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Guild Wars 2 teases Entanglement, season two's next episode

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Events (In-Game), Lore, Patches, Previews, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

Have you played through Guild Wars 2's latest living story installment yet? No? Well, hurry up because episode 2 arrives next week on July 15th. It's called Entanglement, and its associated teaser video arrived in our inbox last night with merely this cryptic introduction:
There are secrets hidden within the newly revealed area of Dry Top, just waiting to be discovered. Continue your adventures in the Maguuma Wastes and take a stand alongside your fellow heroes against an ancient, growing threat.
Evil grows in the video below.

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Not So Massively: Destiny's beta, The Witcher's MOBA, and the IeSF's gender ban fiasco

Betas, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Video, Expansions, Game Mechanics, Lore, Previews, PvP, News Items, War, Free-to-Play, Consoles, MMOFPS, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, Transformers Universe, MOBA, League of Legends, 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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Warlords of Draenor previews Frostfire Ridge

World of Warcraft, Betas, Fantasy, Lore, Previews, Subscription

As the closed beta for World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor rages on, Blizzard has a pair of previews up for one of the expansion's zones: Frostfire Ridge.

Frostfire Ridge's biome features a fun combination of snow-covered wastes and towering volcanoes, so whether your tastes run hot or cold, this place will have you covered. The zone is what will eventually become the Blade's Edge Mountains in Burning Crusade's version of the zone, and here players will be helping Thrall's daddy survive among a closing net of enemies.

Even among such hostile environs, players will find a fortress of solitude. The Horde garrison will be established in this zone, offering a base from which to build a sanctuary and an army.

Hearthstone catches players up on Naxxramas lore

Fantasy, Lore, Previews, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Hearthstone

Hearthstone players will soon have the opportunity to revisit the iconic fortress of Naxxramas in an upcoming adventure pack, which means that it's time to get up to date on the backstory of what this citadel is all about.

In a new lore post, Blizzard walks players through the necropolis' history, layout, and key residents. The place is run by the lich Kel'Thuzad and encompasses four sections: the Arachnid Quarter, the Plague Quarter, the Military Quarter, and the Construct Quarter. Each of these quarters lists the bosses that players will be facing off against in the single-player adventure, as well as the penultimate Frostwyrm Lair and its protector, Sapphiron.

There may be no overt strategy secrets revealed in this article, but sharp-eyed players may deduce the themes and styles of the bosses that they will be encountering when the update goes live.

Turbine: Raiders make up the smallest player group in LotRO

Fantasy, Lord of the Rings Online, Culture, Lore, Free-to-Play, Dungeons

If you've wondered why Turbine has decided to forgo developing new raids for Lord of the Rings Online (at least for the time being), it all comes down to numbers. According to CM Rick Heaton, raiders make up the smallest portion of the playerbase even if they are quite vocal on the forums:
Raiders comprise the smallest, by far, group in our game. PvMP players are far larger and even they are small. in fact together the two groups wouldn't comprise 10% of the total player base and never have (this is important. it's not a new thing, it's a long standing historical fact).

Forum posters comprise a slightly larger group than the combined group of PvMP and Raiders. However, Raiders and PvMP players make up the overwhelming majority of forum posters (More than half. Though raiders are the smaller group of the two (PvMP/Raiders)). So you have a tiny group, inside a small group that is grossly disproportionately represented on the forums.
[Thanks to Dan for the tip!]

The Secret World releases new Love & Loathing mission pack

Horror, Sci-Fi, Lore, Patches, The Secret World, Crime, Anniversaries

A new mission pack has hit the item store in The Secret World and you're all invited to check it out. Sidestories: Love & Loathing is now available for 960 Funcom points. This mission pack arrives just in time for The Secret World's second anniversary today and it features five missions that dive deeper into the story of Kaidan.

Speaking of that anniversary, Funcom is gifting players with double AP and various other bonuses through July 11th!

Take note that you'll need to own Issue #9: The Black Signal and have access to Tokyo to play the Sidestories: Love & Loathing content.

You could write the next Darkfall quest

Fantasy, Darkfall, Contests, Lore, MMO Industry, News Items, PvE, Sandbox, Subscription

Yes, Darkfall has quests, smart-aleck, it's not all-gank-all-the-time. In fact, Agonian group PvE is some of the most enjoyable I've experienced in 15-plus years of MMO playing. In any case, Aventurine kicked off a quest-writing contest this week, and you can enter it by sending your stories to the firm's submission email address.

The devs ask that you limit your stories to 1500 words or less and that you make sure they're based on "anything Agonian." Aventurine notes that it is currently crafting "some fairly long and epic stories" of its own, so the winning submissions will be used for sidequests in the world of Darkfall. The best story will net its author a unique in-game item, and the contest runs through July 20th, so you better get cracking!

[Thanks Dengar!]

Captain's Log: A year of Star Trek Online: Legacy of Romulus

Sci-Fi, Culture, Expansions, Lore, Opinion, Star Trek Online, Free-to-Play, Captain's Log, Subscription

I don't know how Remans got to be so popular when no one actually liked Nemesis, but that's where we are.
The first expansion to Star Trek Online was the expansion everyone expected and yet one that no one really expected. Romulans were the obvious choice, the big gap in the game's factional lineup, the third major power that had been floating around in the darkness like some vast, predatory bird since the original series. But the idea of seeing a new faction after the Klingons had languished for so long seemed like a pipe dream. When it actually happened, I know I was sort of left just staring and disbelieving.

Of course, now we've had the Romulan Republic as a playable sort-of-faction for a year now, and that prompts all sorts of reactions. In many ways, this expansion is better than we could have hoped for, and in other ways it feels as if it kind of falls short. I come here not to praise or to bury Legacy of Romulus but to look at it a year out from launch and perhaps see what lessons could be gleaned for the expansion we're due to receive late this year.

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Guild Wars 2's Gates of Maguuma open July 1st

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Events (In-Game), Lore, Patches, Previews, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

Guild Wars 2 fans have been not-so-patiently awaiting news about the inbound second season of story content, which arrives beginning next week on July 1st with the Gates of Maguuma update. ArenaNet has today released a teaser video to prime players for what the new plotline will entail. Says the studio,
In this teaser, you'll see that the Zephyrites have been met with trouble and there are rumors of a disturbance in the tangled western reaches of Brisban Wildlands. When players log in on July 1, they will work together with their fellow GW2 counterparts as well as Marjory, Kasmeer, Rox, Braham and Taimi to discover what is going on. In addition, when you log in to experience the start of Living World Season 2, you can unlock the story content permanently in your Journal to play in the future.
The teaser video is included below.

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Lion's Arch Lament dissected for Guild Wars 2 fans

Fantasy, Culture, Lore, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Music, Buy-to-Play

Nothing lasts forever.  Or revives forever.
The destruction of Lion's Arch formed the centerpiece of Guild Wars 2's first Living Story finale, an event with a big emotional impact for players who had grown accustomed to the city's presence. How do you summarize such a huge event? With music, of course. A new development blog on the official site details the creation of "Lion's Arch Lament," music that commemorates the destruction while at the same time walking through the history of the city in just a few moments.

The piece starts off with an homage to the music most strongly associated with Lion's Arch in the original Guild Wars, then ties in Scarlet's Theme and the city music from Guild Wars 2 to herald its return and destruction. If you're familiar with the game's music, you should give the post a read and listen to the song; it's likely to stir at least a few emotions about the city and its loss.

EverQuest Next's vampires will not sparkle

Fantasy, Video, Lore, News Items, Free-to-Play, Humor, EverQuest Next

In the latest EverQuest Next roundtable video, SOE Senior Brand Manager Omeed Dariani and Lead Content Designer Steve Danuser team up to offer a counterpart to the villain vote from earlier in June, when players voted Ambassador D'Vinn into the game. This week, the studio focuses on other iconic franchise characters. While Danuser and Dariani note that all the characters mentioned will be present in the game or at least its lore, some will find themselves in new roles since EverQuest Next is a reboot of the franchise, not a chronological continuation of past storytelling.

Lucan D'Lere, for example, will still be associated with Freeport, but he might make different life choices this time around. But it was the Dark Elf vampire Leone who won the poll because, well, EverQuest players. Danuser promises that the rebooted version of Leone and his friends will not sparkle.

Finally, this is apparently the last edition of these roundtable videos. Future episodes, SOE says, will be rolled into the team's Workshop Show livestreams.

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Final Fantasy XIV offers a preview of 2.3's story

Fantasy, Lore, Patches, Previews, News Items, Consoles, Final Fantasy XIV, Subscription

We don't know who Shiva belongs to as a Primal, but you can't look at this and then look at  the ice queen without thinking that there has to be a connection.  And the potential implications are... unsettling.
Final Fantasy XIV is rolling out patch 2.3 very shortly, and that means the game's main story will continue onward. The latest preview on the official site hints at what comes next for the Warriors of Light (i.e., the player characters) as well as what's around the bend for Inspector Hildibrand. Dedicated followers of the game know that the next patch will feature Ramuh, but there appears to be more going on than simply the appearance of the next Primal.

The story preview hints that the next update will focus on Thanalan and Coerthas as well as the Black Shroud, with implications that Shiva may not be exactly who players are expecting. Hildibrand's next adventure, meanwhile, looks to be taking a decided turn for the nautical, complete with a new look for the Inspector. Take a gander at the preview as well as the Facebook preview gallery for more hints about what will be going live with the patch.

Square details Final Fantasy XI June update

Fantasy, Final Fantasy XI, Lore, Patches

Final Fantasy XI's upcoming June update will see a gaggle of new quests for the city of Adoulin. According to official word from Square Enix, players will "find out more about the Order of Janniston's struggles with a young man who suddenly fell ill in 'Sick and Tired,' and they'll witness the struggles of Cid's son Midras as he researches new ways to grow vegetables on the Ulbukan continent in 'Vegetable Vegetable Crisis.' Experience a different side of Adoulin with these and other serial tales!"

The June update is scheduled to drop tomorrow, June 17th. You can find out more info on the official forums.

EverQuest Next will feature Ambassador D'Vinn and Fippy Darkpaw

Fantasy, Video, Lore, News Items, Free-to-Play, Races, Humor, EverQuest Next, Dev Diaries

EverQuest Next's 39th round table video is now live, and in it, SOE Senior Brand Manager Omeed Dariani and Senior Game Designer Bill Trost pair up to discuss the EverQuest franchise's nemesis characters and which ones players want to see in EverQuest Next. Ambassador D'Vinn, the Dark Elf NPC who terrorized newbs as the deadly caboose of pretty much every train to the Crushbone zone line in classic EverQuest, won the player poll and will be featured in the upcoming MMO.

As to Fippy Darkpaw, Trost promises he, too, will be present in EQN. "I believe in his mission, and I hope someday he succeeds!" Trost joked.

The devs also highlighted the alignment of the Dark Elves and the curious nature of NPCs who have agendas independent of the players. Enjoy the full video on YouTube.

E3 2014: Final Fantasy XIV discusses ninjas and same-sex marriage

Fantasy, Classes, Culture, Lore, News Items, Consoles, Final Fantasy XIV, Subscription

A lot of people have good reason to be happy about this.
The first of two official livestreams for Final Fantasy XIV has just wrapped up at E3. While the stream focused on a variety of questions from the fans, two big points were hit during the discussion. The first was the revelation of a new class slated for introduction in patch 2.4: the Rogue class, which will lead into the Ninja job. This will be a damage-dealing class that dual wields knives and daggers, complete with enhanced movement skills and stealth abilities.

Producer Naoki Yoshida also announced that the game's marriage system will allow any two characters to be joined together, regardless of race, nation, or gender. The translated answer explained that in the world of Eorzea, it seemed inappropriate to restrict the system. Players will be given the options of having their characters pledge eternal love or simply eternal friendship, with the possibility of special mounts for the happy couple.

Massively's on the ground in Los Angeles during the week of June 10-12, bringing you all the best news from E3 2014. We're covering everything from WildStar and Landmark to Skyforge and H1Z1, so stay tuned!

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