Kamis, 31 Maret 2011

Online Gaming Community Management: Communication Through Gamers

Perhaps it is safe to say that every gamer has an opinion about the game he is playing. There is always something he wants changed, and maybe, even hoping he himself can implement those changes.

Having worked with two different Community Managers for a year and a half, I noticed that their personality is one good idea on how they manage their community. They both did their job to the best of their abilities, each with a different approach yet still following the "rulebook" set by the company.

I can't recall how many times I have heard the phrase "That's how you handle the community" while I was still a Forum Moderator. I hardly agreed with any of the methods and the reasoning yet still put up with it, hoping that something good will come out of it.

I am no longer an FM, and I'm still waiting for that "something good" from them.

But what exactly does Community Management entail? Mind you, this is going to be a long one.

Community management in video games is a new way to think about the communication between a publisher or developer and its customers. Most closely associated with MMO games, it has scattered very fast to all genres of gaming, including through modding communities and popular online multiplayer games.

In the past, publishers may have thought that the most important task was to sell boxed software. In this age of ubiquitous internet socialization, it would be unwise to release a game without allocating resources to communication with the community.

If the people who play your games feel part of something bigger -- a network with its own rules, its own stars and its own language -- they will be less likely to move to another game, because they will remain loyal to where they belong. Just as it can be difficult for someone to leave their country, it can be hard to quit a community.

It's well known in the MMO industry: people try your game because of the gameplay, the graphics, the reputation or a good marketing campaign, but they keep playing because of the people they play with. When it comes to other genres, it's all about loyalty.

People join a community because they're interested in your game, but if the community brings them what they need in term of entertainment, gaming experience, socialization and accomplishment, they will be more likely to remain loyal to the publisher or the developer who brought it to them.

In the end, a community is also a source of infinite ideas. Give your customers the right tools to express themselves, and they will talk about what's right and what's wrong in your products, allowing you to improve them or build a solid basis for the next version.

Wondering why your last big multiplayer shooter attracts only 300 players online every evening? Why don't you ask the ones who quit playing it why? internet gives developers the ability to directly talk to their players, and it's now time to use it.

That's just a quick summary of what communities can do for you. But that's not the point of this article. Instead, let's talk about what publishers and developers can do for their communities.

Before we begin, keep in mind that this article was written from several years of being part of gaming communities, and then working as a community manager -- but community management is still quite new, and the first rule remains "adapt to your community". As community management is all about communication between human beings, there are no strict rules of what to do and what not to do -- just advice, and experience.

What is a gaming community?

A community is basically something very simple: it's just a group of people, gathering somewhere to talk and exchange ideas about one or several subjects. There have been gaming communities for ages, but they began to grow bigger and stronger with the internet.

Of course, in the past, to gather with your community, you needed to meet somewhere in your city, or travel a long way to see your fellow community members -- or even use snail mail. With the internet, all you need is push the power button of your computer, have an internet connection, and be able to read and write something barely understandable.

Beyond all sociological considerations, a gaming community is a group of people from all around the world, gathering mainly on internet to talk about games. And more specifically, about your games, whether you want it or not.

To build a gaming community, the players just need a game to talk about, and a place for discussion. Most of the time, it all starts with a forum, a few people, a lot of passion about a game. That doesn't mean that it will be a healthy or constructive community. That doesn't mean it will grow bigger and bigger, and spread your word all over the internet. That doesn't mean it will be of any use for you, whether you are a developer, a publisher or a player. It simply means that it exists.

But beyond technical tools like a website or a forum, a real community is characterized by something that's not material: community spirit. This strange thing expresses itself in many ways, but the point of it, in the end, is to keep the players together.

It is what motivates players to write strategy guides for other players, to create fan sites, to lead guilds, to create events on their own, to post on the forums even when they're not looking for any specific information, to give more than they receive, and so on.

In the end, community spirit is what makes players feel they're part of something bigger, and sometimes, an important part of this "something".

Networks and Meta-Communities

As community websites grow, they often join a network and contribute to build a meta-community. Not all networks are meta-communities, but all meta-communities are networks in some way.

Website networks are just gatherings of many websites in a similar web architecture, to share tools, structures, costs and audience in an overall scaled economy. Some of the best-known networks are lead by professional editorial teams which create many specialized sites to expand their audience and land more advertising, but they may also be lead by regular gamers willing to provide others with information about their hobby.

It can be hard to tell the difference between a community, a network and a meta-community, but again, it's all in the "community spirit".

A meta-community is a community of communities. Basically, it works like a network, with many fan sites and forums linked to each other on a same platform, but beyond the audience, these fan sites will share their community to create a bigger one with common rules, codes and habits the newcomers will have to understand before being integrated. Even if they play very different games, the people will still feel part of a unique community, and that is the whole difference between networks and meta-communities.

As it can be very difficult to distinguish a network from a meta-community without being part of it, here are some examples to discover: JeuxOnline.info (French), GuildCafe.com, The Warcry Network, and Stratics Central.

Community Migration

Some people in our industry say, "Players come for the game, and stay for the people". That's not totally true. Indeed, some players may begin playing a game simply because it's attractive to them, but very often they just go from a game to the other to follow the people they play with -- their friends, their community. We can call it "community migration", and it's a very common fact in multiplayer gaming.

Go on a popular gaming forum and you'll see a lot of topics like "Who, from Flyff Server X, will play Rappelz?", "Which team from CSS will play TF2?", and so on. Why do they want to play with people they already know?

There are many explanations to this fact, but one may be that by playing on the same game server in the past, even if they didn't know each other, they were part of the same community, playing with the same rules and values, and so they want to stick together because nobody wants to get lost in new rules and different social codes.

By targeting communication toward an existing community and providing the right tools, publishers can attract groups of players instead of lonely players, and make community efforts more effective.

This process could easily spawn another article, but to keep it short -- and counter the fact that many funny-minded people still say that video games tend to isolate people -- video games remain a social way to entertain, and the primary reason many people buy a game is to play with their friends. The advice of a friend will be a lot more effective than any review or advertising, and communities lead people to create friendships with other players.

The Community Manager

As we said earlier, a community needs almost nothing to start, but to keep it growing, you will need someone able to help it, and this person is the community manager (or CM).

Role and Behavior of a Community Manager

Basically, the community manager is the link between the community, and the publisher and/or development team. Positioned between customer support and the public relations, his role is really diverse and includes the management of community tools provided to the players, the organization of events (both in-game and real), the transmission of information from the dev team to the community, and the transmission of reports, feedback and suggestions from the community to the team.

The community manager is the official interlocutor of the community, and bears the word of the publisher and the developers to the players. It means that he is in charge of the direct communication in times of crisis, but more important: it means that the CM is the first person bearing the image of the company and contributes to building it.

The community manager is a vector of image building and branding, and that is the reason why his behavior has to be without any blame, because one and only one mistake can spread very quickly through the communities, meta-communities, networks, and so on, all over the internet, in less than six hours.

The community manager also bears the authority of the developers among the players, and he has to be respected as such, because if he doesn't earn the respect of the community, everything he says will have no value, and his mission will fail. He also has to make sure the rules are respected by making sure everybody knows them and can understand them.

A community manager is not just a player; he is a communication and customer support professional, and that is why he needs the proper skills and experience -- and thus proper consideration and remuneration.

Recommended Skills

In the past five years, plenty of companies have hired community managers with no skills or experience. Why? Because experienced CMs are very rare, because they didn't want to take the time to provide the right foundation, or simply because they didn't know, and thought that talking to players wouldn't require any special skills.

That lack of experience and consideration from higher management lead some of these companies to bigger problems -- because when a community manager loses his nerves and insults players in the official forums, the word spreads very fast and the public doesn't appreciate it. What can the players rely on, if the representatives of the developer are not reliable anymore?

When you need to hire a community manager and think it doesn't require many specific skills, just ask yourself a question -- would you hire a marketing manager without any particular skills just because selling a good product is, in fact, not that hard?

It is important not to underestimate the importance of the people you hire to talk to your community, just because community management doesn't provide you immediate and calculable results, as marketing can. The people who currently say that community management isn't important are the same who said almost 100 years ago that public relations was not important -- before Ivy Lee came and proved them the contrary.

All the same, that's a fact, as community management is a new profession, and experienced people are extremely rare. To balance this lack of staff, once again, look to your community. To help you find out the good one, here are some of the skills a community manager will use in her work:

Communication skills

Talking: A CM will have to be present at conventions and shows, talk on stage and answer interviews. Self-confidence will be useful in these exercises.

Writing: The majority of the communications will be written, on the forums, via press releases, chat, or other formats. It sounds obvious, but don't hire someone who isn't capable of writing a one page article without one spelling mistake on each line, unless you want to give your company a "special" image.

A standard of academic writing is also recommended. I've seen a few community managers writing about their game like "This game is so cooooooool ! There are monsters and fighters, and even cars ROFL!!!!! Come and play to have fun LOL!!! <3 :))))" This doesn't show me the ability of the publishers to manage a game, and even less a community. As a player, I don't want to rely on someone who behaves like an 8-year-old to run a game correctly.  


Gaming knowledge: The CM has to have a basic knowledge of the type of game she will be working on -- enough to fully understand the point of view of each person in your community. Hiring a member of your game's community could be a good idea, but it's also a great risk. The CM is not a player; much more, she's a communicator, in touch with both the community and development team. If she comes directly from the community, she might have difficulties with the perspective change -- and fail to understand the dev's or the publisher's point of view.

Linguistic skills: Video games are now international -- except a few exceptions (I bet hurling games are only sold in Ireland). Players take their information from different sources. For the CM, she must of course be fluent in his community's primary language, as well as English. German basics could be a plus, because German video game networks are huge and active -- even compared to the English-speaking ones.

Media: Depending on the responsibilities the CM will undertake, having a good knowledge of the gaming media is a strong advantage. As she communicates with her community, she might be able to do it through several different channels -- and magazines and websites are important channels to use. Media knowledge will also help in coordinating communication plans with the PR and marketing departments.


Community: Fan site, forum moderation, game server administration experience is very useful. All type of community-related experience is a strong plus.

Media: As we saw above, experience in relations with the media is always good to have. If you hire someone who already knows how to behave in front of a camera, you don't have to teach her.

Development: A background in developing games or other software would help the CM to understand better the dev team's point of view.

Emotional Qualities

These advantages go without explanation, and could be of great help for the job of community management, although I admit they are very difficult to detect in one, two, or even three job interviews: patience, empathy, self-confidence (but not too much), teamwork, management skills, humility, rigor, ability to listen, etc.

Common Mistakes

The following errors have been made in the past by publishers or developers -- and they had lots of regrets afterwards. As we must all learn from our own mistakes, it's also very important to learn from others' mistakes. Bear in mind: this list isn't exhaustive.

Sending community managers into the lion's den without proper information and/or backing from management

By underestimating the importance of community management, it can be easy to set someone to work without information or backing at the very beginning. It can lead to critical mistakes that can be avoided.

Not providing enough support to the CM's team/not managing the community team

The management of a community, especially a big community, is very hard on the nerves, and there have been some very famous community managers' nervous breakdowns. You can read about them if you do a little research.

The community managers have to form a team, with a team leader managing and providing the support his colleagues need, so they can rely on each other when they have problems, before losing their cool and insulting a whole community on the official boards.

Underpay/under-consider the community team

Community management is an important part of communication in the gaming industry, but as it is still relatively new and formative, it is very often under-considered.

Always keep in mind that the community manager is the first interlocutor with the players, and that he bears the image of your company. So don't expect him to do a quality job without the proper respect from his management -- and the proper salary.

Underestimate the importance of coordination between marketing, public relations and community management

Marketing, PR and community management are the three most common ways to communicate with the public. To maximize the effectiveness of this communication and avoid contradictions, good coordination is necessary.

Having the PR manager saying one thing to the media, and the community manager saying something else to the community, is always a bad and confusing thing.

Building and Management of a Gaming Community

Don't misunderstand the title of this part: a community will be created, grow, and live -- with or without management from the publisher or developer. The purpose of community management is to help it grow faster, ensure it won't die, and use it in a constructive way.

In my opinion, a whole book could be written on community management without being exhaustive about everything that has to be known -- so the following lines are just clues to begin the work.

By the way, as we've seen before, a community can exist without help, but the job of a community manager is to help it grow faster, and live in a good way -- and according to the publisher's strategy.

To do this, the first thing would be to prepare tools to help players build their own fan networks, meet other players and begin talking about the game. This is the easy part. Then begins the real work: keeping "control" of the community, and feeding it, to avoid an early death.

Common Community Management Tools

Official website. The game's official website is the only totally reliable source of information for fans. Interviews in the media can be misquoted, fan sites can be wrong or deliberately lie, but all information in your official website must remain reliable. It is the center of your community and the meeting point of all of your different communities around the world.

Official boards. Some community managers choose not to have official boards for different reasons: if you provide official boards, you have the responsibility of their technical support, moderation, and so on. This is very hard work, and if you're not ready to invest enough time and resources, it could be better not to do it.

Official boards can be useful if you want your community to remain at your website and not disperse to fan sites. This is very important if you want to show your existing community different products, or if your website is a vector for marketing (for example, free-to-play online games or merchandise sales).

Official boards are also a fast and direct way to gather your community before a real fan site network is created. In the end, official boards also are a good way to collect feedback and suggestions from your community, without wandering around a huge number of fan site forums.

It's hard work, but if you have a realistic vision of your objectives for it, it can really be worth it.

Fan site kits. These packs of downloadable files should include every asset needed to start a proper fan site. We're talking about banners, site designs, screenshots, artwork, and sometimes even information.

The purpose of these kits is to avoid the problem of having 2000 empty fan sites about your game littering the web. Don't forget that fan sites bear the image of your game, and I'm sure any publisher would prefer to have fan sites showing proper, high-res, official screenshots than crappy, low-res pictures that came from who-knows-where.

Blogs. To be honest, blogs are a great tool, but very hard to handle. If your CM or someone from the dev team wants to start a blog, be sure it's not to talk about his life. Being a "celebrity" among a given community can sometimes lead people to write things they shouldn't write about -- at least not under an official position.

Blogs allow CMs to communicate in a very different way, close to the community, but they must not replace the official website or boards, and they must have a special purpose and be controlled and managed properly.

Newsletters. These are useful tools to give information to your community on a regular basis. A part of the community won't visit the website, the official boards, or on any fan site regularly, if at all.

The newsletter is a good way to summarize what has happened within the last week (or month) and focus on the important points. Be careful with the frequency of the newsletter, because an empty newsletter is most likely to go directly to the trash bin or the spam box.

Many more tools can be used by the community team, as well as by the PR team: podcasts, wikis, social networks, community videos, and more. I won't talk about them all here, but keep in mind these questions when you're thinking about using one of these tools: is it relevant?

If it is, can you correctly handle and manage it? If both answers are "yes", you should start considering what this particular tool will bring to your community, how much it will cost in terms of time and money, and after all that, start using it within your communication plans.

Keep "Control" of Your Community

First of all, you will never be able to really control a community, but you can try to lead it the right way -- at least, the way which is right to you.

Community rules. By establishing clear rules of conduct from the very beginning, and making sure they're respected, you can establish and influence the structure by which your community will live. It's always easier to establish rules from the beginning than applying them afterwards. When you set up the rules -- for example, the code of conduct -- think of anything that could happen, because a code which changes too often loses reliability.

Community education. The first adopters of a game -- the "early adopters" in marketing terms -- are likely to set the example for others. Teaching your community, and especially these community leaders, what behavior you want them to adopt from the very beginning will help you later on, because the community will manage and moderate itself.

Community managers and moderators can't be everywhere, but if the players are involved in the process of moderation and management of their own community, it will be much easier. I'm not talking here about players with special powers and accreditations, like the helpers we can see in some games; I'm talking about a community that controls itself using social links and peer pressure as a means for moderation. Unfortunately, this tends to stop working when the community gets too big.

Fan site programs. Fan sites will be created and grow without your help, but fan site programs allow you to nurture the development of quality sites and reward the best ones. Don't forget that fan sites about your game do contribute to the image of the game. By rewarding quality and showing the best fan sites on your website through a community program, you will encourage the webmasters to do their best, and thus promote your game at their best.

Trust and reliability. The trust and respect of a community has to be earned. If the community team doesn't earn it, don't expect it to control anything. This is related to the "role and behavior of a community manager" section.

Feed the Beast: Inform and Entertain

Like any other social organism, a community has to be fed to go on living. The people have to have something to talk about -- otherwise, what's the purpose of communication tools like boards or even chat systems? There are two ways to feed it: information and entertainment.

Information. The purpose of any fan site or fan forum is to gather information about the fans' favorite game, and it's the community manager's job to dole that information out, in cooperation with PR. Frequent updates and information broadcasts will regularly feed the community, keep the fan sites up to date and give people something to talk about in the forums.

Be aware that everything you say to any media can be relayed directly to your community. If you answer the questions of a Spanish or German fan site, those questions can be translated into any language published on a French or English website.

Be aware of the distance you have from your players. If you maintain a habit of being very close to them, forget about media exclusives -- because if they learn something important in a magazine or a famous website instead of your websites and forums, they'll denounce it as treason.

Keep them playing and if possible, not hate you

Entertainment. Special events or contests will also give the community something to talk about for weeks and months, while gathering the players in a unique and common subject -- which is very useful to strengthen the links between them.

Don't forget that players want or need to feel part of something; they want to be important in the community, and contests are good ways to foster that, by rewarding their creative talent. Having a big community is good, but having an active and productive community is much better.

Community and Game Development

Now, it's time to turn our attention to how you can harness the power of your community to affect the way in which your development team can interact with the game's fans.

Community management and customer support

In lots of big companies, the community team is part of the customer support department, and the community managers are also very often involved with support. As we said earlier, community management is located between customer support and communication. By their actions, and their communication, the community managers provide support to the players, and have to work very closely with the support team.

The game can't run any more after the last patch has been installed? Even if the CS will gather the information via e-mail or other support tools, the community managers will be busy communicating on the forums, explaining to the players what information they need to send in order for the devs to find out where the bug comes from, keeping them up-to-date about what the technical team is doing to solve the problem, calming the community down by moderating the forums and keeping them informed.

If a CM messes up, players would rather play backgammon than the game you're managing. Or worse, play a different online game

Can't play on patch day, after you announced servers would be back up at 2 PM? The community managers will ask the devs for technical information and estimations, translate it into language understandable for people with no programming background, estimate their own deadline from all available information, and then inform the players of their conclusions.

Working on a critical issue but can't solve it yet? Again, the community managers will do their best to inform the community, and the players will be much more reassured to know that the devs are working on it -- instead of not knowing anything.

There are too many examples of the use of community management in customer support to write them all here, but the idea is that CMs pave the road to communication for the support staff.

Feedback and Suggestions

When developers create a game, they have their own ideas of what will work and what won't, and they know what they want to put into their game. Most of the time, their plans are also based on experience, marketing studies and polls, and the opinions of many people from the PR, marketing, sales, and QA departments.
But remember that in the end, the only people who will judge your game will be the players, so why not directly ask them what they want? Gathering and directing players' feedback and suggestions can be a very difficult task, but it can also be very rewarding.

What's in the CM's mind?

First of all, you need to provide your community the tools to usefully communicate their feedback. Many tools exist for this purpose, but two important ones may be website-based customer support ticket software, and of course your official boards. Using the board, the players will not only communicate to you, but also discuss with each other in a big online brainstorm that can be very productive in terms of ideas... but also in terms of useless things.

After you have provided your community with the tools it needs to provide you feedback, you'll have to gather all the ideas and advice of your players. As it can take a very long time, I recommend doing it on a regular basis.

Keep in mind that developers don't have the time to read 1500 suggestions -- even if they are all very good. It's the job of the community manager to pick which suggestions are genuinely relevant and forget the others. Once she's picked the 10 or 20 best suggestions she could find, her job will to translate the ideas of excited players into words that make sense for both the development and the business parts of the company. A good suggestion report should at least include:

A short and precise description of the suggestion

The target (is this improvement made for hardcore gamers, players that have not yet bought the game, casual gamers, business partners?)

The positive impact it could have (on sales, marketing, customer support, community management, or anything relevant)

The impact on the development team (what will they have to do?)

The impact on the business (will it cost you money?)

After that, the report is sent to a dedicated person within the development team, and is used to improve the current game, prepare the following one, and so on.

As these reports are not always read by the dev team or anyone on the business side, it can be good to regularly merge all the reports you have, make a selection, and then send it to the dev team again. For example, if you sent a report with 10 suggestions every month for the past six month, just select the 20 best suggestions from these six reports and send them again as a digest.

Community and Communication

Most of the advice people learn in PR and communications studies are also relevant for community management, and I often think that the best community managers should have a PR and customer service background. This section will discuss some important points no community manager should forget.

Rule I: Know Your Community

A gaming community is like a country, with its own language, its own culture and rules, and even if a community manager does not have to be part of it, he has to know it well. Knowing the slang of your community is fundamental, as abbreviations can come from very diverse origins.

As an example, in the French community of Rappelz, we had players who came from the U.S. servers with their own language, others coming from World of Warcraft or from other games with their own habits, and in the first weeks after the release, these languages fought for domination, while another slang, coming from the new players, was created. This was a very interesting time to experience, but could be very confusing for community managers.

Knowing the language of your community also means understanding who your players are, what they do and where they come from.

In one game, the game masters were very strict on swear words and insults; I saw some players insulting each other with Japanese slang from the anime they watched, so the game masters wouldn't understand it. In that kind of case, having a community manager coming from the community itself may be very useful.

Knowledge of the community is also very important for understanding how it works, who the leaders are, what the implicit rules among players are, and more. Finally, knowing your community also means knowing your game.

It may be hard to understand why your community is crying about special areas in a particular map that give an advantage to one type of player, if you have never played in this map -- or even in the game.

Community and Communication

Most of the advice people learn in PR and communications studies are also relevant for community management, and I often think that the best community managers should have a PR and customer service background. This section will discuss some important points no community manager should forget.

Rule I: Know Your Community

A gaming community is like a country, with its own language, its own culture and rules, and even if a community manager does not have to be part of it, he has to know it well. Knowing the slang of your community is fundamental, as abbreviations can come from very diverse origins.

As an example, in the French community of Rappelz, we had players who came from the U.S. servers with their own language, others coming from World of Warcraft or from other games with their own habits, and in the first weeks after the release, these languages fought for domination, while another slang, coming from the new players, was created. This was a very interesting time to experience, but could be very confusing for community managers.

Knowing the language of your community also means understanding who your players are, what they do and where they come from.

In one game, the game masters were very strict on swear words and insults; I saw some players insulting each other with Japanese slang from the anime they watched, so the game masters wouldn't understand it. In that kind of case, having a community manager coming from the community itself may be very useful.

Knowledge of the community is also very important for understanding how it works, who the leaders are, what the implicit rules among players are, and more. Finally, knowing your community also means knowing your game.

It may be hard to understand why your community is crying about special areas in a particular map that give an advantage to one type of player, if you have never played in this map -- or even in the game.

Rule II: Communicate

This may be the second rule in community management, but it's the first and most important one in communications. As Paul Watzlawick said: "One cannot not communicate." This very famous sentence means that everything you do -- or do not do -- will be interpreted by your community, by the media, by your business partners, by everyone.

If you don't communicate, somebody else will do it for you, and then you can't control it. Any communications professional will tell you that uncontrolled communication is a prelude to disaster.

That's why you have to communicate, on everything, and with every tool at your disposal. Even the smallest maintenance has to be announced in advance and explained; any gameplay change has to be documented.

You have to communicate in a way that will be understandable to your players -- so ban technical language. If you're planning to apply an unpopular but necessary measure to your game, don't even think about trying to hide it.

If you do that, the players will find out in less than 24 hours and simply burn you alive. The best way is to communicate, discuss, and explain why this measure is important and why you have no choice but to do it. It's rare to have a chance to explain your customers why you do something, and talking to them directly will establish a real discussion, so don't miss out on it.

Of course, you can't tell your players everything -- and they don't have (and don't want) to know everything. So when you have to answer a question, just sit, look at the question, look at the information you can give them, and formulate the best answer you can with what you have. That's the best you can do.

Players are starving for communication. They constantly ask for it, and even if you want to be the most communicative company in the world, they will still think you refuse to give enough information.

If you communicate frequently, you'll minimize the risk of uncontrolled communication. If you communicate enough, players will read rumors, and think, "Our community managers didn't tell us anything about it, so we should just wait for official information." Isn't that the dream of anyone in communications?

Rule III: Be Honest

This rule is simple: if you're not honest, you're not reliable, and if you're not reliable, everything you say has no value at all. If a community manager doesn't earn the trust of her community, or loses it by lying or favoring certain players over others, then it's useless to communicate, because her own community will prefer trusting other sources -- most of the time unofficial -- instead of the official one.

If you're thinking about lying about an unpopular patch applied into the game, or hiding it, realize that you're better off communicating about it than risking losing the trust of your community. The companies who lie to their customers are the ones that underestimate the power of community, and it never brings anything good.

Rule IV: Don't Underestimate Your Community

The power of a community is both huge and impressive. A common mistake is to underestimate what a community can do for you or against you, and therefore not invest enough in community tools and community personnel.

Making this mistake can lead you to miss some of your biggest support when it comes to media, testing, moderation, and many other things. It can also lead to an angry community. You don't want to see 5,000 angry players posting in all the gaming forums they know that you don't care about your community.

Underestimating community also means underestimating players, which can lead to other mistakes, like hiding some of your game's modifications because you think the players won't see it, giving information to a foreign magazine and thinking that the European players won't hear about it, not protecting your game files enough because you think the players won't be able to view (and modify) them, and a number of other problems. The history of video game development is full of mistakes made by people who underestimated their players.

If something is possible, then there will be at least one player within your community who will do it.


A gaming community is a wonderful thing. It's living, growing, changing. It can help you by providing bug reports, feedback, and suggestions about your products. It can help you by spreading your word around the world through the internet, and even more. But it can also react in a manner you won't like.

To help it grow it in a good and productive way, the job of a community manager is to provide tools, entertainment and information to feed the beast, and then keep it alive and active by constant attention.

Everyone realizes that traditional marketing and public relations have changed thanks to the internet. Even so, community management is a newcomer in the media relations family, and all companies will have to adapt.

The community phenomenon is growing and changing with the arrival of new tools and social networks, and online communities have become more and more organized. I won't be surprised when we see a gaming community file a class action on a publisher in a few years.

Placed in the middle of customer support and public relations, community management should be part of all media and marketing plans in the gaming industry. Unfortunately, it's a fact that a lot of the marketing managers who went to business school in the '80s don't take community seriously or realize its usefulness.

After having worked on community management and public relations, I think that cooperation between these three ways of communications -- marketing, PR and community management -- is the next step to having really effective communication, and leading a game to the top. After all, could a game based on player's needs and communicating with its fan base really miss its goals?

Still watching... and waiting.

Credits: Gamasutra

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Review: Tomb Raider Trilogy HD

Crystal Dynamics, along with Square Enix, Inc., the publisher of SQUARE ENIX interactive entertainment products in North America, announced that THE TOMB RAIDER TRILOGY Pack is now available at North American retailers.

The pack has launched exclusively for the PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system and includes newly remastered HD versions of TOMB RAIDER Legend and TOMB RAIDER Anniversary, as well as TOMB RAIDER Underworld, previously released on the PS3.

THE TOMB RAIDER TRILOGY pack offers PS3 owners the opportunity to play two of the best games in the series now for the first time on the PS3. Both Legend and Anniversary have been carefully remastered from their original PlayStation 2 format into HD and also include full Trophy support.

Additionally, several exclusive items have been created specifically for this pack: THE TOMB RAIDER TRILOGY Playstation 3 theme pack, the official Lara Croft female Home avatar outfit, the Viking Thrall male Home avatar outfit and a collection of "making of" trailers in HD for the entire series.


I think it’s fair to say that in recent years the Tomb Raider series has seen something of a drop in popularity. The series seems to have been forgotten about (except for the hardcore fans of course), but it is poised for a big comeback with the highly anticipated reboot on the horizon. That makes now the perfect time to revisit some of the classic titles which made countless gamers surrender their hearts to Lara.

Crystal Dynamics and Square-Enix have picked up on that vibe and released the Tomb Raider Trilogy HD; the title “Tomb Raider Trilogy HD” seems a little weird because for starters the three games included in this voluptuous Playstation 3 exclusive package have all been released on the Xbox 360 previously. This begs the question just how much more HD can they possibly cram in there?

Well quite a lot actually because the three games included (Legend, Anniversary and Underworld) have been revamped fantastically. The graphics are certainly a little dated, but impressive none the less, and, as expected, the level of visual satisfaction only increases as you progress through the three games. If you have not dabbled in Tomb Raider’s delights before you should be ashamed. Go to your room you naughty boy and take this game with you it’s the perfect opportunity to see what all the fuss is about.

The three games included may not be considered among the all time greatest Tomb Raider games, but I certainly got a nostalgic feeling after playing though this collection of games. It’s a pleasant blast from the pre-Uncharted past and anyone who was privileged enough to play the original Tomb Raider games will feel right at home. The dodgy camera angles, twitchy vehicles sections, and often tedious puzzles, are still prominent problems, but it doesn’t drag the game down, in fact it only adds to the charm.

One of the bundles highlights is the instantly recognizable soundtrack; it’s been remastered with noticeable improvements and the distinctive score is one of the cornerstones holding Lara Croft up on her pedestal. As you explore and raid tombs you’ll be accompanied by some truly captivating music. It will change on the fly as you run into all sorts of troublesome enemies, ranging from cunning wolfs, annoying vampire bats, grizzly bears and the delightful raptors, which all caused so much trouble for Lara Crofts in previous adventures. It is a pleasure to gun them down all over again with a handsome arsenal.

The gameplay is unchanged of course, you’ll be running around raiding tombs in all the corners of the earth, utilizing acrobatic skills and gun-play to transverse any obstacles that come your way. During battles you’ll be able to use bullet-time to pull of some cool manoeuvres and, as expected, Lara will run into a fair few traps along the way, which adds a fantastic level of tension and excitement. Significant changes, like the addition of a grappling hook, smoother controls, and the diverse environments mean levels manage to maintain just the right level of challenge and are really very satisfying to play.

So what else does this package come with? What is going to make you pay Lara Croft for another adventure? Well the package also comes with some welcome extras: an exclusive Tomb Raider XMB theme is included along with several avatar items for those of you who enjoy using Playstation Home, but the best bit is the developer diaries.

Whilst they are quite short, they are genuinely funny and appear to be shot by the development team themselves, with different videos for each game and even some for Lara Croft and Guardian of Light. You are going to have to work if you want to experience all of these behind the scenes snippets because you’ll only unlock them by going off the beaten track, and finding in-game secrets. Trophies have been added too (thank god) so altogether these bonus additions really extend the playtime.

Out of the three, Tomb Raider Anniversary shines more so than the rest, at least to me. Released in 2007, it’s a remake of the original game and it stays true to Tomb Raider number one by removing most of the additions in newer titles. Again, it has a few niggling issues but the quality, level design, scale and emphasis on exploration make you appreciate it a lot more than the other two in the package, making it a good, solid and fun game to play.

Saying that, Tomb Raider: Underworld has a lot going for it too: it is a lot more cinematic, with more likeable characters and a more Hollywood Blockbuster-like story. The voice acting is top notch and the visuals are far more advanced. Underworld broke away from previous titles, being edgier, stylised, and demonstrating more influence from games like the highly acclaimed Uncharted. Although I would consider it to be an unfair to compare it with the older games, it makes Underworld more appealing to the wider audience.

The Tomb Raider Trilogy HD has clearly been made with a lot of love for fans but it is much better as an introduction for people new to the series. Honestly, for less than 30 English pounds, it’s a bargain, the HD element makes everything more vivid, sharper and gives you a new perspective on some classic titles.

Gameplay: 4/5 The controls retain the problems they’ve always had, but they don’t soil the experience in the slightest. Exploring is satisfying: climbing cliffs, jumping across deadly drops, it’s all simple, intuitive gameplay which stands the test of time well.

Graphics: 3/5 The HD revamp has given the games a fresh new look, however it can’t really compete with the visuals from current games on the market. Having said that,it puts up a good fight and is certainly a great incentive to part with your cash if you’ve never played the games before, or you just fancy a trip down memory lane.

Sound: 4/5 There are noticeable improvements in the games soundtrack and the familiar Tomb Raider tunes will put a smile on the face of the fans. The voicing acting can be laughable at times but it’s still good, in a cheesy sort of way.

Longevity: 3/5 We can’t be sure how many times you’ll be raiding those tombs but cool features like the developer diaries will mean the completionists out there get some interesting insight into how each one of these games we’re made. Going out of your way to find these little gems also adds another element of challenge and the stories are entertaining enough to warrant a second play though on hard mode.
Overall: 4 Raided Tombs out of 5

In summary this HD bundle is great value for money and it’s a great fan service. Past problems we’ve experienced in Lara’s adventures are easily over-looked and the gameplay, although a little tired, won’t disappoint.

Credits: http://www.tombraiderchronicles.com, http://newbreview.com

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Sabtu, 26 Maret 2011

T3fun’s CardMon Hero and WYD In-game Events for April

T3fun raises the bar this April as they proudly announce the in-game events lined up for April for the games CARDMON Hero and WYD. Next month, expect the unforeseen as more than 5 events are waiting to happen for each game filled with exciting prizes. April is the high time you get your T3fun experience in an ultimate thrill! Ready your weapons, set your cards, and fight for your destiny!


There’ll be more action and clamor in CARDMON Hero for the whole month of April. Get summoned in “The Trial of Time”, kill the monster waiting in dungeon in the best time possible. Fastest one to slay the monster wins. If it isn’t enough to gratify your hunger for endurance test, get listed on the “The Rise of Heroes” tournament, ready your cards and battle your way up. And because heroes are more than just physical superiority, it’s time you reveal your brain power! Join CARDMON Hero “Pop Quiz”, answer the GM’s questions and be a real hero in and out. Want to know more of CARDMON Hero events for April? Visit http://cardmon.t3fun.com.


With Your Destiny is on a hectic mode starting this month! How famous of a Hero are you? Gather your friends and have them register a new account and answer question “Who is your Hero?”. The more they answer your name, the more chances you get to win the ultimate prizes only the famed heroes get. Not the fame-hunger type? Then maybe “My Masterpiece” is for you. Brag your artistic prowess! Submit a picture of your character in the most creative way possible and get rewarded. And if you’re lucky enough, you may also stumble upon some of the Easter boxes strewn around the place courtesy of “Easter Egg Hunt” event. Move forward, know more about WYD events this month; check out http://wyd.t3fun.com!

This April, you’ll never run out of reasons to celebrate as T3fun spices your global game experience with two-fold FUN! Visit http://www.t3fun.com today.

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Kim Hak Yu's New Title Project R1 to Be Published by NHN

Kim Hak Kyu, developer of the hot Korea-made online game Ragnarok Online (RO), director of Korea-based IMC Games and "Father of RO", has recently signed a 2-year agreement with NHN and announced that NHN's Hangame will be the publisher of its latest online game Project R1.

The info about NHN's rights to publish Project R1 in Japan and South Korea is specified in the 2-year agreement, and that details related to the cooperation and the game's operation schedule won't be unveiled till the middle of May, when a press conference will be jointly held by both parties.

As one of the several top game producers in South Korea, Kim Hak Kyu is as famous as the "Father of Lineage" - Jake Song and the creator of the Lineage series - Kim Hyung Tae. His games are also crowned as "blockbuster", including RO (2002 ~ 2010) that earned 350 billion Korean Won in 9 years and Granado Espada (2006 ~ 2009) that earned 50 billion Korean Won in 4 years, and are prized as perfection combinations of "quality and value" by South Korean media.

Project R1, developed by Kim Hak Kyu, is also said as the real RO 2 by South Korean media.

Meanwhile, as analyzed by South Korean media, the agreement between IMC Games and NHN this time in a sense shows that Kim Hak Kyu intends to quit Hanbitsoft. NHN is to purchase 40% of IMC Games' stocks which is now in the possession of Hanbitsoft, but the purchase is subject to further negotiations since there's a dispute over the stock price between NHN and Hanbitsoft at present.

Credits: MMOsite

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Jumat, 25 Maret 2011

Cabal 2 Revealed 6 Classes and Background Story

ESTsoft has released several trailers for Cabal 2 before, and today they unveiled the world of Cabal 2 as well as the classes to us. There are Western Federation of Nations that led by Reinfeldt and Eastern Federation of Merchants led by Echsteel. The class system seems to be the traditional warrior-mage-healer type.

If you are playing or once played Cabal online, you will notice that Cabal 2's classes are similar to those in Cabal. But it's interesting that Cabal 2 adds healing class so you can expect different party gameplay.

Storyline Trailer

Background Story

The Western Federation of Nations Led by the Heart of a Born Ruler

Reinfeldt is a prince of the Heifeldt Empire, but he was never considered the heir to the throne since he's the son of a concubine.

Reinfeldt's mother suffered from severe depression after giving birth to him. On her last day at the palace, she whispered to him: "I have been true to you and only you." Reinfeldt missed his mother, but the Queen Consort taught him, nursed him, and loved him as her own son especially because she didn't have one of her own. She would always say to him, "Lower yourself. Lay low and don't show your claws until the opportunity presents itself.'

He focused only on becoming stronger, saying he's not interested in getting married. When he turned 15, he gave up his privileges as a member of the royal family and announced that he will board the expedition shin to the Old Continent.

Once he's gone out into the big wide world, he was a quiet young boy no more. Every night, he would dream of revealing his claws at last and make everyone kneel before him. Back in Heifeldt, princes waged a war between each other and the war led a rebellion. In the tragic year, Reinfeldt announced complete independence from the Empire and opened the era of a free city.

"Those who discover and exploit shall have the right to an inheritance and land." Nothing else needed to be said. A countless number of warriors and funds flooded into Megas.

You're one of them, coming into view from a distance.

The Eastern Federation of Merchants Led by the Heart of Steel

His father was a trader. Ever since he was little, he followed everywhere his father went, and learned everything from his father.His father was so successful as a trader that it was impossible to know how much money he was making in a day. When his friends studied math at school, he took an inventory of all the items piled up in the warehouse with an abacus.

His father used to say, "Money comes and goes, and it can come when you have none." He was murdered by someone when he was 17.

All the wealth and friends he had made all his life were like sand through his fingers. His father's death made his blood boil, but he couldn't waste his life on this and stop living his life. Echsteel makes a hard decision. He was no rookie.

Time passed, and before he knew it, he became the central figure in trading business in the port city of Matra just like his father had been. He has gone through so much hardship in such a short period of time that all his hair had turned white before be turned 29, but he still had the same piercing eyes he had when he buried his father and got back on his feet. So many people perished and an astronomical amount money was invested in finding the new sea route marked on his father's map that he'd tried so hard to protect.

Ten years have passed. It was like a miracle. One of the ships made it back to the port for the first time. Upon hearing the news on the very same day, Echsteel said nothing but drew a thick line on the map to complete the sea route. Citizens, landlords, merchants, mercenaries, sailors, and everyone else shed tears, shouting out the name Echsteel.

And it looks like you're among them.

Cabal 2 Classes:

Force Shielder

They form the majority of the Royal Guards and Imperial Army in the Main Continent.

They have added the Force to their combat skills, enabling them to command the other members on the front line of the battlefield. They carry a gigantic shield that1 s so heavy that normal people can't even lift, and use it to protect themselves and other team members. They also have great sword fighting skills, making them a subject of envy to many Force trainees.


Born from the Western Continent, they share the same root as Force Shielders.

Instead of carrying a shield, they use a gigantic two-handed sword with sheer destructive power. They look more violent than Force Shielders, but they have the spirit of chivalry and pursue moderation in swordsmanship.


Born from the Western Continent, only the members of the Holy Curia can train to become a priest and join this character class.

They maximize and use their inner faith by borrowing the power of the Magic Book that's said to include a map of the Force that flows in this world. They live up to the basic doctrine of the Holy Curia, which is to protect others and avoid destruction, by using the skills that heal the wounded.


This character class had branched off from the class of priests.

They're the ones who had refused to be a part of the Holy Curia or any other religious sects for that matter, and they founded a school soon after becoming independent。 They have relatively low vitality and defense, but they can manipulate the energy of the Force and contain them with spells.

They attack by casting spells. The higher the level of spell, the more destruction it can cause.

Force Archer & Force Blader

Force Archers use a bow as a Force Artifact to create and shoot arrows with a high concentration of energy.

As for Force Bladers, their Force Artifacts are special swords added with the Force that maximizes the potential of their weapon.

Credits: MMOsite

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Final Fantasy III for iPhone

A revamped iOS version of classic NES RPG Final Fantasy III is available now on the App Store, publisher Square Enix has announced.

The optimised port of the 2007 DS remake of the 1990 original will set you back a princely £9.49. Take a look at the trailer below and judge for yourself whether you think it's worth 16 copies of Angry Birds.

The game is compatible with both iPhone and iPod Touch running iOS 3.0 or above, while a scaled-up iPad version is due to launch next month. Square isn't saying how much it will want for that.

Credits: MMOsite, http://www.eurogamer.net

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Kamis, 24 Maret 2011

Aika Global's Latest Dungeon Prison Despero: The Dark Labyrinth

Within the Tower of Giovanni lies an ancient Labyrinth frequented by The Great Prophet himself. Long ago, it was once used as a prison for all the traitors who have rebelled or plotted against the goddess Aika. Now, it had been invaded by some of the most powerful members of the Zereca and the entire labyrinth is under control of the evil Queen Azu.

This prison is home to new and powerful monsters that can easily cripple and destroy even the most powerful Elters around. This dungeon though, is home to various treasures ripe for the picking for those who can survive and fight their way through the evil army of Queen Azu. Also, ancient records state that the recipes for some of the most powerful equipment in all of Lakia were once stored deep inside the prison. Rumors state that the leaders of the Zereca have discovered these ancient recipes and are jealously guarding them for their power.

The entrance to Prison Despero can be found in Seer Garden of Termes and is only accessible to players who are level 61 or higher. To enter, you shall need Ceras which can be bought from Skype who is located near the entrance. We recommend that you take the level 70 “Encountering Farrel” quest from Moa Silverhorn and “Research of McLean Family” quest from Christy Piniella (Kamiron’s Dwelling) before entering the dungeon.

*Note: There are three “Secret Merchant” NPCs inside Prison Despero. There is one in the first floor, another in the second floor, and the last one is in the third floor. These NPC sell special items needed for some of the most powerful equipment currently available in-game.

1st floor – to advance to the second floor, you shall need to kill the giant lizard-like boss monster called VertRagna. When you have killed it, the teleporter to the second floor should appear at the end of that map. VertRagna can be found roaming around in the giant circular area before the first floor’s exit.


2nd floor – to advance to the third floor, you will need to kill a winged boss monster called Ashis who looks like an Ishuma type monster. He can be found in the giant central room and he is stationed near the next floor’s entrance. When you kill Ashis, the teleporter to the third floor should appear.


3rd floor – in the central corridor, you will find a set of stairs with a glowing green entrance. A teleporter will appear there once you kill the winged knight-like boss monster called Ariman. That boss monster patrols the hallway near the exit of that area. After you kill Ariman, go back to the glowing staircase in order to find the “Gate of Queen”. You will need to use it to get transported to another room where you will fight Queen Azu.


After you kill Queen Azu, a teleporter will appear and it will transport you back to the third floor. If you have the “Encountering Farrel” quest, then you should have received the Black Heart of Queen Azu after killing her.

In the last room of that map, you can find the Secret Room Transmittor. You must be in a complete party (6 Members) and all of your members should have the Fictional Black Heart to use it. If even one of your party members does not have the Fictional Black Heart, then you cannot enter the secret room.

*note: There are three kinds of Fictional Black Hearts (Normal, Hard, and Elite) which all have the same name. Please take note of which one you have before you enter the dungeon, otherwise, you will not be able to enter the secret room.

**note: If you do not have the Fictional Black Heart, then the dungeon is over and you cannot advance any more. The next thing you should do would be to leave the dungeon and pass the “Encountering Farrel” quest to receive the Fictional Black Hearts.

Secret Room – inside the secret room, you will be able to fight Farrel. After killing him, you have a chance of receiving a Green/Blue/Red Book of Farrel. Right-click that book and you will either get Recipes, or the Sullied Green/Blue/Red Bookpage which is required for the “Research of McLean Family” quest.

When you have killed Farrel, then Congratulations! You have completed Prison Despero and have proven yourselves to be some of the most powerful Elters in all of Lakia!

Credits: Aika Global

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Cabal's Next Update Already in Test Servers (Updated Weekly)

Last updated: April 22

Cabal KR has recently posted the Test Server's Patch Notes for the still untitled follow-up to Episode 5: Mercenaries. Major changes are about to be implemented, especially regarding dungeon drops.

■ Fixes

Error when resurrection from death
Can't enter Mission War
Can't register favorite item in AH
Fixed reenter dungeon bug caused DC
Fixed problem related to item obtaining right
Fixed Forgotten Temple B2F quest error
Fixed Weakened Frozen Tower of Undead B1F quest error (no quest item drops)
Fixed some errors caused by item-crafting
Fixed can not use Slot Extender error
Fixed Forgotten Temple B1F quest error (no quest item drops)
Fixed Aura stats were not displayed correctly
Fixed HP amount displayed incorrectly in character badge (top-left of screen)
Fixed bugged quests
Alt + Tab caused client DC
Window Mode setting in Launcher caused in-game bug
Fix bug that caused some skill can not be learned
Fixed some bugged quests
Fixed AoS2 Quest
Bug caused by registering Piro Piro Pet Change Kit

■ Changes

Adjust difficulty of dungeon "Marquis Salinas Outposts"

Scenario Quest difficulty and compensation adjusted

Change attack style of monsters, which Level are lower than 34:
Adjusted some Scenario Quests

Edit some attack style of monster in low-level dungeon from Aggressive to Non-Aggressive

Fixed some bugged quests
Fixed Temporary Craft Formula Card error

Allow single player re-enter dungeon
In dungeon running time, if there's an interrupt, players are able to re-enter dungeon.
Allowed situations
Character changing
Server changing
Disconnected Client
Allowed time range : 10 mins from interrupted time.

Reenter Dungeon after interrupted

Upgrade by Force Core System Reforming
Added 5% to all upgrading cases.
Changes effect of Catalyst upon Upgrading Process

New Items Catalyst

New Force Core Upgrade UI

Changes the display of Epic items (items with Crafted options)
Divided Epic items into 2 categories:
Sub Epic : Craft Level 1-3
Top Epic : Craft Level 5-7

Change the display name & color of "Top Epic" items
Destruction -> Doom (Osmium Blade of Destruction -> Osmium Blade of Doom)
Luck -> Miracle (Osmium Armor Gloves of Luck -> Osmium Armor Gloves of Miracle)
Only "Top Epic" items would be "Character bind after equipped".

Top-Epic and Sub-Epic items

HP stats added many equip-able items

Amount of HP gained for each items

Items gained HP

Update Bike Upgrade System
Bike could be up to +15
Added "Bike Upgrade Kit"
Bike Upgrade Kit (Low) : For "Astral Bike Blue" upgrading
Bike Upgrade Kit (Medium) : For "Astral Bike RW3" upgrading

Bike Upgrade Kit

The upgrading progress will improve stats of Bikes. For example, RW3 +15 will have 95 Defense, 900 Defense Rate and Moving Speed is 950
Change the using purpose of Plasma Coating Kit.
Old : Bike Upgrading
Change : Bike Re-Coloring
Available colors:

0 - Blue
1 - Dark Red
2 - Dark blue
3 - Burnt Yellow
4 - Dark Viridian
5 - Iron Yellow
6 - Permanent Red Dark
7 - Dark Ultramarine

Plasma Coating Kit

Reduce required level of Blue Bike to 60 (old : 80)

New Display of Bikes Info (Includes Speed)

Stats of RW3 Bike +0 -> +9

Reduce item level of Shadow Titanium & Aqua :
Old : High
Change : Medium
Shadow Titanium & Aqua items now can be upgraded with UCM, Slot creating with SEM,...

Remove penalties of Mission Dungeon, Quest Dungeon and DX Dungeon
Change the locations of brand-new creating character
Help system upgrade

Quest UI changed
Added Quest Task list (Summary Information window) with Progress of each quest displayed
Allow up to 5 quests selected to be displayed in task list
Allow pinning Quest Task list on the screen
Allow moving Quest Task list (like Jukebox)

Dungeon Quest are automatically registered in Quest Task list

Quest Task List & Bike Upgrade Kit

Dungeon Drop changed
Remove drop of Blessing Beads from Weakened Dungeons
Remove drop of Remove Extract Potion from Lake in Dusk, Tower of the Dead B1F, Tower of the Dead B1F
Raise drop rate of epic items (included Sword/Magic Skill Amp)
Added drop of Earrings / Bracelets with Sub-Epic
For example : Earrings / Bracelets of Amp. (with 1/2/3% Amp)
Weakened Lake in Dusk
Critine / Shadow Steel Weapons & Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Weakened Ruina Station
Bluestin Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Bluestin Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Shadow Steel Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Weakened Tower of the Dead B1F
Bluestin Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Bluestin Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Bluestin Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Bluestin Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Lake in Dusk
Aqua / Shadow Titanium Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Aqua / Shadow Titanium Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Titanium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Titanium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Ruina Station
Aqua / Shadow Titanium Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Aqua / Shadow Titanium Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Titanium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Titanium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Tower of the Dead B1F
Lapis / Osmium Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Lapis / Osmium Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Shadow Titanium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Vocalnic Citadel
Lapis / Osmium Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Lapis / Osmium Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +2 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +3
Tower of the Dead B2F
Lapis / Osmium Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Lapis / Osmium Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Earrings / Bracelets +2 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +3
Forgotten Temple B1F
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Osmium Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Osmium Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +3 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +4
Illusion Castle : Underworld
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +3 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +4
Altar of Siena B1F
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Topaz / Redosmium Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Earrings / Bracelets +3 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +5
Forbidden Island
SIG Metal Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
SIG Metal Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1-2
Redosmium Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Redosmium Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +3 Sub-Epic 3
Earrings / Bracelets +5
Altar of Siena B2F
Mithril Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Mithril Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Mithril Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
SIG Metal Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
SIG Metal Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +4 Sub-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +6
Illusion Castle : Radiant Hall
Mithril Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Mithril Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Mithril Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
SIG Metal Weapons drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
SIG Metal Weapons drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +6
Forgotten Temple B2F
Mithril Weapons / Armors drop with Sub-Epic 1-3
Mithril Weapons / Armors drop with Top-Epic 1
Earrings / Bracelets +4 Sub-Epic 2
Earrings / Bracelets +7

Change Quest
All scenario quests and regular quests have been changed.
All scenarios, dungeon quests have been changed.
All general quests from Level 1-20 are irremovable.
Quest rewards will be adjusted during the test period.
Mercenaries party active social skills are enabled
Save Board / Bike summoned state

When change Channel or reconnect with server summoned state of Bike/Board will be saved.
Item in AH can not be registered if:
Items are cheaper than normal NPC Shop.
Allow price check of above items.
- Item Properties tab to register the mouse over items you can check the store price.
Change the style of attack UMD-03 Lantus Plumma
Improve the loading speed of Windows 7 OS

■ Additions

Added NPC for Mission War temporary buff items
Item are sold in Grocery Shop NPC
All village (Except Fort. Ruina)
Mission War Lobby Grocery Shop

Add social-network integrated UI
Chat commands: /tweeter, /xmdnlxj
Added to the Cabal menu: Cabal menu - Community - Twitter
Logout button has been removed.
Published charater is limited to 140 characters.
Twitter window can post a screen shot attached.
Chat commands: /facebook, /vpdltmqnr
Added to the Cabal menu: Cabal menu - Community - facebook
With this feature you can post an article on Facebook.
You can post a screen shot attached.
Automatic publishing feature articles
Satisfy certain conditions, automatic posting on the Facebook wall post.
Upon completion of specific quests article will be posted automatically.
"Warrior of Knight Star" quest-chain end
Scenario quests completed
Country / change quests completed

Alt + Enter through the window mode conversion modification
Alt + Enter when in Windowed-mode: Full screen
Alt + Enter mode when in full-screen: Windowed-mode

Add Skill EXP reward when completed quests

Recover SP when finished dungeon, based on rolling dice
Based on BSLv of character
BS Lv6 - Bs18 : 0 - 5 SP bars could be recovered.
BS Lv19 : 1 - 6 SP bars could be recovered.

Dungeon Reward

SP Dice at end of Dungeon

Divided all armors from Bluestin -> Osmium, that means:
Old : Osmium Armor Helm
Change : Osmium Armor Helm (WA) & Osmium Armor Helm (FS)

Update Aura System

Added DP system (DP : Dungeon Point)
When cleared Dungeons (Mission Dungeon, Chaos Arena, DX Dungeon) DP would be earned
DP will be reset to 0 after 3 hours
Allow check current DP in Dungeon Window
NPC Hampton in Port Lux sells items related to DP system (use DP to buy)

DP List of all Dungeons

New MD Dungeon "Marquis Salinas Outposts"

Lv 145
BSLV 11+
Entry Location:
Pontus Ferrum
X: 94
Y: 128
Entry Item:
Hacked code disk
DP acquired when clear : 10DP
Time Limit : 7 mins, time gained when completed Dungeon Quest

Dungeon Entrance

Dungeon Location on GPS

Dungeon Starting Point

Dungeon 1st Boss

Dungeon 2nd Boss

Dungeon 3rd Boss

Dungeon 4th Boss

Dungeon Final Boss

Introduction Quest:
New MD Dungeon Quest Outposts Marquis Nas
Level: 145
Start NPC: Sally in Fort Ruina
New Armor grade added "Dry Plastic Mechanism"
Only drops in "Marquis Salinas Outposts".
Will drop with one slot, slot extension is unavailable.
Use "Highest" core level.
Limit : 145+

New Armor Preview

New Armor Stats (WI)

Similar to Lycanus Weapon, item will be dropped with 3 random options.
Bonus effect gained based on number of wearing-parts.

Bonus Stats

New Epaulet grade added "Dry Plastic Mechanism Epaulet"
Only drops in "Marquis Salinas Outposts".
Resist Critical added in stats.
Added new NPC for DP system
Add DP exchange items

Cube of Training
Cube of Soul
Cube of Strengthen

Added Bluestin / Titanium / Osmium armor switch card:

Allow to switch old armors into class binding armor
NPC : Hamperic
Price :
Bluestin switch card: 100,000 Alz
Titanium switch card: 500,000 Alz
Osmium switch card: 1,000,000 Alz
Each grade consists 6 separated classes : WA / FB / BL / FS / FA / WI
After using switch card, all stats won't change included:
Enchant Level
Item Properties
Epic Options
Switch card is not allowed registering in AH

■ Modifications

Fixed bugged quests
Fixed "Alt + Enter" pressing during client loading caused error
Error caused using of switch card for Force Blader and Force Archer
"All Skill Amp." & "Add all Attack" option caused error in AH fixed
Cannot do "Battle Style Level-Up" if not completed "Colony trainee" quest chain
Fixed bugs caused by Macro Text
Fixed bugs caused when the amount of AP received from quest is too large
Fixed bugged quests

Credits: Cabal EU

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