It has been a long while since we heard anything about Dragon of Legends, a pixel art-style indie MMORPG that ran a small but successful Kickstarter last year and then dropped off the map. Fortunately, the project isn’t vaporware, as evidenced by developers cranking up communication over the past few months.
Back in September, the team reported that the game was “very close now to going live on Steam” and that it was focusing on the Ranger and Wizard classes for the Steam build. Moving into October, Dragon of Legends received some Halloween touches and opened up caves for testers to explore.
Just because the game is 2-D doesn’t mean that building its world is simple. Developer Desmond Thackeray wrote up a piece explaining the process of creating 2-D level design and how it is more challenging than one might assume. “If Dragon of Legends is to be successful, we must pay close attention to verisimilitude,” he said. “We strive to make the environments realistic in that the terrain makes sense, and that every scene is full of life and uniqueness.”
This past year, we couldn’t seem to go a week without bumping into news of some new mobile MMO or a tablet spin-off of some existing franchise. It seems as though the mobile market is still blowing up, and MMORPG developers are looking for a way to take advantage of the popularity and market penetration that these devices offer.
What does this mean? It means that in 2017, we have a whole lot of games heading our way. With any luck, some of them might unseat the low-quality half-breeds that seem to make up a bulk of the existing mobile MMO library and set a higher standard for fun and engagement.
Let’s take a look at about two dozen mobile MMOs we could be getting in 2017 — and which ones might be the new contenders for our undivided attention. Unless we mention otherwise, these titles will be coming out for both iOS and Android platforms.
This week in crowdfunded MMO development, Dragon of Legends’ Kickstarter ended successfully, netting over $15,000 US for the OARPG studio; Star Citizen released alpha 2.3, complete with the long-awaited and gorgeous Starfarer; and Shroud of the Avatar previewed the once-glorious kingdom of Valhold.
Meanwhile, we peeked at Grim Dawn’s modding tools, watched as Greed Monger was abandoned (again), saluted Project Gorgon’s flower arranging patch, and considered whether William Shatner should voice all the things and not just Elite: Dangerous.
Don’t forget to drop by our Q&A collection thread for Camelot Unchained’s Mark Jacobs, who’ll be a guest on the Massively OP this week and needs at least a few thousand more questions to tackle. Then read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding this week and the roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’ve got our eye on!
So here’s a new one for the Make My MMO crowdfunding column: We have a game that’s actually vying for Patreon donations rather than campaigning on Kickstarter or Indiegogo. That game is Shadow’s Kiss, a vampire fantasy MMO. Developer Clockwork Throne says it’s using Patreon to fund production and reward backers.
Dragon of Legends has rejoined our list, having canceled its first Kickstarter and started over, asking for a much smaller amount (in fact, it’s already passed its base goal). Multiplayer sci-fi survival sandbox Planet Nomads finished its Kickstarter a winner too, pulling in almost $140,000. And while MOBA shooter Overpower didn’t quite make its funding goal on Kickstarter, its devs have announced it’ll head into early access on March 2nd.
This week, we also mused on Star Citizen’s success, had a look at Camelot Unchained’s new lighting system, and spoke to Crowfall’s devs about its world-building pipeline.
Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding this week and the roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’ve got our eye on!
On February 9th, Dragon of Legends stopped its Kickstarter campaign. The official word was that it was obvious that the campaign was not going to hit its target value, so it made more sense to simply stop the campaign rather than slogging to the bitter end. But the first campaign did attract investors, meaning that the game’s Kickstarter could relaunch with a much lower target amount – and that new Kickstarter is live right now.
While the original project goal was $60,000, the rebooted campaign is just looking for about $9000, and it’s already more than a third of the way toward its goal with 36 days remaining. Nothing about the game itself has changed; it’s just asking for less to keep development rolling along. If you were interested in the game before and want to jump on the bandwagon now, you can do exactly that.
This week in MMO crowdfunding news, former SOE/Daybreak CEO John Smedley revealed his new company, Pixelmage Games, and its first game, sandboxy OARPG Hero’s Song, whose Kickstarter is live now and will run until February 18th. In fact, it’s already added new pledge tiers to entice backers; a $25 pledge scores two copies of the $20 game at launch.
Dragon of Legends, Overpower, and Planet Nomads join Hero’s Song in the list of new Kickstarters this week.
We also heard Eternal Crusade reject the idea that its early access Steam launch is a “cashgrab,” witnessed Elite: Dangerous fend off confusion about its Oculus Rift support, learned Crowfall is putting an end to refunds, and saw Gillian Anderson describe her role in Star Citizen’s Squadron 42.
Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding this week.
Smed’s not the only one launching a pixelart OARPG on Kickstarter today: Thrive Games has just revealed Dragon of Legends.
Dragon of Legends is an online action RPG for PC, Mac, Linux, and Mobile devices, that is heavily influenced by Gaelic and Norse mythology. Enter the ever-evolving lands of Hávámal, where the lights of faeries border the realms of darkness.
Work on the 2-D game has been ongoing for the last year and a half, Thrive says in its Kickstarter pitch; it’ll include a detailed character class and skill system, crafting mechanics, boats, an achievement journal, twitch combat, and user-generated content. It’s also crossplatform: You’ll play it on PC, Mac, Linux, and tablet. The studio’s goal is $41,318, and thought stretch goals are planned, they aren’t revealed just yet.
It may be true that interest in playing and developing mobile games has peaked, although personally I very much like mobile gaming. On the flip side is the fact that studios like NCsoft and Nexon are investing heavily in mobile development, and games like Forsaken World Mobile are giving us hope that online RPGs are still seeking to break into the market.
Mobile gaming is so dang convenient, especially when I find myself away from a computer with a few minutes of nothing else to do. Waiting for my kids to get out of school? Spending quality time in the bathroom? Curled up in bed before sleep? All prime mobile gaming time.
It’s been a deep desire of mine, then, to see a crop of good mobile MMOs spring up. While there certainly have been some, including the highly lauded Order & Chaos and all of Spacetime Studio’s library, nothing has given me the same taste and pop that I get from a computer. Fortunately for me and other mobile gaming lovers, there are many up-and-coming titles in the MMO genre to watch. Will one of these be the game of our dreams? Let’s take a look at the lineup and see if there’s some promise here.
Would you crowdfund an “action-based” MMORPG for the PC, Mac, and mobile platforms called Dragon of Legends? Developer Square Enix wants to know, and as such it has set up an informal poll where you can make your voice heard. If you read the fine print, you’ll find that Square isn’t actually developing the game itself but is instead looking to “help independent developers” as part of its Indie Collective program.
The title is “heavily influenced by the mythic cycle of Gaelic Ireland and Norse mythology, where the lights of faeries border the realms of darkness.” The firm also mentions a 2-D “retro-inspired world,” customizable characters, a diverse class system, and an immersive narrative.
Sound good? Don’t forget to click the link below to vote!
If you like pixel art and the promise of being able to play an MMO on both mobile and desktop clients, you should probably check out the Dragon of Legends teaser trailer just below. Yes, it’s a painfully generic name, and yes, it’s currently still very early in testing. But the idea is still pretty darn neat.
The developers are allowing would-be players to sign up for beta testing now, if you’re so inclined. Aside from offering cross-platform play, developer Thrive Games is promising a rich narrative and tools for players to help reshape the world, both of which sound like a fun ride.