Nexon Sold a Japanese Subsidiary for 1 Yen

Last week it was announced that Nexon sold a Japanese subsidiary for 1 Yen. For a bit of backstory, in 2012 Nexon purchased a Japanese studio by the name of gloops that was supposed to “accelerate Nexon’s mobile strategy.” It was an all-cash deal worth 36.5 billion Yen. Unfortunately for gloops and Nexon the company then went on to post losses for several years, making them a financial burden to their parent company. That is why last week Nexon sold gloops to GRDrive for 1 Yen.

For those keeping track at home that is $0.009 or €0.008. This is comparable to what it costs the company to print a single page of paper in the MMOGames office. Meaning that the paper this deal is printed on cost more than the deal itself.

Gloops’ latest mobile game, ArkResona will be shut down on January 31st. This calls into question what exactly GRDrive intends to do with gloops. Whatever it is, we are unlikely to hear about it as so far they have been primarily focused on a Japanese audience.

It should also be noted that Nexon is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and there is the potential for this to have an impact on their financials at the end of the quarter or even sooner. While it may be the best thing for Nexon right now, it can’t be easy to see a company go from 36.5 billion Yen to 1 in just 7 years.

 

Source: MMO Culture

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Top MMO News Stories of 2019

The end of 2019 is upon us and that means it is time for us to break down the top MMO news stories of 2019. To say that it was a wild year would be a bit of an understatement. There were a number of huge launches this year, rumors abound, and trouble for some of the industry’s biggest developers. These are the top MMO news stories of 2019.

 

Guild Wars 3 May Be in Development

In October ArenaNet President Mike O’Brien, known by the community as MO left the company after 19 years. At the time an unnamed source told Kotaku that he hand been working on an unannounced Guild Wars project that could potentially be Guild Wars 3. The source also said that Guild Wars 3 hadn’t been officially greenlit but that the work O’Brien and his team had been doing could have developed into a sequel. Since then there hasn’t been any update on the story but a number of other high profile departures from ArenaNet have taken place.

 

Remnant: From the Ashes Launch

The launch of Remnant: From the Ashes took MMOGames readers by storm this year as the announcement of it’s launch was one of our most-read news posts all year. This Souls-like shooter has overwhelmingly positive reviews on Steam and if you happen to be reading this while the Steam Winter Sale is on then you can get it 30% off. Its dark fantasy atmosphere is a rare treat and the fact that you can play it as a single-player game makes it all the better.

 

ArcheAge Buy to Play Option

Gamigo announced in August that ArcheAge would be getting a buy to play option called ArcheAge Unchained. This announcement seemed to come out of nowhere and captured the attention of untold thousands. When it launched in October the servers were plagued with thousands of people stuck in queues for hours on end, a testament to how popular the buy to play option was. The queues continued for several weeks after the launch though thankfully they did settle down eventually.

 

WoW Classic Launch

The launch of WoW Classic was somewhat overshadowed by some other events that were going on for Blizzard at the time, you’ll see more about them later. However, Vanilla WoW fans finally got what they had been asking for, a fresh start in World of Warcraft from the beginning, or at least as close to it as they will ever get. The launch also seemed to bring out some of the worst in people though, just before launch there was a debate about which servers to go on to avoid Twitch streamers because they weren’t part of the original experience in the game. A few months on now conversations about WoW Classic have died down fairly quickly. That’s not to say it wasn’t successful, but it was a bit like when Pokemon Go launched, everyone talked about it for a couple of weeks and then the vast majority of “tourist” players left and only the dedicated core remained.

 

Phantasy Star Online 2 in the West

Phantasy Star Online 2 launched in Japan in 2012 and ever since then there has been a very dedicated bunch of gamers who have lamented that PSO2 never made it to the West. Many had given up hope. Which is why it came as such a huge surprise when it was announced that the game would finally be launching in the West, or at least in North America. The game won’t be launching until Q2 2020 so expect to see a whole lot more about it in the coming months.

 

Brad McQuaid’s Death

This year the MMO industry lost one of its icons when developer Brad McQuaid suddenly died in November. McQuaid is best known for his work on fantasy MMORPGs starting with the original Everquest. He went on to create Vanguard: Saga of Heroes and was working on the development of Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen at the time of his passing. His death was unexpected and surprised the entire community. Developers of Pantheon: Rise of the Fallen have said they would continue the visionary work McQuaid had started.

 

FFXIV Shadowbringers Launch

Though there was no one single news post we could point to for the launch of FFXIV Shadowbringers and its massive popularity we would be remiss in leaving it out of this list. Shadowbringers has been called the best FFXIV expansion to date and in fact, many even hailed it as the best MMORPG expansion of all time. That amount of praise was almost enough to get our most reclusive writers to try FFXIV, almost. Still, it was a fantastic expansion and easily could have been the biggest news of the year had it happened in any year other than 2019.

 

Riot Games Discrimination and Walkout

This year had a rough start for Riot Games as it was knee-deep in sexism, sexual harassment, and discrimination allegations. In response, Riot suspended their COO and hired their first Chief Diversity Officer. Five lawsuits came about as a result of the allegations and two of them were forced into private arbitration. This while tech giants Google and Facebook announced they were ending forced arbitration for harassment cases. Riot continued to make a number of unpopular choices for their employees which resulted in an employee walkout, the first time that had ever happened in the video games industry. It all finally came to an end at the beginning of December when it was announced that Riot Games would pay at least $10 million to about a thousand female employees who are eligible for a share.

 

Blizzard Boycott

As previously mentioned, there was one Blizzard story that dominated them all this year and that was the boycott and backlash the company faced after suspending a pro-gamer after he showed his support for the Hong Kong protestors in a live event. The two casters who were interviewing him were also suspended. This resulted in a very public backlash that included US Senators as well as gamers and non-gamers across the world. There was even an employee protest at Blizzard HQ over Blizzard’s reaction to the events. In the end, Blizzard decided they would give the esports star his winnings and reduced everyone’s suspension to 6 months. Shortly after the story was all but forgotten as Blizzcon made some major announcements that seemed to distract fans.

 

City of Heroes Revival

Shutdown MMO Emulators

The honor of the top MMO news story of 2019 goes to the revival of beloved superhero MMORPG City of Heroes. It was a crazy year but no story lifted more hearts in the MMO world than the return of City of Heroes. Earlier this year it was revealed that there had been a secret server of City of Heroes and shortly after that the first new City of Heroes server open to the public opened up. Since then thousands of accounts have been made across a number of different servers. These servers have small groups of volunteer developers working on making improvements to the 15-year-old game and there are quite a few to pick from, though the most populated are part of the Homecoming group. City of Heroes makes the top of our list for being the story that has had the widest and most long-lasting impact. We can’t wait to see what the new year holds for the revival of City of Heroes.

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ArenaNet Confirms They Are Working on an Unannounced Console Game

ArenaNet has confirmed that they are working on an unannounced console game in a job advertisement. This is a common way to find out studios are developing games very early in the process while they’re hiring new staff. Unfortunately, it also means that there is very little information known about the game.

What we do know about the game so far is that it will be a fantasy action console game in the third person. We also know it is being built using Unreal 4.

There had previously been some question about why ArenaNet was hiring an Unreal Engineer because GW2 doesn’t use Unreal. Now, thanks to an ad looking for an Art Director we have an answer to that question.

We also know that Mike O’Brien had previously been working on a game before he departed the studio. It was said at the time that the game in the state he was leaving it could have become Guild Wars 3. Will this be Guild Wars 3? It is certainly something that can’t be ruled out at the moment. But the fact that it’s a console game makes that seem less likely. It’s also possible that this is another game entirely that is set in the Guild Wars universe or it might be something else entirely. The possibilities are endless.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen this kind of news from ArenaNet in recent years. They were also hiring mobile developers for a while but nothing seems to have come out of that and it is possible that whatever it was has been canceled before it ever even got announced.

For now at least, we know that some of ArenaNet is in fact working on a title that isn’t Guild Wars 2. What it is and when we’ll find out more is anyone’s guess.

 

Source: ArenaNet Careers via Reddit

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Nexon Merges 2 Development Teams

Nexon has announced that it merged two of its development teams: Boolean Games and Nexon Red. In order for this to happen, they had to acquire all shares of Nexon Red which had previously been a standalone studio.

According to the press release the merge’s main aim is to reinforce the company’s development capabilities by “organically integrating the know-how and resources of each development corporation through the restructuring of its affiliates.” The best part of the news is that it appears that no jobs will be lost in the merger. Fantastic news for this festive time of year.

Nexon has had a bit of an odd year. For most of it, founder Kim Jung-ju had been building up to sell his 98.64% stake in the company, a deal that was worth an estimated $9 billion. However, when it came to bidding for that share they got a few offers that were too low and Tencent with Netmarble failed to convince him that they could finance the purchase. After the sale fell through, stock prices tumbled and a number of their projects that had been previously announced were canned.

It will be interesting to see what comes out of this new studio merger. Nexon Red is known for games like Fantasy War Tactics and Alliance X Empire (AXE) while Boolean Games is known for Darkness Rises.

 

Source: MMOCulture

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Exosuit MMO Plan 8 Details Have Been Revealed

We first heard about Plan 8 just before GStar earlier this year and now we are finally getting some details about the game as well as some much sought after images.

It is the first shooter that Pearl Abyss has worked on and it uses Pearl Abyss’ brand-new proprietary engine. The Lead Producer for the game is Seungki Lee, the former Environment Art Director for Black Desert Online while Minh Le, the co-creator of the original Counter-Strike is serving as Technical Advisor.

While it is being called a shooter it will in fact incorporate elements from a number of genres, including MMOs. One of the key features of Plan 8 is finding and equipping different Gears to the player’s exosuit which will open up gameplay experiences they say have never been seen before in a game. Each suit has its own special abilities and grants wearers superhuman power, strength, and abilities.

Enhancement of firearms also plays an important role in Plan 8. Unlike in other shooters, there is no standard format for modifications so you will be able to truly customize your weapons.

Plan 8 is being developed for PC and console, though which consoles haven’t yet been stated. The official website for the game is now live and you can subscribe to their official newsletter to get the most up to date news on Plan 8. As of yet, there is no official word on when there will be a beta for the game but as soon as any new information is released we’ll be sure to share it.

 

 

Source: Press Release

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Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs – Tactical Warfare in the Skies

Steampunk is a science-fiction subgenre that has seen some of the best games ever created. Bioshock and Dishonored are two of the highlights, but we can travel further back in time to recollect gems such as The Chaos Engine or Arcanum. It’s this same genre that serves as the foundation for Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs, the new game from DiP Online.

Aima Wars is about a raging war between humans and orcs, but this time the fight isn’t confined to the ground. On the contrary, the larger chunk of the battles will take place in the skies, as aircrafts of unique designs and features fight for the supremacy of their faction.

Far from being a cookie-cutter game, Aima Wars is a daring venture into a brave open world. There’s no denying the similarities with the studio’s previous effort, LuckCatchers, but the core gameplay is enhanced and many features that players were asking for were introduced. Aima Wars isn’t an immediately accessible game, despite the tutorial’s best efforts to ease you in. It takes time to learn the ropes and fully grasp the controls and objectives, so make sure that you like your MMO experiences with a deep strategic focus and a somewhat slow pace.

Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs Teleportation Gate

Resource Wars

One thing that immediately struck a chord with me was the eerie, haunting music in this game, both in the main menu and during gameplay. It has this dark, depressing yet soothing tone that just sticks in your mind and stays with you for days. I’ve fired up the game a few times just to listen to the soundtrack.

However, we’re not here to listen to music, no matter how great it sounds; we’re here to wage war and stand our ground for our realm. Before you start the game, you must select the faction that you want to represent. Will you go for the Empire of Humans or the Union of Orcs? There doesn’t seem to be any explicit advantages to each faction, but we wouldn’t exclude the assumption that the races may have inherited their attributes from LuckCatchers. This would mean that Orcs are better at extracting resources, while Humans have the upper hand concerning processing and manufacturing. Your choice also affects the starting region and the specifications of your airships.

Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs Settlement

The first thing that you’ll notice is the scope of the game world is. The sprawling sandbox open world is surely designed to accommodate hundreds of players in massive scale wars. The eventual downside of this ambition is that Aima Wars demands a substantial player base in order to fulfill its potential. You’re going to spend a long time traveling to your destination, but thankfully you can use teleportation gates to save you precious time.

The UI allows you to control your ship’s altitude, speed, and assorted activities such as extracting, landing, or using the shield and glide options. You can control your ship using the mouse, keyboard, or a combination of both, which personally resulted in the most comfortable choice.

One of your objectives in Aima Wars is collecting resources. It’s not by accident that the game is titled like that; aima is one of the resources in short supply that you must gather to upgrade your settlement and subsequently your faction and your ships. The other resources are iron ore, coal, timber, sulpurit, and miphrilite ore. Some of these resources are very scarce, and with both factions trying to get to them, clashes are inevitable.

Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs Glide

Call of Dragons

Unless you have a reasonably developed airship, conflict must be avoided at all costs. During the first hours, your focus should be on extracting resources and shooting down any dragons that you happen to come across. The mythical fire-breathing creatures are largely a breeze to take down, only becoming a threat when they considerably outnumber you. During dragon migration, for example, these are a force to be reckoned with, as you can obverse countless hordes of dragons migrating. If left unprovoked, these creatures should do no harm to your airship or settlement; however, if you decide to engage them, there will be hell to pay. This is a risk versus reward event, where you may substantially increase your currency, but you may end up losing your ship, or worse, your settlement.

With the currency that you earn and the achievements you’ll regularly complete, you can level up and unlock new skills. Far from being optional, these skills are crucial to open up access to better features, destined to improve your ship’s capacities and your settlement’s assortment of possibilities. While the skills aren’t mutually exclusive, the skill tree will make you face some though choices, as it would take weeks or months to unlock them in a balanced way. Instead, you should focus on the route that you aim to achieve, and stick to the plan. You could choose construction as your goal if you want to build new and better airships, or go for the energy skills if you prefer to unlock the full potential of your ships.

Aima Wars Steampunk and Orcs Enemy Base

While you enjoy complete freedom in the way that you wish to tackle objectives and expand your settlement, combat is automated. You can pick the type of weapons for your airship and switch between a selection of cannons, torpedoes, and missile launchers, but otherwise the shooting and aiming is entirely out of your control. This isn’t a downside however, as you’ll be busy controlling the airship’s altitude and shooting range, flanking your enemies, and cooperating with your teammates to take down the opposing forces.

Aima Wars: Steampunk and Orcs is a very original MMO that starts slow and demands your time and dedication, feeling like a niche game at its core. Unlike other games nowadays where you reach level 20 in five minutes, this is a game where you have to earn your levels, yet it offers you the freedom to go for it as you see fit, removing the shackles that restrict your creativity. It’s only after a few days’ worth of playing that you begin to see some of the elaborate features at work in the game, spotting the ambition under the hood. If its potential will ever be fully realized, that much is in the hands of the developers as much as it is in the hands of the players.

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A New Global Esports Federation Announced

A new Global Esports Federation has been announced today and it is backed by industry giant Tencent as well as a number of board members from international esports companies and organizations. It is being led by Chris Chan from the Singapore National Olympic Council along with Tencent’s Cheng Wu serving as one of its Vice Presidents. According to the Chinese publication People Esports the organization wants to hold an international tournament as early as January 2020.

At the launch conference, the GEF stated that it wanted to be “the voice and authority for the worldwide esports movement.” They also said that their key objectives include establishing national esports federations, an athlete commission, as well as guidelines related to fair play, doping, and governance structures.

You might be wondering to yourself, “Haven’t we done this already?” and the answer is yes, yes we have. There are a number of organizations that have attempted to form a governing body for all of esports including the International Esports Federation (IeSF). The IeSF formed in 2008 and currently has members from 56 different countries around the world. What makes the GEF different is that it is the first time a game company has backed one of these federations. Will that make a difference in the long run? Only time will tell. For now though, the esports industry is almost entirely decentralized.

 

Source: Esports Observer

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14 Year Old Mods Untitled Goose Game in Minecraft

What were you doing when you were 14? Chances are you weren’t creating a mod to put one game in another game, but that’s exactly what one modder did when they put Untitled Goose Game in Minecraft.

It isn’t an exact port of course, that would be awful. But the homage is called Untitled Chicken Mod and it plays just like Untitled Goose Game. Just like in UGG you run around causing mayhem, throwing signs into lakes, destroying crops, and other things to irritate the villagers.

If you’re interested in giving Untitled Chicken Mod a try and you play Minecraft on PC then you are in luck. You can download the mod by going here to github.

The creator, known only as DeltaTwoForce has said they can’t make the mod open source because if they did they would be publishing large amounts of Mojang-owned code which is a violation of the Minecraft EULA.

If you’d like to see it in action check out this short video DeltaTwoForce made.

I modded the goose game into Minecraft!

We can’t wait to see what they come up with next. This is someone with a very bright future in the games industry.

 

Source: Reddit via USGamer

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WoW Wednesday: The 2019 Feast of Winter Veil!

Snow falls and hearths are lit in the wide World of Warcraft as the holiday season once again dawns on us in the real world. Just as we get together to celebrate the season with our families, the land of Azeroth becomes more festive to herald the coming of Greatfather Winter and the kinship of the heroes of the world. This year Winter Veil comes back bigger and better than ever as a seasonal event in Battle for Azeroth. During the event running through January 2nd, players can sample (and cook) delicious holiday treats, rescue one of Greatfather Winter’s reindeer, tackle special world boss content, and even unwrap your own gifts from the jubilantly jolly geriatric!

New to the festivities this year (on top of the secretly wrapped presents beneath the tree) are two new world explorative events. In both Orgrimmar and Ironforge Greatfather Winter has set up his sleigh for everyone to partake in! Each reindeer can carry a person, as well as an additional member in the sleigh. While you cruise through the skies on your holly-jolly jousting, you may also find the currently hidden Greatfather Winter Pepe. While he has only been datamined from the 8.3 PTR, there are rumors that the tangerine traveler may be prowling the mistletoe for an adventurer!

Part of the meta-achievement What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been, the Feast of Winter Veil has its own meta-achievement which combines gift giving, treat making and more in one comprehensive checklist for the event. Read on to figure out how to join in on the festivities and claim your own <Merrymaker> title!

All of the following achievements must be complete during the Feast of Winter Veil. While several other holiday achievements can be completed outside of their timely slots (provided you have the right items that aren’t locked to the time they’re available), most of this event’s achievements cannot.

Greatfather Winter, here to ho-ho-hold onto your presents until the big day!

‘Tis the Season simply requires you to wear 3 pieces of Winter Clothing and eat a slice of Graccus’ Mince Meat Fruitcake. Made up of five different items, the Red and Green Winter Veil sets are really only constructed of three items each. The hats will drop off of select enemies in Heroic Level dungeons and raids, noted by their festive attire.

Chest pieces will most popularly be found on Auction Houses, but they can also be made by Tailors with level 250 Classic Tailoring. The Winter Boots (which come in only one variety) can be made by Leatherworkers with 285 Classic Leatherworking skill. The fruitcake can be dug up in packages rewarded from the quests Treats for Great-Father Winter or You’re a Mean One…

A Frosty Shake simply requires you to get your hands on a Winter Veil Disguise Kit and /dance with people under its effect in Dalaran. Most players can pick up the toy from their mailbox after completing the quest chain that starts with You’re a Mean One… Time to get the whole snow-family on the floor!

Bros. Before Ho Ho Ho’s will see players traveling across Azeroth and giving a little Christmas smooch to various Brothers of the Horde and Alliance, depending on your faction. Clearly this particular achievement shows off a little of that often joked about ‘Horde-Bias’ whereas there are ten Brothers for the Alliance to deliver a holiday package to, the Horde only has 3 spread across various Horde sites in Northrend.

Aside from being a catchy holiday carol, Fa-la-la-Ogri’la is a twist on the classic Burning Crusade daily quest Bomb Them Again! Travel to the Blade’s Edge Mountains, pick up the quest and turn your deadly bomb-delivery mount into a Reindeer with some Fresh Holly or Preserved Holly. If this quest is unavailable to you, you might need to do a short questline to open them up beginning with the quest The Crystals.

Smookywood Pastures commercializes most of the season, and will ask for your help in saving the holiday.


He Knows if You’ve Been Naughty
 is one that simply requires a little patience, needing you to wait until December 25th. Simply log in, head over to Orgrimmar or Ironforge and open up one of your gifts beneath the Winter Veil tree! Hopefully you’ve been good and don’t end up with a lump of coal. Each year’s special toy has a special Feat of Strength achievement associated with it as well, and many toys can still be collected through alternative means throughout the season. There are also a smattering of other achievements not included in Merrymaker that require these toys, mostly to terrorize other players and be a general Greench! These include Iron ArmadaA-Caroling We Will GoBB King and more.

Let It Snow requires you to use a Handful of Snowflakes on a set list of race-class combinations. Throughout the season there are often charitable players of the opposing faction waiting in neutral major cities to help you out, but you can also pay some punishment on your foes in a battleground or two. If you find yourself short on a Handful of Snowflakes, simply give one of the many Winter Revelers a little /kiss.

On Metzen! is awarded for saving the titular reindeer during the quest You’re a Mean One…, a daily quest requiring you to slay a true Greench and save Winter Veil!

Scrooge is for those who aren’t fans of Winter Veil by smashing snowballs into the faces of some of the biggest revelers in the Horde and Alliance. While Alliance players have the task of sneaking into Thunder Bluff to peg Baine Bloodhoof, Horde players must sneak into the heart of Ironforge itself and pelt Muradin Bronzebeard.

Simply Abominable is another achievement connected to the questline which begins with You’re a Mean One… Slay the Abominable Greench, rescue Metzen and save the stolen treats of Azeroth!

Need to chill out? Step into the zero-gravity Giant Snowball in several major cities!

The Winter Veil Gourmet requires you to collect and cook several holiday themed recipes including a Gingerbread Cookie, Winter Veil Egg Nog and Hot Apple Cider. While all of the recipes can be purchased from the Smokywood Pastures vendors in major cities, the Hot Apple Cider recipe requires 300 skill in Classic Cooking, making it a difficult feat for those who’ve not taken the time to maximize their secondary professions.

With a Little Helper From My Friends is the last of the achievements, and can easily be completed in a few Epic Battlegrounds. Stepping into one of the many Winter Wondervolt machines throughout Azeroth, you’ll transform into one of Greatfather Winter’s little helpers! From there you must make 50 cumulative Honorable Kills in Battlegrounds, meaning that if you die and lose the buff you can simply return and visit the machine between matches!

How do you plan on spending Winter’s Veil this season? Let us know down below!

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