What's Coming: MMOs

pc

#1

So over the past few years MMOs have been in a sort of decline, with the changing style of payment models for online games posing a problem for several MMOs in the recent past, there are other challenges as well. Players are searching for a different experience in their online games, something other than the Theme Park roller coaster ride that WoW (among many others) has given them.

Recently I’ve been hearing about several new games that intend to deliver a unique experience by going back to the genres Sandbox roots that I wanted to share with you, in case you’ve been looking for an MMO with a different feel from what is out there right now.

I’ll start off with one that some of you are probably familiar with.

Albion Online

Albion Online goes back to the genres roots, and then simplifies it, making the gameplay itself the star of the show.

With no character levels, no classes, no specs or skill trees, Albion Online lets the player choose how they will play the game minute to minute by using the player’s equipment to determine which skills they have.

A top down camera view, with click to move controls brings the game back to old school online games such as Ultima Online and Diablo.
Simple, Cartoony graphics work to both give the game a fresh and unique look, as well allow the game to be Crossplatform, playable on PC, Mac, iOS, Android, and on your Browser.

This game features some Hardcore elements such as the ability to take any and all items from a dead player, and weight system that slows you down or prevents you from moving if you are carrying too much. This game looks like it will be blast for PvP action, and Strats is already forming a Guild to be ready for release. For more info on Albion Online go to their website

Crowfall

This is another that some of you may have heard of since there have been a few posts about it in the Strats community.

Crowfall boasts fully destructible worlds that players cycle through one after the other, fighting and destroying until the “Campaign” is over. Then players go to a new world, never to see that previous world again. They also have persistent worlds owned and controlled by players where the player can control the rules and settings that govern their world.

Unlike Albion Online, Crowfall will feature “Archetypes” which can then be specialized into multiple “Promotion Classes”

The gameplay will be doled out in “Campaigns” lasting 1-3 months each. Each Campaign takes place on a unique, procedurally generated “World” this is in effort to keep the gameplay fresh, every few months you will experience a whole new world with new enemies, new landscape, and new towns.

The game also features seasons, each campaign will begin in the spring and end in the winter. On top of the changing seasons, a mysterious force known only as “The Darkness” is infecting each world and slowly corrupting it, so as the landscape changes from summer to winter, the enemies change from bad to horrifying.

Crowfall seems to have a lot of potential and is slotted to launch Dec. 2016
For more information on Crowfall check out their website

Project Gorgon

Project Gorgon is an Indie MMO that focuses on trying to make the world the player is in feel like an actual place, and give a natural feel to the gameplay and environment.

They achieve this by focusing on small details such as not being able to catch someone on fire when they are in water, or keeping the items you sold in a merchants inventory to be purchased by other players, or dropping items on the ground to be picked up by someone else.

They also have quests and items in random places far off the beaten path to reward players for exploring. Exploring is also a good way to discover new skills. Doing something for the first time may reveal a particular skill associated with that action.

Project Gorgon does not feature a character level, but instead has levels for individual skills. I’m sure many of you are familiar with games that have skills which level up as you use that particular skill, but Project Gorgon takes that concept one step further by linking certain skills together. If you want to be a good swordsman level up your calligraphy skill it will increase your hand eye coordination and boost your sword skill.


Another unique feature of Project Gorgon are the “Words of Power” which can be discovered and then typed into chat to release a magical effect.

It should be noted that Project Gorgon is in the very early stages of development. For more info on Project Gorgon check out their website

Shroud of the Avatar

Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues is a new MMORPG by Richard Garriott (AKA: Lord British) Creator of the Ultima Series and Ultima Online.

Shroud of the Avatar will feature a classless character system with 20 skill trees to level up and build your own unique class from. The game will feature an extensive crafting system, as well as player housing with hundreds of options for customization. All buildings and shops in the game will be owned and operated by other players.

Shroud of the Avatar has a very unique combat system which allows you to choose abilities from your skill lines and use them to build a “Deck” upon entering combat you will be dealt a “Hand” in the form of your action bar. As you cast spells or use abilities the cards will disappear from your hand and be replaced by another random ability from your deck.

Shroud of the Avatar has three modes in which players can play the game, they can play Solo, with friends only, or Open (like a traditional MMO).

The game is currently in alpha and boasts a unique system to pledge money to the game allowing players to actually choose which in-game features their pledged money goes toward, effectively voting on what features will be in the game at launch.

The game is also being preceded by a series of fantasy novels by Best-Selling Author Tracy Hickman.
For more info on Shroud of the Avatar visit the website.

Pathfinder Online

The popular table top game Pathfinder is making it’s debut in the digital world with Pathfinder Online.
The game will feature all of the classes and skills that players of the table top game have come to know and love, as well as custom classes that the player can tailor to their preferences.

Like most of the other games on this list Pathfinder Online will be a Sandbox game, focusing on letting the player make their own adventure with the tools the game gives them. Unlike most of the games on this list, Pathfinder Online will have a character level.

Pathfinder will also feature an “Alignment” system, so while open world PvP is encouraged as a big part of the game, attacking an innocent player unprovoked could cause your alignment to change. Also, performing certain illegal actions can result in a PvP “Flag” alerting other players that you are hostile/criminal. In addition to these in-game mechanics, the devs are instituting a “Don’t be a Jerk” policy, simply stating that toxic or abusive players will be asked to change their behavior or leave.

In addition to traditional harvesting, Pathfinder Online will have a unique feature called "Outposts"
Outposts are constructed by the player to produce a steady stream of resources rather than harvesting the materials one at a time.

Perhaps the most radical concept in Pathfinder Online is how the player levels up Skills. Skills are leveled up through Real Time XP Accumulation, this means the character is gaining the same XP no matter how much the player is online, or what they do when they are online. So skills level up at the exact same rate for casuals and hardcore players alike.

To read more about Pathfinder Online check out their website.

Wurm Online

If reading about these upcoming MMOs has given you the itch to play one but you don’t feel like buying into an Alpha phase game, try Wurm Online. Wurm Online is currently out and F2P, featuring a sandbox atmosphere, hardcore full loot PvP, and lots of building.

For more info and/or to download the game, check out their website.

Others

There are of course several more coming in the next couple of years, some of which I probably don’t know about, and others that most of us here have probably already heard of such as EverQuest Next, or Black Desert Online. I will leave links for those in case you want to learn more, but I wanted to focus on the games that weren’t getting as much publicity. Thanks for reading.
EQ Next
Black Desert Online
Camelot Unchained Edit: Added at the excellent suggestion of @dontcallmejames


Wurm Online — The Sandbox MMO
#2

first i just want to say: great thread!!

secondly, (and this may be a topic for another thread) i’m having some issues with the current state of gaming culture. i really have a problem with spending hard earned money to pay full price for a game that is many months, if not years, away from release. the whole industry has been built on hype lately, and i’m not sure if i want to support it.

i have been really tempted to contribute to the Crowfall kickstarter, but i think i’m going to wait. i’d rather pay $50 or $60 for a complete game that has a good chance to succeed (provided the hype train doesn’t stop suddenly before release) than pay half of that price for a game that’s over a year away from release that has a good chance that everyone will lose interest by that time.

i’m not sure why this is trending so badly the other way.

that being said: here’s another to add to the list Camelot Unchained. I was a huge fan of Dark Age of Camelot, and this sounds like a reboot/remake of sorts. It’s got a lot of the same people involved as the original. But again, they’re looking for early contributions. i’m gonna wait on this one too.


#3

I agree with you for the most part, but Kickstarters are a bit different than paying for early access. In a lot of cases the kickstarter determines whether or not the game is funded and actually gets made. So if everyone had the mentality “I’ll just wait instead of pledging to the kickstarter” then the kickstarter won’t fund and the game won’t be made.

That being said, paying for early access is a Hype sham, and that trend needs to go.


#4

Great thread. Man, so much fantasy genre. No one tries anything new.


#5

Yes, great thread. Have you or anyone else here tried Wurm yet? Curious on a personal take.
Currently I’m debating between Shroud or Albion mainly. But will definitely check out Pathfinder now.


#6

I have not played wurm though it is on my list to try.


#7

Crowfall sounds really interesting, I would like to see some gameplay footage though. With this many up and coming and the current MMO’s out now I wonder how many of these will be able to succeed.


#8

my prediction…even though i bought a founders pack for Albion online…is they will all be f2p or disappear within 6 months of release…there is just too many of the same old thing remade…plain and simple.


#9

Most of these games are planned to be F2P at release, AO included.


#10

Love this thread! Great write-up.

Wow. Crowfall looks pretty amazing. I’m going to wait to see more but I really like the premise. I’m with @Biggles7268. I’d love to see some game footage.


#11

aahh…didnt know that @wayward,thanks for the clarification and a great write up :smile:


#12

Yeah, probably should have put that in somewhere, the only one that I’m sure will have a subscription is Pathfinder, they currently require a subscription even for their early access players, which is kind of crazy in my opinion.


#13

I’ll take a stab at this, since I personally dropped a few hundred bucks on Crowfall.

The purpose of crowdfunding your MMO is to keep the game out of the hands of big-name publishers who will be inclined to homogenize your game for the masses and make it just_another_wowcraft_clone_005. By putting their game on Kickstarter these indie companies are trying to keep the design decisions in their hands in order to take risks, hopefully producing something a little different.

For Crowfall in particular, the game is expected to retail for $50. Right now you can pledge $34 and be guaranteed a digital copy. If you expect to try the game anyway at release, what is the downside to pledging and help fund the game? The reasons you gave just do not make sense to me.

Also, you can see a little bit of gameplay on the Kickstarter page. Or there’s a Youtube video of some footage.


#14

#15

maybe i wasn’t clear. but what i meant by waiting to pay more is that i’m basically waiting to see if the hype train keeps rolling. i’ve bought founders packs to too many games that have failed. Neverwinter, Landmark, etc. granted, landmark didn’t fail yet, but since the developer was absorbed into Daybreak Games and all the key staff was let go, where’s that gonna go really?.

my point is i always get all hyped so early for things, and the hype dies off usually way before the actual release of a game. i just don’t like the trend of early access and buying your way into a game during development. it’s not healthy for the industry overall.

and then again, i’m a total hypocrite because i just purchased like 3 early access games in the past couple months, and i still play H1Z1 almost daily.


#16

Thanks for the vid link!


#17

Also, just FYI I was following the devs and they mentioned several times that the combat footage you see is Pre-Alpha and it’s likely to change. They said the telegraphs you see are likely to go, in favor of an action combat system similar to Tera.


#18

Has anyone played Wurm Online recently? Last time I played it was like over a year ago and it was super buggy and kept crashing on me.


#19

I both agree with you and disagree at the same time. I don’t like paying for a game that could fold before release. I do however like that major studios aren’t getting their hands on and ruining these titles. Imagine what minecraft would look like if EA had gotten their grubby hands on it. Investing in Kickstarter projects is a bit of a gamble, but you know that going in.


#20

cough Albion lol.