We've rolled out a new release, here are the summary of changes.
New Game Browser
The game browser has been completely overhauled, and we think you will
like the changes. The browsing and viewing features from the old game
browser have been merged together to create a more intuitive and useful
The top games page has been updated. The
interface should be easier to use, and the games displayed in the lists
now coincide with the website you are visiting, whether it be www.mobygames.com, psx.mobygames.com, etc.
There are many other minor enhancements, bug fixes and UI changes
that have been made throughout the system.
Well it's too big to ignore. For quite some time now every monthly report I've seen for top selling games in terms of dollars and total units always seems to be dominated by Game Boy games. I don't know if this is due to Nintendo's Pokemon license or the fact the both the system and games are incredibly inexpensive. Now Nintendo is releasing Game Boy Advanced in North America June 11, 2001. It promises to be a very impressive handheld and quite affordable to boot. Since GBA is completely backwards compatible we've added the entire Game Boy console series as a platform.
Here's a bit of interesting solitaire trivia for you: What do you think is the first Klondike solitaire game for the PC? If you thought of the traditional Windows solitaire, you're wrong by about 8 years. Brad Fregger submitted his Solitaire Royale as the first version of Solitare for the home computer, and after some research, I was able to confirm aspects of that claim -- at least for the PC. Klondike Solitaire (1984) was actually the first Klondike that resembled today's common solitaire, with exclusive mouse support, but was crude. Solitare(sic), released a year later, contains some more options (including an innovative "same deck" option that actually allows you to play competitive solitare against other players), but didn't contain mouse support. Solitaire Royale came out two years later in 1987, was published by Spectrum Holobyte, had mouse support, and also contained very many solitaire variations in addition to Klondike.
So, Brad gets to keep his claim of "first ever commercial solitaire card game software for the PC". (And Macintosh too.) Whether or not it was the first commercial solitaire game ever for any platform remains to be seen, but we won't know the answer to that one until MobyGames adds a gazillion more platforms. ;-)
Sam Jeffreys helped remind me of one of the games I thought I remembered that maintains a persistent universe without the use of an online server:
I'm pretty sure Lords of Midnight (1995) does this, so time has moved on
when you return to the game. Also, I think the time of year in the real
world was used to set the season in the gameworld.
Thanks go to Sam, and I've ticked off Persistent Universe for Lords of Midnight. I'd also previously ticked it off for Ultima Online, Everquest, and Asheron's Call, but failed to mention it in my last news post.
If anyone else can remember more, online or not, use the corrections facility at the bottom of each rap sheet to let us know about them.
While chatting with Dave about an issue today, the topic of massively-multiplayer online-only games came up. He pointed out that we don't have a genre keyword to properly denote the (significant) attribute of such games: A persistent universe. So, we do now! Games like Ultima Online, Asheron's Call, and Everquest now have the genre keyword "Persistent Universe" checked.
Just what is a persistent universe? Here's the description for that genre/attribute:
Denotes any game that takes place in a constantly-running environment, even when the player is not actively playing the game. Attributes of such an environment include other players actively playing the game, game-created characters interacting with the environment or other players, etc. such that, when gameplay resumes for a particular user, the environment has changed from when the user last interacted with the environment.
Since most persistent universe games are played on remote servers, an internet connection is usually required to play them to perform updates to the game world.
That should cover it. (But note that Persistent Universe is an additional attribute when describing a game -- do not make it the only genre you select. There are going to be a full suite of MMOO games coming out, and they're not all fantasy RPGs like the current ones.)
I have the nagging thought in my mind that there might have been some games published that fit the persistent universe model that are *not* online-only -- I'm thinking of games that maybe simulate time in the game world by looking at the system clock and figuring out how much time has passed since you last played and adjusts accordingly, or maybe an old game that used a modem to update stats for some wargame, or something like that. Can anyone think of any such games that may have existed? If so, email us.
Much thanks to Dave for bringing this up -- in fact, I should've had the foresight to add it the day Everquest was contributed to the database. (smacks forehead) Doh!