New Bless Online producer’s letter tackles optimization issues and hacking

The saga of Bless Online’s turbulent Western release (which we dove into last week) continues with a new producer’s letter posted today, this time addressing two topics that have been the target of much discussion (and criticism) among players: optimization and hacking. The letter recognizes that optimization is “a big question on the community’s collective mind” and states that the team is “currently in the process” of reworking the in-game options menu to allow players more control over their settings without resorting to altering the .ini file. Moreover, the devs have “identified specific function problems” in the game client and are working to remedy these issues in addition to network-related problems. Neowiz plans to hold stress tests for these fixes “sometime in July.”

The letter also acknowledges that the devs have received numerous reports of players using hacks and states in no uncertain terms that it is “absolutely against [the game’s] terms of service.” In response, the devs “have already been taking immediate action” against these players and are “issuing permanent bans” to the guilty. The team also encourages players to continue reporting players suspected of hacking, particularly by providing video evidence containing character names and server information. You can read the whole producer’s letter over on the game’s Steam page. For more first-hand information on the future of Bless, be sure to check out our interview with the devs.


Interview: Neowiz on Bless Online’s tech, class balance, gems, PvP, and more

Neowiz’s Bless has been the subject of much chatter lately (not least of all my own), with its troubled, let’s say, launch raising a bevy of questions and concerns among the game’s community. And as it just so happens, we recently had the opportunity to ask the Bless dev team at Neowiz some questions of our own.

In the exchange, conducted via email (and helpfully translated between Korean and English by the Bless PR team), the devs answer questions on a variety of topics, including the game’s performance and balance issues, chat limitations, and what players can expect from upcoming content updates. If you’re curious to know what they had to say, then read on for the full interview.

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Sea of Thieves servers buckle and break under a surge of would-be pirates

Whether you are personally playing it or not, there are a lot of ambitious pirates trying to cram their way into Sea of Thieves with this week’s launch. Unfortunately for Rare, the studio has seen its servers struggle to keep up with the influx of players and perform as expected.

In fact, Sea of Thieves even disabled the ability for new players to join the game yesterday. “For those playing and those joining we are continuing to work on improvements to the game in order to ensure the playing experience will be optimal,” Rare said. “Please be patient as we are working on updates.”

For those who can get in, there’s a rush to be among the first to encounter the kraken and mysterious stranger. Have you been playing over the past day or two? What’s your take so far?

Source: Twitter, Polygon


Camelot Unchained squishes bugs and improves performance in crunch time

The Camelot Unchained team is hard at work bringing the game into a beta state, and that means killing bugs. The good news is that the team has found and fixed lots of bugs according to the most recent development letter; the better news is that the team has managed to significantly improve performance. Lower-end computers have gone from nigh-unplayable rates to humming along nicely, while high-end computers have seen the game get that much prettier. It’s a wonderful thing to watch a game take shape.

Two weekend tests are planned, one with the almost most current version of the game in development, so players may will get a chance to see many of those performance tweaks in action. Breaking buildings will also be getting turned on, although the current version of doing so makes it trivially easy to break things rather than modeling the complexities of future development. Check out the full dispatch for more development details as well as some lovely concept art.


Check out a test drive of DayZ’s new rendering engine

You remember DayZ, don’t you? It’s not the only survival sandbox on the market any longer, but it’s still in early access and being refined over time. And its newest refinement should prove to be a treat for the eyes, as the game is testing a new rendering engine to make performance smoother and the landscape more attractive on a whole. Sure, the game’s central conceit is that “beautiful” is “not having a zombie gnaw on your throat,” but it’s the principle of the thing.

While the framerate does drop a bit in the video below due to the reality of recording footage, it’s a less severe drop than on the current live client. No word yet on when the new renderer will go live, but take a look at what it’s capable of and you may very well wish that the answer were “yesterday” — unless you’re a big fan of rain accidentally clipping through roofs, we all have our preferences.

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Final Fantasy XIV boasts 5 million registered accounts

Let’s start this news item with an important caveat – we don’t know how many actual active subscribers Final Fantasy XIV has at the moment. What we do know is that the game has five million registered accounts globally, excluding free trial accounts. So while that could mean that the game has two people actually playing and a lot of inactive accounts, it probably means something else.

This announcement comes only two months after the game’s first expansion went live and shortly before the two-year anniversary of the relaunched title. The game also recently launched in South Korea to impressive numbers at the nation’s internet cafes.

Source: Square-Enix press release