Daily Archives: July 12, 2012

Armored White War Tiger – Rift Steals Another Page from the Blizzard Playbook

Mounts are where the money is at, right?

Blizzard has been selling sparkle ponies in World of Warcraft for a couple of years now.  The initial queue to buy one was 140,000 transactions deep.  Multiply that by $25.

SOE says that mounts make up the biggest chunk of their cash shop purchases in EverQuest II, which is why they offer… um… such a variety.  Lord of the Rings Online will sell you mounts of many colors for Turbine Points, and they keep cranking out new ones, so they must be moving.  In F2P, if it sells, you start making more.

So if you are looking for another revenue stream, mounts seem like a pretty safe way to go.

And so Rift is now offering up an Armored White War Tiger mount at a special opening price for subscribers. (Who else would want it?)

SPECIAL OFFER ARMORED WHITE WAR TIGER MOUNT AT A SPECIAL PRICE FOR A LIMITED TIME

We’re offering this special Armored White War Tiger to all active RIFT account holders at a special introductory price.

Cold. Unforgiving. The frozen wastelands of Telara can be a deadly place. Stride across the icy tundra atop this fearsome and powerful Armored White War Tiger. Opponents will quake in fear as your mount swiftly covers huge distances, slicing into all attackers with its deadly claws and armored blades. Strong and relentless, this fierce tiger will carry you through your adventures wherever you go in Telara!

Be the envy of your friends as you race into battle on your new mount. This is a limited time offer so act now.

Purchase of this item entitles you to one Armored White Tiger on each character on your RIFT Account.

Your Armored White War Tiger will match the speed of your fastest mount, or grant you 60% run speed if you don’t have another mount.

Trion has offered up mounts in Rift as part of collector’s editions and other special packs.  That is where I got my two headed turtle mount.   But I believe this is the first time they have offered up a mount all by itself.

No word on how limited the time is on the offer, nor what the regular price will be.  At least they are going with the same model as Blizzard where buying the mount gets you a White Tiger on every character associated with your account.

Run Tiger, Run!

I do wonder what all that stuff is hanging out over its butt.  I guess I will have to wait until I see one in-game.  I imaging there will be a few hanging out in Meridian by tonight.  You just have to head to the Trion Worlds account management page to pick one up.

I imagine that this tiger will more than pay for itself… from Trion’s perspective.

Will you be buying one?

Ultima Forever! Will Lord British Find his Fondness for EA Diminishing?

The first great Western RPG has been lovingly restored in Ultima Forever – return to the Ultima series in BioWare’s new cross-platform action RPG. Accept the challenge from Lady British and save the land of Britannia. Play as the Fighter or the Mage and travel alone or with friends, restore virtue and become the Avatar!

From EA’s newly announced Ultima Forever

Hah! Lady British!

It was just seven months ago, give or take a week, that the madness of Lord British seemed to find some focus and he began openly expressing a fondness for Electronic Arts in various interviews.

This seemed to be a pretty thinly veiled attempt to create popular support for the return of Richard Garriott de Cayeux to the arms of EA, where he could take over and revive the Ultima series of games, primarily by being able to set his planned Ultimate RPG in the Britannia setting.  As he put it:

“What essentially makes an Ultima an Ultima is the principles of design,” Garriott explained. “And I’m very confident that when players sit down with this new world they will very quickly recognise that, whether or not we end up doing any deal with Electronic Arts.

“This is clearly the spiritual successor of the Ultima series,” he said.

Or, as he put it before his attempt to woo EA:

I can’t control EA plans for the word Ultima. But we all know that only my team can create the true heir to my previous work.

This expression of fondness was tempered not just by ego, but also by complaints about the sports game mindset at EA, on which he laid the blame for the failure of Ultima VIII to beat Diablo to market, which made me wonder exactly how serious he was.  Still, at the time of these expressions, Lord British said he was talking with EA about the prospect.

EA just never got the memo.

EA, in response to all of this, said that they were not involved in any talks with Mr. Garriott de Cayeux, at which point somebody somebody from Portalarium stepped in and explained that the constrains of the time-space continuum do not really apply to Lord British, so that the fact he had at one point in the past… in our sense of time… broached the subject with EA meant that, from his perspective, he was always and eternally involved in such discussions.  Or something like that.

Anyway, this all died down and Lord British went on to express fondness for a movie about himself, his garage sale game, and the Mayans.

But the fate and future path of the Ultima franchise was still in play.

And today we know why EA suddenly got up in the face of people remaking Ultima IV a while back.  It was because they planned to remake it themselves.  Lord British and his expressions of fondness were but a vain hope.

And so Ultima Forever has been announced.

Get it?  Ultima IV. Ultima For-ever.  So smooth.

Though, oddly, it somehow changed from “Quest of the Avatar” to “Quest for the Avatar.”

Apparently the Avatar got lost somewhere.  They must have based the game on one of my 25 year old save files, since I never actually finished the game, and I was clearly lost.

You might need a map for this…

And just in case you thought that EA was only pissing in Garriott de Cayeux’s cornflakes with the whole “Lady British” thing quoted at the top of the post, they also seem to be intent on breaking some key aspects to the old game by introducing class choices up front rather than having the game select your class based on your sense of the eight virtues. (Which did, I admit, essentially become “picking your class” once you figured out what was going on.  But the first time it was a mystery!)

Wait, I just pick a class now?

Oh, and you can choose from two classes.  I am not sure how that and the name change fits into the context of “lovingly restored,” but welcome to the real world.

Anyway, the Lord British upshot of all of this is that, with EA’s renewed interest in milking the Ultima franchise, it seems that his Ultimate RPG might well be cast as the spiritual successor, but it will likely have to be developed in a new setting.

Edit: Oh, I suppose if you wanted to reading something more serious about Ultima Forever, maybe with a quote from EA, the article at Ars Technica might serve.  Though there really isn’t much to say about it at this point.

Notes from the War in Delve

Some updates about the situation in Delve, mostly here to time stamp them so I do not forget them later.

Null Sec Power Blocks

The above picture was stolen from the opening post of the Kugu thread about the war in Delve, primarily because I thought it laid out the balance of power nicely.  Or at least how the balance stood a while back.  Also, it gives some scope to the size of null sec and empire space.

The opening post to that thread includes some background on the conflict to go along with the Elise Randolph post on the subject.

Meanwhile, what has been happening.

Nulli Secunda Pulls Out

Nulli Secunda, one of the original participants in the war in Delve (read the war origins posts linked above) and an important source of pilots to SoCo, announced to their membership yesterday that they were pulling out.

As some of you may have heard from faggot -A- corps or rumors from others, as of now, we are officially pulling out of 319. Starting immediately, any assets that you have in 319 or in PB for some reason if your still have stuff there, need to be moved to nearby low sec in Khanid or Aridia. Your corps will most likely have a location picked out where you can move stuff out too, it doesn’t particularly matter which low sec in Khanid or Aridia you pull out too, because we will be moving to a new location on Sunday anyway.

Right now the main focus is on making sure we get everything out of delve and period basis, and that means everything. All supers should already be out to low-sec as per orders from last week, but in case any are left, consult the super channel and make sure they get out safely. All capital ships need to be moved out, any assets that remain in Period Basis, etc. etc. Please be ready to work with other people in the alliance to help with cyno chains, making sure the station is clear of shit that pop’s cyno’s, and maybe even clearing bubbles. You have a good 4 days to get everything out of 319, and most of the stuff is pvp assets, so if the station is camped at one point, just be patient and wait for an opening.

Gaff, who had eyes on the 319 system last night, reported a regular stream of jump freighters moving in and out of the system, covered by carriers.  -A- has responded by increasing their effort to get Nulli Secundi members and corps to join them instead.

Meanwhile, I suspect Nulli Secunda’s Alliance Tournament ad might get pulled from YouTube.

They won’t be seeing anybody in 319 station soon.

Makalu is Putting You on His List

Gentleman’s Agreement, part of the CFC, managed to take down -A- FC Makalu in a 4.5 billion ISK Vidicator and then again in a 2 billion ISK Archon, earning them a serious, and much quoted, warning in local chat:

[22:00:32] Makalu Zarya > you killed my ship
[22:00:33] Makalu Zarya > congrats
[22:00:36] Makalu Zarya > now i kill your alliance
[22:00:45] Makalu Zarya > u can ask DRF for reference

Does this mean we’ll be fighting in Branch soon?  That is where the Gents make their home.

And this all happened in in TG-Z23, deep in the Stain region.  I am not sure if that portends anything for the war, but it cannot have made Makalu, who has been oft quoted from voice coms, very happy.

Walltreipers – Send More Goons!

The heroes of Delve at the moment have to be the Walltreipers Alliance.  They are currently hanging on to the one remaining system in Delve, T-IPZB.

According to a post provided by them over at EVE News 24, they have been holding firm since the start of the fight, against great odds.

They blockaded our system and attacked our outpost, reinforcing it. We were shocked. How could we confront the numbers of the enemy? We had many engages, some of them in our very home, others in the enemy’s. We lost ships, we lost clones… but we kept fighting. All the scars, all the pain were in our souls, not our bodies. And that made us stronger and stronger.

They have refused any quarter from the CFC-HBC forces and continue to defend their system.

In this stubborn, Wake Island-like defense, their primary concern appears to be that they won’t have enough ammunition to kill us all.  Meanwhile, they have been putting up some decent propaganda.

Cornered in Gaul, but holding firm

This has lead to more than a few expressions of respect and admiration for the 400 pilot alliance.  Ideas have been floated to allow them to keep their system, to give them the whole constellation, or just to bring them more ammunition so that they can continue their glorious defense unimpeded.

Oddly, these sentiments seem to be coming from their enemies or neutrals.  I am not sure where their friends and allies are.

And, finally, the big question in my mind, what does “Walltreipers” actually mean?

Addendum: Their defense in Delve came to an end.