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Covenant of the Phoenix has a new official Discord Channel!!!
By Elric

Wolcen: Major Content Patch

If you haven't already heard, Wolcen just dropped a huge 1GB content patch yesterday (6/24/2019). They added a lot of good stuff, and they are really moving along in the development path.  If you haven't heard of "Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem" before, it is an Action RPG similar to Diablo III that is being developed for Steam by Wolcen Studios.  On a side note, it is on sale this week for 20% off!
By Throne

ATLAS: Present and Future

We have been at it since day one, that ugly and...well, let's just stick with ugly...launch. Even through the lag muck and server instability, you could read the stars and see the potential.  Right off the bat it was only for the tough, and we barreled through the glitchy log-ins, the shaky starter zones and the wretched "lawless" starting areas and found our way to the rafts.  Some were able to get to our island after 3-4 hours of learning how to tack, zig zag and fight through server borders and with a full stack of human hides, and then some were finally rescued after what seemed like days of being eaten alive by scorpions and crocodiles, only to quickly get used to dying to the cold, the wolves, the alpha horses, the water, the sharks and each other's general noob mistakes.
Yes, with the known developer, we did try to ARK it, or Dark and Light it...hell, we've even tried to Life is Feudal this one....and Atlas is just NOT those games.  Some visuals and sounds are there, but the depth and options and functionality is just SO much more.  What really took the game from just another ARK expansion to, the potential mmo of the decade, was getting out on our first schooner, the SS Skjoldr (video below).  The experience was entirely PvE, but when you have 13 people packed on to a single vessel and the guys repairing the ship are as vital as the helmsman steering and the deckhands manning the sails, it became something I haven't seen in a game since our friday night flights on the Decimator back in SWG.
We have had just a blast learning the game and surviving our island and our neighbors over the past couple weeks.  Though it may appear as if we are well off enough, growing from 30 actives day one, to more than double that now, we absolutely could use more folks interested in living the Atlas life.  Whether you are interested in navigating the high seas, captaining a brigand, farming the tundra, mucking through politics, taming elephants or exploring the massive (30-40 hours of sailing from one end to the other) world, it is all here and we have many members willing to help you get started.
Here is a few screencaps and videos to give you an idea of what we have been up to:

By Throne

Xalt defeats Elric for 2018 Fantasy Football Crown

Xalt's Zappers smirk at expectations, knock off Elric's Arksters in 171.07-127.47 rout

Both teams exceeded their projected point totals, but it was Xalt's Zappers who got the victory, cruising to a 171.07-127.47 win over Elric's Arksters. Elric's Arksters earned a 3.86-point lead on Saturday behind Joey Bosa (2.18 points) and Mike Williams (1.68), but Xalt's Zappers held the lead the rest of the way. They were led by Matt Ryan (25.46 points) and Damien Williams (22.53). Ben Roethlisberger (42.22 points) and T.Y. Hilton (19.4) led the charge for Elric's Arksters in the loss. This marks the second time this season Xalt's Zappers have beaten Elric's Arksters, after winning 118.28-117.7 in their last matchup. Xalt's Zappers end the season at 12-4, while Elric's Arksters finish the campaign at 9-7.
Matchup Highlights

Sunday Early    There were players with standout moments on both teams early Sunday, after which Xalt's Zappers owned a 125.41-53.13 lead. Matt Ryan had a 75-yard touchdown pass and a 44-yard touchdown pass for Xalt's Zappers, while David Njoku had a 66-yard catch. T.Y. Hilton made the highlight reel for Elric's Arksters with a 55-yard catch.

Sunday Late    Both teams had players with big-time moments on Sunday afternoon, but it was Xalt's Zappers who took the lead, 148.54-96.80. For Xalt's Zappers, Robert Woods had a 39-yard touchdown catch. Ben Roethlisberger made the highlight reel for Elric's Arksters with a 20-yard touchdown pass and a 49-yard pass.

Sunday Night    Harrison Butker had a 54-yard field goal for Elric's Arksters, who trailed 171.07-118.27 after Sunday Night Football.
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Anthem Updates

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Patch 1.2.0 hit this week and there was a developer livestream about the upcoming changes.


For those who want a summary:

  • Patch added a couple of features to freeplay to improve it:
    • A question-mark on the compass for collectables/nodes/etc.
    • Purple icons for areas that will spawn an elite with a guaranteed drop (though the drop may be garbage)
    • Fast travel around the map from strider to strider.
  • Patch added a handful of canned communications commands ("Thanks", "Follow me", etc.)
  • Some new Legendary Missions (technically, they're not new if they're replays of old missions).
  • A bunch of bug fixes.
  • A bunch of gear changes.
  • A QoL fix (looking away from an interaction no longer cancels it).
  • Stream talked about some of the upcoming changes:
    • A PTS is expected to go live next week.  They'll be dropping builds of Cataclysm to it.  Initial builds will have functional gaps.
    • News about the Cataclysm:
      • Designed for four players.
      • Score-based leaderboards, with score being both a product of what you do and the difficulty level.
      • Some new items with slightly higher power levels than current gear.
      • 2-week lead-up to the event with vanity rewards.
      • 6-week event, with different weeks having different special rulesets (i.e., gear does quad damage for a week).
      • Cataclysm will be a new map area.
    • A new melee weapon slot that will allow each javelin to have either primer or finisher for melee attack.
    • Luck as a gear stat is going away (inscriptions will be replaced with +Armor).  Everyone will be given max Luck, which they say will increase drop rates.
      • I run 90+ Luck on most of my kits and don't see great drops, so I'm dubious of the value here.  But +Armor is nice and not having to wear stupid/sub-optimal gear for the Luck will be nice.

From practical experience, Freeplay flows nicer now.  Less bored searching for events.  Now you can hit clusters of mobs as you search for events.

Questrox and I run together several nights a week.  Guild activity is currently down to about 3 people.

Not all the problems are gone from the game, but they've clearly been working hard and there's still some life left in it.  For those that enjoy the gameplay, it remains enjoyable.  For those who don't enjoy the gameplay, it's not really different enough to magically make you love it.

But if anyone was on the fence about committing more time to it, there's life from the devs, and we have a couple of people who play most days, and doing the group content is always better with the same people than pugs.  So swing by and check it out again.

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PTS is up.  Aside from the PTS being not-ready-for-prime-time (not a surprise), there are improvements over the base game.

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Thanks for the update. I really enjoyed the gameplay, but got real tired of farming gear that was just crap. Can’t remember how many grandmaster 2 missions and the group missions I forget what they are called and only ever got one piece higher than mastercraft. And it wasn’t even for the javelin I was in. 


Have they fixed that?

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Fixed getting gear for other javelins.  Loot drop rate is still pretty bad.  If your focus is gear, the game will be frustrating and unpleasant.

If you enjoy flying around or just general gameplay, then getting the loot is a nice bonus.  Though I did get frustrated trying to get the last weapon I needed for the weapon challenges and then the last Ranger gear I needed for those challenges.

I suspect the big patch will be disappointing and the next level death knell for the game unless they improve loot drop rates.  Given random inscriptions, there need to be more (I rarely keep any drops anymore because I've managed to assemble decent inscriptions).

I'll keep playing this till I find something I enjoy more.  Or the game will improve, and I won't find that something.

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