Internet Games: Most Popular Articles
Given the success of pen-and-paper D&D and the numerous video games that have since worn the title, it was only a matter of time before someone turned Dungeons & Dragons into a massively multiplayer game. Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach is Turbine's virtual recreation of the Eberron campaign, with a heavy emphasis on the dungeon crawls that made this franchise famous. Will it be able to hold it's own in a very competitive MMORPG market? Let's see what DDO has to offer.
One of the most popular and ubiquitous casual gaming genres is the hidden object game (or HOG for short). These titles have players scouring scenery looking for all manner of unseen items. The problem is, because there are so many of these games, they can start to look very similar. This makes it tough to pick out the good from the bad. But whether you're new to the genre or have already found your fair share of hidden objects, these games represent some of the best that HOGs have to offer.
Many real-time strategy games for the PC now have multiplayer options that allow you to wage war over the Internet. In most cases you are required to gather resources, research new technology, build up an army, and use it to vanquish your enemy. The player limit is typically between 6 and 12.
There are a large number of mounts available in World of Warcraft, and more are added to the game on a regular basis. The total is currently around 200, although that includes different color variations on the same mount model. Mounts speed up travel through the world and are highly coveted possessions within Azeroth. This guide covers most of the mounts you can currently acquire in the game. Page 2.
FarmVille may be the biggest game on Facebook, with over 75 million active users, but you don't necessarily have to be on the social network to play anymore. Utilizing Facebook Connect, developer Zynga has made the farming phenomenon accessible both from its own website and MSN.com. You still need a Facebook account to play, but these options let you experience FarmVille without having to be on Facebook, perfect for computers where the social network might be blocked. Here's how to do it.
Eve Online is a unique game with a deep economic component, and player perpetrated scams are all part of the action. This is a brief history of the game's largest and most famous swindles.
As soon as you think you're out, they pull you right back in. At least that's the case for Macy, star of the Maroon series of hidden object games, who is forced to make an unwanted return to a mysterious island. And while Marooned 2: Secrets of the Akoni manages to further along the intriguing story, it does little to change the gameplay. So you're left with a solid, but unremarkable, HOG experience.
Looking back over the last ten years of online gaming, there's no doubt that it has been an astounding decade. To say that the hobby has seen explosive growth is an understatement, and it has taken some interesting twists and turns along the way. Here's a quick look at what I would consider the most significant trends that have impacted online gaming in the last decade.
This is a timeline of key events in the history of Internet gaming. It includes significant developments in computer games, console games, and Internet technology.
Screenshots of the MMORPG Darkfall Online. Page 2.
Ever since it's release over two years ago World of Warcraft has dominated the MMORPG market, particularly in North America and Europe. Now that players are romping through The Burning Crusade, the game's first expansion, interest is on the rise again. It's hard not to get caught up in the excitement that comes with thousands of fans pouring into the new zones with all sorts of hopes and expectations, but I've pulled myself away long enough to put together a review of this burning hot expansion. Page 2.
Having trouble finding a decent Scrabble partner? You might enjoy playing Literati on the Web, where there is always someone up for a game.
A hidden object game about a haunted hotel sounds like about the most cliche game imaginable. But Phantasmat is anything but. It's spooky, challenging, and full of great writing and a small cast of memorable characters. It's lengthy and beautiful and, in short, just about everything you could want in a hidden object game.
Every experienced gamer is familiar with constantly escalating hardware demands of the latest games. These PC graphics cards will help get your frame rate back up to tolerable levels whether you're upgrading or building a new system.
They will never be quite like the old arcade pinball machines with roll digits, but online pinball simulations are getting incredibly realistic and there are no quarters required. Free pinball has become a way for companies to promote their brand and encourage people to visit their Web sites.
Over the years, PopCap Games has created some of the most addictive and well known casual games on the market. Titles like Bejeweled and Peggle have stolen countless hours of our time due to being just so hard to put down. But if you haven't yet experienced the joy of a PopCap game, there are plenty of ways you can test them out without dropping a dime. Here are a few ways to enjoy four of the developer's best games for free.
First-person shooters have long been a dominant force in online gaming, especailly on the PC. If you need some fast multiplayer FPS action, these are some of the top games currently available.
One of the most common complaints I hear about using voice chat is that some people can barely be heard, while others are so loud that they blow your ear drums out. And we all know what it's like when someone gets excited in the heat of battle and starts screaming into the microphone, or decides to share that special rap song they're listening to with everyone else on the channel at high volume. Here's how to quickly set up the compressor in Ventrilo for a less painful voice chat experience.
A lot of people dream of turning their gaming habit into a full-time job. There are a number of ways to put your game skills to the test for a wager online.
Whether you are considering an upgrade to your current system, or you want your new system to be able the latest games, here are some things you should know before buying a video card for gaming.
If you're into casual puzzle games, chances are you've come across one or two match-3 games throughout your journey. The fact is, the sheer number of match-3 titles available makes it hard to separate the good from the bad. What follows is a list of some of the best that the genre has to offer, from fresh and inventive games to ones that simply take a good thing and make it better. If you're looking to waste a whole lot of time, these games will be more than happy to help.
In these fantasy-themed MMORPGs games you create a character, don a sword or a spellbook, and venture off into a persistent online world in search of experience points. An Internet connection is required and they typically charge a monthly subscription fee for access.
The second page to the PC/console debate describes the pros and cons of PC hardware for online gaming. See which genre is good for PCs and final thoughts. Page 2.
While there are still some die-hard speed typers among us, the keyboard is giving way to headsets and microphones as voice becomes the preferred way to communicate in online games. These software and hardware options can take team play to the next level.
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Tips for maximizing your Certification gain in SOE's new MMOFPS, PlanetSide 2. Learn about support roles and Sunderer certification to accumulate points.
A lot of money is changing hands these days for characters and items that exist only in the virtual worlds of massively multiplayer online games. Remarkably, some people have turned this activity into big business, creating auctions and stores that cater specifically to the needs of online adventurers. Here's a closer look at this new economic phenomenon.
Puzzle games don't have to entail tremendous amounts of logic and deliberation. Adding arcade-like action or physics to a puzzle game can bring some luck and reflexes to the exercise. These are puzzle games that keep up the pace and often have you shooting your way out of difficult situations.
The Battlefield series has long been a popular source of multiplayer mayhem on the PC, and in recent years it has become a hit on consoles as well. Bad Company 2 has revived interest in the franchise, well-known for its team-based combat and player-controlled vehicles. While many of the shooter skills learned in other games carry over nicely into Bad Company 2, there are some differences which can affect your performance. Here are some tips to help you and your cohorts get the upper-hand in BC2 matches.
Game technology is always evolving, and HTML 5 is shaping up to be the next big step for browser-based gaming. It seems destined to supplant a number of current browser plugins, and it will likely herald a new generation of graphics and audio on the Web.
Screenshots of the MMORPG Lord of the Rings Online.
Internet Games Glossary - DPS - damage per second
Screenshots of the online game Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures.
Mahjong (or Mah-jongg) is a tile-matching game that originated in China over a century ago. Today it is played all over the world, and like many other traditional games, there are now a multitude of free online variations of Mahjong you can play in a Web browser. These are some of the better free Mahjong games I've come across so far.
Internet Games Glossary - gone gold
Telltale Games is best known for funny and witty adventure games, like Sam & Max and Tales From Monkey Island. And later this year the developer will be visiting the world of Back to the Future. To celebrate, Telltale has released its first ever Facebook game. Unfortunately, Back to the Future: Blitz Through Time amounts to little more than a thinly veiled clone Bejeweled Blitz.
Highly graphical multiplayer RPGs have become a large online gaming trend in recent years. See the top seven with a variety of Internet play options.
With Valentine's Day fast approaching, I thought it would be a good time to take a quick look at sex and romance inside massively multiplayer online games, where players celebrate everything from birthdays to weddings. Although it may not fit the stereotype, gamers are not immune to love, and gamer couples are becoming more common all the time. Most games do their best to keep it clean, but those seeking something more risque have a few virtual worlds to choose from as well.
There are plenty of casual games out there, but sometimes actually finding something to play can be a chore. After all, unlike traditional games, you can't simply go out to a store and pick the latest hidden object game off the shelf. Thankfully there are plenty of online casual game portals that do all of the work for you, leaving you with just one decision: what should I play? Here are eight of our favorites.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 14.
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Installing World of Warcraft addons are simple, useful and best of all condoned by Blizzard. Here's a guide on downloading and installing a WoW addon.
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Valve appears set to get into the hardware business. This is a summary of what we know so far and some of the potential pitfalls such a project may face.
Free alternatives for 3D shooter fans have grown rapidly in recent years, driven in part by micro-transaction revenue models. Military settings are among the most popular, but other popular and more casual themes are finding their way into these games as well. While the graphics are often a generation or two behind retail games, the price is definitely hard to beat. These are some of our favorite free online shooters for the PC.
Internet Games Glossary - DKP - dragon kill points
Match-3 games have become a staple of the casual game genre over the years, and you'll now find them adapted to countless different themes and seasons. The central mechanic they all share is that the player must find or create sets of similar items, typically three or more, to complete the game's objectives. Here are some of the most popular free match-3 puzzle games available online.
Launched admist great controversy back in 2003, Steam is Valve Software's digital distribution system for games. It is a free stand-alone program which provides a wide range of game-related services including game downloads, server browsing, instant messaging, friend lists, automatic game patching, and more. Here is a quick explanation of what Steam is, what it does, and how it came to reside on some 20 million computers worldwide.
Tower defense games have been growing in popularity at a rapid rate ever since the success of Flash Element Tower Defense and Desktop Tower Defense in 2007. Essentially, you have to destroy multiple waves of oncoming hostiles (creeps) by placing defensive towers on the map. These towers can typically be upgraded and in some games, used to force the enemy to take a longer path. Here are my favorite free browser-based tower defense games.
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When servers are overloaded from the initial rush, game launches can be a frustrating affair. Some MMORPG fans are resigned to waiting a week or two before plunging into a new release. These are some thoughts on game launches and the issues associated with them.
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Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 24.
Wintergrasp is a large PvP zone added to World of Warcraft with The Wrath of the Lich King expansion. It's a fairly straightforward siege scenario, but there are still frequent questions in chat about the Towers and Goblin Workshops. This is a quick explanation of how the zone works and what the rewards are for participating in the massive battles over Wintergrasp Fortress.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 21.
If you've ever wondered just what hidden object games are all about, well you've come to the right place. Here's a run down of the basics of HOGs, as well as the many different variations on the genre. It's everything you need to get yourself started finding those objects that don't want to be found.
Unlike most games, World of Warcraft allows users to make radical adjustments and additions to the game's graphical user interface (GUI). For the most part, the default interface is pretty good, but it offers nowhere near the range of options and flexibility of many of the addons (also called mods) made by the community. These are some of the most useful of the hundreds of addons available for World of Warcraft.
If you've reached level 60 in World of Warcraft, odds are your guild wants you to get your Onyxia key (Drakefire Amulet) so you can join them on raids to Onyxia's Lair. You need to complete a long chain of quests to get this item, and they differ depending on whether you're playing Alliance or Horde. This is a walkthrough for the Horde side.
Games are typically a blend of different and sometimes exclusive design principles. This has led to use of descriptive terms like sandbox and themepark. Here is a definition of these terms for the uninitiated.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 23.
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Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts.
Internet Games Glossary - DOT - damage over time
Zynga's FarmVille is possibly the biggest game of all time, with an astounding 80 million people playing it every single month. But it's not the only farming game in town. In fact, Facebook is full of plenty of agricultural simulators that are just as fun and addictive as FarmVille. So, if FarmVille isn't your thing, or you're simply looking for something new in a farming game, here are five titles you need to play.
HOGs are one of the most popular genres of casual games. And leading the way is Big Fish Games. Not only is the company leading the way with its very popular game portal, but its internal development studios are also making some of the best HOGs out there, including the pioneering Mystery Case Files series and, more recently, the very well received Drawn games. I had the chance to speak with BFG's Adrian Woods about the history of the genre and just where it might be going in the future.
When Popcap released Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook, it stumbled across the perfect formula for creating a perfect arcade experience on the platform. And now the developer has done it again, only this time with the Zuma franchise. Zuma Blitz transforms the marble slinging series into a series of short, addictive bursts that will soon become the enemy of all your free time.
A preview of the multiplayer online game World of Warplanes from Wargaming.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 17.
The digital distribution of games has really come of age in the last few years, and it now seems inevitable that disks and boxes are on their way out and downloads are the way of the future. Not everyone is happy about it, because a lot of people still expect to get a physical object when they buy a game, but a growing number of game sales are taking place through online services. Here's a quick look at the pros and cons of digital distribution. Page 2.
Mama sure does get around. After numerous releases across game consoles, handhelds, and even mobile phones, the Cooking Mama series has finally landed on Facebook. And nothing has been lost in the translation. The game sports the same bright and happy style coupled with great mini-game-based gameplay that has made the series so popular.
Disney isn't just about movies and theme parks anymore, they've become a serious contender in the online games market, with a variety of titles aimed at youngsters. Pirates of the Caribbean Online is their latest effort, based on the famous movie series, and it lets you skirmish with scurvy dogs and plunder ships on the high seas.
One of the most remarkable trends in online gaming in recent years is the rise in popularity of highly graphical 3D roleplaying games. Some roleplaying games are ideally suited to small groups of players who want exclusive encounters, while others feature large persistent online worlds with hundreds of players running around. If you're new to playing online RPGs, these basics may help.
Meeting demand for the online components of games when they launch can be a challenge, as demonstrated by the recent release of SimCity 5. We return to the once-again-revived debate about always-on DRM.
Developed by SplashDamage, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory is an excellent WWII first-person shooter that you can enjoy for free. Get the details and download locations in this profile.
Server and player finding software is almost essential to online gaming, so if you're new to the hobby, this is an introduction to GameSpy.
Is the new panda-inspired playable race in WoW to childish and cute for the game? Read on for my thoughts on the subject.
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Internet Games Glossary - MMORPG - massively multiplayer online roleplaying game
First-person shooters have come a long way since Quake demonstrated the potential for online play in a 3D action game. Today multiplayer shooters are played on consoles as well as PCs, and they encompass everything from realistic counter-terrorist settings to extreme science fiction. This is a quick summary of how most FPSes are played online.
One of the great things about games is the sheer variety. There are games you play for fun, games you play for challenge, and games you play socially with friends. But there are also games that try to do more. This new wave of artistic games attempts to use the medium as a way of expressing something unique and thought provoking.
It's not often that two blockbuster MMORPGs hit store shelves within weeks of each other, and it presents people who don't have unlimited time and money for online games with a tough decision. Both World of Warcraft and EverQuest II promise to be exceptional games, so here is a quick comparison between the two that might make it easier to figure out which one is for you. Page 2.
With all of the match-three puzzle games out there, it can be hard to make a game stand out from the pack. Developer Playrix managed to do this with the first Fishdom by letting players earn cash in the puzzle game, which could then be used for decorating and populating a virtual aquarium. Fishdom 2 offers more of the same, and while it may not be all that original, it's still one of the best match-three games around.
A lot of first-person shooters take you back to World War II or Vietnam, but Kuma\War immerses you in the very conflicts that have been making recent headlines. Every month they release several new missions for the game based on current events. Can it measure up to the plethora of military shooters out there?
Internet Games Glossary - RTS - real-time strategy
Hidden object games, by their nature, tend to be very similar. If you play a lot of them it's easy to get the games confused with one another. Which is what makes Brunhilda and the Dark Crystal so special. The tale it weaves will keep you engaged from start to finish and when combined with some lovely visuals and polished gameplay, the result is simply magical.
A lot of money is changing hands these days for characters and items that exist only in the virtual worlds of massively multiplayer online games. Remarkably, some people have turned this activity into big business, creating auctions and stores that cater specifically to the needs of online adventurers. Here's a closer look at this new economic phenomenon. Page 2.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 10.
Few MMORPGs use historical settings, and fewer still allow you to play a pirate cruising the Caribbean in a wooden ship, seeking gold and glory. Pirates of the Burning Sea is just such a game, and despite the title, it isn't just about pirates. Players join several different nations in a battle over the ports in the region. I've spent several weeks sailing by the seat of my pantaloons, and this game definitely offers something out of the ordinary.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 9.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 28.
When you log on to an online game, you shouldn't have to put up with all sorts of behavior that isn't befitting a 7-year-old, and yet as often as not, that's exactly what you can expect. To some extent we're probably already getting desensitized to it, but I decided to assemble some tips on good online gaming etiquette, just in case anyone out there still cares.
Bloodletting and large-breasted babes are nothing new to the video game industry, but with the war on terrorism fueling sales of war-themed game titles, both sides of the content controversy seem to be hunkering down for a decisive battle.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts.
Wrath of the Lich King is the second expansion for World of Warcraft, which raises the level cap to 80 and introduces the continent of Northrend. Here are answers to a lot of the common questions about the expansion to get you on your way to a smooth start in Wrath of the Lich King.
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A glossary of commonly used game related words and acronyms.
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The issues surrounding DRM for games go right back to the early days of home computing. At one time it was all about trying to keep people from copying discs, but since the advent of the Internet it has become about the illegal distribution of games online. It's a growing concern for a number of industries, including music and movies. We've touched on this issue in earlier articles, but Ubisoft's recent implementation of new DRM for their games has brought the matter back into the spotlight.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 7.
Looking for some great multiplayer FPS action in a WWII simulation game? This is a short review of Battlefield 1942 for the PC.
Internet Games Glossary - 1337 - leet
Mists of Pandaria will include big changes to World of Warcraft's Talent system. We take a look at the new system to see how it measures up.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 8.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 9.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft mounts. Page 8.
I'm not sure if Soccer, or perhaps more accurately, Football, is the world's most popular sport, but if it isn't, it certainly comes close. Naturally, there have been vast numbers of soccer simulations and fantasy soccer games released over the years. Free online soccer games have also been growing in number, and they've come to offer a mixture of team management and action on the field. These are some of the better free online soccer games currently available.
Internet Games Glossary - griefer
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The evolution of Blizzard's blockbuster MMORPG has been a six-year spectacle that has been impossible to ignore. The remarkable strides World of Warcraft has taken over the course of 3 expansion packs have put an ever-growing chasm between it and its closest competition. The latest expansion for WoW is Cataclysm, and as well as adding the expected new high-level content, it reworks large portions of the original Azeroth.
Have MMORPGs become too easy in recent years? This week we discuss the connection between a game's difficulty and its popularity.
The Battlefield series has always stood out for its intense multiplayer engagements and its unique vehicular combat. Bad Company 2 is the first major Battlefield release on the PC since Battlefield 2142 back in 2006, and it also returns to the modern day setting of Battlefield 2. Gamers have quite a few military shooters to choose from, but this series continues to offer a leading-edge online experience.
General strategies for competing more successfully in Counter-Strike and other multiplayer FPS games. The basics can make a big difference when there's a bullet coming your way hard and fast. (Page 1)
Screenshots of World of Warcraft racial mounts. Page 8.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 10.
Information on Steam, a new game content delivery system and server browser developed by Valve Software.
With Gangster City, developer Playfish has jumped head first into the crowded world of Facebook mafia simulators. And while the game doesn't play all that different from other similarly themed games on the social network, in traditional Playfish style, it outdoes all of them in one important aspect: production values. Unlike the majority of Facebook games available, Gangster City looks good, which helps make up for its lack of originality in terms of gameplay.
There aren't a lot of massively multiplayer games designed for young kids. Along with the obvious safety concerns, many MMORPGs take a considerable effort to learn to play and they often feature violent content that isn't appropriate for children. Disney has taken a different approach with ToonTown, resulting in an online game that isn't just squeaky clean, it's easy to learn and entertaining enough that the adults in the family will likely want to play along.
It takes an great effort to keep an online game cheat-free. Read about online game cheating history, how it's done, who to trust and fair play initiatives.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft racial mounts. Page 19.
War Thunder is an aerial combat game based on the planes of World War II. These are my beta impressions of this new title from Gaijin Entertainment.
With World Cup in South Africa fever only two weeks away, Playfish has released its first collaboration with EA Sports, EA Sports FIFA Superstars. The Facebook game lets players slowly build up a team of real world soccer stars and take on some of the most famous clubs in the world. It's light on action, as you don't actually play any games, but instead focuses on the process of developing the best possible team.
Casual games have become a favorite form of entertainment on the Web because they are a great way to relax and enjoy a diversion without committing a large amount of time or money. There are a stunning variety of these games online, and more arrive every day. Without getting into traditional card and board games, here are my picks for some of the most compelling Web games currently available. Many of these sites offer downloadable versions as well.
The year is 2038 and London has been reduced to rubble by hideous demons that came through the Hellgate. Humans have taken refuge in the city's Underground stations, where they do their best to fight back against the unholy invaders using all the high-tech weaponry at their disposal. Here's a look at Hellgate: London, a new action RPG from Flagship Studios.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft Battleground maps. Page 3.
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Having trouble on the mean streets of Las Vegas? We're here to help. Here are six useful tips to make your time in the Facebook game CSI: Crime City go by much easier.
EverQuest has been around for over a decade and I can't think of any MMORPG that has had more expansions. Here is a brief history of the game and a chronological list of all the expansions released for it so far.
Internet Games Glossary - frag
An introduction to the upcoming MMORPG, Neverwinter, from Cryptic Studios, Wizards of the Coast, Hasbro, and Perfect World.
Visit Their Website Review Date: September 9, 2010 Developer: Alawar Melesta Publisher: Alawar Entertainment
Screenshots of the online FPS game Battlefield Heroes. Page 2.
Screenshots of World of Warcraft flying mounts. Page 32.
My first impressions of DC Universe Online, a superhero MMORPG from SOE featuring iconic characters from DC Comics.
Despite it's generic fantasy sounding name, Secret of the Magic Crystals is actually a simulation game that has you breeding horses. Mythical horses like unicorns, pegasus', and demon steeds. It's a unique concept, and the game does a good job of melding casual gameplay with strong simulation elements. Unfortunately, it's also far too repetitive, leading to a somewhat uneven experience.
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A review of the free-to-play RTS game Age of Empires Online from Microsoft and Gas Powered Games.
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