Final Fantasy XIV announces the last PlayStation 3 login campaign and a new Amazon promotional campaign

With the release of its second expansion, Final Fantasy XIV will no longer be supported on the PlayStation 3. There’s a free upgrade to the PlayStation 4 available through the end of the year, but there’s another bone being thrown to those still playing on the last console generation. The last free login campaign is going live on the console from May 1st until June 15th, allowing those on the console to play for free on the console until support is shut down.

Of course, those of us on the PC won’t have that issue… so why not celebrate with a repeat of last year’s Amazon cross-promotion? Yes, it came back, and this time you can pick up an assortment of items themed after a journey to the East. Buying $20 worth of video games and/or game accessories (which you can do from this link to also help out the site, incidentally) will net you a promotional code for an outfit, weapon, mount, and 50 free Aetheryte tickets, so that should make the impending journeys a bit more pleasant.

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Revelation Online invites players to climb the Tower of Pain

There is a place in Revelation Online they call the Tower of Pain. And it’s been the ruin of many an adventuring group, mostly because you’re going into something called the Tower of Pain. What do you think is going to happen in there? Foot rubs?

It’s not foot rubs. It’s pain. The guardians of this tower sealed their very essence into the tower to prevent people from reaching the pinnacle on the eighth floor. The doors to the dang thing only open once every thousand years. And yet you’re probably still going to go in there, because… well, it’s an MMO, there’s a tower full of stuff, that’s what you do.

Of course, the climb up the Tower of Pain will not be the same every time, so you can look forward to shifting layouts and guardians depending on how you clear your way up the tower. You can also look forward to hurting. Again, we cannot stress this enough, it is called the Tower of Pain.

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Elder Scrolls Online offers a new video glimpse of Morrowind’s Vivec

The greatest city on Morrowind’s island of Vvardenfell is Vivec — and in The Elder Scrolls Online’s expansion timeline, Vivec is still being built by the god-poet who gave the town its name.

The city is the subject of a new video from ZeniMax out today, narrated in-character by Morag Tong assassin Naryu Virian and featuring plenty of swoopy fly-throughs of interiors and exteriors of the town. “But did he have to build it under that big, ugly rock?” Virian snarls. Unfortunately for us, he did! Check it out below, and if you’re digging Elder Scrolls videos, make sure to check out Larry’s lore piece from earlier today.

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Conan Exiles patches in 50 emotes, exploit fixes

Update 25 has landed for Funcom’s in-early-access survival sandbox Conan Exiles, bringing with it 50 new emotes as promised. You’ve got the basics, like shrug and point and dancing, and then you’ve got “laying [sic] seductively,” “spank,” and “belly dance,” which is totes what you should be doing in a brutal world where everyone wants to kill you.

The update also fixes several ongoing exploits, including a dupe issue and that pesky problem of “accidentally” falling through the game world and raiding people’s bases.

And this line in the notes is cryptic: “Seeing dead people can now lead to great rewards.” Hmm.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go over here and emote sleeping on the ground. I’m sure it’s safe to sleep here. What could go wrong?

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Guild Wars 2 announces Flashpoint living story episode, price drop for Heart of Thorns

Super Adventure Box departed Guild Wars 2 last week, so you had to expect we were on the brink of seeing another episode of the living story. Indeed, ArenaNet has just announced that very episode: It’s called Flashpoint, it’s apparently the next-to-last episode of season three, and it’s launching in just one week on May 2nd.

“Flashpoint finds the forces of good fighting a battle on two fronts. The fight against the now more powerful Elder Dragons seemingly has turned in their favor with news that Taimi’s research has resulted in a machine that can stop them with a single decisive blow. Meanwhile, the powerful mursaat Lazarus – who returned mysteriously purporting to be an ally – has been revealed to be an imposter. Marjory Delaqua attached herself to him to investigate and is now headed back to Rata Novus without discovering much about the truth of his identity. Both paths converge as Lazarus is on his way for a confrontation; in Flashpoint, players will uncover shocking secrets and come face-to-face with a threat unlike any they’ve seen before.”

ArenaNet is also permanently dropping the price of Heart of Thorns by 20 bucks, meaning that the cheapest buy-in for the game’s first expansion is now $29.99. (Maybe it’s another hint that the under-construction expansion isn’t that far away, eh?)

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Lord of the Rings Online celebrates 10 years with stream at noon

Lord of the Rings Online is currently in the middle of its 10th anniversary celebrations, only somewhat darkened by the grumbling over the event’s inaccessibility for lowbies. At noon EDT today, the Standing Stone team is plotting an anniversary stream with “gameplay, developer chats, and giveaways” — and hopefully a look into the game’s future.

The stream begins at noon, and you can watch it down below, but in the meantime, take a peek at Massively OP’s LOTRO Legendarium column, in which Justin recapped his ten years in the game, or last night’s episode of the Stream Team, on which MJ took a peek at the festivities.

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Video: Story vs. lore, Star Wars: The Old Republic vs. The Elder Scrolls Online

In the ultimate battle for your dollar in the MMO industry, two MMOs with rabid fan bases duke it out by serving you a deep and engaging narrative. Star Wars: The Old Republic and The Elder Scrolls Online both want to draw you in with the worlds they have to offer, but each does so in a unique fashion: One gives you interesting characters build up your ego by making you the most power being in the galaxy, while the other tempts you in with a wondrous world to discover.

In Massively OP’s latest video, we’ll examine these two games and ask which is more appropriate for an MMORPG: story or lore. It’s a tough question — there might not be a satisfying answer!

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RuneScape plans Menaphos update for June 5, addresses Spring Fayre uproar

RuneScape’s been teasing its Menaphos: The Golden City update for what seems like months, but today, the expansion’s getting a hard date: June 5th. Jagex says it’s just the first in a series of free expansions on the way for the game, spaced out every three months. This one comes with a level cap bump, new raids, and new quests.

“Menaphos is full of untold riches and stories waiting to be unearthed by the game’s millions of players. However, players will arrive in the city as unknown outsiders and must build their reputation within the city to become both exalted and legendary among the inhabitants. As they explore the city, it won’t be long until they discover the dark secret of corruption spreading through the metropolis. In addition, there will be new quests, a constantly shifting network of tombs that can be raided for their ancient riches and a new Slayer Dungeon, which will see the Slayer Skill level cap raised from 99 to 120 for the very first time.”

The update announcement is getting a bit lost on Reddit, however, where players are still fuming over the newly released Spring Fayre, which apparently rolled out with rather hefty microtransactions (MTX). Jagex, however, posted this morning that it plans to change how the Fayre works, increasing rewards and making play periods fit a global audience.

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Grand Theft Auto Online introduces its new Tiny Racers mode, and it’s wonderful

The newest Adversary mode for Grand Theft Auto Online isn’t about stealing things. It’s barely even about exploding cars. No, it’s about taking the game back to its roots with top-down stunt racing on an elevated track, complete with boost sections, power-ups, and all of the general ridiculousness you could expect. It’s the Tiny Racers mode, and it’s live now, without any need for DLC.

Players who drop too far behind the pack in this mode will get blown up, but for the most part it’s just about fun and mildly goofy top-down races across seven tracks. You’ll be getting increased rewards for playing it for the next week or so, which should serve as even more motivation to try it out. Check out the trailer just below for a glimpse at the action.

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VR MMO MetaWorld plans summer early access launch, seeks financial support

Hoping to see a full-fledged MMORPG with virtual reality take off in your lifetime? We may be witnessing the start of one with MetaWorld, even if it does look a little like Nintendo Wii avatars got guns and went fishing in cyberspace.

MetaWorld uses SpatialOS for its engine and is aiming for an August early access launch on Steam. Currently, the team is drumming up financial support for the project through Indiegogo. A soft target goal of $50,000 is posted, although because this is Indiegogo, whatever the team raises, the team keeps.

According to the description, MetaWorld “invites you explore a persistent 10,000 square mile, massively scaled open world together. Discover endless activities and adventure, inside a real-time physics simulation allowing thousands of visitors to participate simultaneously online.”

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Bless Online shuts down Russian beta for revisions, preps Japanese test

There’s something a little hinky going on with Bless Online’s beta test over in Russia. MMO Examiner reports that 101XP was not pleased with the game, deciding to shut down the Russian beta servers and send it back to the devs for revisions.

According to a translation of the announcement: “Last year, we launched in Russia the anticipated MMORPG Bless. Players and the company has pinned high hopes on the game, which unfortunately did not materialize in full. After discussion with the developers, we have come to a decision to close the Russian-speaking servers May 25, 2017. The game will go into development for an indefinite period to return in the future in an improved form.”

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What’s John Smedley building for Amazon Game Studios?

Here’s the million-dollar question of the day: What is John Smedley making for Amazon Game Studio’s San Diego branch? Ever since being handed the reigns of a new sub-studio back in February with a bulk of his Pixelmage team, we’ve been intensely curious about whether Smedley is staying close to his MMO roots in his new project.

Perhaps we might glean a few details from the job listings on Amazon’s site. The studio is looking for several positions for art, combat systems, and engineering, and there are a few bullet points in the job descriptions that hint at the project in question.

One of the job descriptions has the best hint yet, with the position being tasked to “architect and develop the real time combat system for a cutting edge action multiplayer game.” Another intriguing entry mentions a “real time terrain deformation system based on physics simulation.”

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The Daily Grind: Do you believe MMO studios release overpowered new classes on purpose?

Yesterday’s Elder Scrolls Online press embargo drop allowed us to talk a bit more about the overpowered state of the Morrowind Warden class — in fact, Larry flat-out called it a Mary Sue. What surprised me about the ensuing discussion was how incredibly cynical our readers were in response to that (and to the general community uproar over the class). Quite a lot of you (and other highly engaged gamers) seem to believe that ZeniMax is releasing the Warden totally overpowered intentionally as part of its marketing strategy, and to some extent, it makes sense — you want to create hype for your game and get people to buy it, so make sure to pack in a badass, solo-friendly class that encourages fence-sitters to make that leap.

On the other hand, you risk ticking off a couple million existing players who don’t want their characters falling to the bottom of the heap or who don’t want to feel as if they have to reroll.

Do you believe studios like ZeniMax, Blizzard, and ArenaNet intentionally release overpowered new classes, planning to nerf and balance them later? And if so, is it the smart call?

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