Gaming News: Changes at Cryptic and Mythic, Bioware SWTOR multiplayer demo, Steam Sale, World of Tank and Need for Speed beta

News is a bit thin on the ground this week, must be the silly season.

Crew Changes at Cryptic

Craig Zinkievich is leaving his role as executive producer of Star Trek Online. In his leaving letter, he says that he’s decided to take a break from Cryptic and focus on other things, none of which seem to be work related.

Hope he enjoys his break, whether it was enforced or not. The vacant position has been filled, but it’s hard to know what this might mean for STO. It’s not usually a good sign when the producer packs up.

Mythic changes name again

Mythic has changed its name again and is now Bioware Mythic, in a move which makes the actual organisation of MMO studios within EA very clear (ie. Bioware has not also changed its name to Bioware Mythic.)

They also this week finally completed the handover from GOA for running the EU servers. Remind me why we need special EU servers again? Aside from various beta shenanigans and a really awful website, I found GOA did a decent job on running the EU side of WAR. Bootae’s Bloody Blog agrees. Let’s hope Mythic can at least do as well.

SWTOR multiplayer demo

Some of the E3 reports mentioned that journalists had played through a multiplayer SWTOR demo which showed different classes taking up different roles. The official multiplayer demo trailer has now been released. Moon over Endor discusses this along with the rest of the E3 news.

Steam continues to demonstrate how to run a cash shop

Today is the last day of the infamous Steam Summer Sale. If you don’t yet own World of Goo then I do not know you! (Mount and Blade, and Portal are also awesome.)

Syp writes a plaintive post about all the great deals he was forced to pick up this week.

I snagged Gothic 3 and Thief 3, two games I always meant to try but never got around to. I might still never get around to it but at least they’re there on my PC now … or something.

Steam has basically eliminated the myth of the short tail for computer games. Older games will sell, they just need to be enticingly priced and easily available. There have also been some good MMO deals this week, including EVE and Champions Online.

A couple of beta announcements

Yup, struggling for news this week.

World of Tanks enters its closed beta. Sounds dull to me but it’s nice to see the genre expanding. Not sure what you do with your tank other than drive around in it and shoot other tanks – does that make for a good MMO?  But what do I know?

Need for Speed: World is also opening up its beta this week. It is technically an MMO, and to be honest, this sounds way more interesting to me than the tank one. At least with a racing sim, I see the possibilities in training up your car/driver/support team/ manufacturer. Either way, I’m definitely intrigued to hear more about this one.

Monster Hunter Frontier Online tops Japanese xbox sales

This was an interesting story from Massively. An xbox exclusive MMO has made it to the top of the sales charts in Japan. No mention of it being released abroad but with all the anxious discussions about MMOs on consoles, it’s interesting to see proof of concept.

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