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DUST 514

EVE Online and DUST 514 celebrate the holiday season

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Events (In-Game), News Items, Free-to-Play, Consoles, MMOFPS, DUST 514, Sandbox, Subscription

It's usually hard to find a way to mention a good year and DUST 514 in the same space.
The year is wrapping up and EVE Online players are getting presents to celebrate. CCP Games has posted a short recap of the past year and an announcement of the holiday gifts players can expect to receive as a paid subscriber. That includes snowballs, fireworks, jackets, and a set of trinkets to commemorate the past year. Players can also look forward to 20 free days of multiple character training as a final additional gift. All of these promotions are available until January 11th.

Meanwhile, for those of you who prefer to explore this particular universe via a console shooter, DUST 514 is having a holiday event with its 12 Days of DUST. Starting on December 25th, each day will bring a new reward to players who finish three daily missions, so you'll have to keep playing through January 5th to unlock all the rewards. A special reward is awaiting those who clear everything, so get strapped in and ready to shoot if you want to celebrate the holidays that way.

Perfect Ten: Mobile apps to enhance your MMO lifestyle

World of Warcraft, EverQuest, EverQuest II, Fallen Earth, Opinion, RuneScape, Mobile, Wizard101, RIFT, Final Fantasy XIV, DUST 514, Guides, EverQuest Next, Perfect Ten, Miscellaneous, Landmark

We're living in the age of smart phones, when there are more cell phones than there are people on this planet. I can't go anywhere without seeing people constantly whipping out their little rectangular companions for the constant stream of information, social connection, and Candy Crush interludes.

While MMOs aren't making great headway on these devices, in part due to the limited input scheme, several wise studios have made good use of the mobile market to give players a way to keep in touch with their games even while AFK. Today we're going to count down, count up, and count sideways 10 official mobile apps that will enhance your MMO lifestyle.

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Not So Massively: SMITE's championships, LoL's cinematic, and Destiny's brief beta

Betas, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Events (In-Game), Launches, New Titles, Previews, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, DUST 514, Not So Massively, Sandbox, MOBA, League of Legends, Firefall, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Shroud of the Avatar, Path of Exile, Hearthstone

Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.
  • Destiny closed the gates on beta until its launch in September. Analysts predict as many as 20 million units could be sold.
  • SMITE posted dates for its world championship event in Atlanta, Georgia: January 9th through 11th, 2015.
  • Heroes of the Storm announced new hero Rehgar Earthfury.
  • Former Destiny composer Marty O'Donnell settled his lawsuit against Bungie for "$95,000 in unpaid work, vacation time and damages."
  • League of Legends unveiled new cinematic, A New Dawn, and cracked down on bad seeds.
  • ESPN says it is "delighted" with Dota 2's tournament performance.
  • Warframe has opened up PC-to-PS4 account migrations through Friday. (Thanks, Olorunsegun Adewumi.)
  • Firefall implemented new raids just ahead of its relaunch.
  • Hearthstone opened up the first wing of Naxxramas.
  • Transformers Universe now has motorbikes because of course it does.
  • Games of Glory launched Steam Greenlight and Kickstarter campaigns.
  • Path of Exile ends the sale of its supporter packs at midnight tonight.
  • DUST 514 shut down its Oceania server.
  • Riot Games promised to increase diversity in League of Legends.
  • Shroud of the Avatar posted beta release 8, which emphasizes tutorials and PvP.

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DUST 514 shuts down Oceania server

Sci-Fi, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, DUST 514

dust 514
Oceania DUST 514 players have gotten an eviction notice from their home. CCP announced that it will be closing the game's Oceania battleserver this upcoming Monday, citing low population and player exploitation of those remaining.

"Due to some players from other battleservers using Oceania battleservers as a venue for farming battles thanks to the lower population there, we will be shutting them down during downtime on Monday, 28th of July 2014. Any players in the Oceania region will be directed to either the Asia battleservers or the US battleservers, depending on their individual ISP routing," CCP posted.

The studio said that Oceania players will be seeing "a slight increase in latency" due to the move.

[Thanks to Ghural for the tip!]

Not So Massively: Hearthstone's expansion, God of Destiny's greenlighting, and Dead Island's MOBA

Betas, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Expansions, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, Consoles, MMOFPS, DUST 514, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, MOBA, Age of Wushu, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous, Hearthstone

Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

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Kill lots of DUST 514 players and you'll get to name the weapon you used

Sci-Fi, Contests, Events (In-Game), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, DUST 514

Want to name a weapon DUST 514? Log in and start killing, then. CCP is hosting a competition to name the new officer variants of everything from assault rifles to mass drivers to shotguns in its EVE shooter sidequel. From now through July 21st, players with the most kills on a single weekend using a base prototype weapon will get to pick that weapon's name and will also receive 30 copies of it.

Each weekend's score is tallied individually, CCP says. Full details are available at the DUST 514 website.

CCP aiming 'to create virtual worlds more meaningful than real life'

Sci-Fi, Video, EVE Online, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, DUST 514, Sandbox, Subscription

CCP CEO Hilmar Petursson closed this year's GameHorizon conference with a 30-minute talk focused around EVE Online's history and its future.

Petursson starts at the very beginning with CCP's 1997 founding and carries it through the present day in which the firm employs 400 people at studios ranging from Reykjavik to Shanghai to San Francisco to Atlanta. He doesn't shy away from what he refers to as the company's "turbulent times," but he also says that CCP's mission -- "to create virtual worlds more meaningful than real life" -- will continue well into the future.

You can watch the full presentation after the cut.

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EVE Evolved: Growing the EVE Universe

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Business Models, Culture, Lore, MMO Industry, New Titles, Opinion, MMOFPS, EVE Evolved, DUST 514, Sandbox, Subscription, MMORPG

EVE Evolved title image
For much of EVE Online's early history, the playerbase saw consistent organic growth with no end in sight and developer CCP Games was able to stay laser-focused on its single game. The EVE universe has even had to grow several times to accomodate the increase in players, most notably with the opening of the drone nullsec regions and Apocrypha's addition of 2,499 hidden wormhole systems. EVE has survived the launch of countless high-profile MMOs in its lifetime and even weathered the monumental industry shift toward free-to-play business models, but it hasn't been plain sailing. While subscriptions have reportedly grown year-on-year, EVE's average concurrent player numbers haven't really increased since 2009.

The active EVE playerbase isn't really growing, so it should come as no surprise that CCP has been trying to expand the EVE universe on other fronts. Though the first attempt with console FPS DUST 514 was an unmitigated disaster, EVE players still seem quietly optimistic about its PC reboot as EVE: Legion. Dogfighter EVE: Valkyrie has also piqued the interest of the emerging virtual reality community and has the potential to introduce EVE to thousands of fresh faces. EVE's Creative Director Torfi Frans Olafsson even hinted during Fanfest 2014 that EVE Online, Valkyrie and Legion might all share a single login and that characters may eventually be able to switch between games at will.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look at why I think a shared login could be a stroke a genius, and interview EVE's Creative Director and Valkyrie's Executive Producer to find out what the future holds for the EVE universe.

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CCP lays off 49 at Reykjavik office [Updated]

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, MMO Industry, News Items, DUST 514, Sandbox

CCP logo

According to Polygon, CCP is currently undergoing a "gigantic cut" in its Reykjavik offices. The EVE Online developer confirmed that 49 people are being let go.

"As part of our strategy to focus on the EVE Universe, today CCP conducted a restructuring that resulted in the layoff of 49 people in our publishing organization," the firm said. "Though it is hard to say goodbye to our friends and family, this action concludes the process we started several months ago. CCP has provided severance packages and job placement assistance for those affected. Development teams and plans for EVE Online, EVE: Valkyrie, DUST 514, and Project Legion are not impacted by the restructuring."

[Update]: CCP has told Massively that the 49 layoffs were from multiple offices and not just Reykjavik.

EVE Fanfest 2015 dated, tix discounted for limited time

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, DUST 514, Sandbox, Subscription

EVE Fanfest
EVE Fanfest 2014 is still a recent and warm (if scandal-ridden) memory, but CCP is already looking ahead to next year. The studio opened the doors today for fans to pick up tickets to next year's convention.

EVE Fanfest 2015 is scheduled for March 19th through the 21st, 2015, at the same place it's been in Reykjavik, Iceland. The studio says that in keeping with the space-themed MMO, there will be an observable solar eclipse during the event.

CCP is offering several tiers of early discounts, starting with the current early bird limited special offer. While the regular price for the tickets will be $200, players can pick theirs up right now for $125 or 13 PLEX apiece.

EVE Evolved: Eleven years of EVE Online

Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, EVE Online, Business Models, Culture, Events (In-Game), Expansions, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Opinion, MMOFPS, World of Darkness, EVE Evolved, DUST 514, Dev Diaries, Sandbox, Anniversaries, Player-Generated Content, Subscription, MMORPG

EVE Evolved title image
‚ÄčIt seems that every year another few MMOs have closed their doors or convert to free-to-play business models to stay afloat. EVE Online has always enjoyed a level of insulation from these market trends elsewhere in the genre, and just last week on May 6th it celebrated its 11th year of year-on-year subscription growth. Following on from my previous column celebrating the EVE Evolved column's sixth year of operation, this week I'll be summarising all the major EVE news stories throughout the year.

It's been a big year for EVE fans, one that many of us can be proud to have been a part of. The EVE community turned its financial wizardry toward the real world and raised over $190,000 US in relief aid following a typhoon hitting the Philippines, and CCP even built a monument dedicated to the community. Several massive player battles once again put EVE on the global media's radars, and the Odyssey and Rubicon expansions revitalised the game for explorers and PvPers alike. But not everyone can hold his heads up high this year, with details of more cyberbullying within EVE coming to light and several players being banned for defacing the EVE monument in Reykjavik.

In this anniversary retrospective, I summarise all the major EVE news from the year in one place and take a look at what the future may hold for the EVE universe.

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CCP permabans EVE monument vandals

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, MMO Industry, Legal, DUST 514, Sandbox

Citing a "zero tolerance approach to dealing with harassment and victimization in the EVE Universe," CCP announced today that it has permanently banned the three vandals who defaced the new EVE monument in Reykjavik, Iceland. A fourth individual received a six-month ban.

The fact that the monument was vandalized is an insult to the entire community, not just to the individual who's name was directly targeted by the vandalism," the studio posted.

The ban includes not only CCP's games but attendance at Fanfest as well. CCP declined to release the in-game names of the individuals and said that any future development related to the incident will be kept confidential.

Not So Massively: Project Legion's reveal, Star Citizen's $43M mark, and Hearthstone's F2P model

Betas, Fantasy, Historical, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Previews, PvP, News Items, Mythos, War, Free-to-Play, Marvel Heroes, MMOFPS, DUST 514, Not So Massively, MOBA, Diablo III, Crowdfunding, Elite: Dangerous

Welcome back to No So Massively, where every Monday we round up the highlights from the past week in the world of MOBAs, roguelikes, MMOTCGs, and other games that aren't quite MMOs.

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EVE Fanfest 2014: CCP responds to DUST 514 fans' rage over Project Legion

Sci-Fi, Business Models, Culture, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, MMOFPS, Events (Massively's Coverage), DUST 514, Dev Diaries, Sandbox

When this year's DUST 514 keynote presentation rolled around two days ago at EVE Fanfest 2014, fans of the PlayStation 3 shooter were understandably bewildered. Many tuned into the livestream of the talk or even attended Fanfest in person, expecting to hear an hourlong breakdown of the year's DUST 514 updates and some plans for the game's future. Viewers were instead met with a 30-minute presentation on something called Project Legion, a proposed plan to bring DUST's style of shooter gameplay to the PC in an entirely new MMO. In the absence of any information to the contrary, DUST players have understandably concluded that their game is being quietly closed down in favour of Legion.

Earlier today at the CCP Presents keynote presentation, CCP took the opportunity to respond to fears and complaints that have surfaced on the DUST 514 community forum. The official word is that DUST 514 isn't being shuttered and that development will continue, but CCP admitted that it will have less development time going forward. A promise was also made that if Legion goes ahead, the names and assets of every DUST player will be copied over to the new title. That won't be much consolation for the people who bought a PS3 just to play DUST 514 or those who game only on consoles, as Legion is currently being developed only for PC. Another caveat is that Legion has not even been confirmed yet; It was presented in much the same style as EVE: Valkyrie last year, as an experiment that CCP could put significant resources into if players like it.

Whether you're a die-hard fan of internet spaceships or just a gawker on the sidelines, EVE Fanfest is the EVE Online event of the year (and the key source of new EVE Valkyrie scoops!). Follow Massively's Brendan Drain as he reports back on this year's Fanfest starpower, scheming, and spoilers from exotic Reykjavik, Iceland.

EVE Fanfest 2014: Project Legion brings DUST 514 to the PC

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, PvE, Consoles, MMOFPS, First Impressions, Events (Massively's Coverage), DUST 514, Dev Diaries, Sandbox

One of the main complaints about DUST 514 since its announcement was the fact that the game was a PlayStation 3 exclusive. DUST was CCP's first attempt to break into the massive console shooter market and its first game to use the free-to-play business model, but things didn't exactly go to plan. The millions of console gamers CCP expected to flood into New Eden failed to materialise, reviews were mixed at best, and DUST quietly fell off the console radar. Players have been asking for a PC release ever since, as the game's unique connection with the EVE Online universe could potentially make it popular with existing EVE players.

If you've been hoping for DUST on the PC, your prayers may have just been answered. A few hours ago at EVE Fanfest 2014, CCP demonstrated a prototype of something it calls Project Legion -- an attempt to bring DUST 514's shooter gameplay to the PC but with all-new sandbox gameplay. The project is extremely early in development, but CCP was able to put together a concept demo for Fanfest attendees showing how the game will work. Most of the demo was a slick UI and transition into a DUST planetary environment which has had its graphics significantly improved. DUST 514 is severely limited by the specs of the PS3, so Legion's being on PC means it should actually still look that good when deployed.

In addition to signing up for mercenary contracts, players will be able to scan the entire EVE universe for open sandbox salvage zones where resources have been found. These planets have no pre-defined missions, victory conditions, or teams; instead, they're free-for-all PvE zones with open-world PvP, and CCP hopes that this will promote the same kind of emergent gameplay as is seen in EVE. It won't be a true sandbox until you can stab someone in the back, CCP announced to a pleased audience. Little else is known about the project, and the announcement has raised some pretty big questions. Will Legion link in with the EVE universe in any way like DUST? And what will happen to DUST 514 on PS3 if Legion takes off?

Whether you're a die-hard fan of internet spaceships or just a gawker on the sidelines, EVE Fanfest is the EVE Online event of the year (and the key source of new DUST 514 and EVE Valkyrie scoops!). Follow Massively's Brendan Drain as he reports back on this year's Fanfest starpower, scheming, and spoilers from exotic Reykjavik, Iceland.

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