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The Internet Entertainment Games

Another Web-Based Game Targeting Casual Gamers Launches 79

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the irs-is-on-hold-to-tax-your-users dept.
News.com is reporting that Mytopia, another casual-gaming network, has launched into public-beta. More than just a regular game with virtual rewards, Mytopia encourages exchanging points for real-world prizes like iTunes or Amazon certificates. "Since Mytopia is centered on "classic games," the offering--Sudoku, chess, backgammon, hearts, spades, dominoes, bingo, and poker--is a bit of a yawn, though the company has said new games will be added on a monthly basis. On the flip side, the familiarity of those games may be a draw to players who don't want to learn a whole new set of rules. Indeed, Mytopia is targeting a thoroughly non-"gamer" demographic."
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Another Web-Based Game Targeting Casual Gamers Launches

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  • can be easily converted into $$$ on eBay. These constantly sold around 90% or sometimes even 95% of the face value.

    Anyway this concept is not new. Cases Ladder has been doing this for years.
    • iTunes / Amazon.com gift certificate can be easily converted into $$$ on eBay. These constantly sold around 90% or sometimes even 95% of the face value.

      According to Amazon's own rules [amazon.com] you are not allowed to resell gift certificates. If people start selling them enough on eBay, Amazon may pressure eBay to forbid listing them.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Pressure? eBay will roll over and give Amazon power to delist it themselves!
        • by Schlage (195535)

          Pressure? eBay will roll over and give Amazon power to delist it themselves!

          That's a common misconception. eBay doesn't provide anyone outside of eBay with tools to de-list auctions, but rather programs that allow others to send in takedown notices (NOCI = Notice(s) Of Claimed Infringement). The end effect is that for a company actively policing auctions the listings can get taken down quite quickly, often within their first hour. I think this is why people sometimes think that eBay has given others direct access to their systems, which is simply not the case.

          By the way, for tho

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Nazlfrag (1035012)
            I was under the assumption that the VeRO program allowed companies direct access, as discussed here [slashdot.org] a little while ago. There's a paper about it here [cmu.edu] which quotes:

            Once membership has attached, VeRO members have available to them the VeRO Reporting Tool, which is software designed to automate the process of alleging infringements to eBay. Upon receipt of a NOCI, eBay removes the allegedly infringing listing apparently with little or no review of the validity of the complaint.

            and a little later:

            One person claimed to use VeRO to remove over 500 listings in a day.

            My question I guess is this - how much oversight is actually there between the automated filing of a NOCI and the takedown, or is this also automated?

  • until someone gets hooked and dies after a 3 day binge?
  • eh, I dunno (Score:1, Insightful)

    by ILuvRamen (1026668)
    I don't think they're going to beat out games.com. First of all they have the domain games.com. Second, they have EVERYTHING. They even have Monopoly! And third, I think games.com has some sort of win cash by playing games. Never really looked into it but it sounded cool. I don't think this new one is going to beat them out if they simply try to beat them at their own game, no pun intended :-P
  • by ergo98 (9391) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:48PM (#22848388) Homepage Journal

    but for a $5-per-month premium membership, players have access to an ad-supported version of the site

    I presume they misstated, and you actually pay to get an ad-free version of the site.

    Otherwise...is this a slashvertisement? Yet another of hundreds of online gaming sites...what's the news for nerds in this? No, seriously, I really want to know.
    • by eebra82 (907996) on Monday March 24, 2008 @03:03PM (#22848634) Homepage

      Otherwise...is this a slashvertisement?
      That depends on where you want to draw the line on news and advertisements. For example, if Intel launches a new CPU architecture, wouldn't that be very much like this news item?

      Having said that, this news looks like pure spam on a page like Slashdot. None of its featured games are new or spectacular in any way and the concept is dated back to at least 2001.
      • Otherwise...is this a slashvertisement?

        That depends on where you want to draw the line on news and advertisements. For example, if Intel launches a new CPU architecture, wouldn't that be very much like this news item?

        Having said that, this news looks like pure spam on a page like Slashdot. None of its featured games are new or spectacular in any way and the concept is dated back to at least 2001.

        2001 is being too kind. I'd say this idea was barely original pre 1995.

      • Taco's mortgage must be coming due.
    • Actually this is quite an interesting game. I have been beta testing this for the last three months. The grahpics are quite good, and the quests are quite enjoyable to perform. It is very much like diablo, its menu bar at the bottom is virtually a copy of that, except the gama and health are very small compared to diablo, so you really have to keep an eye on it, otherwise you die. This is not really an advertisement, it is stating a new game, that is available for people who are into this kind of web based
    • This sounds like PrizePoint.com [findarticles.com] or Uproar.com (the original version, which lived between 1998 and 2006, not the new version, which sux even more). The idea was you earned points that could be redeemed for prizes by playing cheesy Java-based games. Of course the quid pro quo was being barraged by ads.

      Ultimately, the games and prizes weren't worth putting-up with all the ads. Ad-blocking caused revenues to plummet and those who didn't block ads just stopped visiting. Uproar and Prizepoint merged and the

    • Otherwise...is this a slashvertisement? Yet another of hundreds of online gaming sites...what's the news for nerds in this? No, seriously, I really want to know

      There is a breed of nerds, the game biz nerds, who would be interested in this. The same people who argue passionately about computer chips from so and so, and who make online petitions to prevent EA from buying are probably interested in this.

      As a science/videogame nerd, I have to say this is actually more interesting to me than the bulk of the li

  • by Corpuscavernosa (996139) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:48PM (#22848392)
    ... but how about annual subscriptions to your favorite porn site? That might add a few users!
  • Bot (Score:3, Interesting)

    by DigitalisAkujin (846133) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:49PM (#22848410) Homepage
    How long until someone codes a bot so I can get free shit?
    • I don't know why this is a troll...it's a very relevant question. Search for "pogo cheats" and you'll find many bots available, all for the sole purpose of gaining tokens which are worth nothing more than bragging rights, or maybe some clothing for one's static avatar. Throw in some real-world rewards and there will be tons of bots, not particularly hard to code up for "classic" games.
      • Playbuddy.com [playbuddy.com] has tons of bot programs for Yahoo, MSN, Pogo etc.
        I am a constant player @ Yahoo Chess, and you couldn't believe how many people are using the Chess-AutoBuddy [playbuddy.com] program, especially "1 second per move" games.
        Combine this fact with the my very first post in this article [slashdot.org], then you can see where this is going.
    • Someone else codes a bot so you can get free shit?

      I think you'll be waiting a long time.
  • This sounds a little bit like kongregate [kongregate.com] with a little more multiplayer to it. Kongregate has some better sounding games though, and a steady flow of them. The redemption thing sounds good, except with the obvious point of how security will deal with the private information.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:50PM (#22848422) Homepage
    I mean really... one thing that playing games over an extended period of time seems to cause (especially in the case of first person shooters) is a problem with my eyes... I seem to have problems tracking distances and movements for a short period of adjustment as I retrain my eyes to work in a 3D environment rather than a 2D representation of 3D.

    Isn't "Myopia" a type of optical malady also known as near-sightedness? Granted that "Mytopia" and "Myopia" are two different words, but they are similar enough that the mind will draw a connection between the two whether "liminally" or "subliminally." (Yes, I know there is no word liminally... I just like playing with words and it does effectively get the point across.)
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Hatta (162192)
      It's also rather close to Mycotopia [mycotopia.net]
    • by swalker42 (944794)
      My first thought was "Mytopia = personal utopia" - which I'm sure is what the marketing folks were hoping.
      My second thought was "great we can't even share utopia anymore, another concept taken to the self-centered extreme".
      Then I snapped out of it and thought "who cares, if they can make some cash then good for them".
    • by rrkap (634128)

      Actually, liminally is a perfectly good word. It's the adverbial form of liminal meaning above the threshold of perception (thus subliminal means below the threshold of perception.

      Oh, god! I just corrected someone's grammar on Slashdot. I must retreat to my moms basement and get tested for Aspergers immediately!

    • When your mind starts drawing a connection superliminally, then you've got something to talk about.
    • (Yes, I know there is no word liminally... I just like playing with words and it does effectively get the point across.)
      The word you're looking for is superliminally. And I seem to have the same thing with after long FPS sessions. I notice that I tend to focus in the center of my vision and that it's difficult to use my peripheral vision. Oh well, I'll continue to play them until my eyes are but mere smoldering craters in my head
  • Mytopia? (Score:4, Funny)

    by ajlitt (19055) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:50PM (#22848438)
    Does playing this game make you near-sighted?
  • here's my free ad campaign slogans for you:

    1. "stare at the screen forever! get your myopia on mytopia"

    2. "mytopia: you would think it's an amalgam of 'my utopia'. it's actually an amalgam of 'my dystopia'. sorry for your forthcoming displeasure"

    3. "welcome to mytopia. if you are looking for the hallucinogenic substance exchange 'mycopia,' you are on the wrong site, click here"

    4. "welcome to mytopiary.com, the site for lovers of small shrubs and all things related to small shrub erotica! the mytopia website burned through all of its funds on a shameless ad plug on slashdot, and went bankrupt, and we bought their domain for $29.94"
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Surt (22457)
      4. "welcome to mytopiary.com, the site for lovers of small shrubs and all things related to small shrub erotica! the mytopia website burned through all of its funds on a shameless ad plug on slashdot, and went bankrupt, and we bought their domain for $29.94"

      You overpaid.
  • by Rob T Firefly (844560) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:53PM (#22848504) Homepage Journal

    Since Mytopia is centered on "classic games,"
    For "classic" read "public domain."
    • Since Mytopia is centered on "classic games,"

      For "classic" read "public domain."

      On Slashdot's home turf, games aren't copyrightable [copyright.gov]; implementations are. As long as you step around trademarks (e.g. "Zookeeper" vs. "Bejeweled" or "Lockjaw" vs. "Tetris" or "Snood" vs. "Bust-A-Move"), you break no law by reimplementing an existing casual game's rules with a new program and new graphics.

  • by Hatta (162192) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:53PM (#22848510) Journal
    Like Kings Quest? Dune 2? Battle Chess? Super Mario Brothers? Castle Wolfenstein? Pirates!? Rampage?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Like tic-tac-toe, or global thermonuclear war.
  • Imagination Network (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Kythorn (52358)
    This (visually) looks amazingly similar to the Imagination Network

    http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/001081.html [codinghorror.com] has a screenshot comparison I saw earlier this morning.
  • 1. Write sudoku-playing bots 2. ??? 3. Prizes!!!
  • Sierra Network (Score:4, Informative)

    by kaellinn18 (707759) on Monday March 24, 2008 @02:58PM (#22848568) Homepage Journal
    Jeff Atwood wrote a post [codinghorror.com] about this yesterday. Apparently, Mytopia is a lot like Sierra's ImagiNation Network from the late 80s/early 90s.
  • by Bromskloss (750445) <auxiliary@address@for@privacy.gmail@com> on Monday March 24, 2008 @03:09PM (#22848738)

    ...for generating traffic for news.com or why on earth didn't you include the link to Mytopia [mytopia.com]?!!

    • ...for generating traffic for news.com or why on earth didn't you include the link to Mytopia?!!

      Probably because if they provided a link to Mytopia directly, the editors would be accused of running a slashvertisement for Mytopia. Anytime there is an article about any commerical product, someone is going to cry "slashvertisement"... so now if they link to an article about the commerical product, someone cries "paid referral".

      There's a simple solution, which you appear to have solved for yourself... type "m

  • That mytopia looks a lot like myopia which means "short-sightedness"? Anyone find this fitting?
  • Bow before Neopets (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Monday March 24, 2008 @03:24PM (#22848904) Homepage
    OK, this upstart will achieve NOTHING unless he somehow gets an idea of how to dethrone the inexplicably popular NEOPETS from its throne of bones. I "played" Neopets for more than a month back in '04, when I was out of a job and homebound, and it singlehandedly made me want to get out of the house and get into the real world (no small feat). And Neopets remains popular despite the fact that one of its main pet types is sacreligious [neopets.com] to one of the world's most respected religions. All aboard to Krawk Island! Avast and set sail to Meridell!
  • by cliffski (65094) on Monday March 24, 2008 @03:25PM (#22848916) Homepage
    new casual games portals are ten a penny. who cares?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    the mytopia domain has 0 contact information and a whois on the domain produces a hidden registration if this was legit company/startup and all above board why would they hide their contact info behind a registration proxy ? perhaps we should look harder at them and see where they get their games from i wonder if evservers (their US based host) is aware what they are hosting the DMCA does still apply in the US
  • 1. Obtain highest rating in all games on Mytopia
    2. Get Geek Card Platinum
    3. ???
    4. Profit
  • doesn't allow login (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    It doesn't even allow me to login...weird.
  • I was not able to access the games on that site using ff under Feisty. Anyone else have any luck using GNU Linux to access that site?
    • by wampus (1932)
      Yes. Its just Flash.
    • by markdavis (642305)
      Mandriva 2007.1 + Firefox 1.5 + Flash 9.0 The site loads and says "click to login" and nothing happens when you click. So their site is a *major* yawn...
  • Not the story, this post. I have to use the story as an excuse to plug my own favorite casual gaming site, Kongregate. The cute thing about them is that most of their games are user uploads. Many of these have rough edges (my personal favorite time sink^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hgame, Desktop Tower Defense [kongregate.com], has hand-drawn icons and sound effects that seem to have been done by somebody with a microphone and a talent for silly noises), but that just adds to the fun.
  • Yay! Yet another place where I can play checkers, hearts, or some rip-off of Scrabble that still isn't Scrabble. Games.com used to be really good. I could play Sorry!, Monopoly and other boardgames with friends online, but now it's mostly a portal for demo downloads of single player games. Give me an online web service that allows me to play Monopoly, Clue, Life, Trivial Pursuit, and Stratego on a virtual game board against friends OVER the Internet and without downloading Windows software; and I will happi
  • This is such a boring approach to online games. I think much better would be a service that aims to run ANY turn-based game. Create a language to describe the rules of play, table setup, and optionally an AI. Provide basic concepts such as a deck of cards, a playing surface, and a set of game pieces. All you'd have to do is write a few example games, and the users would do the rest, coding up every standard game, and inventing many of their own.

    Making it profitable while keeping it open and user friendly is
  • I prefer Kongregate [kongregate.com] for casual gaming (read: gaming at work). Honestly, though, is there really that large of a market for this?
  • It's odd that such a site would launch and gain publicity without having anything new to offer!

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