Torchlight Frontiers Has Become Torchlight III

Today it was announced by Perfect World that Torchlight Frontiers has become Torchlight III. The game will be launching on Steam this summer and alpha testing for it begins on January 29th.

“When we started developing Torchlight Frontiers, we were focused on creating a shared-world experience,” said Max Schaefer, CEO of Echtra Games and co-founder of the Torchlight franchise. “During development, you often discover what type of product a game was meant to be and we found Torchlight Frontiers was meant to be a true successor to Torchlight I & II. Based on this and extensive feedback from our Alpha testers, we decided it was time to take the game back to its roots and model it after the classic Torchlight games that ARPG fans have come to love. We’d like to thank our dedicated player base for supporting us and providing such insightful feedback during early development.”


The game had previously been announced as a free to play title but it will be going to the premium model that Torchlight and Torchlight II had before it. In fact, this isn’t the only way in which they’re going back to the familiar way of doing things that they’ve already established. Rather than focusing on horizontal progression, the game has gone back to the familiar linear structure that Torchlight fans know and love.

They have also announced that Torchlight III will have a brand new class, though they aren’t ready to reveal what it is quite yet. There will be more information on it as the launch date approaches.

It’s always exciting when a studio listens to the feedback from their players and this is no exception. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for Torchlight III.


Source: Press Release

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Top 10 Upcoming Diablo-Like Hack and Slash Games

There is no denying that Diablo was responsible for the explosion of hack and slash games. More than a couple of decades after its release, the action RPG genre is often referred to as “Diablo-Like” and for good reason. Blizzard’s classic spawned countless clones and they are still coming fast and furious, with tons of loot, relentless mouse clicking and a fair share of wrist pain. Here are a few Diablo-Like games that you should keep an eye out for.

Pagan Online

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Pagan Online

Pagan Online is the upcoming action RPG from Wargaming. Taking a break from its serious warfare simulators such as World of Tanks, World of Warships and World of Warplanes, the Belarusian company is helping Serbian-based developer Mad Head Games with this grim hack and slash RPG inspired by pre-Christian mythology.

I can tell you that Pagan Online’s world is deliberately bleak and desolate, with its heavily stylized visuals. But it’s the template that stands out, with its MMO-ish design and bite-sized gameplay pretenses. The Pantheon is the hub for your character (from the initial choice of eight unique heroes), with short missions of different types awaiting you. WASD control assures optimal ease of use and co-op play doubles the fun – or even quadruples it, if things go according to plan.

Despite looking and playing like your typical hack and slash game, Pagan Online’s 50-hour campaign doesn’t shy away from some interesting twists, such as the occasional mission with increasingly difficult enemy waves and intense, challenging combat that takes cues from MOBA games.

Pagan Online may draw inspiration from Diablo, but it proudly shows its very own, fierce distinctiveness.

Torchlight Frontiers

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Torchlight Frontiers

What’s not to love about the Torchlight games? They take all the exciting combat and endless loot from the Diablo series and multiply it by a substantial dose of fun, resulting in two of the best hack and slash experiences ever made.

Following Torchlight 2 would never be an easy task. The next chapter needs to bring something special to live up to the hype, and indeed it does – an extra layer of MMO goodness. From public areas with up to eight players and dungeons supporting parties of four, Torchlight Frontiers ups the ante in co-op potential.

Torchlight Frontiers also tries to deviate from the tried-and-tested vertical progression systems found in most MMORPGs, offering a distinct take on levelling your character. Each frontier is levelled up independently, with specific gear best suited for each one. The alpha tests brought the first two frontiers, Goblin and Hyvid, along with randomized dungeons and a season-based contracts system that will reward players for completion of their daily and weekly missions.

Oh, and loot. Tons of loot. Torchlight Frontiers doesn’t seem destined to disappoint in that regard, nor where it comes to classes. The Forged was different enough, but the Railmaster is an entirely original beast, probably the cleverest class ever designed for an MMO in the last decade.

Last Epoch

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Last Epoch

Last Epoch is another Kickstarter-funded action RPG that looks like a close relative to Path of Exile, but with a twist: time travel. Now there’s a great excuse to take you to forbidden lands and forgotten places, or even to the end of time – no, seriously, this is a real map, set in space.

Last Epoch also comes with a skill tree of hell – or in fact, 110 skill trees. The promise of “endless replayability doesn’t fall flat in light of this feature. With five base classes and 15 mastery classes there should be more than enough to experiment, regret, re-roll and finally specialize into your favorite character. Developer Eleventh Hour Games claims that this is an action RPG for newcomers and veterans alike, so you tell us if that is the case since the beta should be available right now, with the full release slated for April 2020.

Lost Ark

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Lost Ark

Each day that goes by without an official announcement of a Lost Ark North American and European release, an angel loses its wings. We know it’s coming – Smilegate’s CEO has confirmed this – but it hurts seeing our Korean friends enjoying one of the best MMORPGs of recent years and realizing that we can’t get our grubby fingers on it before… what? Late 2019 or 2020?

Oh, come on, will you please hurry up with the English localization? China and Russia versions are well underway, and the original Korean release already got a host of new content including a new class, the Lance Master, so the anxiety is eating me up inside.

If you don’t know what Lost Ark is, then you have no love whatsoever for Diablo, MMOs or both. This is everything that you ever wanted from a Diablo MMORPG, but with so much more than you asked for. Combat alone is a thing of beauty, with several classes so diverse and resourceful that you will shake your fist at the skies in the selection screen, rightly enraged by the unfair decision that must be made before you start your adventure. Do not fret, that is what additional character slots are made for. Then you have the incredible cinematic dungeons, with camera angles and boss battles designed to keep you on the edge of your seat right until the climax.

Lost Ark is the real deal; an MMORPG that delivers on its promises. This is, by definition, the kind of rare beast that is on the verge of extinction.

Warhammer: Chaosbane

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Warhammer Chaosbane

The Warhammer franchise has seen so many video game adaptations, dipped its feet in so many genres that it sounds odd to think that no one ever created one action RPG set in this fantasy world. I’m not talking about the Warhammer 40K universe, as that one was already graced with the middling Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor – Martyr.

But that glaring mistake is about to be fixed with the release of Warhammer: Chaosbane. This is a Diablo-esque action RPG coming to PC and consoles in June 2019, with a focus on co-op play up to four players, but you can play alone as well. You should know what to expect right now: hordes of monstrosities for your righteous heroes to slash through.

Four character classes doesn’t sound like a lot (Mage, Soldier, Waywatcher and Slayer) and the Dwarf’s spin attack is already getting on my nerves, but other than that, Warhammer: Chaosbane is shaping up to be a good action RPG, with 10 difficulty levels and a boss rush mode to keep you busy.


Top 10 Diablo Like Games Fractured

In theory, Fractured sounds more ambitious than most of the games in this top 10, but that comes at a price. Coming from Italian-based indie studio Dynamight Studios, this is an open world sandbox MMO complete with a full-fledged housing system.

Graphically, Fractured looks a bit rough around the edges, but nothing to be ashamed of. If the trade-off is a deep MMO with exciting action combat and interactive environments, then I can live with it. You can pick from three very different races (Humans, Beastmen and Demons), something that isn’t just for show, having a practical effect in your game: from your society to the interaction with other players. You can choose to go to a PvE co-op only world, a brutal open PvP environment or a mix of the two. Crafting and trading is entirely player-driven, something that can either make or break a game.

Fractured has a lot of potential but we’ll have to wait and see if this small indie studio is able to pull it off. Sheer ambition can only take you so far.


Top 10 Diablo Like Games Darksburg

Darksburg isn’t so much about loot or forging your path in a vast world. Instead, it places you and a few friends in a zombie-infested world where surviving the invading hordes is the objective. It’s a more immediate and enjoyable hack and slash game without loot dropping every step of the way – items and rewards should be more manageable than your average action RPG and won’t get in the way of the fast-paced game.

Darksburg offers 4-player co-op action where teamwork is crucial. Each character from the roster comes with unique skills and personality – Sister Abigail has a set of abilities that is completely different from Varag, the escaped werewolf. Your character will improve with items and unlockable talents and you’ll need all the help that you can get to fight the bosses. There are different maps with varied objectives to keep gameplay fresh: find the cure, escort someone, escape from the area and more. In PvP mode you can choose to play the bad guys and face other players.

Coming from the makers of Evoland and Northgard, Darksburg looks like the kind of multiplayer experience that you can’t go wrong with. It may not bring a ludicrous dose of loot like some of the other games from this list – that is not its purpose –, but I’ll be a rotten zombie if it doesn’t turn out to be tons of fun.

Lineage Eternal (Project TL)

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Project TL

NCSoft is having a hard time finding the sweet spot for the next Lineage game. The follow-up to one of the most profitable MMORPG franchises ever is switching from third-person to a top-down isometric perspective like Diablo.

Lineage Eternal is in development for ages, having been first announced back in 2011. So that nearly makes for a decade of development hell that doesn’t seem close to the end. In 2016, things seemed to be on the right track – you could pick a team of four characters out of the existing 13, there was a nice system for randomized dungeons and the closed beta was coming soon.

But that didn’t happen. In 2017, a new game producer and a new team undertook some serious changes to the game, including the switch to Unreal Engine 4. The multi-character system is gone as well, replaced by a traditional class system. The name was scrapped, changing to the Project TL codename. That stands for The Lineage, apparently.

It’s been a while since we last heard from Project TL, but you can rest assured: NCSoft has a lot at stake with this game and you can bet that it won’t disappoint.

Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Wolcen

Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem is in a strange place. Once hailed as the next coming of the action RPG, it is slowly dragging its blood-drenched sword through Early Access for over two years. While it entered beta in March 2019, the community seems to be losing faith in the developers, with some updates to the game being badly received, such as the removal of the open world from the first act in favor of a bog-standard, linear area.

Notwithstanding, Wolcen still looks promising, albeit in an unashamed Diablo 3 wannabe kind of way. That doesn’t make it a bad game, but it did subvert initial player expectations in a way that is affecting its reputation.

But what about the game itself, you ask? Wolcen is a fun action RPG with some great gloomy graphics and solid, weighted combat without any class restrictions. It feels like a mashup between Diablo and Path of Exile but currently with much less content and with streamlined skill trees, things that surely will be improved as development progresses.

And that is where Wolcen’s worries lie – a slow-paced development that despite showing commitment to the game, is under fire from a community that is growing impatient as months go by. It’s been four years since this game showed up as Umbra on Kickstarter, but let’s never forget that good things come to those who wait – Path of Exile is a perfect example.

Legends of Aria

Top 10 Diablo Like Games Legends of Aria

Legends of Aria tries to scratch that old-school MMORPG itch that very few games managed to do effectively. Citadel Studios mentions Ultima Online as its biggest inspiration, something that is not to taken lightly seeing that the creation of Origin Systems was released in 1997 and is still running today.

Much like Fractured and even Albion Online, Legends of Aria tries to go for a sandbox open world design, possibly the most difficult template to successfully pull off for an MMORPG. It is advertised as a game with no hand-holding and where community servers and modding are not only allowed, they are vigorously encouraged.

Legends of Aria is another one of those MMORPGs where the community will dictate how it will evolve. If the mechanics are sound and polished, it may stand a chance; on the other hand, a lackluster Early Access phase will surely lessen its chances of success.

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Torchlight Frontiers – I Like the Way You Loot

A Torchlight MMO is something that has been rumored for a long time. The idea harkens back to the days before the first Torchlight game was released by Runic Games, serving as an introduction to this fantasy world before development on an MMO was started.

Fast-forward a decade or so and here we are: Runic Games is no more. However, it lives in spirit within Echtra Games, a new studio that is finally developing the long-desired Torchlight MMO, or Torchlight Frontiers, as it was blissfully introduced to the gaming world. It has all the makings of an MMO and feels like a natural evolution for the series: from the single-player thrills of the first game to the co-op riot of the sequel, and now the next step is the MMO enterprise of the third game. Sounds like the perfect plan… that is, if we choose to ignore the substantial setbacks that reared their ugly faces along the way.

Torchlight Frontiers Preview Boss Battle Strongtusk

Looting Is My Business… and Business Is Good!

I’ll start off by mentioning one of the latest features to be introduced during the Torchlight Frontiers alpha: the Contracts system. This is a system akin to the battle-passes that you usually see in Battle Royale games. You have two reward tracks, with one of them unlocked and the other one being a premium reward track. Completing contracts will increase your Fame experience level and unlock all kinds of rewards. This is the place where you should go for unpredictable missions that deviate from the straightforward story-based campaign – although there is nothing linear about Torchlight Frontiers’ bold approach to progression.

Instead of pushing you through a linear progression system such as the ones seen in countless other MMORPGs, Torchlight Frontiers offers you a choice right at the start: the Goblin Frontier or the Hyvid Frontier. Your hero, chosen from the two classes currently on offer (Dusk Mage and Forged), will see his experience level increasing independently, according to the path that you take. As an example, this way you can be a level 15 character in the Goblin Frontier and level 5 in the Hyvid Frontier. This dichotomy opens a range of possibilities and freedom that is severely lacking in other games of the genre.

The twist is that the gear you collect is aligned with the frontier where you earned it. So, your frontier level determines the level of the gear that you may use, with the caveat that the Goblin Frontier gear won’t be suited to other biomes, and the same works for the opposite as well. If you insist in doing so, this results in severely underperforming gear, ensuring that the early levels of other frontiers remain somewhat challenging and worthwhile. As you progress, it’s inevitable to steadily switch to gear from your current frontier, as the challenge intensifies, and you must adapt to survive.

Torchlight Frontiers Preview Hyvid Frontier Retch the Regurgitator

In practice, this frontier system can provide variety and optional routes for you to evolve in case things get particularly tough in one place or another. But it is also a much-coveted escape path in case you want to discover new enemies, new gear or just complete a series of contracts to clear your mind from a given obstacle. So far, I haven’t stumbled across any insurmountable challenges, but there were a couple of occasions when the opposing forces were so numerous that I found myself trapped amidst a barrage of gnarly netherling teeth and goblin clubbing, with no chance of escape. I’m not ashamed to admit that making a run for it when the going gets tough is a valuable strategy. Live to fight another day and all that.

Don’t get too comfy with all the loot coming your way. Your inventory isn’t too skimpy, but the amount of loot left in the battlefield during your average daily journey is probably enough to make a pile as tall as the Empire State Building. Your loyal pet serves as a secondary inventory and you can send him to town to sell unnecessary loot and earn a few coins in the process.

Changing gear sets is made easier with the help the Wardrobe system. A couple of clicks should take you to your Fort, where you have access to a multitude of options such as this one. Serving as the housing system of Torchlight Frontiers, your Fort has a shared stash, the Mapworks device (used to access additional missions and possibly new endgame content) and the structure where you can unlock new skills and upgrade them, among several other functional or cosmetic options.

Torchlight Frontiers Preview Goblin Dungeon Battle

What Lies Beneath

Were it not for the looming shadow of the frightful progress wipe, Torchlight Frontiers would already be one of my action RPGs of choice. It doesn’t break any new ground in terms of gameplay, but it is designed to addict in a way that only the best loot-driven hack and slash games can do. It’s compelling to the point where you begin wondering if you should give your wrist some much-deserved rest or suck it up as you stride on, eager to complete a couple more missions.

WASD control would be a godsend for Torchlight Frontiers, providing a vital alternate control scheme for many players. I, for one, would undoubtedly favor it over the current click-to-move option where it’s not unusual to find yourself attacking an enemy close-by when you only wanted to take a step back. This control method is allegedly being worked on and it is in my opinion crucially important to the ambitions of Torchlight Frontiers. Another upcoming action RPG, Wargaming’s Pagan Online, is straight up going for WASD as its main control scheme.

The randomized dungeons will always provide a different set of challenges, although I have a couple of quibbles about it. The first one concerns the length of the dungeons, something that could turn out to be a slight problem when you don’t want to give up halfway through. It’s not easy to determine whether you should venture forth or hold on for the next day, and a previous patch already reduced the length of a handful of dungeons, which means that I am not alone in this regard.

The other annoying aspect is based on the randomization system itself. It’s not unusual to find yourself threading familiar ground and wondering if you’re not going in circles. Sometimes the layout feels too coldly engineered and could use an additional human touch to avoid severe repetition. After several hours exploring the same seemingly bottomless caves and infested toxic forests, it can get exhausting.

Torchlight Frontiers Preview Champion Goblin

But those are pretty much all the complaints that I have for now. There is a disconcerting lack of good free-to-play hack and slash games and we’re yet to see if Diablo Immortal will ever find its spot as a proper Diablo-like game for longtime fans of the series. Quite a paradox, to say the least, but it couldn’t be more accurate.

As for Torchlight Frontiers, it’s shaping up to be the logical evolution for the series and the perfect embodiment of everything that makes a good hack and slash game. It has tons of loot, boss battles, crafting, an innovative progression system and an irrefutable potential to cause carpal tunnel syndrome. If that’s not a sign of a promising action RPG, then I don’t know what is.

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Torchlight Frontiers Wants to Wreck their Servers

If the bluster from Torchlight Frontiers is any indication, then the MMOARPG is ready to have a whole lot of people into its first major test. A Torchlight Frontiers server stress test is beseeching potential players to wreck the servers.

torchlight frontiers server stress test

The morning of Friday, November 16th will mark the first closed alpha test, but the devs appear to want to ramp things up at 3pm PST/6pm EST in the hopes of putting the game’s server tech through its paces.

“Melt them down to their very cores until nothing remains but blistered silicon,” urges the post. “Make sure our ancestors whisper in hushed tones about the day the Torchlight Frontiers servers fell – and rose again stronger than we could ever imagine.

What’s not made immediately clear in the post is whether or not this server stress test will mean that closed alpha has a very large pool or if there will be an open alpha period. We’ve reached out to the folks at Perfect World Entertainment for some clarification.

Server stress isn’t the only focus of the closed alpha. The devs are also looking to get feedback on a number of things like gameplay balance, horizontal progression, loot economy, Forts, and multiplayer mechanics.

Meanwhile, a recent trailer showcasing the Forged class has gone online. That’s available for viewing below.

Our Thoughts

Here’s hoping that this stress test – and everything else associated with the closed alpha of Torchlight Frontiers, for that matter – is helpful for the devs and entertaining for the players. And here’s also hoping that the server stress test actually means that launch won’t be a complete dumpster fire.

Sources: official site, press release

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Torchlight Frontiers Details its Free to Play Monetization

The Torchlight Frontiers folks have been pretty busy, releasing little bits of information every little while, but today they’ve released a pretty significant one: confirmation of a Torchlight Frontiers free to play model as well as their philosophy behind the monetization.

torchlight frontiers free to play

While the game’s free-to-play model is going to do its best to sell items “that you want to buy, but do not need to buy,” the game also offers a nod to the fact that some people don’t have time to earn everything via purely in-game means. As such, certain items that accelerate earnings like gold or luck will be on offer. There are also plans to include cosmetics like Fort decor.

The team is also considering selling special items like Relic Weapons on its storefront, though normal gear will always be earned from in-game pursuits. The blog suggests the addition of Relic Weapons is not finalized, but if it ever is there will be “reasonable” means to craft or find those same store Relics in-game.

Finally, the blog post states that content will not be paywalled and that its store items won’t be pay-to-win by virtue of the fact that Torchlight Frontiers isn’t a game you can win.

“We want you to be who and what you want to be in our world,” reads the post. “We know that killing a boss and finding that cool rare item is immensely satisfying, but buying that same item from a store or auction house is less so.”

Our Thoughts

Consider ourselves extremely leery of the addition of Relic Weapons to the in-game store, especially since those are literally means to buy power. Which can be seen as paying to win to some, semantics aside.

Source: official site

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Torchlight Frontiers’ Horizontal Progression System is a Potential Game Changer

The first couple of Torchlight games were some of the best examples shaped by the Diablo school of action RPGs. As far as hack-and-slash titles go, you can’t go wrong with this series if you want a game that is easy to pick up, a blast to play, offers hours on end of content and plenty of exciting loot.

When Perfect World Entertainment announced the closure of Runic Games, I died a little inside. The developer of the acclaimed series was no more, and while there was some vague reassurance about future titles in this franchise, who would eventually carry the torch? As it turns out, Torchlight Frontiers was announced as the first game developed by a new studio, Echtra Games, founded by Max Schaefer, former co-founder of Runic Games. It all seems to come full circle.

Torchlight Frontiers represents the next step in the series, learning from the previous games while venturing deeper into online territory. Torchlight 2 had amazing multiplayer co-op, and it’s no secret that, for years, Runic Games sought to take the series into MMO territory. The plan was eventually put on the back burner, but clearly it was never forgotten.

There is a fundamental reason for all the excitement surrounding Torchlight Frontiers. It’s not the accomplished art style, nor the exciting combat that it luckily has inherited from past titles; the real reason lies on the Torchlight Frontiers’ horizontal progression system that aims to change the way that players delve through content in an MMO.

In most MMOs, your challenge consists of going through the game in the customary means, a vertical system, let’s put it that way. You level up your character, become stronger and ultimately reach the endgame, the place where you belong from then on. Past content soon becomes obsolete, irrelevant, leaving you with no reason at all to return to old dungeons or raids and one-shot hordes of poor, defenseless enemies. Echtra Games wants to give you a good motive to go back to previously explored locations and have fun doing it, while still finding it somewhat challenging and, above all, picking up some valuable loot and gold along the way. As the developers said it, it’s not about sitting on top of a powerful mountain, but more about building different kinds of power that will have a purpose through the entire game and not just endgame.

Torchlight Frontiers horizontal progression system

But how will they achieve this? Through a system that focuses on each specific area – the Frontiers from the title – and the tools that are best suited to succeed in these areas. Dynamic gear scaling is the name of the ‘magic trick,’ and Guild Wars 2 players may be able to identify its inner workings. To put it simply, your gear is temporarily scaled down accordingly to the lower level zone that you will be tackling. This is made in a way that retains some sort of challenge as to not feel like a boring task, and you won’t be wasting your time as you can still earn some precious rewards such as gold and skill points – don’t expect any rare gear or materials, but there will be enough to keep you coming back for more.

Not only that, but this system is also a great way to team up with a friend that joined the game late and is still going through the earlier areas. This way, you can join your friend in zones where your characters behave in similar ways, despite you being way more powerful when all is said and done. Your friend levels up, you get some nice extra rewards – it’s a win-win situation.

However, it wouldn’t be fair if your superior character was reduced to the level of any other new Torchlight Frontiers player, and this is where the dynamic gear scaling system plays another interesting card. Each zone drops specific equipment and it is up to you to use it in your favor. For example, the gear that you earned playing in the Goblin Frontier is aligned to that frontier, so you will be scaled favorably against the creatures in that area. On the other hand, use that same gear in the Hyvid Frontier and it will scale worse, as the monsters in the area are aligned to a different set of equipment. The scaling differences are slight, but as you surely know by now they can make all the difference when you are facing a powerful boss. Changing gear is extremely simple, with the press of a button taking you through the various sets at your disposal.

Torchlight Frontiers horizontal progression system - classes

Torchlight Frontiers is a game with no levels, so your power relies on your equipment sets, your pet’s abilities, your active and passive skills and a couple of other things that Echtra Games is keeping close to its chest.

There are a few other things that the Torchlight Frontiers developers are keeping secret, including the highly anticipated character classes. Apart from some glimpses from the announcement trailer, there is very little to no info on the classes apart from the two that were officially shown: Dusk Mage and Forged. Fingers crossed for a reasonable number of classes at launch, as the meager four from Torchlight 2 simply won’t cut it in a game with MMO ambitions.

The Dusk Mage (apparently classes aren’t gender-locked, thankfully) is a magic-based character with powers split between light and dark. The former is comprised of accurate and sharp shots, while the latter lean towards a disordered area-of-effect style of attacks. As for the Forged, this is an inventive four-legged automaton and the first fully robotic class in the series. It is capable of firing missiles as well as using a sword to swipe enemies up close, and is able to change its parts just like the other classes change their equipment. The interesting bit comes with the heat gauge, which replaces the mana sphere from other classes. Using skills increases heat, and when it is full, you must vent steam with a scorching area-of-effect attack. It’s a curious mix of regular skills and releasing steam that needs to be carefully balanced to obtain the best results.

Torchlight Frontiers horizontal progression system - goblin with mount

With its resolute goal of finding a place in the ever tough MMO market, Torchlight Frontiers tries its best to bring something new to the genre. However, you can expect to find some tried-and-tested mechanics as well, including instanced dungeons where you will find the precious loot and deadly enemies. The definitive number of players that will compose a party is yet to be revealed, but four is the figure that is currently thrown around for good measure and to keep the playfield from becoming too cluttered. While in the persistent towns, the number of players radically increases in pure MMO fashion, with all the interactions that you can expect, including shopping around, gathering and crafting.

Perfect World Entertainment has a catalogue where free-to-play games abound, but also operates some buy-to-play games such as Livelock. When asked about the business model for Torchlight Frontiers, the publisher wasn’t ready to reveal any details, postponing such info for a later date. I can see Torchlight Frontiers working with any of the business models, if the inevitable cash shop is faultlessly tailored to each scenario.

Torchlight Frontiers is scheduled for 2019 on PC first and soon followed by PS4 and Xbox One releases.

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Torchlight Frontiers Introduces Relic Weapons

An ARPG lives and dies by its loot imparting your character with a sense of power – a fact that Torchlight Frontiers would certainly be no stranger to. It’s with that in mind that Torchlight Frontiers Relic Weapons will be a thing, which bring a new tier of equipment to the game.

torchlight frontiers relic weapons

Relic Weapons are described as powerful ancient items that players earn via the game’s crafting system. These items sit in a dedicated Relic Weapon slot of your character sheet and can be activated to become your primary weapon for a short time.

Upon activation, Relic Weapons impart some powerful effects and even grant players new powers or skills as the weapon gains experience and hits certain level milestones. A dev blog offered a look at three of the game’s Relic Weapons and even provided a look at one such weapon’s tooltip to grant players an idea of what these items are like.

According to the announcement and dev blog, these new weapons are meant to be a means to compliment your playstyle or build towards a character archetype. It also opens things up for the devs to include “crazy” mechanics and skills. That all said, everything laid out is subject to adjustment, as the game has yet to enter alpha testing.

Our Thoughts

Relic Weapons sound like they’re overpowered in the best possible way, but what we like most is how they’re earned by crafting, meaning somewhat less reliance on earning the favor of the RNG Gods. Here’s hoping that material drops are not the Achilles heel in that regard.

Sources: press release, official site

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Torchlight Frontiers Checks In with a Development Update

The progress on MMOARPG Torchlight Frontiers appears to be moving steadily along. A quick Torchlight Frontiers developer update has provided a bit more context on what’s being done with the game and a rough sense of how close it is to further testing.

torchlight frontiers developer update

The majority of development has been focused on polish, making sure everything in Torchlight Frontiers is the highest quality possible. A brief rundown of the latest game build details changes like the addition of more waypoints, introduction of rare harvesting resources to higher level locations, and improvements to party functions like quest objective credit and making sure party members arrive to the same instance.

Testing was also recently ramped up this week, adding both more humans and bots into the mix. Reportedly, this increase beneficially broke a few things, meaning the team can focus on what needs to be fixed.

With all of this polish focus, one can perhaps assume that more open testing is on the way. However, there hasn’t been any sort of confirmation of the next phase of testing. Still, the report does sound optimistic that the planned timeline for development is being met.

Our Thoughts

We’re glad to know that things are moving at pace with Torchlight Frontiers. We continue to wait and watch from the sidelines for this MMOARPG to make its way into greater scale testing, because honestly the idea of Torchlight gameplay in a shared world is definitely worth the interest.

Source: Torchlight subreddit

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Torchlight Frontiers Shows Off Gameplay and Details its Gamescom Demo

If you weren’t already being whomped over the head with the news, it’s Gamescom week and we’ll all be full of trailers. One of the latest in particular is a new Torchlight Frontiers gameplay trailer along with word from Echtra’s CEO about what the MMOARPG’s Gamescom floor demo will have on offer.

torchlight frontiers gameplay trailer

The Gamescom demo will let players at the show get some hands-on time with two of the game’s classes and a single dungeon map that will culminate in a boss fight. According to Echtra’s Max Schaefer, this particular scenario will best demonstrate both the world and gameplay beats of Torchlight Frontiers. Namely, carving up enemies and getting lots of loot.

If you’re not living in Europe or otherwise able to make it to Germany, the folks at IGN are the first to release that gameplay trailer we mentioned showing Torchlight Frontiers in action. I think I’ve got enough space in-between the headline and the embedded video, so I’ll stop typing now and just watch along with you all.

Our Thoughts

Yup, it definitely looks like a Torchlight game! We’re especially curious about the classes being displayed in the video and a couple of the mechanics being shown off, like the part where it looked like one of the players was laying down mine cart tracks. Also, we apparently get to play as a sword-swinging, gun-firing robot? Consider us signed up for that.

Sources: official site, YouTube

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Torchlight Frontiers Shares a Word from CEO Max Schaefer

The name of Max Schaefer should strike familiar to ARPG fans as the creator of Torchlight and a dev on Diablo and Diablo 2. Now Mr. Schafer has offered a little more insight into his new company Echtra Games and just what to expect out of their new title in the latest Torchlight Frontiers video.

torchlight frontiers video

According to Schaefer, Torchlight Frontiers is a “true MMO” that will let players fully live in a persistent Torchlight world with other members of the community. “We’re not just making a generic MMO and branding it with Torchlight characters”, promises Schaefer. “This is a true Torchlight game.”

Just what that specifically means wasn’t completely illustrated in the video, but Schaefer does mention that fans of the original ARPG series will be able to hop into Frontiers and experience the same combat style and controls that they’re familiar with. “People who played Torchlight will be able to sit down and play it immediately, but then they’ll discover all the new cool things we can do because it is a persistent world,” says Schaefer.

More information about Torchlight Frontiers is promised in the coming months, but you can take a look at what the team currently has put together in the video below.

Our Thoughts

It’s nice that the devs of an MMO aren’t terrified of saying their MMO is an MMO. All kidding aside, we enjoy the heck out of the original Torchlight games and are very interested to see how this game will strike those familiar beats while being something genuinely new with its persistent world features.

Source: YouTube

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