‘Free-to-play’ is a term that refers to games that do not have box or download fees associated with them and do not incur a mandatory subscription. Some have optional subscriptions and are more properly referred to as hybrid F2P. Most have cash shops and microtransactions.
Not all character level boosts were created equal. Star Wars: The Old Republic
is experimenting with a new type of boost that will offer an interesting alternative to the one that it already has in place to help players skip over the core game and right into the latest expansions.
Instead, the Master’s Datacron boost will instantly advance a character to level 70 while retaining his or her spot in the story. The obvious application of this is to pay to overpower your character so that you can advance through the story without any actual challenge.
At 2,000 cartel coins, the character boost isn’t cheap, although one can be bought and sold for credits on the GTN. The Datacron also comes with a set of level 70 gear and instant access to your ship, even if you haven’t reached it yet in your storyline.
As CMs lock down any speculation about Marvel Heroes’ demise on the forums and players do their best to secure refunds before the title goes away completely, the question looms of what game would be an acceptable substitute to fill the upcoming void. Here is one possibility: Marvel Strike Force.
Created by FoxNext Games and Disney’s Marvel Entertainment, Marvel Strike Force is an upcoming mobile RPG with tactical elements. The game is slated to come out in 2018 and will feature both a single-player campaign and PvP battles.
“We wanted to capture the core mobile fantasy of who wins in a fight. Hydra or Shield?” said FoxNext President Aaron Loeb said. “Earlier, we had the question of who wins in a fight. Hulk or Hulk Buster? Now we ask who wins between the Avengers or the Defenders? You’re trying to solve the puzzle of how to beat the other team.”
Don’t get too comfortable in Mordor just yet, because Lord of the Rings Online
is preparing to send its players to the far reaches of the explored map come 2018.
Executive Producer Rob Ciccolini dropped a juicy letter today that went into detail about the studio’s plans for LOTRO over the next year. It all begins with Update 21.3’s Abyss of Mordath raid, coming before the end of 2017. Then in early 2018, Update 22 is taking players to Northern Mirkwood, Dale, Laketown, and Erebor. Following that is Update 23, which returns to Mordor for a trip into Minas Morgul and a confrontation with Shelob.
Ciccolini sprinkled in some other additions and improvements coming to the game, including Elk mounts(!), a playable fiddle, updates to the festivals, the continuation of the Bingo Boffin storyline from last Halloween, and avatar updates to Dwarf and Hobbit models.
On this week’s show, Justin and Bree bid a sad farewell to Marvel Heroes (and Master X Master while we’re at it). It’s not all depressing news; Secret World Legends is killing it, there’s a new Path of Exile expansion, and Guild Wars 2’s fourth living world season is on its way.
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
Listen to the show right now:
It’s the thing to do lately: rerelease a classic video game with just enough enhancements to charge for it all over again. In this case, however, I suspect it’s a good thing. I’m talking, of course, about BioWare’s 15-year-old multiplayer Neverwinter Nights, which Canadian studio Beamdog will be re-delivering in an “enhanced edition,” though we don’t have a release date just yet. That’s the same studio that’s already retooled other old BioWare games, like Baldur’s Gate and Planescape Torment, and is in fact made up of former BioWare devs.
“We’ve added an improved display that looks great on modern 4K monitors, UI elements now adjust in size based on chosen resolution, and post-processing effects make for crisper, cleaner visuals,” Beamdog writes. “Save games, modules, and mods from the original Neverwinter Nights work in the Enhanced Edition.”
Oh man, that means my guild’s old custom roleplaying modules from back in the day will still work. I wonder if anyone’s up for a campaign…
In honor of the launch of Star Trek Online Season 14: Emergence
on console last week, PWE
has granted Massively OP a bunch of goodies to raffle to our console readers! We’ve got 25 sets of codes apiece for PlayStation 4 (SEN version) and Xbox One, each with a trio of starter packs for each faction.
- Federation Starter Pack Content: Tier 1 Constitution Class Starship, 12 Inventory Slots, 12 Bank Slots, 1 Borg Bridge Officer, 13 Mark II Very Rare Space Gear, 7 Mark II Very Rare Ground Gear, One Small XP Boost
- Klingon Defence Force Starter Pack Content: Tier 1 B’Rotlh Bird-of-Prey Starship, 12 Inventory Slots, 12 Bank Slots, 1 Borg Bridge Officer, 13 Mark II Very Rare Space Gear, 7 Mark II Very Rare Ground Gear, One Small XP Boost
- Romulan Legacy Starter Pack Content: Tier 1 T’Varo Light Warbird Starship, 12 Inventory Slots, 12 Bank Slots, 1 Borg Bridge Officer, 13 Mark II Very Rare Space Gear, 7 Mark II Very Rare Ground Gear
Read on to enter to win!
It’s a good time to pile on predatory cash-shop models, especially if you’ve got a better one, and in-development hardcore MMORPG sandbox Saga of Lucimia is doing just that. While citing EA and Star Wars Battlefront II as the lead villain, however, Lucimia dev Tim “Renfail” Anderson isolates microtransactions as a whole, not just the lockbox phenomenon that saw EA dragged to the principal’s office.
“While the cash shop model has risen to prominence in the past decade, to the point where the vast majority of MMORPGs have shunned the subscription model in favor of larger profits, it is a system rife with poorly executed versions,” Anderson argues. “While there are some examples of microtransaction systems that work relatively well — I would argue that Elder Scrolls Online is a prime example in this category — the vast majority of them do not.”
In a new paper released last week, University of York researchers sought to examine whether research that strategy gaming (like chess and arcade games) correlates with intelligence holds true in the modern games like MOBAs. “In our current paper we extend their findings by asking whether we can establish a link between intelligence and performance in widely-played, commercial, team-based videogames with global reach,” the authors explain.
The researchers examined League of Legends and Dota 2 players, comparing their ranks to their results on a fluid intelligence test and attempting to disentangle all of that from teamwork ability, practice, and age by comparing the results to those from more twitch-oriented games like Destiny and Battlefield 3 – easier said than done, since apparently there aren’t a lot of “olds” playing some of these titles – and the general population’s performance on fluid intelligence tests by age. The result?
What is the mobile game that everyone will be talking about this holiday season? Netmarble is confident that the answer to that is “Lineage 2 Revolution.”
The newly launched mobile MMO has some decent momentum at its back, considering that it is Netmarble’s top-grossing game in Korea right now and racked up 1.5 million pre-registrations. The studio is not shy in anticipating that Lineage 2 Revolution will blow up huge in the west as well, taking the top spot on mobile gaming charts.
“I’m taking every measure to make sure that Netmarble US would be successful here. I know for sure that we can reach the top of the charts with a mobile MMORPG,” said Netmarble CEO Shim Chul-Min in an interview. “To make sure that Lineage 2: Revolution becomes the number one mobile game in NA, we’ll do our absolute best.”
With the shutdown of Marvel Heroes looming about a month and a half away, players are scrambling to see if they can obtain a refund for some of the funds they dropped on the game the past few months.
According to Kotaku, it has been a mixed bag so far, with many players reporting that they have not been able to get a refund within the 90 day grace period. However, there may be hope. One player reported (and screenshotted) a conversation with Xbox Live support during which the representative said that “all customers who purchased the game will be receiving a refund for it next week automatically.” The rep followed that up by saying that “we were initially waiting on approvals from the publisher to allow refunds to be processed for it.”
Early on in all the WoW Classic hoopla, I’d been thinking of World of Warcraft legacy servers as the sort of gimmick servers that a lot of older games put up. Ultima Online, EverQuest, RuneScape – their hardcore servers, progression servers, old-school servers are sort of sideshows, literally, to the “real” game in the center ring.
But the day the Classic WoW subreddit went up and I watched the playerbase neatly conduct its semi-orderly self-partition, my thinking changed, such that I don’t really think it’s just a gimmick anymore. WoW Classic is going to be a whole new game. I’m not even sure Blizzard realizes it yet, given how weird and slapdash the BlizzCon announcement was, but if WoW Classic releases in the next couple of years, it’ll easily be one of the largest and most successful “new” AAA MMORPGs to come out in quite a while. It’ll be up there with AIR and New World. That’s a sobering thought – but maybe not all that surprising.
Are you thinking of WoW Classic as a totally new MMO? How will you be approaching it?
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 Dragon Nest, TERA M, Mabinogi Mobile, Icarus M, Summoner’s War, Star Trek Online, Osiris New Dawn, Lord of Vermilion Arena, PUBG, Stardew Valley, Warframe, Overwatch, Path of Exile, Astroneer, KurtzPel, RuneScape, Dota 2, Second Life, and Renaissance Kingdoms, all waiting for you after the break!
You know what’s one MMO that seems to be capturing the interest of a lot of gamers these days? Warframe
. It seems to be sucking players in and surprising newcomers even four years after its debut.
“Warframe lends itself to replay in quite a number of different ways,” noted Why I Game in an extensive review. I Has PC is gushing over the various Warframe discoveries: “There is something for everyone here, all wrapped up in a tight, beautiful gameplay package. I have read people on Reddit learning new things about the game after putting in over 1000 hours already.”
Warframe not for you? This week’s edition of Global Chat points you toward MMO essays on the joys of climbing, grabbing free stuff in games, and the pain of healing a group of idiots. Check it out below!