Posts Tagged ‘free to play’

Sins Of A Dark Age Launches Out Of Early Access As F2P

By Alice O'Connor on May 11th, 2015.

Even by the time Sins of a Solar Empire folks Ironclad Games announced their MOBA Sins of a Dark Age [official site] in 2012, the genre was a little overcrowded. SoaDA was originally billed as a MOBA/RTS, but later dropped bits like base-building. It’s still trying to be more ambitious than you average Dote ‘em up or Loller, though.

Now, after a lengthy stretch on Steam Early Access, where it costs $5 (and it was $25 for beta access before that), Sins of a Dark Age is out free-to-play for all to manage lords. It’s on Steam.

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Premature Evaluation: Survarium

By Marsh Davies on April 20th, 2015.

Survarium may be one of several games claiming to be a spiritual successor to STALKER, but it offers one substantial twist: the apocalypse that has swept the earth is not one instigated by nuclear catastrophe; instead, the Earth’s very own flora has rebelled, wreaking ecological revenge upon humanity for its many crimes against the natural world. It’s the latest intriguing shift in the deployment of Soviet-era sci-fi motifs that have come to parallel the resonances that Godzilla has in Japan. Both are emblematic of the nuclear catastrophes that each culture has suffered and the overweening pride that impels humankind to create such forces of devastation, believing it can control them.

Each week, Marsh Davies stalks through the reality-warping anomaly of Early Access and comes back with any stories he can find and/or gets turned inside out by a pocket of non-euclidean space. This week’s precious artifact is free-to-play online shooter Survarium, in which the remnants of humanity tussle over abandoned radar stations and chemical plants, long reclaimed by nature (and other, less natural phenomena).

It’s to Survarium’s credit that I want to play a lot more of it. Alas, after a handful of hours, the game data corrupts and subsequent attempts at reinstallation are consistently halted by a recursive nightmare of error messages which can only be broken by pouring a half-pint of lamb’s blood onto my keyboard and calling forth the hissing spirit of Task Manager to devour the process in question. Survarium is not a finished game, then. But, being supported by a somewhat unalluring muddle of microtransactable trousers and gasmasks, neither has it cost me a penny. All the same, after this brief encounter, I am left wondering: how much less unfinished is this since Jim looked at it a year ago?

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Battlefield Bye Bye Bye: EA Closing Four F2P Games

By Alice O'Connor on April 15th, 2015.

We received a report from the eerie ghost world of EA’s free-to-play MMO drive ‘em up Need for Speed World only last week. Its streets lay empty, making the twilight world a spooky haunted house of a city. And then… a car appeared. Oh, how much I’d like to have told young Jack “But Jack, NFSW closed down on this very day three years ago” and watch his jaw drop. But I couldn’t, because it’s only now closing.

EA today announced plans to close four of their free-to-play games: Need for Speed World, FIFA World, Battlefield Play4Free, and Battlefield Heroes.

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Rise And Shine: Path Of Exile’s Expansion The Awakening

By Alice O'Connor on April 13th, 2015.

Back when our Adam had a good play of free-to-play click ‘em up action-RPG Path of Exile [official site], he called it “a smart and content-rich ARPG”, saying “It doesn’t rewrite the click-for-loot formula but it does tweak just the right parts to make the repetitious hacking and casting a more involved and intricate experience.” Sounds good, that. It’s soon to get even more things to click on, as developers Grinding Gear Games have announced the next expansion.

The Awakening will bring new zones, skills, items, customisation bits, and more. Signups for closed beta testing are open now.

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Ghost In The Shell Online Uncloaking This Year

By Alice O'Connor on April 7th, 2015.

Go go cyberlegs!

Do I think Ghost in the Shell Online [official site] will be good? No, not really. Am I able to resist posting about rad cyborg ladies able to tear tanks apart with their cyberhands? No, not really.

Look, here, it’s word that South Korean free-to-play developers Nexon are indeed planning a western release for their class-based FPS based on the anime series based on the manga. It definitely has chunky shotguns, cyberarms with pop-out rocket launchers, and thermoptic camouflage, which I shall look at and nod approvingly.

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Premature Evaluation: Nosgoth

By Marsh Davies on April 6th, 2015.

It’s curious how far back the idea of drinking blood to replenish youth goes, given that we are only just now beginning to understand the benefits of transfusion. Recent research on mice has shown that a transfusion of young blood into an old body can indeed stimulate stem cells and invigorate ailing neurons. But experiments with transferring blood date back centuries, based on the most dubious understandings of science and mostly with disastrous and macabre results.

Each week Marsh Davies sinks his teeth into the hot, pumping artery of Early Access and drains its sweet lifegiving essence, leaving only a ragged skein of flesh when he’s done. This week he’s played (or free-to-played) Nosgoth, a team-based multiplayer game in which heavily-armed non-consenting blood-donors clash with the fanged forces of unlife.

The general mood has been less than charitable towards this project. It’s a multiplayer spin-off of Legacy of Kain, traditionally an action RPG series, a demo of which I think I brushed past on a PC Format coverdisk once, back in the days before games had invented a way to render the male nipple. But, I’m told, it had really good storytelling for the time, and how dare anyone decide to use this important and sophisticated fiction for something so trivial as a thirdperson asymmetric multiplayer game? Yet dare they have. And it seems they’ve made quite a well-considered one, in which deft movement and exact coordination trump headshots and button mashing, and the two teams of which, vampires and humans, offer very different play but surprising parity.

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Mo’ MOBAs: Bandai Namco Announce Supernova

By Alice O'Connor on February 27th, 2015.

BOOM!

At some point in every publisher’s offices across the globe over the past five years, an executive has asked “What is a MOBA and why don’t we have one?”

Namco Bandai evidently had that discussion later than many, as they’ve only now tossed their hat into the free-to-play MOBA arena. Yesterday they announced Supernova [official site], a F2P sci-fi MOBA with a twist (got to have a twist!). See, in Supernova, folks can upgrade and customise their creeps – those weak, AI-controlled units forever charging towards the enemy base. A twist!

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Fable Legends Will Be Free-To-Play

By Alice O'Connor on February 27th, 2015.

Chill out.

Oh! We never said what Fable Legends [official site] even is. Microsoft announced a PC version during their big Windows 10 announce-o-rama in January, but it became just another bullet point in a huge newsblast. So. While your typical Fable game is a sprawling open-world, story-driven RPG, Fable Legends is a multiplayer dungeon-crawling action-RPG where up to 4 players can band together in co-op against forces controlled by a villainous player (or AI in any of these roles). And, it was announced yesterday, it’ll be free-to-play.

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Oh: Kickstarted Tactics ‘Em Up Duelyst Will Be F2P Instead

By Alice O'Connor on February 23rd, 2015.

Counterplay Games raised $137,707 (£90,000-ish) on Kickstarter in 2014 for Duelyst [official site] with a dream of turn-based tactical combat focused on competitive ranked multiplayer. It was to run under that quaint ‘pay-once-and-get-a-game’ model, with pledges offering the game starting at $15 (£10) and running up to $70 (£45) for versions with fancy skins and instant unlocks of units and spells. Well! Eleven months later, Counterplay have changed their minds, and announced it’ll be free-to-play.

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Happy S.T.A.L.K.I.N.G.: Survarium Freeplay Mode Plans

By Alice O'Connor on February 9th, 2015.

Don't be fooled: the beast is merely sleeping.

Gosh-o! After several years of nodding politely and say “Yes that’s nice but…” to news about the deathmatch-y side of Survarium [official site], developers Vostok Games are starting to share firm plans for the post-apocalyptic FPS’s open-world Freeplay mode. As we’ve hoped from the studio founded by former S.T.A.L.K.E.R. developers, it’s sounding pretty S.T.A.L.K.Y. as players roam across wasteland, scavenging for weapons and supplies, completing missions, sheltering from deadly storms, and being as helpful or murderous to others as they please. It has permadeath, obviously.

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Mighty Quest For An Epic Launch Is Victorious

By Shaun Green on February 7th, 2015.

Ubisoft’s The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot [official site] has marched into the nearest village, laden with plundered treasures, ancient relics and what looks suspiciously like a necklace of human ears. Did I say human? I meant horrible nasty goblin ears. Yes, they’re definitely monster ears.

Now lend me your ears, readers, because I need to tell you that the free-to-play tower defense/offense has traded its pilfered wares for an official launch, finally leaving open beta.

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Victory Achieved: Petroglyph’s Army Arena Battler Reborn

By Alice O'Connor on January 28th, 2015.

I hope it's... great. Aye? Right? Yeah? Great? Great victory? Remember the Internet yeh?

Cast your mind back to the distant year of 2013, when developers Petroglyph failed to Kickstarter multiplayer arena-o-RTT-ish game Victory. The Grey Goo gang dreamed of 5-on-5 multiplayer online arena battles between combined arms armies composed and customised by players, but didn’t get anywhere near their $700,000 goal. They did, however, say several publishers had shown interest so they might get to make it after all. And so they have!

The free-to-play game now named Victory Command [official site], and now co-developed by South Korean F2P folks Neoact, has been re-revealed and opened beta signups.

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Kain In The Neck: Nosgoth Open Beta Next Week

By Adam Smith on January 14th, 2015.

Nosgoth, as you may remember, is “a solid-looking free-to-play multiplayer shooter set in the Legacy of Kain universe”. A closed beta has been in operation for a good while now and this time next week – that’s Wednesday the 21st, 6pm GMT if you’re reading this in the future – the dark world of Nosgoth will open its doors to everybody. I don’t have any stakes (HAHA) in the Legacy of Kain series, but Nosgoth has my attention because it has humans doing boring human things like capturing points of the map, and vampires hunting and eating them.

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