|Pretty much the biggest AC Announcement since the game
went retail... yeah, you're gonna have to pay for it, but knowing Turbine, it'll be so worth
it. Here's the official word from Asheron's Call.com:
|Microsoft today announced that the
Asheron's Call: Dark Majesty Expansion Pack will be available this holiday at retail
locations throughout North America. The first of its kind for the franchise, this
expansion pack includes the original Asheron's Call as well as many new features and a
compelling new landmass. Asheron's Call: Dark Majesty will be available at retail for only
US$19.95 and will include one free month of play.
"Turbine is very excited about the expansion pack, and our continued
relationship with Microsoft. The Asheron's Call franchise is a very important part of our
company," noted Jeffrey Anderson, President and CEO of Turbine. "We are firmly
committed to developing and delivering high-quality online entertainment."
The Expansion Pack delivers on new additions such as
housing and storage, two of the features most requested by our customers. Players will be
able to purchase their own homes on designated plots of land, as well as use their
residence for secure storage purposes. The Expansion Pack also kicks off the next chapter
in the on-going Asheron's Call story-line by introducing the island of Marae Lassel. Marae
Lassel is a sprawling new landmass which will contain new quests, dungeons, and treasures
and will be accessible to all levels of players who purchase the Asheron's Call Expansion
Asheron's Call: Dark Majesty builds upon the epic,
evolving storyline by paving the way for the return of an old nemesis. "We don't want
to give everything away," says Nik Davidson, producer of the Expansion Pack,
"but suffice to say that the name of the expansion pack is a big clue."
"Microsoft is making a significant investment in
Asheron's Call with both the expansion pack and in the sequel to Asheron's Call which we
announced earlier this year," explained Matthew Ford, Lead Program Manager for
I can only really touch on the implications here... well, the
days of muling may be at an end if this turns out to be anything like it is implied to be.
Certainly houses are going to cost a sh-tload of pyreals, and there will probably
be land fees, etc. The coolest application here will be how are these houses going
to work out on Darktide (PvP)? Interesting days ahead for AC, for sure. The
update is set to come out at Christmas of this year. Anyway, here are two
screenshots from the site of (I assume) two sample houses. Cool.
As for the storyline, it looks like it will be the return of
Bael'zharon which I have to way is weak. As detailed as the story was, like
a WWF angle, it became drawn out, boring, and shadows were just a really lame pick for the
"forces of evil. So while I'm not at all keen on the return of BZ, houses are
cool and I'm sure Turbine has a lot more in store for us in this release, which we'll keep
you updated on.
Finally, for some more information on the "Dark Majesty" release, click here to read an interview with Turbine President and CEO, Jeff