Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning


FeatureThe case for WAR

BioWare Mythic on Warhammer, Real ID and the future.

FeatureWarhammer Online's Mark Jacobs

On population balance, server stability and more.

Key events

Warhammer Online is gone forever - or is it?

One ex-Mythic dev knows a way to preserve the MMO, but will EA listen?

Massively multiplayer online role-playing game Warhammer Online is no more. This week EA shut down its servers and in the blink of an eye the five-year-old once would-be World of Warcraft killer was snuffed out of existence.

Dark Age of Camelot maker unveils new MMO Camelot Unchained, which sounds very similar indeed

Camelot Unchained is a sequel to Dark Age of Camelot in all but name - and even that's quite close.

It's being made by City State Entertainment and the project is led by Mark Jacobs, one of the founders of Mythic Entertainment and one of the leaders of the Dark Age of Camelot MMO project.

Camelot Unchained features three factions/realms fighting each other: an Arthurian English realm, an Irish Tuatha Dé Danann realm and a Viking Scandinavian realm. That's almost exactly the same as Dark Age of Camelot, which was split into Albion (Arthurian mythology), Hibernia (Irish mythology) and Midgard (Norse mythology).

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Why subs-based MMOs have a future

Mythic founder senses shift away from F2P.

An F2P-only future for the MMO genre is anything but a foregone conclusion, reckons Mythic founder and former CEO Mark Jacobs.

Former Mythic boss explains EA split

Mark Jacobs talks past, present and future.

Mythic co-founder and former CEO Mark Jacobs has shed some light on why he left the famed MMO developer following owner EA's decision to merge the studio with BioWare in 2009.

BioWare leak row gathers pace

Insider calls out EA mole, drops F-bombs.

Another industry insider has joined David Jaffe in lambasting the soon to be laid-off EA art worker who yesterday tore into their employer in an anonymous blog.

Laid-off EA dev: Old Republic "is a joke"

David Jaffe responds: stop whining.

A disgruntled EA employee about to fall victim to lay-offs has published a vicious diatribe against their employer, claiming, among other things, that forthcoming MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic will be a disaster.

EA: Warhammer Online is "profitable"

We're not giving up, says BioWare Mythic.

Massively multiplayer online role-playing game Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning makes money and is here to stay, developer BioWare Mythic has insisted.

FeatureThe case for WAR

BioWare Mythic on Warhammer, Real ID and the future.

Last month Mythic Entertainment quietly renamed itself as BioWare Mythic, and emerged as one of four BioWare studios currently hard at work making videogame magic happen.

BioWare Mythic hates Real ID

"No. Never. Never. No."

On the eve of the release of Blizzard's StarCraft II, Warhammer Online developer BioWare Mythic has told its fans that it will "never" force gamers to use their real names when posting in forums.

Warhammer Online players overcharged

Error results in subs fees of $300 and up.

Warhammer Online players are complaining they've been massively overcharged for their monthly subscription fee - in many cases to the tune of hundreds of dollars.

Warhammer Online client made free

Upgrade from trial by paying sub.

Mythic has decided to stop charging for copies of its MMO Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning. You can now get the game for free by downloading the trial version and then starting to pay a subscription.

Mythic "committed" despite layoffs

Ultima, DAOC and WAR are safe, it says.

Mythic executive producer Jeff Hickman has moved to reassure players of the three MMOs that it operates - Warhammer Online, Ultima Online and Dark Age of Camelot - that it will continue to support them with customer service and new content.

WAR's free trial goes endless

Play up to level 10 with no limits.

Mythic is moving Warhammer Online to an "endless" free trial which offers unlimited access to the MMO up to level 10 in the Empire versus Chaos zones, reports GamesIndustry.biz. Previously, the game's free trial had a 10-day time limit.

WAR revamping early levels

Also adding buddy system.

The next patch to Warhammer Online - game update 1.3.2 to its friends - will make significant changes to the starting experience for new players, as well as introduce an "apprenticeship" program allowing players of high and low levels to synchronise their ranks.

Mac version of WAR gets release date

Mac version of WAR gets release date

Get it next month for less than 20 "bucks".

Fantasy MMORPG Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is coming to Macs next month.

It will be released on 28th October via Gametreeonline.com, priced at $19.95 - which includes 30 days of game time. Current subscribers will be able to download the Mac client for free and use it with their existing accounts.

A beta test is currently underway for the Mac version and you can join in by visiting Warhammeronline.com. Participants will get an exclusive title and trophy reward for their characters.

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Mythic shares biggest mistakes with WAR

Too easy, not social enough, poor economy.

Warhammer Online executive producer Jeff Hickman has outlined what he feels were the biggest mistakes Mythic made with last year's high-profile MMO launch in an Austin Game Developers Conference seminar.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

Well, this is orkward.

I was watching my housemate, also an on-off WAR player, creating yet another character. "What's the point in choosing a face for him," he asked, "when they all look the same?" On-screen, a parade of only faintly distinguishable Dark Elf visages cycled around and around. In truth, I couldn't tell at what point we returned to the first face in the roster, but nonetheless I unconvincingly offered "yeah, but you can change the colour of your outfit at any point". My housemate remained silent. Meanwhile, the near-identical faces continued their eerie dance.

Warhammer Online coming to Mac

Beta version now, release in autumn.

Mythic has revealed that it's developing an Apple Mac version of its fantasy MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

BioWare: Mythic will help Star Wars MMO

"Oh yeah, without a doubt," says Zeschuk.

BioWare has told Eurogamer that Mythic Entertainment will "without a doubt" help out on Star Wars: The Old Republic, as there are "absolutely opportunities to share and learn" within the newly formed RPG/MMO group.

Mythic focusing on RvR, Tier 4 endgame

September anniversary next milestone.

Mythic Entertainment producer Jeff Skalski has told Eurogamer that Tier 4 endgame and realm-versus-realm combat will be the focus of the next big patch or update for Warhammer Online, which is likely to coincide with the game's one-year anniversary on 18th September.

WAR opens the Land of the Dead

Early access for live event victors.

GOA and Mythic have opened new Warhammer Online zone The Land of the Dead for the forces of Order and Destruction to rampage through.

A basic rule of thumb you'll need as you explore the Land of the Dead, the Egyptian-esque new area due to expand the world of Warhammer Online later this year: if it's big, you can bet it's going to take a pop at you sooner or later. Whether it's a giant, apparently long-dead skeleton, a mighty obelisk with a strangely glowing light at the top or a skyscraper-sized statue of an evil pharaoh, it has little interest in simply being architecture. The Land of the Dead aims to impress, and few things achieve that more successfully than giant stuff coming unexpectedly to life and clobbering you.

World first complete city capture in WAR

Euro Destruction faction downs the King.

Massively reports that, over six months after the release of Warhammer Online, the first complete and legitimate sacking of a realm's capital city has taken place.

Warhammer Online closing 63 servers

Final round of transfers today.

Mythic's MMO Warhammer Online is closing 63 low-population servers: 43 in the North American and Oceanic regions run by Mythic itself, and 20 of the European servers operated by GOA.

WAR patch 1.2 goes live next week

WAR patch 1.2 goes live next week

It's getting a price cut in Europe, too.

In its latest newsletter to players, Mythic has announced that Patch 1.2 for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning will go live on 3rd March - that's next Tuesday. The game is also being halved in price in Europe.

The sizeable patch will include the new Dwarf Slayer and Orc Choppa careers; the Bitter Rivals live event; a limited preview of a new Scenario; improvements to realm-versus-realm warfare, itemisation, crafting, and the user interface; more "easy" public quests for smaller group sizes; and over 500 bug fixes.

Patch 1.2 kicks off the Call to Arms "live expansion" that will be released in chunks over the next few months. Monthly live events will be followed by the release of the Land of the Dead zone in June.

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Roper warns against writing off WAR

Problem is expectations, says Cryptic man.

Cryptic's Bill Roper - the Diablo and Hellgate luminary now working on superhero MMO Champions Online - has stood up for Mythic's Warhammer Online after it announced its drop to 300,000 subscribers.

WAR's patch 1.2 previewed

WAR's patch 1.2 previewed

New careers, zone domination, bug fixes.

Mythic's Mark Jacobs has posted on the VN boards with a preview of what to expect from Warhammer Online's next major patch, 1.2.

Patch 1.2 will go live on test servers next week, with a full release expected in March. Jacobs - answering criticism from players that the game's ambitious update plans might delay much-needed bug fixes - has dubbed it "the Bugs, Careers, RvR, Bugs, Items and Bugs Patch". Some 500 bugs will be fixed by 1.2, apparently.

The biggest new additions of the patch - and the first component of the recently-announced Call to Arms "live expansion" - will be the two new character careers, The Dwarf Slayer and Orc Choppa. They'll be introduced via the Bitter Rivals live event.

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Mythic details WAR's Land of the Dead

Mythic details WAR's Land of the Dead

Level 25 up, live events, loot and more.

Warhammer Online's executive producer Jeff Hickman and creative director Paul Barnett revealed plenty of new detail on the game's upcoming Land of the Dead zone in last night's live interview on Eurogamer.

The zone - part of the Call to Arms live expansion due in the coming months - will span content from level 25 to endgame raiding, feature a wide range of activities and ways to get loot, and be opened by a race for access between the Order and Destruction factions. Once inside, you will be permanently under threat from realm-versus-realm warfare, meaning you can be always be attacked by players of the other faction - even when in instances.

"Tomb Kings, or The Land of the Dead, is a massive zone which is broken up into two parts - The Necropolis and the Tomb of the Vulture Lord," explained Hickman.

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Mythic "super proud" of WAR subs

Fall was "expected", numbers growing again.

In a live interview with Eurogamer readers, Warhammer Online's executive producer Jeff Hickman has stood by the game's subscription numbers.

Warhammer Online has 300k subscribers

EA's financials reveal slow-but-steady start.

Publisher EA has revealed - as part of its depressing financial report - that Mythic MMO Warhammer Online had 300,000 subscribers at the end of last year.

GOA unveils enormous WAR update

GOA unveils enormous WAR update

New classes, dungeon, battleground.

GOA has announced that a great big "Call to Arms" update for Warhammer Online will go live from March.

Top of the bill are re-instated classes Orc Choppa and Dwarf Slayer. Both are mirrors of one another: berserk, up-close brawlers with little regard for their own safety.

These will be introduced properly in March, but players can get a head start with the new classes by completing a live Bitter Rivals event slightly earlier. This event opens a Chaos-themed Twisting Tower RvR battleground, too.

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Mythic hints at WAR's Orc Choppa

New career teased with Governator prank.

Mythic continues to have fun with Warhammer Online bloggers and tease the announcement of new Warhammer Online classes this week. The MMO's developer has dropped a very heavy hint that we'll see the Orc Choppa soon.

WAR factions balanced, says Mythic

We're not all bad guys any more.

Mythic has posted some data on the balance of player populations between the Order and Destruction factions in its MMO Warhammer Online. The stats suggests that it's as close to 50/50 as makes no difference.

EA job cuts rumoured at Mythic

WAR developer next to suffer?

The grapevine has told Joystiq that Warhammer Online developer Mythic Entertainment is the latest victim of EA's massive job cuts.

Mythic hints at WAR Dwarf Slayer

Also, Zone Domination on the way.

Warhammer Online developer Mythic has been entertaining itself posting videos on YouTube and sending cryptic packages to bloggers - the latter hinting that a new class, the Dwarf Slayer, could be on the way.

Mythic speeds up WAR levelling

Christmas XP bonus for all players.

Mythic boss Mark Jacobs has sent a Christmas message to Warhammer Online fans and revealed that the developer is going to speed up levelling in the game over the holiday period - starting now.

FeatureWarhammer Online: the new classes

Meet the reinforcements new to the WAR effort.

The public apology starts here. Mythic copped a fair chunk of flak for the late revelation that they'd axed four classes and four cities from Warhammer Online. The grand, sprawling world we'd been anticipating suddenly seemed smaller and more ordinary. Indeed, MMOs breaking their own promises is something that happens with depressing regularity - look at the difference between what Conan was meant to be and what it is. Whither those severed limbs?

Warhammer Online gets first big update

Warhammer Online gets first big update

US servers now, EU tomorrow morning.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is currently receiving its first major content update since its launch in September.

Update 1.1a is now live on the North American servers for the Mythic MMO. European operator GOA has told Eurogamer that the patch will be applied to European WAR servers tomorrow morning. Expect around three hours of downtime while the patch is applied, starting at 7am.

Update 1.1a marks the official debut of the game's two new careers, the Knight of the Blazing Sun and the Black Guard - although these were made available to some players last week, and to everyone else a couple of days ago.

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Mythic hasn't started WAR expansion

Mythic hasn't started WAR expansion

Focusing on live game, says Jacobs.

Mythic boss Mark Jacobs has warned that the first expansion pack for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning could be a long time coming.

Posting in a speculative thread on the VN Boards, Jacobs said that work hadn't begun in earnest on the first expansion to the young MMO - and that once it did, it would take a long time. The developer's priority remains updating the live game for now.

"Just so you know, we haven't begun work on an XPack yet and aren't going to until we get a lot more done in WAR," Jacobs said. "The expansion can wait a little longer but the main game can't."

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Warhammer Online adds new careers

Early access now, everyone else next week.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning has added two new character classes, the Knight of the Blazing Sun and the Black Guard, in its latest patch this week.

Mythic "resolving" sketchy WAR servers

Large scale, final tier battles cause trouble.

Mythic Entertainment has assured fans that Warhammer Online player-versus-player servers will be fixed following complaints about their stability in the MMO's higher levels.

FeatureWAR: Stories from the city

Why the MMO's overlooked capitals are its heart.

The trouble with ravaged fantasy worlds locked in constant battle between man, monsters and short beardy fellows is that they don't leave a whole lot of options for socialising and sight-seeing. “Fancy meeting for a coffee? Great. I'll meet you by the torture pits. Wear something you don't mind getting splattered in ichor.”

Players question WAR systems

Is "contribution" merely random?

There's trouble brewing in the Warhammer Online community. The Mythic MMO is facing criticism from players that its "contribution" system, which is supposed to reward players according to the contribution they make to large-scale battles, is in fact purely random.

WAR heralds new classes with live event

Earn early access to careers and scenario.

Mythic has announced the start of an in-game event in Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning to celebrate the imminent arrival of two new careers.

Warhammer Online is Korea-bound

EA, Mythic and NHN got Seoul.

Hangame, part of South Korean internet giant NHN, has announced that it has signed a deal to bring Mythic's MMO Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning to Korea in 2009.

WAR doubles XP for open-world warfare

Trying to stimulate barren battlefields.

Mythic has announced that it's doubling the experience rewards for killing enemy players in open-world realm-versus-realm warfare, relative to the game's instanced Scenario battlefields.

Mythic "flattered" by WOW's PVP changes

Jacobs reckons it's a reaction to WAR.

Blizzad's move to beef up open-world player-versus-player combat in World of Warcraft is "absolutely a reaction to Warhammer," according to Mythic boss Mark Jacobs.

Warhammer Online class cut for good

Hammerer banned, or Choppa chopped?

One of the four classes yet to be included in Warhammer Online is set to be cut from the game entirely, according to Mythic's boss, Mark Jacobs.

Blizzard in for "lengthy battle" - Mythic

Jacobs responds to claims of lost players.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning has only just begun to compete with World of Warcraft, says Mark Jacobs, Mythic's CEO, who commented "It's a marathon, not a sprint".

Major WAR update in December

Major WAR update in December

New classes, rewards and content.

Further to the announcement that two new classes are coming to Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, Mythic boss Mark Jacobs has revealed more details of the update they'll arrive in.

WAR's first major patch, 1.1, will arrive in December. As well as the introduction of the Dark Elf Black Guard and Empire Knight of the Blazing Sun, it will include new systems, content and a number of fixes.

Improved rewards for taking part in WAR's realm-versus-realm warfare are at the fore. As well as better gear, itemisation, higher-quality drops, and improved rewards for taking part in open-world RVR, dedicated warmongers will be able to benefit from an RVR Influence system similar to the one that rewards players for taking part in the game's Public Quests.

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Two new WAR classes this winter

Cut careers to return. Tanks very much.

Mythic has announced that it's bringing two new classes to Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning "this winter", which we guess means by Christmas.

WAR players returning to WOW

More than half, says Blizzard's Sams.

While a number of World of Warcraft users dropped the game to play Warhammer Online, more than half of those gamers have already returned to Blizzard's market-leader, reports GamesIndustry.biz.

WOW to add 1m more subs - analyst

WAR won't have "a negative impact".

Lazard analyst Colin Sebastian reckons World of Warcraft can add another million subscribers to its total of 10.9 million in the next year, and that it will shrug off competition from Warhammer Online.

FeatureWAR Sports

The ecstasy and agony of Warhammer Online Scenarios.

It takes a while before you notice that you've bumped into someone. You're trying to run forward, and annoyingly something seems to be blocking your path. A lump of rock on the ground, perhaps, or some errant clipping. A forwards jump should sort it. Hmm, no. How about a step to the left? Wait. What? A person. It's a person that's in your way.

First WAR city siege takes place

Altdorf sacked in walkover, bugs blamed.

Although Mythic hoped that it would take at least a month before a city siege took place in its new MMO Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, the first occurrence has come less than two weeks after launch.

WAR claims 500,000 players

Fastest-selling new MMO ever, says EA.

Mythic and EA have claimed that over half a million players have registered for their new fantasy MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, since it launched last week.

Analyst: WAR will get 250-350k subs

It's selling in line with expectations.

Analyst Arvind Bhatia of Stern Agee has told Edge Online that he believes Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning's subscriber base will "drop off and level off" at 250,000 to 300,000.

WAR bans gold sellers "like crazy"

Jacobs doesn't hold back on "pond scum".

One thing Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning doesn't lack is vocal front men at its developer Mythic Entertainment. Chief executive Mark Jacobs has used his first blog post since the game launched last week to lay into his pet hate: gold sellers.

UK charts: Force Unleashed the new star

WAR also strong. Top 40 inside.

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed has crushed opposition and taken top honours in the UK all-formats chart this week, in what was the biggest multi-platform launch since GTA IV.

Mythic clarifies comments about EA

"Of course they know how to launch MMOs."

Mythic Entertainment co-founder Mark Jacobs has clarified "sarcastic" suggestions made by Paul Barnett yesterday that EA "know nothing about launching MMOs in Europe".

FeatureWarhammer Online's Mark Jacobs

On population balance, server stability and more.

Mythic boss Mark Jacobs is a busy fellow this week, as Warhammer Online launches globally tomorrow. The last thing he needed to be doing was clarifying sarcastic quips made by Paul Barnett about owner EA and its competency at launching MMOs in Europe, then. Well, not exactly; for Jacobs this is all part of the run up to launch. And, after all, he should know, having been at the helm of arguably the smoothest online world arrival with Dark Age of Camelot nearly seven years ago.

Barnett bets on 1m WAR subs in a year

Says it's Vegas to WOW's Blackpool.

Paul Barnett, creative director on Warhammer Online, has been doing some fighting talk. In an interview published today, he told Eurogamer he's personally betting that the game will claim a million subscribers in its first year - and eventually hit the three million mark.

FeatureWarhammer Online's Paul Barnett

Oh! What a lovely WAR.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning launches this week, and its outspoken creative director and frontman Paul Barnett is reaching the end of an exhausting, interminable PR tour. We followed up our review (Barnett: "You're very naughty!") with a chat at the Games Workshop Games Day, held last Sunday at Birmingham's NEC Arena.

WAR ships 1.5 million copies

Breaks EA pre-order records.

Mythic Entertainment has announced that its fantasy MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, has shipped 1.5 million copies to retailers in preparation for its global release on Thursday.

WAR server types, names announced

WAR server types, names announced

Any role-players out there?

With its official release looming - next Thursday at retail, pre-order head-starts on Sunday - Mythic and GOA have announced the types and names of the launch servers for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

There are four server types: Core, Open RVR, Roleplay, and Roleplay/Open RVR.

Core servers follow the standard game design, with unrestricted player-versus-player combat limited to Scenario maps and designated parts of the game world, and players can only fight each other when flagged for RVR (Realm-versus-Realm).

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Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

"The acronym should be WOAR, not WAR," our esteemed and not at all pedantic editor complained in the pub last night. Well, he's half-right; Mythic Entertainment's long-awaited, oft-delayed, EA-backed, Games Workshop-licensed monster fantasy MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, should technically be dubbed WOAoR.

But he's also missing the point. Mythic picked the abbreviation with the same single-minded sense of purpose with which it has crafted this impressive new entry in the field of massively multiplayer RPGs. Those three angry letters send a message just as clear and pointed as Blizzard's three-letter exclamation of wonder. For all its tremendous debt to World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online is not about losing yourself in the scale and grandeur of an extravagant fantasy world. It's about the hard and gritty business of battle. WAR is all about war.

The push and counter-push of the battlefront is everywhere you look: from the bar in the top right of the screen that indicates whether Order or Destruction controls the zone you're in, to the grand Realm-versus-Realm endgame of capital city sieges; from the dynamic NPC battles littered throughout questing zones, to the way even small-scale player-versus-player battles naturally coalesce around a single, see-sawing frontline. At its best, WAR is less about standing toe-to-toe with your enemies than shoulder-to-shoulder with your allies.

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Burning Crusade's quality delayed WAR

Jacobs wanted more "watercooler quests".

Speaking to MTV, Mythic boss Mark Jacobs has said that the quality of questing in World of Warcraft expansion The Burning Crusade delayed development of his own MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

Jacobs on WAR beta:

Jacobs on WAR beta: "GOA messed up"

Account creation still unavailable.

Mythic Entertainment boss Mark Jacobs has weighed into the row over the European open beta test of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, as problems persist with key authentication and account registration.

Jacobs had stern words for players who had posted abusive and threatening comments about the situation on his blog, but was frank about his own displeasure with the European publisher and operator GOA.

"This is not an excuse for GOA," Jacobs said. "We had a number of conversations with them today about everything that happened.

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WAR open beta struggles in Europe

WAR open beta struggles in Europe

Yesterday was "a dark day" - GOA.

GOA, the European publisher and operator of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, has issued a public apology for the false start to its open beta test yesterday.

Although servers have opened, and closed beta testers have been able to enter the new phase without any problems, account registration and authentication for new players is not working.

"I rarely address players directly, but I wanted to write you as too few of you have been able to access the open beta today," said GOA's chief executive, Ghislaine Le Rhun, on the European WAR site.

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WAR item for Red Alert 3 pre-orders

In-game helmet that turns you into a bear.

Those pre-ordering Red Alert 3 will get an exclusive in-game item for Warhammer Online, which appears to be a helmet that turns you into a bear. Bizarre.

Mythic details WAR early access dates

Mythic details WAR early access dates

Pre-orders get up to four days' headstart.

Those of you pre-ordering Warhammer Online will be granted access to live servers up to four days earlier than the general public.

Specifically, Collector's Edition pre-orders will be invited to play from 14th, while regular pre-orders will join a day later. Warhammer Online launches for the masses on 18th September.

Characters created during the Headstart period will retain any progress made and items gained after the live launch, rather obviously. However, heroes used during the open beta will be non-transferable.

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IGDA slams WAR for omitting credits

Mythic to only credit current staff.

Mythic, developer of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, has come under fire for not crediting all members of staff who worked on the game.

WAR open beta in early September

Mythic plans to open Warhammer Online beta testing from 7th September ahead of its full release on the 18th.

Those fast enough to grab keys will be treated to the much flaunted realm-versus-realm battles, which are basically player-versus-player skirmishes but on a massive scale.

"In just a few weeks, we are going to throw open our doors and invite more players into the game than ever before. They will have a chance to delve into the open beta and see for themselves that WAR has arrived and it is glorious," said Mark Jacobs, co-founder of Mythic.

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Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

Beta Report Part 1: The early levels.

There's nothing quite like an MMO launch. These games are laden with so much detail, have been in development for so long, have so much blood, sweat and tear-soaked money stacked up behind them, that the run-up to launch takes on a momentous significance. While it's true that all MMOs - subscribers willing - have long developmental journeys ahead of them, that only seems to add more weight to the occasion. If an ordinary game launch is a sprinter leaping out of the blocks, an MMO's introduction to the world is more like an ocean liner easing out the shipyard for the first time, while a crowd of thousands waves little handkerchiefs in black-and-white.

WAR was to have 250 classes

Losing four doesn't seem so bad now.

He's off again. Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning creative director Paul Barnett has confessed to Videogaming247 that the game was to have no fewer than 250 careers, or character classes, at launch.

Warhammer Online gets release date

Warhammer Online gets release date

European pricing details inside.

EA has announced that its MMO contender, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, will launch on 18th September. That's just six weeks away.

North American, European and Oceanic (that's Asia, Australia and New Zealand) servers will all go live at the same time.

The regular edition of the game can be pre-ordered in Europe from 28th August, and will give early access to the live game, as well as exclusive in-game items. There's no word yet on how "early" this access will be.

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WAR system requirements revealed

Relax, it's no Age of Conan.

Mythic Entertainment has revealed the minimum system requirements for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, its hotly anticipated massively multiplayer RPG.

WAR is "finished", could ship now

Barnett's not finished yet.

More from Mythic Entertainment motor-mouth Paul Barnett at the Develop Online conference today: Warhammer Online; Age of Reckoning, is "finished", he told videogaming247.

WAR: "we can't schedule for sh**"

And WOW is "flawed genius" - Barnett

Speaking at the Develop Online conference today, Paul Barnett, creative director of upcoming MMO Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, admitted: "When we launch these games, we can't schedule for sh**."

EA indicates September for WAR

Official date "extremely soon".

EA's Singaporean website seems to have inadvertently dated the company's MMO contender, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

Hammered into shape.

When we last played Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning a few months back, we came away impressed by the Mythic MMO's ideas, but concerned about its look, its basic combat mechanics and its feel. Like it or not, this is a game aimed at World of Warcraft's heartlands - a colourful, traditional, grind-happy, high-fantasy RPG romp. That means it's bound to be judged by the highest standards of quality and polish in the MMO world. If it's found wanting, the battle could be over before it's begun, and the announcement of feature cuts didn't do anything to assuage fears.

Warhammer Online guild beta begins

Warhammer Online guild beta begins

Last stage of closed testing.

Mythic has pushed Warhammer Online into its final stage of closed beta testing.

This phase will introduce some of the 10,000 guilds that applied, as well as more from the 750,000 pool of individuals itching for their turn.

Mythic calls guilds "some of the world's most experienced MMO players", and wants you to put its quest system and dungeons through their paces. There are also Heraldry bits, scenarios and user interface updates to test.

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WAR loses four cities and classes

Features cut for quality, says Jacobs.

Mythic Entertainment boss Mark Jacobs has revealed that the EA studio is axing large chunks of content from the launch version of its upcoming MMO, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

Mythic drops EA from its name

WAR developer rolls back its brand.

EA Mythic boss Mark Jacobs has told MMORPG.com that the Warhammer Online developer is dropping the EA from its name, and becoming Mythic Entertainment once more.

EA: WAR is no rival to WOW

But Riccitiello still thinks it'll pull in big profits.

Electronic Arts boss John Riccitiello has told investors that he doesn't expect Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, EA Mythic's fantasy MMO, to challenge World of Warcraft's dominance of the market. However, he remains positive about its chances of making a healthy profit.

Warhammer is PvP first and foremost - Mythic

Monsters and PvE designed around PvP.

Warhammer: Age of Reckoning producter Jeff Hickman has laid out Mythic's intent with the game pretty clearly in a new interview, explaining that everything in the game is designed with PvP in mind.

Antipodes get WAR when we do

Global release includes Oz, NZ, Asia.

Electronic Arts has confirmed that Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia will get Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning at the same time as the US and Europe.

Blizz: room at the top for Conan and WAR

But a WOW-beater will need to be great.

Speaking to Eurogamer, World of Warcraft producer J. Allen Brack - currently working on second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King - has said that there's no reason this year's competing launches, Age of Conan and Warhammer Online, can't succeed alongside it.

EA buys Napster bloke's site

Social networking for MMOs.

EA has shelled out USD 30 million to acquire Rupture, a game-focused social networking site made by Napster creator Shawn Fanning.

Mythic planning five years of WAR

Content scales with expansions in mind.

Warhammer Online has been built to contain five years of content, EA Mythic's senior designer Josh Drescher told GamesIndustry.biz.

FeatureWarhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

Please, Warhammer, don't hurt 'em.

Looked at from one angle, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is a game with everything going for it. It has a licence perfectly suited to a massively multiplayer RPG with the kind of classical high fantasy setting that has been the basis of virtually every successful MMO to date, from Ultima to Lord of the Rings. It has an experienced developer in the form of Mythic, creators of Dark Age of Camelot, and the bottomless resources of Mythic's new owners EA (although GOA will publish and operate the game in Europe). It has another few months in development to ensure it's as good as it can be. It has a wide-open path to the mainstream, conveniently bulldozed by genre phenomenon World of Warcraft. It has simple, familiar basics backed up by a truckload of big and rather brilliant ideas.

WAR beta to hit a million sign-ups

WAR beta to hit a million sign-ups

So reckons Mythic boss.

EA Mythic's general manager Mark Jacobs has said that he's confident the beta for forthcoming MMORPG Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning could surpass one million users once the title is opened up to Asian markets, GamesIndustry.biz reports.

A closed beta for the game has been live for over a year. Jacobs has said he's pleased with the number of people signing up for the open beta phase, which has already surpassed the 500,000 mark.

"Actually, I'd be surprised if we didn't hit one million once we start taking beta apps for our Asian partners," said Jacobs in a post on theIGN forums.

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WAR Online "technically" ready for launch

WAR Online "technically" ready for launch

Delay is to give it polish, says producer.

In an interview with Eurogamer, Jeff Hickman, senior producer of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning at EA Mythic, has explained the reasons for the fantasy MMO's recently announced delay from spring to autumn this year.

"We need more time to polish it," said Hickman, explaining that the actual content of the game was already, to all intents and purposes, complete. "All the content's done. The game is fully playable. Technically, I could launch the game today."

Instead, Mythic is conducting an exhaustive overhaul of the entire game and its interface to bring it up to the desired standard. "We're looking at every quest in the game, we're looking at how the land is set up, all of the content. Everything," he said. "And making sure that it feels the way that it needs to feel, and that we want it to feel, so that we can have a slam dunk success when we launch the game."

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FeatureWarhammer Online: Age of Reckoning

Producer Jeff Hickman on the game, the grind, the delay and EA.

The European games press congregated in Paris this week to see EA Mythic's forthcoming massively multiplayer fantasy game, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning. Mythic, respected for its work on Dark Age of Camelot, picked up the Warhammer licence from Games Workshop in 2005 (after Climax had dropped it). The studio was purchased the following year by EA, the super-publisher in search of its first MMO hit.

EA unveils WAR Collector's Edition

EA unveils WAR Collector's Edition

Extra goodies and in-game content.

Electronic Arts has revealed details of the Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning Collector's Edition.

The special bundle was unveiled at a press conference in Paris this morning. It'll include an exclusive Games Workshop miniature depicting Greenskin warboss Grumlok and shaman Gazbag.

Then there's a 128-page hardback graphic novel titled WAR: Prelude to War. It's been written by Graham McNeill and illustrated by Chad Hardin, Joe Abraham, Rahsan Ekedal, Tony Parker and Kevin Hopgood. Each of the six chapters in the book will tell a story about the armies in the game.

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EA approach changing - Mythic

Publisher focusing on quality.

Electronic Arts is working to change the way it goes about making games - with a view to releasing higher quality titles, and "games that players really want to play".

FeatureWar, Interrupted

EA Mythic boss Mark Jacobs on Warhammer's delay.

It's fair to describe EA Mythic's Warhammer as one of the most keenly anticipated massively multiplayer games on the slate right now - so the groans and frustrated harrumphs heard when the company announced a three month delay to its launch schedule earlier today are only to be expected.

Warhammer Online delayed

Slips to middle of 2008.

Warhammer Online will not appear in the shops until sometime between April and June next year, a few months later than its previous Q1 2008 date.

WAR beta closing tomorrow

WAR beta closing tomorrow

New phase in December.

EA Mythic has said it will be closing the Warhammer Online beta tomorrow, before opening up a new phase of testing in December.

The developer has compiled all of your feedback to date and is ready to make some big changes to the game, so the next version should look considerably better.

Specifically, EA Mythic will be brushing-up open field skirmishes and battlefield objectives; providing us with more customisation options - both ability and appearance based; keep on enhancing the public quest system; and prepare pointy-eared elves for their release into the world.

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Plenty of life in MMOs

All-star panel says so.

In a packed Games Convention Developer's Conference today, four of the industry's leading online game developers discussed the prospect of Life After World of Warcraft, GamesIndustry.biz reports - and all agreed that there's a lot more to come for the genre.

Warhammer Online at Leipzig

Elves to be exposed.

French publishing outfit GOA will be showing off a playable version of Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning at the Leipzig Games Convention 2007.

Warhammer Online beta

Warhammer Online beta

Sign-up now to take part.

French MMO outfit GOA has announced that sign-ups for Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning are now open.

It coincides with the launch of the new European website in the build up to the game's worldwide launch in early 2008.

To join the beta test you simply have to fill in a few forms and register on the site. But don't be too hasty, because you'll need to upload your system specifications, which requires you sitting at the computer you want to play the beta on.

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Warhammer Online delayed

Developer reviewing work.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning has been delayed in the US and Europe until Q1 2008, EA Mythic said yesterday, with the developer claiming its takeover by Electronic Arts is largely responsible - but not in a bad way.

FeatureWarhammer: Age of Reckoning

From table top to laptop. See what we did there?

Written on the whiteboard in executive producer Jeff Hickman's office is the legend, "Fun, you f***ers." It was scrawled there - unsanitised, we might add - as a reminder by Mythic's eccentric and excitable British-imported creative director, Paul Barnett. Jeff and Paul, along with the more sedate and composed producer, Lance Robertson, present a force to be reckoned with. They intend to make an MMO that won't get crushed under Blizzard's might, instead helping the genre take an evolutionary step forward. Their emphasis, driven by the long-established character of the Warhammer licence, is on brutal fun.

A dazzling CGI E3 showreel was the last glimpse gamers had of Mythic Entertainment's anticipated Warhammer MMO – and the US firm has now released the full, extended version of the Age of Reckoning trailer, which is showing exclusively this morning on Eurogamer TV.

GOA gets Warhammer MMO

Mythic's title gets Euro publisher.

GOA, the videogames publishing division of France Telecom, has secured the exclusive European publishing and online operational rights for Mythic Entertainment's Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

New Warhammer Online details

New Warhammer Online details

It's due out next year.

Mythic Entertainment has officially announced the first details of its new Warhammer PC MMORPG.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is set during a time when a terrible Chaos Plague is ravaging the land, wreaking havoc on the population and generally making things tough for the poor old Emperor. Meanwhile, the dwarfs of the World's Edge Mountains are coming under siege from an Orc army.

And just to make matters worse, an army of Chaos is marching south, bearing the banner of Tzeentch - Changer of the Ways. So what's a beleagured Emperor to do but call upon the High Elves of Ulthuan to help out - and luckily for him, they agree.

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