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Camelot Unchained’s monthly newsletter covers the beta delay and end of crunch

Camelot Unchained’s monthly newsletter has dropped, and believe it or not it’s on the briefer end of newsletters for CSE with “only” 8000-odd words.

CSE Senior Editor Max Porter reiterates the team’s gratitude for the community’s reaction to news of the beta delay and says that the team is out of crunch but still hard at work — and still has no plans for new stretch goals. The company is also deep in the hiring process for new programmers; the latest addition to the art team is featured in a spotlight interview as well.

Designer Ben Pielstick touches on some of the design issues that prompted the delay:

“It is never an easy decision to fundamentally change a significant part of a game’s code in the midst of an already taxing development process. When it’s the right decision for long term success though, it is a very good thing to be able to go ahead and commit to change. Much, much better than being stuck with limited and unmaintainable systems due to inflexible schedules caused by funding concerns, inflexible delivery dates, or the disapproval of decision makers who don’t understand the severity of the detrimental consequences of leaving a failing system in place!”

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One Shots: Guild meeting

Guilds… assemble! Because there’s nothing like logging into a vast virtual world and then plunking your virtual butt down in a room, am I right?

“This one was at a guild meeting in Asheron’s Call,” Zulika Mi Nam posted. “I’m not sure if those still happen in game like this or not. The first shots I have is AC are bad and boring, but this is the oldest one that that made me think of anything other than blah.”

Zulika suggested that we put out a call for guild screenshots, so I’ll spend the rest of the column contemplating that and get back to you at the end. In the meantime, check out these non-moving moving pictures!

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Elite: Dangerous plans Q2 Horizons and Engineers rollout for Xbox One

Frontier Developments announced today that Elite: Dangerous’ Horizons season/expansion catch-up patch is on the way for Xbox One this quarter — including the 2.0 Planetary Landings update and 2.1 Engineers update, which is slated to arrive for PC players in May.

“In Elite Dangerous: Horizons, Xbox One players can journey seamlessly from space to surface and land anywhere they choose on accurately simulated planets and moons throughout Elite Dangerous’ full-scale Milky Way galaxy, venturing onto the surface in the all-terrain SRV Surface Recon Vehicle.

Elite Dangerous: Horizons for Xbox One will also introduce players to The Engineers. The Engineers is a sweeping, game-changing update that brings even more personality and personalization to Elite Dangerous, putting a face to every mission and adding a range of customization and crafting options that will make every ship in the Elite Dangerous galaxy unique.”

The first stage of Horizons landed on PCs back in December for $59.99 US. Check out the trailer below!

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Crowfall previews vehicle crafting and the war machines of Siege Perilous

ArtCraft Design Lead Thomas Blair is back on the Crowfall blog this afternoon with a fresh update on the Siege Perilous testing, including word that the game’s latest test event saw 77 players loaded into a single map. “The engineers are confident that we are ready to hit triple digits in a single siege,” he says. “It’s right around the corner.”

The core of the update focuses on upcoming siege vehicles that will eventually make their way into the game.

“One of the bigger pieces missing from Siege Perilous is task of building siege equipment throughout the battle. When a battle starts, the attacking team’s siege engineers (trained in Siege Weaponry skill tree) will be able to use ‘vehicle platforms’ that are located near the master siege tent. The number of platforms will be determined by the amount of resources pumped into the siege by the attackers. Each bay can build one vehicle at a time, and each vehicle will cost a variety of resources and take a different amount of time to build. We hope this leads to some interesting strategies on the attackers part.”

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Elder Scrolls Online previews Dark Brotherhood DLC’s Anvil and Kvatch

The Dark Brotherhood DLC for The Elder Scrolls Online will feature new areas for players to explore, which is a good thing. No one wants a new DLC that compresses everything into a single closet, even if it would prevent undue wear and tear on your W, A, S, and D keys. So why not take a quick tour of the areas found on the Gold Coast, from the cities and towns to the many parts of the land infested with things that want to kill you in new and exciting ways?

Anvil and Kvatch are the region’s two major settlements; Anvil is a bustling port town (presumably named after a sailing vessel by people who were very bad at sailing) and Kvatch is known as somewhere between “quiet and pious” and “neck-blisteringly sanctimonious” depending upon whom you ask. You can also dive into Hrota Cave or Garlas Agea if all of the city stuff leaves you with an urge to kill something, or take a look at the re-fortified Enclave of the Hourglass. You won’t want for places to explore, certainly.

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Aeria Games announces anime-styled Twin Saga for later this year

There is not exactly a dearth of games boasting an anime style in the MMORPG market at the moment. Even if that’s not enough to keep your attention when it comes to Twin Saga, though, you still might be interested in the game’s other features, like mobile personal housing and freely swappable classes for all characters. The game is due out later this year for North American and European players.

If you don’t like housing or class swapping – perhaps your grandmother died in a tragic class-changing accident – you still might be intrigued by the game’s lore background, with players serving as the last hope for humanity after a war of deities. One goddess wanted human beings around, the other didn’t, and the former goddess lost the fight, so now it’s up to you to prove to that human beings are worthwhile. Or you could jump down below and see if the screenshots or trailer intrigue you. Keep your eyes peeled for beta dates if any of the above apply.

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How to get started as an assassin in Elder Scrolls Online’s Dark Brotherhood DLC

Elder Scrolls Online’s upcoming Dark Brotherhood DLC might not be releasing until the end of May, but you can already sample it on the public test server. Wanna know how to get started? ZeniMax has released a guide for that as of today. The studio says you can hop on a boat to the Gold Coast, visit Outlaw’s Refuge to pick up the Voices in the Dark Quest, or pluck the quest from your Collections UI under the DLC option. That’ll deposit you in Anvil, one the two new cities in the DLC, where you’ll get started with contracts to execute targets with your trusty new stabbin’ blade.

There are also two new delves out in the world.

“Dark Brotherhood introduces two new delves that you’ll want to check out. The first is Hrota Cave, found near Anvil, and the other is Garlas Agea which you can find closer to the middle of the zone. In addition, two new world bosses in the Gold Coast are looking for challengers to defeat them. Limenauruus is a towering minotaur found at Tribune’s Folly near the center of the zone, and the other world boss can be found lurking in the Kvatch Arena.”

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TERA unveils Secrets and Shadows update raid and dungeon

When TERA’s Secrets and Shadows update launches next month, two new dungeons will be available for players. There’s the 7-player, level 65 raid dungeon, Demokron Factory:

“The archdevans’ secret production facility is a horrifying factory filled with pain and hideous secrets. Players will be challenged by two unstoppable killing machines, a masterless giant crab, and Verno, a former researcher who has been transformed into a mindless, twisted monstrosity.”

And the Shadow Sanctuary, a 5-man, level 65 dungeon:

“Dakuryon is back, and his secret base is a gruesome nightmare of blood-magicked madness. Players must defeat an abomination sculpted from living rock and infused with energy stolen from the Dream before facing their least-favorite archdevan. But be warned: Dakuryon wants nothing less than the total destruction of the Valkyon Federation and all it stands for.”

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PAX East 2016: Hands-on with NCsoft’s Master x Master

Master x Master might very well be the MOBA that I learn to love in spite of any and all preconceptions.

I am not, categorically, a fan of MOBAs. This is not news. It’s not a moral stance of any sort; the genre, as a whole, just holds very little appeal. Master x Master had that to overcome right from the starting gate, along with the reality that the game’s very nature didn’t sound to appealing. A mascot-based MOBA based on NCsoft properties, most of which have very little resonance for me in the first place? I can live without that.

Walking away from the demo I had with the game, I’m humming an altogether different tune. The game actually exists in an odd hybrid space between MOBA gameplay, twin-stick shooters, and cooperative ARPG gameplay in more ways than one, and its “mascot” nature has been vastly overstated. What I’ve seen and played thus far is smart, fun, and almost everything I would have asked for from a genre that I normally don’t have much interest in.

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Firefall’s 1.7 patch tomorrow brings Devil’s Tusk zone content, elite ranks overhaul

Firefall’s 1.7 is on the public test server and is due for deployment on the live servers tomorrowday. The big news is the arrival of the Devil’s Tusk zone content refresh and multi-phase world event. The Baneclaw boss fight returns as well with signature weapon drops for all archetypes; optimization work likewise continues, and leftover migration issues are still being investigated.

Perhaps the most significant (and most controversial) addition in 1.7 lands in the form of retroactive experience curve adjustments for elite ranks. Red 5 explains,

“The topic of Elite Ranks has been under discussion since their implementation in Update 1.6. The team has been monitoring system behavior as well as player feedback. Making a big change like this does not come quickly, easily, or lightly. There have been many debates internally on the subject and the team feels that implementing a curve where the amount of XP required per Elite Rank will gradually increase as a battleframe gets further into the system.”

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Elder Scrolls Online’s Dark Brotherhood DLC lands on the PTS, opens Anvil, nukes veteran ranks

ZeniMax has set a rapid pace for fleshing out Elder Scrolls Online’s recently announced Dark Brotherhood DLC, which lands on the PTS today. The studio just released a patch overview with abbreviated patch notes; expect access to the assassin’s guild and questline itself, repeatable quests, kill missions, the Gold Coast area (woot for Kvatch and especially Anvil, the best city in Oblivion), new delves, new gear, a new crafting style, and even new music. The base game patch nukes veteran ranks (finally!) and adds poison-making, tweaks for the grouping tool, and a number of balance improvements for combat, vampires, and the Fighters Guild.

The DLC is free for those with active ESO subs. Free players can expect to pay 2000 crowns in the cash shop (or 4000 for the CE bundle, which comes with a mount, pet, and experience scrollies too). It formally launches for PC on May 31st.

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PAX East 2016: Guns of Icarus shows off its new ships, new guns, and new maps

How many cooperative airship piloting simulators are there in the marketplace at the moment? The answer is that there’s basically just the one, and Guns of Icarus could probably rest on those laurels alone. Instead, the developers have rolled out new ships and guns on the show floor at PAX East 2016, giving players a taste of some of the new stuff being added to the game as it continues through the development cycle.

The new ships are the Mercantile Magnate (a maneuverable ship with many fields of fire), the Chaladonian Shrike (maneuverable and well-equipped to put out a broadside but with a fragile frame), the Fjord Baronies Crusader (a ship with powerful weapons that necessitates an expert crew), and the Anglean Corsair (a durable broadside ship with a complex engineering layout). New guns include a gas cloud launcher, a swarm missile launcher, and a focusing laser for ripping through light armor. There are also new enemy boss ships and AI crew members to fill out rosters. Check out a new trailer and screenshots for the game just below.

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One Shots: Jedi to the max

Are you all the Jedi you could possibly be? If not, then subscribe to our exclusive six-week course, where we’ll teach you such advanced concepts as “saying goodbye to love forever,” “giving short green dudes piggy-back rides,” and “that’s not how the Force works.”

Or you could just take a cue from Camelotcrusade, who has mastered the art of being a Jedi poser — to the max in SWTOR: “How to tell if you’re a badass Jedi: Eye patch? Check. Expensive white power crystal? Check. Multiple training droids? Cheeeck.”

Either way, you’re going to have plenty of adventures and things to tell your mom at Thanksgiving!

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