Massively week in review

Joystiq's sister site has all the news you'll need about MMOs. Here's the best, brightest, and most interesting stuff from the last week, all in one convenient place for your MMO minute.
Visualizing Free Realms: An interview with Art Director Rosie Rappaport
If you've been following the development of SOE's Free Realms lately, you're probably pretty excited about everything it has to offer. If you haven't been following its development, check out our extensive coverage and exclusive interviews with its developers. Ready for even more exclusive interviews? Good, because just last week Massively sat down with Rosie Rappaport, the Art Director for Free Realms, to chat about the game's distinctive art style and the concept process involved.
Massively's pre-launch interview with Runes of Magic
With the game set to launch in just about a month from now, we jumped at the chance to have a chat with the folks at Frogster concerning their much-anticipated fantasy MMO. Are they on track with this March launch date? How has beta reaction been so far, and what do they have to say about the growing concern that the game is "nothing more than a cheap WoW clone"?
Mercenaries, the hired goons of EVE
In the harsh, hyper-capitalistic world of EVE Online, everything is for sale and everyone has a price. If you've had the misfortune of making some enemies with deep pockets that really like to hold a grudge, you might find yourself staring down the gun barrel of one of EVE's oldest professionals – The mercenary.
Hands-on with Darkfall
Aventurine was really kind enough to let us here at Massively have some play time on their game, Darkfall, and really get our hands dirty with it. Of course, I jumped to be first in line to get my account activated for beta and rush right into the world with my sword drawn.
Is free-for-all PvP really for nobody?
Many MMOs with the "hardcore" PvP mentality are often argued as an experience that isn't for everyone -- something for a very set niche. Or in other words, these games aren't for people who prefer a little structure and intelligently crafted incentive to participate.
Official Champions DevBlog: Randy Mosiondz on laying a foundation
When building a new MMORPG,‭ ‬it is essential to focus on a strong foundation for future growth.‭ ‬Verbatim duplication of successful MMORPGs does not guarantee the success of your own game,‭ ‬nor is it in most cases feasible without massive capital expenditure and time investment.‭ ‬Building a flexible core game engine with potential for expansion and cultivating a strong contributing fan community should be the ultimate goal for any MMORPG company.
Know Your LotRO Lore: Gimli
In this week's Know Your LotRO Lore, we're exploring the life of our favorite quirky dwarf, Gimli. You know and love him from the movies as played by John Rhys-Davies, or perhaps his animated adaptation as voiced by David Buck in Ralph Bakshi's 1978 Lord of the Rings cartoon.
Massively interviews EVE Online Lead Economist Dr. EyjoG
Beyond its scale, what distinguishes EVE Online from other games is that it has a player-driven virtual economy, the backbone of the game. EVE's economy has been a major draw for players interested in market and crafting sophistication generally unseen in an online game.
Introducing the Massively webcomic: Grinders
Grinders is a new weekly cartoon here at Massively devoted to chronicling your adventures in your favorite MMOs! If you have a funny story or just a funny character, submit your tale complete with a screenshot to The best will be etched in stone and displayed in the town square for all to see. Or just put in the comic.
How do you handle burnout?
Burnout is something that affects all MMOs and most players experience it at one point or another. Your favourite game stops being as fun as it used to be and you don't feel like logging in. We all handle this in our own way. As a long-time MMO gamer, I've faced burnout many times in games ranging from EVE Online to Everquest 2 and World of Warcraft. I've quit the latter two games several times due to burnout but somehow even after playing EVE for five years (five years exactly on Tuesday 24th), it has never made me quit even when I've burned out. So how do you handle burnout and what makes EVE so special?

This article was originally published on Joystiq.