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General : Anook Sponsors Second Annual Blaugust Event

Posted Aug 01, 2015 by Catherine Daro

Anook.com is a social media site for gamers to share videos, images and more about gaming in the "Nook system" (groups). Throughout the month of August Anook is partnering with Belghast, a game blogger, and challenging bloggers and vloggers to create posts every day until the 31st.  

The event is being organized by Belghast on Anook’s unique Nook feature. Anook’s Community Manager Andrew “Lonrem” Kuehndorf will be on hand to offer participants tips and advice on how to expand their audience. Finally Anook.com will be awarding one participant with the Anook Community Choice Award and an as yet unannounced prize.

To find out how to participate in the event and read on details, check out the Anook site

Project Gorgon : 100% Funding Achieved, First Stretch Goals Announced

Posted Aug 01, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Project Gorgon is a Kickstarter success with the achievement of its funding goal. With the realization of $20,000 from backers, the team has now turned its eye to stretch goals, the first two of which will be a 'unique backer mount' at $25,000 and a 'timed exclusive backer character race: dwarves' at $30,000.

The Dwarves are stout, dour subterranean people and Kickstarter Backers will have exclusive access to them during the alpha and beta period! Kickstarter backers below the Patron level will be able to unlock the Dwarven class through in-game objectives, while those at or above the Patron level will have them automatically unlocked once available.

Find out more on the Project Gorgon Kickstarter page.


General : Sorcerer King - A RPG Fan’s Ideal 4X Game

Posted Aug 01, 2015 by Suzie Ford

4X Games are one of the most enduring strategy genres out there. Games like Civilization and Sins of a Solar Empire have fans that are legion. Heck, I doubt I’m the only person on MMORPG.com who appreciates this sort of strategy. But one thing I’ve always wanted is for a little more RPG to make its way into the 4X (Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate) pantheon. Stardock tried this to some success with Fallen Enchantress, and now ups the ante quite a bit with the excellent Sorcerer King.

Read more of Bill Murphy's Sorcerer King - A RPG Fan's Ideal 4X Game.

Neverwinter : Double XP Through Strongholds Launch

Posted Aug 01, 2015 by Catherine Daro

Neverwinter Online has a Double AD weekend (ongoing through Monday, August 3rd) and double XP bonus until Strongholds launch (on the Tuesday, August 11th). 

Ways to Acquire Rough AD:

  • Salvaging
  • Rhix’s Daily Quests
  • Invocation
  • Leadership Profession
  • Skirmishes

Source: Arcgames.com

Camelot Unchained : Stretch Goal Met: Stealth Unchained

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

The Camelot Unchained team has let us know that the latest stretch goal has been met: Stealth Unchained. Knowing its controversial nature, the team gave long consideration to its inclusion in the game. The most important factor, we are told, is fun. If the system isn't entertaining for all, it is not implemented right.

The first named archetype, or class, is the archer. They will have access to a more powerful and magical camouflage system that is available to all players. They will have access to camouflage armor and is given to them to take on the ranger-style archer, not a magical one. Further, camouflage is not invisibility -- it simply makes players using it harder to see.

Scouts will have a powerful stealth mechanic, but with a limited duration. Those with Soul Walking will be useful as Assassins and gives them the ability to separate soul from body and to "float through the Realms".

Veilwalkers & Veilstalkers are specifically oriented towards killing other players. They are not one-shot assassins. They have the ability to stay in the Veil for much longer than any others. The longer in the veil, the more damage they can deal, but they will not emerge with full health.

Goal #1 – Design a fun, interesting stealth mechanic and classes that are not seen as “Easy Mode” by non-stealthers

Based on the reactions on the Forums when we were talking about this, I do think we have concepted a number of interesting mechanics and classes. A true scouting class is, in and of itself, a pretty cool addition. Archers with a true camouflage system will also be a good addition to the game. At the same time, the VW/VS setup, as well as other counters, do not make being a stealther “Easy Mode”, as they can, and will be, the target of other hunter-killers.

Goal #2 - Do not design a class that is centered around a strong opener, stun, vanish with long/unlimited stealth

Even in the midst of a big battle, the ability to move into the Veil will not be as simple as hitting a button and going poof, you’re in the Veil.

Goal #3 – Design a class that has the ability to be very active and sought-after in RvR

The use of scouts, archers, and VW/VS will all add important aspects to the RvR gameplay in our game. Even in the midst of a large battle, having VW/VS hunting each other and looking for targets of opportunity could be important. Scouts that can help disable siege engines and help other players hit their targets, even when there is no line of sight, can be a nice addition to the game.

Goal #4 – Design a class that some non-traditional stealthers want to play

I think we did that, but only you folks can tell us for sure. As someone who plays stealthers too (not my main, usually), I would play all three of these classes, so…

Goal #5 – Design a class that requires skill to play well, and not just unlimited patience

I think this one is covered by a lot of the above checks and balances. Life as a stealther will be challenging, but rewarding as well. Most importantly, stealthers are going to have to pay attention, at all times, to the game that they are playing.

Goal #6 – Design a system where gank groups of stealthers are not possible

I hope that the use of sound, extra damage, and possibly other things, will really discourage the use of gank groups (as opposed to groups on the field of battle).

Goal #7 – Design a system that doesn’t affect the launch date of the game

One of the three classes discussed here is already a planned launch class. Another one of the classes is going to be an Extender class, and the third will only be put in if it doesn’t hurt the schedule. Fortunately, that class is also going to require less tech than an archetype such as archers, because of how we are envisioning them. And again, if putting this class in the game at launch would require any additional delay, we are not going to delay the game for the class's implementation.

There is much, much more to read, more details and more about how the stealth system will work in RvR and more. There is also a planned live stream that will talk in more detail and that will allow players to pose questions about stealth.

Read it all on the Camelot Unchained site.

Devilian : Evoker Class Revealed

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

The Devilian site has been updated with a new post about the Evoker class from the forthcoming title. The evoker is an elemental spellcaster that can cast frost spells and an array of AOE spells.

As an Evoker, you can pursue skills from three skill trees:

  • Control: Render your opponents immobile. Push them into the path of an oncoming storm. With coordination and timing, this skill tree allows you to reshape entire battlefields.
  • Assault: Unleash powerful bursts of elemental damage upon foes. With this tree’s wide range of instant-cast spells, you’ll need to watch your mana and stay quick on your feet.
  • Burst: Skills in the Burst tree create chain reactions, damaging multiple enemies at once. Whole armies will crumble beneath the might of these spells.

Read the full post on the Devilian site.

PlanetSide 2 : PlayStation 4 - Worlds in Conflict

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

It is in those moments, where everything about Planetside 2 is moving in perfect concert, that the battles you fight can astound you with their immensity. You'll run through valley floors as columns of tanks exchange fire and aircraft engage in dogfights and strafe your position, reviving downed players as a combat medic. You'll jetpack your way onto a facility roof alongside your squad, ambushing several pesky infiltrators with sniper rifles picking off your main force. But for each of these thrilling encounters, there are plenty willing to strip you of any significance you might have felt. Planetside 2 has its moments, but their impact is almost always threatened by its numerous issues.

Read more of Steven Messner's PlanetSide 2 - PlayStation 4 - Worlds in Conflict.

Lost Dimension : Chasing Shadows

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Some games rely on their stories and character development to grab your attention, using plot devices and memorable personalities to keep you coming back for more.  Others depend upon their gameplay systems to keep you engaged, either through their unique implementation or by sheer force of addictiveness.

Read more of Som Pourfarzaneh's Lost Dimension: Chasing Shadows.

Drakensang Online : Skill System Overhauled for Rise of Balor Update

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Bigpoint has reached out to let us know that the skill system overhaul for Drakensang Online is nearly finished and will be deployed with the Rise of Balor update. The revamping of the skill system is to encourage new and different ways for players to develop their characters.

In the old system, talents became available at the same time as the associated skill. Each skill had two talents: players could pick one or the other, but not both. The new skill system offers many more options in character development. As characters gain levels, they will automatically earn talent points to spend on talents. Each skill has three talents that can be purchased with these points. Players can choose freely how to distribute talent points. It is also possible to reorganize them to try out different builds and play styles.


Read more on the Drakensang Online site.

Neverwinter : Strongholds - A Large Update Focused on Guilds

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

On Wednesday afternoon I had a conference call with Rob Overmeyer, Executive Producer for Neverwinter, and Alex Monney, Communications Manager with Perfect World. During that time Rob took me on a guided preview of what players can expect when Neverwinter launches their newest module, Strongholds, later this summer.

Read more of Rob Lashley's Neverwinter: Strongholds - A Large Update Focused on Guilds.

World of Warcraft : Community Manager Bashiok Leaving Blizzard

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

In a surprise post on the Battle.Net forums, community manager Micah "Bashiok" Whipple has announced that he is leaving Blizzard after twelve years with the company. He does not indicate where he is going, but we will be sure to keep you posted as the story develops.

I could pretty easily write a few thousand words right now, but I did my best to keep this brief.

I began working at Blizzard way back in October of 2003, and every day of my experience here has been shared with you, the players, and content creators, artists, bloggers, AddOn authors, podcasters, streamers, forum trolls, and— man, anyone remember the old Off-Topic forum back in the day? That place was just absolutely cuckoo bananas.

Anyway, Blizzard—and the community that surrounds it—has defined almost my entire adult life, and I am just so absolutely grateful to all of my friends here for having such an incredible and positive impact on who I am, and who I am yet to become. I don’t think I’ve had to make any decisions as difficult as the one to leave Blizzard, but a new opportunity has come my way, and I’ve decided to take it.

While I think it’s all still sinking in, the other day I realized I actually get to be surprised by Blizzard announcements and releases again. Which, as a lifelong fan and rabid gamer it makes me giddy thinking about being able to sit in the audience at BlizzCon, watching a stream, or reading the newest blog posts, and seeing whatever’s in store next—for the first time.

I’m looking forward to what’s next, and wishing you a life of joy, insatiable curiosity, and happy gaming.

Definitely thankful,
Bashiok

Source: Battle.Net

The RPG Files : Growing Out of JRPGs

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Everyone has a childhood favorite. For Chris, it was JRPGs. Now, whether it’s Final Fantasy, Ni No Kuni, Persona 4 Golden, or Bravely Default, he can’t rekindle the magic. Why is that? This week, we exploring falling out of love with your favorite genre.

Read more of Christopher Coke's The RPG Files: Growing Out of JRPGs.

Project Gorgon : Funding at 90%, Fae & Orc Class Races Revealed

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

The Project Gorgon team has sent word that the KickStarter initiative started less than a week ago is at 90% already. In celebration, both the Fae and Orc player races have been detailed.

Fae and Orcs join the already-announced player races of Human, Elves and Rakshasa and one as-yet-unnamed sixth race.

Since you are able to check out the Elves, Humans, and Rakshasa in-game now, we wanted to give you an early look at the Fae and Orc classes (final design is subject to change). As a side note, all classes will automatically be unlocked for the Grand Duke and above reward tiers once available!

Read the full update on the Project Gorgon site.

Guild Wars 2 : First Beta Weekend Scheduled for August 7th

Posted Jul 31, 2015 by Suzie Ford

ArenaNet has announced that the first public beta will kick off on Friday, August 7th beginning at 12:00 pm Pacific / 3:00 pm Eastern and will run through 12:00 pm Pacific / 3:00 pm Eastern on Monday, August 10th. Players who have preordered the Heart of Thorns expansion will be eligible for the event and will have access to all forthcoming beta weekends until HoT launches.

All progress will be saved during the first test and will carried into future beta events to give players an idea of how character progression and new abilities work in the expansion.

In this first test, players will have a chance to experience the first story instances in the expansion’s new area, the Heart of Maguuma Jungle, as well as playtest the revenant, an all-new profession with attacks and abilities that draw their powers from legends of Guild Wars lore. They will be among the first to try out the new elite specializations that introduce new weapons and skills for each profession in the game. They also get to test the new masteries system, a new endgame progression system that replaces linear leveling and gives players choices in the new skills, abilities and rewards they pursue.

In addition, attendees at next week's Gamescom will be able to try out a demo of a portion of the beta client beginning on Wednesday, August 5th and continuing throughout the convention's end on August 9th.

You can find out more about this exciting news on the Guild Wars 2 site (If the link is not yet live, keep trying! It will be!).

General : BATTLETECH: New Kickstarter from Harebrained Schemes

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Battletech is getting ready for a reboot with a Kickstarter initiative planned for later this year. We had the opportunity to interview the staff about the forthcoming project. See what they had to say.

Read more of Rob Lashley's Battletech: New Kickstarter from Harebrained Schemes.

General : How EpicData is Making the Games You Love Better

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

A lot goes into the making of MMOs. It is not just about game design, there is a huge infrastructure that goes along with it. Forums, web design, cash shops, interface, and customer experience all make up the parts of an MMO that you may not think about while playing a game. Well, the good news is Raechele Greenwald and her team at EpicData has started thinking of it for you. More importantly their company works on building platforms that MMOs or any type of online games can use to incorporate these tools into their system. Bottom line, it allows developers to focus on their game rather than all of the bits and pieces that go with it.

Read more of Garrett Fuller's EpicData Interview with Raechele Greenwald & Gordon Walton.

Guild Wars 2 : Making Fractal Dungeons More Viable

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

The Guild Wars 2 site has been updated with a new post by ArenaNet's Mike Zadorojny that discussing "sweeping changes to the Fractals of the Mists".

The discussion begins with changes to fractals including:

  • fractals will consist of one island out of a list and will be able to be completed in a short period of time, say 30-60 minutes up to 90 for longer events
  • players can practice fractals to learn the challenges without need to reroll fractals to get the one desired
  • mistlock instabilities are being reevaluated and new ones will be added
  • new achievements and rewards to let players show off their prowess
  • Legendary backpacks will be introduced. " Together with any of the armor crafting professions (armorsmith, leatherworker, or tailor), you’ll start with a simple new backpack and build it into the new precursor back item. Just like all future precursor and legendary items, this precursor will be account bound and can’t be traded—it must be earned."
  • Ascended salvaging
  • bonus subobjectives
For players who’ve been hunting for fractal weapon skins, we’re making a couple a changes. The first is that there will be a collection for obtaining them all, including a new reward for its completion. The second change will help address the frustration of trying to find that one particularly elusive skin you really want that won’t drop no matter how many fractal runs you attempt. Once you’ve completed fractal scale 50, the golem BUY-2046 in the Mistlock Observatory will sell you a fractal weapon crate for pristine fractal relics, which will grant you a fractal weapon skin of your choice.
Read the full post on the Guild Wars 2 site.
 

Crowfall : Concerns and Misconceptions

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

I've written both praise and skepticism about Crowfall in this column over the last few months, as I think it's only fair to see both sides of any ambitious new game project. Personally, I enjoy the portfolios of both J. Todd Coleman and Gordon Walton, so that combination, including the premise of Crowfall itself, is music to my ears. But different people may be excited (or not) about Crowfall for different reasons.

Read more of Shawn Schuster's Crowfall: Concerns & Misconceptions.

Skyforge : Crucible of the Gods Update Coming August 11th

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Obsidian Entertainment and My.com have announced that a big update is headed into Skyforge on August 11th. Called "Crucible of the Gods", the update will feature tongs of feature improvements, bug fixes and the addition of the divine form that allows players to access high-end content including invasions and raids.

Divine Form:    Certain heroic deeds are beyond the abilities of both mortals and immortals alike. For these activities, you will need to ascend to your rightful place as a God and progress through the newly unlocked Divine Atlas. Players will need to complete the "New God" Storyline quest which becomes available at ~30,500 Prestige to unlock access to the Divine Form.

Read more on the Skyforge site.


Gloria Victis : Economy - It’s All About the Players!

Posted Jul 30, 2015 by Suzie Ford

Production was an integral part of medieval society and was inseparable from the day to day lives of those that lived in that period. It was a time of self-sufficiency where everyone had a rudimentary understanding of every craft. However there were also those that truly excelled in a specific craft and made it their profession – the fame of these masters would spread far beyond the borders of their nation and men from foreign lands would come to them looking for their products.

Read more of our exclusive developer diary, Gloria Victis - Economy - It's All About the Players!

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