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War Thunder’s CEO answered a ton of questions at Gamescom

Earlier this month at Gamescom, Gaijin CEO Anton Yudintsev fielded a ton of questions from War Thunder players. The firm published excerpts from the Q&A over the weekend, and it’s probably worth reading if you’re a fan of the game and if you have a good amount of time on your hands.

The questions cover everything from where War Thunder will be in two years to the possibility of dynamic weather to the reasons for omitting playable infantry. Curiously, Yudintsev doesn’t say that infantry would be technically impossible but rather that the game’s teen rating “disallows killing of human characters.” He also mentions possible conflicts in terms of avatar power, given that guys with guns are much weaker than an aircraft, a tank, or a ship.

Source: Q&A; thanks Boris!


GTA Online is getting some ‘exciting new gameplay’ next month

Rockstar’s newswire published a GTA Online story today that hints at “exciting new gameplay” for GTAO’s free roam mode. The developer says it will be more specific in the coming weeks.

The piece also touted the Rockstar Editor’s forthcoming appearance on current-gen consoles. The movie-making tool suite debuted as a GTA PC exclusive last April. As part of the game’s next update, the Editor will feature a new ambient audio and sound effects library, snapmatic integration, director mode updates, copy and paste marker properties, and new fonts.

Source: Rockstar newswire


Shroud of the Avatar teases dragons, housing, and R21

Shroud of the Avatar’s latest Update of the Avatar newsletter debuted over the weekend. It includes a look at some “very large creatures” (also known as dragons) currently being worked on by Portalarium’s character artists and animators.

Release 21 is also available in an early QA build for backers at the Developer level or higher. The build is buggy and incomplete, according to the devs, but they nonetheless would like you to poke and prod it in service of identifying major issues.

The newsletter also features a bunch of housing screenshots, the second part of a lengthy dev dissertation on use-based systems, and more.

Source: Update of the Avatar #139


EVE’s Galatea iterates on sov capture stuff tomorrow

CCP wants you to know that EVE Online’s Galatea update will deploy on Tuesday, August 25th. That’s tomorrow, if you’re playing at home.

Galatea includes a first iteration on sovereignty capture mechanics, a batch of designer ship skins for Caldari vessels, user interface tweaks, a new Dominix model, and the usual round of bug fixes. You can get further details on the update by clicking here, here, and below.

Source: Announcement


Otherland delays early access

Bad news, kids: Otherland is not going to make its projected August 26th start date for early access after all.

“There are many reasons for [the delay],” Drago posted, “one of them being the decision to set up US servers simultaneously, as this has been requested so many times over the last couple of days. The team simply could use more time to polish the game and get rid of bugs that have come up over the weekend.”

No new time frame for an early access launch was given, although the team said that it will be announcing the new date along with a feature video later this week. Previously, Drago indicated that early access would last for a half of a year and that the game is nearly feature complete. Early access should cost around $22 for the standard edition, although Drago has yet to commit to prices.

Source: Steam


Guild Wars 2 teases Thief elite specialization

“This promises to be a distracting week…” Guild Wars 2 hinted on its Twitter account today, posting a piece of concept art with a figure holding what appears to be a staff or spear.

The safe money is on the announcement of the next Heart of Thorns elite specialization, most likely for the Thief class. Guild Wars 2 has already revealed several elite specs, including the Berserker, the Herald, the Tempest, the Reaper, the Dragonhunter, and the Chronomancer.

Guild Wars 2 will also be announcing the expansion’s “challenging group content” in a presentation at PAX this coming weekend.

Source: Twitter. Thanks to Siphaed for the tip!


How Wander’s launch devastated its community manager

What is it like to be the community manager of an MMO that was infamously called the worst PlayStation 4 game ever? That’s the question of the day for Emma S., the community manager of Wander.

Emma shares how she got involved with the Wander project as a volunteer and worked her way up to CM and social media guru. She describes jumping into the role at launch “beyond stressful” and “insane,” feelings complicated by a massively buggy and unstable release.

“Never underestimate the tremendous wrath of an immeasurable horde of irate gamers,” she recalls. “Within half an hour of launch, Facebook and Twitter had exploded with incredibly nasty comments. Though they were horrible, they were also honest. I hit the ground running. I read and answered every single post and comment as it came though. My stomach sank further with each passing notification. I felt was like I was being punched from the inside with every new comment.”

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RIFT explains the design principles behind the Primalist

RIFT is getting a new Calling for the first time since launch, which is a pretty big deal with the game’s approach to classes. An official interview with senior systems designer Jeff Hamilton has been posted on the game’s official site, detailing the design work that went into creating the first additional calling for the game and what led to making major changes with the Calling’s soul trees and talent system.

Hamilton explains that the other Callings have soul trees that have been expanded and bulked out through several level cap increases, but the Primalist was designed from the start to have a smaller number of points with more impact for each. He also explains that the intent was making sure that each of the various souls available has a clear purpose, from melee AoE to tanking. Read the full interview for more details about how the designers added something completely new to RIFT after years of an established structure.


Sword Coast Legends early access starts in September

People attending PAX Prime this weekend will have the opportunity to play around in Sword Coast Legends on the show floor, but it won’t be long before those not at the show get to jump in on the game’s early access. There will be three phases of early access, with the first running from September 11th to the 13th for players who pre-ordered one of the collector’s edition packs.

The second early access period will be held from September 18th to the 20th for all pre-order customers, while the third will start on September 24th and continue through the game’s official launch on the 29th. Players who pre-ordered the collector’s edition will be able to access additional modes of play during the early access period. So don’t be jealous of the players who get to try out the game on the show floor if you’ve pre-ordered the game because your day is just around the corner.

Source: n-Space and Digital Extremes press release


Star Citizen threatened with class-action lawsuit

Internet Warlord Derek Smart is at it again: This morning, the dev behind Alganon and Line of Defense ramped up his crusade against Star Citizen and Chris Roberts with a demand letter from his attorneys and the threat of a class-action lawsuit.

“I have decided to make good on previous statements calling for accountability,” he writes. “Aside from the FTC guidelines on crowd-funding, as well as actions they have taken against companies that seek to defraud consumers, and because I have reasons to believe that this entire project now borders on consumer fraud, regardless of the risks to myself, my family etc or the amount of aggravation (attacking the messenger is an exercise in futility) that this is no doubt going to cause me, I am going to continue fighting this, while working with the Federal authorities, including the FBI, to get to the bottom of what is going on with this project and where backer money is going.”

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Project Gorgon wraps up Kickstarter campaign with over $74K

It asked players for $20,000 to add better art and additional features, but what Project Gorgon ended up with was an impressive $74,781.

The indie fantasy MMO wrapped up a successful Kickstarter campaign last night after two failed attempts in the past. Over 1300 backers rallied to provide Project Gorgon with funds to beef up its graphics and feature set for its December 2016 launch. The campaign achieved several stretch goals, including a Bard skillset and the ability to become a vampire.

The team also posted a new community Q&A on the forums a couple of days ago. Amid discussing topics such as animal forms and incoming races (Fairies are next on the slate), Eric Heimburg said that he will be improving Steam functionality: “I’m going to kick the dirt off the implementation of the Steam interface and expect to get that up in a month or so.”

Source: Kickstarter, Q&A. Thanks, TJ!


Final Fantasy XIV’s anniversary broadcast reveals plenty of content for patch 3.1

Back on April 1st of this year, the developers behind Final Fantasy XIV made a joke about developing a strategy game in which you could pit your minions against the minions of other players. It was the usual April Fools’ nonsense, but players liked the idea. So now that’s being added to the Gold Saucer with the game’s next major patch, along with a whole lot of further content, as revealed during the most recent live letter for the game.

Players can look forward to two new dungeons, the Saint Mocianne Arboretum and a hard mode for Pharos Sirius, along with the new 24-person content in the form of the Void Ark. There will also be a new Gold Saucer entry added to the challenge log, more main scenario quests, and new housing options like the ability to adjust your house’s interior lighting and brightness. While the quick translation from the live letter doesn’t perfectly translate everything, it should whet your appetite for more official and formal previews in the weeks to come.

Source: Official Site; thanks to Drakonicus for the tip!


MMO Week in Review: What the Smed (August 23, 2015)

Were you too busy gaming this week to pay attention to MMO news? Get caught up every Sunday evening with Massively Overpowered’s Week in Review!

Stop me if you’ve heard this one: MMO studio executive, long begrudged for his role in a popular sandbox’s downfall but much beloved for his outspoken candor, is publicly harassed and swatted by international crime ring until he erupts on social media, resigns from his post at the studio he’s run for almost two decades, and quits to found a brand-new company.

No? Never? This genre, man.

Read on for the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions.

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