NCsoft MOBA Master x Master should’ve turned three years old in the west this month

    
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Masterful.

Way back in 2014 on Old Massively, our team began covering Master x Master, a new MOBA by NCsoft, then in beta in South Korea. Like Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm, MxM was to be a multi-IP title that would loop in characters from all of NCsoft’s MMO franchises, from Lineage to WildStar. By 2016, we learned it was heading westward. Perhaps the game’s biggest headlining moment – for MMO players, at least – came when NCsoft decided to add City of Heroes characters to the roster, which at the time was taken as rubbing salt in the wound of gamers who really just wanted the MMO back.

But just a few months after the western launch in 2017, NCsoft was already throwing in the towel, as many MOBAs that hadn’t already crumbled under the weight of League of Legends and Dota 2 were giving up that year thanks to the entry of PUBG and then Fortnite into the multiplayer market. At the time, NCsoft said the game simply “wasn’t enough to take on the established juggernauts” in the genre. “[U]ltimately it came down to a matter of business – we explored several options, but none of them were sustainable,” the company said. “We truly believe that MxM is special, and offered a lot of new ideas to change up the MOBA genre, but in trying to carve out a niche for itself, we failed to connect with players.”

The bummer was that several of our writers had enjoyed the game and found it to be one of the better MOBAs out there. But as MMO players well know, quality doesn’t always translate into market success. RIP, MxM.

Some of our more interesting coverage of the game during its brief run:

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rafael12104

It was a fun game and had some interesting PvE while maintaining its MOBA roots.

I was forced to play it because there was a cross promotion with BnS. If you made a character in MxM and leveled it a bit, you were rewarded with one of the best outfits available in BnS.

And I enjoyed it. MOBAs aren’t my thing, but here was a game I could enjoy without all of the usual MOBA cookie cutter shit.

And the heroes you could choose from were great! Being able to choose my fave BnS hero or anti-hero was great! And yes, I loved the City of Heroes characters available too. I’m not butt hurt about that. It was a tribute not a sore point, for me.

But to be fair, there wasn’t enough in the game to keep me glued to my PC to play it. I didn’t come back to it right away. And by the time I thought about the game again, it was announced as cancelled.

A sad story, but I also understand the need. Because lets be honest. There was less than outrage and the game was put on the shelf.

So, here is to MxM! I hope someday it returns albeit it may be in a different form!

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Meanie

:,o (

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kvlt_vonnegut

Such a shame, MxM coulda been a great title. NCSoft just didn’t give it the postlaunch support that kind of game needs, it had (extremely fixable!) balance issues that NC was just way too lackadaisical in addressing. RIP

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Emu_John

I disagree with plenty of ya’lls politics but the taste in games on this site is spot on. Mxm was a beautiful game with great gameplay a unique take on the traditional moba map with over and 3v3 to boot ncsoft chopping this was such a shame.