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]

Overwatch walks players through the addition of competitive play

Are you ready to compete against other Overwatch players to see who is truly the best person playing the game? If you answered in the negative, well, this post is probably not going to change your mind. But you might still be happy with the way that the game is handling its competitive side, as detailed extensively in a new video about the most recent test patch introducing competitive play.

Competitive play is locked until players reach level 25 to ensure that you have some time and space to get decent at the game before jumping into the deep end while also allowing players who live for the competition to get in reasonably quickly. It’s also set up to account for varying queue sizes organically, allowing you to enter competitive matches with as many or as few friends as you’d like. Check out the full walkthrough of this first iteration in the video below.

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Daybreak says it’s ‘cracked the dupe bug’ plaguing H1Z1: Just Survive

Daybreak updated the H1Z1: Just Survive website this morning with abbreviated notes for the patch currently on the test server. “We cracked the dupe bug,” says the studio. Among the other highlights are adjustments to base decay rates, screamer difficulty settings, zombie weapons, trap damage, and recursive destruction. Daybreak is also adding more restricted base building servers and critically ensuring that “zombies still look right and are spawning with colored hair and no more glasses.” Priorities, man.

The bad news is that the update will be delayed on the main servers.

“Some of the new features we introduced to base building are dependent on the amount of time they live on the server so in order to ensure those are tested properly, we are going to be pushing back the publish to the Live servers into next week. We feel it’s important to give the community enough time to experience these changes and provide valuable feedback we can use to improve the update. Pushing that update into next week was not our intent, but it will help create a smoother transition onto the Live servers.”

Expect a full player and server wipe when it does land on live to “help reset the world’s economy of resources.”


Take a look at Hearthstone’s biggest minion yet

The next expansion for Hearthstone will feature a big minion. Very big. Whispers of the Old Gods brings out the Ancient One, a minion with 30 attack and 30 health, enough to immediately kill another player at full health without armor. So that’s going to be fun to see on the battlefield. It’s going to take a bit of work to get it out on the field, though, as explained in a recent card preview and interview on designing the beefiest minion yet.

Players won’t be able to summon the Ancient One directly; instead, players can summon Blood of the Ancient One, a pricey-but-reasonable 9/9 minion for 9 mana. Finish a turn with two of them under your control, and they automatically merge and summon up the Ancient One itself. The result is a minion that’s going to take some work to summon and lacks in special abilities, but makes up for it by, well, being really big.


Dive into the maw of Doom’s open beta next week

The newest iteration of Id Software’s demon shooter Doom is almost upon us. Doom — the first entry in the classic series since 2004’s Doom 3 — is scheduled to launch on May 13th. For those with itchy trigger fingers and an incurable impatience, there’s a balm coming next week in the form of a four-day open beta test.

The open beta, which will run from April 15th through the 18th, won’t feature the story campaign but instead will give testers two multiplayer maps to dominate. Any and all are welcome to try out a team deathmatch and a moving king-of-the-hill mode to see how this version of Doom handles.

Following its launch, Doom has three DLC packs in the making which can be purchased individually or via season pass. The first DLC will include a trio of new maps, a playable demon, a different weapon, and all sorts of other goodies.

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The Repopulation spin-off Fragmented launches early access this month

Earlier this year, the team behind The Repopulation faced down its HeroEngine difficulties with an ambitious plan to port the entire sandbox MMORPG to a new engine and publish a survival game based on the same assets to tide MMO fans over in the meantime. Today, Above & Beyond has posted a run-down of its latest work on that survival game, titled Fragmented.

Studio co-owner and lead dev Joshua Halls writes, “We wrapped up many items on our checklist, to get the game available for Early Access release. This included improvements across the board, continuing to flesh out the core systems, and introducing some familiar art from The Repopulation, as well as new art made specially for Fragmented.”

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Blizzard swapped Tracer’s butt pose in Overwatch with a… different butt pose

We’re sure you’re all still watching Overwatch’s #tracergate with keen anticipation, so you’ll be pleased to know that Blizzard replaced Tracer’s infamous “butt pose” with the latest patch.

Tracer's original butt pose

Original pose

Player complaints over the original pose of the quirky kid sister character were addressed last week by Game Director Jeff Kaplan, who said his team wasn’t comfortable the butt pose either and would be changing it, which of course sent the usual suspects into a frothing fight over “artists’ rights,” by which they mean artists’ obligations to render all the butts. ALL the butts.

Well, the butt pose people are going to be happy about the (side-butt?) replacement pose that is apparently Blizzard’s solution, which is plainly derived from pin-up art, most likely a piece by Alberto Vargas, as Twitter user @christianmccrea noted.

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Path of Exile reveals the Lightning Golem and prepares to go to China

Lightning golems have been consistently voted as one of the best ways to deal shocking electric death to your enemies during the Annual Elemental Golem Convention for five years running, and Path of Exile players will soon get to experience that for themselves. The inclusion of the Lightning Golem skill rounds out the existing elemental golem skill tree, and unlike its contemporaries it will keep more distance and hang back while also enhancing the attacks of nearby allies with electricity. It’s everything you could want in a golem, although it may involve a bit more inadvertent static buildup than you like.

So where can the game go from here? Why not China? Grinding Gear Games has reached an agreement with Tencent to localize the game for Chinese audiences; the localized alpha test is slated to begin in May 2016. You can get more information on the official Chinese site, although being able to read Chinese would make that easier. If that’s not really your thing, just nod and check out the Lightning Golem preview below.

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Atlas Reactor launches Vive preview, EVE Gunjack launches on Vive, EVE Valkyrie confirms Vive arrival in 2016

If you’re not quite sure you’ll want to play Atlas Reactor when its closed beta launches on April 14th, then today’s playable preview might be for you, at least if you’re on the bleeding edge of gaming tech, as Trion has released an “interactive VR exploration” of Atlas Reactor’s characters for the Steam-backed HTC Vive, downloadable today.

“The VR experience built by Trion’s virtual reality lab showcases Atlas’ most wanted Freelancers in a revolutionary new way. Perched atop one of the many skyscrapers in the game’s cloud-piercing cityscape, users will get an up-close look at Atlas Reactor’s full character roster. They can watch Freelancers perform in-game abilities and taunts, in addition to previewing each character’s visual customization options, like skins and styles, with the wave of a hand.”

Trion is serious about VR; CEO Scott Hartsman says his company “believe[s] in the promise of VR”: “We know there’s a long road ahead before millions of people have these and we want to be here creating experiences for you every step of the way. For now, we hope early VR adopters have some fun with this token of our high esteem for VR.”

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Hearthstone’s Whispers of the Old Gods is likely launching on April 26th

There’s no formal announcement just yet of when Hearthstone players will be able to jump into the Whispers of the Old Gods expansion, but it’s going to be pretty significant when it happens. But a hint has indeed come for anyone purchasing the Curse of Naxxramas adventure pack, which now comes with a warning that players will not be able to use the cards contained therein in Standard-format matches after April 26th. That certainly doesn’t say that the expansion is launching on the 26th, but it does raise a few eyebrows.

The expansion’s card reveals already raised a few eyebrows with the addition of its new card Ragnaros, Lightlord, depicting the fire elemental boss of Molten Core and Firelands fame as a benevolent entity. Lead designer Ben Brode took to Twitter to offer lore fans a slight clarification:

In other words, repeat to yourself that it’s just a cool card idea, and you may want to just relax.


Grim Dawn teases free Hidden Path update

Multiplayer ARPG Grim Dawn has been teasing modding tools, but there’s more on the way in the form of a free content update called The Hidden Path. Crate Entertainment promises new lore, new bosses, and a new dungeon as well, but there’s not much more than that aside from a little lore tease:

Little is known about the Witch Gods, but that is precisely how the Three prefer to operate, from the shadows, away from prying eyes and the heavy hand of the Empire. The Inquisitors are well-versed in sniffing out followers of the heretical faith, but even they have not been able to completely eradicate what is widely considered a danger to the integrity and well-being of the nation. But that is the rhetoric of the ignorant, of those afraid of what truths may lie within the shadows.

Then there are those who had witnessed the power of the eldritch realm, and the gods that reside within. They are the raving thralls of Dreeg, the power-hungry worshippers of Solael and the scheming followers of Bysmiel. To them, the Empire only seeks to obscure the real truths, to silence them from spreading the message bestowed upon them by the Three.

With the Empire in shambles and the world forever changed by the arrival of the Aetherials, something has stirred within the eldritch realm. And as their hour nears, thousands of believers worshipping in secret await the call when at last the Witch Gods rise from the eldritch weave and reclaim their world.

The Luminari can no longer stop you, the Empire cannot condemn you. And if you seek out the Hidden Path, you too shall lift the veil that blinds you from the darker truths. You too shall learn of the Witch Gods.


Paladins’ Illusionist Ying creates explosive prisms of pain

Teased last week, Paladins’ latest revealed character – illusionist Ying, the Blossom – got a full ability scope-out video over the weekend. Illusory Mirror shoots pink energy from a floating focus, while illusion itself generates copies of Ying herself to confuse and attack enemies and Shatter explodes those enemies (think: Guild Wars 2’s Mesmer). Dimensional Link will help with spying around tight corners, and her Ultimate, Illusory Rift, creates explosive prisms of pain. Check it out below!

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The Island is a small-scale co-op survival game

You know what I love about foreign video game press releases? They are very often free of bullshit. So it is with a PR from German studio CFJ Games, which today announced a Steam Greenlight campaign for its oddly titled co-op survival game The Island – Ethereal, in which a helicopter crash on a deserted island forces you and your mates to “gather and defend resources that [you] can use to build a craft [to] escape the island and win the match” against the enemy AI.

So basically, it’s LOST, but with any luck, the ending won’t suck.

It’s definitely co-op, but small scale and not an MMO, with six playable characters, dynamic weather, and PvE combat:

“The Island – Ethereal is a co-op multiplayer game for the PC, which combines tactical shooter, survival and horror elements. You can play with up to five other players and choose to connect via LAN or the internet. The game-play consists of matches versus an AI.”

A formal launch is planned before the end of the year. Check out the screenshots and video below.

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Overwatch’s second animated short features the assassin Widowmaker

Following Overwatch’s first animated short featuring the superhero Winston comes a new movie that takes a look at the assassin Widowmaker.

The six-plus minute video revolves around an attack in London and a battle between Widowmaker and Tracer. It gives a peek into the game universe, where robot (android?) and man are attempting to live together peacefully — although not everyone wants that to happen. Overall, it’s properly exciting and well-executed, the type of video that makes one think that a full-length Overwatch animated movie wouldn’t be the worst thing to come to the big screen.

Sit back and enjoy the animated short below!

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