Pretty much every MMO player dreams of sitting his or her favorite developers down to get the honest and direct truth. While Grinding Gear Games
isn't making house calls (yet), the dev team did make an effort to satisfy community curiosity by tackling an assortment of 30 submitted questions
about Path of Exile
There was some concern over the potential for a bug flood when the expansion drops this fall. GGG said that it's on top of it: "There's a lot changing in 3.0.0 so there's a lot of scope for problems to creep in unless we find them. To deal with this, we've expanded our QA team over the years and it's currently the largest it has ever been. In addition, we're running a beta for 3.0.0 specifically to find problems before they affect the live realm."
There was no confirmation regarding a launch date for the expansion, but the team did discuss lengthening the ignore list, trade improvements, the Xbox One launch, and controller support. The team also hinted that there are "a lot more" expansions being planned for the MMO.
As Albion Online barrels toward a summer release, the crew took to Reddit yesterday for a marathon AMA session to tackle any pressing community questions.
Asked how much work an average player will need to put in before being of any use in PvP, the team responded, "A general principle of Albion Online -- as a game with a strong PvP focus -- is that the combat power curves for gear and character progress are very flat [...] When you start out a new character, you could expect at least 10 to 20 hours of gameplay before you could be considered competitive in PvP."
What about super-experienced and -geared players taking over the game's landscape and making it miserable for everyone else? "Of course, well-organized guilds will always have an advantage over more casual players - it would be weird if that was not the case. However, it is extremely unlikely -- and has never happened in any of our tests, two of which lasted around six months -- that a single faction will dominate the world."
Hear ye, hear ye! Pirates are terrorizing the skies with the aid and comfort of ruthless players! So-called "early access" has ushered in an era of fear and cutthroat commutes, and experts say that this is only the beginning!
It's true: The PvP airship simulator Cloud Pirates went into early access yesterday with Update 1.1: Gold Rush. The patch adds a new convoy mode in which a team of players work together to guard a shipment of ore as a second team seeks to steal it for their own greedy souls.
The developers took this opportunity to answer many community questions about the game, including where it will go from here. "We have several large items prepared for this year and it’s too early to share most of them, but we can safely say that the two upcoming big things are competitive (rating) battles and improving the Cloud Pirates Brotherhood (clan) system. Statistics, ladders, ratings and competitive gameplay is one of the main directions for Cloud Pirates."
Chronicles of Elyria is nothing if not bursting with interesting little ideas that you don't often see in other MMOs. One of these, apparently, is that your in-game activities can and will alter how your character looks: "If you eat a lot and exercise little, you'll get fat. If you do a lot of physical labor, you'll build muscle. If you fall in a lake, you'll wind up wet. If you don't clean your clothes, you'll get dirty. It's just like real life!"
It's good to know that we can be fat slobs in video games too, right?
Soulbound Studios reported that the work on the PAX East demo is coming along nicely and that a female character model has been introduced to the game. The studio said that it will be discussing its prologue experiences (the single-player game and the text-only MUD) with the community later this month.
The team recently sat down to answer nearly 40 fan questions about the game's settlement system in the game (alas, there will be no underwater cities, just in case you were hoping). You can watch the 30-minute edited version below!
Now that the cat is out of the bag on the existence of Ashes of Creation, the team is charging forward in sharing its vision and design of the game with potential players. In this effort, a 25-minute question-and-answer video was posted on the site today to give a better idea of what this MMO is all about.
This marks the first time that the community will see the faces of some of Intrepid Studios' dev team, including Senior Designer Peter Pilone, Creative Director Steven Sharif, Lead Designer Jeffery Bard, and Senior Designer Matt Reynolds. The team fielded several questions that were sent in from the community, such as Ashes' node system, character identity, world lore, guild features, player housing, the referral system, and the game's rejection of factions.
Give the video a watch after the jump and learn more about Ashes of Creation from our December interview!
players have no shortage of questions about the game these days, particularly post-Revelation. To answer some of these, Trion Worlds
took to the forums for a large community Q&A session
that tackled the new servers, upcoming changes, and other concerns.
Trion said that it's holding off on opening an additional fresh start server out of a fear that it would be a wasteland in coming months. The studio said that the two shards should be able to handle the current demand: "In regards to tech issues, it's important to distinguish that the problems players are reporting are not coming from anything related to server hardware. The 600% increase is well within what the server hardware is expected to perform with. But we see server stress in the high population of zones during events, hero calls, and the massive new housing zones that put additional stress on the amount of instances running at once that was not there prior to 3.0. We've improved it over the last three weeks, but it's not fully there yet."
What ever happened to Crowfall's stretch goal for a QA lead? The answer is nothing happened to it; it's still a goal for the future, but at the moment the studio's finances are just such that the bug-tracking needs to be handed off to people already working on the game, including J. Todd Coleman himself. The work of tracking down bugs and issues is still being done, and hiring someone to lead the hunt is still in the cards for the future. But you needn't take our word for it, since you can watch the latest community Q&A in video form just below.
Many of this round's questions cover more general QA or technical issues; the game is still planned to allow 1000 people per campaign world as a bare minimum, but major optimization work has not yet been done on the server structure. There's also more information about how bugs are tracked internally and what's next for the game's milestone updates; check out the whole thing past the break.
As 2016 comes to a close, Crowfall finds itself in pre-alpha testing involving the so-called "big world." At this point the community has many questions for the team (some 15 or 16 pages' worth, according to ArtCraft), and today the devs do their best to address those pertaining to skills and the big world.
In the Q&A video, the devs talk about diminishing returns in skills, blacklists on personal vendors, skipping ahead in crafting progression trees, power differentials between players, and the possibility of skill training through a website or app. The devs said that they "overachieved" with the recent big world test, although they saw that the zerg issue was severe and would need addressing with safe spaces.
"Our entire approach with this project is 'grow into your success,'" J. Todd Coleman said. "One of the things we're terrified of, and rightful so, is building up a bunch of tech, propping it up on launch day, and having it collapse.
Your 14 minutes of roguish smiles and informative answers await you below.
New H1Z1: Just Survive General Manager Landon Montgomery is attempting to show that his leadership will see a more open and forthcoming Daybreak with the survival game's fanbase. In last week's AMA, Montgomery took on a wide range of questions on everything including base building, weather, and storytelling.
"Base building is our #1 priority for next year. I can't give you a timeframe, but modularity is massively important for us," Montgomery said, going on to clarify: "We're still in 'fix now, cool later' mode but that's top of the list for 'cool later.'"
He said that he turned down a position at Blizzard in favor of fixing this MMO: "I think Just Survive has so much potential. True, it hasn't received the love it needs this past year, but do believe I can help turn that around with this team. We have an amazing, dedicated team whereas we didn't really have that before. There was some split between KotK and JS, but we don't have that now. We have a full team 100% focused on nothing but JS now."
With Conan Exiles' early access launch just around the corner, you can better believe that the community has a mountain of questions about the survival sandbox. Funcom's Joel Bylos stepped into the Xbox One Reddit yesterday to tackle many of these, although some, like queries about pricing, he declined to answer (Conan Exiles won't have microtransactions or a sub, however).
Bylos said that the primary inspiration for the game comes straight from Robert E. Howard's books. "Conan Exiles has a tighter focus on melee combat, a world that can be explored to find lore and stories, a religion system that allows access to magic and god avatars, a thrall system that allows you to enslave and turn your enemies into allies," Bylos said. "Oh and no flying mounts, because those tend to make the world too small."
Players will have a wide range of rulesets from which to choose, with each server hosting up to 70 players apiece during the early access period.
It's safe to say that Ion Hazzikostas has emerged as the face of World of Warcraft's development team, particularly following his rundown of all of the MMO's upcoming content at BlizzCon. Well, now Hazzikostas is back with even more info, thanks to a dev livestream in which he tackles many follow-up questions and concerns sent in from the community following the convention.
The hour-long Q and A covered many topics, but some of the highlights included the news that Patch 7.1.5 should go on the public test realm early this week, legendaries are getting a 15-level bump this Tuesday to feel more powerful, more legendaries are coming soon, Trial of Valor's rewards are getting an item level boost, and Nighthold is coming sometime in January.
Hazzikostas did spend some time talking about the huge surprise which was the announcement that players will be going to Argus in Patch 7.3. Apparently this will contain several zones and instances, wrapping up the Legion storyline in an epic fashion.
But don't just settle for the summary points; watch the whole developer interview after the break to pull out every nuance and detail!
Do you trust Q&A sessions over Plain Jane dev diaries, if only to hear the team field questions that you might like to know? Then you'll be happy to hear that The Black Death's seven devs have vowed to round up and answer a batch of community questions every week in their dev blogs.
Topics on the table for this first Q&A session include bug extermination, farming, and dynamic events. The team also confirmed that there is at least one mystery class that has yet to be announced for the sandbox title and that it will be present at tomorrow's EGX 2016 show in the UK.
You can check out an hour of Black Death's gameplay along with additional community questions and developer answers after the break!
Crowfall fans are in for a long, tall drink of information this weekend, poured straight from the minds of creators J. Todd Coleman and Gordon Walton. The pair sat down for a lengthy Reddit AMA on Friday, tackling dozens of questions from the community.
Coleman said that the team is currently working on the core of Crowfall: "Our next milestone is focused on making the foundation of the MMO work: large scale world(s), persistence across days (...then weeks, then months), scalability of the game service. There are some new systems coming online (harvesting and crafting, revised chat, revised skills), but MOST of the next milestone revolves around the theme of 'laying the foundation for the real game.'"