Gameinformer interviews Steve Ranck

There is a very cool interview of Starcraft: Ghost between Gameinformer Magazine Editor Adam Biessener and Blizzard/Swingin’Ape Studios Steve Ranck—Vice President of Console Development.  Two subject that highlight the interview are that Protoss will be a Multiplayer fully playable race and that Nova has more psionic abilities that have not been revealed yet!

“If you run and gun through Ghost, you can probably make it through, but you?re going to have a hard time.  The player has to think like a Ghost.  How would Nova play this game?  How would she get through this situation?  She would not cloak the entire time.  Cloaking requires energy, and just like in the RTS her suit will run out of energy.  You don?t want to cloak the entire time ? here there?s some light infantry ? you can take those guys.  Suddenly a Marine walks in, a Firebat, or four light infantry, and now it becomes serious.  Now it might be the time to raise it up to the next notch, cloak, and use that ability.  You might want to think about when to use her reflex ability, her psionic abilities that we haven?t announced yet.  These are all part of her arsenal.

We?re trying to give the player the complete experience on what it?s like to be a Ghost.  So the balance there is really up to the player.  If they want to play action, they really can.  You can play cloaked a lot, and stay behind the scenes.  You can actually make it through entire levels without ever being seen.  It?s a little on the difficult side but you can do that.”

Starcraft: Ghost cancelled on GameCube

On a move by Blizzard that makes many GameCube players uncomfortable, Blizzard updated the Starcraft: Ghost FAQ.  The game is planned for release sometime during Summer 2006 only for Playstation 2 and Xbox.  You may call it a rant, but I purchased the Gamecube last year expecting the release of Starcraft: Ghost.  Two weeks later, the game release was postponed.  A year later, here I am with a GameCube with no Starcraft: Ghost … Now I gotta think of getting a Playstation 2.  I am sure many have the same sentiment.  Plans for the Starcraft: Ghost changed when Swingin’ Ape Studios took the project, rebuilding the engine and implanting Multiplayer.  The game was originally meant to be single-player.  Nintendo has not yet developed a multiplayer online solution, which translates into shipping only for Playstation 2 and Xbox.  Hopefully, Nintendo finds a very late solution to the competition so that Blizzard can make a Gamecube release of Starcraft: Ghost.  Read the updated Starcraft: Ghost FAQ here

MicahW: ” Unfortunately the GameCube version of the game was decided to be dropped. In order to provide the game envisioned by the console team a set and readily available online solution was needed. Unfortunately the GameCube has no online service and since so much work is going in to the online portion, it would be additional work to release only part of the intended game. Nintendo systems certainly aren’t something that we are against supporting. Blizzard in its entirety is based upon earlier games for Nintendo systems. The GameCube and Revolution will still be cosidered for future products, unfortunately Ghost will only be made available on the Xbox and PS2 at this time.”

Sarah McKerrigan: Lady Danger Novel

Glynnis Talken—voice of Kerrigan in Starcraft—has great news for her Medieval Romance writer career to share with her fans.  Sarah Michelle Gellar has endorsed her first novel LADY DANGER.  We have the cover of her new book to be published by Time/Warner on April 2006.

I have some very exciting news this month.  My agent has managed to garner an endorsement for my first Sarah McKerrigan novel from Sarah Michelle Gellar of ?Buffy, the Vampire Slayer?!  Buffy definitely has something in common with Deirdre, my kick-butt heroine in LADY DANGER.  They’re both beautiful, powerful warriors, tough yet vulnerable.  And this valuable endorsement should help get copies of LADY DANGER flying off the shelves in April!  By the way, if you want a sneak peek at my book cover, visit www.sarahmckerrigan.com.  The site isn’t really up and running yet, but there’s a splash page for LADY DANGER.

BlizzCon Invitational Video - GGL

BlizzCon Invitational VOD?s (Video on Demand) are now available at http://www.ggl.com/mediaplayer/ – Watch the best StarCraft and WarCraft players from around the world battle it out at the first ever BlizzCon Invitational. These 12 full-length featured matches in Windows Media format include the commentary of Wacksteven, a veteran to World Cyber Games StarCraft coverage, and u5|bunny, a well known WarCraft 3 broadcaster. Videos are available in both streaming and downloadable formats. They include the fantastic finals of Reach vs. Yellow in StarCraft and Grubby vs. Zacard in WarCraft 3.

If you weren?t there to see the action live, you can still be a part of the global experience that was the BlizzCon Invitational!

Blizzplanet: Luke Johnson Public Q&A

New York City, N.Y.—November 1, 2005— Blizzplanet today announces plans for a Public Q&A on IRC Chat with Luke Johnson, Warcraft RPG books Author & Developer, from White Wolf Publishing, Inc.  The Public Q&A will take place on:

Date: Tuesday, November 8
Time: 8pm EST / 5pm PST
Server: irc.stratics.com
Port: 6668
Channel: #rp-pvp

To join the IRC channel—for those in College limitations or not irc-savvy, you may join through Stratics Java applet:
http://chat.stratics.com/content/java/HoC/hoc1start.php

If you have java installed, go there. Type a username. Once stratics server loads few seconds later, type:
/join #rp-pvp

then you are ready. The event starts at 8pm EST or 5pm PST.

IRC Clients
Download Mirc (PC)
Download Ircle (Mac)
Download GeoIrc (Linux)

Blizzard Fansites, RPG/d20 Fansites, Wow RPG & Roleplaying PvP Servers players, and Gaming Networks are invited to come and participate one-on-one with Luke Johnson.  You may contact me here.  Share your comments at the RP-PvP Lore Forums Community.

The public Q&A will focus on the World of Warcraft: The Role Playing Game book released back on July 2005 and the upcoming releases:

World of Warcraft: More Magic and Mayhem
It?s the first supplement for the new World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game book and the first book for which Luke Johnson was the developer from beginning to end. Material is adapted from Blizzard Entertainment’s best-selling Warcraft computer game franchise, with over 19 million copies sold.  It?s currently in production; scheduled release date: November 14th, 2005.

Magic Twists as Gears Turn.  Arcanists and healers weave spells that scour the battlefield. Tinkers craft rifles, bombs and clockwork poultry to decimate their enemies.

  • New Magic and Technology

    • More Magic & Mayhem brims with magic and technology steeped in the Warcraft setting. Heroes hardwire new weapons, research arcane secrets, and call forth mighty creatures to smash their foes. Based on the best-selling World of Warcraft computer game, More Magic & Mayhem contains a wealth of new spells, feats, classes, magic items and technology.
  • New and updated core classes, including the inscriber, runemaster, witch doctor.

  • New and updated prestige classes, including the Argent Dawn crusader, enchanter, geomancer, and steam warrior.

  • Create alchemical brews, enhance your weapons and armor with special enchantments, and harness runic powers.

  • New feats focusing on magic and technology in the Warcraft world.

  • New spells, abilities, magic items and technological devices that enhance, mangle and squawk.

  • Extensive rules for battling in mighty steam armor!

World of Warcraft: Lands of Mystery
This is an upcoming Warcraft RPG book that explores Kalimdor, the South Seas, and Northrend. It’s the first Warcraft book for which Luke Johnson was both author and developer, which has become standard practice. It’s currently in production; scheduled release date: January 2006.

Uncover Warcraft’s Secrets!  Battle across the unexplored continent of Kalimdor. Unearth dead civilizations in chilling Northrend. Hunt evils in the jungles of the Echo Isles. A world of adventure awaits!  A Sourcebook for World of Warcraft: The Role-Playing Game?.

Explores the regions of Kalimdor, Northrend, the Echo Isles, Undermine, and other uncharted regions in Azeroth, from inhabitants to geography to key individuals.

  • New prestige classes (including the South Seas buccaneer), new feats, new monsters, and new magic items appeal to all Warcraft players.

  • Three adventures set in the lands of mystery make this a great game master resource.
  • Designed with extensive input from the creative minds behind Blizzard’s best-selling World of Warcraft computer game and chock full of lore for fans of the online game.

World of Warcraft: The Monster Guide
This is the latest and greatest monster book updated for the World of Warcraft RPG. Approximate release date: March 2006.

The undead Scourge dominates Lordaeron and Northrend. Servants of the insidious Burning Legion summon demons. Naga strike from the depths, and troggs burst from dark places beneath the surface. To carve your name into legend, you must match swords, wits, skill, and spell with these and hundreds of other creatures.

  • Over 200 monsters for use in your World of Warcraft Roleplaying Game.

  • Many monsters suitable for player character races, such as blood elves, Dark Iron dwarves, naga, and pandaren.
  • Includes descriptions and statistics for some of Azeroth?s key villains, such as Baron Geddon, Illidan Stormrage, Lord Kazzak, and Onyxia.
  • Includes full rules on monster abilities, on improving monsters, and on using monsters as heroes and villains.

Alliance Player’s Guide
Glory to the Alliance!  Draw blade and spear to battle the Scourge, the Burning Legion, and the Horde! Keep your eyes sharp and your tongue sharper as you match wits with rival political factions. Bolster the Alliance’s strengths? or prey upon its weaknesses.  A character sourcebook for the World of Warcraft Roleplaying Game?—It’s currently in production; scheduled release date: April 2006.

  • Includes a wealth of detail on the Alliance, including its races and structure.

  • New races, feats, prestige classes, and other game mechanics particular to the Alliance.
  • Information on the Alliance’s history, its leaders, and its current military and political structure.
  • Delve into the details of the Alliance’s races: Explore their society, psychology, and culture.

Horde Player’s Guide
Glory to the Horde!  Grab hammer and axe to crush the Horde’s enemies! Mok’nathal warriors range across new frontiers. Shamans and witch doctors teach their skills to new adepts, and the Horde’s enemies learn of its strengths and strike at its weaknesses. Delve into the Horde’s history, its structure, and its political climate. Discover new races, feats, classes, and technology unique to the Horde. Blood and thunder!  A Character Sourcebook for World of Warcraft Roleplaying Game?—Scheduled release date: June 2006

  • Includes a wealth of detail on the Horde, including its races and structure.

  • New races, feats, classes, and other game elements unique to the Horde.
  • Information on the Horde’s history, its leaders, and its current military and political structure.
  • Designed with creative input from the minds behind the best-selling World of Warcraft computer game.

Gamespot: Starcraft: Ghost

Gamespot got the full hands-on preview of Starcraft: Ghost during BlizzCon’s showcase.  This preview will give fans what they need to understand the Multiplayer concept and the purpose of each Terran and Zerg unit:

“The infantry soldier seems to be as weak as a kitten; his assault rifle doesn’t seem terribly damaging, nor can this character take much damage before he falls over and dies. However, infantry can build stationary turrets that, when placed well, can be highly effective defenses (as well as offensive weapons, when built near enemy spawn points, which is similar to the old real-time strategy tactic of “towering”—building a defensive tower in enemy territory to take advantage of its defensive fire capabilities).”

Why the … Blood Elves with Horde?

This question was answered by Caydiem, Community Manager, and it makes sense.  Blood Elves are the new playable race announced at BlizzCon to come included within World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Expansion:

Caydiem: “Chris Metzen was asked about this very thing in the Lore and Quest Design panel during BlizzCon. This is indeed part of the history, and it hasn’t been forgotten, but ask yourself a similar question: “Why would Tauren ally with the Undead?” That’s a tolerance more than a true “alliance”. The same holds true here.

The bonds keeping the Blood Elves to the Horde are not ones of fellowship. The Horde is the means to an end, a particular purpose that the Alliance has actively fought against in the past. There is some bad blood there, no one denies that, but only through working with the Horde can they access Outland and gain access to the tremendous power there.”

On another post, a fan refered to Thrall, Vol’jin and Cairne as retards, to which Caydiem answered:

Caydiem: “Say there was a new, powerful force in town (and I’m referring to both the Forsaken and the Blood Elves here, in their respective times) with the potential to be either ally or enemy… and you’d only recently re-established your people on a new land and recovered from endless invasions. You’re vulnerable, and increasingly aware of your known enemy gaining in power with each passing day. What do you do with this new force? Ignore it, allowing others to potentially gain even more strength against you? Attack them, making them yet another enemy? Or do you form a tentative and closely-watched alliance with them, bolstering your strength and giving you access to things you didn’t prior while being able to keep a careful eye on them?

Thrall’s no fool. Allying with the Forsaken gave his people a foothold on the Eastern Kingdoms, and he can keep a close eye on any potential… problems they may cause in the future. The Blood Elves are a strong, sophisticated, arcane race with knowledge of Outland as it is now rather than Draenor that was—to go in blindly to new frontiers would be folly.

Do not so quickly dismiss the choices of Thrall, my friend. He may initially seem quite the trusting fool, but he is deeply entrenched in the politics and power plays of Azeroth.”

I want to take the opportunity, now that you are reading.  Sometime during the week, Blizzplanet might be a couple of days offline.  We will give you the scope of why after the site is back.  We are making a bold move to support Azzor’s NoGold Stand.  Confused?  We will tell you when you see us back online.

Why the … Blood Elves with Horde?

This question was answered by Caydiem, Community Manager, and it makes sense.  Blood Elves are the new playable race announced at BlizzCon to come included within World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Expansion:

Caydiem: “Chris Metzen was asked about this very thing in the Lore and Quest Design panel during BlizzCon. This is indeed part of the history, and it hasn’t been forgotten, but ask yourself a similar question: “Why would Tauren ally with the Undead?” That’s a tolerance more than a true “alliance”. The same holds true here.

The bonds keeping the Blood Elves to the Horde are not ones of fellowship. The Horde is the means to an end, a particular purpose that the Alliance has actively fought against in the past. There is some bad blood there, no one denies that, but only through working with the Horde can they access Outland and gain access to the tremendous power there.”

Tigole: Tower of Medivh

Tigole has been pumping out few revelations of future content, from the outcome of the “Missing Diplomat” quest series, down to how many players Tower of Medivh will possibly accomodate.  Indirectly, he does mention there is a programmed Burning Crusade Beta in the way:

Tower of Medivh
Actually, my point was, that we are looking towards doing many 5 man dungeons in the Burning Crusade. As for Karazhan, our current thought is that it would be a 10 person raid. You mention that you hang out with 8 people—I think Karazhan would be well within your reach.  In any event, things will change over time, as we play the Burning Crusade in beta and get a feel for what players want and need.

We’re not going to do anything to deliberately alienate anyone from the game. We try very hard to keep players happy—from casual to hardcore”

Missing Diplomat—King of Stormwind
” This quest line is going to be re-addressed in the future. In patch 1.9, the King has mysteriously escaped from Alcaz”

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