It’s been quite a ride for Wild West Online, the survivalish MMO that came out of nowhere last spring to take on Red Dead Redemption 2. The game was originally planned to launch in the fall, but it hobbled to an early access launch well behind schedule instead, weathering drama around its relationship to The War Z’s studio, the slow rollout of female toons, and a complete do-over on its planned open PvP gankbox mechanics (the game is now a faction-based setting – cue the anguished howls of early backers).
But the game formally launches on Steam today boasting that faction-based territorial PvP, solo and group play, PvE questing, and homesteading, with a promise of an evolving world in the future.
“To create an even further gripping experience, the development team will continue building out the larger world and integrating new content to create the best experience for players. This includes having Wild West Online’s world age through the years. When players enter Wild West Online today they will start in the mid-1800s with a frontier dynamic and during the coming years the world will evolve as it moves into the late-1800s and eventually into the early 20th century.”
Red Dead Redemption 2’s new trailer is finally here (after an absurd amount of teasing and handwringing over what could be in it). Spoiler alert: It’s exactly what you expect out of a Wild West-era online RPG. And it’s gorgeous. And it, like Wild West Online’s recent announcement, seems properly poised to scoop up some Westworld season 2 hype while also playing with classic RDR fans’ nostalgia, as the gang is back from the original game.
“After a robbery goes badly wrong in the western town of Blackwater, Arthur Morgan and the Van der Linde gang are forced to flee. With federal agents and the best bounty hunters in the nation massing on their heels, the gang must rob, steal and fight their way across the rugged heartland of America in order to survive. As deepening internal divisions threaten to tear the gang apart, Arthur must make a choice between his own ideals and loyalty to the gang who raised him.”
Rockstar’s site still says the launch will be October 26th for console (no PC mentioned, again), and we’re still expecting that promised “online multiplayer experience.” Gamers will recall that it was first announced in October of 2016 with a fall 2017 launch planned. But by May of last year, Rockstar had already pushed that estimate off into 2018, barely making its own “summer” deadline to pick spring 2018 for the console launch. Then in February, it delayed until October. And here we are, trailer in tow.
Following a drawn-out and somewhat inconsistent testing phase, Wild West Online is back with an important message: It’s overhauling the game from top to bottom to improve the alpha client.
The studio admitted that it allowed the deluge of player requests derail it from hitting promised deadlines, and that it wants to get the game’s development back on track. All in all, it is taking longer than expected, although not as long as most anyone who is familiar with MMO development would have expected.
“We’re happy to announce that we’ve reached a state where we think our new version of the game is ready for you to try out,” the studio said. “Today we’ll be taking the game down for a patch, and since we’ve pretty much overhauled all the game systems, it may take a week or so for us to prepare the new game backend, database and make sure that account data is intact.”
In response to one fan who noted that Red Dead Redemption 2 was heading down the pike, the studio replied, “Well, we hope to get game out before October 2nd.”
Red Dead Redemption 2 is suffering another long delay, this time to October. The new official launch date is October 26th, 2018.
“We apologize to everyone disappointed by this delay,” Rockstar said today on its blog. “While we had hoped to have the game out sooner, we require a little extra time for polish.”
The game was first announced in October of 2016 with a fall 2017 launch planned. But by May of last year, Rockstar had already pushed that estimate off into 2018, barely making its own “summer” deadline to pick spring 2018 for the console launch.
But hey, at least they pushed out a bunch of screenshots to keep us busy.
A couple of weeks ago I covered 20(ish) MMORPGs that we are looking forward to seeing develop, test, and launch in 2018. But as you well may know, Massively OP covers a small university’s worth of “not-so-massively” multiplayer games that have some crossover into the MMO space. We do this because it gives some people much-needed gripe fuel and also because a lot of our readership is also interested in these games.
There is a lot of movement in the multiplayer game space, especially as the larger video game market continues to adapt and hew to MMO design. It’s a blended mess as we continually try to sort these games out into their proper categories, but while we do that, you can enjoy this list of 20 multiplayer games that you should be tracking in 2018. From survival sandboxes to pirate simulators to sequels, here we go!
Is Rockstar Games planting little Easter eggs in Grand Theft Auto Online for its upcoming multiplayer western? And are the two games connected?
This seems to be the case, as player dataminers have discovered GTA Online files that indicate the studio is setting up a treasure hunt that will lead gamers to a special chest that holds signature Red Dead Redemption 2 gold-plated pistols. Even better, the chest may also bestow an in-game benefit for the upcoming western title.
The treasure hunt should be coming with the next update, called “The Doomsday Heist.” If all of this is shown to be true, then it might confirm that both games share the same world, just in different timelines.
Like GTA Online, Red Dead Redemption 2 will feature some online multiplayer functionality, although the exact specifics of this have yet to be revealed. We do know that it’ll have lockboxes, however.
It has become a long-standing tradition as Massively OP and our former site that we like to end the year by creating a list of titles that we anticipate for the coming one. It has always been a devilish list to create, full of loose dates and fast guesswork about which titles will and won’t be releasing during a 12-month window (just read last year’s list to see how spot-on I was).
This year we’re changing things up a bit by tossing out the qualifying factor of “will see a hard launch in 2018.” Instead, I drafted up a list of 20 MMOs that have the potential to do or be really interesting next year, whether that be a launch, a long-anticipated beta test, or some other significant development. Plus, hey, you get 20 for the price of 10, so no complaining now!
As an aside, this list isn’t going to cover some other exciting-looking multiplayer games that are arriving in 2018, like Anthem, Sea of Thieves, The Crew 2, Monster Hunter World, DayZ, Red Dead Redemption 2, Stardew Valley, Conan Exiles, and State of Decay 2. And you old school fans won’t want to forget that Ultima Online has a new free-to-play option coming this spring.
Not everyone in the video game industry is shying away from lockboxes or denouncing them outright. Take-Two Interactive President Karl Slatoff took the side of the ESA by saying that he doesn’t consider lockboxes gambling and that the Red Dead Redemption 2 studio will continue using microtransactions going forward.
“The whole gambling regulator thing, we don’t view that sort of thing as gambling. Our view of it is the same as the ESA statement for the most part,” Slatoff said during a recent confererence. “That’s going to play its course, but in terms of the consumer and the noise you hear in the market right now, it’s all about content […] You can’t force the consumer to do anything. You try to do your best to create the best experience you possibly can to drive engagement. And driving engagement creates value in entertainment. That’s just how it’s always been and always will be.”
As the conversation over lockboxes continues to ramp up, a story of one teen who got caught up in online gambling and spent over $10,000 on video game microtransactions is drawing the attention of many — as is this scathing piece at Polygon taking EA’s poor apologies over Star Wars Battlefront 2 to task.
It didn’t quite make summer, but close enough: Rockstar has finally rolled out the new trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2. We’ve been keeping an eye on the western as like its sister GTAO it’s got some MMO-ish elements: “The game’s vast and atmospheric world will also provide the foundation for a brand new online multiplayer experience.”
The trailer description doesn’t mention deployment for PC, so we still don’t know whether that’s happening, but at the very least we can assume it’s not happening right off.
“The all-new trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2, the story of outlaw Arthur Morgan and the Van der Linde gang as they rob, fight and steal their way across the vast and rugged heart of America in order to survive. Coming Spring 2018 to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One systems.”
Likewise, the game was originally set for fall of this year, then delayed to spring of 2018, which apparently holds. The trailer’s down below.
Rule lawyers, please advise: Is it fulfilling the terms of a verbal contract to have promised more details on a delayed game by the end of summer and then announce hours prior to the start of autumn that an announcement was coming? Does that count?
Because that’s exactly what Rockstar Games did with Red Dead Redemption 2. When the studio revealed back in May that it was delaying the multiplayer sequel to its hit western game to 2018, Rockstar promised more details by the end of summer. The details that we got just before the seasons passed the baton? An announcement of an upcoming September 28th announcement. Seems a little disingenuous from where we are sitting.
Rockstar previously said that RDR2 would contain an “online multiplayer experience” when it arrive on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, but the studio’s been considerably more cagey about whether or not the rumored PC version will actually happen. Maybe we’ll find out more next week?
It’s still not a sure thing that Red Dead Redemption 2 is coming to PC.
During its recent earnings call, Rockstar parent company Take Two heaped praise on the PC platform, calling it a vibrant and big digital market with plenty of potential for “engagement with a consumer” – “the PC market as a company is very important and very exciting and something we focus on.” But when pressed for a statement from an investor on the status of a possible PC version of RDR2, CEO Strauss Zelnick deferred comment to the studios, meaning Rockstar itself.
“Any updates about any of our titles will come from our labels,” he said.
Read Dead Redemption 2 was announced last October with a fall 2017 date and promises about the “online multiplayer experience.” But just ahead of its last investor call — and on the heels of the announcement of potential rival Wild West Online — Rockstar announced a delay of RDR2 to spring 2018 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 to give it more time to cook (and causing a dip in Take-Two’s stock).
The good news for both companies this time is that Grand Theft Auto Online is in the middle of a surprise record year and best quarter ever.
Rockstar Games announced last night that it’s delayed Red Dead Redemption 2 to spring 2018 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, a result of the fact that it’ll be Rockstar’s first rodeo on this generation of consoles and “some extra time is necessary.”
“We are very sorry for any disappointment this delay causes, but we are firm believers in delivering a game only when it is ready,” writes the studio.
It’s an interesting time for the game to be making headlines again. Rockstar began teasing the title last autumn, originally setting a fall 2017 date, releasing a trailer, talking up the “online multiplayer experience,” and leaving PC fans to fret they’d been forgotten. In just the past few weeks, it’s seen the rise of a challenger in the previously barren American West MMO subgenre in the form of Wild West Online, which is embracing both its MMO nature and the PC platform.
Take-Two’s stock closed 9% down yesterday; its quarterly earnings report from this morning, however, shows the parent company has little to worry about, thanks to net revenue increasing by 26% over the period.
Here at Massively OP, there’s nothing we like to hear more than word that new, bold, and big MMORPGs are in development. Over the past week, Wild West Online rode in on a dusty horse out of a desert of MMO development, delivering the reveal of this western sandbox followed by a surprise announcement just this morning that full funding had been achieved and a launch was scheduled for later this year.
To dig more into these announcements, we sat down with Stephan Bugaj, Chief Creative Officer of 612 Games, to ask a few follow-up questions about this exciting project, its budget, its scope, and if only PvP gankers need apply.