Justin Olivetti

Senior Reporter

A casual gamer and long-time MMO fan, Justin is often heard yelling, "Player housing for all!" in the Massively Overpowered offices. In addition to news, he tackles LOTRO Legendarium for LOTRO, The Perfect Ten, Jukebox Heroes, the retrospective Game Archaeologist series, One Shots, and the Massively OP podcast.

Personal blog: BioBreak
Twitter: @sypster

Meet the Oceanides, Skyforge’s main aquatic threat

When I was a kid I used to go out with my grandfather on his fishing expeditions out in the Gulf of Mexico. What I saw him pull up in his nets convinced me then and there that I was best staying on dry land where I had the tactical advantage versus such horrible creatures. Son, the ocean is scary.

Maybe Skyforge is channeling the same sort of childhood fear with its Oceanide race. In a new lore diary, the history behind the fiercely aggressive Oceanides is given. Basically, they’re a super-smart and advanced race that’s looking for new territory in which to expand and elder gods to absorb. Now that they’re invading the planet that players have sworn to protect, it’s time to decide whether you’ll be sending out for shellfish — or if the seafood will be having you for dinner.

Source: Skyforge

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Time-travel through RIFT in the latest Nightmare Saga publish

The second act of RIFT’s new Nightmare Saga has gone live, and this time the game is taking players on a trip through time to unravel a mystery and earn neat rewards.

Trion Worlds set the scene for players’ upcoming adventures: “In Part 2 of the Nightmare Saga, you’ll follow Orphiel on a journey through pivotal moments in Telaran history, from the Mathosian civil war to the fall of Port Scion, in an attempt to unveil the mysteries behind Lord Arak’s origins. If he is indeed the Nightmare, who is the dreamer?”

The rewards for this quest include an item to summon guffins to fight for you and a housing NPC that opens portals to various places. This is the second of three acts planned for the rollout of the Nightmare Saga. The first act came out earlier in July with the third act to follow in August.

Source: RIFT

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Project Gorgon nears funding goal, reveals new races [Updated]

It’s looking good for the imaginative Project Gorgon, as it has nearly reached its current Kickstarter crowdfunding goal after two past failed campaigns. The indie fantasy MMO crossed $18,000 of fundraising with hopes to shoot past the $20,000 finish line soon.

“If we are able to surpass our initial goal, we will be able to expand upon current and planned game features!” the team posted. “We have great ideas that add unique twists to many of the MMO features that you have come to enjoy, and some new ones that you have yet to experience.”

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Get a sneak peek of ArcheAge’s 2.0 patch notes

Curious what ArcheAge patch 2.0 will look like when it finally arrives later this summer? One helpful fan has translated the Russian patch notes into English for a detailed list of the update’s features.

The notes include details on lots of new guild functionality, such as the new guild leveling system, guild wars, guild quests, guild shops, guild applications, and the integrity system. This post is brought to you by the word “guild!”

Of course, it should go without saying that what you read here may or may not be what exactly makes it into the North American and European version of the game. When 2.0 hits, Trion will be monkeying around with “evolving” the servers, so players will want to pay attention to any potential merges and transfers impacting their characters.

Source: Patch notes. Thanks to Rogbarz for the tip!

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Heroes of the Storm bribes players to try it out

Is this the summer of Heroes of the Storm? Blizzard would really like it to be, as the studio is not above a little digital bribery to get you and your friends to play its new MOBA.

From now through August 4th, the studio is giving out free seven-day stimpacks to all brand-new players in each region. Stimpacks dole out extra experience and gold after each match played. Current players might not be eligable for stimpacks, but they can get a nice 50% XP boost by getting a friend to sign up and play the game.

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SMITE adds Khepri, its biggest god yet

“This is one big scary bug. Much bug. Wow.”

Hi-Rez has a lot to say about Khepri, SMITE’s newest god, but perhaps the above quote is the most apt. Khepri is a gigantic armored insect that is the game’s biggest model yet. Despite its size, Khepri isn’t a tank, but instead a support character that excels at assisting its teammates by buffing and even resurrecting them.

There’s a lot more than Khepri that’s gone into the MOBA’s latest update including some much-needed item tweaking. “We want players to feel rewarded for making smart item choices and make sure they have a wide pool to choose from,” Hi-Rez posted. “We looked at some of the underperforming items and tweaked them to make them more attractive for players to utilize.”

Source: Khepri reveal, patch notes. Thanks to Sorenthaz for the tip!

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Crowfall explains why you’ll be grouping in the game

If you hate teaming up with others, then boy is Crowfall so not the game for you. In a new combat Q&A video, ArtCraft emphasized that grouping for PvP encounters is downright essential and explained its philosophy behind the design.

Basically, combat is being balanced between groups, not individuals, with the team makeup being more important to success than any one class. “It forces you to take different archetypes with you,” the devs said. “It makes the battlefield more interesting.”

ArtCraft also reported that it’s added three new members to the combat team and went into depth on topics like crowd control, stacking effects, and projectile physics. You can watch the full 20-minute Q&A after the jump!

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Guild Wars 2’s fractal dungeons to become more accessible and challenging

Guild Wars 2 is not planning to neglect its fractal content when Heart of Thorns comes out later this year. The fantasy MMO put up a dev blog today discussing how the team is simultaneously making the scaling group content easier to access and more challenging.

One big change with the expansion is that players will be able to choose a specific fractal to run from a list instead of a grouping of randomized dungeons. This will allow for shorter runs and players to get to learn certain fractals better. Another change is that fractals are going to scale up to 100, offering a harder difficulty level for seasoned groups. There will also be plenty of new rewards and achievements for running fractals, in case you needed incentive.

ArenaNet also outlined how it will be giving players a path to earning a legendary backpack in the expansion: “Just like existing legendary items, players will need to collect components from all over Tyria. To craft each stage of the precursor backpack, players will need to obtain a new salvage item from ascended equipment.”

Source: Guild Wars 2

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Pathfinder Online deploys holding and outpost warfare system

Purposeful PvP is expanding in Pathfinder Online, as today Goblinworks is rolling out its holding and outpost warfare system for its early enrollment v10.1 patch.

With the new system, players will be able to attack enemies’ hexes with the ultimate intent of taking over their territory and reflexes. In order of that to happen, a feud must be initiated, outposts in a hex must be overrun, and that hex’s holding must be conquered. If all goes well, players can settle into their conquest and eventually start enjoying the resources generated by that hex.

There are a few other improvements and changes with v10.1, so check out the patch notes to make sure you’re up to speed.

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Devilian unveils the Evoker class

You still have some time to decide which of Devilian’s four classes you’ll be trying out when the game launches. If ranged spellcasting is your bag, however, then the game might be tempting you with the powerful Evoker.

The Evoker is a supercharged mage that uses different elemental abilities such as ice and lightning to unleash AoE attacks and wipe out the battlefield. The class can specialize in control abilities, instant-cast assault blasts, and frying multiple foes at once with chain reactions.

The Evoker joins the game’s launch lineup alongside other classes such as the Shadowhunter. Devilian is being imported from Korea by Trion Worlds, which is planning a beta test for some time later this year.

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With Your Destiny and Asta close down

We truly do hate to be the bearers of bad news, especially when that news has to do with the demise of an MMO. It’s doubly unfortunate to have to report on the sunset of two free-to-play titles this past week: Asta and With Your Destiny.

T3Fun’s With Your Destiny recently announced that it was closing its doors, and yesterday the title shuttered both its servers and the website. The Norse mythology MMO had been in operation since 2003. Currently, any attempt to find the With Your Destiny page will send you to T3Fun’s site instead.

Asta: The War of Tears and Winds, which was billed as the Asian World of Warcraft when first released, is shutting down its South Korean servers next month following a couple of years of stalled development.

Source: MMO Culture. Thanks to Mitch and Winterskorn for the tips!

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WildStar forums compromised by exploit, taken down

If you’ve been wondering where the WildStar forums have gone, you’re probably not the only one. Carbine Studios took to Reddit today to explain that it had voluntarily disabled the forums while it is dealing with a rather serious software exploit.

The studio said that it took down the message boards soon after discovering that someone had been using an exploit to mess with the forum software. While Carbine is still looking into the issue, it says that it is “limited to email and IP addresses, as well as forum content” but not passwords or other personal information.

In the meantime, Carbine is rebuilding the forums, rolling back the data, and auditing all NCsoft West games and forums. The new forums should be up in a few days.

Source: Reddit

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World of Warcraft to reveal newest expansion next week

What will World of Warcraft’s next expansion be? Forget speculation — you’ll be finding out for real in a little over a week.

Blizzard announced today that it will reveal the follow-up to Warlords of Draenor on Thursday, August 6th, at noon EDT during a Gamescom livestream. The studio said that it will have a follow-up dev chat covering the expansion on August 9th during the convention as well.

“Join us Thursday, August 6th, at 9 a.m. PDT for a special World of Warcraft event streamed live from Gamescom 2015 in Cologne, Germany — where we’ll be unveiling the next chapter of the World of Warcraft saga,” the studio teased on the offical game site.

Fans were hoping to hear about the expansion soon, considering that the last expansion has already wrapped up its patch cycle. So since we have a week until the news, how about whipping up a Massively OP office pool to guess the new expansion’s name?

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