Daybreak Games Restructure Forms 3 New Studios

Today it was announced that the previously announced Daybreak Games restructure would be forming 3 new studios, each of which focusing on one of Daybreak’s franchises.

Dimensional Ink is the studio focusing on DCUO in Austin, Texas. It is being run by Jack Emmert, who you might know from City of Heroes, Neverwinter, Star Trek Online, and DCUO. This will be the studio that is starting development on a new high profile action MMO this year. It might just be the rumored Marvel MMO we heard about a while back. If you want to read more about Dimensional Ink, including how they picked their name you might want to check out this official blog post.

Darkpaw Games, is where you will find the Everquest Franchise. The studio is named of course after the beloved Everquest character Fippy Darkpaw. The studio will be run by Holly Longdale and they plan to continue to make new expansions for both Everquest and Everquest 2. They’re also looking ahead however towards expanding the franchise. You can read Holly’s Producer Letter about the changes if you want to know more.

Finally, we have Rogue Planet Games which will be where you can find everything Planetside. The studio is in San Diego and will be run by Andy Sites. They are focusing on Planetside 2 at the moment but they do have Planetside 3 in their sights. Andy’s Game Producer letter can be found on the Planetside 2 website.

So, what does this mean? Is Daybreak going away? No! They are going to be the publishers of the three new studios. One big question this has left up in the air is what does this all mean for H1Z1 as well as Lord of the Rings Online? Because these games weren’t mentioned right now it would appear that H1Z1 will stay at Daybreak and LOTRO is already made by a non-Daybreak Studio, Standing Stone Games. It’s most likely that they won’t be impacted by this at all. But, we will have to wait and see.


Source: Press Release

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Rumor: Daybreak Games Was Developing a Marvel MMORPG

According to a post on Reddit several former Daybreak Games employees have confirmed that Daybreak was developing a Marvel MMORPG. According to the post the game was worked on for most of 2018 before it got canceled. This does line up with some layoffs that took place last year.

Click to make me bigger

On the evidence of the MMORPG the Reddit post says this:

“Evidence about the game comes from posts by developers who are working or have worked at Daybreak’s Austin studio. There’s multiple references on sites like Linkedin to working on a comic book game that’s different from DC Universe Online, and one comment even directly references the Infinity Gauntlet. An artist who worked at Daybreak until the layoffs posted art showing off Marvel characters like Red Skull, Iron Man, and Captain America.”

The images in this article are from the supposed artist who was laid off by Daybreak.

Finally, the rumor ends that the game doesn’t seem to still be in development and that one developer wrote the game had top-down issues.

It should also be noted that the Daybreak Austin studio is currently hiring for a new MMO project and the job listings state that they’re working on a world class, iconic IP. But, they don’t mention anything about comic books or anything else that might hint at what they’ve got in the works.

At the moment this is all we have to go on with this rumor. Is it true? We may never know. For now at least we can enjoy some sweet Marvel art.

Source: Reddit

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Interview: Challenges In Bringing DC Universe Online To Nintendo Switch

Back in 2011, Sony Online Entertainment mounted a huge task with bringing a comic book universe to an MMO structure. That project, DC Universe Online, would become a huge hit with fans of both gaming and comic books alike, attaining an audience of millions across PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Years later, now owned by Daybreak Games, it would continue to grow on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 front, as servers shut down on older platforms.

DC Universe Online Interview

Now, that audience is set to grow again. The game is set to make its debut on August 6 on Nintendo Switch, becoming the first full-on massive multiplayer online game to launch on the platform. Granted, it does come with its challenges – it’s huge in size, clocking in at 24GB at initial download, and it also has to keep up with Nintendo Switch Online’s limitations. However, the team at Daybreak is more than ready for what’s coming this week, with a brand new server dedicated to all its players.

We recently had a chance to chat with the game’s executive producer, Leah Bowers, about the challenges that came with bringing DC Universe Online to the platform, as well as what players can expect from it. And judging by early impressions, there’s a lot to look forward to.

First off, Bowers dove into the general excitement of creating the experience for a new platform in general, something that hasn’t been done since the game debuted on Xbox One back in 2016.

“It really is a special opportunity for us to be the first to bring a true MMO experience to the Nintendo Switch,” she explained. “Players will love the action combat play style that DC Universe Online brings to the console — it’s a natural fit!”

Of course, there’s the Nintendo Switch Online infrastructure to go around, since it isn’t your typical online gaming network like Xbox Live and PlayStation Network. But Bowers says her team was more than up to the task.

DC Universe Online Interview

“We’ve been working on this as a team since October of last year. This was a huge challenge for us to take on, and the team really met it head on. The most important thing was handheld performance. That first time we were able to walk around the office playing DCUO handheld on the Switch was awesome.”

So, yes, you can take the system with you to San Diego Comic-Con and enjoy playing it while you’re waiting for the next panel – provided you can find a strong enough Wi-Fi point to connect to, obviously. Bowers said there’s a big plus in taking the game on the go.

“As a Nintendo Switch user, having a game of this magnitude with so much to do is extremely exciting to me! I think it’s going to really blow players’ minds when they can use a mobile hotspot to run a raid with their league mates. When I was traveling for Comic-Con I definitely fantasized about doing my DCUO dailies at the airport,” Bowers noted.

For those concerned about whether or not you need a Nintendo Switch Online membership, good news – you don’t. “DC Universe Online is free-to-play and does not require a Nintendo Switch Online membership to play,” Bowers explained. “Just download and start making your very own customized Super Hero or Super Villain right away!”

Some players, however, may feel the need to have to get “caught up” with everything that DC Universe Online has had to offer over the years. But Bowers reassured that isn’t the case, as all the content that has been released thus far will be there, with more to come – which we’ll cover below.

“Players will get to experience all the episodes!” she explained. “Everything is available from day one and mirrors what is currently available for our PlayStation, Xbox and PC communities. It’s very important to us that we welcome Switch into the DCUO fold and give them the best heroic experience we can.”

That will come in the form of Dark Nights: Metal, a new expansion based on the comic book series of the same name. Fans may recall that this was the introduction of a league of new Batmen, including The One Who Laughs. While Bowers didn’t go into too much detail about what this will bring, fans have a lot to look forward to, she explained.

“The next episode, out in September, is inspired by the Dark Nights: Metal storyline from the comic. That arc was a TOTAL TRIP and when I read it, all I could do was imagine it as a video game. I’m so excited to get to bring that deep, dark, meaningful storyline to life in our game,” she said.

And the team is working very closely with DC Comics to assure that the vibe behind the comics continues to flow smoothly into DC Universe Online, so it isn’t lost in its events.

DC Universe Online Interview

“We work very closely with our partners at DC on all updates to the game,” she said. “It’s a wonderful and collaborative relationship. They are very open to ideas from our end, and we love it when they share what they are excited about over at DC. Metal has been a big deal for them the last couple years, so they are absolutely thrilled that we’re making it a part of the DCUO universe too.”

As for what the future will hold outside of Metal in the months ahead, Bowers didn’t have a detailed schedule available. But she did note one key word: “Updates!” she said.

“We are constantly updating the game with weekend events, seasonal events, episodes, or just crazy ideas we want to try out and get feedback from our extremely passionate community. Our biggest updates coming soon are Metal Pt. 1 in September and Metal Pt. 2 in December. And, of course, the Halloween and Winter events are coming too, and for Switch players, it’ll be their first time tackling those.

DCUO is a living, breathing game and we look forward to growing it for years to come.”

Fans will be able to discover what DC Universe Online has in store when the game goes live on Nintendo Switch starting on August 6. Again, it’s going to require a lot of space, so make sure you get a big enough memory card to hold it all, and get yourself a strong Wi-Fi connection before you do anything else. Also make sure that you’ve got a good hero picked out, and have a few friends in tow to help you save the day, just in case.

DC Universe Online Interview

We’ll have a review of this game around the time of the game’s release, so be sure to check back!

DC Universe Online is also available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.

(Thanks to Joy and Daybreak Games for the interview!)


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Hacker Who Took Part in Daybreak Games DDOS Attack Sentenced to Prison Time

Way back in 2013 Daybreak Games, then called Sony Online Entertainment suffered a massive coordinated DDOS attack. The Daybreak Games DDOS attack was done by a group called DerpTrolling who was also responsible for attacks against, League of Legends, and Dota 2.

daybreak games parent company

23-year-old Austin Thompson pled guilty in November to damage to a protected computer in connection with the DDOS. In his plea agreement, he said that he was in charge of the DerpTrolling Twitter account which had posted in early January 2014 that federal agents had shown up at their house but that they had escaped through the bathroom.

Now he’ll be serving 27 months in prison and be forced to pay Daybreak Games $95,000 in restitution. Previous convictions for DDOS attacks against Daybreak Games, these by Lizard Squad resulted in a 2 year suspended sentence for one man and 3 months in federal prison plus $350,000 to Daybreak Games. The Lizard Squad attack was when Smedley, the then head of Daybreak Games had his make an emergency landing because of a bomb threat.

This has brought about some debate online of course. Some are saying that he was just a teenager trying to take down a game and that the prison sentence and money are too much for the crime committed. Others say that it serves him right and he shouldn’t have done the crime if he wasn’t willing to do the time. Some believe that the punishment is as severe as it is because the courts are making an example out of him. The debate goes back and forth. Whichever side you sit on it is interesting to see this all play out.


Source: Polygon

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Daybreak Offering Lifetime Subscription for MMOs

How do you make 1.2 million dollars in a hurry? Well, if you’re Daybreak offering lifetime subscription to your MMO catalog is the way to go. This is exactly what they’re doing with a limited availability lifetime all access membership. For $299.99 (henceforth renamed $300 because ain’t nobody got time for that.) players will have lifetime membership benefits in every All Access game. For those who don’t know which ones that includes, we’re talking about Everquest, Everquest II, DCUO, and Planetside 2. Only 4,000 of these lifetime subscriptions will be made available and for anyone wondering, that’s where the $1.2 million comes from ($300 times 4,000 equals $1.2 million). This offer is only available until December 31st, assuming supplies last that long. Which of course Daybreak is warning that they will likely sell out.

If the $300 price tag is a little bit too steep for you at the moment but you do happen to have $200 laying around then maybe you’ll consider getting a 12-month subscription instead. All the same perks, but a hundred dollars less and only for one year. Yeah, we’d go with the lifetime sub if it were us.

The recently announced Planetside Arena is most notably not included as part of this lifetime deal, neither is H1Z1. This is likely because they still have a lot more life in them than the other titles. That’s not to say that we think any of them will be closing in the near future, just that they are Daybreak’s older games which naturally puts them closer to the end of their lifecycle.

You may recall that recently Daybreak had layoffs, then very shortly afterward announced Planetside Arena. There were also rumors earlier this year that Everquest and Everquest II were going to be coming to an end very soon. All of this, of course, has made a lot of people very worried about the future of Daybreak Games. If there are in fact problems this might just be enough to save them for the time being.


Source: Official Site

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H1Z1: Just Survive Gets a Stay of Execution

So H1Z1: Just Survive – you know, the part of the game that isn’t battle royale – looked to be sunk as of this month. However, the previously announced Daybreak Games investor appears to also be willing to bankroll the survival sandbox along with Z1 Battle Royale, meaning the Just Survive shutdown isn’t happening.

just survive shutdown

The news comes from Daybreak’s Jace Hall, who announced during a developer livestream this past Friday that the joint venture between the company and NantG Mobile LLC will also mean that the Just Survive portion of H1Z1 will remain live in some capacity.

“Just Survive will continue and our intention is to put it into a maintenance mode for a moment,” said Hall. “Then we want to work with the community over time and figure out the right way to re-integrate Just Survive as a mode inside of Z1. There’ll be a survival mode, you’ll see Just Survive.”

There’s no hard timeline for when this maintenance mode will begin for Just Survive or when it’ll be folded into Z1BR, but we expect that the next couple of weeks will provide more firm details on that front.

Our Thoughts

Well, this is some surprisingly good news for fans of Just Survive. Assuming, of course, there are enough of them to make adding the mode to Battle Royale sustainable. If nothing else, having it as a secondary mode for the (apparently) now primary game will give folks options. One could say that this game will survive, only just.

Source: MMO Fallout

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New Daybreak Games Investor to Fund Mobile EverQuest and H1Z1

Apparently, EverQuest and H1Z1 are ready for the mobile spotlight if this Daybreak Games investment news is any indication. A new joint venture between the game publisher/developer and a “diversified holding company” has been announced, which means mobile editions of the above titles are en route.

daybreak games investment

The new partner in question is NantWorks, which will see the formation of NantG Mobile LLC, a new mobile games developer and publisher that NantWorks will have a controlling interest in. This new studio will be handling the creation of mobile editions of the classic EverQuest and the battle royale shooter H1Z1, which will be rebranded as Z1 Battle Royale. The joint venture will also pick up management duties of H1Z1 Battle Royale on PC.

In addition to these new ventures, NantWorks is also putting together an esports venue in El Segundo, California. The LA Times Center is described as “a convening hub for the community and a venue where NantG Mobile will establish esports leagues for multiple game titles”, the first of which will be Z1 Battle Royale.

There’s no word on when this venue will break ground or ultimately open as of right now. Similarly, there’s no timeline on when Z1 Battle Royale or EverQuest’s mobile version will arrive.

Our Thoughts

So one could see this a couple of different ways. Either Daybreak Games is chasing the new hotness and other publishers, or they’re looking to sell off their assets to fleece these game IPs bare. Then again, maybe they’ll actually put together compelling mobile titles, who knows?

Source: press release

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Michael Cohen Court Case and Mueller Investigation Tied to Columbus Nova

After what was definitely the whirlwindiest of whirlwind weeks for Columbus Nova and, tangentially, Daybreak Games, there’s yet another thread that ties the company to ongoing legal issues in the US. According to reports, Russian oligarch and Columbus Nova owner Viktor Vekselberg has been questioned about hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of payments from his company to President Donald Trump’s attorney Michael Cohen.

columbus nova

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation into possible Russian meddling in the 2016 US elections has been recently focused on Trump attorney Michael Cohen and his business dealings. These connections include Vekselberg and Columbus Nova, as well as a $300k campaign contribution by Andrew Intrater, who is Columbus Nova’s head and Vekselberg’s American cousin.

Cohen also has paid $130k to adult film star Stormy Daniels to keep quiet about an alleged affair with Trump. Daniels’ attorney Michael Avenatti believes this hush money came from the payment made by Vekselburg, alleging that money from Cohen’s Essential Consultants shell company was the source. Part of this accusation was reported by our colleagues at, who provided the below quote from Avenatti’s filing:

“Chief among these suspicious financial transactions are approximately $500,000 in payments received from Mr. Viktor Vekselberg, a Russian Oligarch with an estimated net worth of nearly $13 Billion. Mr. Vekselberg and his cousin Mr. Andrew Intrater routed eight payments to Mr. Cohen through a company named Columbus Nova LLC (“Columbus”) beginning in January 2017 and continuing until at least August 2017.”

Columbus Nova attorney Richard Owens provided a statement to CNN about the allegations, bluntly denying the charges. “After the inauguration, the firm hired Michael Cohen as a business consultant regarding potential sources of capital and potential investments in real estate and other ventures,” reads the statement. “Reports today that Viktor Vekselberg used Columbus Nova as a conduit for payments to Michael Cohen are false. The claim that Viktor Vekselberg was involved or provided any funding for Columbus Nova’s engagement of Michael Cohen is patently untrue.”

You’ll recall that when this story tying Columbus Nova to Russian meddling was broken, Daybreak Games outright refuted any affiliation, claiming that Daybreak Games is owned by Jason Epstein in spite of three years’ worth of press releases and other information that links the two companies together.

Our Thoughts

Sheesh, just when we all thought this mire went no deeper, here we go again with another slop into the muck. Of course, if there’s genuinely no links between Columbus Nova’s current scrutiny and Daybreak Games, then this will mean less than nothing for Daybreak’s MMO stable. Time will tell.

Sources: CNN,

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H1Z1 Stealth-Shifts its PS4 Closed Beta Test Date

Despite a press release that stated intention for a H1Z1 PS4 closed beta test during the month of April, this past weekend came and went without any codes or other word from the game about when eager PS4 battlers royale will get to fight it out for the last person standing.

h1z1 ps4 closed beta

When contacted by fans during this past weekend on whether “this month” did indeed refer to the month of April, the game’s official Twitter account replied with word that the devs “haven’t announced an official date for closed beta quite yet.” None of our information available to us has brought new word beyond that.

In what might be seen as a worrying development, the H1Z1 Twitter account has been silent for the past 21-odd hours at the time of this story’s writing. Users of the H1Z!: Just Survive subreddit are also already bracing themselves or otherwise saying their goodbyes.

The concern springs from the wave of layoffs that swept over Daybreak Games this past week which saw 70 employees affected. Our colleagues at Massively Overpowered have compiled a number of recent statements from Daybreak’s MMO portfolio including DCUO, EverQuest and EQ2, and PlanetSide 2 regarding the past week’s events, which essentially sum up to updates and developments continuing as normal.

Our Thoughts

Things do not look very sunny for H1Z1. Of course, there are no firm statements one way or the other, but perceived radio silence is often much worse than a simple remark about the game’s PS4 future or future in general. At this point, many fans would perhaps even be happy with a “no comment” statement.

Sources: H1Z1 Twitter, Massively Overpowered

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RUMOR: Ashes of Creation’s Intrepid Studios In Talks for Acquisition of Daybreak

Shortly after the news about layoffs across much of Daybreak Games was confirmed, another layer has been added to what’s fast becoming a baklava of remarkable developments. Rumors of new Daybreak Games acquisition talks have come to light and one of those interested in buying up the company could be Ashes of Creation’s own Intrepid Studios.

daybreak games acquisition

Our colleagues at bring word from an anonymous source close to Daybreak Games, who says that the company is looking for a path to being acquired and has fielded several suitors. The majority of the companies in question are not in the realm of game development, but one of them certainly is: Intrepid Studios.

It’s worth bearing in mind here that Intrepid Studios’ workforce already consists of several former employees of Daybreak and Sony Online Entertainment. The studio’s main office also happens to be in San Diego, CA – the same city where Daybreak Games is housed. These factors, the report posits, are elements that make an acquisition from Intrepid a prime candidate.

In a statement from Intrepid’s Steven Sharif, he made it a point to keep himself away from rumors while still offering some thoughts on the recent layoffs at Daybreak:

“It has long been my personal policy not to comment on rumors. Even if we were in talks with Daybreak for an acquisition, we would not be able to comment. Additionally, I saw the news of recent layoffs at Daybreak today and would like to extend my condolences to those affected. Daybreak (SOE) has an incredible history of creating some of the most cherished franchises that are near and dear to our hearts, and the people laid off today are some of the most talented developers in the industry. Intrepid Studios wishes them the best in their future ventures and I know they will go on to accomplish great things.”

Our Thoughts

What a week it’s been for Daybreak Games. At this point, this story has taken so many remarkable and stunning turns that it’s hard to know what will happen next. We do agree with the source article, though, that Intrepid Studios would be an absolutely perfect fit for acquisition of Daybreak and its titles. Especially if it means we see EverQuest Next somehow make a return.

…yes, we’re still a bit salty about that game’s closure.


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