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The Stream Team: Vanguard's final week

Fantasy, Video, Vanguard, Free-to-Play, Livestream, The Stream Team

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With only a week left of life, Vanguard players have limited time to jump in and get the all the things done. Massively's MJ is heading back in with the intention of diving into a dungeon or two, although chances are she just might get sidetracked by intense nostalgia. Maybe she'll just take her sorrow for the loss of the game out on some nearby mobs or dungeon dwellers! Join us live at 11:00 a.m. to be a part of the mob butt-kicking group or just to share memories about the game.

Game: Vanguard
Host: MJ Guthrie
Date: Saturday, July 26th, 2014
Time: 11:00 a.m.. EDT

Enjoy our Stream Team video below.

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WRUP: This is why we can't have nice things

Massively Meta, Miscellaneous

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Spacecobra
Welcome back to Massively's What Are You Playing, the game in which we tell you what we're playing this weekend and you giggle at all the lore purists who demand in-game lore-friendly holidays and events instead of Thanksgiving and Valentine's Day because here it is. This is our punishment for hating on Ewoks with cupid wings. This is why we can't have nice things.

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The Daily Grind: Do you have a regular gaming group?

Culture, Opinion, The Daily Grind, Miscellaneous

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eq
Some of my best experiences with MMOs have involved regular gaming nights with a set group of friends. These days I only have a Monday night The Secret World excursion to look forward to with my cabal, but it's undoubtedly the highlight of my gaming week.

I have friends who have been playing a Monday night LotRO skirmish group for years now, and they often regale us with tales of idiocy, running jokes, and extremely slow leveling. But the point is more to socialize and have fun than progress, which I can respect.

Do you have a regular gaming group for your MMO? If so, how did you get into it? What exciting adventures have you gone on lately?

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

Betawatch: July 19 - 25, 2014

Betas, Business Models, Launches, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Betawatch, Miscellaneous, Crowdfunding

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Destiny
Destiny's beta opened its doors to everyone this week... as long as you have a PS3, Xbox Live Gold, or a PlayStation Plus subscription, that is. What else is new in the world of MMO testing? The full Betawatch roundup is below.

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Choose My Adventure: Hunting for trouble (and riches) in ArcheAge

Fantasy, Video, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Choose My Adventure, Livestream, ArcheAge, The Stream Team

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Bouncing between alpha and beta has hindered progress in ArcheAge for Massively's MJ, but it hasn't diminished the fun. As per last week's vote, she spent the past weekend in beta, checking out life on the other continent as an Elf. Now, with the next beta a whole week away, it's back to alpha life as a Firran. But that doesn't mean it's a lonely life! MJ found a spot for her little farm and has been raising some goslings as she continues her crafting and trade exploits. And there's also this thing about joining a guild... we're sure she could find some more trouble to get into with friends. Perhaps she'll even finally make it to prison! Join us live at 7:00 p.m. for MJ's final two-hour CMA Live adventure.

Game: ArcheAge
Host: MJ Guthrie
Date: Friday, July 55th, 2014
Time: 7:00 p.m. EDT

Enjoy our Stream Team video below.

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Analyst predicts that Destiny will sell between 15M and 20M units

Betas, Sci-Fi, MMO Industry, MMOFPS, Destiny, Buy-to-Play

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destiny
I think we all know that Destiny is going to be a very big launch when it happens this September, but one analyst has put a number to that feeling: 15 to 20 million copies sold.

Cowen & Company Analyst Doug Creutz has been tracking the progress of Destiny, saying that it has topped the company's rating chart: "We continue to believe that Destiny is a lock to sell at least 15 million copies. And we now view 20 million copies as increasingly likely."

Creutz said that Destiny will help to sell PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles and predicted that the game will be purchased alongside with many of them. He also noted that Destiny may cannibalize sales from the Call of Duty franchise.

Romero: 'PC is decimating console, F2P has killed a hundred AAA studios'

Business Models, Interviews, MMO Industry, News Items

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Doom co-creator John Romero gave an interesting interview to GamesIndustry.biz recently in which he compares the modern free-to-play model with the early 1990s shareware revolution driven by id's hellish sci-fi shooter.

"Our entire first episode was free -- give us no money, play the whole thing. If you like it and want to play more, then you finally pay us. To me that felt like the ultimate fair [model]. I'm not nickel-and-diming you. I didn't cripple the game in any design way. That was a really fair way to market a game," Romero said. "When we put these games out on shareware, that changed the whole industry. Before shareware there were no CD-ROMs, there were no demos at all. If you wanted to buy Ultima, Secret of Monkey Island, any of those games, you had to look really hard at that box and decide to spend 50 bucks to get it."

He goes on to say that F2P design will mature and at some point lose its stigma. "People are spending a lot of time trying to design this the right way," he explained. "They want people to want to give them money, not have to. If you have to give money, you're doing it wrong. For game designers, that's the holy grail."

Romero also remarks on the parallels between today's industry and the fledgling game industry of 30 years ago that he says was wholly created by indies, as well as the autonomy enjoyed by modern developers as a result of the move away from retail and traditional publishing. "With PC you have free-to-play and Steam games for five bucks. The PC is decimating console, just through price," he said. "Free-to-play has killed a hundred AAA studios."

Riot Games promises to increase diversity in League of Legends

Fantasy, Culture, Events (Real-World), News Items, Free-to-Play, MOBA, League of Legends

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Well, it couldn't be a step down.
League of Legends features a lot of diversity among its male champions, but the female champions all feature a fairly uniform body type. That's something the developers at Riot Games are keen on changing. In response to a fan question at SDCC, producer Omar Kendall said that the company has been introducing new ways of looking at body types and shapes, with the end goal of making female champions who don't look like the others.

Kendall went on to specify that the call for more diversity is one that players should see represented soon in a new character coming out. He also noted that diversity is being strongly considered with further character designs and any new champions. Game designer Brian Feeney noted that it would be a net boon to the game as a whole -- as Riot is very concerned with distinctive silhouettes, a more robust selection of body types makes it easier to tell champions apart.

Firefly Online brings the crew back together (for voices)

Culture, Previews, News Items, Mobile, Miscellaneous

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Well, the important thing is that Sean Maher is working.
Despite the name, Firefly Online isn't really an MMO. But it does feature online interactions, and perhaps more importantly, it does feature the original cast together again. If you were hoping to hear Captain Malcolm Reynolds growl at you while you played the game -- and let's face it, odds are almost certain you were -- you can be happy to know that the main cast will be reprising their roles for the first time since the movie.

Alan Tudyk will also be voicing multiple roles, and Michael Fairman will be playing Niska, who is apparently hiring if you're none too worried about your conscience bothering you. The game is set to release in 2015 on multiple platforms.

Marvel Heroes celebrates Guardians of the Galaxy

Super-hero, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play, Marvel Heroes

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Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy film hits theaters on August 1st, and Marvel Heroes is counting down with its 10 Days of Guardians of the Galaxy in-game event. Players can complete three shared quests once per day to max out their allotment of Planet X Bark, which can then be redeemed for loot boxes with varying levels of unique rewards.

There's also a daily login reward, so head to the official Marvel Heroes website to read all about it!

Working As Intended: It's not the journey or the destination

Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Opinion, Massively Meta, Miscellaneous, Sandbox, MMORPG, Working As Intended

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FFXIV
If you play MMORPGs, you've no doubt been told, hundreds of times, "Slow down! Don't rush! Stop to smell the flowers! It's the journey, not the destination!"

Typically, you're being told to slow down in an MMO whose focus is the destination: the endgame. All the good stuff is at the end. The best dungeons are there. The best gear is there. The best PvP content and titles and achievements are there. The players the devs cater to are there. Patches and expansions provide new content there. In fact, the only reason to play the rest of the game is to level up to get there. The midgame is a hindrance, a barrier to the "real" game, and it's usually neglected by developers once most players are through it.

So if games themselves reward you only for arriving at the destination, why on earth should you feel bad for not savoring the journey?

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Massively interviews EVE executive producer Andie Nordgren

Sci-Fi, Video, EVE Online, Culture, Expansions, Interviews, MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, Dev Diaries, Sandbox, Subscription, MMORPG

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EVE Online title image
If you've been following the development of EVE Online lately, chances are you've heard of Andie 'CCP Seagull' Nordgren and her mission to make deep space colonisation and player-built stargates a reality. Andie has spearheaded the direction of EVE's development over the past few expansions and has gathered a considerable following in the EVE community. At EVE Fanfest 2014, we heard her plans to overhaul EVE's outdated sovereignty and corporation management systems, and to eventually introduce new deep space colonisation gameplay.

Today CCP announced that Andie Nordgren has been promoted to the position of Executive Producer on EVE Online. I caught up with her for a chat about development on EVE and to find out what this promotion means for the future the game. I've pulled together the important details from the interview in this article, and if you still have burning questions for Andie Nordgren, she's doing an AMA thread on Reddit right now!

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Transformers Universe MOBA now has motorbikes

Betas, Sci-Fi, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Transformers Universe, MOBA

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Jagex's Transformers Universe MOBA has added Swagger and Diabla to its roster of playable bots, the first such addition since the free-to-play title transitioned into open beta.

Swagger is an Interceptor-class Autobot who uses his cloaking device to enable hit-and-run gameplay that Jagex says will decimate Decepticon players with reduced defenses. Diabla, on the other hand, is a damage-focused Decepticon who roams the map hunting for single targets and "takes them offline without a second thought."

You can read Jagex's full PR spiel after the break.

[Source: Jagex press release]

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RIFT's Unicornalia returns through July 30

Fantasy, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, PvE, Free-to-Play, RIFT

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Did you miss out on RIFT's Unicornalia event last May? Well, it's back, according to a post on the fantasy MMO's website. Refugee unicorns from the Plane of Life require your assistance, and you'll need to "find the PRI representatives in your capital city to discover how you can help."

Onyx Unicorn mounts are obtainable via rare drops from the Hooves and Horns event in Moonshade Highlands, as a reward for completing the Rainbow in the Dark achievement, or from the game's cash shop. Opal Unicorn mounts can be had from daily quests or the store.

Unicornalia runs through July 30th.

Destiny beta now open to all (sorta)

Betas, Events (In-Game), MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items

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Bungie has expanded Destiny's beta to include everyone regardless of console (PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Xbox 360) and regardless of whether or not you've landed a beta code. There is a catch, though, and that catch is that you must have either an Xbox Live Gold or PlayStation Plus subscription.

The firm plans to stress test its servers this weekend, and it will also be giving away an in-game emblem for players who help out on Saturday, July 26th.

[Update]: The beta does not require a Plus subscription on the PlayStation 3.

The Daily Grind: Do you suck at MMOs?

Culture, Game Mechanics, Opinion, Massively Meta, The Daily Grind, Miscellaneous

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WoW
That's a serious question.

Back in February, our sister site WoW Insider published an editorial called You're bad at WoW, and so am I. Author Olivia Grace argued that no one is perfect at any game, that everyone makes mistakes, and that the worst mistake is not admitting those weaknesses because then you'll just keep on sucking. Reading our comments sometimes, you'd think that everyone reading here is a world-class player who's better at ALL OF THE GAMES than professionals and certainly than the developers, when the reality is most of our readers are probably above-average gamers slacking off at work. Ahem.

Personally, I'm pretty good at the psychological warfare of economic PvP and general PvE dungeon-running, but man, jumping puzzles and platforming -- I'm horrible at these things. What about you? Do you suck at MMOs? I promise I won't laugh at you if you won't laugh at me.

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

Darkfall creates a new customizable user interface

Fantasy, Darkfall, Patches, PvP, Subscription

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darkfall
Today's patch for Darkfall brings a major revamp to the user interface that's long been in the making.

"We started changing things with the revisions we did to windows like chat, feats, and roles, and as it was expected, the time had come to give some attention to what we call internally the 'Front of Darkfall,' aka the Action Mode HUD (Heads-Up Display)," Aventurine posted.

The action HUD has several new components including crosshair, healthbar, and target information. This then can be customized in regard to location, opacity, icon selection, and size.

The Think Tank: Saying farewell to Vanguard

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Opinion, Vanguard, Massively Meta, The Think Tank, Sunsets

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Vanguard is being retired forever next week, and this time there won't be a studio waiting in the wings to rescue it from doom. Today, Massively's staff hopes to give it a fond farewell. Join us in sharing our thoughts about the world of Telon.

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SWTOR will charge a cool 50 million credits for guild ships

Betas, Sci-Fi, Business Models, Economy, Game Mechanics, Guilds, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, Star Wars: The Old Republic

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We hope Star Wars: The Old Republic players have been saving up their credits for a rainy day because that rainy day is here and it wants its money. BioWare Community Manager Eric Musco announced on today's livestream that guild ships, expected in next month's Galactic Strongholds expansion, will cost a whopping 50 million credits, making it arguably the most expensive single item in the game as it surpasses the cost of the ST-7 Recon Walker and Dathomir Rancor.

Massively's SWTOR expert Larry Everett notes that while it's not uncommon for a lone player to have a tenth that amount and the 'wealthy' title is granted for amassing 10 million credits, small guilds might struggle summoning the funds for these ships.

Star Trek Online throws bonus dilithium ore weekend

Sci-Fi, Events (In-Game), Star Trek Online, Free-to-Play

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sto
Live long and mine on! To boldly mine where no one has mined before! The needs of the mine outweigh the needs of the newbie... or the vet! Whatever your Star Trek Online mining credo, prepare to use it this weekend for Cryptic's bonus dilithium ore event.

From today through Monday, July 28th, players will be able to mine 100% extra ore from the Vlugta asteroid field and the fleet dilithium mine. There will be a 50% bonus for gaining dilithium elsewhere in the game.

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The Stream Team


Stream Schedule | Twitch Channel | Past Streams
 

Release Dates

Core Games | In Testing | Crowdfund Hopefuls
AoW: Warrior's Ascension July 31, 2014
Destiny September 9, 2014
The Crew November 11, 2014
LEGO Minifigures Online Fall 2014
ArcheAge 2014
Firefall 2014
WoW Warlords of Draenor 2014

Meet the Team

Brianna Royce Editor-in-Chief
Jef Reahard Managing Editor
Justin Olivetti Contributing Editor
Eliot Lefebvre Contributing Editor
Shawn Schuster Contributing Editor
MJ Guthrie Contributing Editor
Anatoli Ingram Columnist
Brendan Drain Columnist
Larry Everett Columnist
About Team Massively | Contact Us | FAQ

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Latest episode: Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

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