If you haven’t been paying attention to the television market over the past few years, you might have missed the fact that we are in the middle of a revolution of how shows are made and broadcast. Streaming services like Netflix, Amazon, HBO, Disney, and CBS are greenlighting all sorts of fantastic shows with the hopes of strengthening their audience and luring them to these pay-to-watch platforms.
Game of Thrones, Westworld, The Walking Dead, The Defenders, Star Trek Discovery, and Stranger Things are a few examples of how these companies are getting acclaim and major viewership with ambitious projects. Large amounts of money are being thrown around on both the licensing and production of these shows, and companies are frantically looking around for the next big hit. So while Disney is boldly announcing a Star Wars live action TV series, Amazon went to the fantasy equivalent and nabbed a little thing called Lord of the Rings.
Yes indeed. The big news from this past week was that Amazon bought the rights to produce a multi-season Lord of the Rings series. While the exact cost of this deal wasn’t revealed, industry experts estimate that it was somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 to $250 million. No small po-tay-toes any way you look at it. But what will this series mean for our beloved MMORPG? I have a few thoughts about that.
“You ain’t anybody if you ain’t on Steam,” our momma told us when we were tykes. Of course, back then Steam had yet to be invented, so this statement was more cryptic than it should’ve been. Now? Now it’s practically truth, which is why World of Warships
made an attempt to get onto the platform.
Access to the game through Steam went live earlier this week, offering fans another way to install and play the multiplayer ship battler. Other than how you get into the game, there is no difference between Steam’s World of Warships and the official client.
The team confirmed that all players can enjoy the same game on the same servers, although any new Steam players will have to pick and commit to a region before playing. You cannot use your Wargaming login for the Steam client, unfortunately.
Steam collectibles and achievements are on their way, the team said, although they won’t be present in this launch edition.
. With thanks to BalsBigBrother!
This week’s Massively Overthinking topic is a submission from reader and commenter camelotcrusade, who takes the industry’s current fight over monetization in a different direction from lockboxes. “Are modern games too cheap?” he asks, probably slowly reaching into a can of worms with a wicked gleam in his eye.
“When you think about it, many other things we buy have increased in price over the last decade but AAA games are still expected to be a maximum of $60, with many of us waiting for sales (or for free-to-play). Meanwhile, games everywhere are adding shops, post-release content, and DLC galore with increasingly aggressive pricing models. How much of this is to make-up margins they can’t capture up-front? How much should an AA game cost in 2017? $75? $90? Is there a price point where lockboxes, gambling, and in-game stores could focus on value-add instead of survival? And how did we get here? Whose fault is it? And how do we get out of this, or is ‘would you like a game with your store’ the future as we know it?”
Let’s talk money!
Destiny 2 who? Overwatch is aiming to lure in as many of Blizzard’s players as possible with another free weekend. The best part? It’s already here, complete with the newest character Moira, so if you’ve never purchased the team shooter, you can download it from the Blizzard launcher and give it a try right now.
The free weekend is running through the 20th and is available to players on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. It isn’t a limited experience, either; the studio is allowing everyone to play any of the 26 heroes across all maps and game modes.
Of course, Blizzard hopes to make a few sales from this weekend, which is why it said that any progress made during the event can be carried over if a player decides to purchase the game.
Tenno, come and get it! Get your free skin, that is.
To celebrate the full release of Plains of Eidolon across all platforms this week, Warframe is giving away Vectis and Vectis Tekelu skins from now through February 18th, 2018. To get yours, you’ll need to go to the website and follow the directions.
For those who have already exhausted all of the content in the open world zone, there’s a new operation to master. It’s called Operation: Plague Star, and it all begins with the sky falling as teased last week: “A mysterious meteorite has crashed just outside of Cetus revealing a horrific boil. The boil is growing and the Ostrons have sighted infested lifeforms emerging from it. We need to get a hold of the toxin and destroy the boil before it becomes unstoppable.”
This operation will be active from now through November 27th.
Are you tired of MMOs providing you with bland and predictable finite
forests? Thank goodness that Destiny 2
is here to show other MMOs how it’s done with the infinite
forest coming along with the Curse of Osiris
DLC. Sure, it’s a virtual simulation, but that only matters to the people in the world.
All of this is tied to the lair of the eponymous Osiris, of course; the Vex are trying to use the Infinite Forest to find something, and Osiris is hoping that the PCs will help him stop that effort. There’s also more of Mercury to explore, which winds up being a desert wasteland in sharp contrast to the aforementioned infinite forest.
The DLC is also adding in a new raid lair, which is a different way of extending raids than the original game; rather than a whole new raid, this adds new parts on to the existing raid. You can check some of it out in the video clip down below, if you’re not content to simply dream of a forest that’s just… forever.
When you’ve got a club full of penguins overseen by the Mouse House itself, you know things are going to get both wacky and weird! Club Penguin may not be everyone’s go-to MMO for music, but its wide array of simplified genres certainly give the Battle Bards a lot to discuss on this week’s show.
Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn, Pocket Casts, Stitcher, and Player.FM.
Listen to Episode 109: Club Penguin (or download it) now:
MMO studio streams are so common that we seldom report on them until after the fact and then only if they’ve actually revealed something newsworthy. We’ll make an exception for Destiny 2
, however, as Bungie’s prefacing its Curse of Osiris
stream with an “official tune-in trailer” today. Call it the carrot-on-a-stick.
“Join Bungie for an introduction to Osiris, the most notorious Guardian in history. Learn about the mysteries, explorations, and battles that await you in ‘Curse of Osiris,’ the first expansion to Destiny 2.”
The first stream begins at 2 p.m. EST Wednesday, which is not coincidentally just 30 minutes after this post goes live. Watch it down below!
On this week’s show, Justin and Bree wrassle a mess of eastern mobile MMOs that are leaping onto the scene, imagine a world full of Harry Potter gamers wandering about, discuss SWTOR’s server merges, and take Guild Wars 2 to task for lockbox missteps.
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
Listen to the show right now:
Want to start a career in making video games? You could do worse than to sign up with Digital Extremes.
The Canadian developer of Warframe was recently named one of Canada’s top 100 employers of 2018 by Eluta. The site gave the London-based studio top marks in its workplace, atmosphere, communications, training, and community involvement. Starting salaries begin at $40,000 with two weeks’ paid vacation, health benefits, paid parental leave, flexibile work hours, and up to $3,500 in tuition subsidies per year.
Digital Extremes’ workplace was highlighted as particularly enjoyable by employees. The studio has “a busy social calendar” and what sounds like a pretty kickin’ office. “Digital Extremes’ unique head office is located inside a renovated historic building in London’s downtown core and features an in-house theatre, a stocked employee lounge and game library, and a full-sized commercial kitchen and dining room, with four full-time kitchen staff who prepare healthy meals daily and special treats every Friday.”
Special treats? We are so there.
With Curse of Osiris and season two on the way for Destiny 2, the team at Bungie has some time to fill with events to keep players busy and sated. Right now there’s a battle for resources that will conclude on November 14th, awarding one of three factions the winner and making its special weapon available for all.
Next up is a Clarion Call event that will begin on November 17th and continue through the 20th. During this event, players who are teamed up with at least one other clan member will receive double XP for all activities.
Bungie said that it readying the game for an upgrade that will take advantage of the new hardware on the market: “On December 5, along with the launch of Curse of Osiris and Season Two, we’ll be deploying an update to Destiny 2 that will deliver stunning gameplay with high dynamic range (HDR) lighting to these new consoles. You’ll also see adaptive 4K resolution on the PlayStation 4 Pro and 4K on the Xbox One X.”
Do not be alarmed.
Your brain is now under our control, but that is a good thing. You no longer have to worry about the mundane tasks of life; all you need to do now is party. Party hard, party with a purpose, party until you collapse and feed all of your life’s energy to our party vampire!
You know who loves to party? Skoryy loves to party: “Here, have last night’s Extra Life 2017 party in Secret World Legends’ Agartha, complete with dancing CMs and giant Dreaming One mascots!”
One of the persistent complaints about Overwatch is that for all of the animated shorts, comics, and CGI trailers that Blizzard has released, the story has been in arrested development pretty much since the minute it released. This could all change, however, if Activision Blizzard decides to go ahead with a full-length movie.
Activision’s Tim Kilpin said that an Overwatch movie is something the company “would like very much” and could be “a way to expand the audience and expand the opportunity and then e-sports.”
The prospect of an Overwatch film brings to mind 2016’s Warcraft, which was a critical bomb but a box office success.
As we wait for this to happen (or not), at least we have all of the cinematic trailers compiled together in a convenient video. Check it out below and let us know in the comments if you’d love to see an Overwatch flick on the big screen!