Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 7:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016
Games in our Multiplayer category are multiplayer online games that share some but not all mechanics in common with traditional MMORPGs. Generally, their “massive” nature is contested. They frequently include OARPGs, online shooters, online strategy games, mobile MMOs, and other pseudo-MMOs that optionally provide single-player, offline, or custom-server support. We formerly categorized Multiplayer titles as “Not So Massively” games. You may also be interested in our MOBA category for PvP-centric arena battlers. [Follow the Multiplayer Online Games category’s RSS feed]
Kotaku has reported on an ongoing lawsuit lodged by Dungeon Defenders developer Trendy Entertainment against ARK: Survival Evolved’s Studio Wildcard. Trendy has alleged that Jeremy Stieglitz, formerly the controversial creative director at Trendy, played a pivotal role in the development of ARK and in doing so violated his contractual agreements not to poach Trendy’s workers, misappropriate Trendy’s assets, or work for a competing games company.
According to Kotaku, Wildcard denied that Stieglitz was a major figure in the creation of the game; instead, he was merely a consultant now being hired on more permanently. The studio has filed a motion to dismiss the suit, claiming Trendy’s December 15, 2015, accusations are “irrelevant, immaterial, impertinent, and scandalous,” but Wildcard has not otherwise addressed the lawsuit and would not comment for the report.
In April, a Florida circuit court will hear Trendy’s motion for an injunction against Wildcard. “If granted, the injunction could temporarily halt development on ARK: Survival Evolved and even force Wildcard to pull the game from Steam as the lawsuit continues,” writes Kotaku.
Advertising itself as having “no mana, no minions, and definitely no random number generation,” Chronicle: RuneScape Legends offers players a different kind of digital card game. The best part? You can play it right now, thanks to its release into the waters of open beta testing.
The card game spin-off from the popular MMO RuneScape offers both PvP and PvE encounters and seeks to “shake up the world of competitive card games.” The open beta launch also introduced the dungeoneering draft mode, and Jagex has promised that old-school RuneScape content was coming next month. Chronicle’s closed beta testing covered over 250,000 games played.
You can check out some of Chronicle’s screenshots as well as its open beta trailer below.
“Tenno, in three years you have succeeded in 1.5 billion Missions, killed over 50 billion Grineer, captured 120 million prisoners and significantly grown to over 12 million Operators,” writes Digital Extremes. “Thank you to everyone who has accompanied us on this journey, and thank you to the Tenno who continue to fight this war with us!”
As part of the festivities, players will be awarded previous years’ anniversary gifts as well as a new Special Edition Dex Sybaris (it’s the badass rifle below). You’ll have to log in to claim yours from your inbox before 2 p.m. EDT on March 29th. Warframe is also running a sale on the Excalibur Proto Armor Skin, Nyx Nemesis Skin, and Proto Glaive Skin during the same period.
Characters in Overwatch do not level. You can play nothing but Tracer day in and day out, and she’s still going to have the same ability set from start to finish. But there is progression in the game, and a new entry on the game’s official site outlines how it works. It’s a system of unlocking skins, voice lines, sprays, emotes, and victory poses as cosmetic rewards for better performance, with each new level awarding a new random box of items. Already have what’s in the box? That’s fine; the items get converted into credits which can then be used to purchase the skins and so forth that you really want.
There are a few more rewards in the progression tree in the most recent beta patch, but the biggest addition with the patch is a new escort map, Route 66, and a new Weekly Brawl gameplay style inspired by Hearthstone‘s Tavern Brawl. The Play of the Game system has also received some tweaking, along with an option to let players save and replay their own personal highlights. It’s all good stuff if you’re in the testing now, and if not, at least you can read up on how you’re going to be marking your progress.
When is this year’s BlizzCon? We don’t know. It hasn’t even been officially announced yet. But the eagle-eyed folks over at MMO Champion spotted a brief revision to the official BlizzCon page claiming that this year would mark the 10th year of the convention and that it would be held on November 4th and 5th.
Is that a given? No, at this point nothing is a given. That timeframe marks it as post-launch for both of the company’s two big releases slated for this year (Overwatch and World of Warcraft: Legion), so it’s definitely plausible, but nothing is yet set in stone. Watch this space.
Senior Producer Nathan Richardsson explains that staff setbacks and technical uncertainties led his team to prep a “conservative” infographic detailing the game’s launch outlook. “We added to it only what we believed we could deliver with high certainty,” he writes.
“As with any online game, we will continue post-launch development for years. We find it a very strange practice that in a game designed to play with friends, you can pay for a DLC that denies them from playing with you. Add a few more of that type of DLC, and none of you could play together at all. That’s not how we roll. We don’t want to segment the player-base, so you will all get new content, updates and an expansion every 3 months, for free.”
For those still lost on the lore of Overwatch, Blizzard’s upcoming shooter and brand-new IP, the company has begun pushing out a series of three animated shorts, the first of which, Recall, is included below. Recall highlights the backstory of Winston, the cybernetics-laden, bespectacled gorilla hero who apparently plays Hearthstone when he’s not busy saving the world.
Blizzard Watch has identified several clues about unreleased heroes in the video too. Check your cynicism and go watch it all below — it’s honestly cute.
David Brevik, one of the original co-founders of Blizzard North and probably best known to MMO players for his long tenure at the helm of Marvel Heroes, gave a talk at GDC that sheds new light on the birth of the Diablo franchise just in time for its 20th birthday.
Brevik told the audience he came up with the idea for a turn-based roguelike — Diablo — in high school and pitched the idea around, only to be told no one wanted to invest in RPGs because “RPGs are dead.” But post-Warcraft Blizzard eventually took on the publishing rights and turned it into a real-time ARPG that struggled with cheating, invented the hotbar, and needed to pass the “mom test.” You hear that, hardcores? (And can we please stop using that term?)
As promised, Ubisoft is pushing out a Division patch this week — tomorrow, in fact. There’s a huge list of bug fixes in the patch notes, along with some hefty changes for the Dark Zone that are making for a very happy PvP playerbase. Of note:
- Players can now heal other neutral players in the Dark zone
- Players are now able to fast travel to Dark Zone checkpoints from outside the Dark Zone
- Players killed in the Dark Zone now drop ammo, medkits and grenades, generated rather than taken from the dying players’ inventory
- Players killed in the Dark Zone will lose less Dark Zone Funds and Experience
- Dark Zone Funds and Experience rewards for surviving Rogue status and killing Rogue agents have been improved
- For level 31 and 32 enemies, there’s now an increased drop rate of High-End items, High-End Division Tech Material, and Phoenix Credits; funds drop rates and quantity on NPCs has been reduced.
- Rank 30 chests will now drop purple items instead of blue, and keys chests now have a chance to drop gold items.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and often 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, TERA surprised and disturbed all of us by announcing the sale of “mood clouds” that demonstrate the next level of emotes by placing a rainbow-vomiting cloud above your head. Just in case you weren’t being subtle enough with your emotions.
Read on for more bits of gaming news we didn’t want to leave behind!
Ubisoft recently revealed that a player reached the maximum level and Dark Zone rank in The Division just a week after its launch. While many players reached the standard level cap of 30, the Dark Zone PvP area has its own separate rank system with XP loss on death and a rank limit of 99. Player Chaos 3K became the first player to hit both level limits when he reached level 99 in the Dark Zone after 130 hours of game time.
Chaos 3K accomplished the feat by stacking Increased XP gear and farming efficiently and safely since the game launched, his biggest setback being the XP loss from dying once at rank 93. The achievement was reached just 7 days after the game launched, meaning the player must have spent an average of at least 18 hours per day playing.
CliffyB’s Nexon-backed shooter LawBreakers isn’t breaking the law, but it might be breaking hearts over those medial capitals, am I right? At GDC this week, Boss Key Productions revealed that the OFPS will be a Steam exclusive aimed at PC… for now.
The game won’t be free-to-play, either, which MMO players will note is unusual for a Nexon-backed game over here and runs contrary to original launch plans. It’ll be a “digital premium title.” The price is still unknown, but Boss Key vows it “will not have the $60 price point of a traditional box product.” The FAQ reads,
“After careful consideration of how the game has been progressing, we realized free-to-play wasn’t the right fit for what we’re building. Lawbreakers is a competitive game at heart and that means balance is a big priority. Using a digital premium model helps ensure an even playing field by giving fans access to every available role without barriers.”