Neverwinter Loremaster Randy Mosiondz Talks Season of Dragons (Interview)

Posted by on October 20, 2014 - No Comments »

NW_Vellosk_Screenshot_WatermarkedNeverwinter has expanded four times already. Developer Cryptic Studios is hard at work on Module 5, which will see the rise of one of Dungeons & Dragons’ original protagonists the multiheaded Tiamat. Ahead of this epic addition to the action-oriented MMORPG we dive into the tomes of lore with Randy Mosiondz, a senior content designer on Neverwinter, discuss game design and what keeps him up at night.

LoreHound: Before we get start who are you and what’s task in the world of Neverwinter?

Randy Mosiondz: My name is Randy Mosiondz, and I’m a senior content designer at Cryptic Studios. I’ve been with Cryptic for nearly ten years now. I got started working on City of Heroes, then moved on to be lead designer for Champions Online. A few years back I came on to work on Neverwinter where I became Lead Content Designer. After taking a break from work, I came back to focus on content implementation and am currently known as the “Loremaster” on Neverwinter. I’m the go-to person when someone needs to know the latest and most accurate information on how things work in Dungeons & Dragons and the Forgotten Realms. I also make sure the whole team gets regular updates on how the story is developing in the game.

LH: Cryptic Studios has kept tight ties between Neverwinter and the latest in Dungeons & Dragons, the boardgame the title is based on. How closely does Cryptic work with Wizards of the Coast? Does Wizards award any sort of leeway or input?

RM: We’ve got a great working relationship with Wizards of the Coast. We talk with them on a weekly basis, and we have a pretty quick turn-around back and forth when we need approvals on things. At Cryptic we try to stick pretty close with the established D&D/Forgotten Realms lore, so we mainly need updates from Wizards to ensure that any content we’re building still fits with the evolving canon of the Realms. We’ve been thrilled to help develop new canon for the Realms. Read more…

MOBA Monday: Orcs Must Die! Unchained & Time for TOME (Giveaway)

Posted by on October 20, 2014 - No Comments »

moba_monday_omd_unchained_halloween_tomeMOBA 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 in our weekly Twitch channel staple.

Robot Entertainment put down a massive patch for its upcoming tower defense meets MOBA Orcs Must Die! Unchained. The third-person team-based shooter dealie introduced a new hero, and all-new map and a “newish map” with numerous other goodies jammed inside Patch 1.6. This definitely includes a reskin of a previous map to celebrate the “collective end-of-October-beginning-of-November holidays.” And, of course, that also brings us new vanity skins for the same exact celebration of the dead, things to die and harvest festivals et. al.

The back half of MOBA Monday will see TOME return for the thirdtime this month. The F2P MOBA from Kixeye continues to draw me in with its quick matches and deep meta system. The flip side to Robot Entertainment’s aggressive patching and largely transparent development, Kixeye has remained largely quiet since we were introduced to the game at PAX Prime 2014. Sure, there have been minor correspondences and patches, but even a major update like v7.1 to 8.0 yielded minor changes, mostly dealing with your typical balance modifications. At least these updates are coming fast and furious.

MOBA Monday will return to its famed 1:00 PM EST time slot. Hit the jump or head directly to the channel page to watch live. Don’t forget to follow for all the updates and giveaway opportunities. This is a double dip week. TOME gameplay will come complete with Diesel Orlon skin codes, so be sure to make your account now! Read more…

ArcheAge: The Conquest of Auroria is Nearly Upon Us!

Posted by on October 17, 2014 - No Comments »

Auroria_blog_810x300Set sail for the new continent November 4! The end game continent, Auroria, will be launching in just a few weeks, bringing a host of new content to ArcheAge. New zones, gear, vehicles, enemies, siege warfare … Auroria adds a great deal to ArcheAge and has been avidly desired by ArcheAge players since launch. Probably the best thing, the true music to my ears was reading that there will be a 30% increase in housing … maybe I will finally get my house? Read more…

F2P Friday: We’re In the New Gazillion Offices!

Posted by on October 17, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_marvel_heroes_f2p_friday_new_officeF2P 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.

We’re not in their base, killing their mans, but we will be in their base. For some reason or another Gazillion Entertainment has invited us to check out their new offices. We wouldn’t dare missing out on an opportunity to chat with David Brevik or geek out with community manager Ryan Collins. We honestly don’t know who we’ll be discussing Marvel Heroes 2015 with, but we know it’ll be a good time.

To boot, we’ll do our best to get some of those highly sought after Random Costume Box codes for later consumption. I’ll simply demand that the Gazillion team give them away during the livestream interview, fat chewing, or powwow. Whatever you want to call it. If you’ve additional questions, concerns or demands then leave them in the comments section and we’ll do our best to get to them. Otherwise, feel free to ask them live!

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which is scheduled to kick off at 3:00 PM EST and run until around 5:00 PM EST. Read more…

NYCC 2014: What Are You Trying to Be?

Posted by on October 16, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_NYCC-Catbug-I-Love-NY_reedpopReedPOP, the company behind New York Comic Con, seems to be confused with how to position the east coast’s biggest comic convention. Unlike it’s west coast (unaffiliated) rival San Diego Comic Con, NYCC has mutated over the past few years. And not for the good. Yes, it’s continued to grow, now, believe it or not, larger than SDCC, but it appears listless, even directionless in its execution.

My first introduction to NYCC was a pleasant ordeal. I was introduced to comics. Pop culture icons roamed the floor, manned numerous booths and spoke. Tabletop games had a presence, as did video games, albeit in a relatively small scale. Most importantly, everything was a mix of new, old and upcoming. Golden Age comics mingled with artists and writers hawking upcoming graphic novels. Games, like those that PAX attendees would enjoy, were strategically distributed across the Javits Center.

This past weekend was, sadly, confusing. NYCC 2014 was simply dominated by vendors. I’m not referring to the core of nerddom. More like tertiary vendors hawking wares based upon popular franchises. Video games, which, let’s not forget a share a fair common market, were almost entirely absent outside a small Capcom booth. In brutal honesty, I felt at times to be walking around a large mall on the decline. Third tier stores filling in the gaps between a few main draws.

NYCC could be a staple of pop culture for the east coast in the fall. ReedPOP already has a successful formula by way of PAX East. Focus NYCC more on the core comic culture rather than video games, a flip of the PAX East design, and you’re good.

Impressions of ArcheAge: Dungeoneering

Posted by on October 15, 2014 - No Comments »

ScreenShot0164It’s way too late… once again.
I’m sitting here eyes strained and aching.. once again.
Playing ArcheAgeonce again.

In one of my previous posts I expressed my disappointment that dungeons were instanced. I have to correct that statement – there are instanced dungeons, but there are also open world hidden dungeons. Yes, hidden. Not displayed on the map, no quests leading you there, with doors and keys that must be found and puzzles solved before you gain access.

I’m even more in love. Read more…

NYCC 2014: What is Earthman Jack vs. the Ghost Planet (Interview)

Posted by on October 14, 2014 - No Comments »

Earthman-Jack-Book-CoverBeing a dedicated Lore Hound reader you’re likely well aware of my penchant for reading. I consume the written word, reading a variety of topics from business or world news to science fiction and video game op eds. Given the increasing popularity of video games it was only a matter of time before they received their own original novel like Star Wars or Star Trek. This is why we created The Novel Post, a column dedicated to video game novels, shorts and comics.

Titles like Ready Player One have interceded into a fine niche between video game universes and novels through pop culture, Easter eggs and even game design. After speaking with Matt Kadish it appears his Earthman Jack is taking it to the next level. Planned as a seven-part young adult epic tale, Earthman Jack is introduced through Earthman Jack vs the Ghost Planet. A tome of a tale itself Kadish laces pop culture more subtly than the aforementioned Ready Player One focusing on the space tale instead.

Our full interview after the cut will introduce you to Kadish, give some of his gamer credibility, including World of Warcraft and WildStar, and entice you towards that single purchase in a fledgling Harry Potter-sized series.

We’ll have a full review of the book up once I can put it down. By the way, for a limited time you can snag the e-reader version of first book for free! Read more…

NYCC 2014: The Wonderful Cosplay That Baffles Locals

Posted by on October 13, 2014 - No Comments »

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