Wednesday 29 September 2010

Skaven, my Chosen and me

I was having a natter on twitter the other day with people about the new Skaven, some folks are bit disappointed with how they’re being implemented and others, myself included, are not. However it wasn’t that long ago that I had been saying how the very concept of Skaven not being a traditional MMORPG level from rank 1-XX style character was NOT what I wanted. So what changed?

It boils down to a moment of self(ish) realisation that I had while pondering on the Gamesday UK Skaven news. My Chosen isn’t RR80 yet (RR76), for the simple reason that I am constantly being distracted by other playstyles and characters; after all it’s why I have 8 level 40s… So if Skaven added to that, well let’s just say my Chosen stands no chance of hitting RR100. I would end up being too busy going off on constant tangents and developing new characters.

However with this new system, my Chosen will effectively have access to 4 entirely different class playstyles AND still get all the renown earned. The downside of course is it doesn’t sound like I will really ever get that RPesque (new word ftw!) feeling of a true Skaven character and representing the little rat bastards properly, something I was quite keen on experiencing in an MMORPG, but for once I think I can happily live without that extra immersion. It’s going to benefit my overall progression so dramatically that I am pretty much converted to embracing the new Skaven.

With just one character we’ll have all these new options, but it is at the cost of our traditional expectations of new classes and expansions. Perhaps we have been too blinkered by the standard MMO mould for expansions and in fact Mythic are going to be stirring up a bowl of awesomeness, or perhaps being blinkered is right and it’s a case of “if it’s not broke don’t fix it”. I don’t know for sure yet, but at present I’m feeling very optimistic about all of this. It will be very interesting indeed to see how the rest of the WAR population and those watching from the sidelines react, particularly once it all goes live.

I know Gaarawarr was considering posting something about this, more from the slightly concerned viewpoint, so if you’re interested in this topic be sure to keep an eye on his blog (which you should be anyway).


  1. I'll have mine up in the next few days. Rushing to get ready for a 6.30am plane flight I didn't think I was going to take tomorrow, so running behind. :/ Plus, I'm getting all research-y on it. You know me. :p

  2. A good spin on the Skaven classes.

    I think it's also worth considering, that just because they don't appear in the traditional sense now, that doesn't mean in the future they cannot be expanded upon.

    We will get new character types, maybe not just yet.

  3. Most people complain about MMO's being WoW clones and the second you give them something different they start complaining.

    Its a very good point most established players have a main between rr71 and 80 plus a bunch of alts. Is that what the game really needed? moar alts?

    Presumably the purple rain will fall on the skaven "persona's"? during the seige, maybe this will be a good way to level up alts from rr 21-51 which is a bit of a hump for anyone with an alt.

    As a Warhammer player for nearly 20 years having skaven on the side of order is pushing it in the extreme. Dwarfs have been locked in struggle with skaven as much as anyone (excepting lizardmen). I understand the reasoning (we read it happened in a novel once and thus its going into our game) However the real reason is that they lacked the resources to implement Lizardmen at the same time. It sucks buts true and we have to move on.

    Otherwise I am really happy WAR is moving on and developing. If it is possible to do this level of expansion every 6-12 months on the current subscription basis then I am pretty chuffed. Remember we are getting a new zone too...


  4. I appreciate your viewpoint on this. And like you, I like that if I do spend time as a Skaven, my main will reap the benefits.

    The lore stuff ... honestly I've never been a lore nazi but this time I do cry foul. I posted about this and with a little more work repurposing some existing NPCs Order could have gotten Ogres, Gnoblars, Dwarf Thunderers, and Wood Elf Scouts. It would've made more sense.

    I do love the RvR changes and see lots of fighting in our futures.

  5. Besides the resources argument, I think that so many Order players want to play as Skaven that if they implemented other races instead, Lizardmen or whatever else, Order realms would have depopulated to other servers to roll Destro and play as their Skaven. Mercenary Rat bastards.

    The Lore is maleable. It's fiction.

    All in all I am really looking forward to these changes. The game just keeps getting better.

  6. I'm probably disappointed with the news about the Skaven just because I had such high hopes of them being a true playable race. Realistically though I know that's a lot to ask from the developers but I can't help but be greedy ;)

  7. The lore stuff regarding Empire and Skaven is something I have really mixed feelings on. It is dodgy, as mentioned the dwarves being the primary reason. It's not bothering me much, but then I play Destruction.

    From a lore perspective it would have been better for sure if Lizardmen had been implemented in the same way for Order, but for whatever reason Mythic AND Gamesworkshop are choosing to morph the lore based upon, well not a huge amount.

    Perhaps it was a time and resources issue, but just as likely is how damn popular Skaven are. If they were Destro only, what would that do to Order populations? They would be ravaged as masses leapt to play Skaven. No matter what other races they brought in, no matter how much I and others have tried to think up ways of making them seem cool, you just know deep down the masses would go for the rat bastards.

    So all told I think it's a shame from a lore view point and an awkward one for Mythic to have dealt with, but that's not stopping me from looking forward to playing Skaven.

  8. When it comes to lore i think a lot of people forget this skaven thing is happening right on the very edge: the war frontlines.
    In a peacefull city they might all cheerfully burn the twisted mutant critters, but when they find themselves facing what they percieve right then and there to be the greater evil invading whole countries allmost any tool is acceptable to ensure victory.

    ...the huge exception will ofc be dwarves, i just cant see them closing their book of grudges for the vile rat-things :P


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