Posts Tagged ‘press release’

The Secret World Release Date Revealed (Briefly)

8 February 2012 | 1 Comment » | Pherephassa

Early this morning the fans of Funcom‘s upcoming mmorpg, The Secret World, had an excited moment when gamer.no reported a release date had been given at last: April 24th. Ragnar Tornquist, The Secret World‘s senior producer, had apparently announced this date at a Norwegian conference, and it was quickly broadcast across the net for the fans who are eagerly awaiting any news about the game. After a flurry, puzzlement ensued when the article and the tweet disappeared.

The article later reappeared in a slightly edited form. It turns out the announcement was premature; Funcom later produced a press release stating that the April 24th date was only an internal goal. “April 2012″ is still the official date.

Funcom has previously announced the launch month for the game to be April 2012 and wants to stress that there is currently no change or update on the expected time for commercial launch of “The Secret World“.

For those following the game, April 24th has been and remains the expected release date. A poster in The Secret World‘s official forums explains why this makes such a great date for the anticipated release. It’s unofficial, of course, but the logic is sound, and now it’s been paired with a premature and unofficial announcement. Personally, I’m hoping this is the day. It’s just a few days after my birthday, so I can get my partying out of the way before settling down to enjoy my gift to myself.

What do you think? Is this a likely date? Will we get our hands on something official soon, or will the game be delayed?

Cataclysm Sells More Than 3.3 Million Copies

13 December 2010 | 2 Comments » | Amatera

And that’s just in the first 24 hours after launch:

IRVINE, Calif. — December 13, 2010 — Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced that World of Warcraft®: Cataclysm, the third expansion for the critically acclaimed massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), sold through more than 3.3 million copies as of its first 24 hours of release, making it the fastest-selling PC game of all time.* This milestone eclipses the previous record of more than 2.8 million copies sold in 24 hours, set in November 2008 by Blizzard’s second World of Warcraft expansion, Wrath of the Lich King®.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm was simultaneously released in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Europe, Russia, Southeast Asia, Australia, and New Zealand on December 7, and became available in Korea and the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau on December 9. More than 10,000 stores throughout the world opened their doors at midnight to welcome players who wanted to be among the first to obtain a copy of the expansion. In addition, more than 15,000 players attended official launch events hosted by Blizzard and key retail partners in the US, Canada, France, Germany, Russia, Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, the UK, and the region of Taiwan.

“We had to bring Azeroth to the brink of destruction in Cataclysm, but the result was our best expansion yet,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “We want to thank all of our new, existing, and returning players throughout the world for their incredible enthusiasm and support, and we look forward to hearing what they think about all the new content.”

As cited in the full press release, that makes this expansion officially bigger than Wrath of the Lich King, but not bigger than Activision-Blizzard’s other Q4 release, Call of Duty: Black Ops. Of course, we’ve got to remember that game had months and months of in-your-face promotion and it released on many different platforms with three different SKUs at the same time. Cataclysm also hasn’t hit mainland China yet, and going by the general release schedule for such things, may not do so for awhile.

Grats, Blizzard! You once again have the fastest-selling PC game of all time!

Could Microsoft be Publishing APB?

25 April 2008 | 2 Comments » | LHStaff

Before I begin, let me clarify that I do not know anybody who works in the higher ups at either Realtime Worlds, or Microsoft Game Studios. This entire post in generally just pure speculation given by the recent courses of action by the two companies in the last few months.

Anyways, now that’s out of the way, lets carry on. Is there a possibility that All Points Bulletin, Realtime Worlds newest crime MMORPG, could be getting the publishing treatment from mega-corporation Microsoft? Absolutely and it really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody after what we have witnessed over the last few months. Allow me to explain:

I recently wrote up a post explaining Microsoft’s enigmatic history with MMORPGs. To put it short they have a vaporous history with them. However, given that the cancellation of Marvel Universe Online occurred only a couple months ago, could Microsoft and Realtime Worlds been gearing up for a partnership? Let’s take a look at it from Microsoft’s perspective. Back in 2005 they entered into a deal with Marvel and Cryptic to make an MMO based on super heroes. Exciting stuff, right? Well maybe not for Microsoft. You see Microsoft has what many people like to call “big boy” syndrome, where in, if they can’t be the biggest in whatever field they are pursuing they usually don’t bother at all. So while City of Heroes was successful it definitely wasn’t nearly the most successful, and it was unlikely a Marvel MMO would get much more successful than CoH. Enter Realtime Worlds.

Originally announcing its game, APB, in 2006 Realtime Worlds was a very small company with no releases. After securing a publishing agreement for APB with Webzen, a Korean MMO company, it later secured a publishing agreement with Microsoft for it’s single player GTA-styled crime game Crackdown, which was met with favorable reviews. Skip ahead a couple years after Crackdown has already been released and Realtime Worlds had acquired $50 million in funding for APB and “other projects”. Using some of this money they were able to re-secure the rights for APB back from Webzen. As of now, APB is without publisher…

So where does this leave us? Well if you look at what has happened, as I have explained it, there are a few noticeable connections:

  1. Microsoft no longer has any commitments to dedicate money to Marvel Ultimate Universe.
  2. Realtime Worlds no longer has any commitment to Webzen.
  3. Both Microsoft and Realtime Worlds have a favorable relationship, where in the latter has gone on record as saying they were “heartbroken” that Microsoft did not request them to make a Crackdown 2.

Now here is where most of my speculation will come in. With the release of GTA IV coming in next week, Microsoft knows just how important the property is. It is one of the most popular games in history, maybe even more so than Halo. Because of this, exploiting an MMO in the same scheme as GTA (and created by the creator of GTA) probably hasn’t escaped Microsoft’s ever scheming eye. After all, given the right mechanics, a GTA MMO could become more popular than WoW (you heard it here first!). Not only that, but securing this game and having it be exclusive to their Xbox 360/Games for Windows platform would make a lot of sense. The PS3 has a lot of heavy hitters coming this year, and if Microsoft really wants to step up their game this is one way to do it.

So there is my speculation and evidence. I have no real proof that this is happening, but it would make some sense. Realtime Worlds still isn’t a large enough company to publish the game on their own (even with $50 million) and Microsoft desperately needs some new exciting franchises now that Halo is wrapping up. Of course, I guess SOE could publish APB as well, but we all know what happens when they do that…

The Future of Cryptic Studios

6 November 2007 | 2 Comments » | LHStaff

Earlier today, in a joint press release with NCSoft, Cryptic Studios announced that they will no longer be running the CoH/CoV games, and has thus decided to sell the IP to the publisher. It is very shocking news, and we can’t even contemplate what might happen to the game. However, that is not what we are here to discuss. Today, we look at the future of Cryptic Studios, the company that gave us one of the most unique MMORPGs that still exists today.

If you were to look at the Cryptic website you’d notice they have placed a F.A.Q. (here) detailing the issues of the move. Unfortunately, within this F.A.Q. is very limited information on what the company plans on persuing next. So what could be in their future as a company? Three words: Marvel Universe Online.

Marvel, after losing its original lawsuit against Cryptic, has now decided it would be better to bring them into their midst and have them develop their newest endeavor, an MMORPG based off the Marvel comics. This can be seen as a good and bad thing. First off, for those who loved the character creation within CoH, you can expect the same type of creation within Marvel Universe Online only with, presumably, more options and much better graphics. No doubt there will also be more powers and other such things comic book fans love. However, with Cryptic signing on to make this their new MMO can we expect there to be more grind as well? What about the endgame? CoH was notorious for having almost no end-game material.

Cryptic has a good history, but only time will tell whether they have learned from their past mistakes or not. Personally, I think it is a bad idea to have the same company who has developed a Super Hero MMORPG already, develop another one. Although, I wouldn’t mind being proven wrong. The ball is in Cryptic’s court.

BioWare + LucasArts = ?

30 October 2007 | No Comments » | LHStaff

Some very interesting news cropped up today telling us all that LucasArts and BioWare have teamed up, yet again, on an unannounced project. It was a very interesting read and one that hinted at a lot of possibilities for the duo. Naturally, I won’t bother restating what has already been said in the press release (you can read that here). What we will discuss here is what exactly this could mean.

BioWare has been developing an MMORPG for a while now, it’s no secret. What is a secret is what exactly their MMORPG is based on. Naturally the gamers of the world have united in an attempt to convince them to make one based off their hit-RPG, Knights of the Old Republic. This notion was, obviously, fueled earlier today by this press release. Now I hate to burst bubbles, I really do, but we have to look at this scenario logically. As much as I’d love an MMORPG based off of KotOR, I just do not see it happening, and here’s why:

  1. LucasArts and Sony Online Entertainment still have a contract that allows for Sony to develop the Star Wars MMO property. I don’t see Sony quietly backing out of this and allowing more competition into their very small arena. A BioWare Star Wars MMO would kill their property.
  2. [Quoted from the LucasArts/BioWare press release today]“BioWare’s mission is to deliver the best story and character-driven games in the world, delivering powerful emotional experiences to our fans.” No MMORPG, ever, has character-driven games. It is, with our current technology, impossible. MMORPGs are world-driven, not character driven.
  3. The press release is announcing a new partnership, not one that has been working on an unannounced title since 2006 (when they announced they were beginning development on an MMORPG).
  4. Why would they announce the partnership but not the game? If this really was about them making a Star Wars MMORPG then they would have announced it along with this deal. Everybody is already assuming that this means the Star Wars MMO is coming. BioWare knows this, and LucasArts knows this which is why they kept their game a secret because with everybody assuming its an MMORPG they don’t have to worry about their new IP being leaked to the public.

I understand that this is all circumstantial evidence, but these things need to be brought up. This deal in no way signifies that their will be a BioWare Star Wars MMORPG. I very much hope I am wrong, but as of right now I believe they may be working on a completely separate game altogether. LucasArts has many, many other IPs including Indiana Jones. There is a good chance BioWare is asking to be a part of one of those franchises.