I’ve been keeping a gratitude journal for the first time in my life this month, and it turns out that it’s freaking hard. Why? Because it’s humbling beyond belief. The list of things I need to be grateful for is endless. Even if I limit it to just Massively OP, I could go on thanking the writers all day. Instead of doing that again, this year I want to thank the spouses and roommates and SOs and other familial enablers of our writers, without whom this site probably would not exist. The reality is that in many cases, their love, support, financial maneuvering, and childcare behind the scenes allows us to keep writing. So thank you, to all of them – Paul, Joy, and Elaine especially – for helping us live this weird dream.
Now let’s turn it to the genre itself. What are you grateful for in the MMORPG genre?
What is Massively OP’s MJ thankful for in Warframe? Headshots! No, really. Besides being thankful for the game itself, she is particularly thankful for the intense fun of skewering grineer to the wall with her bow. It’s especially satisfying — like a filling turkey dinner. So while you munch on some good food and pumpkin pie, she’s going to try out her new headshot-happy Vectis sniper rifle. Join us live at 12:00 p.m. for a special Thanksgiving Day edition of…
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 12:00 p.m. EST on Thursday, November 23rd, 2017
Stately resting between the gaudy purple and orange of Halloween and merry red and green of Christmas is the earth tone-saturated Thanksgiving. While no one’s favorite color scheme, Thanksgiving does give us a nice in-between holiday with family meals, an awkward dance around politics, a work day for football teams, and the occasional MMORPG holiday event.
While not every online game has decided to embrace the American holiday, enough pop up every year that need corralling. And since we just got turkey certified here at Massively OP, we’re going to lay out all of this week’s event options for you on a platter. So enjoy the festivities and dressing up like a Pilgrim for two days maximum before deeply questioning that fashion sense. Now jingly sleigh bells, size XXXL red suits, and reindeer antlers, that’s a smart look indeed!
It’s kind of hard to be thankful this year. Sure, some good things have happened this year, but we also have some things that, to put it politely, are unqualified messes. There’s everything around Star Wars: Battlefront II. There’s the shuttering of Master x Master and Marvel Heroes (the latter I actually flagged a year ago as being robust and healthy). There are titles like Lord of the Rings Online and ARK: Survival Evolved that have doubled down on methods to enrage players. And last but certainly not least, there’s still no sign of a sequel to the Warcraft film.
That one might be a grey area, actually.
But the year hasn’t been devoid of light, and there’s still stuff to be thankful for. So rather than being bitter and cranky about it, I want to focus on what we do have to be thankful for even while I hope for better in the future. Let’s talk about some stuff that’s good to be thankful for, even if it doesn’t tickle your particular fancy, and be a little more hopeful.
Some MMO studios waste entire Fridays streaming about their upcoming patches, but not Bungie
: Bungie’s wasting two
whole days on Destiny 2’s
Curse of Osiris. Only they’re not Friday. They’re Tuesday. Which means if you missed last week’s
, you can grab this week’s right now. And even if you don’t care to watch live, there’s a new trailer in it for you because again Bungie has literally put out a trailer for its stream – it’s weird, right? But not unwelcome?
“In this livestream, the Bungie team will debut the activities awaiting you on Mercury including traveling into the Infinite Forest, a brand-new Public Event, and more.”
The stream begins at 2 p.m. EST as this post goes live; we’ve tucked it and the trailer down below.
It’s time to smash up some robots with other robots in Final Fantasy XIV
. There’s more to it than that, sure, but the core of the game’s new Rival Wings PvP encounter
is that you are leading a team of robots (mammets) against another team of robots (mammets), and sometimes you get into a robot (machina) and use them to smash cores. It’s all of the robot action in the game you could possibly want, and if you’re familiar with the mechanics of MOBA combat, you will likely find this pretty familiar. Try it out for yourself; patch 4.15 has just gone live today.
The new Perform system, on the other hand, is less robot-based. It’s entirely based around making music as a Bard, and that means hitting a whole lot of different notes to make your own original music. (And the patch notes even warn you that you had better be making your own music, thus making the game a place where saying “anyway here’s Wonderwall” might literally get you in trouble.) So you can make your own song after stomping robots for a while. What more could you ask for?
It’s a good time to pile on predatory cash-shop models, especially if you’ve got a better one, and in-development hardcore MMORPG sandbox Saga of Lucimia is doing just that. While citing EA and Star Wars Battlefront II as the lead villain, however, Lucimia dev Tim “Renfail” Anderson isolates microtransactions as a whole, not just the lockbox phenomenon that saw EA dragged to the principal’s office.
“While the cash shop model has risen to prominence in the past decade, to the point where the vast majority of MMORPGs have shunned the subscription model in favor of larger profits, it is a system rife with poorly executed versions,” Anderson argues. “While there are some examples of microtransaction systems that work relatively well — I would argue that Elder Scrolls Online is a prime example in this category — the vast majority of them do not.”
The Armoury System places a certain unique burden on Final Fantasy XIV
. Any new job doesn’t just need to have a distinct mechanical identity, it needs to have a distinct weapon. Which worked well for the first expansion and a half or so; after all, there were a lot of obvious weapons that existed in the game in some abundance but didn’t necessarily have jobs associated. A bit of massaging and we had a job for daggers, a job for great swords, a job for… spinny card-balls…
Yeah, this analogy falls apart pretty quickly. But the point is that it’s still just as viable as a means of predicting new jobs as looking at past titles, especially as Yoshida has stated on multiple occasions that he’d like to have a job that was unique to FFXIV. So let’s look at some weapons we’ve seen in the game, ones that show up in other titles, and ones that make a certain degree of sense as a prediction method.
In a new paper released last week, University of York researchers sought to examine whether research that strategy gaming (like chess and arcade games) correlates with intelligence holds true in the modern games like MOBAs. “In our current paper we extend their findings by asking whether we can establish a link between intelligence and performance in widely-played, commercial, team-based videogames with global reach,” the authors explain.
The researchers examined League of Legends and Dota 2 players, comparing their ranks to their results on a fluid intelligence test and attempting to disentangle all of that from teamwork ability, practice, and age by comparing the results to those from more twitch-oriented games like Destiny and Battlefield 3 – easier said than done, since apparently there aren’t a lot of “olds” playing some of these titles – and the general population’s performance on fluid intelligence tests by age. The result?
If you don’t mind saddling up on something that is straight out of an entomophobic’s worst nightmare, then boy is Elder Scrolls Online
going to make your November extra special!
ZeniMax announced this past week that it is giving away a free Nix-Ox mount to all players who have purchased the Morrowind expansion. To claim the mount, you will need to log into the game by November 26th. And yes, this promotion is good for anyone who decides to purchase and play Morrowind over the next week as well!
This is the latest in a string of promotions and deals for Elder Scrolls Online around its anniversary. Recently, the game gave out a pair of clockwork pets and deeply discounted some of its DLC packs.
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!
Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from Dragon Nest, TERA M, Mabinogi Mobile, Icarus M, Summoner’s War, Star Trek Online, Osiris New Dawn, Lord of Vermilion Arena, PUBG, Stardew Valley, Warframe, Overwatch, Path of Exile, Astroneer, KurtzPel, RuneScape, Dota 2, Second Life, and Renaissance Kingdoms, all waiting for you after the break!
You know what’s one MMO that seems to be capturing the interest of a lot of gamers these days? Warframe
. It seems to be sucking players in and surprising newcomers even four years after its debut.
“Warframe lends itself to replay in quite a number of different ways,” noted Why I Game in an extensive review. I Has PC is gushing over the various Warframe discoveries: “There is something for everyone here, all wrapped up in a tight, beautiful gameplay package. I have read people on Reddit learning new things about the game after putting in over 1000 hours already.”
Warframe not for you? This week’s edition of Global Chat points you toward MMO essays on the joys of climbing, grabbing free stuff in games, and the pain of healing a group of idiots. Check it out below!
I do think that we, as a culture, have become disturbingly obsessed with selfies, but I will always make an exception for anyone who finds himself standing in front of an enormous gas giant.
“I wanted to share my screenshot for One Shots for the first time,” sent in Stormheim. “The screenshot is from Destiny 2. I don’t still have cool stuff and gear, but its kinda awesome to take a selfie with Jupiter behind you.”
If nothing else, Jupiter has the effect of making the subject look thin and light in comparison. Kind of like standing next to Jabba the Hutt or a YouTube content creator’s ego.