The latest Wild West Online patch landed on July 5th, and it brings in some changes like a full Sheriffs vs. Outlaws faction setup and the ability to taunt your enemies. It’s also easier to customize your character’s appearance and several skill trees have been fixed to work correctly with the game’s current build. All good things for the people still playing the game, and all meant to feed into what is apparently a plan to relaunch the game entirely to be more of an online shooter and all that entails:
What this “relaunch” plan means for you – our existing players ? to be honest it doesn’t really gonna affect you much – it will for sure will bring new players to the game, as well as add more stuff to do in a game, making user experience more in line with it being PVP shooter game.
The developers go on to explain that quests will be removed from farmers, replaced with simply daily tasks that pop up as part of the interface, and farmers will become just another sort of vendor in the game world. You can read up the full plans for the “soft relaunch” now, although you have to dig a little bit to find out that the developers are working on adding playable women to the game but don’t consider it a very high priority because it’s “just a cosmetic feature.”
If you’ve forgotten, WWO launched out of early access in May in a state which appeared wildly unready for launch, with immediate negative reception. We’ve got a roundup just below if you’d like to catch up on the progress.
There are a lot of ways to announce adding a new platform to your game’s release lineup. You can do so at a major convention, put out a new ad, send out a big press release, add it to someone’s profile on LinkedIn… the last one is admittedly not traditional, but it’s the biggest piece of evidence that Red Dead Redemption 2 is indeed heading for the PC.
A developer whose identity remains unstated updated his LinkedIn profile to reflect his work on RDR2 for various platforms, including the PC. He has since removed the reference from his profile since it seems to be an obvious mistake, but the Internet never forgets these things. Again, it still doesn’t quite have the appreciable tang of having an actual announcement about what platforms the game will be playable on, but it seems like pretty strong evidence in favor of a desktop release. We’ll probably know for sure as October gets closer.
A planned June 15th patch for Wild West Online obviously didn’t happen, and now we know why: The developers said that when they took the patch to test, it ended up being too unstable and buggy to release to live. As a result, a month delay was announced as well as the postponement of a planned free trial version.
“It was a team decision to postpone patch for up to one month, and make sure that we hit all goals we want with it,” the devs said. “We’re very small team at the moment, so while we wanted to have more resources to put on it, we’re going with what we have — what is in line with game’s metrics. ”
Wild West Online has struggled to gain an audience after launching far too early with a recently revamped gameplay build. Steam Charts shows that hardly anyone is playing it these days, with a daily average hovering around three dozen gamers or so.
Another week, another huge plan change for Wild West Online. Newly installed studio (or maybe the old studio with a new name) DJ2 Entertainment says it’s completely deleting the faction system from the game. “There’ll be no Mcfarlanes vs Steele,” the devs say on Steam. “We loved it internally, but effectively it did added some unnecessary complexity to the gameplay mechanics and affected player’s experience in a negative way.”
“Instead we’re bringing back Sheriffs vs Outlaws mechanics, and they’ll become our two main factions in a game. While we don’t think that first release will check all boxes for all players, we will continue tweak and fine tuning it until we’ll get system that all players will be happy about.”
The company is also working on a town capture redesign, weapons adjustments, fluff loot, barricades, event rewards, and a new tutorial. A free trial version of the game will soon appear on Steam and on the official site; it’ll allow folks to play to 20 without achievements and awards.
Wild West Online’s reviews have continued to sink on Steam since the game’s surprisingly hasty official launch earlier this month; they currently sit at “mostly negative.” Steam Charts pegs its all-time peak (publicly accessible) players at 559, down to 174 over the last 24 hours and under 100 as I type this.
But the dev team isn’t giving up. Yesterday, it patched in several bug fixes and features, including new hair colors, plantation and hideout tweaks, and the new hot bar that lets players swap between their guns and “use certain items more conveniently in a fast paced shooter environment.” It’s also added something called “novice servers”:
“If players character are below level 20, and if ALL characters in a group are below level 20, they will be joining ‘novice’ servers. If any of the players in a group are level 20 and above, group will be joining ‘general population’ servers.”
There’s gold in them thar Wild West Online hills! Massively OP’s MJ has a map that will show her where she can mine some gold and she’s not afraid to use it. It’s also a good time to talk about this western’s proposed changes to make PvE more possible with being caught up in PvP. Tune in live at 3:00 p.m. to see if MJ survives the gold rush. If she strikes it rich, she might even spend some time at the roulette wheel.
What: Wild West Online
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 3:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, May 18th, 2018
If you suspected, as I did, that Wild West Online might not get much in the way of updates after its bizarrely hasty launch, prepare to be relieved as a new update is on the way to allay those fears. In fact, it’s being called a “relatively big redesign of the game.” What’s going into it? It’s not set in stone yet, but 612 Games has some ideas, and a lot of those ideas are going to appeal to PvE-centric players who don’t really want to get shot.
That begins with the faction system, which is apparently once again the subject of proposed changes. “You will still be fighting for McFarlane or Steele when capturing Towns, but you won’t need to choose your faction on character creation. It’ll be a more fluid system. Town Captures will be balanced – we’re basically borrowing base balancing/gameplay from Battlefield 1 on this,” the studio says. “Players who want to do activities beside PvP will be able to do that relatively safe. […] So basically there’ll be no killing on sight or grieving of players leaving the safety of the towns. All towns will be safe zones unless of course, the town is actively under siege by Factions.”
On this week’s show, Bree and Justin do their darndest to shape the MMO industry by holding up Wild West Online as a cautionary tale and talking about how studios need to think before applying real-world labels to games.
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.
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Whether or not you think that Wild West Online rushed into launch, you can probably agree that the game has some mechanical issues it still needs to work out. So it’s good to see that there are several fixes and improvements in the latest patch, like placing the traveling gun salesman out in the world twice a week with a clear icon while also reducing the cost of several items. There are also several bug fixes and quality-of-life improvements, exactly what any soul meandering through the wastelands of the West would like to see.
You can also take heart in knowing that the team already has a list of other priority items to address in the next patch, like refunding any real money spent on Plantation decorations and adding them for all players to purchase, offering better PvP rewards, and offering more wood spawns. Nothing on there about other big-ticket items (you can probably think of some), but it’s a start.
Perhaps Wild West Online is attempting to emulate life on the actual historical frontier. This week’s launch has certainly been uncertain, fraught with peril, and an unsure venture. As pretty much anyone could have predicted, the western MMO has taken a savage beating on Steam for being largely unfinished (which is to be expected, since the whole game was revamped not just two months ago).
Steam reviewers have given WWO mostly negative reviews, labeling the game as a “money grab” with a poor graphics engine, no PvE content, and pretty much no content to experience at the present. One large point of contention was the lack of playable female characters. Can someone get this game an “under construction” GIF from the 1990s?
Yeehaw! Saddle up folks, ’cause Wild West Online has launched on Steam. Massively OP’s MJ is ready to ride in and poke some cows. In the absence of cows, she’ll be exploring, mining for gold, and trying to avoid being shot by outlaws. Tune in live at 4:00 p.m. for a launch day edition of…
What: Wild West Online
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 4:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, May 10th, 2018
It’s been quite a ride for Wild West Online, the survivalish MMO that came out of nowhere last spring to take on Red Dead Redemption 2. The game was originally planned to launch in the fall, but it hobbled to an early access launch well behind schedule instead, weathering drama around its relationship to The War Z’s studio, the slow rollout of female toons, and a complete do-over on its planned open PvP gankbox mechanics (the game is now a faction-based setting – cue the anguished howls of early backers).
But the game formally launches on Steam today boasting that faction-based territorial PvP, solo and group play, PvE questing, and homesteading, with a promise of an evolving world in the future.
“To create an even further gripping experience, the development team will continue building out the larger world and integrating new content to create the best experience for players. This includes having Wild West Online’s world age through the years. When players enter Wild West Online today they will start in the mid-1800s with a frontier dynamic and during the coming years the world will evolve as it moves into the late-1800s and eventually into the early 20th century.”
Red Dead Redemption 2’s new trailer is finally here (after an absurd amount of teasing and handwringing over what could be in it). Spoiler alert: It’s exactly what you expect out of a Wild West-era online RPG. And it’s gorgeous. And it, like Wild West Online’s recent announcement, seems properly poised to scoop up some Westworld season 2 hype while also playing with classic RDR fans’ nostalgia, as the gang is back from the original game.
“After a robbery goes badly wrong in the western town of Blackwater, Arthur Morgan and the Van der Linde gang are forced to flee. With federal agents and the best bounty hunters in the nation massing on their heels, the gang must rob, steal and fight their way across the rugged heartland of America in order to survive. As deepening internal divisions threaten to tear the gang apart, Arthur must make a choice between his own ideals and loyalty to the gang who raised him.”
Rockstar’s site still says the launch will be October 26th for console (no PC mentioned, again), and we’re still expecting that promised “online multiplayer experience.” Gamers will recall that it was first announced in October of 2016 with a fall 2017 launch planned. But by May of last year, Rockstar had already pushed that estimate off into 2018, barely making its own “summer” deadline to pick spring 2018 for the console launch. Then in February, it delayed until October. And here we are, trailer in tow.