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MMO Industry

Betawatch: October 25 - 31, 2014

MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Massively Meta, Betawatch, Miscellaneous

Elite
Elite: Dangerous' beta 3 went live this week with bug fixes and new features like player-driven interdiction, asteroid mining, and philanthropy missions. What else is new in the land of MMO testing? Read on for the complete Betawatch roundup.

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EVE's Phoebe adding better search functionality and more

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Dev Diaries, Sandbox

Another day, another Phoebe-focused dev blog from the folks at CCP. EVE Online is getting a bit of a search overhaul in its November patch, as items inside station containers will be included in search results.

CCP is also calling attention to the "pretty powerful advanced search functionality" in EVE via a new question mark icon in the game's Asset Search tab that leads to a keyword tooltip. There are several other UI changes scheduled to debut with Phoebe, but you'll need to click through the links below to view them in the full dev blog.

If you're a third-party EVE app developer, don't forget to visit CCP's newly published blog.

You'll want an aircraft carrier in World of Warships

Historical, Video, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, War, Dev Diaries, World of Warships

Wargaming released a new World of Warships dev diary video this week. It's focused on aircraft carriers, which the firm calls "the most unique type of vessel" in the game.

Carriers are speedy, excellent at spotting enemy ships, and of course pack a tremendous punch. Once a carrier has launched its aircraft, they can traverse the entire map and attack from unexpected angles, according to the video. Have a look for yourself just past the break.

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Star Citizen's latest patch adds ESP, improves control

Sci-Fi, Business Models, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Star Citizen

Cloud Imperium has officially released version 0.9.2 of Star Citizen's Arena Commander. It's kind of a big deal thanks to something that the company is dubbing ESP, or Enhanced Stick Precision. CIG's Chris Roberts explains how this latest version of the alpha software, which combines ESP with significant changes to the ITTS and HUD systems, comes the closest so far to achieving "the level of control and sense of dogfighting that I had in my head when I first pictured how space combat should feel back when I started the journey that is Star Citizen."

The latest patch also doubles the size of Arena's Commander's maps. You can read the full patch notes here.

CIG also unveiled the Drake Herald this afternoon. Be sure to click the web page's decrypt button to see all the details.

[Thanks Cardboard!]

Here are The Crew's PC system requirements

Real-Life, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Races

Ubisoft has released the system specs you'll need to play The Crew on your PC. Let's skip right over the quote-unquote minimums and go right to what's recommended, shall we?

You should have a Core i5-750 2.66 GHz or a Phenom II X4 940 3.0 GHz (or better), Ubisoft says. Eight gigs of RAM are recommended, as is a GeForce GTX580 or a Radeon 6870 (or better) for your graphics processing. You'll also need a 64-bit version of Windows. Ubisoft's dev blog lists the full requirements including minimums and an optimal setup.

The Think Tank: Fixing the Landmark-EQ Next perception problem

Betas, Fantasy, Business Models, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Massively Meta, EverQuest Next, Sandbox, The Think Tank, Landmark

Not a Landmark post on Massively goes by without at least one commenter essentially telling SOE to talk about EverQuest Next or shut up. Massively's MJ Guthrie, who writes our EverQuest franchise column, has herself explained until she's blue in the face that Landmark is EQ Next's foundation, and SOE has talked plenty about EQ Next independently too, but for some reason, the explanations aren't sticking with the MMO populace, so the same complaints are voiced in every thread.

So what gives? Has SOE been too confusing with the Landmark/EQ Next co-branding? How can SOE dig itself out of this persistent perception problem? That's what I asked Massively's writers in today's Think Tank.

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Richard Bartle 'frustrated' with modern MMO development

Interviews, MMO Industry, Miscellaneous

richard bartle
A fascinating piece over on Eurogamer about MUD1 and Richard Bartle traces the history of the modern MMO back to this game and this man. Bartle said that he and his partner "wanted to change the world" with his game, although he says that the modern MMO has yet to reach its full potential.

"I am frustrated at its slow pace," Bartle said. "There's so much you can do with virtual worlds. But it's not being done. I wanted them to be places of wonder in which people could go to truly be themselves, away from societal pressure or judgement. My idea was that if you could truly find yourself in a virtual world you might be able to then take that back into the real world. Then we could get rid of these artificial restraints of class, gender, social status and so on that dictate that you are what you are born to be."

Bartle talked about how the goal for MUD1 was to give players "pure freedom" and how he thinks that MMOs should operate on a meritocracy. For more information on this topic, check out Massively's MUD retrospective and interview with Bartle back in 2011.

Guild Wars 2, Torchlight 2 slash box prices for Halloween

Fantasy, Business Models, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Promotions, Miscellaneous, Buy-to-Play

gw2
If you're looking for a subscription-free MMO to spend Halloween in, ArenaNet has an offer for you: The studio's slashed the price on Guild Wars 2's digital edition by 50%, making the cheapest version of the game just under 20 bucks.

If OARPGs are more your style, then check out Torchlight and Torchlight II; both are half off until November 3rd, Runic announced this afternoon.

We included a bunch of other Halloween-related sales in this morning's MMO Halloween roundup, and we expect more to keep rolling in today and tomorrow. Most games with cash shops are running some sort of promotion... just remember, you're a person, not a wallet.

Massively's MMO guide to Halloween 2014

Horror, Business Models, Culture, Events (Real-World), Events (In-Game), MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, Massively Meta, Promotions, Miscellaneous

Defiance
MMORPG fans love to play dress-up. Admit it! We do it every day with our characters, even if we pretend we're just "checking out our stats" when we're rifling through the hundreds of pieces of cosmetic gear in our banks. That's what makes Halloween our magic holiday!

Following what is now epic tradition, we've rounded up all the big MMORPG Halloween events and sales for 2014 as well as a few little ones and some from our favorite MOBAs and OARPGs too. The list isn't exhaustive, so feel free to chime in with any we've missed that you love!

Now, furbish up your pumpkin heads and get in there. That virtual candy isn't gonna eat itself.

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The Daily Grind: Do you defend your favorite MMO?

Fantasy, Culture, MMO Industry, Opinion, The Daily Grind, The Elder Scrolls Online

I think I'm getting old, because there was a time when I'd wade into a forum discussion about my favorite MMO and defend it to the death against all comers. I still catch myself doing that on occasion, but said occasions are getting rarer. The passion hasn't gone anywhere, but I'd rather just go play it than argue about it, you know?

What about you, Massively readers? Do you defend your favorite MMOs?

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

Final Fantasy XI wants you back really bad

Fantasy, Final Fantasy XI, MMO Industry, News Items, Promotions

Final Fantasy XI is dangling quite a few incentives for adventurers considering a return to Vana'diel. First up is the Idyllic Vana'diel campaign, which begins on November 10th. You'll get login prizes, double XP, and more.

There's also a discount campaign, which features substantial price reductions on everything from the Seekers of Adoulin expansion pack to the FFXI Ultimate Collection Seeker's Edition. Finally, don't forget about the Adventurer Appreciation campaign, which rewards players who had active accounts between September 1st and October 31st.

CCP explains EVE's upcoming mission guidance system, CSM changes

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, PvE, Dev Diaries, Sandbox

CCP released another Phoebe-focused dev diary earlier today, this one detailing the new mission objective system coming to EVE Online next month. The firm is walking a fine line between general guidance and "brain-dead instructions to follow," and as such it is asking for feedback relative to how the new feature is presented in today's diary. It's a lengthy read, but you can also see the new system in action if you log onto EVE's Singularity test shard.

CCP has also delivered minutes from the Council of Stellar Management's summer summit earlier than expected. CCP Leeloo explains that the studio will make further changes to the CMS next year, starting with lengthening the winter summit and shortening the current CMS's term to better align with next year's Fanfest. Applications for CSM10 open on January 30th.

Leaderboard: Is TERA's expansion tempting you to play?

Fantasy, Expansions, MMO Industry, Opinion, The Daily Grind, TERA

I haven't played TERA in a long while. I always to meant to give it more of a shot, but for whatever reason it's never worked out. On the heels of En Masse's first expansion announcement, I'm thinking about it again, though it's going to take some doing to pry me away from ArcheAge.

What about you, Massively readers? Is TERA's Fate of Arun expansion tempting you to play? Vote after the cut!

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Camelot Unchained devs play music, talk audio stretch goal

Fantasy, Video, Business Models, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Humor, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Camelot Unchained

If you've ever wanted to see Mark Jacobs fend off a wasp attack, the latest Camelot Unchained dev diary video is for you! It's also noteworthy because Jacobs details how the crowdfunded PvP sandbox met its previous stretch goal and how it is now on to a "sound and effects" stretch goal.

"This is a very serious attempt to have triple-A sound and effects," he says, before going on to explain how CityState will hire a dedicated engineer, license a top engine, etc. Click past the cut to watch Jacobs, a wasp, Grumpy Cat, and the CU dev band.

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Valiance Online launches its Kickstarter today [Updated: It's live now!]

Betas, Super-hero, Business Models, Events (Real-World), MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Promotions, Crowdfunding

Valiance Online
A post on Valiance Online's Facebook has good news for fans of the upcoming game: SilverHelm Studios will be bringing the game to Kickstarter today. "It's packed with all manner of goodies for you to get your hands on," Design Director Nate "Paramount" Vogeding writes. "These things will be exclusive to our KS backers and backers alone. That's right; it won't be coming back around again." Vogeding also promises more pre-alpha invites and tells readers to "let everyone know that yes, there is a city coming back and very soon!"

Valiance Online is one of several fan-backed superhero MMOs vying to become City of Heroes' spiritual successor. In September, SilverHelm told followers that it will not be licensing the CoH IP if it is eventually secured from NCsoft by City of Titans.

[Update: The Kickstarter is now live, with pledges ranging from $1-$10,000 and a funding goal of $150,000. We've embedded the trailer below.]

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