After a short one-week hiatus, the Massively OP Podcast is back and has brought another guest co-host along for the ride! We spend a lot of time this week looking at older games, including shocking (sort of) revelations about a certain spacey MMO. We’re sure you can guess which one.
Join us on the podcast as we talk about what we’ve been playing in MMOs, the top news stories from the past week, and topics that listeners have submitted!
As you might have already been aware, today is the original Guild Wars’ 10th anniversary. To mark the occasion, Community Manager Gaile Gray wrote up a post in which she walks down memory lane to talk about the formation of ArenaNet, the debut of Guild Wars Prophecies, and the game’s subsequent updates.
“I think it says a great deal about the company’s founding philosophy that — years before the release of their game — they were thinking not solely of development but were also thinking about how to communicate with their future players and fans,” Gray notes.
The article covers several quotes from current and former ArenaNet team members while noting some of the game’s important milestones. With 10 years of Guild Wars behind us, what are some of your favorite memories from the game?
[Source: Guild Wars 2
If you read the last Hyperspace Beacon
, then you know that BioWare’s announcement that Ziost is finally hitting Star Wars: The Old Republic
excited me beyond reason. Ziost is one of those planets that really should make a mark on the SWTOR
universe because of its significance in Star Wars ancient history. Unfortunately, that also means that BioWare has a lot to live up to when it comes to creating this planet. We are, of course, talking about the former capital world of the Sith Empire and the home of the first Dark Lord of the Sith Ajunta Pall.
This past weekend I played through the Ziost storyline myself. And to make sure I had a rounded perspective, I watched a few videos playthroughs of the planetary quests too. Specifically, I’d like to mention Vulkk, who produces a monstrous swath of videos about all the SWTOR content. I watched his Republic playthrough just to make sure that I didn’t really miss anything as far as the story was concerned.
As you will come to understand after reading this, the story on Ziost feels incomplete, and frankly, the quest layout is really weird compared to all the previous quests.
Shield-using Mesmers may be one of the new specializations coming with Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns if a new piece of concept art is any indication. ArenaNet posted a picture of a light-armor class with a spiked shield on Facebook, which many players believe to be a Mesmer.
The studio has also decided to take a new route with distributing beta keys for the expansion. Starting on April 28th, special rare portals will drop from enemies in Dry Top and Silverwastes that will flag the looter’s account for beta access.
Not every player is thrilled that ArenaNet is taking this route. Blogger Verene says that eager players will be facing the game’s incredibly stingy loot tables: “The biggest problem is that it’s going to be entirely down to luck. There is no way you can work towards getting one of these beta-granting portals than simply farming in those two zones and hoping you get lucky.”
, Guild Wars 2
, Under the Pale Tree
Welcome along to Guild Chat, my cozy corner of the internet in which we can discuss all things guilds, the place where we all gather to give advice to a reader in need. Come on in and pull up a plush purple couch, everybody! I’ll pop the kettle on while we get settled in, all ready to deal with this month’s issue. This edition of Guild Chat is focused on a question sent in from Massively Overpowered reader Loyheta that asks about balancing the size of a guild’s roster with its inclusiveness and activity levels. As pointed out, the balance can be hard to strike: Many of the largest guilds become somewhat fractured and cliques inevitably form, whereas smaller guilds may be very friendly but often rely on new players suiting the commonality of the existing core members. Read Loyheta’s question in full below to get up to speed, and don’t forget to pop your own two cents on the topic in the comments below.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, readers of all races, professions, and levels: I finally have the news we’ve all been waiting for! Today I’m not writing about Hylek tribes or PvP betas; I’m getting down into the nitty-gritty workings that power the upcoming Guild Wars 2 expansion with the first word on Heart of Thorns‘ new specializations and traits. This ambitious overhaul of one of the game’s core progression systems aims to completely decouple stats from traits and allow players to come up with more creative character builds.
I got to fire some quick interview questions across to Game Design Lead Jon Peters that should help tease out the changes that are coming our way. Peters has crafted an in-depth blog post on the topic that will go live on the official Guild Wars 2 website on Thursday, April 23rd, but since I love you all I shan’t keep you waiting for a breakdown of the new specializations and traits that will rock Tyria very soon. Keep reading for my summary of the additions and the full-text interview with Peters, noting of course that we’re dealing with very early information that is subject to change as development continues.
ArenaNet can’t stop talking about competitive Guild Wars 2 PvP here lately, and today brings us a blog post focused on the World Tournament Series Championship. The next set of champions will be crowned at Gamescom in Cologne, Germany on August 8th.
Prior to that, there are qualifiers and ESL matches galore in which teams will need to place highly to secure an invitation to Cologne. The full post has all of the eligibility requirements as well as some verbiage about playing for $50,000 USD.
In other GW2 news, ANet has partnered with Overwolf to create a contest for coders that will reward the top 20 app developers with “over $15,000 USD in prizes.”
[Source: Announcement post
The PvP team at ArenaNet is steadily gearing up for the release of the Heart of Thorns expansion, with the PvP-inclined among the Guild Wars 2 playerbase being treated to a 24-hour open beta Stronghold event last week. I don’t know about you lot, but I found the Stronghold open beta experience to be very interesting and perhaps even game-changing for me. I was invited along by the team to join forces with other journalists and ANet staff, including Game Director Colin Johanson, in an epic battle across the Champion’s Dusk map during the day-long playtesting period.
My name is Tina and I am PvP-phobic. I have an embarrassingly poor track record in PvP, opting instead to sink my time into PvE adventures rather than bashing my toon against the might of other players. PvP usually switches me right off, presenting a very steep learning curve that’s quite unforgiving for a curious explorer like me. But I put my dread aside and threw myself headlong into the perilous fray of Stronghold this week in order to sum up the experience for an edition of Flameseeker Chronicles… and was pleasantly surprised!
The debut of World of Warcraft Tokens into the game’s economy has caused quite a stir, particularly after the prices plunged during the first few days. Alt:ernative Chat discussed the economics 101 aspect of the event but ultimately posed a few soul-searching questions for buyers.
“Was it worth it?” she asks. “All that time it took to ‘make’ that money in game, is this a fair exchange for the real world money you’ve currently freed up? What if Blizzard turned around tomorrow and vastly restricted your ability to make gold in the future? Most importantly of all, do you now feel a greater obligation to play the game because you had to work for it in a different fashion than simply stumping up US/AU Dollars?”
To that all I can say is: Time is money, friends! In this week’s blogosphere safari, we look at the backstory of SWTOR’s Revan, ponder the merits of joining a multi-game guild, and read an analysis of Guild Wars 2’s elite skills.
How would you like to own the most lavish llama in the lands of Tyria? All you need to do is participate in one of Guild Wars 2’s community-run PvP events. You don’t have to win one of the events, according to ArenaNet’s latest blog post. Placing in the top half of a bracket will “generally” earn you a reward, the firm says, and most of the single-elimination tourneys grant a prize after a single round victory.
As for the llama itself, it’s basically a minipet that features progression and the ability to dance in its final form.
[Source: ANet blog post
Do you like Guild Wars 2? Do you like PvP? If you answered yes and yes, the fact that ArenaNet has announced its third Tournament of Legends PvP event may interest you.
Or it may not, in which case you can safely skip the remainder of this post.
The tourney is open to players of all skill levels and it features five-person teams in a best-of-three single-elimination format. The Euro version of the event happens on May 23rd, while the North American version is scheduled for May 30th. Prizes include legendary weapons, components, gems, precursor weapons, and more.
[Source: ANet announcement
Players are not getting a level cap bump with Heart of Thorns; the apex of power in Guild Wars 2 will remain Level 80. But there will be new progression in the form of Masteries, which a new article explores in some depth. The difference is that rather than represent universal power growth, Masteries are entirely contextual character improvements that allow characters to better navigate, explore, and handle content that the player is doing anyway. So all of the movement tricks like gliders aren’t just fun ways to explore the jungle; they’re ways for players to access parts of the jungle that would otherwise be cut off.
Players, meanwhile, are a little miffed that all the mastery in the world won’t allow them to access the Super Adventure Box again. A parody video by Eexa expresses annoyance in the only possible way: in the form of a song! It’s probably not going to fully send the message either, but when you’ve already got a history of making musical parodies about building golems and being a genius in Lion’s Arch, it’s at least consistent.
This week’s Massively Overthinking question is posed by Kickstarter donor Winterskorn, who wants to talk about something getting less and less love in MMORPGs lately: PvE.
“There are currently a lot of PvP-centric MMOs cropping up. But when companies talk analytics, they always indicate PvPers are small percentage of the population. So the question is why are there no PvE centric MMOs — solely PvE with no PvP attached?”
I polled the Massively OP writers for their take. Is Winterskorn’s perception accurate, and if so, where are the purely PvE MMOs?