beta testing

Betawatch: Ascent: Infinite Realm is already heading to Korean beta (November 17, 2017)

Let me tell you, I’m really glad that Ascent: Infinite Realm already has a publishing deal for the west, because otherwise I would be figuratively biting my nails about the game’s first beta test in South Korea. I only just learned it existed, sure, but it’s a game about steampunk mechs and airships. If we get superheroes and cats, that’s pushing most of my buttons right away.

More beta news? Sure, what the hey!

That’s a lot of questions followed by shouted responses, but we assure you there is less shouting in our list of games in testing down below. You can still respond to us in the comments, though; we like to hear from you. Especially if some game swapped test phases without us knowing about it. Those are useful responses!

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Paladins goes full auto with Vivian

Would you rather have a trove of ancient technology at your fingertips or a modern arsenal of rapid-fire weaponry?

Paladins’ newest champion, Vivian, doesn’t have to make this nail-biting choice. The multiplayer title’s 14th character comes onto the scene toting drones, deflector shields, and a no-nonsense machine gun. “Vivian’s abilities are all about outwitting her enemies with ancient technology then destroying them with a relentless barrage of firepower,” the team posted.

Vivian arrived in Paladins’ Open Beta 63 patch this past Wednesday. The update includes an improved daily quest rewards system, a new type of victory spray that shows off your stats, and a new category of chest that allows players to roll to obtain full skin collections.

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PvE Zombie MMO Dead Maze has landed on Steam in closed beta

I think we’ve officially passed the zombie craze in online games, or at least it feels that way to me as new zombie games are starting to feel like retro throwbacks. So it is with new isometric “zombie MMO” Dead Maze, which just landed in CBT on Steam.

“Set in the Western United States, where humanity has been devastated by a plague of the undead, player cooperation takes center stage in Dead Maze, with thousands of players having to explore, scavenge, and work together to survive and rebuild society. With the start of the closed beta, players can discover the destroyed world of Dead Maze, build their new home and craft their own supplies, team up with their friends and battle the dozens of different types of zombies, using over 200 different items and weapons. More content will be added to the closed beta and all progress made will be carried over into the full game, when it is released in 2018.”

Intriguingly, this isn’t Just Another PvP Gankbox Where The Player Is The Content. “Player versus player combat is not featured,” says French studio Atelier 801. “Instead, the danger comes from the wide array of aggressive zombies that roam the world.”

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Black Desert devs responds to datamining dust-up with stat transparency and apologies

Remember a week ago when Black Desert dataminers dug up dirt on the game’s so-called hidden stats, only to be booted off the subreddit by mods doing Pearl Abyss’ bidding? Remember how the dataminers just put it all up on a different sub beyond the reach of PA, practically daring PA to follow through on the legal action it threatened dataminers with earlier this year?

Consider the situation effectively defused. Kakao has apologized for creating “confusion among [its] beloved players by failing to deliver accurate information,” promising clarity on those stats. Indeed, clarity is arriving in the form of a producer letter from Pearl Abyss (which also apologizes profusely).

Executive Producer Jae-hee Kim says PA now plans to add accuracy, evasion, and damage reduction numbers to tooltips, noting that while hidden stats seemed like a fun idea originally, there is now too much of a “gap” between people in the know and everyone else. The studio also aims to tweak “ambiguity” on elixirs, boost drop rates party to the node level system, and provide transparency on future stats.

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Earth Eternal’s player-run emulator just patched in tons of new stuff

Scroll back in your brain a decade to 2007, when Sparkplay announced it was building an MMORPG called Earth Eternal, a free-to-play, microtransaction-based MMO (yes, that early) notable for its purely anthropomorphic races, PvP, and clan-centric gameplay, which actually had a solid if small following and earned plenty of praise. Following an open beta in 2009, Sparkplay went bankrupt and sold the game to Japanese company Sankando, which operated a beta version with spotty uptime in 2011 and apparently closed down at the end of that year.

Since then, fans have put together several other emulators and communities that I can find, the most recent of which is Earth Eternal: The Anubian War. In fact, the srver apparently came online last year and has been steadily updating since. Most recently – this past weekend – the player team updated with the Valkal’s Shadow patch and infrastructure tweaks to boot. The update boasts a new region, new quests, new dungeons, a new town, a new storyline, a new book system, near gear, and on and on. Not too shabby!

Source: Anubian War, Wikipedia. Cheers, Johnathan!

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Netmarble mobile MMO Lineage 2 Revolution has officially launched

As the Google Play app on my phone frantically notified me this morning, Lineage 2 Revolution has officially launched itself right on out of open beta and into the wilds of western app stores in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Oceania. In fact, 1.5M players apparently signed up for those same frantic notifications. We’re frantic notification twinsies!

Lineage 2: Revolution is a free-to-play mobile MMORPG based on the popular PC online game IP Lineage 2, which has entertained more than 30 million players since it first debuted. Lineage 2: Revolution stays true to its PC roots, displaying a stunning open field, raids, 200-player castle sieges, character re-designs and classes, all in a mobile environment. A fully-featured MMORPG provides seamless open-world environments, real-time 3vs3, 5vs5, 20vs20 and 50vs50 PvP battles, as well as lifelike fantasy world with dazzling graphics backed by the Unreal 4 engine.”

Netmarble is rather hoping the game does as well globally as it already did in Asia, where the title became “the top grossing game on Google Play and App Store in 11 additional Asian territories”; in Japan, it apparently “became the top grossing game on the App Store in just 18 hours.” It’s a high bar, peeps. Get to downloading!

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Grab a MU Legend starter pack key from Webzen and Massively OP!

Have you checked out MU Legend’s open beta yet? Apparently you’re in a quickly dwindling group. Webzen announced today that it’s had so many downloads that it’s “opened additional servers dedicated to EU, US and SEA regions in order to provide space for everyone to play the game.” In fact, Webzen has granted Massively OP starter pack keys to get even more people in and playing. The starter pack includes three days of Platinum Service, a three-day Type A Costume, a set of three-day Constellation wings, and 10 Holy recovery potions.

Click the Mo button below (and prove you’re not a robot) to grab one of these keys!

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Peria Chronicles is not at G-Star, reportedly to save demo development time

If you’ve forgotten about Peria Chronicles, you can get a refresher in the game’s trailer from last year down below. And that’s more news than you’ll get about the game from Nexon at this year’s G-Star conference, as Peria Chronicles is conspicuously absent. For those of you who have been following the game, that’s going to be worrisome. Is it still coming? Is the game on track?

Steparu reports that the reason for the game’s absence is entirely down to a question of how long it takes to prepare a demo. The developers want to start moving into beta testing and the like this winter, which necessitates focusing less on making a demo and more on getting the game into a better state. Plausible? Sure, why not. But then, Nexon isn’t bringing a bunch of its in-progress games to the conAstellia Online, Mabinogi Fantasy Life Mobile, Tree of Savior Mobile Remake, Elsword M Shadow of Luna, Durango Wild Lands, and the Final Fantasy XI Rebooot will all apparently be no-shows.

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EA claims Star Wars Battlefront II’s business model aims to ‘provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment’

Some awards, you do not want to win. The Darwin award, for example. Or “worst business model of the year.” Or “most downvoted comment of all time on Reddit because you have the worst business model of the year,” which EA managed to score this past weekend.

In response to players continuing to riot over Star Wars Battlefront II’s obnoxious business model – specifically, the part where people are upset that key characters are locked behind an additional paywall in a game they already paid $80 for – EA trotted out the old “sense of pride and accomplishment” line. Seriously. They said that. Out loud.

“The intent is to provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment for unlocking different heroes. As for cost, we selected initial values based upon data from the Open Beta and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before launch. Among other things, we’re looking at average per-player credit earn rates on a daily basis, and we’ll be making constant adjustments to ensure that players have challenges that are compelling, rewarding, and of course attainable via gameplay. We appreciate the candid feedback, and the passion the community has put forth around the current topics here on Reddit, our forums and across numerous social media outlets. Our team will continue to make changes and monitor community feedback and update everyone as soon and as often as we can.”

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Bluehole’s Ascent: Infinite Realm prepares for its first beta on December 13th

Let’s get the bad news out of the way right out of the gate. The first beta for Ascent: Infinite Realm (the next game from Bluehole Studios, remember) is going to be in Korean, seeing as how the game is being developed by a Korean studio and all. If you’re looking forward to the game and your only language spoken is English, you will be out of luck. But at least you may not be out of luck very long, as the game is heading into beta quickly, with the first test starting up on December 13th.

Players will be able to experiment with all five of the game’s classes (Sorcerer, Mystic, Warlord, Gunner, and Assassin) as well as playing around with the game’s airships for some of the PvP modes. Check out a trailer and screenshots below; you may not be able to get into the game’s first round of beta testing, but with the fast pace it’s got for that first test, you can hope it’ll be coming over sooner rather than later. At least we know that Kakao is bringing it out over here.

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Betawatch: Closers Online has a closed beta (November 10, 2017)

Here’s this week’s test of age: When you see the title of Closers Online, is your first thought along the lines of “help me, I’ve torn apart my insides” or “four years, no call, now you’re looking pretty in a hotel bar”? It really doesn’t matter either way; the game just entered closed beta, so you can buy a founder’s pack to get in whether you want to growl about losing yourself in bed or sing about stealing mattresses from roommates.

Meanwhile, we bid farewell to Mu Legend as it moves into open beta, which rhymes with “soft launch” in this case.

Other beta news? Not a whole lot, but it’s still there if you know where to look! Specifically, toward games in testing. That’s where to look.

  • After ages of tests and rumors, Lineage Eternal is being rebooted as Project TL, which is… we’d like to say a step closer to release? It’s not actually even in consistent testing, see.
  • The second week of early testing for Prosperous Universe apparently felt a lot slower than the first one in terms of gameplay. But that’s still providing lots of technical data, so it counts as a net win.
  • The plans are set for OrbusVR’s early access schedule once December rolls around, but it’s still in a beta state for the rest of November. There’s a plan, and that plan is important.

While the week may have been quiet (read: while the week was totally quiet), there’s still a whole list of games on the testing docket just below. If you’re curious, you can jump on down there and check them out, but you can also let us know about the tests you’ve personally been checking out down in the comments. And if you’ve seen a game on the list that seems to have changed states without us noticing? Do let us know with specificity, that helps us yank things from the list.

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Perfect Ten: A list of all the MMORPGs I supposedly hate

Did you know about all the MMOs I hate? I sure as heck didn’t! I mean, I knew there were a few games I hated (Scarlet Blade, Alganon) and some that I have pretty poor feelings toward for various reasons (Star Citizen, EVE Online, League of Legends, H1Z1: Kash of the Kow), but those are also games I discuss only in particular circumstances.

Yet thankfully, I have been informed over the near-decade of writing about MMOs that there are a number of games I thought I liked but that I do, in fact, hate. This was a surprise to me, but I think that for purposes of comprehension, it’s best for me to list for reference all the games that I apparently utterly despise. It’s all very confusing to me, but I’m confident that by sharing and making the occasional off-color joke, I’ll be able to decipher it all.

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OrbusVR outlines its early access schedule for December

The production schedule for OrbusVR is speeding right along, and the game is just about ready to head into early access. For a given value of “just about,” anyhow; November is still going to be all about the closed beta starting on November 15th. But when that ends on December 8th, players can mark their calendars for the early access head start on December 13th, and from that point on the game is playing for keeps.

Yes, really; the game’s early access period will feature no more wipes or rollbacks, whether you’re part of the headstart or have to start on the general early access period on December 15th. That’s also when fans will be able to gift the game to others, incidentally. So if you’re excited for the game but don’t like playing MMOs when you know there will be progress wipes, get ready to dive in with a will in mid-December.

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