EVE Online Is Now Free, Asterisk
The age of the MMO seems to be over. Across the board, it seems that once-great MMOs are having to start changing their business to keep players. The latest MMO to change its ways: EVE Online is now free, to a certain degree. It's sort of like how Runescape does it: there's essentially free and member worlds, and in free worlds there's a limited amount of skills and levels you can access. This doesn't mean free players are at a disadvantage, like starter-edition World of Warcraft players. They're more limited than paid members, but they're still able to be competitive in the free worlds.
Valve Facing $3M Fine For Breaking Australian Consumer Law
I'm no Australian law expert, but they seem to have a pretty strong consumer law. One of the provisions gives consumers a legal right to get a refund when they're sold a defective product. Valve was found guilty of this earlier this year, and could now be facing a three million dollar fine. Hey, if it took a court case to get Valve to actually add a refund policy, I can't say it's all bad.
Star Citizen Developer Commits To More Openness During Development
After a few tell-all exposés by various media outlets, Cloud Imperium Games—developer of Star Citizen—has realized that they've got to do something to convince people that they're not scamming their fans out of over a hundred million dollars. They've decided to share their internal development schedule on a weekly basis, starting in Alpha 2.6. This, of course, doesn't mean that there's any more guarantee that the game will ever be finished, but it does mean that people will have a little more information on what they're doing while developing.
Hacker Convicted Of Stealing $16M Worth of FIFA Coins
The in-game currency for FIFA, like many online games, can be sold for real money on the black market. This is, of course, against the rules, but it usually only results in a ban from the game. But a certain enterprising hacker decided to steal over sixteen million dollars worth of these coins—and then was convicted of wire fraud. The hack was pretty simple—the hacker and his co-conspirators created software that told EA's servers that they'd completed thousands of games per second. They would then be credited with coins for these matches, which were then sold for real money on the black market. And they would've gotten away with it, too, if not for the part where they got caught.
Watch Dogs 2 Reveals That Ubisoft Is Planning a Space Exploration Game
Watch Dogs 2, the sequel to the critically panned 2014 game, seems to be doing pretty well this time around. In one of the missions in the game, you're tasked with hacking into an in-game version of Ubisoft San Francisco's servers, where you uncover a trailer for a No Man's Sky-esque space exploration game, codenamed Pioneer. And according to Kotaku, the game is real, but it's not going to come out any time soon. It was originally planned to come out in 2017, but plans have apparently changed.
Other, more sinister things might be going on at Ubisoft—five executives at the company are being investigated by the AMF, the French stock market regulator. They're accused of selling off company shares shortly before the announcement of delays for Watch Dogs and The Crew back in 2013. The accused include three executives from Ubisoft Montreal, the developers of Watch Dogs.