MMORPG General News
MMORPG Gaming: The Ultimate Nerd Expression?
Fluent explains why in his opinion MMORPGs can be better than single player RPGs
» Continue reading the article...
Neverwinter: An Interview
Lucky Day talks to Cryptic's Jack Emmert about their upcoming D&D "Online Multiplayer Game", Neverwinter.
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Poll WatchDo you Kickstart?
Yes, I've supported a bunch!
Yes, but only 1 or 2.
I'm waiting for the right project.
No! No finished product, no money!
No - but only because of my tight budget.
Expected ReleasesMar: Elder Scrolls Online
Diablo III: ROS - Preview @ IncGamers
IncGamers previews the crusader class from Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls.
During this evening’s IncGamers live stream we starting taking a new Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls Crusader through the game.
This week there was a character wipe for all Reaper of Souls beta players when the Diablo 3 PTR launched with the new Loot 2.0 system and other bells and whistles such as clans. This is an ideal opportunity to demonstrate the new class starting afresh.
Drixx is your host and he talks through the first levels of the game playing as the Crusader explaining the expansion’s many new features, the differences between the expansion and vanilla Diablo 3, the skills available to the Crusader, and more.
This is the first part of his live stream series on the IncGamers Twitch channel and these will be airing over the next few days.
If you want to know how the game is shaping up during the closed beta test keep an eye on these videos and our live channel. Members of the Diablo: IncGamers team stream their gameplay for all the different character classes most days of the week.
WAR Online - Shut Down & Refunds
I can see the eyes rolling already not another MMO news-bit, but please bear with it. Mythic Entrtainment annouces that Warhammer Online is now shutdown, and gives a link for refunds.
Warhammer® Online Shutdown – 6pm Eastern December 18th, 2013 (UTC -05:00)On December 18th, 2013 the Warhammer Online servers will be shutdown at 6pm Eastern Time (UTC -05:00). We wish to thank all the loyal players throughout the years for their patronage.
For information on refunds: http://www.warhammeronline.com/article/Warhammer-Online-Refund-FAQ
Information aboutWAR Online
Elder Scrolls Online - Editorial @ Camelot Post
Camelot Post takes a look at the emperor concept for The Elder Scrolls Online, and calls it wasted potential. So do you agree?
The Elder Scrolls Online Emperor – Wasted Potential
Very few MMO games today release a feature that only 1-2% of the player base can experience. Even the very toughest end-game challenges are enjoyed by thousands and thousands of players. Of course it’s still early days and there could well be more to The Elder Scrolls Online Emperor mechanics but with the currently released information, it seems like they’ve wasted a lot of potential to really tackle the political aspect of the MMO world.
Elder Scrolls Online - Fit for the Emperor
ZeniMax Online has a new post on the games web page with information about the suit of armor that you can only wear if you become emperor.
Discover one of the rewards only the most powerful in Tamriel can claim--the emperor's armor!
The one who sits on the Ruby Throne cuts an imposing figure, driving enemies to flee in fear and inspiring allies to even greater deeds of conquest. When the emperor strides onto the battlefield, everyone takes notice--and few foes will survive to warn their allies. Below, you'll see concept art for armor that only the emperor can wear, intricately worked from the strongest materials and valuable beyond measure.
WoW - The Feast of Winter Veil
If your still one of the millions of players playing World of Warcraft Blizzard has announced the starting date of the The Feast of Winter Veil.
The Feast of Winter Veil Begins December 16
The later seasons of Azeroth are marked as a time of change in many cultures. The term "Winter Veil" is said to stem from a supernatural being referred in many cultures to as Greatfather Winter. As he would walk the land late in the seasons, winter itself would be his billowing cloak. In his wake was the blanketing of the land in snow, and thus it is said that Greatfather Winter would cast his wintry veil over the land.
The idea of feasting during this time of year is one that traces its origins to the legend itself. As Greatfather Winter walked Azeroth, it is said he would provide a bounty for those who welcomed his presence.
As such, the idea of feasting during the winter veil would bring together communities as they shared whatever they had. Typically, a single day of merriment and feasting welcomed the change, all in anticipation of the land's renewal.
Diablo III: ROS - Closed Beta Now Available
Blizzard also announces today that the closed Beta for Reaper of Souls is now available to select players.
Reapers, and Westmarch, and Crusaders, oh my—the Diablo® III: Reaper of Souls™ Closed Beta has begun!
Invitations to this next phase of our public test are now being delivered to nephalem worldwide. If you've been invited to the Closed Beta, we'd love to hear all about your adventures on the forums, watch your live streams, and see screenshots and videos of your experiences in Sanctuary. Please keep in mind that Reaper of Souls is still in development, which means that all content in the Closed Beta is subject to change and isn't necessarily representative of the final game.
Diablo III: ROS - Two More Previews
Here are two more previews for Diablo III: Reaper of Souls.
Reaper of Souls is meant to fix Diablo III. Blizzard may not put it exactly that way, but it doesn't take a lot reading between the lines to realise that they're not entirely happy with how Diablo III came to play out in a number of areas. And that's putting it mildly.
The biggest and most important change is two-fold. The much criticised auction house has been removed, while Blizzard introduce a new system for loot drops. They called it "Loot 2.0" - and the idea is that the loot you find should be more applicable and useful to the player.
I’ve been suitably impressed with what the beta had in store for Diablo III, with a slew of changes the game has become exciting, rewarding and most importantly, fun again. Definitely one to keep watching for how the beta pans out and stay tuned as we’ll be covering more of Diablo III: Reaper of Souls in the future.
Elder Scrolls Online - Release Date Announced
Zenimax Online has a new post on The Elder Scrolls Online webpage announcing the game will release on the PC 4/4/2014, and on consoles June 2014. They even included a new video about how war works.
Greetings everyone. As we are approaching the end of 2013 and heading into our launch year, I thought I’d take a moment to thank you, our community, for your continued support. I’d also like to give you an update on the game’s development and our launch plans for 2014.
First, thanks to everyone involved in the ESO community: those we met at trade shows, those of you on social media, and those that have had a chance to play the game and provided invaluable feedback through beta testing. I personally am humbled by the intense feelings of excitement expressed to us by the community at large. At shows like PAX East, PAX Prime, Gamescom, Eurogamer Expo, Paris Games Week, etc. – we always had three to four hour lines to play ESO. We know those wait times weren’t easy, and the great patience and enthusiastic reception you showed was remarkable. Everyone here at ZeniMax Online appreciates each and every one of you and your fantastic support of the game.
Game development is coming along very well. We completed major systems development, and are focusing on making this the Elder Scrolls game you expect: polishing the hundreds and hundreds of hours of content, making combat even more fun and responsive, fixing quest issues, and much, much more. In fact, we plan on spending the next few months before launch reacting to the latest feedback from internal and external testers and gameplay data we have collected.
As some of you know, we’ve been in beta testing for about a year now, leading up to our most recent test in late November where we had over 300,000 people in the game over a 48 hour period. We’ve had approximately 4 million people sign up for beta and that number continues to grow. We hope that just about every one of you who have signed up for beta will get an invitation to play sometime between now and the weeks before launch. These tests are very important, not only for gameplay feedback, but also to test our infrastructure. Beta tests can sometimes be a little rough when we are testing some systems for the first time with large numbers of players. So thank you to all who have participated for your understanding and support. It is very much appreciated.
Worldwide demand for The Elder Scrolls Online is extraordinarily high. This means we need to do a staggered rollout of the different versions of the game to spread out the initial service load and ensure an enjoyable, smooth gameplay experience. It is not only a game we are launching – it is a large online service as well, and our number one priority is to ensure a trouble-free, stable rollout for everyone.
We long ago promised that as soon as a version of the game is ready, we will launch it. So we’re happy to announce that the game will launch worldwide for PC and Mac players on Friday, April 4, 2014, while PlayStation 4 and Xbox One fans will see the game arriving on consoles in June 2014.
Again, thank you for your continued support and enthusiasm over the past year. We are very proud of this game and excited to share it with you. We can’t wait to see you in the game in 2014! —Matt
Neverwinter - Hunter Ranger Trailer
Perfect World Entertainment has released a new interactive trailer for te new ranger class from the just released Shadowmantle module.
Module 2: Shadowmantle, the second free content expansion for Neverwinter, is now live!
Log in to explore the new adventure zone, the Dread Ring, and face Valindra Shadowmantle herself. We've also introduced many new in-game systems, features, and the free Hunter Ranger class!
Check out some of the things that you can do as a Hunter Ranger with this interactive video! Please make sure your annotations settings are on and click a power on the video when prompted.
Neverwinter - Now Available on Steam
Steam announces that you can now download the F2P MMO Neverwinter.
Now Available on Steam - Neverwinter
Neverwinter is Now Available on Steam and is Free to Play!
Neverwinter is a free, action MMORPG based on the acclaimed Dungeons & Dragons fantasy roleplaying game. Epic stories, action combat and classic roleplaying await those heroes courageous enough to enter the fantastic world of Neverwinter!
Explore and defend one of the most beloved cities from the Dungeons & Dragons Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting as it rises from the ashes of destruction. This immersive MMORPG will take you from the besieged walls of the city to subterranean passageways in search of forgotten secrets and lost treasure.
Neverwinter - Shadowmantle Now Live
Perfect World Entertainment and Cryptic Studios announce the release of it's second free module Shadowmantle for Neverwinter. Here are the details.
Acclaimed Action MMORPG Launches Second Free Module
(Redwood City, CA) December 5, 2013 - Perfect World Entertainment Inc. and Cryptic Studios are pleased to announce that the widely acclaimed free action MMORPG Neverwinter, set in the Dungeons & Dragons Forgotten Realms universe from Wizards of the Coast, has launched its second free Module, Shadowmantle. In this Module expansion, players can travel to Neverwinter Wood's' deepest region and fight through the Dread Ring campaign, play as the new Hunter Ranger class, explore a whole new Paragon Path and collect artifacts on their way to glory.
"Delivering new free content to our players is and always will be our highest priority,” said Cryptic Studios Executive Producer and COO, Craig Zinkievich. “To see Shadowmantle, go live less than six months after official launch, is incredible, and we couldn't be more excited to release this new content to our players. We also want to hear feedback about the highly anticipated Hunter Ranger class, so we encourage fans to try it and let us know what they think.”
Shadowmantle, the second Module for Neverwinter, is a free content expansion in which players tackle the Dread Ring campaign. Deep within the Neverwinter Wood lays the Dread Ring, a massive structure built for ritual magic. Players explore this broken but still powerful region and fight Valindra Shadowmantle's army, including an epic battle with the lich herself. In addition to the Hunter Ranger class and new playable content, Shadowmantle features new collections, artifacts, and Paragon Paths.
Neverwinter is an action MMORPG that features fast-paced combat and epic dungeons. Players explore the vast city of Neverwinter and its surrounding countryside, learning the vivid history of the iconic city and battling its many enemies. In Neverwinter, players can create their own quests and campaigns with the Foundry, a powerful content creation tool that allows players to seamlessly integrate their adventures into the live game world.
For more information about Neverwinter Shadowmantle, and to begin playing now for free, please visit the official website: http://www.PlayNeverwinter.com
Diablo III: ROS - Preview @ Eurogamer
Eurogamer has a new preview of Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls adventure mode.
I've had access to the beta test for Diablo 3's first expansion, Reaper of Souls, for over a week now, yet I've barely touched the new fifth Act in the campaign and only scratched the surface of the Crusader class. The reason? Adventure mode, which is absolutely the best and biggest addition in an expansion which changes almost everything. It's nothing less than a new way to play the game.
Adventure mode is different every time you log in to Diablo 3, offering randomised bounties spread across the entirety of the game's campaign: these might be to hunt down a rare monster, kill a boss (which might have different attack patterns), clean out a dungeon or run a special event. Monster locations have been switched around, while some areas appear at different times of day and under different weather conditions. You earn loot bags and a special gambling currency for completing bounties - and also pick up keys to Nephalem Rifts, which are special, entirely randomised dungeons that mix up tile sets and monsters from across the entire game.
To see a bounty and a Nephalem Rift in action, and hear more of my thoughts on this brilliant new mode, check out the Let's Play video below.
Elder Scrolls Online - News Roundup
It's been a busy week for The Elder Scrolls Online, and I managed to round up a few articles for everyone today. To begin the news-bit I have a new video from
We explore the systems you'll use to build exactly the character you want to play as you explore Tamriel in The Elder Scrolls Online
Next a new Creating ESO article about skills.
Is your character a Sorcerer in the Mages Guild who wades into the melee wearing heavy armor and tossing fireballs? A Dragonknight who has mastered the bow and keeps allies alive from range with a restoration staff? A master provisioner? No matter what you have envisioned for your character, you’ll use skill lines to define many of his or her capabilities.
If you saw our recent video about character progression, you have an idea about how skill lines work, but we’d like to take you a little deeper and explore how we designed this system, the choices we had to make, and what factors we’ve considered throughout development.
And for last Gamereactor has a new interview.
You have stated before that you are targeting both the fans of the series, as well as the fans of the MMO genre. Has it been difficult finding a way to meet the expectations of both audiences?
I think we have such high demands for ourselves as a development team, and we represent both those audiences internally, so there was a series of steps we took to, to say: "What are the things we as developers want to do, to make a great Elder Scrolls RPG, and what are the expectations that will be common amongst the MMO crowd?"
So we had this big exercise, where we wrote down what we wanted from the game as MMO players, and what we wanted as Elder Scrolls players, and it was amazing where those things synced up. That's where we started to lay the base of the game down. So I don't know if it's been difficult, as much as it has been an interesting exercise in trying to find the "good game", and from there, making the baselines meet.
Have you been forced to make any concessions, in order to make certain mechanics fit within the gameplay?
There are definitely things that won't work in a multiplayer setting, as they will in a singleplayer setting. For instance, you can't just kill every NPC in the world, because then there'd be no NPCs for anybody to meet, so I don't think it's necessarily concessions, so much as it's one of those things that is different from a normal Elder Scrolls singleplayer experience to the MMO.
We also have to be a lot more strict with the game's economy, as in how we introduce items into the world, how we introduce gold, and those types of things. Also, realtime physics are much harder to model, when you have litterally thousands of players online at one time. Those are the kind of things you have to take into account, when building any kind of massively multiplayer game like this.
SW: TOR - Starfighter Expansion Available
BioWare annouces in a new press release that the Starfighter Expansion for Star Wars: The Old Republic is available for subscribers.
Early Access to Galactic Starfighter Digital Expansion Available to Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ Subscribers Today
AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The journey to become a legendary Starfighter pilot begins now! Today, BioWare™ a division of Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA), and LucasArts granted early access for current subscribers to the new Free-to-Play Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ Digital Expansion, Galactic Starfighter. The second Digital Expansion introduces 12v12 intense Player-vs-Player (PvP) free-flight dogfighting and fierce factional battles as the war between the Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic explodes into space. Players will compete and advance to earn experience, in the form of “requisition” to unlock awesome new weapons, powers and abilities to customize their ultimate Starfighter.
“We are so excited for players to experience all the incredible new content in Galactic Starfighter, while still gaining additional XP and credits to give their ground game characters a boost,” said Jeff Hickman, Vice President, General Manager of BioWare Austin. “Free-flight space combat is a feature the fans have been asking for, and Galactic Starfighter really delivers on that feeling of heart-pounding fast-paced dogfighting action that you expect in a Star Wars™ game.”
Anyone who becomes a subscriber will be able to jump right into Galactic Starfighter and become part of the factional combat and free flight PvP experience (no minimum character level requirements apply). In addition to gaining early access to Galactic Starfighter, subscribers will receive exclusive rewards, including custom paint jobs, two pilot suits and two titles ("Test Pilot" and "First Galactic Starfighter"). Preferred Status Players* will be granted access to Galactic Starfighter on January 14, before the Digital Expansion becomes available to the public beginning on February 4.
For more information on the Digital Expansion: Galactic Starfighter, please visit www.StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com/galactic-starfighter. Join the conversation by visiting the official Community Blog, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages.
Information aboutSW: TOR
Diablo III: Reaper of Souls - Preview
Play.tm has a preview of Blizzards next expansion Diablo III: Reaper of Souls.
Blizzard has put together a pretty comprehensive update with Reaper Of Souls. A new Chapter, a whole new character class, a new free-roaming gameplay mode and a complete reworking of the loot system are all enticing propositions. There may be no return of PvP as yet but as game director Josh Mosquiera said at Blizzcon, "Once we feel we have the fundametals right then we can start asking the really cool question about how we're going to get you fighting each other."
Everquest Next - News Roundup
Pc Gamer has a new post about a few more landmark videos. I'll just post one here so click the link for the rest of them.
Next EQNexus shares info about some of the classes you can play based on the X-mas issue of PC Gamer.
Cleric - Wields either a two-handed hammer or a hammer and shield. Buffing and protecting allies is the typical Clerical duty, but these magic men and women do it with the power of fire, which gives them some killing power, too.
Necromancer - Wielding a tome or a dagger and focus object, the Necromancer summons destructive chaotic energies and comes with a companion: a Monstrosity that grows in power with its master.
Beast Lord - If you’re a fan of ‘trampling’ and ‘savaging,’ the Beast Lord’s furry friends make excellent companions. You can do your own savagin, too, with a flail and shield combination, or a spear for medium range attacks.
Tempest - With two blades or one two-handed blade, the Tempest ‘dances across the battlefield’ and unleashes powerful winds and blasts of lightning. Ought to appeal to fans of action RPGs.
Elder Scrolls Online - Preview @ PC Gamer
PC Gamer posted a new preview of The Elder Scrolls Online that gives us a tour of massively multiplayer world of Tamriel.
In the previous games, it was always my first few steps into those richly-detailed worlds that stuck with me. Whether I was setting out into the marshes around Seyda Neen or exploring pastoral woodland on the outskirts of the Imperial City, so much of the wonder of a new RPG is owed to the way those initial experiences suggest innumerable new experiences just out of sight. As I left Khenarthi’s Roost for the mainland, that feeling returned. I found myself looking forward to continuing my life as a wood elf archer in a strange land, just as I had in Morrowind a decade ago.
“The way we’ve built our content, it’s meant to be completely nonlinear,” Paul Sage tells me. “I can go over to this point of interest and say, ‘That place looks cool. What’s happening over there?’ Then I can get introduced to the story, if it’s a quest area, or maybe it’s something else. The entire idea is that you can ignore us entirely, and go off on your own, and do whatever you want.”
Right now, what I want to do is to play more TESO. I want to push beyond the next grove of trees, walk around the next bend in the road, and see what awaits on the other side. For all of its rough edges, The Elder Scrolls Online feels full of promise in a way that no other MMO has since my first experiences with the genre over ten years ago. That sense of discovery is a powerful thing.
Elder Scrolls Online - More Heavy Armor Styles
ZeniMax Online has a new post for The Elder Scrolls Online showing off more heavy armor sets. Head over to the games webpage if your interested.
Finding a shiny new piece of armor that offers more protection or a magical benefit is something every adventurer looks forward to. In ESO, not only will you find stronger and better armors as you explore, but you’ll find them in different racial styles, as well. Crafters can learn to create weapons and armor in the various racial styles, so you’ll be able to create or find a set of your favorite kind. Check out this new art, where we show off the Orcish, Khajiit, and Argonian heavy armors.
Guild Wars 2 - The Great MMO Migration
ArenaNet is offering to give a free copy of Guild Wars 2 if you submit a video stating you will forswear every other MMO. Here are the details.
The Great MMO Migration is a program which provides MMO gamers two new ways to move to Guild Wars 2. From today until Tuesday, Dec. 3 at 11:59pm (PST), you can enter the video contest for a chance to win a free copy of Guild Wars 2. For those who don't want to enter the contest, ArenaNet is offering their award winning online roleplaying game at 40% off -- their lowest price ever, a historically low price of $29.99.
Information aboutGuild Wars 2
Neverwinter - Editorial @ Unigamesity
Unigamesity has a new article for the F2P RPG Neverwinter dissusing why the end- game content is stale. Give it a read then discuss in the comment section
Neverwinter, a MMORPG based on the popular role-playing game, Dungeons and Dragons, has been out for almost 6 months now, and it’s developed a loyal fan base among the MMORPG community. Along with the Dungeons and Dragons enthusiasts out there, Cryptic Studios and Perfect World Entertainment has propelled the success of this MMORPG immensely through the integration of their unique combat system, relatively in-depth character customization, and leveling scheme. However, there have been a lot of questions on why this game has been met with so much criticism.
One of the main issues that I’ve noticed in the general gaming community for Neverwinter is their lack of end-gamee. Now, I’m sure that I’ll be met with an army of people that disagree with this, saying that that’s why the Foundry, Gauntlgrym, and two separate tiers of dungeon delves are available. But with that, is it really enough? Understandably, everyone has their own definition of what makes a good end-game, but in a game that’s following the MMORPG build, it seems necessary to have a little more end-game content for all players to enjoy. So let’s address each of these end-game activities. Now remember, all of these points are based on my opinions. Everyone is subject to their own likes and dislikes.
WoW - Happy 9th Anniversary
Blizzard has a new post announcing that World of Warcraft is now nine years old.
It’s been nine years since World of Warcraft opened its gates—nine years since fledgling heroes from all walks of life spoke to their first quest giver and began their journey through Azeroth, unaware of where those first steps would ultimately take them.
Nine years is a long time for any voyage, and we couldn’t have hoped for a more dedicated and passionate community to come on this adventure with us. World of Warcraft wouldn’t be what it is today without you: the players who celebrate your passion for the game every day and share your own Azeroth-enhancing contributions with one another. From creating awe-inspiring costumes for BlizzCon to talking complex raid strategies on podcasts, from building fansites to making amazing machinima, the World of Wacraft community has forged a culture and language uniquely its own.
While our primary quest remains to create an epic world for you all to enjoy, we’ve also joined you in the trenches on our own journeys to become heroes of Azeroth. From the very beginning, we’ve engaged in endless battles on the fields between Southshore and Tarren Mill and faced Onyxia in her lair. We knew we needed “more DoTs” and there were many whelps, and we handled it together—carrying off truly epic loot for our efforts.
Elder Scrolls Online - Editorial @ Hardcore Gamer
Hardcore Gamer has a new article for The Elder Scrolls Online asking if the game can capture the essence of the series.
The very idea of this being a game and game world that has to be balanced for thousands of players at a time means the traditional style of exploration we’re used to in Elder Scrolls games simply won’t be possible. Setting aside the idea of faction locking specific areas, there is also the issue of level zoning. In typical Elder Scrolls games there is level scaling to allow you go anywhere at any time and not be totally rocked by the enemies. I am not a huge fan of level scaling in RPGs, but at least in the case of open world games it allows you to explore without the fear of stumbling into an area where you aren’t supposed to be. MMO areas are typically zoned for specific level ranges, meaning you won’t be able to explore without the risk of going somewhere you aren’t equipped to deal with yet. It’s possible the developers have some solution for this issue, but I have no idea how they would do it.
Those are some concerns about The Elder Scrolls Online coming from a huge fan of the series. I think the bit about not being the center of the story could actually be a good thing if it’s done well, but my concerns about exploration are another matter. When it comes right down to it, an Elder Scrolls game without that sense of wonder and discovery is simply not an Elder Scrolls game in my mind. So much of my enjoyment of the series is tied into the freedom to explore and experience the content in whatever order I want, and I just don’t see how The Elder Scrolls Online can capture that same Elder Scrolls magic. It’s entirely possible the developers have found some way to make an MMO with that sense of exploration and discovery the series is known for, but I’ll believe it when I see it.
Neverwinter - Shadowmantle Module
Perfect World Entertainment and Cryptic Studios announce in this new press release that the free content update Shadowmantle will launch on December 5th.
Second Free Expansion to Popular Action MMORPG Introduces Hunter Ranger Class and Dread Ring Zone
(Redwood City, CA) November 21, 2013 - Perfect World Entertainment, Inc. and Cryptic Studios are pleased to announce that the widely-praised free action MMORPG Neverwinter, set in the Dungeons & Dragons® Forgotten Realms® universe from Wizards of the Coast, will launch Shadowmatle, its second expansion, on December 5, 2013. This free content update introduces the Hunter Ranger as a new character class, and an entirely new zone, the Dread Ring, an ashen field buried deep within the Neverwinter Woods.
“We’re incredibly excited to share the release date of Shadowmantle - our second free expansion”, said Cryptic Studios Executive Producer and COO, Craig Zinkievich. “With Neverwinter, our plan has always been to release massive regular updates that provide new unique online experiences with exciting new content for players to explore.”
“Shadowmantle continues to fuel excitement and great adventures for D&D fans. Supporting great storytelling through our digital partners continues to be a priority for the brand and this latest module delivers on that promise,” said Nathan Stewart, Brand Director for D&D at Wizards of the Coast.
Shadowmantle, the second Module for Neverwinter, is a free content expansion in which players tackle the Dread Ring campaign. Within the Dread Ring is a massive structure built for ritual magic. Players explore the surroundings of this broken but still powerful structure and fight Valindra Shadowmantle's army, including an epic battle with the lich herself. In addition to the Hunter Ranger class and new playable content, Shadowmantle features new systems including Artifacts and Collections, and new Paragon Paths for the original classes.
Neverwinter is an action MMORPG that features fast-paced combat and epic dungeons. Players explore the vast city of Neverwinter and its surrounding countryside, learning the vivid history of the iconic city and battling its many enemies. In Neverwinter, players can create their own quests and campaigns with the Foundry, a powerful content creation tool that allows players to seamlessly integrate their adventures in to the live game world.
For more information about Neverwinter Shadowmantle, and to begin playing now for free, please visit the official website: http://www.PlayNeverwinter.com
Elder Scrolls Online - Interactive Map of Tamriel
ZeniMax Online has posted a new interactive map of Tamriel. They promise to add more content in the following weeks so remember to check the map for updates.
Tamriel is a diverse landscape where you’ll find everything from scorching deserts to woodlands, plains, and treacherous swamps, all inhabited by cultures just as disparate as the terrain. If you want to learn more about the setting of ESO and get some new glimpses into the various regions you’ll traverse in-game, we think you’ll love our new site feature, the interactive map of Tamriel.
You can view the map right now to see new screenshots and concept art and to read journals, excerpts from books, conversations overheard at taverns, and more from the world of ESO. We’ll be expanding the map in the future, so keep checking back for more. Don’t forget to tell us which ones are your favorites on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter; we can’t wait to see what you think.
EverQuest - Retrospective @ Rampant Games
So a few weeks ago, I did the unthinkable. After nearly a decade, I reinstalled EverQuest. The original.
Well, “reinstalled” is perhaps the wrong term. My original discs were not used. As the game has gone “free to play,” I just installed the new client. I doubt that my old account is available anymore (any attempts to access it were met with failure), so I started over fresh. Brand new characters in an old, familiar world.
It was weird, man.
By way of backstory – I started playing EverQuest only a few days after it launched (although technically, one of the Sony producers had me goofing around in the beta days before it launched). I played it a lot. I eventually quit simply because I had just started “going indie” and realized that I couldn’t keep up with the necessity to do big raids on a nightly basis and make any productive effort towards my games. I’d played in MUDs before (years before), and I’ve played several MMOs since, but EverQuest will always be the MMO for me – as crude and painfully designed as it was.
After hearing that it’s a lot easier to solo, now, I figured I’d start up a character or two and play for a few hours and see how it panned out.
I’ll go into the mechanics of the changes in part 2. From a game design perspective, it’s been fascinating to see how the game has evolved – to going free-to-play, to intense competition from more modern MMOs, to dealing with having a really huge world and not a lot of players to fill it. Suffice to say that from a gameplay perspective, the absolutely “free” experience is in almost every way superior to the one I paid hundreds and hundreds of dollars for back in 1999-2004. The astonishing thing to me is that the game is still “live.” Whereas other, newer MMOs have come and gone, shutting off the servers for good, Norrath is still around.
Diablo III: Reaper of Souls - Interview
AusGamers has a new video interview for Diablo III: Reaper of Souls with Jesse McCree, and Leonard Boyarski.
AusGamers: I’ve been asked by some of my colleagues to ask this question, and don’t know if you guys can answer it: It is a transition phase at the moment, obviously [Reaper of Souls] is heading to console which is something that you guys had been working on and teasing for quite a while, but it was a no brainer, it fits on consoles so well -- my wife and I play all the time at home; it’s fantastic.
Has it changed the development of Reaper of Souls much, that it’s also coming out on console? Are you guys talking to the teams and sharing stuff, learning something from the console guys at all?
Jesse: Yeah, well we’re not actually separate teams. So the console developers and the PC developers… we’re the Diablo developers. So we’re hand-in-hand and we’re always talking, and we think of the game more -- now that we’ve shipped on console -- as the game. And when we look at the PS4 version, and the new Xbox, and how it works with the PC, we try and make things… I wouldn’t say identical, because the console has some interesting UI challenges, but as far as gameplay goes, and what we want out of the player experience, they’re very tight-knit.
AusGamers: I did actually have one last question: The Auction House is gone obviously, and you’ve got the game out on console, which is offline. The bigger question then is, are we going to see the game playable offline on PC.
Jesse: Offline for PC... the way we feel about the PC version of the game is it’s most fun to play with your friends. So we want to make sure we have systems in place where you can find your friends to play with. They’re constantly available, the tie-in with Battle.net is huge. Being able to see across games, like “Hey, my buddy’s playing Warcraft or StarCraft”, and being able to coordinate with them, is a big deal for us, so we definitely want to keep that available.
SW: TOR - Domination Trailer
Bioware released a new trailer showing off the new space battles from the new expansion Galactic Starfighter being released in December.
Watch the latest trailer and get ready to dominate your opponents in intense PvP space battles in the new Free-to-Play Digital Expansion, Galactic Starfighter, coming to Star Wars™: The Old Republic. Beginning December 3rd, Subscribers get early access as well as exclusive Scout and Strike Fighter "Valiant" Paint Jobs, Pilot Suits, and in-game titles!
Information aboutSW: TOR
Everquest Next - Preview @ GameSpot
GameSpot is the next site to preview Everquest Next Landmark.
In case you missed the initial announcement, EverQuest Next Landmark is a massively multiplayer sandbox in which you get to use voxel brushes, smoothing brushes, and other vital tools to shape, sculpt, and sand the world as you like. These are the same tools the Everquest Next Team is using to build the next-generation Norrath. As for me, I’m no game designer. I had an hour with a high-powered laptop to make something nice. And when that hour was up, what I made wasn’t all that nice. But I still made something, and that was, well, that was something, all right. I certainly can’t claim to not have had all the proper instruments for the job, however. At the start, I looked out onto the rolling green hills from a third-person view and imagined what buildings might be at home in such a place. I then completely dismissed the grand notions that danced in my head, and instead figured I’d start simply: with a rectangular house. Surely some walls, some doors, and a roof wouldn’t be too tough to pull off.
You will soon have a chance to put your own imagination to the test. EverQuest Next Landmark will hit alpha status on February 28, 2014 (hooray for leap year!) or sooner, and will reach closed beta status on March 31, 2014 or sooner. Starting today, you can buy Landmark Founder’s Packs for $19.99, $59.99, or $99.99, each of which nets you some nice goodies. (I wouldn’t mind traipsing about the world with the Trailblazer title, personally.) And of course, Sony Online Entertainment is using a number of avenues for communicating consistently with its community, including its YouTube channel and community round table.
One thing I didn’t get to do was experience Landmark’s resource collection, which starts with the simplest of tools: a copper pick. And then there’s EverQuest Next proper, the upcoming online role-playing game that aims to shake up the genre and may very well succeed. Soon enough, however, we will be starting the first leg of an extended EverQuest journey, and I’m excited to add my own creative expressions to it. Even if that expression is a lopsided house made up of ice and cobblestones.
Neverwinter - Paragon Paths Overview
Cryptic Studios has a new post on the Neverwinter website about new paragon paths.
With the upcoming Module 2: Shadowmantle, Neverwinter will bring more gameplay options and choices for your character. Along with Artifacts and Collections, new Paragon Paths will be available for each of the original playable classes.