Eidos and Funcom have announced that they are teaming up with the folks over at Gamespot.com to offer up to 15,000 selected gamers a chance to participate in a Player vs Player (PvP) beta weekend event from Friday the 18th of April until the following Sunday the 20th.
The game’s deep character creation system will be available to play with during this time, in which players will be able to make a highly customized avatar from among any of the 12 classes. Your character will then be granted level 20 and spec’ed out for combat to allow everyone involved to get a little taste of the game’s combat system. Forgoing any initial time commitment is a nice idea to let players see what they are getting into before they potentially waste hours playing a class that they later figure out they don’t prefer.
It seems as though the developers are aiming to take full advantage of the game’s pushed back release date not only to further test and tweak the different classes, but also in order to do a large scale stress test to avoid any launch day congestion that so often happens when a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game is released.
If these things aren’t in good order before the final release date (May 23rd for now), it could have a negative impact on the game’s popularity before it ever gets to take off. Afterall, It doesn’t take much these days for newly released MMO’s future to be quickly crushed under the treads of the tank that is World of Warcraft.
[See also: Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures gallery]