I polled the Massively writers for their favorite announcements and showings from the con. Here's what we think was the best and most interesting MMO news to come out of PAX Prime.
@ceruleangrey: It's been a while since I played RIFT, but I sure perked my ears up at the news of the Nightmare Tide expansion. I always enjoyed the creepy Water Plane content in the beginning areas, and I'm a big fan of Z-axis movement and gameplay, so while an underwater-themed expansion probably sounds like some players' idea of an actual nightmare, I'm all for it.
@nbrianna: Two things stood out the most to me: The first is that Justin actually kinda liked Shroud of the Avatar and thought it was pretty in person. Having backed it, I am happy to hear it and now wishing my tier came with early access. The second is that Wander is still on track to be something special. I called it the biggest surprise at PAX Prime 2013, and I'm pleased to see it's still happening and still weird and wonderful.
@Eliot_Lefebvre: I like that Upsilon Circuit keeps being a really nifty and unique way of leveraging players in a multiplayer online space. That's cool. Other than that, this year's convention was as boring as anything, and the companies that seem like they'd have something interesting to say either remained completely silent or they didn't even bother showing up. Or gave away fat chocobo headbands that I don't get to have; that's kind of the same thing. I guess The Crew still looks neat, even though my idea of why I would be playing it does not intersect with what the developers intend in the slightest.
@jefreahard: ArcheAge's launch date is the only thing that resonated with me. I was somewhat interested to hear about The Repopulation and The Crew, but the rest of the PAX lineup consisted of either games I'm already playing or games I couldn't care less about.
@Sypster: Probably the most impressive thing that I saw was the preview for RIFT: Nightmare Tide. It looks like a heckuva expansion and will most likely suck me back in to play it. World of Warships surprised me with how fun it looks, and Shroud of the Avatar didn't look as, well, amateurish as I was anticipating.
@Shaddoe: For me, PAX was more about whom we did not hear anything new from. We did not hear about Star Wars: The Old Republic's new expansion. We did not hear about The Elder Scrolls Online's console launch. We did not hear (directly) about EverQuest Next.
That being said, I am happy to hear that ArcheAge finally has a release date, and I'm glad to see that The Repopulation hasn't completely become vaporware, which had me worried because it hadn't really announced anything new to show since its second successful Kickstarter in early July. I still have my fingers crossed that it's going to be great, but I'm keeping my expectations low.
@MikedotFoster: I am as excited to play Heroes of the Storm as ever. I love Dota 2 very much, but HoTS looks like something I can play casually when I want the MOBA experience without the pressure or the constant need to mute my teammates. I'm curious about Tome now, as well. I'll probably check out the beta in a stream sometime soon. As for HoTS, it appears that my Blizzard Entertainment alpha/beta luck has finally run out; I still haven't received an invite.
@MJ_Guthrie: Was there other news besides the ArcheAge launch date?
Actually, the fishing in The Repopulation caught my eye as I enjoy fishing, even in games. Fishing = good memories, and if I have to get my fix virtually, I will.
What do you get when you throw the Massively writers' opinions together in one big pot to stew? You get The Think Tank, a column dedicated to ruminating on the MMO genre. We range from hardcore PvPers to sandbox lovers to the most caring of the carebears, so expect more than a little disagreement! Join Editor-in-Chief Bree Royce and the team for a new edition right here every Thursday.