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See: Sony Online Entertainment, now Daybreak Game Company

The Daily Grind: Which MMO would you recommend to Marvel Heroes refugees?

So Marvel Heroes has about six weeks to live thanks to the impending shutdown of the game following Disney’s decision to drop Gazillion as a business partner. That’s going to leave some superhero MMO players once again without a home, and though the game’s current Steam numbers can’t hold a candle to the number of players affected by the City of Heroes closure five years ago, we’re left with the same situation – and a similar roster of games vying for refugees.

The big superhero MMORPGs are still DC Universe Online and Champions Online, the former of which is certainly better supported with content, the latter of which may have more of that Marvel feel. There’s also three strong crowdfunding superhero MMOs still trying to fill the CoH vacuum: Ship of Heroes, City of Titans, and Valiance Online. Which MMO would you recommend to Marvel Heroes refugees? Would it be another superhero MMO, another superhero game or ARPG altogether, or something else? If you’re a former MH player, where are you getting your fix?

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DC Universe Online patches in Earth-3 adventures today

This morning, the DC Universe Online servers went down to apply the game’s next major patch. They may or may not be back up by the time you read this, but they’re expected to be up no later than 4:00 p.m. EST today. And when they are up again? You can take a trip to the land of evil opposites, Earth-3!

What must Earth-3 residents think of the rest of the multiverse, though? Technically Earth-1 would be the world with their opposites. Is that a thing there?

Regardless of existential musings on the nature of evil doppelgangers, players can explore a variety of new bits of content on Earth-3, ranging from an open-world exploration of the new world’s Gotham City to an elite raid in which players rail against the Crime Syndicate that threatens the world. So go forth, find your evil opposite, and beat the living snot out of that villain. Or hero, we suppose, if your character is already a villain. It’s complex.

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Hyperspace Beacon: Assessing SWTOR one week after the big server merges

Many people believe that server merges are innately bad because in games like ArcheAge (or even all the way back to Star Wars Galaxies), they were done completely wrong or the game itself wasn’t designed for its servers to ever consolidate. However, other MMOs – RIFT comes to mind – have nearly perfected server merges. And for the most part, server merges help the game and its population. Because many of the smaller servers combine together with larger servers, there are more people around, group-finder queues tend to pop faster, PvP is more dynamic, and roleplayers can reach the all-important critical mass.

If I were to just look at the Star Wars: The Old Republic server merges from the perspective of the overall benefits of combining different server communities, I would have zero issue with them. SWTOR is one of those games that has no innate issues with combining server save for players losing character names. It could be done without losing character names, and I will get into the flaws of that system in a bit.

Now, let’s talk about my specific perspective having experienced two server merges by BioWare, then we will get into the details of how this latest one affected those in my community.

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The Daily Grind: Where do you stand on WoW’s proposed new PvP system?

Buried in the World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth reveals earlier this month was the huge PvP news that eventually, PvP servers, like the dying one I’ve been stuck on for half of forever, will be quietly converted into PvE servers. Instead of being constantly subjected to lowbie ganking while out questing in the world, PvP server players will join PvE players in taking part in what is akin to the Star Wars Galaxies-esque TEF system, only stricter. As you leave a major city, you’ll flag PvE or PvP, and that’s that. Flag for PvP and you’ll get a chance at things like extra rewards and faster reputation. The details are still up in the air, but as Blizzard Watch’s Ted Atchley points out, the rewards will have to be pretty sweet to entice most players to paint a target on their backs.

I’m not all that sad; PvP on PvP servers was basically pointless ganking for jack-all rewards, but there was just no way to convince a dozen friends to pay to move their entire stables elsewhere, so we soldiered on and put up with the random ganks on our leveling alts. I can still see taking the risk of being ganked if the rewards are huge, and the move will allow Blizzard to continue condensing its server groups too.

Where do you stand on WoW’s proposed new PvP system?

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EverQuest II takes you to the Plane of Magic

Did you realize that EverQuest II is going to release its latest expansion this month? Well, it’s November, so that should have been a default assumption, but still, there isn’t a lot of time left to get ready for the next chapter of this MMORPG’s run.

As part of the Planes of Prophecy expansion, EverQuest II players will be venturing to the Plane of Magic in their journeys. “Here, you will become empowered by the lands as you venture through them, explore their wonders and breath-taking sights, and forge relationships with their residents: the Pakiat and Allyrians,” the team wrote.

The standard edition of Planes of Prophecy is $35 and includes a single character level boost to 100. The expansion is scheduled to release on Tuesday, November 28th.

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Perfect Ten: A list of all the MMORPGs I supposedly hate

Did you know about all the MMOs I hate? I sure as heck didn’t! I mean, I knew there were a few games I hated (Scarlet Blade, Alganon) and some that I have pretty poor feelings toward for various reasons (Star Citizen, EVE Online, League of Legends, H1Z1: Kash of the Kow), but those are also games I discuss only in particular circumstances.

Yet thankfully, I have been informed over the near-decade of writing about MMOs that there are a number of games I thought I liked but that I do, in fact, hate. This was a surprise to me, but I think that for purposes of comprehension, it’s best for me to list for reference all the games that I apparently utterly despise. It’s all very confusing to me, but I’m confident that by sharing and making the occasional off-color joke, I’ll be able to decipher it all.

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EverQuesting: Reflecting on EverQuest II’s 13th year

I am particularly fond of the number 13. And I am particularly fond of EverQuest II. So it is a happy convergence of favorites as EQII celebrates its 13th year this week. That’s thirteen years of adventures from Antonica to Zek. Will 13 be a lucky number for this MMORPG? I sure hope so! Norrath could use a little luck going forward after this past year. It’s not that things have been especially tumultuous (do you remember the heartaches and fears from 2015?); in fact, they have been a bit quiet. Too quiet.

The past 12 months have worried me more for the future of my beloved game than even the restructuring to Daybreak did. Will EQII make it through the next year? Maybe we’ll have a stroke of luck and the game will blossom again in 2018. Luckily, I still have some hope left that it will make it through, and I know I am not alone in wanting those adventures to continue quite a while longer.

All hope is not lost because despite the worrying parts, the year wasn’t all bad. There were still bright spots and positive things. As is customary this time of year, I take some time to reflect back on all that has transpired since the last anniversary retrospective. Join me for a look back to see how the game has grown and how it has changed. Then hop in and enjoy the Heroes’ Festival anniversary celebration before it disappears next week!

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The Stream Team: Happy 13th birthday EverQuest II!

Massively OP’s MJ is ready to celebrate: One of her favorite games turns 13 years old today. EverQuest II is a teenager! The Heroes Festival is live, and there are quests to do, bosses to vanquish (and their plushies to acquire!), and a cool new patchwork mount to get. Tune in live at 8:00 p.m. to enjoy a Norrathian birthday party.

What: EverQuest II
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 8:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, November 8th, 2017

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Massively OP Podcast Episode 143: BlizzCon strikes back

On this week’s show, Justin and Bree dig into the exciting news from BlizzCon, mull over the troubles at Marvel Heroes, mourn the passing of a great studio, and cover a handful of MMO updates.

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:

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The MOP Up: Eden Falling brings the turn-based apocalypse (November 5, 2017)

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 MapleStoryWorld of WarcraftRendEverQuest IIDevilianHyper UniverseEden FallingWar ThunderNeverwinterMaster X MasterFinal Fantasy XIRagnarok OnlineDota 2Old School RuneScapeKurtzPel, and Kritika Online, all waiting for you after the break!

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The Game Archaeologist: Disney’s Toontown Online

The use of the word “toon” to describe MMORPG characters is a contentious one, with fans divided over its annoyance or acceptance. But when it came to one MMORPG, it was nothing but proper terminology to call all characters just this.

Toontown Online was one of those “kiddie MMOs” that you probably ignored unless you happen to fall within its demographical clutches back in the day. While it lasted for about a decade, the game’s operation would be notable for its repeated transformation and uncertain status.

With a silly, cartoon-like look and theme, this MMO attempted to bring a levity to a genre that was often marinating in deep fantasy lore and statistical theorycrafting. But when you wanted to eschew dragon fighting for slapstick pie throwing, there was no better game out there. Let’s take a look!

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DC Universe Online unveils plans for a trip to the evil Earth-3

The DC Universe loves its alternate worlds, as you probably already know. (If you didn’t already know, there it is.) Earth-3 is one that offers plenty of opportunities for conflict, though, as it’s the one where all of the evil opposites reside, headlined by the Crime Syndicate of America. And the next update for DC Universe Online will pit the players against the machinations of Ultraman, Superwoman, Owlman, and the rest of these sinister villains with remarkably familiar branding.

This new update is combining both the content styles of events and episodes: Players will have new rewards to work toward and new areas to explore, along with time-limited elements that encourage logging in and fighting back against the Crime Syndicate. The content will also bring in players of all levels, so even those who have yet to hit the level cap will be able to explore the length and breadth of the battle. Check out the full rundown for a preview of the content options available when the crisis starts up on… well, a different Earth, but a fairly finite number of Earths.

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DC Universe Online’s artifacts system goes live with GU76 today

Game Update 76 descends upon the gloomy superhero world of DC Universe Online today. The headline feature going live after the big ol’ maintenance? That’d be the new artifacts system that’ll remind you a bit of similar systems in Lord of the Rings Online and World of Warcraft.

“Artifacts is an exciting new system that will allow you to further up your stats and effectiveness within DCUO by collecting rare Artifact objects and ranking them up by feeding unique Reagent items into them. Players above level 20 will now have access to a new instance titled ‘Artifacts: Oblivion Bar’ in the Events tab of the On Duty Menu. In this instance, tricky ol’ John Constantine himself will help guide you in getting started with these exciting new items. Artifacts can be accessed through the new ‘Artifacts’ tab in the Inventory menu, where Reagent items can be fed into them to raise their ranks until they reach milestone points. Once an Artifact reaches a milestone, players will need to use special Catalyst items to unlock the milestone and continue ranking up their Artifact.”

The patch also introduces new Thanksgiving stuff (happy November!), implements an inventory overhaul that buffs stack sizes (yay!), adjusts projectile targeting, and fixes up some bugs.

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