Saturday 29 August 2009

Adapt or wipe

As you probably know, the keeps in WAR now have 2 ramps up to the Lord room. This has totally changed keep defence. No longer can you pile a tank wall at the top of a lone ramp and rain down AoE, to do so is a wipe waiting to happen. You can try putting up 2 tank walls, but quite often when defending you’re going to be outnumbered and even when not, it's difficult to make both walls strong enough.

The old tried and tested methods are null and void. It’s time to adapt.

I’ve seen a few keep defences where a tank wall was built at the main keep door, with mixed results. It’s a lot easier for the attackers to put a lot of AoE down on a front door, since the ranged attackers don't have the same awkward line of sight issues they faced with ramps and it’s more straight forward for the melee DPS to get stuck in. However, if the defenders keep the oil manned, have some ranged fire coming from the walls and most importantly stay organised, then this type of defence can work well.

It’s not the only way mind you. A night or two ago at a keep in Dragonwake I saw Order try out various strategies. Whilst at the time none of them completely worked, there was definitely potential to build on. And btw /salute to the Order involved (think it was Crimson and friends), you kept us on our toes and we were impressed to see you trying stuff out.

Normally when defenders sally forth from a keep, they leave the healers and ranged inside, but that night they appeared to be trying a full warband assault from the front entrance, before we’d got the door down. It was a good scrap and we did kill them, but there was a trickle of players coming out long after the main assault, so I think it didn’t hit with the full force it could have. Seemed to me that they had a lot stragglers not paying attention. I’m used to seeing (or being one of the) melee charging out of keep doors, but that was probably the first time I’ve seen an attempt at such a large scale counter attack from the front door against a greater number of attackers.

They also tried the same thing by coming out of the rear postern door. Luckily for us we had Nulfmatwo the squig herder of doom watching the side of the keep that they moved round. As they were trying to sneakily form up, thanks to Nulf's warning we managed to counter their own counter attack. After a big fight around the side of the keep we pushed them back through their postern. Had they not been spotted, then there was a good chance they would have annihilated our healers before we could stop them.

I’m sure most of us have tried these kinds of tactics before, but perhaps the difference is now they should be the focus of a defence, which will require a bit more organisation than just lining tanks up and spamming AoE. Undoubtedly defending has become harder, but I think potentially it’s got a lot more interesting too.

Friday 28 August 2009

Thursday 27 August 2009

First visit to the new Altdorf

I’ve been a bit worried that the last few days might have been somewhat disastrous for WAR. This patch was another of those where it really needed to be good; it needed to be Mythic making a statement, showing us that they CAN produce quality goods. That the naysayers were just that, naysayers. But due to a myriad of bugs it proved to be the opposite. Instant ressing, poor performance, random teleporting, broken campaign, broken dungeons, and the list goes on…. I know quite a few people that are “taking a break from WAR until the campaign/my class/whatever is fixed”. So it’s fair to say that up to now this patch has done nothing but piss people off and highlight in BIG RED LETTERS that Mythic’s quality assurance/testing/whatever is not good enough. Right now it’s as bad as Funcom’s patching and as an ex Anarchy Online and Age of Conan player, I don’t say that lightly. Though in fairness Mythic do hot fix much quicker and better than Funcom did.

The big saving grace would have been the excellent on paper city changes, but thanks to the fortress lords becoming un-attackable, on Karak-Norn at least, we didn’t get to see the big new changes. It has been impossible to take down a second fortress, which of course meant no city sieges for us. However, last night we discovered they had been fixed and despite some determined defending by Order, we made it to Altdorf.

And now I find myself really torn on what to say, it could be “be careful what you wish for, you just might get it” and it could be “this is bloody awesome”. City sieges are now much more about the RvR. The first stage of the initial PQ is a giant Nordenwatch where you gain points by holding the 3 objectives and killing Order. The next PQ stage you can kill the Lord PvE style, or you can continue the fighting. There’s more of course as the city state changes, but I’ve not seen that yet. On entering the city it’s immediately obvious that this first PQ/scenario/thing will work brilliantly; we have now got what we asked for and in city sieges the focus is on killing enemy players. Great stuff I think. However, as you’ve no doubt guessed, he comes the “but”... But what about if you’re in an instance with no enemies?

Oh… bugger... We got to Altdorf late last night and with Karak-Norn Order having a much larger daytime than night presence, it meant some of us had empty instances. There just wasn’t enough Order to go round. Unfortunately for me, I was in one of those instances. So this meant we spent 15 minutes sitting at an objective doing nothing, then killed the PQ stage 2 lord, PQ resets and it’s back to sitting at the objective. Not overly exciting for me, but I heard from people in another instance that was packed with Order, that for them it was absolutely bloody awesome.

I’ve just heard that the daytime dominating Order are in IC right now. Having been online during the day before myself and witnessed the low Destruction turn out, it’s a safe bet that many Order have spent their afternoon in empty IC instances.

It’s quite amusing really, prior to this patch people would try and get into empty city instances so they could farm the PvE PQ for loot, but now everyone will want to be in the full instances because it’s actually a lot of fun. Mythic have turned the whole thing on its head and mainly in a good way. It will mean late night city sieges are less appealing (which is no bad thing in my book), we’re not reliant on dodgy PQs and are less likely to be shafted by low level characters, the poorly geared or bloody ignorant (I’m not implying that they’re one and same ofc). However to make the most of the change, for everyone in a city instance to have a good time, then we really need both factions to be equally active at the same time.

With whatever real life factors defining when we can or can’t play, is that going to happen? Let’s hope.

Monday 24 August 2009

Does WAR need more PVE instances?

Lately I’ve seen a few people say it does. At first this puzzled me greatly, I mean come on, this is meant to be an RvR game, surely it needs more RvR? But after pondering on it a bit, I think I see where they’re coming from. Let’s say you’ve cleared Lost Vale earlier this week, when you log in and for whatever reason there’s no decent RvR going on. The problem you now face is that there’s not that much else to do.

There is Tomb of the Vulture Lord (and LotD Lairs), but that’s not a dungeon you can always get in and it has the odd issue that is putting some people off going regularly (including me), but that’s a topic for another post. For now I’ll “just” say that access to Land of the Dead isn’t always available, the main dungeon itself is tricky enough to not be somewhere you can easily take random groups to, the scorpion boss fight is ridiculously badly implemented and the place has a certain burning irritation…

Out in the rest of Tier 4 unless you’re grinding XP, you’ll only do each PQ once if at all, for the sake of seeing them perhaps. There are the lower dungeons for taking alts and new people through, but there’s nothing relevant to most of our main characters. In the modern MMO we don’t do dungeons just for fun, we do them for fun AND loot. EQ/WoW turned us into materialistic bastards, whilst we still want to have fun; the desire for shinies is often the driving factor. If you’ve cleared a dungeon or PQ once, unless there’s loot to be had, why bother going again? You’ve already met the challenge and beaten it to death with it’s own shoe. MMO PvE just isn’t that much fun on its own. To have any interest in doing something more than once, for us to want to farm it, then it needs to have incentives, be they XP, cash or loot.

Anyways, back on topic and now apologies for another Warcraft comparison, but it’s easy to do so meh :P If you compare WAR’s end game dungeons with WoW’s vanilla dungeons (prior to The Burning Crusade expansion) it looks like this:

WAR (6)
Bastion Stair
Bloodwrought Enclave
Bilerot Burrow
Lost Vale (3 wings)
LotD Lairs (think its fair to group these as one)
Tomb of the Vulture Lord

WoW (12)
Blackrock Depths
Dire Maul (3 wings)
Lower Blackrock Spire 10-man raid
Upper Blackrock Spire 10-man raid
Molten Core 40-man raid
Onyxia 40-man raid
Blackwing Lair 40-man raid
Zul Gurub 20-man raid
Ahn Quiarajthingy 20-man raid
Other Ahn Quiarajthingy 40-man raid

Obviously within those dungeons there are paths of progression, but in WoW there are a lot more options for your progression. It doesn’t matter that you were locked out of Molten Core; you could still do Onyxia or Zul Gurub, etc instead. In WAR there are other things like the King fights or the instances in city sieges, but they’re not things you can just arrange to do on any given night, where as with WoW you free to do stuff anytime. Clearly then, at present WAR doesn’t have anywhere near this PvE luxury, which is understandable as an RvR focused game, but if people are asking for more PvE how can this be addressed?

There are 2 basic solutions:

1). Add more instanced dungeons. For me the danger here is it makes a comparison between WoW and WAR’s PvE more relevant. Unless something dramatic happens with Mythic’s bug squashing, this comparison is one that WAR will lose every time.

2). Give us new and improved RvR options. Make tier 4 zones fully RvR, give us more objectives, open field scenarios, RvR PQs, non-instanced RvR enabled dungeons, open-RvR scenarios, fortresses that don’t suck, better (and actually relevant) influence rewards, more siege weapons and destructible walls. Get the game to a point where there’s so much awesome RvR going on that people don’t have time or a care for PvE.

For me it’s option 2 all the way. I like RvR in WAR now, despite the odd (heh) problem its PvP is still miles ahead of most MMOs, but we all know it could be so much more. Mythic are moving in the right direction here with the changes to city sieges and fortresses (whatever they’re doing with fortresses must be better than the current rubbish), so there’s potential.

Sunday 23 August 2009

I'd like to give you an update on the patch's major changes, but I can't...

...because we can't get to Altdorf.

/rant mode on

And whilst Order to their credit put up some tough defence this evening, that wasn't the thing stopping us. The intensely irritating reason was that, along with the constant crashing and other bugs, this patch has brought a bug where once you capture one fortress, the NPCs at all the others become unattackable. So even with a coordinated push to get all 3 enemy fortresses under siege at the same time, as soon as that first one fell the others became impossible.

Since the campaign was knackered, we decided to go to the Tomb of the Vulture Lord, but we couldn't get in. Not because the zone was Order controlled, oh no. Instead because the PQ outside is bugged and the "dig" button isn't appearing for stage 1. Great... Though apparently some guildies got it to stage 2 earlier because the button appeared for a couple of people, but then the runes you stand on weren't activating at all, so they were still stuffed.

There's all sorts of other bugs and problems being reported on forums and in game. That's a tad ironic considering that this patch's big selling points were: bug fixes and city siege changes.

The bug fixes are probably great, but they're overshadowed by the monstrous new ones. And as for City sieges, well they remain great on paper. But that's all it is so far, on paper, since we can't get to the bloody city because of bugs.

Here's a tip. Don't release bug ridden patches just before the weekend, so like maybe you'll have enough staff in to fix the bloody thing before it gets hammered with the weekend's heavy gaming numbers. A bit like with the previous not at all buggy patch, where you didn't release it just before thanksgiving and have by your own admission most of your staff on holiday. Oh wait... :P If that's a misconception of events on my behalf, then apologies and yet at the same time, yikes! The situation is worse if so.

I hope this is all a bit embrassing for Mythic, but unless the US is suffering the same we won't know as they don't comment on EU issues. That's left for GOA to reply with the generic "sorry, we'll send it to Mythic" style response, followed of course by sweet FA. We still need shared US/EU forums.

Continuing this whinging tangent compare:

Even after all this time we're still stuck with the much despised, browser unfriendly, bugger all information holding, pile of turd, Flash (is it 1998 in France still?) website. It's like a constant digital reminder to us EU players of the old classic GOA comment "equal does not mean identical". Also known as "meh screw 'em, what do the customers know anyway".

See Mythic? See what your bug ridden patch has done? It's drained my positivity and turned me into a grumpy old twat wallowing in my internet misery.

/rant mode off

Yipee! Happy thoughts!

Friday 21 August 2009

Karak Norn = Crash, crash, crash, crash, crash!

Sort it out Mythic/GOA pls. It's pathetic how often the entire server is crashing since the patch. Multiple times every day, every night.

Not good enough.

Thursday 20 August 2009

If you build it, they will come, maybe.

First off in case you’re wondering why I’m not talking about the patch, it’s because I figured I’d let it settled in before commenting. For now, onwards with a totally different subject!

I recently posted a proposal for how a third faction could be incorporated into the existing campaign system of zone locking. The post was met with some enthusiasm (my thanks to those that commented here and the bunch of folks that contacted me in-game, feedback is great to have), so I think it’s time for some more third faction rumblings, but please bare in mind the following is purely hypothetical and Mythic have not given any suggestion they would consider adding a new faction. Right now this is just a popular topic generally, that I think is worth a bit of pondering on. Certainly it seems to me that most people are in agreement, WAR should have had a third faction. It worked in Camelot, would have worked here and would have been a lot better than just two. So the next question I’d like to mull over is:

Is it possible to implement a third faction without it becoming each server’s whipping boy?

Short answer: I think so.

Long answer:
The big concern is that if a third faction suddenly appeared, it wouldn’t have enough players to compete with the existing factions. If the faction starts of weak and is getting it’s backside spanked, then it’s perhaps not going to be an attractive option for people to sign up to and as a result it stays weak long term. Also I’ve seen people comment that people aren’t going to just quit their existing guilds and factions to join the new one, which I’m sure is true in many cases, but I know for sure it’s not every.

So if we think about what introducing a third faction needs to achieve and who it should be marketed at, I think it’s fair to say that; a change of this scale needs to not only be a nice addition that keeps existing subscribers, it also needs to draw in masses of new subscribers and give the game a big injection of life.

If what forums and some bloggers seem to be saying is true, then WAR is full of pissed off and bored people wanting a new challenge. OK, so if you want a challenge how about building a whole new faction up to a competitive level? Surely that would be one hell of a path to glory? I’ve already seen several guilds re-roll faction for a new challenge, which suggests it’s actually not that much of a stretch with a third faction. I know that if I were in that pissed off category I sure as hell would give it a go. It could actually be quite an exciting thing to be part of. Perhaps within this contingent lies the experienced spine of a new faction.

As for the new players, this is the crop waiting to be harvested. If Mythic could get that huge influx of new players you’d hope for with any expansion, but also get the majority of them into the new faction… That’s the lifeblood of it right there. We all saw how skilled Mythic are at building up hype for their game. Mythic could use that skill again and focus it around the third faction. Mythic release the expansion after months of advertising funkiness and the new players join up already brainwashed and gagging to play the new races.

Also I think a key selling point would be to release this as a proper paid expansion (something this scale has huge costs after all), but unusually the expansion release should include a full copy of the original game. This would mean totally new gamers wouldn’t have to pay twice to start the game and would instantly have access to that all important new faction. A whole game and expansion for the price of one is something people will certainly consider trying out and with the new content hyped to high heaven it would get some attention.

So that’s fine, we’ve got a potentially decent sized player base, but how do we make them start strong? That hype is going to wear off fast if the new faction’s city is on one star and being farmed constantly.

That would indeed be a bad thing. Lets avoid it entirely through the power of live events… For the first few months after release have the new faction’s city as un-attackable. We could push them back through the zone before it, but we can’t siege their city itself. This would give their faction time to develop relatively unmolested. As time progresses have various live events themed around the collapse of whatever lore reason is used for this immense defensive power.

The next big thing is to capitalise on the lore. Warhammer is one of the most popular fantasy licences out there; Gamesworkshop has created wonderfully detailed and interesting civilisations full of character. Pick the right races and classes for this new faction and make them awesome. Not good, not quite cool, it needs to be bloody awesome. The things you could create for Skaven zones… or Bretonnian, or Wood Elves, or Beasts of Chaos, or Nurgle, or…. There’s just so much potential to back up the hype with epicness. Make the most of it.

Boil this down and we’ve got:
  • A full game and expansion for a decent price.
  • A new faction hyped to hell and with a defensive head start.
  • Something fresh and new for existing bored players.
  • A much more dynamic RvR campaign.
  • More GW awesomeness.

    I’m still happy as Larry with my Destruction evilness, but if I weren’t that would make me sign up. How about you?

    © 2008 - Bootae's Bloody Blog
  • 1.3.2 Fortress changes = Relic raids?

    I wouldn't bet my house on it, but wouldn't be surprised either.

    For those that missed out on Dark Age of Camelot... it used to have Fortresses that had a special Relic inside, having that relic in your faction's fort gave a realm wide constant buff, damage increases that kinda thing. If I recall correctly, relics from different Fortresses gave different buffs. You could assault the enemy Fortress, capture the relic, then escort it back to your Fortress and then your realm would get the buff for as long as you kept the relic safe. More relics you had, the more buffs you got, but the more of a target they became.

    Something like that could be a nice side line to the main campaign. Or do you think they have something else planned?

    © 2008 - Bootae's Bloody Blog

    Wednesday 19 August 2009

    Fight Club continued

    OK my first night's 3 to1 win/loss ratio hasn't lasted :P I'm probably at about 40/60% win/loss now, though to be fair I am repeatedly fighting the people I can't beat to work out how what I need to do. A slow, painfull, but interesting process that. Plus of course lots of these duellers are bloody good, so it would be arrogant as hell to assume I can show up and instantly get consistently good results.

    Duelling is too addictive. I really must get some sleep.

    © 2008 - Bootae's Bloody Blog

    Tuesday 18 August 2009

    Tangent warning! Oi Sailor!

    One of my big gaming interests is military sims and (decent) strategy games, chief amongst which is probably the Silent Hunter series.

    Big woot from me! Trailer for Silent Hunter 5 is out :)

    Monday 17 August 2009

    Producer's Letter - 1.3.1 and Beyond

    I wouldn't normally put two posts up in one day, but this is worth it. Check out the latest Producer's Letter released today, there's some VERY interesting stuff about plans for patch 1.3.2.

    1. Data has shown us not enough players have experienced a city assault. With the new improvements, we want to make sure that happens, so we’ve decided to decouple the Fortresses from the Tier 4 campaign. They still exist, so don’t worry—they are not disappearing, but they are also no longer required to capture in order to claim the pairing. We have other ideas for the Fortresses, but I would be showing our hand a little too early with those thoughts right now. =) It’s cool, trust me.
    Ooooooooooooooohhhh!!! Now this is very interesting. Right now it seems almost everyone hates going to the Fortresses, which is fair enough, since they suck royally. I'm really looking forward to the city changes in 1.3.1, but I'm not so keen on having to go through the bloody forts to get there. Decoupling them from the campaign can't come soon enough and I'm most intrigued to see what Mythic's plans are. This could be great.

    2. New User Journey Experience – New recruits come to WAR everyday and many of us roll alts from time to time, so we are taking a hard look at the beginning player experience and exploring how we can make that introduction experience to WAR even more memorable.
    I'm an alt whore, so new stuff in the lower tiers I'll be interested to see regardless. Plus this could be good for keeping hold of new recruits to WAR.

    3. Apprentice/Hireling System – Wouldn’t it be cool if you could play with anyone at any time regardless of Rank? I think it would. ;)
    Ah an apprentice system. Hmmm, could be good, but I've encountered them in other games and am yet to see one that really worked well. Always a first time of course.

    4. Continued Crowd Control balancing! In patch 1.3.0b you saw some of our first adjustments to Crowd Control, and in 1.3.2 you'll see the next steps as we begin approaching some CC abilities directly. These changes will help to continue shifting Crowd Control to be more strategic and purposeful on the battlefield.
    Good. The changes so far have been a step in the right direction, but it's proven to be not quite enough. Looking forward to some details.

    5. The Daemon moon will rise.
    Oh you tease.... Clearly a reference to the Warhammer world's warpstone second moon and the many evils it's associated with. Live event one presumes.

    Fight Club

    A couple of days ago I found myself at a bit of a loss for things to do. It was late and it seemed everyone was rammed into a zerg fest fortress thing, something I can rarely be bothered with. I noticed my guild’s infamous duelling Sorcerer “Infexion” was off in Etaine. On Karak-Norn Etaine has become the server’s sort of official duelling zone (when not unlocked for RvR of course), it’s generally acknowledged that you leave the duellers to it, unless you want to join in. So with nothing else to do, I figured I’d take my Chosen over to Etaine and try out this duelling lark.

    It was an interesting change of pace. I’m pretty handy with my Chosen in group/warband oRvR, on even terms my guild groups are a tough prospect and losing is not something we do that often. Also whilst in scenarios and roaming generally, I fairly often get in 1v1 situations and it’s a very rare occasion that I lose, so I was fairly confident about duelling. This was probably a bit naïve, as I’ve now realised there is one huge difference between random 1v1s and the organised duels. That difference being: preparation.

    When I’m scrubbing about Tier 4 or in scenarios I’m using equipment and tactics that will put me in a good stead for any situation and opponent. I’m using an all round, cope with anything set up and due to how suddenly combat can start, normally I won’t have time to switch tactics or gear. The same applies to my opponents. Duelling however is totally different. Prior to the fight starting people are selecting the optimum tactics and equipment set up for that particular opponent. This is something I totally failed to get my head round and I just went in with my standard set up. I've no idea what the best set ups for 1v1 fights are, I've had to just wing it so far... So how did it go?

    Actually it has gone pretty well. I’ve won more than I lost (over 27 fights I had a roughly 3-1 wins/loss ratio), but I have found myself consistently losing to one class; Swordmasters using shields. There are also some classes I’ve not yet duelled (KotBS & Runepriest), so I don’t know how I will fair against them. I’ve had a chat with a couple of the big name duelling Chosen about my Swordmaster problem and they initially put it down to my gear. I’m using Invader & Darkpromise armour (I can’t equip my Warlord yet, the price of having too many alts…), which means I’m running (with my aura on) at about 800 strength. These guys are in the 900+ region, which certainly makes a difference and I could see them hitting harder, but I now suspect the main thing is actually tactic choice rather than that 100 strength difference. After further discussion with one of the guys I discovered (amongst things) he was using a tactic that boosts our DPS by 15%, but reduces our armour by 33%. This is something I wouldn’t normally even consider using, it’s too risky for my normal group play. But this isn’t group play, this is duelling and the environment is totally different. People are using different tactics for different opponents, which I suppose is obvious really, but having not duelled before, I hadn’t considered it... It’s got me wondering how many different tactic set-ups I actually need to for fighting different classes.

    After a year of WAR it’s fascinating to discover I’ve got a whole new style of play to learn. Though I'm also preparing myself for some brutal spankings as I go up against more of the seasoned pros... :P

    That and I need to pull my finger out and instead of having multiple RR5x characters, lots of nice LV gear on them and a bazillion other alts, I need to become a renown whore and get my Chosen’s RR up big time...

    Thursday 13 August 2009

    Oh bless their cottons! BBB gets plagiarised

    Friend of mine has pointed out some donut at is putting my and other people's posts directly onto their blog :P

    Having not asked permission or bothering to even present it as being copy pasted from other sites, well let's just say making the title a link to our sites doesn't quite wash. My fellow bloggers that actually, you know, own a keyboard... may want to have a trawl through the archives of that "blog".

    Comedy gold, but kinda special too.

    Wednesday 12 August 2009

    City siege improvements are good apparently

    I couldn't get on for the Euro PTS lark, but from everything I've read so far things are looking pretty damn good. "Like a huge Nordenwatch" was one of the descriptions I very much liked the sound of. Game performance in the cities is meant to be much improved too, which would be a very welcome change.

    Other bloggers weren't as slack as I and managed to get on to the PTS. There ares some comments over at Overly Positive and Werit which as always with those blogs are worth a butchers, plus there's the feedback threads over at the official US forums.

    If Mythic pull this off and makes city sieges fun, then this could make a big difference for a lot of people. There's a whole load of us that don't bother going to attacks or defence currently because it's just fairly poor PvE with hideous lag. If that was to change to decent RvR and good performance... Well my friends, I'll see you in the city :)

    Monday 10 August 2009

    56.789% of MMO facts are bollocks

    All the time I see forum warriors pulling statistics and “facts” out of their arse.

  • WAR has sold 2 million pre-orders in the Far East!
  • By my accurate estimate WAR subs are now at 123K
  • WAR subs are growing 33% every month!!
  • WAR is in maintenance mode and will be dead within a month!

    It’s probably a load of old cock. In reality the facts and statistics, both for and against, are nothing more than rumour and guesswork based upon individual’s perception. Perception that is tainted by their personal experience of WAR, their past MMO preferences and the ranting of people on the forum they have alt-tabbed at work. Unless it has a linked source from EA or Mythic, take any fact or statistic as pure opinion.

    People are now giving their “accurate” estimates based on EA’s latest report where apparently the only thing mentioned about WAR was that it was mostly responsible for a 33% increase in their $36million online subscription income. Despite the vagueness, folks are using that percentage to calculate subscription numbers for WAR. Regardless of there being no detail on what was included within in those subs, how the other games subs reduced or increased and so on. By Odin’s beard! People are even using xfire stats as proof… Maybe we have no bloody idea and should accept until EA/Mythic confirm it; we’re just pulling numbers out of our arse to support the argument we want to make.

    Both the haters and lovers lash out at each other, forums are trolled to death and finding anything meaningful becomes bloody impossible. Human nature validates our opinions and makes all different ones wrong. We’re right and anyone thinking differently is a noob retard bastard that’s probably 12 years old or a sweaty geek that’s never seen a real woman naked. Let the circle of hate and anger commence! RAAAGHHH! HATE! ANGER! HATE! ANGER! HATE! ANGER!

    My perception of WAR is positive. It has problems, it would be naïve to suggest otherwise, but for me it has more good points. It’s still the MMO I see myself playing long term. Based upon my experience of past MMOs I think the idea that the game is going to be turned off is ridiculous. So am I right? Pffft… no idea! What I do know is that my guild is good, very active and committed to WAR, most times that I log in my server has a high/high population and there’s always loads of fighting to be done. However not everyone has those things (and even if they do), their “state of the game” may differ immensely.

    I think the latest hype-fest Aion is bloody awful. It runs very well, but it’s too grind based, I loathe the slightly suspect, camp fairy imagery and I believe once it goes live in the west it’s popularity with many western gamers will fizzle out fairly quickly. Archlord, Lineage, RF Online, zzzzzzz, I’ve seen it all before. Now I could go into the many reasons why I feel this about Aion, but I can’t present them as fact; it’s nothing more than my own opinion. Likewise the people I know that liked the Lineage games or Final Fantasy online thingy are pimping Aion like they’ve got Gianna Michaels for a freebie weekend rampage, but that’s just down to their preference and opinion. They predict we will see a new king, a World of Aion if you like, but that's a prediction, not a fact.

    It’s very easy for us to make judgements on how the majority view an MMO based on the thoughts of our own gaming communities and the forums and/or blogs we read, but its a monstrously arrogant assumption to believe we represent the majority of MMO gamers, or that it turns us into to some kind of gaming expert with mutant industrial espionage powers.

    The reason we’re playing and talking up the MMOs we do is down to our personal perception of that game. I just wish people would be more wary of estimating facts and presenting opinion as anything other than what it is.

    One man’s truth is another man’s utter bollocks.

    IMHO ;)
  • Thursday 6 August 2009

    WCPI - Leaked patch notes 1.3.1

    Shadow-war has a decent write up and details of the leaked patch notes for 1.3.1 that briefly appeared on the EU forums. If you want a heads up on what 1.3.1 is probably bringing us, that's a good place to fill your boots. Leaked patch notes should always be considered far from gospel, but these ones look pretty solid.

    Bug fixes galore and what appear to be excellent changes to the city siege system. Lets hope.

    Wednesday 5 August 2009


    Durtbocks has been at it again...

    Rickrolling is so last year. Waaagh!rolling is where its at.

    Give me some of that scenario action

    A good while back I called for the removal of scenarios from WAR, they were detracting from oRvR and to me felt like they were only put in to catch gamers that needed some World of Warcraft familiarity.

    Ok, so this is me eating my words. :P I’ve actually been enjoying scenarios immensely over the last few months. I think this is down to several factors.

    1) I almost exclusively play in guild groups.
    I can’t stress how much better scenarios are if you play with guild groups. If you end up stuck with a bunch of clueless buggers with Internet Twat Bully Syndrome™, well… at least there are 6 of you in there that can try and make a difference. Hell, if you’re lucky with your timed sign ups then you can get a couple of guild groups in at once, which makes for a much more satisfying experience (possibly not for your enemy muhahaha).
    Also, just like skirmish oRvR, when you are in a scenario communication and reliability are key. A good bunch of mates and a ventrilo server can make all the difference. Win or lose, it’s more fun when you can have a coordinated attempt at victory.

    2) Its not just Serpents bloody Passage anymore.
    Variety is the spice of life. Previously when I did a lot of scenarios it was back when all you got was Serpents Passage. Thankfully those days have gone and we get a decent mix of scenarios to fight in.

    3) WAR’s scenarios are mostly rather good.
    There’s a lot of scenarios in WAR I like; Logrin’s Forge, Battle for Praag, Maw of Madness, Grovod Caverns and Gromril’s Crossing to name just a few. Most of WAR’s scenarios are variants on capture the flag or king of the hill, but they’re nicely mixed up and well made.

    4) No Zerg.
    Zergs aren’t my cup of tea. I’ll follow them about for ease now and again, but I much prefer more of the small skirmish type fights. Big fights can be fun for sure, particularly when the sides are fairly even. A 4 warband pile up entertaining, but unfortunately all too often its big zerg vs small zerg. With zone layout and the zone locking campaign promoting the zerg, it’s important to have alternatives.

    Of course scenarios can also be unbalanced and they are very good at putting emphasis on the overpowered elements in an MMO. I imagine every WAR player, both Order and Destruction, has experienced the pain of facing multiple professional bomb groups. *shudders* I suppose the more you reduce the size of a fight; the more you highlight the abilities of the individuals in it. That said, I think often people forget that this is not just highlighting advantages of different classes, but also the skill of the player.

    The only thing I personally find frustrating with scenarios is when people leave early. Short of a RL emergency I never quit scenarios and I encourage my guild members not to either, it’s just not the Kill Frenzy way. It’s all about the waaagh man… That does however mean we sometimes get stuck in impossible situations. A night or two ago I was in a guild group doing Battle for Praag. On joining we quickly realised the other Destruction were randoms and we were facing at least 2 premades of decent Order. After one wipe the other Destruction just buggered off. Leaving us all alone... More destro queueing solo would join, see the score and then leave as well. We of course stayed to the end and tried to put a fight up, but when there are 6 of you taking on 18 coordinated enemies camping your spawn, well… that’s only going to go one way. :P
    That’s not so much WAR’s fault as it is many players lacking any sense of honour and only playing for the renown gain. People can say what’s the point of fighting in an obvious loss, but then if everyone had that attitude and simply quit at the first sign of a loss, then there wouldn’t be any PvP at all. If you can’t cope with losing now and again, go PvE. Plus there’s nothing like turning a losing scenario around for a win, which I guess some folks will just never experience.

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    Half man half pixel. Music obsessive, likes a drink, occasional bastard.