Official Site: Pirate101
Studio: KingsIsle Entertainment
Launch Date: October 15, 2012
Genre: Fantasy Family-Friendly Sandpark
Business Model: Hybrid F2P (Optional Sub, Cash Shop)
Platform: PC, Mac

Massively OP's guide to the 2016 MMORPG winter holidays

It's time to get all snuggly in front of a crackling fire, roast up some chestnuts, down a gallon of hot chocolate, and log into your favorite online RPGs for seasonal festivities! Or you could "bah humbug!" your way through the season and ignore all of the silly, free, and rewarding events if you so desire. We're not here to tell you what to do, after all!

With extra time off of work and school, many gamers have the opportunity to take advantage of all of the winter holiday events that are running across MMORPGs, MOBAs, and other online games. Feeling at a loss about where to start? Board the Massively OP sleigh and join us as we take you on a tour of all of the Christmas events going on right now!

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Wizard101 and Pirate101 have ponies and decorations for all

When it comes to a great holiday event, what would you rather have more: in-game activities, giveaways, or cash shop sales? If you said, "All three!" then KingsIsle agrees with you. Both Wizard101 and Pirate101 are currently in the midst of so many Christmas promotions that it's kind of hard to keep track of them all.

Let's start with the 12 Days of the Spiral, a calendar promotion in which players can get free and discounted goodies every day from now through December 20th (make sure to pick up your free housing items and pony!). Wizard101 also has a brand-new Krampus dungeon for players to tackle while the season lasts.

There's plenty of other things to do as well, such as enjoying the Yuletide event and entering in a holiday art contest.

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Jukebox Heroes: MMORPG music for a haunted Halloween

You simply can't have a good and proper Halloween without a perfect soundtrack to back you up. Sure, you could just pop in one of those tired old sound effects cassette tapes (kids: ask your history teacher what cassette tapes are) and call it a day. Me? I prefer some genuinely atmospheric tunes straight from the games I love.

Today I'm going to put together a mix tape for your darkest dreams and your silliest spooks. It's Halloween, done MMO-style, and the only way to get to the dawn is to dive deep into the terrors of the night with gleeful abandon. Take my hand and walk with me, and don't worry if you start hearing voices murmuring just behind your left ear. That means they like you.

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The Stream Team: Thar be a Pirate101 birthday today!

Shiver me timbers, it's a birthday! Pirate101 is celebrating its fourth birthday today, and Massively OP's MJ is joining in on the swashbuckling fun. As part of the festivities, everyone gets some birthday gifts. From now until November 2nd, players can claim a birthday pack containing a tribal crew pack, a parrrrty hat, a birthday eyepatch, a 12 Flavors of Hawkules pet snack, and a Cupcake Pet Snack. With a a birthday so close to Halloween, the gift pack also includes a Halloween pony mount (7-day rental) and a trick or treat banner housing item. To claim your gifts, visit the main site and enter spooky4thbday. Then join us live at 4:00 p.m. to wish Pirate101 a very happy birthday.

What: Pirate101
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 4:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday, October 15th, 2016

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Battle Bards Episode 79: Combat music

Ready to battle it out more than usual? The Battle Bards are cranking up the combat tunes from MMORPGs today, inviting all sorts of violence and slap-happy tempos into the show. So strap on your sword, sling a shield on your back, and get ready to leap into the fray with a wide assortment of excellent -- and even unusual -- music tracks!

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, TuneInPocket CastsStitcher, and Player.FM.

We’ve got Episode 79: Combat music and the show notes for you after the break!

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The Daily Grind: What's the best piratey MMO?

Arrr, today be a good day to walk the plank o' public opinion and ask ye which is the best piratey MMORPG!

We'll leave the field wide-open for your opinion. Sure, you could go for a pure-blood swashbuckler MMO, such as Pirate101 or Pirates of the Burning Sea, but we'll also leave the possibility for answers outside of these walls. Perhaps there's a game that exudes the piratical lifestyle or has a terrific pirate presence. We'd even allow for answers that wander into the realm of letting you play in the pirate spirit, taking plunder and booty by force (you scoundrel you)!

So settle back with some grog and hardtack and tell us grand tales of the seven digital seas!

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Pirate101 returns to Valencia with major update

The madcap anthropomorphic buccaneers of Pirate101 are back with to fight against the Armada with a large update to the colorful MMO.

Valencia Part 2 released today, bringing with it the continuation of the nail-biting storyline featuring pirates versus robotic British stand-ins. In addition to more story, the update raises the level cap for players and pets to 70 and the gold cap to 250,000. Avast, that be a lot of booty!

With the increased level cap come new skills for your pirate's arsenal. There's also a companion to obtain, the Countess Argento (a swashbuckling horse with flair). And of course there are new puppet shows. Three of them, in fact. Jealous much, other MMOs?

Source: Patch notes


One Shots: Fire + ice = mess

What do you get when you mix fire and ice? A steamy combination of incredible pictures... and an awful mess.

Steampower Girl noticed that in this rare instance, Final Fantasy XIV did not obey the simple laws of thermodynamics: "Some inattentive summoner didn't notice their Ifrit egi was off making incriminating glares at the snowfolk. I was quick with the screenshot key for evidence in case a wet bow tie, mustache, and beret turned up where this snow gent once stood!"

Then again, you can buy tubes of "Icy Hot," so I guess anything is possible with science and market research.

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The MOP Up: EVE Online phases out DirectX 9 (June 5, 2016)

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!

Our headline story this week is that EVE Online is making good on its promise to phase out DirectX 9 support for the game. The team said that it's aware that the Mac version only uses DirectX 9 and is investigating a solution.

But the news doesn't stop there. Read on for word on Asta Online's big update, World of Tanks' centennial celebration, an Ingress survey, and more!

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Jukebox Heroes: Wild West MMO tunes

"Wait a minute," you say out loud to your computer. "Western MMORPGs aren't a thing, except in my fondest dreams. How can you write an entire column on music from these imaginary games?"

It is true, there really aren't many (if any) "wild west" MMOs, but that isn't to say that we are lacking for western areas and themes in our games. The American west makes for a great backdrop when its fictionalized into games, whether they be fantasy or sci-fi, and composers do love to sneak in a western-sounding track or two into their albums as well.

Today we're going to be listening to a wide range of MMORPG soundtracks that would be comfortable on the frontier. So pull a log up to the fire, take our your harmonica, and think of a home on the range!

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Rumor: Wizard101 and Pirate101 developer KingsIsle hit by layoffs [Confirmed]

[Update: KingsIsle has confirmed the layoffs to Massively OP; see end of post for statement.]

Industry vets on Twitter have begun sending condolences to KingsIsle employees allegedly hit with "mass" or "massive" layoffs today. KingsIsle is the studio behind kid-centric MMOs Pirate101 and Wizard101.

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The MOP Up: Setting a VR world record (May 8, 2016)

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!

This week we'll look at a world-breaking virtual reality record, Trove's musical charity work, a welcome change for Allods Online customers, and more!

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Pirate101 gives away free hats while Wizard101 introduces daily assignments

Let's check in with KingsIsle's 101 universe today, shall we?

Stating in Pirate101, the swashbuckling game is giving away free "Helms of Ultimate Protection" for players quick on the ball. Pirate101 is already up to 400 in-game pets and is teasing some sort of upcoming content that has to do with a nautical-themed living room set.

Not to be outdone, Wizard101 just conjured itself a big fat update. The patch contained a new daily assignment system, tougher skeleton key bosses, a gear vault for housing, Zafaria fishing locations, and of course, more spells.

"If you’ve ever wanted to delve deeper into a secondary school of magic, now is the time," KingsIsle said. "The scholars of the Arcanum can now teach even more spells from their schools of focus to Wizards over level 100. Each spell will cost one training point, so study wisely."


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