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By Throne

ATLAS

From the sister studio of Wildcard, makers of ARK: Survival Evolved...
ATLAS: The ultimate survival MMO of unprecedented scale with 40,000+ simultaneous players in the same world. Join an endless adventure of piracy & sailing, exploration & combat, roleplaying & progression, settlement & civilization-building, in one of the largest game worlds ever! Explore, Build, Conquer!
https://store.steampowered.com/app/834910/ATLAS/
Early access, Thursday, December 13th  (Update:  delayed release to December 19th)
 

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By Throne

Kenshi 1.0 Released

It is generally a rarity that finds a single player game a feature of CotP articles, however, over recent months this game has entered my personal top five games of all-time and has passed my hourly steam totals for Mount & Blade, Fallout 4 and Skyrim in the process.  What the....yeah, I know.
So many titles over the years have claimed that it allows its players to "win" the game "their way" in an "open sandbox" environment.  Well, we cannot get the time back that we spent realizing that those developers were still significantly limited in the scope of what any individual's personal definition of in-game "freedom" actually means.  For me, M&B and SWG came close.  Unfortunately, both those games (or their EMU reboot) are either approaching or have surpassed the ten year mark of their seemingly eternal impending latest release. Enter Kenshi.
Freedom is a fun word in Kenshi...yes, you have the freedom to stay solo, group up with a squad, make a vegetable farm, join a faction, enslave a faction, slay the champion, be the richest hermit, recruit an army of robots or build the great city....blah blah, boring.  Now, the freedom to fail in the most unique form possible...that is the true gem in this game.  I will give you just the one example:
My squad is epic, I will tame the badlands and establish a civilized trading outpost...plan = awesome.  Headed for the abandoned fishing outpost.  Acid rain, not fun...put up tent, survived.  Reached fishing village, it is not a fishing village.  Really freaky "skin" people pour out of all the village buildings.  We put up a good fight but were overwhelmed.  One by one, my squad members were....stolen.  Knocked out, picked up and taken to some of the village huts.  What is going on here?  Then the screams.  Agonizing screams from my captured squad members.  No idea.  I am the last one to go down.  KO'd, picked up, taken to a nearby hut....
I died from blood loss.....after I was put into a grinder that peeled my skin off.
https://store.steampowered.com/app/233860/Kenshi/
 
WHAT IS KENSHI?
Kenshi is a single player sandbox PC game set in a vast and atmospheric ‘Sword-Punk’ style open world. With a mix of RPG elements, squad-based control and city-building features, gameplay is completely free-roaming and open: enjoy the freedom and potential to do whatever you want.
Set in an unrelenting world of bloodthirsty cannibals, starving bandits, brutal slavers and wild beasts, survival alone is a grueling struggle… You are not the chosen one. You’re not great and powerful. You don’t have more ‘hitpoints’ than everyone else. You are not the center of the universe, and you are not special. Unless you work for it.
Character Customization 
Edit your characters, build up their strengths and watch them endure and grow. Train Your Skills in Robotics, Thievery, Engineering, Medicine, Weapon Smithing and more!
Squad-Based Control
Play with one character or control a whole team; an army, even. Combat is Real-Time Strategy style with a choice of ranged and melee fighting styles
Build Your Base
Create and run your own city, manage an empire or simply wander the lands as a lone drifter. Research upgrades such as industry tech, weaponry crafting and trade goods
Wounds Affect Gameplay
Complex medical system where injured characters limp, crawl, bleed to death or pass out from starvation. Stem blood loss to avoid predators and replace lost limbs with robotic prosthetics
Open-ended Gameplay
An original sandbox world. Lay siege as a warlord or make your riches as a trader… There are endless game style possibilities and the world will never stop moving
Train hard
There is no level-scaling, the world does not level up along with you. At the start of the game almost everyone will be stronger than you and you’ll have to use your cunning to survive
Survive
Escape capture from deadly slavers & cannibal prisons, rescue your squad mates from grisly death and get them all home alive
Start A Faction
Keep to yourself, form an alliance or oppose other factions and territories of the world… good or bad
 
https://lofigames.com/road-map/
 


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By Throne

Drayvn ARK cluster updated with Extinction

The ARK: Extinction map has been added to Drayvn's Server Cluster.
The Goal:
Link multiple maps on one server so that players can truly enjoy everything the game offers. You can live on the Island and still explore the dungeons on Extinction while using the dragon you got from scorched and the spelunking tools you got from Aberration.
Note: This is a private server cluster created by Drayvn and is open to COTP members who are able to conduct themselves in a mature manner.  
Note II:  These servers are not modded in order to provide some difficulty to those who can handle it.
Maps currently in cluster:
The Island Scorched Earth Aberration Extinction Server Names:
Pheah Islands Pheah Scorched Pheah Aberration Pheah Extinction Forum Group Link: 
 
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By Throne

Fallout 76 is Live

Fallout 76 is live right now. It wasn’t supposed to go live until midnight last night but it’s arrived early so a few of us started our journey through Bethesda’s post-apocalyptic MMORPG yesterday.
So far, it is playing more like a Fallout 4 co-op with a new ((much larger) map than the pvp mayhem some were expecting.
I did run into a few brave souls who wanted to tangle early on, but not much came of it as there are protocols that keep open pvp from being too deadly until after you reach level 5.
I crashed twice in 10 hours, and my 4 yr old system held up nicely on ultra graphics (I7 - RX 480 - 32GB Ram).
The base building is unique and interesting.  Pieces snap much more smoothly than I remember in FO4.  If you find a unique plan (blueprint) like a crafting station or furniture, you can help your team out by building it for them on their camp (base) and they'll get to keep it, even if they move their base around.
The S.P.E.C.I.A.L system has been revamped with cards you can use to customize your characters perks and abilities, e.g. Guild Wars.  I didn't see it as a minus or plus, just something new to figure out and maximize for the way I play the game.
The difficulty was typical of Fallout games, where it can be a challenge for moderate gamers and daunting for casual gamers new to the Fallout franchise.
Good times are always best shared, and this game is no exception....running around with a team is much more enjoyable, however the game does not diminish whatsoever when it comes to making progress solo.
So far, it has my endorsement.
Join us in discord https://discord.gg/ar8NGD or on the forums
 

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By Elric

New Ark Expansion!

If you haven't already seen it, the new Ark expansion was released yesterday.  The new expansion, "Extinction", takes the players back to Earth to find a ravaged homeworld with all sorts of new creatures and challenges.  It seems like they've taken some popular mod content and created some massive "Titans" that function as world bosses throughout the new map. 
The new launch trailer: 
 
COTP does not have an "official" server right now.  Currently Cecil and I run a private server for any COTP members that want to join.  Hit me up via PM if you would like to give it a try!  We are working with our hosting company to get the new expansion server up today.
Here is the official content notes from the Steam page:
 
 
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Chapter 2 – Repercussions

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Erudius

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Pop. SnapSSSSSSssssssssss.

 

Mari stirred next to the warmth of a fire burning near her. It was morning. She had cried herself to sleep. Beside the fire, on a rock, was a bowl full of water. She cupped it and examined it closely. She smelled it. ‘Fruit?’ She drank a sip then almost involuntarily drained the rest of the liquid from the bowl. She breathed a small sigh. ‘So sweet.’

 

The green canopy had been a wonderful covering from the morning shower that had set the leaves of the forest a-glitter. She had slept through that. ’Darn,’ she thought, ‘I miss wandering in the rain’. She thought of Tian and how they would get soaked together in it wandering in the forests of Dromund Kaas after her initiation had concluded.

-

They sat alone under a tree near some fern bushes watching the water on the large leaves.

“Do you see this raindrop?” Tian had looked into her eyes. “It has fallen from the sky and landed here on this leaf, but it did not do so of its own accord. It was made to do so and so it must. It doesn’t choose where to roll or what drops to join in its path, it is guided by consequence. It absorbs and is absorbed.”

She had leaned into his warmth and he wrapped his arms around her and continued, but she didn’t hear much of what he said. She listened to his steady heart beat… felt the steady, peaceful rhythm. She wanted to stay here. Not return to the dread that awaited her at the Citadel. Her master surely was suspicious her dallying with this light-leaning sith.

“Mari-love.” Tian whispered. “Seek balance… Love mercy… Exercise justice… Walk with the Force in humbleness… Don’t lose yourself in emotion, draw strength from it.”

-

The sun broke through a clearing in the canopy blinding her for a moment and interrupting her reminisce. She looked around her again, feeling something she could not place. ‘A presence? No.'

She moved soundlessly out from the copse which had sheltered her during the night, reaching out with her senses and touched something conflicted. It withdrew immediately. Then she felt a light press on her thoughts.

 

“You’re up.” said the thought… distinctly male… incredibly peaceful. She started at the intrusion. “I hope you enjoyed the refreshment. If you’d like, come south to the creek. We can talk there.”

 

‘Nothing pressing to do’ thought Miri as she looked again at the verdant landscape encompassing her. Quickly, she readied herself and set off.

 

 

-----

“YOU WHAT?!” echoed the gravelly voice of Darth Granus. She shoved her way across her vast office space to look her assassin in the eye, nose to nose.

 

The assassin trembled as slowly his neck began to rise, held by another force. “We… we were… attacked my Lord. A… human, but … not… hum – “ His explanation was cut short as his vocal cords were being pressed.

 

Then his mouth contorted into a soundless, raging scream and his eyes shut vice-tight. His brow furrowed unnaturally as he writhed in mid-air.

 

“I WILL have my answer!” screamed Granus. Her eyes narrowed and she leered at him. Light distorted in front of them as if an inferno blazed from within them. Her face grew gaunt, but she pressed in, launching a scathing mental assault.

 

She had no mercy on her servant assassin, slashing and ripping at every part of his mind until at last she arrived at the scene in the forest and saw what transpired.

 

The assassin fell limp to the floor, a vacant expression on his face. Drool pooled from his lips where he lay.

 

Granus seethed.

 

 

-----

Kourou winced. His eyes welled. He felt the assassin’s sanity leave him and knew all that remained was a fleshly shell where once had been a soul. Alive, but vacant.

 

'Nothing has changed.’ He thought, shaking his head almost imperceptibly.

 

Mari approached from behind him, clearing her throat as she approached.

 

“I’m sorry, Mari, if I mis-read your intentions but I thought helping you escape was the best choice… given the alternative.”

 

“You felt it too…” she said. She had been crying.

 

“Yes.”

 

“I hate her.”

 

“Hate is a strong word…”

 

“I do! You have NO idea what I’ve been through!” Mari’s mind raced through a lifetime of memories and experiences with her old master, Darth Granus.

 

“You’re right, I have not been through what you have experienced.” Kourou conceded. “Can we at least agree that I have had experiences also?”

 

Mari watched him for a moment and looked up at the mid-day sky. A breeze caught her and lifted her silky hair, caressing her face. Every time she felt that kind of a breeze she was reminded of how Tian would cradle her face in his palms and press his forehead on hers before kissing her gently.

 

“Mari… what does she fear in you that she would hunt you?” Kourou asked warily.

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