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MMO Industry

The Daily Grind: What's the most exciting bit of MMO news you've heard lately?

Sci-Fi, MMO Industry, Opinion, The Daily Grind, Sandbox, Star Citizen

Wednesday's blurb about Star Citizen's release schedule caught me a bit off guard. I guess I lost track of time because the thought of getting to see the game's persistent universe this year took me aback. It makes sense, though, since Star Citizen boasts a big dev team and an even bigger developmental warchest, and they've been going at it in some form or fashion since 2012!

So that's a bit of exciting and unexpected MMO news for 2015, at least in my book. What about you, Massively readers? What MMO news has tickled your fancy of late?

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!

Red 5 tweaking Firefall's reputation system

Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, PvE, Firefall

Firefall's latest news blurb concerns reputation. It's not all about grind and 20 different currencies that will clog up your inventory, though. In fact, Red 5 says that the work-in-progress rep system will ultimately feature reputation points that function like experience. Which, OK, is still about grind. But yay for inventory space!

The devs are also enthused about the future of the rep system, which they say will make use of Firefall's NPC corporations that "aren't much more than flavor" in the current build. You can read all about rep at the official Firefall website.

The Think Tank: Analyzing Elder Scrolls Online's B2P model

Fantasy, Business Models, Culture, MMO Industry, Opinion, Massively Meta, The Elder Scrolls Online, The Think Tank, Buy-to-Play

Yesterday's reveal that The Elder Scrolls Online will go buy-to-play in March has prompted much speculation about the nature of the cash shop, the ethics of the switchover, the continued viability of the game, and the quality, cost, and frequency of the promised DLC. In today's Think Tank, the Massively staff will discuss the decision. Is B2P the right call for ESO? Was the exceedingly long delay of the console launch a huge mistake? What do we expect from the DLC? And is "Tamriel Unlimited" in fact the worst rebrand ever?

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Elite's February patch to feature 'community goals'

Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, News Items, PvE, Elite: Dangerous

Elite: Dangerous is readying something called "Community Goals" for its 1.1 patch. Executive producer Michael Brookes told PCGamer that community goals are a "new type of story-driven collaborative content."

The first such goal will involve supply and bounties, with "massive player migrations [that] will have a knock-on effect on galaxy-wide economy and power structures."

February's 1.1 update will also feature a new gas giant shader and city lights on planetary dark sides, Brookes says.

SWTOR Q&A mentions 12x, soloable flashpoints

Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, PvE, Star Wars: The Old Republic

Werit has posted a Q&A with Star Wars: The Old Republic's community team. It touches on the well-received 12x experience boost, which BioWare says it will be discussing "later this year." There's also a bit about making older flashpoints soloable and while BioWare says it doesn't want to make all group content accessible to single players, it does have "some major story moments that [it] would like every player to see."

APB: Reloaded coming to PS4 and Xbox One in Q2 2015

MMO Industry, Free-to-Play, Consoles, All Points Bulletin

Last fall we heard that APB: Reloaded was reportedly working on bringing the crime spree MMO to consoles but was struggling with the companies to make that happen. Fortunately, it seems as though all of the details have been paved out, as APB is gearing up for its console debut in the latter part of the second quarter of this year.

APB: Reloaded will be coming to both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One as a free-to-play title, although it will require Xbox owners to be part of the Xbox Live Gold service. The console adaptation is being handled by a joint effort between Reloaded Games, Deep Silver, and The Workshop.

The Workshop CEO Peter Akemann says that the title will shine on the new hardware: "Because APB is such a technically complex game, featuring thousands of destructible objects and heavily customized players and vehicles in every scene, we are thrilled to help make APB a reality on these brand new high performance hardware platforms."

To date, APB has had five million PC downloads since 2011.

[Source: Reloaded Games press release]

Pathfinder details corpse looting and more

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Sandbox, Pathfinder Online

GoblinWorks CEO Ryan Dancey has published a new blog post touching on today's Pathfinder early enrollment release.

Version two of the fantasy sandbox adds player husks, which is another way of saying lootable corpses. "The extent of your losses will be related to how quickly you are able to return to the site of your husk and if you are able to recover the inventory that remains on the husk before others are able to take all of its contents or its timer expires," Dancey writes.

There's a bit more to the update, but you'll need to click through to the GoblinWorks website to read it!

Here's a 23-minute Elder Scrolls Online 'supercut' CG trailer

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, MMO Industry, News Items, The Elder Scrolls Online

ZeniMax has released a 23-minute "supercut" of its Elder Scrolls Online trailer series. The firm says that the CG production was "over a year in the making," and the final bit -- dubbed The Confrontation -- brings the battle for Imperial City to an end and reveals "a new and horrific threat to Tamriel."

Click past the cut to have a look.

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Raph Koster is collaborating on Crowfall [Updated with video]

Economy, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Miscellaneous, Sandbox, Crowfall

Does it have your attention NOW
So here's a funny story: Yesterday, the Massively writers were shooting the breeze in team chat when the subject of sandbox devs who were not also closet-gankers came up. "When do you think Raph Koster will finally make a new sandbox?" I asked, half kidding and half wistful. "Never," Jef answered. Then we commiserated for a bit.

It turns out we were remarkably prescient because that day is... today. ArtCraft, the studio working on the nebulous PvP MMO Crowfall, announced today that Koster, the backbone of sandbox legends Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies, has been collaborating with the Crowfall team on the game's design for a year already as a "formal advisor and design consultant."

"Raph and I have been working together for about a year on the design architecture for Crowfall," ArtCraft's J. Todd Coleman wrote. "At the heart of this game, we have two core systems: dynamic territorial conquest and a player-driven economy. Marrying these two concepts is the holy grail of MMO development, and Raph is arguably the best person in the world to help us solve this puzzle."

Koster gets a blurb of his own in the PR: "There isn't anything on the market like Crowfall, and it has been a long time since some of these design ideas were explored. There's a very specific audience out there waiting for a game like this -- the conflict, the real economy -- that has been looking for new steps beyond the games of ten years ago."

Your move, MMO genre.

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The Daily Grind: Will you play Elder Scrolls Online once it's B2P?

Fantasy, Business Models, MMO Industry, Opinion, Massively Meta, The Daily Grind, The Elder Scrolls Online, Buy-to-Play

Yesterday's news that The Elder Scrolls Online is going buy-to-play in time for its console launch surprised... well, not many of Massively's readers. You pretty much saw it coming. Some folks around here said this move was a certainty even before launch and consequently refused to buy it, deciding that patience would pay off. (And it did!)

But what about now? I admit I'm much more tempted by a game that isn't charging an unwarranted fee and isn't abusing a cash shop. B2P is a great model for gamers, especially when they avoid lockbox crap (yay!). How about you? If you didn't play ESO when it launched last April, will you give it a try in March when it's down to just a box fee, a mild cash shop, and more traditional DLC?

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!

Forsaken World's Freedom Falls expansion coming February 4

Fantasy, Expansions, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items

Forsaken World's upcoming expansion is called Freedom Falls. When, exactly, is it upcoming? That would be February 4th, according to a Perfect World press release.

Said release also tells us that Freedom Falls features a new playable race and class as well as a new high-level progression path called Apotheosis which allows players to "join the ranks of the gods of Forsaken World." New zones include the Land of Origination and the Polar Borderlands region.

[Source: Perfect World press release]

Guild Wars 2 player redesigns ANet's UI

Fantasy, MMO Industry, News Items, Guild Wars 2

A Guild Wars 2 player who goes by the name of Amax on the official forums has redesigned the game's UI to correct "some flaws in the game's user experience."

Changes include the character panel, the guild tab, the LFG panel, the story journal, and the addition of a lore journal. You can peruse a 28-page PDF complete with design notes and logic or check out a JPG screenshot showing off the concept just past the break.

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Crowfall creative director: Game is not for everyone

Fantasy, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Sandbox

ArtCraft's head honchos have posted a two-pronged dev update on the Crowfall forums. Executive producer Gordon Walton says that work on the title has been ongoing for six months, and the studio currently employs 17 full-timers.

Creative director J. Todd Coleman says that Crowfall is about to cross the 20,000 registered players threshold, which he calls "staggering" and "completely humbling." He also says that beginning tomorrow, the team will be ramping up details and information drops, some of which will lead people to the conclusion that "this isn't the game for them."

"This game won't be for everyone, and we're OK with that" Coleman writes. "We've done big, mass-market games before. With Crowfall, we wanted to make something different."

New World of Speed trailer invites you to race the world

Real-Life, Trailers, Video, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Races

World of Speed's latest trailer is out, and aside from a few briefing passing shots, there aren't many cars to be found in the clip's two-minute-and-20-second running time. What gives? Slightly Mad and My.com are showing off the game's globe-spanning locales. You'll be racing in the UK, the USA, Russia, France, Monaco, Australia, Belgium, and Germany.

See for yourself after the cut.

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Leaderboard: Is time or money more of a hindrance to your MMO habits?

Business Models, MMO Industry, Opinion, Leaderboard, The Elder Scrolls Online

Elder Scrolls Online's forthcoming buy-to-play conversion is a hot topic at the moment, but sadly it doesn't do much for me on a personal level. Even if I hadn't already played and enjoyed ESO for a significant chunk of 2014, I don't have the time for another grindpark, however well made it may be and however well it scratches my IP-related itches. But hey, maybe I'll have time at some point in 2015. I hope so!

What about you, Massively readers? Is time or money more of a hindrance when it comes to your personal MMO habits? 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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