Multiplayer Category

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]

War Thunder fan creates a full virtual reality cockpit

Flight sim fans are often on the cutting edge of technology and peripherals, usually more so than the rest of the gaming crowd. After all, when your goal is to replicate the complete flight experience, you’re going to need some serious hardware.

One gamer has put together an impressive virtual cockpit that combines the Oculus Rift headset with a detailed instrument panel and flight chair to bring him as close as possible to the real thing. He’s very effusive in his appreciation of the detail and combat of War Thunder as his game of choice, and shows it compared to flying an actual small-engine plane to demonstrate how well it does its job.

So what does War Thunder look like with all of the (ahem) trimmings? Prepare to be impressed after the break!

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Paladins introduces two new game modes in today’s ‘Chicken Patch’

Hi-Rez’s online shooter Paladins is undergoing a major patch for its ongoing closed beta today. The so-dubbed “Chicken Patch” introduces new game modes, Survival and Payload, the latter of which is played out in a new map called Outpost:

“Attackers must attempt to push the Payload along the tracks to the Defenders base to win the game. Defenders must keep the Attackers off the Payload cart long enough for the time to run out. If the Attackers reach the checkpoints they gain additional time.”

There’s much more to the update, including a big balance pass for champions. We’ve included both tutorial videos below.

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The Division’s new map, system reqs, and commitment to the PC

Want to see the map you’ll be traversing when you leap into The Division next week? Great. Ubisoft has uploaded an interactive map to the game’s official site today for just that purpose. Dive on in.

Of course, the shiny maps won’t matter if you can’t run the game, so how about a look at the new recommended and minimum specs? In addition to acquiring the massive hard drive space hinted at earlier this week, you’ll want to break out your wallet for a pretty sweet rig: The company recommends the equivalent of a system with an Intel Core i7-3770 and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 and 8GB of RAM. Whee!

Finally, Rock Paper Shotgun has a new interview out with Creative Director Magnus Jansén on why the game designers chose to set the game in New York at Christmas, when a game just has too much stuff, and why Ubisoft is so laser-focused on supporting the PC in a genre where a lot of devs go console-only.

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The Black Death takes survival games to a grim era

Survival games aren’t always the cheeriest of places (after all, you have to have something to survive against), but a new game might make other titles seem like a trip to the local candy, puppies, and fireworks store.

The Black Death plops players in the role of a medieval commoner who must not only make a living somehow but do so amidst one of the worst pandemics that history has ever seen. Players can choose from one of 10 classes, explore a period Western Europe, buy property, and compete against the wildlife, fellow villagers, and the infected (which look to be more like zombies here). Why not be a Minstrel who’s cheering up those sore-ridden souls with a few top 40 hits?

Early access for The Black Death will begin in March on Steam. You can check out its teaser trailer after the jump.

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Blizzard delays the return of Overwatch’s beta to February

Blizzard has delayed the return of Overwatch’s beta, according to a post on the official forums today.

Game Director Jeff Kaplan says that the tentatively planned resumption date of mid-to-late January isn’t happening because the team isn’t ready and wants to add “one more big feature to the next beta patch”:

“After looking through all of the feedback from last year, one of the things we noticed players consistently mentioning was their desire for more game modes in Overwatch, in addition to Point Capture and Payload. Without getting into specifics, we are working on a new game mode. And we’re very excited about it! And we have some great new maps to support it, too, but we need a little more time to get everything just right.”

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PvE finally comes to HEX next week

For the longest time, PvE seemed like it would never arrive in the beleaguered HEX — so much so that it became a running joke of sorts. Well, it’s time to put that joke to bed, because HEX announced that it will be coming out with the first installment of its PvE game next week.

“Not a day goes by where we don’t get asked, ‘When is PvE coming?'” the studio posted. “Well, the answer is… THE END OF JANUARY! Yes, the week of January 24th we’re planning on launching the first update for PvE, of which there will be many to come!”

The first update, called Chronicles of Entrath, will allow players to create a character by picking a faction and race, choices of which will impact the story. From there, players will venture to Crayburn Castle to explore, experience the story, and fight many a battle.

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Paladins aims for more MOBA-like gameplay, less customisation

When Hi-Rez Studios first revealed its upcoming online shooter Paladins, people immediately started comparing it to Overwatch and the slew of MOBAs on the market today. Paladins definitely seems to derive many of its core ideas from MOBAs, with team-based objectives and iconic characters with abilities that unlock and improve over the course of a match. The main difference is that players in Paladins put together decks of power-up cards that unlock throughout each match rather than just levelling up their character’s core abilities.

In a new interview with Rock Paper Shotgun, developers revealed that the original design of the game was actually more like Team Fortress 2 or Global Agenda, with relatively few character classes but plenty of customisation via the card system. Feedback from testers has since shown that gamers much prefer a MOBA-style system with a larger number of characters that each has its own iconic identity and fills a particular role and gameplay style.

Developers now plan to limit the amount of customisation that’s possible using the card system so that each character’s playstyle is more consistent and predictable and wacky builds are less feasible. “The element of understanding the enemy and their capabilities is important to flag up here,” CEO Erez Goren told RPS, later adding that “People don’t seem to appreciate the variation on a character as much as they do having a new character that does things that particular way.” Paladins is currently in closed beta and is scheduled for release at some point during this year.

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Naval Action heads into early access on January 21st

Right now the Age of Sail title Naval Action is prepping the release of its early access version on January 21st. This means that if you haven’t gotten the game yet, you can snag it this Thursday when it becomes available to buy on Steam.

Current owners of the game, however, are invited to participate in Naval Action’s head start, which begins today. There was a wipe from the previous round of testing, but a two day jump on the rest of the crowd is nothing to sneeze at, right?

The devs acknowledged that these dates are always subject to change: “We know that most plans don’t survive when the meet reality. We do not discount the possibility that something might change. The riskiest date is the release date itself. If Valve is slow the date will be moved forward.”

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Nintendo’s shooter Splatoon gets its final piece of weapon DLC

When Nintendo launched its quirky online shooter Splatoon on the WII U last year, the game had only a handful of maps, weapons and cosmetic clothing options. In order to keep the game fresh, Nintendo began releasing free DLC with new items and playable stages along with its regular balance updates and gameplay tweaks. In the past seven months we’ve seen 40 new weapons, 10 new playable maps, and several entirely new game modes added to the base game.

This week the game officially got its final piece of weapon DLC with the release of the Custom Hydra Splatling. The only major update still to come will be the addition of the Ancho-V Games map, at which point the game will essentially go into maintenance mode. Fans of Splatoon will be glad to know that the game will still get periodic balance and bugfixing updates, and the regular Splatfest events will continue to run for the foreseeable future. Splatoon has been a very successful new IP for Nintendo, selling over 2.42 million units in its first four months and winning multiple awards.

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World of Tanks launches on PlayStation 4

There’s just no stopping the Wargaming blitzkrieg, is there? The PlayStation 4 is the latest platform to be host to World of Tanks, which launches on the console today.

Executive Producer TJ Wagner gave a speech to the troops: “The team is very excited to launch World of Tanks on PlayStation 4 and bring the game to a new audience. The support we have received so far has been overwhelming and we can’t wait to share what we have in store for PlayStation 4 in the upcoming months. We hope you enjoy playing the game as much as we enjoy making it.”

To provide a little incentive to downloading a popular free game (because the joy of playing a proven product isn’t always enough for today’s jaded population), Wargaming is promoting the launch by giving away free T1E6-PS US premium light tanks with special camouflage, and the “Girls und Panzer” Pz.Kpfw. IV Ausf. H Elite tanks. PlayStation Plus members get additional goodies as well.

Source: Wargaming press release

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Pixelart OARPG Dragon of Legends launches on Kickstarter

Smed’s not the only one launching a pixelart OARPG on Kickstarter today: Thrive Games has just revealed Dragon of Legends.

Dragon of Legends is an online action RPG for PC, Mac, Linux, and Mobile devices, that is heavily influenced by Gaelic and Norse mythology. Enter the ever-evolving lands of Hávámal, where the lights of faeries border the realms of darkness.

Work on the 2-D game has been ongoing for the last year and a half, Thrive says in its Kickstarter pitch; it’ll include a detailed character class and skill system, crafting mechanics, boats, an achievement journal, twitch combat, and user-generated content. It’s also crossplatform: You’ll play it on PC, Mac, Linux, and tablet. The studio’s goal is $41,318, and thought stretch goals are planned, they aren’t revealed just yet.

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Interview: Fantasy author Patrick Rothfuss is working on Smed’s OARPG, Hero’s Song

Among the dream team John Smedley assembled for Hero’s Songstudio Pixelmage’s new 2-D open-world ARPG — is Patrick Rothfuss, an acclaimed fantasy author who rocketed to stardom in 2007 when his first novel, The Name of the Wind, won multiple literary awards and was followed up with a New York Times bestselling sequel. Smed tapped Rothfuss specifically to plot the game’s lore, world, and story. We spoke with him about his process, his worldbuilding, his thoughts on immersion, and what video games he plays when he’s not busy penning blockbuster books.

Massively OP: You’re primarily known to fantasy audiences for your award-winning novels. Why make the leap to video games? What did Smed say to drag you over to the dark side?

Patrick Rothfuss: What a lot of people don’t know is that I actually tried to write a computer game long before I tried to write a novel. What’s more, I’ve been playing computer games pretty much since the beginning. So turning my hands to videogames isn’t a leap so much as it is a small step for me. Though it is a step in an exciting new direction.

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Exclusive Interview: John Smedley reveals Hero’s Song, his new open-world OARPG

Today, we finally learn what John Smedley has been working on since he resigned from his decades-long role at Daybreak.

The industry veteran has founded indie studio Pixelmage Games and is hard at work on Hero’s Song, a buy-to-play, fantasy-based, pixel-art, open-world, PvE-focused action RPG that can “host thousands of other players” but will boast a solo campaign and allow private servers as well. The sandboxy feature set — housing, character development, crafting, a world in flux — sounds remarkably like an MMORPG, at least in its largest form. The studio has raised a million dollars in private investment already and brought together MMORPG industry veterans like EverQuest Lead Designer and co-creator Bill Trost and wildly popular and widely acclaimed fantasy author Patrick Rothfuss. The game’s Kickstarter launches today, and the game itself launches in October — that’s one year of development time from start to finish.

We spoke to Smed in this world-first interview on the game. Read on for Smed’s thoughts on game funding, business models, permadeath, graphics snobbery, DLC, and just what genre this game really belongs in.

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