Preorder Starcraft 2, Get a Beta Key!

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - No Comments »

Starcraft 2 Box Art

OMG Box art!

In case the title itself wasn’t descriptive enough to you, allow me to elaborate:

For as cheap as $5 from Gamestop, you too can have a Starcraft 2 beta key! If you haven’t snagged one from the Facebook page, Twitter, or other psuedo-random selection but are a die-hard Starcraft fan, this might be the route for you.

To my knowledge, this is the first time Blizzard has ever used this model to distribute beta keys. It seems to be jumpstarting their sales; as of the time of this writing, the regular version is the #1 seller in video games (and the collector’s edition is #3) on Amazon.com. Its a great system that has been used a lot in the past few years, and its great to see Blizzard on the gravy-train while giving customers what they want.

On the flip side, if the purpose of the beta is to actually test the game for bugs and balance to prepare it for release, selecting testers by a buy-in program may not seem like the optimal way to find people. Performance in other games, like sending invites to anyone on a Starcraft or Warcraft III ladder, or even top WoW players, seems like the best way to find the people who will find minute issues with your game. In the future, I think we will likely see a system like this more streamlined with universal Battle.net profiles.

Much how the very long WoW beta built up hype for the game, it seems pretty clear that this has become the marketing stage of the beta. The ability to essentially buy into playing the game early allows players who are excited about the game to play it now without the promise of a finished product.

How many copies did you buy?

For the Hoard 1.5: Whistle of the Venomhide Ravasaur

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - 1 Comment »

It’s been a long, 20-day grind. But after killing dinos, stealing feathers, stabbing bugs and gathering eggs, it finally is time to trade in my Venomhide hatchling for a full-fledged, rideable Ravasaur mount. Join me as I gather together all my missing quest items and journey back to Un Goro Crater one last time to finally experience the glory of the Venomhide Ravasaur.

Runes of Magic: Chapter 3 Begins

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - No Comments »

The first slice of the new Runes of Magic update, Chapter 3: The Elder Kingdoms, is now up on the official server. The update(3.0.0), titled “King’s Call” introduces a small portion of the continent of Zandorya. The update also adds a series of new items, quests, and new features. Players can now select the difficulty of instances like “Hall of Survivors” and “Heart of the Ocean.” There’s also a new function that lets players save their current progress in a dungeon or during a raid and return later(praise Jesus).

Updates to the monster card system are also present, cards which drop off monsters will now provide attribute bonuses. Guilds also have new things to play with. Chapter 3 brings with it three new guild drill grounds, six new guild quests, and stone fortifications to expand guild castles. Finally, slight balance changes have been made to keep gameplay as fair as possible.

Grand Chase Updates to Season 3

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - No Comments »

Grand Chase, the popular brawler MMO from Ntreev, has announced that it’s launching into its third season. Season 3 will be launched in two parts: Act 1 this month, and Act 2 in May.

Grand Chase: Season 3 will introduce a few major updates to the game, including revised missions, items, user interfaces, along with new dungeons and lands. Alcrubra, a new desert area, will appear beyond Silver Land and will include a serious amount of dungeons: the Goblin Work Site, Underpass of Lost Hope, Kungji Village, and Sands of Illusion. Another new area will be Archimedia along with the dungeon Hammer’s Reach. Equipment and items will receive an overhaul, making them easier due to stat normalization. The interface will also be receiving a facelift, missions will receive a reward scaling system and there will be a few technical updates as well.

Dragon Oath Giving Away Dragon Turtle Mount

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - 14 Comments »

Dragon Oath, the martial arts free-to-play MMORPG by ChangYou has recently gotten a new manager Community Manager (Lucy Song), and to celebrate, she’s giving away a Dragon Turtle Mount. The Dragon Turtle is a unique and powerful mount that boosts speed by 70% and can carry a passenger along. To win a Dragon Turtle mount, all you have to do is make a forum post about why you love the game in this here topic. That’s it, now hurry!

Lore Hound is LFM Bloggers

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - 2 Comments »

If you like MMOGs and have a clear writing voice that you’d like to show to the world, you may be just what we’re looking for.

Lore Hound is seeking new writers to add to our core blog crew as we grow the site. If you play at least one MMOG, either casually or hard core, have an opinion to express, and can form a cohesive and coherent paragraph, we invite you to apply. Our requirements are as follows:

  • You should be an active player of at least one MMOG.
  • Schedules will be flexible, but you should be willing to commit to a set number of regular posts.
  • You must be fluent in English.
  • Prior published writing experience is a plus, but not required.
  • You must be at least 16 years of age.
  • Having an interest in learning about additional games as possible writing topics is a big plus.

The application process is simple. Simply submit the following:

  • A synopsis of your gaming history, especially with MMOGs, including what games you’re currently playing.
  • Two sample blog posts covering the kind of topics that you would like to write about for Lore Hound. Base your word count on other posts you’ve seen on the site and the length that you think you need to appropriately explain your topic or make your argument. Longer isn’t always better.
  • Any other information that you think would be helpful, such as prior writing experience or your resume.

Send all this to write@lorehound.com. We will contact candidates soon, but may not be able to respond to all inquiries.

As we are a brand new site and still building an audience, this will be an unpaid position. However, we do try to reward our writers with perks such as gaming loot, paid accounts to games that they cover and access to limited beta tests.

Good luck, and have fun!

Updated 1/30/11

We currently are on the lookout especially for candidates interested in writing about Guild Wars 2 and/or RIFT.

Age of Conan: Rise of the Godslayer Dated – May 11th.

Posted by on April 23, 2010 - No Comments »

Funcom has announced via a press release that the expansion to Age of Conan, titled ‘Rise of the Godslayer‘ will be released on May 11th. Funcom also announced that the expansion will receive both a retail and digital release. The retail version will come bundled with the original game, alongside with several exclusive in-game items.

Funcom is proud to announce the launch of the pre-order campaign for ‘Rise of the Godslayer’, the first expansion for the highly acclaimed massively multiplayer online role-playing game‘Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures’. The expansion, set in the eastern empire of Khitai, builds on an already extensive Conan universe and will let players travel to a unique part of Conan’s world where an ancient traditional culture clashes with dark forces.‘Rise of the Godslayer’ expands on an already massive game world, and will also introduce entirely new and exciting gameplay mechanics.

For more information on Age of Conan: Rise of the Godslayer, be sure to check out the official website.

Lore Hound MMOcast: Episode 4

Posted by on April 22, 2010 - 2 Comments »

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Join the Lore Hounds as we discuss the latest news in the MMO world. The lineup this week includes Juggynaut, iTZKooPA, and Amatera.

This week the discussion covers:

EA’s foray into the browser based free to play games, Lord of Ultima launches
Heroes of Might & Magic Online heads to beta
Runes of Magic removes RMT trading temporarily
WAR’s Jeff Hickman apologizes for Mythic’s billing issues
Turbine is purchased by Warner Bros.
EQ2 Passport offers a new subscription to former EQ2 accounts.
Discussion: Are you fearing the summer lull of gaming content – MMOG and otherwise – or looking forward to being able to catch-up, play things you missed like Dog’s Life

Click the player above to listen, download the podcast, subscribe via RSS, or subscribe on iTunes.

Also, get involved with our podcasts! E-mail us at podcast@lorehound.com or leave us a voicemail using the button below or simply call us at (304) 884-LORE.  Remember you can follow us on Twitter for a chance to win a Celestial Steed mount, too!