7 days around the MMO world

Fortunately for the readers, we here at TVGB covered a lot of the major news happenings in the MMO space this week. But unfortunately for this article it leaves us stuck between a rock and a hard place on what to cover for you. Not to worry though we have a trick up our sleeves and we’ll also recap some of the bigger news stories that happened this week.

It seems like every MMO you play, there is that one infamous character that everyone just hates. Sometime it’s justified and sometimes there’s just something about this person’s attitude that rub you the wrong way. Well a professor Loyola University set out to create a character just like this in City of Heroes, all in the name of sociology.

Professor David Myers created the superhero Twixt in an elaborate study of online sociology. As the character Twixt he would do just about everything he could to drive the rest of the game’s population absolutely mad. He would grief people in every which way possible, all with in the rules of the game of course, like teleporting a PvP opponent right in front of NPC guards that would then kill the other player. He would also “kill steal” among other annoying tricks. His purpose was to prove that even while abiding by the rules of the game, a population can make you an outcast by not adhering to the populations rules. For example it’s not cool in most MMOs to kill steal, which is kill a mob that has been tagged by another player.

His experiment worked because Twixt became one of the most hated characters on the server. By not assimilating into the game’s culture and thus not abiding by its standard of rules, he was push out as an outcast. He has since published his report (*.doc link) on City of Heroes and blogged about it on his personal blog. Needless to say the experiment proved to be interesting and we’ll be curious if Myers continues his research in other games.

We would like to take rest of the space in this article to recap some of things we already covered in case you missed it. BioWare released a post on their blog describing the effort going into the voice portion of Star Wars the Old Republic and needless to say, it’s epic. There is a lot of detail going into the scripts all the way down to the actors themselves. Hopefully all this hype becomes justified in a great game.

World of Warcraft is switching operators in China and that change over has left China WoW-less for more than a month now, not only that but it appears they’ll have to wait longer. Ignoring the fact that Wrath of the Lich King hasn’t been seen over there yet, this news puts the new operator NetEase in a not so easy position. The hold up is related to licensing issues with the Chinese government and is costing Blizzard millions. Hopefully that mess gets straightened out soon or Blizzard will have to report a first time subscription decline.

Irony is a strange beast and is the case when it comes to George Lucas. We love him for bringing us Star Wars but we want him to stay away from anything related to it because we’re almost positive he’ll mess it up. Well it appears that Lucas can’t keep his fingers out of anything, including The Old Republic. That’s ok because he’s not alone as Mythic apparently is getting involved on the project as well. Of course their level of involvement, both Mythic and Lucas, is vague and we kind of assumed that Mythic would get involved as part of the merger with BioWare, so no brainer there.

In other MMO news:

  • Champions Online officially going into open beta on Aug 17.
  • Darkfall gets a free expansion pack that looks more like just a patch to us.
  • Get two weeks free in Age of Conan if you’re into that kind of thing.
  • Aion’s collectors edition almost sold out in the UK, take that nay sayers!
  • Square Enix cracks down on gardeners in Final Fantasy XI.