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Heroes of the Storm offers up a Chromie trailer

The majority of the Bronze Dragonflight is somewhat aloof and mysterious, as befits an entire group of dragons perpetually mucking about in the timestream. It’s not that they don’t like other people, it that it’s hard to be friends with someone whose existence may be radically different when you edit the past few years of the timeline to never have happened. But Chromie’s not like that; she’s charming, upbeat, friendly, and appearing in Heroes of the Storm to fill all of your needs for a chipper time-controlling dragon.

The video below does a good job of showing off Chromie’s personality as well as her ability to alter the timestream, summoning her more draconic powers only when absolutely necessary. (Although when you can make someone’s timestream run backward, being able to fly around with claws does seem a bit like a step down.) Check it out if you look forward to playing the character in matches time after time after time.

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Players vote to change Elite Dangerous: Engineers progression

Are Elite Dangerous players happy with how Engineers’ endgame progression is in the beta or do they want a change? According to a poll put out by Frontier, the community voted overwhelmingly that the studio should change progression to be “mission-based” instead of the current crafting-based format.

In the poll, 88% of players preferred the change to “doing missions with a matching theme,” while 12% were fine with the system as it was. Elite Dangerous has been working on patching up and polishing its Engineers beta before pushing it to live, so this could represent a significant change for the expansion.

In other voting news, Elite players selected five battlegroups that will be competing in the next stage of the Dangerous Games.

Source: Poll, Dangerous Games. Thanks Orian!

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Paragon to host free beta weekend on May 26

Whenever the cry of “free beta!” goes out across the valley, you can be assured that you will get two types of people flocking to your call. The first will be seeking cheap, colorful fish, while the others are curious onlookers who want to dabble in a game to see what treasures it contains.

Paragon is hosting a free beta weekend that will run from May 26th through the 30th on both PC and PlayStation 4. If you’re interested in checking out this zany MOBA during that time, you’ll need to sign up by May 25th to qualify for the fun.

Does this sound too good to be true? We have the proof after the break that this free beta weekend is actually happening.

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ArcheAge offers name change service, postpones name reset

If you’re sick of your character’s name in ArcheAge yet have too much time on that toon to consider rerolling, you now have a way out of this terrible predicament. Starting yesterday, players can use a name change service to swap out “xXLordDeathStrikeXx” for something a little more awesome.

The name change service isn’t free, of course; players will be charged 1,400 credits to use it. There’s also one more condition attached: You can only change your name once every 30 days.

Trion Worlds did notify players that it won’t be releasing long-dormant names until later this month: “The team continues to work to make sure that everything is in place for the name reset to be performed. Some of these final changes require a major update to be performed on the game (as the in-game name change prompt needs some updated text) and so we’ll be releasing the name reset along with Update 2.9 on May 31st.”

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SMITE sells Viking-themed invasion pass

Starting on May 24th, SMITE is welcoming a Viking invasion to the game. No, a nasty virus won’t be pillaging and looting your hard drive, but instead the studio is selling an “invasion pass” for players looking to pick up a deal on a few items.

The bundle, which is being sold for 900 gems, includes a Viking-themed loading frame, a music theme, a stein ward, an altar pedestal, a Ymir voice announcer pack, and Viking skins for Chaac and Kali. The pass also unlocks branching quests that lead to Valhalla — and even more god skins.

Source: SMITE. Thanks Sorenthaz for the tip!

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Final Fantasy XIV posts a teaser for its next two dungeons

The next two dungeons to be added to Final Fantasy XIV‘s lineup are not a secret – players will be exploring the brand-new Sohr Khai and the remixed Hullbreaker Isle (Hard). We even know the broadest strokes of the story for the latter, at least. But the most decent development preview isn’t focused on lore in the least, focusing instead on taking a quick trip through the two new dungeons so that players might have some idea of what to expect.

While the preview doesn’t go into depth on the bosses players will face, you can rest assured that a giant moogle is showing up for at least one of them, thus quelling the anguished cries of those who have not gotten to beat up a fluffy pom-pom transporter since Thornmarch. There’s also the promise of a tentacle pet for players who brave the depths of the rejuvenated Hullbreaker Isle. There are still plenty of questions about what will be in the dungeons, but at least this is the start of some answers.

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CCP announces Gunjack Next for Google Daydream

EVE Gunjack is getting a sequel, and it’s an exclusive for Google’s Android-based Daydream VR platform, which itself was announced just today. Gunjack Next — yes, that’s its codename — is planned to launch in the fall.

CCP Games today announced that they are developing “Gunjack Next,” the codename for an entirely new sequel to the best-selling game Gunjack, which is currently available for the Samsung Gear VR, Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive VR platforms. The game is being created exclusively for Google’s newly-announced Daydream platform, and will launch this fall. CCP Games’ Shanghai studio, the creators of Gunjack, is working closely with Google’s team to ensure that “Gunjack Next” leverages all of the power and features available. Like Gunjack, which was praised for its breakthrough graphics when it launched on Gear VR, the development team expects “Gunjack Next” to again raise the bar for mobile VR gaming.”

More when we have it.

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RIFT launches a sentient 10-man raid; here’s the trailer

Live in RIFT’s patch today is a brand-new 10-man raid called The Comet of Ahnket. A lore piece last week revealed that the eponymous comet led scholars to discover a sentient tower that is the location of the raid — “not only sentient, but fiercely self-aware and possessing astonishing magical power.” The tower says that she’s entrapped two warring enemies within her walls, and it’s your job to enter her and destroy them both.

Welp, never seen that done before. The trailer and screenies are below.

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Vigor Roads takes the wheel of the apocalypse

When will the apocalypse get here already so that all of the really cool stuff can start happening? Mutants, rampant looting, cannibal games, and armored death cars all seem like a glorious dream that only New Jersey residents get to live. For those seeking Mad Max-style road rage in their MMOs, there might be a new game coming along to bring high-octane action to the wasteland: Vigor Roads.

Developer NeuronHaze, the makers of the upcoming Project Genom, have launched a small Kickstarter campaign to raise $25,000 to make the basic edition of Vigor Roads. This game has players driving “battle cars” around a broken-down world, competing and cooperating in several different modes. While this initial version is quite limited, stretch goals include an open world map and support for other platforms (including VR).

If the campaign picks up an incredible amount of steam, it could even trigger the Dog milestone at $1M (“We’ll add a dog called Chris Robinson in a spacesuit which will live in your garage.”) and the Real Car stretch goal at $1.5M (“We’ll make a real car in Vigor Roads style and you could ride it with a professional driver.”).

Hey, if you’re missing Auto Assault, this might be the next best thing. Check out the Vigor Roads trailer after the break!

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Blizzard and Twitch address harassment defiling game event streams

In case you had forgotten since yesterday’s news that RuneScape had to ban players for running around in-game wearing KKK costumes and shrieking racial slurs, some gamers are still racist idiots. The topic is getting attention from Blizzard now too, as horrific racially motivated harassment toward Terrence Miller, an African-American player, engulfed the live chat panel of the Twitch stream of his Dreamhack Austin Hearthstone matches earlier this month.

Polygon reported at the time that the moderators working during the stream said they were completely unprepared for the deluge of nastiness; though they brought on more in a hurry, some of them were part of the problem themselves.

Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime issued a press statement yesterday, suggesting that the company, alongside Twitch, plans to adapt to make sure garbage like this doesn’t happen again at gaming events with his games’ name attached to them. He put it more politely, of course:

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HEX has purged inactive accounts, but don’t despair yet

If you woke up this morning to an email in your inbox telling you your HEX account has been permanently deleted, you’re not alone, and it’s not a joke.

The trading card MMO announced the impending purge on its official site and on Kickstarter a few weeks ago, explaining that Gameforge, the game’s publisher, is bound by German privacy laws, which mandate that a company may not hang onto user data if the user does not actively agree to it by accepting a user agreement and TOS. In this case, the accounts of players who had not not done both since November 9th were required by law to be purged. Of course, if you opted out of Kickstarter spam and don’t watch the official site like a hawk, you probably never saw that notice.

At least one affected player on Reddit who contacted customer support received the following message of hope:

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Skyforge’s Cybernetic Alliance coming on June 1, game soundtrack is out now

Summer is going to start with an interesting team-up in Skyforge. The sci-fi title announced today that its next content update, Cybernetic Alliance, is scheduled for June 1st.

As the name suggests, Cybernetic Alliance will see players getting a robotic sidekick companion thanks to the tinkerings of Flavius. The patch also introduces the first appearance of the Gorgonide Avatar, more D-series distortions, equipment refinement, and additional class balance tweaks.

In other Skyforge news, the team released the game’s entire soundtrack on YouTube. You can listen to the main theme after the break, and if you like that, browse through Volume 1 and Volume 2 of the score.

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World of Warcraft will have no gold costs on rearranging talents but will limit it to certain areas

There is no actual gold cost for swapping around your specs or talents in the next World of Warcraft expansion. That’s gone. You want to be Shadow one minute and Discipline the next? Go for it. And there’s no gold cost for swapping your talents, either… as long as you’re in a rest area. That’s the game’s new compromise, allowing players to swap talents freely within designated safe zones but nowhere else.

Switching specs already has a large enough number of restrictions – having the appropriate artifact, the right gear, proper hotbars, and so forth – that putting a gold cost on top of it felt superfluous. By contrast, allowing players to simply swap talents anywhere at any time for no cost encouraged players to swap talents at a moment’s notice for a specific fight. There are plans to introduce a consumable item for Inscription so that players can respec in the field if necessary, but for the most part, you should expect to be sticking with your talent choices once you leave safety. Back in safe spaces, though, you can do whatever.

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