buy to play

‘Buy-to-play’ is a term that refers to games that have box or download fees associated with them but do not incur a mandatory subscription. Some have optional subscriptions and are more properly referred to as hybrid B2P. Most have cash shops and microtransactions.

The Elder Scrolls Online clarifies that Crown Store items can be traded in-game

It might not seem like it would be something with many grey areas, but the crown store items in The Elder Scrolls Online bring up some interesting questions about RMT. So it’s a good thing that Zenimax has confirmed, at least on the forums, what the “official” view on these items is. The question was always one of whether or not the items counted as in-game items or a form of real money; if it was the latter, trading them could be seen as trading in-game items for real-world money, which is against the rules.

The clarification from staff spells out that Crown Store items are considered in-game items, and trading them falls under the same header of trading in-game things. There’s also some protections in place for players who feel that they’ve been victims of a scam, so the staff suggests that you make sure any discussing happens within logged in-game channels. Still, it’s good to know that the items off of the Crown Store can be traded between players for other in-game gewgaws.

Source: Official Site; thanks to Tom for the tip!

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Final Fantasy XIV and Monster Hunter World team up for a bizarre collaboration

Fancy some Monster Hunter in your Final Fantasy XIV? How about a bona fide Monster Hunter World collab? That’s what you’re getting, according to Square Enix’s E3 presser today. It sounds as if FFXIV players will be pitting themselves against the iconic “Rathalos” from MHW “this summer.” According to the landing page, you’ll need to be level 70 and own Stormblood to participate.

“The partnership unites two beloved and wildly successful titles, with FINAL FANTASY XIV Online currently boasting over 10 million registered players worldwide and Monster Hunter: World having shipped over 8 million copies since its release in January 2018. This special collaboration event will bring new challenges to players of FINAL FANTASY XIV Online featuring characters from Monster Hunter: World to the world of Hydaelyn.”

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E3 2018: Dissecting the Elder Scrolls VI teaser that broke the internet

Last night, Bethesda Director Todd Howard took the E3 stage and practically broke the internet. Of course, he talked about Fallout 76, which everyone expected. After all, Bethesda teased that days earlier, and if he didn’t give us more details, the internet would have rioted. However, the thing that really broke everyone — especially Reddit — only took 36 seconds. He announced what everyone wanted but no one expected: The Elder Scrolls VI.

It’s amazing how a small teaser will set people on fire. Massively OP’s chatroom lit up with speculation. Admittedly, it was mostly me and Bree going nuts over this particular game, but we were doing our best to try to determine where The Elder Scrolls VI would take place. All we had was a 36-second fly-by that featured a bunch of rocks, bigger rocks, and a little bit of grass. In other words, it told us practically nothing. But that didn’t stop me from attempting to pull apart each little detail — what was shown and what wasn’t.

Let’s break this down.

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E3 2018: ‘Fallout 76 is entirely online’

You’ve seen the teaser. You’ve heard the rumors. You’ve watched the E3 trailer. And now it’s time to find out, exactly, what Fallout 76 is.

On Sunday night, Bethesda took the stage at E3 to finally talk about what Vault Boy and his comrades are up to with this prequel game. Let’s start with the bombshell (so to speak): “Fallout 76 is entirely online.”

That’s right: Bethesda is bringing the Fallout series online with this game, with the option to play solo. It’s what the studio is calling “softcore survival” — death doesn’t mean the loss of progression or your character. Players will be able to hop over to wherever their friends are and play on servers populated by dozens, but not hundreds, of people. Choices are key here as players will decide on the heroes and villains.

There is PvP here and co-op adventures as well. Scavenge, gather, and crafting is a major component. Players, solo and grouped, can build bases anywhere they want and move those buildings to desired locations with mobile platforms. Oh, and there will be nuclear sites that players can use to nuke the world if so desired.

B.E.T.A. (Break-it Early Test Application) testing begins soon, and Fallout 76 will launch later this year on November 14th.

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E3 2018: Elder Scrolls Online announces Wolfhunter and Murkmire DLC (oh yeah, and Elder Scrolls VI is coming!)

At Bethesda’s E3 presentation this evening, ZeniMax’s Matt Firor announced that The Elder Scrolls Online’s next DLC is called Wolfhunter, complete with werewolf theme. And even later this year, we can expect yet another DLC called Murkmire – yep, we’re diving into Argonian culture in Blackmarsh. Finally, right?! The company promises both this year – in the “second half of 2018.”

Firor says the game is up to 11 million players, with 1 million new in the last year. There’s a brand-new trailer for E3, focused mostly on Summerset, as well as a Murkmire teaser.

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One Shots: Rave on Risa

I love how in the Star Trek universe, the universal consensus on what makes for an ideal vacation spot is a planet that looks a lot like Miami Beach. I mean, there’s a whole galaxy out there, people! Is it possible that there are any slightly more exciting, exotic, and thrilling vacation destinations than Jimmy Buffet’s island paradise?

Junior Ensign JonBuck doesn’t think so: “In Star Trek Online, there’s only one good place for vacations: Risa!”

Yes, I want to go to the place where humanoid cats are getting jiggy with it while wearing a two-piece. Wait, I thought cats don’t like water?

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E3 2018: BioWare’s Anthem has soloable co-op open world, no lockboxes, a sweet trailer, and a February 22 launch

At this afternoon’s EA Play, EA and BioWare have revealed Anthem’s brand-new trailer. The game is now slated to launch on February 22nd, 2019.

During the developer discussion, BioWare said it recognized the problems inherent in storytelling in a multiplayer shared world (reiterating Casey Hudson’s dev blog from not that long ago), but it thinks it’s found a way to reconcile driving the story without sacrificing multiplayer gameplay.

Characters will play as “freelancers” piloting Javelin exosuits, trying to survive in a hostile environment, and fighting the bad guys trying to exploit the power. There are four Javelins, each with a different way to play the game: Ranger, Colossus, Interceptor, Storm. “You are not your suit,” BioWare cautions; you can flip between them depending on the gameplay you want to take part in from moment to moment.

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Massively Overthinking: Why is no one meeting the obvious player demand for big MMORPGs?

Massively OP reader ichi_san has a burning question about the state of the industry.

“Lots of people seem to be looking for an MMO they can get into – consider the rush into Bless as an example. Lots of games are being released, but most (or even all) have some glaring issues, like pay-to-win, lockboxes, ganking, poor optimization, heavy cash shop, horrible gameplay, and so on. There’s the WoW model and other semi-successful formulas, and a lot of unexplored territory. The market seems hungry, and there is a bunch of history to build on and new territory to explore, but either gaming companies don’t understand their customers or greed/laziness/expediency get in the way, such that we see release after release that fails to scratch the itch. Am I missing something – are there fun MMOs with good graphics and fair monetization that I’m missing? Or is there a gaping hole in the MMO scene, and if so, why isn’t someone filling it?”

I’ve posed his question to the writers for their consideration in Overthinking this week. We’re long past bubble-bursting here when all of the still-major MMORPGs are four years older. What exactly are we looking at? Why is the obvious demand for MMOs not being met?

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Guild Wars 2 fans grow impatient for episode 3 while Pride Month commences

The slow rollout of Guild Wars 2’s season 4 is starting to severely tax the patience of the MMO’s community and content creators. It’s now been three months since episode 2, and it might be longer than that, as ArenaNet admitted to a non-specific delay in the production of episode 3.

One content creator, that_shaman, publicly announced that he was walking away from his efforts for now due to the delay: “Alright, It’s clear I need a break from #GW2 content creation stuff.. Hopefully I’ll see you people around in 2038 when episode 3 is released!” Other fans have taken to creating parody videos like the one that you can see after the cut.

There is one thing that ArenaNet is doing this month, however, and that is changing its logo to a rainbow variant to mark Pride Month.

Fans seem to be having a lot of fun with the puns on this one. Here’s Noxxi’s “totally legit” trailer to make the wait go faster.

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The Soapbox: Do MMOs still fall victim to the copycat curse?

When Radical Heights launched, I was inspired to put together a whole Perfect Ten about why trend-chasing doesn’t work for online games. Obviously, my chief focus was on games that wind up being developed at a rushed pace to cash in on trends and then run face-first into problems with chasing momentary trends, which… you know, you can just read the article; it’s linked right there. But it also prompted a follow-up question by longtime reader Sally Bowls asking why, with all of these issues, why the same rules don’t apply to MMOs.

The answer? Well, there isn’t one answer. There are three answers, all of which are part of the same set of considerations. For one thing, there’s the difference of development time and depth. For another, there’s the time before grinding. And last but not least, well… they do apply, really. But let’s take this piece by piece to talk about why trend-chasing for MMOs doesn’t quite provoke the same immediate reactions as it does for, say, MOBAs.

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The Crew 2 is getting an open beta while the original The Crew goes into maintenance

It’s probably not much of a surprise to hear that The Crew is slipping into maintenance mode, as patches had been quiet for a while and the sequel is slated to come out this month. But it has been confirmed at this point that there will be no more patches for the game from this point onward. Servers will remain online and playable, and maintenance isn’t ruled out for fixing imminent issues, but don’t expect any new content.

There’s hope for those who need some new online racing fun but aren’t ready to buy the sequel just yet, as the game’s beta site has teased that an open beta is coming soon and will be discussed more at this year’s E3. So you can get some new driving fun in before the game releases… it just won’t be in the original game. That’s not exactly a shock.

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Guild Wars 2 fans find evidence of ‘awakened’ mounts incoming

Possibly due to the delay of the next Guild Wars 2 living world update, certain store assets have been added to the game’s files that were not activated quite yet. However, dataminer that_shaman quickly unearthed a run-down of what’s incoming and shared among it the community.

In addition to a pack full of convenience upgrades and several new weapons, there are mentions of “awakened mounts” that should be coming to the game soon. The pack that you might be able to buy soon includes new golden-clad skins for the griffon, raptor, springer, jackal, and skimmer.

As players continue to wait for the patch, at least they’ll have the next season of the PvP league to anticipate. The twelfth season begins on June 12th and concludes August 8th. As for the next living story episode, that’s been delayed, and we’re still awaiting news on when it’ll drop.

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The Daily Grind: Would you play a new Guild Wars 1 expansion?

With all of the talk and revival of interest in classic Guild Wars, it’s certainly been a great time to celebrate this beloved MMO (yeah, I’m calling it an MMO, what are you going to do about it?). I’m certainly happy that the game is still providing a fun playspace for fans and is even getting improvements in 2018.

So here’s a pie-in-the-sky question: What if ArenaNet decided that there was enough of a community for Guild Wars 1 that it commissioned an actual new expansion or campaign for the game? I know, I know, it will never happen. For all I know, it can never happen because of technological limitations and whatnot.

But… what if it did? Would you play it? Since we’re dreaming here, what kind of classic Guild Wars expansion would you love to see made?

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