christmas 2017

Shroud of the Avatar teases winter holiday items and the R48 artifact revamp

Are you one of those folks who laments that the winter holiday season gets pushed earlier and earlier every year? If so, you’re not gonna like Shroud of the Avatar’s latest newsletter, as it’s got everything but Santa. For the rest of you, it’s time to get your Yuletide on, as the piece features stuffed stockings, crackling fires, sleighs, and decorative garlands. There are even cards, and yes, you can write inside the cards as if they’re books.

Meanwhile, the studio is teasing new armor going live in R48, along with a big artifact revamp that effectively removes artifact reparability. “They will only be able to be repaired by salvaging other artifacts to get Artifact Essences that will be used in Artifact repair,” Portalarium explains. “This will cycle Artifacts out of the economy and require players to re-acquire them periodically or destroy other artifacts (thereby simulating ‘production’). Additionally we will make Artifacts a bit more dynamic by giving players the ability to enchant and masterwork them.”

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Shroud of the Avatar opens a trio of new mines for lowbies, gets ready for Christmas

Players who want to get a jump start on their Shroud of the Avatar crafting career might end up taking a tour under the surface of the world. The developers report that they have opened up three new low-level mines so that newer players can start mining for that much-needed ore without having to wait until much later in the game.

SOTA’s artists showed off a couple of rewards that players will be able to obtain, such as torn and bloody wedding attire (if you’re missing Halloween already) or Yule gifts and candelabras (if you can’t wait for Christmas). There’s also moustache-themed helmets and cloaks to support the Movember movement for men’s health.

Shroud of the Avatar recently raised $60,000 from its last telethon and is currently running a free trial which is set to conclude on November 15th. The following day will see Release 48 hit the scene prior to the holiday rush.

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Chaos Theory: Farewell Samhain, hello Secret World Legends Season 2 hype!

Do I love Halloween? Yes, yes I do. And while the season was in full swing, my mind was fully focused there. This season is a great diversion, especially in Secret World Legends. But with the awesomeness that is Halloween winding down and with Samhain now over, my mind can finally settle on other matters. Now I know for some, that means Christmastime and Krampusnacht. (One staffer here even declared/warned us of all out Christmas festivities starting November 1st!)

As cool as Krampusnacht is, my mind has turned instead to Season 2. Without my favorite holiday to distract me, I am keen on embracing the big awesome that we’ve all been waiting a long, long time for. New content! New stories! All new zone! Yes, Season 2, I am waiting for you. And the latest little teases coming from Funcom give me hope that we can get it sooner rather than later; the devs’ flaunting it more openly and allowing us to focus on it really has revved up my hype train. It’s almost like there is nothing else in the way and this is their complete focus. Oh yeah! *insert Kool-Aid Man here*

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Ultima Online patches in Halloween, 20-year vet rewards, and Christmas

Publish 98.2 is live in Ultima Online this week with… Christmas?

Yep! Halloween is already live in the game, but the latest patch set up the Christmas rewards, though they won’t actually begin triggering until December. There are some pretty nice trinkets in the bundle, including a jewelry box that will essentially cut down piles of 500 jewels unto a single lockdown.

As the game’s just turned 20 years old, it’s also released a new set of veteran rewards, including several new statuettes, an enchanted writing desk, a koi pond, new titles, and for accounts that have been active the full 20 years, a ridable ethy serpentine dragon.

In addition to the return of the game’s artisan festival and tweaks to the taming mechanics, UO’s also recently seen a round of anniversary gifts for every subber and a ton of Halloween events, including the a special dungeon mechanic, the trick-or-treating event, in-game pumpkin carving, and extra-haunted graveyards. The one by my house better not spawn crap on my lawn!

Of course, this is all just the appetizer for next year’s main course: the free-to-play switchover.

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Overwatch kicks off Halloween, hires for a new game possibly set in the Overwatch universe

Halloween – sorry, “Halloween Terror 2017” – is live for Overwatch players this week and runs through November. After all, come November 1st, spooky stuff is just weird, right? That’s Christmas season. Everyone knows that. Shut down the pumpkins and ghosts ASAP.

“Players can explore the haunted streets of Eichenwalde and Hollywood, expand their collection of Halloween seasonal cosmetics, and team up to fight the forces of evil in two PvE brawls—Junkenstein’s Revenge and the all-new Junkenstein Endless brawl featuring a different cast of heroes,” Blizzard says. Also lootboxes. “We’re also re-opening our crypt so players can unlock their favorite Halloween-themed items from last year along with over 50 new tantalizing treats, including legendary skins like Corsair Ana, Van Helsing McCree, Dragon Symmetra, and Cultist Zenyatta.”

In more tantalizing Overwatch news, PC Gamer noticed yet another job listing on the Blizzard site, this one for an artist to work on an unannounced project relating to Overwatch or at least requiring familiarity with the “Overwatch universe” specifically. Is it an intern developing marketing materials or another game set in the same universe – that first-person project that it’s been hiring for over the last year, perhaps? Or maybe – just maybe – Overwatch could be getting an MMO, bringing the whole franchise full circle.

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Ship of Heroes has finished up its first character creator alpha – here’s what you built

Quietly zipping along this fall is City of Heroes spiritual successor Ship of Heroes, which has been running a small external alpha test with backers focused on its character creator tool, the first such alpha wave for the game. Heroic Games now says that test has drawn to a close as a “resounding success.”

Ship of Heroes has three current character models – a female, a male and a really big male. Each can be outfitted with civilian clothing or with hero costumes, and the items can be mixed and matched. Each article of clothing has primary and secondary colors that can be set using RGB values, giving enormous freedom to each player to design a unique character. In addition, over 300 morphs can currently be applied to each character, allowing even greater levels of customization. Every character in the game can be distinct and unique from other characters.”

Notably, the team says its feedback revolved around wanting more hero costumes, a wider variety of costumes, more skin tones and colors, and body morphs including height, all of which is still in progress.

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