There’s nothing quite like flying through the air in a steampunk airship, unless you’re also blowing other steampunk airships out of the sky. Guns of Icarus Alliance is now in beta, melding the original Guns of Icarus gameplay with a PvE feature set. The new way to play the game is also available to all owners of the original PvP-only game, so if you got tired of other players shooting you down, now you can take on AI players at no further cost.
Guns of Icarus Alliance includes a sprawling metagame of factional dominance across a world map, along with five new ships and four new weapons. Players can also load up with new ultimate abilities to change the face of the battlefield across five modes and seven maps. Check out some screenshots and a trailer just below, especially if we had you with the idea of shooting down airships.
If you were a dragon, what kind of dragon would you be? Perhaps you’d go traditional, with the whole “giant world-devourer” aspect. Maybe you’d be made out of odd things, like ice cube trays or old abandoned AOL install CDs. It’s even possible that you could be the type of magic dragon that lives by the sea and helps imaginative children before eating them.
Frank was on a lovely holiday in Final Fantasy XIV when he encountered this charming little thing. “Most of Azys Lla imparts an otherworldy impression but few are as fierce as Tiamat,” he wrote. The message and his right hand were all that remained after this encounter. Poor Frank.
Hiring is going well for Camelot Unchained, City State tells players in a new dev post this weekend. “We are now up to six people in Seattle (though the 6th won’t start till January), and have seven candidates in the pipeline,” Mark Jacobs says, noting that while CSE is losing a programmer to an overseas move, it “should have another Ops/Junior programmer to replace him shortly.”
The studio has been focused on testing abilities, the patcher, animations, zones, network performance, and rendering — you can see a bit of the bloom-soaked “god rays” in the screenshots below, though they’re still a work-in-progress.
“Note the subtle shafts breaking through the trees, but also the bloom softening the environment just beyond the trees. We’ve also introduced eye adjustment which can be seen here. We are simulating the opening and closing of a person’s iris, which occurs as you enter or exit dark and bright areas. The consequence, as your eye adjusts to the dark shadows you are in, is anything that is bright, such as the sky in this shot, will be slightly more blown out.”
The Valkyrie awakens in Black Desert today with her new awakening weapon, a lance named… wait for it… Lancia. It allows the class to stab from afar and joust the enemy while still wielding a shield. Level 56 characters can pick up the awakening quests in Calpheon.
“A defensive force to be reckoned with, the Valkyrie excels at withstanding high-power attacks while supporting her allies with special buffs. In addition to boosting her already rock-like defenses, the class Awakening adds new offensive skills to the Valkyrie’s arsenal, allowing her to deal a greater amount of damage to multiple targets while quickly moving about the battlefield with her long-reaching lance.”
Kakao has also kicked off a design contest for its seasonal calendar. Screenshot junkies, take note! Everyone else, check out the Valkyrie’s new video below.
There have been no shortage of big updates for Blade & Soul, and the newest update is delivering a big update for big groups. The Midnight Skypetal Plains are arriving on November 16th and serve as the game’s first dose of 24-person content, asking for a large group to gather together and take on an array of strange creatures invading the bridge between the spirit realm and the earth realm. This includes the rather nasty and long-thought-extinct dragon turtle Sacred Longgui, who will no doubt provide something of an obstacle for your investigation.
The good news is that you don’t need to just live with the satisfaction of a job well done when you clear the area out; players can unlock new Legendary Soul Shields by taking on the region’s bosses, as well as a new costume. No word on whether or not anything else is coming along with the update, but it’s quite possible that big content is enough on its own. If you’ve long been awaiting the chance to really get a huge group going, your time is almost here.
Sea of Moving Ice, the latest installment of Neverwinter’s
Storm King’s Thunder campaign, is live on PC today, complete with a new nautical vessel, fishing minigame, artifact weapons, treasure hunting (!), the 10-man Assault on Svardborg endgame trial, and of course, the new arctic-biome zone itself.
“Picking up where Storm King’s Thunder ended, the Sea of Moving Ice update sends players to overcome the formidable defenses of Jarl Storvald, who threatens to blanket the lands in permafrost with the Ring of Winter’s awesome power. Players must navigate the treacherous and heavily-guarded seas surrounding Svardborg to gather support for the battle ahead. Along the way, they’ll be able try their luck at an updated fishing system, hunt for bottles filled with treasure maps and uncover lost relics to earn powerful artifact weapons.”
Not on PC? Xbox One and PS4 players will get the update in “early 2017.” Check out this lens flare.
Don’t call it an MMORPG, but Planet Explorers might just scratch your sandbox itch. Formally releasing out of early access on Steam today, the game is a massive sci-fantasy sandbox with 30 hours of solo and co-op story, but it can also be played in multiplayer on official and player-run servers. Developer Pathea Games says players will bump into digging, farming, colony-building, resources, enemies and followers, a realistic weather and diurnal cycle, a negotiation mechanic, and 200 unique items. For you hardcore tinkerers who just can’t leave well enough alone (*raises hand*), there’s a creation editor and story editor too.
And I swear I spy a pseudo-lightsaber in those pics.
The game is currently $24.99 on Steam.
Last week, Steam told developers that it will be cracking down on “bullshots” — images that don’t actually depict the game they’re supposed to represent.
“We ask that any images you upload to the ‘screenshot’ section of your store page should be screenshots that show your game,” Valve wrote. “This means avoiding using concept art, pre-rendered cinematic stills, or images that contain awards, marketing copy, or written product descriptions. Please show customers what your game is actually like to play.”
The rule applies even to Valve’s own Dota 2, which as Kotaku pointed out had to replace its own concept art with actual game shots following the decree.
I’m torn on rule myself. I completely understand why players would feel betrayed and confused over concept art posing as in-game screenshots, but at the same time, I also think most people can tell the two apart, and I’d like a mix of both. And as a blogger, I vastly prefer concept art for using on our site when the games aren’t exactly easy on the eyes — often the case with MOBAs and retro games. Plus it’s often easier to get studios to provide quality concept art than quality screenshots.
What do you think? Is Valve solving a serious problem here? Are real screenshots critical to your MMO purchases?
Put away your fall decor; it’s Christmas in Shroud of the Avatar. Not really, but Portalarium’s latest newsletter does detail the creation of craftable rustic Yule stockings coming to the game for the winter holiday season.
It’s also got a picture of an in-game outhouse. Really! The outhouse is a charity item SOTA players can buy to support Water.org for the UN-declared November 19th World Toilet Day. In fact, the studio has posted a long list of its charities. Did you know a large chunk of the proceeds of the infamous blood art sales earlier this year went to medical charities, including Doctors Without Borders? Neither did I.
Game-relatedly, there’s a look at Elad’s Lighthouse and Graff Island (some beautiful screenshots in there), plans for a community stream this Thursday, and a community spotlight on the player-run down of Bay Lunaire. There’s even a little plug for Project Gorgon’s Indiegogo. Check out the screens below!
I am not above indulging in a little universe window shopping now and then. NASA’s pictures of the universe might be touched up with extra colors and star destroyers for effect, but even so, the majesty is breathtaking. I’m glad that those developers doing space MMOs try to put in the effort to make spacescapes seem just as vibrant and picture-worthy.
Ben sent in this postcard from EVE Online: “Following your call for more Halloween event screenshots, here’s one from EVE Online’s Crimson Harvest event. Here’s my pilot Khorghast in the Phantasm-class cruiser Out for Blood fighting a few Blood Raider Cruisers in a Blood Raider Gauntlet site in the Badivefi system within the Khanid region. The nebula in the background is one of my favorites in the game, which is why I love roaming through the Khanid, Kor-Azor, and Tash-Murkon regions during these special events.”
Mark Jacobs has lists and lists of progress being made on Camelot Unchained as the game continues its “march toward beta.” In this week’s newsletter, Jacobs counts off all of the improvements the team has made, saying that a weekend test is currently underway.
“We are going to hold an Alpha and IT test this weekend, starting now,” Jacobs reported. “If all goes well with this test, we’ll open it up for Beta 1 next week, as soon as we can resolve a couple of bugs that we know are lurking in the code. In the meantime, Alpha and IT folks: Enjoy the weekend, but please keep in mind that we do not consider this a truly stable build, so problems are expected.”
Camelot Unchained’s visuals have undertaken a noticeable uptick in quality thanks to the implementation of high-dynamic-range (HDR) imaging in the newest build. The team had a half-dozen new screenshots to show off how the countryside and characters look.
World of Warcraft’s “What’s Next” panel this evening more than made up for the game’s lackluster mention during the BlizzCon opening ceremonies earlier in the day. Newly minted Game Director Ion Hazzikostas took the stage to talk about not just the last patch and the next patch but 7.2 and even a tease for 7.3.
In patch 7.1.5, Blizzard has promised a return to older expansion content (specifically, Mists of Pandaria) via Timewalking, the return of the Brawer’s Guild, micro-holidays (most of them pretty funny, like Ahn’Qiraj Remembrance Day), and a ton of class updates — yeah, they’re adding back some of the stuff they took out.
7.2, dubbed The Tomb of Sargeras, sends players back to the Broken shore to work on their class order campaigns, fend off legion assaults via invasion world quests, dungeon through the Cathedral of Eternal Night and raid the Tomb itself, take part in PvP brawls (Southshore vs. Tarren Mill is back!), and upgrade their artifacts. Soloers, that last one is for you, no kidding. Flying is also finally on the way; expect account-wide unlocks there… and class mounts for everyone.
The future of World of Warcraft involves a lot of green fire. Of course, the present involves a lot of green fire, that’s sort of what Legion is all about. But it’s also about… well, other stuff. Last stand for survival, desperate odds, heroes arising in unlikely circumstances, all of that fun stuff. And now we’re going to get a more cohesive look at what’s coming next with this panel.
Fun stuff always gets nods during the opening ceremonies, but these panels are usually where the meat gets revealed. So head on down with us as we liveblog the panel down in the comments and share all the information you’ll need about what’s coming up next for WoW in the near and slightly less-near future.