MMORPG News: Blue Protocol NA & EU Announcement, PSO2 Closed Beta, Crimson Desert, FFXIV 5.2 & Project TL
We got a lot of news to talk about this week. Thankfully my cold has cleared up, I’m no longer congested and I finally feel well enough to be making longer videos like this.
This week we’ll be talking about quite a few games – a lot of closed beta announcements, and even a couple games I’ve never heard of.
So, take a minute to get comfortable, get some sliced cucumbers for those tired eyes of yours – yes, I know you’re tired. It’s early right now.. or late, maybe if you live on the other side of the world – why aren’t you in bed? Wait, nevermind. We’re going off topic.
Let’s begin today’s Weekly Byte of MMORPG News.
Let’s start this off with some interesting news on a game that has gone radio silent as of late. I know it’s been a while now, but you all remember Mad World, right? If not, then allow this to jog your memory. A few months ago, Jandisoft, the developers behind the game announced that Netmarble would be publishing the game.
They stated that the reason they had such poor communication with their players was due to sorting out issues involved in working with Netmarble. Fast forward to a week or two ago, Jandisoft finally made an announcement, or, more like posted an update on their official forums.
It included quite a bit of information – so if you’re interested in finding out exactly what was mentioned I urge you to navigate to their forums and take a read.
While there is still no confirmation in terms of a release, it’s refreshing to know that, at least according to Jandisoft, they’re going to be making an active effort to work on better communication with their community.
I did a video – a complete, dedicated video on Project TL a week ago, so if you’re interested in finding out more about Project TL I urge you to watch that. Suffice it to say, NCSoft announced last year that they would be launching Project TL in 2020. In South Korea, anyway.
I know, I know. “We still have a while before it launches over here in the West though, Stix.”
However, I’m talking about this now because of two things: One, NCSoft just released a plethora of concept art for the game, and two, NCSoft actually claimed that the game would have a simultaneous global release. Granted, this was years ago and may not be the case anymore, but it’s a possibility we can’t ignore.
Phantasy Star Online 2
If you weren’t already aware.. Phantasy Star Online 2 currently has their very first closed beta running for Xbox One players. The beta began on February 7th and will continue through the weekend until February 8th.
PC players have been promised the game later through this year, and other platforms like the PS4 will also have a release.. at an undisclosed time.
The game will be fully voice acted in English with the option of swapping between English and Japanese languages, and interestingly, players will retain all of their progress through the beta test period when the game officially launches.
Finally, interestingly enough, the user manual for the game has confirmed that PSO2 will also be launching onto Steam, for players that would prefer to use Steam as the platform of their choice with which to play the game.
Tree of Savior
Interestingly, I’ve been leveling a character through Tree of Savior recently in hopes of getting far enough where I can make an educated video on the game. However, according to IMCGames, the developers behind Tree of Savior, 4 brand new servers are going to be opening up for new players; 1 server per region.
The servers will offer 300% increased XP, increased drops and a lot of other quality of life improvements to aid in reaching the level cap – a whopping 420, faster. I’m actually contemplating restarting so I can get through the outdated content as fast as possible, but at the same time I’ve invested weeks worth of time into this already.
Thus far, the general Tree of Savior community doesn’t seem all too thrilled with the idea of new increased rate servers.
You should all know about Crimson Desert by now. It was announced months ago, and heck, I even did a dedicated video on what to expect from the game earlier this week.
Regardless, Pearl Abyss have announced that they’re working very hard on getting the game ready for alpha and beta testing, but as of right now they’re not capable of giving an estimate on when the game will be launching.
What they did mention, was that the game will be going into beta testing later this year. They also went on to release some new screenshots from the game, and elaborate on the single-player story, the disconnect from Black Desert and a few other points.
If you’re interested in learning more, go watch my video. It covers everything.
Final Fantasy XIV
Square Enix have been hinting at Final Fantasy XIV’s latest update, Echoes of a Fallen Star for weeks now. As of February 6th, we not only finally have a brand new official trailer for the update in question, but they’ve also given us an exact release date for it: February 18th.
Echoes of a Fallen Star will bring with it a brand new dungeon, 4 more Eden raids, a new mount, new trials, story, and.. so, so much more. But mostly what you’d expect out of a large patch like this. I’m excited and Mrs Stix is incredibly excited to continue our journey through Shadowbringers.
Saga of Lucimia
This is actually the very first time I’ve heard of Saga of Lucimia. Upon further inspection, turns out the game is a PvE-oriented sandbox MMORPG that provides players a large amount of freedom to play the game how you want.
I’m not sure the exact kind of game this is, but according to the devs, you’re capable of choosing from hundreds of skills to build a character that is unique only to you. While that sounds pretty cool, it’s quite a ways off.
Apparently, the game is looking to launch sometime at the end of next year, and that’s with the expectation that nothing will go wrong between now and then.
I feel like we’re beginning the month with a list of games I haven’t talked about in.. well, months. Fractured is one such game that I’ve heard almost nothing on for quite a while. Upon investigation, the devs behind the game are actually planning their second Alpha test – and it’s literally this month. A couple weeks, actually.
While there’s no exact, definitive date, it is planned for late February, and will be introducing various social features into the game in the way of parties and guilds. That’s exciting, right?
I never played the first Alpha so I don’t know what was missing, but this looks like a great opportunity to really see what the game’s shaping up to be.
I cover Project Gorgon from time to time. It’s a solid game, and definitely deserves more attention than it gets. The reason I’m talking about it right now is because a brand new patch is rolling out in a few weeks, and with it, comes a brand new race that has been talked about since back in 2016: Faeries.
To unlock the new fairy race you’ll be required to first have a character of high enough level, and proceed to run through a dungeon called The Winter Nexus with other players, completing a level 40 quest and finally unlocking the race permanently.
I’ve been meaning to play through Project Gorgon more thoroughly.. so I guess this might be the time to.
I’m a very large fan of Genshin Impact. It’s one of the games I’m looking forward to playing with Mrs Stix. I know it’s not an MMORPG, but I also enjoy co-operative RPGs, and Genshin Impact will have online multiplayer.
So when they revealed the date they’re rolling out their closed beta, I was ecstatic. According to miHoYo, Genshin Impact will be launching into closed beta during the first quarter of 2020.
Which means we’re looking at a release within the next 6 weeks. This is very exciting news! If you haven’t already, then make sure you’ve signed up for the closed beta.
Star Trek Online
It’s not often an MMO gets to say they’ve been online for a decade. Star Trek Online is one of the few games that get to make that claim, and they’re holding a large anniversary event to go along with it!
While there are in-game events going on right now, and things you can redeem for logging in, it’s worth noting that a few goodies were leaked on Twitter: More specifically, screenshots from the Measure of Mortality episode featuring characters from Star Trek: Discovery and Voyager.
If you’re interested in the new Star Trek Picard series, or either Discovery or Voyager, then you’re gonna wanna see this.
Book of Travels
I’ve talked about Book of Travels a few times over the last several months. It’s a very interesting looking indie MMO that managed to raise over a quarter million dollars during its Kickstarter. But that isn’t what you’re interested in.
What you’re interested in is the fact that they’ve laid out their development plans for the year, and, more specifically, dated both their beta test and Early Access dates.
According to the devs behind the game, they’re going to be taking next month to decide what to include in their upcoming beta, with the beta in question taking place in both May and June, with the game finally launching into Early Access in October this year. Yup, the game’s that close!
This was actually really weird news for me. See, Mrs Stix did a gameplay video for Torchlight Frontiers. In it, she partied with a group of people and went out, journeying around, having fun. However, that was last year, a while ago.
Recently, the devs behind the game revealed that the game would be going through an overhaul – and a drastic one at that. Instead of being an MMO – it’s going to be.. well, according them, they’re planning on going “back to their ARPG roots.”
Not only this, but they’re also going buy-to-play as opposed to free-to-play as they’d originally intended and promised, and stripping most, if not all of the multiplayer functionality from the game. Torchlight III is planned for a Summer release, but no exact date has been given thus far.
The Sims 5
This one… this one I had to include purely because I’ve always wanted a “Sims Online” game. I know, there was a “The Sims Online” game from the early 2000’s, but I wanted one from this generation. And it looks like that might actually be the plan for The Sims 5.
According to Andrew Wilson, the CEO of EA Games, they’re contemplating incorporating a lot of the features and functions that The Sims Online had into The Sims 5, with their goal of making them a core part of The Sims games going into the future.
Man I’d love a Sims MMO, allowing for tens of people, hundreds of people to play together, even on a local server like ARK. Heck, I’d be happy with 2-player co-op.
Gran Saga is a brand new upcoming Action MMORPG from NPIXEL. Up until last week all we had was a simple cinematic trailer, however, NPIXEL revealed a full gameplay trailer showing exploration, combat and even dungeon footage.
The action combat looks fantastic, a cross somewhere between Black Desert and KurtzPel, and could potentially be one of the best looking upcoming MMOs this year. The game doesn’t have a release date right now, but it’s expected within 2020. Gran Saga is one of the first cross-platform MMORPGs.
If you weren’t here for Crimson Desert or Phantasy Star Online 2.. then this is what likely caught your attention. Yes, it has been more or less confirmed by this point that Blue Protocol is coming to both North America and Europe.
Bandai Namco not only posted a job opening for someone to overlook the English localization of the game, but they also went as far as registering the trademark for Blue Protocol in both North America and Europe. This is honestly all happening much faster than I thought it would but I can’t say I’m surprised.
I called this potentially happening when someone posted on Reddit a few months back that Bandai Namco had no intention of bringing the game over. Additionally, they’ve removed the NDA that was in place preventing players from sharing content they recorded during their Alpha test back in the middle of 2019.
Finally, Bandai Namco announced yesterday that they’re going to be holding a full Closed Beta holding 50,000 players total. Registration for the Closed Beta begins on February 12th, with the Beta test taking place in March – just next month.
The Closed Beta will be global, meaning that players will be able to play from anywhere in the world – without IP Blocks or a need for a VPN. While there’s no confirmed release date right now, it doesn’t look like it’ll be too far off as the game as making very steady progress.