interviews

Trion deals with DDOS attacks while ArcheAge dives into its Maelstrom update

Trion Worlds is reporting “intermittent” attacks on its Dallas hub over the last day that are causing connectivity issues for some of its online games, such as ArcheAge and Trove. The team is working with the local ISP providers to counter the attack and stabilize the servers for play.

“Please keep in mind that DDoS attacks are all too common and, for the most part, they don’t impact gameplay,” Trion said. “Our network engineers have setup substantial protections that allows us to mitigate the vast majority of these types of attacks. Without these efforts, taken by all game companies, any game under an attack such as this would simply be offline.”

It’s especially important for this to be resolved for ArcheAge, as today is the official launch of the game’s Maelstrom update. This patch contains a new raid organizational system, a non-RNG gear upgrade system, cross-server arenas, title collections, a redesigned folio, limited-time events, and the introduction of the Bloodsalt Bay naval combat arena.

Get the full scoop on Maelstrom with Massively OP’s interview on the update and its offerings!

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Black Desert’s Pearl Abyss on feedback, cadence, and avoiding ‘aggressive’ business models

Pearl Abyss’ Dae Il Kim sat for an interview with InvenGlobal earlier this fall that’s just gone live, and while it might be a bit old, it’s packed with juicy quotes of note to Black Desert players.

For starters, Kim says the game’s UI is due for revision, and those reivisions were inspired by – wait for it – the mobile and console versions. That includes the minimap, mind you. And feedback from players? Yeah, he reads it, unfiltered and raw, to ensure that his team gets the “specific emotion” from player complaints.

But Kim does reject Inven’s assertion that the game’s update pace has slowed down, which is certainly the case in the West, where PA’s western publisher has reduced updates from weekly to biweekly.

“The [number] of updates is the same as it was before,” he counters. “I pushed myself to make a system which makes the updating progress much faster and easier.”

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Interview: ArcheAge’s 4.0 Maelstrom launches December 13 with changes to lunagems, raid finder, and more

Batten down the hatches because a big storm hits tomorrow! ArcheAge’s Maelstrom, with its cross-server navel arena, launches on December 13th. We got to see some of the 4.0 expansion and learn more about it during our demo and interview at PAX West this last fall. And on the cusp of launch, I sat down again with Trion Associate Producer Seraphina “Celestrata” Brennan, Executive Producer Merv Lee Kwai, and Community Manager Joe “Muzzy” Brogno to chat more about the upcoming changes. What I learned is that the changes have changes! Lunagems, the raid finder bulletin board, streetlights, and some of the arenas updates have been updated. And one change — the addition of the new turtle ship — will actually not be happening.

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Trion is trying to bring Defiance up to date on modern consoles

Most of you probably think of Defiance as “that game that used to tie into a TV show and is probably on borrowed time.” Yet a recent interview with the team reveals that the game is actually doing a lot better than you might expect. The team behind the game is reporting around 120k average monthly users, and they’re hard at work trying to deliver an upgraded version of the game that takes advantage of current-generation console hardware on the PlayStation 4.

The big goal is finding out what the game’s current playerbase wants and see if major long-term upgrades like this are something that would actually improve the experience for players; behind the scenes, it’s felt that there’s a good core game already in existence, so there’s not much desire to shake things up too severely or go the sequel route. It’s a fascinating interview all around, although it’s possible that the biggest surprise is that the game appears to be still humming along despite the loss of its vaunted transmedia synergy.

Source: DualShockers

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EVE Evolved: Calling time on EVE Online’s five-year vision

When Andie “CCP Seagull” Nordgren walked onto the stage at EVE Fanfest 2013 and delivered her long-term vision for the future of EVE Online, the excitement in the room was palpable. EVE was riding its highest peak concurrent player numbers in the game’s history following the overhauls of the Crucible, Inferno, and Retribution expansions, and players were ready for a new blockbuster feature to fire their imaginations. CCP delivered its ambitious five year vision to hand the reins of EVE‘s living universe over to its players, with player-built stargates and deep space exploration in completely uncharted star systems.

We’re now about four months away from the five-year mark on that vision, and many parts of it have now been completed, but no battle plan ever survives contact with the enemy. We’ve seen some big feature drops such as the release of citadels, the industry overhaul, and the recent moon mining overhaul, but that deep space colonisation gameplay still seems far off. Some players feel as if EVE is currently in a holding pattern, with everyone waiting for the next big feature or overhauls to their favourite part of the game before deciding what to do next. So what does come next?

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I break down the progress toward Nordgren’s 5 year vision so far and talk about the possible next steps I think CCP could take to make it a reality.

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Massively Overthinking: The best and worst MMO developer quotes of 2017

Think of all the wacky things devs have said in public in front of gamers and journalists this year.

Now imagine what gets said behind closed doors!

For this week’s Massively Overthinking, I’ve asked our staff to select the best (and worst) developer quotes from the year and reflect on what we’ve learned from them. Let’s dig in – we’ve got some whoppers.

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DayZ finally makes hard plans to leave early access and launch (beta) next year

Remember like 50 million years ago when DayZ was young, Dean Hall was at the top of everybody’s interview list, and nobody realized the survival sandbox genre was about to blow up? Ah, 2013.

DayZ still hasn’t launched all these years later, to the point that it’s been supplanted as the most-egregiously-still-in-early-access game multiple times, and Dean Hall has left the company and started multiple games since then (and closed some of them, too). But at least the early access part is about to change as the team makes its “move away from legacy DayZ,” according to a post penned earlier this week by Bohemia Interactive Lead Producer Eugen Harton and Creative Director Brian Hicks.

The team admits that the current experimental build (0.63) isn’t up to snuff and won’t make it to players this year. When it does launch next year, it’ll introduce new crafting, revamped ranged and melee combat, the new central economy, new visuals, new animals, new zombies – gobs of new stuff and overhauls to old stuff.

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Shadow’s Kiss devs interview vampires as their Kickstarter nears finish line

Even though it’s looking more like Christmas than Halloween around these parts, Shadow’s Kiss is taking its Kickstarter all the way to the bank. The blood bank.

The indie vampire MMO is about to finish a successful fundraising campaign, having raised over $67,000 of its initial $25,000 goal. This means that the community has unlocked a number of stretch goals, such as crafting, a ritual magic system, a soundtrack from Midnight Syndicate, and demolitions.

“We’re honored and a bit overwhelmed by the support from the community,” said Clockwork Throne President Thomas Sitch. “This Kickstarter is going to allow us to finally bring the world a vampire-themed MMO, with gothic story elements, horror, and the ‘coolness factor’ of being a vampire set on ruling the night.”

Flush with all of that future cash, the team apparently funded a trip to the city to interview real vampires during which all of the devs were killed. Or so the following mockumentary videos would have you believe.

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Marvel Heroes: Former dev says Disney’s not the bad guy, Xbox One grants automatic refunds

Still reeling from the abrupt early sunset of Marvel Heroes yesterday? Same here. If you want a little closure, maybe check out Kinda Funny Games, which yesterday posted an interview with former Gazillion Systems Designer Anthony Gallegos, who discusses the collapse of the studio.

Gallegos suggests that Gazillion is going through “some kind of bankruptcy” and notes actually furloughed employees a week and a half before the layoffs – and indeed, lost a quarter of its staff from layoffs earlier this year. He also confirms that the license (he says “contract”) for Marvel Heroes was lost in October and negotiations with Disney/Marvel began anew.

This was a time when Gazillion reps were telling the press and the playerbase that “the company [was] functioning normally.” It clearly was not.

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Lineage 2: Revolution recruits Conan O’Brien for western domination

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.”

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Cyberpunk 2077 will include online elements of some sort according to a video interview

When science fiction writers pictured the world of tomorrow back in the mid-’80s, they pictured some things that definitely have not caught on in ubiquity (bulky VR headsets, neon everything, phasing out daylight in favor of rainy nights all day every day). But the whole idea of constantly interconnected computers? They got that. So it seems appropriate that the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 from CD Projekt Red (best known for The Witcher series) will include some form of online component.

Company CEO Adam Kicinski has said in a recent interview that an online component is recommended and/or necessary in order to achieve long-term success in the video game marketplace. What that online component may be remains to be seen, as it could be anything from a multiplayer mode to lockboxes to just being a full online co-op game. You can check out the video interview just below, but it is in Polish, so you’ll want to turn on subtitles if that’s not a language you speak.

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Traditional ‘tier’ sets are not planned for World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth

If you’ve never played World of Warcraft, you may be unfamiliar with the concept if not the visuals of tier sets. Tiered armor is the ultimate class-specific reward from each given raid level, so the upcoming Antorus raid awards Tier 21 armor for those lucky enough to get the necessary drops. Wearing several pieces of tier armor also awards set bonuses. But it looks like the time has passed on all of that, as a recent interview stated that tier sets are not planned to return at all in Battle for Azeroth.

Designer Ion Hazzikostas explains that tier pieces tend to “lock down” certain gear slots and feel like more of a hindrance than anything, so the team is experimenting with different ways to award gear and appearances. How that will work remains to be seen, but the suggestion of no more tier sets alone is a major departure from how World of Warcraft has always structured its endgame raids. We’ll hopefully learn more about these changes as the expansion gets closer to testing and release.

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World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth will have no personal boats, no big class overhauls, and no lockboxes

It’s hard to imagine that anyone is going to be upset about the idea of no lockboxes in World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth. Sure, Blizzard makes use of them in several other games, but at this point there are no plans to bring them into Azeroth, according to a new interview. (Whether or not that will change in the future remains to be seen.) Of course, the same interview that confirms that also confirms that we will not be getting our own personal boats, so it’s sort of good news, bad news.

Other interviews have indicated that the team wants to bring forward Mission Table-style content, so that doesn’t mean we won’t have anything similar; it just means it won’t be a boat.

Last but not least, there’s another “no” on the list that will either make you happy or sad depending on how you feel about the Legion mechanics for classes. While every class and spec will be adjusted and altered moving into the next expansion, there will be no major overhauls on par with the Legion shift, certainly nothing like the large-scale rework of Survival Hunters. Exactly how things will be balanced remains to be seen, but this is good news if you like your current spec’s playstyle. If you don’t… well, it’ll be adjusted, not wildly changed.

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