I really didn’t want Massively Overpowered’s inaugural column about World of Warcraft to focus on the negatives. But I can’t in good conscience ignore the fact that patch 6.1 for Warlords of Draenor is not getting the Iron Docks that many players were expecting. It’s not that I think it’s a grand betrayal of player trust; it’s not. Things get shifted around in development. Stuff gets held back for the next patch. It happens. This feature was never promised for Tuesday, and it isn’t coming out then. Seems fair.
No, the problem here comes down to one of perception, presentation, and the simple fact that there’s plenty to do at level cap in Warlords of Draenor… but also absolutely nothing to do.
It seems ironic that an expansion that led to an enormous subscriber surge is also seemingly tone-deaf on a number of points, but it also seemed ironic when Cataclysm followed Wrath of the Lich King by undoing a good portion of what made the prior expansion so popular. So why is there so much negativity, even from people who do like the game? How can a game be replete in things to do while at the same time have nothing to do?
EverQuest has made a reputation for itself over the years as an MMO that isn’t afraid to experiment with progression servers, and as such Daybreak has announced that it is planning yet another such server for players to experience.
“The cool thing is that the entire team’s been talking about a progression server, and that’s one of the ongoing discussions we’re going to have and will hopefully wrap up in the next week or two,” Executive Producer Holly Longdale announced during a video Q&A session. “It’s less now about should we do a progression server and more about what kind of progression server will we do as a team.”
The devs said that players can expect a poll regarding different progression server “flavors” in the near future.
, YouTube @ 15:45
Are you looking forward to the newest addition to Guild Wars 2‘s class lineup, the Revenant? Do you stay awake at night wishing that you could see the Mist-wielding warrior in action? Well, don’t do that. Staying up at night is bad for you; a full eight hours of sleep is ideal. Besides, you could just jump on past the break and check out Friday’s stream from the development team, which shows off an hour of Revenant gameplay.
Host Rubi Bayer joins game designer Roy Cronacher and game design lead Jon Peters to walk through several of the Revnant’s abilities and show off the class in active content, sure to delight any fans of its unique brand of legendary empowerment and wearing blindfolds all the time. Of note, the hosts show off what the expansion will borrow from its older brother in the form of stances inspired by Guild Wars lore.
Check it out just past the break, then perhaps go back to bed. You need to sleep.
North America and Australia Runes of Magic players, buckle up: You’re about to experience some server merger turbulence. During this period, drink service will be suspended and the devs have asked that you remain in your seats with your seatbelts fastened.
The team announced the incoming merges last year and recently posted a FAQ about how plans are progressing. The six current servers between the regions will be condensced down into two: Artemis and Govinda. There aren’t any “defined dates” as of yet for the merge, but the team assures its fans that game updates won’t be affected by the move.
If you have a Runes of Magic character on one of these servers, you’ll need to log in (or have logged in during the past year) to make sure that your character is flagged for the transition.
[Source: Official forums
. Thanks to Kailenn for the tip!]
Jef and I were talking this past weekend about something Star Wars Galaxies got really, really right: the Jump to Lightspeed expansion, which brought joystick-driven free-form space exploration and combat to the sandbox. More importantly, it brought multi-person ships to a genre that simply had nothing like it. Imagine bringing your ground-based party to a totally different place where the holy trinity was pilot, gunner, and mechanic and the endboss was a star destroyer. It was awesome.
Jef told me that after JTL launched, he spent almost all his time in space. And that got us debating games-within-games — not timewastey /gems or card games, mind you, but the kind of large-scale game systems that are so rich and entertaining in their own right that they create entire subcultures dedicated to them and attract players who do little else in the game but that one thing.
We’re trying to think of others in today’s TDG. What’s the best game-within-a-game in the MMO space?
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!
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!
Up-and-coming PvP MMORPG Crowfall has been counting down a 40-day timer that ends next week, biding its time with announcements about its destruction-oriented voxel-based tech, physics engine, and new classes. Any guesses as to what’s happening when that timer runs out?
Read on for a look at the rest of this week’s top MMO stories.
This week saw the first concrete reveal of EVE Online‘s potentially revolutionary new Opportunities system, which promises to replace the current tutorial with a more sandbox-oriented alternative. Rather than leading players by the hand through a series of steps, the new system will give players looser goals to complete and let them explore the game at their own pace. It doesn’t sound like a huge change, but the opportunities system will completely change the way new players interact with the game. If it works as intended, this feature has the potential to solve EVE‘s notorious learning curve problem once and for all.
At the same time, I find myself excited for new opportunities outside the game as Massively relaunches as an independent site. Just a few weeks after we were informed that Massively was being shut down and we were all being let go, everyone on the team has pulled together and volunteered his or her time for free to create Massively Overpowered. It’s really good to be back, and I hope I can continue delivering your regular dose of EVE Online for years to come! Ultimately, though, the long-term viability of this column and all the other coverage at MassivelyOP depends on the success of our Kickstarter campaign and future funding through Patreon and advertising.
In this first edition of the reborn EVE Evolved, I discuss EVE‘s upcoming Opportunities feature and the effect it might have on the new player experience.
If you’ve been having a hard time finding companions to help you through your weekly heroic strikes in Destiny, then Bungie is sending patch 1.1.1 on a mission to rescue you (and others in your situation, of course).
In this week’s update post, the team said that a major addition with 1.1.1 will be a matchmaking service for weekly heroic strikes. According to the devs, most players didn’t have enough friends to participate in them and would benefit from being automatically grouped up with strangers. This change means that the weekly heroic cannot be soloed.
Bungie has thus far resisted adding any type of matchmaking or looking for group service for its raids. Other changes coming with 1.1.1 include balance tweaks, a reputation screen, and a fix to the heavy ammo bug.
[Source: Bungie weekly update
SOE Daybreak has been all about “F2P your way” for a couple of years now, but comments by EverQuest Next senior producer Terry Michaels and lead designer Darrin McPherson in a recent dev team Q&A indicate that the business model for both EQN and Landmark is very much up for discussion.
“Not every model for monetizing a game fits with every game type,” Michaels says. “Right now we believe that they’re going to be F2P games, but we’re not willing to say absolutely that’s what they’re going to be at this point in time.”
“We do not want to lock ourselves into one thing,” McPherson continued. “We want to make the best game possible.” Click past the cut to watch the video. If you want to skip ahead to the business model segment, it starts around the 16-minute mark.
How big is 2015 shaping up to be for Star Citizen fans? Pretty freaking big, if Chris Roberts‘ latest Letter from the Chairman is any indication. “We are entering into the tightest schedule we’ve ever had for public releases,” Roberts writes. “In short order, you will see Arena Commander 1.1 (now with REC!), the FPS module, and the so-called social module, our first foray into the persistent universe.”
Roberts has a lot more to say, including bits about the aforementioned REC, upcoming community events, and a playable version of the FPS module that will debut at PAX East.
[Source: Letter from the Chairman
This weekend’s Shroud of the Avatar post is a big one. Update of the Avatar #113 explains how the game’s single-player offline mode will function as compared to the online world, with particular emphasis on save games, companions, and spawning rules. Portalarium also says that a few items available for purchase in offline mode (like the castle and keep-sized lots) will not be available online. Finally, there will be no character transfers between the two modes.
SotA tech director Chris Spears also has a lot to say about the game’s economy, but you’ll need to click the source link below to read it!
[Source: Update #113
This will probably not come as a shock to you, but a lot of press was talking about World of Warcraft and Destiny last year.
ICO Media tallied up all of the article mentions of video games in 2014 and sorted them out according to categories. Destiny was near the top of the overall heap at 36,915 mentions. In the straight-up MMO category, World of Warcraft topped at 21,449 mentions, followed by Elder Scrolls Online, Final Fantasy XIV, WildStar and Guild Wars 2.
MOBA mentions were included as well, and League of Legends led the pack with 21,222 mentions. To illustrate just how much LoL dominates that part of the industry, the next game mentioned — Dota 2 — only had 11,069 mentions.
I’ve given dragons a lot of flack over the years for being overused, underwhelming stock MMO bosses when bears deserve top billing. But what about player dragon heroes? Where do they stand in my estimation?
I guess I’ll give them the scaly benefit of the doubt that they can do actual good in the world and be self-sacrificing for those in need, although it wouldn’t surprise me if most of them turned out to be raid villains in the making.
Our first One Shot for the day is from dragon-loving Jake: “This is Kahdesh’Hadhi, an Argonian Dragon Knight from Elder Scrolls Online. I think this game is beautiful, and I’ve taken more screenshots here in the past week than I have in any other game. It helps that the UI is so minimal that I’m much more immersed in the environment and aware of my surroundings on a regular basis.”