WAR is not a good MMO

But it is an amazing GAME.

Okay, so the title was intentionally sensationalist, but that doesn’t mean my point is wrong. I want you to reread the title of this post, and that first line again.

When I think of what an MMO is, or is supposed to be, I think of a virtual world. An electronic location created with rules and systems in place that continues in motion regardless of my participation. A series of interconnected systems that influences one another to create a place where players LIVE a second life. This is a topic that has been getting bandied about the last few months by some well-known bloggers as well as some industry people, and various other folk.

The gaming genres were historically broken into very distinct and separate categories. RPGs had levels, stats, character progression, classes (black wizard anyone?), and lots of dialog. Shooters were first-person view, with all the gore they could muster, and roaming monsters that begged the player to blow them into juicy meat-morsels. Except now, we’re seeing a bleed across genre lines. Dead space was gory (and scary) as hell, but there were methods of leveling up, and progression, as well as numerical stats to follow. FPSs are going the same way. Every modern FPS game in the last couple years have had progression elements, with different kits, or jobs, and ranks that unlock new gadgets, weapons, or peripherals. The same bleed is happening with MMOs.

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Incentivizing vs Limiting

As I see things, when designing games, systems, or anything that involves human interaction and choice, you are always trying to get certain outcomes or results. With games and MMOs in particular, we usually like to have options on how to go about doing various tasks we want to do, and we want to be successful at it. Lately, it seems I’ve been having a lot of conversations about how to get players to act as desired after. In WAR, this is healers who DPS, or Tanks who DPS, or players who solo queue for scenarios, or ignore other players who need help. But this activity happens in all games, it was the Dirge/Troub in EQ2 who wanted to do more dps and neglect their debuffs. In WoW it (perceived) to be Shamans and Paladins who wanted to DPS instead of heal. Sometimes the games change to accommodate these other desired playstyles, making all paths viable, other times, games cut divergent players off by hard-limiting possibilities. Of the two choices, I always prefer the former.

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Variety is a spice

This is my kind of variety.

I had a very relaxing weekend, and I think the primary reason for it was my relaxed gaming schedule. I’m usually pretty aggressive about getting some things done, or setting goals I want to achieve for the weekend to help make up for my lack of play time during the week. But this past weekend, I approached it very loosely, and floated around a bit. From consoles, to PC, to miniatures, I did everything and kept things interesting. Oh, and it was my first Father’s Day, so that felt odd, out-of-place, and like it should not have been an applicable holiday for me in the slightest. The whole “I’m a Daddy” thing still feels a bit surreal at times (6 months in, and me being responsible for another LIFE still strikes me as insane at times).

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Oh, and another thing

Destro kill our king the other day. I expected it far sooner, but *shrug*. Grats to them.

Weekend round-up

Off the beer bitches!

I’ll keep this short, as I don’t have much time.

This weekend I dabbled in games, I had to finish a drawing I was doing for my Art class, as well as paint the babies room, so free time was at a bit of a minimum.

WAR – Shadow Warrior: Played maybe 5 scenarios. I did get a piece of mail from the guild leader of a decent guild saying that if I wanted to come join up with them, I’m welcome to see if it would be a good fit. He’s aware of my situation as I’m pretty active on the boards. I’m probably going to give my guild another week, and then make a decision.

WAR – Disciple of Khaine: All city, all weekend. I kid you not. I think Saturday we were in there three times. It’s ridiculous. I played some SCs, did some city sieging. Farmed the palace a bit. The good news: got the purple bag from the invasion PQ and got a hot, HOT jewelry piece. I want to handcuff it and call it dirty names.

Champions Online – I “did” the Lemurian Crisis. Solo. I’m going to have to accept that I will never beat this crisis, and that no one ever does it. Once I got to the boss, I understood why. He’s a legendary villain, and he’s big and nasty, and looks like an overgrown Murlock. The real nasty part though, is that he’s surrounded by this purple-black fog. This fog, while innocuous at first glance, is actually the kryptonite of my character. Whenever anyone within the fog has full endurance, they start taking heavy damage. Yes, I am a END/REC character, built around having as much endurance at all times. I’m going to have to ride the bench on this one coach.

DAoC – Wha? What is this doing here? After my post last week asking about it, I gave it a whirl. It’s actually pretty neat. You can tell they’ve made crazy graphical improvements over the years. The interface is a tad lacking, but surprisingly decent for what it was. My biggest complaint is how the camera interfaces with the turning of my character. If I turned my character (not strafe) the camera is disconnected and remains in the direction as previously. I probably would never pay for it unless they offered some bundle deal with WAR.

It’s here

Land of the Dead has finally arrived. Officially. Order won the advance day access on 9 of the 14 servers for North America. Anyone surprised? Me either.

Meh, I’ll check it out when I get home, but I’m not expecting much.

From “Meh” to fucking pissed

angryIncoming rant. If you don’t want to read a long wall of text full of expletives and crazy frothing at the mouth, I suggest you skip this post and move on to gentler pastures. I was awaiting confirmation on some things before I went here, and now I have it, and the cage to the angry beast just swung open.

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“Meh”, about sums it up

meh_catSo, the live event for the Lands of the Dead release, and the patch for 1.3 came out yesterday. As the title of this post shows you, I’m not particularly impressed so far. I played for an hour or so on both my DoK and on my Shadow Warrior, and got a handful of the targets finished to earn my some check marks in the special tab for this. I have yet to do the PQ on either of them, as it apparently only starts once every hour (maybe I’ll be lucky enough to partake tonight). What can I say about this event and patch? Not much really.

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Nerding it up some more

Yeah, that’s right. Another PvP video. I tried to be equitablem in my wins/losses. All the sorc fights are against the same player. As you can see, they are nasty opponents, and when played right, the two of us end in a near dead-heat. Anyway, here you go.

Executive Producer’s Letter, part 2

ancient-letterI never even knew there was a part 1. Talk about dropping the ball on that one. Well, if you really want to go there to read it, you can just follow this link. Or, if you would like the whole thing with the ease of staying in my lovely domain, just keep on reading. I’ll even be so kind as to give my opinion on some of what is said in there. I know that’s why you’re really here, my charming wit, and devilish tongue is able to whip up a conversation piece into a steaming froth of hectic rhetoric (i.e. skip to the bottom for the condensed version). You know you love it.

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