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Chapter Eight: The Back Room? – The Helvetica Voyage

Posted by | March 14, 2015.

First time assimilation subscribers receive bonus energy for six months and free implant upgrades for signing up for lifetime contracts,” the Collective’s chorus boomed over a hidden PA system. “Certain conditions and restrictions apply.

Helvetica, Boots, and Rocky-Road beamed into what looked like an area less crowded with drones than any other section of the ship. Slightly below the center there was an area that the sensors showed was filled with aisles of boxes. The space seemed to have been set aside for storage. The vaulted ceiling soared over the small team as the poked through the contents.

The Borg had laid out the room in a very human-standard warehouse configuration, with tall racks of shelves running in one direction with regular openings to move between them. The floor appeared to be a composite of metal plates, thick rubbery wires, and green lights. This texture continued across every surface—from floor to ceiling—although …

Chapter Seven: No, I Don’t Want to Sign up for Your Credit Card – The Helvetica Voyage

Posted by | March 7, 2015.

Lower your shields and prepare to be assimilated.”

“Do these guys do customer service work?” Helvetica asked.

She thumbed through the various options on the captain’s console. Photon torpedoes: check. Phasers: check. No mute button.

“Ssshould we ssshoot them?” hissed Ensign Boots. “I would very much like to return fire.”

His reptilian claws clattered on the controls—the sleek panels were nice looking but ill-suited for his cold-blooded physiology. Helvetica couldn’t say she disagreed with him, she opened her mouth to give the order, but the ship’s computer interrupted her.

Enemy facing shield has failed, the on board computer reported.

“Now would be a good time for a torpedo,” the game piped up afterwards. It paused a moment when Helvetica glanced upwards with eyebrow raised and then continued sheepishly, “Would you believe I voice tutorial and tool tips?”

Helvetica’s finger hovered over the “fire volley” button but an emotion passed over her. She deactivated the captain’s reticle and …

Chapter Six: Borg Give Bad Customer Service – The Helvetica Voyage

Posted by | February 28, 2015.

“What happens if we get to the bridge and the Captain is…dead?” asked Rocky-Road.

Boots shifted on his feet, all of the leather on him creaking. “If sssooo then I nominate Helvetica as Captain. Ssshe’sss most sssenior and I’d rather ssshoot than command the ssstarssship.”

“We will know in a moment,” Helvetica said. She went through her belt-full of weapons, once by one checking their charge and firing mechanism. She’d offered Boots one of the guns but he shrugged it off. Instead she gave the weapon to Rocky Road–a phaser, she made sure it was set on stun.

She checked the turbolift panel. It would arrive at the bridge in approximately ten seconds, if she were reading the little glowing line correctly. Just in case, she levelled both rifles at the door and fluttered her finger over the triggers.

Boots took this as his own cue, drew his rapier and pistol and nodded.

Rocky Road …

Chapter Five: Ensign Boots – The Helvetica Voyage

Posted by | February 21, 2015.

Ensign Rocky-Road proved to be extremely clumsy with the phaser rifle that Helvetica gave her to defend herself—she couldn’t manage to hold the rifle and her tricorder at the same time. This led to a series of misfires, fumbles, and one instance where the ensign blasted open a wall panel. To prevent this in the future, Helvetica traded the rifle for a pistol and this seemed to resolve the problem.

As they paraded through the corridors, Helvetica started to notice that the number of Borg has precipitously dropped.

“Shields restored,” the ship’s computer announced. “Intruders still present on decks two, three, and one.”

“I think that means the Borg have control of the bridge,” Rocky-Road said, licking at an ice cream sundae.

Now that Helvetica had someone to give the damn things to, she’d been feeding every bit of ice cream to the cat-ensign. Rocky-Road seemed perfectly pleased about this and now wore, jingling …

Interview: Arienne Keith in Guild Wars 2 Necromancer and Puzzle Jumper

Posted by | February 20, 2015.

This MMO Anthropology interview features Arienne Keith, player of “Euclidia” and “Mover Shaker” from Guild Wars 2. As a player she enjoys the monstrosities that come with the Necromancer class as well as the abilities of the Mesmer. The former for killing foes in PvE and the latter for helping out new (and old) players in jumping puzzles across the map.

In recent days Arienne has been working on her Mesmer, Mover Shaker, who has been porting people across the ends of numerous jumping puzzles to get them a chance at the delicious-delicious-loot at the end.

Watch her interview and enjoy!

MMO Anthropology Invites Guild Wars Players Alliance as Guests for Friday’s Livestream

Posted by | February 19, 2015.

Every Friday, the MMO Anthropology show on Twitch.tv brings players into a random multiplayer or MMO game and this upcoming show will feature Guild Wars 2 and two guests from the GW Players Alliance podcast.

GW Players Alliance show hosts Cithryth and Draculetta will be joining MMO Anthropology host Amerist, co-host Nelson Williams (editor-and-chief of this blog) and Dracul Draconicus in Guild Wars 2 to discuss the state of the game, what players want, and actually play the game.

Feel free to tune in at 9pm MST and stay until 12 midnight. If you own Guild Wars 2 you can come along as well, but the team will be full—however, the host, Amerist has a commander tag so can make a squad and bring as many people as needed into open world content.

Be sure to check out the Guild Wars Players Alliance website and

Chapter Four: Ensign Rocky-Road – The Helvetica Voyage

Posted by | February 7, 2015.

By this point, Helvetica had obtained quite the collection of firearms from the various Borg drone’s in the corridors. Her armament now consisted of a multitude of pistols and rifles–entirely disruptors and phasers. She’d taken to keeping a phaser pistol in one hand and a disruptor rifle in the other.

The Borg apparently had not learned their lesson and continued to deliver weapons and snacks to Helvetica as she stormed through the hallways. Good thing too for those catfish sandwiches; killing Borg was hungry work.

She had just polished off another cluster of drones (and drank the Saurian Brandy she found on them) when she heard the strangest caterwauling vibrating through the nearest door.

For the most part, the Oxford had extremely boring corridors. Grey carpet, white paneling on the slightly curved sides, and black screens lining the walls that would alternately display bright crimson RED ALERT or a cross-section of the ship. …

Star Trek Online sees a change in command as Executive Producer D’Angelo steps down

Posted by | February 2, 2015.

Perfect World Entertainment and Cryptic Studios MMO Star Trek Online’s Stephen D’Angelo is stepping down as Executive Producer to be seceded by Stephen Ricossa.

D’Angelo is best known by the community as the guy who descended into the forums to tell the playerbase how it was when Cryptic Studios claimed there was an exploit in a patrol in Tau Dewa. Leading to a great deal of animosity from the playerbase who had not entirely known that what happened in the patrol mission in question was actually an exploit at all.

In Ricossa’s acceptance blog post, he hinted at the potential for future STO changes and content, specifically teasing a much-waited-on change to sector space:

“With the launch of Season 10 Sector Space will be comprised of only three maps, with each one representing a quadrant that exists in STO. Yes, the sector walls are coming

This just happened: Sony Online Entertainment becomes Daybreak Game Company

Posted by | February 2, 2015.

If you didn’t see this coming, you’re not alone. President of Sony Online Entertainment Jack Smedley appeared on Reddit to announce that Sony Online Entertainment is breaking away from Sony and renaming itself Daybreak Game Company. Aside from the aforementioned Reddit post, SOE also posted on the PlanetSide 2 forums.

According to statements, SOE has been acquired by Columbus Nova, an entertainment and technology investment firm.

“This means that effective immediately SOE will operate as an independent game development studio,” says the announcement. “Where we will continue to focus on creating exceptional online games for players around the world.”

Smedley will remain president of the new company and the new website for SOE will be available at www.DaybreakGameCompany.com.

More coverage is available across the entire gaming blogosphere from GamePolitics, Gamasutra, Polygon, SiliconAngle, and Massively (sigh)

Goodbye Joystiq, Massively, and WoW Insider

Posted by | February 1, 2015.

This weekend saw the news that AOL is rolling the Joystiq brand into its Engadget blog and while doing so shutting down MMO blogs Massively and WoW Insider. It will be sad to see them go. Vox Ex Machina in particular has a soft spot for WoW Insider, after all they published about my World of Warcraft fanfiction. The sites are officially closed. Further coverage at SiliconAngle from Kyt Dotson.