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See: ArcheAge

Massively OP’s guide to MMO Thanksgiving 2017

Stately resting between the gaudy purple and orange of Halloween and merry red and green of Christmas is the earth tone-saturated Thanksgiving. While no one’s favorite color scheme, Thanksgiving does give us a nice in-between holiday with family meals, an awkward dance around politics, a work day for football teams, and the occasional MMORPG holiday event.

While not every online game has decided to embrace the American holiday, enough pop up every year that need corralling. And since we just got turkey certified here at Massively OP, we’re going to lay out all of this week’s event options for you on a platter. So enjoy the festivities and dressing up like a Pilgrim for two days maximum before deeply questioning that fashion sense. Now jingly sleigh bells, size XXXL red suits, and reindeer antlers, that’s a smart look indeed!

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ArcheAge kicks off a festival of cooking

The Festival has arrived in ArcheAge. What’s it a festival about? Good question. Most festivals have a title of some sort, like “the harvest festival” or “the cooking festival.” Just calling it “the Festival” makes it sound like the villagers are mumbling about the Festival and how it will please the Old One. Luckily, it seems to just be your regular cooking festival, at least insofar as you can call any festival in which you can earn a shield shaped like a frying pan with an egg “regular.”

Yes, players can earn cooking-themed weapon skins, along with home decor, achievements, and special buffs. Take part in festival daily quests and timed quests for a variety of crafting and gathering chores, feed hungry cats, and cook special festival dishes. There’s something of a food-based holiday coming up later this week for players in the United States, so hopefully you’ll still have the appetite for a bit more cooking.

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Here’s the full list of Trion Worlds’ Black Friday deals

As you plan your Black Friday shopping strategy (ours: sleeping in and lazily shopping on Amazon Prime), Trion Worlds wants to help out by giving you a heads-up on all of the deals that the studio is throwing for its games next week. Here’s the rundown:

  • Trove: All starter packs will be 50% off during Thanksgiving week. All Class Packs, plus the Creators Pack, Collectors Pack, and Battle Pack will be 70% off, while the Essentials Edition and Double Dragon pack will be 80% off, through November 27th.
  • RIFT: Premium mounts will be 25% off from November 22nd through the 29th, and some previously lockbox-exclusive mounts will become available for direct purchase.
  • ArcheAge: Sales up to 80% off on certain items. Also, here thar be lockboxes.
  • Atlas Reactor: All packs will be 75% off and Golden Age skins will be discounted from the 22nd through the 28th.
  • Defiance: Players can get up to 65% off on Titan bundles and gold editions. Also, more lockboxes.
Source: Press release

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Massively Overthinking: Are modern games too cheap?

This week’s Massively Overthinking topic is a submission from reader and commenter camelotcrusade, who takes the industry’s current fight over monetization in a different direction from lockboxes. “Are modern games too cheap?” he asks, probably slowly reaching into a can of worms with a wicked gleam in his eye.

“When you think about it, many other things we buy have increased in price over the last decade but AAA games are still expected to be a maximum of $60, with many of us waiting for sales (or for free-to-play). Meanwhile, games everywhere are adding shops, post-release content, and DLC galore with increasingly aggressive pricing models. How much of this is to make-up margins they can’t capture up-front? How much should an AA game cost in 2017? $75? $90? Is there a price point where lockboxes, gambling, and in-game stores could focus on value-add instead of survival? And how did we get here? Whose fault is it? And how do we get out of this, or is ‘would you like a game with your store’ the future as we know it?”

Let’s talk money!

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ArcheAge promises better communication, but the community isn’t having it

A lengthy letter from the ArcheAge team about the state of the game and its direction forward isn’t making a lot of people in the community excited. On the contrary, Reddit lit up with grumblings and complaints over the post, with some taking particular umbrage with Trion’s claims of “more direct communication from the core ArcheAge team.”

“The letter doesn’t address any core problems the community has with the game. It doesn’t even acknowledge them,” one player posted.

“It’s a little disappointing not only for me but I imagine the community when you don’t change anything you say. It’s simply damage control on certain issues by distracting us with another,” said another.

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ArcheAge’s Maesltrom update adds PvP content and open-world raid tool December 6

ArcheAge fans! Trion has a doozy of a patch coming your way next month. Releasing December 6th, the 4.0 update is called Maelstrom and is dropping some nice new mechanics and PvP content.

“As revealed earlier this year, ArcheAge: Maelstrom brings players into Bloodsalt Bay, a new 20-player battleground and the game’s first PvP naval arena. Guide your ship’s crew of five into the waters of Bloodsalt Bay to face-off against monsters and terrors of the deep – all the while, three other crews fight to claim victory and earn the spoils of battle for themselves. Sow the seeds of fear at the very mention of your name in all-new cross-server arenas! Earn bounty galore as the reward for dominion over the seas.”

Trion is also touting a new open-world raid finder tool and a big revamp for the Lunagem system.

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Mobile MMO roundup: ArcheAge Begins, Paladins Strike, MU Origin, and Vendetta Online

Welcome back to another quick tour through the very latest in mobile MMORPG news. Let’s begin at the beginning with…

ArcheAge Begins

Yep, the GAMEVIL-produced mobile spinoff of this core sandbox MMORPG has released on both iOS and Android worldwide, with 100K players having signed up for pre-registration. “Developed with Unreal Engine 4, ArcheAge Begins features impressive-looking character models and environments, intense strategic battles and engrossing online multiplayer features,” GAMEVIL says. (Thanks, Jason!)

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Massively Overthinking: Is open-world housing really a ‘failed’ MMORPG experiment?

Massively OP’s Justin Olivetti has a provocative article on his personal gaming blog, Bio Break, this week on MMORPG housing.

“I once again wonder why open world housing is this holy grail that some players and developers seem hellbent on chasing,” he writes. “It’s an ideal, a beautiful mirage couched in the notion of players inhabiting the very world they play, allowing them to stroll through neighborhoods of fellow adventurer’s homes and basking in the connectivity of it all. Yet it’s a failed experiment, one that is proven time and again to have far more drawbacks than benefits.” After listing off his complaints with the mechanic, he ultimately concludes that “we simply don’t need fixed open world housing, even in sandboxes.”

But being Justin, he also asked for feedback on why the joys are worth the drawbacks – and how to fix the system so it works instead of running off the rails. That’s just what we’ll do in this week’s Overthinking. Is he right about not needing this type of housing? And if not, how would you fix open world housing?

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ArcheAge brings in a variety of haunting events for Hallowtide

Starting on Tuesday, October 24th, ArcheAge is getting into the spirit of Halloween. As we all know, the real meaning of Halloween is dressing up in costumes and enjoying bits of ghoulish glee, and you can rest assured that exactly that will arrive with the game’s many seasonal events. Honor the souls of the dead for festival tokens, or go about smashing pumpkins and picking up costumes and event crates. There’s also a special trade pack delivery route starting on October 18th, and it won’t bring you through festival areas, so you’ll be in greater danger the whole time.

You know what’s really scary as an ArcheAge player, though? Discussing servers. No, it’s not another merge, thankfully, it’s just opening up transfers to and from the game’s Evolution servers. Fresh Start servers remain sectioned off for the moment, but it wouldn’t be a proper Halloween season without a shiver of terror running down your spine. Even if it’s less terror at the thought of monsters and more at the thought of another land rush.

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EverQuesting: Celebrate everything Nights of the Dead with our EverQuest II guide

I may be disappointed with the lack of caring I feel is being shown to EverQuest II players by Daybreak/Columbus Nova, but that doesn’t mean I have stopped caring. I still do, even if I’m saddened. Thankfully, there are still EQII happy thoughts. And those happy thoughts are strong now! What better way to lift my spirits than with the festival celebrating my favorite holiday ever? Nights of the Dead has returned to Norrath, and I am going to revel in the glorious spookiness and collect all the goodies to adorn myself and my homes. I am celebrating Halloween in true Norrathian style, and you can too.

After years of growing, there’s so much to do and so much to get in this festival that it’s a good thing we have until Friday, November 3rd, at 2:59 a.m EDT to mummy-wrap everything up! With so much, where do you start? An awesome part about the Nights of the Dead event is that you don’t have to start at any one particular place; you can participate from pretty much anywhere (collecting candies), and even better, at any level (most quests scale). A reminder mail sent to everyone in-game points out where major event activities are transpiring, but it’s still easy to miss something. To help ensure you don’t miss out on any old or new content, here’s a guide to 2017’s Nights of the Dead.

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Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV patch 4.1 in review

Let me make an agreement with you, dear readers: this column about Final Fantasy XIV will not talk about the housing situation in Shirogane at all. If you’re wondering “why wouldn’t you cover that,” the answer is that I already did and you can read the whole feature on that. (You can also read the follow-up.) So for the remainder of this column, we’re going to talk about all of the other features of this particular patch, which seems like a better use of our time anyway.

Heck, the whole stupid housing mess was only released with this patch, it’s not like the mechanics or anything are new.

And hey, there’s some good stuff going on with this patch, along with parts that are well worth discussing for where they don’t work as well. So let’s dive right in, starting with the obvious centerpiece of every patch, the continued expansion of the game’s storyline… as perfunctory as it may feel sometimes. Some mild spoilers are possible, so be fairly warned.

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Trion Worlds entices players to support Extra Life charity with in-game rewards

If you haven’t heard already, tomorrow marks the start of a massive gaming marathon called Extra Life that will help raise much-needed funds to aid sick kids at the Children’s Miracle Network hospital. Among those forming teams and playing titles for this charity is Trion Worlds, which is encouraging its community to rally around this worthy cause.

Trion’s Extra Life marathon begins tomorrow afternoon, during which the dev team will stream non-stop for 24 hours. To encourage and entice players to join the team in this fundraising effort, Trion is offering a bounty of virtual goods based on the amount of money raised.

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