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World of Warcraft’s patch 6.1 goes live on February 24th

There are lots of reasons why you might be looking forward to patch 6.1 in World of Warcraft. If you play a Blood Elf, you want your upgraded character models. If you like racing around, you want the new racing feature put into the game. If you have a joke Twitter account for your main character, you want that Twitter integration. Good news for all of those groups: You don’t have to wait much longer, as the new patch goes live on February 24th.

Blizzard has released a new video to herald to launch, offering a quick rundown of the patch features, which also include improvements to garrisons and another step in the legendary ring quest chain. The heirloom interface is also en route; it will allow players to more effectively pass heirlooms between characters for leveling. That’s on top of the usual quality of life improvements. Check out the video just past the break for a quick overview, and get ready for the patch going live when next Tuesday rolls around.

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Final Fantasy XIV unveils more about the Gold Saucer

Final Fantasy XIV patch 2.51 is expected to drop on February 24th, and it’s bringing the long-awaited Manderville Gold Saucer as its main attraction. A recent live letter from producer and director Naoki Yoshida explained several of the Gold Saucer mechanics and events in depths, including Chocobo Racing and the Triple Triad card game. And now there’s an official translation, so if you were desperate for more information regarding the den of iniquity, now you have it right at your fingertips.

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Crowfall thinks you play games to crush… voxels

Crowfall developer ArtCraft Entertainment has announced today that the game will employ the Voxel Farm technology platform. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because Voxel Farm is licensed to several other high-profile MMORPGs, including Landmark and EverQuest Next.

The best part is how the studio leads describe what they’re doing with the tech. “We want to create hundreds of unique worlds, with unique maps — mountains, hills, valleys, rivers, dungeons, ruins — for players to explore and destroy,” says ArtCraft president Gordon Walton. Sounds peaceful, right? Wrong! Creative Director Todd Coleman says ArtCraft is out to subvert that trope: “Most games are using voxel technology for creation — effectively, giving players a sandbox to build things. We’re using them for a very different reason; we are using Voxels for destruction. We’re creating sandcastles for the players to kick over.”

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Final Fantasy XI previews its February version update

February’s a short month, so it’s easy to not expect much out of it. The team behind Final Fantasy XI is still bringing new content for the month just the same with the February Version Update planned for February 19th. Headlining the update is a new Alluvion Skirmish in the Yorcia Weald wherein players summon monsters to help assault an enemy stronghold. The new skirmishes reward new armor and improved forms of the older weapons.

Players can also look forward to further improvements to job point categories and new gifts for each job. For those who don’t feel like investing too deeply in combat for this update, there will also be new quests, improvements to the Mog Garden, and quality-of-life boosts. You can get a decent picture of what’s coming with the update by checking out the official trailer just past the break.

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This WoW boss fight is causing motion sickness

When you jump into a World of Warcraft raid, you’re hoping to get some keen new armor, maybe a weapon or two, that sort of thing. You are not hoping to get a fresh case of unexpected motion sickness. Surprise! That might be exactly what you’re getting when you jump into the Hans’gar and Franzok fight in Blackrock Foundry, which already has a lengthy thread on the official forums in which people have complained of getting motion sickness during the fight.

The fight involves a large number of moving conveyer belts and moving elements, and even players with no history of motion sickness are reporting feelings of disorientation, nausea, and the like. Player solutions include aiming your camera at the wall rather than the floor, taking over-the-counter medications, and playing in a more brightly lit room to help alleviate the problem. No word yet from Blizzard on the matter, but it seems reasonable to bet that nausea and severe disorientation are not intended parts of the loot table.

In other WoW vision news — yes, really — Blizzard revealed the new colorblind-friendly UI options due in patch 6.1.

[Source: Thread, Official Site, dev blog; via: Blizzard Watch]

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MOBAs dominate Raptr’s January rankings as WoW playtime falls

According to a Raptr press release posted today, MOBA League of Legends dominated the service’s January rankings with just under 20% of total playtime share. World of Warcraft held onto second place with not quite 11% of total playtime share, but it “lost 5.28% of play time in January compared to December.”

DOTA 2, SMITE, and Hearthstone scored well; Diablo III, in particular, saw its playtime rise 77.27% percent month-over-month, likely a result of the 2.12 patch.

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Black Desert makes $2M in cash shop sales in one week

Wait, what did that headline say? Did Black Desert really make a cool two million in just a week?

Apparently so! According to FreeMMOStation.com, the Korean fantasy title made 2.3 billion KWN ($2 million) in its first week of open beta in the country. Those sales were powered by Black Desert’s impressive 1.5 million registered users.

Now the question is, when Black Desert comes to the west in 2016, will future sales make this look like pocket change?

[Source: FreeMMOStation.com via Reddit]

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World of Warcraft’s graphics to improve in Patch 6.1

While many of you World of Warcraft players will be squeeing over your new Twitter integration and making the world a much more dangerous place to exist by driving recklessly when Patch 6.1 arrives, some will also take a moment to appreciate new and returning video options that will make this 10-year-old title sparkle.

A new dev diary posted yesterday talks about some of these additional graphics options, including the return of a couple of types of anti-aliasing. Even better, the team is adding something called “per-pixel deferred point lights” that will allow illumination sources such as campfires and torches to throw off more realistic lighting.

These and more graphic options are currently available on the test realm.

[Source: Engineer’s Workshop]

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The Repopulation offers $20 early access

Getting into The Repopulation’s early access program is now cheaper than ever, as Above and Beyond has announced a new silver membership tier for only $20. Previously, getting into the alpha cost $50 for a gold membership.

Those who buy a silver membership will not only get into the currently running early access program but be treated to a repop token and the ability to reserve a name. Interested parties can purchase this on both the official site and through Steam.

The team is also testing the new 15.1.1 build and is seeking out QA testers to help with the process. Finally, Josh Halls will be present at at a panel at PAX East later this spring.

[Source: Official site, patch notes. Thanks to Crow for the tip!]

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DC Universe Online launches Amazon’s Fury part II

Are you ready to go head-to-three-heads with Cerberus, guard dog of the Underworld? Because that’s what you’ll be doing when you pop into the newest DLC pack for DC Universe Online, Amazon’s Fury part II. You’ll also wind up facing off against Ares and Hades and picking up new Amazon-themed equipment to make yourself look the part, assuming that you don’t find beating the snot out of a dog with three heads to be its own reward.

In terms of content, the new DLC includes new solo content with two instances, two new four-person bits of content, and three new eight-person raids including an Elite version of one raid. You can also pick up new base items and select Hades’ Palace as a character selection background. Check out the official launch trailer just past the cut, and then get in there as furiously as possible. It’s not called Amazon’s Mild Irritation, after all.

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What do you think about WildStar’s capital cities?

What do you think about WildStar’s two capital cities? Do you love or hate them? What do you think could be improved in them? These are the burning questions that Carbine Studios is asking of its playerbase this week.

In a forum post this week, the dev team solicits feedback on the cities, their layouts, and their services. The team is even open to removing unwanted portions and adding new elements to make it an ultimate destination: “In our eyes, a capital city should be a central hub for player gathering and trade. It should be Grand Central Station to send you wherever you’re bound. It should help lead you to the content you’re interested in.”

In the recent Protogames Initiative patch, WildStar overhauled its city touring tutorial for low-level players. Players can leave feedback for cities on the forum thread.

[Source: WildStar forums]

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