A few months ago, Hi-Rez's Todd Harris announced that development on Tribes: Ascend was suspended, with the studio focusing its efforts their third-person DoTA-like Smite. As fans of that game grew concerned that its own continued development would eventually be in danger, the studio's CEO Erez Goren has posted a candid address to the Smite Reddit page, addressing Tribes' development, its financial troubles, and Smite's success in comparison. His comments also call into question their plans to release map-making tools for Tribes: Ascend.
Free To Play
A Twitter reply from Gearbox president Randy Pitchford has confirmed that Homeworld: Shipbreakers, the game formerly known as Hardware: Shipbreakers, is no longer planning to use a free-to-play business model. While you could reasonably argue that Twitter isn't the best medium for divulging information about the funding plans of an anticipated RTS resurrection, realise that it could be worse. He could have done it as a Tumblr gif wall.
Ghost Recon Online will stage its first official tournament September 15, beginning a seven-week cup series that will culminate in a continental final for European and North American players, according to a recent announcement. The $3,200 tournament is being jointly presented by the free-to-play game's publisher Ubisoft and Electronic Sports Leagues.
If you were worried that Hawken and its giant stompy robots just weren't big enough, fret no further. Though a little later than we expected, the mech-piloting game today got even bigger with its newest update, Ascension, bringing on all sorts of additions and changes—from new game modes all the way through to fashionable Oculus Rift support.
Well this makes things easier. Between free-to-play revivals and Kickstarter, we spend a lot of time saying things like "from the makers of..." and "a spiritual successor to..." Basically, everything short of "look, they're remaking that game you liked, only they're not allowed to call it that because of law." For upcoming free-to-play RTS Hardware: Shipbreakers, it was the spectre of Homeworld that we were awkwardly dancing around. Not any more: Gearbox, the new owners of the Homeworld IP, have partnered with developer Blackbird Interactive to allow them official use of the licence.
World War 2 combat simulator War Thunder has come a long way since it got Steam Greenlight approval back in February. Russian developer Gaijin Entertainment has released a gorgeous new CGI trailer for the free-to-play MMO, giving us a slow-motion glance at the human side of its incredibly mechanized battlefield of planes, tanks, and naval warships.
You may remember Dirty Bomb from late last year, when I told you all that, "hey, look! Dirty Bomb is the name of a game!" Well now it isn't. What is the name of a game is "Extraction". In fact, it's the name of the same game. Splash Damage have rebranded their first person shooter, announcing its new, arguably blander moniker alongside a partnership with free to play publisher Nexon.
World of Tanks is one of the most popular free to play games in the world for a few reasons. It's got tanks in it, sure, that goes a long way, but it also walks a perfect line between accessibility and complexity. The interface may be friendly and easy to jump into, but after a few hours you come to realise that there's tremendous strategic depth to WoT's team battles. In a matter of a few years World of Tanks has spawned a fierce esports community, ensnared millions of players around the world and grown to include dozens of new tanks, maps and game modes.
Whether you're just starting out with World of Tanks or consider yourself a veteran, you'll find plenty of insider info, guides, interviews, competitions and giveaways in our massive 148 page iDevice guide to World of Tanks. We've taken apart every map, analysed every tech tree, driven every tank, modded them, painted them and driven them off cliffs to provide a comprehensive go-to compendium of tanky knowledge for newcomers and seasoned generals alike.
I first thought that the "cantina tour" was an overhyped parading of the BioWare lunch hall's lukewarm mac 'n' cheese, but apparently, it's actually a regular-ish event that gives fans a glimpse at the next things in store for Star Wars: The Old Republic. Who knew? The latest stop on the cantina tour was at Gamescom, and USB drives handed out there contained a shedload of concept art for the upcoming patch 2.4; we've got a tantalizing taste of future mounts, planets, and more.
The free-to-play Command & Conquer will feature shorter matches than previous games in the series - though players will be able to expand them if they prefer the length of the older battles. Speaking to Polygon, Victory Games' Jon Caneghem said that "we've been noticing since the original Generals, the preferred play session has gone done from an hour plus to 30 to 45 minutes. So we've changed the pacing [of Command & Conquer] to deal with that". They're also considering introducing starter packs, which will give paying players something of a head-start in the game.
Crunchy, bullet-ridden, free-to-play mech shooter Hawken is currently getting a major overhaul that may go live by the end of the month, according to a recent update by Adhesive Games producer Jason Hughes. Current goals for the in-beta game include new matchmaking and customization tools as well as the integration of bots to training modes for new players, among many other proposed changes.
In free JRPG-looking politic-em-up Postmortem you play Death, and you are on your way to a dinner party to kill someone. Your orders are to kill only one person, it doesn’t matter who; The Secretary has told you so. Perhaps the world has been encased in some sort of Malthusian Deadlock. But as you begin to develop an uncharacteristic curiosity about the guests, engage them in discussion, and investigate the documents and trinkets of the venue, you enact an oddly human bias. You realise that who you kill might have a greater impact than just having a waiter drop his hors d’oeuvres. But is your curiosity shifting history down another track? Is your very interest sending a cosmic ripple down the trouserleg of time? Right from the menu screen’s orchestral, foreboding, almost overbearing adaptation of Pop Goes The Weasel from Kevin MacLeod, you feel like whatever you do in this game, something awful is going to happen.
Hawken has thrown away its rusty brown color palette with its new map, the Last Eco, as announced in a forum post at the Hawken community site. Set in the last remaining forest on the continent, the map will have players stomp-stomping past old growth forests, run-down structures deep in the wilderness and what looks like massive mushrooms.
MechWarrior Online continues the unstoppable march towards its official release date, and has picked up some new friends along the way. The latest patch for the free-to-play mech battler bumps the player count, with the previous 8v8 limit now raised to 12v12. Piranha have released a video, showing the effect an extra eight mechs can have on a battlefield. Hint: more lasers.
EverQuest Next's entire environment—hills, forests, deserts, and cities—will be made of voxels, little bits of matter which can be smashed apart by explosive spells and giant Golems. Before we start breaking things, though, SOE wants us to start building—the developer is announcing today that it will be sharing its voxel building tools in EverQuest Next Landmark, a separate free-to-play MMO going into beta before the end of the year.
Perfect World today released an infographic celebrating Neverwinter's crossing of the two million player mark with various impressive stats and figures, by way of comparison to some fairly random achievements. Those two million players, for instance, can fill Brazil's Olympic stadium 33 times over. You've gotta hand it to them; the strange comparisons amid these stats are as impressive as the stats themselves.
MechWarrior Online's new Terra Therma map looks like it will melt the armor plating right off your giant battle robot. Full of craggy peaks and open lava flows, the new environment went live today, making it the (doubly) hottest game world in developer Piranha Games's free-to-play, still-in-beta shooter.
Activision Blizzard released its preliminary second quarter earnings results yesterday and revealed that World of Warcraft’s slow slide in subscribers is continuing as expected, down to 7.7 million active players. We’ve been marking the decline, it seems, every time new financial reports come out.
The F.E.A.R. series has been contorted into a free-to-play online multiplayer shooter, developed by Korean company Inplay Interactive and published by MMOs-you've-probably-never-heard-of specialists Aeria Games. According the press release, F.E.A.R. Online "will focus on several team combat modes spanning over ten ominous maps packed with grotesque details such as still-twitching bodies hanging from meat hooks and messages smeared in blood." Messages like "Have you remembered to buy enough Aeria Funbucks?", perhaps?
You might not have known it, but Fatshark's rendition of the 15th century English battle, War of the Roses, has been a free-to-play game for quite some time now. The base game became a free trial earlier this year, being free-to-play in all but name. Now, it has the name.