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!
Let’s talk about Elder Scrolls Online’s new houses today, shall we? No, it’s not going to be a discussion of player housing, although that would be pretty cool. Instead, let’s examine Morrowind’s various house factions and what they might offer to the roaming adventurer.
“Vvardenfell is a dangerous place for an Outlander such as yourself, and if you aren’t careful when dealing with the powerful Houses and organizations that control the island, you won’t last long,” the team cautioned.
Some of these factions include pious and honorable House Redoran, the magicka-focused House Telvanni, the cosmopolitan House Hlaalu, and the four orders of the Temple Ordinators. There’s even an ancient order of assassins with the Morag Tong, because what fantasy game would be complete without such a charming group?
Remember when real-time strategy games were all the rage and not games where you did weird things with dino poop to stay alive? Insane Unity does, which is why the studio is building a MMORTS called Win That War.
“The heart of the Win That War experience lies in a massively multiplayer online campaign, in which opposing factions wage merciless war to conquer territories at planetary scale,” the team explains. Players join up with one of three retro-futuristic factions to conquer the galaxy one planet at a time.
Win That War just launched on Steams early access and includes a PvE mode for those who would rather beat up a computer than a fellow gamer. The game’s not free to check out, alas; it costs $20 to purchase at this stage of testing. Check out the trailer after the break!
“The update introduces a full-scale Guild versus Guild tournament, a new ice cold battleground and exciting new trials for adventurers to test themselves in. Situated at the top of the world, the Snowpine Peak Battleground unfolds a new chapter in the faction war between two known races in Nuanor. The feathered Wingar and the furry Ursids are at each other’s throat and it is up to each player to select a faction and jump in to determine the outcome!”
Get caught up with the launch trailer, which we’ve tucked down below.
“Deep within the blustery land of Snowpine Reach, a bitter rivalry between the Wingar and the Ursids threatens to spill across the zone, putting all manner of innocent people at risk of death or injury if the situation isn’t placated. It is now up to heroes like you end the stalemate by assisting one of these two rivals in decimating their enemies. While having either race free to intimidate the Snowpine Peak region as a whole may not be optimal, it is preferable to having both factions battling across the land and leaving devastation in their wake.”
Faction selection begins at level 40; at that point, you can hop into the battlegrounds twice per week to earn points for your side with a bit of old-school Alterac Valley flavor.
The whole shebang launches on May 23rd.
Ramsgate is not the sort of city you would choose as a vacation destination. It’s cramped. It’s built in a terrible spot. It’s right on the boundary of territory filled with enormous monsters who want to stomp you into paste. But for the player characters of Dauntless, that’s exactly what makes it home. It’s a place to rest up, restock, and get ready before heading out to kill some more titanic monsters because it’s located right on the boundary of their domain and it stands as a metaphorical slap in the face to the creatures.
Also, it has dye vendors.
Obviously, players will need to be familiar with the city’s armorsmith, weaponmaster, and aethersmith. They’ll also want to visit the Stormchasers, the Crimson Blades, and the Orrery, the three factions that have set up bases within the city while jockeying for allegiance from the various monster slayers. It might not be a luxury resort, but it’s exactly the sort of city you need if you want to hunt big monsters in Dauntless… and seeing as how that’s what the actual game is all about, your options are fairly limited.
Kirsten Geary. That is almost all you have to say when talking about the Illuminati faction in The Secret World. That’s because the infamous KG (as she signs her memos) is practically the personality of the organization — at least as far as players are concerned. As the player handler, she is the main contact point for everyone putting on the blue. However, there is more to the faction than her. Lots more! Not that I can tell you all of it; that would spoil the game! But I can tell you some, in case you are considering rolling one when Secret World Legends hits the scene.
After laying out the gist of factions last week, I’m shifting my efforts to looking at each one individually. Today we’ll peek behind the curtains of the Illuminati so you can get a look at the inner workings. Don’t worry: I promise to make this as spoiler-free as absolutely possible.
“Snowpine Reach is cold enough to dampen the spirits of those unused to such chilling environments, thus those who stay there must quickly learn how to craft the warmest clothes using the hides and furs of local wildlife,” says the studio. “Given Snowpine Reach is also the staging ground for one of the most bitter rivalries in Nuanor, staying warm isn’t the only factor one must adapt to when trying to survive.” That’s because the baddies are also trying to kill you, as are the factions — at least until you pick a side.
The other piece covers the lore behind Shinji. Poor, poor, Shinji, doomed to be the king of everything. Have a look — pretty, yeah?
For those craving more Telsa coils and calculation engines than swords and spells, there’s the brand-new Steam Hammer that’s coming to Steam early access on Friday, May 12th.
Players begin by crash-landing their airship on an island in an industrial revolution-level world. Faced with rebuilding their society and technology, the community will craft their own weapons, buildings, and airships from materials around the island. It won’t be a cakewalk, due to the inherent conflict between the two factions vying for power.
Steam Hammer is a 64-player survival sandbox with lots of steampunk gadgets and weapons, including chain swords, airships, motorcycles, alchemistry, and Telsa generators. Also, there are turkey farms, because it isn’t just about nonstop killing.The game just had a wipe of its global servers two days ago to prepare for its big moment on Steam. In preparation for the early access release, you can check out the trailer after the break.
While a spring launch of Secret World Legends is not a guarantee it’s still a hope, so it’s not too soon to be thinking about creating your character. Anyone who is remotely like me could use as much lead time as possible to make important decisions! And one of those decisions is what faction to play when the game releases.
Why would faction choice matter? Although Creative Director Romain Amiel told me in our interview that faction PvP is something the new game was hoping to move away from, factions are still a thing. Beyond determining the hue of faction-colored armor (if that ends up being a thing in SWL as well), factions really flavor a good chunk of your game experience. So picking the right one for you could affect your level of enjoyment. If you played The Secret World, you have already faced the quandary that new players will face: which one? You might already have a favorite faction that you will automatically choose. However, maybe you are interested in experiencing the story from a slightly different perspective. The question then becomes which secret society should you pledge to this time? If you’ve never played before and will be starting fresh in Secret World Legends, you may not know anything about the differences in the three organizations. So how do you choose?
The spring season always sees a deluge of MMORPG birthday celebrations: Lord of the Rings Online, City of Heroes, Allods Online, Free Realms last week and TERA and EVE Online this week. Lost in the din, however, is Guild Wars — classic Guild Wars, ArenaNet’s original MMO, which released in 2005 against World of Warcraft, performed brilliantly, and let up only once Guild Wars 2 itself was underway. Even though it’s now clinging to life in a permanent sort of maintenance mode, I still consider it one of the best MMORPGs ever made, in spite of the fact that it’s missing several things I’d normally consider vital for an MMO. And in this week’s video edition of my Working As Intended column, I’m going to tell you why.
Last week, we reported on an impending roleplaying event in Elite Dangerous that was set to influence the outcome of Premonition, a game-based novel by author Drew Wagar. What players did during the event to hunt down or defend accused assassin Salomé was expected to be incorporated into the book, including NPCs being killed off permanently.
I’m sad to report that while many players did rush to Salomé’s (as played by Wagar himself) defense, the event was predictably run off the rails by players. First, a multi-guild faction calling itself Premonition Allied Coalition (PAC), which was sanctioned by Wagar and ostensibly there to protect the NPC, allegedly began threatening and attacking non-PAC players who arrived in the event locations, causing extreme uproar across the Elite subreddit.
And that, according to Ars Technica, is when the chaos really began, as amid the pandemonium, Salomé’s ship was actually destroyed by a PAC member who was in fact a mole named Harry Potter (sigh) from gleeful and notorious Elite griefer group Smiling Dog Crew, who had convinced PAC it could be trusted this time, and MMO players for some reason believed them.
Low-security space offered a tempting middle-ground for players back then, a place you could go to reap better rewards than highsec but at the cost of a proportional increase in risk. Pirates faced much lower consequences for attacking another ship unprovoked there than in highsec, and the areas around stargates and stations were kept safer by automated sentry turrets. The delicate balance between risk and reward in low-security space began to fall apart as the sizes of player groups in EVE increased and ships got better at tanking the damage from sentries. Nearly a decade later and with very little done to revamp the area, today’s lowsec still suffers from this legacy and has lost much of its identity. But how can this problem be solved? Hints may come from recent rumblings at EVE Fanfest 2017 on the future direction of PvE.
In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look at the reasons I believe low-security space has lost its identity and a few of the ways CCP could inject some much-needed personality and speciality into this neglected area of the game.