EVE Fanfest 2018: EVE Online’s upcoming ‘Into the Abyss’ expansion sounds incredible

While player capsuleers are undoubtedly the most powerful force in EVE Online, there are some pretty scary NPCs lurking in the depths of space. One of those threats has just been unearthed throughout New Eden with the discovery of The Triglavian Collective, an ancient and twisted offshoot of the human race found in tiny pockets of space cut off from the rest of the universe. EVE Online players will soon be able to invade these pockets of Abyssal Deadspace and face the collective in the upcoming “Into the Abyss” expansion coming on May 29th.

At EVE Fanfest 2018, CCP revealed a huge set of interconnected new features revolving around ancient Triglavian ships and Abyssal Deadspace pockets. Players will hunt through these bizarre new environments filled with unpredictable dangers that get more challenging the further you go, and with increased challenge comes some incredible rewards. You’ll find blueprints for powerful Triglavian ships, an incredible new weapon system ominously named the Entropic Disintegrator, and organic mutaplasmids that can transform your existing modules into powerful Abyssal versions.

Read on to find out who the Triglavian Collective are, what the deal is with Abyssal Deadspace, and why the “Into The Abyss” expansion could be incredible for solo PvE players.

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Crowfall addresses randomness, streaking and deck-style random outcomes

How much time do you spend thinking about random chance? If you play video games, probably a fair amount. The designers working on Crowfall certainly have, and they’ve also taken the time to talk about it with a new article. But said article also takes the time to discuss things like the Gambler’s Fallacy and other perceptions of random number generation, discussions that many players and some designers seem to forget on the regular when looking at these systems.

(If you’re unfamiliar with the fallacy, ask yourself the following question: If you flip a coin nine times and it comes up heads each time, what are the odds that it will be heads on another flip? The answer is 50%, but the fallacy makes us think it’s lower.)

The team is looking into ways to adjust its RNG systems so that players don’t feel that they are stuck with bad outcomes or subjected to excessive streaks of bad luck; one of the systems proposed (and noted as a likely choice) is the “deck” system, where every possible outcome is in a certain deck that you shuffle through, thus meaning that bad luck streaks have inherently higher chances to end as you get more failures. This also ties into the game’s crafting system that both discourages light dabbling and keeps players from feeling like failures produce nothing useful after lengthy gathering. Check out the full article for the details.


Neverwinter developers are addressing random queue issues

There are some random queue issues in Neverwinter at the moment. By this, we mean that the issues are with the random queue, not that there are queue issues happening randomly. Clarification is important. The good news is that development team is acting to fix them quickly, starting by allowing level 70 players to earn shards from three separate random queues to avoid slowing down Stronghold progress. Players will also no longer have the new Merchant Prince’s Folly skirmish in the random queue, as many people found it difficult to hit the item level requirement so quickly.

All of these issues are for immediate and quickly addressed items, but the developers are also looking into adjusting things based on overall feedback. The goal of the random queue system is to vary what players are fighting through while giving players more opportunity to rendezvous and work together, not to get people not to queue with friends or anything of the sort. So it’s not a perfect system just yet, but it’s being refined and improved, and hopefully the quick fixes will address the immediate problems.


Overwatch promises to reduce duplicate item rewards in lockboxes

Since the only real form of progress in Overwatch involves skins, there’s nothing more frustrating than opening a few dozen lockboxes and seeing every rare skin be the same one… for a character you don’t even play. The latest development update from director Jeff Kaplan notes that the team is aware of the problem, and steps are being taken to ensure that the number of duplicate items received will be dramatically reduced in the future.

You don’t need to worry about losing out on the buy-anything credits, though; the credits you get from loot boxes will also be increased, so you should find yourself getting more credits even as you get fewer duplicates of things you already have. How well this will map out in particular remains to be seen, but it’s an effort to mitigate the randomness that’s always underpinned the game’s lockbox structure. Kaplan also discusses ongoing improvements to the highlights feature; you can watch the full development update just below.

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The Daily Grind: What’s the most frustrating streak of bad luck you’ve had in an MMO?

There are two things I’d really like in World of Warcraft‘s most recent expansion, and since both of them are entirely random, I’m flat out of luck for both. I’ve done countless emissary quests without unlocking a single Legendary, and my farming of Suramar content has yet to give me the fox mount I so dearly covet. It really doesn’t make the time spent feel worthwhile, since it’s all entirely random; I could start seeing Legendaries rain from the sky tomorrow, or I could go the rest of the expansion and never see either show up, since it’s not a matter of dedication but of luck.

But then, we’ve all had runs of bad luck before. We’ve had the one upgrade or cosmetic piece that just refuses to drop no matter how many times we run content in RIFT or that gathering node that never actually yields its rewards in Final Fantasy XIV. That point where drop rate doesn’t actually matter, because as far as you can tell it’s functionally a 0% shot. What’s the most frustrating streak of bad luck you’ve had in an MMO? Was it based on mechanics or just a series of unfortunate events coming together in just the wrong way?

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Wisdom of Nym: Final Fantasy XIV and the weirdness of Yo-kai Watch

The fact that Final Fantasy XIV has now officially had a crossover with Yo-kai Watch feels rather odd to me. I’m honestly not a huge fan of crossovers in general because they raise a whole lot of questions that aren’t really going to be answered, but at least stuff like the Lightning crossover or Dragon Quest is reasonably easy to smile and nod about. Sure, there was a lady in weird armor marching around; there are golems that look unusual stomping about in Thanalan. I can accept these things.

Yo-kai Watch, by contrast, really never settles well against the game world. But I also recognize that’s my hangup more than anyone else’s, and it’s still something that merits further discussion. To the surprise of no one who has read the obvious headline, that’s actually what I plan on discussing this week. So now that I’ve spent the introduction explaining that the event doesn’t entirely sit well with me, let’s start in on why the event is totally fine even if it doesn’t sit well with you.

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Final Fantasy XIV hits 6M registered players, patches in the Deep Dungeon

Final Fantasy XIV has now “drawn in over six million cumulative players globally – excluding free trial – in under three years,” according to a Square-Enix press release this morning. The new milestone comes just in time for the launch of the game’s latest patch: the Deep Dungeon.

How deep is Final Fantasy XIV‘s Deep Dungeon? For the moment, it’s 50 floors deep. That might change in the future, but it’s certainly enough for the moment, offering players a new sort of content to explore, level up in, and fight through. Players who enter will start over from level 1, improving equipment and earning abilities independent of outside progression, taking on challenges in the race down through randomly generated floors while saving progress along the way.

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The Daily Grind: What’s the most annoying bit of randomness you’ve experienced in an MMO?

Randomness has been a part of most computer games since the beginning because computers can do math very quickly and randomness is exciting. Oh, is it ever exciting. After all, who doesn’t like to watch a big critical hit pop up when fighting a boss, followed by the boss dropping exactly what you want on your first run? It’s gloriously satisfying. The down side, of course, is that it’s random, and you could just as easily fail to even hit the boss randomly.

And sometimes random chance is just awful. Like with Final Fantasy XIV‘s randomly dropping Atma, or World of Warcraft‘s wildly random loot combined with a bonus roll system (which doesn’t really fix bad luck), or sometimes just the randomness of your partners in a League of Legend match. So what’s the most annoying bit of randomness that you’ve experienced in online gaming? Elusive drops? Unreliable percent chances? Or something else?

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