maintenance mode

The Daily Grind: Is Destiny 2 an MMO?

Massively OP reader Sray suggested we open a can of worms today, and I just happened to have a can opener handy.

“Is Destiny 2 an MMO?” he wondered, noting correctly that “this argument is going to keep happening as we approach the PC launch” in October. We’ve already had people telling us we shouldn’t cover it for – as sure as we’ve had people telling us we ought to cover it more – all on the basis of its MMOness or lack thereof.

Destiny 2 is candles and breakfast food, that I know – but an MMO? It seems to me as much an MMO as classic Guild Wars, another borderline online title whose MMO status people to this day fight over, never mind that the darn thing’s lodged in maintenance mode.

Without having played D2 yet on PC, I’m willing to be convinced by consolers one way or another. Is it an MMO or not, and critically, why?

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Age of Conan (finally) adds 720-day loyalty rewards

In one of our recent Daily Grind discussions about MMORPGs that might make it to 20 years of live operation, some of our commenters pointed out that despite Age of Conan continuing in maintenance mode, Funcom had ceased to honor its ongoing subscription loyalty reward program for players pushing two years or more.

The same day, Funcom (purely coincidentally, we have no doubt) posted its 720-day loyalty reward information. The good news for loyal subbers is that the two-year mark will net you five royal treasure chests and a free character boost to level 80.

Age of Conan was officially put into maintenance mode back in February as Funcom chose to instead pursue Conan Exiles, Secret World Legends, and other upcoming projects.

Source: Age of Conan

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Happy birthday to Fallen Earth, Aion, World of Warships, and Warhammer Online

This particular part of September is loaded with MMORPG and MMO birthdays. In addition to ArcheAge, whose corgipocalypse we’ve been covering already, and Ultima Online, doomed to ding 20 by Monday, there are a few more we’ve not mentioned yet. Let’s remedy that!

Aion is turning eight today, and it’s putting on a pretty sweet partyplus a different one in the EU. US players can look forward to bonus experience, cake, and Kroemede’s Revenge; through the weekend in the EU, expect a Cake Hunt, in-game boots, gifts, and temporary mounts, plus an event about poppys. I don’t know, it’s Aion, man, just go with it. We’ll be streaming some of the US festivities on Saturday, so stay tuned!

Fallen Earth also turns eight today, though you won’t find any hoopla on the official site, where there’s been no news since last year. MOP’s Justin judged it in maintenance mode as of at least this past summer. It’s OK, Fallen Earth. We’ll have a slice of cake in your honor.

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Whatever happened to Black Gold, Order and Chaos Online, and Eden Eternal?

Ever pause during your day and find yourself wondering, “Whatever happened to that game?” With hundreds upon hundreds of online titles these days, it’s surprisingly easy for MMOs to fall through the cracks and become buried as more aggressive or active games take the spotlight.

Well, every so often we here at Massively Overpowered find ourselves curious what has transpired with certain MMOs that we haven’t heard from in quite a while. Have we missed the action and notices? Has the game gone into stealth maintenance mode? What’s the deal? What has it been up to lately?

That’s when we put on our detective hats and go sleuthing. Today we look at whatever happened to Black Gold, Order and Chaos Onlineand Eden Eternal.

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Funcom will still love Conan Exiles when the new baby is here

Longtime Funcom watchers and MMORPG veterans already knew that Funcom was working on multiple games as part of its Conan franchise push, but some Conan Exiles players newly come to the studio’s games were hearing the news for the first time following Funcom’s quarterly financial report last week, leading to confusion and panic.

“We’re planning another Conan game, but full production won’t start until after Conan Exiles,” Funcom reassured followers on Twitter. “Our plans are to continue supporting Conan Exiles after launch, but first we need to concentrate on having the best launch possible. Exiles is set for full launch in Q1, 2018. We will make sure it is good and ready before we do anything else.”

“We have an additional six months of Early Access, and no resources will be pulled from Conan Exiles until it’s finished,” the company confirmed, repeating the messages in multiple replies.

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The Final Fantasy XI mobile version hasn’t died

You could be forgiven for thinking that the long-awaited mobile version of Final Fantasy XI developed by Nexon had been unceremoniously banished to the land of wind and ghosts. (So Ru’Aun Gardens, basically.) But that’s not the case! The most recent investor call for Nexon lists the title as one of its upcoming offerings for Q3 2017 and beyond, so it looks like the game is still alive. Just… quiet.

This is a far cry from the desktop version of FFXI, which has a maintenance mode more active than some live titles.

The down side is that there’s not actually any news or surprises about the title, just the title itself on the list for the future. But that alone should assuage some amount of worry; we can hope that there’s more news about it when Korea’s annual G-star convention starts up in the not-too-distant future.

Source: Steparu

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Whatever happened to PlanetSide 2, A Tale in the Desert, and Istaria?

Ever pause during your day and find yourself wondering, “What ever happened to that game?” With hundreds upon hundreds of online titles these days, it’s surprisingly easy for MMOs to fall through the cracks and become buried as more aggressive or active games take the spotlight.

Well, every so often we here at Massively Overpowered find ourselves curious what has transpired with certain MMOs that we haven’t heard from in quite a while. Have we missed the action and notices? Has the game gone into stealth maintenance mode? What’s the deal? What has it been up to lately?

That’s when we put on our detective hats and go sleuthing. Today we look at whatever happened to PlanetSide 2, A Tale in the Desert, and Istaria (witness protection program name: Horizons).

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The Game Archaeologist: Where are all of the open-source MMOs?

Recently we had an interesting question come in from reader and Patron Rasmus Praestholm, who asked me to do a little investigating: “What (if anything of substance) exists in the MMO field that’s not only free, but open source? The topic of open source came up briefly in a recent column, where Ryzom was noted to have gone open source at some point. But have any serious efforts actually gotten anywhere starting out as open source?”

As some graphical MMORPGs pass the two-decade mark in video game history and are being either cancelled or retired to maintenance mode, it’s an increasingly important topic when it comes to keeping these games alive. Not only that, the question of open source MMOs involves the community in continued development, with the studio handing over the keys to an aging car to see what can be done by resourceful fans.

But has anything much been done with open source projects in the realm of MMORPGs? Is this something that we should be demanding more of as online gaming starts using more accessible platforms such as SpatialOS? Let’s dig a bit into this topic and see what we turn up.

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Perfect Ten: MMOs in limbo

The one thing that I thought we could all count on forever was that the MMO life cycle was pretty easy to understand. A game is launched, then it runs for a certain amount of time, then it shuts down. That last part kind of sucks, but the point is that you know when it’s time to move on. The life cycle is clearly one of creation, then life, then death, like a potted ficus or a cheap desk chair you get at Target.

But then sometimes you have a cheap desk chair that breaks in a crucial way, but you manage to screw the right sort of braces together so you can keep using it for another year after it should have been thrown out. And sometimes an MMO is born, and then it lives, and then it… doesn’t live, but it’s not actually shut down or in maintenance. Or it isn’t clear what’s going on with it, due to what seems to be total abandonment. Or it updates more than games which are supposedly live.

That’s what this column is all about. MMOs in a weird sort of limbo, where some facts are clear, but the results or the overall trajectory make no sense. Sometimes it’s not even clear if the game has actually launched or not. It’s weird.

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Anarchy Online celebrates its sweet sixteen

Maintenance mode or no, Anarchy Online is going to celebrate its birthday in style. The MMO, which launched back in 2001, turns 16 this month and is bringing back its anniversary celebration to mark the occasion.

“Today, Anarchy Online celebrates its 16th year of active service,” Funcom posted. “Not a whole lot of games can boast this kind of accomplishment, and we sincerely thank you for your continued love and support of Anarchy Online. You are the very matter that makes up this universe, so thank you again.”

As part of the anniversary event, players can run quests for the Tinker to earn a gift bundle with 500(!) items, defeat the Desert Rider for his loot, and take advantage of multi-month subscription deals to secret bonus loot. There’s also a new cybernetic helmet as a loyalty reward for those who have stuck with the game thus far.

Source: Steam

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Global Chat: Saying goodbye to The Secret World

With the move to put The Secret World in maintenance mode and shift focus to the rebooted Secret World Legends, one MMO blogger decided that it was time to say goodbye to his stable of characters by logging each of them out in meaningful locations.

“It is now clear that The Secret World’s days are numbered,” Tyler of Superior Realities writes. “I have decided to say goodbye to the game while I still can, conducting a final tour of some of my favourite parts of the game and finding thematically appropriate ways to retire my many characters. And taking an unhealthy number of screenshots.”

I’ve seen others do this sort of thing, especially when an MMO ends, and it almost never fails to be touching and profound. These games meant something to us, and when we say farewell, it can be an emotion-laden funeral for time well spent.

Join us today as we tour around other essays from the MMO blogosphere, including an examination of class customization, musings on SWTOR’s road map, and a balloon ride in World of Warcraft.

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Boot up your Age of Conan account for a free level 80 toon on its ninth birthday

So, Age of Conan players. Let’s talk. I know this year has been kinda rough on you. You found out, as we did, that your game was going to be maintenance-moded just a few months ago in a tiny aside in a financial letter to corporate investors. That hurt. And your baby brother, Conan Exiles, has sucked up all of dad’s attention. And money. You could rant at the unfairness of it all, or you could be grateful that at least you’re not being sunsetted like so many great MMORPGs before you. I won’t judge you for either.

But if you are playing, or think you might someday again, maybe take a peek right now as the elder Conan game turns nine years old. Yes, nine years ago this very month, we all logged into Tortage… no, actually, let’s not talk about Tortage. It’s birthday time. And Funcom is trying to make it worth your while with a free level 80 character boost and a free character slot, as long as you had an account before today, and as long as you log in before May runs out.

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Final Fantasy XI preps a new event for its 15th anniversary

It’s been 15 years now since Final Fantasy XI first launched in Japan, and the game is still receiving updates to this day. (Seriously, we’ve made hundreds of “maintenance mode” jokes by now.) So it’s probably no surprise that a new anniversary event is coming to the game starting on May 16th. We don’t know what it’s going to include just yet, but we know there will be crab shirts and fantastic prizes for players to earn celebrating a game that launched closer to the creation of the world wide web than to the present day.

Of course, if anniversary events aren’t your thing, you could instead fill your time with a bit of good old-fashioned Mog Bonanza antics. Yet another lottery is coming, and plays can start purchasing marbles on May 16th. So you’ll have plenty of chances to celebrate the game, and you’ll have a chance to gamble big and totally lose out on what you wanted. It’s really the full FFXI experience right there.

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