Patches & Expansions Category

We’re not even going to try to sort out the patches from the updates from the iterations from the campaigns and expansions and expanshalones. If it’s something going into an MMO that’s already out, it lands in this category! [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

Get a closer look at Defiance’s Alcatraz

The prison island of Alcatraz is the hot new destination of Defiance players following yesterday’s patch. If you’re a curious looky loo or a former player pondering a return, then we’ve got a closer look at the update to satisfy your curiosity.

A recent dev diary expands upon the Alcatraz patch’s key features, while fan site Defiance Data has a great guide covering all of the new features and changes. The patch includes the titular player hub, four-player expeditions, the ability to self-revive, a higher EGO cap, and more types of loot. With the third season of the TV show on the horizon, it will be interesting to see how the game and series continue to tie together.

We’ve got pictures and a video from Alcatraz below, so take a gander and then excuse us for using the word “gander!”

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The Secret World gets hyped for Issue 11

With Joel Bylos out of the picture as The Secret World’s lead, the monthly update letter torch has been passed to other members of the team, starting with Senior Community Manager Laurie Payne.

Payne’s April update letter is full of studio backpatting and general enthusiasm about Update 11, although she says little that we didn’t already know about the first season finale. She talks up the Orochi Tower’s randomization and one-day cooldown as a highly replayable piece of content: “Each floor will present enemies and challenges that must be defeated to gain access to different levels where players will discover more about the secret projects haunting the tower.”

She also mentions that the next world event will have another new pet while simultaneously making the previous event pet easier to obtain.

[Source: Monthly development update. Thanks to Nordavind for the tip!]

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World of Warcraft adds retro ‘timewalking’ dungeons

There’s no reason for you to go back to older dungeons in World of Warcraft unless you particularly like the look of something that drops there for cosmetic purposes; they surely don’t offer much in the way of relevant rewards. But some of those dungeons were well-tuned back in the day, and if you’ve never experienced them in their harder modes, you’re kind of missing out. That’s the premise behind the game’s new Timewalking feature: Players will be re-doing older dungeons at lower levels for more modern rewards.

Patch 6.2 introduces seven new weekend events, including two that are designated Timewalking weekends; they allow players to travel back and re-challenge five dungeons from The Burning Crusade and five dungeons from Wrath of the Lich King with their gear and stats tuned down to the level of the instance. Said players will retain all of their skills and talents, however, and the rewards from the dungeons will scale up to be equivalent to loot found in current dungeons. It’s a chance to step back to the past and run through older content with the benefit of experience and the modern arsenal of abilities.

[Source: Patch 6.2 Preview – Timewalking; thanks to Jake for the tip!]

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Flameseeker Chronicles: Exclusive Guild Wars 2 Maguuma Hylek interview

I had the pleasure of chatting with Scott McGough, a Guild Wars 2 narrative designer who is currently working hard on Heart of Thorns content, about two new Hylek tribes that we’ll be meeting in the Maguuma Jungle. In this special edition of Flameseeker Chronicles, we have all the juicy details about how the two tribes come together to survive in the hostile jungle environment, with hints galore about how those races are equipped for combat and how they might perceive the players’ characters.

The Itzel and Nuhoch Hylek tribes are very different from each other, yet the Heart of Thorns narrative has deeply tied them together in their mutual battle against the dangers the jungle holds, especially the Mordrem. The Itzel are happy-go-lucky iridescent tree dwellers based on treefrogs that believe the jungle provides for all their needs, and their Nuhoch cousins are goliath bullfrogs that prefer to use brute strength and epic belly flops to solve their problems.

McGough will be publishing a blog post about the Hylek tribes on the official Guild Wars 2 website on Thursday, and this will be supported by a Points of Interest show this Friday that will give us a first glimpse of some of the places where players will interact with the Nuhoch and Itzel as well as some of their combat moves. Points of Interest will air on the Guild Wars 2 Twitch channel at 12 p.m. PT. Read on for the mammoth full interview, but be careful if you are worried about spoilers!
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Defiance adds Alcatraz, preps for season three

Trion has added Alcatraz to Defiance, along with a new EGO rating cap of 6,000 and several other key features. Chief among these are expeditions, which the devs describe as “evolving co-op matches that pit you against increasingly tough enemies for ever-increasing rewards.”

Alcatraz serves as a sort of base between rounds of each expedition, as your team will be transported back to The Rock to “rearm, regroup, and purchase gear from faction vendors,” Trion says.

Also new in this patch are cyber rigs, which improve your performance with vehicles, weapons, etc. There are also a few “behind-the-scenes changes to stat gain,” which should lead to significant weapon and shield stat boosts as you grind toward the new EGO cap. Finally, don’t forget about the Defiance TV show. Season three premieres on June 12th.

[Source: Alcatraz update]

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Hyperspace Beacon: Five things you should know about Ziost before SWTOR Update 3.2

Shortly after Star Wars: The Old Republic launched, I was a part of a group of players asked which planet they would like to see next. Pre-launch we were still learning which planets were even in the game. We knew that there were more planets to be revealed and that we had a huge swath of planets that had great backstories but had not been spoken of during SWTOR’s time period. I remember that some people suggested popular planets we’d seen in the original Star Wars trilogy, like Bespin, but I think the most popular was Kashyyyk.

But not mine. Eric Musco, who was a part of TOROCast at the time, even joked about my pick. “And out of left field is Larry Everett with Ziost,” he quipped.

Three and a half years later, Ziost is coming to SWTOR while those other guys are still waiting for Bespin and Kashyyyk. In Update 3.2, we’ll learn more about Vitiate, the former Sith Emperor, and what he’s been up to since the incident on Yavin IV. We learn that he’s traveled to frozen, rocky world of Ziost.

So why did I pick Ziost as the planet I thought we would see in the SWTOR lineup? My reasoning probably mirrors the reason that Vitiate also chose that planet as a base of operations. How about I break this down into five reasons that Ziost is the perfect planet for Star Wars: The Old Republic?

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H1Z1 adds grouping system and zombified players this month

Your secret dream of becoming a zombie — yeah, we read your diary — will get a virtual assist from this month’s H1Z1 updates. The survival sandbox is finally making good on plans to gradually turn infected players into zombies.

According to the game’s early access roadmap, players have two major patches to anticipate in April. The first, arriving on the 16th, will add more Steam functionality, throwable weapons such as grenades, and a grouping system to help players team up.

Then on April 23rd, H1Z1 will patch in the ability to become infected and gradually transform into a zombie. This won’t be all bad, as infected players will get zombie night vision and player tracking. This update will also include first-person battle royale servers and drunk vision.

[Source: Roadmap]

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World of Warcraft 6.2 adds new dungeon difficulty, zone

If you thought the first major patch of Warlords of Draenor seemed a bit thin on content, you’ll be happier with World of Warcraft‘s patch 6.2, which is now available on the test server. This patch adds Mythic difficulty for dungeons, a new raid, a new zone, the new Shipyard for garrisons (complete with naval missions), and the conclusion of the Legendary Ring questline. Yes, that’s quite a bit of stuff to fit in the second major patch.

Not all of these changes are available for testing just yet; Hellfire Citadel (the new raid) and Mythic dungeons are still being rolled out, as are naval missions. Smaller changes are also on the test server, however, like the removal of a cap for Apexis Crystals and the newly added item level sync for non-PvP items in PvP combat. Check out the full list of changes and keep your eyes open for more changes as the patch gets put through the paces of testing.

[Source: 6.2 PTR Patch Notes]

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Not So Massively: LoL nerfs Nidalee, Hearthstone bans mods, and Path of Exile talks Act IV

League of Legends finally applied a nerf to controversial champion Nidalee, but players warn that it won’t harm her jungling potential. Riot Games has also decided to run this year’s World Championship tournament series in Europe and revealed the event venues it will use. Hearthstone‘s community manager confirmed that modding the game in any way is not allowed and those caught using any mods will be banned. Armored Warfare released a new sneak peek video on its upcoming M551 Sheridan tank, Infinite Crisis released new champion Lex Luthor, and Bloodline Champions ran its first cash tournament in a long time.

Star Citizen Alpha 1.1.1 was released this week, and developers discussed two new innovations to the game’s FPS module with its stance and breathing mechanics. MassivelyOP got an advance look at Path of Exile‘s colossal upcoming Act IV update, and signups have now opened for the Act IV closed beta to be released on April 20th. Five Elite: Dangerous players have won brand new Geforce Titan graphics cards in the game’s recent scavenger hunt contest, and the latest newsletter revealed the the highly requested cargo drone is coming to the game.

Read on for more details of the above stories and more news from the wider world of online gaming in this week’s Not So Massively.

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Destiny’s House of Wolves expansion launches May 19th

Destiny fans ready for a new expansion after last December’s The Dark Below have to wait until only May 19th for the release of House of Wolves. Players who’ve purchased the $34.99 Expansion Pass will get this expansion as the final installment of that deal, and those who want to get House of Wolves separately will spend $19.99.

Previously leaked information indicated that this expansion will add a third raid, another Fallen strike, three new Crucible maps, and a new Awoken storyline. The official prologue trailer below confirms that players will be able to travel to the Reef to claim the mysterious treasures awaiting there.

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How to get into Path of Exile’s Awakening beta

So you want to test the next big update for Path of Exile? That’s understandable; it’s a big update that promises a whole lot of new content and new play options. While the developers aren’t yet prepared to reveal all of the mechanical details, there’s plenty of information on how to get into the testing process and what happens when you’re in.

Players will be selected randomly with a rolling timer system, along with some closed beta keys being given to streamers and news sites. Not everything will be available during the test period, but new features will be added over time, just as more testers will be added regularly to ensure that a fresh set of eyes gets exposed. Take a look at the full FAQ for more details, and make sure to sign up on the game’s account management page if you’re looking to get in on the testing.

[Source: Closed Beta FAQ]

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Wisdom of Nym: What we now know about Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward

I honestly hadn’t expected to learn quite this much about Heavensward this soon. I don’t know why I hadn’t expected this, to be fair; we’ve got 67 days as of this writing before the expansion launches, so now is definitely the time to start learning all of these important details of Final Fantasy XIV‘s first expansion. But somehow I suppose I expected the development team to be close-lipped for a little bit longer, to really build up the mystery, to keep it vague until there was literally no other option or something.

We didn’t learn a lot of details. But the shape of what’s coming is much clearer now than it was before the live letter, and we have a baseline for what to expect in the game when we step through the Gates of Judgement in June. There were some interesting revelations and a few that I think rather flew under the radar, so let’s start looking at where we’re going from here and what we can reasonably expect.

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DCUO returns to the Halls of Power with its next update

With DC Universe Online’s sped-up content delivery schedule, players fresh off of the munitions update now can look forward to a new hit of superhero juice with a return to the Halls of Power.

DCUO’s 14th episode, Halls of Power Part II, will take players to New Genesis for a slew of solo and group content. Apparently the nasty Darkseid is trying to gather up ancient artifacts while Granny Goodness is abducting both heroes and villains upon which to experiment. The update will contain daily solo bounty missions, new duos, the Fatal Exams four-player operation, the New Genesis Now eight-player operation, and an eight-player raid called Happiness Home.

Halls of Power Part II is slated to come out sometime “this spring.”

[Source: Daybreak press release]

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