Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Steel Crusade Set to Eradicate Champions Online

13 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

CO_SteelCrusade_RoboPunch There be some busy bees buzzing around at Cryptic Studios. The developer announced a new content patch for its original free-to-play title Champions Online. Partnered with the upcoming second expansion for Star Trek Online and the August 14 release (hey, that’s tomorrow!) of Tyranny of Dragons module for Neverwinter the Perfect World Entertainment subsidiary has not taken the summer off in any sense.

The Steel Crusade update brings the superheros of Millennium City face-to-unique-face with Mechanon, a robot supervillain that believes sentient life is best when made out of cold, heartless steel. Players will have to explore new areas, snuff out a nanobot virus and crusade Mechanon’s satellite fortress to save the world.

Three new instances, a new mission hub dubbed with a ridiculous NASA-worthy acronym of UNTIL (United Nations Tribunal on International Law) and a new archetype are a part of Steel Crusade. Additional Mechanon-focused content will follow the September 4 launch of Steel Crusade in time with the fifth anniversary in late September.

We’re hopefully be getting some hands on of Steel Crusade at PAX Prime later this month. Until then the screenshots after the cut will have to hold you over. Continue Reading

The Idea of SMITE on Xbox One is Good Yet With Concerns

12 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_smite_xbox_ramerica_News came out of Gamecom 2014 early this morning that touched the MOBA community in a sensitive spot. Yes, the no, no spot; consoles. Hi-Rez Studios will be bringing its god-based third-person massive online battle arena to Xbox One. Everybody okay, because Reddit wasn’t. Twitter was none too happy as well. But that’s a bit expected from the hyperbole of gamedom. The world is not over. Yes, the F2P community of SMITE will change as will development. The thing is, as with money from Tencent and Level Up, this only vets how much people like SMITE, your game, and will soon be a part of it.

Now before I slip into a rebuttal to the hyperbole that is part of the discussion there are some justifiable concerns, or to some extent, lack of details, that the community would like cleared up. For instance, please confirm that the title won’t be cross platform. Really, that’s an anticipated fairness. Along those lines one hopes that the Xbox has if not it’s own small team then some people dedicated to it so as not to impact overall development with the port. This includes not delaying patches to the tedious Microsoft review process. You should see a trend of the most obvious concerns and an easy way to address them; outside the actual gameplay and community elements, keep the titles separate. Continue Reading

Analyst: League of Legends Leaving Loaves of Bread on the Table

11 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern
lh_smite_league_of_legends_monetization_game_design_breaking-bad-money-pile

Yeah, that kind of dough.

Detractors have been saying the sky is falling on the free-to-play market since, well, the beginning. Initially, it was a business model that would never work with western audiences, then it was that it was a niche. Something that’ll never be mainstream. Well, now we’ve hundreds of F2P games ranging from the original MMORPG incarnations to new genres like MOBAs and old genres like shooters. Digital platforms like Steam and Xbox Live are both on board. Heck, our weekly F2P showcase wouldn’t need to double up on a game for ages and still have quality options.

Most of these Chicken Little claims were conjecture, biased industry veterans or outside analysts. Today, Gamasutra put up a piece that uses (more than the usual amount of) internal information from one of the watershed F2P stories, Riot Games and its sole product League of Legends. In addition, the analyst, Teut Weidemann of Blue Byte, an Ubisoft studio, uses external details. Analysis complete, he doesn’t pull an end of the world claim, but does see numerous flaws in the business model employed by Riot. Essentially, the California company could be making at least quadruple what it is and still be at the low end of the F2P industry metrics.

His analysis found three basic problems causing the drain. Continue Reading

MOBA Monday: Infinite Smiteness (Livestream)

11 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

moba_monday_smite_Infinite-CrisisMOBA Monday is a weekly showcase of how to perform, eh, let’s go with adequately – we hope – in a massive online battle arena. The streaming squad features the hottest, upcoming or most interesting titles of their and the communities fancy for a few rounds of PvP shenanigans inour weekly Twitch channel staple.

It’s back into the depths of the growing ranks of human mythology later today. Join me in my continuing trek towards League play readiness for the Arena mode of SMITE. Who knows which god I’ll end up being forced into playing this week. Hopefully not a tank, since I’ve only a few of those gentle giants left to farm. Maybe I’ll give Serqet her first go.

The other half of MOBA Monday is heading into an entirely different mythology. That of the DC comics universe and its Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline. I haven’t been in the ranks of Infinite Crisis in quite some time, so it could be a little hectic, a little more death prone and a little more likely to lose. But hey, at least I still have a ton of in-game money with no idea of what to buy quite yet. Seeing as development is currently in a bit of a crossroads, there’s a chance I may be able to catch up skillswise before release.

All this and more shall begin around 1:00 PM EST. Hit the jump or headdirectly to the channel page to watch live. We’ll be giving away a god and recolor skin during the SMITE portion of the stream. Don’t forget to follow for all the updates and giveaway opportunities. Continue Reading

Swordsman Review: Wuxia’s Digital Introduction (Part 1)

8 August 2014 | No Comments » | Pherephassa

2014-07-09 22-40-24Swordsman is the newest MMO on the Perfect World lineup, an epic wuxia-styled game set in the novels of Louis Cha. This is a game that I really wanted to like. I enjoy the subject material – it’s very difficult for me to resist giving kung fu games a try every time I see one – and I have also seen two of the tv serials based on Cha’s The Book and the Sword novels.  There is so much possibility in the setting; secret societies, kung fu, warring martial arts schools, intrigue, romance.. but does the game live up to it?

Installation was easy. Thanks to the Arc console, I simply went to the games section, clicked Swordsman and waited. I did have a black screen issue that prevented me from playing for a day, but the guys at PW very quickly came to my aid and helped me discover I was having bios issues after my newest computer upgrade. Mea culpa – that had nothing to do with the game itself and it ran fine once I sorted those out! My only complaint about the loadup of the game is the splash screen with an image of Cha’s book and warnings about copyright violations lingers on the screen for just a bit too long for this impatient gamer’s taste and can’t be escaped. But that’s admittedly on the nitpicky end of things. I have definitely seen splash screens that are more annoying. Continue Reading

F2P Friday: Guardians of the Plug & Catch the Epidemic

8 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern
Paid for by Marvel's marketing team. Lol, they care about our 5 views!

Hey, look, another plug!

F2P Friday is our weekly showcase of the growing free-to-play market, from MMORPGs to first-person shooters and beyond. The stream team will feature the latest, greatest and just plain fun games that cost you nothing to play. Ever. Granted, you should throw the developer a bone if you enjoy a title, but you don’t have to.

I had an absolute blast being back in Neverwinter for the return of Instance Gratification. But the ridiculous amount of marketing behind Guardians of the Galaxy makes me want to leap back into the Marvel Universe. I get to make my own decision because I’m an adult, or something, so I’m letting Ryolnir pressure me into playing Marvel Heroes for the stream. Is it still pressure when it’s something you want to do? I’m not sure. I digress.

On the other side of this week’s escapades into free gems of gamedom I’ll be returning to the latest genre to come out of DotA. That is Deep Silver’s ZOMBA in Dead Island: Epidemic. It was an interesting romp a few week’s back. Sure, I only ran around in PvE and tutorial missions, but it was entertaining enough to warrant a second go. Who knows, maybe I’ll finally man up and dive into some PvP. Assuming the title let’s such a low-level player do so!

Now if only we had some giveaways to go along with this week’s F2P Friday. /me shoots out emails to the applicable companies.

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which will be replaced later with the recorded edition of the show. We’ll be going live a bit late around 1:30 PM EST  and be pulling shenanigans for at least two hours. Continue Reading

Nu Wa Revamped, Zeus Redrawn in SMITE’s Latest Update

7 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_revamp_patch_notes_NuWa_Default_CardHi-Rez Studios has once again rerolled one of its released characters. No longer reaching far back into the history of SMITE, which, let’s not forget, did kick off way back in 2012, the developer revamped the last god released in the Year of the Snake, Nu Wa. The In addition to being way hotter, the Guardian of Heaven gets a large overhaul saving only her Clay Soldiers and fog from the original design. To further annoy me, Hi-Rez Studios has given Nu Wa a new ultimate, which puts her in the class with Freya, Thanatos and others that leave combat during their ultimate.

Nu Wa’s changes obviously champions the latest patch for the MOBA, but Hi-Rez has much more. Zeus has his abs redone for his new model and dramatically altered portrait cards. Four other gods receive new skins, including an awesome Ymir and a zombie surviving Ullr. Voice packs are naturally included.

If you’re not a mage player or don’t care too much about the revamp there’s something else this patch brings; Treasure Boxes. These items will award players with everything from ward skins to god skins. You will be able to receive skins for character you don’t own, effectively bribing them to buy the god!
Full notes after the cut. Continue Reading

Star Trek Online: Delta Rising Officially Coming in October

7 August 2014 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_delta_rising_star_trek_online_expansionCryptic Studios and Perfect World Entertainment have made it official. Star Trek Online will be receiving its second full expansion by way of Delta Rising this coming October. The official announcement comes rife with confirmations of our earlier post on the subject.

The largest piece of new information details the expansion’s placement in the annals of Star Trek lore. Delta Rising is set 30 years after the events of Voyager, placing players in the dangerous unknown of the Delta Quadrant. A newly discovered portal in the Dyson Sphere awards quick access to the territory that Voyager famous charted.

Most profoundly lauded was the level cap increase from level 50 to 60. STO executive producer Stephen D’Angelo pointed out that this is the first increase in four long years. Naturally, such an increase opens the way for additional gear, ships and officers to be placed under your more experienced captain’s command.

Hit the jump for the latest screenshots, including your first look at the alien races being introduced as part of Delta Rising. Continue Reading