The Daily Grind: How do you choose your character’s mounts in an MMO?

Sometimes, the choice of mount in an MMO is limited by functionality. If I want to cart someone around in Final Fantasy XIV, I need to use a two-seat mount. There are many environmental obstacles in Guild Wars 2 that require specific mounts to bypass. And you could argue that your “mount” in EVE Online is kind of what determines your character abilities at any given moment, so you have to take that into consideration.

But there are times when you could be riding (or flying) anything, and you still have to choose. So what do you pick? Do you go with something specific to a given character? The rarest mount? The most expensive mount? The one that looks the goofiest? Or do you just abuse any “random mount” button with joy? Tell us, dear readers; how do you choose your character’s mounts in an MMO?

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World of Warcraft is selling a divine puppy for the Year of the Dog

Such dog, very mount, many lunar new year, WoW. Yes, World of Warcraft has introduced a new mount for the Year of the Dog, and it is… a dog. It’s just a big old dog. Why is Shu-zen, the Divine Sentinel available for purchase? Because you can get him over in the Chinese version of the game for buying a large amount of game time, and the rest of us want to be able to fly around on a good dog too.

Obviously, the dog in question can fly, because of course it can. It also features all of the usual elements of a cash shop mount, unlocking on all of your characters for one purchase price of $25. If this addresses a pressing need in your life to have a flying dog in the game, it’s available now; if you can’t understand why someone would drop $25 on a flying dog mount, feel free to mutter “heck” and move on.


The Daily Grind: How do you pick a mount in MMOs?

In some games, like Guild Wars 2, there’s more going on with mounts than just “run faster.” Frequently, you’ll have more important choices to make. Playing Final Fantasy XIV means that you sometimes will choose your mount based on its cosmetic abilities, there are abilities present for mounts in Neverwinter… you get the idea. And yet in many of these games, you still probably have a mount (or mount skin) that is distinctly yours, the one you use most frequently.

So how do you pick a mount in MMOs? Do you go for the one that was the hardest to get? The one that best suits the character riding it? The old standby that just feels like it’s closest to your personal aesthetic? The mount that takes up the least space? The mount that takes up the most space? Or just whatever mount gets randomly selected from your expansive collection, assuming you have an expansive collection?

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Dark and Light shows off the new tameable creatures from Blackice Peaks

If you’re told that there are new creatures in Dark and Light, your goal should be capturing, taming, and riding those creatures. They exist to be your new ride; that’s all they’ll ever be. So it’s good that the new creatures from the Blackice Peaks patch can indeed be tamed and ridden, and three of them are on display in the latest community video just below.

Do you want to ride on a hyena and wield an enormous hammer? Would you like to shoot enchanted arrows from the back of a stag with horns that glow like they’ve been dipped in something highly radioactive? Or would you just like to ride on the back of a cyclops and have said cyclops throw enormous rocks at anything you find interesting? You can see all three on display down below, so rest assured that you have a surfeit of riding options.

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Flameseeker Chronicles: Getting to grips with Guild Wars 2’s Path of Fire mounts

ArenaNet dedicated last week to all things mounts, so it stands to reason that I’d simply have to provide you with a run-down of the flashy new expansion inclusions for Guild Wars 2: Path of FireRather than filling a perceived travel efficiency gap, the steeds created for PoF include a fairly extensive suite of travelling tools that help set them apart from the run-of-the-mill mounts in more traditional MMOs. These mounts are built to feel weighty and move realistically, changing how the player interacts with the virtual environment and allowing for more freeform map designs than ever before.

In this edition of Flameseeker Chronicles, I’m going to discuss all things mounts and dig into the development rationale behind them. I’ll weigh in with my thoughts on how the mounts might impact future map development and change how we approach travelling in Tyria as well.
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Guild Wars 2 devs on how mounts bring the ‘joy of movement’ to Path of Fire

If you took part in the first Guild Wars 2 Path of Fire preview weekend, you surely got to play around with the first mount, the zippy, slidey lizard. I found it surprisingly fun myself, even after 20 years of riding on MMO mounts.

In any case, if you’re into mounts or just wanna devour every scrap of info in the lead up to next month’s expansion, point your eyeballs at Anet’s official site today, where it’s running the first of its mount dev diaries. The studio’s Roy Cronacher says that the impetus for mounts in a game that’s traditionally eschewed them was born out of the popularity of gliders.

“We weren’t satisfied with making mounts a simple cosmetic speed boost that’d be tacked on to your character, so we set out to build a visceral, organic experience that feels like you’re riding a real animal,” he explains.

Cronacher skims through all the mounts we know about so far — the raptor, springer, skimmer, and jackal — and even touches on the mastery-linked way we’ll be training them up. Check out the whole thing on the official site and the new pics and video down below.

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Earn a new mount in TERA by leveling a new character in Kritika Online

There are, presumably, more people enjoying TERA right now than enjoying Kritika Online. That’s sort of to be expected; the former is an established game, the latter is new. So it’s quite possible that you’re playing TERA and haven’t yet played Kritika… but what if the developers enticed you with a new mount you can earn just by leveling up in Kritika several times? Until August 31st you can earn one of two mounts in TERA just by hitting level 20 or 50 in Kritika during the promotional period.

It’s worth noting that players who have already hit level 20 or 50 will have to start a new character to earn these benefits; an existing character doesn’t count. But other than that, it may be the ideal promo for anyone looking to ride a love wolf in TERA, since all you have to do is play another game for a bit to get the mount for free, including a version that restores your health as you ride. So if you haven’t tried the game, consider this your motivation for getting in on it.


The Daily Grind: Are you a fan of Guild Wars 2’s non-traditional mounts?

Mounts are the big new thing in Guild Wars 2’s Path of Fire expansion, and as I’ve previously mentioned, I was initially concerned about their inclusion, given that traditional mounts would seem to necessitate a major revision of the game’s foundation. But of course, the new mounts aren’t traditional mounts; they seem more like toys to help players navigate parts of the world, not a second set of legs with a speed buff. I was OK with that; I was expecting, welcoming, something mundane and non-game-breaking.

But then my experience with the raptor mount in this weekend’s preview event actually impressed me: The raptor is astonishingly well-animated and genuinely fun (at least for those who don’t get motion sick), way better than a dumb toy or gimmick. While originally I rolled my eyes at the idea of romping around Elona on a dino, I surprised myself by enjoying whipping out rapty.

That said, I saw a lot of commentary this weekend from people who weren’t impressed — indeed, who talked themselves out of preorders specifically because of the mounts. The things I loved — the animations, the non-mandatory “toy” feel — seem to be huge turnoffs for other folks who want something more like, well, WoW. Is that you? Are you disappointed in the way the mount system works, or are you a fan of Guild Wars 2’s non-traditional mounts?

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Albion Online’s fantastic beasts and where to find them

Albion Online is riding high — in more ways than one. The fantasy sandbox is fresh off of the release of its Hector update and is rounding the bend toward its July launch. With Hector came the addition of several new mounts to offer players better and more specialized methods of transportation.

“Mounts are a great way to travel through Albion Online,” the team explained, “with each mount fulfilling a certain role in the game. Aside from the regular riding horse, armored horses and oxen, there are also several rare mounts and faction mounts, which provide an even bigger advantage to those who have managed  to obtain one.”

All players will now be granted their own mule mount during the tutorial. If that’s not enough excitement for you, you can procure giant stags, transport mammoths, spectral bonehorses, swiftclaws, rageclaws, warhorses, and nightmares while playing the game. Then again, that mule does look pretty choice.


Start earning your World of Warcraft class mount next week

For those keeping track at home, World of Warcraft’s Patch 7.2 came out this past March, and yet here it is June and all of the features from said patch have yet to be unlocked. Happily, one of the most anticipated promises of the update is finally coming next Tuesday.

Blizzard Watch reports that players will finally get to earn their Legion class mounts starting on June 6th. There’s a lot to do to get to this point, as the process involves finishing up the entire Assault on Broken Shore scenario and completing the Legionfall campaign. There’s also a special quest line tailored for each class, so it’ll be a little different depending which character you’re playing.

The good news is that once you unlock a class mount, it’s account-wide for any other characters of the same class. Get a refresher on what these classes look like after the break.

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Final Fantasy XIV’s Hatching-tide offers you an egg mount in this trying time

There has never been a Hatching-tide event in Final Fantasy XIV that has not been at least a little weird. This year, however, it’s going to be a very sober and sedate affair that, completely by coincidence, awards players with a flying mount in the shape of a huge floating egg. It’s the sort of mount that will mesh really well with Stormblood and its emphasis on revolution, that’s for sure.

The event starts on Tuesday, April 4th, and runs until Monday, April 17th. That should be plenty of time for players to pick up both a flying egg mount and the latest set of Hatching-tide wallpaper for those interested. Because, really, isn’t this what the game has always needed? Egg mounts.


Skyforge prompts players to investigate the Emerald Stream

There’s a new outbreak of a heretofore unknown species of Phytonides in Skyforge, which is… not normal, but it’s well within the usual wheelhouse of things that the game’s deities have to deal with. (When you have this many gods running around, you wind up stopping just shy of cat-up-in-tree services being handled by said gods.) But then there are a whole lot of precious meteor stones from the eponymous Emerald Stream event going missing from homes across the planet. Why is all of this taking place? Are these events connected? What can be done? Why not take part in the event to find out?

If the promise of learning the mysterious connection isn’t enough to entice you, perhaps you’ll be enticed by the prospect of getting to ride your very own treant mount wherever you go. You can just tell people you’re an exceptionally good gardener when they ask where you got it. The event runs until April 12th at 4:00 a.m. EDT, so you’ll have plenty of time to earn rewards, decipher the mystery, get yourself a new mount, and eventually get kind of tired of plants.


Revelation Online details the many ways to travel the world

There’s a bit of a problem with Revelation Online when it comes to transportation. You get wings, you see, and that begs the question of why you would ever use another mode of movement to get anywhere if you can fly. Fortunately, it’s a question that is also answered right away, as detailed in the most recent entry on the official site. You gain access to your wings at level 29 and slowly gain access to aerial combat skills and upgrades after that, but that’s a lengthy process.

Your first ground mount, however, is available fairly early on and will allow you to get from place to place far more efficiently. You also have access to class-specific mounts at level 69 (nice) that can both walk and fly, and there are mounts that carry passengers such as the mount included in the Founder’s Pack. So there are some situations where you actually will not want to be flying. It might seem strange, but occasionally being on the ground is a good thing.

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