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 got confirmation that The Division is finally launching its public test server (tomorrow, in fact!). We’ve got that plus stories and videos from Guild Wars 2, League of Legends, Final Fantasy XI, and more, all waiting for you after the break!
You know, it’s kind of weird to think that Eternal Crusade has actually launched. It seemed as if it would forever be in testing, but now it’s released. As for future support and further improvement, well, only time will tell. Hope springs eternal and all of that, yes? It’s not alone in the launch field either, as Heroes & Generals has also made the jump to full-on launch.
Gosh, are we done with betas? I mean, it has been a pretty quiet week otherwise, but there’s still some stuff happening.
- Fragmented is making some pivoting plans involving consoles and VR, as the game hasn’t yet sold well enough to bring the team fully up to speed for porting engines with The Repopulation.
- The final Eco build before beta will release on October 5th, adding in the eponymous ecosystem to the game. If you were curious about how that would work… well, now you’ll have a chance to find out, won’t you?
- Shards Online hasn’t quite hit beta, but it has added fishing. Someone is probably happy about that. Seriously, it’s always fishing, all the time.
- Sea of Thieves is very proud about its environments. The game’s development team is talking about its light, and it appears to be quite bright indeed. There’s even a video that should prove illuminating.
- Say, what ever happened to Forsaken Legends? The answer is a whole heck of a lot. Seriously, massive updates. You don’t even know.
While we’ve lost some titles to launches, the list of betas continues down below, as it always has. See something with an inaccurate status listing? Let us know about it in the comments! It’s good for us to know..
First there was realistic water. Then there were fluffy clouds. And now, Sea of Thieves is proud to present its glorious light.
In a new Inn-side Story video, the team talks about the warmth and volume of its lighting system. As Sea of Thieves will feature a full day/night cycle, the lighting will adjust accordingly depending on the time. Plus, screenshotters who adore sunsets should be in for a treat: “We can let the sun hang on the horizon to give you that nice sunset image, let it last a bit longer. As the sun sets, it gives the illusion that it gets bigger, so we increase the disc size of the sun.”
Check it out below!
Pirates in Sea of Thieves might be traveling on the game’s gorgeous water for the most part, but it will always be under a picturesque, painterly sky. In a new Short Haul video, Principal Technical Artist Valentine Kozin talks about how the clouds in Sea of Thieves won’t be your ordinary skyboxes.
“Our clouds are actual 3-D objects that you can stick up in the sky and will be all fluffy and lovely and cloud-like,” he says. “You can have clouds that look like pirate ships and skulls. You can do all these things to them, which I don’t think anyone has really done.”
Have a spare minute? You can watch the entirety of this short dev video below!
“We want people to be hyped, but we want people to be hyped for the right reasons.”
As development rolls forward with Sea of Thieves, Rare discussed how it is carefully and deliberately sharing information with its community. The studio said that it is using a multi-pronged approach to doling out revelations and answers, including its video and podcast series. Of utmost importance to the team is that it wants to show not tell, and so it is willing to hold off on discussing certain features until they are far enough along in development to be ready for the spotlight.
One of these features is the game’s water effects, which is obviously quite important for a pirate game. There’s a lot more thought poured into these water visuals than you might think, so see what the devs have to say about this aspect of the game below.
The wise sailor knows that a salty pirate is nothing if not long-winded, especially if you provide enough grog. So for the second episode of the Sea of Thieves podcast, the team jaws for an entire hour about the game. Obviously, the most important thing you want to know from it is, “Has any fan got a tattoo of the game’s logo?” And the answer is, yes they did, and yes, it means the team now has to make a good game.
The team spent a good amount of time beating around the bush of specifics as to what players will be able to do in Sea of Thieves. What it comes down to, according to the devs, is that there will be a heap of everything: “There are a mix of sandbox elements and defined goals.”
You can listen to the second episode after the jump!
When Sea of Thieves releases, it won’t just be on console; Rare is developing the game for both the Xbox One and Windows 10. In a new developer video, the studio explains why it’s giving both platforms equal attention.
“We have to build credibility in [the PC] space,” said Executive Producer Joe Neate. “I think it’s important that we do get people to understand that we are taking this as a really serious platform, that PC and Xbox One are equal partners. That they’re both as important as each other to us.”
The developers assured fans that the studio is “full of PC players,” just in case you were worried that they were completely prejudiced against computers for some reason. You can listen in on the discussion after the break.
Pirates don’t just live by the code of the sword and skull; sometimes a good buccaneer likes to fill his or her day with some jaunty sea tunes. In the spirit of this, Sea of Thieves has plans to implement musical instruments for characters to play during their journeys.
“We wanted to put in instruments in a way that is lighthearted and fun and fits the tone,” Senior Designer Shelly Preston said in the project’s maiden “short haul” video. Players can pick up instruments and join together to provide some aural atmosphere as they go on adventures and wait for the action to begin.
Tap out a merry tune as you watch the video after the break.
Did you read our Sea of Thieves E3 interview and come out with more questions than you had going into it? Are you still curious how much of an MMO this upcoming online pirate game will be (we are too)? Then perhaps you’ll be satisfied to some degree with a new Rare video that seeks to answer the question, “What is Sea of Thieves?”
“Basically, Sea of Thieves is every pirate show and pirate film you’ve ever seen that you can actually play, that you can actually be immersed in, you can be the pirate you want,” said Executive Producer Joe Neate. “I think that’s the promise of the game for me.”
The devs did make a point that they’re shying away from the “massively” label as they want every encounter to feel personal. Their interpretation of MMORPG is, then, “Memorable Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game.”
Give the three-and-a-half minute video a watch after the break and let us know in the comments what you’d like to see in this game!
Rare is still feeling out the “emergent world” of Sea of Thieves as the game nears its closed beta testing phase. In an interview with AusGamers, the studio expressed how it’s trying to strike a balance between allowing players to be proper pirates without robbing the game of a sense of community and fun.
“We wanted a game that wasn’t overly punishing like a DayZ or EVE Online [where] you’ve got these shared roles where there’s a lot of loss and it’s permanent,” said Design Director Gregg Mayles. “So we’ve [been trying] to find the balance; the world needs to feel like there’s peril and you can lose your ship and you can die, but it’s not the kind of loss where [you’re punished unfairly].”
If you were hoping that Sea of Thieves would allow you to turn on your fellow crewmates, then this isn’t the game for you. Rare disabled friendly fire once it saw how it negatively impacted early tests, and instead the studio worked on adding incentives for teams to work together.
Rare also posted its very first episode of its “Tales from the Tavern” podcast for the upcoming game. You can listen to it after the break!
The podcast team is back to tackle an incredibly busy week dominated by E3 news — and word that several games are heading off into the sunset. Will the good overcome the bad? The joy dominate the sorrow? The white knights conquer the trolls? Listen in and see!
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.
It’s been awhile since I’ve been excited for a Rare game, but pirate-themed, multiplayer sailing-and-swashbuckling game Sea of Thieves took hold of me just based on the concept we heard last year at E3 2015. I knew this year the game would be shown in some capacity this year, and indeed I was pleased to get to interview Rare Lead Designer Mike Chapman and get some hands on with the game. I wasn’t disappointed.
First announced back at least year’s E3, Sea of Thieves has emerged with two brand-new trailers at this year’s event: a cinematic trailer and a gameplay video, the latter showing multiple players tricking out and sailing a pirate ship. Rare is stopping short of calling it an MMO, though an interview last year suggested “large scale co-op,” but you can definitely put checkmarks next to “online” and “multiplayer” so far. Arrrrr!