New WoD models

Blizzard recently updated the World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor model viewer, with the female gnome and male tauren model. Blizzard writes

“Our character artists strived to recapture the charm of the classic models while taking advantage of the expressiveness of their fluid new animations to bring new life to these beloved characters. We hope you like the new looks as much as we enjoyed making them.”

Looking pretty good if you ask me. What do you think about the upcoming WoW expansion? Will you buy and play it?

 

Link to the WoW model viewer:

http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/warlords-of-draenor/#characters

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gReep

May 31st

News

Nintendo 2DS out in Oct. 12, cost $130

Today we were fortunate to receive the news from Nintendo. They will release a new hand held console, the Nintendo 2DS. It will be released in Oct. 12 and the cost will be 130$.

Nintendo writes

“The system features a distinctive fixed, slate-type form factor …. Nintendo 2DS maintains many of the same hardware features as Nintendo 3DS: dual screens, game-play controls and touch-screen features. The system also has backward compatibility with the existing library of more than 2,000 Nintendo DS games, as well as access to wireless connectivity features like multiplayer online game play, fun Nintendo Video content and great digitally delivered games in the Nintendo eShop.”

Here’s their entire press release.

Nintendo Offers Unrivaled Value and Variety This Holiday Season with Lower Wii U Price, Zelda Wii U Bundle and New Nintendo 2DS Portable

Top Nintendo Video Games Get Launch Dates Through the End of 2013

REDMOND, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Nintendo outlined a campaign that will offer consumers unprecedented levels of value and variety this holiday season. That proposition includes:

Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Ninten …
Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS games in 2D, launches on Oct. 12, the same day as Pokémon X and Pokémon Y. (Photo: Business Wire)

A $50 price drop for the Wii U Deluxe Set to a new suggested retail price of just $299.99, effective on Sept. 20.
A limited-edition Wii U bundle featuring The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD launching on Sept. 20.
The introduction of Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS games in 2D. Nintendo 2DS launches Oct. 12, the same day as Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, at a suggested retail price of $129.99.
Dates for an outstanding lineup of Q4 video games for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U.
The announcements demonstrate Nintendo’s aggressive approach to providing new games and experiences available only on Nintendo platforms for all types of people this holiday season. Nintendo announced these items at the GameStop Managers Show in Las Vegas.

“Nintendo has one of the strongest and most diverse video game lineups in our history,” said Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America’s president and COO. “Today we’re making those unique Nintendo experiences more accessible and affordable. However you play and whatever you play, Nintendo has you covered.”

Nintendo 2DS

The newest member of the Nintendo 3DS family is designed specifically for anyone looking for a more affordable entry point into the world of Nintendo hand-held video games. Nintendo 2DS will be available in Red or Blue on Oct. 12 at a suggested retail price of $129.99.

Nintendo 2DS plays the entire library of packaged and downloadable games for Nintendo 3DS only in 2D. The system features a distinctive fixed, slate-type form factor, and optional carrying cases will be available in Red or Blue at launch at a suggested retail price of $12.99. Nintendo 2DS maintains many of the same hardware features as Nintendo 3DS: dual screens, game-play controls and touch-screen features. The system also has backward compatibility with the existing library of more than 2,000 Nintendo DS games, as well as access to wireless connectivity features like multiplayer online game play, fun Nintendo Video content and great digitally delivered games in the Nintendo eShop. To view a video of Nintendo 2DS, visit http://youtu.be/sAExBTWIp3M.

People eager to test drive the new system will have the chance beginning in October, when Nintendo 2DS joins a sampling tour in conjunction with Simon Malls that visits several different markets before it wraps up on Nov. 3. For more information about the tour, visit http://www.nintendo.com.

New Suggested Retail Price – Wii U Deluxe Set

Starting Sept. 20, the Deluxe version of Nintendo’s Wii U system will be reduced in price by $50, to a new suggested retail price of just $299.99. The new price makes Wii U an even greater value, particularly with the strong lineup of Wii U games available and on the way for the system in 2013. These include Pikmin 3, The Wonderful 101, EarthBound, New Super Luigi U, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Super Mario 3D World and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD Bundle

A new limited-edition Wii U bundle featuring The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD launches on Sept. 20 at a suggested retail price of $299.99. The bundle includes a black Deluxe Wii U console; a GamePad controller adorned with gold lettering, a gold Hyrule crest and gold symbols from the game; a download code for the digital version of Hyrule Historia, a book that details the chronology, history and artwork of The Legend of Zelda series; and a code that can be used to download The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD from the Nintendo eShop immediately at no additional cost.

The digital version of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD will also launch on Sept. 20, while the packaged version launches Oct. 4 with distinctive gold-foil packaging, both at a suggested retail price of $49.99. GameStop is also offering an exclusive Ganondorf figurine bundled with the packaged game at a suggested retail price of $54.99.

Q4 Games

The robust lineup of games on the way for Nintendo systems in Q4 includes:

Wii U

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD: Launches Sept. 20 (downloadable) and Oct. 4 (packaged) at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Wii Party U: Launches Oct. 25 bundled with a Wii Remote Plus controller and stand at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Super Mario 3D World: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $59.99.
Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze: Launches Dec. 6 at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Wii Fit U: Launches this holiday season. Further details, including launch date, pricing and bundling information, will be revealed at a later date.
Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games™: Launches this holiday season. Further details, including launch date and pricing, will be revealed at a later date.
Third-party titles: Previously announced titles on the way from Nintendo’s publishing partners include: Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure (Sept. 24) and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes (Fall) from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; Skylanders SWAP Force (Oct. 13) and Call of Duty: Ghosts (Nov. 5) from Activision Publishing; Sonic Lost World (Oct. 22) from SEGA; and Rayman Legends (Sept. 3), Just Dance 2014 (Oct. 8), Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag (Oct. 29) and Watch_Dogs (Nov. 19) from Ubisoft.
Nintendo 3DS

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $39.99.
Mario Party: Island Tour: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $39.99.
Third-party titles: Previously announced titles on the way from Nintendo’s publishing partners include: Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure (Sept. 24); LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Universe in Peril (Fall) and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate (Oct. 25) from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; Skylanders SWAP Force (Oct. 13) from Activision Publishing; Adventure Time: Explore the Dungeon Because I DON’T KNOW! (Nov. 19) from D3Publisher; and Sonic Lost World (Oct. 22) from SEGA.
Remember that Nintendo systems feature parental controls that let adults manage the content their children can access. For more information about this and other features, visit http://www.nintendo.com/wiiu and http://www.nintendo.com/3ds.

Nintendo 2DS will be offered for sale after FCC authorization is obtained.

 

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gReep

August 30th

News

World of Warcraft: Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde

The new WoW lore book from Mist of Pandaria is here. It’s called Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde.

Blizzard announces

Warchief Garrosh’s assassins strike at Vol’jin, leaving him at death’s door. But fate smiles on the wounded Darkspear leader when renowned brewmaster Chen Stormstout transports him to the safety of an isolated mountain monastery. There, Vol’jin wrestles with old hatreds smoldering between the Alliance and the Horde as he struggles to recover alongside a mysterious human soldier.

Yet this is only the beginning of Vol’jin’s worries. Soon, he becomes embroiled in an invasion of Pandaria launched by the Zandalari, revered trolls driven by dreams of conquest and power. This ancient tribe offers Vol’jin a chance to seize the glory that is the birthright of all trolls… an offer made even more tempting after Garrosh’s brazen treachery.

Amid these troubling events, Vol’jin is rocked by intense visions depicting his race’s grand history. As he questions where his loyalties lie, he knows he must make a choice about his own destiny that could save his people or damn them to languish under Garrosh’s heel.

Written by: Michael Stackpole
Release date: July 2, 2013
Preorder at amazon.

 

Excerpt from Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde

When awareness came to him again, Vol’jin found himself whole and hale, strong of limb and standing tall. A fierce sun beat down on him as he stood in a courtyard with thousands of other trolls. They had nearly a head’s height on him, yet none of them made an issue of it. In fact, none of them seemed to notice him at all.

Another dream. A vision.

He did not immediately recognize the place, though he had a sense that he’d been there before. Or, rather,later, for this city had not surrendered to the surrounding jungle’s invasion. The stone carvings on walls remained crisp and clear. Arches had not been shattered. Cobbles had not been broken or scavenged. And the stepped pyramid, before which they all stood, had not been humbled by time’s ravages.

He stood amid a crowd of Zandalari, members of the troll tribe from which all other tribes had descended. They had become, over the years, taller than most and exalted. In the vision they seemed less a tribe than a caste of priests, powerful and educated, quite apt for leading.

But in Vol’jin’s time, their ability to lead had degraded. It is because their dreams all be trapped here.

This was the Zandalar empire at the height of its power. It dominated Azeroth but would fall victim to its own might. Greed and avarice would spark intrigues. Factions would split. New empires would rise, like the Gurubashi empire, which would drive Vol’jin’s Darkspear trolls into exile. Then it would fall too.

The Zandalari hungered for a return to the time when they were ascendant. It was a time when trolls were a most noble race. The trolls, united, had risen to heights which someone like Garrosh Hellscream could not possibly dream existed.

A sense of magic ancient and powerful flooded through Vol’jin, providing him the key to why he was seeing the Zandalari. Titan magic predated even the Zandalari. It was more powerful than they were. As high as the Zandalari had been above things that slithered and stung, so were the titans above them—likewise their magic.

Vol’jin moved through the crowd as might a specter. The Zandalari faces glowed with fearsome smiles—the sort he’d seen on trolls when trumpets blared and drums pounded, inviting them to battle. Trolls were built to rend and slay—Azeroth was their world, and all in it were subject to their dominion. Though Vol’jin might differ with other trolls as to the identity of their enemies, he was no less fierce in battle, and vastly proud of how the Darkspears had conquered their foes and liberated the Echo Isles.

So Bwonsamdi be mocking me with this vision. The Zandalari dreamed of empire, and Vol’jin wished the best for his people. Vol’jin knew the difference. It was simple enough to plan for slaughter and far more complex to create a future. For a loa who liked his sacrifices bloody and battle-torn, Vol’jin’s vision held little appeal.

Vol’jin ascended the pyramid. As he moved up, things became more substantial. Whereas before he had been in a silent world, he could now feel drums thrumming up through the stone. The breeze brushed over his light fur, tousled his hair. It brought with it the sweet scent of flowers—a scent just slightly sharper than that of spilled blood.

The drumming pounded into him. His heart beat in time. Voices came to him. Shouts from below. Commands from above. He refused to retreat but stopped climbing higher. It seemed he might be rising through time as he would be rising through lake water. If he reached the top, he would be there with the Zandalari and feel what they felt. He would know their pride. He would breathe in their dreams.

He would become one with them.

He would not allow himself that luxury.

His dream for the Darkspear tribe might not have excited Bwonsamdi, but it provided life for the Darkspears. The Azeroth the Zandalari had known had been utterly and irrevocably changed. Portals had been opened. New peoples had come through. Lands had been shattered, races warped, and more power released than the Zandalari knew existed. The disparate races—elves, humans, trolls, orcs, and even goblins, among others—had united to defeat Deathwing, creating a power structure that revolted and offended the Zandalari. The Zandalari hungered to reestablish rule over a world that had so changed that their dreams could never come true.

Vol’jin caught himself. “Never” be a powerful word.

In an eyeblink the vision shifted. He now stood at the pyramid’s apex, looking down into the faces of the Darkspears. His Darkspears. They trusted his knowledge of the world. If he told them they could recapture the glory that was once theirs, they would follow him. If he commanded them to take Stranglethorn or Durotar, they would. The Darkspears would boil out of the islands, subjugating all in their path, simply because he wished it done.

He could do it. He could see a way. He’d had Thrall’s ear, and the orc had trusted him in military matters. He could spend the months of recuperation plotting out the campaigns and organizing strategies. Within a year or two of his return from Pandaria—if that was still where he was—the Darkspear banner would be anointed with blood and more feared than it already was.

And what be that gaining me?

I would be pleased.

Vol’jin spun. Bwonsamdi stood above him, a titanic figure, ears forward and straining to gather the pulsed shouts from below. It would gain you peace, Vol’jin, for you be doing what your troll nature demands.

Is that all we be meant for?

The loa do not require you to be more. What purpose be there in your bein’ more?

Vol’jin looked for an answer to that question. His search left him staring at a void. Its darkness reached and engulfed him, leaving him with no answer and certainly no peace.

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gReep

June 7th

News

World of Warcraft loses a million subscribers since february

Historys largest MMO hit game has shrunk some more. And a good some at that. In only the last three months World of Warcraft has lost over a million subscribers.

This news hit the scene after yesterdays quarterly investor call. The announcement was made by Activision-Blizzard.

It was reported that this february World of Warcraft had 9.6 million subscribers. Now that number is down to 8.3 million subscribers. A huge loss of around 1.3 million active subscribers.

8.3 million active subscribers is still an enormous amount of people paying for the chance to play an online game every month, however it is now obvious that Blizzard must take steps to regain some of this previously owned leverage.
Discussions have for some time circulated around Blizzard wanting to take WoW back to more of a vanilla feel. Some argue that this is the only way for rapid subscriber growth for the game.

A million subscribers less for WoW might create an opportunity for other companies. There will no doubt be a real vacuum to fill, with so many players leaving the game.

Will the loss of so many players mean something for the rest of the gaming market? If so, what? And how should the vacuum be filled?

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gReep

May 9th

News

New editorial to stir things up

Mmoopinion is working on a new editorial. We hope to inspire a great discussion with this long and well written piece. Furthermore it will be a discussion we think is desperately needed in todays gaming scene.

The topic will be subscription mmos vs the free to play model, the misconceptions and the reality.

We hope for you to welcome this discussion, as we do, and we will make it public in the days to come. We will announce via social media.

In the meantime join us on Facebook and Twitter below to keep yourself updated on the event.

Join us then to discuss one of the biggest issues in the mmo scene today.

Stay tuned.

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gReep

April 2nd

Events

News

StarCraft 15th Anniversary Special Mission

Today marks the 15th anniversary of the most popular rts-game in history, StarCraft. To celebrate this Blizzard has released an objective with a reward.

All one has to do is simply to play one game of StarCraft II, in any online mode, against other players.

The reward for doing this is a Feat of Strength achievement, and the classic character portraits bellow will also be unlocked. This offer extends to April 17th.

Blizzard writes in their announcement

“Following its release on March 31, 1998, StarCraft warped millions of us through time and space to the 25th century, where we explored the unruly Koprulu Sector for the first time. We built armies and brought ruin to countless enemy bases as we helped the terrans, protoss, and zerg wage war against each other. The release of StarCraft: Brood War just nine months later saw the Queen of Blades become one of the most iconic villains of all time, and the popularization of professional StarCraft competition in South Korea.

Fast-forward through twelve long, anticipation-filled years to 2010, when StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty was finally unleashed upon the world. We guided Jim Raynor’s actions as he fought valiantly against Arcturus Mengsk’s Dominion forces, and cheered on as professional competition, now fondly referred to as StarCraft II eSports, exploded in popularity on a truly global stage. Now, with less than one month behind us since the release ofStarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm, we’re faced with not just Kerrigan and her ferocious brood, but the realization that time really does fly when you’re having fun.

Mission Objective:

  • Play one game of StarCraft II in any online mode before 11:59 p.m. PDT on April 17.

Beginning March 31, play one Arcade, Custom, Ranked, Training, Unranked, or Versus A.I. game to earn theStarCraft 15-Year Anniversary Feat of Strength achievement. As soon as you’ve received the achievement, all three portraits will be permanently unlocked in your StarCraft II character profile.

We know what you’re thinking, and no, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke, though it is important to note that Campaign, Offline Custom Games, replays, and observing your friends’ games don’t count toward reward progress, so make sure to play in one of the previously listed online game modes. Furthermore, the Feat of Strength will be awarded only after your game is over, so if you leave that 4v4 ladder match early, the achievement will not be given to you until everyone else has left the game as well.”

As a bonus, Blizzard has released a new classic wallpaper to mark the anniversary.

 

Time to go play.

 

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gReep

March 31st

News

Art day: The art of Josh Atack

The talented concept artist Josh Atack recently shared some of his great work with the community. The art he shared came in the form of vintage-styled World of Warcraft posters.

Josh has his home at badgertracks.net.

 

Dalaran

 

Thunderbluff

 

Undercity

 

Have a link to some great game concept art you want to share?

Do so in the comments bellow!

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gReep

March 30th

Articles

News

Morning conference: Making $10,000 through Diablo III

Some of us remember the infamous player who made over $10,000 with Diablo III‘s real money auction house system. Some discussions followed on reddit, which the player took part in.
There he said he’d never scammed, botted or otherwise cheated at all in his efforts because trading in item markets is part of how he has fun, so it “wouldn’t make sense” to cheat.

He, among other things, said that

Gold is like a foreign currency. It represents value, but only within the specific game world. You can’t use gold to buy things in stores in the US, just like you can’t use Yen to buy things in those stores. If, however, you can convert that currency to a usable one, it has an “exchange rate.” Gold has an exchange rate exactly like a foreign currency has. (Except gold is more easily exchanged than 90% of the currencies in the world.)

Since then Blizzard has promised to look over the currency converting abilities of the Diablo 3 auction house, but so far they haven’t really gotten around to it. It might not be in Blizzards best interest to have a system where elaborate strategies are used to extract these kinds of sums of money, but it’s not in their interest to remove this initial idea from the game either.

Making this much money from one game however, raises some questions. The interesting ones for now are; Have you ever wanted to make money from gaming? If you would go for it, how would you do it? Would it be through systems like the Diablo 3 auction house, or would you want to earn your money through pro gaming, tournaments or streaming?

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gReep

March 29th

News

Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition, update 9 and creativity

Recently 4J Studios released a new trailer for the Xbox360 console version of Minecraft. The trailer shows the upcoming update nr. 9 for the big hit game.

In the trailer we also see “The end of the world” and footage of the Enderdragon.

Minecraft could be considered to be a pretty interesting game. Not because of the playing mechanics or graphics. The huge portion of freedom the players have has attracted many to buy the game. Minecraft survives in a highly competitive market due to having creativity and player freedom at its core.

When one sees the current game projects generally and the mmo projects in particular, the feeling is that a lot of today’s game developing companies and publishers should learn from Minecraft. Learn how another mindset in regards to online gaming is possible.

In order to craft new, modern and iconoclastic games the player creativity and freedom should be put at the center of the productions. The Minecraft creator Markus Persson did this in his own way, but there are many other ways of doing it.

Even though it can’t always be easy to think outside the box in a very tech-savvy industry, a larger effort should be made. Maybe it will be a coming product of that kind that is going to set the new standard for the industry in the years to come?

How do you think the game developers should tackle the creative and freedom based aspect in mmo games, in a practical way?

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gReep

March 28th

Editorials

News

Swtor: Game back on track with expansion?

The Hutts will not be allowed to expand their dominion at our expense.

―Supreme Chancellor Leontyne Saresh

 

The expansion “Rise of the Hutt Cartel” has been dated and will be hitting the stores on April 14th. This was announced by Bioware at the Game Developers Conference, the worlds largest conference for game developers, held in San Francisco this week.

A while back Star Wars: The Old Republic  the big investment of EA and BioWare, had to go from being a traditional subscription mmo, to changing its format to free to play.

Since so much resources had been put into this colossal project, for example thousands of hours of recorded voice acting and of course the stake in itself of constructing a mmo, going free to play was seen as an enormous loss for the two companies, EA in particular.

This affair got so bad that some started to promote the idea, quite vigorously, of the the time for the subscription mmo being over. More of this in our upcoming editorial.

Despite old debacles, EA and BioWare decided to move on and focus on their future expansion.

And here it is.

 

Will you play Rise of the Hutt Cartel? And will this expansion be a possible clean slate and player magnet for Swtor?
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gReep

March 27th

News
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MMO Opinion

MMO Opinion is an opinion and news driven online magazine, regarding the world of the massive multiplayer online games.
Our wish is to create strong bonds with the game community and the developers and to serve as a channel through which news and editorials with high quality will be published and discussed.
Mmoopinion.com is not associated with any game developing company. We are an independent, free source of reporting. We want to be a platform of independent, free and informed opinion and news.