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Betas

Onigiri MMO coming to consoles next year

Betas, Fantasy, Free-to-Play, Consoles

onigiri
The Japanese mythology MMO, Onigiri, is officially on its way to the Xbox One (and PlayStation 4) next year in North America and Europe, Windows Central reports. The title, which is developed by Cyberstep, will be free-to-play and is already live on the Xbox One in Japan.

Onigiri came out on the PC in 2013. The console version may have patches slightly lagging behind the PC version, but it will otherwise be identical in form and function. There will be no cross-over play between platforms.

While Windows Central says that this will be Xbox One's "first MMO," that overlooks the already-released Destiny and The Crew as well as other titles on the way, including Elder Scrolls Online, PlanetSide 2, All Points Bulletin, Neverwinter, The Division, and Warframe.

Space strategy MMO AD2460 launches on December 29th

Betas, Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, Launches, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Browser, MMORTS, Miscellaneous, Subscription

AD2460
After two months in open beta, space strategy MMO AD2460 has announced its official launch for December 29th. The spiritual sequel to 2000's Planetarion, AD2460 is playable in-browser, meaning it works on mobile too. Players will be spending their time developing alliances and empires and fleets, and once the game is out of beta, they can expect to pay $1 a week in sub fees.

Fifth Season's Christian Lassem dropped by our comment section earlier this fall to dispel confusion about the game and show off a slice of combat via video, which we've included below.

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See Bless Online's character creation options

Betas, Fantasy, Video, Classes, Free-to-Play

bless online
Getting a closer look at character creation options when a title is deep in testing is always useful, especially to those of us who lack access to the beta. Steparu.com took Bless Online's character creator out for a spin as the title's closed beta test revved back up, and you can enjoy a sneak peek as a result.

Steparu noted that it doesn't look as though classes are gender-locked, although players may be wedded to a faction once they roll up their first character. You can watch the character creation video after the jump, and make sure you bounce over to Steparu.com for more videos on several of the game's classes.

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Warhammer 40k: Eternal Crusade discounts its founder packs

Betas, Business Models, News Items, Warhammer 40k, Miscellaneous

Eternal Crusade
Just in time for the holidays, Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is discounting its founder upgrade packs. "We have big plans coming in 2015," says Behaviour Online, "and want to allow our fans the chance to get some extra upgrades now."

Starting December 17th, the game will offer a 25% discount on pack upgrades, which makes the cheapest packs $30 and the elite Dawn of the Imperium pack $97.50. Founder packs count as preorders, even at the lowest tiers. While the game will be F2P upon launch, free players are restricted to the Ork Boyz faction.

We've included the latest video, a teaser for the studio's Friday Twitch event, below. Behaviour will be hosting a Razer product giveaway and showing off a brand-new war zone.

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The Transformers Universe MOBA is shutting down

Betas, Business Models, MMO Industry, News Items, Miscellaneous, Transformers Universe, MOBA, Sunsets

Bad news today, folks: MOBA Transformers Universe will close before it even leaves beta as part of Jagex's and Hasbro's efforts to "realign their plans and focuses for 2015." UK developer Jagex had posted about impending layoffs for the TU team back in November, but it appears that it's really game over now:
The shutdown period will begin from today. As part of the winding down we will be refunding all those that have purchased a Founders Pack, as well as anyone that has purchased relic bundles and starter packs. These refunds should be all processed in the next 30 days. In addition we will be closing the ability for new players to make accounts, those of you that already have accounts will continue to be able to use them until the closure date. [...] We will also be pushing an update live today that will switch off the ability for players to buy any more relic packs, or starter bundles.

[O]n 31st Jan 2015 @ 10am GMT we will be shutting down all servers and forums and will freeze all Transformers Universe related accounts. These accounts will then be live for another 60 days (approx.) for any final queries before deletion on 31st March 2015. Between now and the date of closure the Jagex CM team will continue to operate on the forums and we will provide relevant updates on the website as necessary.
Jagex asks players to contact the customer services team if they have not received their refunds by January 16th. Our hearts go out to the players and developers who hoped to see the title succeed.

Elite: Dangerous' launch-day roundup

Betas, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Business Models, Launches, New Titles, News Items, Massively Meta, Crowdfunding, Elite: Dangerous, Buy-to-Play

Elite
Successfully Kickstarted just over two years ago, David Braben's space MMO Elite: Dangerous formally launched early this morning, a rare buy-to-play entry in the MMO market and one of the most high-profile Kickstarter MMOs to actually reach launch to date. If you're heading to the comments right now to inform us that Elite isn't an MMO because of its single-player mode, know that the tide's against you; even Frontier, in the midst of controversy over the cancelation of its originally promised offline mode, justified that decision because Elite is an MMO and "technically [...] always has been."

Elite: Dangerous won Massively's Most Underrated MMO of the year by a hair just last week. Check out the launch trailer and our roundup of the best Elite news, streams, and hands-on articles by the Massively staff below!

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Not So Massively: HEX gets new cards, Dota 2 cancels Christmas, and Hearthstone lands on Android (sorta)

Betas, Trailers, Video, Expansions, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MOBA, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Elite: Dangerous, Path of Exile, HEX, Hearthstone, E-sports, OARPG

HEX
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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Zombie sandbox MMO Immune enters early access on Steam

Betas, Horror, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Game Mechanics, News Items, Promotions, Post-Apocalyptic, Miscellaneous, Crowdfunding, Buy-to-Play

Immune
If you can't wait for H1Z1 and want to slay some zombies this Christmas, perhaps isometric post-apoc sandbox Immune will suffice. Billed by developer Vidiludi Games & Entertainment as an MMORPG, Immune launches into early access today and is pushing for Steam greenlighting.
"Immune is a humorous early access sandbox survival MMORPG with PVP and PVE, in which you scavenge, hunt, and even grow your own food to survive. Inspired by classics such as DayZ, Rust, and Stalker, Immune takes place in a post-apocalyptic world following an outbreak of a devastating pandemic leaving only a handful of survivors. But beware of the gasmask wearing NPCs doing everything in their power to avoid the infection by shooting everyone sick or immune in the face!"
The game is currently $10 US on the developer's website, half off as a holiday promotion.

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Borderlands Online will use heavy instancing

Betas, Sci-Fi, MMO Industry, Miscellaneous

bo
So, Borderlands Online. You know, that popular game-turned-MMO conversion that we'll probably never get to see in the West? At least we have a few new details that will taunt us forever with our lack of this sci-fi western title.

The title looks to be a more instance-heavy MMO, akin to Dragon Nest or the original Guild Wars, with co-op adventure zones but no mass shared open world zone. Instanced MMO gaming isn't everyone's cup of tea, of course, but it doesn't automatically mean it will be horrible, just different. Other details that Chinese game site Sina discovered is that there will be over 20 million guns, plenty of hidden secrets, and some form of PvP.

Elite: Dangerous has no offline mode for story reasons

Betas, Sci-Fi, News Items, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Elite: Dangerous, Buy-to-Play

These just keep going, huh.
Frontier Developments head honcho David Braben has been working overtime to defend the 11th-hour revelation that Elite: Dangerous will have no offline play option. A recent video interview with Braben includes his response to these issues; he states that it's not off the table, but it's incompatible with the way that the game handles storytelling. The game world is meant to change over time based on player actions, and it wasn't as functional without players being affected by each another.

Braben explains that the game's missions are generated in part by aggregates of player activity; if a majority of players choose to support a rebel faction on a given planet, for example, then that faction becomes more powerful, and the nature of missions related to those rebels changes. Keeping the game online ensures that these changes can be reflected in gameplay, making the experience more dynamic and engaging. The full interview also covers the details of beta testing and control setups, if you're not as interested in the fine details of staying online while playing in single-player mode.

Elite: Dangerous formally launches tomorrow.

Landmark's monster update delayed until Wednesday

Betas, Patches, PvE, Free-to-Play, Sandbox, Landmark

With such a monster update coming to Landmark, SOE was open about the possibility of troubles and a delay. After keeping the community updated on progress and pitfalls over the weekend, Creative Director Dave Georgeson confirmed it: The PvE patch is delayed until Wednesday, December 17th, at 1:00 p.m. EST. Apparently the mobs themselves are scared of the introduction of players -- as well they should be! Mobs were found all clustering in a single cave. To fully fix this, SOE has to regenerate the islands. But don't worry, builders; there is no claim wipe involved, just time. Once the servers are up and running, watch for a Stream Team tour to check out the new Landmark wildlife.

Black Desert's sieges are purposeful chaos

Betas, Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Black Desert

black desert
Believe it or not, Black Desert's appeal doesn't begin and end at darn fine looks; the Korean MMO has a wealth of other features as well. Two of those features are the subject of a new trailer today, half of which shows off the mighty field boss fights and the other half showing the chaos of castle sieges.

We've got a five-minute look at both of these features in a gameplay trailer after the break! Our favorite part is the musician who is merrily wandering around the field of combat belting out sweet tunes, oblivious to the carnage all around.

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Listen to Shroud of the Avatar's player-created soundtrack

Betas, Fantasy, Patches, Music, Shroud of the Avatar, Buy-to-Play

sota
The fact that approximately 90% of the soundtrack for Shroud of the Avatar will be player-created may have escaped your attention, but the devs have not forgotten. In fact, in this past week's newsletter, several of the successful submissions were featured, including the track called Truth.

The team is getting ready to unleash another grand tour quest and has announced that the reward for completing this journey will be a seasonal yule hat. Another addition planned for the upcoming Release 13 is the ability to light weapons on fire via magic. Why have magic if you're not making the world burn, right?

True fans of the genre, get thee hence to Cabal II's closed beta

Betas, Fantasy, Free-to-Play, Humor

cabal 2
Are you a "true fan" of the MMO genre? If so, then according to a hyperactive press release by ESTGames, you'll surely want to sign up for Cabal II's closed beta on the official site.

The beta sign-ups for the sequel to Cabal Online are indeed live, and a focus test is already in the works for December 19th through the 22nd. Cabal II is an action-MMO with "fluid, skill-based combat"; it's aiming for a 2015 release in both North America and Europe.

[Source: ESTGames press release]

Get a closer look at Star Citizen's Gladiator bomber

Betas, Sci-Fi, Sandbox, Star Citizen

star citizen
So just what is the Gladiator, Star Citizen's newest ship, and why might it have some players salivating? Recently, the team posted additional information and technical specs on this carrier-based bomber for all those interested to check out.

According to the description, "The Gladiator is the UEE Navy's premiere carrier-based torpedo-plane and space-to-ground dive bomber. Operating with Hornet escort fighters, Gladiators have seen service with great success in battles across known space. Rugged to a fault, the Gladiator is the most capable bomber chassis ever designed."

Star Citizen is selling the Gladiator as a not currently flyable pledge ship for $165, or or you can pay $180 for the ship and an extras package. It will be available for pre-purchase only through December 22nd, although it will eventually be in the full game upon release.

[Thanks to Cardboard for the tip!]

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