Archive for March, 2009

Genesis Journey to the West goes into closed beta on 3rd.Apr / 《创世西游》于2009年4月3日第一次技术封闭测试

Sunday, March 29th, 2009, posted by leig

Quick Comment: Genesis Journey to the West, a massive 3D MMOPRG developped by Netease, will go into the first Closed beta on 3rd.Apr.2009

人民网3月27日电 网易旗下“创世工作室”历时四年倾力打造的国产3D东方神幻大作《创世西游》,将于2009年4月3日正式开放第一次技术封闭测试。






Announcing BigWorld Technology Suite 2.0 – A major upgrade delivering hundreds of new features and performance improvements

Thursday, March 26th, 2009, posted by skg

25 March 2009

For Immediate Release

In Game Web Functionality, Full 64 Bit Server Support, Ground Breaking Multi-Threaded Client Capability among enhancements to industry leading MMO middleware.

[San Francisco, CA, 25th March 2009] BigWorld Pty Ltd. today announced the release of BigWorld Technology Suite 2.0, reinforcing its position as the leader in development technology for massively multiplayer online games and virtual worlds. A proven technology, with dozens of licenses worldwide, and an ever-increasing number of game titles in full commercial operation, the BigWorld Technology Suite has been offering developers the ideal balance between quality and scalability since 1999.

Now with the release of BigWorld Technology Suite 2.0, including a multitude of new features and improvements such as native 64 bit server support, a new fully featured multi-threaded client with exciting post effects, and extensive social networking and Web 2.0-style functionality, the company continues to reinforce its position as the industry leader in truly massively multiplayer environment development technology. BigWorld CTO, Simon Hayes, commented that ‘BigWorld has always been at the forefront of massively multiplayer development technology. It was important for us to implement native full 64 bit support to ensure the greatest possible server scalability and continue to reduce deployment costs for our customers’.

Commenting on the new version, Gavin Longhurst, VP of Business Development, said “BigWorld 2.0 consolidates hundreds of optimizations and features since our customers started releasing games over the last few years. More complex and sophisticated visuals with tools like the integrated weather-editor are great improvements to workflow, but online games are not just about eye candy. Social connectivity through appropriate use of interfaces like Twitter, and web-content injection into games and virtual worlds can make for an increasingly compelling, ‘sticky’ and creative environment. These are part of the tools and interfaces for the massive communities of now and tomorrow’.

BigWorld Technology Suite 2.0 also sees the addition of a post-processing visual effects editor, enabling effects such as cartoon rendering, film granularity, and posterization to be applied to the virtual environment. This is all part of the new multi-threaded client application.

BigWorld will be demonstrating BigWorld Technology Suite 2.0 on North Hall Booth #6233 at GDC 2009, taking place at the Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco, between 25th and 27th March 2009.

About the BigWorld Technology Suite

Comprised of the BigWorld Server Software, Content Creation Pipeline, 3D Client Engine Package, Live Management Tools & Instrumentation, BigWorld Technology Suite is the premier complete and proven massively multiplayer game development solution, providing all of the complex systems required to produce engaging, highly scalable next-generation MMOGs and Virtual Worlds.

About BigWorld Pty Ltd

BigWorld Pty Ltd was formed in 2002 to commercialize years of intense R&D, which started in 1999 and continues to this day. With a direct local presence in the USA, China, Japan and Europe, BigWorld licenses its middleware platform to game studios and publishers around the world to build successful next generation MMOGs and Virtual Worlds. For more information and links to currently released or in production titles, visit

BigWorld News Blog

Media Contact: Casey Gregory


Phone: +61 2 6162 5120

Astrum Online developing new client-based title on BigWorld

Thursday, March 26th, 2009, posted by Mike

from the online games play you dept.

Astrum Online Entertainment is developing a new online game based on BigWorld Technology

Moscow, Russia, March 25, 2008

Astrum Online Entertainment and BigWorld Pty Ltd. announced today the signing of a license agreement for the use of BigWorld’s technology software suite for developing a new online game.

This new project has already been in development for several months by a team of professionals with over ten years of experience in the Russian gaming industry. The team has earlier produced well- known games such as Silent Storm and Robocalypse. The official announcement of the game is scheduled for the second half of 2009.

“Our team has many years of experience in the gaming industry and I’m proud that we’ve got a chance to focus directly on this challenging gaming process in our first online project. It’s been in development for several months already; so it’s safe to say now that BigWorld’s technology successfully tackles all the objectives and allows cutting production cycles”, said Dmitry Zakharov, Head of ACTA Games, the developer of the game.

Mike Allenson, Business Development Manager Europe/Russia for BigWorld Technology stated, “We’re extremely pleased to be working with the largest online company in Eastern Europe. We’re certain that the combination of our world-leading MMO technology suite and Astrum’s highly professional and experienced development team will produce results that help solidify both of our positions locally as well as internationally.”

Vladimir Nikolsky, the CEO of Astrum Online Entertainment believes in the strategic advantage of partnering with BigWorld Pty Ltd. “Using BigWorld’s technology in game development opens new strategic horizons for Astrum Online in the development of the European online gaming market. Only the best quality and the most creative gaming projects can win against tough competition. We have both of these advantages and we are ready to start astonishing Europe and Russia this year already”.

Expanding into international markets with high quality Russian products is a seamless part of Astrum Online’s development strategy. The first steps have already been implemented and include the localization of Astrum’s games into Great Britain, Germany, Turkey and China. The experts of Astrum Online believe this will allow the Russian gaming industry to secure its position in foreign markets and create a strong foundation for the Russian business thus getting ready for the next turn in the global entertainment industry’s evolution which will begin in 5-7 years.

Occupying over 60% of the local Russian market and having extensive experience in the development, publishing and managing of online games, Astrum Online Entertainment operates in new geographical markets according to time-proven strategy of focusing on MMO games and a free-to-play business model.

About Astrum Online Entertainment

Astrum Online Entertainment is the largest player in the Russian market of interactive online entertainment. The Corporation is formed by five companies: Nival Online, Nikita.Online, IT Territory, Time Zero and DJ Games. These companies have successfully launched more than thirty MMO games, including hits like Lord of the Rings: Shadows of Angmar, Legend: Legacy of the Dragons, Territory, Time Zero, Sphere, Piratia, Perfect World and many others.

By the beginning of 2009 a total audience of Astrum’s projects made up over 15 million players.

Astrum Online Entertainment prepares to release ten of its own gaming projects as well as six localized online games by its foreign partners during 2009. For more information please visit Astrum Online.

About BigWorld Pty Ltd

BigWorld Pty Ltd was formed in 2002 to commercialize years of intense R&D, which started in 1999 and continues to this day. With a direct local presence in the USA, China, Japan and Europe, BigWorld licenses its middleware platform to game studios and publishers around the world to build successful next generation MMOGs and Virtual Worlds. For more information and links to currently released or in production titles, visit

Roman Chernigovtsev
Astrum Online Entertainment
Phone: +7 (495) 952-4482

Casey Gregory
BigWorld PTY Ltd.
Phone: +61 2 6162 5120

GungHo’s Hokuto no Ken Online (Fist of the North Star Online) Gets Major Revamp

Monday, March 23rd, 2009, posted by ronniec

Hokuto No Ken is now Hokuto No Ken Online Heroes

At a recent press conference (March 14th 2009) in Tokyo’s Akihabara district, BigWorld customer GungHo Entertainment revealed details of a major overhaul of the popular online game title ‘Hokuto No Ken Online’ [Fist of the North Star Online].

The update is scheduled to be available for download from the middle of April ‘09.

Four new major gameplay systems were unveiled:

・Hero System
Once per day, a player character selected at random will have the chance to become a Hokuto No Ken Hero – with extra abilities and powers to go with it!

・Crime System
Players can now enjoy various criminally inclined activities around the world of Hokuto No Ken. Steal a motorbike, and rampage through the city.

・Buddy System
Characters from the original “Hokuto No Ken” manga work together to achieve their aims.

・一撃必殺! 「一指奥義(ひとさしおうぎ)」
Hmmm – your translator has no clue what this means! Looks fun though – will get back to you shortly :-)

Anyway folks, will keep you updated on all things BigWorld in Japan and Korea.

Interzone Entertainment Announces Australian Closed Beta for Interzone Futebol

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009, posted by skg

from the Made in Australia file

“Interzone Futebol features unique competitive gameplay with every character on field, including the goalkeeper, controlled by a real person. As players participate in matches, they unlock new abilities, earn salaries and are rewarded with sponsorship deals. The final release of the game will feature music by world-renowned DJ Paul Oakenfold and audio commentary from a yet-to-be-announced sports commentator.”


BigWorld licensee Slipgate becomes part of Gazillion Monster Publisher

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009, posted by skg

from the You didn’t read it first here dept.

San Mateo-based studio ‘Slipgate Ironworks’ came out of hiding of sorts today with a massive industry lash of all things online and a name change, including the announcement of a mammoth ten-year licensing contract with Marvel to deliver MMO games based on the comic book and movie franchise’s properties.

This is a truly mammoth deal encompassing multiple satellite studios working on significant online content – studios include Romero’s own Slipgate Ironworks, newcomers Gargantuan, NetDevil who are building again a Jumpgate title as well as a Lego title. Ben Fritz’s excellent Variety interview and article notes :

“…it has four major MMO development studios under its umbrella and eight projects either planned or in the works:

-NetDevil, which Gazillion recently acquired, already has “Lego Universe” and “Jumpgate Evolution” in development, along with an unannounced MMO. The Lego Group controls its eponymous game and will handle publishing. But Gazillion got the rights to “Jumpgate” when it acquired NetDevil and will co-publish it in the U.S. with Codemasters, which is handling retail distribution.

-Gargantuan, a studio founded by Gazillion, is making “Marvel Universe.”

-Slipgate Ironworks, started by id co-founder John Romero, which Gazillion has quietly been involved in from the beginning. It’s producing an unannounced original MMO.

-Amazing Society, another existing studio that Gazillion has quietly been working with from its inception, is developing the “Super Hero Squad” MMO and two unannounced titles.

Rob head shot Founder and CEO Rob Hutter (left) knows that MMOs are a huge risk. But in a down economy when traditional console publishers in particular are struggling, he sees it as the biggest opportunity, particularly when combined with licenses.

“We saw the meteoric success of ‘World of Warcraft’ and now more casual titles like ‘Runescape,’ ‘Club Penguin’ and ‘MapleStory’ are proving the format really has traction,” he explained. “The missing piece is bringing worldwide dominant entertainment brands into the space in a way that delivers high quality MMOs with properties that have a tremendous amount of recognition.”

Rob Hutter, CEO of Gazillion continues,

“Licensed MMOs are only a winning proposition if you can convince folks to spend time for six months and beyond,” Hutter affirmed. “That long-term relationship means your audience is a check on quality. It’s very different from a one-shot retail sale where you’re just going off the marketing of another property. The safest strategy for us is a high quality title.”

Read more at Variety, and here, in Virtual Worlds News, and in Edge and here (Korean) or here (French).

『北斗の拳ONLINE』が「北斗の拳ONLINE HEROES」に完全リニューアル

Monday, March 16th, 2009, posted by ronniec

3月14日東京秋葉原UDXシアターにて、「北斗の拳オンライン」の大型アップデートが発表された。 アップデートは3月下旬~5月まで徐々に実装される予定だ。


 一日一回ランダムでプレイヤーの誰かが「北斗の拳」のヒーローキャラクターに なれる。ヒーローに合った「スペシャルな技」を発動できる。

 停めてあるバイクを盗んで乗り回すことができる。リヤカーや箱など街中の物を 破壊したり、村人などのNPCを殴ることができるようになるなど「悪党を選択した ユーザーはより「悪事」を満喫できるようになった。

 原作漫画「北斗の拳」に出演するキャラクターや動物を「相棒」として一緒に行 動することが可能になった。

・一撃必殺! 「一指奥義(ひとさしおうぎ)」
 「奥儀」発動時に画面の「一指奥儀」ボタンアイコンで更に強力な技にすること が可能になった。これは新課金アイテム「一指奥儀(ひとさしおうぎ)」を購入 すると、低レベル帯のキャラクターであっても強力な「奥儀」技を発動できるよ うになる素敵な仕様だ。


English summary will be updated soon.