Free Realms Housing Confusion

I grabbed a lifetime account on Free Realms for both of my kids. One of the perks of becoming a member is that you get a house as well as the free apartment everyone gets. Problem is, the house is only for one character and it is not shared over the account. Even though you can have 3 characters (I’m not sure why you’d want more than one) only one of them gets the house. The rest get apartments. I really do not understand why you wouldn’t share it to all 3 but hey that’s the rule.

The first thing my daughter does is create a new character (again it was a perk of gaining member status to get 2 more character slots) and the “you have an item to claim” icon shows up so she clicks it and next thing you know she has a house. Excitement! Decorating! Then she logs into the character she has been playing since the game came out and hey what’s this apartment thing? Where’s my house? She had no idea. So she deletes the new character thinking that the house will show up on the only character left. Oops! She just deleted her house. It’s gone for good. Now don’t get me wrong here, I’m sure it warned her that the house is tied to one character only when she claimed it but for whatever reason she did not digest that information.

SuperDad steps up to the plate and contacts Free Realms support. After a few emails back and forth they grant the house to her main character and remind me to remind her not to delete that character because if she did she would be out of luck and have to buy a house in the future.

I really only have one question for them: Why would you do it that way?

– Ethic

(My)Last Word on Free Realms Launch

While I hadn’t planned to post more on the subject, I was contacted earlier today by SOE in regards to my post. We talked through the elements I raised like rational people and I came out of it feeling like they are going to launch with eyes on the road. While I still hold that it’s too early to launch the product yet, and I won’t be signing myself or my kids up for it to start with, I was happy to spend some time talking through the plan rather than simply being told “You’re crazy, get over it.” I sincerely wish them goodwill on their launch.

Also, since I’m taking the most heat over one element, let me be completely clear – the price right now, at release, is $4 for 10 cards for their TCG, which was the element of the game I enjoyed the most (which is likely why the high cost I saw mentioned in several places bothered me the most).

Oz Does Free Realms Beta

For the past few weeks I’ve been heavily playing Sony’s new MMORPG offering, Free Realms. I’ve been working on a review for here for a while, but had refrained on posting it until I had confirmation that the NDA was lifted. Tonight, while wandering through the forums, I read that they lifted the NDA on April 22nd, although they really didn’t make a lot of noise about it. I also found out that they are now going to launch on this Tuesday the 28th, after just under two weeks of a single round of closed beta. I was stunned, and can only imagine that the people behind the Vanguard launch are making the decisions. That said, what follows is a review from the prospective of both a long time gamer who has played nearly every MMORPG that has come down the pike, including beta testing launched and shelved products, and also a father of a pair of pre-teens, who are clearly this game’s target market. If you’re not interested in the long breakdown, here’s a one sentence summary:

Ever wonder what the child of ToonTown and Everquest would be? Wonder no more.
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