The MMO Geek: This week in MMO’s…
It’s been a busy couple of weeks in the MMO community, and as always, I try to stay abreast of as much of it as possible! I’d like to discuss a few of the big happenings that are taking place in the MMO world!
I won a copy of Defiance! Thanks to a bit of luck (and a lack of participation), I was able to win a copy of the new SyFy/Trion MMO Defiance. While I haven’t had a ton of time to tool around with it yet, I must say that it’s been pretty entertaining. For those of you unfamiliar with the game, you take on the role of an Ark Hunter, an individual who looks to be a sort of treasure hunter/mercenary (as I said, haven’t gotten too far into it to truly understand what that means) who seeks fame and fortune- and apparently violence- on a sort of post-apocalyptic Earth. In some ways the game reminds me of Borderlands- cool guns, vehicles, setting, and the ability to use special cooldown powers that increase various stats or just give you nifty little tricks. My character is currently a bit of a sniper who benefits from the ability to turn invisible every couple of minutes.
Overall the launch went very smoothly for me, though I’ve heard reports of others having issues with lag and server connectivity. In an effort to reimburse those who have lost time on the game, Trion recently sent out an email that included a variety of bonuses for those who currently own the game. It’s the usual fare: an in-game title, various boosts to experience and money, etc. I’m a big fan of companies doing this, as it shows at least a slight attempt to make up for any serious issues.
Betas galore! Both The Elder Scrolls Online and WildStar entered beta this past week to much fanfare.
Carbine is already facing some issues with their space MMO in the form of folks attempting to sell fake keys. They’ve pointed out that they in no way, shape, or form condone the selling of beta keys, and have cracked down. If you think you’ve found some massive deal where someone is offering WildStar beta for $5, think again. Carbine has pointed out that this is almost definitely a scam and should not be trusted.
I haven’t heard as much from ESO‘s invites other than that they plan to send out quite a few, and it appears that they are making good on this promise. Every few days it would seem that another wave of invites is going out. I know that I, for one, have been checking my email almost non-stop since the announcement!
EA sucks! The company that was recently named the “Worst Company of the Year” delivered quite a blow to its employees yesterday, laying off a number of their staff. While they don’t state which teams experienced said layoffs, it’s always sad to see developers get the shaft. It is my hope that they will find homes at other studios looking to expand their staff. I have to think that at least some of this is tied to the horrible launch of the newest Sim City title.
These layoffs come close on the heels of Disney closing down Lucas Arts, the longtime developer that was founded in 1982. The gaming community collectively wept, mourning the loss of the company that brought them classics such as the Monkey Island series and some of my personal favorite Star Wars games. Numerous developers reached out to extend invitations for the recently displaced employees to apply to their studios.
Layoffs and closures in the gaming industry are always sad; we follow these titles so closely that we really feel like we come to know the individuals behind them. I wish all those laid off the best of luck as they move on to new endeavors.
That’s all for this week folks! Have a great weekend and happy gaming!