As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, MMOs and other MMO-adjacent games and studios continue to react, bringing their staffs home and offering bonuses to players. To wit:
- Revelation Online has granted players a free bundle with 30 days of premium service, boosts, and 1400 bonus aurum.
- Trove is increasing drop rates for things like companion eggs, mount talismans, and dragon fragments through April 7th.
- Champions Online is running double experience for the next few weeks.
- You’re also looking at a Star Trek Online double expies weekend.
- Neverwinter is running double drops on some currencies.
- There’s a huge cantina crawl in SWG Legends this weekend.
- The staff of Corepunk, shown in the header above, switched to working-from-home.
- And DC Universe Online has brought back open episodes.
“We know DCUO can be a way to escape or distract from hard times, and we know playing can be a great way to stay connected with friends from the comfort and safety of our own homes,” the DCUO team at Daybreak writes. “For the team, there is an elevated sense of meaning and passion about what we do right now. If we can make anyone’s next few weeks easier, that’s important to us on an entirely different level. That’s why we remain (safely) hard at work on our upcoming episode (Birds of Prey), so you can enjoy it as soon as possible, and that’s why we’re rolling out bonus WEEKS for the foreseeable future.”
If you spy more events not covered here or in our past roundups (down below), feel free to drop them in the comments for everyone to benefit from.
A few other notable news bits:
- Destiny 2 company Bungie, which is based in Seattle and had to react to the virus’ spread earlier than many studios in the US, released a letter aimed at encouraging players, employees, and other businesses to adopt best practices for staying safe and sane.
- The New Zealand Game Festival has been postponed until April 2021; the event’s game awards will still take place as an online venture.
- GameStop has come under fire for insisting on keeping its stores open during the pandemic (though canceling midnight launches and other events), while providing employees insufficient cleaning supplies to protect themselves and their stores and customers. “We just got off a conference call about an hour ago saying that we will be staying open our normal business hours no matter what the states are mandating,” a store manager reportedly told Polygon. Other employees expressed dismay over the continuing emphasis on sales of things like trade-in devices over safety. Yikes.
And in more light-hearted news:
Some MMOs have gone on sale too, including The Crew 2, Xsyon, Boundless, and Red Dead Redemption 2. EA us currently selling The Sims 4 for five bucks on Origin, which might help keep your kids happy for a bit.
Please be safe out there, everyone, wherever you are. This is no joke.
More on the impact of the virus on gaming:
• Mar 19: More and more MMOs are offering sales and events during the coronavirus pandemic
• Mar 17: Massively OP Podcast Episode 263: Cantha or bust
• Mar 17: Daybreak, Cryptic, City State, Frontier, and more MMO studios affected by worldwide pandemic shutdowns
• Mar 16: Coronavirus roundup: GamesCom 2020 is still planned for August – for now
• Mar 16: Steam hits a new peak of 20 million concurrent users thanks to quarantines and social distancing
• Mar 14: Coronavirus roundup: Blizzard, free APB Reloaded, EA esports, HPWU, and how your PC can help humans win
• Mar 13: Warframe studio Digital Extremes cancels in-person TennoCon 2020, turns it fully online
• Mar 13: Coronavirus roundup: EGX Rezzed, Pokemon Go, and using MMOs to learn from home
• Mar 12: Coronavirus roundup: Virtual GDC, Overwatch League suspended, Crowfall and Funcom work-from-home
• Mar 11: Complete coverage of the novel coronavirus’ impact on gaming
• Mar 11: Coronavirus leads to E3’s cancellation, plus SMITE and Pokemon Go postpone events
• Mar 9: Coronavirus concerns cancel SXSW, Minecraft Festival, and several FIFA 20 and Apex Legends esports events
• Mar 6: Destiny 2 staff told to work remotely to keep season on track (and the novel coronavirus at bay)
• Mar 5: Blue Protocol’s Japanese closed beta has been delayed nearly a month over coronavirus
• Mar 4: The coronavirus has shut down another six gaming and tech events
• Mar 3: Massively OP Podcast Episode 261: PAX yay, GDC nay
• Mar 3: Coronavirus drives DCUO to beg off a ComicCon, but E3 planning is ‘full speed’ ahead
• Mar 2: CSGO esports set a new online viewership record thanks to quarantine
• Mar 1: The Daily Grind: How much do you see COVID-19 impacting the MMO sphere?
• Feb 28: Coronavirus fears prompt GDC to reschedule to late summer
• Feb 28: Blizzard has now bowed out of GDC 2020 over coronavirus fears
• Feb 28: CCP Games just canceled April’s EVE Fanfest over coronavirus concerns
• Feb 27: EVE Online tours offices as fans debate potential coronavirus impact on Fanfest
• Feb 27: Coronavirus fears knock out more PAX East exhibitors, but GDC will go on as planned
• Feb 25: Wandering Wraeclast: Discover Delirium when Path of Exile’s new league launches March 13
• Feb 25: EVE Echoes has been ‘hindered’ by the coronavirus but will launch in ‘late 2020’
• Feb 25: EA becomes the latest studio to back out of a con over coronavirus concerns
• Feb 24: The mayor of Boston asks Sony to reconsider withdrawing from PAX East
• Feb 23: The MOP Up: Coronavirus concerns are impacting PAX East 2020
• Feb 21: Square Enix has canceled most of its Final Fantasy XIV and FFXI PAX East festivities over the coronavirus
• Jan 31: MMO Business Roundup: Stadia, Coronavirus, E3, VR, EVE Fanfest, Discord, and WOTC’s BioWare devs
• Jan 30: Blizzard’s Overwatch League matches in China are on hold for two months for the coronavirus
• Jan 27: League of Legends Chinese pro esports league suspends events over spreading coronavirus
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