Matthew Holland never planned to add his dogs to Divinity: Original Sin 2. It happened on a lark, but turned into a wholesome story about his two canine companions. Holland worked as a scripter at Larian, the studio behind the fantasy RPG. While they were designing Fort Joy, an introductory island prison, the team came up with a quest about two separated dogs who wanted to find one another. At the time, their names were just “Dog A” and “Dog B”. While brainstorming with lead writer Sarah Baylus, Holland jokingly pitched the names of his two dogs, Buddy and Emily. The names stuck and Buddy became the lonely dog on the beach at Fort Joy who was missing his partner, Emmie.
I typically avoid games that cause me to swear and sweat through my own repetitive, frustrating failures. For Katana Zero, I consider the stress worth it.
You can now fly around the levels of the beloved PlayStation 2 classic Katamari Damacy to your heart’s content in your web browser, exploring the game’s worlds without having to impress your overbearing space dad, thanks to the website Noclip—and a $500 bounty offered by its creator to expert engineers willing to help crack open the game’s code.
Pirates of the Burning Sea has everything I expect of a 2000s-era MMO: Quests delivered by long-winded NPCs, guilds (called Societies), a contentious relationship between PvP and PvE players, and character models so low-poly they might actually be in style again. Where many other MMOs of the time period have become defunct, PotBS is still clinging to life, floated by diehard pirates who see something in it that they can’t find elsewhere.
On a busy bridge in Alinor, sandwiched between the fast-travel wayshrine and the crowded crafting stations, hundreds of Elder Scrolls Online players will cross from one part of the busy city to another. Some thunder over riding horses or bears. Others pause for a moment to rummage through their inventory bags. One particular player, a splotchy black and white Argonian, does the most useless thing a person could be doing at the heart of a lively MMO hub. His name is Sleeps-On-Bridges, and he logs on every night to do exactly that.
I am a cop. At least, I suspect I am because the woman outside the hotel room I woke up in told me so. I don’t actually remember being a cop. Or how the hotel room window got shattered. Or why my face looks like I lost a fight with the pavement. Or my own name. I don’t remember anything about the case I’m supposed to be solving: a dead body strung up in a tree outside the hotel I’m staying in. Not a good day to be me, it seems, but if I’m someone who can solve murders, maybe I’m the type of person who can solve the mystery of his own identity. Maybe.
We all remember our first invasion like it was yesterday. After enough practice, every fight starts to take on a familiar cadence: thrust, parry, flank, thrust again. There are only so many ways you and your invader can dance about and most of them just involve rolling around on the floor until you run out of stamina. It’s enough to make you give up on PvP entirely, resigned to a solitary offline life in Lothric. If you’ve lost the spark in your PvP life, try these tips to rekindle your bonfire and bring a bit of humanity back to your invasions.