Trio of MMOGs raid retail

Pirates, demons, and aliens all go massively multiplayer as Pirates of the Caribbean Online, Hellgate: London, and Tabula Rasa launch this week.


Once upon a time, gamers had the choice of either high fantasy or alternate fantasy if they wanted to play a massively multiplayer online game. And although it is certainly the case that the fantasy genre still dominates the MMOG market, several new games released this week aim to add a bit more spice to one of the fastest-growing sectors of gaming.

On the family-friendly front, Disney Online has released Pirates of the Caribbean Online. Inspired by the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced summer blockbusters, which themselves took root from the classic Disney theme-park attraction, the MMOG lets aspiring swashbucklers captain a ship, steal booty, slay undead, and otherwise build a legend as the most well-intentioned knave on the Seven Seas. The game is available for both the PC and Mac. Players can play for free in a limited-access, ad-supported version of the game, with full access being granted for a first-month fee of $4.95 and a $9.95 charge each month thereafter. It is rated E10+ for Everyone 10 and Older.

Playing off of the ghoulish frightfest that is (or at least used to be) Halloween, Flagship Studios has opened up Hellgate: London this week. Hellgate seeks to join first-person shooter gameplay with role-playing game character building. The M-for-Mature-rated game, which experienced a degree of technical difficulty with its online servers initially, is playable in both single-player and multiplayer modes after its initial $49.99 purchase (a $59.99 collector's edition is also available). The game can also be upgraded to an elite subscription account at $9.99 a month for further massively multiplayer functionality. A free trial of the single-player portion of the game is currently available for download.

The launch sequence for Richard Garriott's "blank slate" sci-fi MMOG Tabula Rasa also engages this week. Not unlike Hellgate, Tabula Rasa seeks to marry the fast-paced action of shooters with the complexity of RPGs, while indiscriminately laying waste to hordes of invaders. Available in both $49.99 standard and $69.99 collector's editions, Tabula Rasa requires a recurring monthly subscription fee of $14.99 after the first 30 days.

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Avatar image for tron563

well i play lots of kinds of MMO but this one i play 3 of this games already

Avatar image for Azurewrathhal

MetalZombieII, your argument pretty much fails because you reference Guild Wars as an MMO, and if you knew anything about MMOs you would know what's wrong with that statement. But I'm sure ex-employees of a company are pretty reliable as far as giving an unbiased opinion of where they used to work.

Avatar image for MetalZombieII

OriginalSenn "They have to charge for these games, because they have so many employees constantly working on them and in them" Actually that is what they have everyone thinking, but it's not true, the only people who are always on are GM's and a large number of these games don't even employ GM's. The the development team only works when there is an issue expansion or update. Ex-employees from Sony outed them on EQ and EQ2 a year ago, saying that keeping the servers running and paying the dev team to constanly be working was an excuse that was used when large numbers of gamers started to complain about subscription fees. There was even an artical not to long ago where the head of development on Guild Wars, some of whos employees come from other MMO dev teams, said flat out, that companies like Sony and Blizzard say things like their games are in a constant state of development and they need to keep the servers running, as excuses to get people to pay a monthly fee and it is untrue.

Avatar image for rokkuman09

Oh, gosh there are way too many MMOs already on the market. We don't need more flooding the market, there just isn't going to be enough players to keep all these games running.

Avatar image for Merl57

JESUS 10-15 bucks a month NO WAY I dont care how good a game is that is just so completely unreasonable, Xbox Live is the only thing I'm paying for, I'll never EVER buy WoW for this reason or these other games, its B.S and they don't need to do it. Look at Guildwars selling 4 mil copies

Avatar image for linkthewindow

Another reason for me to take up MMO's.

Avatar image for MasterChief725


Avatar image for i_got_you60

my money is on hellgate online mmorpg and single player in one hell ya now thats what iam talkin about

Avatar image for NandoSupes

Warhammer Online Age of Reckoning is the MMO to wait for in my opinion.

Avatar image for dorohala

At least we know now!!!

Avatar image for londonrider

Thanks for the news! /me back to Stalker

Avatar image for boomboomkid

Tabula Rasa seems fleshed out enough to pique my interest only of the three. I gave a try to Hellgate with demo, but it just seemed too generic and lackluster with drab designs and almost copy/pasted quest system from WoW. Pirates, on the other, hand would be great for my 10 year old niece.

Avatar image for ryaz_weaponx

still dont think any can beat WOW

Avatar image for sw_and_wet

Hellgate seems good. Not sure about Tabula Rasa, and Pirates of the Caribbean Online??? Can't image what it's gonna be.....Really doubt about this game..............although I sort of like the movie..........

Avatar image for NX75

Playing Hellgate, I have no idea how anyone can call it an MMO. When did society develop such a broad and loose definition of MMO that it could envelop that game? It's beyond me. Tighten up that definition again, guys, or it's a useless moniker. Since I'm the only one here who probably watches the show, I'll be the first to point out the coincidence here with Tabula Rasa being released this week and this Friday's new episode of Stargate Atlantis also being called Tabula Rasa. Err... what a bizarre coincidence!

Avatar image for diesil

if any mmo thats not wow and guild wars gets a 9.0 or higher deserves to be played

Avatar image for serge59

I'm thinking about getting on board with hellgate london, but I'm still waiting on the verdict from a couple of my trusted places. The demo was poor in my eyes, but I hear the real game is much better.

Avatar image for ROXLYDE

I'm still undecided about Tabula Rasa...sometimes its fun..other times..not so fun.

Avatar image for K_M82

How can they support ads in game like Pirates of the Caribbean? Where do they put the ads?

Avatar image for LockdownLA

Hellgate is so very awesome! Tabula Rasa, not so much...

Avatar image for nintendorocks

This isn't news. It's just the fact that 3 MMOs are being released. princeofshapeir- Guild Wars is not a MMO. Get over it.

Avatar image for jknight5422

Man, there is a void for MMORPGs for the 360 & these guys all ignored it. The only thing I've heard is NCSoft is going to bed with Sony & PS3, I guess they like a smaller customer base or some bad blood developed between NCSoft & Mr. Softy. It's disappointing.

Avatar image for runstalker

While ArenaNet is my favorite ex-Blizzard team, I think Flagship's going to have a nice game with Hellgate after about a month of tweaks and settling down.

Avatar image for princeofshapeir

Guild Wars = Best MMORPG ever.

Avatar image for grafkhun

only hellgate london out of 3 are potential buys from me, personally i think its gonne be awesome and am going to go dl that demo right now :)

Avatar image for Diernes

Number of subscribers does not a good game make. and neither does completely biased hype and review sites that probably have a hand in the publishes pockets. WOW is overated kiddy friendly rubbish, which stole many ideas from its predesessors and repackaged it in a brainless and accessible form for the majority of the casual game playing populace. There have, in fact been numerous "WOW killers" already many of which existed before WOW was but a glimmer in blizzards eye. I played the hell gate demo, and sadly was not impressed, the full version better be drastically better to hold my attention. Im sorry if I have offended any of you, but I am just one of those gamers that prefers my digital entertainment to have, you know... some depth.

Avatar image for Ra-Devil

I'm tempted to get Hellgate London, but I'm a console gamer at heart, and Mass Effect is about to come out. Just one question: Is Hellgate London any similar to Diablo? I heard from someone it was like an alternative take on it.

Avatar image for wiirdawgs

hell gate >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> WoW

Avatar image for dead_god86

I agree with Red_Jester, it's gunna be a long time b4 any MMOG does better than WoW.

Avatar image for Nepherate

Hellgate: London is not an MMOG.

Avatar image for TH3_GAMBL3

Ryuketsu2043 :Hellgate Londonh friggen rocks and it should not be classified as an mmo at all ~ yeah it does rock...but being classified as an mmo doesn't mean its a bad thing, its classified as an mmo because it is massively multiplayable.

Avatar image for membernametaken

I'd rather watch Lazy Town than play any of those games.

Avatar image for OriginalSenn

They have to charge for these games, because they have so many employees constantly working on them and in them, unlike a regular game, that gets sent out and the developers wash their hands, except for maybe a patch or two. These games require constant supervision and repair. Somebody's got to pay everybody who does it, and that someone's the consumer.

Avatar image for LuffyTubby

HGL is so much fun. I LOVE IT. I freaking love it. It's... AMAZINGGGGG!!!:)))

Avatar image for zgreenwell

Now I know no one has enough time to play all three of these.

Avatar image for nate_n8

after 2 years of WoW, I'm done with MMO's.......hopefully :?

Avatar image for A1B2C3CAL

I am having a blast in Hellgate London! Gotta love lifetime subscriptions. No monthly fee ftw!

Avatar image for Ryuketsu2043

Hellgate Londonh friggen rocks and it should not be classified as an mmo at all

Avatar image for PseudoFinrod

MMORPGs require way more time and energy than I'm willing to invest in a game.

Avatar image for Lum_Yatsura

$14.99 a month? That's harsh. I could buy a PS2 game or 1-2 DVD movies...

Avatar image for ZOnikJJ

Still no WoW killer.

Avatar image for Mike_1511


Avatar image for Red_Jester

Three incoming games that will fail to capture a decent share of the MMO market.