Earlier this week, we wrote about Black Desert developer Pearl Abyss’ IPO and its grand plans for the future – among them, four additional MMOs. Sounds great, right? Except that the suspicion, at least in our comments, is that Pearl Abyss will just follow in the footsteps of Nexon, NCsoft, and Netmarble in that the games will mobile MMOs and not “real” MMORPGs at all. That may or may not be true; the games have fairly fast turnaround for a full-scale MMORPG, but then the company talked up the BDO engine for future games and expressed great ambition in the MMORPG market in the west and on console.
But the suspicion seems to turn off so many of us — the stigma is real. So for today’s Overthinking, I wanted to dig into that. Do you play mobile MMOs, especially any of the modern crop that are popular in East Asia and then ported here? What keeps you from playing mobile MMOs, and what would you want out of an MMO for a mobile device that would actually make you consider it a home MMORPG?
Let’s introduce you to Trab. Trab is a PC gamer who really enjoys shooting things, so he’s looking forward to some other shooter that recently released on consoles, with a PC release coming later. What is Trab going to do for this weekend? Perhaps he’s going to jump in and play The Division’s free weekend, which is happening this weekend from September 14th through the 17th. There’s lots of stuff to shoot there, and Trab won’t have to wait for a later PC release.
If you’re in the same boat as Trab or just want to try before you buy the game, you can start pre-loading the game now, so you’ll be all charged up when the free weekend kicks off. Your progress will be saved if you buy the game, and there’s even a 60% discount if you buy from Ubisoft directly during the free weekend. That seems like a pretty good deal for anyone with a need to shoot something on PC.
Have you ever really wanted to get ganked by the AI in a game? That’s what you’ll be getting with the two new areas in The Division arriving with patch 1.8. Players traversing the West Side Piers will find enemies dynamically spawning along the zone, and the designers are bragging that it’ll at least seem like the game is trying to take you out specifically. Which probably sounds either awesome or awful, depending on how you feel about enemies popping up to shoot you from diverse angles.
You can check out all of that in the latest developer stream, archived just past the break. The new areas will also make Division Tech (previously available only in the Dark Zone) accessible to players within these wholly PvE regions, which should be welcome for those who don’t wish to have even the threat of actual ganking. Check out everything just below if you’re curious to see what it’s like by the harbor in the next patch.
Curious where you might travel to next in The Division’s post-apocalyptic New York City? Since the whole game is “tourists with guns” anyway, why not visit the aircraft carrier Intrepid, which is now a floating museum-slash-video game level?
Ubisoft revealed the details behind its upcoming Resistance update today, informing players that they will be visiting a new zone called West Side Pier. It’s here where the Intrepid is docked, but don’t expect to be standing around goggling and taking pictures! The enemy factions are starting to band together against the Division forces, and players will engage in the new Resistance PvE mode to counter their threat.
If that’s not enough, Update 1.8 is also going to add a 4v4 deathmatch skirmish mode for Division players who can’t get along. What kind of example are we giving to the enemy by doing this, anyway?
Check out the reveal trailer below!
At its pre-Gamescom press conference this Sunday, Microsoft revealed more about its upcoming Xbox One X and its glorious 4K gaming capabilities. As part of the conference, the company listed several games that would benefit from the enhanced performance and power of the console when it arrives this November.
MMO players should take note, because this list contains many games in our sphere of interest. The select enhanced titles include BioWare’s Anthem, ARK: Survival Evolved, Astroneer, Black Desert, Conan Exiles, Dark and Light, Diablo III, Elite: Dangerous, Path of Exile, Portal Knights, Roblox, Sea of Thieves, SMITE, State of Decay 2, The Crew 2, Elder Scrolls Online, The Division, Warframe, and World of Tanks.
The Xbox One X boasts six teraflops of processing power, 4K Ultra Blu-Ray, and 12GB GDDR5 graphics memory, and will retail for $500. Interested players can pre-order the Project Scropio edition right now for as long as supplies last.
The Division has this week patched up with Update 1.7, a whopper of a patch that introduces an epic new time-limited global event system, new commendations and patches, face masks, facial customization, new gear sets, account-wide sharing of bits and bobs like blueprints, a weapon rebalance, skill tweaks, the works. Oh, and new lockboxes dubbed “encrypted caches” from the Premium Vendor. Yes, they require dropped or cash-shop-bought keys, and yes, they “contain unique appearance items, emotes and skins.”
Ubisoft is opening up last winter’s Survival DLC to a free-play event starting this Friday and running through Sunday as part of its promotion of the patch. “Experience a completely new way to play The Division: cold, stripped of gear, and beset by a brutal snowstorm, you must survive until extracting safely in the Dark Zone,” Ubisoft teases newbies. “Finding warm clothes and survival equipment will be vital to your success.”
The trailers for both the update and the older DLC are down below!
Gamasutra has an unusual piece from an Ubisoft developer this week arguing that co-op gameplay is the industry’s rising midcore trend, one that he believes will ultimately outstrip team competitive games. “It’s all about all the big data and stats that are finally available and can be mined,” author Andrii Goncharuk says, “and no surprise that it’s showing that players who played co-op mode have much more play hours, and players who played co-op with friends have even more play hours.”
He may be right, though first you’d have to believe co-op ever went anywhere to begin with (and console players would probably tell you nope!). But as I read the article, I couldn’t help but see MMOs in most of the arguments he’s making about what makes co-op games sticky, and yet MMOs are being edged out all the same. And while I don’t like to think of the MMO genre’s space in the industry as a zero-sum situation, the reality is that when people tire of MMORPG baggage but still want social play, co-op is exactly the sort of game they retreat to.
For this week’s Massively Overthinking, I asked our writers to reflect on the rise of co-op PvE games outside the MMO label. Do we play them? Do we prefer them, and when? How can we learn from them? Is the popularity of smaller-scale co-op hurting MMORPGs?
After some ups and downs this afternoon — everybody loves the “try again later” message, right? — Valve’s summer Steam sale is finally underway and stable. Here’s what we’re looking at in our corner of the gaming world.
Ever since the Destiny 2 reveal, everyone seems to be freaking out about this follow-up MMO shooter. Will it be the new hotness or a repainted product that’s being sold again to the same audience?
The reveal made Dragonchasers change his mind: “I guess I have to applaud Bungie for trying something new. They freely admit that they’re trying to do something about the frequently toxic environments brought about by matchmaking.”
“I have to say I am not disappointed in the least,” Tales of the Aggronaut enthuses. “In fact at this very moment I am feeling inordinate amounts of Destiny love. There were a few things that were released that gave me all the feels.”
That doesn’t mean everyone’s fully on board yet. “I appreciate the changes the game is making, but I had expected a proper sequel to Destiny to actually be a bigger game with actual new stuff to do, stuff that couldn’t be done in the first game,” said Virtual Bastion.
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 have stories and videos from Skyforge, EVE Online, Ingress, War Thunder, World of Tanks, Wakfu, League of Legends, SMITE, GTA Online, Elsword Online, Wurm Online, Darkfall: Rise of Agon, Worlds Adrift, Counter-Strike, SEAL Online, and Warspear Online, all waiting for you after the break!
The Division (or what we called “The Divs” when I was a kid roaming the suburban streets of Ohio, looking for my next hit of Capri-Sun) wonders if you have plans this weekend. Yes? No? Willing to cancel? If you have a slice of time, perhaps you’d like to play the game and see how it’s shaped up over the past couple of years.
From May 4th through the 7th, you can try out The Division for free. There are just two conditions: You have to play it on a PC and you need to go through Uplay to access the promotion.
The Division pushed out a patch last month that tackled a whole host of bugs and added the new loadout system. Check out the exact times of the promotion’s start and end after the break.
Have you ever noticed that while there’s an entire world out there, most all of the MMORPGs we discuss and play tend to either be ones crafted in the USA or imports from China or Korea? We even have a shorthand for this: “western” and “eastern” MMOs. We’re usually not talking about entire hemispheres with these references, but rather about categorizing three countries that are big into the MMORPG business.
But what about the rest of the world? Are all of these other countries so uncaring about this genre that they’ve never tried their hand at making an MMO? Of course not; as I’m about to show you, there are plenty of online RPGs that have been made in countries other than China, the USA, and South Korea. It’s just that for various reasons, those three countries ended up fostering concentrations of video game developers who knew how to create these types of games.
So let’s take a tour around the world and see if we can’t give some credit to other countries for their contributions to the MMORPG genre past, present, and future. Before you click the link, see how many you can name off the top of your head!
There’s a new patch on The Division’s public test server today, the star of which is surely the loadouts system first teased last month.
“Loadouts offer players the chance to save their equipped Weapons, Gear, Skills and Talents to Loadout slots, allowing for quick swapping of builds to be used for different activities,” the patch notes say. “Players will be able to create and save up to 6 Loadouts per character. Each Loadout can be directly equipped when out of combat.”
It’s mostly bug and balance and quality of life patch beyond that; expect tweaks for the PvP-centric Dark Zone, a few weapon nerfs, and minor talent and skill adjustments. When does it migrate to the real servers? That’s anybody’s guess.