Anatomy of Murder dares you to solve a murder mystery for cash

Think you’re the world’s greatest sleuth since Sherlock? Then you might want to try your hand at a new massive online murder mystery challenge, especially since there’s a sizable cash prize attached.

Anatomy of Murder is an episodic experience that players can explore through their browsers or phones. Within the two 45-minute video episodes is reportedly everything needed to solve the mystery. By picking the correct combination of killer and motive, players will have a shot at winning the AU$250,000 prize.

The game has been in the works for 13 years and plans for a sequel are already underway.

[Source: PR Newswire, Anatomy of Murder]

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Watch Dota 2’s Red Bull Battle Grounds America regionals… now

Dota 2’s Red Bull Battle Grounds e-sports event has been winding its away across the world with only one regional champ left to be decided: the American one.

Teams from Europe, China, Russia, and Southeast Asia have already competed to crown their regional victors; today’s winning American team will join the other four at the playoffs in Santa Monica a week from today, with the final champion being crowned the following Sunday. In fact, you can still grab tickets for the live Grand Finals on May 10th in San Francisco; the cheapie seats are only 40 bucks.

Who’s representing the Americas?

America’s Champion will be decided on April 28th when brand-new-to-DotA ROOT GAMING faces off against long-time juggernaut TINKER in the same group as DotA 2 Badboy Jimmy “DeMoN” Ho’s SUMMER’S RIFT and Peruvian super-squad NOT TODAY.

The action begins live at 5 p.m. EDT; enjoy the stream below!
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Massively OP Podcast: Episode 11

After a short one-week hiatus, the Massively OP Podcast is back and has brought another guest co-host along for the ride! We spend a lot of time this week looking at older games, including shocking (sort of) revelations about a certain spacey MMO. We’re sure you can guess which one.

Join us on the podcast as we talk about what we’ve been playing in MMOs, the top news stories from the past week, and topics that listeners have submitted!

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EVE’s Mosaic update is now live

CCP has successfully upgraded EVE Online with today’s Mosaic patch. The new Opportunities tutorial system is now available for all newbs, and the patch also introduces cruiser-sized burner missions, new structure assembly effects, a Tech 3 destroyer rebalance, a balance pass on low- and nullsec ores, and more.

You can read the full patch notes here, or peruse the new Updates site for the highlights!

[Source: Announcement post]

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Perfect World to become privately owned

Perfect World is no longer a publicly traded company, as founder Michael Yufeng Chi made a deal to take the company private.

Chi will take over Perfect World by merging it into a new company, Perfect Peony Holding Co., which is located in the Cayman Islands. Current investors will receive $4.04 a share as part of the buyout. The deal is made possible by a $900 million loan from a Chinese bank, is approved of by the board, and will go forward later in 2015.

Perfect World Entertainment, the game division of Perfect World, recently made the headlines due to a series of layoffs worldwide.

[Source: Washington Post. Thanks to Paraxes for the tip!]

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Guild Wars recalls what a long, strange trip it’s been

As you might have already been aware, today is the original Guild Wars’ 10th anniversary. To mark the occasion, Community Manager Gaile Gray wrote up a post in which she walks down memory lane to talk about the formation of ArenaNet, the debut of Guild Wars Prophecies, and the game’s subsequent updates.

“I think it says a great deal about the company’s founding philosophy that — years before the release of their game — they were thinking not solely of development but were also thinking about how to communicate with their future players and fans,” Gray notes.

The article covers several quotes from current and former ArenaNet team members while noting some of the game’s important milestones. With 10 years of Guild Wars behind us, what are some of your favorite memories from the game?

[Source: Guild Wars 2]

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The Soapbox: Making your own fun in MMORPGs

This guest Soapbox was commissioned through Massively Overpowered’s Kickstarter campaign and is authored by Chris “Warcabbit” Hare, a developer at Missing Worlds Media. The opinions here represent the views of our guest author and not necessarily Massively OP itself. Enjoy!

Howdy, all. I’m Chris “Warcabbit” Hare, project lead at City of Titans, and I’d like to spend a few moments talking about the things that we, as game designers, can’t do for players.
I call it making your own fun.

There are several things that make an MMO an MMO, but one of the most important elements is the entire “massively” part of “massively multiplayer online.” More than just a team, and bigger than a raid, it’s everyone around you.

And people get rewards from being in this ocean of players, whether they’re showing off their best armor, getting a little help in a public event, or playing the auction house economy. None of those systems would work without a lot of other people around.

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DCUO’s stat flattening is not the end of the world

One upcoming change to DC Universe Online has some players concerned, although it may not be as bad as feared. Daybreak announced that it will be flattening stats in Game Update 47 to better match players’ power with the appropriate enemy levels.

“In order to provide a more consistent experience while progressing through the game and decrease the stat difference between low and higher CR characters, stat progression in general has been flattened,” Daybreak said in its patch notes.

To allay fears that this will nerf characters to the ground, one player has posted a series of videos and analysis to show that it the changes are “not a nightmare,” although she admitted that they increase the challenge of the game in some areas.

[Source: Patch notes, forum]

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Dark Age of Camelot welcomes traveling merchants, prepares next patch

If the latest Dark Age of Camelot newsletter is any indication, the team and community are crazy involved with this classic RvR MMO. Broadsword said last night that it is preparing Patch 1.118 for late May or early June with “exciting new content” as well as fixes for pet pathing issues, revamps to several old dungeons, and improvements to the casual group finder.

The team says that a traveling merchant with special wares is visiting the game until May 4th and invites players to apply to be one of a select few volunteer helpers. As for upcoming events, the newsletter reports that a 5v5 free-for-all tournament is in the works, as are tweaks to the UI, the new account center (scheduled for this fall), and the reskinned Camelot Herald (coming before the end of the year).

[Source: Newsletter]

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Hyperspace Beacon: Hands-on with SWTOR’s Rise of the Emperor update

If you read the last Hyperspace Beacon, then you know that BioWare’s announcement that Ziost is finally hitting Star Wars: The Old Republic excited me beyond reason. Ziost is one of those planets that really should make a mark on the SWTOR universe because of its significance in Star Wars ancient history. Unfortunately, that also means that BioWare has a lot to live up to when it comes to creating this planet. We are, of course, talking about the former capital world of the Sith Empire and the home of the first Dark Lord of the Sith Ajunta Pall.

This past weekend I played through the Ziost storyline myself. And to make sure I had a rounded perspective, I watched a few videos playthroughs of the planetary quests too. Specifically, I’d like to mention Vulkk, who produces a monstrous swath of videos about all the SWTOR content. I watched his Republic playthrough just to make sure that I didn’t really miss anything as far as the story was concerned.

As you will come to understand after reading this, the story on Ziost feels incomplete, and frankly, the quest layout is really weird compared to all the previous quests.

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Children’s Week returns to World of Warcraft

Won’t somebody please think of the children! Oh… someone did? And there’s a whole week dedicated to those wee ‘uns without parents? Now we feel like a heel.

Children’s Week has returned to World of Warcraft, giving every player the chance to be a big brother or sister to orphaned tykes. Of course, you’re not just doing this out of the kindness of your heart; you can earn one of several special pets by taking an orphan on tour of the world. This year there are a few new rewards, including a pet care package and a couple of toys.

The event is already underway and will end on Monday, May 4th.

[Source: Children’s Week via BlizzardWatch]

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Shadowrun Chronicles: Boston Lockdown launches today

After quite a while in early access testing and a significant name change that appears to have displaced much of the “online” component of the game, Shadowrun Chronicles is officially launching today with its first campaign, Boston Lockdown.

The launch is accompanied by several balancing changes, a polishing pass, and plenty of bug fixes. Players can form a team of “runners” to tackle missions with turn-based combat in this cyberpunk setting. While it can be experienced completely solo, there is an option to join up with other players in hubs for a co-op run.

The standard version of Shadowrun Chronicles is $40 while the deluxe version will run you $60.

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Dev polls community about bringing back original Darkfall Online

Are you unsatisfied with the way that Darkfall Online has progressed after transforming into Unholy Wars? There may be a window of opportunity to undo all of that and bring the game or at least a copy of the game back to what it used to be — if that’s a concern of yours, of course.

Aventurine’s Axilmar put out a poll to the community on Reddit asking whether players want the game to revert back to its former state: “This an informal poll of mine, not a company one, since the last few days I’ve read many posts that say ‘bring back DFO.’ So, I’d like to see if there is actually any real interest in bringing back DFO. If there is, i.e. if there are many upvotes, let’s say over 5,000, so as that one can support this as a business proposal, I will ask my managers to check this out.”

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