Massively OP’s sneak peek of Atlas Reactor, Trion’s turn-based strategy MOBA

I first experienced Atlas Reactor just before Trion made its big announcement at the PAX Prime party last summer. At the time, I didn’t really know what to think of it. First, it’s clearly set in some futuristic timeline, but then it has come fantasy elements like gremlins and cat-people. I’m on board with that. I’m frankly tired of high fantasy. The characters, which Trion calls Freelancers, are similar to what we find in League of Legends or maybe closer to the upcoming Blizzard shooter Overwatch.

So far, so typical, except it’s turn-based. What? Yes, turn-based. I was thrown, too.

Senior Producer James Karras and Lead Designer William Cook called us up to talk about how Altas Reactor works and what makes it stand out, and then they demonstrated a few rounds of the game over a private livestream. One thing I’m sure of is that Atlas Reactor is an interesting concept definitely worth a second look.

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The Daily Grind: What untapped survival sandbox theme needs love?

Zombies. Dinosaurs. Other people. Pygmies, for some reason. They’ve been done. But plenty of themes haven’t been tapped for survival sandboxes.

Joking in the Massively OP online offices the other day, our writers decided that MJ’s frequent travels deserve immortalizing as a survival game. “Introducing Air-1 Citizen: Follow protagonist MJ as she trawls airports and tries to make it to the right plane, which may or may not take off and convey her to her destination! We’ll have two modes: One is all about melee combat with airplanes, hijackers, attendants, and tourists; the other is a minigame for baggage handlers where you have to sort the bags into the right conveyor belt. (Insert GM joke about TSA agents stripping away your gear.) No need for a complicated launch; we can just keep Air-1 Citizen in early access forever, dividing it into smaller and smaller pieces — Air-1 Citizen: Bag Totality now comes split into the Bag Customizer and Bag Sorter modules, both at full price!”

OK, maybe not; we were all a bit silly and cynical at the time.

But what theme would you like to see in the next big survival sandbox?

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MMO Week in Review: Blizzard and NCsoft financials (February 14, 2016)

Were you too busy gaming this week to pay attention to MMO news? Get caught up every Sunday evening with Massively Overpowered’s Week in Review!

Activision-Blizzard and NCsoft both posted financial results this week, sending MMORPG communities into their usual rounds of speculation and admonition. Blizzard claimed nonspecific “growth” for World of Warcraft, while NCsoft saw end-of-the-year bumps for Guild Wars 2 and WildStar that didn’t quite meet everyone’s hopes and dreams.

Meanwhile, it’s been a week of festivity here on the site, as we celebrated Valentine’s Day with an MMO event roundup and our first birthday as an independent website with a birthday podcast and special edition Sword & Bored comic.

Read on for the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions.

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Red rover, red rover, SMITE sends Grover on over to Paladins

One advantage to owning multiple properties under one roof is the ability to do crossovers at your pleasure. Hi-Rez is certainly taking advantage of this, as it’s sending SMITE’s Grover on a foreign exchange program to Paladins.

In Paladins’ closed beta 14 update, Grover the Wild joins the champion line-up for this fast-paced multiplayer brawler. Grover is a melee fighter who wields an axe to great effect. He also can shoot vines out to pull himself to distant objects and activate auras to help allies and harm foes.

The patch included a reworking of the match system and lobby UI, as well as many balance tweaks to the characters. You can see Grover in action and get an overview of the closed beta 14 update in dev videos after the jump.

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The MOP Up: Anarchy Online opens its Reck room (February 14, 2016)

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 Anarchy Online got one of its first new zones in years, RF Online moved to a new host, DDO announced its 2016 player council, we met the leader of Elder Scrolls Online’s thieves guild, and more!

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Watch a run-through of WoW: Legion’s Maw of Souls dungeon

When World of Warcraft: Legion arrives some time this summer, players will be able to jump into nine brand-new five-man dungeons. So what kind of mind-blowing instance design does Blizzard have in store for its fans? Well, how about a ride through Vyrkul hell on a ghost ship?

This is the premise of the new Maw of Souls dungeon, kind of like Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean ride with 100% more terror and boss fights. If you don’t mind getting spoiled, you can watch a full annotated run-through of the dungeon below in a little under 15 minutes. See you on the other side!

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MMO Mechanics: Eight annoying MMORPG mechanics that grind my gears

The inspiration behind this edition of MMO Mechanics is a recent conversation I had with my housemates about the column and the inner workings of our favourite games in general: It took a turn toward hilarious when we ranted on about the most annoying mechanics we’ve encountered, and I knew I had to start taking notes for a future article. I managed to make our rambling vaguely coherent by whittling down the list to the eight most annoying mechanics in MMOs, but the fun part is that the list is torn straight from our conversation. I present points from a range of opinions that I may or may not agree with, but I’ll be sure to explain why each mechanic made the list. Expect the discussion that lies ahead to be derailed by plenty of inconsistencies, blanket statements, and brazen exaggeration by our debaters!

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ArcheAge bans raiding guild for Leviathan exploit

One raiding guild in ArcheAge is feeling the heavy hand of studio justice this weekend, as Trion Worlds has levied the boom against over 50 players who utilized an exploit in order to take down a previously undefeated world boss.

Trion said that it responded to multiple reports that the guild Rage Quit used an exploit to kill Leviathan on a North American server and investigated the case carefully. The situation was compounded by the guild keeping the loot, not reporting the issue, and even trying to leverage more goods from the studio in exchange for explaining how the exploit was done.

Instead of capitulating to the demand, Trion instead permanently banned the 53 players involved in the exploit, removed the loot from the game, and disbanded the guild.

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One Shots: Hard tack and bottomless grog

This week marks a small change-up in how we do things here at One Shots. Prompted by a suggestion from one of our readers, I’ll be incorporating more screenshots submitted in the comments into weekly posts (in addition to emailed ones, of course). Feel free to get your picks in either way!

Our first shot comes from Reeseracer, who gives us a first glance of Naval Action. “In this photo, I’ve regained the weather gage and am now in pursuit of a Spanish cutter. Giving chase under more favourable conditions meant I was eventually able to damage his sails significantly with several chain-shot broadsides, limiting his maneuverability. I then tacked, crossed his stern twice, and decimated his crew with grapeshot from my six-pounders. A short boarding action afterward — and I had my prize.”

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The Daily Grind: What do you love about your MMO?

According to our Hallmark overlords, this is the season for love and fattening chocolate bites. I do not know what it is about February that’s supposed to be more amorous than the rest of the year, but as I am not a greeting card expert, I am not allowed to be critical of such heavy-handed holidays.

Anyway, with V-Day this weekend, I thought we might talk about wuv, twue wuv today. No, not the romantic kind or even a love between someone and a fine Cuban cigar, but the love of a gamer with his or her games. We play MMOs. We even profess to liking them, from time to time. But I posit that deep within, there’s also love. Love for what these games offer, love for the experiences, and love for certain features.

What do you love about your MMO? Oh, don’t look so bashful; you can tell us today, Valentine.

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Make My MMO: Inside The Repopulation & Hero’s Song (February 13, 2016)

This week in MMO crowdfunding news, two studios spoke to Massively OP in-depth about their major crowdfunding decisions in 2016. Pixelmage Games’ John Smedley told us that Hero’s Song is full-steam ahead after its Kickstarter cancellation last month and explained just why his team went with Kickstarter in the first place. And Above & Beyond’s JC Smith sat down with us to discuss The Repopulation’s new engine and spin-off survival game and what it all means for the crowdfunded sandbox.

Meanwhile, two of the City of Heroes-inspired crowdfunded superhero MMORPGs, City of Titans and Valiance Online, both saw updates this past week, and Star Citizen blasted one last reminded that tomorrowday really truly is the last time to buy into the games cheaply before Squadron 42 becomes a standalone product.

Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding this week and the roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’ve got our eye on, plus some bonus news at the end!

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Heroes & Generals now has more players than Denmark has people

WW2-themed online shooter Heroes & Generals has logged its 7 millionth player this week.

Danish studio Reto-Moto called the milestone “a cool and magic milestone as it is more than there are people living in [its] home country.”

To celebrate, the studio is handing out a voucher code (“SEVEN”) that grants three days of veteran status in the game, provided you apply the code before Tuesday, February 16th.

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The Stream Team: A Neverwinter green owl giveaway

Want another chance to secure a Neverwinter Green Owlbear Mount giveaway that we’ve been running all week? Here it is! MassivelyOP’s MJ has 10 more of these Xbox One exclusives to give away while she prowls around in game. This mount boosts movement speed by 80%, so if you’ve got a need for speed, join us at 4:00 p.m. for your chance to snag one.

What: Neverwinter
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 4:00 p.m. EST on Saturday, February 13th, 2016

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