September was absolutely packed full of games in the RPS community, with events taking place in Dirt Rally [official site], Europa Universalis [official site], Guild Wars 2 [official site], Terraria [official site], Trove [official site] and more!
Want to know what happened and how you can get involved? Read on!
RPS' league, Rally Power Slide, has climbed to 114 active members over the past few months. Run by auto authority Grizzly, each season has provided a selection of challenges, the pinnacle being the Rallycross tribute 'Highway to Hell' mentioned at the start of September.
Congratulations to both MDP and luis.s who share 55 points at the top of the league table. I wonder if they'll stay winners with the next series, or if they'll sag under the pressure of driving some of the cars indirectly affected by the fallout of the diesel scandal – Peugeot.
The new season begins… now! And it’s a literal Tour d'Honneur.
Racers will throw the Peugeot 205 and its brethren around muddy tracks to claim the best time, all while hopefully belching out slightly less omissions than other brands.
There's no obligation to participate right away, since you can drop in at any time. You can just give the events a shot and see how you do, or you can try make it on the scoreboard - there's no limit on the amount of times you can try the series again.
Back in the Community Update for July, I plugged the forthcoming EUIV campaign, run by Calamity - one of our most experienced strategists. Since mentioning the campaign, more than 50 people signed up and this led to two separate weekly games on Thursdays and Sundays.
These have been uniquely characterised by players being able to forge their own nations to start with, allowing savvy veterans the opportunity to secure lucrative trade routes, chop up AI countries and colonise far-off continents.
The campaigns kicked off at the beginning of September but coalitions have already been formed and wars have started. It's been interesting to watch the threads from an outside perspective and witness the casual politicking outside of the sessions – some amateur statesmen have even downloaded the saves and run simulations to get an idea of how each game will pan out (with varying accuracy).
Both campaigns are due to run for another couple of months, and given the amount of people involved there's sure to be a few dramatic moments to come. If you signed up for the campaigns during August and forgot about them, it's not actually too late to join in the action. You can create your own country (although space is running out fast) or play as a pre-existing one.
How to join: Details of both campaigns can be found in the first posts of two threads: This one (for Thursdays) and this one (for Sundays). If you're new, it's simply a case of turning up on Mumble at the times provided and determining what land you want to grab, or which AI nation you want to fill in for.
Guild Wars 2
The RPS GW2 guild has fought against an entire menagerie of enemies in its history, from enemy servers to huge dragons. But on Saturday the 12th of September, guild officer Tweetiti declared war on poverty. Following a blitz of last-minute marketing, the guild and many other players from across EU servers gathered together to hunt down treasure. The goal was to collect rare items for a prestigious achievement, netting a few gold in the process.
The night was chaotic as it was beautiful, with our army chasing promises of wealth across Tyria. It featured boss encounters, jumping puzzles, ‘voice acting’ and quizzes. Our horde of prospectors must have appeared impressive and terrifying to the new players we passed while travelling over the map.
Tweetiti did an amazing job at leading such a gold-hungry group for a full eight hours, and we've received some great feedback from the people who came. We definitely want to hold more of these on the run-up for the release of Heart of Thorns at the end of October, and the best way to keep up with announcements is to be a part of the RPS guild.
How to join: Head over to this forum thread, have a look at what the guild's about and then post your ArenaNet ID there so we can invite you in-game. Note we are currently only playing on EU servers, although that may change in the future.
Who doesn't love awesome, high quality screenshots? I do, and the 400 registered users who have viewed the thread for screenshots over two and a half million times do too. It was originally created back in June 2011 as a place for members to share bugs, glitches or funny stuff they saw in games. Over the past four years, the culture of the thread has shifted towards showing off awesome pieces of art from absurdly high-end PCs.
It's eye-opening to see how modern games scale up to ridiculous resolutions, how otherwise ugly graphics can be made to look polished, and how the people capturing snaps can do so at perfect moments. Naturally, there's a small group of frequent posters who have perfected seizing great scenes and (thankfully) post regularly, making the rest of us quietly jealous that our games don't look that good.
Of course, there's nothing stopping you from giving screenshotting a go for yourself, or asking for hints on how to take the best ones. We might even feature more on the main site in the future, like Graham's article on Human Revolution's ceilings.
How to join: All the fun's going down in this forum thread, so have a look through there and feel free to post.
Both Terraria servers were full of excitement as their communities barrelled through bosses into Hardmode, coming up fast on Moon Lord - the vanilla game's final challenge. Outside of the successful scheduled boss kills every Sunday, both servers saw big improvements this month with the populations stabilising at 500 registered players each.
The admins (myself included) have been able to cultivate vast worlds with playerbases promoting positivity and teamwork. Thanks to the vigilance of the regulars, we have been able to ban troublemakers quickly, and we've been left with two great servers full of amazing people.
The enthusiasm for working together doesn't just shine through during big battles and reporting rule breakers; these folks show their kindness and creativity every day they're on the server. This ranges from helping newbies get gear, to creating trading posts, to building castles in the sky.
On Sunday the 27th, our oldest server (Red), managed to challenge...
...and take down the Moon Lord monstrosity by banding together and dying, a lot. It was still an achievement, especially as a Frost Moon invasion was summoned in the middle of the fight.
Don't be intimidated by these successes though; there's still a chance to join in the action. Your fresh character will start out quite weak, but there's always people around to lend a hand in getting you the equipment you need to survive - just ask.
How to join: Make a fresh character in Terraria, then go here on our forum. Read the rules and get an understanding of where both servers are at. Then post in the thread with your character name.
You'll likely be put on the Blue server, as Red have killed Moon Lord already this past weekend!
Keeping with the theme of crafting and killing, Trove is a similar game which the RPS community has recently expanded into. On Saturday the 26th September, a few of us played the voxel-based free-to-play MMO together and found it really fun.
We ran through some tutorial missions, completed dungeons and even formed our own club – Rock Pixel Shotgun. The game’s systems enabled us to get together quickly, as once you add people to Friends you can join directly on their location any time (so long as they're online).
As we learned, Trove is very easy to get into: you start off by picking a class, going through a few lessons, and then you're free to do whatever you want; from fishing to making a manor. Or even contributing to a club's world.
It can get pretty crazy once you start playing in large groups, so why not join up with us?
How to join: Make a character on EU servers (change the location in the top-right of the launcher) and then post your name in this thread. Someone will invite you within a couple of days, so keep an eye out on your invites (press 'P' in-game).
If you're looking for people to play with, ask around in the thread - or even just add people to your Friends List.
A lot of other information about how to get involved in the community can be found here. Anyone is free to ask questions (or plug other games) in the comments below.