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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.

Hearthstone opens up the first wing of Naxxramas

Fantasy, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, Miscellaneous

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Make quick werk of... wait, that's a different wing.  Never mind.
Are you ready to take on Naxxramas in Hearthstone? Good! You can start now. The first wing of the new adventure is available to players today; it'll send you through the Arachnid Quarter in a trip down a spider-filled memory lane. If you're on the fence about trying it out, you can take on this wing for free now through early September (the exact date for the end of free access will be announced later on).

Players will be able to purchase further wings of Naxxramas with either in-game currency or real money, with discounts available for bulk purchases. But you don't have to just hope you'll enjoy the adventure; you can log in and try it for yourself right now.

World of Warcraft shows off revamped Tauren ladies

World of Warcraft, Betas, Fantasy, Expansions, Previews, News Items, Races, Subscription

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No word on whether or not their portraits will finally open their eyes.
As Warlords of Draenor approaches release, the art team behind World of Warcraft continues finishing the revamped models for the game's races. The latest race to get a revamp is the female Tauren; while male Tauren have been in the beta client for quite some time, players have until now seen only quick shots of what the new female model would look like. Now you can see her in all her glory, and even at a glance it's a massive improvement.

The original model was extremely angular and low-detail due to the technology available when the game was first made, but the revamped model has much more definition in her fur and body shape. The only big silhouette change is a shrinking of her hands, with the official design blog calling the original model's hands "out of control." Take a peek at the official preview for more details on the updated ladycows.

Neverwinter unveils the Dragonborn Pack

Fantasy, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, Races, Neverwinter

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FUZZ ROW D'AWW!  Please don't sue.
Were you worried that Neverwinter's fourth major update, Tyranny of Dragons, would feature too few dragons? We're not sure how you could have been worried about that, but the good news is that you can bring even more dragon into your play experience by playing a Dragonborn. No, not that kind of Dragonborn; the kind that's literally half-dragon. Or all dragon, but... humanoid dragon. You get the idea. And you can play one.

Buying the game's Dragonborn Legend Pack unlocks the new race as well as a set of cosmetic armor for your new man-dragon, the special Heart of the Red Dragon artifact, and a variety of other rewards including a race change token. The pack is on sale until August 18th, allowing players a chance to get in on the race at a discount. Whether you want to just one-up roleplayers claiming to be half-dragon or can't get enough lizards in your gameplay, you can pick up the pack now if it's your sort of fun.

Get a good (and hilarious) overview of Trove with this video

Betas, Fantasy, Free-to-Play, Guides, Sandbox, Trove

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Trove
Have you ever caught yourself wondering what Trove is, exactly? Is it a sandbox? Is it a Minecraft clone? Is it a bizzaro pixelated version of Second Life? It's certainly hard to adequately describe what this quirky Trion Worlds title is going for, which is why it's simply better to see it.

TheHiveLeader created a four-and-a-half-minute video in which he touches on Trove's selling points, from its existing classes to what players can do with cornerstones. It's also pretty funny and moves along at a brisk pace, which is why it's earned today's Massively Seal of Community Approval. Check it out after the break!

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Shroud of the Avatar's Release 8 is here, and so are its tutorials

Betas, Fantasy, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Sandbox, Shroud of the Avatar, Buy-to-Play

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It's time for Shroud of the Avatar's Release 8. No really, it's time right now, as you're reading this. Portalarium has published instructions and a lengthy list of features (both included and not included) in this particular build.

The focus is on PvP this time around, and to that end both Scott Jennings and Chris Spears have posted tutorials. Jennings' takes the form of a PvP deck-building guide that's hosted on the SotA forums, while Spears narrates a 24-minute video that you can watch after the break.

Release 8 started at 11:30 a.m. EDT this morning and it runs until 11:00 a.m. EDT on Monday, July 28th.

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Chaos Theory: The value of The Secret World's DLCs

Horror, Real-Life, Expansions, Patches, Opinion, The Secret World, Chaos Theory, Buy-to-Play

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Chaos Theory: The value of The Secret World's DLCs
This question was posed to me recently by a few different readers and stream viewers: Are The Secret World's DLCs a good value? As I pondered the question, I decided that instead of answering each query personally, it would be a good topic to explore here in Chaos Theory. Besides, the answer is definitely not a short one! (It can't even fit in a single column!)

So why can't I just fire off a simple yes or no to this question? The biggest problem is trying to provide an objective answer to a very subjective situation. While the meaning of value itself is clearly defined, said definition emphasizes that the judgment is individual to whoever is involved. How each player defines value is very personal, so I can't really answer for anyone except myself. What I can do, however, is provide as much of the objective information that I can so you can make your own subjective judgment on the value. Are TSW's issues and sidestories packs worth it? Let's look at the value from various viewpoints and you decide!

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Play Destiny this weekend, get an exclusive beta emblem

Betas, Sci-Fi, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Destiny, Buy-to-Play

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In case you needed a reason to log into Destiny's beta this weekend, Bungie is offering an incentive in the form of an exclusive in-game emblem. You'll need to be online at 5:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday, July 26th, to qualify.

Black Desert's NA and EU publisher is Daum

Betas, Fantasy, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Sandbox, Black Desert

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Black Desert's search for a Western publisher has made news on more than one occasion in recent months. As it turns out, though, the fantasy sandbox MMO will be published in North America and Europe by the same company publishing it in its native Korea.

That company is Daum, one of South Korea's largest internet conglomerates. News of the deal was confirmed by Steparu via an email exchange with a representative of Black Desert development studio Pearl Abyss. While there is no information available regarding Western beta dates, Pearl Abyss began working on an English client over seven months ago. Black Desert Korea will kick off its third closed beta sometime in late August or early September.

Skyforge to premiere at Gamescom

Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, New Titles, Skyforge

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SkyForge
Skyforge, the upcoming MMO from Obsidian Entertainment and the team that brought you Allods Online, will be making its debut at this year's Gamescom in Cologne, Germany.

Along with World of Speed and Armored Warfare, Skyforge will be presented by My.com at its booth in the business hall and as a playable demo for press. This will be the first reveal of two of Skyforge's classes and brand new locations. Interested players can also sign up for the closed beta for all three games at the official websites linked below.

[Source: My.com press release]

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AoW: Warrior's Ascension July 31, 2014
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