game mechanics

Paragon walks through the mechanics of its upcoming character Revenant

What do you know about Paragon’s upcoming new hero, Revenant? If you were asked that before watching the video down below, it might just be that he looks like a combination of characters owned by some other company, or maybe it’s that he probably has a hard time showing off his ID to buy drinks when his face is just two glowing eyes under a hat. Afterwards… well, you might still think all of that, but you’ll also know how he plays mechanically.

Revenant’s whole schtick is isolating and breaking down single targets, from his random spread of bullets working best against an isolated target (so more of the bullets will target one enemy) to his ultimate ability, which drags a target into the nether realm for a one-on-one duel. Thus, you want to build up his damage and focus on making him into a formidable takedown engine. Check out the full video below for all of the details you need, unless the details you need involve biologically improbably reproduction between characters from other games. Ahem.

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Revelation Online invites players to climb the Tower of Pain

There is a place in Revelation Online they call the Tower of Pain. And it’s been the ruin of many an adventuring group, mostly because you’re going into something called the Tower of Pain. What do you think is going to happen in there? Foot rubs?

It’s not foot rubs. It’s pain. The guardians of this tower sealed their very essence into the tower to prevent people from reaching the pinnacle on the eighth floor. The doors to the dang thing only open once every thousand years. And yet you’re probably still going to go in there, because… well, it’s an MMO, there’s a tower full of stuff, that’s what you do.

Of course, the climb up the Tower of Pain will not be the same every time, so you can look forward to shifting layouts and guardians depending on how you clear your way up the tower. You can also look forward to hurting. Again, we cannot stress this enough, it is called the Tower of Pain.

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Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward in review, part four

At least we’re finally thought the story. While we walk through a review of Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward in its totality, we’ve taken three weeks covering all of the various stories within the expansion, as well as touching upon a bit of the class design in the last part. Parts one, two, and three cover everything from the main scenario to some of the zone side stories. And now we can move on to the mechanical side of things enthusiastically.

Also, we’re reaching the point where I know I’m going to forget to mention at least one or two things that were really keen from the expansion, but that’s a different discussion.

In terms of sheer volume, of course, Heavensward nearly matched what we got from the base game in terms of patches, and arguably surpassed it in some categories; sure, we only got 10 dungeons from patches rather than 15, but if you didn’t have any interest in Coil in 2.x, you got the entirety of Alexander, which was new. But volume alone isn’t the determinant of how good that content was. So let’s start in on that, albeit not with the dungeons.

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Overwatch adjusts competitive win conditions for Assault maps

When both teams lose, who wins? That might sound like an oxymoron, but the latest Overwatch adjustment to competitive play is aimed at exactly that scenario. It’s possible when playing on maps with an Assault component like Hanamura to have both teams fail to capture an objective at all… which raises the question of who wins. In an effort to make things fair, a change was already made so that the team which made more progress would be declared the winner… but that led to a problem wherein it was essentially a job for defenders to always have someone on the capture point so the attackers couldn’t make progress.

The next change upcoming requires at least 33% progress on the capture for it to “count,” meaning that if the enemy team slips someone on for a tiny sliver of capture, they’re still behind. So if both attacking teams manage to partially capture the objective, but one hits 10% and the other hits 40%, the team who hits 40% wins the round. The various potential tie scenarios are all discussed in the official rundown, which should put your mind at rest if you stay up at nights thinking about this problem.

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EverQuest II outlines upcoming familiars, cooperative competitions, and a level boost in the near future

Are you cooperative or competitive in EverQuest II? Do you like to work with others or work against them? The good news is that according to the newest producer’s letter, you’ll have an opportunity to do both with the game’s new “co-opetitive” challenges. (That’s their term, not ours.) You’ll work together with your group to clear content, and in the process you’ll be hindering and trying to go faster than other groups doing the same challenge. The rewards are new loot, including the upcoming Familiars, companions that can allow you access to stat boosts and the like.

The game is also offering a free level 100 boost token for players with accounts existing before April 20th, or players who make a subsequent account with paid membership time before the promotion starts up on May 2nd. There are also plans in motion for the game’s upcoming expansion and a new time-locked expansion server with special Heritage quest rewards. So there’s a lot to look forward to on the game’s live servers for the next couple of months, whether you like being part of a team or working against a team. Or both.

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Armored Warfare launches its Tanks Reloaded balance patch and previews its immediate followup

It’s been a while since Armored Warfare first discussed its upcoming “Balance 2.0” adjustments for the game’s mechanics, but the first pass has been added to the game with patch 0.19. The patch adjusts tank gameplay extensively while simultaneously adding 26 new tanks to play. But that’s not all the patch includes; there’s also a new PvP map, two new PvE missions, a new Skirmish mode, and a new Global Operations match. That’d be enough for a patch even without all of the balance changes.

Also, that isn’t the end of the story; the game is already previewing its next major update, which will include more balance changes, a new Garage interface, another new PvE mission, and new UI elements. So the big stuff just keeps rolling along. You can check out a trailer for the most recent patch just below, and you already know what to look forward to after you’ve finished up with that.

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Paragon introduces its newest hero, Revenant

Bear with us for a moment, here. You know there’s a game out right now that has a whole lot of characters but is allergic to any actual story, so most of what fans do is ship one character with another character. So what happens when Obnoxious Shotgun Edgelord and Just An Actual Cowboy Straight-Up In The Game hook up and manage to somehow have a love child? Well, Paragon has answered that question with its new ranged carry character, Revenant.

Don’t believe us? It sounds kind of unbelievable. Here, check out the reveal trailer just below in which you see a cowboy-hat-wearing specter of death with a shotgun revolver stomp around and shoot things. Seriously. If you’ve got some fanfics on deck about how such a thing would be possible… well, please don’t send them to us. We’re fine with leaving that as a biological mystery.

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The Daily Grind: Do you prefer safe strategies or fast strategies in MMOs?

There’s an interesting discussion which pops up on the Final Fantasy XIV Reddit from time to time regarding the differences between American and Japanese players. For this topic, the most pertinent discussion is one of strategy. The American community, as a whole, prefers to have static groups of players who will often undertake risky but fast strategies; if the strategy works, it’s a quick and solid clear, but as soon as someone screws up it’s all down the tubes. By contrast, the Japanese community prefers strategies which are safer and more reliable, giving everyone more leeway… and possibly resulting in a slow clear when you get the group together.

Obviously, this applies to other games. From World of Warcraft to Black Desert, you always have the option of playing it safe or going big. Pulling one enemy at a time to farm for drops means you’re unlikely to ever get overwhelmed, which can certainly happen if you pull half a dozen… but if you succeed, that half a dozen can probable be minced faster than pulling them one by one. So what about you, dear readers? Do you prefer safe strategies or fast strategies in MMOs? Are you happier with a sure-fire win, or would you rather risk losing in exchange for a big victory?

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Final Fantasy XIV makes everything a little easier with patch 3.57

The last patch for Final Fantasy XIV before the expansion has been released. Does it contain unexpected in-depth content to delight and amaze players who had expected nothing of the sort? Of course not. Let’s not be silly. It does, however, give you a bit more reason to run the stuff that’s already in the game. Weekly loot and token restrictions for Dun Scaith, for example? Those are gone. Micro tomestones? Easier to get, making 260 weapons easier to get by extension.

Speaking of those weapons, you can upgrade them now in Idyllshire more easily, now that Shire weapon upgrade items can be purchased along with the armor and accessory upgrade items. It’s also easier to move through the stages required for your Anima Weapon if you’d like a bit of catch-up there, as well. So while you’re flitting about for the last two months until the expansion, you can get more out of every run you take part in; that’s a good thing, all told.

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World of Warcraft patches in some reward adjustments for Nether Portal Disruptors

You there! When you play World of Warcraft, are you just focusing on Nether Portal Disruptors on the Broken Shore? Well, stop that; do other stuff too. And to make sure that you don’t want to do that any more, the latest round of hotfixes for the game adjusts the rewards for said disruptors, adding in lots of war supplies and dauntless tokens while removing any and all Netherchunks and Sentinax beacons. So hopefully now it’s just something you’ll want to do when it’s up, not something you wait around for.

The hotfixes also make Witchmatron Magora far more sturdy while adding in significant damage buffs for Fire Mages, Enhancement Shamans, Outlaw Rogues, and Marksmanship Hunters. You can check out the full list of hotfixes on the official site, although you probably shouldn’t do so while waiting around for Nether Portal disruption to take place. That’s not as rewarding any more, remember?

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Diablo III temporarily removes the Necromancer from testing

And lo, it did pass that a select group of players of Diablo III were invited to test the Necromancer in the beta version of the game’s next major patch. And those players did test, and they experimented, and there was much rejoicing. But then Blizzard did decree that the Necromancer would be removed from testing for an unspecified timeframe as of today, and Blizzard didst encourage its testers to continue testing, but without the new class.

Now there was time when those who had seen the message (and those who had not, for it could only be accessed by those in the test) didst debate why the Necromancer was removed. And one soul rose with a speculation, saying this: “Could it be that the Necromancer is going to undergo major changes and the developers don’t want us testing it until then?” And many did raise their voices in assent. But then one soul offered a different idea, saying this: “The developers want us to be testing the other parts of the patch and this is the only way to be sure that happens.” And many more did raise their voices in assent. And the speculation reigned, for all that was known for certain was that it would indeed be removed from testing for a time.

Source: Reddit

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Greg Street discusses balancing League of Legends for all skill levels

How do you balance a video game? It’s kind of an ongoing question, but it’s also one that Greg Street (aka Ghostcrawler) has been answering for years with work on both World of Warcraft and League of Legends. He gave a panel on exactly that topic for League of Legends at this year’s GDC, and you can now watch that hour-long talk in the video just past the break. And it’s a worthwhile topic from the start because he’s talking about balancing not for the best players or the worst, but for everyone.

This is important; balancing for new and inexperienced players only produces a game that doesn’t have the depth needed for long-term play, while balancing solely for veterans creates a game that’s impenetrable for newcomers. So how do you make a game that’s fun for people getting into the genre for the first time as well as people who eat, sleep, jungle, and repeat? Check out the video below (courtesy of Gamasutra) for one possible answer.

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Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward in review, part three

Boy, I will be really miffed if this winds up taking more time than I have until Final Fantasy XIV‘s second expansion arrives. I will be put out. But there was a lot of stuff here to review! So far we’ve covered a whole lot of story in the first two parts of this series, but there’s… still a bit more story to resolve here! Yeesh. This expansion had some stuff in it.

Of course, it also had other stuff in it, so this time around we can start going into other useful stuff like new jobs and class design. Which is a good thing, since, again, we’ve got a little while longer until Stormblood arrives, but not forever. So enough preamble; let’s finish up talking about the stories in Heavensward, especially as we’re moving into the parts that just unambiguously did not land well.

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