Opinion Category

Opinion pieces are by definition neither neutral nor subjective. Massively Overpowered’s writers’ editorials reflect their own opinions, not necessarily the opinions of the site or company. [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

Jukebox Heroes: Seven MMOs with player music systems

A few weeks ago I asked the Massively Overpowered community if all MMOs should come with player music systems. In my opinion, at least, the answer to this is “almost always, yes.” Giving players tools and freedom to express themselves creatively through music is such an immersive and socially bonding element to a game, and yet such systems are more rarities than commonplace.

Today in Jukebox Heroes I wanted to flit around between seven different MMOs to deliver examples of how each included a player music system into its world. From the obscure to the popular, we’ve got an MMO symphony awaiting you after the break!

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Three Elder Scrolls Online mods you shouldn’t play without

If you have not jumped into Elder Scrolls Online yet, you should really give it a shot. With its latest update and B2P transition, it’s finally feeling like Skyrim or another Elder Scrolls game — just online.

Of course, I can’t say that ESO is perfect; there are a few things missing. And at times, you can tell that this game was made by a staff that doesn’t necessarily specialize in creating an MMORPG. Fortunately, ESO allows for mods. And while you won’t need to replace character models as you likely did for past Elder Scrolls games, this UI doesn’t exactly cater to MMO players. And so crafty players have designed UI mods to help with everything from item sorting to roleplay. I use a lot of mods myself, but there are three specific sets of mods that I don’t think I could play without — and neither should you.

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The Daily Grind: Have you tried Infinite Crisis?

Infinite Crisis came out on Steam last week, which was bad timing for me. I left town for the weekend and I didn’t get to do any gaming, so I’m just now getting around to patching up Turbine’s DC multiverse MOBA and picking up where I left off in the beta last December.

What about you, MassivelyOP MOBA fans? Have you tried Infinite Crisis? If so, what did you think? If not, do you plan try it?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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Sword and Bored: Poof! Poof! Poof! Poof!

It’s Monday again and time for the further adventures of Mo in Sword and Bored. I have been extremely impressed with the popularity of this little comic. Although I’ve been drawing forever and Jef has been writing forever, this is our first venture into the unknown world of web comics.

We are more than happy that you have related to Mo. He really does represent the every-man/woman MMO player. We’ve all at one time or another run into the same troubles that he has, but we stick with MMOs because they are fun, despite some of the other players that use us as their content.

I promise that things will get better for Mo, eventually. But for now, let’s see what this week has in store…

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Wisdom of Nym: The fall in Final Fantasy XIV

There is a crack in the foundation of Eorzea’s defenders, and it’s been there for a while. For all of Final Fantasy XIV’s operation, we’ve been able to ignore that fact, to pretend that it isn’t there or that we’re not really facing something horrid just over the horizon. We’ve faced down one threat after another and convinced ourselves that the land is at least relatively safe. But we’ve never faced a threat like the one about to hit Ishgard.

We spent so much time defending against other threats that the Dravanian Horde never got its due.

The last part of the 2.5 cycle goes live tomorrow, and with it comes the conclusion to the entirety of the relaunch storyline. We’ve already made some pretty big strides, but it’s time to look at what we know will come next, what we believe will happen, and who will be left standing after everything goes cross-eyed. Fair warning: There may be spoilers ahead, so tread carefully if you’re afraid of those.

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The Daily Grind: What stupid mistake do you keep making in an MMO?

In a lot of games, the E key defaults to use/interact/whatever. Get near a thing, press E, you do what you need to do. In Skyforge, that context-sensitive interaction is instead mapped to the space bar, while E is mapped to a different vital action. All logical and sensible, and the sort of thing that I should have picked up on after two minutes of play.

I’m several days into the beta and I cannot seem to grasp this reality. Every time I saunter up to an NPC I hit E, despite the big prompt telling me to use the space bar, because I am not a smart man. Sure, I could rail against the designers for mapping controls like that, but I’m pretty sure it’s mostly my fault at this point. What about you, dear readers? What mistake do you make that you should have unlearned?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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Guild Chat: The top five ingredients in every great guild

Welcome to Guild Chat, my comfortable little corner of Massively Overpowered in which I dissect the inner workings and tricky politics associated with MMO guilds. If you were a ravenous reader of Massively-of-old, you may fondly remember Karen Bryan‘s fantastically crafted column The Guild Counsel, which expertly covered all things related to guilds. I couldn’t hope to replace Karen’s deep insight into guild politics and wouldn’t want to intrude on her substantial body of work, so I’ll be going in a more interactive direction with Guild Chat that brings my own unique style and perspective to the conversation.

I want to lend a personal style to Guild Chat that starts and ends with the words of the MOP community. I’ll tackle issues that actual readers are facing (feel free to submit your own by email) or topics you would like to see covered, and I hope that the comments will be filled with even more helpful advice and new perspectives on the topic too. For my first article in the series, I’m going to look at what makes a great guild and which particular aspects or components comprise them. This question comes at the request of Kajatta, my World of Warcraft player fiancé who has found himself without a guild recently. Read on for Kajatta’s full question and my thoughts on the issue.
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The Daily Grind: Do MMORPGs need VR?

Video game developers have been positively obsessing about virtual reality for the last few years, but barring an exception here and there, few MMOs seem to have a compelling plan for how to upsell us on the idea. CCP’s EVE: Valkyrie project has been met with a mixture of awed skepticism since its reveal last year, though admittedly that’s probably not entirely because of its VR nature. And Crowfall’s recent VR stretch goal received “mixed” feedback, causing the developers to add an extra stretch goal to mollify backers who reported that VR is simply “uninspiring.”

It’s not as if we’re luddites here; I personally like having all the shiny new tech I can get my hands on. But I’m not convinced VR is going to add that much more immersion to my gaming, certainly not for the price.

Am I alone? Do you think MMORPGs really need VR?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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The Daily Grind: Do you have a regular gaming group?

When you’re on a time budget and can’t always be in a game 24/7 to join spontaneous guild runs, it’s a blessing to be part of a committed gaming group that meets at a particular time every week to have a blast together.

I’ve been part of many such regular groups over the years, including one cheeky bunch that get together to do all manner of Lord of the Rings Online silliness. Sure, we love each other, but at the end of the day, we’re not ashamed at telling each other to take a flying leap off a portcullis when a run’s gone south.

Are you part of a regular gaming group? As a bonus, why not use the comments to connect players with groups that could use a new member or two!

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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WoW Factor: In praise of Warlords of Draenor

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I consider Warlords of Draenor to be a sub-par expansion. My opinion on that has not changed; I spent the last installment of this column noting the ways in which the expansion has cycled multiple game mechanics back around, and the first installment of this column discussed expansion issues. Yet today I come here not to bury Warlords of Draenor but to praise it.

For all that World of Warcraft has removed or made worse many gameplay elements over the years, there’s a part of my heart that will always be invested in the game, and for all the missteps that can be made, there are still things of shocking beauty. So let’s talk about things that are completely praiseworthy in WoD, starting with something that I’m happy to say my opinion has changed on in the time between the beta and launch.

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Lost Continent: ArcheAge’s dolphingate was much ado about nothing

I’d like to play devil’s advocate about this whole ArcheAge dolphingate thing. First, though, let me start with a disclaimer. If you’ve read this column for any length of time, either here in our new home or over the years on Massively-that-was, you know that I don’t pull any punches when it comes to Trion’s ArcheAge buffoonery.

But this was not that.

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First impressions of Skyforge beta, part two

In the first part of my Skyforge closed beta impressions, I took a look at the tutorial and character creation process. Suitably impressed albeit with some concerns, I advanced into the game proper by heading to the Divine Observatory.

The Observatory is sort of the headquarters for all of the immortals in the game. I’m informed that while I’m technically a god, I’m not almighty and will have to work for my pay. I can do that by answering distress calls (prayers?) from people around the planet, which is as good an excuse as any to zone-hop and test out my newfound skills.

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The Daily Grind: What MMO conceits would you port into real life?

This morning’s Daily Grind is a fun one straight from Kickstarter donor Wesley Hendriks. Wesley proposes we all ponder the following question:

If you could choose 3 things from your favorite MMO to be in your real life, what would it be and why?

I want mark and recall or gate spells or map teleporting first thing. FIRST THING. I’d never have to sit in traffic ever again. Following that, I want the Image Designer profession so someone can just click click click and make me look like Neo give me awesome hair that never needs touch-ups after I kill a whole bunch of rats with a greatsword. And I want playing the auction hall and making sick piles of gold to be as easy and lucrative as in video games.

Shoot, I think I used up all my wishes and never got around to “flying” or “invisibility” or “spaceships” or “pocket horses” or “a job where I deliver pies to hobbits.” And what about cloning and immortality? What about costume particle effects? Darnit. This is harder than it sounds. How about you folks? What MMO conceits would you port into real life?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!

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