I was recently reading Larry’s column on Elder Scrolls Online’s latest expansion and how he noted that there didn’t seem to be a lot — if any — in the way of filler quests. Side quests aren’t a thing in Morrowind, unless you give yourself a quest to just poke around and get into trouble. And I consider that a very good thing indeed.
I’m done with side quests. With the exception of, say, The Secret World (which puts some effort into these), side quests have long become the dumping ground for “busy work” with minimal story. They’re the MMO equivalent of increasing the margins on your high school research paper so the end product looks more impressive, yet no one is actually fooled.
Are MMO side quests on their way out? Do you see evidence of this in other games? And do you prefer to stick to main storylines — either personal or regional — when you play?
Here’s the good news for Twitch Prime members: Warframe
really likes calling things “prime” (almost as much as Transformers), so the game is giving away the desirable Frost Prime frame and the Vistapa Prime Syandana to Twitch Prime members totally free
. The bad news for people who are not
Twitch Prime members is… that exact same news. Those people get something neat and you don’t.
If you feel the urgent desire to correct this issue, the good news is that you have means of doing so. The promotion in question runs from June 29th to July 26th, and all you have to do to get this free stuff is link your Twitch Prime and Warframe accounts. So you should be entirely capable of getting these rewards if you really want them; the only question is whether or not you want them more than you want to not have Twitch Prime. Not that it’s a problem if you’ve already got it.
One game enters the list and another leaves. Dark and Light has started its closed testing, although there’s a very small number of people currently invited to test the game, so you’re probably not on the list. Meanwhile, Master x Master has entered the shark-infested waters of launch, so it’s now as real as it gets. Hooray for changes on the list!
Boy, I’m so excited I’m just going to launch into several more list items. Come with me, will you?
- Luna Online is apparently in closed testing in Southeast Asia, so that’s good news for fans of the game, people who live in Southeast Asia, and people who want games with names similar to those of moths. I assume the crossover on that list is rather small, but you never know.
- Hyper Universe has entered closed beta; if you’ve forgotten about that one, it’s a MOBA but of the side-scrolling variety. Check out the Facebook page for keys and such.
- A big test update is coming to Project Genom next month. It’s… big, almost like a whole rewriting of the game’s focus. You’ll want to see it to believe it, apparently.
- The bad news is that the early access launch for Rend is being delayed; the good news is that it’s apparently being delayed for really cool and good reasons. You’ll have to take the developer’s word on that one.
- Gigantic is launching on July 20th, so you may want to mark your calendar for that. And you can test freely on the PC right now, too.
- Kritika Online is throwing into the open beta ring pretty soon; June 29th, to be specific. Founder’s pack holders get in a little bit earlier, though.
- Last but not least, Shot Online Golf has hit the closed beta scene. So, you know. Golf.
And there’s still a whole list down below! What fun. Let us know if something in there slipped phases without us noticing, all right? We really like lists, if you haven’t noticed.
We don’t mean to surprise you, but Gloria Victis involves a whole lot of fighting things. You have various sharp bits of metal that you insert into some living creature or another, hopefully before they can do the same to you. So it’s important that combat feel as solid as possible, hence the new combat upgrade. You can watch the full trailer for the upgraded battle system below the break.
While the developers are still tweaking the specifics, the overall goal is for combat to feel more responsive, intuitive, and just plain fun. Hacking away at enemies should involve more skill and give players more options for how best to take on combat. It’s also worth noting that we are in the middle of the Steam summer sale, so perhaps you should take a gander at the trailer down below and then consider jumping in to do a bit of hacking-and-slashing of your own after all.
ArcheAge Begins’ title is never going to be as appropriate as it is right now. Gamevil’s spin-off of XLGAMES’ well-known MMO sandbox has just kicked off its first global closed beta test and is looking for a few players to give the game a test drive.
The closed beta test is a fairly short one, running from now through July 3rd. ArcheAge Begins is looking at a Q3 2017 release on mobile, so it looks as thought the testing process is ramping up to make way for the launch. The game uses the Unreal 4 engine and contains many features from the MMO, including raiding, fishing, and trading, although it is obviously not the same product.
Right now the beta is for Android players only, so if this is you and you have interest in the game, you can sign up for the program through Google Play.
Did you enjoy the music of The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind? Then there’s good news, because you can now fill your ears with it wherever you go. The soundtrack is available via Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, and Google Music, so no matter what your preferred platform may be, you can make it the day-to-day soundtrack of your life. Be warned that you may get some funny looks if you spend an entire business meeting playing it, assuming you’re someone who has high-powered business meetings.
The official site also has an interview with composer Brad Derrick, who talks about the challenges involved in making sure the soundtrack was new and distinct while still reminding players of the history behind the game’s title and lore. Derrick marks the title theme as the hardest part to compose (since it’s the iconic song for the whole expansion), while also seeing the transition of one theme into another depending on player activities to be vital to making a good soundtrack. Check out the full interview if you’re curious about how the tracks got made.
If you were worried that Mark Kern’s Em-8ER (properly pronounced “eem-eight-er” for those willing to die upon snarky hills) wouldn’t fund on its latest Indiegogo push, good news! It’s already funded and looking toward stretch goals. Of course, one could argue that since the game has already had one successful Indiegogo campaign and is now having its second in a series of “serial crowdfunding” pushes, this is already a stretch goal, but let’s not split hairs. The point is that you can pay more money and get more stuff; that’s what the campaign is focusing on.
The newest stretch goals allow for model fights against a new beast, more emotes for players, and motion capture. “We will be modeling the ‘beast’ form of the Tsi-Hu aliens,” says the game’s newsletter. “This deadly creature is what Tsi-Hu can transform into for brutal melee combat. The next stretch goal is to animate it and have it fight the players! There are lots of great perks to unlock, including color changing CHROMA jumpjets, glowing Omniframe skins and even a full motorcycle. In response to player feedback, we also updated our $500 tier to include better rewards, like the Turret #2 Pet robot, and having NPCs salute and greet you by title.”
Secret World Legends‘ NDA has finally dropped — probably because it has just launched its headstart for The Secret World owners! And as a long-time fan, you know Massively OP’s MJ is going to be deep in the game all day, so come join us live at 4:00 p.m. to take a look at the TSW reborn. Will it be all you hoped?
What: Secret World Legends
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 4:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, June 23rd, 2017
Almost lost in the buzz today was the release of SuperData’s rundown of the global digital games market for May. You’ll notice immediately that World of Warcraft has once again been rejoined! SuperData had split the game into east and west versions for its January report, then botched the entries in February and hastily repaired its graphic to rejoin the two; in March, the WoWs were one from the get-go but split up again in April. Now we’re back to one. It’s still not clear what’s going on there.
In any case, it’s allowed for a new entry on the PC side: Dota 2, which recently patched in PvE, apparently to good effect. On the mobile side, Pokemon Go has vanished entirely from the top 10, though we won’t be surprised to see it return next month as the summer events heat up.
“Overwatch shows continued growth,” writes the research firm. “Overwatch digital revenues are up from April but down from May 2016, when it launched. Additional Content revenue hit a new high in May on the back of a one-year anniversary event.”
Folks have been waiting a while for the lowdown on the Secret World Legends patron benefits, and Creative Director Romain Amiel just shared some tidbits with us. The benefits for subscribing to the reboot include some items The Secret World players are familiar with (bonuses to earning currency, free anima leaps, reduced mission cool down timers, and bonus XP) as well as some new additions that are specific to SWL (increased healing potion capacity, free auction house delivery, the ability to trade directly other patrons, a free daily cache key, and daily bonus keys for dungeons, scenarios, and lairs). There’s also a 50% discount for buying healing potions.
For those who purchased the Grandmaster lifetime account, that will guarantee that you’ll be a patron for life in SWL. However, there will be no way for any players — new or old — to purchase this going forward. As for the price on patron, we don’t have particulars yet, but we’ll share those details as soon as we get them.
Let’s see if you can follow the chain of logic here. Police officers in Seattle shoot and kill a alleged burglary victim, resulting in controversy over whether or not the officers made the right decision. All understandable. One of the officers of the department took to Twitch in order to deliver an update on the shooting and the reasons behind it; again, understandable, albeit perhaps not the best choice of platforms.
Of course, he was also taking to Twitch so he could stream while playing Destiny. A game where you shoot things. Like, that’s the whole game.
Saying “don’t livestream a game about shooting people while discussing an actual shooting your department is being criticized for” seems like it should be kind of obvious, but apparently not. The officer in question has stated that he felt failing to discuss the shooting would be seen as a cop-out, although that doesn’t really explain why he felt that was the ideal time to combine these two things. We should all just be happy it wasn’t Grand Theft Auto Online.
I sat down with Elite Dangerous Senior Designer Sandy Sammarco again at E3 2017, and while the information I’ve got in terms of game info may be a bit old hat for hardcore Elite players, I want to be clear on something: MMO players should take note of how Frontier is doing community events. Even if you aren’t interested in the game itself, the design strategies and execution are things that are reminding this jaded MMO-enthusiast about what got me into the MMO genre in the first place. I don’t really do space sims, and haven’t touched my VR for months (though I could probably hop on normal PC or PS4 versions), but my time with Sammarco has gotten me closer to hitting the “buy” button on the game.
This week’s episode of Star Citizen Around the Verse sees Cloud Imperium’s Chris Roberts and Eric Kieron Davis bookending Foundry 42, Ship Shape, and solar system segments. From the Foundry 42 Frankfurt office, Development Director Brian Chambers checks in to discuss new hires, level design work, landing zones, atmosphere mapping, buddy AI, enemy reactions, planet surfacing, outpost lighting, environment art, and multiplayer persistent universe gameplay testing (yay!), while Ship Shape is aimed at you motorcycle lovers.
“Being able to see your footsteps in the snow or have your vehicle kick up dust while speeding across the desert are those little details that’ll make you believe that you’re really in those environments and be much more immersive, and you know me – I love immersive,” Roberts chimes in.
The best bit is easily the solar system segment, but I’m biased – I married an astrophysicist. The devs explain how they use the Solar System Ed (SolEd) to build out the parts of their galaxy in the service of the Star Map, making use of volunteer astronomers and other scientists to vet their ideas for scientific plausibility. Fun!