Rise of Mana – Square Enix reveals latest game in popular Mana series

The latest entry into the Mana series by Square Enix is heading to mobile devices, more specifically Android and iOS (Japan only). Known as Rise of Mana, this mobile RPG will feature a completely new storyline, not a remake or continuation of its predecessors.   Players will control a character where an angel and demon [&hellip

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Neither clueless nor jerks

Imagine you are on a crowded beach on a sunny summer day and you start building a wonderful sand-castle. You put in a lot of effort to make it look just perfect. But then you notice that the other people around you aren’t participating. They either just build imperfect small sand-castles, or none at all. Except for your perfect little corner the beach is just a random mess of footprints in the sand. That makes you all angry, and you start berating the other people on the beach as being clueless or jerks. But are those the only two possible explanations? I would say it is far more likely that the majority of people on that beach simply don’t care. They are there to get a tan and relax, not to put any effort into sand-castle building.

If you followed that link above, the article about people being either clueless or jerks is of course about players of World of Warcraft. Blizzard recently said they would consider putting in a skill test as a requirement for running heroic dungeons, requiring a “silver” score in the Proving Grounds to access those. That is supposed to solve the problem of players in dungeons being “clueless”. Talarian quotes another player who “suggests that the real problem in random dungeons are the jerks”.

But just like on that sunny beach, I would say that the majority of players of World of Warcraft are neither clueless nor jerks. They are simply not interested in putting in a lot of effort. I mean, why would they? Didn’t WoW teach them for hundreds of hours that progress is something that comes automatically for just playing effortlessly? The idea that at the end of simply enjoying your sunny beach or cruise holiday you would suddenly be forced to put in some effort is really quite ridiculous. You could call it a bait & switch scam. The majority of players aren’t clueless or jerks, they are simply tourists. They regard the kind of people who take that game very seriously with the same bemused look as tourists on the beach give to somebody who is working hard there.

It isn’t for me to decide who is right or who is wrong here. Obviously heroic dungeons and raids require players to perform at a certain level for the venture to be successful. But I can’t really blame the tourists walking into them and wondering what the fuzz is all about. A performance requirement *IS* out of place in a casual game like World of Warcraft. I just seems to be part of the game because the developers failed to come up with a better idea for the endgame which would have been more fitting with the rest of the game. If WoW had that sort of performance requirement starting from level 1, the heroic dungeons and raids would fit a lot better, but then WoW wouldn’t have millions of players.

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Final Fantasy XIV – China server to begin debut test phase this April

According to the recent information gathered from the Final Fantasy XIV press conference in China, the game wil enter its debut test phase sometime in April, with an official launch by end 2014. The publisher is Shanda Games, which have not really fared well with its recent games… Here are more details for the upcoming [&hellip

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The Elder Scrolls Online – Several changes made in Private Test Server

While the beta phase has now ended, the Private Test Server (PTS) is currently still available to some players. Several gameplay changes were made recently, and Force Strategy Gaming was able to get permission to discuss about them. Are the changes worth the monthly payment? &nbsp

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Shanda Games – China MMO giant rumoured to be sold on cut-price deal

According to a flurry of reports from China today, 1 of the nation’s biggest online games publisher and developer, is rumoured to be sold for around USD 525 million. That is of course Shanda Games, 1 of the subsidiaries under the Shanda umbrella. Both companies refused to comment. To be more precise, Shanda Games is [&hellip

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