Friday, 25 December 2009
Wednesday, 23 December 2009
I am constantly tinkering with my user interface to try and squeeze every ounce of my meagre PvP skills out. A while back I tried the YakUI release of add-ons, which are excellent. But to try and improve frame rates I deleted them all. I recently just upgraded my graphics card so went back to re-install YakUI.
I was hugely impressed by the installation and ease of use this time round. After you copy the files across the add-on sort of installs itself. It describes what you must do to scale your resolution and fonts then logs you out.
Then when you log back in it gives you a menu of the extra enhancements you might want to make and also gives you a tour of your new swanky UI with little arrows explaining each part. I think Mythic should give the creator a job as the whole installation was excellent!
I moved my war band grid to the middle of the screen in this screen shot as when I play a healer, I like to see what is happening and the little green bars at the same time. I plan to move guild chat in the right space.
Tuesday, 22 December 2009
I was playing in tier 3 today and we were trying to take a keep, the outer door went down and we piled in only to be stopped by a keg in the door way. You can run and jump over it, but the more people get stuck the more congested the door way gets. Some are calling this an exploit, but I love the ingenuity of players and thought it added a little extra to a standard keep siege.
Once ‘Keg End’ is over I wonder if ‘Mythic’ could actually introduce a barrier which can be constructed by players. I think it would still need to be jumpable, and take a good minute to construct and should only be allowed to have 1 in a given distance to another one, but it could add an extra element to PvP.
Maybe they could even extend the idea to have pools of damaging lava, or explosive aoe traps to slow players down. All the above needs to take time to plant and maybe even take the effort of a group of players, but you can imagine it being used as traps in troughs of terrain or at choke points.
I can just picture it now… you’re standing just over a hill with your war band goading the other side, then they charge with a bomb squad only to be slowed down by a snare trap and decimated by your ranged DPS.
Monday, 21 December 2009
Saturday, 19 December 2009
Heartless_Gamer is trying out the 10 day return to ‘War’. He is up to day 2 of his return, and both posts seem balanced and come with some excellent observations. I wish I could write stuff like this.
One observation is copying the Land of the Dead mix of PvE and PvP and duplicating it throughout the game. This works for LotD as it doesn’t attract the zerg because it does not contribute to the main RvR zone locking mechanic.
Would the public quests and small scale RvR still work as well if there were part of the zone locking? Or would the public quests and small scale PvP just get lost in the hordes of players?
Friday, 18 December 2009
To be honest I am a bit grumpy with War this week. I have been trying to play my Squig Herder and Shaman, and they keep getting stuck in looping animations which don’t fix until I change zones. So when it happens at the beginning of a scenario or doing a dungeon it can be very annoying.
The ‘1.3.3 Producers Letter - Bruce Maclean’ didn’t really inspire and spent a little too long dwelling on the past.
My effort to give away a 60 day time card also epically failed with not one entry, so I guess I’ll just use it myself.
I’m off to torture a goblin; I wonder how long its entrails will stretch out, so I can use them for catapult wire to launch a Snotling at a keep wall. Maybe the sounds of TWANG.., "Ouch!", SPLAT! Will put a smile on my face.
Tuesday, 15 December 2009
The latest Warhammer Alliance pod cast is up and I had the pleasure to fill the fourth spot. I would like to say a big thank you to the podcast team for making me feel welcome. I wish I could just put on my slippers and don a bubble pipe and turn up each week and listen to all the chat and murmur agreement.
Listening to my own voice though, makes me want to crawl into ‘The Bile Lord’s stomach and pull his intestines over, so I can hide.
Wednesday, 9 December 2009
For a few months now, Destruction on ‘Karak-Azgal’ has been dominant. But since the transfers from ‘Eltharion’ it has flipped and massive Order war bands are everywhere and it is lots of fun.
This means our guild might not always be able to take/defend keeps but we can always find a good fight. Tuesday was no exception the number of players in ‘Caledor’ was staggering. After a few hours you feel like a ‘Snotling’ being repeatedly smashed into a rock by a ‘Black Orc'. But like the sick ‘Snotling’, I secretly like the attention and violence.
Monday, 7 December 2009
I have been playing in tier 1 a lot lately with a friend who is trying out the free trial and I have been surprised by the amount of people running about. Even when I played in tier 2 the number of war bands and battles around were the most I have seen.
I know War has seen a decline in the player base, but I wonder how many players the unlimited free trial has introduced to the game. Over the next month or so I could imagine Mythic releasing a press release based on this. DDO did it with announcing the increase in player based by percentage. Lord of the Ring did it with the amount of characters created.
Mythic could spin it any number of ways to percentage increase in people trying the game, new characters created or new accounts. Even when these announcements are just spin, it still creates a positive murmur around the community and gets your games name in the press.
Friday, 4 December 2009
I was browsing in my local Game (UK Gaming retailer) and came across a Warhammer European prepaid 60 day game card at a slightly reduced price. So I bought it and plan to give the code away. So if you want to have a chance at winning the code you need to do the following:
- Write a post similar to this one or this, outlining key strategic points about either a battle objective or keep.
- The post should be around 100-500 words and in English.
- It should also follow a similar layout with looking at its location, terrain, and engagement possibilities.
- Only enter if you don’t mind me reposting it on this site (of course I’ll also state who wrote it.)
- Email your entry to 'email@example.com'.
My favourite will receive the 60 day prepaid code sent by email and have their entry posted on the blog. The next 5 runners up will get there entries posted on this blog over the next few weeks after the winner has been announced.
The competition deadline for entries is 18th December 2009.
Tuesday, 1 December 2009
Trying to login to my main character of late has been difficult. I have 3 more destruction alt’s on the go. A Disciple of Khaine and a Shaman who are both 20 (I wanted the Cold One and Wolf mounts) and a Sorcerer around level 10. I am also undecided which healer to take to 40 as both have completely different play styles.
A few of my friends are also trying out the endless trial. At the moment they seem to like the accessibility of scenarios. We even rolled order alts on Karak-Norn. So I now have a level 7 Witch Hunter called Thlint (
The endless trial seems to be working well for tier 1 as most of the public quests have people running them and scenarios are popping like crazy. Last night on our order characters I don’t think we spent more than 20 seconds out of the scenarios. It is good to see how the Witch Hunter class works as well as they have killed my Choppa enough times.
Sunday, 29 November 2009
Thought I would make my own Warhammer Online video showing game footage from level 1 to level 40. It is not to advertise any kind of uber skill but to try and advertise the game. They say player word of mouth can do more for a game than expensive marketing, I was able to capture the game play after the improvements Mythic added in patch 1.3.2. Please watch and add some kind comments and ratings.
Wednesday, 18 November 2009
Over at ‘Warcry’ there is an interesting article about ‘World of Warcraft’s’ 5th year anniversary. The interview comes across as quite honest and open. Something I’d expect from ‘Mythic’ rather than top of the heap ‘Blizzard’ (remember when Jeff Hickman talked about War’s mistakes).
It was interesting how ‘Warcraft’s’ vision has changed since development in its launch and even up through its 5 year life. This seems to be shifted due to time constraints, player demand and the market.
Even in War’s short life span we can see this in a magnified way, from the loss of cities due to release schedule. Too the inclusion of RvR influence system and players dropping tokens in an effort to entice more players into RvR while they level.
What I think we are yet to see is ‘War’ changing due to other MMO releases. I am not sure how many times it has happened in ‘Warcraft’s’ life cycle. The only contributing effects I think have been the release of ‘War’, (please feel free to point out others) with inclusion of PvP experience and battleground queuing from anywhere.
This might be the fact that when the likes of ‘Darkfall’ and ‘Aion’ were released 'War' was too young and had only just been launched. Or as with the release of ‘Aion’, ‘War’ seemed almost glad not to be in the spot light so they could concentrate on none sexy improvements.
The article also mentions the decision to take ‘Warcraft’ in the e-sports direction and the problems they faced. I wonder if ‘Mythic’ ever wished they had stayed with the three faction model like ‘Dark Age of Camelot’.
What I also took out from it that an MMO’s vision and direction can be quite fluid. I remember the sales pitch ‘Warcraft’ had with inclusion of world PvP. Could ‘Warcraft’ been a better product if they had just stuck to PvE content. Maybe the constant balance issues and efforts taken up by PvP might have been used in improving its world and PvE offering. I imagine we might have seen more classes and even more hero classes.
If I was ‘Mythic’ I would take these lessons and pick a vision and stick to it. Forget PvE and focus on RvR and add variety. Even with the inclusion of a third faction, would this improve RvR as this later stage in ‘War’s’ life? Could effort wasted in creating a new faction and new zones associated with this go into creating a more varied experience. Does ‘War’ need siege weapons and realm balancing? Would it be better to hone the city sieges and make fortresses a key part of the campaign rather than a third faction with new classes?
I know the third faction seems important at the moment. But as an existing player, do I want another side to reroll as, or just more to do with my level 40 characters. Even if we got the third faction what would all those returning players once they hit 40 in the new faction find? I guess the same game but with more sides. ‘Mythic’ has shown us in the past they can think out of the box, maybe it is time they show us a new shining light which is not the third faction.
Thursday, 12 November 2009
So this is my third try at writing this post since the news about the redundancies at Mythic. I have gone through the classic symptoms of denial, Waaagh and revenge. The letter from Jeff Hickman did little to alleviate my concerns as it made no mention of that ‘still getting funding’, ‘hope for the future’ word… expansion.
My heart goes out to the staff that had to leave Mythic. But at least they can say (though I imagine it gives little too no comfort) they contributed in making War such a great product. Not many games released of late can say they contributed to the original ideas pool for MMO games.
I am not a maintenance mode player but for the moment I am staying on the roller coaster ride of War as the game is still a lot of fun for me. Saying that I actually think War has spoilt me with regards to my expectation of an MMO. I am no longer willing to accept playing through all the levels to reach an end game which is a totally different experience. War has shown you can have a game which is fun and accessible and does not necessarily need to change at level cap.
In resent months I have looked to see what has changed in the other games I used to play. I gave ‘Age of Conan’ and ‘World of Warcraft’ a month each, the later to play with my friends in instances, but I always just wanted to login back to War.
Like I said War has spoilt me, in those other games my choice of what to do is limited. I can quest, do their versions of scenarios (which are both limited) or wait around looking for a group in an instance. War for me at least offers so much more variation, and it is immediate! I can login for 20 minutes and feel like I have accomplished something. Whether it is getting my influence for a public quest or just 20 minutes of killing, the whole experience is friendly to the casual player.
So as I look across the MMO landscape I don’t seen much hope for other games which can offer the same accessible, fun experience like War. Aion looks nice, but I don’t fancy having to PvE through lots of levels to get the chance to PvP (before War I might have give it a go…).
I have tried Lord of the Rings but again I think I am tired of this generation’s type of PvE where quests are just a hub of exclamation marks. I only actually use quests in War while no RvR or scenarios are popping or I just plonk myself in a public quest. Even Eve Online which I consider to be the greatest MMO out there requires significant play time to be involved in PvP.
I hope EA know the gem of a game they have and continue to fund its expansion. With ‘Star Wars, The Old Republic’ for PvE and ‘Warhammer Online’ for PvP they could have two very cool offerings in their MMO portfolio.
Thursday, 5 November 2009
If you look at the War blogs and forum’s there is a lot of negativity around the changes to the removal of fortresses. A lot of servers are experiencing multiple city sieges a day. This was not really intended for the game so Mythic are introducing some more changes to try and alleviate the problems. It is a shame the removal of fortresses coincided with the performance changes as the performance fixes brought a lot of positive aspects to War, so much so I have actually been able to successfully Fraps a lot of the action in game.
My play time is limited at the moment therefore I missed out on city sieges in the past and the change has actually allowed me to participate with my guild to attack and defend the cities.
Monday night in particular was an excellent session, we had fought in Dragonwake managed to crash the server and on at least two occasions battle objectives bugged out and took a second count down to flip but destruction managed to lock the zone so as an alliance war band of 2 and a bit groups we all joined the same instance in Altdorf. We were out numbered in the instance so we accepted the fact we would loose and just played to have fun. Moving quickly to flip flags and hide in buildings to pick off smaller straggling groups from the main order masses. Sure we got caught a few times and order started to notice a pattern in our movement which just meant more skirmishes and death. It was one of my favourite nights in War from epic zone battles to mini instance skirmishers.
Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Last night in tier 4 on Karak-Azgal the RvR was bouncing. Eataine was on the brink of a zone lock for quite some time but Order kept popping up too steal an objective or two. Our own alliance managed to form a full war band and Order was everywhere so we had some good fights.
A few people on Ventrilo suggested this post might have shaken order up who have been complaining about the destruction zerg for weeks. I am not exactly sure how much of a role the server forums take in War. I for one rarely visit the official forums and instead lurk around the Warhammer Alliance ones, which for me have more of a community feel. The main reason for this I think is the forums existed before the game was released therefore a community has longer and more reason to establish. I think the official forums came too late and they might have been better off actually linking the Warhammer Alliance forums and establishing some kind of official link.
The real reason for the renewed activity in War could be the live event as we all know Order are loot whores but in my opinion it is patch 1.3.2 and the action point fix have made a huge positive difference in tier 4 RvR. No longer do I just spam abilities. Fights are lasting longer and I have to actually think more and be more careful, to come out alive.
Thursday, 22 October 2009
A while back I posted an entry on how I thought War was on the up and I still think that patch was a good start. It was the time when Mythic stopped adding and started fixing. Since then we have had a number of patches which in my opinion has improved War adding polish and improvements as well as tweaks to the game to improve things.
I agree with Werit and Bootae it is a good time to come back to War, but I might suggest just wait one more patch. As I think between now and then things will only get better, Mythic even seem to be hot fixing improvements now, which for me is better than big patches spread out.
When I created an alt and logged in for the new player experience I was greeted with the following screen, which outlines all the improvements they have added. I think my favourite addition has been the second ramp in keeps. All the keep sieges I have participated in have been manic!
Just thought I would also add my favourite screen shot I have at the moment which became the blogs banner. I seem to have caught Scission in an almost deflated state. This with the dark clouds approaching from behind almost tells a story of foreboding.
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
When you speak to most Dark Age of Camelot players if they are not endlessly harping on about 3 factions they gush over the feeling of realm pride.
Now I don’t to even pretend to know the answer to instilling more realm pride into War. If you are winning at the moment most people just point to the zerg and if you loosing there seems to be common theme of I quit remarks.
The War web site does have statistics on what the current snap shot of the realm looks like and it does have leader boards. But these are cumbersome to use and don’t tell a story of those epic struggles to take an objective.
Over at www.worldoflogs.com I jealously explore the amazing amounts of statistics they collect from World of Warcraft instance runs.
Take this example it shows DPS against a boss in an instance. You get to see how the group has done and it even shows markers throughout the boss fight. Of course the statistics can be viewed in a multitude of ways which can be DPS done and damage taken, healing statistics and a whole lot more. The whole web site is so easy to use and quickly brings up any statistics you want.
Imagine if War had this kind of log site. You might be able to take a particular objective and show the flow of battle. Then post the links on the server forums of a battle were your war band managed to hold out against insurmountable odds. Maybe have bragging tables of the most active and successful guilds over the past week!
Friday, 16 October 2009
So a lot is happening in War at the moment. I could comment about the interesting musings over at Bootae about possible expansion leeks.
Maybe I could join Zizlak looking at 1.3.2 and make comments about the War patch?
Instead… I was in tier two and notice Mandred's Hold has its own toilet. With one fatal design floor! They placed it outside the keep. Some of those sieges can take hours! What is a goblin to do when nature calls and the forces of Order are trying to break down your keep door?
Sometimes I wonder why I write this blog. But now I am wondering if any other keeps have there own facilities. All I need to do take out my tier 4 character on walk about, so I can get round quickly… I knew once day it would bite me on the behind! Damn you chicken mechanic! Damn you to hell!
I took a few videos and posted them here. Note you need sound for the posh voice.
Thursday, 15 October 2009
So the new user experience is on its way and the price for War has been lowered (which are both good). So what is missing to bring more players to War? Well in
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
You may have noticed I started a Zealot alt a while back. She was enjoyable to play but did not have a glitzy mechanic like the Shaman, or have the personality of the green skins.
A while back I created a Shaman to use if my friends ever tried War. He was still waiting at level 5 so I decide to give him a spin. 10 enjoyable levels later and I am still finding it fun and easier to level than my
Today I got into RvR for the first time in tier 2 with him and found myself a war band leader. Like most of my outings in tier 2 it was extremely enjoyable, we swapped objectives and keeps with order in the chaos coupling. We won a few objectives and managed to beat order back. Once all the objectives were taken we decided to take the keep, which was fortified with order. We got to the keep lord and wiped due to a strong order defence. Instead of the usual stragglers being taken out as your side get whipped into submission the war band grouped up outside of the keep and tried again together moving as one force. We made it to the lord again and again order wiped the war band. The third time was a charm, and order again tried to wipe us, they succeeded but the lord fell in the last moments, the Raven god must have smiled on our lost souls. So we returned to clear out our keep, 2 epic hours later we swept the last of the enemy from the doors of the keep.
Healing in a keep attack and defence has given me new respect for healers in War, the whole 3 hours was quite stressful and full on. When I have played a tank or melee DPS you get time to take a breath in these situations, but not when I played as a healer. There was always someone taking damage or needing resurrection. The layout of the keeps doesn’t help as well with dead and dying players around walls or down stairs. That coupled with team members over extending themselves out of healing reach, calling out for resurrection without location details or just my ineptitude. The job is difficult and challenging but enjoyable.
Wednesday, 7 October 2009
Monday, 5 October 2009
So we are getting to that time of the year when the twin moons Morrslieb and Mannslieb are high in the sky and the blood in your ooze ridden veins makes you do things even more horrid than sprouts with the roast dinner or skin on your gravy.
Mythic are giving use a new live event called Daemon Moon Rising. It has a few items from the last year’s event Witching Night and a new public quest ‘The Daemonball Rally’. It gives a nod to blood bowl and lets you kill and play skull football.
I am glad they are not just re-releasing last year’s event which looks positive for future events.
Friday, 2 October 2009
For a small organized war band the zerg can be annoying. You try and take a keep or lock a zone and the whole of the opposing side tier 4 players are all over you like mucus on a well used blade.
The tier 4 zones are a decent size, but the problem is each has a flight path smack in the middle. So any force can respond very quickly, which is good as Mythic’s aim has been War War War… But it also means the zerg might as well stay together as once they wipe a war band the other is only a snotlings throw away.
I wonder what would happen, if 2 out of the 3 flight paths in a race coupling was disabled or moved to a far flung PvE camp. Could this slow the zerg down or at least split it up. The smaller war bands then could at least try and take two objectives out at a time and have a little more time before the zerg wave crashed over them.
If we wanted to add a little more strategy to the campaign we could even allow the players to disable up to 2 of the flight paths by completing an objective near the camp. This might help split up war bands to respond to multiple threats but still allowing the War War War to happen.
Wednesday, 23 September 2009
I find him more amenable. His starter zone is better and he has a touch of the comical about him. Early on his mechanic seems more interesting, and reading on the forums the views tend to be positive about them later on. With posts like 'I love my Shaman'. Which I think is a first for a MMO class.
Monday, 14 September 2009
Bootaes has issued a challenge so here is my ultimate MMO group.
Spot 1: Warhammer - Black Orc
This was a difficult selection as the Chosen looks so good. But ever since I rolled a Warrior Priest and saw a Black Orc lumber over the hill dwarfing and annihilating all who got in his way I fell in love. Who could argue with an ability called ‘Right in Da Jibblies’.
Spot 2: Age of Conan – Conqueror
So here you have a tank that can use two weapon fighting. Anyone who is a fan of Drizzt Do'Urden will know wielding two swords is cool, doing this and being a viable tank at the same time must give them points.
Spot 1: Dungeons and Dragons Online – Cleric
Their versatility is excellent, they could also tank for you if your group were in a tight spot. The Warrior Priest from Warhammer nearly made it, but they are probably next generation Battle Clerics.
Spot 2: Missgideon (World of Warcraft - Priest)
For the single reason she was the only character I had who made it to the level cap in Vanilla WoW.
Spot 1: Eve Online - Megathron
They have everything, looks and style and filled with blasters as a Blasterthron would rip anything to shreds.
Spot 2: Age of Conan – Barbarian
They don’t actually have huge amounts of DPS as the moment, but would look good doing it. Blood splattering… heads flying all over the shop and the single fact you can pretend you are Conan and issues Arnie one-liners.
Friday, 11 September 2009
Firstly I’d like to look at a few possible definitions’ of the word “Zerg”. You can pick one or dispute them if you like.
“The Zerg Swarm are a race of fictional insectoids and the overriding antagonists of the StarCraft series. Operating as a hive mind,….”
"Overwhelming an enemy with numbers - going for quantity instead of quality, by rushing your opponent with hundreds of millions of players that have little skill.”
Now I have been trying to par-take in some RvR this week and the “War” zerg doesn’t seem to even live up to any of the above. Rarely have I seen any focus, or even a goal of the PvP and there has been certainly no idea of rushing an opponent to overwhelm them with numbers or any inkling of a hive mind. (By the way I am not blaming Mythic for this; I am putting the blame squarely at the average player.)
I have joined a few war bands and a lot of the players are not even playing in the same zone. Then when I have run to where the main clusters of players are, you find a massive group of order and destruction just fighting in one spot. My best attempted at describing this is pebbled beach warfare. Each side has a turn at being the water, a wave of players smashing into the pebbles dissolving into nothing remotely meaningful.
Now I still consider my relationship with War meaningful, but this kind of PvP is like having dinner with your other half and finding a ginger hair in you lovely prepared chips, sausage and egg, when you both have brown hair.
What has happened to us? Are people just trying to grind renown, is it the fact flipping zones and taking keeps only gets you “Annihilator” gear, and most people and their dog already have this? One member of the guild did suggest moving to another zone, then some one pipe’s up they don’t want to do PvE RvR (taking keeps without opposition).
Before this post just descends into a rant, I will try being constructive.
For me, the only way to have a truly organised war band or scenario group is with Ventrilo or Team Speak. No matter how fast you type you can not respond to the flow of RvR without it. As well an integrating voice communication (I’d do what Dungeons’s and Dragons Online did and get the experts to help you integrate it, I seem to remember they used the gamespy people.) I would make it configurable and have 3 types of people in a war band. The leader, scout and member, allowing the war band leader able to assign roles and turn off mute depending on your role. That way you could have voice communication so only the leader and scouts can chat and the rest listen.
Should a war band leader get more renown or a gold bag, which significantly helps to flip a zone? A player already gets more renown on a tic if they took keeps and objectives. If you’re a war band leader with over a certain number of members could you also get something extra? A gold bag to re-distribute or more renown? This might make more people step to the front and try and lead as doing so actually requires thought and effort.
Do we need a war band leader only chat channel which spans regions? The region channels tend to get spammed therefore could leaders use this to coordinate themselves?
Mythic have done lot’s to try to coerce players to take objective and keeps, with extra renown and gold. But as far as I have witnessed a lot of the population for that past few weeks any way seem to be happy with the pebble beach warfare.
Wednesday, 9 September 2009
Thursday, 3 September 2009
Over at ‘Grimnir’s Grudge’ he made an excellent post ‘Why you are going to (or already do) miss WAR?’. It is a simple question but the post covered so many topics from people leaving and how they do it, problems with the game to finally what he see’s as the essence of the game. It gave me so much to think about and made the boils in my brain bleed.
I have been away for a week and getting back into the swing of any MMO can be difficult. I think it’s the sun and sand which makes you forget why you played the time sink in the first place. ‘Grimnir’s’ post helped me see the essence of ‘War’ again. I logged in Tuesday night and thought right I need to complete the tasks, instead of thinking not lets carve some healers up. Consequently I only spent an hour and a half before I went and played ‘Batman Arkham Asylum’ (which is very good by the way).
‘Grimnir’s’ post helped me see why I play these games. Now if I quit a game I am not one of those people who wriggle on the floor in convulsing death throws on the forum spewing out hate and oily tentacles trying to take people with me. Or after I have died continually leave poisonous ooze to drive people away to what ever is my new shinny orb I am worshipping. I have always been the silent type who just moves on which a sourcey wink to the game “Catch ya later baby!” but I wonder what ‘Mythic’ prefer? At least the poisonous chaos beasts leave feedback, the most feedback they get from me is a closed subscription.
So getting back in the game can be a tentative time, with so many other games nudging each other for your time. I am not really talking about the newer games either… like ‘Champions’ or ‘Aion’ which at the moment don’t float my boat.
There are the also console games which I am not going to talk about here. But my two other MMO loves which are ‘Age of Conan’ and ‘Eve Online’, which in essence are in my view are quite similar to ‘War’.
‘War’s’ gems of play like ‘Grimnir’s’ states are the speed and bloody battle of war. I also think it brings with it the tactical combat of a well oiled war band that can use terrain and tactics to carve open the opposing side.
Then we have ‘Age of Conan’, I have not experienced it’s PvP as I only made it to level 55 with my barbarian and left before the PvP patch. But ‘Age of Conan’ actually excel’s in bringing this blood through its PvE combat. If you don’t believe me take one barbarian and sprinkle 6 bad guys and watch the blood fly. It is seat of you pants PvE combat with the barbarian knocking back and stunning foes… heads rolling and blood splattering. You make it out the other side with a sliver of health, but with the power in your lunges to shout down the wondrous ‘Hyborian’ valley with battle lust.
Lastly we have ‘Eve Online’. If you listen to ‘Channel Massive’ they call it gaming by spreadsheets. But I don’t imagine they have played the smaller fast guerilla style warfare of small ship combat. Imagine being 15 star gate jumps inside enemy territory (which actually takes real time and organization to achieve) and your cloaked scout has spotted your prey, a larger ship transporting some cargo. You spring your trap with a warp bubble and start to take him down. But this prey is not with out his own friends. Before you know it, scouts report in coming targets and your exit routes through star gates get closed off and a cat and mouse chase starts. You don’t have the coppery splatter of blood across your face but the eye stinking sweat and heart palpitations of the fight for survival are all too real.
But what is the point of this post, well it’s to give kudos to ‘Grimnir’s’ excellent post but also when you quit or play a game to try and remember why you play it. Push those bugs and niggles to the back of your mind and just savour the fear of your enemy.
Wednesday, 2 September 2009
Tuesday, 1 September 2009
So I am back from my holidays and I am looking forward to the Wild Hunt live event. But I just had to make a post about the book I read on holiday The Empyrean Age an Eve Online novel.
Now if I have a first love in the MMO genre it is probably Eve Online. (The name of this blog is a salute to the Eve server architecture.) Internet space ships for the win!
I thought the book scratched two of my itches. The first it follows classic (in my view) science fiction traditions. By this I mean taking a look at humanity as it is now and the human condition and putting a futuristic spin on those events. The next itch it plunges you into the Eve universe which is gritty and unforgiving. I could almost feel the mix of dirt, blood and pod fluid under my finger nails.
Thursday, 20 August 2009
Now my Choppa has hit the level cap logging into War now comes down to the serious business of renown gain. It seems I have a few choices here I can:
1. Join pugs and wait on the capture of battle objectives and the little renown they give and join the odd keep attack.
2. Join alliance war bands and do they same, the renown probably ends up a little higher and is more fun but our alliance has gone a little quiet of late.
3. Try single PvP in duels with other players. I have heard this gives the most renown, but I doubt I have the skill or min/maxing to do this.
4. Join PUG scenarios, this seems to give decent renown. I can usually get from around 1.5 to 3k per scenario. In the old days of KDS this would have been a nightmare of constantly loosing scenarios. But it seems of late especially on Karak-Azgal the matches are more balanced. I have been in a lot of matches were both sides where around the 400+ points.
5. Join pre-made scenarios. This is where the renown and fun flows like wine in War. You can’t beat being a Choppa with guard and a pocket healer…
Have to say one of my favourite abilities is the Choppa auto resurrection ability. So many times I have just been beaten by the tiniest slivers of health and I get the lovely auto rez dialog pop up. I wait for the other player to turn their back on me and go for the soft spot.
This is just a quick note to say I will not be posting for the next week as I am off on my summer holiday. I hope I get back in time for the Wild Hunt event, did I mention I wanted the stag cloak.
Saturday, 15 August 2009
An article has been posted on the official War site detailing what they needed to do to improve keep design. This hopefully will say goodbye to the single point of combat at the top of the ramp to the lord room. Over at thatsskarwithak they rightfully voice concerns at what this means for smaller groups of defenders but they also comment this may mean city sieges become regular events.
Hopefully this may mean the fights within keeps become more dynamic, with multiple tank walls needed. The reduction in AoE might also help to make keep combat more interesting.
But could there be more additions to keeps to make them even more interesting? I have already posted a few ideas on possible simple solutions for siege weapons. When thinking about ideas I always try to make them simple to include. Mythic probably don’t have the time to include whole new structures and mechanics not already part of the game in some capacity.
In keep combat the end is usually when the lord is killed and the almost immediate wipe of the defending side. What if this wasn’t the end, there is third floor and a lot of the keeps have outer siege pads with single bridges to them. Smaller groups could further defend these points. Taking this idea I came up with the following possible stage two keep encounters:
Keep Cleansing Stage
This is the simplest idea, once the lord is down and the doors respawn. The lord and champions don’t immediately respawn. Instead the opposing side have given amount of time to completely wipe out the defenders to eradicate their taint within the keep walls. Who ever wins within this time frame, would get further tokens or renown tick.
Supply Line Sabotage Stage
Again once the keep lord is dead, small barrels/containers spawn around the keep, at the top or along the keep walls. If any defenders still live they have the chance to taint the supply barrels to the keep reducing the hit points of the new NPC’s giving them a slight advantage when they decide to try and take the keep back.
Defence Sabotage Stage
As before once the keep lord is dead, explosive crates spawn at each of the walls above the inner and outer doors. If the defeated defenders can protect this spawns for a limited time they explode and reduce the hit points of the keep doors, again giving the loosing side an advantage when trying to take the keep back.
I am not suggesting all keeps would have all three mechanics; maybe they are spread out making each keep attack unique within the zone. It also might provide smaller groups an extra incentive to hide around the keep defending parts and bring even more dynamic combat to keeps.
Wednesday, 12 August 2009
To be honest half the time I think this is down to the usual trolls and rage quit posts, by people who think just because War didn’t suit their needs must be doomed to failure. In my little mutated world all has been fine from release and has only gotten better. Yes classes have been imbalanced at times (with zergs throwing themselves at the bomb squads) and city sieges broken. But as a player I just accept them and have faith the people at Mythic love the game as much as I do and will one day fix the issues. I just work around the areas I don’t find fun and do the stuff I do enjoy.
Anyway for all those doom mongers it looks like things might be looking up, there are a lot of positive reports on the city sieges (see below). The guild I am part of got to take part on PTS to test the city sieges. Everyone agreed that it was a great improvement and seemed to be fluid and fun. As for the last AoE patch, again that seems to have been well received. I for one am not dying time and time again to Bright Wizard bomb squads (did I just admit to sometimes being part of those mindless zergs?).
By the way I also just hit level 40 with my Choppa. This again is a first for me having actually two characters at the level cap, the only other time I ever hit the level cap in a morg was in vanilla World of Warcraft with my level 60 priest. Those last 10 levels in WoW killed me even though I had the help of friends to quest with.
What is more surprising for me is the lack of the sinking feeling. You know that feeling that you never want to go through that levelling process again, and the end game doesn’t appeal. On the contrary I am ready to go through it all again with my Zealot, and a few hours in tier 1 and 2 scenerios always seems to refresh the game for me.
I think she will be more of a part time alt, as I actually plan to play my Choppa and climb the renown and gear ladders.
DRANNATH'S ZEALOT LOVE
Warhammer Blog Times
Thursday, 6 August 2009
Wednesday, 5 August 2009
Friday, 31 July 2009
I wandered into a dangerous mind set for me over the last week. It is one were progression becomes my main focus, which means the act of actually playing the game takes second fiddle.
This is largely due to the fact my Choppa is level 37 renown rank 31. What happens is I end up grinding PQ’s just to try and use a 1 and a half hour play session effectively. Even questing becomes too slow, as I become impatient because I have to travel or read text. Let alone stand in a keep for half an hour with guild members defend.
This means I end up actually missing all the fun stuff, and not engaging with my guild members. So I have pulled my self out of the progression pit and told myself 40 will happen so stop trying to make it happen. So last night instead of the PQ’s I joined a pug war band and had loads of fun.
War band is probably a bad term as there were at least 4 of them which is more of a zerg. It was only an hour’s play session, but instead of following I tried to make sure I was one the front line. Which does wonder’s for you character ego. I just charge and when I have casters in my range I stick on Git To Da Choppa and because there so tightly packed in just watch those damage numbers fly up. I know the zerg is not skillful but sometimes all you need is to stick your choppa into as many faces as possible.
Wednesday, 29 July 2009
- Repeatable quests at Battle Objectives and Keeps, and also just having different quest icons to point them out.
- Influence RvR system, this is one of the main reasons why you get more people in the RvR lakes as the sets are so much more accessible.
- Easy public quests, as well as just providing more information on the map so you can tell straight away what kind of group you need to attempt the PQ.
- More experience given for killing players.
- Free trial, with a greater influx of players you have more people to play with.
Thursday, 23 July 2009
Tuesday, 21 July 2009
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
Saturday, 11 July 2009
I thought I would try a new regular feature with the blog. Spending a lot of time in tier 4 and playing a lot of open realm versus realm you slowly get to know the zones and how PvP plays ebbs and flows at certain points on the map. The guild I am with is a decent set of players and the war band leaders are always trying new tactics to try and beat the other side, so I thought I use the experience’s I am have to break down the objectives and keeps throughout the zones.
This may end with one feature or expand (if successful) across all the tiers. The first one is here. I will try and keep a common layout, and as my soul is sold to Chaos the details will be destruction focused. If you have any comments on views please post.
This objective is very close to the order war camp, from destruction point of view it is a bit of a lone objective and is used by order to ninja the objective before destruction can make it in time and maybe preventing a zone lock.
The battle objective is situated in sort of a crater with a path leading down and around, though a quick root in and out is available by means of a slope. Getting up the slope can be tricky but you just need to approach it from the right.
This objective can be a death trap for the smaller war band as it is a dead end and any approaching enemy can get a very good view of you war band numbers, without having to engage.
As the slope upwards is tricky it can be used as a farm point for ranged dps if they can taunt and pull the stupid lone war band stragglers up the slope.
For destruction this can be a quick way to a war band wipe. Order can trap you at the objective, and any dead can quickly spawn back if their healers are pressed. My advice is hope the objective caps before order arrives and either quickly move up the slope or work you way round and push order closer to the war camp and then break off once you have sufficient numbers to make it away. So choosing when to cap this objective can be at important as fighting at it.
See more pictures here.
Thursday, 9 July 2009
This is a shout out to Ziss from lagwar.com, for Stonetroll Certified Warhammer Online Podcast #31. At the moment there is a lot of negativity in the War community and he put out a positive show which made me smile.
I agree with him War is what you make it, if you using the same tactics all the time or standing in the capital city waiting for the Land of the Dead to open for your side yes the game might get repetitive or feel like a grind.
Why don’t you, try the following?
- Stop and have a look round. The world Mythic has created is beautiful and contains so many nooks and crannies and beautiful spots. I love the tier 3 Empire battle objectives or the tier 4 the elf areas.
- Put a group together and try and run some RvR.
- Has the door on the outer wall fallen, instead of running to the keep, push out at the postern and catch them from behind. Does the keep have buildings contained inside the out walls? Hide in them and pop out when they least expect it.
- Have you have just joined a scenario group, with an enemy premade in it? Don’t just leave the scenario, try and form your own group and use the same tactics, or operated some avoidance tactics taking objective without running into that bomb squad.
- Go and explore that zone you have not tried and or that public quest you never completed.
If you continually just follow the zerg or AoE the same mob to power level the game will only get dull and repetitive.
Monday, 6 July 2009
I have just reached level 32, so it is the final few levels till the cap in tier 4. I am planning to do most of my levelling through RvR and scenarios. With the occasionally visit to public quests throughout the zones.
This time round, I have managed to keep my renown rank relatively close to my level, as it currently stands at 28. I don’t want to reach forty again and have to grind 10 levels of renown rank just to wear the annihilator stuff (renown rank 33).
Running keeps in tier 4 without with the level 30 renown rank ability to bypass the postern, sounds like I’ll be as much us as a chocolate Bright Wizard staff.
Wednesday, 1 July 2009
Sunday, 28 June 2009
It’s 4’oclock in the morning, and it starting to get light. Everywhere is quiet and I am hot and can’t get to sleep, so I creep into the office and fire up my computer and luckily destruction have control of Land of the Dead. So I start to explore…
I have a go at one of the easy public quests. This particular one seems to fire a beam which keeps my Choppa in berserk mode. The skeletons rising out of the ground are level 40, and I am only 30 but being bolstered to level 36 they still deadly when you select them. So I try and pull one and he goes down in a few hits as I am in berserk mode. Then wham 2.5k from the kill, so I spend the next half hour killing skeletons and gain half a level and hit level 31. I stop as I don’t want to level to 32 as I am not quite finished with tier 3 oRvR.
What do I do… go back to tier 3? No! For some reason Land of the Dead almost begs me to explore, the whole place feels different… foreign. I try to swim across the river, which is a big mistake as the skin falls away from my body. I try and slay a vulture, and then I am picked up and dumped in a nest.
The whole area and monsters feel that little extra polished, and what is the main refreshing change to the area which makes me want to explore besides being just new content are there are no people in the hub with quests(what the funk)! Somehow I felt it free my character to take it up him self to see what is out there…
I took plenty of pictures which you can see here.