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Blade & Soul teases a new Shaman trailer, gives us a sad

Betas, Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Classes, Game Mechanics, Previews, News Items, Blade & Soul

Blade & Soul
Have you got 35 seconds? Good! Because 35 seconds is all you'll need to watch this new Blade & Soul trailer featuring the Shaman class, whose pistols and magic cards are probably not what most western fantasy fans think of when they think of Shamans, that's for sure. Then you can feel free to spend the next couple hours moping because we still don't know whether the game will ever land on our hard drives. Enjoy!

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Blade & Soul and Aion mobile games announced

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Aion, Events (Real-World), New Titles, Mobile, Blade & Soul

While mobile MMO development seems to be at an all-time low in the West, it might be up to our Asian friends to pick up the slack. Ahead of G-Star-2014 this week, NCsoft has announced that both Blade & Soul and Aion will be getting mobile spin-offs in the near future.

Aion: Legion will be a tactical RPG with plenty of strategy, tactics, and raids. It's being planned for both iOS and Android devices and should run fine on phones and tablets even a couple of years old. Then there's Blade & Soul: Mobile, which will boast a cuter look and a love-story focus. There have been no release dates or windows announced for either title.

We've got the G-Star trailers for both games after the break, so let us know if they get you revved up!

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NCsoft's third quarter report is glowing; WildStar's revenues are not

Aion, Lineage, Lineage 2, Business Models, MMO Industry, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Blade & Soul, Miscellaneous, WildStar

NCsoft
NCsoft's unaudited third quarter 2014 financial report is in. Do you want the good news first or the bad?

Let's get the bad out of the way. WildStar's revenues plummeted between the second and third quarters, down 42.9% (the sales units in the table above, please note, are in millions of Korean Won). Variable expense, NCsoft wrote, also fell "largely due to decreased box sales of WildStar." Guild Wars 2's revenues also fell slightly over the quarter, down 8.5%.

But the good news is that global sales and operating profit are very much up, up, up in total quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year, thanks primarily to the continuing popularity of Aion and classic Lineage.

Lineage Eternal will be playable at G-Star 2014

Betas, Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Aion, Lineage, Lineage 2, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul, Promotions

Lineage Eternal
​NCsoft today announced that Lineage Eternal, first revealed back in 2011, will be playable at this year's G-Star con in Busan, South Korea. The third entry in the outrageously popular Lineage series was originally scheduled to head into closed beta this winter and seems to share more in common with Lineage 1 thanks to its isometric view and heavy focus on guild warfare.

MMO Culture reports that NCsoft MMO Project HON will likewise be playable and that the company plans to announce a "mystery game" a few days before the con opens on November 20th.

We've included the G-Star teaser vid below; it includes quick flashes of Lineage, Lineage II, Aion, and Blade & Soul too.

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Rumor: Blade & Soul 2 is under development

Fantasy, MMO Industry, News Items, Rumors, Blade & Soul

Yes, it's a screenshot that actually doesn't look completely cheesecake, miraculously.
If you're still holding out hope for a Blade & Soul release in North America, you have an admirable amount of patience. But a recent rumor might sink that hope a bit further. Website 2P.com claims to have insider information that points to the development of a Blade & Soul 2, which is good news if you're a fan of the game but bad news if you're still hoping to see an official release of the original.

The Shanghai studio behind the concept art was a part of the original team responsible for the game's art direction, so it could very well point to something new in the works. Whether that means a sequel, an expansion, or even an actual release on this side of the pond is all up for speculation. It's too early to flag as anything but a rumor, although the concept art that's been leaked certainly looks as if it comes from the game in question.

WildStar and Guild Wars 2 boost NCsoft profits

Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Aion, Lineage, Lineage 2, Economy, MMO Industry, Guild Wars 2, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul, WildStar

ncsoft
The second quarter of 2014 was a very good time indeed for NCsoft, as the publisher announced today that revenues and profits are up thanks to WildStar's launch and Guild Wars 2's move into China.

In today's earnings report, NCsoft shows that sales went up 20% and operating profit increased 46% from the previous quarter. The company said that it saw a marketing expense increase due to WildStar and that Lineage "recovered meaningfully" during this period.

As for sales per game, Lineage is still at the top with 32.2%. Following that is WildStar (15.9%), Guild Wars 2 (12.6%), Blade and Soul (10.8%), Aion (10.4%), and Lineage II (7.7%).

One Shots: Reflection perfection

Screenshots, Lord of the Rings Online, Culture, One Shots, Blade & Soul, Miscellaneous, Neverwinter, The Elder Scrolls Online

LOTRO
"Take a picture of a picture in an MMO," I said to you guys a couple of weeks ago, and darn it if you awesome folks didn't come through! We have two entries from that screenshot challenge this week, starting with reader Chiara taking a look at her good looks in Lord of the Rings Online.

"One of the things that impressed me the most when Riders of Rohan launched was the furniture," Chiara wrote. "I spent the whole day breaking into NPCs' houses uninvited (they weren't amused). The first time I saw a mirror, I squealed."

I'm squealing right now myself, but that's mostly because a mouse just ran across the ceiling tiles. I need to throw a cat up between the floors one of these days to solve that problem. Anyway, let's take a gander at the other great entires from players' screenshot folders!

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Jukebox Heroes: Top 40 MMO themes, #20-11

Age of Conan, Darkfall, Final Fantasy XI, Guild Wars, Opinion, Star Wars Galaxies, Allods Online, Blade & Soul, Miscellaneous, PlanetSide 2, Defiance, Jukebox Heroes, Dragon's Prophet, Music

SWG
We're growing ever closer to my top picks for MMO theme songs, but we're not quite at the end yet. This week we are on to the third part of our Top 40 MMO main themes countdown. To repeat my self-imposed rules for this list: I limited myself to just one theme from a particular title, even if there were multiple themes in a game. Entries had to be a main theme or the closest equivalent of that; they had to be from MMOs, not from MOBAs; and I had to divorce my weighting of the track itself from the popularity of and my experience with that game. So there were no points added or subtracted based on my love of the game. I'm counting down the best music, period.

If you missed earlier parts of this series, check out themes #40-31 and #30-21. Otherwise, hit that continue button and get listening already!

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NCsoft boosts numbers in Q4 2013 while Nexon names new CEO

Aion, Lineage, Lineage 2, MMO Industry, Guild Wars 2, Legal, Blade & Soul, Miscellaneous, WildStar

NCsoft
NCsoft is thanking its lucky Blade & Soul these days, as revenues from the game's popularity in China have helped to boost its financial status.

In the recently released Q4 2013 earnings report, NCsoft announced that sales, operating profit, pre-tax income, and net income were up over Q3 2013. Overall, 2013 was profitable for the company as its income went up year-over-year. NCsoft credited a growing Lineage and a "strong" and "solid" Guild Wars 2 for this effort, as well as cost savings initiatives. While sales in Korea improved from 2012 to 2013, those in Japan, Europe, and North America all declined over the same time period.

Lineage is by far NCsoft's biggest earner, followed by Guild Wars 2, Aion, and Blade & Soul. The company said that WildStar is on track to launch in mid-2014 and that the key GW2 focus is not on an expansion but with bringing the game to China.

Meanwhile, NCsoft's biggest investor, Nexon, just named Owen Mahoney as its new president and CEO, replacing Seungwoo Choi. Nexon also announced a revenue and income increase in 2013 and acknowledged that it is underperforming in Japan and the West.

New Blade & Soul video goes to Hell

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Patches, PvP, News Items, PvE, Blade & Soul

Screencap -- Blade & Soul Hell trailer
NCSoft has released a new video featuring the latest addition coming to Blade & Soul Korea: a combination PvE and PvP zone appropriately named Hell. While you won't find any lakes of fire in this incarnation of Hell (they're more like puddles), you better believe there's going to be plenty of weeping and gnashing of teeth as players in the zone have to contend with the usual unholy abominations, malicious demons, missile-barrage-firing mechs (yes, really), and of course, nefarious schemes of opposing players. The full video features nearly seven minutes of shiny, explosive, and occasionally bizarre PvE and PvP combat throughout the new zone. They say diplomacy is the art of telling someone to go to hell in such a way that he looks forward to the trip, so if you're curious about how diplomatic NCSoft can be, click on past the cut for the full trailer.

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Teaser page confirms Blade & Soul is heading to Japan

Fantasy, MMO Industry, News Items, Blade & Soul

Confirmation for Blade & Soul's trip to Japan was just provided by a teaser page released by NCsoft. Steparu discovered the page, which boasts the URL 1.0/secret, when it appeared on the studio's official Japan website. Although the images are shrouded in shadow, the forms and armor are recognizable. Unfortunately, there are no other details available; it is unknown if the Japanese version of Blade & Soul will be IP blocked or if it will follow in the Korean version's footsteps and be censor free.

While this shows the game is moving into yet another international market, there is still no word (or image) on the game coming to the West.

Leaderboard: ArcheAge vs. Blade & Soul

Fantasy, Culture, MMO Industry, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul, ArcheAge, Sandbox, Leaderboard

Blade & Soul - Coming to Western PCs in 2045
I'm feeling a bit ornery today, so you'll have to excuse this Leaderboard's angry-gamer outlook when it comes to Korean imports and the W-word. See, I like Korean MMOs a whole lot, but I don't particularly like Westernization because a) one of the main reasons to play a culturally divergent MMO is to experience said divergent culture and b) Westernization takes for-frickin'-ever.

How long have we been waiting on ArcheAge now? And what about Blade & Soul? And yeah, I know Trion is purportedly in friends-and-family alpha now. That's better than Blade & Soul, at least, about which NCsoft has said absolutely nothing in regards to the Western market.

So for today's poll, let's assume that you have to choose between ArcheAge and Blade & Soul. The Westernization gods will only allow of one of them to make it out of Korea in our lifetime, and it's up to you to decide which it'll be! Would you rather play XL's ginormous fantasy sandpark or do you prefer NCsoft's martial arts fantasy title? Vote after the cut!

Ever wish that you could put to rest a long-standing MMO debate once and for all? Then welcome to the battle royal of Massively's Leaderboard, where two sides enter the pit o' judgment -- and only one leaves. Vote to make your opinion known, and see whether your choice tops the Leaderboard!

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Blade & Soul tops 1.5M concurrent users in China

Betas, Fantasy, MMO Industry, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul

Blade and Soul
While we twiddle our thumbs in the West waiting for a game that might never come, Blade & Soul is stampeding across Asia and has the numbers to prove it.

MMO Culture reports that Blade & Soul China has 1.5 million players (wait for it) online at the same time. As in concurrency, not total numbers. While that certainly smacks of popularity, what's even more astonishing is that some players in the region have to wait around six hours in a queue just to play.

Other impressive statistics include the Blade & Soul beta trailer being viewed 30.4 million times, 450 million monsters killed on the first day of the game, and one player who's already sunk 1,345 hours into the title.

One Shots: All outta soul

Screenshots, Aion, Culture, One Shots, Champions Online, Allods Online, Blade & Soul, Miscellaneous

Blade and Soul
Man, there are few things worse in the gaming world than to see players of other regions get a hold of titles that have yet to make it to your neck of the woods. First comes the flush of jealousy, then the slow burn of envy, then the mountaintop proclamation of vengeance upon the studio in the middle of a rainstorm.

Reader Dynatos is one of the fortunate to be able to try out this particular game: "I've recently stepped back into Blade and Soul with the Chinese release, and while I'm not very far along into the game (it's a little tough when I don't understand the language!), I'm completely in love with the art style and combat mechanics. Here's my Kung Fu master looking at the foreboding building up the walkway -- not very inviting!"

I WILL RAIN HOT DOOM UPON YOU NCSOFT! DOOM! Er, sorry, I just advanced to stage three.

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Blade & Soul surpasses 1.8 million concurrent users in China

Fantasy, Business Models, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Free-to-Play, Blade & Soul

Blade & Soul
Western Blade & Soul fans may be wondering when, or if, NCsoft is ever going to bring the martial arts fantasy MMO to their shores. Chinese fans, on the hand, are scarfing up the title as quickly as publisher Tencent can add additional servers.

MMO Culture reports that the firm added another hardware group last week, bringing the total to a whopping 195 servers and helping to alleviate shard congestion. The site also notes that concurrent users have surpassed 1.8 million while active users sits somewhere around the 18 million mark.

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