We’re taking a tour back through our MMO coverage, month by month, to hit the highlights and frame our journey before we launch into 2020 and a whole new decade of MMOs!
What was it about October that made the whole MMO industry lose it mind? Yes, October was the month that Blizzard’s bungled decision to punish a Hearthstone esports star over his “Hong Kong liberation” outburst on a stream sent the entire gaming industry into a tizzy, complete with politicians condemning Blizzard and a massive boycott.
But Blizzard was far from alone in the self-owns this month; Mike O’Brien left ArenaNet, Shroud of the Avatar changed ownership, Daybreak suffered yet another round of layoffs, Camelot Unchained delayed again, and Fallout 76 delayed the Wastelanders expansion and launched the badly received Fallout First subscription.
And in happier news, ArcheAge Unchained launched, SWTOR finally rolled out its Onslaught expansion, Black Desert opened up the Great Expedition, Raph Koster announced he’s making a new MMO, and Riot Games plotted a bunch of new games. Read on for the whole list from October of this past year!
TOP NEWS STORIES OF OCTOBER 2019
Destiny 2’s Shadowkeep launches today as Bungie teases the future
CCP vets found new game studio to build an open-world MMO
Elite Dangerous addresses community petition over development ‘grievances’
Here’s why the Guild Wars 2 community is grumpy over build templates
Raph Koster is making a new MMO and just raised $2.7M in seed funding to do it
Mike O’Brien is leaving ArenaNet and Guild Wars 2 to form a new studio
Raph Koster’s new MMORPG will be more than ‘just hack and slashing your way through levels’
Red Dead Redemption 2 and Red Dead Online will finally hit PC on November 5th
Montreal law firm wants to launch a class action lawsuit against Fortnite for being addictive to minors
Pantheon’s Brad McQuaid’s recent dev blogs cover everything from PvP to instancing
World of Warcraft previews patch 8.3, Visions of N’Zoth, and plans Dire Maul for WoW Classic October 15
RuneFest 2019: Old School RuneScape’s Morytania expansion, Twisted league, group ironman, and clans
Blizzard bans Hearthstone esports player and fires casters over pro-Hong Kong protest
Players, pros, and politicians join in protest over Blizzard’s censorship of Hong Kong Hearthstone pro
Shroud of the Avatar changes hands as Portalarium transfers assets to Catnip Games
Legends of Aria is overhauling its PvP system once again
ArcheAge Unchained’s test server throws its doors open to you – yes, you
Shroud of the Avatar finally admits the Kickstarter book is not happening, offers in-game items instead
Guild Wars 2 studio ArenaNet chased the 2016 Gaile Gray account hacker all the way to Germany – and lost
Analysts fret over Blizzard’s prospects following wildly unpopular ban of Hong Kong Hearthstone esports star
Interview: Star Citizen’s Sean Tracy on the gameplay features of alpha 3.7, live today
Blizzard won’t punish the US college Hearthstone players who protested in support of Blitzchung – so they quit
Mark Kern didn’t just quit WoW Classic: He accused his old Firefall studio of Chinese corruption
Blizzard dev says there’s no internal comms over Hong Kong fiasco: ‘It’s pulling our teams apart at the seams’
It looks like Daybreak’s been hit with yet another round of layoffs
League of Legends tells casters and pro players to avoid ‘sensitive issues’ at the World Champs
Blizzard finally addresses Hong Kong esports fiasco, reducing bans and reinstating prize money
Daybreak confirms yesterday’s layoffs and ‘realignment of the company into separate franchise teams’
Make My MMO: Star Citizen drops alpha 3.7 as it turns 7 itself
Fortnite literally vanished into a black hole, and the internet lost its mind
BlizzCon protests begin to officially organize in response to the Hong Kong controversy
EVE Evolved: Chatting up EVE Online world record holder Ethan ‘Katia Sae’ Richards
Blizzard solves its ‘one company, two policies’ problem by hiding pro players and canceling an event
Buy-to-play ArcheAge Unchained is officially live today with the Shadows Revealed update
World of Warcraft: Classic is getting Dire Maul today ahead of the rest of Phase 2
Riot announces team shooter, card game, fighting game, co-op game, and mobile League of Legends
ArcheAge Unchained delays Steam, beholds mighty queues during launch rollout
Blizzard finally decides to ban the college Hearthstone team that called for a Blizzard boycott too
Bethsoft delays Fallout 76’s Wastelanders to 2020, but private servers launch next week
How Pokemon Go company Niantic is collecting (and using) your life’s data
UK art studio accuses Kickstarted MMORPG Oath of incompetence and failure to pay for work
Daybreak’s Holly Longdale promises: ‘There is a future for EverQuest’
Riot Games expresses ’empathy’ for Blizzard after its Hong Kong fiasco
US politicians chastise Activision-Blizzard for its handling of the Hong Kong fiasco
Final Fantasy XIV TV show gets a few new details, confirms chocobos
ArcheAge Unchained is kind of a hot mess while the land rush begins
Ragnarok Online’s international servers are going dark for two months to receive a mass of updates
German magazine ad appears to confirm impending announcement of Diablo 4
Daybreak talks PlanetSide Arena goals and plans for PlanetSide 3
Shroud of the Avatar claims move from Portalarium to Catnip will bring ‘positive change’
Kritika Online appears to be coming back to life in the west, self-published by its developer
Elder Scrolls Online’s Dragonhold DLC is officially live on PC
UK’s children’s commissioner calls for tighter legislation on lootboxes
Star Wars The Old Republic’s Onslaught expansion is now live with its launch trailer
SuperData September 2019: WoW Classic’s surge is over, Fortnite sees worst month since 2017
ArcheAge Unchained permabans 200+ accounts over ArchePass mission exploits
Fallout 1st is a new Fallout 76 sub that locks private world ownership behind a paywall
Elite Dangerous delays fleet carriers to 2020 in favor of multiple clean-up patches
Kingdom Under Fire 2 gets a November 14 launch date
The Fallout 76 community is storming over the Fallout 1st sub
City of Titans’ character creator, Titan Create, is now available for backers
Shroud of the Avatar works on bards, complains about negative press coverage
Bethesda says Fallout 76 scrapbox bug is a ‘top priority’ as ‘class warfare’ griefing claims surface
Final Fantasy XIV launches patch 5.1: Vows of Virtue, Deeds of Cruelty
EA is bringing an unspecified number of games back to Steam along with the EA Access plan
Guild Wars 2’s build and equipment templates are live – and the extras are not cheap
Legends of Aria is going semi-free-to-play with sweeping New Dawn update
Mitsubishi dropped its Blizzard esports sponsorship following the Hong Kong fiasco
Guild Wars 2 fans are super unhappy about yesterday’s build template patch
Ship of Heroes says its character creator is a ‘huge step up from games like City of Heroes and SWTOR’
Pro esports players criticize Blizzard for sticking gamers with the whole WoW Arena World Champs prize pool
LOTRO’s Minas Morgul lockboxes are raising community concerns
Camelot Unchained isn’t launching this year, delays until at least 2020
Complete coverage of Blizzard’s ‘Hong Kong liberation’ Blitzchung fiasco
FAVORITE EDITORIALS OF OCTOBER 2019
Flameseeker Chronicles: Does Guild Wars 2 release more paid outfits than armor skins?
Choose My Adventure: Torchlight Frontiers and the mindless catharsis of ARPG gaming
Perfect Ten: Solo prequel games to MMORPGs
The Daily Grind: What would get you to try out a battle royale title?
Into the Super-verse: Why Ship of Heroes’ character customization tool is so important
Vague Patch Notes: Copies, blatant copies, and plagiarism in MMOs
Massively Overthinking: The one about MMO roleplay servers
Leaderboard: Are you concerned for the future of Guild Wars 2?
Lawful Neutral: Endorsements, disclosures, and the games industry
Ask Mo: Second chances, hate wagons, and the MMORPG grudge game
Jukebox Heroes: Exploring EverQuest’s official soundtrack
Fight or Kite: Impressions of Ashes of Creation Apocalypse, a solid fantasy battle royale nobody is playing
Wisdom of Nym: The space remaining in Final Fantasy XIV
Choose My Adventure: Figuring out the crazy train of Torchlight Frontiers’ Railmaster
Leaderboard: Are you planning to buy a PlayStation 5?
The Daily Grind: Should MMOs do away with stat armor entirely?
RuneFest 2019: Exploring RuneScape’s archaeology, dino breeding, and content through 2020
Tamriel Infinium: Which province will The Elder Scrolls Online explore in 2020?
WoW Factor: The shabby ethics of Blizzard’s ‘Hong Kong liberation’ ban
Perfect Ten: Kickstarter MMOs that raised the most money
Global Chat: The Hearthstone Hong Kongstraversy
The Daily Grind: What’s the longest MMO boycott you’ve run?
Desert Oasis: A guide to some of Black Desert’s world bosses and their weapons
The Game Archaeologist: Funcom’s long-abandoned Midgard MMO
Not So Massively: The Blizzard I loved is dead
Wisdom of Nym: Picking apart Final Fantasy XIV’s patch 5.1 teaser site
Flameseeker Chronicles: Is it time for Guild Wars 3?
Choose My Adventure: The Torchlight Frontiers Railmaster suddenly makes perfect sense
The Daily Grind: Do you think MMORPG communities are too cynical?
Into the Super-verse: Catching up with Valiance Online
WoW Factor: Blizzard’s nonpology and the ethics of boycotting
Jukebox Heroes: Exploring World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth’s patch music
Perfect Ten: WoW Classic dungeon reviews courtesy of Azeroth’s Yelp
Hyperspace Beacon: Is SWTOR prepared for the Onslaught?
Massively Overthinking: Are you boycotting Blizzard?
The Daily Grind: Do you play MMOs for the fashion wars?
LOTRO Legendarium: Taking the Stout-Axe Dwarf on a journey
Jukebox Heroes: The best of Fallout 76’s musical score
MMO Cartographer: World of Warcraft, then and now
Fight or Kite: Albion Online has the potential to be the perfect mobile MMO
Wisdom of Nym: What we know in the wake of Final Fantasy XIV’s second 5.1 preview
The Daily Grind: What are you hoping to see in Diablo 4?
The Daily Grind: What are the odds that Daybreak can turn itself around?
Miniature Desert Oasis: Hands-on with the upcoming Black Desert Mobile
Desert Oasis: First impressions of Black Desert’s Great Expedition
Hyperspace Beacon: First impressions of SWTOR’s Onslaught and Update 6.0
Perfect Ten: The many flavors of MMO PvP
Vague Patch Notes: Scammers, grifters, and amateurs in the MMORPG market
Tamriel Infinium: Who are Elder Scrolls Online’s Dragonguard?
Massively Overthinking: Niche MMOs vs. everythingboxes
WoW Factor: World of Warcraft’s Lich King 2, Tides of Lichness?
Lawful Neutral: What’s China really worth to the Western gaming industry?
Leaderboard: Did you go back to SWTOR for Onslaught?
The Game Archaeologist: A brief history of Multi-User Dungeons
Not So Massively: Four things Anthem can do to turn itself around
Wisdom of Nym: Prepping up for Final Fantasy XIV patch 5.1
MassivelyOP’s 2019 guide to Halloween across the MMO world
Flameseeker Chronicles: Quality-of-life upgrades Guild Wars 2 still needs
Choose My Adventure: Torchlight Frontiers says goodbye to me with a hearty kick to the butt
The Daily Grind: Will BlizzCon weaken gamers’ #BoycottBlizzard resolve?
Perfect Ten: What I learned about ArcheAge Unchained as a complete newbie
Vague Patch Notes: Does BlizzCon have a future in its current form?
Massively Overthinking: The problem with MMO ‘dailies’
ALL 2019 YEAR-IN-REVIEW POSTS SO FAR