Guild Wars 2 Announces a Weapon Design Contest

If you’ve ever sat around and thought “A greatsword made out of night or day? Pff. That’s lazy. I can do better than that,” then now’s your chance to prove it. The Guild Wars 2 weapon design contest is granting players the opportunity to leave their mark on the MMO as it enters its fifth year of operation.

guild wars 2 weapon design contest

From now until Sunday, October 8th, budding weapon designers can download a .ZIP file with guidelines and templates to create their own Guild Wars 2-themed weapon design. According to the contest rules, contestants cannot submit more than three designs and there are a number of parameters and requirements to follow such as file size, format, and template layout.

Once a submission is complete, contestants need to file their design through an official submission form, where 20 finalists will be selected and have their creations put to a community vote. The top three winners will have their creations used as inspirations for new in-game weapons, along with various physical and digital prizes.

Complete information, including download links and contest rules, can be found here.

Our Thoughts

Considering that Final Fantasy XIV has been putting together fan-designed armor contests for a little while now, we’re definitely ready to see how creative the fans of Guild Wars 2 can be with their creations. Let’s see some truly remarkable weapon designs, people!

Source: official site

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ARK: Survival Evolved Answers Fan Questions

There’s only a day left before the survival dino-box ARK: Survival Evolved fully releases, but fans still have some questions. Those questions have been answered in an ARK Q&A session run by Gamespot with co-creative director, art director, technical director, and apparently Man of Many Roles Jesse Rapczak.

ark q&a

Among the answers provided in the article, Rapczak has mentioned that the team is working on a variety of features that are due to be announced. According to Rapczak, the dev teams is reportedly eager to fill out every aspect of the game including new map, more ARK TEK, and plans for continuing Ark Storyline content.

“We very much feel that Ark is an IP that transcends one game,” said Rapczak. “Ark has proven to be a hugely successful IP with staying power, so we don’t plan to stop developing it any time soon.”

As far as current affairs, Rapczak has stated that several optimizations are heading for the PC version thanks to the work performed on the game’s console version. The PC version is also going to receive some new backend help in order to combat against server crashes, duping, and DDoS attacks.

The topic of cross-platform play was also approached in the Q&A with perhaps an expected response: “We have said it before and we’ll say it again–we want everyone to play together,” said Rapczak. “When the day comes that Xbox Live and PSN players are allowed to play together, we’ll be first in line to support it.”

Our Thoughts

We’re very curious to see how ARK: Survival Evolved will…um…evolve once its officially launched, but until then we’re going to keep our fingers crossed for fans to have a fun and generally hassle-free release.

Source: GameSpot

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Absolver Heralds Release with a Launch Trailer

The online melee action game Absolver is only a day away from its full release. Just to stir up the pot a little, developer Sloclap and publisher Devolver Digital have released a new Absolver launch trailer, showcasing the game in a much more cinematic fashion than its previous video offerings to this point.

absolver launch trailer

The trailer shows off the two paths of two different Prospects as they cross the Plains of Adal in their search for approval from the mystic Guides and the chance to become an Absolver. The video features a number of in-game action sequences showcasing the game’s active combat model, all culminating in the two combatants ultimately facing off against one another.

Absolver will kick its way onto PlayStation 4 and PC tomorrow – Tuesday, August 29th. You can learn more about the game on its official website and check out the new cinematic trailer below.

Our Thoughts

We don’t have long to wait before we can get our hands (and our feet) on this one. Absolver definitely looks like one of the more unique games coming to the online multiplayer space and we most definitely want to see how this online brawler feels with other players running around. We’re eager to get started on our own path to Absolution…whatever that means.

Source: press release

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Conan Exiles Brings Sprint and Wield Tweaks to Test Server

Running around and whipping out your weapons are generally rudimentary actions in any MMO’s combat. That said, there are some new sprint and wield adjustments coming to the Conan Exiles test server that could offer players a little more mobility.

conan exiles test server

When a player starts to break into a sprint, they will now automatically sheathe their weapons and will auto-wield them once sprinting stops. The change is meant to help introduce a greater level of control while sprinting, including the ability to run diagonally, make sharper turns, and continue to sprint while leaping if the sprint button is held down.

The test server also has a variety of animation adjustments included that affect combat, such as the ability to “ghost” actions through a special state, like pressing the attack or block button while dodging or keeping your block up after a knockback or hit confirm.

The test build also offers up a number of bug fixes, all of which can be read on the game’s Steam page.

Our Thoughts

They’re not exactly marquee adjustments by any stretch, but these new additions could perhaps make combat and movement flow a little better as well as offer a tighter level of control. Anything that makes fighting in the brutal world of Conan Exiles more direct is likely going to be a welcome addition.

Source: Steam

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Wild West Online Confirms Closed Alpha Start Date

We’re not going to make any lasso references or any other references to rope, knots, or other similarly themed terms. We will tell you that the Wild West Online closed alpha test does indeed have a start date confirmed.

wild west online closed alpha

The game’s pre-order/early access purchase page has offered the date of Friday, September 15th as the start of closed alpha, though it still does mention that dates are not final and are subject to change. That said, it’s a calendar date above and beyond what is listed for closed beta and full release, which are scheduled for sometime in mid-Fall and December respectively.

The closed alpha access is limited to those who have bought in at either the Pioneer (silver) or Collector (gold) tiers of pre-order. If you’re curious about these different editions and what they come with, you can head to the game’s website for more details.

Our Thoughts

Subject to change or not, this does give us a better idea of just how close Wild West Online is to becoming complete. With the demonstration videos that were shared online a few days ago, we’ll be curious to know if this alpha build will have additional features built in or if this will be a bare-bones test to see how many players the digital frontier can hold.

Source; official website

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Gamescom 2017: Star Citizen Demos 3.0

Star Citizen 3.0 isn’t quite live yet, but it most definitely appears to be approaching a playable state according to CIG’s Gamescom 2017 demonstration. The over two hour long presentation demonstrated a variety of new tech and gameplay features being added to the in-development space sandbox.

star citizen 3.0

3.0 will introduce more levels of persistence to Star Citizen, meaning character items and ship damage will be maintained once you’ve logged out of the Persistent Universe. The demonstration also showed off Star Citizen’s new facial capture technology, allowing players with webcams to translate their facial expressions to their in-game avatar. According to a post about the feature on the official website, the new tech will also allow your voice chatter to be broadcast in 3D space in-game.

The lengthy demonstration provided a look at a series of activities starting from the moment of one person’s waking up all to a coordinated effort on a multi-crew ship. The demonstration did have at least one particularly powerful bug which saw one of the players crash, showcasing the challenge of what Chris Roberts called “the most high level of coordination difficulty demo ever done” by the team.

Bugs notwithstanding, get comfortable and take in the immense video below.

Our Thoughts

A lot of the demonstration was pretty clearly staged (except for the crash), but otherwise certainly showed off a huge amount of potential. We’re definitely curious about what players have to say about 3.0 as well as the new facial recognition technology, so feel free to share your thoughts below.

Source: YouTube

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Gamescom 2017: Crowfall’s Q&A Session Offers Dev Insights

You know what they say about the best laid plans? Turns out ArtCraft’s earlier idea for daily livestreams from Gamescom were marred by technical issues. Regardless, a Crowfall Q&A session has offered a look into where the devs are looking to go with the MMO.

crowfall q&a

The session took a slew of questions from the game’s Twitch chat and offered a few insights into the vision for the game as well as some rough timelines for features and content. Here’s some of the more potentially interesting tidbits:

  • Update 5.3 is not quite ready yet, but will be soon; the team wants to wrap up Gamescom then release the first Campaign Worlds, which should be approximately in a week’s time.
  • Speaking of Campaign Worlds, the first CW map will be the same size as the current test map (the larger one, not Tiny Tyranny).
  • The team is considering adding a speed boost to pack/caravan animals who travel on main roads, making them attractive as well as high-risk.
  • The Campaign World “faction bar” still needs some testing to see if it feels rewarding, but just in case a King of the Hill mode is ready to deploy.
  • Different “sports-like” Campaigns are on the table, such as limited-time short-span Campaigns or teams of 20 Champions in a territory control/elimination match.
  • Relic effects are on the table for “a complete pass” to possibly have their effects translate outside of the Eternal Kingdoms into the Campaign World.

There’s a WHOLE lot more in the Q&A video, so be sure to check out the game’s official blog post for the full broadcast as well as a summary on the official forums. You can also take a look at the game’s Gamescom 2017 cinematic trailer below.

Our Thoughts

While it’s a shame that sound problems made daily broadcasts unavailable, we’re pretty sure that the Q&A session is salve enough for Crowfall fans hungry to find out some more information about what’s next. As always, we’re looking forward to a lot more details as Crowfall’s development pushes on.

Source: official site

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Ship of Heroes Showcases Mission Instance Tech

It seems like a reasonably simple thing, opening a door and entering a mission. Still, that’s a big first step when you’re an indie MMO in development. The latest Ship of Heroes showcase offers a look at prototype gameplay of a mission run from the perspective of a team and a player who doesn’t have that same mission.

ship of heroes showcase

In the demonstration, mission instances are private to individual players or teams, meaning that others will not be able to interfere with gameplay objectives much like in the original City of Heroes. The new build also has some rudimentary features such as a clickable “glowy” that ended the mission but only after the enemies in the instance were all defeated. The prototype also has several technical fixes installed, such as returning disconnected players to the proper location and custom server allocation for multiple missions.

The current build of Ship of Heroes is, understandably, incomplete and lacks much of the intended polish for things like animations, graphics, and sound. Regardless, you can take a look at the mission instance demonstration in the video below.

Our Thoughts

It’s not a lot to look at in terms of gameplay, but as a proof-of-concept and a test of the tech, this is definitely very successful and intriguing. We’re looking forward to seeing further developments out of Ship of Heroes soon.

Source: official site

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Final Fantasy XIV Offers a Peek at the Fourth Anniversary Event

It’s almost been a full four years since Final Fantasy XIV was a realm reborn, and soon players will get to celebrate with this year’s The Rising event. A new preview page has gone online offering a sneak peek at the annual event’s quest and its rewards.

the rising

While The Rising in the game’s lore is a celebration of remembrance for the events of the Calamity that nearly destroyed the world, a missing friend is weighing heavily on the mind of Nonoro and it’s up to players to find them. The quest NPC can be found at Ul’dah at the Steps of Nald zone.

Rewards for this year’s event include two new Minions fashioned after Stormblood NPCs, some new Orchestrion music rolls, a new furnishing, and some Magicked Prisms that let players fire off some flower-shaped fireworks.

The Rising will run from Saturday, August 26th through Thursday, September 14th. You can find out more about the event on its official page.

Our Thoughts

The information about this particular Rising event is actually remarkably vague, with only the above key art and the little blurb as clues. We’re certainly curious to see where this goes. We also want to wish the Final Fantasy XIV a happy fourth anniversary once more!

Source: official site

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GTA Online Opens Up the Skies and Smuggling Lanes in Next Update

Things in the air above Los Santos are about to get a lot more interesting. The arrival of GTA Online: Smuggler’s Run will introduce another new avenue of shady business for players with all new aircraft-minded gameplay and features.

gta online: smuggler's run

Smuggler’s Run sees players offered the chance to help Nervous Ron with his growing smuggling empire by taking flight in a variety of new planes including choppers and ultralights. Players will get to haul cargo and make deliveries from the air while also getting to dogfight others or even take on bombing runs according to a new gameplay trailer.

The announcement also described new gameplay for stunt racing with the addition of Transform Races. These races will test players’ ability to navigate land, sea, and air as their vehicles will automatically change to suit the course as it weaves from the road to the water to the sky. Transform Races are expected to arrive sometime in the Fall.

If you’d rather stay on the ground (or are awful at flying), updates arriving in the Fall will also include new four-wheeled vehicles and new competitive Adversary Modes. There are also plans for new seasonal events for Halloween and the Winter holidays, though no details were included in the presser.

Smuggler’s Run will lift off on Tuesday, August 29th for all platforms. You can check out the new mode’s new trailer below.

Our Thoughts

Smuggler’s Run looks like an incredible amount of fun, especially with the myriad aerial activities being offered in the update. We’re definitely looking forward to starting our own smuggling business and will prepare by working on our best Han Solo-style one-liners.

Source: press release

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