It’s been a weird week in MMO crowdfunding. The Codename Reality Kickstarter isn’t looking good; devs have raised under 2% of their original half a million dollar goal. Project Oasis World is over this week too, well under its goal. EverFeud‘s Kickstarter has already been canceled, as that studio says it’ll hunt for other options. As for Endless Trials, that Kickstarter has also ended abruptly; team Fire Hurts says it’ll try a fresh campaign with a video at some point in the future.
AdventureQuest 3D, however, has already seen outrageous success with its Kickstarter for… plushies. For real. As I type this, the game is four times over its goal. Plushies are happening.
Meanwhile, Pathfinder still isn’t dead, Elite Dangerous’ next big thing will launch at the end of August, SOTA is hard at work on player-created dungeons, Dual Universe updated its roadmap, Camelot Unchained is working on its 64-bit client, Ashes of Creation showed off its alpha combat, and a judge is permitting most of the Crytek Star Citizen lawsuit to continue.
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.
If you are a fan (or fanatic) of game-related plushies, AdventureQuest 3D has something you might want to check out. It’s a Kickstarter for 12 cute and cuddly Moglin mascots. Wait, the Hero Mart already exists to sell AQ3D and AdventureQuest Wolds items, so why a Kickstarter? Artix Entertainment’s Adam “Artix” Bohn shared that with a Kickstarter, not only does the team gauge interest in the plushies, but it also can ensure that it has the exact number of which plushies customers wants instead of having a large surplus of some and a shortage of others. That said, the Moglin plushies will head to the Hero Mart for sale at a later date (if the Kickstarter is successful), though without the special exclusives and deals available on the Kickstarter.
So what are the special deals? Pledges for the Moglins start at $14.00 and go up to $99.00, and you can choose between getting one, two, a pack of the three, a pack of six, or all 12 at once. All plushies come with digital codes for the matching in-game pets in AQ3D and AQW. Read more
At the tail end of July, we covered the Kickstarter of EverFeud, a PvP-focused MOBA/MMO hybrid that sought $105,000 to fund development. Unfortunately, the Kickstarter lasted only a week, as developers canceled the effort with just four backers and $81 pledged.
“We have decided to cancel the Kickstarter due to lack of interest,” the PSB Entertainment developers wrote on Twitter. “We are pursuing other option[s] including partnering with other developers.”
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that development will continue, as the Kickstarter originally noted that the game’s founder had already invested $100,000 in the project and that he wouldn’t “stop until EverFeud is a reality.” PSB had described the sub-hopeful title as a hyper-competitive “arena and battleground-styled multiplayer PVP game set in a fantasy world where might and magic hold sway,” a game “built by PvPers for PvPers,” with no levels and no grinds; instead, it is set in an MMO-like world with battleground factions rather than FPS-style lobbies with gobs of customization, classes, and races.
There’s been another update in the long-running saga that is Greed Monger.
Greed Monger is easily the most infamous MMORPG Kickstarter failure to date, having raised over $100,000 back in 2012 to build what the developers said would be a “crafting-focused sandbox MMORPG.” By 2015, the project imploded as devs abandoned it over a lack of funding, generating scam accusations from angry backers. Subsequent attempts to revive the game failed, but earlier this year, the original founder, Jason Appleton, resurfaced and vowed to reimburse Kickstarter backers with his newfound cryptocurrency fortune. (Appleton has his own account of the past few years of Greed Monger drama, primarily blaming incompetent lead developers, trolls, and the press for the failure of the game.)
The problem was many Kickstarter backers claimed and claim they still haven’t received those refunds, and in May, Appleton railed at angry backers on Kickstarter, saying that he’d closed down application for refunds, that he’d run into technical hurdles trying to reimburse people, and that he was under no obligation to give these refunds. A few weeks later, he blamed refund delays on both PayPal’s byzantine processes and on the backers who hadn’t come up with a mass-reimbursement system or otherwise helped him.
A recent post by the City of Titans team in which it briefly mentioned “costume unlocks” for the upcoming superhero MMO got the community’s full interest. As such, the team followed that post up with a newer one discussing how costume unlocking is going to work when the game goes live.
The team stressed that a “majority” of costume and customization options are going to be available to everyone from the start. But the remainder will require unlocking, either from direct microtransaction purchases or through gameplay. And yes, every cash shop item can be obtained in-game through some effort.
“Items unlocked through gameplay will work a little differently,” the dev team explained. “Unlocked assets will only be available to the character that unlocked it, so if you want it for multiple characters you’ll have to earn it multiple times. Some items will come as rewards for completing storylines while others will be available just by exploring the world. Some will be easier to get and some will be harder, but all of them can be acquired through in-game effort alone.”
Here’s a new one for us, and if you like it, you can throw money at it right now: It’s called Endless Trials, and it is gunning for some of the more tedious and repetitive tropes of MMORPGs. With graphics that look more like FML than WoW, Endless Trials – ET – bills itself as “an MMO without the boring parts,” which to the three-man Danish dev team means a focus on endgame instead of “tedious leveling and grinding.”
“We all love a good challenge, something fun, something that pushes us and affords us a sense of accomplishment. The leveling and grinding part of the game, however, that is where boredom can creep in. With that in mind, we have set out to create a new, semi-hardcore MMO that focuses on endgame content. We are calling it Endless Trials, and it is our attempt at making raiding great again! Each new character will follow a brief introduction quest, and when we say ‘brief’ we mean exactly that: it will take just an hour to finish. From there, you get some basic gear and get in on the real action, battling dungeons with your friends, completing daily quests for rep and rewards, farming for crafting materials, and hanging around the space station with other players. This is a game in which leveling plays a minimal role. The key here is excitement. We want Endless Trials to feel fresh every time you play, not like a job that you are doing half the time just to get to the real fun!”
Unlike some indie MMOs that keep an intentionally vague timeline of development, the team at Novaquark has mapped out the development and testing of Dual Universe from now through launch. Even better, the studio has announced that all Kickstarter backers of the sci-fi sandbox will be granted alpha access by the end of this year.
Alpha 1 is scheduled to dominate the rest of this year with world building, the ability to save designs, and harvesting. Alpha 2 will take place in the first half of 2019 with markets and character progression, followed by Alpha 3’s PvP combat and ship combat over the rest of that year. Then a much bigger beta test is going to arrive in the first half of 2020 with territorial warfare and a full galaxy to explore. Finally, the official launch is slated for the second half of 2020, complete with character customization and pets.
Dual Universe recently raised an additional $3.5 million to help fund the project, which makes the total budget to date $11 million. These new funds will be used to hire additional staff and “accelerate development.”
While we may only faintly remember Trials of Ascension: Exile for a pair of failed Kickstarter campaigns back in 2015, the hardcore fantasy sandbox nevertheless has persevered in development to the point where the title went into Steam early access last month.
The game is perhaps most notable for the fact that, along with playing as a boring human, you can adventure through the world as a web-spinning spider or a flame-spitting dragon. It’s a survival game at heart, so expect a lot of crafting, building, and (presumably) dying. Speaking of dying, one of the server options is to allow permadeath, a feature that the team feels is desirable to certain players.
Trials of Ascension’s first early access patch rolled out this week with lots of quality-of-life and database improvements. The dev team has a huge shopping list of features that it is working on for the future, including a magic system, various growth stages for characters, and more server host options.
This week in MMO crowdfunding, Star Citizen did some just Star Citizen things as fans raised a pay-to-win stink over CIG’s lifting of the cap on pre-launch currency stockpiles, meaning hardcore backers can hoard now and have (another) major advantage come launch. The drama would’ve probably blown over in a day or two but kept blazing through the weekend, as first a CIG PR statement and then Chris Roberts himself bizarrely denied the pay-to-win aspects of the game. Oh yeah, and 3.3 was delayed to coincide with CitizenCon.
Want something new to back? We got two new MMORPG Kickstarters this week: One for a self-described “massively multiplayer online persistent entity game” called Codename Reality, which seeks $583,918 wants to “revolutionize the MMO genre,” while the other, at $105,000, is for a PvP MOBA/MMO hybrid called EverFeud. Both join our list today.
Good news on the Camelot Unchained front: Beta one did indeed launch as planned this week, and thought it won’t look considerably different to existing testers, it’s a major milestone for the Kickstarted RvR MMORPG. Meanwhile, Razer launched a super quiet Kickstarter for left-handed gaming mice, Zeal announced it’ll kick off a Kickstarter in September, Albion Online launched its Merlyn update, and the Diablo history book Kickstarter pulled through to successfully fund in the end (phew!).
Read on for more on what’s been up with MMO crowdfunding over the last week and our roundup of all the crowdfunded MMOs we’re following.
If immersion and realism are what you crave in a new MMORPG, take a look at Codename Reality, another new game in our field of view this week. Europe-based studio Orode Productions just kicked off a Kickstarter for the game seeking $583,981 to build what it says is “the kind of project even the biggest game design companies wouldn’t dare undertake” – a “massively multiplayer online persistent entity game,” or MMOPEG for short. This one’s buy-to-play, with no sub.
“Codename Reality is a realistic fantasy/medieval realm in which your actions shape the world,” the devs write in their pitch.
“In other words, we have provided you with the possibility to create its history. We have redesigned the NPC system to better integrate with the realistic feeling and along with this, the death mechanic is more aligned with permanent death than with the classical MMORPG death system. You define the storyline and as such your future is completely up to you. However, with great potential comes great risk. Players can be harsh, and the same goes for the Realm itself. Only those with the skills to predict the consequences of their actions will succeed. Can you rise to the occasion and thrive in the Realm, or will your actions lead to the demise of you and your allies?”
On this week’s show, Bree and Justin do a belly flop right into a big pool of superhero MMOs, news, and fan projects. City of Heroes may be dead and gone many years now, but its legacy still lives on in surprising ways!
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
Listen to the show right now:
As we foretold yesterday, the PvP-focused MOBA/MMO hybrid EverFeud has officially launched its Kickstarter today. Developer PSB Entertainment has described the title as a hyper-competitive “arena and battleground-styled multiplayer PVP game set in a fantasy world where might and magic hold sway,” a game “built by PvPers for PvPers.” It eshews the levels and grinds of most MMOs, but it’s set in an MMO world with battleground factions rather than FPS-style lobbies with gobs of customization, classes, and races. It’s adamantly anti-pay-to-win and is expected to run a $5 monthly sub and $20 box fee, with no fees for future content.
“Are you looking for a pure PvP fantasy combat game without all the leveling and grinding? Think playing video games should be fun and not a chore? Maybe you do like questing and raiding but don’t want to spend time grinding your PvP character and just want to compete? Then this game is for you. […] EverFeud is a cross between an MMO and a MOBA. It’s pure PvP combat in a fantasy setting. […] All class weapons and gear types are available at the time of character creation. You then choose from an assortment of runes and imbuements to further specialize your weapons and gear. Character classes can be specialized by choosing from multiple ability trees.”
Here comes a new one to the MassivelyOP pages! It’s an MMO called Zeal, which developer Lycanic Studios bills as “an indie action RPG that allows you to build your character and fight against players in Arenas, slay creatures in Dungeons and conquer savage lands against both in Conquest Mode.”
The trick is that you’re not going to be grinding; you are picking your character from a pool of 15 classes and leaping in to just play rather than grind in the MMORPG style. That’s chiefly because this is a PvP-oriented game, although there’s apparently plenty of PvE too, as small-group dungeons and solo/co-op campaigns are mentioned. On the flipside, you do get to heavily customize your character with abilities, stats, and appearance within the class and character you pick.
According to the game’s website, playtesting has been ongoing all summer, leading into a Kickstarter coming in September, alpha by the end of the year, beta early next year, and release by summer of 2019.