Novel Inc. Brings Politics, Strategy & Warfare to the Online World with Launch of ‘Empire & State’

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Online Gaming Start-up Debuts First MMO Title, Introduces Brand-New Take on Community Gaming

“Today’s core gamers crave quick and easy access to high-quality games, but want to be able to experience them without the time commitment associated with traditional MMOs,” said Brayden Olson, founder and CEO of Novel, Inc.

Novel, Inc., an emerging online game developer and pioneer in the enterprise simulations space, today announced the release of Empire & State, a political real-time massively multiplayer strategy game. With Empire & State, the first consumer-facing product to launch from the company’s entertainment studio, Novel is redefining immersive online gaming and providing the first community gaming experience that allows players to cooperatively manage an entire empire. With a focus on politics, diplomacy and economics, Empire and State offers a deeply immersive gameplay experience for hardcore gamers but without the big time commitments typical in MMO titles.

Empire & State, the flagship product from the Redmond-based startup, is a browser-based game that puts gamers in control of a world inhabited by thousands of other players with agendas of their own. The game operates around a continuous player-driven storyline that mirrors the management of a real-life nation, immersing players in a world where they can elect political leaders, organize military deployments, develop new businesses, plan espionage and crime, and form multi-player alliances to manage an entire empire comprised of other players. With the "click-and-play" convenience of a browser-based game, Empire & State is free to play and accessible on almost any PC with an internet connection.

“We’ve seen very positive community feedback during the game’s alpha phase, and have been working closely with the players to improve every facet of the game,” said Toby Ragaini, Director of Product Development for Novel. “Because the gaming experience is generated by the decisions and abilities of the players, we’re excited to see the emergent stories that will unfold during the open beta launch of Empire & State.”

Casual PC gaming has experienced an upward surge and the lines between core and casual players are beginning to blur. It was with this industry shift in mind that inspired Novel’s development of an MMO that would appeal to the time-sensitive gamer. Empire & State is designed for core gamers who don’t have the time to invest in a traditional MMO but still crave a meatier experience than those offered by today’s popular asynchronous games. From the art style to the game mechanics, Empire & State has taken the immersive elements of a core MMO and wrapped them into a more accessible package.

“Today’s core gamers crave quick and easy access to high-quality games, but want to be able to experience them without the time commitment associated with traditional MMOs,” said Brayden Olson, founder and CEO of Novel. “I am one of these gamers myself, and Empire & State is a satisfying and accessible game within an immersive political and strategic player-driven world. You can play when you have time, even just a few minutes, and make a visible impact on this world."

Empire & State is available online at http://www.empireandstate.com and is free to play.

About Novel, Inc.
Redmond, Wash.-based Novel, Inc., (http://www.novelincorporated.com) was founded in early 2009 by entrepreneur Brayden Olson as an emerging developer of massively multiplayer online (MMO) games and pioneer in the new category of enterprise simulations. The company’s mission is to bring innovative consumer online games to market and leverage proprietary game technologies for business application. The company’s first title, Empire & State is a social strategy MMO that will serve as the foundation for future consumer and business products.

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Catharine Neblett
Novel Inc.
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