MMORPG Category

MMORPGs are massively multiplayer online roleplaying games, our core focus here on Massively OP. MMORPGs are traditionally differentiated from mere multiplayer games by their persistent worlds, massive playerbases and/or servers, customizable character development, and always-online status. [Follow the MMORPG category’s RSS feed]

EVE Fanfest kicks off next week

CCP couldn’t have timed it better if it had tried: This year’s EVE Fanfest will kick off in Reykjavik, Iceland, next weekend, smack in the middle of EVE Online’s biggest player war ever.

Massively OP’s longtime EVE Online expert and veteran reporter Brendan Drain will once again be reporting from the event, so stay tuned for our coverage, and in the meantime, check out CCP’s promo video below.

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Darkfall reboots vie for your love (and your wallet)

Both Darkfall reboot projects continue to barrel ahead, seeking to establish a foothold among the PvP community with their different visions. No matter which game you support (assuming that you have a preference), it appears that both reboots are making great progress toward launch.

New Dawn is working on getting a stress test going, but before that the team was able to get a feature patch put together faster than anticipated. The patch contains some quality-of-life improvements, like changing the default bindings, and reduced the complexity of skill acquisition.

Rise of Agon might be winning the race to get into players’ hands first, however. The game went into alpha testing last week with an initial wave of 500 player invites. An NDA is currently in place for the alpha, although the team expects to lift that soon and welcome a greater number of testers into the game. The reboot also launched a new website and online store for its fans.

You can check out Rise of Agon’s alpha launch trailer below!

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Neverwinter’s tabletop campaign delivers a month of prizes

Neverwinter’s not-quite-an-April-Fools-joke tabletop game is scheduled to run through the entire month of April. This is not just to give players a chance of seeing the unique mechanics of Portobello’s Campaign but to earn all of the new prizes before time runs out.

The team listed many of the potential rewards that can be obtained, including Portobello’s Wand of Sight, Intern Fashion, and a Gargoyle defender companion. There was even mention of “a personal version of the beholder tank,” whatever that means.

Portobello’s Campaign also has a new artifact up for grabs. “The Dagger of the Apocalypse, meanwhile, is a fully fledged artifact capable of tearing a rift into the Plane of Fire beneath a targeted area and incinerating any hapless foes standing nearby,” Cryptic said. “At least that’s the hope… I hear there’s a chance for a slightly less fiery result, one involving six points of damage.”

Source: Neverwinter

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PlanetSide 2 hitbox hack gets called out, hotfixed by Daybreak

When it comes to multiplayer shooters, issues like hitbox detection and size are always hot button topics for the community. But what if you could change everyone else’s hitboxes to make them so big that you couldn’t miss?

A relatively simple hack for PlanetSide 2 that allowed cheaters to greatly enlarge enemies’ hitboxes was called out rather publicly this past week. In his exposé video, the author notes how modifying a simple text file could result in a large, full-body hitbox, allowing griefers to rack up easy kills on other players. Apparently this security flaw had been available and exploited for a while.

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Lord of the Rings Online gets a combat tune-up

In all of the excitement of yesterday’s Lord of the Rings Online Battle of Pelennor Fields update, it was probably easy to miss some of the nitty-gritty combat adjustments that the devs made in favor of the big-ticket features.

To make sure that players stay informed about the changes that came in the most recent patch, Turbine’s put out an additional dev diary about the combat tune-up that came in Update 18. There’s nothing ground-shattering here, although these adjustments are part of the bread-and-butter of fights. In the patch, the avoidance mechanic has been tweaked, the mastery stat will buff player damage, and medium armor classes can cap mitigations for less than before.

Turbine also said that combat positioning in instances should be getting more attention. “It will be much more important to skillfully position yourself behind your enemies: Enemies with high block, parry, and evade ratings will generally take fewer crits unless you’re attacking from behind.”

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Interview: Star Trek Online’s 11.5 mid-season update

Yesterday’s Season 11.5 update for Star Trek Online is a bit of a hodgepodge, an assortment of several separate pieces all sitting in the same space without a great deal of thematic connection. In a way, though, that’s entirely appropriate. This patch was meant as part of the bridging action after the game’s first six-year story arc came to a close, and the seeds of it were sown back at the end of that story arc… even if they weren’t as explicit as might seem necessary.

I had a chance to sit down and speak with Steve Ricossa, the game’s executive producer, about the 11.5 update, the mechanics involved, and some of the future plans involved for the game. The Na’kuhl’s presence in this first story arc is, in fact, entirely to be expected, as the developers were planning on this at the same time that players were finishing up against the Iconians.

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Crowfall has kicked off external pre-alpha Siege Perilous testing

You don’t know if you like Crowfall yet. Sure, you may have taken part in the Hunger Dome testing, but we’re going to let you in on a secret: That wasn’t anything. That was just mechanics. No, it’s the Siege Perilous testing that’s live now which is all about providing players with new ways to do things and show just a snippet of what Crowfall brings to the MMO space that’s diverse. Did we mention that it’s live? Because it is.

The participants in this particular test are still sharply limited, but players will be getting invited in greater numbers over the next few weeks. There may or may not be siege weapons heavily involved in this version of the testing, as the Throne War testing is next on the agenda, along with another new archetype for players (the Druid). If you’re a backer and can’t wait to get into the business of tearing down castle walls, take heart; your time is coming soon.

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Landmark ups prop limit, adds durability, and collapses build UI

While certainly not as hefty as the one that introduced the mega claims, Landmark’s latest patch introduces a slew of combat, building, prop, harvesting, and UI tweaks as well as changes to the Marketplace, economy, and goals. The patch notes are fairly extensive (you can get all the details on the official forums), so here’s sampling of highlights:

  • Decorators will be happy to hear that the prop limit has been increased to 7,000 per building site, and that the large build UI can now be collapsed.
  • Those who want a little less color in their lives may also appreciate the new ability to remove tints from the props.
  • Anyone who dies frequently may be pleased to note that remembering to craft spirit anchors is no longer a thing; instead, the “Revive Now” option now simply costs lumens. (Currently owned spirit anchors can be consumed as lumens.)
  • Everyone will be glad to know that the bug limiting players to only 120 lumens per day has been squashed.
  • One thing players may not be as happy to learn is that durability was just added to all armor, weapons, and harvesting tools, which can all be repaired for lumens at the newly introduced repair station prop.
  • Chaos cavern explorers might be sad that they can no longer bum rush the lost crystal to nab the reward and teleport to the next cavern — the lost crystals have a 10-second interaction effect and animation that will be interrupted by any mob damage.

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Das Tal’s investors give the game more funding

Those of us with a fondness for MMOs have had to learn exactly how expensive these games are over the past few years. The future of small indie games like Das Tal can swing on the good faith of investors and players alike. So we’re glad to bring you some good news by sharing that Das Tal‘s primary investors have doubled up on their investments, providing the game with the money needed to push toward a full launch.

Numbers were not disclosed, but the announcement does make it clear that this will allow the team to hire more people and finish up crucial areas of the game. So take heart, fans of the game, the developers have money and can afford to… well, if not feast, at least eat well enough to finish making the game.

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Age of Conan launches Pit Master’s Arena, shelves crafting revamp, plans F2P improvements

Funcom today pushed live a new update for Age of Conan called The Pit Master’s Arena. “Fight exotic and deadly beasts for fame and fortune within this Cimmerian Arena,” says the studio, “or challenge other players to prove your dominance!” Why would you do this? The blood of your enemies! Just kidding: It’s loot, of course.

“The arena features a slew of new rewards, including new pets, powerful necklaces, and unique faction-specific mounts! Discover four all-new Rune Stones through the arena, providing effects such as additional Constitution, protection bonuses when critically struck, or a surge of power when low on health. Slake the soil with the blood of the unworthy!”

The patch also includes numerous user interface tweaks, adjustments to some pets and mounts, and a handful of bug fixes.

In other Funcom news, the company announced today that it has taken on a $500,000 US loan ahead of its planned share issue, which is intended to raise capital for Conan Exiles.

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Working As Intended: Busting up the MMORPG nostalgia party

Last week, a clever Massively OP commenter, SC_Deadline, neatly summed up the ongoing Nostalrius emulator shutdown as Blizzard “bust[ing] up someone’s nostalgia party,” which stuck with me all weekend as I mulled over how to approach this piece. I sympathize with emulator players, of course; I’ve been tooling around on emulators since the earliest days of Ultima Online’s, and the Star Wars Galaxies emulation community kept me sane after my favorite MMORPG of all time was ripped from the internet and replaced with a themepark. I’ll forever champion emulation communities from the angle of historical preservation even as I know that much of what they do falls within the dark shadow of the law.

And you know what? I sleep fine at night. I can accept that part of myself that gives zero fucks whether SWGEmu, for example, infringes on copyrights, as long as I can still have my droid shop on Tatooine.

I can also accept that my fun will come to a halt the day the copyright holder puts its foot down, and while I’m sure it will hurt like hell, I won’t proclaim I’m entitled to intellectual property that was never mine to begin with.

What’s impossible for me to accept is this ugly and pervasive idea that people who play emulators are hopelessly mired in some irrepressible, unflattering “nostalgia.”

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Blizzard to WoW testers: Class orders will not be like garrison missions

If you’ve paid any attention to World of Warcraft during its present expansion cycle, you are probably aware that Garrisons have not exactly been warmly beloved as an addition to the game. Now that the next expansion is in testing and class order halls are in place in their earliest incarnation, some players are already calling it the return of the Garrison mission table, a claim which was addressed by the developers with a resounding, “no.”

The core difference, as explained by the post, is that the actual world didn’t contain enough content, thus leading to players having no reason not to just sit in the garrison and wait. Legion is offering players a variety of other things to do and reasons to do open-world content aside from resources for class order halls, which should lead to a different dynamic. Feedback on the setup of the hall is, of course, welcomed by the development team; it’s just a bit too early to be calling doom at this juncture.

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The Division encounters bugs with loot and characters after patch 1.1

Yesterday was patch day for The Division, meaning fans got to hurry to the game flush with excitement, eager to download the patch and start playing. It must have been a real kick in the teeth if you did that and then found that the patch made your character go missing. Yes, some players are apparently missing their characters altogether, with Ubisoft promising to investigate matters. The company did state that it would not be resolved with the patch hotfix, however.

“What hotfix?” you ask? Well, that one’s a funny story too; it seems that patch 1.1 also inadvertently gave named bosses in challenge modes at least two high-end drops with every kill. That was too good to be true, and it turns out it was a bug as well, with a hotfix patch restoring the drop rates to normal. This is probably not terribly reassuring to players whose characters are in absentia and can get no drops.

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