christmas

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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Lost Ark sails into closed beta 2 this Friday

Countdowns could mean many things. Missile launches. Christmas. New Year’s Day. Or in the case of Lost Ark, the start of its second closed beta test in Korea.

The official (Korean) site is currently sporting a countdown to this Friday, when Lost Ark’s CBT2 is set to begin. This time around, the beta is greatly expanding to include a focus on sailing, so there’s a whole lot of ocean, ship, and harbor imagery going on with the previews.

Smilegate said that the beta will also feature a new class, the opening of a brand-new continent, and more stories to experience. If you feel proficient in your Korean, you can attempt to sign up for a spot on the site!

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World of Warcraft saves an in-game tournament by disabling phasing

Players on Moon Guard have long hosted a week-long tournament event for all World of Warcraft roleplayers called the Tournament of Ages. It’s filled with races, jousts, card battles, D20 battles, and all of the things you’d expect from the phrase “week-long roleplaying tournament.” The problem is that it’s also filled with players, and given the phasing shard technology that Blizzard’s servers have been using for some time, that’s the game’s cue to split people off into small groups so that everyone has equal access to a zone. A fine theory for current expansion content, but less fine when players are trying to host a large-scale RP event.

Surprising everyone within World of Warcraft’s beleaguered RP community, the developers pushed forward a hotfix to disable sharding in Northrend for RP realms, thereby saving Christmas the community’s ability to hold and enjoy this tournament. It’s a nice push to allow players to enjoy some time together for something other than progression content, so one may wonder if similar changes are coming to more of the game beyond the areas where sharding is vital to handle expansion launches.

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Lineage Eternal delayed again, Guild Wars 2 mobile game teased

Steparu is reporting on a Korean-language piece today that suggests Lineage Eternal is once again in do-over mode. According to the report, NCsoft has gutted the game’s engine plans, switching from the Guild Wars engine originally used and porting over to Unreal 4. This follows the replacement of the team lead on the game back in March, all of which is delaying the game (again). The report also floats the idea that the game may launch as a mobile game, not as a full-fledged MMOARPG as originally envisioned.

Lineage Eternal has been floating around in our field of view for years. First announced in 2011, it saw its first closed beta almost exactly three years ago. But following several focus group tests in 2015, the game skipped G-Star that year and resurfaced with yet another beta just before Christmas last year. A global beta was planned for this year until the previous quarterly report, during which it was revealed that NCsoft had overturned the development leadership, suggesting that the closed beta failed to “reflect NCsoft’s characteristics.

Another interesting bit from NCsoft’s conference call? There’s a supposed Guild Wars 2 mobile game that may or may not go forward.

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The MOP Up: SMITE’s bad news bears (August 6, 2017)

The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!

Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from Villagers and HeroesAionDark and LightPokemon GoGuild Wars 2DefianceWurm OnlineDC Universe OnlineChampions OnlineDark Age of CamelotElder Scrolls OnlineSMITE, and Dota 2, all waiting for you after the break!

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Jukebox Heroes: Six goofy RuneScape tunes

Over the past year I’ve nearly been bested by the unclimbable mountain that is the RuneScape soundtrack. With well over 1,200 tracks currently existing in the game, it’s sheer folly to try to listen to it all straight through. That, of course, is exactly what I’ve been attempting, yet with new tracks coming out all of the time, I feel that there’s no end in sight.

If I’m to be forever working my way through an MMO soundtrack, RuneScape is a great place to be. As I’ve been discovering, there is such a sheer variety of interesting and catchy tunes on display covering a wide swath of biomes, races, events, and situations. What I perhaps like best is how RuneScape’s score isn’t in the slightest self-conscious with being silly and bizarre. In fact, it seems to revel in it!

So today let’s take an odd musical interlude to listen to six goofy and weird RuneScape tracks before we all get serious again about our video games.

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One Shots: Summer camp

I ask for “camp” from all of you — and camp is what I got, although not necessarily what I envisioned. Sometimes it’s better than that! So what did Rees Racer immediately go to when I requested pictures of summer camp?

“There’s no pretending TERA is an open-world sandbox,” he said. “It is straight-up themepark. This means there are plenty of towns (large and small) along with various and sundry other quest hubs cleverly disguised as camps. I’m having good fun leveling the newest Valkyrie class, and here she is during a brief respite at the Desert Research Station in Val Aureum.”

May I float the suggestion that saddling a lion and pulling on its mane while shouting “GIDDYUP!” only has one logical and unfortunate conclusion?

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The Game Archaeologist: How Sceptre of Goth shaped the MMO industry

When it comes to text-based MMOs created in the ’80s, ’90s, and 2000s, the sheer number of them would blot out the sky. There are certainly more multi-user dungeons (MUDs) than I’ve ever been able to get a handle on when I’ve tried creating lists of the most important to know, but I will say that there are a few that seem to pop up more than others. The original MUD1, created by Richard Bartle and Roy Trubshaw, was certainly a watershed moment for online roleplaying games. Learning about DikuMUD is pretty essential, considering its impact on graphical MMORPGs that we still play today.

But there’s another title that often goes unnoticed, unless you keep an eye out for it. It’s a MUD that keeps popping up when you look into the history of the MMORPG genre, one with ties to key players and design concepts that are still active today.

It’s the MUD that shaped the MMO industry, and it was called Sceptre of Goth.

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Astroneer isn’t an MMO, but it might scratch your co-op PvE sandbox itch

If you’ve had a hankering for a multiplayer survival sandbox but want something more elegant than the typical gritty murderfests on offer, take a look at Astroneer. Developer System Era Softworks dubs it “a game of aerospace industry and interplanetary exploration,” and it does include a multiplayer co-op mode, terraforming, vehicles, trade, and crafting.

“Explore and reshape distant worlds! Astroneer is set during a 25th century gold rush where players must explore the frontiers of outer space, risking their lives in harsh environments for the chance of striking it rich. On this adventure, a player’s most useful tool is their ability to shape their world, altering the terrain and extracting valuable resources from planets, and moons. Resources can be traded or crafted into new tools, vehicles, and modules to create everything from massive industrial bases to mobile rover bases.”

The game landed in Steam’s early access program last Christmas but has been steadily patching up; its most recent update is focused on turning the recent overhaul of Astroneer’s research system to make it genuinely fun. It’s still considered in pre-alpha and is currently priced at $19.99, so it’s very much an early access you may want to just add to your wishlist for now. Take a peek at the assets below.

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