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E3 2013: The Crew racing game boasts 'persistent online world,' boss fights [Updated]

Real-Life, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Races, Crime

E3 2013 The Crew racing game boasts 'persistent online world,' boss fights
Here's another one for the is-it-or-isn't-it-an-MMO file courtesy of E3 2013. The Crew, a racing title from publisher Ubisoft, boasts a "persistent online world" that spans the entirety of the United States.

The Escapist reports that other drivers encountered by the player may be AI, but they may also be other player characters. Ubisoft's press conference revealed that the game has no lobby system, so players can chat, group, join crews, and play through group content in the game world proper. Vehicle customization is apparently a big deal as well, as is the ability to "infiltrate and take over a criminal organization one city at a time."

[Update: Joystiq reports that the title will be coming to PC and next-gen consoles. Click past the cut for a demo video. Thanks to Paul for the official website link!]

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Anarchy in the APB

PvP, Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime, Dev Diaries

Anarchy in the APB
If you think drive-by shootings, exploding vehicles, and an epidemic of robbery and murder on the streets of San Paro wasn't enough anarchy for you, GamersFirst has just introduced Chaos Mode to its crime MMO APB: Reloaded.

Joining a Chaos district will put you into a survival mode that allows you to gain points by killing as many players of the opposite faction as possible. All of the district's contacts are gone, replaced by vendors. So there's no other mission but to kill, and kill quickly. A leaderboard tracks the best of the best and several new titles and a new role have been added.

You can check out an early prototype of Chaos Mode in the game between now and June 6.

[Thanks to Derek for the tip!]

DCUO's Origin Crisis to release on May 14th

Super-hero, Patches, Free-to-Play, Crime, DC Universe Online

DCUO Origin Crisis to release May 14
For you DC Universe Online fans out there, SOE has announced earlier today that the superhero MMO's upcoming DLC, Origin Crisis, will officially launch on Tuesday, May 14th.

If that's not enough, SOE is rewarding all Legendary Members with early access on May 8th (tomorrow!).

You can read more about what Origin Crisis has to offer in our coverage of the DLC since it was announced at SOE Live last October.

[Source: SOE press release]

Second Wind: All Points Bulletin Reloaded

Screenshots, Video, Business Models, Game Mechanics, PvP, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Hands-On, Races, All Points Bulletin, Crime, MMOFPS, Humor, Livestream, Second Wind, Player-Generated Content

APB reloaded screenshot
I could make this a very short piece by saying that APB: Reloaded is simply as fun now as it has ever been. The game is a blast in more ways than one. Heck, I could close it right now by telling you that not only was my return to the game well worth the effort but also that it also served to slap me on the side of the head to say, "Hey, dummy, remember how fun it is to run over people?" I'd rather give you more details, though, especially for those of you who might not have played the game or haven't played it in a long time.

APB: Reloaded is essentially a lobby-based shooter. The lobby -- or social district, as it is called -- and the instanced battle arenas are massive places. While I livestreamed the game last week (you can watch the embedded video after the cut), someone accurately commented that watching it was like watching "GTA Online." I agree, but it's also so much more than that. Join me past the cut and I promise not to run you over.

(EDIT: I was able to order an APB: Reloaded box from Newegg.com for $7.99 USD which contains "over $50 value" like a permanent Magnum gun, a Cisco car, 500 G1 credits and 30 days of premium. I paid no shipping fees at all and received it within three days of ordering, but after this article went live.)

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MMO Burnout: Yucking it up with Saints Row The Third

Real-Life, Game Mechanics, Opinion, Crime, Hands-On (Massively's), Sandbox, MMO Burnout

MMO Burnout - Saints Row The Third
So how would you feel about running around in an open-world action title smacking enemies with a giant dildo? The answer to that question will go a long way toward determining whether or not you'll dig Saints Row The Third, which is, naturally, the third installment of Volition's sordid sandbox saga.

If that question made you laugh, utter some version of "hell yeah," or type "Saints Row 3 dildo" into your Google image search box, you and SRTT will get along famously. If you shifted uncomfortably in your seat, grumbled about kids these days, or fired off a how-dare-you email in the general vicinity of the Massively tip box, well, you can probably skip the rest of this week's MMO Burnout.

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MMO Burnout: Do yourself a favor and play Sleeping Dogs

Real-Life, Game Mechanics, Opinion, Hands-On, Crime, Sandbox, MMO Burnout

MMO Burnout - Sleeping Dogs' Wei Shen
This week I thought I'd travel to Hong Kong as an undercover cop, infiltrate the Triads, enter a few street races, sing some karaoke, and generally kung fu fight my way through another jewel of an open-world sandbox actioner.

You're welcome to come with me, but you'll need a copy of Sleeping Dogs to make it happen. Square's 2012 gangster opus got a new DLC injection this week, but it'll be a while before I can report on it since the rest of game is so large and involving.

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MMO Burnout: Second time's the charm for L.A. Noire

Historical, Game Mechanics, Opinion, Crime, MMO Burnout

MMO Burnout - L.A. Noire
I don't know about you, but I really wanted to like L.A. Noire at release. I mean, come on. It was Rockstar. It was also a gigantic open playfield based on the 1947 incarnation of a real-life town that's spilling over with sordid, sultry characters all looking to make their mark on post-World War II America.

Alas, something about the title just didn't jell with me at launch. In fact, I didn't even finish the original campaign on my Xbox 360, which is rare when it comes to personal gaming habits. Equally rare is the occasion when I repurchase a game that I didn't really like on a different platform, but that's what I did thanks to yet another ridiculous Steam sale this past December.

My second tour of duty as hard-boiled detective Cole Phelps has been decidedly more enjoyable than my first, and while L.A. Noire is still a flawed video game in some respects, it makes for an engaging vacation from massively multiplayer convention while riffing on some of the genre's new-school charms.

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APB: Reloaded dev blog talks optimization

Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime, Dev Diaries

APB Reloaded dev blog talks optimization
Devs say the darndest things. In APB: Reloaded's latest dev blog, optimization of the live game is likened to changing your car's oil while speeding along at 65 mph. While not an admission of actually attempting the latter, this fact-filled dev diary does get into the nitty gritty of the optimization process; it offers a view (literally, with graphs and pictures) of both the software and hardware optimizations that are in the works.

A new OTW (Open Test World) called Overkill will soon come online to test a new bit of hardware developed specifically for the game to help improve performance. Those who are current OTW testers can expect to see Overkill in the next two weeks, while all players can expect to see release 1.10.2, with its performance improvements, very soon.

If you want to see exactly what is being done to improve your FPS in game, this is the blog to read.

MMO Burnout: Two weeks in the valley with Multi Theft Auto

Real-Life, Galleries, Screenshots, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, PvE, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Hands-On, Roleplaying, Crime, Hands-On (Massively's), First Impressions, Sandbox, MMO Burnout

MMO Burnout - Multi Theft Auto
OK, you know that guy who's always going on about how bloody awesome it would be if someone ever made a working multiplayer mod for Skyrim? If you don't know him, well, you do now, because he's me. Back before I was bitten in earnest by the MMO bug, I spent quite a lot of time messing with private servers of both the Jedi Academy and Neverwinter Nights persuasions. And when I say "messing with," I don't mean I logged into them, I mean I hosted them, made mods and skins for them, and generally wasted significant portions of my youth serving as a GM.

Needless to say, it was a blast, and the thought of having that experience again in a larger game world is just short of orgasmic. Alas, no one has made much of a multiplayer Skyrim mod yet, and while private servers for NWN and Neverwinter Nights 2 are still running and serving their niche communities quite capably, those are topics for another edition of MMO Burnout.

I'd like to tell you about something similar that I've been playing lately, though. It's called Multi Theft Auto.

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APB: Reloaded celebrates Steam success, teases new content

Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime

APB Reloaded celebrates Steam success, teases new content
GamersFirst can enjoy a new bragging right today in the realm of free-to-play MMOs as APB: Reloaded has held steadily to a top-five position for most-popular free-to-play MMOs on Steam for a year. Currently ranked in the number four spot, APB:R has expanded its reach to Brazil and Russia in that year, while adding new content including Fight Club, Asylum, tons of new weapon and clothing packs, and more.

As the team looks forward to 2013, players can expect a new update entitled Settling the Score in the just a few weeks and rumors of an "all-new APB experience" being revealed in the coming months.

[Source: GamersFirst press release]

DCUO's Home Turf launches today

Video, Patches, PvP, Free-to-Play, Crime, DC Universe Online, Housing

DCUO's Home Turf launches today
SOE's sixth DLC pack for DC Universe Online has launched today, bringing with it a customizable base system that allows players to build their own lair. Appropriately named Home Turf, this content update bring a housing system that players have been anticipating since launch.

Lairs are much more than housing, though. The Lair's Mainframe allows players to unlock and access new combat abilities, and level 30-or-higher players can duel it out with Lair PvP battles.

Be sure to check out all the details in the latest DLC patch notes on the DCUO forums and skip past the cut for the Home Turf launch trailer.

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Previewing DC Universe Online's Home Turf update

Super-hero, Expansions, Patches, Previews, PvP, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Crime, DC Universe Online

DCUO Header
Over the last couple of days, we've seen some pretty cool clips and snippets of DC Universe Online's Home Turf update. Due on January 29, Home Turf brings an innovative system for player housing, new challenges for heroes and villains, and a 1:1 PvP matchmaking system that lets players duke it out in the comfort of their personal lairs. Don't let the focus on housing fool you, though; Home Turf introduces a host of new features that have the potential to change DCUO as you know it.

We sat down with creative director Jens Andersen for a closer look at Home Turf and the many ways in which it deepens and expands upon DC Universe Online's existing content. Put simply, this latest batch of DLC offers more than just a place to hang your cape.

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APB locks and reloads for Christmas

Events (In-Game), Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime

APB locks and reloads for Christmas
All Points Bulletin is preparing for a bloody Christmas siege -- and if you can get through this holiday event without saying, "Now I have a machine gun. Ho ho ho," then you are better people than we. The game is kicking off its holiday festivities on Wednesday, December 12th, and has a few twists from last year's event.

During the event, players will need to seek out Elves for a few new missions. These Elves aren't messing around, either; they're prepared to hand out weapon skins and cool threads for the street-tough. The studio also floated the rumor that there will be a snowball grenade launcher up for grabs.

The studio has a 12-day promotion starting on December 13th for shoppers. Each day, the cash shop will hand out a different surprise gift to those dropping money on the title.

[Source: Reloaded Productions press release]

APB celebrates Steam anniversary with free cigars

Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime, Promotions, Anniversaries

APB celebrates Steam anniversary with free cigars
There are anniversaries and there are anniversaries. Steam anniversaries are apparently a thing now, as Reloaded Productions is celebrating All Points Bulletin's debut appearance on the digital distribution platform, as well as its official relaunch day. According to the studio, APB has proven incredibly popular on Steam during its year run.

Chief Marketing Officer Rahul Sandil conveys the company's appreciation: "We want to thank our player community and our friends at Steam for all the support and love they have shown APB Reloaded for the last year. With over three million downloads delivered, APB has established itself as one of the hottest game franchises in the online games industry. Over the next few days we will be making other exciting announcements about the expansion of the APB franchise, so stay tuned."

To celebrate the anniversary, the studio is discounting the ATAC 424 NCFP 3 weapon in the store and handing out free cigar and celebrate emotes to all players.

[Source: Reloaded Productions press release]

APB: Reloaded's version 10 to feature car surfing and more

Real-Life, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, All Points Bulletin, Crime

apb version 10 dev blog
GamersFirst has taken the wraps off APB: Reloaded's next patch. The version 10 update, otherwise known as New Breed Part Three, will appear "in the next few weeks" according to the latest edition of the APBR dev blog.

The patch introduces two new T5 contacts, Birth and Templeton, both of whom bring a laundry list of new features to the game including vehicles, weapons, and modifications like Spotter and Car Surfer. The former is about what you'd expect given the name, as it allows players to paint enemy targets and display them to teammates (even through walls). Car Surfer, naturally, allows you to ride on a vehicle's roof. Check out a couple of quick example videos after the break. You'll find more like them on APBR's official site.

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