Free MMO and MMORPG games, news, reviews and more

Russian Version of Black Desert Online Shuts Down, Player Data Lost
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Pearl Abyss was set to take over the Russian version of Black Desert Online from the local publisher GameNet, but apparently Pearl Abyss couldn't reach an agreement with GameNet and player data is lost. Pearl Abyss points the blame at GameNet while GameNet says they were ready to transfer player data, but Pearl Abyss wasn't going through the legal route to manage personal information in Russia. While we can't know who's exactly to blame, it looks like anyone who played the Russian version of the game were shafted.

I suspect Pearl Abyss will operate a newly launched Russian version of the game in the neat future, but no word on whether they'll be able to obtain player data or not. This won't affect other versions of the game, but it's sad to see players in Russia get screwed.

Further reading:...
Elder Scrolls Online Kicks Off Halloween Festivities On October 18
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You’ve probably come across Indriks while wandering through the Summerset Isles in Elder Scrolls Online, you might have even slain one or two. Well, now you have a chance of acquiring the magical creature as a mount. All you have to do is participate in four holiday events running from Halloween through New Year’s, the first of which kicks off on October 18th.

“The Witches Festival kicks off at 10:00AM EDT on Thursday, October 18 and will run until 10:00AM EDT, Thursday, November 1. During this spoopy event, you can enjoy a 100% XP buff, become an undead monster, and acquire a creepy collection of Witches Festival-themed items. In addition to this, we’re also introducing the brand-new Dremora Plunder Skulls, containing a never-before-seen Motif!”
Aside from being a requirement to acquire the coveted Indrik mount, the upcoming Witches Festival will also feature the return of...
MapleStory 2 Officially Launches – Boasts Over 24k Concurrent Users On Steam
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The highly anticipated sequel to one of Nexon's most successful games, MapleStory, is finally here. MapleStory 2 launched today as a free to play game both on Steam and the Nexon launcher after being available for early access founders since October 1st. According to SteamCharts, the game hit a peak concurrent playerbase of over 24,000 users on Steam alone, which is impressive for a game available off-Steam as well.

I've personally already played a bit of MapleStory 2 on the Korean server as well as both closed beta periods and I'm optimistic about its chances to succeed in the West. As-is, it's already off to an incredibly strong start. The game's focus on stuff to do outside of core gameplay mechanics, like housing, mini games, crafting, customization, music, and more will help differentiate it amongst a sea of countless MMOs. If you haven't tried this one yet...
Combat Arms: Reloaded Launching on Steam
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While Nexon no longer publishes Combat Arms, the classic version of the game along with the revamped 'Reloaded' version are available through their affiliate company Valofe (which also publishes another old Nexon title, Atlantica Online). While no word on whether Combat Arms classic is launching on Steam, the Reloaded version is headed to Valve's platform in the near future.

No word on exactly when the Steam launch is happening, but the game is available right now on its official website.

The original Combat Arms game launched back in 2008 and quickly grew in popularity. It was one of the first mega popular free to play shooters from South Korea. Since launch it has reached 1.5 million registered users and still has a core active community.
Lord of the Rings Online Launches Update 23 ‘Where Dragons Dwell’
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While Lord of the Rings Online is certainly a bit of an oldie (2007 release), it's still getting updated regularly. Standing Stone Games and Daybreak released the game's 'Where Dragons Dwell' update today (Update 23) which increased the game's level cap by 5, introduced a new ironfold crafting tier, added new zones, and more. Take a look at the highlights below:
  • Exploration of new and expanded regions: Players can now adventure through iconic Middle-Earth locations including the Iron Hills, Grey Mountains and Erebor.
  • Increased Level Cap - Level cap has been increased by 5 for players along with an increased level cap for legendary weapon legacy.
  • Introduction of the Bassoon: The Bassoon is the latest addition to LOTRO’s acclaimed instrument system—a system that allows players to write and play their own music in the game, while maintaining the sounds of real world musical instruments.
  • Limited time in-game gift: All...
DayBreak Games Announces EverQuest 2 Expansion: Chaos Descending, Beta Access Available with Pre-Order
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EverQuest 2's latest expansion, Chaos Descending, is available for pre-order today and will be launching on November 13th, 2018. Anyone who pre-orders the expansion can begin playing the beta for it right away. The base version is available for $34.99, Collector's Edition for $89.99, and Premium for $139.99. Learn more about the different versions here. Check out the key features below:
  • Expanded Lore: Something is throwing the Elemental Planes of Order into chaos! Norrathians return to the planes to restore balance to the planes of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth to uncover a mystery of Celestial proportions.
  • New Elemental Planes to Explore: New zones, dungeon themes, signature adventure quests, raids, and more highlight a vast array of new story content for Norrathians to battle through. But will they gain the strengths and abilities necessary to defeat the ceaseless denizens of the...
WW2 MMOFPS Heroes and Generals Launches Biggest Update Ever
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Heroes and Generals from the Danish game studio Reto Moto launched their 'Deploy! Drive! Destroy!' update this week which is being dubbed by the developer as its biggest update ever. The update rebalances more than 70 vehicles as well as introduces a new armor system to the game for vehicles.

“In the ‘Deploy! Drive! Destroy!’-update we ripped out key elements of the game and rebuilt them for a richer and deeper gameplay experience. We not only wanted to make heavy tanks as badass as you would expect, we wanted to add value to ALL vehicles in Heroes & Generals and create a diverse and balanced battlefield,” tells Jacob Andersen, Game Director at RETO MOTO.
Heroes and Generals is a World War 2 MMOFPS game with persistent elements and faction war. Although games take place in lobbies, they impact a larger scale war happening in the background. The game averages over 3,000 players online at any given time according to Steamcharts, making it one of...
Legends of Aria Launching on Steam on December 4
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Legends of Aria, the sandbox fantasy MMORPG inspired by Ultima Online, is finally launching on Steam on December 4th. Anyone who pre-orders the game between now and December 3rd will gain access to a 7 day head start program and obtain all other founder's pack bonuses. Anyone interested in Legends of Aria should pre-order, as the game will be buy to play at launch anyway.

“It’s hard to believe it’s been four years since we began this journey,” said Citadel Studios Founder Derek Brinkmann. “So much has changed since then. We’ve gone from making a smaller scale online RPG to making the large-scale full-on sandbox MMORPG we’ve been dying to play since Ultima Online, Dark Age of Camelot, and EverQuest first made us all believers in the genre years ago. We’ve got even more content and additions planned for the future of Aria, but we’re just excited to finally open the doors and see what the players will do in our world this December.”
Legends of...
MapleStory 2 Available on Steam for Headstart, Official Launch Oct 10
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MapleStory 2's head-start program began on October 1st for everyone that bought a founders pack and is will be free for everyone on October 10th. The game also made its way to Steam on October 4th and the game's numbers on there are fairly impressive. As of this writing the game hit over 1875 concurrent users, which is impressive because most people hyped for the game bought founders packs directly through Nexon. The 1875+ users on Steam likely represent a small minority of the game's active playerbase.

Given the game's unique emphasis on non-gameplay elements (housing, crafting, mini games, music, etc), I'm optimistic on the game's fortunes in the West. MapleStory 2 seems to be a lot more than a game - it's trying to be a place to hang out.
Fractured Virtual Store Is Now Open For Business
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Indie developer Dynamight Studios has just announced that the virtual store for their crowdfunded sandbox MMO Fractured is now up and running. According to a recent press release, the Fractured Store “marks the reboot of crowdfunding for [the] upcoming sandbox MMORPG Fractured.”

The virtual store features the same pledge packages found in the Kickstarter campaign which ended in July with over $120,00 in funding. This includes the Early Bird packs and other exclusive packages previously available during the Kickstarter campaign.

Pledge Packages start at $23 all the way up to $345. High-value packs will be available until the start of Alpha testing in December which all high-tier backers will immediately have access to. Backers who donated during the Kickstarter campaign will also be able to upgrade their pledges...
TERA Kicks Off Halloween Celebrations With A Special Dungeon & Seasonal Costumes
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Halloween is in the air and TERA is celebrating with candies and costumes for everyone. En Masse Entertainment has brought back the Harvest Festival Hall event to kick off the celebrations.
During the event, players will be able to participate in a special Halloween-themed dungeon.

“Look for the witch Serena at the Eldritch Academy (near Pora Elinu) to participate. Once you're inside, use the Halloween Cannons to repel waves of monsters intent on stealing every last bit of candy they can get their grubby paws on.”
Players who participate in the special dungeon will be rewarded with Halloween Candy which they can exchange for unique mounts, pets, and of course, costumes.

En Masse will also be releasing premium seasonal costumes every week of October. For this week, players can purchase the sexy Devilicious costume for females and sentai-themed Titan Force costumes for male characters...
Bless Online Going Free to Play on October 23
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Bless is officially exiting early access on Steam on October 23 and also going free to play on the same day. The game originally launched as a buy to play game in North America and Europe, despite being free to play in every other region. The logic behind the business model was to follow in the footsteps of Black Desert Online in monetizing retail sales rather than relying heavily on micro-transactions. Unfortunately the game launched with terrible optimizations and saw its playerbase decline precipitously and the free to play move is an attempt to increase its playerbase.

Every owner of the Early Access of Bless Online, even those who purchase the game now before its official launch on Oct. 23rd, will receive unique rewards for their patronage. Those who own the Collector’s Edition will receive a lifetime premium membership subscription, and all editions receive at least three months of premium membership, along with exclusive skins that...
Score A Free Copy Of Black Desert Online This October
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Want to get a copy of Black Desert Online for free? Last month, the fantasy MMORPG hit 10 million players and Kakao Games and Pearl Abyss are celebrating the milestone by giving away free copies of the game to new players. But, there’s a catch.

“New adventurers can earn a free copy of Black Desert Online by completing the 7-day trial challenge. Players who start playing Black Desert Online between the 3rd of October up until the 17th of October, reach level 56 on a character and complete that character’s awakening quest before their 7-day trial expires will be rewarded with a free Starters Package.”
The Starter Package is priced at $10 which isn’t bad considering that the Drieghan expansion’s release is just around the corner. Unfortunately, the promo won’t work on Steam. You can find the full mechanics here.

Meanwhile, the game itself has just gotten a new patch which features the...
Fortnite Gets A ‘Cool’ New Trap With Update 6.1
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Fortnite Patch v6.1 is now live bringing with it a new Battle Royale trap that’s sure to give your unwary opponents cold feet. The new Chiller Trap is a common trap that can be placed on floors, walls, and even ceilings. Triggering the trap gives enemies and allies icy feet and causes them to slide around the map like the burglar in Home Alone 2.

Save The World players will also be getting shiny new weapons, the Lead Sled Hammer, a fast-swinging hammer that gains attack speed with each hit, and the Obliterator Sniper Rifle, a slow-firing rifle with massive damage. Both weapons will be available in the Weekly Store from October 3rd 8pm ET to October 10th 8PM ET.

More options have been added to Playground Mode which is still the currently available LTM. There’s also improvements and bug fixes for gameplay, audio, and the UI. Read through the full patch notes on the Fortnite official site. You...
Hearthstone Prepares For Annual Hallow’s End Celebration
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Hearthstone has just kicked off their annual Halloween celebration with spooky Tavern decorations, costumes optional. This year, a special guest will also be gracing the common room of the Tavern - Sir Annoy-o.

“In this Hearthstone update we’re decorating the Tavern for a spooky Hallow’s End event that includes a special guest: the new Paladin Hero Sir Annoy-o! We’re also adding New Player Ranks, giving the Welcome Bundle a facelift, adding new Daily Quests, fixing some bugs, and more.”

The actual Hallow’s End celebration starts October 17th and will run until October 31st. Simply login anytime during the event to claim your free golden Witch’s Cauldron card. A special dual class arena will also be available during the event along with special Hallow’s End emotes. The Headless Horseman will also be making a comeback during the event.

In addition, the devs will also be adding the new “Cast When Drawn” keyword to a number of cards. There’s also bug fixes and...
Lineage 2 Classic Server Opens In NA Today
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Lineage 2 Classic is finally coming to North America following a successful launch in Europe and Russia. The classic server will be opening its doors today and NCSoft has just published the official, and slightly extensive, patch notes.

“Relive the beginning with Lineage II Classic, and experience the bold, tough, and unforgiving world of a hardcore progression MMO. Team up with friends in a Clan, dominate your enemies, and claim ownership of a vast empire. Start fresh on a new server and race to meet the challenges of punishingly difficult (and non-instanced) content.”
The classic server will initially be capped at level 70 but will increase with future updates. Players can choose from five playable races: Human, Dwarf, Elf, Dark Elf, and Orc. Kamael and Ertheia will not be available. A 4% exp penalty will be implemented on the classic server when you die. The good news is that players will get to keep all of their items when they die. Accruing...
Rend Releases Development Roadmap Amidst Declining Playerbase
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Frostkeep Studios released their early access development roadmap today for their sandbox faction based survival game Rend. The game has been available through Steam early access for about 2 months now and despite a strong start the game's playerbase is in decline, averaging about ~240 players online at any given time.
Some of the key targets and objectives in the development road-map are:
  • Comprehensive Combat Improvements
  • Streamlined Features
  • Legendary Artifacts
  • Dynamic Siege Combat
  • Refined Social Mechanics
Rend is a buy to play survival game that mixes Rust like survival elements with larger scale faction based gameplay and persistent MMO elements.

Further reading: Development roadmap blogpost
Aion: Awakened Legacy Update (6.0) Launching October 24 In U.S.
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NCSoft USA announced today that Aion: Awakened Legacy is launching on October 24th, 2018 which is the biggest update of the year for the game. Awakened Legacy, better known as 6.0, increases the game's level cap to 80, introduces the new Lakrum zone, adds new skills, gear, items, and more. It's a massive update and to celebrate the occasion, NCSoft is giving away free awakened gala gift packs (visit the splash page to get them).

The European version of Aion through gameforge received this exact same update early last week, so the North American version is a tad late. Still, better late than never. This is the first time the game has increased its level cap since 2016, so it's a massive update. Mark your calendars!

Further Reading: Aion Awakened Legacy Splash Page
Battlerite Royale Launches on Steam Early Access As Separate Title
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Battlerite's Battle Royale game mode, Battlerite Royale, officially launched on Steam early access today as a standalone game as is off to a fairly strong start (3360 peak players on launch day). The game is available for $19.99 and mixes the MOBA elements found in Battlerite with popular battle royale mechanics from hit titles like PUBG / Fortnite. While the game costs money today, it will be free to play after it launches sometime in 2019. The game's current early access build features 20 unique champions along with similar combat mechanics from Battlerite, although with some tweaks to make every character viable.

“We’ve taken MOBA and battle royale and blended the best of both worlds to create something different and worthy of all MOBA fans,” says Peter Ilves, Game Director at Stunlock Studios. “Featuring a third person perspective, unique combat, and MOBA elements, Battlerite Royale is a truly unique take on the BR genre. The Early Access...
WildStar Officially Shutting Down on November 28
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While we knew WildStar was shutting down, we didn't know exactly when. At least until today. NCSoft announced today that WildStar will be shutting down for good on November 28, 2018. Anyone who spent money on the game since July 1st on either Steam or through the official website will be getting refunds. From now until the game shuts down, WildStar will be hosting some fan favorite in game events as a farewell to their loyal players. Rest in peace WildStar (2014-2018).

Further reading: Official Announcement