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Not So Massively: RuneScape's TCG, Destiny's playerbase, and Firefly Online's engine

Super-hero, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, New Titles, Patches, Previews, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Trading Card Games, Consoles, MMOFPS, World of Tanks, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, World of Warships, MOBA, Diablo III, Destiny, Infinite Crisis, Path of Exile, E-sports, OARPG

NSM - Chronicle
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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Here's an early look at Star Citizen's planetside gameplay

Sci-Fi, Video, Events (Real-World), Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Star Citizen

Did you miss CitizenCon last weekend? I sure did, and as a result I also missed this rather exciting 11-minute clip that shows off a boatload of Star Citizen sights and sounds.

Better late than never, though, right? Click past the cut to see an early version of the game's planetside gameplay and environments!

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RuneScape announces Hearthstone-like card game

Betas, Fantasy, New Titles, RuneScape, Free-to-Play, Browser, Mobile, Trading Card Games

Hearthstone's success is hard to ignore in the industry, and it doesn't take much effort to connect the dots between that title's growth and Jagex's decision to develop an in-game card battler for RuneScape. The UK-based studio announced that it's making Chronicle: RuneScape Legends to be played inside of its popular MMO.

Chronicle takes place inside a "magical book" that challenges players to use deck-building to create quests that can be completed through PvE and PvP card battles. "Your opponent will be creating quests in parallel with you, but watch out as they might try to steal your weapons or gold," the website states. "At the end of your quests you do battle, with the last person standing the victor!"

According to Eurogamer, Jagex has been working on Chronicle since the beginning of the year to be released sometime in 2015 for the PC, Mac, and mobile devices. Chronicle is currently accepting beta sign-ups.

Korean RvR MMO Azera enters beta

Betas, Fantasy, New Titles, PvP

A new realm vs. realm challenger is on the scene, and it's looking to move into the next phase of testing overseas by the end of this month.

Azera, an RvR MMO developed by SmileGate, will feature factional warfare with a political system that allows players to assume positions of power if they're on the winning side. It is utilizing the Havok Vision Engine and contains five classes and three player factions.

The new title is preparing to go into its second round of beta in Korea on October 29th.

Make My MMO: October 5 - 11, 2014

Business Models, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Crowdfunding, Make My MMO

This week in MMO crowdfunding news, Ascent got itself a new Kickstarter. The sci-fi title's been playable for a while now, but Fluffy Kitten Studios is aiming to improve both its visuals and its UI.

Star Citizen surprised a few people by condoning the grey market surrounding its pricey pretend spaceships, and chairman Chris Roberts made additional headlines by reiterating his desire for a virtual world as opposed to a virtual shoot-'em-up.

You'll find the rest of this week's crowdfunding wrapup after the cut.

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Betawatch: October 4 - 10, 2014

Betas, Expansions, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Betawatch, Miscellaneous

The Crew
This week, The Crew's launch date was delayed until to December 2nd, ensuring a longer closed beta for the driving MMO. What else is new in the world of MMO testing? Read on for our complete Betawatch roundup.

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Cloud Imperium is OK with Star Citizen's grey market

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

If you think Cloud Imperium charges a lot for Star Citizen's spaceships, you should see what some of the "rarer" ones are going for on the game's grey market. Eurogamer has published a look behind the curtain of the space sim's secondary item sales, including interview snippets with a couple of middlemen who have made significant amounts of real-world money by facilitating digital spaceship swaps.

In many cases, the perceived value of a Star Citizen spaceship is tied to whether or not it has lifetime insurance, which was originally offered to backers during the game's early crowdfunding days. Cloud Imperium says that the insurance will function as a convenience item instead of a must-have in the final game, but that hasn't stopped speculators and collectors from paying a premium for LTI-equipped ships, even though some of them can't be used in Star Citizen's currently available hangar and dogfighting modules.

Eurogamer reports that CIG and Chris Roberts have "no desire" to interfere in the trading of pretend spaceships for real cash.

Korean action MMO Asker Online hits closed beta

Betas, Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Game Mechanics, New Titles, News Items, Miscellaneous

2P brings word of another Korean MMO migrating to closed beta this month: Neowiz's Asker Online. The game first caught our attention way back in 2013 when it was nicknamed Black Sheep Online. It emphasizes a dynamic world with randomized dungeons, weather, grappling mechanics, and destructible elements.

Neowiz is also responsible for BLESS, which is also still in beta and still has no hard plans to travel westward.

We've included some of the newish Asker Online vids below. Think it's worth hoping for?

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Choose My Adventure: Cracking whips in Swordsman

Fantasy, Historical, Polls, New Titles, PvE, Free-to-Play, Hands-On, Choose My Adventure, MMORPG, Swordsman

In last week's Choose My Adventure poll, I asked two simple questions of the Massively community: Which gender should our character be in Perfect World Entertainment's Swordsman, and what path should that character take among the game's 10 available schools of combat? The result was a resounding win for the female-character-exclusive Five Venoms school (probably because whips) and for the creation of a female character.

Since the polls closed on Saturday, I've created our character and spent a little time with Swordsman's intro sequence, tutorial missions, and the earliest chapters of its main storyline. I've whipped a bunch of dudes, summoned giant frogs, and set a few horses on fire. And while it's early yet to declare Swordsman a success, failure, or mediocre in-betweener, thus far I would describe the experience as decidedly mixed.

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Star Citizen's Roberts: 'A working universe is much more interesting than just a battlefield'

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

Do you think Chris Roberts keeps a stack of future Letters from the Chairman in his desk drawer? It would make sense, given the fact that Star Citizen regularly blasts through million-dollar crowdfunding barriers (each one prompting a new letter).

The latest milestone to fall by the wayside is $56 million, and the latest letter talks up the sci-fi sandbox's non-combat bells and whistles. Roberts writes that he's pleased to see the new Reclaimer salvage ship striking a chord with backers, as it confirms his "feeling that a working universe is much more interesting than just a battlefield."

He also mentions a community poll that determined the role for Star Citizen's initial fourth wave ship. "The results of the poll also confirmed my belief that the community understands the broader reach of Star Citizen: an overwhelming number of backers voted for the research and hospital ship!"

The Crew pushed back to December 2

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

Ubisoft has pushed The Crew's launch date from November 11th to December 2nd.

"The extra time will allow for a second closed console beta to be held, giving even more players the opportunity to experience the game, which is something the community has been requesting," Ubisoft's statement read.

The open world racer's Xbox One and PlayStation 4 beta is currently ongoing. Gamespot reports that a second closed beta will happen some time in November.

Stick and Rudder: Oh yeah, Star Citizen is a game I'm following!

Sci-Fi, Culture, MMO Industry, New Titles, Opinion, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Stick and Rudder, Star Citizen

I actually said the title of this piece out loud the other day. I was compelled to do so primarily because of a certain sandpark's launch as well as the fact that it's been dominating my game time for a solid month now.

And yeah, I left off the Stick and Rudder part when I said the title out loud because "Stick and Rudder: Oh yeah Star Citizen is a game I'm following!" would've sounded even stranger than "Oh yeah, Star Citizen is a game I'm following!"

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Make My MMO: September 28 - October 4, 2014

Business Models, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Crowdfunding, Make My MMO

This week in MMO crowdfunding, some analysts suggested that game development crowdsourcing might not be the wave of the future. Then Star Citizen topped $55 million in crowdfunding, which makes it not only the biggest game-based crowdfunding project of all time but the biggest crowdfunding project of all time, period.

Once you're done reconciling those two stories, don't forget to click past the cut for our weekly MMO crowdfunding news roundup.

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H1Z1's senior designer on item degradation, crafting, and more

Horror, Video, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Sandbox, Crafting, H1Z1

SOE has released a new H1Z1 dev spotlight video. The dev in question is one Paul Carrico, senior game designer on the open world survival sandbox.

Carrico spends the vid's four-minute running time fielding fan-generated questions, one of which pertains to crafting. "Crafting can get really deep," he says, before giving an example of makeshift weapon fabrication. Carrico also mentions ammo variation, though he says that flaming, exploding, and poison-tipped arrows will have to wait until after H1Z1's early access goes live.

Finally, Carrico talks about item degradation, which will affect everything from weapons to structures to tools. Click past the cut to watch the full clip.

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Elite: Dangerous launches Beta 2, Beta 3 coming later this month

Betas, Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Sandbox, Crowdfunding, Elite: Dangerous

Elite: Dangerous is officially in Beta 2 as of today. Frontier says that the current build is a "major update to the game," which includes new outposts, a new starport, and ship wear and tear, to name just a few. What? You want to hear about a few more? OK, how about pre-flight control checks, new music, and SLI/Crossfire support?

You can view the full release -- and the full feature set -- after the cut.

Beta 3 is currently scheduled for October 28th.

[Source: Frontier press release]

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