Well, that didn't take long. EA announced today that gamers can play the beleaguered Star Wars: The Old Republic MMORPG this fall for free, avoiding the usual $14.99 monthly fee. The company also announced a $14.99 price cut for the game coming in August; the cut comes packaged with a one-month subscription. … Read more
Searching on a popular search engine nowadays does not guarantee an anonymous state. When you click on a search result, your computer automatically sends information such as search terms, IP addresses, and the date and time that you landed on a site. But when this information is paired with additional account information, your odds of being uniquely identifiable increase tremendously.
For this week's Freeware Friday, check out some of our favorite tools to boost the privacy of your online experience and reduce leakage of sensitive information.
Electronic Arts announced solid financial results today, including fourth quarter net income gains of $400 million -- a rather sizable difference compared to $151 million in same quarter last year. The massive gaming company pegged revenue for the quarter at $1.37 billion, a figure several hundred million higher than the year before.
EA's net income for the year ending March 31 amounted to $76 million, perhaps an uplifting number in comparison to the $276 million loss in 2011. Total revenue for the 2012 fiscal year amounted to a staggering $4.1 billion, up from $3.5 billion a year prior. Revenue strictly from digital content rose to $1.2 billion, an increase of nearly 47 percent in comparison to 2011. Investors seem wary of EA's projected 2013 earnings, though, as MarketWatch points out, the assumed revenue for the future falls below expectations. … Read more
Science-fiction/fantasy publishing company Tor Books dropped a big bomb on the e-book world today by announcing plans to abolish DRM on its entire collection of e-books in early July.
The shift will most likely appear seamless to consumers, as an official blog post on the Tor Web site mentions that DRM-free titles will sell at the same retailers that currently sell Tor's books, and will additionally appear on DRM-free-only e-book stores. The Macmillan-owned company also publishes titles under Forge, Orb, Starscape, and Tor Teen. … Read more
Eight men have been arrested and charged with distributing more $1 million in LSD, ecstasy, and other narcotics through an online storefront that hid the identities of the service's users.
The online drug market -- known as "The Farmers Market" -- used the Tor Project to allow suppliers to anonymously sell their wares online to buyers in 35 countries, including the United States, according to a federal grand jury indictment unsealed today in Los Angeles. The store provided buyers with order forms, forums, and customer service, and accepted various forms of payment, including PayPal and Western Union, … Read more
Everything will change immensely for players of Star Wars: The Old Republic in early April.
Last week, a video emerged from BioWare describing a massive 1.2 update for the popular multiplayer online role-playing game. The content patch--named Legacy--offers several major benefits and a plethora of little changes that could make things much more enjoyable for those invested in the game.
The big-ticket items include a new warzone (Novare Coast) and operation (Explosive Conflict) located on the planet Denova. We also spotted a new flash point named The Lost Island, which you can further see in the trailer below. … Read more
The privacy-focused Tor Project is working on helping Iranians sidestep increased Internet restrictions that were put in place by the country's government today in anticipation of protests this weekend.
Antigovernment protests are reportedly planned for Saturday--the 33rd anniversary of the Islamic revolution that toppled the Shah. In response, the government has blocked access to Web-based e-mail services such as Gmail and social networks like Facebook. Officials have also, reports Forbes' Andy Greenberg, cut Web traffic that takes advantage of the kind of encryption used by secure e-mail services and social networks.
That's where U.S.-based Tor comes … Read more
A little-noticed section of the Stop Online Piracy Act could make it illegal to distribute Tor and other software that can "circumvent" attempts by the U.S. government to block pirate Web sites.
The controversial Hollywood-backed copyright bill allows injunctions to be filed against "any" person, nonprofit organization, or company that distributes a "product or service" that can be used to circumvent or bypass blockades erected against alleged pirate Web sites such as ThePirateBay.org.
The Star Wars MMORPG will be available on December 20 in North America and on December 22 in Europe. After months of speculation, BioWare co-founders Dr. Ray Muzyka and Dr. Greg Zeschuk confirmed the release date at the Eurogamer Expo in London.
"This is an incredible moment for everyone at BioWare and our partners at LucasArts who have dedicated their lives to build this extraordinary game," said Dr. Muzyka. "We appreciate the patience from the millions of fans who have been waiting for the game's release."
Subscription fees are standard for a game of this type, starting at $14.99 (€12.99) for one month. Three month plans for $13.99 per month (total $41.97/€35.97), or six month subscriptions for $12.99 per month (total $77.94/€65.94). Bioware gives gamers 30 days of subscription time free with each purchase of the game.
The highly anticipated Star Wars: The Old Republic MMORPG still lacks a release date, but Bioware isn't shying away from showing off some end-game content.
As a bit of background for the uninitiated, gamers can group together in SW:TOR and tackle challenges called "operations," which are similar to raids or instances found in World of Warcraft. These types of areas are critical to those who have reached the maximum level possible by offering intensive teamwork experiences and the chance to acquire high-powered items. Dallas Dickinson, Bioware's director of production, previews one of those operations, Eternity Vault, in a 10-minute video released a few days ago. … Read more