7 days around the MMO world / March 7

Now we know we made a promise last week to broaden the main portion of this MMO update to include other MMOs beyond the scope of World of Warcraft and what’s new and shiny. While we intended to do that, with specific regards to the Final Fantasy MMOs, this week left us nothing of note to cover in that respect. So instead of recycling two week old news for the sake of doing so, we’ll bring you more recent and relevant news and this week we’re leading off with Aion.

This week NCSoft released details on the 1.9 patch for Aion boasting a very long list of fixes and updates. This isn’t the patch that will bring in the new graphics, but this patch still has a lot for players to get excited about. The update will bring about changes to the way players form groups within Aion, moving away from the channel-based solution to a UI-based system. Players will be able to browse through the UI for parties, see who’s in them, what they’re doing and be able to contact that party leader right through the new system. The same goes for leaders looking for parties, they’ll be able to see who’s browsing for what and easily invite them.

This patch is also introducing an interesting incentive to do daily quests. Daily quests will not be able to reward temporary items that decay over time after you equip it. So from the moment you equip the item, it will begin counting down until it eventually fades away into oblivion. This same type of item decay will be applied to rental gear system. Players will be able to buy top level gear for a fraction of the cost, but the items will only be temporary. This should allow players to try out some of the more expensive things before dropping a crap load of money on it and committing to it.

It also looks like this update will bring about much desired changes to how much it costs to get around. Transportation, flight paths and spirit healing have all been reduced in price, so the money sink won’t be as bad. On top of that a new function called “energy of salvation” which works like rested xp should be a godsend for more casual players. There is more experience also to be gained through extra quests and higher xp rewards from those quests.

There are tons more changes contained in the details of 1.9 including some balancing of the combat. However, listing them all here would prove fruitless. We suggest you take a look at the full patch notes if you get a chance as there are loads of things being changed, fixed and updated.

With the Winter Olympic Games coming to a close recently we thought that this particular story might be of interest. There are some athletes out there who seem to enjoy playing MMOs; retired baseball pitcher Curt Schilling’s has love for World of Warcraft and now an Olympic silver medalist from Norway, Kjetil Jansrud, has been found out to be a fan of EVE Online.

Jansrud took home the silver medal in the Men’s Giant Slalom event all the while maintaining a healthy dose of one of the more hardcore MMOs around.

In other MMO news:

  • The Going Rogue expansion for City of Heroes is now open for pre-ordering
  • Happy Birthday to Darkfall, you’ll get special pricing for the celebration.
  • Who wants a spoiler? If you do check out the Ruby Sanctum details for the next major WoW patch.
  • SOE Fan Faire 2010 details released, time to party!
  • If you have an nVidia video card and play any Blizzard games, don’t install the 196.75 drivers, your card might explode.