KingSkippus writes: Last December 1, NCsoft shut down the long-running City of Heroes superhero MMORPG. Undaunted, a group of fans formed Missing Worlds Media, a new studio to develop City of Titans. The new game is a spiritual successor with original art, stories, and code. A Kickstarter project to raise funds for software and hardware for the mostly volunteer team of developers and artists reached its funding level less than six days later, and the total is currently approaching stretch goals. Missing Worlds Media is currently targeting a November 2015 release date for City of Titans.
KingSkippus writes: At midnight Pacific on Saturday, December 1, NCsoft shut down the City of Heroes servers for the final time. Since announcing the closure, a group of players has been working hard to revive the game by getting attention from the gaming press, recognition from celebrities such as Sean Astin, Neil Gaiman, and Felicia Day, and assistance from fantasy author Mercedes Lackey. Meanwhile, NCsoft has been drawing negative publicity, including a scathing article about the shutdown from local news site The Korea Times noting that the game was earning $2.76 million per quarter and that "it is hard to comprehend what NCsoft means when they say they closed it for strategic reasons." NCsoft's stock price has fallen over 43% since the announcement in August, almost 30% below it's previous 52-week low, right when investors were counting on the success of the recently launched Guild Wars 2 to help boost the company.
KingSkippus writes: The superhero-themed MMORPG City of Heroes announced this morning that it is rebranding the game as City of Heroes Freedom ("freedom to pay and play as you choose"), and moving to a hybrid payment model including a free-to-play option. "VIP" players who still pay a monthly subscription will have most features of the game unlocked and will be given credit towards purchase towards others. City of Heroes Freedom is due to hit later this year with the next major game update.
KingSkippus writes: According to a story at CNN, Apple has begun enforcing third party promotion guidelines (PDF) that, among other things, restricts organizations from giving away iPads, using the word "free" to describe any Apple products in a prominent manner, or promoting giveaways of iPod Touches in lots of less than 250 and with Apple's explicit approval.
KingSkippus writes: Hulu is sending beta members an e-mail today announcing the official launch of Hulu Plus. Among the announcements is a price drop in the service, from $9.99 per month to $7.99. Beta members are being retroactively refunded $2 for each moth they were subscribed. Also announced is a referral program, which will split a free month of service between an existing subscriber and a new referred subscriber. The service, however, still does not include the whole catalog of shows, does includes ads, and is only be available on computers and select devices.