Action for reward is a stock-in-trade with all MMOs. Players want to be rewarded for their time spent but it's a conundrum for developers. See how the issue is viewed and addressed in Matt Miller's latest column.
Unfortunately, just like fluid dynamics (and electricity for the most part), the playerbase will seek out and exploit the path of least resistance. What actions will take the least amount of effort and the least amount of time to achieve the same goal, and receive the same reward? Given enough time (or enough people) such paths are found in most MMOs, much to the designers chagrin.
Read more of Matt Miller's Player Behavior & Fluid Dynamics.
The Hunter Ranger class has arrived in Neverwinter with the release of Module 2: Shadowmantle. To celebrate the arrival of the much-desired class, Cryptic Studios has released a new trailer to show off some of the powers from which Hunter-Rangers can choose. Check it out!
Playtox has announced that its popular MMO, World of Shadows, is ready for launch in North America. The game can be played on any device with a browser installed and does not require a separate download.
The title creates the experience of a full-scale PC game, while being accessible from the device in your pocket. Users can integrate their social networks with World of Shadows, letting them play with an international online community and share achievements in the game with other players.
"World of Shadows was inspired by our team of self-proclaimed gamers, and has all the classic elements of what should be in a role-player game, including a creative and unique storyline," said Artem Zinoviev, CEO of Playtox. "As a result, we have been able to keep active users for a year to a year and half on average. We look forward to seeing this success translate to U.S. gamers as well."
In World of Shadows, players begin their adventure as a Mage, Warrior or Monk. Gameplay includes a wide array of items, ancient artifacts and gear sets. There are more than 500 quests, more than 1800 outfits, 21 dungeons and 200 fantastic creatures available to players.
Get started in World of Shadows.
Now that we're getting more of the puzzle pieces that assist in bringing the Elder Scrolls Online picture into full view, we are hungry for more. In our latest ESO column, we plead with Zenimax to tell us more on a few different topics. Read on and then tell us what you'd like to know more about.
You know, it’s heading into the end of 2013, with just a few short months to go before Elder Scrolls Online likely launches to the masses across the PC and consoles. And when I think about it, there’s a whole lot left to uncover in terms of this game’s features. So today, I’m going to list out five things I think Zenimax Online Studios should detail for fans and prospective players of Elder Scrolls Online. Here’s my shortlist of things ESO should be talking more about as we head into 2014.
Read more of Bill Murphy's Elder Scrolls Online: Tell Us More, Zenimax!
Entropy has arrived a bit early on Steam and early-access to the space-themed MMO has started. Entropy is being developed by Artplant, the same team behind Battlestar Galactica Online.
Exclusively available through Steam’s Early Access program from today, Entropy’s persistent, open-universe experience brings fast, real-time, player-controlled space combat to the space MMO genre for the first time, along with player-driven dynamic trading and sandbox gameplay.
Set in a future where humanity is desperately working to maintain a crumbling interstellar civilisation, Entropy unlocks more than 100 detailed star systems for early access players to explore. In addition to fighting in space-based dogfights, players also have to work together and manage trade, mining, travel and more, controlling both the direction and fate of the entire galaxy. The decision to provide players with Early Access to Entropy during this phase of development will allow crucial feedback to be gathered, enabling gameplay to be enriched as it progresses towards full launch.
A selection of Founders packs are now available to purchase, providing players with immediate access to Entropy, as well as a raft of extra benefits. These include starter ships, in-game currency, multiple character slots and exclusive player avatar items. Players who purchase either of the top two packages also receive the extra benefit of not having their experience and wealth reset when the game comes out of Early Access.
“We’re really excited to finally unveil Entropy to MMO fans; it’s an ambitious title for us and we can’t wait to see how players react to engaging in player-controlled, intergalactic dogfights for the very first time in a space-based MMO,” said Jack Wulf, Chief Executive Officer of Artplant. “Launching through Steam’s Early Access programme will help ensure Entropy connects with its emergent community and utilise crucial feedback from players, enhancing the incredible gameplay experience we’re building.”
Find out more on the Entropy Steam page.
The Age of Wushu site has been updated with a forward looking article for 2014. In it, the team discusses the forthcoming "School Betrayal System" that will include six sects that will be detailed more precisely in the coming weeks. In the meantime, the article gives players a sneak peek into the system.
School specific Identity, Titles, Internal Skill will be erased completely. School specific fashion and function will be rendered unusable. Players will not be able to join the betrayed School; however the other seven and six new Sects will be open for recruitment.
School identity, titles and ultimate scrolls will be erased completely. Internal skills lowered, School specific fashion and function will be rendered unusable.
Player will not be able to join any of the original schools while under “Excursion” effect; the six new Sects will be available.
School identity and titles erased completely. School specific fashion and functions will be temporarily locked. Ultimate Scrolls will be erased but first three skill sets will not be affected. Player will not be able to join the seven original schools under “Incognito” effect; the six new Sects will be available.
Upon release of the “Incognito” state, player will be able to return to the original School selected.
Read the rest on the Age of Wushu site.
A lengthy Q&A for Camelot Unchained has been posted on the official site. It's a grab bag of information that includes whether or not a boxed version of the game will be released, a query for more information about the magic system and much more.
Fedaip asked: Can you give out accurate information on the magic system? If not, when can we expect a more profound explanation of combat systems and rules?
Mark has been writing and editing the magic and combat systems documents and we have had team meetings to give him feedback. Once we have these systems to a point where the team feels that they are exciting and workable, then we can start releasing details to the community. Once these systems are polished enough for a reveal, we will happily (yet with a modicum of trepidation!) do so.
Read more on the Camelot Unchained site.
Those looking for the most up-to-date information about Gloria Victus will want to head to the brand new official game site. The pages are filled with feature descriptions, media, forums and more.
Gloria Victis is a low fantasy medieval FREE MMORPG that values realism in terms of game mechanics. Our game is set in a parallel universe of X - XV century Europe and Middle-East with the corresponding nations.
The fundamental difference that our development has with large game studios is the spirit in which we are making the game in, Gloria Victis is founded on frustration and passion, frustration at the lack of a game that is truly innovative and worth playing and passion for the medieval period. As such, Gloria Victis is not driven by fiscal goals but actually the desire to create a game that truly belongs to gamers.
Check out the Gloria Victis site.
ArenaNet has announced the Season One winners in the Guild Wars 2 World Vs World tournament. Both the North American and European league winners were named.
Congratulations to Blackgate, Fort Aspenwood, and Henge of Denravi for their impressive performances in the North American leagues and to Vizunah Square, Desolation, and Drakkar Lake for their victories in the European leagues! You’ll be able to spot the champions who aided these worlds by their dolyak trophy finishers!
Read more on the Guild Wars 2 site.
What big new feature did Star Citizen unveil yesterday? What indie MMO gave our site an exclusive end of year update? And what 2014 shooter MMO showed off its goods during the VGX awards in Vegas this weekend?
Watch on to find out. This is MMORPG’s MMOrning Report, and this is what you need to know for December 10th, 2013.
Valiance, the most recent expansion to hit Lineage II, is set to launch on 12/11. And what better way to get psyched up for the content than with a developer livestream laying it all out for you? Read on for details!
Associate Produce Jason Lieberman will be on hand with our own Rob Lashley to detail Valiance's many updates including:
- Revamped Hunting Zones: Hellbound
o Beleth’s Magic Circle – Solo Hunting
o Desert Quarry – Small Party Hunting
o Phantasmal Ridge – Fully Party Hunting
o Beleth Raid – 98 to 300 Player Raid
o 3 Skill Trees (Knight, Warrior, Wizard)
· New Raid Boss Point System and 76 New Raid Bosses
· Returning Raid Bosses
The Fishing System
Wizard101 has recently added Castle Tours, which gives the ability to open your house up for others to tour and rate, and they have seen some truly amazing feats of decorating from the community! To help foster this creative activity, we’re giving away items from the Decorating Sets! With your code, you will receive ONE housing item from the Krokotopia Furniture sets, plus a chance at an entire furniture set! Get your key now!
Possible rewards from your free include:
Now that fans have had a few days to digest all of the information about Elder Scrolls Online and character progression, Zenimax is back with even more in the latest Ask Us Anything that is specifically focused on the topic.
Considering the very high versatility of character progression, with the armor, weapons, guilds, and other skills, why did you choose to maintain a class system?
There are a number of reasons we made this decision, but let’s look at these two:
1. Many of you have an idea about how you want to start the game in your head already. When you create your character, you may be looking for an archetype and a certain style. Classes help provide choices right from the beginning and can give you something you’re comfortable with.
2. Multiplayer games are about standing out in a crowd, competing and cooperating with other players, and playing off their strengths and weaknesses. The different skill lines provided by the classes allow for this right from the beginning. You’ll have the freedom to mold your character however you want eventually, but class choices allow you to strategize and combine your character’s core skills with others’ in a fun way.
Our goal is to allow for maximum diversity while still giving you interesting, clear choices that let you stand out.
Read more on the Elder Scrolls Online site.
MMORPG.com has partnered with the Origins of Malu team to bring our readers a first-look at how the game will round out the year in its development cycle. Check it out and leave your thoughts in the comments.
Let’s start off by acknowledging that we have been very quiet over the last few months. While it would be nice to say that it’s been because we've been invited to all the cool parties, going on cruises, and sitting beachside, unfortunately the life of an unfunded indie company is quite different.
What this does mean is that we spend more time working on the important stuff like game play, graphics, environments, etc. After our first Alpha/Beta test we had a tremendous amount of feedback to compile and produce a game plan around. We have been using this time to good effect incorporating some of the feedback and generally making the gameplay better. We have also added in some gameplay elements that we did not have ready for the first beta run. Amongst all of this we have also been exploring options with potential publishers.
Read more Origins of Malu: End of Year Update Dev Blog.
The WildStar team has tons of class information available for those who just need to know more. First off is the release of last Saturday's Medic live stream. There are also a pair of AMAs for the Stalker and Medic classes and, lastly, the team has another live stream event planned for this Saturday.
Stalker & Medic Reddit AMA
We’ve also been continuing our classes AMA on Reddit! With both the Stalker and the Medic getting put in the spotlight for fans to ask questions directly to the class team developers!
Finally, we’ll be doing another Class Livestream this Saturday at 12PM PST over on our Twitch channel! Make sure you follow us to get a notification of when we go live!
Till next time WildStar fans!
Read more on the WildStar site.
Aura Kingdom is one of those games that many players may take a cursory glance at and then move one. Not so fast, gamer! We took a look at Aura Kingdom recently and offer a few thoughts to entice you to look again. Read on before heading to the comments.
Aura Kingdom’s story may remind some folks of a Final Fantasy game, the spirit force called “Gaia” has bestowed the ability to control familiars known as Eidolon upon a select group of people within the game’s realm. These Envoy of Gaia as they are called can be both good or evil. Throughout the game you’ll have a selection of Eidolon that you can collect and you’ll be able to keep up to three to switch between in and out of combat, sort of like AI controlled Espers or Summons, if I can continue with the FF metaphor. You’ll be able to team up with your Eidolon to pull off special combos, like a devastating AoE spin attack from you and your giant robot, or hopping on the back of a cyber-panther for a limited amount of time to deliver some brutal ice elemental attacks, and the little girl who floats around on a crescent moon and turns you into a giant bunny to deliver a tremendous flying slam into the ground below. Switching between them in battle on the fly is simple and you can select which commands you want them to carry out. There appears to be enough variety that finding the companion should be easy enough.
Read more of Blake Morse's Aura Kingdom: A Fresh-Faced New Kid on the Block.
Defiance players will have an opportunity to check out the latest DLC, Arkbreaker starting tomorrow, December 10th. We spent some time checking out the new content in a recent developer livestream. Check it out before heading to the comments to chat.
In your ongoing fight against the Shkathe 'Nado (AKA Dark Matter) you'll have to conquer new arkfalls that yes, you can summon. If Earth is going to succeed in its fight against the Dark Matter you'll have to summon these new major arkfalls to gather new technologies that they bring along. The new arkfalls will feature the widely feared Volge race and even the “world-conquering” Volge Warmaster boss. While duking it out against the Volge race to get inside the new arkfall, players can place spikes on the floor that grant auras of ammo, 30% increased damage, and even shield power. Chances are you'll need spikes in order to defeat the Volge Warmaster, which allows for players of all combat ratings to contribute. Trick Dempsey mentioned, “The arrival of a new player should never be a bad thing.”
Read more of Jeffery Lerman's Defiance: Spikes, Stims, and Weapons, Oh My!
Guild Wars 2 players have a chance to earn and make ascended gear in both weapons and armor varieties. In today's Guild Wars 2 column, we take a look at how fun it is and whether it's worth it in the end. Read on!
Why is a grind an issue? Nearly every MMO in the past has used the grind, and the item treadmill as a form of character progression. It wasn't fun then, and it isn't fun now. Guild Wars was the first online RPG that didn't put you into that type of situation. It focused on player skill, rather then the power of your items. That same design philosophy was promised to be carried over to Guild Wars 2, never forcing players to grind for better items. So far technically they've kept their promise.
Read more of David North's Guild Wars 2: Ascending!
A new blog post has been published on the Star Citizen site to give fans a look at how "player organizations", essentially the guild system. The blog details how organizations are formed and the process of building a cohesive group commences.
One of the first lessons we learned during Star Citizen’s campaign is that players like to form their own groups. Whether you want to game with friends or work with like-minded strangers to impact the universe, you want to come together. We knew going in to the project that Star Citizen would need a robust guild/squadron system… but we had no idea we would need it before the game launched! As soon as the RSI forums went online last year, players were already building their own squadrons, pirate clans, merchant companies and more.
As a result, we decided to start building Organizations into the website today instead of waiting for the game to launch. Players who want to form groups will soon be able to do so right here at RSI… and those groups will transition directly into Star Citizen. The organizations you form today will be the ones you fly with in the ‘verse! The web team at Turbulent has been hard at work integrating these plans and today we’re going to share details about how the first release is going to work.
Read more on the Star Citizen site.