The Stream Team: Celebrating Secret World Legend’s Krampusnacht!

Up on the housetop
Krampus paws,
Those aren’t presents in his claws
In through the window
He breaks right in
To punish bad children
That live within!

Oh no no!
You’d better go
Oh no no!
You’d better go
Dash to your front door
Quick quick quick
Else he will get you
Lickity split!

It’s time to delve into the realm of cloven-hoofed demons and horned holiday gods! Massively OP’s MJ is joining the Krampusnacht celebration. Join us live at 9:00 p.m. to be a part of the festivities (and singing).

What: Secret World Legends
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EST on Friday, December 15th, 2017

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Players discover Red Dead Redemption 2 pistols in GTA Online files

Is Rockstar Games planting little Easter eggs in Grand Theft Auto Online for its upcoming multiplayer western? And are the two games connected?

This seems to be the case, as player dataminers have discovered GTA Online files that indicate the studio is setting up a treasure hunt that will lead gamers to a special chest that holds signature Red Dead Redemption 2 gold-plated pistols. Even better, the chest may also bestow an in-game benefit for the upcoming western title.

The treasure hunt should be coming with the next update, called “The Doomsday Heist.” If all of this is shown to be true, then it might confirm that both games share the same world, just in different timelines.

Like GTA Online, Red Dead Redemption 2 will feature some online multiplayer functionality, although the exact specifics of this have yet to be revealed. We do know that it’ll have lockboxes, however.

Source: Polygon

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Betawatch: Ashes of Creation testing is set for today (December 15, 2017)

Who wants to play a guessing game? If you’re an Ashes of Creation backer, you get to play one whether you answered yes or no! See, the game’s first test is scheduled to start today, so everyone gets to find out if they’re in one of the expected invitation waves or not. A new storefront was launched on the official site regardless, with the actual kickoff of testing expected later today (there’s supposedly a stream at 6 p.m. EST). There’s a lot of guessing going on.

More pre-holiday beta news? Yes, before the real lull begins.

So happy not-quite-holidays, folks! And check out our list just below, let us know things that have jumped testing phases without us noticing, you know the deal. Just remember that testing games isn’t a gift, it’s a responsibility. Like puppies, or baby llamas, or insect-raising kits, or LEGO kits that request you building several dozen models before you’re allowed to stop.

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Neverwinter’s Sword of Chult lands on console in January

Hey consolers. What are you doing in January? Back to the grind, right? Not in Neverwinter: You’re headed to the jungle in Swords of Chult, the update that PC players have already been rolling around in since October.

“A five-player skirmish, The Merchant Prince’s Folly, gives end-game adventurers dynamic new content to experience with multiple enemy, location and daytime combination possibilities leading to new rewards. Additionally, all competitive adventurers can now test their mettle in revamped PvP, featuring the addition of a permanent solo queue, Tenacity stat rework, armor penetration changes, control effect adjustments and new gear rewards. Swords of Chult brings more quality-of-life improvements to the refinement system, dungeon queuing and the campaign progression system for alts, offering a better in-game experience.”

Expect it to roll out on January 9th on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and do note that it’s a free update!

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Saga of Lucimia’s devs shriek at spiders and bears

With Saga of Lucimia’s ninth pre-alpha test scheduled to run from December 22nd through January 5th, the team hopes that more fans will get excited enough to pony up a pre-order and get into the test. Aiding in this crucial decision-making is a four-minute video in which the devs shriek in fear at spiders and freak out over bears.

OK, there’s a little more to it than that. The brief video shows an internal team dealing with a pack of landscape mobs that it has aggroed, continuing on later to an underground cave where a spider’s all like, “High five, bros! Hey, why you run?”

If nothing else, it might give you an idea of how combat is shaping up with this hardcore fantasy title. Give it a watch below!

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Destiny 2 takes pity on non-Curse of Osiris owners, challenges players to snowball fights

Those who have elected not to pick up Destiny 2’s first DLC might have felt like they were being shut out of more progression and content than was fair. Bungie agreed with this, and in Patch 1.1.1.1, the team made several changes to accommodate the “have nots” of the playerbase.

Non-owners can now progress to power level 300 without disruption and engage in the Leviathan raid and the standard Trials of the Nine maps. Previously, Curse of Osiris made the trials inaccessible to the base game owners even if the launch maps were featured, which rankled more than one member of the community.

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World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Hearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm get into the seasonal spirit

‘Tis the season for so many Christmas events that you’ll have to forsake all family and tins of popcorn to get around to them all. Blizzard isn’t making it any easier on you, since pretty much all of its games are currently in the throes of holiday events.

World of Warcraft’s Feast of Winter Veil kicks off tomorrow with the traditional quests (say hi to the Abominable Greench for us!) and new holiday hats that can be found in dungeons. Overwatch is running its Winter Wonderland and challenging players to the new and ridiculous Yeti Hunt brawl.

Over at Heroes of the Storm, Winter Veil brings a quest chain with a special spray and mount as rewards. Then there’s Hearthstone, which is reskinning some of its game boards, tossing in seasonal emotes, and inviting players to a “Wacky Waxy Winter’s Veil” tavern brawl.

In non-event news, World of Warcraft had to delay an announcement of its 2018 plans but said that this info should be coming soon. And if you are deep into the new Hearthstone expansion, check out the following behind-the-scenes video of its making!

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Dark and Light rezones city slums just in time for Christmas

Winter has come to Dark and Light, quite literally. Players logging into the early access sandbox since yesterday are being treated to a blanket of snow, the Krampus world boss, and major cities decorated for the holiday. Oh, and if you want to ride a reindeer, now is the time:

“Reindeer have been spotted around Archos! These red-nosed creatures only show up when the weather is at its coldest, and they have the mysterious ability to fly, despite not having any wings! They seem to really enjoy eating carrots, and not much else, so be sure to stock up if you plan on taming one!”

This week patch also added new holiday home decor schematics, dye recipes, and carrots (what else would you make a snowman with?). And this is festive: The devs have moved the slums of every city to the outskirts of said cities. This is for real – take that, optics.

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Global Chat: Something fishy in these MMOs

Fishing in MMOs: You either really get it or you really don’t. Ancient Gaming Noob Wilhelm is among those who enjoys taking every opportunity possible to cast his rod and reel in search of slimy, scaly adventure under the waves — and he’s shared how he assigns an alt the joy and responsibility of fishing in each one of his games.

“If there is fishing in a game, I’ll be there. But fishing really only needs one character,” he writes. “I generally pick somebody to be my fisherman and send them out to fish around the world, following whatever plans the game happens to have for the vocation.”

Oh my cod, you say, this column has already started to flounder. Well, fear not, we have a porpoise for everything we post, and we’re sure that you’ll get hooked on one of these MMO essays and end up trouting its virtues.

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Conan Exiles is still working on the full nudity patch for some Xbox One regions

What’s new in Conan Exiles since the devs announced a console price hike, a scale-back in launch features, and its actual launch date (May 8th of next year)? Oh, nothing much, just a whole ‘nother patch. In fact, update 32 rolled out this past Wednesday, the last stable one expected prior to the holiday.

“This update adds the weapon, tool and armor modification system, new dynamic weather, two new armor sets (Zamorian and Aquilonian), new thrall capturing tools, new weapons, new building pieces (ladders, folks!!), and the long-awaited sickle,” writes Funcom. “It lets you harvest a metric butt-tonne of Plant Fiber!” That was followed by a rollback and bugfix when items began disappearing thanks to an overzealous item purge script. Oops.

Funcom says it’s further working on the user interface, new clan and attributes panels, patch stability, double-jump, character animations and movement, target-locking, lighting shader bugs, voice chat, and of course, the new combat system. There’s also been movement on the console nudity front, which is a sentence I just typed. I’ll let the team explain:

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Star Citizen’s Around the Verse on alpha 3.0, atmo flight, and Squadron 42 info

Shake it off, Star Citizen: On this week’s Around the Verse, CIG says it’s “getting close to live release,” stress testing the current version of the game with 176 must-fix issues still to go. Is that too many to make it by 2018? Probably! Are they still trying anyway? Probably! The back half of the episode focuses on atmospheric flight (and yes, it’s just going to make Star Wars Galaxies fans sad) as the engineers explain how they’re making flying spaceships near the ground feel as real as possible for different sizes and types of vessels and atmo situations.

Meanwhile, as MOP reader Space Captain Zor pointed out yesterday, CIG has pegged December 20th for the Squadron 42 details promised for this month back at CitizenCon; that rollout will apparently include an exclusive newsletter, Mark Hamill teaser video, and report during next week’s streamed ATV. That’d be the same Squadron 42 over whose existence Crytek is currently suing CIG. 2018 is going to stretch our popcorn budgets thin!

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Black Desert bans nearly 600 fish botters

In the war between robots and fish, the only side who wins is… wait, is there a war going between robots and fish? Well, assume for the purposes of this story that there is. At least, that would be the logical reason for 574 players of Black Desert to be deploying fish bots in order to fish up all of the oceanic meals in the water.

Wait, what’s that? They were doing it to exploit the game and make in-game money? Well, it doesn’t really matter why they were doing it, because they’ve been summarily banned as part of an ongoing investigation. And it’s an investigation that ends in a place where they’re unlikely to get the bans overturned on appeal.

As usually happens, the community staff is not naming and shaming; it’s enough to know that the bots are gone and likely won’t be back. Or, at the very least, will have to buy the game again, which is a blatant cash grab just because the botters cheated egregiously. So, hopefully they’re gone for good.

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WoW Factor: The fate of WoW’s class orders post-Legion, part 1

In the lull between expansions, I’ve been hard at work bringing my alts up to the level cap, unlocking all of the class mounts, picking up the occasional appearance that I really want from the Mage Tower challenge… you know, the usual stuff. And the result is that I find myself asking a question that surprises me a wee bit in the context of World of Warcraft: What is going to happen to all of the class orders?

I neither had an answer nor cared about one when it came to garrisons. Presumably, they’d continue to sit there, a testament to what happens when designers try to make housing that isn’t housing and don’t understand why people like housing in the first place. But the order halls are different. They’re cross-factional, they’re important, and perhaps most importantly, they represent something that makes different use of the resources of the world.

So what’s happening to these orders? How are they changing? How does this play into the war between the Horde and the Alliance becoming properly hot? And might we get some extra lore about these things?

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