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]
Skyforge is bringing you March in February. Specifically, it’s bringing the March of Knowledge. The patch is called March of Knowledge, anyway, which seems like a joke that would work much better if they could just wait out the remaining days of February. Then again, the game does keep its update on a regular schedule, and this year is sporting a long February. Maybe the team just couldn’t wait that long. Considering the bulky list of additions for the March of Knowledge patch notes, you can sort of see why; there are the big additions that have been specifically previewed on the site, and then there are plenty of minor changes like a rearrangement of keybinds for group members and a new disassembly mode to speed up the process of disassembling items.
The patch is arriving on February 10th, but if you can’t wait that long to see it in action, you can check out a stream with the development team today at 3:00 p.m. EST. The preview is planned to run for about an hour and a half, complete with photos in the new Photomode and exploration of the new regions added in the patch. It’s the next best thing to just skipping ahead two days, really.
Chad Moore is moving up the ranks in Carbine Studios; after a long tenure as the lore expert, Moore is now the director behind WildStar. What does that mean? Well, that’s all to be found in his letter to the community on the state of the game. Moore looks back over the past year of updates and development for the game and provides a picture of what the game will look like, starting with Destination Arcterra, the game’s first major patch following the free-to-play transition.
The development team is also working on the game’s next big raid (The Redmoon Terror) and taking players beyond Nexus proper with a trip to the Halon Ring. There’s also another Expedition in the works alongside an item upgrading system and the vague promise of more work going into the game’s PvP. It’s an optimistic letter and should hopefully give players awaiting more content reason to look forward to the future. We’ve also taken the liberty of reaching out to NCsoft concerning the status of product director Mike Donatelli in the wake of Moore’s new position.
The Warring Triad is a big deal in Final Fantasy VI.
We don’t actually know if it’s a big deal in Final Fantasy XIV
, but I’m tempted to believe it is because we haven’t been told about it much at all.
It’s not hard to find the Triad in the game right now; you can fly past them in Azys Lla if you want. They’re referenced by the plot, even, and they form a major part of the conclusion to the expansion, but they’re not specifically called out as such. The game obliquely mentions what’s going on with them, and later confirms the connection between the final MSQ boss and the Triad, but it always leaves any crucial bits of joining to be drawn by the player.
I think this is a pretty big deal, bigger than it might seem at a glance. So for those of you who don’t have games from two decades ago stuck in your brain, let’s talk about what the Triad was and what its presence might imply for the future of Final Fantasy XIV. There will be spoilers, but I’ll do what can be done to hide them behind our fancy-pants spoiler tags as possible.
Do you feel a burning desire to get in and try out one of the intended spiritual successors to City of Heroes? Because you can do exactly that right now with Valiance Online. The pre-alpha client is available for downloading and testing with no NDA, no restrictions, and no certainties about when the server may go down for patches and/or maintenance. Still, you can share your experiences freely with the world at large.
The pre-alpha patch notes have a pretty long list of improvements as well; players who’ve tested earlier versions can look forward to improved combat, improved enemy AI, improved power sets, and improved missions. The game is still obviously in an early state, so it’s far from feature-complete, but players can still get a sense of where the game is going by downloading the installer and getting the client running.
Everyone knows that ARK: Survival Evolved is a survival game. But what do you do once you know that your survival is assured and you have plenty of resources to continue living? Well, you find more stuff to ride and build yourself a grappling hook. Yes, there’s a grappling hook in the game now, and it works exactly as you’d expect. You can climb up sheer cliffs, you can drag small creatures along with it, you can hitch a ride on flying creatures… you know, basically everything you would want to do with a grappling hook in real life.
“Wait, I thought I could ride something new?” Yes, dear reader, you can ride the Terror Bird, a flightless bird that grows up to 12 feet tall with the ability to make long gliding leaps. The most recent patch also adds in fishing updates and tribe alliances, so you can do more stuff after you eventually get bored of riding around on a new bird and grappling around all over the place. Check out a video highlighting these additions just below.
Technology is vital to every single MMO that we play and is also almost completely invisible. When a game is running well, you don’t think about the technology underpinning that performance; you notice only when it doesn’t work. That’s all the more reason to have pieces like the most recent article about RIFT‘s past year in technology updates and its upcoming multicore support: because you wouldn’t know about the hard work that goes into these systems if no one ever pointed it out.
The new multicore processing will allow the game to perform faster and more reliably on modern CPUs without unnecessarily throttling the computer’s GPU. As the article explains it, it’s a bit like changing from a one-lane road to a four-lane highway, allowing faster overall travel by sending more individual bits of information. While the multicore support is still in internal testing, a public beta of the new technology (and performance improvements) is planned for sometime in the near future.
Even if you’ve never played Final Fantasy XIV
, you can probably make a decent guess about how the Gnath work. They’re little insectoid people; obviously they all obey a hive mind. Not including that particular bit of species-wide characterization would be like not having early quests to kill innocuous rats right outside of the city limits. But what happens when a group of Gnath start breaking away from that mind? That’s the central conceit of the upcoming Gnath beast tribe quests
As with prior beast tribe quests, players will aid and support a group of Gnath through various daily quests. These quests will also scale with level in the same way as the prior patch’s Vanu Vanu daily quests. If you like new decorations, love new mounts, or just really can’t get enough of insect people breaking free of singular hive-minds, you’ll want to take part in these quests.
There’s a new kind of challenge in Diablo III with the advent of Set Dungeons, specific challenges with pre-determined sets. The latest entry on the official site explains how these set dungeons came to be, with the overall design intent being similar to the goal behind the game’s season progression: a new way to play and experience the game for players eager for a new challenge.
Senior game designer Alex Sulman came up with the basic idea for Set Dungeons during a team-wide brainstorming session, with the whole Diablo III team trying out new passion projects and seeing how they worked in the game. The original intent was to make them solo-only experiences, but ultimately having them be available for multiple players provided a better overall experience, even though the dungeons are possible to complete while solo. If you’re curious about the steps between the concept and the final execution, give the full entry a read-through.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
This past week we celebrated the end of Chronicle: RuneScape Legends’ closed beta test, took a closer look at the Warcraft movie, celebrated Valentine’s Day in oh-so-many titles, and more!
Am I excited, with some reservations, about World of Warcraft‘s next expansion? You bet. Am I happy to be involved with the testing? Yes. And also no, because I don’t want to be bored with the expansion before it’s actually out. The last thing I want is to go ahead and go whole hog on a title when I know that I’m still not actually making any “real” progress on the live servers… even at the same time that my job kind of necessitates some knowledge of the test, since that’s the only thing to talk about with regards to the game at times.
This is hardly the first time I’ve been in that situation, of course; beta tests for City of Heroes expansions, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and Skyforge all threatened to dull my interest in the full product if I overindulged. As frustrating as it could be, I kind of appreciated Final Fantasy XIV‘s very limited beta that prevented me from seeing much of the game until it was actually sticking around for an extended period. But what about you, dear readers? Are you reluctant to test games you know you want to play on launch? What about patches and/or expansions? And whether or not you fear being bored by launch, has it ever happened?
Taunting may not be the sexiest feature of an MMO, but for tanks it’s as vital an issue as they come. Happily for those on the front lines in EverQuest, the devs are planning on buffing and fixing taunts and other related systems with this month’s patch.
“We looked into the success rate of the taunt skill and decided this ability could use some improvements,” the team said. “The overall success rate for characters with taunt (200) and higher should be noticeably better.”
Players on EverQuest’s progression servers will enjoy more XP for killing mobs but less XP for completing quests. Apparently the team didn’t create a proper balance between the two sources of XP when creating those shards, so players should soon find that these servers are more in line with how it used to be back in the day.
Fashion or power: Who says you can’t have both? Not ArcheAge, that’s for sure, because the game is getting ready to introduce costumes with stats
that level up over time.
According to a post by CM Seraphina Brennan, these special costumes have been live in Korea for a while now and have been in demand in the west. The new system will use “in-game methods” to level, including crafting.
“As the base costume levels up, it will gain additional stats. In the initial ranks, the pool of possible stats it will draw from will be very limited,” Brennan writes. “But what’s important here is that the base costume is leveled up and made more powerful by in-game item drops and in-game crafting.”
Indie sandbox Das Tal is running a “dev-supporter-exlusive” playtest this weekend to test its latest build and its new features. What can testers expect in addition to the usual balance and bug fixes? Opportunities, clan elections, and practice dummies:
Added the Opportunities system to advertise game features to new players.
Added the Equipment Drop Chance system to protect newbies from too much gear loss.
Added Practice Dummies to the game so you can try out new abilities easily.
Added a Clan Leader role that has the power to invite and kick clan members and disband the clan.
Added a new Clan Elections system that allows clans to vote for a new leader at any time.
Fairytale Distillery is also accepting clan applications for its second alpha test in the coming months. If you’ve got a guild that is willing to test as a group, make sure to sign up!