Friday, March 23, 2012

We're back!

Now THAT was a serious hiatus!

A lot of stuff has happened since the last blog entry in October. Between the Greek debt crisis, US Presidential politics and an incredible focus by our Game Studio on the next version of APB, there just never seemed to be time to make a full blog post. And now it's already spring-time again!

Separate from the intense work at our Game Studio, our back-end team has been finalizing a brand new stand-alone MMO publishing platform for people who want to spare themselves the trouble of spending years creating their own MMO publishing system and just want focus on making a great game. Our new platform comes with complete payment systems, in-game analytics, fraud management, in game product management, marketing tools and hosting services, so you can publish your own hard-core free2play MMO to millions of players (just in case YOU, or any of your friends, happen to have built a serious free2play MMO in your garage and you need to reach a global audience) But that is a whole other topic that will be announced completely separately from this blog (at So with that interlude... back to APB!

Springtime For APB

We have a TON of game changes coming up in our big 1.7 patch. 1.7 introduces a large number of features, an extended progression system and major changes to core features that we think will make the game a lot more fun for many players.

On the global front we partnered with Innova Systems in Russia last year, and last month Innova launched the APB Open Beta in Russia, and they very quickly hit some pretty impressive player numbers on their Russian servers!

Over the last few months we were also battling a few 'snafu's' of our own making - including some messed up threat ratings (which were fixed, but not before causing some major havoc in the game), and some issues around people suddenly having the ability to 'de-threat' almost at will (something that we also curtailed). We did try hard to not let those distract us from the critical work on 1.7.

New in 1.7 is brand new progression content, brand new modifications (like the ability to put a 'brick' on the accelerator in your car, jump out and turn the whole thing into semi-guided cruise missile), updates to missions that continue our long running work of making them more fun and engaging, map updates, as well as major updates to Fight Club with the launch of the Fight Club Challenge system (to give Fight Club a lot more definition and purpose).

We will be updating the Test World with 1.7 this weekend so people can start the process of testing out several of these new features, and then after our final semi-public test-run, we are hoping to go fully live to everyone in mid-April with the first set of 1.7 features.

Permanent Weapon Changes Coming

Last but not least... We will be changing the way you buy permanent weapons in the game in the future (!). Right now most permanent weapons are NOT account bound - but purchased for each character. In the near future we will (finally) be switching to a system that the most common permanent weapon will be account bound and apply to ALL your characters. For those who have already bought those permanent weapons in the past, those will then apply to all your characters. For those who bought more than one of the same permanent weapon, you will get some extra-special compensation and your credits back after this change goes into effect. More details to be provided soon.

More Bloggers!

In order to provide a lot more frequent updates to this blog I am also adding some new faces and posters who will start providing many more hands-on updates and news.

This was just a quick 'hello' to tell you guys that 'we are back.' Over the next week I am handing over the mic to APB's Producer 'Quinzel' to start sharing the gory 1.7 details, and then we will open up the floor to a bunch of different team members who will be able to share all the exciting new things we will finally be able to release.

Oh - and don't forget to go check out the latest stuff on the forums (specifically the revamped items that Quinzel just put up: ). See you all in San Paro!