This week in MMO crowdfunding, Camelot Unchained devs say they’re getting really close to finalizing the date for beta one. This week, in addition to fiddling with the beta calendar, CSE says it’s been working on poses, rocks, casting and UI animations, new armor and weapon textures, container permissions, and performance for buildings, as well as training up the new tech producer.
Meanwhile, Shroud of the Avatar pushed out R50, Elite kicked off the beta for its next big update, we continued our tour of Project Gorgon, Dual Universe teased new concept art, War of Rights got a wee patch, ROKH patched up (devs say they’re still “looking for the best way to make [their] come-back,” and Fragmented admitted it’s essentially in maintenance mode.
Read on for more on what’s up with MMO crowdfunding over the last week and the regular roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’re following.
It was foretold, and then it happened. Sea of Thieves hit its closed beta this week with play anywhere functionality fully intact. The bad news is that beta hit back with some bugs, one of which has a workaround of requesting a refund and then re-purchasing the game. Hopefully extending the beta until January 31st provides a bit more time to fix these issues?
Ah, well. Let’s see if other games are navigating their betas decently. What have you got for us, magic list (it’s not actually magic)?
- Remember Rust? It’s leaving the comforting warm blanket of early access for launch on February 8th. You can decide for yourself if that’s because the game is ready for launch or if it’s just a matter of needing some new source for outrage after people got angry about no character creation.
- The closed beta for Closers ends on February 6th, bringing the game formally into the launch world. The only other thing I can add to this is that when I was trying to work up an extended song lyric spoof for this, I called it a “shoot-brawler,” which seems… apropos.
- The Repopulation has plans for 2018. Big plans, the biggest plans. It’s going to be so big, you’ll see. We would all like to see.
- The mobile client for Albion Online is currently in testing, which is pretty cool. It’s only on Apple devices, which may be less cool if Android devices are your mediums of choice, but it’s one before the other.
- Speaking of sandboxes where you kill other players, Darkfall: New Dawn is launching today out of beta. Let’s see how well this revival does!
- Last but not least, survival box SOS apparently has the official Snoop Dogg seal of approval as it heads into early access. Look, have him do the stream alongside his good friend Martha Stewart, and we’ll talk.
It’s nice to see that 2018 is both replete with beta news and with stories that are just plain weird (it’d be sad if we couldn’t call back to Steven Seagal on a boat, after all). So what about other beta stuff? We’ve got a list down below! Let us know if something on it is inaccurate, like a game that’s tacitly launched or something that we may have missed. It’s appreciated.
So here we are in January, one whole year after Idea Fabrik bought The Repopulation from a beleaguered Above & Beyond. The new company got it back online last year, and how could it not, since it owns the engine, right? Today, IF’s published an annual update and roadmap to spell out just what’s coming to the sandbox in 2018.
The company says January has been focused on caching and performance, plus the new targeting system and newbie tutorial. As for the rest of the year, the team is working with an 8- to 10-week update schedule and a new patch numbering system to build out inventory fixes, a consolidated astronomy system, better harvesting and surveying, the farming and horticulture system, a unified race spec system, unified factions, updated guilds, crafting tweaks, new NPCs, a new dynamic mission system, camp spawners, the combat progression overhaul, player merchants, the auction house, the UI, and the housing revamp. It’s, well, everything.
And don’t forget the world revamp. “We want to give the players a full map instead of a partial world,” IF says, “so this will take the longest time development-wise and as a result will have a longer wait time.”
Over the weekend, we added a new entry to our “whatever happened to X” series with a quick note about Fragmented, the survival sandbox that Above & Beyond put together in its attempt to raise enough funds to save The Repopulation. While we quoted the formal statement that A&B wasn’t abandoning updates for the game at launch, an awesome tipster dug up a forum thread from just last week where the devs effectively admit defeat.
“The game hasn’t been abandoned but it is more or less in maintenance and bug fix mode only at this point,” A&B’s J.C. Smith says in response to players asking whether it’s worth $3 from the latest sale. “It just doesn’t bring in enough revenue for anyone to support it full time at this point. Josh are I still around to fix emergency issues and issue the occasional bug patch but the team has moved on to other projects at this point and we don’t foresee any major additions to the game in the future. Future patches will likely be similar to the last couple patches, focusing on streamlining and bug fixes.”
Just one more casualty of The Repopulation’s sad story.
. Cheers, Emmanuel.
Ever pause during your day and find yourself wondering, “Whatever happened to that game?” With hundreds upon hundreds of online titles these days, it’s surprisingly easy for MMOs to fall through the cracks and become buried as more aggressive or active games take the spotlight.
Well, every so often we here at Massively Overpowered find ourselves curious what has transpired with certain MMOs that we haven’t heard from in quite a while. Have we missed the action and notices? Has the game gone into stealth maintenance mode? What’s the deal? What has it been up to lately?
That’s when we put on our detective hats and go sleuthing. Today we look at what has been going on with Ascent: the Space Game, Aura Kingdom, and Fragmented.
This is, bar none, the column I hate doing most on a regular basis. None of the games I highlight in here is something that I actually like pointing to; they’re games that people like, games that may very well be someone’s absolute favorites, and yet they’re also games where the future looks difficult if not outright bad. A cloudy future is never a good thing, and this particular column does not make it all right.
But we’re still here in the early days of 2018, and that means it’s still the right time to look at the games we might not see around next year. For various reasons, these are the games that already look like they’re in trouble, instead of absolute face-shattering surprises like a couple of the shutdowns last year.
I didn’t intend to leave Star Citizen off my personal list of most-anticipated MMOs this year, but I think it’s the first time in several years that I did so. It’s not so much that I’m not looking forward to it – I am! – but that I don’t see the point of getting my hopes up when it still feels so far away from being feature-complete for all the things I want to do in that world. That, and it turns out I have a giant list of other MMOs that are much closer in space and time that just bubbled to the top of my excitement list. This is a great thing for the genre!
If there’s one that used to show up in my list every year but no longer does, even though it’s still technically alive? Probably The Repopulation. Sigh. That reminds me, I’m going to go listen to Sentience again.
What MMOs are you no longer anticipating that you once were?
The last week of the year is always a time of anticipation and a fair amount of “let’s get this dumb year finished already,” so it comes as no surprise that most beta-related news this week is all about getting ready for next year rather than working too hard at the remaining one. Rend, for example, is looking forward to starting its alpha in the start of 2018. What day? Not important yet. It’ll be the start of the year, that’s all you need to know.
Other anticipatory news of the week?
And with that, we bring the end of Betawatch… for 2017. Seriously, we’ll be back here next week like always, and we’ve got our usual list below. If something has skipped off to another phase without us noticing, please, do let us know in the comments. Stay safe, and we’ll see you all again when 2018 rolls around.
How do you like to play video games? Specifically, how do you like to play The Repopulation? No, you don’t have to tell us, not even down in the comments; you can tell the designers directly with a pair of new surveys asking for details about how players want to experience the game. The concept is to just start off with two surveys but regularly add more, allowing the developers a nuanced and complete picture of how people are enjoying the game and how they can continue to improve.
To start with, the surveys ask about your experience in the world of The Repopulation and your preferred playstyle; future surveys are already planned to cover things like skill gaining, PvP, and so forth. If you’ve got opinions and want to make sure you’re heard, well, this seems like an obvious way to make that happen, doesn’t it?
As captain of our Stream Team, Massively OP’s MJ Guthrie and Larry Everett were joined by Andrew Ross this year to play zillions of games live, some old and some new, providing our community with an interactive look at some of the games in (and around) our genre. I’ve picked out my 10 favorites from the year, from sunsets and interviews to early access MMO sneak-peeks and even a group stream for the launch of one of the year’s biggest MMO expansions. Let’s dig in!
Welcome to a special edition of Make My MMO, Massively OP’s regular recap of what’s going on in crowdfunded MMOs, which we do specifically for those of you who are convinced Kickstarter is the absolute worst (it’s not) and that no crowdfunded MMOs ever launch (they do). Plus, somebody’s got to keep an eye on what your money’s up to! Tonight’s edition isn’t going to be our usual recap of the last couple of weeks, however; we’re going to look at the most important MMO crowdfunding news of the entire year. Lock up your wallets and let’s get to it.
It’s holiday time, and that means everyone is leaving the offices early now. Except for those of us who work from home, because we can’t leave our offices. We live in them. But there’s still stuff afoot in testing, like Legends of Aria eyeing down its official closed beta start on January 15th next year, or the really real for real March 27th launch date for Shroud of the Avatar. Have a slightly belated holiday present!
More beta news? Why not, it’s enough to keep you comfortable through the holiday.
- Star Citizen has finally brought out alpha 3.0 to everyone. Now everyone can enjoy the features/realize it’s a mess/complain in the comment threads! (Please circle your preferred action.) It’s also selling you an expensive new concept… tank. Fun times.
- Saga of Lucimia knows that it takes a village to fight a bear. Or four people, at least. So a very small village.
- Testing has been rebooted on The Repopulation, but Idea Fabrik has also announced that it won’t be able to deliver on some backer tiers and will be compensating them in some fashion. That’s a bit more of a mixed bag, there.
- If you are a family member or a friend of Chronicles of Elyria, you can be taking part in the game’s closed alpha. If you’re an extended family member, acquaintance, well-wisher, chum, or just a buddy, you’re out of luck.
- Last but not least, Sea of Thieves has ended its technical alpha, re-arranging the forums and offering a last glimpse behind the scenes for anyone who wasn’t able to take part. Of course, the game is also launching in March, so if you’re not able to test you still won’t have to wait long.
And now, it’s time for us to cap off the pre-holiday rush with… a list of games, you know how it is. They should all be in testing. Is something on there which ought not be? Let us know down in the comments, and do be specific. And enjoy your holidays, whether you’re testing a game during the next few days or just playing existing ones.
December’s many article roundups and awards always remind us that it’s hard to remember what happened last month, let alone what happened way back at the beginning, so this year (as in 2015 and 2016), we decided to poke through our MMO coverage, month by month, to hit the highlights and frame our journey before we launch into 2018.
If you were still reeling from the devastating loss of EverQuest Next in 2016, the announcement in January of this year that Landmark was being kicked the curb too was salt in the wound. In fact, the beginning of 2017 was a dark spot for MMOs, with Firefall in limbo, Marvel Heroes rolling out an unwelcome patch, The Repopulation being sold to the company that almost snuffed it out, and the Asheron’s Call series on the chopping block. Even Nostalrius had regrets! We did, however, see the launch of Conan Exiles and get our first whisper of Elder Scrolls Online’s Morrowind.
Read on for the whole list from January of this past year.