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Pirates of the Burning Sea

Pirates of the Burning Sea CEO on the economic revamp and a player-driven world

Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Economy, Game Mechanics, Interviews, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play, Sandbox

Pirates of the Burning Sea duo
Pirates of the Burning Sea recently celebrated its sixth anniversary as well as the one-year anniversary of parent company Portalus' decision to strike out on its own following the expiration of its Sony Online Entertainment publishing contract.

The dev team is currently prepping a major economic revamp, but CEO Charles Ellis kindly spared a few moments to answer Massively's burning questions. Join us after the cut as we talk about life after SOE, the game's robust economy, and Portalus' future plans.

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Jukebox Heroes: Top 40 MMO themes, #30-21

Aion, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Opinion, Guild Wars 2, The Secret World, Free Realms, Mabinogi, Wizard101, EverQuest Next, Miscellaneous, The Elder Scrolls Online, Jukebox Heroes, Age of Wushu, Music

We're back with our second part of our Top 40 MMO main themes countdown, this time digging into the middle of the pack. To repeat my self-imposed rules for this list: I limited myself to just one theme from a particular title, even if there were multiple themes in a game. Entries had to be a main theme or the closest equivalent of that; they had to be from MMOs, not from MOBAs; and I had to divorce my weighting of the track itself from the popularity of and my experience with that game. So there were no points added or subtracted based on my love of the game; I'm counting down the best music, period.

If you missed the first part, check out themes #40-31. Otherwise, hit that continue button and get listening already!

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The Daily Grind: Have you lost track of an MMO only to rediscover it later?

Fantasy, Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, MMO Industry, Opinion, Free-to-Play, The Daily Grind

Pirates of the Burning Sea swordpoint
Last night I started thinking about Pirates of the Burning Sea. I don't know why. It's a bit odd, actually. Anyhow, you might remember PotBS as a piratey SOE title set in the age of sail and featuring some pretty awesome ship-to-ship combat. If you're really hardcore you might remember the game's pre-SOE days or even its 2008 launch under the Flying Lab Software banner.

In any case, I lost track of the game completely and didn't even realize that it was still operating. So right now I'm downloading the client via the Portalus website and digging through old screenshot folders, just because.

Oh, and there's a Daily Grind question buried somewhere amidst my ramblings. Ah, here it is. Have you ever lost track of an MMO only to rediscover it later?

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!

Pirates of the Burning Sea opens new account creation

Fantasy, Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, MMO Industry, Sandbox

Pirates of the Burning Sea
Pirates of the Burning Sea continues its voyage of transition from the old days of SOE to the new ones under Portalus Games. As such, the team has opened account creation for new players on the Portalus website and added new seasonal exchange items to the game.

In addition to account creation, Pirates of the Burning Sea can be downloaded from that site as well. The official game site is currently being "rebuilt," so stick to Portalus' home page for the time being.

Pirates of the Burning Sea fine-tunes engagement odds

Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Patches, PvP, Free-to-Play, Sandbox

Pirates of the Burning Sea finetunes engagement odds
It's never fun to be the one on the bottom of a PvP dogpile, and the folks at Pirates of the Burning Sea understand that. The developers have been making adjustment to their open sea engagement rules to find the right balance to make a memorable encounter.

While the team initially restricted confrontations so that ganking by player mob couldn't happen, the devs admit that the end result wasn't what they had hoped: "That adjustment went too far, and the fights since have by and large been less dynamic."

So to bring back some of the unpredictability in encounters without making it a gankfest, the devs will be tweaking engagements so that at maximum they can only be two-on-one fights. They also vowed to keep an eye on these fights going forward, particularly in regard to the reinforcement timers.

Captain's Log: Star Trek Online's Daniel Stahl at E3

Sci-Fi, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Bugs, Events (In-Game), Expansions, Interviews, Opinion, Star Trek Online, Free-to-Play, Captain's Log, Neverwinter

STO Odyssey Header
Last week the unstoppable Jasmine Hruschak was one member of Massively's crack team who braved the traffic of Los Angeles to take in the sights, sounds, hawking, yelling, and craziness that was the Electronic Entertainment Expo. While she was there, she interviewed Star Trek Online's Executive Producer, Daniel Stahl, and put forth a few questions from the Massively team.

Stahl was able to drop a few hints about the future of Star Trek Online in his responses, so join me past the jump as I deliver the highlights from their conversation!

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Pirates of the Burning Sea unfolds 2013 road map

Fantasy, Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Previews, Free-to-Play, Dev Diaries

Pirates of the Burning Sea unfurls 2013 road map
Portalus Games Lead Programmer Hamled has apologized to players for "the lack of discernible progress and substantive information" in Pirates of the Burning Sea as of late. To make it up to fans, Hamled has posted an extensive development road map for 2013.

In descending order of priority, the dev mentions the following projects for the team: getting out the 2.12 update, completing the transition from Flying Lab Software, bringing back up needed hardware infrastructure, rebuilding the account system, providing localization services, creating a dedicated game installer, and redesigning the official website.

"I will be working on many of these tasks in parallel because we can't afford to wait until each one is completely finished before moving on to the next," Hamled stated.

One Shots: You were saying?

Screenshots, Lord of the Rings Online, Pirates of the Burning Sea, One Shots, Humor, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Miscellaneous, Firefall

One Shots You were saying
If there's a class in Star Wars: The Old Republic that has a monopoly on the best lines, banter, and dialogue, it would have to be the Smuggler. Reader Danielle sent us in this nicely framed shot: "Here's my confident, sassy Smuggler striking a pose as he interrupts a conversation."

But isn't interrupting a conversation... rude? He shouldn't do that, then. He should wait patiently until both parties are finished, and perhaps raise his hand and wait to be acknowledged by his betters. Or he could totally interrupt their boring chit-chat.

The One Shots column is a time capsule of some of the most important MMO moments in history, and you're about to witness the latest entries into this hallowed vault. Steel yourself and prepare to gaze in wonder at the peak of human ingenuity and the print screen key!

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Jukebox Heroes: A few of my favorite MMO soundtracks

World of Warcraft, Guild Wars, Lord of the Rings Online, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Opinion, Vanguard, Miscellaneous, Jukebox Heroes, Music

Jukebox Heroes A few of my favorite soundtracks
I could hear some of you thinking in disbelief last week, "If Age of Conan isn't one of your top MMO scores, what is? And just how much am I not sending you a Christmas card this year, you loser?" You were kind enough to just think it and not say it, but I could hear it even so.

As we've mentioned countless times in this column, musical tastes are subjective. What's appealing to you may not be for me and vice-versa. What more is that musical tastes -- and favorites -- are always shifting around. I listen back to the jams that I enjoyed in the '90s and absolutely pity my younger self for such a deficiency in his musical diet.

So I thought that I'd take a week off our normal soundtrack reviews to bring to you my current top six favorite soundtracks. This list comes with the caveat that it's always subject to future changes as I continue to listen through more soundtracks for this column.

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Pirates of the Burning Sea account migration is ready

Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play

You have a week to migrate your Pirates of the Burning Sea account
Pirates of the Burning Sea is preparing to cast off from the safe harbor of Sony Online Entertainment for good. It's time to get on board if you don't want to be left behind; Pirates of the Burning Sea will now be sailing under the banner of Portalus Games, which means you'll need to migrate your account in order to keep swashing and buckling.

The migration system is now totally ready. You won't be able to spend Station Cash in the game after the 31st of January, but Burning Sea Notes and Points will transfer over in the migration process.


Pirates of the Burning Sea sails away from Sony Online Entertainment

Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play

Yarr!  Goodbye.  Yarr.
Pirates of the Burning Sea is leaving port, but it's not getting scuttled. After a great deal of discussion between Flying Lab Software and Sony Online Entertainment, an agreement has been reached and the game will leave SOE's portfolio on January 31st, 2013. But this doesn't mean the end of the game -- instead, the game's management will be taken over by Portalus Games, a new company formed from several former members of Flying Lab.

What does this mean for current players? Well, if you want to keep playing the same characters, you're going to need to go through a few steps to ensure your account migrates properly over to the new management. Beyond that, any new developments remain to be seen, as the new company has high hopes for the game's future but hasn't announced any firm plans. All we know now is that the game's servers are planned to continue operating as normally through the transition, and should help calm minds as the waters get a bit rougher.

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

The Perfect Ten: MMO Jukebox

World of Warcraft, Anarchy Online, EVE Online, Guild Wars, Lord of the Rings Online, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Culture, Runes of Magic, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Perfect Ten, Miscellaneous, WildStar

The Perfect Ten MMO Jukebox
Earlier this year, I got to expose my musically nerdy side to you all in a one-two shot of MMO theme song countdowns. The truth is that I'm just a huge sucker for video game music, and as such, I've collected a wide range of MMO scores to bolster my MP3 player.

I know that we players tend to be pretty vocal about turning off MMO music at some point, usually due to extreme repetition. Unfortunately, that seems to leave a bad association with this music in our minds, and I don't feel that reputation is deserved. MMO scores can be just as good -- if not better -- than their counterparts in film or other video games.

So I've decided that every so often I'm going to devote a full Perfect Ten to sharing my favorite MMO music. I'm always open to suggestions, of course, so if you know of a track that you feel really should be in the next list, send me an email or leave it in the comments!

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SOE games down Monday for 24-hour maintenance

Fantasy, Sci-Fi, EverQuest, EverQuest II, Pirates of the Burning Sea, PlanetSide, MMO Industry, News Items, Vanguard, Free-to-Play, Free Realms, DC Universe Online, Family

SOE logo
We imagine that the word downtime makes Sony Online Entertainment employees cringe, convulse, and eye-twitch for hours on end after last summer's disastrous hacker-induced service outage. Happily, though, the next service interruption is planned, and we've got plenty of notice.

SOE will be performing maintenance this Monday, April 23rd, and the firm says that all of its game services will be unavailable for approximately 24 hours. The downtime starts at 3:01 a.m. EDT. Commerce transactions and account management functionality will also be affected, so you might as well cross all of your SOE-related plans off Monday's calendar.

Pirates of the Burning Sea outlines plans for 2012

Historical, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, News Items, Free-to-Play, Miscellaneous

Pirates of the Burning Sea - anchored ships
Remember Pirates of the Burning Sea? Yeah, it's still sailing along after its 2010 free-to-play conversion, and the dev team at Flying Lab Software is gearing up to celebrate the game's fourth anniversary in high pirate style.

Brain "Fodderboy" Taney has offered up a lengthy dev blog detailing what's next for the nautical MMO, and he outlines two main goals: immersion and the desire to "layer" the game.

Immersion is fairly self-explanatory (and in case it's not, Taney says that it entails bringing more authentic 18th century elements to the game). Layering requires a bit more verbiage, but it basically boils down to improving "the game experience for all the different kinds of players we have in our community (e.g., casual, hardcore, PvE-only, PvP-only, etc.)," Taney says. There's quite a bit more, of course, but you'll need to head to the official PotBS website to read about it.

The Perfect Ten: Best MMO theme songs (part one)

Age of Conan, Darkfall, Final Fantasy XI, Pirates of the Burning Sea, Wurm Online, RuneScape, Humor, Mabinogi, Wizard101, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Blade & Soul, Perfect Ten

Perfect Ten
As I've well established both here on Massively and elsewhere, I'm somewhat of a nut for video game music. Whereas others might collect vintage hair metal tracks or the latest Justin Bieber opus, I'm always digging through obscure (and not-so-obscure) official soundtracks to games like Wipeout and Kirby. Video game scores can be right up there with the best that the film industry puts out, and the fact that they tie into personal experiences that we've played through can lend them sentimental weight.

So for the next two Perfect Tens, I scoured all the MMO theme songs that I could get ahold of in an attempt to formulate a list of the very best. It was originally slated to be just one list, but after an hour or so of listening to tracks and having friends and fellow staffers weigh in on the subject, I knew it was impossible to keep it there.

Two important things to note for this list. First, I wanted to keep to just the title/login screen tracks so that I wouldn't be working on this for the next 2.5 years. Second, unlike most past Perfect Tens where there's no significance to the order of the list, in this case we're going to have a genuine countdown to the best MMO theme song of all time. And I expect to take no flak about it, do you hear me? Good. Let's begin.

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