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Posts with tag nyt

The Shattering hits The New York Times best-seller list

Blizzard has let us know that after only a short time available on bookshelves, The Shattering by Christie Golden has hit The New York Times best-seller list. This makes The Shattering Golden's and Blizzard's second NYT best-seller after Arthas: Rise of the Lich King. Congratulations to Christie and Blizzard, as the book is awesome and totally deserves the recognition that it is getting.

The Shattering – New York Times Best Seller
Despite having just been released earlier this week, The Shattering by Christie Golden has rocketed into the New York Times best seller list.

This prelude to Cataclysm follows major faction characters as they adjust to life after the war with the Lich King, before being abruptly attacked by the land and elements themselves. What is leading to these devastating earthquakes and ship-sinking squalls? Magni believes he has found the secret through his brother's research, while Thrall believes an already shattered world holds the secrets. If you're looking forward to the Cataclysm expansion, this is a must-read to catch you up and prepare you for the epic story about to be unveiled.

The book is available in the Blizzard Store (http://us.blizzard.com/store/details.xml?id=1100001208) and all fine book retailers.

Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

NYT: GAPP and Ministry of Culture clashing over Chinese WoW regulation

The New York Times has brought its journalistic bear to the story earlier this week about China deciding not to approve WoW's release over there under new service provider Netease, and it seems what we thought was confusion between two agencies has turned into a war. On one side, you have the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP), who earlier this week said that Netease (WoW's local provider of Blizzard's game in China) could not legally be collecting subscriptions on a game that GAPP hadn't yet approved. But on the other side is the Ministry of Culture, who did approve WoW's content when it was run by The9, and are now saying that GAPP "overstepped its authority" by thinking it could "penalize online gaming" at all.

Which means that the silly game of World of Warcraft has fallen smack dab in between two government agencies lobbying for power. In the past, says the NYT, GAPP has approved games pre-release, and the Ministry of Culture has overseen games once they've started running online. But WoW is a weird exception (it has been online for a few years already, and only went offline when Blizzard switched providers), and it looks like both agencies are grabbing for power and the sizable fees that come along with regulation. If they continue to clash, it'll be up to the State Council, China's cabinet, to determine who's in charge. And the NYT says if that happens, the Ministry of Culture has the edge, with lots of friends in the cabinet already.

Meanwhile, Netease hasn't taken the game offline yet, apparently -- they still haven't been given official notice to do so. There's no word on how long this will take to shake out, but even China's players are tired of the fighting; they just want to get back into Azeroth and play.

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

Filed under: Realm Status, News items, Economy

All the World's a Stage: Background story

All the World's a Stage is a source for roleplaying ideas, commentary, and discussions. It is published every Sunday evening.

Your character is like an arrow. He was launched from the birthplace of your imagination with the aim of creating spontaneous stories with other creative people. Your character's personality is the particular direction he travels in, and his background story is the bow which set him on his way.

The bow-string tension that gives a good backstory its momentum is its lack of resolution. The desire to find resolution propels your character forward into the game, but it doesn't predict with certainty where your he or she will end up. Realizing this can free you of a great burden: your story doesn't have to make the New York Times Bestseller List. In fact, the whole idea here is to purposely leave your backstory unfinished, ready to be resolved through roleplaying. Too much emphasis on a dramatic background leaves you with not enough room for an interesting foreground, and little else to contribute other than the saga of your epic past.

Obviously, people aren't logging into WoW to read your miniature novel. They generally won't want to hear your backstory unless they specifically ask you about it (which they might!), but even then they'll care less for its narrative value and more for its ultimate impact on your character as a person. It's best to think of it less as a story in itself (e.g. "How I got to be this way"), and more as a prologue to the story you want to roleplay (e.g. "How do I get out of this mess?"). Its purpose is to set up challenges for your character to overcome with other people, and it should establish a direct line to your character's desires and aspirations.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Lore, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

NYT covers WSVG's CBS broadcast tomorrow

The New York Times does a quick profile of the WSVG on the eve of their CBS broadcast tomorrow afternoon. I don't know if you guys knew this, but apparently gaming has been an "odd, insular subculture," and only now are gamers stepping outside into the harsh sunlight, rays blinding their sunken-in eyes as they blink at the real world around them.

Idiotic gamer stereotypes aside, the article does mention a few interesting things about how the network and the WSVG have worked together to make complicated games more accessible to an audience that may not understand them. We heard a few of the ideas, including the health bars and the "Iceblock" graphic, yesterday in our exclusive interview with WSVG President Matt Ringel (that's right, the Gray Lady is picking up WoW Insider's news scraps), but there is mention of a Guitar Hero mechanic that I hadn't heard-- at tournaments, instead of just the scoreboard, there's also a "showmanship judge" that can give points for an enthusiastic performance.

Are you planning on watching the show tomorrow? I am, but not necessarily because I expect it to be amazing. Just like I sat through the terrible comic book movie of Spawn all those years ago just so we could have a great comic book movie like Batman Begins, I'm going to give them my eyeballs tomorrow so we can hopefully have some great spectator eSports in the future.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, News items, PvP

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