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One of the highlights of Sony's annual Fan Faire is always the costume contest. Hardcore gamers don the gear of their favorite video game characters from Sony Online Entertainment's games, and then battle it out in an epic display of costumery. Check out the funny, sexy, silly and amazing gear these guys and girls come up with... but remember, no wagering.

FanFare 2011 Costume Contest Video »




According to Matt Higby, Creative Director for PlanetSide 2, the reason MMOFPS PlanetSide wasn't as successful as it could have been when it launched back in 2003, is that the timing was off.

"When PlanetSide launched, and when we had our biggest numbers for PlanetSide, it was at a time that the world wasn't ready for it. Now we really feel that the world is ready for another MMOFPS, and we feel like we're poised to ddeliver a huge hit with PlanetSide 2."

Check out the rest of the interview with Higby and Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley in the video below:

PlanetSide 2 Overview & Combat Preview »


I have to ask, is the world ready for PlanetSide 2 now?


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It's Thursday and you know what that means... dollar beer night at the local dive bar. But it also means it's time for The MMO Report! This week Casey will show you the newest trailer for EVE Online, discuss how The Secret World has no classes or leveling, and get chew-ed out in Uncle Casey's Mail Bag. Don't worry, he can take it.

The MMO Report: Thursday, July 14th »



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Guild Wars 2 is a new gorgeous massively multiplayer role playing game (MMORPG) from ArenaNet that is changing how MMOs are played. In this video, our own MMO expert Casey Schreiner talks with GW2 devs Colin Johanson and Jeff Grubb about a variety of gameplay mechanics including underwater combat, dungeons, and the new Engineer profession.

Guild Wars 2 Gameplay Preview »


For even more on Guild Wars 2, check out our Guild Wars 2 gameplay preview, our Guild Wars 2 dungeon impressions, and our GW2 Engineer preview .  


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The Death of Star Wars Galaxies: Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley Talks

By now you all know that Star Wars Galaxies will be switched off in the coming months, but what you might not know is that it was destined to be turned off in 2012 according to their current contract. Also, the game has already had its "end date" extended twice, far beyond the original planned five year license.

"A lot of people don't know about this because we don't talk about it, but we've already extended the game end a couple of times. When we originally approached LucasArts back in 2001 for the original license, we planned it to be a five year window for the game. And that seemed like a hell of a long time! This was back in the early days of EverQuest with had only been out for just over a year, so we didn't know about the shelf life of these things."

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PlanetSide 2 Announced -- Return Of The MMO FPS

PlanetSide 2 has been announced by Sony Online Entertainment. It will be a reimagining of the MMO FPS PlanetSide, released in 2003. PlanetSide 2 will continue to use the features from PlanetSide including ground and air battles. According to the press release, new to the game will be "features that modern gamers have come to expect out of the FPS and MMO genres." They didn't actually list these features so I'm forced to assume they mean it will connect to Facebook!

Thousands of gamers can play together in grand scale matches, some lasting for "for days or weeks." PlanetSide 2 will feature ground, air, and seaborne combat. An extensive skill tree, a wide variety of vehicles, and artillery customization will be available to gamers who want to create the perfect fighter. Three empires, The Terran Republic, The New Conglomerate, The Vanu Sovereignty, a class system and and unlockalbes will keep gamers playing PlanetSide 2 forever.

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Ladies and gentlemen, today is a very special day. You are about to watch the 200th episode of The MMO Report! How is that even possible?!?! That's 4 whole years worth of Casey Schreiner's patented awesome! Anyway, back to the task at hand. This week we have a new trailer from Star Wars: The Old Republic featuring the Bounty Hunter class, EVE Online's recent DLC controversy, and of course look through your ramblings in Uncle Casey's Mail Bag. Thanks for watching guys, we couldn't have done it for this long without you!

The MMO Report: Thursday, July 7th »


 


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I know gamers are all crapping themselves with anticipation for MMOs Star Wars: The Old Republic and Guild Wars 2, but my personal massively multiplayer loyalty is going to The Secret World. While all y'all are pretending to be elves and Chewbaccas and standing on your heads and picking daisies or whatever, I'll be with my gothy-pals, nervously exploring a Lovecraftian hell-scape filled with terror, horror, and more terror. Perhaps I'll go mad!

Check out the below video with a look at the Savage Coast location, which is more than a little reminiscent of Lovecraft's fabled, corrupted seacoast town of Innsmouth... but with machine guns!

The Secret World "Savage Coast" Trailer »


 


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EVE Online players comprising the Council of Stellar Management (a sort of parliament for EVE players) met with developer CCP Games over the weekend to discuss their concern and in-game riots of the implementation of vanity items in EVE Online. Both the CCP and CSM have released their individual statements on an EVE dev blog to address "monoclegate," and there's a video as well for those so inclined.

It's a bit long, but if you've had concerns about "pay to win" style gameplay affecting your favorite space mineral mining sim, it's worth a look. Be sure to check it out below: 

Lastly, CCP announced a press conference for today, July 5, 2011. A member of the dev team has posted on this forum thread if you want to keep absolutely up-to-date. In the meantime, let's all go back to our flying fortresses and live out our fantasies as ruthless space CEOs.



Last week the good people at ArenaNet invited some members of the game press up to their offices in Bellevue, Washington to see what they've been up to on their next MMO Guild Wars 2. Casey Schreiner never passes up a free trip or free food, so of course he was in attendance. In this week's MMO Report you'll get an inside look at what the studio's been up to and get some insider information about Guild Wars 2.

The MMO Report: Guild Wars 2 Preview Special »


 


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EVE Online Micro-Transactions Causing Macro Headache For Players

EVE Online micro-transactions, a feature launched with the latest expansion Incarna, has players jumping ship en masse. Ironically, the items which have been criticized for being ridiculously overpriced (a virtual monocle will run you the equivalent of $70 in real-world money) have caused a reported drop of over 5.5k subscriptions, which are now expected to cost developers CCP Games over $1 million in lost revenue.

If you've never played EVE, read on to see why it's a big deal.

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Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 dungeons are dressed to impress. While skeletons, giant spiders and possessed swords may all sound run-of-the-mill fantasy, GW2 twists are adding lots of juicy, juicy layers to our MMO gaming experience. Our own MMO queen Leah Jackson got a chance to sift through the dust and bones of The Ascalonian Catacombs, and came away with a newfound vigor for the game:

"One of the main ways Guild Wars 2 is trying to capture a lot of hardcore MMO players’ eyes is how the game does away with the 'holy trinity' group composition system of tank, healer, and damage dealer groups. Instead, GW2 offers no dedicated healer class, and through different playstyles, each profession, aka character class, can both tank and deal damage on the fly. I got to test out how well the system worked in one of the first playable dungeons: The Ascalonian Catacombs."

If you want to follow Leah into the depths and danger as she explores story mode, explorable mode and retells her harrowing adventures, be sure to read the full Guild Wars 2 dungeon preview.

Still can't get enough? Check out our Guild Wars 2 overview preview or get your hands dirty in our in-depth Guild Wars 2 Engineer Profession preview!


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Star Wars Galaxies Private Server Passion Brings SWG Players A New Hope

A Star Wars Galaxies private server, running as a Pre-Combat Upgrade patch emulator, may be worth checking out if you're destined to be one of the homeless when SWG servers shut down by the end of 2011. SWGEmu continues to update on a regular, weekly basis with a live test server, called Nova.

If you already mourn the loss of Star Wars Galaxies, download the SWGEmu client here. If you're not a Galaxies forum regular however, or maybe you've just never sat down at the local cantina, let's back up a moment and refresh our memory cores.

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Guild Wars 2 -- The Other Big MMO Launching This Year

Have you heard that there is a much-anticipated MMO with dynamic content, action-oriented combat, massive PvP, deep storytelling and stunning visuals? If you think we’re talking about Star Wars: The Old Republic, you’d only be half right. The other big MMO on the horizon--alpha/beta testing will take place this year, while the game is expected to launch in 2012--is ArenaNet’s Guild Wars 2. You may have not heard much about it with that other title taking up everyone’s attention, but join us for a look at what makes GW2 a strong contender to be a breakout hit all on its own.

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It's Thursday, and that means it's time for another MMO Report! This week Casey's back in the studio talking about all the MMOs that have just gone free-to-play, new patches for Rift and World of Warcraft, and is up to his eyeballs in Schmemes in Uncle Casey's Mail Bag. So strap in, this may be a bumpy ride.

The MMO Report: Thursday, June 23rd »



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