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Blog Warhammer and Warhammer blogs

Blog Warhammer was launched this Tuesday and it's coming along nicely. I have found plenty of new WAR blogs and the discussions so far has been interesting. If you got a blog about Warhammer you are free to join us, and if you like to read Warhammer blogs then this is the place to find them.

I'm currently working on switching platform to Wordpress now that I got a host in Blog Warhammer, but hopefully it won't take too much time. Will use a full blogroll by then, so don't worry if your blog isn't listed.

And speaking of hosts. Since I got more bandwidth and space than I know what to do with, I was planning to offer some bloggers a space on the server. Meaning you can host your own Wordpress platform, get your own FTP with plenty of space, and a subdomain (http://yourblog.blogwarhammer.net). Sounds interesting? Maybe I will have active membership on Blog Warhammer as a requirement, so go there now and take part in discussion if you are interested! ;)

Here are some fresh new WAR blogs that was introduced on Blog Warhammer this week (in no particular order):

What about us poor across the pond?

The last week there has been a multitude of big announcements about WAR. I have remained cool about them all... no, that's actually a lie. I have become more and more furious, because none of them affect me. I didn't pre-order a Collector's Edition in time here in Europe, so I was left standing with a bitter taste in my mouth and only hope of another way to get into Open Beta and Head Start.

When it was announced that the OB and HS features from CE would be included in the pre-order Standard Edition as well, I rejoiced. For one minute. Then I read the last of the announcements that went something like "oh and by the way, EU SE doesn't get Open Beta". For all CE buyers, it was like the End of the World.

With the latest announcement, the pre-orders will be getting a "Preview Weekend", and the CE owners will get priority in. From the sound of it, it seems it will be held before Open Beta, and it will likely be a stress test. What that means is instability, random disconnects, downtimes, and general frustration. But people who get to play the game for the first time, even if it's just a quick taste, can be forgiving.

The CE will also be getting one additional day on Head Start, and let into the Closed Beta. And suddenly all the CE owners have grown strangely quiet. Was it really that long ago since they were shouting and screaming about the value of their CE? Normally I would say that they took something with one hand and gave something back with the other, but they never said some of the features in CE were CE exclusive. It was just people who were unable to comprehend what they were reading.

And speaking of reading comprehension, I find the phrasing in the latest announcement amusing. If many people had trouble with the phrasing of CE's features, how many will not misapprehend this?
Regarding the pre-order, Collector’s Edition and the Standard Edition, we are extending the Head Start for the pre-order CE (not the SE) buyers by at least an additional day
Regarding the pre-order, Collector’s Edition and the Standard Edition, we are pleased to announce that we will also be inviting our pre-order CE buyers into our Closed Beta test starting next week

Why do they even have "and the Standard Edition" in those sentences? It would have been perfectly fine if they had just begun the sentences with "Regarding the pre-order, we are..." I interpreted that the SE would also receive these benefits until I read the sentence again.

But after all these announcements, I have yet to see an explanation to why the EU pre-order SE will not get into the Open Beta. Until I receive an explanation, I will file this under "GOA f*ck up". The game hasn’t even started yet, and I already hate that company. As if the crappy website and even crappier updates wouldn’t be enough.

GOA of course blame Mythic, so I don't use the Finger of Blame with full force until I see exactly who's fault it is.
IanC had this to say on Freddy's House:
I don't know yet what the situation for the EU will be regarding this. To be honest this announcement was a surprise to us as well and so we'll need to talk to Mythic, our other partners and our various internal teams to see what is possible under the circumstances. The timetable we were working to appears to have changed dramatically so we'll need to re-evaluate a lot of things and look at where our resources are at the moment. It's Mythic's prerogative to change things - in fact there have been many changes prior to this that we've worked through together - we just need to see if it's possible to adapt our plans to bring things back into line again. As always our intention will be to try and give the same opportunities to European fans as Mythic give to NA fans but we need to see if it is possible to shuffle our timetable to match given the fact that everything is pretty much committed at the moment to gearing up for launch.

I expect we'll be able to announce what we will be doing for the European fans within the next few days.

July newsletter dispatched

Right on the heels of the official WAR release date, WAR's EU site announce that the July newsletter has been dispatched. I have not received it yet, but apparently it's on the way.
July's much awaited Newsletter is being sent out. Here are some of the goodies you will find within:
Does it sounds interesting? No, not really.

Release date confirmed

18th September. EU site actually announce something before the rest of the world? /faint

Introducing: Blog Warhammer

Blog WarhammerI wrote in the last post that I was working on something, and I'm proud to announce what it is now!

A while ago I posed an idea I had: to create a community specifically for Warhammer bloggers. Since I only got positive responses I was hoping to make it reality. Before this weekend I was writing a new post where I was looking for someone to host it. I got halfway in the post, and then I wondered "why can't you do, you lazy bastard?". So I did. And I spent the last days in setting up a forum (setting it up is easy, finding a style that looks good is the hard part), and I just finished.
What is it?
Blog Warhammer is a community for people who blog about Warhammer. It's that simple; if you got a blog and it's about Warhammer, then you are welcome to join! The blog doesn't have to be solely for Warhammer, talking about it from time to time is enough. The more people here the better.

What is it good for?
Some people have been blogging for a long time, some have just started, and some are thinking about starting - hopefully the site will satisfy every type. Join into a tighter and friendlier Warhammer blogging community. Share your experience or advice with the community, and hopefully learn something in return. Announce your blog to people who can spread the word.

Only bloggers?
Bloggers are not the only ones who can take advantage of Blog Warhammer. If you like to read blogs and Warhammer, then this is the place to find them.
Sounds good? Go there and take part in the community, and help spread the word to other bloggers. I'm also looking for active members that want to serve as moderators, so PM me or something with interest.

Slow weekend

I read a article about blogging somewhere that said you shouldn't apologize for not posting lately. I didn't really grasps the purpose of that, but I bet it was something clever with psychology.

Screw that. Sorry for not posting this weekend. Have been busy working up a hangover, and then I have been working on a project. I won't spoil it, but it's something about... or no, it would be too easy to figure out. Let's just say it will likely interest a lot of people, and I will post here when it's done - hopefully any day now.

Beside, the WAR news have been boring anyway. Oh there was something called Road to War, but sounds more like a PR thing - haven't tried it yet. Booooring.

Playing in another timezone?

I have always played on the local servers in online games. Not only the time difference is making me to do so, but also the fear of latency issues. I had my friends here, pre made guilds, and raiding times that are normal. But with WAR I have come to have doubts on playing on EU servers, and the prospect of a US server seems more and more interesting. Partly because playing with the other WAR bloggers sounds like fun ;)

I started having the doubts with the EU version of the WAR's official site, which is badly updated (we still have no Realm War page), out-of-date (the FAQ list "Early 2008" as release date for WAR), and use Flash.
Recently, it was also announced by Mark Jacobs that the preorder standard edition of WAR wouldn't receive an Open Beta invite, despite that the same version in the US does. Jacobs didn't give a reason; it was just what he had been told. By GOA one can only guess.

The US/EU split in WoW was really bad in the beginning, with EU players visiting the US site to get new information, but it works pretty well now. Still, it's not something I would like to experience again; I didn't like the feeling of being a second grade customer then, and I sure as h3ll won't like it this time either.

There is nothing that stops you from purchasing a US version of the game and play on the US servers, but that would have some negative effects. From where I live and some city on the east coast in US, like New York, the time difference would be 6 hours. Ouch, that's a lot. For me it would be midnight when it's 6 PM there. It could work, if you were rich and never had to go to work/school, or if you worked some really weird schedule. I guess it's nothing for me, and I just have to bend over and take the feeling of being a second grade customer.

But the possibility still nags me. Could it work? Are there people who do it?

Hot feelings in the community

Mark Jacobs went in with the Hammer of Justice and laid down some truth that more than one person in the thread on WHA needed to hear. At the writing of this post, the replies in the thread are up to 426, which is pretty impressive considering the thread was started 5 hours ago.
When we put up the websites for the CE, we separated the CE from the CE Pre-order program on purpose. Nowhere in the CE Pre-order program does it say that *only* CE Pre-orders will get the HS and the OB. There's even a line that says "All pre-order customers will receive one of the following items..." It also says a number of times in the same section the words "pre-order customers" and not "CE pre-order customers." We weren't trying to be clever, cute, devious, etc. but to simply covey the basics of the program. Apparently we may have needed to be even clearer than I thought we were being.

In terms of the length of OB, the final length of it is still to be determined. Don't expect a 30 day OB or anything like that. We've never promised, hinted or even inferred that OB was going to be a long process, that's what our Beta is for. If we need a longer OB, then it will be longer. If a shorter one will suffice, that is fine by us.
I couldn't agree more with Jacobs. The Open Beta was never announced to be CE only. The length of the Open Beta was also never announced. You expected a month of free time, with a game that would probably be so polished that it wouldn't need more beta testing. If you pay for something you automatically get certain demands, even if it's a beta. There wouldn't be a NDA, and all review sites would each get a invite to spread the word of WAR. Free PR is what Betas are nowadays. If you expected a month of beta time and all you got was 9 days, guess what, no one has cheated you on your "righteous time". Seriously, stop laying down threats to cancel your CE, it's pathetic. I will gladly pick your copy up, I have nothing against a short beta that more than CE get invited to. The box is packed with sweet stuff, if you bought it just for a Open Beta spot, you bought it for the wrong reasons.

Mark Jacobs once again prove himself to be a man that doesn't keep back on the words when he want to get things out. Now if you excuse me, I will go and preorder my normal copy of WAR, since CE is all out here in Europe.

In Europe, the plan is for the OB to invite the CE POs customers but the SE POs will not get a special invitation.
WHAT?! Oh you got to be ******* kidding me?!

They [EU SE] will get into the HS but not a guaranteed slot in the OB as far as I know.
- Mark Jaocobs (Source)
So us in EU who preorder the SE won't get into OB. That's just pure BS, first the website and now this. Second hand experience straight from GOA. But we will get into the HS, that's a small relief at least, now people won't level way ahead of me straight from the beginning.

Dates for Open Beta, Head Start, and Release

Gamestop has sent out a mail with awfully detailed information on Open Beta, Head Start, and Release! Normally I would stand up and wave the false-alarm flag, but this just seem to be too detailed to be false.
Please Note: Servers will not go live until 10:00am EST on 9/18/08.

Reserve Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning and receive:

Open Beta Access: Be one of the first players to experience the glory of battle and the thrill of WAR! Open Beta will run from September 3, 2008 at 10am EST until September 12, 2008 at 10am EST. The Open Beta will level capped and content restricted.

Live Game Head Start: Reserve customers will get a 3-day head start on the battlefields of WAR. The Live Game Head Start begins on September 15, 2008 at 10am EST.

Bonus In-Game Items: Equip your characters for the journey to the frontlines with Rittenbach’s Portable Camp and Sentinel’s Amber Band.

Universal Fighting System Battle Deck: The Emperor Karl Franz and Tchar’zanek, dread Champion of Tzeentch, go head-to-head in this exclusive collectible card game deck from Fantasy Flight Games.

ONLINE/IN-STORE PICKUP CUSTOMERS: You will receive a code for the bonus items. Please provide a valid email address at time of purchase.

STORE CUSTOMERS: All bonus items will be available in store at time of reservation. Items available in store week of August 4. Please call ahead to confirm availability.
As you can see, this seem to be offers previously limited to the Collector's Edition now also available to the normal pre order game. I didn't reserve a CE in time, so I'm not exactly objective to this announcement. I have been worried half to death to be left out of the Open Beta and all it's juicy information it provides, without NDA.

The Head Start offer on the other hand is a bit confusing, since I was definitely thinking it was a CR feature only. If they hand them out to everyone that pre order everone will start at the same time anyway. Probably the offers is either timelimited or only for Gamestop.

Via Warhammer Vault.