With Pokemon Go trying to avoid explicitly calling itself an MMO, Massively OP once again has room for a top contender in the realm of mobile MMOs. There’s just one problem: We’ve got mostly Western readers for a genre that seems to appeal much more to the East. I was given the opportunity to see top global mobile MMO Lineage 2 Revolution and up and coming dino-sandbox Durango at E3 2017. I can see the appeal of both games, but also some limitations. Let’s dig into both.
Best known in the west for Uncharted Waters Online.
The Netmarble take on NCsoft’s Lineage franchise, Lineage 2 Revolution, has soft launched as a global version in multiple English-speaking markets and app stores this week as planned. The Unreal 4 game has already become a blockbuster overseas, having landed in the top 10 ten mobile games in SuperData’s revenue charts for the last several months and helping to propel Netmarble’s record setting $12B IPO bid this spring.
The game boasts high-ish end graphics for mobile devices and stock MMORPG mechanics usually reserved for PC and console games, including questing, raiding, and PvPing in an open-world setting. Anybody smacked this on a phone yet to try it out?
If you’ve forgotten about Lineage II: Revolution, the short version is that it’s like Lineage II, only it’s on mobile. (There is more to it than that, but we said the short version.) It’s a mobile MMO powered by Unreal 4 and available on your tablet, phone, or smartwatch. (You should not play it on a watch, though. You might be able to do so, but you shouldn’t.) And it’s coming out in June, in some capacity.
Why “some capacity?” Well, it’s not clear if the new site is indicating that the title will launch in June or just start beta testing in June. Both are possible. But the important thing is that when June rolls around, it’s got a date with some mobile devices. You can check out the full site if you want to see a little bit more about what the mobile experience promises players.
The top publisher of online games in South Korea now boasts the second-largest initial public offering in the country’s history.
Netmarble, a Tencent subsidiary, raised an amazing $2.3 billion through its IPO this spring. The sale reached over 17 million shares at $138 apiece, helping the publisher reach a total company value of $11.8 billion. Demand was high for the IPO, which benefited greatly from Netmarble’s release of Lineage II: Revolution in Korea.
One of Netmarble’s previous properties is currently sailing into the Industrial Revolution. Uncharted Waters Online announced that is embracing steampunk and advanced firearms with its Age of Revolution: Chapter 1 update. Steam engines, gatling guns, and flamethrowers are all part of the jump to a new level of technology, and OGPlanet is offering a free beginner’s box to anyone who registers on the website with the code “xanrJdmh” (no quotation marks).
South Korean Tencent affiliate Netmarble announced today that it will launch an initial public offering to the tune of $2.35 billion US. That works out to approximately 17 million newly issued shares.
As GI.biz explains, Netmarble is hoping to pay off debts and increase its holdings, building “towards a state goal of being in the top five global gaming companies by 2020.”
Reuters calls the IPO the second-largest for the country, sandwiched between two Samsung IPOs.
In the west, the company is probably best known for games like Lineage 2: Revolution, Prius, and Uncharted Waters; its recent partnership with Disney came with a license for Marvel and Star Wars titles as well.
Lineage II: Revolution is using the Unreal Engine 4 to create PC-like graphics for mobile devices, and will be releasing simultaneously on iOS and Android. The MMO has four races (Human, Dwarf, Elf, and Dark Elf) and a strong PvP system, as befits a Lineage game.
The mobile spin-off of the Lineage series has seen multiple delays, which have been cause for some concern. Developer Netmarble canceled the planned beta tests back in October and pushed the game from its November launch window. Plus, there is that whole awkward scene with NCsoft suing Netmarble over a different game entirely while the two studios collaborate on Revolution.
Apparently NCsoft is levying a lawsuit against its own business partner, Netmarble, for infringing on the Lineage II IP with the latter’s new mobile game, Aden. NCsoft claims that Netmarble was inserting Lineage II elements, such as names and phrases, into Aden without any permission. Netmarble’s defense? It’s a mobile game and not in direct competition with a PC MMO, so chill out.
This is quite uncomfortable as the two studios have been collaborating on Lineage II: Revolution, which is supposed to launch this month. You can check out Aden’s trailer after the jump and let us know what you think of the two games’ similarities (or lack thereof).
With all of the current, upcoming, and spin-off Lineage titles out there, you might need a flow chart to keep them all straight in your mind. One of these spin-offs, Lineage II: Revolution, is nearing its big day, as developer Netmarble is planning to launch the game in November.
What’s strange is that Netmarble has canceled planned closed and open beta tests for the mobile MMO that were supposed to take place this month. Steparu posits that Revolution’s release might conflict with the highly anticipated Lineage Eternal closed beta test in November and require more shuffling of dates.
Lineage II: Revolution has been in the making for over a year and a half and should come out for both Android and iOS devices. Its Unreal Engine 4 visuals are certainly the highlight of the game’s reputation so far, but we’ll have to see how it fares when it gets into the hands of gamers.
Looking for a powerhouse MMO to fit into your smartphone or tablet? One such contender deserves your attention, thanks to the legacy from which it draws.
Lineage II: Revolution is a planned spin-off from NCsoft’s popular series that’s being farmed out to Netmarble. We’ve known for a year now that such a game was in the works, although it was shrouded in secrecy under the code name of Project S. Revolution looks drop-dead gorgeous, using Unreal Engine 4 to create a game that looks like it should be on a PC.
You can get your first look at the game from a few overseas convention videos that are lurking after the break. The teaser page is up now too!
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
NCsoft and Netmarble are joining forces to make a mobile version of long-running fantasy MMORPG Lineage II. MMO Culture reports that the game is currently called Project S, and it is due sometime in 2016.
Netmarble is perhaps best known for developing the mobile RPG Marvel Future Fight as well as publishing free-to-play MMO Uncharted Waters Online through late 2013.
Relations between NCsoft and Nexon are not exactly comfortable at the moment; you may remember that it’s been only a few months since NCsoft bought a large amount of Netmarble stock just to block any possible takeovers from Nexon. The most recent NCsoft shareholder’s meeting seems to imply both companies are stepping back from that degree of brinksmanship, however. Current NCsoft CEO Kim Taek-Jin extended his time in office up through 2018, a move that Nexon executives present at the meeting did not oppose.
Nexon’s representatives did question the purchase of Netmarble shares at a considerably higher price than they had been purchased in the past and Taek-Jin’s appointment of his wife and brother to high positions within the company. Taek-Jin defended the former as a necessity of buying into a valuable and growing company, while he pointed out that his wife’s appointment coincided with a growth in profits from the company’s American division after it had been suffering from a deficit. It’s unlikely that the fencing between the companies has concluded, but it appears to be at least on hold for the moment.[Source: MMO Culture]
MMO Culture has a chart on the top 10 publishers in Asia for last year. Third place went to NCsoft, followed by Netmarble and Com2uS. We’ll be keeping a particular close eye on Smilegate, as the company is in charge of handling the gorgeous-looking OARPG Lost Ark.[Source: MMO Culture. Thanks to Paul for the tip!]