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Eliotropes land in Dofus and Wakfu

Fantasy, Screenshots, Trailers, Video, Dofus, Classes, Game Mechanics, News Items, Free-to-Play, Miscellaneous

I don't see anything.  Where am I supposed to be looking?  I'm not seeing it.
The Eliotropes are coming! Wait, sorry, that's not quite right; the Eliotropes are here if you're playing Wakfu. They're also here if you're playing Dofus. Yes, both of the games based on the same lore are getting the same class on the same day. The class also promises to be a tricky one, as it's centered around making use of martial arts attacks projected over long distances through a series of portals.

Eliotropes can serve as healers and positioners in the game's combat system, launching powerful assaults through portals and slipping through those same portals to evade damage. But enemies can also use these portals for transport, making the class a bit more tricky to play well. Check out the videos on the new class just past the break because this new option is already here. And there. Lots of places, really.

[Source: Ankama press release]

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The Game Archaeologist: Ironman modes and elective permadeath

Asheron's Call, Dofus, Dungeons and Dragons Online, EverQuest, MMO Industry, Opinion, Star Wars Galaxies, RuneScape, The Game Archaeologist, Miscellaneous, Wizardry Online, Star Citizen, H1Z1

wizardry online
One facet of video games that's been around almost since the very beginning is the difficulty level. This has allowed the player to choose how hard or easy a game would be from the onset, influencing factors such as the number of enemies, hardiness of bad guys, fragility of the player character, and available loot (or lack of it). I used to love how some of those '90s shareware titles would mock me for picking easy, sometimes portraying my character wearing a baby bonnet and sucking its thumb. Real gamers, the devs implied, go tough or go home.

With a few exceptions, MMOs operate on a fixed level of difficulty for all of their players. Instead of assigning blanket difficulty client-side, the game world portions difficulty into areas, usually according to level or activity. Some games have instances with adjustable difficulty levels, but past that what you get is also what I get.

This might be changing. A very fringe but dedicated group of players have championed such ideas as elective ironman and permadeath modes for their MMOs, and at least one studio is responding positively to that desire. Would you choose to make your MMO experience harder than everyone else in exchange for nothing more than a bigger challenge and a more "realistic" experience?

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The DOFUS movie aims to release in 2016

Fantasy, Dofus, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, Free-to-Play

World of Warcraft isn't the only online game that's working on a movie adaptation. DOFUS has an animated feature that will be coming out in French theaters on February 3rd, 2016.

The feature is called DOFUS -- Book I: Julith and will be fully animated. The project has cleared the pre-production phase and is going forward to meet the 2016 release date. The studio released a screenshot (above) from the film, illustrating its art style.

Ankama said that it doesn't know when or whether the film would be made available outside of France: "At this time, we can't announce any plans for the international communities, but if that changes, we will inform you as quickly as possible."

DOFUS takes a pounding from DDOS attacks

Fantasy, Dofus, Free-to-Play, Legal

DOFUS taking a pounding from DDOS attacks
The cutsie DOFUS is sweating big anime sweat drops today as the game and its forums have come under multiple distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks.

The team reported the first attack this morning on Twitter, saying that the devs were working on beefing up the title's security. However, come this afternoon all hell started to break loose. "We may be under a second DDOS attack, forums and game are inaccessible at the moment," the DOFUS Twitter account said.

We'll keep on top of this story as it develops.

Iran blocks Guild Wars, World of Warcraft

World of Warcraft, Dofus, Entropia Universe, Guild Wars, MMO Industry, Second Life, RuneScape, Guild Wars 2, Legal, Miscellaneous

Iran blocks Guild Wars 2, World of Warcraft
Reports are coming in that Iran is moving to block access to several MMOs, including World of Warcraft and Guild Wars. This comes following a conference by the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance earlier this month. At the conference, the Islamic Revolution Game Designers Community was formed and decided to ban games that promote superstition, mythology, violence, and revealing clothing.

Following the decision, the government started cracking down on various services and MMOs, such as Battle.net's library and ArenaNet's Guild Wars series. Other games targeted include RuneScape, Second Life, Dofus, Evony, and Entropia Universe.

It's unclear to what extent the government is attempting to enforce these bans, and Iranian players are looking into workaround solutions to access their MMOs. It's interesting to note that Blizzard does not authorize downloads of its products or services in Iran.

Some Assembly Required: A virtual world roundup

Fantasy, Super-hero, Aion, Anarchy Online, City of Heroes, Darkfall, Dofus, EVE Online, EverQuest, EverQuest II, Fallen Earth, Final Fantasy XI, Flyff, Lord of the Rings Online, PlanetSide, Ryzom, Wurm Online, Opinion, Second Life, Star Trek Online, Ultima Online, Vanguard, RuneScape, Free-to-Play, Virtual Worlds, Mabinogi, Mortal Online, Wizard101, Runes of Magic, DC Universe Online, RIFT, Xsyon, Family, Post-Apocalyptic, Some Assembly Required, Sandbox, Origins of Malu

Some Assembly Required header
If you are perusing this column, chances are you are a fan of virtual worlds and the sandbox genre. Join the club! (Dues will be due on the third Tuesday.) The aspect that compels many aficionados to delve into a game is the ability to make an impact on the world in some small respect instead of making them into Hive Member 1593072 running a static, predetermined gauntlet. How that impact is accomplished, however, varies; there are multiple features that can facilitate it, and which ones are considered most important depends on the player.

With the loss of one of the best sandbox games just last month, some players may be feeling a void. Others still are looking/hoping for the "ultimate" sandbox that contains nearly every virtual world feature. Certainly, there are some upcoming games that make some drool-worthy promises, but what about playing something now? There are actually games out on the market that have at least one aspect of the genre, if not more.

To start off the new year, Some Assembly Required looks at some of the top features of virtual worlds and lists games that incorporate these features. While this list isn't exhaustive (considering the sheer number of games when you include all of the smaller free-to-play titles, I'd run out of column space!), it is a comprehensive enough overview to point you toward some games worth playing that perhaps you hadn't considered before.

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The Perfect Ten: Non-vanilla server rulesets

Age of Conan, Asheron's Call, City of Heroes, Dark Age of Camelot, Darkfall, Dofus, EVE Online, EverQuest, EverQuest II, Fallen Earth, Lord of the Rings Online, Ultima Online, Vanguard, Shadowbane, Humor, Perfect Ten, Miscellaneous

Perfect Ten
I've always thought that rulesets are a golden opportunity for MMO developers to get creative with their products and try something fresh and exciting. Unfortunately, most every MMO these days, new and old, adheres to the four "vanilla" rulesets that have been in place since Pong. You have your default PvE, your same-as-PvE-except-we-have-a-naming-policy PvE-RP, and the two player vs. player variants: PvP and PvP-RP.

Those are all well and good, but... y'know... couldn't rulesets be used to create fascinating variations on these games? It turns out that yes, yes they can.

While the vanilla rulesets are the vast majority, there does exist a group of fringe rulesets that dared to walk the different patch, er, path and made versions of MMOs that are a bold and refreshing flavor. Like blue! Sometimes these new rulesets were whipped up to inject new life into an aging title, giving players a valid reason to come back and see the game from a different perspective.

In this week's Perfect Ten, we're going to check out just how wild 'n' wacky server rulesets can get!

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Ankama releases new Vulkania zone for DOFUS

Fantasy, Dofus, MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play

DOFUS, the free-to-play fantasy MMO from Ankama, is embarking on a somewhat novel approach to new zone content. The game's newest map area is an archipelago called Vulkania, and it's only available to players during the months of July and August.

The isle features varying terrain including white sand beaches, tropical jungles, craters, and various caverns, not to mention strange wildlife. Among the new monster species are the sauroshell family and a pet/mount called a madreggon. According to an Ankama press release, "Vulkania is also home to Grozilla and Grasmera, two terrors who are back to shake the World of Twelve once more!"

The release also provides a concise summary of what we can expect from Vulkania aside from its monsters, and amenities include 40 new quests, 13 new equipment items, and 3 new titles. Check out the official DOFUS website for more.

DOFUS: Battles available in the App Store

Fantasy, Dofus, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Free-to-Play, Mobile, Casual

What's more fun than using the word DOFUS in a sentence? Using the words DOFUS: Battles, of course. Happily, the devs at Ankama have given us ample reason to do both thanks to the newly released iOS title called, you guessed it, DOFUS: Battles.

The strategy game is available in the App Store today for both iPhones and iPads and is an interesting blend of RPG, RTS, and tower defense mechanics, all tied to the game world of the wildly successful DOFUS MMORPG. Players will manage an army consisting of 12 heroes and a dragon, and the new game borrows 12 classes from its parent MMO and spices things up with 28 levels, three minigames, and more than 170 unique equipment items.

DOFUS: Battles currently comes in four flavors: a free version with battle and class limitations, the full version, and two corresponding HD versions for higher screen resolutions. You can learn more at the game's official site.

DOFUS introduces Rogue and Masqueraider classes

Fantasy, Dofus, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play

Class-based fantasy games aren't unusual these days; in fact, they're the standard. It's rare that such a title has more than a handful of classes, though. Then there's DOFUS. The six-year-old free-to-play title recently added Masqueraiders and Rogues, bringing the game's class total to a whopping 14.

Rogues function a bit differently than the rascally backstabbers you may be used to from other games. Rogues effectively dictate actions on the battlefield through the use of bombs and walls, which direct enemy movements and function as a form of crowd control.

Masqueraiders take their power from a variety of wearable masks, which allow the player to adopt several fighting styles. Three masks types are available: the cowardly mask (ranged damage), the psychopath mask (close combat damage), and the classic mask (crowd control). Finally, Masqueraiders can also avail themselves of several buff-type spells including plastron, tororuga, and trance. Head to the official DOFUS website for all the details.

Rise and Shiny recap: Dofus

Fantasy, Video, Dofus, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Hands-On, Mac, Casual, Rise and Shiny, Livestream

Years ago I had to find a job in my new home state of Texas. Luckily for me, my wife hooked me up with a friend who helped me get hired at Starbucks. At first, I hung my head in shame. Later, though, I enjoyed dealing with customers and the free coffee. I had a co-worker, a real chin-scratching, coffee house wanna-be intellectual who would often spend more time dreaming about some game than about getting people on their breaks. He even brought his Macbook to work to sneak in time in the game.

I glanced over his shoulder one day and was delighted to see an odd-looking, cartoony, turn-based game on his screen. It turned out that the game was Dofus. I tried it immediately and fell in love with it, but that was years ago. I still found time to revisit the game, but once I started working at Massively, most of my time became dedicated to every other game in the world.

Well, it's time to visit it again. During the first part of this week, though, I thought this was going to be a disaster. I stayed strong and battled my way through bot after bot, spam message after spam message, and eventually found the great game I remember. Click past the cut to see exactly what I found!

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DOFUS brings the holidays to players, then blows them up

Fantasy, Galleries, Video, Dofus, Classes, Events (In-Game), News Items, Free-to-Play

The colorful world of DOFUS seems well-suited to a holiday celebration, especially with the amount of character embedded in the game's graphics. And one is taking place on Kwismas Island, beyond a shadow of a doubt. But there's still something else for players to look for, something that's far less merry than the dungeons of the island (whose merriness is already a rather dubious quality). It's the newest class of the game, the Rogue, a class focused on guns, explosives, and the use of both in tandem.

Capable of summoning a variety of elemental bombs as well as making elementally charged pistol attacks, Rogues are the 13th class in the game, available as a premium feature now. All DOFUS players can enjoy Kwismas Island, however, previewed in our gallery just below. Take a look at the Rogue teaser video past the cut, and consider the possible combination of holiday dungeons and heavy explosives. (It beats fruitcake and caroling.)

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Chill out in Frigost with a DOFUS beta key from Massively

Betas, Dofus, News Items, Free-to-Play, Giveaways

Ankama Games has just updated their DOFUS servers, and are introducing an all new area, Frigost, for players to check out. This chilly area is for those adventurers who have attained level 100 or higher, and offers lots of new challenges in the form of frozen lake dungeons and icy fields of enemies to battle through. There's also shiny new equipment, all new quests, and a new ice DOFUS (or dragon egg for those not familiar) for players to be found among the riches of this new land.

For those readers who have been playing DOFUS for some time, or are just looking for a fun new free-to-play game to check out, we've managed to snag 200 beta keys to get you into the frosty lands of Frigost early. All you have to do to snag one is to head over to our beta code giveaway page, grab a key, then follow the directions there to get signed up!

Massively's tour of Dofus 2.0

Fantasy, Dofus

Dofus is a game that's been around for a while now, first in its 1.0 form, and now as Dofus 2.0. It's a tactics-based game (many players have pointed out that it has a Final Fantasy feel about it), and while it's not as flashy as many of the graphics-heavy games on the market today, it's got a fair amount of substance to it. Dofus 2.0 offers a nice variety of combat areas, diverse and specialized classes, even crafting if that's your thing. Recently we were lucky enough to take a tour of Dofus 2.0 with Ankama's own Elissa Dukes. Follow along after the jump to see what we found.

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Dofus opens their new version, Dofus 2.0, to simultaneous praise and worry

Fantasy, Dofus, Launches, MMO Industry, News Items, MMORTS

If you're a gamer looking for a tactical approach to MMOs, then you're pretty much going to want to play Dofus. Dofus is the MMO that takes a real-time strategy approach to combat, letting characters move in cells and conduct attacks in turns, very similar to the classic combat system of Final Fantasy Tactics.

Recently, the Dofus team has ripped open the packaging on Dofus 2.0, a huge update that gives the game improved graphics, new areas, gameplay, and much more. However, the update hasn't been released without a fair share of criticism. Ankama Games had made the decision to launch Dofus 2.0 while simultaneously keeping Dofus 1.26, the prior version, online on separate servers.

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