New Final Fantasy XIV producer's letter talks China and 2.25
Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 3:30 pm

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Naoki Yoshida, seen here being a friend to all mankind.
Final Fantasy XIV is doing pretty well for itself at the moment, and it's still expanding. The latest letter from producer Naoki Yoshida discusses preparations for the game's launch in China, with the cooperation of Shanda Games. Service is expected to launch this summer; the game has just recently launched on the PlayStation 4, expanding its range of available platforms.

Yoshida also discusses patch 2.25, which will be live tomorrow. Originally, the patch was slated to include an expansion to the current Zodiac weapon quests; however, Yoshida states in the letter that this system is being pushed back until patch 2.28 goes live in May. The team is hoping to incorporate feedback on the existing quest line and allow players more time to upgrade and receive their Animus weaponry. 2.25 will contain improvements to the Wolves' Den PvP system as well as a new system involving materia, so while further weapon upgrades are on hold, there's still going to be plenty of new things to do.

MassivelyNew Final Fantasy XIV producer's letter talks China and 2.25 originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 14:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Gabriel Knight 2: Wagner scavenger hunt
Posted by Bio Break [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 12:00 pm
(This is part of my journey playing through Gabriel Knight 2: The Beast Within. You can follow the entire series on the Nostalgia Lane page.) With Gabe transforming into a werewolf and Grace dealing with a live pigeon stuffed into her … Continue reading


Elder Scrolls Online's Firor posts on the state of the game
Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 12:30 pm

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ESO's Alik'r desert
Elder Scrolls Online lead developer Matt Firor has posted a state-of-the-game address on the fantasy MMO's forum.

Firor says that, yes, ZeniMax sees the groups of bots clustered around the game's dungeon bosses and that, yes, it is taking steps to address the problem. "We regularly ban accounts involved in spam and bot activity," Firor says, but the scope of said activity is so large that it accounts for nearly 85 percent of ESO's customer service tickets.

There's also a blurb about de-synched quests as well as a brief preview of the game's first major update that ZeniMax is currently prepping for ESO's test server.

Continue reading Elder Scrolls Online's Firor posts on the state of the game

MassivelyElder Scrolls Online's Firor posts on the state of the game originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 11:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Choose My Adventure: Testing addons in The Elder Scrolls Online
Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 1:00 pm

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Gratuitous cleavage shot
My adventure in The Elder Scrolls Online continues this week with my Nightblade Fa'saad making his way through Stonefalls for the Ebonheart Pact. As the format of Choose My Adventure has changed slightly, the polls from the first two articles mold my journey through the rest of the month. At the end of it all, I'll give my summary impressions and tips I learned along the way.

This week it's all about addons as I tried out a dozen or so to report back on my favorites. Addons can aid your gameplay in so many different ways, from stat counters to UI mods to quality of (virtual) life improvements, but they're not for everyone. I'm not usually an addon fan because I think they verge on cheating in a way, so I've approached these addons from the perspective of a skeptic. Did they really help my game? Will I continue to use them?

Continue reading Choose My Adventure: Testing addons in The Elder Scrolls Online

MassivelyChoose My Adventure: Testing addons in The Elder Scrolls Online originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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    Civilization – The Center Cannot Hold
    Posted by The Ancient Gaming Noob [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 12:00 pm
    The third week of our Friday night Civilization V game saw us all online together, but we were going to have to test something new.  Loghound was with us, but would have to drop out of the game almost immediately to take care of a domestic issue.  From what we had read, the game should […]


    10th Anniversary Attendance
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
    10th Anniversary Attendance   The first thing you’ll want to do when you open the Anniversary UI is check in! Once a day, when you log in, you will get a stamp on the 10th Annivesary Event window's main...


    Squash Event
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
      Event Process Buy the Squash Seed and Large Squash Seeds needed for the event from the Chaotic Throne NPC. Go to the Chaotic Throne in each of the village's event zones and buy Squash Seeds or Large Squash Seeds...


    Frederick the Destroyer
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
    Raid Schedule | Victory | Event Rewards A New Foe Appears!   Frederick the Destroyer will appear at certain times during the event! Every weekend during the event, participate in the raid against Frederick the Destroyer near the Elf...


    Dandy's Dragon Weapons
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
    Borrowed Weapons | Dandy's Scroll: Release Seal | Genuine Dragon Weapons   He may be small, but he's determined!  Visit Dandy to borrow some powerful Dragon Weapons during the Anniversary celebrations!   Event Duration April 23rd, 2014 to May...


    10th Anniversary Celebration with the Lineage II Team
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
    Come celebrate our 10th Anniversary with the Lineage II Team. We will be logging in to the servers to chat with players, give buffs, and have fun. To participate in the festivities, check your server’s scheduled celebration time and...


    Master Yogi's 10th Anniversary Event
    Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 April 2014, 1:00 pm
      Buy the Staff and Scrolls needed for the event from the Goddess of Destruction NPC. Go to the Goddess of Destruction (available in each of the village event zones) and buy +4 Master Yogi's Staff and Master Yogi's Scroll: Enchant...


    Building Poetry Communities on WordPress.com
    Posted by WordPress.com News [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 11:00 am
    From cutting-edge ezines to collaborative projects, poets and poetry lovers are finding each other on WordPress.com.


    WoW Source vid on WoD's PvP, class updates
    Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 11:30 am

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    Warlords of Draenor
    WoW Source's latest episode features World of Warcraft lead designer Ion Hazzikostas, lead class designer Kris Zierhut, and senior game designer Brian Holinka. The trio discuss everything from Warlords of Draenor's class changes to PvP to skirmishes. There's also a sneak peek at the new Ashran PvP zone.

    Click past the cut for the full video!

    Continue reading WoW Source vid on WoD's PvP, class updates

    MassivelyWoW Source vid on WoD's PvP, class updates originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 10:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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    Five video game genres that I stopped playing and why
    Posted by Bio Break [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 9:00 am
    It’s weird when you look back at your life and see how you’ve changed, grown, and sometimes simply stopped doing things you used to be really into.  While I’m just as crazy about adventure games, RPGs, and many strategy titles … Continue reading


    WildStar unveils Warplots DevSpeak
    Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 10:00 am

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    WE ARE THE BORG.  YOU WILL DEACTIVATE YOUR BASE DEFENSES AND PREPARE FOR A PVP LOSS.  RESISTANCE IS FUTILE.  YOUR RATING IS IRRELEVANT.  FROM THIS POINT FORWARD YOUR RESOURCES WILL BE ADAPTED TO SERVE AS OURS.
    Do you consider yourself something of a military genius? Do you also consider yourself a big enthusiast for player housing? Have you long wished for some form of gameplay that combined your love of building the prettiest dwelling possible with your love of killing other players? Then you're looking for WildStar's Warplots. They're a thing. Yes, they're customizable fortresses that you pit against other customized fortresses from other players, that is the whole deal.

    Want to know more? Well, if you see that little "Continue Reading" button down there, you can click that and watch the latest DevSpeak from the development team covering Warplots. Is that not enough for you? All right, then, you can read through our coverage of the gameplay mode from PAX East when we got to take an advance look at it. Still not enough? Maybe you'll need to wait until the game launches in June, then. Do not convert your front lawn into a death fortress and attempt to fight a PvP Nerf war with the mail carrier. That won't go over well.

    [Source: NCsoft press release]

    Continue reading WildStar unveils Warplots DevSpeak

    MassivelyWildStar unveils Warplots DevSpeak originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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      What is the state of The Elder Scrolls Online?
      Posted by Tobold's Blog [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 8:14 am
      Today I had a mail from IGN in my mailbox, who did a review of The Elder Scrolls Online and gave it a not really great score of 78. That is the day after reading the PC Gamer review which gave TESO a 68. A look at Metacritic reveals a familiar story: A bunch of reviews from release day giving the game high-ish scores around 90. And then reviews with lower scores trickling in over the three weeks since. Average score thus trending downwards, currently at 78, which is less than stellar.

      I wonder if the actual players show a similar trend. I have no idea how many copies The Elder Scrolls Online sold, apparently Zenimax only published how many people signed up for the free beta. That is borderline misleading, because obviously not everybody interested in a free beta will then want to pay the price of a full game plus a $15 a month subscription. I would be really interested to know the actual sales up to now. The only data I have is the very imprecise Xfire score compiled by the Nosy Gamer, which shows TESO being played less than SWTOR or FFXIV, and only slightly more than Aion.

      Now in the MMORPG blogosphere there is frequently talk of the "three-monther" MMORPG. Many triple-A MMORPGs post-WoW have lost the majority of their initial players in the first three months. But personally I believe that over half of that three-month loss happens at the end of the first month, because that is the first time where a player has to decide whether he actually wants to pay a subscription for the game he is playing. Now I've read some stories about accounting irregularities with TESO, where basically you couldn't play your free month if you didn't have $15 on your credit card. All game companies are trying to force you to sign up for a subscription, so usually you need to subscribe and then actively unsubscribe before the free month ends if you don't want to pay any subscription fee. But the end of the first month still remains a rather important milestone. Too bad that as we don't even know initial sales, it is unlikely that Zenimax will reveal how many players they lost after one or three months.

      In the specific case of The Elder Scrolls Online there will be another important milestone after two months: The Wildstar headstart begins May 31st. It is inevitable that *some* players will decide to switch from TESO to Wildstar, but very hard to predict how many that will be. Warlords of Draenor will probably be too late in the year to really make a big dent into TESO player numbers any more.

      Up to now I have no data which would suggest that The Elder Scrolls Online has better than mediocre success. But if somebody has data that suggest otherwise, I would be very happy to hear them. From what you know, how is The Elder Scrolls Online doing?
      Tobold's Blog



      Early Theme Adopters: Hemingway Rewritten
      Posted by WordPress.com News [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 8:00 am
      In our Early Theme Adopters series, we focus on bloggers creating great-looking sites with the most recent additions to our Theme Showcase. Today, let’s visit some of the sites that are already using Hemingway Rewritten, a free theme that makes both words and images shine.


      The Daily Grind: Are you into stealthing mechanics?
      Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 9:00 am

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      WildStar
      Apart from the Imperial Agent in Star Wars: The Old Republic, I haven't played a lot of stealth-able characters in MMOs. For me, I just don't see the appeal of sucker-punching bad guys instead of facing off in a fair fight; it kind of makes me feel as though I'm bullying them. Plus, having to walk slower in stealth, constantly worry about positioning, and ignoring the illogic of disappearing in broad daylight all wave me off of such characters.

      But that's me and those are my hang-ups. I know that stealthing is pretty popular in certain quarters, and I can concede that when done right (as in the Thief series) it can be a compelling mechanic. So I'd like to hear whether you're into being all stealthy in MMOs and what you think about how these systems have been handled over the years.

      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!

      MassivelyThe Daily Grind: Are you into stealthing mechanics? originally appeared on Massively on Wed, 23 Apr 2014 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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        The value of trash mobs
        Posted by Tobold's Blog [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 3:09 am
        My pen & paper role-playing campaign uses Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition rules. 4E rules are excellent for creating epic combat encounters. As I wrote in our campaign journal yesterday, this week we had an encounter which involved an evil cleric, a vampire, a basilisk, and five minor vampire spawns. So the players need to assess the relative danger that those 4 different types of enemy pose to them, and make tactical decisions which enemy to take out first. And the rules system gives them daily powers, powers they can use once per encounter, and powers they can use every round to select from. So as long as players enjoy that sort of tactical games, 4E makes for really great epic fights.

        What 4E does much less well is trash mobs. "Classic", that is earlier editions of Dungeons & Dragons, had more, but smaller encounters. For example the Keep on the Borderlands (Caves of Chaos) classic D&D module from 1979 has 64 encounters, but most of them are small and with just one type of monsters. So you meet 9 kobolds in one room, and then 3 orcs in the next, while 4E would rather do fewer encounters, but each having several monster types. In earlier editions of D&D all spells are "daily" powers, so if you use your magic missile in one fight, you can't use it in the next. Thus a series of small encounters works as a challenge of resource management. In 4E players would just use at-will and encounter powers if they met 3 orcs, and thus spend at best a healing surge here or there in a series of small encounters.

        Thus my 4E campaign looks a bit like a MMORPG raid dungeon without trash mobs: There are only epic boss fights. Or rather, there are boss fights, and non-boss fights which aren't any less epic. No need to grind through trash mobs which pose no real challenge to the players. Or is there?

        A reader commented yesterday that my players were frequently rather timid, and not very heroic. And I began to wonder in how far that is my fault: If every single fight they enter is a life or death epic struggle, no wonder that they are rather careful. Maybe I need more trash mob encounters, where my players without much effort dispatch 3 orcs. Maybe there is a psychological value to trash mob encounters in making the players feel strong and heroic, and then less afraid of the epic boss fights. After all, there must be a reason those trash mobs are in every MMORPG raid dungeon.
        Tobold's Blog



        GWJ Conference Call Episode 393
        Posted by Gamers With Jobs - Conference Call [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 April 2014, 12:40 am

        Episode 393 - April 23rd, 2014
        Tons of Games From PAX, Film Noir in Gaming, Special Guest Kate Craig From Fullbright Company, Your Emails and more!

        Right Click Here and 'Save As' to Download!
        (A Bright 44.9 MBs, 1:18:28)

        This week the fantastic Kate Craig joins the crew to talk about the Film Noir genre in gaming and lots more!

        read more




        Media Link

        Black Desert's extreme character creation profiled in video
        Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 April 2014, 10:00 pm

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        Black Desert
        Overseas MMO expert Steparu is back with another round of Black Desert videos that make North Americans extremely sad about the ongoing Korean beta and the lack thereof here. The videos highlight character creation, specifically the hyperrealistic (and, er, extremely toned) Sorcerer, Warrior, Giant, and Archer models, male and female, complete with musculature and hair mesh toggles and sliders. We're not exaggerating when we say that this is extreme character customization, folks. Enjoy two of the videos below and the rest over at Steparu.com.

        Continue reading Black Desert's extreme character creation profiled in video

        MassivelyBlack Desert's extreme character creation profiled in video originally appeared on Massively on Tue, 22 Apr 2014 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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        Server Maintenance, Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014
        Posted by Lineage II [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 April 2014, 6:31 pm
        All game servers will be down for maintenance on Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014, at 5am PDT / 7am CDT / 8am EDT / 12pm UTC/GMT. Estimated downtime is approximately 4 hours. With this maintenance: The 10th Anniversary In-game events...


        War Thunder introduces closed beta tank events
        Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 April 2014, 8:00 pm

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        War Thunder
        Gaijin Entertainment posted today that it's launching tank events for War Thunder's closed beta participants. Prices of tanks and associated purchases have been slashed by 90% to facilitate this test phase; accordingly, Gaijin warns, everything will be wiped once again before the WWII combat sim's open beta begins.

        The studio also recently announced its intention to launch War Thunder in China in 2014 via Tencent and revealed its Elo-based rating system for squadron battles.

        MassivelyWar Thunder introduces closed beta tank events originally appeared on Massively on Tue, 22 Apr 2014 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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        Landmark's devs on crafting and item upgrading
        Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 April 2014, 8:30 pm

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        Landmark
        SOE Senior Brand Manager Omeed Dariani and Lead Systems Designer Michael Mann present this week's Landmark roundtable video, this time focusing on one of the more detailed components of the sandbox's crafting system: item upgrading, which beat out reinforcing, imbuing, and refining among roundtable voters as the system most worthy of prioritization. Mann explains that item upgrading is intended to reduce the demoralizing effects of RNG; eventually, all crafted items will be created as green-quality items that are upgrade-able depending on player skill and statted according to player direction via relics.

        Dariani and Mann also hint that Landmark and EverQuest Next will share the same crafting-related back-end systems and that Landmark's crafting will ultimately "flavor" the crafting system in EQN. The full roundtable video is below.

        Continue reading Landmark's devs on crafting and item upgrading

        MassivelyLandmark's devs on crafting and item upgrading originally appeared on Massively on Tue, 22 Apr 2014 19:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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        Massively Speaking Episode 294: Moar mailbag, please!
        Posted by Massively [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 April 2014, 9:00 pm

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        We're so behind on addressing our mail on the show that we've decided to dedicate an episode to playing catch-up! Don't worry, as there will still be news, but Bree and Justin need to clean out their inbox to make room for all of the excellent emails to come. You understand.

        Get all of our opinions and analysis on the most important stories of the past week right here on Massively Speaking, the industry's leading MMO podcast. And if you have a comment, question, or topic for the podcasters, send an email to podcast@massively.com. We may just read your email on the air!

        Get the podcast:
        [RSS] Add Massively Speaking to your RSS aggregator.
        [MP3] Download the MP3 directly.
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        Listen here on the page:



        Read below the cut for the full show notes.

        Continue reading Massively Speaking Episode 294: Moar mailbag, please!

        MassivelyMassively Speaking Episode 294: Moar mailbag, please! originally appeared on Massively on Tue, 22 Apr 2014 20:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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