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The softer, gentler side of MMORPG life. [Follow this category’s RSS feed]

The Daily Grind: What’s your favorite MMO easter egg?

The other day someone pointed me to the direction of a big ol’ page of EverQuest II Easter eggs. As someone who only lightly played the game, I thought it was pretty fun to read down this list and see what I was missing.

Easter eggs have a long tradition of being peppered all over video games, and MMOs have certainly run with them. Part of it is the fun of placing little secrets and mentions around the world for player explorers to find, I’m sure, but the rest of it has to be a continuing attempt to help retain developer sanity. Ever wonder why quest titles are almost 90% puns? Each of those puns keeps a dev from snapping, tearing off his or her clothes, and running down the road while screaming of the futility of “class balance.”

What are some of your favorite MMO Easter eggs? Let’s make a nice list here today!

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Final Fantasy XIV kicks off another celebration of Valentione’s Day

The house of Valentione is not one of the major houses in Ishgard, but it’s still very important to players of Final Fantasy XIV at least once every year. After all, Valentione’s Day is the annual celebration of affection and your best chance to get various heart-themed accoutrements for your character, your character’s house, and in one memorable year your character’s trusty chocobo.

This year’s rewards are a heart-themed hat and a pair of heart-shaped earrings, along with three new furnishing items. Two of the furnishings join together to make a loveseat, while the third is a heart-shaped bed for three people that readers may draw their own conclusions regarding. The event runs from now until February 15th, so be sure to get your heart-shaped stuff before your time is up.


Trove now allows you to make a toilet that lets you fly

Do you see the people flying in the header image? Have you thought that you want to be able to do that in Trove, but on a toilet? Great, then you’re the one who serves as the target audience for the new Porter Potty. Please explain why this was a thing that you felt you needed. We are absolutely mystified as to what circumstances in life culminated in “flying toilet” as a sensible course of action. There’s not even much to speculate on.

That’s not the only thing added to Trove recently; the game is also dropping all of its old adventure boxes, for example, and there’s a doubled drop rate for adventure boxes. You can also make new Mimic Boxes that automatically mirror the substances they touch, allowing you to repair minor mistakes with ease. But it’s the toilet thing that really kind of leads to asking questions with no obvious answer.


Chris Roberts answers another ten questions for Star Citizen fans

Ready for another round of answers for Star Citizen fans from the project’s brain trust? Chris Roberts has sat down for the 76th installment of the ongoing “10 for the Chairman” series, and as always, that means answers to the most pressing questions that the community can conceive of. You can also check out a transcript if you want all of the information but don’t have time to watch the nearly 40-minute episode down below.

Roberts states that some bandwidth issues have been encountered in early testing, but that’s to be expected as the netcode is not yet optimized and hasn’t been the focus thus far. The multicrew systems still need to be fully implemented as well, although players should expect that larger ships can be repaired while in the midst of a firefight; larger ships will also have the option of docking with smaller ships in deep space, while smaller ships may not have that option. The full video is available down below for more answers on questions such as turret aiming mode and influences on the game.

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Grimdark sandbox Revival plans the wrap-up of its first client stage

Now that we’re in February, the holidays are finally behind us all. (Very few people actually get to skip work on Valentine’s Day.) That means that the team at Illfonic is back to working hard on Revival‘s development and the deployment of the game’s current client version. It also means that the plans are in place to finish up development of the current “stage one” client and move on to the next stage once a few more bugs and features are in place.

The biggest issue for allowing players to use renovation kits within the houses was a persistent issue spawning items that could be kicked in the wrong location, so renovation kits will be introduced with its items movable only in design mode. After that, estates are slated to be released within the next two weeks. Then it’s bug fixes and maintenance while the team moves on to the second stage of development. Good news for fans whether you’re happy with touring houses or can’t wait for more than just kicking furniture.


Shroud of the Avatar announces final Grand Tour and character wipe

The most recent patch for Shroud of the Avatar is live now, and as has been the case with previous major patches, there’s a grand tour to be taken showing all of the ways in which the game has been updated. This in and of itself isn’t unusual. What is unusual is that this will be the final Grand Tour quest, with one last hat to be awarded for players who take a tour of everything new in the game. But that’s not the only thing that’s going to be coming to an end, as the most recent community letter includes the final dates for character wipes.

July 28th, 2016, is both the projected launch of Release 32 and the final planned wipe of character data; character information will be persistent from that point onward. This isn’t the same as the game launching, as it will still be an early access title, but players won’t have to worry that hard work will evaporate with another patch. So you know that your current experiences can be reversed, but the date of no more wipes is approaching quickly.

Massively OP’s own Matt Daniel wrapped up his month-long look at Shroud over the weekend.

Source: Official Site; thanks to TJ for the tip!


Phantasy Star Online 2 still is not being localized, but the anime based upon it is

Good news, Phantasy Star Online 2 fans! Or hypothetical fans of the game who still have not played it due to the fact that it’s never released on Western shores, thus requiring anyone with an interest in the game to futz about with a variety of prerequisites to download and play the game! You can now watch a show based on the game on Crunchyroll!

Reviews of the anime itself are rather mixed, with a split between people asserting that it’s a generic anime with predictable characters and others quite pleased with the anime as it exists now. If your hopes for this anime include a lot of storytelling in the real world of Japan, you can at least blow through the four extant episodes in a lazy afternoon.

Source: Crunchyroll; thanks to Rheem Octuris for the tip!


World of Warcraft’s Lunar Festival starts today

There’s a bit of a content drought in place on the World of Warcraft servers at the moment, what with the game’s last major patch coming out in June and nothing new on the horizon until Legion releases. But perhaps you’d like to pass the time by fighting a large dog with two heads? The Lunar Festival is back around, complete with the aforementioned dog to fight and the usual assortment of elders to hobnob with.

This year’s festival does not appear to have changed significantly from its incarnation in 2015, so you can likely use existing guides to get the most out of the festival. Of course, if you’ve already done everything last year you’re likely not going to have much new to do other than take another crack at the aforementioned dog. In that case, your enjoyment comes down to how much you like fighting evil moon-dogs.


Wisdom of Nym: What we know so far about Final Fantasy XIV’s next patch

So we know what’s going on with the next patch for Final Fantasy XIV, or at least as much as could be released during a producer’s letter. The transcript of one, anyhow. I know there are people who totally sit through the whole thing as the transcript of the letter goes up on the forums, and I have to tell you, I am not one of those people.

Regardless, the important thing is that we have some information about the next patch. I feel… oddly ambivalent about it. Don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t sound bad, but I don’t feel as if it has a feature list that gets me intensely hyped up. But let’s just take this one as it comes and hit the highlights of the content we know about right now. I do think it’s going to be a good patch, mild ambivalence aside; I just don’t look at it and see much in terms of a shock factor.

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Final Fantasy XIV is resuming Mac clients sales on February 23rd

When Final Fantasy XIV launched its first expansion in the middle of last year, it also meant the launch of the game’s Mac client. Sadly, that didn’t work out nearly as well as the expansion launch; the client suffered from severe technical issues, so sales were discontinued and refunds were offered to those who had purchased the game. It’s taken about eight months, but players using more fruit-based operating systems can look forward to the client sales resuming on February 23rd.

Part and parcel with this change is the end of any refunds for the Mac client for those who purchased it and found its performance unsatisfactory. Refunds will be offered until February 21st, so it’s important to double-check the system requirements listed to make sure that your machine can run the client properly if you’re on the fence about requesting a refund. For those who are already playing the game on either PC or PlayStation, the biggest news is the usual update procedure for tomestones in the next patch.


Choose My Adventure: Brewing disaster in Shroud of the Avatar

Hello, friends, and welcome to the final (belated) installment of Choose My Adventure: Shroud of the Avatar edition. Last week, I asked y’all to make a few final decisions about my character’s build. The blades-bludgeons-polearms vote was a close one, with polearms edging out victory, and it was by a fairly significant margin that you decided I should eschew a shield in favor of a two-hander, relying solely on heavy armor (which beat out light armor by a hefty 26% of the vote) for protection. Meanwhile, magic-wise, you folks decided that I should abandon all pretensions of being an even remotely benevolent wizard and take up the study of the Death and Chaos schools of magic which won with a resounding 36% and 29% of the vote, respectively.

I also, as you may recall, decided that I would close out my time with SotA by dabbling in a bit of crafting, and I asked you folks to choose which trade I should take up. Blacksmithing and alchemy were neck-and-neck for a while, but in the end, alchemy pulled away with the victory with 38% of the vote compared to blacksmithing’s 29%. Well, as always, I did as I was told, but that doesn’t mean I necessarily enjoyed the experience. I don’t know about you folks, but I’m about ready to wrap this one up, so let’s get on with it, hm?

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Guild Chat: How to have fun as an MMORPG guild

Welcome along to another instalment of Guild Chat, my cozy wee corner of Massively OP in which we break down the issues and questions presented to help readers improve the guilds of MMO enthusiasts everywhere. In this edition, I’m going to look at the fun side of things because I received an email from a reader who thinks that we’ve been a little heavy on the guild drama front recently and wanted to brighten up the mood. There’s no name attached to this one, but thanks very much for the submission, mystery reader, and I hope you enjoy my ramblings on the topic. See below for both my solution and the many opinions offered by the commentariat.

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One Shots: Kneel before Zod

As if MMOs didn’t already give us big enough heads, what with everyone treating us as if we were the saviors of the world and the only hero (along with a million others), now we have games literally bowing down before us.

Reader John got his ego fix from Star Wars: The Old Republic: “At some point in the Sith story I had my own group of cultists, and I miraculously had the wherewithal to hit print screen just as they were all beginning to worship me. I thought it captured the essence of the Sith story well: It’s all about YOU, man.”

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