Saturday, 18 April 2009

1.2.1 first day final impressions

Well that's my first day of 1.2.1 done and it's time to reflect on how good a patch this is.

Generally I'd say at this early stage it seems very good, but it's not without a few problems either. So first off lets get the bad out of the way.

First off we have Lost Vale.
I've not been in there myself today, but I've heard of 3 bosses that have new and serious bugs. The Gnoblar at the Butcher boss is bugged and starting at 50% enrage which is making it nigh on impossible. Gorak the Ancient is randomly nuking fully warded people for 20k, making this impossible to do. And finally, I didn't catch the exact details but N'Kari is doing some buggy uber damage attack also making it impossible to do. It needs to be stressed I'm not hearing this from people new to LV, but very experienced WAR players that have had LV on full farm for months. Looking at the official forums shows this is not unique to my guildies and is a common problem. Frankly I'm shocked bugs this serious in WAR's premier dungeon make it to live. How did this get past testing? Especially considering those bosses have FIXES included in the patch notes...

New bugs
Sometimes when you get killed, you click release and nothing happens. It won' let you log out and you have to ctrl-alt-delete, shut the game down and restart it. I only had this happen once all day, but I saw another 4 people have the problem once or twice.

Entering City Siege instances doesn't always work. Order sieged IC earlier and when trying to enter IC for siege defense it would start to load, then just go back to the Maw. Eventually I got in, but this was an annoyance. Some people didn't have the patience and just logged off.

Both of those 2 problems have been acknowledged by Mythic, so should get sorted quickly. Lets hope LV gets hot fixed fast too.

And now the good!

The new guild UI is very good.
In fact I'd say it's now one of the best I've used in any MMO. Truely a massive improvement and makes my life as a guild leader soooo much easier. Also little things like being able to look at the guild roster and instantly see who's in what type of warband, then just right click to join them, such a simple idea and really bloody great. Popular one that.

Combat responsiveness.
It's a lot better. I've been playing melee classes all told for about 5 hours of RvR today and the improvement is immense. We talked a lot about it today on ventrilo and everyone was reporting big improvements. Our witch elves in particular were most pleased.

Game performance.
For the first time ever I was able to do large scale oRvR with full spell effects on and have acceptable FPS. It's still not good enough, as the bigger fights I had to turn it off for, but it's a major improvement. Couple of warbands fighting was no problem, it was only when it got into multiple warbands it started to chug. But regardless it's improvement enough to show promise.

City sieges
Are quite a bit better. Not great yet and far from the epic moment I expect, but far better that previous ones I've been on. Game performance wise we're talking about a huge improvement, today I fought players and not fighting lag. Also with the Invader Crest tokens as rewards both for the PQ and a succesful defense, it gave us more tangible incentives and a proper reward for defending.

Token system
I really like it. The drop rate seems about right, people aren't going to be in full Invader over night (though it seems some people think they should...), but if you do RvR you will get RvR armour rewards. Bare in mind these tokens are in addition to the set pieces from loot bags. So people still have the normal chance to get items. The tokens are a back up system, a kinda reward insurance policy.

The only thing we can't do anymore is buy things like the armour set gloves for gold from vendors. Makes it a tad more difficult to quickly gear alts, but IMHO it's not worth crying about. There's still the BoE bits dropping from players and it just means people need to pay their dues and go fight people for tokens. From memory I think my haul from today was 4 Invader crests, 6 Conquerer Crests and 16 officer medallions. Remember those crests can be broken down into large numbers of medallions, so it really won't take that long to get stuff.

Also I highly recommend you check out how much stuff actually costs (Greenskin has a good post for this), because people in region chat are talking total crap. I've seen people saying how the Invader helm costs 500 Invader crests... Actually it costs 9 Invader crests and 475 officer Medallions. I got almost half the crests in one day's play and if break down those conquerer crests that'll give me 46 medallions already. Soon as I have enough Invader crests, I'll start breaking them down too and then the medallions will fly up.

Seriously, take the crying on forums about the token system with a pinch of salt. It needs time to fully assess how good or bad it is, but to me it's looking good.

Keep upgrades
Cool, I think... They had an impact, but were not game breaking, at least that's my initial impression. Long term effects? Wait and see.

Melee is back baby!
Melee works again. Wizards, Engineers, Sorcs and Magus still hurt, but the AoE spam is nothing compared with what it was. For the first time the large number of Bright Wizards didn't over balance things. First time in ages that it felt like an even fight. Today was the most fun I've had in RvR in a long time. When using Gashface my choppa I died loads (obviously), but I had a blast and really contributed to our group/warband killing things.

When on Bootae my chosen, well that was a surprise. We've got harder to kill in RvR, like big time... I had it explained to me, but may have since got the detail confused, apparently it's something to do with a change to how toughness works.
Big talking point prior to the patch, Rending Blade... the nerf isn't too bad, but you have to adjust how you play. For smaller fights I did just fine with a great weapon. Though I sword and boarded for all the big fights, be mad not too.
Also, it seems Touch of Palsy got a bit better. I need to test that out more and see if anyone else has noticed anything, so don't take that as gospel.

So there you go, first day and first impressions are worrying for PvE (sloppy testing?), but very positive for RvR. With some good hotfixing, this could work out very well.

PS gratz to Karak-Norn's Order for getting to IC on the launch of 1.2.1. This clearly showed you're not just about Rain of Fire stacking and will remain a force to be reckoned with. Fair play to ya! ;)


  1. Ah, you forgot to notice the rez-to-80%-or-full bug. That's a game breaker right there. I was running a group of 6 into groups of 8-12 today, and we seriously would have beaten them had the Choppas not popped back up at full HP.


    However, I LOVE the new patch. It's a huge improvement to RvR.

  2. Good point mate, thinking about it I did see that and I was briefly puzzled a few times. I'd assumed it was a change to shaman or something that I hadn't heard about, but obviously that's not the case then.

  3. I don't see how you could get invader crests at all considering it's nigh impossible to finish the invasion PQ now due to having to fight off the lord, 4 heroes, and a horde of players.

    The only other alternative is to get lucky lots off of player drops, and you pretty much need a lot hack to be able to beat the 23 other people you're lotting against on a regular basis.

    I think Mythic needs to change back to where we can select our city instances, or even better get rid of the lord/heroes all together. Make it a pure RvR climax to the PQ.

  4. Got 1 Invader crest from the PQ, it's not impossible, but certainly not easy to do that's for sure. Got 1 for successfull defence of the city. 2 others were from players. All the conquerer was from players.

    I don't want selectable instances myself, the days of everything being 0/48 48/0 O should never be repeated. But I totally agree it should be a fully RvR based experience.


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