kingdom of loathing

Official Site: Kingdom of Loathing
Studio: Asymmetric Publications
Launch Date: February 10, 2003
Genre: Satirical fantasy turn-based RPG
Business Model: Free (Donating players receive a Mr. Accessory)
Platform: Browser

Massively Overthinking: Prestige systems in MMORPGs

Last week, an interesting question dropped into our team inbox. It was from a game developer -- I don't know for which game -- named Matthew.

"As a developer, I'd be really interested to know what MMO gamers think about the idea of a 'prestige system' in an MMO, akin to Call of Duty's, to encourage players who reach the endgame content to play through the game again from level 1 (with a different approach). Especially in the context of a game that has enough choices and options to make replaying the game interesting. My small studio doesn't have the resource to produce an expansive endgame, and this seems like it could be a viable option."

There are a handful of MMORPGs that try this already -- Mabinogi is coming to mind -- but it's very rare in the RPG genre in general, and I bet you guys can think up a few reasons why. So let's tackle the question for this week's Overthinking: Which games have prestige systems that encourage you to replay your character from level 1, why do you think it's so rare in MMORPGs, and how would you like to see such a system play out in a genre that prides itself on character development and permanence?

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PAX West: West of Loathing makes a punny western with surprising depth

If you've ever taken the time to sit down with the long-running Kingdom of Loathing, you know well that the developers of that game love silly puns, wordplay, crude (yet charming) doodle drawings, and a world full of goofy twists on RPG tropes. The popularity and profitability of that game has helped to build a spin-off called West of Loathing, which should be coming out in early 2017 for PC and mobile devices.

As its name implies, West of Loathing takes players into the western genre of the Kingdom of Loathing universe. While it won't be a multiplayer game, it will tie into KoL's lore while also providing a more full-fledged RPG experience with all of the franchise's jokes and design.

Curious about West of Loathing? Check out a short interview from PAX West with the game's creator after the break!

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TennoCon 2016: Warframe's convention, new primes and cartoon

Warframe has been one of those games that I've always meant to look into as soon as I had the time. Well, thanks to TennoCon 2016, the opportunity arose to make the time. And I am glad I went! It may have been the first Warframe convention, but I think it rivals the bigger, established cons for feel and fun.

Over the course of the day I toured the Digital Extremes office with Game Director Steve Sinclair, hung out with devs, listened to the soundtrack for the second dream sequence (over and over), sat in on sound and art panels, and mingled with the crowd. From that, I came away from TennoCon with an interest in and excitement for the game and its upcoming plans -- and an anticipation for a repeat performance next year.

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Perfect Ten: Top 10 obscure MMORPGs

I've seen a lot of desperate requests in my day in which players are asking for games outside of the normal sphere of popularity and MMO mainstream (such as it is). We all know what the big games are, the ones that get the lion's share of the publicity, press, and popularity. But all of that attention can easily blind us to those titles that are quite good if not as well-known, and I believe it's those MMOs that many players are seeking when looking for an alternative to the games they've been playing for years.

So today we're going to explore a list my top 10 recommendations for "obscure" MMOs. These are games that might not be on the tips of everyone's tongues but have earned a solid reputation in some way and might offer a different experience than the same-old that you're used to seeing. For this list I'm mostly sticking with released or playable titles that have good word-of-mouth behind them, are still in operation, and have generally run under the radar for most of their lifespan.

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Kingdom of Loathing mulls mobile version and spin-off, prepares for annual convention

There's a lot going on for the punny browser game Kingdom of Loathing, so let's bring you up to date on all of the fun! First of all, it appears that the developers are considering creating a mobile version of the online RPG, perhaps funded by a Kickstarter campaign. Currently the game does adapt to smartphones and tablets when run on those device's browsers.

Next up is the news that the team is creating a spin-off title, West of Loathing, for spring 2016. West of Loathing looks to be a western single-player RPG set in the Kingdom of Loathing universe.

Finally, KoL Con is returning for its 12th (!) year in Mesa, Arizona from September 25th to 26th. The $25 registration fee is your access ticket to casino night, BBQ, and, um, "wizards."

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The Daily Grind: When's the last time an MMO made you laugh?

There are few things that I love more in gaming than to have a genuine laugh-out-loud moment. Maybe something silly and stupid happens in a game (such as a Guild Wars 2 glitch that made dead sharks float above land), maybe it's clever or weird quest writing, or maybe it's just the game's cheekiness coming through.

Kingdom of Loathing got more than a few chuckles from me for its absurdist grammarian humor, but I am equally fond of the black humor of Fallen Earth and The Secret World.

So cynicism aside, when's the last time an MMO made you laugh?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today's Daily Grind!

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