FIREFALL’S FIRST OPEN BETA EVENT BEGINS TODAY: DOUBLE CRYSTITE WEEKEND

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Featuring Battleframe Discounts, Bonus Crystite, Dev-hosted Missions and More

Laguna Hills, Calif. – Aug. 9, 2013 –Red 5 Studios™ today announced Firefall’s first Open Beta event: Double Crystite Weekend. Beginning today at 4:59 p.m., the server-wide event features double Crystite rewards, discounted Battleframe unlocks, developer-hosted missions and easier access to Firefall’s latest zones. For additional information visit the official homepage: www.firefallthegame.com 
·      Double Crystite: From Friday, Aug. 9 at 4:59 p.m. PDT to Sunday, Aug. 11 at 4:59 p.m. PDT, players will receive a 2x bonus to all Crystite drops and rewards in both PvE and PvP.

·      Discounted Battleframe Unlocks: Players will be able to unlock new Battleframes for only seven Pilot Tokens (marked down from ten). This limited-time 30% discount will last until Tuesday, Aug. 20.

·      Easier Access to New Areas: Players will be able to directly craft keys for easier access to Firefall’s latest zones – Antarctica, Diamond Head and Sargasso Sea.

·      Developer-hosted Missions: The developers and Red 5 Rangers will be inviting groups of players to join them on missions into Firefall’s first five-man story instance, Blackwater Anomaly. All players who participate will receive special rewards.
Players can join Firefall’s Open Beta for free by signing up at http://www.firefallthegame.com or purchase a Starter Pack with exclusive rewards at http://firefallthegame.com/starterpacks.

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Xbox Live’s Major Nelson » Sign up for the 2013 Xbox Live Update Xbox 360 Public Beta

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We’re inviting Xbox Live members worldwide to participate in the 2013 Xbox Live Update for Xbox 360 Public Beta.* It will include updates to improve overall performance and the ability to conduct transactions with local currency, as Microsoft Points will be retired later this year.

Unlike our previous beta programs, sign up is now accessed directly through your Xbox 360 console to streamline the experience. Space is limited, so once the spots are filled the beta will be closed to the public.

To join, look for the Xbox Beta Program tile on the home hub of the Xbox Dashboard.

You will be required to agree to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for confidentiality reasons.
For more details on the beta : http://support.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-360/system-updates/xbox-360-beta-faq

Our open public betas allow you to help make Xbox even better.

We appreciate your feedback and thank you for participating!

* Xbox Live members in any of our 41 Xbox Live-enabled markets will be able to participate in the public beta for Xbox 360. Please note that members in Japan will have an opportunity to join at a later date.
I’ll update this post when we open it for Japan, and additional information about the program as it progresses.

Xbox 360, Xbox Live By Larry Hryb, Xbox LIVE’s Major Nelson

Xbox Live’s Major Nelson » Sign up for the 2013 Xbox Live Update Xbox 360 Public Beta :.

Republic Closed Beta Media Event Highlights – Darth Hater

IGN said:

More than Alderaan, Huttball makes every single class feel valuable. It also never feels like a stalemate, which is something other capture-the-flag modes almost always boil down to. Huttball is a mode that, come launch, I will be playing a lot.

MMORPG said:

The game opened up a lot more once I left Ord Mantell (where I only saw other Troopers and Smugglers) and made my way to Coruscant. Before arriving on Coruscant, I traveled to the Carrick space station in the midst of the Republic fleet. This is the Republic social hub shown off during the TOR main panel at New York Comic-Con last week. The station is indeed filled with vendors, a cantina, class and crafting trainers, and a jump off point to launch Flashpoints. It was a pretty neat spot, but felt sort of inorganic. It almost felt like a bit of a shopping mall in space. Everything is neatly placed and organized in an intelligent and convenient fashion, which is great for gameplay purposes but really not much else.

IGN said:

As if that wasn’t enough, the Trooper can swap between different firing modes. Called ‘Cells’, only one of these modes can be active at a time to give the Trooper added bonuses to all blaster shots. I favored the Plasma Cell over the Armor Piercing Cell, because it added a percent chance to ignite targets for a short while, inflicting damage over time. It also lets me use High Impact Bolt, a single high damage shot only usable against targets taking damage over time or who were incapacitated.

Massively said:

You’ll be traveling on foot until you ding 25, and I spent a good four hours or so just getting to level 7 (all without straying far from the very obvious beaten path between one quest hub and the next

IGN said:

In conversation they (companions) are less active and more reactive. Depending on which dialogue choices you make during a conversation sequence, your companion may gain or lose “Affection.”

Gamespy said:

The story (as much as I saw) is every bit as good as I’d hoped. Whether I was smack talking across the bleak wastes of Ord Mantell on my prissy smuggler or pontificating as a holier-than-thou Jedi Consular over the wooded paths of Tython, SWTOR pulled me into its world like no other MMO has pulled me before.

IGN said:

Once you have a crafting skill, items that you can theoretically craft — say, lightsabers and bracers for Force users as an Artificer — can be “Reverse Engineered.”…This is significant because you can break down items you create, and each self-created item you Reverse Engineer has a chance to teach you a recipe to create a better version of that item…It makes item-crafting somewhat of a slot machine, and gives you a reason to craft the same item a dozen times that isn’t strictly for skill-ups, sell back to vendors or put on the Auction House

Republic Closed Beta Media Event – Darth Hater.

STAR WARS: The Old Republic – Beta/Game Testing Weekends FAQ!

Beta Testing Weekends began last weekend, to get more people than ever before testing Star Wars:The Old Republic. We invited a number of testers in to experience the game this past weekend, and will continue to invite more testers, in greater numbers, as we move towards launch.While the number of those invited will increase over time and while we plan to invite as many people as possible who are signed up for Game Testing to test, there are no guarantees that everyone who applies will be invited.

It is also important to note that not every weekend going forward will be a Beta Testing Weekend. In September, we’re hoping for one more Beta Testing Weekend, which will be larger in invite size than the last.

Now, onto some FAQs and answers:

What’s the difference between Early Game Access, Beta Testing Weekends, Guild Testing and Game Testing?

They are four different ways to get access to play The Old Republic. Details are as follows:

Early Game Access: Available to everyone who pre-orders any edition of Star Wars: The Old Republic and redeems their Pre-Order Code. Essentially a head-start, it will begin before the formal release date/launch day of the game. The final release client will be used to play. Exact duration will be revealed closer to our release date.

(Edited to reflect that Early Game Access is not another phase of testing; apologies for any confusion. )

Beta Testing Weekends: Large scale, short-term testing. We will be inviting registered testers to play the game in greater invite numbers than ever before. The first Beta Testing Weekend started on September 2nd. They will continue beyond September and will not necessarily occur every weekend.

Game Testing: The ongoing testing program. We continue to invite those who have registered for Game Testing into the program on a regular basis. Those selected will generally test the game for an extended period of time, as opposed to a Beta Testing Weekend.

Guild Testing: We are selecting guilds who are registered on our Guild HQ for inclusion into general Game Testing (see above). Invites to a guild do not necessarily extend to all guild members.

As part of Beta Testing Weekends, will the Game Testing Agreement (specifically, the Non-Disclosure Agreement) be lifted or modified?

No. The Game Testing Agreement is still fully in effect for Beta Testing Weekends. As before, you may tell others that you are part of the Game Testing Program (or that you have been invited to a Beta Testing Weekend). However, you may not reveal any other details about your game testing experience, including any aspect of the testing process, any details of the client, or any assets from the game (including text). Even after the Game Testing Weekend is over you may not detail your experiences.

Any breaches of the Game Testing Agreement at any time will result in your potential immediate removal from Game Testing and/or prevent you from being invited to any future testing.

Will Beta Testing Weekend invites be sent in the usual way Game Testing invites are sent?

Yes. Those invited will receive an email to the email address they have registered on their SWTOR account. The email will come from no-reply@bioware.swtor.com. Ensure you have that email address registered in your email whitelist so that the email does not go into your spam folder. If you think you have deleted the email by mistake, you can check to see if you have been invited by logging in to the SWTOR.com web site at www.swtor.com/tester/. If you are unsure of an email’s authenticity, we strongly advise you to login to the website to confirm. If you are still unsure, please email support@swtor.com

After a Beta Testing Weekend is over, will I get re-invited to a future Beta Testing Weekend?

At this time, we are not planning to re-invite those who are invited to a Beta Testing Weekend to future Beta Testing Weekends. This may change in the future.

I previously participated in Game Testing, but am no longer participating. Does that omit me from being re-selected, either for a Beta Testing Weekend, or Game Testing generally?

Currently, if you have previously been selected to test Star Wars: The Old Republic, you will normally not be re-selected for future testing. (This applies whether you were selected previously for Game Testing, a Beta Testing Weekend, or any other testing access.) That may change closer to launch, but we want to get as many fresh eyes on the game as possible.

Will future Beta Testing Weekends be three days long?

Most Beta Testing Weekends will last roughly from a Friday evening to Sunday evening. In some cases, we may choose to extend the time available at our discretion.

I got an invite to a Beta Testing Weekend, but can’t test during that weekend due to other commitments. Can I postpone my invite to another weekend?

You may choose, if you wish, to decline a Beta Testing Weekend invite. If you do this, you will be put back into the general ‘pool’ for potential future selection. However, your selection in the future is not guaranteed; you will be picked randomly.

Will those invited to Beta Testing Weekends be playing on the same servers as those in Game Testing?

For the first weekend, those invited will be playing on a separate server. This will probably be the format for future Beta Testing Weekends, but if our requirements change, we may invite people to specific servers (or potentially allow them to choose from multiple servers).

Will extra time be given to download the SWTOR game client before a Beta Testing Weekend starts?

Yes. Invites to Beta Testing Weekends are generally sent out a few days before the weekend to allow time to download the client. However, because of internet download speeds and the invite schedule, we cannot guarantee you will have the game client downloaded and installed before the weekend starts.

The size of the game client is currently approximately 27Gb.

Can I use the same game client in testing and then at launch?

We cannot guarantee that you will not have to re-download and re-install the game client at any point before the start of Early Game Access. Periodically addditional content patches may be required during any period of Game Testing.

Do those invited to Beta Testing Weekends get access to Forums to talk about their experience and give feedback?

Yes. Specific Forums for Beta Testing Weekends will be opened from when invites are sent out for that weekend, until a short period of time after the weekend’s testing is over. These will only be accessible to those invited to the specific Beta Testing Weekend.

Are invites to Game Testing still random?

Yes. Those invited to Game Testing – of any kind – are still currently randomly selected from those who have opted-in to be eligible for Game Testing.

There used to be a ‘System Scan’ function on the website as part of Game Testing sign-up, and now it’s gone. How does this affect me?

We no longer require potential Game Testing applicants to perform a ‘system scan’. If you have previously scanned your PC and have since upgraded it, don’t be concerned. You’re still eligible for selection to Game Testing.

When does Game Testing for EU-based players start?

Game Testing for EU-based players is imminent, and will include localized French and German versions of the game. Future phases of Game Testing for EU players will happen on EU-based servers. Beta Testing Weekends will also begin specifically for EU players in the same timeframe.

As EU players are being invited now and other players have been testing for longer, will feedback from EU players make a difference to the game at launch?

Yes. Every piece of feedback from a tester is potentially useful. Even if a piece of feedback is not acted upon before launch, it may be used to change the game in some way in the future.

As part of Guild Testing, will guilds be invited to Beta Testing Weekends?

Guilds are generally invited to the main Game Testing program. Individual guild members, through random selection, may be invited to Beta Testing Weekends, but guilds will not be selected for inclusion in Beta Testing Weekends as part of Guild Testing.

I have infractions on my Forums account. Does that prevent me from being invited to Game Testing?

No, it does not, although accruing enough infractions could lead to a Forums ban. If you are banned from the Forums, you would also be removed from Game Testing.

I pre-ordered The Old Republic; does that allow me access to Game Testing or Beta Testing Weekends?

At this time, pre-ordering The Old Republic and redeeming your Pre-Order Code ensures you gain Early Game Access.

I live outside of the initial launch countries for Star Wars: The Old Republic; will I be able to take part in Game Testing in any way?

We’re hoping to extend Game Testing to many more countries before launch, but we have no estimate on exactly when that will happen.

Stephen Reid | Senior Online Community Manager
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– Beta/Game Testing Weekends FAQ.