Either it's really been a slow news week this week because everyone's busy getting ready for BlizzCon in one way or another, or that punk rock plague I contracted from a weekend of Festing made it feel that way. Now that I'm on the mend, I find myself digging for news that isn't really there. Granted, what I do have for the day is really cool stuff, but it's just tidbits of awesome, rather than enough meat for 1,000 words of awesome. Today we have some super rad news from CD Projekt RED in regards to The Witcher 3's next 16 planned DLCs, news from Allods about Skyforge beta, and news from Final Fantasy XIV. Let's dig in!
The Witcher 3
People generally have a love/hate relationship with DLC. While they love new content, they don't necessarily like paying for it, especially when it's something that should have been in the game anyway that was pulled last minute and then sold for extra cash on launch day. We all know what I'm talking about. So, CD Projekt RED decided to do the community a solid here. The next sixteen DLCs for The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt will be available for free. While it's not known if there will be other DLCs after that, added on content that comes after will generally be well received, even if it's paid content. What is known, is that these free DLCs are good for anyone, regardless of what system they purchased The Witcher for, and it works for both those who have pre-ordered the game and those who purchase the game after launch. The first four DLCs (two bundles) will be available immediately, with a new DLC available each week after launch. For more details, have a look at thewitcher.com and be sure to check out the Q&A from the press release:
Q: What do I have to do to receive the 16 free DLCs?
A: The only thing you need to do to receive the 16 DLCs is purchase The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. All of the DLCs will be available for free on every platform (i.e. Xbox One, PC, and PlayStation 4).
Q: Do I have to pre-order to get the free DLCs?
A: No, each piece of content will be available for download regardless of you buying the game before or after launch on February 24th, 2015.
Q: I have the standard version of the game (i.e. not the Collector’s Edition). Do I still get the free DLCs?
A: Yes. You get the 16 DLCs regardless of the version of the game you bought (i.e. standard or Collector's, digital or physical).
Q: What’s the plan? When can I expect the DLCs to be released?
A: The plan is to release a new DLC bundle (each bundle contains two DLCs) on a weekly basis, following the game’s launch February 24th, 2015. The first DLC bundle will be released the next day on February 25th. The next bundle will be available for download a week after that, on March 4th, the next on March 11th, and so on. The first bundle will contain the Temerian Armor Set and a Beard and Hairstyle Set for Geralt. The second bundle will contain an additional quest and an alternative look for one of the game’s main characters -- Yennefer of Vengerberg.
Q: Where can I find out more?
A: You can find more details on www.thewitcher.com. At this moment, four DLCs (two bundles) are revealed. The remaining DLCs will be unveiled each week after launch.
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn
This is the second game in the past 24 hours that has sent out a press release regarding Steam where they haven't sent out the Steam links. Folks, if you want people to write about things, don't make us Google them. I'm sure that not everyone reading these press releases would have the interest in these games. FFXIV at least has a pretty dedicated following, but the one I wrote about yesterday...well, I doubt most people would take the time to write about it without a link. There's my ranty plea.
While the press release was to announce that the fourteen day trial is now available via Steam, what it doesn't say is that both the regular edition and the collector's edition is currently for sale at 50% off on Steam. If you're in the US, that means you can own the regular for $12.50 and the CE for $22.50. I'm pretty tempted to buy the game just because it's so cheap. Those of us in NA are required to have a Square Enix Account for the region to play, but to either try the game for free or to buy it on the cheap, that sounds like a steal. Here's the Steam link for all interested parties.
I'm really enjoying writing about Skyforge lately. I last wrote about the Adepts system and it's pretty fantastic. I like that utilizing Adepts to their fullest is pretty much an minigame within itself. Today, Allods announced that next coming weekend will be a technical beta weekend for Skyforge, beginning November 13. Since this is a technical beta, this is to test systems like server load, flooding the login server, and other core systems. Players will also be asked to provide feedback on in-game systems, such as the Divine Observatory, classes, and combat. Beta invites go out next week and you can bet that I'll be sitting here with my fingers crossed monitoring my inbox for this! The details:
The Technical Beta Weekend will begin on November 13 and end on November 16, however; players who are invited to participate will be able to download and install the client starting on November 11 - giving them a two day window get ready for the beta. This way players will be able to jump into the game as soon as the servers are opened!
This technical beta will have just a small number of people invited, so that certain aspects of play can be tested and feedback recorded. Allods reminds people that if they don't get into this beta, there are more happening in the future, which they could have the chance to get in on another. Remember, if you do get in, this isn't a preview – it's a test. Feedback, bug reports, and critical criticism during this time is the most important things game developers need from the community. That doesn't mean you shouldn't be out there enjoying yourself, because if you're not enjoying a game, developers need to hear that, too. Instead of just yelling something about “this game sucks!” try to think about what sucks and why. “I didn't enjoy this area because the questing is trite and repetitive” is far more valuable feedback. If you get a golden ticket for next weekend, have fun!
That's all I have for today (so far)! Be sure to keep an eye out here at Ten Ton Hammer as we transition to Ten Ton BlizzCon for a few days. While our sister site, eSportsMax, will be covering tournaments for StarCraft II and Hearthstone, all news will be available here directly on TTH. Don't have a virtual ticket to BlizzCon? Let us cover everything for you, so you don't miss a thing.