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News

June 3, 2007
News through the Developer's Diary

The vast majority of new developments and news for MaidMarian.com are coming through the Developer's Diary. I would suggest you start there to get the most up to date information about the progress of all the games. MaidMarian.com attracts over 1.25 million unique visitors to the site every month and over 3500 simultaneous players at peak times. The games are in continuous active development, with updates released weekly. Just a little background, we are a very small company with a cottage industry feel and tight connection to it's player base. We're profitable off advertising revenue alone and in this way we are able to keep the games free and fun for everyone. We're not in the work for hire business, preferring to slowly grow our own IP and continue to push the envelope around what's possible in browser based 3D MMOs. I recognize that making a living, doing what you love is a rare thing in this world. Our players make this possible. 

I did a two part interview with Hanford Lemoore for his blog. If you're curious about my background, design approach or the technology behind the games, have a look:

Part 1: How one man made an MMO: an interview with Gene Endrody

Part 2: Technical Aspects, Business and Marketing

MaidMarian.com also was mentioned in the Escapist, a popular online magazine covering gaming and gamer culture, in an article entitled "Boutique MMOGs, Under the Radar but bigger than EverQuest" by Allen Varney. Here's the link:

www.EscapistMagazine.com/issue/75/15

Business or sponsorship inquiries may be directed to Gene Endrody at GeneEndrody@gmail.com .

Thanks, 

Gene Endrody
CEO
Maid Marian Entertainment Inc.
Gene's Bio

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November 16, 2005
Growth and Design Philosophy.
(reprinted from the Developer Diary)

Development efforts on Sherwood and TankBall ramped up in July and August. Sherwood received a major update to the 3d environment and now includes a castle to explore. This is a significant step forward in the visual 3D quality and immersiveness of the world. TankBall's updates include improvements to physics and frame rate, timed five minute multiplayer games with team and individual top scores and a health bar. Judging by the response, these changes have been well received by the players. Traffic has grown to over four million page impressions per month with some days exceeding 200,000. Since November of last year MaidMarian.com has grown by over 600 percent in traffic and revenue. During peak times the multiplayer servers host over 1,200 simultaneous players. I've added a third server to keep up with traffic demands and all of the games have received numerous security and stability updates in the last few weeks.

Since September I have been working on what I originally thought was a major update to Sherwood. It looks more like these features will now be rolled into a new game to be launched in a few months. For now I'm calling this game The Dungeon's of Nottingham and it will include a more sophisticated inventory, character and combat system, new items and weapons and a large dungeon environment to explore. Although it will initially launch with a relatively modest feature set, this game should establish a stable foundation that will support many future enhancements. This is easily the most ambitious project I've done to date, so wish me luck. 

The process of creating Sherwood and the other games has been very organic. I love the idea of someone finding Maidmarian.com by accident, clicking on a link and finding themselves in a fantasy world way beyond their expectations. In console games, they use the term "out of the box experience" to describe that first twenty minutes of playing a game. To maximize the impact of the first impression, I've placed a priority on trying to create immersive 3D environments with high frame rates, real-time physics, motion captured animation and dynamic time of day lighting. These are features players expect from games purchased in a store, not from something you play on a web-page. It's my goal to have the best 3D visual impact and "out of the box experience" of any web based game. 

So what was I thinking when I designed these games? It becomes critically important as an independent game designer to be efficient with development time. Game content that takes me months to create can often be ripped through in an evening by the average player and I don't have the resources to stay ahead of them with fresh material using a traditional approach. Linear story lines that rely on large amounts of content will lead to an unsustainable game design. This is one reason why the web is littered with the dead bodies of old failed independent MMORPGs. 

I believe that leveraging emergent gameplay is critically important. I try to provide the setting to allow players to play their game, not mine. The fantasies that players bring with them are far more vivid and compelling than any a developer might impose on them. Ideally the game features or objects should interact in fun ways the developer never anticipated. The trick is to create a game that can hold together when you haven't accounted for every possibility. This is challenging to design but very efficient because it maximizes the amount of gameplay created by new content. There's always the possibility that the new feature you're working on could exponentially increase the amount of gameplay.

Gene Endrody 
GeneEndrody@gmail.com

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October 24, 2004
Moon Base get it's one millionth visitor!

Launched in March of 2004, Moon Base has been up for eight months and today it received visitor number 1,000,000! MaidMarian.com is currently averaging about 25,000 visitors/plays per day and we're expecting that to double over the next few months. The Sherwood Game Play Video was launched on this site October 19 and a press release officially launching the Sherwood was sent out via wire service on October 23.

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February 19, 2004
MaidMarian.com named as CFOX Geek of the Week site. 
Here's what they had to say...

"You MUST check this site out. A while ago we had a link to Colin's Crazy Carrara which was a really nice looking shockwave driving game put together by local game developer Gene Endrody. Well now see what it's evolved into: immersive 3D worlds where you can drive around, chat, play smash up derby and explore with your friends. Marian's World is set on a wooded island and Moon Base is on the surface of the moon."

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December 2003
Ratinator makes The Adrenaline Vault's list of Top Shareware Games of 2003. (AVAULT)

"Looking for a fun and whimsical shooter? Then you can’t do better than Ratinator. Around every corner of a 3D maze within an infested house lies unexpected perils and opportunities. What with customizable mouse and keyboard controls, first- or third-person perspectives, portals, spawn points and destructible walls, this offering has it all. You’ll face some pretty imposing bosses, too, and you’d better be quick on your feet. You can also create new levels using the powerful editor. The graphics are crisp, colorful and cute, and the audio is enjoyable, with the title tune being mesmerizing. Ratinator includes 40 levels, over 20 different enemy types exhibiting unique behaviors, joystick and gamepad support, the ability to save your progress and an online high score list."

Bob Mandel

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September 2003
Ratinator is officially launched on Shockwave.com and GameBlast.com! 
Ratinator has made it to the #3 spot in the Top Action Games and averages 4 out of 5 stars. New site game site: www.ratinator.com

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August 2003
Colin's Crazy Carrara linked from FHM.COM's Big Eye On the Web. They called it the Porsche Simulator.

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May 8, 2001 
Maid Marian.com was featured on the front page of http://www.freshfroot.com - under the theme of 'lucky dip'.

Dancing Queen
MMORPG
"Just in case you aren't familiar with us - freshfroot is kind of like a visual search + resource engine aimed at anyone working or playing on the web or in art/design.  Each day there is a new theme and for that theme 12 items that have been harvested from a round the web..we look for the more tangential pieces that can get lost in the sludge of the web - we take a good look, chew them over, spit them out and offer them to the audience on a plate. Submitter Nat has invited us to enter the 3D visual feast that is maidmarian.com by Gene Endrody. Beware the alarming looking Marian and the equally unexpected dancemoves."

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April 15, 2001
Maid Marian screen shots seen on CBS Market Watch

Screen shots from the Maid Marian Tech Demo were used in an article covering Intel's quarterly results on Sunday morning's CBS Market Watch. The article talked about Intel® leveraging it's Internet 3D Graphics technology to find new markets for it's chips.

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MMORPGMarch 26, 2001
Maid Marian.com a finalist in the UCON2001 People's Choice Awards.

 
We are proud to announce that Maid Marian.com was nominated March 26, 2001 by Macromedia, Inc. for a People's Choice Award at their User's Conference (UCON 2001) at the New York Hilton on April 22 along with two other finalists.

The People's Choice Awards are presented yearly at Macromedia's User's Conference in eleven different categories. The Maid Marian Tech Demo was nominated in a new category for Shockwave 3D content. During the awards ceremony, once a short demonstration is complete, the audience votes immediately using electronic recording devices. The winner is announced within seconds of the vote.
 
The other two finalists were Lode Runner by Sapient and Intel Architecture Labs's Glass World.  

Sapient, a leading business and technology consultancy, has 2600 employees with offices throughout the world.

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products. Intel employs 85,000 employees in 45 countries. Intel's Architecture Labs provided much of the technology present in the new Shockwave 3D Player and is a development partner with Macromedia.
  
Considering the size and influence of the other two finalists, we consider the nomination of Maid Marian an honor and hope it's a sign of good things to come.

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March 24, 2001
Maid Marian Demonstration included with Macromedia's Shockwave Player 3D Public Beta.

 

We are proud to announce that the Maid Marian Demonstration movie is being included, along with seven other examples with the Public Beta of Macromedia's new Shockwave Player. Macromedia and Intel previously announced that they had formed a technology relationship to bring pervasive 3D to the Web via Shockwave Player. Macromedia Shockwave Player 3D Public Beta is the first available test version of the resulting Shockwave 3D technology. Because this is the first opportunity for most users to have a look at the 3D capablities of the new Shockwave Players, we are very happy to have our Maid Marian movie included with the release.
 

www.macromedia.com/software/shockwaveplayer/
3d_content/samples/main.html

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About Maid Marian Entertainment  

Maid Marian Entertainment is a leading developer of next generation web based games specializing in community oriented multiplayer games. Imagine 3D environments, where you can explore and interact with players around the world – all on a web page. No retail box to purchase and no cumbersome client software to download and install. Just click a link on our website and you’re in. We deliver immersive multiplayer 3D experiences right to your web browser. 

Maid Marian Entertainment is in the business of creating online escape and we intend to revolutionize the way massively multiplayer games are delivered. Games like Sherwood, Marian's World and Moon Base are milestones in the journey towards that goal, bringing together an online community of like-minded players. We intend to push the envelope both through technology and visually so our 'experiment' continues to represent the state of the art. 

Free, easy, and completely anonymous, these games deliver a 3D multiplayer experience on a web page, with no client software to install and no sign up required. Our worlds are constantly evolving as new feature requests come through the community forum. Features include:

  • Three persistent online worlds to explore

  • Avatar based chat

  • Support for up to 2000 simultaneous players

  • Immersive 3D environments and characters

  • Real-time physics simulation

  • Motion Captured Animation

  • Dynamic time of day lighting

  • Free, easy and completely anonymous

  • No cumbersome client software

  • No sign up required

Contact Information
Maid Marian Entertainment
1151 Croft Road
North Vancouver
BC, Canada, V7K 1K2
Gene Endrody -
GeneEndrody@gmail.com

 

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