launch date

Monster Hunter: World will release worldwide on January 26, 2018

Good news for fans of hunting monsters today, as Monster Hunter: World has announced its release date as January 26th, 2018! The slightly less-good news is that’s just for the versions on Xbox One and PlayStation 4; players on PC will have to wait for an as-yet unspecified date. But it’s still happening, and a firm release date just makes it seem that much more likely in the near future.

You can also check out a new rather narrative trailer just below, showing off the landscapes and (most importantly) the monsters players will encounter in the game. Those of you who remember that a rather similar title pushed its own launch to 2018 might be looking forward to the battle for hearts and minds, but if you’re a stalwart Monster Hunter fan, you can be happy just to know that there are only a few short months before the game is open to the world. You can also check out our hands-on from E3 this year.

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Cloud Pirates releases fully on April 19th with the Stronghold launch

Why would you try to steal a cloud? What possible advantage could that confer? Even when you ignore the obvious logistical difficulties of getting one into a cargo hold, it’s mostly water vapor. It’s not easy and it doesn’t produce anything. Or perhaps the title Cloud Pirates refers to where the pirates operate rather than what they specifically steal, which would make more sense. You can find out when the game launches for everyone on April 19th.

The launch also coincides with the release of patch 1.3 for the game, the Stronghold update. Players will be able to besiege a stronghold in a new gameplay mode, form three-player groups to play together, and generally enjoy a vastly expanded set of features for the game. Check out a trailer just below and get ready to sail the bounding… well, skies. You might wind up stealing a cloud or two along the way, as long as you’re up there.

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Darkfall: Rise of Agon launches on May 5

Remember how Darkfall: Rise of Agon’s team mentioned last month that the game was roughly four months away from launch? That seemed kind of crazy. But it turns out that wasn’t hyperbole, as the team has announced an official launch date of May 5th, 2017. That’s a bit under three months away from now… and yes, just about four months away from the initial launch date. You can’t fault the team for lack of punctuality.

While you can play the game right now in early access, an official launch means that the game is ready for the game to be live consistently and with no possibility of further wipes. It’s good news if you’re anticipating the project and had nothing major on your schedule in May… or if you did but are now frantically trying to clear out your schedule just for this. We won’t judge.

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Life is Feudal aims for late 2017 launch, hires on public relations firm

As Life is Feudal bears down toward its launch window of “late 2017,” it has a new ally to help with getting the word out about this medieval sandbox.

Bitbox Studio announced yesterday that it signed a deal with gaming public relations firm Reverb Communications to assist with the promotion of the MMO. This move should help the already-popular title to expand its audience and prime the MMORPG for a strong launch.

According to the press release, Reverb “will be managing media, streamer, and influencer outreach for the game.” Some of Reverb’s other clients include ARK and Escape from Tarkov. You don’t need a PR firm to get you excited, of course. Perhaps checking out these new screenshots might do the trick all on their own?

Source: Press release

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Allods Online launches update 8.0 on December 22

You’ve read the development diaries, you’ve thought about the changes, you’ve done everything you can to prepare for the next big Allods Online update. And you’ve still got a week before it actually hits the game’s live servers. Update 8.0, “Immortality,” will be live on December 22nd; as is common, the game is offering fans the option to purchase a starter kit or collector’s edition to coincide with the patch, both of which contain a plethora of useful but non-mandatory items.

This patch includes a number of class changes, the game’s eighth playable race, new level syncing options, and three new cross-factional Orders. There are also new quests and such, as you’d expect from an update of this scale. You’ve got about a week left to look forward to it, so see if you’ve still got a little bit of cash left over after you finish up your holiday shopping to pick up one of the item packs if you’re interested.

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EverQuest II’s Kunark Ascending expansion launches November 15

If you’ve been eagerly awaiting new EverQuest II content, you still have another six weeks to go: Kunark Ascending will be going live on November 15th.

On that date, those who have purchased the 13th expansion will get access to not only the new zones, dungeons, and quests but also epic 2.0 weapons, new crafting recipes and signature quest line, and four new ascension classes. The ascension classes are EQII’s new progression, as the level cap is not increasing. Each level 100 character will be able to learn and level up all four of the available ascension classes, but only one can be active at any given time.

Two other incoming features are all about getting dressed: one for mercenary gear and one for players. Mercenaries will now be able to grow in power by equipping either merc-specific or actual player gear. As a nice bonus, everyone who gets Kunark Ascending will have access to mercenaries without having to purchase that feature separately. As for players, the long-requested wardrobe feature will finally be a thing! It will allow players to get all the gear and costumes they use cosmetically out of their bags and into their own collection window.

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The Daily Grind: What’s the oldest MMO that you started playing well after launch?

Pretty much every MMO that I start playing seriously is a game I pick up close or on its launch. I only start getting invested in an MMO if I want a long-term investment. I think the biggest gap between launch and when I started seriously playing a game is a month or two; most of the games that I’ve played for a long time I grabbed at launch (World of Warcraft, Final Fantasy XI, Final Fantasy XIV, and Star Wars: The Old Republic all spring to mind).

But that is not universal. I have friends who avoided Final Fantasy XIV until hearing people rave about it, grabbing it a year after the relaunch and loving it. My wife first played Final Fantasy XI five years after its domestic release. I know that there’s someone (hopefully reading this site right now) who just bought Guild Wars and will begin playing it with a gusto for the next few years. So what about you, dear readers? What’s the oldest MMO that you started playing well after launch? What finally got you to pick it up, and what kept you playing?

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Star Trek Online: Agents of Yesterday launches on July 6th

Players of Star Trek Online are no strangers to going back in time, but Agents of Yesterday is something different. It’s not just traveling back in time, it’s being back in time, back in the era of Kirk’s crew and the travails of a younger, less assured Federation. The expansion is launching on July 6th for everyone, so you’ve got just about a month left until you can… travel back in time. Between points in the future. It’s a bit complex.

Players will be able to make a new Captain appropriate for the timeline of the original Star Trek, investigating problems and exploring frontiers that were certainly quite new at the time. The expansion also features classic Star Trek voice talent to make the game feel just a bit more authentic. Unfortunately, we’re all still traveling through time at a linear pace, so you’ll have to wait a bit longer before you can also go back in time to a slightly less far-flung future.

Source: Cryptic Studios press release

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Hearthstone’s Whispers of the Old Gods is likely launching on April 26th

There’s no formal announcement just yet of when Hearthstone players will be able to jump into the Whispers of the Old Gods expansion, but it’s going to be pretty significant when it happens. But a hint has indeed come for anyone purchasing the Curse of Naxxramas adventure pack, which now comes with a warning that players will not be able to use the cards contained therein in Standard-format matches after April 26th. That certainly doesn’t say that the expansion is launching on the 26th, but it does raise a few eyebrows.

The expansion’s card reveals already raised a few eyebrows with the addition of its new card Ragnaros, Lightlord, depicting the fire elemental boss of Molten Core and Firelands fame as a benevolent entity. Lead designer Ben Brode took to Twitter to offer lore fans a slight clarification:

In other words, repeat to yourself that it’s just a cool card idea, and you may want to just relax.

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HTC Vive will cost $799 but comes with two controllers and sensors

There’s no getting away from it, VR gaming is going to be an expensive hobby to get into. Between the high system specs required to run VR games at 60 frames per second and the cost of the headsets themselves, gamers could be shelling out a lot of money on hardware on the near future. The Oculus Rift’s hefty price tag of $599 caused something of a raucous online, but now it looks like it’s actually going to be the cheaper option for a high-grade VR headset as the HTC Vive has been given a release price of $799.

The Vive is being produced in partnership with Valve and is powered by Steam VR, and pre-order customers will get copies of two launch games: Job Simulator and Fantastic Contraption. Though the package is $200 more expensive than the Oculus Rift, it comes with two wireless controllers and positional sensors that can track your movement inside an entire room, making games where you can move around inside a virtual environment possible. The two wireless controllers can also be used as accurate motion controls, becoming your hands inside that virtual environment. For the moment, it seems this is the closest we’ll get to creating something like the Star Trek Holodeck. Pre-orders open in one week on Monday, February 29th, at 10 a.m. EST.

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Sphere 3 gets worldwide launch on December 2

Looking for a fresh new MMO to take you into the last month of the year? We humbly present to you Sphere 3, which has just announced a launch date of December 2nd.

The free-to-play fantasy title has two core attributes in its design: “hardcore” and “PvP.” Players won’t be coddled with a targeting system but are instead challenged to use skill and reflexes to dominate the battlefield. Sphere 3 promises hundreds of quests, castle sieges, and a happy-go-lucky storyline involving “political deceit, war atrocities and vile treachery.”

The developers paid special attention to making sure that Sphere 3 will run smoothly on a wide range of machines so that performance won’t be a factor in the action gameplay.

Source: Nikita Online press release. Thanks to Feodor for the tip!

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Blade & Soul makes Western debut on January 19th

If you’ve been waiting for the localized launch of Blade & Soul for what feels like an eternity, your wait is nearly over. The game is officially launching on January 19th in North America and Europe alike, with more beta tests taking place between now and then. Founder’s Pack purchasers will be able to access the game on January 15th, while name reservations will be available starting on January 11th.

Want a little more time to try the game out before buying in? The next beta weekend runs from November 24th through November 30th, giving you a new and exciting excuse for avoiding your family during the holidays. At launch, the game will have a level cap of 45 for all seven playable classes, and 30 dungeons along with the 1v1 arena once you’re done with questing and exploring.

Source: NCsoft press release

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Rumor: WoW Legion due on or before September 21st, 2016

BlizzCon is starting up later today, but a couple of leaks are already making the rounds. World of Warcraft players poking around the structure of the Battle.net site allegedly uncovered a background image revealing a launch date for Legion on or before September 21st, 2016, which would give fans eagerly anticipating the next release a date to look toward at least.

The image itself is no longer acccessible on the game’s site, which could mean that it’s a hoax or it could mean that someone caught the goof. Players who pre-order are also promised access to Demon Hunters ahead of launch. With the opening ceremonies of the convention a few hours away, we’ll likely learn more once Blizzard says a few official words on the subject.

Source: Reddit via Blizzard Watch

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