Rumors Category

We do our best to confirm rumors before we publish them. Heed the caveats and have fun speculating! [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

Guild Wars 2: Loot rumors, RNG grumblings, character boosters, and map spoilers

Guild Wars 2 Path of Fire detail rumors are swirling as info (and disinfo) is trickling back from the test environment. Here’s a few of the more interesting bits (we’re tucking spoilers behind spoiler tags, so don’t sweat it).

It appears that the shared inventory slot granted with Heart of Thorns will indeed stack with the shared slot granted by Path of Fire, which is a nice little bonus ANet didn’t hype, given how much those account-wide slots are worth. The character boost tokens also appear to stack with each other.

Click to reveal potential spoilers about gear
An image floating around Discord has led players to suspect that gear drops in the expansion may arrive in our inventories as stackable, unidentified items rather than predetermined items that clog up inventory. This would be a giant step forward for the game’s drop and inventory system, at least if our commenters in today’s coincidental Daily Grind are any judge!

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Rumor: Is En Masse publishing Closers Online in the west? [Update: Likely!]

We’ve been keeping half an eye on Closers Online since at least 2015, but with no clear sign of westward movement, that half eye was all we spared. But today, there might just be hope. MOP reader Ephekt has pointed us to a blooper in a recent Kritika Online stream that appears to show Closers Online in the community manager’s En Masse launcher, suggesting that the company may indeed have unannounced plans to port Naddic’s action-combat “MORPG” across the pond.

We’ve reached out to En Masse for a statement and will report back when we have it. [Update – it’s down below!]

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Datamining generates World of Warcraft expansion rumors

Players have datamined a bit out of World of Warcraft’s most recent test realm patch that hints at the destination of the next expansion, with what appear to be pieces of leveling gear and even some voice lines. These could, of course, be red herrings, but there’s also the possibility that we’ll be heading off to the long-rumored south seas and confronting the Old Gods at long last; considering the thrust of Legion, it would make a certain amount of sense.

In other WoW news, if you weren’t around during the time of the Black Temple raid – and probably even if you were – you missed out on a set of encounters that many raiders cite as some of the most memorable in the game’s long history. The dungeon is coming back as part of the next Timewalking event, and a new article on the official site walks through the process of initially making the Black Temple as well as how it got updated for players to explore once again.

Source: Official Site via Icy Veins, Wowhead; thanks to Josh for the tip!

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Pokemon Go: The Milwaukee lawsuit, rare Pikachu, and the gym reporting problem

It’s been almost a year now since non-expat Americans were able to play Niantic’s Pokemon Go. While we’re naturally seeing birthday rumors, the game’s unique position in gaming has led to continued lawsuit issues over AR and Niantic’s struggle with moderating its content.

Rumors of a shiny Pikachu are being linked with both a brief “one-year anniversary” line of code that was recently datamined and news that Niantic will release a “rare Pikachu” at ACM Siggraph.

Meanwhile, the lawsuit between Candy LAB AR and Milwaukee County that we previously reported has led to the two sides exchanging words, none more damning than those of the county:

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Rumor: Is Blizzard working on another shooter game – or an Overwatch expansion?

Strange as it is be to consider, but Blizzard might not be solely satisfied with the rampant success of Overwatch in the shooter market.

VG247 notes that several job listings on Blizzard’s site points to the studio’s intent to possibly develop a new game. Four “unannounced project” posts are listed, with one particularly telling: “Blizzard Entertainment is seeking an experienced engine engineer to work on a robust first-person engine for an unannounced project.”

The same job listing mentions that it is a plus if the candidate has experience working on first-person or action-based games. Another post seeks artists who have worked on first-person perspective titles.

So what does this mean? It’s definitely too early to draw any conclusions, but this raises the possibility that Blizzard could be working on a new FPS game or an expansion for Overwatch.

Source: Blizzard via VG247 via NeoGAF

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Will Smed’s Amazon game utilize shooter mechanics?

Back in February, we learned the fate of MMORPG industry veteran John Smedley: He’s heading up a new game for Amazon Game Studios.

Smed is well known for his 20-year reign at SOE and then Daybreak, which he departed in 2015, and most recently for Hero’s Song studio Pixelmage Games, which closed down last year ostensibly for financial reasons.

While Smed wouldn’t speak about the game on the record back then, Amazon did cite his MMO experience when telling gamers that his game is “an ambitious new project that taps into the power of the AWS Cloud and Twitch to connect players around the globe in a thrilling new game world.” We might have a clue today as he’s tweeted about PC shooters, soliciting opinions on gunplay.

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Wild West Online addresses Sergey Titov rumors [Updated]

Rumors spread on Reddit yesterday suggesting that Sergey Titov is involved in Wild West Online have been partially but not fully debunked. Titov, you’ll recall, was the controversial personality behind scandal-riddled The War Z aka Infestation: Survivor Stories aka Infestation World, a survival game so terrible our original reviewer called it “worse than actually being killed by zombies.”

Reddit user TheSkiesAreShattered (now deleted) posted his hypothesis (now deleted) that Titov was involved in Wild West Online’s development and indeed was its mysterious investor. The Redditor offered circumstantial evidence including an engine comparison, domain name patterns, and Facebook friends lists, chastising the press for missing those “clues.” Similar threads on the official forum have been locked and heavily moderated with links to the Reddit thread removed, but a forum moderator confirmed that the team licensed the engine from Free Reign Entertainment – that’s Sergey Titov’s outfit.

“No, Sergey Titov is not involved in the development of this game, but yes we use a game engine developed and supported by one of his companies,” the mod writes. A second followup post from the developers also homes in on the engine rumor specifically but doesn’t address the other allegations:

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Is Cryptic Studios creating a Magic: The Gathering MMO?

For years now, we have been pondering what “top secret” project might be in development over at Cryptic Studios. Well, the studio isn’t talking — yet — but there are indicators that suggest that Cryptic might be working or collaborating on an MMO set in the Magic: The Gathering universe.

PCGamesN connects a few sparse dots to point to such a project, noting that Cryptic ex-devs have gone over to work for Wizards of the Coast and that a new Cryptic job posting for an art director on the unnamed title mentions that the game will be “based on an extremely exciting, well-known fantasy IP.”

“We’re very excited about what we’re working on,” Cryptic has had posted on its top secret project page. “Our top secret work represents our continued commitment to diversify and reach beyond the boundaries of traditional MMORPG gaming.”

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Jagex leaks ‘Next-Gen’ project slide; is it for RuneScape?

During a weekend stream of RuneScape, Jagex Community Manager Shaun “Shauny” Akerman appears to have let slip a logo for an unannounced Jagex project called “Next-Gen.” The community is more or less united behind Shauny, who expresses concern on the video that he may be fired. He won’t be, by the by; another mod posted,

“Don’t worry, Shauny! Honest mistake, we all make them. This was a slide from an internal company livestream, so there must have been something leftover from that. God bless you Shauny – we just have to teach you to cut feed when a stream is over!”

Other folks on Reddit are a bit more cynical, suggesting that the whole thing was an intentional leak by the studio in the service of starting up the rumormill on whatever Jagex is working on next.

So what the heck is it? It could be RuneScape Remastered, which Jagex confirmed last year. It could be the VR tech for RuneScape the company hinted at earlier this spring. It could be just a throwback to RuneScape 3’s internal name. Or it could be a new property altogether, though it hasn’t had the best track record there (RIP, Stellar Dawn and Transformers Universe).

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Overwatch: Hero leaks, lockbox probabilities, and Korean political humor

As Asian countries are cracking down on online games with lockbox gambling, gaming companies are complying with transparency. To wit: Blizzard’s Chinese Overwatch website has published lockbox probability parameters. Here’s the paraphrase of the translation:

“Each lootbox will contain 4 items, including cosmetics or game currency for direct unlocking cosmetics. Each lootbox will contain at least one item of excellent or higher quality. An epic quality item will be availabe every 5.5 lootboxes on average. A legendary quality item will be availabe every 13.5 lootboxes on average.”

Since it’s leak week, here’s an Overwatch one for you, unconfirmed:

Click to reveal spoiler/leak
According to SegmentNext, a 4chan user who claims to be a Blizzard artist says that Doomfist will roll out much sooner than anticipated and that the studio is working on two other heroes: Bria (a tiny character who locks off map chunks, now in testing) and Ivon (an older gentleman, defense-based, but not coming soon). Still other gamers are digging into game files for evidence of an event on the way soon.

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BioWare delays SWTOR 5.2 for a week, might be working on KOTOR 3 and a ‘semi-MMO’

Let’s rip off this band-aid quickly: There will be no SWTOR Update 5.2 today. BioWare announced on the forums that it is delaying the patch, which contains the MMO’s first new raid in two years, to next week. In the meantime, SWTOR will be extending its XP/CXP event through the 18th as compensation.

The studio said that the delay was due to a quality issue with the update: “At this point in time, we are not satisfied with the quality of the Iokath update. For that reason, we are delaying the release of 5.2 by one week, to release on April 18th. This allows the team more time to make improvements to address some of the issues still pending.”

And as one Old Republic game sees a delay, another might be forthcoming. Scuttlebutt this week is that BioWare Edmonton is working on a Knights of the Old Republic game. The rumor’s source said that it is unclear whether this is a remake of the original, a revival of the franchise, or something else entirely, but that BioWare is currently working on Star Wars games exclusively.

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Secret World Legends beta leaks show a vastly changed game [Updated]

Funcom has issued a statement about the leaks; we’ve included it in its entirety at the end of this post.

For those assuming that Secret World Legends will be only slightly different from the existing MMO, it may be best to rip off that band-aid early to get used to the truth. While the game is currently under NDA in closed beta, that doesn’t stop information from leaking out that appears to show a vastly changed title in the making.

On the new Secret Worlds Legends subreddit, a beta tester has unloaded a ton of information and screenshots that mostly center on the action-RPG’s combat system. With the understanding that this is beta and all may be changed, the tester claims to shows how the different combat weapons have been streamlined and modified (for example, shotguns now have different types of shells that perform various tasks and assault rifles have grenades). The tester notes that most classes should self-heal now as in most other MMOs. Players will use a reticle system for combat and will need to worry about overheating at least some of their weapons.

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