This week in MMO crowdfunding is one of the biggest ever for this little subgenre, make no mistake. TemTem is about to fund. Fractured’s Kickstarter went live. Legends of Aria posted a huge graphics overhaul. Elite Dangerous launched Beyond: Chapter 2. Shroud of the Avatar’s latest patch effectively revamped housing ownership. Even Saga of Lucimia pushed out a big pre-alpha update, and Star Citizen stamped “done” on its 3.2 alpha. Plus, there’s a solid chance that Camelot Unchained’s beta makes its due date this week.
Please never let anybody tell you that Kickstarter MMOs are all failures. That’s bullshit. We’ve got a whole list of them that prove the meme wrong, every week right here in Make My MMO! So read on for more on what’s been up with MMO crowdfunding over the last couple of weeks and our roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’re following.
Lately I’ve been overdosing on some serious Sims 4 time (blame the Seasons expansion announcement for this!) and indulging in my long-standing passion for player housing. I don’t always get that fix in every MMO I play — looking sideways at you, Blizzard — but I do enjoy expressing myself and seeing what other players have come up in their own living spaces.
Let’s take a tour of some excellent virtual abodes today! We’ll start with Rees Racer: “I’ve been a Elder Scrolls Online plus player for… a long time. I don’t buy much, so I had some crowns to spend. I eventually purchased the Alinor Crest Townhouse in Summerset. I’m a Bosmer, and it’s technically Altmer architecture, but I really like the colours and the courtyard fountain, and I’m fairly certain I saved the rule of Queen Ayrenn a few years ago. It’s more extravagant (like all High Elf accoutrements) than I need (or like), but I earned it.”
The second chapter in Elite Dangerous’ Beyond content is due to land early this afternoon, with the Alliance Challenger as well as a “selection of new wing missions, installation interactions, new settlements to explore and, to combat the ever-growing and ever-encroaching Thargoid threat, a cache of new Guardian weapons and technology from the Tech Brokers.” The update is a free one and rolls out to PC and console together. Full patch notes just went up on the official forums a few minutes ago!
“Beyond, the third Elite Dangerous season will be free for all players, and will focus on community-requested enhancements to the overall player experience. Alongside those core foundational changes, new in-game content will progress the ever-expanding player-driven storyline and give pilots across the galaxy new tools to shape the ongoing narrative. Chapter Two is a smaller update, but still filled with content. Players will find two new ships – the Krait Mk II and the Alliance Challenger – as well as a selection of new Wing Missions, installation interactions, new settlements to explore and a cache of new Guardian weapons and technology from the Tech Brokers to combat the ever-growing and ever-encroaching Thargoid threat.”
With Star Citizen on the way (eventually) and smaller efforts like Prosperous Universe, Starfighter Inc, and Dual Universe in the works and titles like Elite: Dangerous already here, the space sim looks to be on the rise in the massively multiplayer space. That’s great news for players who want to leave the fantasy realm and reach for the stars.
Of course, not everyone has the same vision for what they would like to see in a space sim. Me? I don’t want a cold and sterile space environment; I really crave colorful environments and races that are chock-full of personality.
Assuming that you’re interested in playing an online space sim at some point, what are your must-have features that you wouldn’t consider playing without? What features would take it above and beyond mediocrity to make it something special?
Two more days until Beyond: Chapter Two arrives in Elite Dangerous, superfluous colons in tow! And other more interesting things, too, as Frontier dropped a new cinematic video for the game this morning.
“It’s a dangerous galaxy out there but the call of the void is strong for Elite Commanders. All they need is a ship,” Frontier quips. “We’re proud to present ‘Lift-Off,’ our latest cinematic short in the Commander Chronicles series.”
And yes, the Krait – a surprise reveal for the game yesterday – is featured in the video. What else is in the video? Space legs – basically, it’s Elite’s Walking in Stations, literally characters walking around with visible leggers, something the playerbase has begged for forever. It’s not coming in this update, but it’s in the video, which has Reddit abuzz anyway. Enjoy!
Elite Dangerous is in the home stretch ahead of the launch of Beyond: Chapter Two later this week, and you know what that means: infodumps and videos!
PCGamesN has a deep-dive focusing on the Krait “design and reissue,” which has apparently been a bit of a surprise for the update. Frontier says the new version is “analogous to modern updates of the real-world Mini Cooper or Volkswagen Beetle […] a reimagining of a classic that connects conceptually and aesthetically with the ship from 1984s Elite, while offering enough innovation and quality to compete with contemporary rivals in Elite Dangerous.” But can I get it in candy pink metallic with a convertible top?
The chapter will also introduce the Alliance Challenger, new wing missions, new settlements, and new anti-Thargoid tech. It drops Thursday. And by the way, Frontier is hiring! The video’s down below.
Even as E3 rages on, the recent Lavecon has closed its doors for another year. The player-led gaming and geek convention continues to feature Elite: Dangerous and the rest of the Elite franchise as its tentpole, which means that we got a lot of new information about the MMOPRG out of it.
Panels on the game discussed features and upcoming changes involving mining, exploration, and art. Pilots will be getting new tools to crack open those asteroids for their sweet payout, not to mention new sensor probes to take a look at bodies in space long before a ship gets there. The community also got an opportunity to ask a bunch of pressing questions to the developers.
Take a look at some of the screenshots and the Frontier panel below!
I love crane machines. Yes, I know they’re a total scam, but I won something in one once, and I can’t help but throwing money at them in the vain home of repeating that epic moment. Of course, I might forswear crane machines altogether if I got one of FFXIV’s creepier races as a prize.
Vincent has no such compunctions: “Only a Lalafell would look this happy being carried around by a Death Claw!”
It’s how all of us at Massively OP get to work every day, actually.
Elite Dangerous fans, hope you got all your grinding in during last weekend’s event because the next big thing is just on the other side of that moon over there as Elite Dangerous: Beyond – Chapter Two launches on June 28th.
“In just under a month, you’ll be able to get your hands on the Alliance’s newest Chieftain variant: the Alliance Challenger. We’ve also got a selection of new wing missions, installation interactions, new settlements to explore and, to combat the ever-growing and ever-encroaching Thargoid threat, a cache of new Guardian weapons and technology from the Tech Brokers.”
Frontier says this is the first of two smallish updates for Beyond, with a much larger one coming out by the end of the year with squadrons and improvements to mining and exploration.” Naturally, the studio has a big ol’ announcement video, tucked down below.
Dealing with either a broken system, a credit exploit, or both, Frontier announced to its community this week that it was going to have to limit players from acquiring too many of a certain type of Elite: Dangerous mission for a while.
“For mission balancing reasons, we have made a change to the Massacre Skimmer mission type: Commanders will now only be able to take up five of these missions types at a time,” the studio said. “This may be something we change in a future update and if it does, we will let you know.”
This swift fix was in response to piles of money flooding into player accounts thanks to the exploit. Reactions among the community are mixed, with some blasting Frontier for limiting fun and funds and others backing up the studio for fixing the exploit before money became meaningless.
Frontier isn’t exactly known for running bonus weekends, but it’s doing just that in Elite Dangerous as it joins the throng of online games vying for your eyeballs during the upcoming Memorial Day weekend.
“We’re pleased to announce that, starting from May 24 to May 30, we will be introducing an extended ‘Bonus Weekend’, which will bring temporary but lucrative bonuses to the galaxy!” the studio says.
“The bonuses we will activate for this period are as follows: All profits from trading activities will be increased (the amount of profit will vary depending on what you are shipping and where you’re shipping it to. Rare commodities are excluded from this bonus.) The materials requested for engineering recipes will be at one rank below the existing ones (cheapening the current cost of engineering your modules.) Whether you’re a penniless pauper or a wealthy space-tycoon, it’ll pay to haul this weekend, so dust off your freighters and get out there! Oh, and if you need a little extra jump-range, the engineers have you covered!”
Elite Dangerous is considering revamping its Powerplay mode, and it’s not going to make everyone happy, especially solo players.
Powerplay, you’ll recall, is sort of a factional territorial war in the game whereby players ally with powerful NPCs and their space and resources. Most of the proposal for tweaks will go unchallenged; Frontier wants to allow powers to dump systems, avoid internal sabotage, skirt stagnation, encourage conflict – all reasonable.
But the studio also wants to force players in the mode into open PvP and make it impossible for solo players and private groups to profit from the mode (while avoiding both ganking and being ganked).
Yesterday, as our writers were shaking their heads over Star Citizen’s latest shenanigans, Eliot cracked a joke about how having backed the game had become a punchline. I said I doubted anyone on the team had backed it, and then MJ pipes up and says she did: She grabbed one of the earliest intro ships and has barely looked at it since, just waiting for the actual finished game to emerge.
We gave her a pass, since honestly, anyone who backed it way back when couldn’t have really seen the last five or six years coming, right? Elite Dangerous’ Kickstarter was the same year and it’s been out for ages – Star Citizen didn’t look like a bad bet back then. (If you’re still paying $700 for a concept ship sight-unseen in 2018, well, I have no words for that.)
I didn’t back Star Citizen, but I have backed some serious duds. I’m livid over the stalled development of TUG and complete lack of communication from its developers. Greed Monger gave refunds (though apparently not all – thanks Xanward), but TUG won’t even say boo. Yeah sure it was 10 or 20 bucks, but still. Weird world.
Have you backed any MMO Kickstarters that you deeply regret?