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Elder Scrolls' Sage explains new Champion alternate advancement

Fantasy, Video, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, PvE, The Elder Scrolls Online, Subscription

Elder Scrolls Online creative director Paul Sage released a lot of interesting info about the future of the game on a recent ESO Off the Record videocast. Sage talks about everything from the new Dragonstar Arena in Craglorn to an Imperial City three-vs.-three PvP map to guild management and class balance additions to extensive VR changes.

The veteran rank tweaks are so huge that they'll be rolled out in phases, the first of which debuted earlier this week and featured "lower difficulty" in existing VR zones. Phase two will remove veteran points in favor of normal XP and will also include increased PvP XP. Phase three will completely replace the current VR system with the Champion System, which involves alternate advancement that Sage compares to the AA system in EverQuest II.

That's not all, either, as Sage's interview runs for nearly two hours. You can watch the whole thing after the cut. If you don't have time for that, Dulfy has published a summary transcript.

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Dino-survival: Hands-on with The Stomping Land's early access alpha

Betas, Bugs, Business Models, Game Mechanics, PvP, News Items, Opinion, Hands-On, First Impressions

Stomping Land
Yesterday, I examined up-and-coming dinosaur-survival MMO Beasts of Prey. Today, let's look at another game in the same niche genre: The Stomping Land.

The Stomping Land isn't technically billing itself as an MMO, but it boasts a semi-permanent world. But my experience in it was nothing like the trailers shown back in May. The current game is totally different. In fact, it seems to have regressed. There's no customization, there are no berries, and no one I talked to knew how to name a tribe. It feels like a semi-permanent shooter, similar to other survival games except without a lot of the building. You either make a teepee or you don't. You make a bow or you don't. You have a dinosaur mount or... you don't. The biggest servers I saw had 24 people, meaning I was able to avoid other players very often, but the game was more fun when I encountered people -- at least people who didn't one-shot me and waltz away.

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Heroes & Generals on Steam today

Historical, Business Models, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, War, Free-to-Play

Did you know that Heroes & Generals was one of the first titles to ever be Greenlit by the Steam community? Yep, it was, and today developer Reto-Moto is launching the World War II shooter/strategy FPS on Valve's ubiquitous PC platform.

But wait, isn't Heroes & Generals a browser game? Well, partly, but Reto-Moto says not to worry. "The browser version will also still be operational and both versions offer the same game and access to the same wars," the firm explains via press release. If you're already an H&G player, you can use your existing account with the new Steam version.

Click past the cut to have a look at the Steam launch trailer!

[Source: Reto-Moto press release]

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ArcheAge Korea getting 1.7, new PvE and PvP content next week

Fantasy, Trailers, Video, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, PvE, Free-to-Play, ArcheAge, Sandbox

While Western ArcheAge fans are getting all hot and bothered by Trion's upcoming closed beta, it's worth remembering that XLGAMES' sandpark has been live in its native Korea for a while now. As such, it's scheduled to receive a version update (1.7) next week that will add new PvE and PvP content. There's an aquatic world boss called Leviathan in the works, as well as something called Attack of the Abyss that features PvP capture-and-defend objectives as well as PvE pirate ghost ships.

The update will also feature a new PvP area called Dew Plains. You can view trailers for Leviathan, Attack of the Abyss, and Dew Plains after the break.

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Vote for your Guild Wars 2 International All-Stars tourney reps

Fantasy, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Guild Wars 2, Buy-to-Play

ArenaNet and Twitch are joining forces to bring you the "first-ever truly global" Guild Wars 2 competition. It's going down at Gamescom 2014 and it's called the Guild Wars 2 International All-Stars Tournament since it matches players from North America, Europe, and China.

Fans can choose their regional representatives via a voting drive that starts today, and the winners will receive all-expenses paid trips to Germany to compete.

Dino-survival: Hands-on with Beasts of Prey's early access alpha

Betas, Fantasy, Bugs, Game Mechanics, Previews, PvP, PvE, Opinion, Hands-On, First Impressions, Post-Apocalyptic, Crafting, Buy-to-Play

Beasts of Prey
When I first dived into the horror-survival genre, I knew there would be zombies, but I never expected dinosaurs. You don't get much bigger than a T-Rex stomping around your neighborhood (though I am still waiting for an underwater survival game that randomly has blue whales unintentionally ruining your kelp fort as they hunt for krill). When dinosaurs started to replace zombies, I knew that my inner child would drag me in, even if I once again had to pay for alpha.

It's this very idea of "paid alpha" that inspired me to tackle not one but two titles from the newly spawned dino-survival based genre. Apologists will say that it's just alpha, but the reality is that you get only one launch, and to me, launch is you start letting people buy your game and don't hold them under an NDA. With this in mind, I decided to try my hand at both Beasts of Prey and The Stomping Land to see which, if either, feels the most deserving of my time (and money). Today, I'll start with BoP.

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Firefall to launch July 29

Sci-Fi, Events (In-Game), Launches, PvP, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, Firefall

Firefall
Firefall's extended beta will soon be over as Red 5 Studios has announced that the MMO shooter will be launching on July 29th.

The free-to-play game has been gearing up for this launch with a series of dev blogs entitled Path to Launch that each spotlight a particular game feature that MMO shooter fans -- and general MMO fans -- may enjoy. "The update we are releasing for launch will be the largest update we have ever had," said James Macauley, CEO of Red 5 Studios. "It will quadruple the amount of world space in Firefall and add roughly 15-times the amount of content we have had previously in Beta."

Be sure to check out our own early impressions of the game and take a look at the official press release for more info on what to expect at launch.

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

NSM
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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EVE Evolved: Making ISK from the Crius release

Sci-Fi, EVE Online, Culture, Economy, Expansions, Game Mechanics, Patches, Previews, PvP, PvE, EVE Evolved, Dev Diaries, Sandbox, Crafting, Player-Generated Content, Subscription

EVE Evolved title image
‚ÄčEVE Online's economy has been studied over the years for its resemblance to the real world, and it is often cited as an example of a hyper-capitalist society with no laws or regulation. But underneath the emergent interplay of supply and demand that has fueled everything from freighter businesses to virtual investment banks, EVE is ultimately a game. The biggest influence on the markets by far has always been CCP Games and the changes it deploys in expansions, which shake the universe up and force players to adapt to new circumstances.

There's always money to be made from major gameplay changes, and accurately predicting how an expansion will impact on the market can put you on the head of a short-lived but very lucrative gold rush. Though EVE's updates now come in the form of ten smaller releases per year, the upcoming Crius release scheduled for July 22nd has practically a whole expansion's worth of changes to industry and research. That gives you just over two weeks to prepare for the change, train any skills you might need, and figure out how to cash in on EVE's industrial revolution.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I run down some tips for how to prepare for the upcoming industry revamp in Crius and make some ISK.

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The Daily Grind: What untried portion of an MMO have you been playing lately?

Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, Opinion, Free-to-Play, The Daily Grind, Star Wars: The Old Republic

So it's double XP week in Star Wars: The Old Republic right now, and I'm pretty sick of the Kuat Drive Yards flashpoint. I popped into a Galactic Starfighter queue out of sheer boredom, and while it's a far cry from the space sims I love, it was a pleasant diversion.

What about you, Massively readers? What previously uninteresting or untried portion of an MMO have you discovered 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!

Heroes & Generals adds paratroopers, new uniforms

Historical, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, War, Free-to-Play, Browser

Reto-Moto has released a new update for its World War II strategy/shooter Heroes & Generals. Codenamed "Quesada," the patch brings paratroopers to the game and allows players to jump out of C-47 Skytrains or Junkers Ju-52s and "perform surprise attacks" on the battlefield.

Quesada also features new uniform variations for classes including US Recon, US Paratrooper, German Tank Crew, German Recon, and German Paratrooper. You can see the full list of tweaks and additions via the patch changelog.

[Source: Reto-Moto press release]

Leaderboard: Will you be trying ArcheAge?

Betas, Fantasy, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, Opinion, ArcheAge, Sandbox, Leaderboard

ArcheAge's closed beta is coming in a couple of weeks, and if Trion stays on schedule, the long-awaited sandpark's western launch will happen some time prior to year's end. The only real question, then, is will you be playing.

There's clearly a lot to like about the game in terms of features, but there's also the specter of open PvP, which has traditionally hamstrung MMO sales and retention figures in the West. So, how about it, Massively readers? Will you be trying ArcheAge despite (or perhaps because of) its PvP?

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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Siege Online gets new expansion, does not take itself too seriously

Fantasy, Historical, Video, Culture, Game Mechanics, New Titles, Patches, PvP, News Items, Humor, Miscellaneous

Siege Online
Ever heard of Siege Online? Neither had we, but we're suckers for "medieval" combat MMOs with hot air balloons, teepees, Moai statues, stone pyramids, and dune buggies, never mind totally anachronistic and anatopistic things like running water. Today, this crazy cat of a game has a new expansion.

Developed by Russian studio Quant Games and published by Mousee Games, Siege Online boasts a tactical battlefield combat system, castle construction, a functional economy, guilds, and PvP zones. The update, dubbed The New Edge, improves some graphical landscaping, adds a newbie tutorial, includes special mounts, adjusts starting zone difficulty, and simplifies building modes.

We've tucked the game's original trailer behind the break. Enjoy!

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The Witcher: Battle Arena MOBA due out Q4 2014

Fantasy, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, MOBA

CD Projekt Red's first foray into multiplayer Witcher territory isn't an MMORPG but rather a MOBA. Not only is The Witcher: Battle Arena a MOBA, but it's a mobile MOBA that's due for Android, iOS, and Windows tablets and phones sometime during Q4 2014.

"There will be a monster-hunting mode, kind of an isometric multiplayer [in the future]," explains project manager Tadek Zielinski. "There will be a boss mode, where you will be able to fight the bosses -- that will be purely a (player verses enemy) experience. And we are thinking of other competitive modes. We have a classic one-lane MOBA experience with towers, but we have a different approach because we don't want to have minions, we don't want to have farming."

Not So Massively: Hearthstone's expansion, God of Destiny's greenlighting, and Dead Island's MOBA

Betas, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, Business Models, Events (Real-World), Expansions, MMO Industry, Patches, PvP, News Items, Consoles, MMOFPS, DUST 514, Miscellaneous, Not So Massively, MOBA, Age of Wushu, Crowdfunding, Destiny, Star Citizen, Elite: Dangerous, Hearthstone

NSM
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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