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Destiny 2 deploys Solstice of Heroes: Moments of Triumph update

Good times just might be here if Destiny 2 has anything to say about it. Today, the sci-fi shooter deployed Update 1.2.3 and the bounty of content goodness contained within.

There’s a lot here, although some players are griping at the endgame raid focus of the patch. The update contains prestige raid lairs, 6v5 quickplay in the Crucible, Iron Banner upgrades, tuning for exotic armor, additional bounties, and a ton more. Plus, starting on July 31st, the Solstice of Heroes event will unleash the new Moments of Triumph bounties. Complete enough of these bounties, and you’ll be able to earn a t-shirt, Sparrow, and emblems.

Go into depth with the developers on the July update after the break!

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Interview and excerpt: The ‘Braving Britannia’ book preserves Ultima Online’s oral history

Earlier this week, we wrote about the launch of a new book that’s right up MMORPG fans’ alley. Dubbed Braving Britannia: Tales of Life, Love, and Adventure in Ultima Online, the book gathers together 35 interviews with players and both former and current Ultima Online devs to effectively become the first published oral history of the MMORPG that started it all.

Author Wes Locher was kind enough to answer a bunch of our questions about the book and provide us an excerpt to help you folks understand what you’re getting into if you decide to pick it up. Read on for the whole scoop!

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DC Universe Online is giving away free CR 170 characters for logging in this week

It’s “member appreciation week” in Daybreak’s DC Universe Online, and it lines up nice and neat with the holiday too – how convenient is that? You’re definitely going to want to take advantage of this one, too, as Daybreak is essentially handing out a free toon boosted to 170 combat rating.

“Members, log in starting tomorrow to claim your FREE CR 170 Character Advance ($45 value). Create a new character or advance one of your existing characters up to Combat Rating 170. At 170, you will be ready to jump into Amazon Fury Part III and the rest of the latest episodes. Enjoy on us, and thank you!”

During the rest of this week, subbers will see a 20% discount in the cash shop, and console subs are on sale for a third off too.

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EU’s Copyright Directive proposal has Second Life and Roblox players worried

A proposed law that’s making its way through the European Union’s legislative bodies has both players and studios worried that a wave of oppressive censorship might be on the way for video games (never mind other publishers, bloggers, and internet users!).

The law in question is called the Copyright Directive, which is being designed to protect (obviously) copyrights. The problem is that there are multiple provisions that are “vaguely worded and ripe for abuse,” including one that would make it a law to check everything uploaded online for possible copyright infringement.

Online games such as Second Life and Roblox that rely heavily on player-created and -uploaded material are at risk for possible censorship from an automated filter that will most likely not be up to the task.

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E3 2018: Deep-diving Trion’s kid-friendly voxelbox Trove and its upcoming Geode expansion

One thing Trion Senior Producer James Karras drove home during my meeting with the team at this year’s E3 is that with Trove’s Geode update, the team is experimenting. Yes, Battle Royale is happening, but it’s no threat to the main gameplay. Geode’s new world and its playstyle alone should allay those fears.

Specifically, the team wanted to introduce non-combat gameplay into Trove with planet Geode. It’s about exploration. It’s about helping small animals that are cold, injured, or hungry. It’s about rewarding everyone nearby you when you do good. While the game might seem more grindy, the idea is to give crafter and exploration types something that’s engaging for them, though clearly going out and killing will still be an option. I’m not even a Trove player, but I was quite excited to hear about the team’s design choices this time around.

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‘Magic through serendipity’: Raph Koster on the glorious mess that was Ultima Online

I was a wide-eyed, naive kid when I first stepped into Ultima Online in 1997, and as it turns out, the developers were too.

That’s my takeaway from reading through the Ultima Online chunk of Raph Koster’s new book, Postmortems. Koster, as any dedicated MMORPG fan will recall, went by “Designer Dragon” back then as the creative lead on the game. Having come from a MUD background, he and his wife Kristin Koster were instrumental in shaping Richard Garriott’s seminal MMORPG and therefore the genre as we know it.

Koster kindly sent us a preprint of the book, unwittingly robbing himself of $35, as I was going to buy it anyway, and it’s massive, folks: over 700 pages spanning three decades and the majority of the online games Koster’s worked on during his long tenure in the gaming industry. Some of those games are definitely of more interest to our readers on Massively OP, in particular Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies. It’s the Ultima Online chapters I aim to cover today.

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World of Warcraft releases pre-expansion novel, nixes Blood Trolls allied race rumors

We’re just (presumably) weeks away from the Battle for Azeroth pre-patch, and World of Warcraft fanatics everywhere are starving for a hit of the new expansion. To capitalize off of this period of time, Blizzard has released a new Warcraft novel that leads up to the events in the expansion.

Called Before the Storm, the prequel novel spans the time between the end of Legion and the start of Battle for Azeroth, focusing on Anduin, Sylvanas, and the relationship between them. “Anduin enacts a desperate plan aimed at forging a lasting peace between the factions. Azerite jeopardizes the balance of power, and so Anduin must gain the trust of Sylvanas,” the description reads.

The studio also clarified interview statements made at E3 about the possibility of Blood Trolls being an allied race. So sorry, troll fans: they are “not currently planned” to be playable.

Source: Amazon, Icy Veins

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Massively Overthinking: Why is no one meeting the obvious player demand for big MMORPGs?

Massively OP reader ichi_san has a burning question about the state of the industry.

“Lots of people seem to be looking for an MMO they can get into – consider the rush into Bless as an example. Lots of games are being released, but most (or even all) have some glaring issues, like pay-to-win, lockboxes, ganking, poor optimization, heavy cash shop, horrible gameplay, and so on. There’s the WoW model and other semi-successful formulas, and a lot of unexplored territory. The market seems hungry, and there is a bunch of history to build on and new territory to explore, but either gaming companies don’t understand their customers or greed/laziness/expediency get in the way, such that we see release after release that fails to scratch the itch. Am I missing something – are there fun MMOs with good graphics and fair monetization that I’m missing? Or is there a gaping hole in the MMO scene, and if so, why isn’t someone filling it?”

I’ve posed his question to the writers for their consideration in Overthinking this week. We’re long past bubble-bursting here when all of the still-major MMORPGs are four years older. What exactly are we looking at? Why is the obvious demand for MMOs not being met?

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More rumors: Fallout 76 is a co-op game coming in August

While we will have to wait for the June 10th Bethesda E3 showcase for the full scoop on Fallout 76, the rumormill is churning out some interesting possibilities from alleged inside sources.

One newish post that’s making the rounds describes Fallout 76 as being a co-op open world game  in which players will need to improvise weapons and reconstruct civilization. Players will be taking on the role of a surface scavenger who is traveling along an interstate in northern Virginia who will encounter six factions. According to this supposed leak, Fallout 76 is not “Rust-like” or a full-fledged MMO.

Another fan noted that the release date for the U.K. Amazon listing changed to August 1st, although this no longer seems to be the case. “A viewer of mine reached out to Amazon support yesterday when the date was July 31st and they’re saying the info on the listing is correct,” he posted.

Source: Twitter, #2

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Star Wars Galaxies creator Raph Koster to release postmortem book on MMORPGs

Raph Koster is certainly a well-known name in the MMORPG industry who has spent his career working on titles such as Ultima Online, Star Wars Galaxies, Metaplace, and Crowfall. But did you know that he is also a prolific writer as well? Koster has posted many intriguing behind-the-scenes and industry discussion essays on his blog, and now he’s compiled those and many other new ones for a book that he’s titled Postmortems: Selected Essays Volume One.

Postmortems is due out later this June, and it contains plenty of stories that should intrigue fans and historical buffs of the MMO genre. “It’s not a memoir or tell-all; the focus is on game design and game history,” Koster said. “There’s still nowhere near enough material out there in print covering things like the history and evolution of online worlds (MUDs especially), in-depth dives into decisions made in games by the people who made them, and detailed breakdowns of how they worked.”

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The MOP Up: Fractured Lands has fun in the apocalypse (June 3, 2018)

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. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!

Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from RendArmored WarfareWakfuElswordH1Z1Conan ExilesDauntlessSea of ThievesFractured LandsMagic: The Gathering ArenaEVE OnlineOrbus VRRuneScapeFoxholeShot OnlineDark Age of CamelotPixARKTERA, and Final Fantasy XI, all waiting for you after the break!

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Amazon posts and retracts a July 2018 release date for Fallout 76

This past week’s announcement of Fallout 76 — Bethesda’s newest entry in the post-apocalyptic series — has just about everyone in the gaming community buzzing. And while we’re sure to hear more about this at E3, one vital piece of information may have already been leaked: the release date.

When Amazon posted the game’s pre-order page, it initially listed the game as releasing by July 31st, 2018. That date has since been changed to “on or before December 31st, 2019,” but there are some that wonder if Amazon might know a thing or two that we don’t. After all, Bethesda has said that it wants to drastically shorten the time between game announcements and releases. Another theory is that the multiple Halloween references in the teaser video point to an October launch.

Fallout 76 is retailing for $60, although you may want to wait until E3 (June 12th through 14th) to find out more (including a documentary on the making of the game!). We do know that it takes place long before the last couple of entries in the franchise and has some sort of online multiplayer component. Rumor is that it’s a survival sandbox of some sort. Your thoughts?

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EverQuesting: Seven must-dos with your free EverQuest II level 100

We are smack-dab in the middle of the free level 100 giveaway in EverQuest II for all existing accounts. If you haven’t made your character yet (perhaps you are having trouble choosing between all the races and classes EQII has to offer), you have until Thursday, June 7th, 2018, to do it. And make it I would! Don’t miss out on this opportunity: Now is your chance to see and do things you may never have before, especially if you’ve you’ve been away from the game a long time and/or have never had this high of a level before. This is even a good opportunity for current players who don’t own the latest Planes of Prophecy expansion thanks to the sneak peek period.

OK, so now that you are making one, what can you do with a newly minted level 100? Sure, it may not be the best idea to immediately take it into a max-level raid; you might want to get a good feel for what the skills and abilities are first before some hard-core play. But there are a number of activities that are perfect for your fresh-from-character-creation fighter/healer/scout/mage. Here are seven must-dos to experience while you have the chance!
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