Billed as “the first virtual universe with a real cash economy” Entropia Universe, one of the most successful massively multiplayer online role-playing games around, will go offline in two days time. When it returns with its Version Update 10.0 and updated CryEngine2 engine, users will be able to get it with BitTorrent.
Massively multiplayer online role-playing games (better known as MMORPGs) are online worlds where huge numbers of players can interact. The genre is extremely popular with the most popular game being World of Warcraft – it has a colossal 11.5+ million subscribers.
Another successful MMORPG is Entropia Universe. Designed by Swedish company MindArk, the game’s software is completely free of charge and there are no subscription fees. Instead, the game employs a type of micropayment system whereby the player can use real world money to buy in-game currency known as PED – Project Entropia Dollars. The neat part is that items purchased within the game have a real-life monetary value, since PEDs can be withdrawn from the game and changed back into real-life money.
Currently operating on Version 9.4, the entire Entropia Universe will be shut down at 00:00 UTC on Monday August 17th in preparation for Version 10 of the client which will follow a few days later.
However, for publisher MindArk the bandwidth implications for its 800,000 plus subscribers grabbing an update are significant – the Version 10 update is a whopping 4gig in size but as regular readers of TorrentFreak will be aware, it’s a cost that can be hugely reduced with everyone’s favorite swarming technology.
From last night the brand new version of the client (utilizing Crytec’s CryEngine2) was made available for pre-launch download via the Planet Calypso site – and for the first time, using BitTorrent of course.
BitTorrent use is becoming increasingly popular with MMORPGs like World of Warcraft, Project Powder, Fiesta Online and GodsWar which all use the protocol to save on bandwidth costs.
Users wanting to grab the update can do so here. If you’re new to BitTorrent and want to learn how it all works before you take the plunge, here are some handy TorrentFreak guides to get you started.