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The softer, gentler side of MMORPG life. [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

Tree of Life dev explains crime system, prefers ‘2:8 wolf/deer ratio’

Take heart, sandbox PvE fans. Tree of Life developer OddOneGames is on your side and has added a crime system to its early access sandbox so as to avoid turning it into yet another PvP-focused gankbox. In a post on the game’s Steam forum, developer Chyaya says that the team’s primary goal is “to build up a well-running ecological system.”

He says that the preferred ratio of wolves to sheep (or wolves to deer, in this case) is 2:8. “It is not our direction for us to give all the freedom for the players to attack other players as a sport and not intervening and taking responsibility on our part,” Chyaya writes. “What we pursue is freedom not license. From now on, the act of harassing other players will have its consequences. We will be planning to continuously control the specific number of crimes as we monitor the crime numbers of all the players.”

Source: Steam; thanks Fnights!


Trion addresses Defiance players’ requests for more content

The newest set of answers from the Defiance developers to player questions is available now. The bad news (always start with the bad news) is that several of those answers come down to “we’ll consider it.” The good news is that those answers cover a lot of ground just the same. Case in point: The team is aware that it provides no rewards for players on the test server, but with upcoming releases that require a larger test, there are plans to reward those who take part in some fashion.

Backwards compatibility for the Xbox One is also being sought out, although there’s no word on whether or not that will happen. There are currently no plans to have the Omec appear in-game, although Omec-inspired armor is currently on the table as a possibility. Take a look at all of the answers on the official site.


City of Heroes is returning… as a chat client

The dream of seeing City of Heroes reborn is still just that — a dream. But through the hard efforts of fans of the superhero title, a portion of the game could soon be back online.

A team at CoH Titan is on the verge of releasing a new product called Soon™, which will allow players to interact, emote, and chat in City of Heroes zones. The software will only be for chatting and socializing, as there will not be any combat or enemy NPCs available. Even so, players should be able to bring in their characters and bios from Icon, an earlier effort from the team, and enjoy a return to their old stomping grounds. The devs said that friends list and chat channels are in the client and that they are working on mimicking travel powers for a future update.

The team will be making an official announcement of Soon™ and posting a FAQ in the near future.

Source: MMO Games, CoH Titan. Thanks to Psi for the tip!


The Daily Grind: Are there any survival sandbox features you’d like to see in MMORPGs?

I’ve been playing a lot of ARK: Survival Evolved lately. It’s certainly not an MMO, just judging by player count, but it has elements of progression, persistence, crafting, and combat that many MMOs share. My question to you this morning, MassivelyOP readers, is whether or not there’s any aspect or feature in particular from ARK or its survival sandbox brethren that you’d like to see incorporated into an honest-to-goodness MMORPG.

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E3 2015: Life is Feudal isn’t just another gankbox

I’m standing with my PR contact at the Life is Feudal booth when suddenly a guy with a thick Russian accent walks up to me, picks up a toy of a wooden bear at a computer, and starts to move it so the bear paws at the keyboard. “This is how we make games in Russia” he laughs.

This was my E3 2015 introduction to Vladimir Piskunov, CEO of Bitbox and friend to veterans of ShadowbaneDarkfall, and other PvP games (or at least, the guy inviting the veterans to Life is Feudal‘s alphas).

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One Shots: Primitive GPS

There’s no shame in being lost, especially if your MMO doesn’t include an on-screen map. Anyone remember the olden days of using graph paper to keep track of where you were, especially in dungeons? That single-handedly kept the graph paper industry in business, it did.

Reader Krieglich decided to make the most of his bewilderment by taking a screenshot of the moment. “This isn’t a map but one of the nice little gimmicks of Elder Scrolls Online. Whenever someone is looking at his map, all around him know that he/she has to look where to go. AGAIN.”

But don’t you worry, fair reader, you’re not lost! You’re right where you need to be: At the beginning of a journey through exciting and thought-provoking screenshots in One Shots!

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The Daily Grind: What’s your first priority in a new MMO expansion?

The start of Heavensward access in Final Fantasy XIV has me running around like it’s the end times. I need to level the new jobs, I need to advance in the storyline, I need to get to work crafting and gathering… basically, I need to be doing anything and everything other than what I’m actually doing. The joys of trying to write about a new expansion!

Of course, I’m going to bet that the vast majority of you reading don’t have quite that particular collection of stresses; you can just enjoy what you’re doing. So when you get your hands on a new expansion (or major patch/DLC, if you prefer for your game of choice), what’s your first priority? What do you want to do right away, above and beyond everything else?

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WRUP: Early access maybe edition

This week, no one will exactly be surprised to learn that I’m playing Final Fantasy XIV‘s early access weekend. Or trying to, anyway, because while the servers are nice and stable and the content seems largely free of bugs, you’re going to be stuck with some pretty horrendous queues and lobby server errors the moment you try to log back in after you log off for literally anything. Which, you know, isn’t something I’m really going to rake the company over the coals for… but it’s still kind of annoying to sit through.

But enough about me, by which I mean a very small bit more about me and about others. It’s What Are You Playing, wherein we tell you our plans for the weekend (and our Patrons chime in) and you let us know your weekend plans in the comments! And there’s no queue here. There might be login issues, though, depending on how nicely Livefyre is running.

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The Daily Grind: Are MOBAs destined for a Great Crash?

Make no mistake, even with the recent launch of Heroes of the Storm, MOBAs are crashing and burning all over the place these days. We’ve seen titles like Transformers Universe, Solstice Arena, Infinite Crisis, Dawngate, and Wrath of Heroes flame out against the shared monopoly of League of Legends and Dota 2, and the consensus around the Massively OP office is that this is only the beginning of a possible Great MOBA Crash.

Of course, this could be trying to connect dots in the effort of seeing a trend. After all, games are born and die all of the time, so why should MOBAs be any different? What do you think: Are MOBAs destined for a Great Crash or is there enough interest and innovation to expand the field and keep current titles running?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!


Massively Overthinking: The value of MMO voice chat

This week’s Massively Overthinking question was shot over to us from Kickstarter donor Celestial, and it’s all about voice chat in MMOs.

Do you use a voice chat program while gaming, and if so, which one do you primarily use? Mumble, TeamSpeak, Ventrilo, RaidCall, Razer Comms, Skype, or some game-integrated solution (WoW, DCUO, LotRO, etc.)?”

And furthermore, do you actually like voice chatting, or is it just something you do because you have to for certain gameplay situations? Let’s discuss the pros and cons of voice chat vs. other types of chat in general!

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RuneScape’s RuneFest community event scheduled for October 3

Jagex has announced that RuneFest will return for a fifth incarnation of the annual community event devoted to RuneScape. It happens at London’s Tobacco Dock on Saturday, October 3, 2015. A Jagex press release says that players will see the dev team’s plans for 2016 as well as take part in themed activities, dev Q&As, and “a host of other distractions and diversions.”

As in previous years, players can purchase tickets with real-world currency or via in-game gold and RuneScape bonds. Last year, 40 percent of RuneFest’s attendees used game gold to pay their way to the con, and a few even used bonds to purchase flights, accomodations, and entry tickets, Jagex says.

Source: Jagex press release



Perfect Ten: MMO terms that have overstayed their welcome

My original plan for this week – during the few moments that I was capable of coherent speech rather than just babbling about the upcoming Final Fantasy XIV expansion – was to give you lovely folks a drinking game. Each time you see certain things come up in indie MMO Kickstarters, take a shot. And I might still do that one day, but I decided against it for two reasons. One is that it feels a bit like punching down, which I don’t like to do.

But the second reason, and the more important one, is that not all of the fault can be laid at the feet of indie Kickstarters. The part where you expect to build a functional MMO on a budget that won’t pay for a single programmer, yes. Pretty much everything related to Greed Monger, that’s on you. But some of these terms come up over and over because they’ve been bludgeoned into formless masses now, and so it’s not really the fault of the indie folks that you can throw these terms in front of more or less everything.

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Check out this handy Guild Wars 2 build calculator

Here’s your Guild Wars 2 public service announcement of the day: Don’t get so caught up in the expansion fever and the price wars that you forget that there’s a sizable content patch coming between now and Heart of Thorns!

One of the big changes with the upcoming patch is the replacement of the current trait system with the new specializations. Enterprising Guild Wars 2 fan site Into the Mists is helping players prepare for the change by creating a handy build calculator for both PvE and PvP characters.

The calculator walks you through potential new builds step by step. Give it a try and let us know what you think. Or you can go sign the petition and try to get your money back at the cost of your account. Either one. Pitchforks for everyone.


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