Guild Wars 2 set its fanbase on edge this last week on Twitter and at PAX prime. We learned that raids are coming to GW2 with its next expansion, and on Saturday the base Guild Wars 2 game became free for everyone. Of course, the announcement left fans with more questions than answers. What are the raids going to be like? How are they going to work without the traditional trinity? Are we ever getting a LFR tool?
In a new and very lengthy interview with Polygon, Chris Roberts fields a wide range of questions about the development and delays of Star Citizen. He points out to fans that he’s been working on the title non-stop for three years now and is proud of the progress and communication being put out by the team.
“I’m personally working harder than I ever worked in my life, including going back to the early days doing the first Wing Commander,” Roberts said. “I find it very challenging. It’s a bit like being a politician. Not only are you trying to develop a game and run multiple studios with a lot of different people, but we’re also being open and keeping the community informed of everything we do, while we have work that is out there and being improved upon all the time.”
So what’s the deal with World of Warcraft’s Demon Hunter? We just don’t know yet. But the space to speculate is pretty awesome.
I mentioned in my last column that in some ways, Legion feels like an expansion that should have been launched back in the post-Wrath of the Lich King space. Certainly the design elements seem a little odd, bringing in a lot of bits and pieces that had all but vanished from the game since that much-loved expansion was done with. There’s speculation to be done there, but the more immediate speculation is about the game’s second Hero Class and what it means for the game as a whole.
We don’t know yet how the class will play in any detail; we know a handful of abilities, we have some idea of the class resource (but not its real mechanics), and we know that in all likelihood they’re going to just be carting around a specialized weapon for the whole expansion because of the Artifact system. But we can still make some guesses based on that.
Players who enter the Imperial City will find themselves in the thick of a brutal PvP warzone, although there are several PvE instances for groups (or powerful soloers) to conquer. The patch also adds two dozen item sets, two new crafting motifs, inventory upgrades, more achievements, more collectibles, and an increase in the veteran rank cap to 16. When players log in today, they’ll discover that their skill points have been reset due to all of the various changes.
The Imperial City update marks the first DLC pack following ESO’s buy-to-play transition earlier this year. Subbed players will enjoy the DLC for free, while everyone else will need to pony up 2,500 crowns to enter the city. The DLC is live today for the PC and will be coming to consoles in mid-September.
For many of us, the weekend is the ideal time for gaming – there are no real responsibilities, you don’t have to pretend to be sick to avoid work, and all of our friends are online. Players hoping to get in a weekend of play in Cryptic Studios games over the weekend, however, were met with severe network lag, login troubles, and a host of other connection issues, which had the teams behind the games working furiously to correct the problem.
The last update on the situation as of this writing came yesterday evening, with community moderator Zebular informing players that the issues appear to be with Cryptic’s ISP rather than with any of the company’s hardware. No discussion has yet been started about potential compensation. It’s an unpleasant reality of dealing with online games, and we can only hope that these issues will be swiftly resolved today.
Good news, Destiny fans who thought that the game was taking up far too little hard drive space! You may or may not have opted to pick up The Taken King expansion, but even if you decided not to, you’re going to need a lot of space on your console — about 20 gigabytes of space, as it happens, which coincides with the massive patch that comes out before the expansion launches.
For those who already have a larger hard drive in their consoles, this is probably not a tremendous amount of space, but players with stock hard drives and lots of downloaded titles may feel the pinch. The expansion launches on September 15th.
Following rumors last week that suggested the studio might be turning its attention back to the long-neglected 2012 entry to the Tribes franchise, CEO Erez Goren tweeted the confirmation, noting that the good fortunes of MOBA SMITE and the upcoming Paladins have made the reinvestment possible:
With the success of Smite and Paladins, we have more resources than ever in the Studio. We can now afford to go back and improve older game.
— HiRezErez (@BlueOrc) August 28, 2015
I’ve got player housing on the brain this week, as decorating my Nar Shaddaa sky palace has accounted for most of MMO playing time here lately. It’s so expensive, though, that I might not be able to finish it!
For starters, you have to pay huge amounts of either in-game credits or cash shop funny money to unlock all nine rooms in the house. Then there are 475 item slots to fill, and depending on your tastes, you’ll be spending a pretty penny on those, too. MassivelyOP’s Larry once told me that he spent $30 million in-game credits decorating a SWTOR stronghold!
It’s been a giant week for Guild Wars 2 as we count down to the now-50-odd days until Heart of Thorns launches, though it’s not been without its bumpy roads. ArenaNet announced the Thief elite spec and next beta date, handed out its third anniversary gifts, committed to an October 23rd expansion release, and revealed a new raiding endgame and free base-game business model, though the last pair bobbed in the wake of a badly timed leak. Plus, Massively OP’s GW2 columnist, Tina Lauro, debated the merits of datamining.
Read on for the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions.
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. See any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
If there’s an overarching theme to the information that’s been posted thus far for Sacrament, it’s that the designers clearly want it to have some of everything. Open-world PvP? Sure, that’s in. Structured PvP? Yes, that too. Raid content? Yes. Solo content? Uh-huh. Ukulele-playing dogs that fight against resurrected dinosaur necromancers? There’s nothing confirming it yet, but let’s just assume the answer is “yes” for the purpose of the running joke here.
What exists for the game right now is chiefly a large number of concept documents and design discussions, with the promise of a Kickstarter happening at some point in the near future. If you’re in the mood to check out new conceptual MMOs to follow in the future, you may want to give it a look.
There are always some games that you look at and think that it would be great to try when you have the time. My Steam library is full of them. One game that might have made it into your Steam games is Guns of Icarus, but even if it hasn’t yet, perhaps it should. And you should also make time to actually play it.
This weekend at PAX, I sat down with two of the creators of the game, Howard Tsao and Joe Lieberman (not to be confused with the former US Senator), and they were extremely excited to let me be one of the first people to step into the PvE module for Guns of Icarus.
Like the idea of survival games, but not PvP? Wish your class involved video games? Maybe you want to doom humanity to choking itself on its own filth?
The game is basically a PvE survival game launching with player made governments where players use server-provided data on the environment (such as number of deer, population over the past month, and cause of death) to make laws. These laws aren’t just ideals but server enforced rules created and voted on by players, so if people choose to allow players to kill only three deer a day, the game prevents you from killing a fourth. Over harvesting leads to extinction, not just of that species but others related to it, which can eventually lead to the death of a world (read: server-wide permadeath via PvE). The emphasis on social tools, data use, and environmental balance isn’t a coincidence, however; Eco is built to be used as an educational game.