Alphas & Betas Category

MMOs in various stages of testing and crowdfunding, playable and… not. Don’t forget to follow our Betawatch and Make My MMO columns for a weekly rundown. [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

Snag an AQ3D 'GDC blade' from Artix and Massively OP

Back at GDC, AdventureQuest 3D whipped up a special in-game sword for folks who stopped by the booth: the GDC Blade. But as Artix's reps told me, the studio felt bad that regular players -- who couldn't attend GDC -- weren't able to pick up the blade.

That all changes today, as the studio has granted Massively OP 1000 codes for these exclusive swords for our readers! Click the Mo button below (and prove you're not a robot) to grab one of these keys!

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Moonlight Blade offers you the freedom of flight

Who needs wings or a fancy mount to experience the fun of flight in an MMORPG? Upcoming Moonlight Blade will give every player clearance for take-off, granted that they've reached level 50 and have a supply of flight potions.

As Steparu investigated, flying in Moonlight Blade looks pretty neat, with each class sporting their own unique animations while zipping through the air like Iron Man. There's a lot of flames, twisting about, and generally looking cool as all get out. But you really do want to make sure you have enough pots on hand, because it would stink to find yourself plummeting to your doom or having to hoof it back to civilization on your own two feet.

Need to see it for yourself? Check out the videos after the break and see if you don't feel your excitement level rising a bit for this Chinese import!

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Master x Master announces closed beta, adds City of Heroes' Statesman

Today's good news for Master x Master fans is that the game has a closed beta coming up. The next test will be between April 6th and April 27th, ahead of the game's full launch in the summer. All of that is good news, but it kind of gets overshadowed by the game's other simultaneous announcement of a new hero in the game's lineup... Statesman.

Yes, from City of Heroes. Someone decided to add one of the most loathed characters from a dearly departed game that many fans are still upset about losing. It's one of those rare situations where you're not even sure what to be upset about first.

The bright side is probably that Statesman at least seems to play true to form, so he's got all sorts of melee abilities, moves around quickly, and can activate Heroism as his ultimate ability. And he's from a game that NCsoft shut down, we cannot stress that point enough. Just... check out some screenshots and a trailer down below; no one here is sure how to feel at the moment.

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Legends of Aria begins focused testing, delays Steam launch

Legends of Aria is shaking things up from the old Shards Online paradigm. In addition to the name change and broader focus, the fantasy title announced that it is going to adopt a "more conventional MMO testing platform" going forward.

"Future play-tests will now be conducted in phases of focused testing, geared towards specific areas of gameplay in preparation for final implementation," Citadel Studios said in this week's newsletter. "To accommodate the need for extra testing periods, our Steam launch will coincide with the release of the Legends of Aria Beta instead of Alpha 2."

The current Alpha 1 test will conclude on March 26th, to be followed by Alpha 2's start on April 28th. The team said that its taken a shine to the concept of a single large official server (in addition to the private ones) and that it will start to talk about all of the changes in store for Legends of Aria on March 31st in a new development blog.

Source: Newsletter

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The Stream Team: Springing into Conan Exiles' spider cave

Aladdin visited a cave of wonders, but Massively OP's MJ is going to visit a cave of spiders in Conan Exiles. What better way to celebrate the first day of spring than by exploring a place that is bound to make her jump and run away? Perhaps she will have better luck surviving here than she did in the croc cave. Tune in live at 9:00 p.m. to see if that holds true.

What: Conan Exiles
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EDT on Monday, March 20th, 2017

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Castles get an upgrade in Gloria Victis

If players or guilds are going to put the effort in purchasing and building up a castle in Gloria Victis, they are going to be rewarded with one fine-looking structure. Thanks to this past week's alpha patch, the biggest building in each of the six main settlements has received new and improved models for the keep's final form.

The patch contains an additional hodge-podge of changes, including the ability to interact with non-dialogue NPCs, bigger buffs for countries being dominated by others, and smiths that sell better wares than before.

The team also reported that it is continuing to work on making combat look and feel better: "We know, that combat/animations overhaul is long overdue and community is getting impatient, to say the least. So, just a quick heads up for you guys: we are polishing. It’s a long, yet rewarding process, as we are tweaking little details over and over again to exterminate bugs and make sure it feels great to roam and fight."

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Shroud of the Avatar: Kas Ruins, custom NPCs, and marble columns

Shroud of the Avatar's 219th newsletter has arrived! Of note is the segment on the Kas Ruins, whose biome is based on the Rockies and Grand Tetons of the US but could easily be pulled straight from Lord of the Rings.

Portalarium has also requested that backers entitled to submit NPCs for inclusion in the game do so for the village of Harvest, a farming community and waystation in Estgard. I would totally claim that town crier and make him say rude things, but that's why I'm not a game designer.

The devs have also uploaded more info on their charity work, the full telethon, and notes for the offline mode save game format changes.

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Conan Exiles on this week's patch, The Purge, and a 'partial wipe'

DualShockers has a new interview out with Conan Exiles' Joel Bylos. It's from GDC, but it's still worth a look given that it includes info on this week's patch. For starters, expect to see the new decay system (it's been renamed as the "ruins system" now), the planned dye system, new weapons, and the promised thrall updates -- eventually, players can expect alchemists, engineers, sorcerers, and beastmasters as thralls. Don't expect mounts until summer, though. Crafters, a heads-up for you: Since crafting progression is getting a revamp, "players will get to repick all of their recipes."

The Purge is also a hot topic for future updates -- basically, it'll be a massive AI invasion with special thralls and an eye toward wrecking your server's best stuff. Can't let that happen, now can we.

Meanwhile, following player outcry over the excessive duping and exploiting going on there, Funcom has announced it will partially wipe the official servers.

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Star Citizen will drop DX11, avoid DX12 support

Over the weekend, Cloud Imperium fielded questions from players on some of the more technical elements on display in Star Citizen's last Around the Verse. Turns out that some major DirectX changes are on the horizon.

"Years ago we stated our intention to support DX12, but since the introduction of Vulkan which has the same feature set and performance advantages this seemed a much more logical rendering API to use as it doesn't force our users to upgrade to Windows 10 and opens the door for a single graphics API that could be used on all Windows 7, 8, 10 & Linux," explains Director of Graphics Engineering Ali Brown. "As a result our current intention is to only support Vulkan and eventually drop support for DX11 as this shouldn't effect any of our backers. DX12 would only be considered if we found it gave us a specific and substantial advantage over Vulkan. The API's really aren't that different though, 95% of the work for these APIs is to change the paradigm of the rendering pipeline, which is the same for both APIs."

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The Repopulation is back, but major bugs ensure the next patch is a ways off

Idea Fabrik's internal dev team published a dev update on The Repopulation this morning, following the game's relaunch last week. The studio says it's still working on verifying old backer accounts and reminds players that the game hasn't been updated yet -- this is just a copy of the game from fall 2015 when it all came down. Expect wipes to correct the economy at some point as well.

The really bad news is that the new team has discovered a slew of existing problems it needs to fix before it can move on with new content.

"We have been digging in to the zoning/transition issues, which have provided an insight to many other issues, this includes but is not limited to a lot of information that is being replicated which doesn't need to be, and some major issues with server drops, memory leaks and performance are being extrapolated by this. What this means for us is... We have to go over all replicated information, sort out what should be server side and client side, then apply all of the fixes without borking up other interconnected systems at the same time. As example of this is when players go over zone lines: ALL of your Account information is replicated from one area to the next, this includes for example, your inventory. So the more information on your character, the longer it will take to transition. This is not a straight forward and easy changing a 1 to a 0."

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The MOP Up: Kali awakens in Dragon Nest (March 19, 2017)

The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!

This week we have stories and videos from Pokemon GoConan ExilesWarframeCrash ForceHeroes of the StormArmored WarfareElder Scrolls OnlineTERAAvabel OnlineOverwatchAionGlory RidgeDragon Nest, all waiting for you after the break!

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Master x Master introduces Koom and Vonak

Eager to know when everyone gets to play Master x Master? We can't tell you that, on account of not actually knowing. Still, the game is introducing us to two new heroes, so forward motion is still happening! This pair is Koom, an enormous stone juggernaut, and Vonak, a spindly guy with a popped collar and two guns. Care to guess which one is the defensive hero and which one is the assault?

That's not a trick question, by the way. It's pretty obvious. Koom is a huge dude made of stone, he's all about defense. That should not be a difficult evaluation.

As always, the videos for both characters show off their abilities and some of the customizations available for the characters to tweak abilities and attack. You can check out both videos down below, and presumably join the "eagerly waiting for a beta announcement" crowd.

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Make My MMO: Pathfinder is alive, Starfighter seeks crowdfunds (March 18, 2017)

This week in MMO crowdfunding, Pathfinder Online resurfaced this weekend with good and bad news. Paizo's Lisa Stevens tells fans that efforts and research into selling the game to a large MMO company to finish weren't fruitful. While consultants said the game might appeal to a more indie developer, ultimately they recommended Paizo finish the game itself, which the studio is doing, putting together a one-year timeline to polish the title for "open enrollment."

We've also got a new online multiplayer space sim cooking (thanks, Crow!). The game is Starfighter, Inc., and it describes itself as "Counter-Strike meets World of Warships in Space." It's about a third of the way to its $150,000 US goal with 27 days yet to go.

Meanwhile, we checked out the newly revived Repopulation, Chronicles of Elyria suffered controversy over its monarchy allotment, Grim Dawn got a new patch, Wild Terra began open testing, Dual Universe delayed its alpha, we spoke to Legends of Aria's team about its name and design changes, OrbusVR's Kickstarter funded for over 200% its original ask, Ship of Heroes announced it'll seek $400,00 in crowdfunds, and Star Citizen gave a clear view of its level development. It's been an incredibly big week for crowdfunded MMOs!

Read on for more on what's up with MMO crowdfunding over the last week and the regular roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we've got our eye on.

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