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The Daily Grind: Which ArcheAge Firran do you prefer?

Betas, Fantasy, Culture, The Daily Grind, Races, ArcheAge, Sandbox

I've been poking about in ArcheAge recently, but it's nothing too serious until Trion announces a launch date (or at the very least, a no-wipe date). I'm still trying to figure out a main, and all four races have something to recommend them. The Elves are probably my least favorite, followed by the humans. The Firran are slick, but to be frank I preferred them before they were westernized or whatever you call it.

What about you, Massively readers. Do you prefer ArcheAge's earlier feline folk or the new models?

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!

Quests, Elves, and Dwarves coming soon to Pathfinder Online

Betas, Fantasy, Patches, Races, Dev Diaries, Sandbox, Pathfinder Online

pathfinder online
Pathfinder Online's alpha is growing by leaps and bounds as evidenced by two upcoming builds that will take shape over the next few weeks. In them, the devs are adding in essential systems like questing along with new races.

With next week's alpha 7 build, questing and companies will be introduced into the game as will possible new terrain types. Then when alpha 8 comes along, the sandbox MMO will make the jump to its early enrollment servers. This update will also include Elves, Dwarves, a graphical upgrade, expendables, storage, auction houses, banks, and more terrain options.

Part of the purpose of these new builds is to conduct what the devs are calling a "cold start" to see how players advance when they begin with nothing but a club and the clothes on their back. "Everything your character possesses and every ability your character learns after that point will be totally dependent on how you choose to play the game," the devs posted.

[Thanks to Chrysillis for the tip!]

Explore The Crew's gameplay options in new vid

Real-Life, Trailers, Video, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Races, Buy-to-Play

Ubisoft has released a new promotional video for The Crew which highlights the racing MMO's 1900 square mile open world, its highly detailed cities, and its vast swathes of drivable/explorable terrain. "If you can see it, you can drive there," the vid explains.

Driving off the beaten path can be profitable, too, as you'll occasionally find car wrecks and junk yards from which you can scavenge rare parts to help further customize your ride. See all that and more in the clip just past the cut.

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Gamescom 2014: Star Citizen gets racing, FPS, hangar, and Connie teasers

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

Star Citizen fans, we hope you're sitting down, because Cloud Imperium released not one, not two, not three, but four separate trailers during its Gamescom livestream. Let's see, there's one about racing, one about the upcoming hangar update, a commercial for the Constellation, and oh yeah, how about some FPS combat footage?

Feast your eyes after the cut!

[Thanks Cardboard!]

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Ubisoft explains why The Crew isn't coming to PS3, Wii U

Betas, Real-Life, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Consoles, Races, Buy-to-Play

As we reported yesterday, Ubisoft's open world racer The Crew is launching on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Xbox 360 platforms this November. The game will not be coming to the PlayStation 3 or Wii U, though.

"The Crew is originally built for the new generation of consoles so when we made the decision to port it to the previous generation of consoles, we decided to focus solely on the platform closest to the new-gen's technical infrastructure, which is the Xbox 360," an Ubi rep told VideoGamer.

Ubisoft has also announced that closed beta on next gen consoles is coming "in late September."

Leaderboard: What the heck is Guild Wars 2's Pale Tree?

Fantasy, Polls, Lore, Guild Wars 2, Races, Leaderboard, Buy-to-Play

I've heard of Mad King Thorn, but this is ridiculous.
Since Guild Wars 2's humble beginnings, players have been debating the exact nature of the seemingly benevolent Pale Tree, an entity who has acted as a mother to the playable Sylvari race. Season two of the living world story has been throwing more fuel on this particular fire with almost every chapter, and this week's release of The Dragon's Reach: Part Two is no exception.

Since ArenaNet has announced a mid-season break in the story, it seems like a good time to cast our votes once and for all and ensure bragging rights for those of us who turn out to be correct. What's your favorite explanation for the existence of the Pale Tree? Click past the break to vote (but be warned that while this poll is spoiler-free, the comments may not be)!

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The Crew coming to Xbox 360

Real-Life, Trailers, Video, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Consoles, Races, Buy-to-Play

Open world racer The Crew was already scheduled to hit PCs, the PlayStation 4, and the Xbox One on November 11th. Now we can add one more platform to that launch date, as Ubisoft has said via press release that the game is also heading to the Xbox 360.

The 360 version is being developed by Asobo Studio with assistance from Ivory Tower, Ubisoft Reflections, and Ubisoft Shanghai.

Have a look at the game's new "Playground" trailer after the break.

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World of Warcraft spotlights Draenor's new Troll models

World of Warcraft, Betas, Fantasy, Previews, News Items, Races

WoW
Today's World of Warcraft Artcraft blog is all about Trolls. No, not the trolls who plague internet comment sections everywhere; the playable Troll race that outcools all the other Horde races. Blizzard's Chris Robinson spotlights the new models for both the male and female Trolls, noting that the race's tusks posed "unique challenges":
In the character customization options, you have the ability to select from a number of tusk "styles." While other race models (like the Tauren) have similar customization options, the additional modeling, texturing, and animation articulation of the Troll face-and mouth especially-made this a distinctive challenge. We actually had to model the Troll with a flat lower lip; then, for each facial customization option, we went in and posed their lips to naturally wrap around each tusk option.
We've included a pic of the female Trolls below.

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WoW's Warlords of Draenor expansion is making faces at you

World of Warcraft, Fantasy, Screenshots, Game Mechanics, Previews, News Items, Races, Subscription

WoW
When Blizzard launches World of Warcraft's Warlords of Draenor expansion later this year, players will be getting more than just the long-awaited character body model upgrades; they're also getting new facial geometry. Art Director Chris Robinson wrote today on the game's official blog,
Our next big focus is doing justice to the facial options. With the original models and their simplistic geometry and low-resolution textures, a lot of facial expressions were simply painted on. Now that we've moved to higher-polygon models with lips, teeth, and fully articulated faces-not to mention higher-resolution textures-recreating those same facial options isn't as simple as painting them onto a flat surface. Previously, to get a sneer out of a model, you'd just paint a sneer on its face, and that was that. To do it correctly now-and make it look great-we have to fully pose a sneer, create a custom texture, and mesh that base pose with all of the existing emotes and animations.
Robinson also said that Blizzard is "committed" to launching all of the new models together rather than roll them out independently post-launch, but a later tweet indicated that Blood Elf models will not make it in for launch.

NCsoft launches Lineage II's Ertheia expansion today

Fantasy, Galleries, Video, Lineage 2, Classes, Expansions, Lore, Patches, News Items, PvE, Free-to-Play, Races, Dungeons

L2
Lineage II's latest expansion, Ertheia, launches today, bringing with it a new race (the Ertheia), two new classes (Ertheia Fighter and Ertheia Wizard), a new racial skill (Alchemy), new stats (Charisma and Luck), a level 99 instance (The Dimensional Barrier), and two new hunting zones for -- you guessed it -- Ertheia characters.

Former players can take advantage of a welcome-back promotion that includes a pack of goodies for veteran characters and a free mount for freshly rolled toons.

We've included some concept art as well as videos describing the lore and new classes below.

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World of Warcraft shows off revamped Tauren ladies

World of Warcraft, Betas, Fantasy, Expansions, Previews, News Items, Races, Subscription

No word on whether or not their portraits will finally open their eyes.
As Warlords of Draenor approaches release, the art team behind World of Warcraft continues finishing the revamped models for the game's races. The latest race to get a revamp is the female Tauren; while male Tauren have been in the beta client for quite some time, players have until now seen only quick shots of what the new female model would look like. Now you can see her in all her glory, and even at a glance it's a massive improvement.

The original model was extremely angular and low-detail due to the technology available when the game was first made, but the revamped model has much more definition in her fur and body shape. The only big silhouette change is a shrinking of her hands, with the official design blog calling the original model's hands "out of control." Take a peek at the official preview for more details on the updated ladycows.

Neverwinter unveils the Dragonborn Pack

Fantasy, Patches, News Items, Free-to-Play, Races, Neverwinter

FUZZ ROW D'AWW!  Please don't sue.
Were you worried that Neverwinter's fourth major update, Tyranny of Dragons, would feature too few dragons? We're not sure how you could have been worried about that, but the good news is that you can bring even more dragon into your play experience by playing a Dragonborn. No, not that kind of Dragonborn; the kind that's literally half-dragon. Or all dragon, but... humanoid dragon. You get the idea. And you can play one.

Buying the game's Dragonborn Legend Pack unlocks the new race as well as a set of cosmetic armor for your new man-dragon, the special Heart of the Red Dragon artifact, and a variety of other rewards including a race change token. The pack is on sale until August 18th, allowing players a chance to get in on the race at a discount. Whether you want to just one-up roleplayers claiming to be half-dragon or can't get enough lizards in your gameplay, you can pick up the pack now if it's your sort of fun.

Leaderboard: Which ArcheAge race will you pick for your main?

Fantasy, MMO Industry, New Titles, Opinion, Free-to-Play, Races, ArcheAge, Sandbox, Leaderboard

I am so damn excited for ArcheAge! And with closed beta starting this week, it seems like an opportune time to translate that excitement into a Leaderboard poll. I'd like to ask which class(es) you plan to play, but that might prove a bit cumbersome since there are over 100 choices. Instead, let's talk about the game's four races. Which one will you roll as your main?

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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Flameseeker Chronicles: The true nature of Guild Wars 2's Sylvari

Fantasy, Lore, Opinion, Guild Wars 2, Races, Flameseeker Chronicles, Buy-to-Play

Honey, you've got a big storm comin'.
Remember last week, when I made a comment about how neat the little touches in Guild Wars 2's Gates of Maguuma release are? Stuff like a vine poking at a waypoint in Dry Top and making it spark? Hey, it was actually kind of cute! Aww, the big fella probably doesn't know what a waypoint is. Maybe he's hungry. Those aren't for snacking on, you silly vine.

Right. Well, hide your Miracle-Gro because more vines are now spreading eastward across the waypoint network. As of this writing they've gotten as far as Lion's Arch, which as we all know hasn't seen enough trouble lately. Some of them have even fully entangled the floating waypoint doodlehoppers, growing larger in the process. So I may have been right about the snack part, but that doesn't exactly bode well. What exactly is going on?

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The Stream Team: Living like a Teir'Dal in Landmark (and a beta giveaway)

Betas, Fantasy, Video, Free-to-Play, Races, Livestream, The Stream Team, Player-Generated Content, Landmark

The Stream Team:  Touring racial builds in Landmark (and code giveaway)
Landmark just wrapped up its first racial contest and will soon be exploring the building styles of the next. That makes it a perfect time for Massively's MJ to show off some of the Dark Elf contest submissions that players have built. Come join MJ as she tours various bridges, towers, and castles in all their sinister glory. Need more incentive than just staring at awesome creations? How about free beta and portcullis codes! Join us live at 3:00 p.m. for the latest tour and a chance at your own codes to join in the fun.

Game: Landmark
Host: MJ Guthrie
Date: Friday, July 11th, 2014
Time: 3:00 p.m. EDT

Enjoy our Stream Team video below.

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