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Dungeons and Dragons Online: Mists of Ravenloft opens pre-orders, aims for December release

The, ahem, bloodiest MMO expansion of 2017 is finally available to pre-purchase. Dungeons and Dragons Online opened up pre-orders today for Mists of Ravenloft, allowing players to secure some extras for their gameplay right now while reserving a copy of the expansion for day one of launch.

As with Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor earlier this year, Mists of Ravenloft’s expansion bundles range from $40 (for a basic edition) to $130 (the “ultimate fan bundle”). It should be noted that all editions include both the expansion and the new Aasimar race, but the Vistani Knife Fighter talent line is limited to the $80 and $130 packages. If players elect to purchase the expansion or the new race with store points, they’ll have to wait until that option becomes available in March 2018.

Speaking of dates, Standing Stone Games says that it is aiming for a release date of December 5th, although the studio is allowing for up to a month of potential delay, meaning that there is a chance that the expansion will slip into 2018.

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Ultima Online’s F2P mode launches spring 2018, limits housing, boats, and banks

Two decades after launch, Ultima Online is still going strong, and as we reported over the weekend, soon – spring 2018, to be exact – it’ll be letting players jump in with a new free option. Of course, the new “Endless Journey” approach will have restrictions on it, hence a new FAQ detailing what players with free access can and cannot do.

Broadsword notes that the freebie option will include all expansions except for the most recent one, Time of Legends, and the High Seas booster pack. Bank storage is a big deal, too.

“Previous veteran accounts have access to remove a limited amount of items from their bank box,” the studio says. “Endless Journey accounts have access to a vault for secure storage that can be rented for in-game gold. Additional vault storage can be rented using tokens purchased from the Ultima Store. Vaults that become delinquent in their rent payments will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.” Fortunately, your “real” bank “will remain waiting for you until you decide to resubscribe or return as an Endless Journey account. The contents of your bank box will never be auctioned off. Remember though, Endless Journey accounts only have access to a limited number of items from their bank and may not add new items to it.”

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MMO Tree of Life has entered ‘final beta,’ counts 85K early access players

Korean sandbox import Tree of Life is officially in “final beta” ahead of its launch this week.

“NeoBricks is announcing Tree of Life, the sandbox MMORPG on Steam has been already started the Final Beta on live servers and the official launch will be on 17th of August,” reads the press release. “By official launch, German, Russian, Brazilian-Portuguese, French and Simplified Chinese will be added.”

NeoBricks and OddoneGames previously said they sold 34K copies of the game during its first few months in the wild; today’s press post says the game was “loved by around 85,000” users during early access.

Along with the partial wipe ahead of the launch, the plan is to implement the new Clay 2 engine, redesigned UI, and PvP update for launch. A more recent FAQ tells players that the relic war will be removed from the final version, the UI will see a new compass, and the team might consider world bosses. But PvE servers are not happening. “The three factions are contesting but PvP should not be the essential feature,” the devs wrote earlier this month. “We are designing the game so that you can enjoy it even without active PvP

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Indie sandbox MMO Tree of Life officially launches on August 17, won’t include PvE-only servers

Here comes another MMO emerging from early access! We’re talking about Korean sandbox import Tree of Life, which hit beta last year following a transition to factional PvP and a big graphics overhaul. Developers NeoBricks and OddoneGames, who’ve said they sold 34K copies of the game during its first few months in the wild, are plotting a final beta from August 10th to 16th, at which point the servers will be partially wiped and launched on the 17th.

The announcement comports with last month’s note that the test phase would come to an end in “early August 2017” when the game is fully released on Steam. The plan is to implement the new Clay 2 engine, redesigned UI, and PvP update for launch. A more recent FAQ tells players that the relic war will be removed from the final version, the UI will see a new compass, and the team might consider world bosses. As for PvE servers,

“The idea of PvE/PvP servers is interesting but we do not consider it. In the world of ToL, the 3 factions are contesting but PvP should not be the essential feature. We are designing the game so that you can enjoy it even without active PvP (We have looked at the Community Feedback and have been discussing about PvP and concluded to remove the Relic war in the official version).”

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Wild West Online denies that its alpha has been delayed

Hey, cowboys and cowgirls. When did you think alpha was going to begin for Wild West Online? You’re wrong, apparently. 612 Games broke its recent silence to post a pair of FAQs, one of which insists the game isn’t running behind.

“Is the Alpha late? Technically, no. There was some misunderstanding due to a mistaken release that went out in some territories saying it would be late July, along with a lot of misinterpretation of the Early Bird end date as being the Alpha start date, but the plan has been ‘late Summer’ since before the first public announcement. We apologize for any miscommunication. However, if you still want to think of the Alpha as late we totally understand, and we look forward to you receiving your late Alpha access soon.”

Early in July, the team extended the game’s preorder program and announced an alpha server list. During a May interview with Massively OP, WWO’s Steven Bugaj told us, “We plan on running a number of alpha tests this summer, with a closed beta available by the fall and a short open beta prior to the game’s launch.” Still, maybe the snark isn’t quite warranted from a game still weathering suspicions and accusations about its dev team.

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Secret World Legends prepares for Monday’s Steam launch

How many do-overs does Secret World Legends get? At least one more, as the rebooted horror MMO is anticipating its Steam launch on Monday after a month of beta live operation.

Funcom is paving the way to a hopefully smooth release with an informative FAQ posted on the SWL site today. The studio notes that the Steam client is different from its own client but that both clients will access the same game servers.

The FAQ covers all of the possible scenarios, including whether players had owned the game in the past, had played on Steam, been playing for the past month, and so on. If you have been accessing Funcom’s SWL client but would rather change it to the Steam client for accessibility and consolidation’s sake, you can — but it is a one-way, one-time process if chosen.

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LOTRO expands its Mordor FAQ with more pre-order info

One of the qualms that players have expressed over the new Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor pre-order package is a lack of clarity over some of the more expensive edition offerings. It appears that the developers have been listening in part to these complaints, because the official Mordor FAQ was expanded early this week to elaborate on some of the extras.

The explanations covered the new Mordor runes, a creepy teleporting door that you can put inside your house to take you to the land of shadow, how the XP bonus item works, and pictures of the adorable kites that you will no doubt be flying as you vacation in Sauron’s back yard.

Now that you’re armed with more information, will you be dropping upwards of $130 on the expansion or going with the basic package? While you’re mulling that over, check out YouTuber Andang’s new character model update video after the break.

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Grim Dawn takes you on tour with the new Inquisitor

While Diablo III fans have their shiny (decaying) Necromancer to play with, Grim Dawn players are still tapping impatiently as they wait for the first expansion for this action-RPG to arrive. There’s still no word as to its name or specific release date, but the expansion FAQ page has it listed as “Q2 or Q3 2017.”

The dev team isn’t being completely silent on the expansion, however. A new video takes players on an hour-and-a-half tour with the new Inquisitor class, and a blog post this week announced that every celestial proc in the game is scheduled to get five additional ranks when the expansion releases.

Go on a journey with the Inquisitor and hear what the devs do have to say about the expansion after the break!

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Lord of the Rings Online: Mordor eyes July 31 launch, starts taking pre-orders

Ready to hop in your Middle-earth safari jeep and start touring around the untamed and lava-strewn lands of Mordor?

It might be coming sooner than you think. Standing Stone Games is eyeing a July 31st release date for its Mordor expansion, although the fine print leaves some wiggle-room for a delay (“In the event of delay, you will receive the Mordor expansion content and items no later than August 31st, 2017″).

But not so fast, little Hobbit — you’re going to have to pre-order first! All of the Free People ready for Lord of the Rings Online’s newest expansion should head on over to the Mordor pre-order site, where they can view the three bundles and decide which (if any) to purchase.

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Phantasy Star Online 2 unveils its Hero class this month — and here’s how you can play it

Phantasy Star Online 2’s most advanced class to date is getting ready to break into the scene later this month. On July 26th, the Japanese servers will patch in the Hero class, which is reportedly the most challenging (and powerful) profession to date. The Hero can wield three weapons and swap between them at will, requiring a flexible mindset for combat encounters.

So why do we tell you this? Are we tormenting you with visions of a game that you can’t play? Well, actually you can. While PSO2 will most likely never get a western release, there is no IP block from outside countries (apart from SEA nations) to come in and play. To make matters better, there are fan-created English patches to help native speakers navigate and understand the game (you might want to read the FAQ if you’re doing this).

Check out the trailer and the new Hero class after the break.

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EverQuest II kicks off new progression server after short delay

Following a brief delay yesterday, EverQuest II’s newest progression server is up and running.

The time-locked expansion server will start subscribers over at the earliest era of the core EverQuest II experience, after which expansion content will unlock at the rate of one every 12 weeks. The Fallen Gate FAQ has all of the information you’ll need to make a decision whether or not to roll a character on this server.

One of the key incentives for starting over on this special server is to gain rewards for all of your characters: “Heritage Quests are a staple of adventure in EverQuest II and we have some exciting rewards for those who complete them on Fallen Gate. Completion of any HQ on the Fallen Gate server will not only provide the normal reward, but also make a level appropriate version available for all your characters! Time to take those Journeyman’s Boots off the shelf put them to good use!”

Source: EverQuest II

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EverQuest II answers all of your progression server questions

Next week, EverQuest II is opening up Fallen Gate, a new “time-locked expansion server” that’s going to function a little bit differently than other progression servers have in the game’s history. Essentially, it’s going to unlock new expansions every 12 weeks and allow players to complete heritage quests to earn rewards for all of their characters across all of the game’s servers.

If you’re curious about the finer details of this new server and are weighing your decision whether to roll a character or not, you’re probably going to want to read the FAQ that the team put out yesterday that clears things up.

The team did mention that combat encounters are going to be a bit tougher on this server. “While items drops are not the same as they were in the early days of EverQuest II, both items and encounter power have been adjusted to approximate the play experience of launch. So while items have more stats, such as DPS, potency, or critical bonus, the encounters have been tuned to expect those stats, so the fight balance should be relatively the same.”

Source: EverQuest II

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Here’s everything you need to know about Path of Exile’s expansion beta

The beta for Path of Exile: The Fall of Oriath is starting in two days, on June 8th, and it’s no small potatoes to the dev team. In fact, if going by the website is any indication, the expansion test is being treated as something on par of a complex military invasion.

That’s why there is not just one, but two FAQs to disseminate all of the important information to potential testers. The test will cover five to six weeks during the summer and will draft players using waves of silent invites. Of course, you can always pay to get in by buying one of the supporter packs.

When June 8th hits, the main game will get Patch 2.6.2, beta keys will start to go out, an Act V trailer will be released, supporter packs will be sold, and embargo lifts will happen across the internet. The first seven acts of the game are planned for testing at this point, with the eighth act coming soon thereafter. Acts nine and ten are being reserved for the launch of The Fall of Oriath in mid-July.

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