Summertime does seem to be ripe territory for MMORPGs to release sizable content updates in the hopes of keeping players occupied and luring back in the bored and nomadic in the larger community.
Making a pitch for your attention today is RIFT, which has just released the latest segment of its Prophecy of Ahnket expansion cycle with Patch 4.2: Celestial Storm. As players head into the newest endgame zone of the MMO, what will they discover?
A few words on that: Beauty. Challenge. Epic feuds. Rewards. And a crapton to do.
Hula-hoops and cats — they go together like cats and anything else that cats aren’t especially known to do. But somehow Atlas Reactor is making it work with NEV:3, a catgirl character who uses Tron-like hoops for ranged damage. Plus, she’s got a cat face emoticon in her name, so you know she means business.
NEV:3 joined the game’s cast yesterday in the Chapter 3 update: “With her custom-made catarangs, NEV:3 can prove to be quite catastrophic to her enemies. Her catarangs can be dished out to deal damage and will stay out for a turn. Afterwards, the catarang returns to NEV:3 dealing reduced damage along the path to her.”
Whether you’re on board with this catastrophe or not, Atlas Reactor is activating a double ISO weekend from July 14th through the 16th for everyone, so it might be worth setting aside some time to rack up extra advancement.
There’s been a reshuffling in Trion Worlds’
ranks this past week, as ArcheAge
Senior Community Manager Seraphina “Celestrata” Brennan announced on the forums
that she has been bumped up to become the game’s associate producer.
“I’m really happy to let you all know that I’m your new associate producer,” Brennan said. “I’ll be joining Khrolan and Amary on the production team side of things, so don’t worry that someone’s going to go somewhere. You’ll still see me posting on the forums and Reddit too, though perhaps not as much as I use to. My time is going to have to go towards behind-the-scenes work and planning, after all!”
Taking over for Brennan as senior CM is Joe “Muzzy” Brogno, who transferred over from the Atlas Reactor team back in June.
Hey, you there! If you didn’t already know it, Atlas Reactor appreciates your playing. As a reward for all of that appreciation, players can get some free stuff this weekend, which is a pretty great sign of appreciation. Players who log in between July 6th and July 9th will get an item pack containing three freelancers (Aurora, Elle, and Titus) along with a skin for each, three loot matrices for each, and a Mega Lancer Enhancer to massively improve Freelancer experience for seven days.
Players can also look forward to more experience and Flux earned from matches during the event, so even if the items themselves don’t delight you, the overall incentive might. And while there’s a little bonus for those who already own the item pack containing every single freelancer, you can grab these items even if you’ve never downloaded and played before now. That’s the sort of generosity you can appreciate, especially if you stop in for the event.
After some ups and downs this afternoon — everybody loves the “try again later” message, right? — Valve’s summer Steam sale is finally underway and stable. Here’s what we’re looking at in our corner of the gaming world.
There’s a new sheriff on ArcheAge’s forums, and his fearsome name is Muzzy.
Trion Worlds announced Joe Brogno, otherwise known as “Muzzy” to the studio’s community, was being transferred over from Atlas Reactor to ArcheAge as the fantasy MMO’s newest CM. Brogno won’t be replacing Seraphina Brennan, as she will remain as the game’s senior community manager.
The team revealed the shift in personnel on a Twitch livestream, which wasn’t exactly received with open arms by the community. On the forums, players expressed indignation over the new CM’s alleged ignorance about the basic concepts of the game and Trion’s decision to ignore pressing issues in favor of promoting some of its cash shop items. You can watch the stream after the break and decide for yourself.
Season 3 has dropped in Trion’s Atlas Reactor today, introducing the brand-new Hyperforge map and a brand-new support hero, Meridian.
“He blurs the line between Frontline and Support, and doesn’t feel the burden of carrying the p.u.g.s! He’s the royal Hyperion Primus that hefts a massive 2-handed hammer powered by old Reactor tech. His ultimate shields his nearby teammates turn after turn, helping keep his Firepower’s alive to win trades. He’ll launch with a Necrolancer alternate skin that is scary enough to win games through skintimidation.”
Trion’s also rolling out new skins, new achievement tracking and badges for the season, and the return of the Extraction game mode. The ranked component of the season kicks off two weeks from now and also includes special rewards for those who jump in. We’ve got all the new images of Meridian below — enjoy!
If you don’t like tricks and jokes, just stop reading right now, turn the lights off, and go climb back into bed. Nothing on the internet is going to bring you joy today, so just sit this one out. Trust us.
For everyone else, there’s April Fools’ Day! Follow along as we rattle off all the great MMORPG pranks and events we’ve found so far this morning.
Ready for sappy questlines, particle effects that look like hearts, and lots — and I do mean lots — of pink? Valentine’s day has arrived in the real world and many of the pretend worlds inside MMORPGs (for some reason). And who are we to fuss when the events are all about candy and cheap romance? Nobody, that’s who. Read on for our guide to Valentine’s Day around the MMORPG verse!
No more half-measures of being free-to-play for Atlas Reactor
; with the game’s most recent patch, the title is entirely free-to-play. Not just mostly
free-to-play or sort of
free-to-play. Get out of here with your “freemium” nonsense, that’s not even a real word. The patch
lets players purchase freelancers with Flux (earned in-game) or real money, and those who have already purchased the game will receive 50,000 flux along with a whole lot of other bonuses.
This patch also includes Brynn, the Skywarden, wielding a shield and lance as a front-line menace to enemy teams. There’s also the start of Season 2 and a whole lot of incremental updates to the balance of various characters, so the metagame will shift slightly no matter what. And since the game is fully free-to-play now, you don’t have to take our word for it; you can just jump in and try out the expanded and rebalanced game yourself.
Do you want to test out Brynn the Skywarden in Atlas Reactor? You can do that right now on the game’s test server. You can even stream about her and sing her praises on every available forum. The developers are fine with it; it’s a public test server, there’s no NDA. But even if you don’t want to play around with Brynn, you may want to check out the test server, as there have been extensive balance changes to a wide variety of characters.
Aurora, Asana, and Nix have all received some downgrades, as Trion felt all three characters were a bit too easy to play successfully; by contrast, Orion, Blackburn, and Juno have all gotten buffed up. And that’s not counting the smaller tweaks to specific mods or other options to ensure that the game has a more balanced environment. You don’t have to just read about the changes, though; as mentioned, you can try them out. Right now, if you’re at a place where you can run the game (your work may be very accepting).
Good things are on the horizon for Trion Worlds’ plucky Atlas Reactor, which is getting ready to go into its second season next week.
According to the game’s recent producer’s newsletter, Season 2 is set to debut on January 17th with “a ton of major improvements and enhancements.” Chief among these is the ability for gamers to now earn (in addition to purchase outright) freelancers by playing the game. The studio will be handing out special gifts to those who have already spent money on these playable characters as a thank you.
Trion said that this has been the most-requested feature since Atlas Reactor’s launch: “By making the game fully free-to-play we give more players the opportunity to experience everything Atlas Reactor has to offer. Now, players will be able to play the game for free, earn some freelancers along the way, and at any time they can upgrade to a premium pack to get all current and future freelancers.”
Among its features, Season 2 will include a new, unidentified freelancer, rotating game modes, balance tweaks, and a reworked tutorial.
When the sun goes down, the Battle Bards’ work has just begun! In this week’s episode, the crew explores nighttime music cues in MMOs, chasing the ever-elusive feel of what that period between dusk and dawn sounds like in game. Don’t fall asleep!
Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Player.FM.
We’ve got Episode 89: Nightfall and the show notes for you after the break!