Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures

It was rumored last September that Sony Online Entertainment was working with LucasArts to create a third Star Wars MMO, this one set in the Clone Wars period, targeted at a younger audience and being similar to Free Realms. Today they are confirming those rumors.

Called "Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures" it is a browser-based, free-to-play game (they're calling it a "virtual world" instead of an MMO since apparently it won't have leveling or quests). Here is the text from Gamasutra:
Sony Online Entertainment and LucasArts are developing Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures, a free-to-play virtual world based on the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series airing on Cartoon Network, set to launch online and in retail stores this fall.

While LucasArts published SOE's last MMO based on the George Lucas franchise, Star Wars Galaxies, the San Diego-headquartered studio is both developing and publishing this title. The companies hope to introduce the Jedi, Padawan and Clone Troopers saga to a new generation of Star Wars fans with Clone Wars Adventures.

In this browser-based virtual world, players will be able can pilot starfighters, fight other starships, duel against "icon adversaries" with their custom lightsaber, play minigames like Droid Programming and Speeder Bike Racing, and play an embedded collectible card game featuring characters, creatures, and vehicles from The Clone Wars show.

While Clone Wars Adventures is free, players can purchase a monthly membership with unspecified advantages. They can also buy outfits, items, and accessories through microtransactions with Station Cash, SOE's virtual currency.

As with Free Realms, SOE's tremendously successful free-to-play virtual world with more than 10 million users, Clone Wars Adventures is designed to be a safe online environment for kids and families. It will offer customizable safety options, such as pre-canned chat and playtime settings for younger users.

"Clone Wars Adventures is the ultimate destination for fans of The Clone Wars series and will bring the action and excitement of the show to players online so they can experience The Clone Wars universe firsthand" says SOE president John Smedley.

Smedley adds, "We've worked with LucasArts and Lucasfilm to create a virtual world that is seamlessly integrated with the TV series and a true extension of the show. It's also just flat-out fun to play."
And thanks to Massively I've also got a trailer video of the game for you:

Having played Free Realms a bit, which was quite fun (for a brief while), this could be quite entertaining. It depends on how fun the minigames themselves are (Free Realms' minigames got boring rather quickly, not to mention some frustrating time-based minigames), but might be worth keeping it installed to waste the odd moment here and there.

Sounds like something to check out at least.


IGN has a couple of ingame videos and a preview article. Though it seems none of the videos actually have sound. Here's an excerpt from the article:
Similar to Free Realms, Clone Wars Adventures features a hub world where players can interact with their friends and spend Station Cash (a real-cash-to-game-currency system developed by SOE) to buy new outfits and accessories for their characters. The developers also explained to me that certain game types will also be reserved for monthly subscribers, though it doesn't sound like these modes have been finalized as of yet.
I'll refrain from embedding the videos; you can see them at the link above.

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