MOBA Monday: Guess Who’s Playing Conquest Again?! (Giveaway)

Posted by on December 22, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_smite_conquest_giveaway_swcMOBA 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.

Well, there’s something off my 2014 List of Things To Do. I finally, after dozens of MOBA Mondays, hundreds, possibly thousands of kills and quite a few four letter words, have earned enough Worshipers in SMITE to enter into ranked Conquest mode. Sadly, I haven’t been earning them in that actual mode instead preferring the faster games of Arena. As such, I fully expect to be a bit out of touch running around the map later today. Ever the thoughtful teammate I plan on sucking it up and playing a large amount of non-ranked matches before joining Season 2.

Naturally, this is all to get even more pumped up for the upcoming SMITE World Championship in mid January. That plan could go horribly sideways if I am so out of touch that my K:D ratio ends up being an improper fraction or my tanking becomes completely ineffective with horrendous initiations all over the place. Oh, there’s at least one other item that can ruin my return to Conquest, Comcast continuing to maul my Internet service. Hopefully the upgrade to 150/20 Mbps will correct the recent lag issues. Ya know, since it costs like 2x as much…

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. We’ll have skin codes for SMITE today! Read more…

Another One Bites The Dust: Transformers Universe Closing Before Launch

Posted by on December 21, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_canceled_refund_moba_Transformers-Universe-hammerIt’s unfortunate thatAnother One Bites The Dust exists, but necessary. This column chronicles the fateful announcements ahead of an MMOGs’ downfall, a company closure or, in some truly sad cases, both. Grab your Big Gulp and let some hit the floor for the fallen.

Way, way back in late 2011 we did an interview of a little covered gameTransformers Universe. Licensing the popular Transformer intellectual property developer Jagex was hoping to lay another hit on the online gaming universe akin to its flagship Runescape F2P MMORPG. Over a year after the early tease, of which the global PR manager Laura West expertly dodged most questions pertaining to gameplay, the game saw a radical switch from an MMORPG to the new hotness of the multiplayer online battle arena slant.

The same week the development 180 was announced the game went into closed beta testing. That was in late 2012. Jagex and Hasbro jointly announced that closed beta was as far as the title would go. Just over two years from the switch the companies jointly announced that Transformers Universe has been canceled, account creation has been closed, refunds will be issues and servers will be culled on January 31.

Jagex didn’t much of an explanation for the closure; both companies realigning “their plans and focuses for 2015” being the closest. I’d put my money on slow adoption/little interest due to the highly competitive MOBA market and a title with few discerning features or innovative ideas. Read more…

F2P Friday: Over 3k Gold is Burning a Hole in My Hearthstone Board

Posted by on December 19, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_f2p_friday_MEKGINEER-THERMAPLUGG_hearthstone_goblins_gnomesF2P 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 began hoarding gold in Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft way, way back when Curse of Naxxramas, the first Solo Adventure, was announced. Saving up 700 Gold for each wing (except the first one since it was free at launch) meant that I had to forgo many, many classic expert packs. That self-imposed challenge has put me at a clear disadvantage when attempting to throw around my skills in Ranked play. No matter how you slice it this free-to-play title is very much one that requires those expert packs to truly compete at any kind of high level.

To date I have opened less than 20 expert packs. Again, purely a self-imposed disadvantage. But today, things will change. Today marks the first time that I will truly make a run for rares, epics and legendaries. And that run will encompass some 30+ expert packs opened and discussed live on the air during the return of F2P Friday after my recent road trip. Come join me as I assuredly redeem multiple purples and oranges and attempt to deduce which class will utilize them best and how to optimize the Goblins versus Gnomes cards into my paltry decks.

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 between 3:00 and 4:00 PM EST. Read more…

SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained – Awilix

Posted by on December 18, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_smite_deities_demigods_gods_maya_Awilix_Default_CardSMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained is a column dedicated to introducing prospective players of SMITE to its massive back story of lore. From the Greek to Hindu, each week we’ll look at two characters from a major pantheon and provide a quick recap of their history and in what capacity their digital incarnation will represent on the field of Hi-Rez Studios’ new MOBA.

Lore: Ahh, another Maya deity with a bit of conflicting origin. Awilix, the moon goddess, is, in some regions of the Maya empire, actually a moon god. Yeah, the sex isn’t entirely set in stone. Most tellings, including those of a large Maya kingdom in Guatemala, revered Awilix enough to erect a large temple in the honor of their patron. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before but academics don’t agree on her early origins. Although it is believed that Awilix spawned from the classic moon goddess tales featuring Xbalanque and Hunahpu.

Read more…

Warhammer 40k: Eternal Crusade Orks F2P

Posted by on December 18, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_green_tide_orks_warhammer_eternal_crusade_f2p

No reason to avoid this version!

There’s no need for a long, drawn out click-bait heavy countdown; Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade is my most anticipated upcoming MMORPG. I mean, come on it features the dark science fiction meets fantasy universe from Games Workshop that’s teased all of gamedom since the genre really broke onto the scene. If the universe is new to you or you’ve been unwilling to take a chance on Behaviour Interactive, a licensed IP happy developer, then you’ll be happy to hear that it won’t cost you anything anymore.

Behaviour Interactive announced a F2P version of Eternal Crusade. There are restrictions though. Chief among them that you have a strong penchant for WAAAGH! as you’ll only be able to travel to Arkhona as the stinky greenskins. Not to miss a beat the company unlocked the Pioneer Pack, a founder’s-style option that boosts the F2P experience with badges, items, RTP, and name reservation. It’s not a bad deal for a paltry $15, the subscription rate for most other titles, but does keep some locks in place, such as the lack of a full game key.

Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade won’t be disappearing from the pages of Lore Hound any time soon. That 2015 release date can’t come soon enough. Get your Founder’s Pack today to join us in game.

WildStar Testing 20-man Raiding Means What?

Posted by on December 15, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_20man_40man_wildstar-raid-datascapeCarbine Studios was never shy about its target demographic. For one, it hoped to engage those of you reading this, the Lore Hounds. Creative director Chad Moore has made this a consistent effort. Expanding the lore in interesting ways, holding back aspects and always, always engaging the community to attempt to understand what sticks, what we’re interested in and to leverage some of our ideas. Another of the four pillars was raiding and that was strictly hardcore. Interview after interview reiterated that dungeons and adventures were introductory, tutorials if you will, to the “true” challenge of old-school raiding.

During my road trip I came across a reminder that Carbine Studios made the hard decision to cut raiding from the incredibly complex and dedicated 40-man affair to a more consumable 20-man outing. At the time it was upcoming with an unplanned release date. Now the 20-man Datascape is live, albeit in the testing phase. When Drop 4 comes next year it’ll mark what could be a dramatic shift for WildStar. And I’m torn.

What attracted me to WildStar was its ideals. Its aspiration to return us to the hardcore. To be World of Warcraft in its The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King mix with ten years of new technology, game design innovation and storytelling bolted on. And there’s no doubt that now it’s being watered down. Those achievements and server firsts of old will mean more but few will realize or care. And clearly this has been necessitated by business needs. Fortunately, in a way, this means I can join the raiding legions of the Nexus. Hence the splicing.

Where do you stand?

Exclusive: WildStar Lore Past & Future with Chad “Pappy” Moore

Posted by on December 9, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_wildstar_pappy_interview_lore_past_future1It’s not every day that the creative director of a AAA studios is made available to you. Carbine Studios has made it appear as a somewhat common occurrence for here at Lore Hound and we’re proud to bring you our latest discussion with Chad “Pappy” Moore. Today’s piece includes questions from our staff in addition to numerous questions sourced directly from the /r/WildStar community.

Lore Hound: Carbine Studios has always pushed lore, but ya’ll have been focusing even more lately with Loremageddon followed by the just-launched Voyage of the Nomad. Why the renewed focus on (expanding) the founding lore for WildStar?

Chad Moore: Having a healthy IP means that you need to continue to develop and expand it both inside the game and out. What’s great about this content is that it can be enjoyed by our existing players, who will see brand new stories such as the Voyage of the Nomad, as well as new players who are just coming to WildStar and are interested in knowing about our lore. I also think that it’s important that we continue to engage our community on multiple levels, and further expanding our universe (sometimes in conjunction with our existing fans, as we did with Loremageddon) is just one of the ways we can do that.

LH:WildStar made news all around the Nexus when it was revealed that quests would be initially consumed in Twitter-sized bites. Do you feel this may have been a misstep? Perhaps leading to many players not fully consuming the rich lore of Nexus and the universe it resides?

Chad: I don’t think that short quest text was a misstep at all. Really good storytelling doesn’t require walls of text in order to be compelling. And I still very much believe in the philosophy of allowing our players to choose when they want to dig deeper into our lore, and our current system does a great job of doing that. Read more…

The LoreCation Begins December 4 (Giveaways)

Posted by on December 4, 2014 - No Comments »

lh_lorecation_giveawayTimeAfter a hard year’s work it’s only fair to receive a little bonus, rest and relaxation, right? I hope you agree because we here at Lore Hound have decided to throw the bonus your way. All month we will be giving away an insane amount of prizes that we’ve collected over the year. The codes you’ll see on our Twitter, Facebook and Google+ pages will cover the gauntlet of games. We’re talking MMORPG, MOBA, F2P, subscription, FPS, the works. And this is simply in addition to our everyday giveaway love that’s provided on our right panel.

I’ll be honest. It’s not all out of the goodness of our hearts. Many of us have various functions we need to attend to. Others have children to watch. Some are roaming across the country in an automobile. That last one will be me. You can take part in the “extravagance” on my personal Twitter or my Instagram. I can’t guarantee that those accounts won’t be full of cats. But hey, at least she’s named after an X-men.

Now, don’t mistake this as “December is going to be a post void.” Oh, no, we shant leave your mind unattended. New, current, and returning writers will continue pushing out the goods and I’ll be doing my best to get items online during my expedition, including the promised lore interview with WildStar creative director Chad Moore. Unfortunately, the LoreCation will cause a ruckus on our Twitch channel.