Is Call of Duty the next Activision franchise to migrate to Battlenet? Very likely. As Eurogamer broke earlier this month, players are now able to link their Call of Duty accounts to Battle.net – no doubt in anticipation for Black Ops 4.
I bring this up to MMO players because of the potential impact on World of Warcraft – specifically, token prices – as WoW players buy and sell their tokens to spend down their Blizzard balance to buy up the new CoD title (or cash in on the flurry). Redditors are current speculating about the incoming speculation, arguing that tokens prices have been relatively stable over the past few months, spiking for the Battle for Azeroth hoopla but ultimately settling back down. In fact, just covering the potential for a spike can cause a spike, one poster points out. Gamers will recall a similar situation last year when Destiny 2 landed on Battlenet, sending the token to record heights.
And that leads us to some Leaderboard fun. Do you speculate on WoW Tokens or other legal MMO RMT currency (like PLEX, C.R.E.D.D, etc.), or do you stay the heck away from that noise? Multiple responses are allowed!
Two Destinies for the price of one! For this episode, the Battle Bards are gearing up in their favorite space armor to take on highlights from both of the Destiny soundtracks. From buyer’s regret to confusing the gender of a key character, there is all sorts of on-air therapy happening with this kooky trio!
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.
Listen to Episode 117: Destiny (or download it) now:
Albion Online’s Lancelot update, its third major release since launch, is officially live this morning. The star of the update, as we’ve previously covered, is the new fishing system. “Cast a line into Albion’s rivers, lakes and oceans to gather fish, then cook them into meals, enhance other foods, or sell them in the Marketplace,” Sandbox Interactive says. “Different biomes and settings offer different types of fish, as do freshwater and saltwater. Explore an all-new Destiny Board path and discover new fishing gear. Seek out rare fish that offer increased bonuses and hunt for sunken treasures all across Albion.”
The update also includes a big overhall for the guild UI and other quality-of-life guild features, new hellgates, new artifact armor, combat tweaks, improved game performance, roaming mobs, a new expedition, and the launch of the second GvG season.
Current and lapsed players will be happy to know that logging in between now and March 19th will nab you seven free days of premium sub time, so go have a looksee.
Let us make an already interesting MMO news day a bit more so, shall we? How about the introduction of a brand-new, full-fledged MMORPG in development with AAA credentials and some notable game industry vets at the helm?
The game in question is code-named Project C, a sci-fi MMO that takes place on a single-shard hostile world. It sounds incredibly intriguing and not afraid of to embrace the massively multiplayer experience:
Project C invites the players to explore, conquer and dominate a massive hostile persistent sci-fi world. The game offers players genuine innovation in game design with emphasis on emergent memorable gameplay moments: a single-shard virtual world, continuously updated with new chapters of the game’s story, containing a fully simulated ecosystem of creatures and resources, in which player choices create permanent changes.
Fishing has become a hot topic in MMOs this week, thanks to the likes of RuneScape and Albion Online. The latter will see the implementation of fishing in next week’s Lancelot update.
“With the new fishing system, Sandbox Interactive hopes to achieve three major goals: to add a fun new activity for all players, to integrate this activity into Albion’s economy and create interesting economic choices, [and] to implement a relatively simple feature which nonetheless adds depth for players,” the studio’s PR explains. “For example, there is a new Destiny Board path available for fishing, a fishing journal is available for the player’s house, and adventurers can even defeat a massive boss fish and craft it into a trophy.”
In Albion’s latest dev video, Game Director Robin Henkys calls the system the game’s “first major economic addition” since its launch last summer. It’s basically a wind-down mechanic for when you’re retiring from a hard day’s work wrecking faces, as one does, but the idea was to make it engrossing enough to stand on its own too. You can listen to his whole talk in the video below.
After reading through the most recent Destiny 2
patch notes, you can join us in a sigh of relief at the fact that the game has enabled opt-in text chat only for PC players in social spaces and public areas
. Clearly adding more to that system (which basically every single PC game with multiplayer has had over the past three decades) would lead to mass hysteria and a breakdown of everything in the MMO. But perhaps we should just be happy that text chat is there now
, even if it’s in a limited format.
More relevant for players on all platforms is the addition of strike scoring for Nightfall, the marquee feature for the update. Players will score points for both kills and orb generation, with players who score above a certain threshold enabling an aura and a token bonus. (That’s “bonus to tokens,” not “a bonus that’s just a token bonus.”) Players can also enjoy new Nightfall challenge cards and variants on emblems, so check out the full patch notes before you go storming back into the game with full firepower.
I recently went on a rant about gaming, but it wasn’t directed at gaming. It was in defense of gaming. I am so weary of our pastime getting slammed as wrong, evil, or equated as an automatic addiction. Games are bad! Gamers are bad! It is what the mainstream media portrays, it’s what politicians portray, and it is what those with an agenda want John Q. Public to believe. I have been seeing this media-fueled fallacy more and more often coming from good people and it drives me bonkers.
So after a slew of comments of that sort happened in a very diverse group I am a part of, I felt I needed to educate some of these otherwise wonderful folks about the topic. While I have no desire to tell folks what they can or can’t do in their own home or when raising their family, I really wish people would stop vilifying video games and gamers. I feel it is important to combat misinformation that leads to misjudgment.
No development plan survives first contact with the community, and Bungie freely admits that its previous Destiny 2
roadmap was subject to change at any moment for any reason.
Hence, an updated and revised roadmap was published this week that takes players from next week’s Patch 1.1.3 through May’s Patch 1.2. A few features have been shuffled around, such as the delay of what would have been 1.1.3’s Nightfall Strike unique weapons to March’s Patch 1.1.4.
“We also have a big addition we’re eager to share,” Bungie said, “Rumble will be joining 6v6 Iron Banner and Mayhem in our new rotating weekly Crucible playlist in 1.1.4. We want to make sure players have a more diverse set of game modes available in both Crucible and Private Matches. Doubles is also planned to return, but we do not have an exact release date just yet.”
Take a gander at the latest development roadmap after the jump!
One of the advantages to computer RPGs, I’ve always thought, is that you don’t need a friend who you can alternately sucker or bribe into taking on 80% of the work that’s involved in making a tabletop RPG fun. You just turn on the game and it goes. The downside, of course, is that you also don’t have the advantages of having a GM in charge of the game, so you don’t get that personal connection and that sense of familiarity.
Except that’s not entirely accurate, is it? Yes, these games do not have a person eagerly perched behind a screen explaining how your characters have screwed everything up forever, but you still do get the same sense of a specific GM guiding the game over time. Because there are certain quirks, certain constants, and over time a feel to the game that informs what sort of GM you’ve got running the game. So let’s talk about the GMs running some games.
I warn you that if you’ve never played any sort of tabletop game, this column may not make a whole lot of sense. But if you’ve never played any tabletop RPGs I don’t understand how you live and thus cannot promise to target you reliably. Sorry.
Destiny 2’s Nightfall strikes are in the wings, waiting for their turn to receive some love and adjustments. This should happen soon, as Bungie plans on getting rid of the pass-fail timer and replacing it with other criteria that will score varying degrees of success. Also, players can pick up challenge cards with handicaps that add a score multiplyer to their runs.
“Fireteams of any size should be able to participate, from organized clan groups to skilled solo players,” promised Game Director Christopher Barrett. “Players should be able to determine their own challenge level, by going slow and steady or fast and wild, with elective modifiers to test the most hardcore veterans.” Read more
With revenues and net bookings up, Activision Blizzard is riding high going into 2018. CEO Bobby Kotick introduced the Q4 2017 report by saying that it was “a record quarter to cap off a record year for Activision Blizzard.”
The studio’s net revenues shot up 6% to $7.02 billion and its revenues were up 1%, bringing in $2.04 billion during the quarter. The company’s stock price took a dip that it attributes to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, however. More than $4 billion of that net revenue came from in-game microtransactions, half of which came from the company’s PC and console titles.
Destiny 2 and Overwatch did its part to push earnings, with the former being the second-highest-grossing console game for 2017 in North America. Overwatch has witnessed “higher engagement” since its Overwatch League began. And while Blizzard continues to not report on the population of any given game, the studio said that it had 40 million monthly active users during the quarter.
It takes two in the new Destiny 2 Crimson Days event
. Specifically, players are tasked with taking on a 2v2 Clash and a new Burnout variant in which two players must group together in order to keep the light from fading completely. In other words, you’ll need to work together with a partner in order to earn rewards and pick up new mounts, emotes, and decorations. It’s about as romantic as you can get in a game that’s chiefly concerned with shooting one another, let’s be real.
Should that not work with you, it’s important to note that the official forum rules are being changed somewhat, so you might not actually be able to complain about it on the official forums. If you haven’t yet reached the Farm in Destiny 2, for example, you won’t be able to post in that game’s Feedback, Gameplay, or Off-Topic boards. So you’ll actually need to play the game a little bit before getting a platform to talk about it. That seems fair.
The latest development roadmap for Destiny 2 has arrived
, and it’s pretty expansive. It covers updates through May, which winds up being the next three big updates, and each one has plenty of meaty content attached. February’s big update has the emblem/aura rework, reduction to exotic repetition, Nightfall high scores and score tracking… a fair amount of stuff. Check out the whole map
if you’re curious about where the game goes from here and where it’s continuing to go.
Of course, wherever you as a player might be going, you’ll want to go there fast. The latest weekly newsletter covers the work of the sandbox team, and that team has been working on letting you go faster. Buffed glides, buffs to the Mobility stat, faster Super recharges, Arcstrider improvements… in short, make the game more mobile and fast-paced across the board. You can argue whether or not that’s in the best long-term interests of the game, but you can’t deny that it’ll make this more active.