The quest for chapter 20 rewards

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At rank 33 I was running out of decent quests in my area, and the mobs wee giving me very little experience. I tried to do some PQs to grind out some influence but the rewards didn't seem great enough to motivate me to do this. So instead I decided to do a little bit of exploring; running around the map and unlocking as many chapters as I could find. Soon enough I cam to the high elf chapter 20 which gave me a ridiculously good weapon which gave me an extra 8-9 dps. The mobs for this PQ were rank 38 and 39 classified as 'challenging' and 'dangerous'. With my breath held in anticipation I pulled the first dark elf and started hammering away at it. The fight took a bit longer then it would to take down a monster my level (With grudges up and the 'cave-in' ability ready I can take them down in around 10 seconds) but the xp was pretty big; around 800xp for each kill with no xp rest bonus.

Things moved along a bit quicker when I had my grudges up and I was able to take on a the level 39s which I probably couldn't without the grudges. I was getting a fair amount of xp but it was just taking too long and I still needed to kill around 300 more to get my epic influence reward. I quickly advertised in chat whether anyone wanted to help, and after about 30min and a bit more spamming someone said that they'd come along. He ended up being a rank 32 warrior priest, so a 33 and 32 tried together to take the PQ. This time we coul take on two mobs at a time but annoyingly it wasn't twice as fast and soloing so I wasn't really getting the great influence that I longed for. Finally a guildy came along; a 38 ironbreaker and we started rolling through it. Funnily enough we managed to finish the entire PQ with just us three. Rewards were trash (three green bags) and we had to split up after that.

I started to realize simply how much grinding this was going to take when I had barely reached the first reward. However, a couple more groups later, and a few more hours of killing dark elves ended up with me aquiring my ownage new axe. Blissfully I put it on with a sort of ceremony and what do you think I discovered? It looked exactly the same as my old axe.../rage. Mythic, please introduce the dressing room feature..this is killing me.

What you lookin' at fool?

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Something pretty sweet that Mythic has implemented is when you target a friendly player or npc (Could be opposing players and enemies as well, I haven't seen it though) you char occasionally turns its head to look at them. Too bad they didn't implement a system where your character looks a the target's head not at the body. Or at least made the dwarves to look up a little bit. Or you get scenes like this one...

1/2 an apology

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So I just received the PCPP issue today and got to read the review and have to somewhat apologize for my previous post. The review was surprisingly decent and fair, making some solid points about the game and overall justified the score of 7/10, but what cannot be justified was his AoC review and comments on the forums.

In other news I won't be playing WAR for a while as exams coming up in three weeks and decided not to renew my subscription until after they finished. Hopefully this little determined stance of mine will last and I do decently in them. Probably won't be posting as much as usual but still will chuck up some stuff when my head is crammed with junk.

Professional bias

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A few months ago I subscribed to the pc gaming magazine PC Powerplay. These guys have a very active forum which I visit occasionally and on the magazine feedback topic I heard that WAR got 7/10. I have not read it as yet because I live in the west and they like to take years to relinquish anything to us poor citizens but the main issues mentioned on the forum were bugs, population, and lacklustre PvE. Some of my friends always said to me that magazines are the most bias source of info/reviews/wahtnot ever and I haven't really noticed the fact so far (Mostly because I don't follow a lot of games) but with the WAR review it was kinda' obvious.

A couple of issues ago PCPP reviewed AoC, once again I haven't read it as I subscribed one issues afterwards, and guess what it got? A 6? A 7? Nope, a 10! It got one perfect score, it is a perfect game. And this was at launch people. 10 for AoC. What made it worse was the fact that they have a double page AoC advertisement directly behind the cover; the first thing you see when you open up the fresh mag. Now, I wasn't too concerned when my friends told be about the bias situation, but when it actually hits you with something you think is good and something you thi...know rather, is aweful and reverses that for the sake of advertising, it makes you kind of want to rage at the writer on the forum...which is what plenty of people are doing.

A last comment to make is that WAR never advertised in the magazine, they never got the front cover or a preview. (As far as I can tell) Its as if PCPP purposely ignored them for the entire period of time leading up to launch then finally realized that they mgiht as well fill some space and give it an average score. Poor form. I'm not against them giving WAR 7/10 (I would give it an 8 though) as long as they back it up not only with logical and reasonable words but also a fair attitude towards it. As The writer of the review said on the forums;

As the one who reviewed AoC, no I'm not "gun-shy" - AoC is still in my opinion, the greatest MMO yet seen on this earth, and I stand by my comments and score 100% You don't like it, fair enough.

Sack that fool
/end faboi-disguised-as-justice-seeker rant

In a perfect world there wouldn't be blogs

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In the past month there has been many new blogs popping up all over the place, some bloggers begin to post more, others slack off; enjoying the game. But a large majority of the posts around are ideas to improve the game, complaining about an aspect of the game, or just giving a autobiography of their toon. A month in and there is still plenty to talk about, the 'State of the Game' announcement, scenarios, PQs, population woes, and on and on and on. My point is that without the problems in game we bloggers wouldn't have a whole lot to talk about. If everything about WAR was great then we would only need to make one post 'Grats Mythic' and close our blogs.

So I guess some of the bloggers could thank Mythic for having the many problems, that it is only to be expected, but problems nontheless, for without it every WAR dedicated blog would have shut down a few weeks ago. Because we all know that rage posts and frustrated posts are a joy to read we should all thank Mythic for being only human (Or as human as a compnay can get) and giving us bloggers something to write about.

The appeal of the melee frontline

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Over at Wizards and Wenches there is a post that sums up a lot of my experience in scenarios as a tank really well. The deficiency of not only melee classes but also capable healers is a problem that results in being constantly pushed back. As an ironbreaker I just charge in there do as much craziness as possible then die and run back. I don't mind the dying part as long as I have achieved something before I do so. With Order's obscene amount of bright wizards at hand, all ready melt into a puddle of squishiness if a chosen or marauder so much as looks at him my method is not always so effective.

Funnily whenever I do a kamikaze run I target I always seem to target a squig herder or a shaman. 50% of the time I'll be able to take him down but even if I do there is no follow up by the rest of Order, they just won't push with me. So I die and the squig herder/shaman gets a rez and keeps on rolling. No matter what scenario I do there will be always at least four melee Destruction lined up to go beserk, and 4-6 bright wizards in my group ready to do piddly all. And I blame Mythic for this, surely at some point they realized that they were making Destruction appear to be by far the coolest faction and Order to be the boring old good guys, so lets look at their main, most played melee classes as opposed to ours.

Chosen - A crazy spiky warrior whose weapons and shields look fearsome, probably Destruction's favorite character.
Marauder - Not so much armour but arm mutates and does obscene damage, especially to a squishie. This class appears to me like a beserker, who barely can be killed.
Black Orc - This class just never ever seems to die. I've seen one black orc take on three Order for about a minute, just refusing to die. These big brutes are the ultimate in survivability.

Ironbreaker - IMO the best melee class; they are tough and reasonably good looking. With a decent healer and grudges up we can destroy everyone on the battlefield. Path of vengeance allows us to take down squishies so easily; knockdown, slow, they ded.
Witch Hunter - Squishie melee, while they look cool they cannot survive a decent fight and are constantly sculking around the place, picking their fights.
Swordmaster - Well, its an elf...who wants to play an elf? These guys look like they can barely hold up their massive shields. But they do tank well.

Witch hunters can barely hold a frontline so that leaves the job of being a wall to the ironbreakers and swordmasters and these two class just do not have the appeal of the three beastly Destruction classes. With the KotBS making a comeback hopefully later this year this might even up a little bit; hopefully they have added a little spice to the mix for Order, but I'm sure they won't be able to top the ironbreakers for sheer stunty awesomeness.

A WAR interrogation; how elite are the bloggers? Part 4

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Today we get to learn the ins and outs of WAR's most pimping blogger; Syp. The scores I have been giving for the past couple of ones haven't been too impressive (*I-expected-more-from-you-son-look*) but we're not over yet and someone could still get some truly awesome marks. Enough procrastinating, lets dissect Syp the blogging fiend!

WAR interrogation - how elite are the bloggers?

Identify yourself! (Blogger name – what blog – class)

Syp, WAAAGH! A Warhammer Online Blog, Playing Syp, Dwarf Engineer

1) Where you at? (Normal rank – renown rank) - 3.5/5

Rank 24, RR 19

2) We want dedication soldier! (Average playtime every week) - 3/5

18-22 hours (a few a night, plus a few extra on Thursdays)

3) On a scale of 1 to 10 how skillful would you rate yourself? - 2.5/5

Ability to die heroically - 9.5

Ability to jump around Destruction players and be an annoying fly in their ear - 8

Ability to make a thick stew - 4

4) Who are you working with? (Class you like the most aside from your own and why) - 4.5/5

Probably Runepriests, because they take pity on my broken corpse and rez it so that it may receive more punishment. Plus, they look like short fat Jedis with wooden lightsabers.

5) Give me names (Class you dislike the most and why) - 4.5/5

Witch Elves. Witch Elves. Witch Elves. A cuter rogue in form, but a rogue nonetheless -- and just as cowardly, overpowered and unforgiving as rogues in other titles.

6) What do you really want? (If you could make up one ability what would it be?) 4/5

A puppy cannon. The enemy would never be prepared for a face-full of puppies, and it would give me the psychological edge.


A good start Syp, quite a good level although you don't seem to be grinding enough scenarios to get your renown rank up there. :P
Reasonable playtime but I guess we can't expect something like 80 hours a week because of your obscene post rate.
I would like to think you could be a bit more awesome then an annoying fly..
Runepriests are apprentice jedis with wooden lightsabers, protecting use fom the evils of Destruction!
Too true, my pocket runepriest only has time to open his mouth before those Witch Elves have hammered him into a stunty pulp.
A psycological edge over something like a black orc may not be that much of an advantage as it has no brain, but still bonus points for creativity.
You have reached rank 40, you gain 22/30 points of 1337ness!

Solving scenario problems

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A post over at Word of Shadow gave me an idea for a way to make scenarios less monotonous and avoid getting the same scenario again, and again, and again. People complain that scenarios are grind fests; you get in, you grab the item, and start farming the opposition or of course the reverse happens. In a game so totally focused around an RvR campaign the scenarios seem rather out of place; you teleport into this unknown battleground and fight for a keep before teleporting out and doing it all again. We don't know where this battleground is, what it is there for, and why we are capturing it, well maybe we do...we're capturing it so we can get more renown and xp. Going from the epic struggle of the zones to a seemingly increasingly linear scenario experience is something that probably should be addressed.

This linear experience is partly created from doing the same scenario over and over again and partly because the battle has no real context. My idea is to firstly create a scenario cycle; where you just join the scenario queue, and you have no idea which one is going to pop. You get in and complete that scenario before the cycle begins and you move directly onto another scenario. You can leave the group whenever you like which allows other people to join. In this way you would get rid of the boredom of repeating the same old scenario time after time.

The second thing I would do is tie each scenario into a part of the actual game. I would make Tor Anroc an actual place in the game where people can go, with this you could fit in a story of how important this area is to both factions and give a reason why they are fighting. After the Tor Anroc scenario is over you can move on to another part of the map where you can continue the struggle. This other scenario would be carefully linked to a seperate place in the game which in turn would be linked to the Tor Anroc place ingame. This connection would tie scenarios in closer to the actual game and prevent it from being a linear grind experience. To take it a further step the scenarios could be programmed to have some effect on the same place ingame. Say if Order wins Tor Anroc 500 times in one day then the place ingame becomes a special Order warcamp for one day which gives access to unique instances/quests/gear. Alternately Destruction could win 500 times and the same would happen for them.

If these two ideas worked then scenarios would become a whole lot less linear and grindy, but knowing players, most would still just do it for the renown and experience. Many have said that doing scenarios is the fastest way to level, so as a final measure nerf the experience and renown gaisn in scenarios (not too much though) and increase them for open RvR. In this way I believe the game could become more balanced and interesting.

A WAR interrogation - how elite are the bloggers? Part 3

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Part three and today we get close and personal with Brent. Not only does he produce a great blog but he also made a bunch of vids on youtube before the NDA was lifted and they are some of the bet warhammer gameplay videos around, you can check them out here. But what is really important is the score so lets put brent through his paces.

WAR interrogation - how elite are the bloggers?


Identify yourself! (Blogger name – what blog – class)

My name is Brent, my web alias is br3ntbr0. I run the blog "A Wall of Text" at http://textwall.blogspot.com. I play a Goblin Shaman on the Thorgrim server and a Dwarf Ironbreaker on the Averheim server in Warhammer Online.

1) Where you at? (Normal rank – renown rank) - 4.5/5

My goblin shaman is level 22/20 (lvl/rr) on a low population server, so the PVE leveling has been slow. On a higher pop server my order characters are able to level via scenarios and I have a 14/14 Ironbreaker, 9/9 Rune Priest, 10/10 Warrior Priest and 8/8 Bright Wizard. I suspect my Shaman would be in his 30's right now if scenarios would only pop more for Destruction on my server ><

2) We want dedication soldier! (Average playtime every week) - 3/5

I play 2-3 hours nearly every night, and slightly more on Sat/Sun if schedule provides the time. I'd say I'm probably around 20 (give or take 5) hours a week, which I consider to be alot (probably too much) time with gaming.

3) On a scale of 1 to 10 how skillful would you rate yourself? - 4/5

I'm not a great twitch gamer, but I try. I might give myself an 8 simply because I have alot of experience with these kinds of games, and I'm an IT professional and I understand software a bit more than the average gamer. I try to be a student of any game I play and am constantly on the look out for new information that might help me be more competitive, especially with PVP based games. If there's a mod, macro, or piece of hardware that might help, I'll probably try it.

4) Who are you working with? (Class you like the most aside from your own and why) - 2.5/5

I like the Shaman and Ironbreaker the most right now, closely followed by Bright Wizard and Rune Priest. The Shaman is a really flexible character. He does good dps for a healing class, and since he's a healer he's a welcomed sight in just about an aspect of the game. The Ironbreaker is just the most annoying class to the Destruction side I can think of. Hard as nails, knocking people all over the map, snares, knockdowns...just fun. The Rune Priest is the best healer in the game (zealot too) and the Bright Wizard will absolutely wreck people if left alone.

5) Give me names (Class you dislike the most and why) - 4/5

I dislike the Witch Hunter, because they have crap survivability, and in these kinds of games survivability is my thing. With those classes, once you come out of stealth to attack someone in anything other than 1v1, you'd better pray you get spam healed or you pretty much die as others will turn to focus on you since you are squishy. There's no vanish-like mechanic to get in and get out. I'm not big on low survivability classes, which is the only reason the Bright Wizard isn't my main character in War either. The very first class I ever made in War closed beta long ago was the Witch Hunter and loved everything about the class...until I started doing RVR with him. The next one I made was the Bright Wizard, and while better in RVR (since he's ranged) but he was even less able to survive.

6) What do you really want? (If you could make up one ability what would it be?) - 2.5/5

Like I mentioned in earlier, if Witch Hunters had an emergency escape skill like the Rogues have in WoW...something in addition to their normal stealth...then I'd probably start playing one instantly. To the same end, if Bright Wizards had a 2nd crowd control skill I might consider playing him as well, something like the Blink spell that WoW mages have. I know the War/WoW comparisons have been beaten to death, but I think those classes in War would be well served to study thier WoW counterparts and bring something like those abilities in to War.

Time is up and the results are in, but just a few comments first.
You got good marks for keeping your RR up with you normal rank and pretty good leveling considering your play time.
Not a bad play time but not a particularly good one.
Go on...give youself an 11, you know your worth it.
I said aside from your own!!!! You named all the ones that you were playing!!!! If you can't listen to instruction then you had seriously better consider whether you belong here! *Stand over your cowering frame and leer*
Everyone hates Witch Hunters so you get good marks for that one.
Bright Wizards are already the most over powered class in the game except for their squishieness which stops them from being absurdly op, a blink ability would just make 50% of Order who doesn't already have a Bright Wizard main roll one.

Overall great job Brent and you have been awarded with; 20.5/30

Ten things I hate about you; Tor Anroc

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Number one is the fact that I queue for everything yet only you pop
The second; even after the patch people run out of spawn and then afk stop
Third; every single bright wizard forms a separate group to farm renown
Number four is when Destruction reach the bauble before we get halfway down
The fifth thing I hate has gotta be the AOE knockbacks that throw half of Order into the lava
Six now and destruction fall back, running back from respawn could barely be further
The seventh hate is to die slowly from dots while standing next to a dps specced healer, /rage
Eight and I'm waiting 28 seconds for global rezz, gives me time to shout at that noob archmage
Number nine whine is when all Order squishies are pushed to spawn, then begins the blame game
And the last hate of all is 'Game over'; I'm top Order damage yet get half the renown of anyone else, now to get out and do it all over again

Those are not in any particular order and while it might not sound particularly great, or have no rythym or technical qualities, it comes from the heart...it comes from the heart...

A WAR Interrogation - how elite are the bloggers? Part 2

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Receiving various bloggers' responses to my 'questionnaire' it was interesting to see how much each wrote, some wrote a fair amount while quite a few wrote one liners. But I will mark them all as equal! Today I decided to fit in two, yes two, different bloggers answers because they were short enough to do so, and also that Thallian didn't look so lonely up there on the leaderboard, so with out further ado; Tobold and Crimson!!

WAR interrogation - how elite are the bloggers?

Identify yourself! (Blogger name – what blog – class)

Tobold - Tobold, http://tobolds.blogspot.com/, shaman
Crimson - Crimson Starfire, Word of Shadow (http://word-of-shadow.blogspot.com), Warrior Priest (Starmantle) and Archmage (Bloodfire)

1) Where you at? (Normal rank – renown rank)

Tobold - Rank 20, RR 17 (3/5)

Crimson - Starmantle - NR:20, RR:18 , Bloodfire - NR:21, RR:20 (4/5)

2) We want dedication soldier! (Average playtime every week)

Tobold - Around 20 hours (3/5)

Crimson - 35 - 40 hours (4/5)

3) On a scale of 1 to 10 how skillful would you rate yourself?

Tobold - What's your definition of skill? I rate high on knowledge skills,
understanding game systems, knowing what to do. I rate low on fast
button mashing skills. (4.5/5)

Crimson - Nine (The most arrogant - lol) (4/5)

4) Who are you working with? (Class you like the most aside from your own and why)

Tobold - Tanks, obviously. I like to hide behind a black orc and keep him alive. (2.5/5)

Crimson - Like working with the Ironbreaker because they are easy to heal, hard to kill and deal and enormous amount of damage when needed. The Ironbreaker/Archmage make a great combo. (4/5)

5) Give me names (Class you dislike the most and why)

Tobold - Witch hunters, because of their invisibility. (5/5)

Crimson - I like all classes. I do enjoy killing Witch Elfs the most though :) (2/5)

6) What do you really want? (If you could make up one ability what would it be?)

Tobold - I want a knockback ability, shamans only get one very late, and only
if they specialize in one talent tree. (3/5)

Crimson - Teleport (Like blink from WoW) (3/5)


Well done bloggers, short and to the point makes good reading. Crimson gets brownie points for having two characters at a reasonably high level, would like to see a bit more commitment in a single character, however, to get more points.
Answering a question with a question Tobold; you know how to play this don't you? Crimson, if you are going to be arrogant, you might as well go all the way, but a good self assessment there. I was going to mark you both up on question 4 because you both said you love tanks, but then I realized Tobold was talking about a Black Orc/Shaman tag team which lost him all his points, I hate those creeps; impossible to take down!
Tobold hit the money on the head, but there is a Destruction class who also has invisibility and you didn't mention them - I'm starting to think you favour Destruction...Crimson, your message of world friendship is disgraceful but since I can relate to you with WE (Always killing my healers) you didn't do too badly.
Nothing too creative on the last question which was a bit disapointing but overall you guys did pretty well!

So the final score is;
Tobold - 21/30
Crimson - 21/30

Its a tie! We have just a few more bloggers to go but things are beginning to look very close!

Glitchy fun

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Some of the odd things that happened to me while stuffing around in Reikland. These two happened when I jumped down from the massive observatory tower thing into the water (you don't die) however when I swam out I found myself walking through the ground.









This also happened in Reikland round the back of a monastary, I think I might have been looking down into the lower levels of the building, it was pretty cool.








A WAR interrogation - how elite are the bloggers? Part 1

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Partly because everyone loves interviews, and partly because I thought it would be interesting, I have gone about and asked/interrogated various blogger about them and their WAR experience.Some were enthusiastic and wrote a short novel for each question (Thanks brent) and others kept it short and sweet, while others probably deleted the email as spam. :P But the aim of this is to find out just how elite are the bloggers, there are six main questions which each will be marked out of 5 for a total of 30 points, after a couple of days we should find out just who is the most elite blogger! First off the plate we have (drumroll please) Thallian!!

Identify yourself! (Blogger name – what blog – class)

Thallian is my pen name-Thallian and Anton's MMO and random rambles blog

1) Where you at? (Normal rank – renown rank) - 3/5

I have three "main's" Rumples the IB is rank 13 on Praag, Thallian the SM is rank nine on Averheim (hes in COW) and Erustark the RP is rank 8 or 9 on an rp server which is some thing I'm trying out for the first time. Really, I've come ot the conclusion so far that they aren't that special. I dunno my pvp rank but its pretty on par with everyone else's at these low levels.

2) We want dedication soldier! (Average playtime every week) - 2/5

Ummm yeah dedication lol. Obviously not a lot of that other than the dedication to not quit!!! I play about 2 to 4 hours of warhammer a week and 2 to 6 hours of Lotro if I get permission from my gf (the boss)

3) On a scale of 1 to 10 how skillful would you rate yourself? - 4.5/5

On a scale of 1 to 10 I am super great.

4) Who are you working with? (Class you like the most aside from your own and why) and 5) Give me names (Class you dislike the most and why) - 3.5/5 and 3/5

Sure, I hate fighting Disciples of Kain, they are too beefy. I also hate fighting shamans unless I have them outnumbered and outgunned. Marauders are powerful but quite killable so I don't mind them I think thye are neat. On the Order side I dont like archmages, they are too hard to kill and wonky. I bet I wouldnt like warriori priests too if I played destruction more often. I have two destruction chars I'm toying with playing, a zealot and a DoK. Maybe a marauder. I love the Ironbreaker. Undecided on the Swordmaster but I like how he's different than the ironbreaker. Lastly I dont think the runepriests are super cool but they are ok and I need to try the engineer

6) What do you really want? (If you could make up one ability what would it be?) - 4.5/5

If I could make up an ability or two, one would be the ability to domino effect. Push one person with a move and it pushes the people behind them. This would make for some great fights in crowded places. Umm Second I vote for full collision detection with no pushing through against the enemy. You want to push through you gotta kill em. Nuff said. Not enough thought went into the lameness of the push through decision.

Congratulastions Thallian, you have completed your exam...I mean interrogation. Kudos for you trying ou all the different characters, points were deducted for saying 'pvp'....its RvR! Play time is a bit disapointing but the gf saved you from a complete embrassment. I like the fact that you answer a simple number question with a sentence - bonus points - its what we want to see in our men. Good coverage of classes, but its uspposed to be that you hate all Destruction and love Order, but anyway. And chain knockbacks is a brilliant idea and it should definitely be given to Ironbreakers.
You final score is 20.5/30 which puts you in the lead! One down several more to go...who will be the most elite blogger?

You know when you always ask in school 'when will I ever need this?' finally I have found a use for the simple mathematics!

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Now that my riveting title has drawn you all in I can now bore you with some maths! The realization of how long it would take to get to the higher renown ranks came to me while working away in Tor Anroc trying to catch up to my normal rank. I needed around 15000 renown to level and the renown I gathered from each scenario varied from 300 to 1500 renown. Even if I achieved 1500 renown a match it would take 10 of them to level. When each Tor Anroc generally goes for around 10 minutes that is 100 minutes of pure scenarios to level, which doesn't seem a huge time period, however it is different when you consider the 300 renown. 1500 renown at 300 renown per scenario adds up to 50 10 minute matches before leveling totally 500 hours of gameplay, making 100 and 500 minutes the two extremes. With a bit more maths the average works out to be roughly 160-170 minutes which is still a significant amount of time. And this wasn't a very high renown rank, I forget the exact number but it was in the low 20s.

If it takes almost 3 hours to level one renown rank in low T3 what must it be like when you hit the elite ranks of 60+? While in Altdorf I visited a renown gear merchant who offered 'Mythic' gear for renown ranks 75 and 76, they did look shiny but when I thought about how long it would take to reach that rank the stats seemed paltry, surely by then the stats on those types of gear for that type of rank to be almost as good as some of this kind of gear.

Calling all elitists!

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After a bit of discussion my guild, Psygnosis, has decided to make our recruitment process a bit easier on those wanting to get in as we want more players in so we can have more of a hope capturing and defending keeps, as well as all the stuff we normally do together. (Scenarios, nude marathons, etc...) We are one of the smallest bestest guilds on Ironclaw with 20 members with members mainly from NZ and Aus.

How exactly absolutely awesome are we? Well, website ranks all the guilds in terms of renown gathered and we have the third highest renown per member on the server. (Don't trust everything you see on that website though, we are actually rank 16 now) But don't be too scared but how elitist we are because we are a great bunch of people that just want to cream Destruction. Head over to the guild website to check us out and say hello, bringing muffins always helps with the recruitment process...

Powerlvling Mythic

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Ah, what the wonders of population imbalance can do! In an effort to confront the massive favoritism towards destruction Mythic have announced 20% bonuses both to xp and renown. When I heard this I wondered whether my realm would be lucky enough to receive the bonus but alas it was only for half a dozen random ones. Something I found funny was the fact that they put the faction that was getting the bonus up there with 'Order' in blue. What a suprise! Never would have thought of that. The real issue is whether it is going to work, and the answer imo is that it will not.

The reason people chose Destruction is because it looks the coolest, because Mythic have made it out to be the evilest and creepiest. (Between posh British people and Lord Byron on drugs who would you choose? Nobody even likes the British!!) Maybe the xp and renown bonues will persuade a few people to make alts there but it will not have any long lasting effect. As a final note, I believe that for all servers there is an inbalance and I know for Ironclaw there are a significant amount more of Destro the Order but not as much as others, but for only a half dozen of servers to be named for the bonus there must be a massive inbalance, maybe something like 4:1....5:1?

-Chappo

Of farming renown

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I first heard of it over at Word of Shadow and soon after that I noticed it going on in some of the scenarios. The theory is you get a lot more renown if you make your own party for the scenario, and because you don't have to share any renown that 'you' earned you generally get a whole lot more then the rest of the peeps on your side. A lot of people in the game have said that they never heal those who make their own group to farm, and I know that if I was a healer neither would I. People may say that there is nothing wrong it or Mythic would have done something about it, but it seems to break a certain code in the game.

In my previous post I talked about the scenarios and how they differed from WoW's battlegrounds, how it was more important to get support your team and get the win then get the kills and damage, and I think this practice goes against that. Through the practise I've often seen these people at the top of the damage charts with a massive amount of renown, while the rest of their team had very little renown or experience having lost the match. Renown farming is selfish as the people care more about how they go individually in the scenario rather then how their team went (Whether they won or lost) as it doesn't effect them nearly as much. Then again, this entire post could be because as an Ironbreaker I'm useless at burst damage and can't farm renown myself...

-Chappo

Grats Mythic

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Well Mythic have announced that they reached the 750,000 mark. Not subscriptions, or copies sold but number of 'players' registered. Now why would they release something like that? An announcement which no one really understands? Well, WotLK is looming ever closer as well as the end of the free month that came with the game so there are interesting/challenging days ahead.

-Chappo

First thing first...T1

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So lets get down to the important stuff. During the open beta I tried out my three original top classes; Ironbreaker, shadow warrior, and warrior priest, however because I only had two days to test them I didn't get to explore and expand a whole lot. In the end I decided that the ironbreaker certainly looked the coolest (Stunty spiky ball is just the cutest thing) and they are really fun to play. So saying at the headstart I jumped on Ironclaw where my guild was rolling, and breathlessly made my little stunty as cuddly as possible.

During the headstart I slowly made my way through T1, doing a couple of PQs which were intense, did a lot of exploring and questing and just a little bit of scenarios. Coming from a big background in WoW's battlegrounds (4 twinks) I was excited about the experience/renown/loot aspect of it as well as the role the scenario plays in the game, even though you can't twink in WAR. And there was a difference, a very significant difference; all of a sudden these scenarios mattered, you really desperately wanted to win. You wanted to push your enemies back and rule the castle, something that was completely lacking from something like WSG.

Back in my WoW days, I was very much a solo player, all I wanted to do was rack up the most dmg in a battleground, not really caring about the actual result of the match. And while I still get a rush from seeing my name at the top of the board its not as important as the result of the match. Scenarios were a ton of fun, even though I didn't participate in too many of them, and some of the fights were so intense when I was finally hit with the 'respawn' message I had to take very deep breaths and slink a bit deeper into my chair and family members gave me funny looks.

One thing I noticed though is that Order have a ton of ranged dps (Majority of which are Bright Wizards) but few melee classes and fewer healers. This became a frustration for me as I would often charge at the destruction frontline and have no support while everyone nuked from a long way off, leaving me to die. Also healers would often refuse to heal me, instead concerntrating on the ranged dps classes hanging around them. I have had frequent /rage moments because of this, but luckily it doesn't happy all the time.

As a final note on my T1 experience, I even got to do some open RvR action. I had unknowingly run into an RvR area (A bit hard I know when a big red message comes up, but it happened) and was killing some mobs when a squiggy ran into me. My first thought was to run, but I thought that if I did so he could easily just nuke me down, so I ran at him. he actually appeared at the perfect time because I had my grudges full and also my health full. The battle was over with 20 seconds with me standing victorious, barely losing any health. I was lucky that he hadn't been prepared and had just run into me else the result might have been different, although people say squiggies are useless against melee anyway.

So that was my T1 experience, it was great fun, especially since there were plenty of people around to do stuff with especially PQs, I'm not entirely sure how much I'm going to write about T2 because I hardly remember anything about it, it all goes so quickly...
But if you want to say gday ingame just send a tell to Chappo on Ironclaw, I might not respond straight away because I'm farming renown at the moment.

-Chappo

Updating files...

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So its been ages since I last post and a storm of things have happened in the gaming world! WAR came out....Spore came out...and a lot of other stuff as well, but those are the main ones. I didn't even consider paying Spore actually as never felt that it was truly deep enough to enjoy very much, many people were proclaiming it as the next greatest game yet after a few weeks it appears that there are signs of people viewing it as a time filler.

Ok, onto the interesting stuff. I am playing WAR! With a minuscule amount of money left from purchasing my new computer I had to borrow heavily from my brother to pay for the game. I bought it from the EA store and chose the download option, and this is where the problems started, or maybe they started a few days before.

A fellow guildy apparently received an extra open beta code and standard edition headstart code which he very kindly gave to me. Eagerly I jumped onto fileplanet to start the download but was met with a 500+ queue...treeek. I waited a little while but the estimate came up to be around 5 hours or so. There was another queue that appeared to be moving quicker so I joined that one aswell then went to bed.

In the morning I got up to find that I had got through both queues but that the downloads had started automatically so I had downloaded 2GB of one file and about 4GB of another. I quickly cancelled the shorter one and waited, shivering, for it to finish. Unfortunately, I had aimed to finish it all in my off-peak time but it was just taking too long so as the clock hit 12 the download came to a standstill. /rage. Another day that I couldn't play the game, and just sat around watching HD gameplay videos in full screen and pretending I was actually playing.

Next day the download finished, and after patching (which took a rediculous amount of time) I finally got to play....for about 2 days before the open beta period ended. I had great fun during that time but another problem was brewing. The dreaded war.exe oceanic rubbish stuffed me up so I couldn't play after the headstart. /rage. I tried downloading the new one that 'they' said would work, but no suprise when it didn't. Seeing no other option I decided the download the 10GB game for the 2.2nd? time. I downloaded it, it worked, I was happy. My adventure had begun.....finally.

-Chappo

I'm Alive

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Yes, I still exist. Its been a little while since my last as did a bit of soul searching (of sorts) as well as a fair dose of hardcore lvling in WAR, but I'm back for another stab. At the moment I'm dedicating all my time to playing WAR and cramming in some study before exams in a couple of weeks but missed my misadventures on my blog so decided to start up again. Once again I will diligently blog my experiences in-game just so you can enjoy reading about someone else playing a game rather then you actually experiencing it for yourself.

-Chappo

Changes

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Hey guys, its been a while since I have posted and I apologize. Things are getting pretty tough around here at the moment; school is getting a bit frantic as the teachers realize how much work we actually have to do to be prepared for exams, and I have started to write for WarhammerGamers which is a lot harder then writing for this blog, but still a great experience. At the moment I can hardly find time to write for them let alone for my blog so thats why there hasn't been a whole lot of activity. I have finally got my computer to work after a ridiculously long time and have tested out a few games which has been great. As it is, with WAR coming out soon, between it, writing for WarhammerGamers, and studying for school, I won't be posted very much at all, if anything.
Thanks for all your comments and support over the past few months, I have had a great time, this isn't good bye, just until next time.

-Chappo

TCG madness

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Well, I had the idea of starting up a trading card game such as Magic the Gathering yet after a lot of rummaging around I realized that collecting them could wind up being a lot of money. There also was no real guarantee that I would get any decent cards. So I decided to at least wait a while before I started throwing my money around. A new idea came to me when my little brother started to get frustrated about Yu-gi-oh! and said he wished he could make his own card game. *Bing* So thats what I have been doing for the past couple of hours; making up my own trading card game.

It wasn't that hard to get into as I wasn't out to invent an entirely new game. I decided to make a fast and exciting game where you are able to wield enormously powerful monsters and your opponent is able to defeat them just as quickly. I made a simple template for each card on Microsoft Publisher where I can easily make a new card by sticking a picture in, writing in a title, and some information. I have ended up with 9 'cards' for every A4 sheet. It really is quite a thrill to make you own cards. Already I have started thinking up series of cards for certain strategies and such. To save time I have been grabbing pictures off the internet rather then drawing in monsters myself, for while I am a decent artist it would take far too long to draw all the pictures up.

So, its off to an exciting start. I haven't yet made enough cards to play a game, but that will come along soon enough I'm sure. The only real problem is that the 'cards' are only a normal paper thickness and will easily tear, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. Oh, as a final note, Wizard101 beta is closing very soon and apparently us beta testers will get a unique item that no one else will get when the full game is launched. This might be enough to draw m back in as I haven't played for a while now with all the WAR hype going around.

Magical mobsters gathering

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Life has been fairly slow for the past couple of days. I managed to finish my epic Ancient History presentation which wasn't a total fail which was good. Please don't shout at me but I have been playing a lot of a myspace game called Mobsters. It is quite addictive and is the only game I have been playing in my limited spare time.

You begin by starting out as a little unknown mobster and level 1. You need to do some missions to gain money with which you buy equipment or property which gives you money hourly. The equipment is usually weapons such as a crowbar, or uzi, or a minigun. With this equipment you can attack other mobsters who give you s small amount of money and experience. You have a mob in the game as well who consist of any friends you have on myspace who also have the Mobsters application. As your mob grows, you grow more powerful, able to complete bigger and more rewarding quests. Unfortunately, this can be used as a easy way to win because I have seen many people advertising for anyone to add them to their mob. In the end they end up with 500 mob members and 500 myspace friends who they do not know and never communicate with. Anyway, there is also a big highscore board of sorts which shows you the top mobsters, with the most fight victories, or most money and some other statistics. It certainly is very fun, and unexpectedly addictive.

Also I have started to get interested in the card game; Magic the Gathering. I have heard others talk about for some time but never checked it out. One of my biggest gripes about trading card games is that they are so ridiculously expensive. However, I plan just to buy 200 or so cards for a relatively cheap price and just use them to play with my brothers. I bought a couple hundred Yu-Gi-Oh! cards a while back and still occasionally play with them, but I am looking for something a bit more different and tactical which requires a bit more skill and strategy. I know Tobold has gushed over the game before so looking forward to seeing how good his judgment was. Do any of you guys play MTG, or have played? What was your experience with it?

Its begun

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The storm has begun. I logged into google reader today and got hit by a mass of articles, all about WAR beta. Its going to be an exciting couple of days ahead as open beta looms ever closer. Now I'm beginning to wonder about whether I will still blog my experiences in WAR when it is launched because the blogging world already seems saturated with WARness. Oh well, something to think about.

Updating files...

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No, I'm not going to talk about the open beta start, the NDA lift, and the filefront download because innumerable bloggers have already said all there is to say. Just to say that I won't be in the open beta, and I haven't been in the closed beta, meaning that I won't be posting tons of posts analyzing the game, highlighting the good and bad aspects of the game and making videos of each class. As I see it, most people have already made up their minds about whether they are going to play it or not and most probably bias videos from excited bloggers (This class is awesome!!! So much damage!!) aren't going to help a whole lot. That doesn't mean I'm any less interested in the game, its just I want to experience everything as new. My worst fear is that people will convince me otherwise to play the class that I am planning to. But, lets not talk abut that. Perhaps its time for another boring computer update?

It has been pretty much of a disaster. I kept getting stuck on one page for a couple of days while trying to install vista. A friend came over to try and fix it, I went over to another friend's place to try and fix it all with no luck. I contacted the seller and he asked me a ton of questions, and gave me lots of advice but it didn't work. In the end we figured out that the problem was most likely the hard drive, after hours and hours of tests. For a while I thought it was the motherboard which would have been painful to replace. The seller, who has absolutely excellent service, has just notified me that they will be sending a new hard drive over here to replace my faulty one. Hopefully this works because its already taken a lot longer then I had expected. Everyone I know is having a good old laugh because I did the worst thing possible by buying off of ebay, but thats life.

I am eagerly waiting for my next edition of PC Powerplay as they have a world exclusive on Spore. Thats right, a real spore review. Apparently EA changed their code of silence for the press from 25 August to 20 August just for them. It going to be incredible. Good reading.

Pox Nora

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The world of blogging seems to be in a state of uproar. Bloggers everywhere are being consumed by the beast that is WAR. All of a sudden everyone is in the beta or just about to, after registering their codes. Countless tortured souls live with fear in their hearts of accidentally breaking the NDA. It would seem very odd then to talk about something not at all related to WAR, but this blog is about what I'm playing and thats not going to change. While I was on a guild's vent the other day I heard one guy talking about a game called Pox Nora. Supposedly there was a new expansion to it. I vaguely remembered seeing an advertisement for the game, and perhaps even checking out the website, but I hadn't played it. Since he was pretty excited about it I decided to go back to the website and see what to fuss was about.

It caught my interest, or maybe just caught me unprepared (longing after WAR) but I decided to give it a go. The download wasn't too big and I was soon going through the tutorial. Pox Nora is a strategy game in which you get a dozen or so runes, which act as warriors, spells, or something like buffs. You can only place down a certain amount of these runes a turn as they require something called Moga, which you acquire automatically after every turn. Each player has a keep which when destroyed ends the game. Pox Nora is quite strategic and will take one or two games to get used to, but even then its pretty fun. I played a few online matches and lost miserably but learned some new things. After the end of a match your units gain some experience, and when they lvl they get stronger. So far I'm enjoying myself so I recommend you trying it out.

Ancient Rome questing

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At the moment I am working on an extensive research assignment on Ancient Rome. My class were told to look into a certain aspect of the society such as slavery, or the military back then and then present the results a few weeks later. As an extensive research assignment it is worth a significant amount of our semester mark so its important to do it well. Of course, I have been procrastinating like crazy and only now realize how much work I'm going to have to do. As we were given about 4 weeks to do the assignment I had half-heartedly tried to get an early start on it but almost instantly lost interest and then stowed it away and forgotten about it, but now its come back to haunt me. This is a quite bad metaphor of some the types of quests that I have encountered in my mmorpg gaming life.

The quests I am talking about are the ones that are too difficult, take too long, or just aren't very interesting and quickly accumulate. When you grab one of the said quests you of course have a stab at it, but then realize how boring/long/hard it is and just leave it for later. Note that these are not the quests that do not give any decent gear because those you can easily discard without a second thought, these quests are the ones that really mean something, that have great rewards and incentives. As a result you keep those quests in your options so you can always do it later when you are more powerful. Soon, these quests compile and you are stuck with tons of quests whose rewards aren't that great anymore because you left it too late to try it again.

So what's the solution? Well, the logical one is to make all the quests easier/more interesting. Yeah, thats simple enough. I had an idea that these quests rewards could increase slightly over time as you gain lvls, but the objective remains the same. I mean, as the player gains lvl the gear in the quests improve slightly, not very much, just a little. Leave it too long and the gear quickly becomes redundant, but if you wait 2 or 3 lvls then the gear could still be nice and the objective much easier. I haven't thought a whole lot about this, but it would be interesting to see how well it would work in the situation. I know I would certainly like to have it, but it is my idea after all. But while I think there is a solution for the boring/time-consuming/tough quests, there will never be one for the quests where you carry around a 'quest item' that hogs your inventory space except, of course, for total extermination. *Shudder* Those quests are evil.

Updating files...

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Finally my new computer arrived. Apparently there was a mixup with the company that was supposed to deliver it and it arrived a week later then expected. I was starting to get a bit worried because I had bought it off eBay....nuff said. But it has arrived and looks very nice. It has a massive fan that glows blue when you turn it on which I thought was quite a nice touch. Its also very quiet which is what I was also looking for in a computer. The only problem is that it hasn't got any operating system yet and I have no idea how to install one myself so am going to wait for a friend to come over and he'll do it for me.

Top 3 toons

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Ok, in light of the looming presence of WAR I have added a new feature to the blog where I have my top 3 toons. These are the ones that at the present time I am most likely to play, and will most probably be constantly changing.

Chicken tactics

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Both Keen and Graev and Tobold have been talking about the chicken idea that Mythic are incorporating into their game in order to stop ganking. They delve into the situation quite well and look at it in a very thorough and intellectual way. Well I am going to talk about the same chicken affair as well but please don't expect me to write like them. I possibly may have posted on this before because I do recall talking about it sometime before, so I apologize in advance if this is the case.

From the way I look at it, the chicken situation can be a tactical method in RvR combat. It occurs when a high lvl attacks a less powerful, lower lvl player easily being able to defeat them, supposedly they will instantly turn into a chicken who can be killed in one shot. Fun. But I don't see what there is to prevent high lvl groups from running around with low lvl toons in their midst. I mean, Order and Destruction are fighting it out on a battlefield. Order are pwning (of course) everyone because thats how they roll. Destruction gets tired of losing and call in some really low lvl toons. The Order champions are deceived by this devious and outrageous maneuver and mistakingly begin to attack the low lvls thinking they are the same as the rest of all the other Destruction freaks. Hence, they get turned into chickens and are easily finished off.

Ah, the joys of speculation, we bloggers make our living out of pondering what could happen. Still, you never know; it could happen...

World of world of warcraft

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Well I was lazy and having a pretty bad day so was trawling youtube for something interesting and found this. It made me laugh as its so well done.

Updating files...

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Ok, as you may have guessed I am kinda excited about WAR and in all likelyhood going to be playing it for a while. During the time I play I will be giving accounts of my adventures in the game, I don't think I will do a review of the game, although I will certainly address and give my opinion on certain aspects of it.

Most likely I won't be playing the day of launch. This is because I don't feel as though the WAR preorder box is good enough value. From the searching I have done the standard version is $80 including postage which is really quite significant. And what do you get with it? An entrance into open beta and the headstart, as well as some small items ingame. I also presume that it comes with a free month's gameplay even though it doesn't say so anywhere. Call me a party pooper but I don't think that is worth $80. I think one website has the option to download the client for $50 and that might be what I end up doing.

Hopefully Mythic allows anyone to download the game client regardless of whether they are in open beta or not, and then I will purchase a 60-day time card for $30. Which really gives me an extra month of gameplay for less then half the price. Fingers crossed that this will happen, but what I think is more likely is that Mythic will change the standard preorder version to one without the open beta and head start at a much reduced price. Granted, this will probably occur a few days after launch, but I'm too much of a sting to do anything else.

Still my new computer fails to arrive so I'm not going to go with the option of downloading it for $50 for a little while. Luckily WAR is released on a Thursday with the headstart a day or so sooner, and I have Ancient History on that day. I'll chuck a sickey and miss that truly awful subject. So some things are looking bright, and others just a little confused and undecided.

I don't know about you...

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...but I want to have a good PvE experience in WAR. I want to do a bit of raiding and and boss fights. As much as I love PvP and the whole idea of RvR I want to get my guild together, jump on vent, and run an instance. Now, Mythic have recently given a bit of insight into their PvE game and it looks very nice indeed with the three sections of an instance with various mini-bosses and a final master boss at the end. All good. What I am concerned about it that Mythic have hidden away the best PvE end game content in RvR, meaning that they have plonked some sweet instances right in the middle of the opposing forces' main city.

This means two things; you are forced to RvR all the way up to the highest lvl, fight off lots of baddies, hope that you have enough allies so as to reach the best instances. the I am thinking that you will need to grab your guild together real quick so as to run the instance before you lose control of the city. (unless of course you defeat the king) The other choice is you can RvR all the way up to the city, clear out huge amounts of enemies, hope that you have enough allies, and then decided whether to do the instance or not.

See the difference? No? Well, either you RvR because you want to do the instances at the end, or you RvR because you love to RvR and conquer. Either way you are going to want to RvR to get what you want. This is a clever tool by Mythic to encourage people to RvR as much as possible. I am sure that the rewards for completing a dungeon in the opposing sides' capital city will be enormous; something that everyone will desperately want. But this doesn't really work out too well for the PvE lover. Sure, they will be able to many of the PvE dungeons separately for some time, but in the end they will have the best PvE gear and the only way to upgrade will to be get to the capital city instances. This however could take a long time of doing something that they had hoped to avoid.

So WAR isn't going to be for the PvP-avoider or PvE dedicated, sure there will be plenty of stuff for them to do aside from RvR but only for a certain time. Let's hope that Mythic balance the PvE and RvR gear right because it would be a disaster if those PvE junkies rock up to RvR and are unable to do anything decently, or on the other hand, begin to annihilate those who did not do very much PvE, if any at all.

Hyperlicious

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I thought I should make a post about hype because it seems as though everyone is talking about it. And by everyone I mean just a couple of my fellow bloggers. The word is going around that Mythic have been over-hyping their game like crazy, and when its going to be released there will be some repercussions. The repercussions may be in the form of raging gamers who thought that WAR would be THE next game, maybe others will just be slightly disappointed. Personally I feel that the complaints of over-hyping a game are pointless until the actual game comes out. Why? Because you can't tell whether the game is going to actually live up to the hype until you have actually experienced it. Perhaps, of course, some of the bloggers are in the closed beta and have been playing for a while and do not feel that the game lives up to the hype which is understandable.

I don't think that Mythic have over-hyped their game. I think what they have done is clever marketing. (which can be I guess be seen as just another way of saying 'over-hype') They have released a lot of production podcasts which explain the interesting and exciting aspects of the game, they have made their development interviews exciting and interesting (Thank you Paul Barnett) and they have listened to their fanbase and given them what they asked for. Can this be classified as hype?

About a year ago I had recently quit WoW and was looking for a new MMO and I came across Fury. It was a game developed by an Aussie team which focused completely on PvP. The hype for Fury wasn't significant, and certainly quite timid as opposed to WAR, yet I was still really excited about the game. Sadly there were many, many things wrong with it and it didn't sell. Only a few days ago it shut down its servers. Why am I mentioning this? Well, I think that there is nothing wrong with hype. While there was very little hype for Fury I still was very interested in it, and consequently was extremely disappointed with the result. WAR (apparently) has been overloaded with hype and I am waiting with sweaty hands to play it, yet I know that if the game doesn't turn out as I hoped I will be no more disappointed then with Fury. Developers should not be blamed for over-hyping their game; its their job and in the end hype is not what the developers make out their game to be, but what the player makes out the game to be in their mind. While this ideal may be effected by the stuff churned out by the developers it is not totally dependent on it as demonstrated by my experience with Fury.

Open beta thoughts

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I think I'm going to have to up the quality of this blog after being linked to by Syp over at the great WAAAGH blog, but I still can't remember that brilliant idea of a post that I had yesterday. A few months ago my WAR guild had a competition in which the winner would gain the codes from a preorder CE which the GM had purchased. Luckily I won with a drawing that I had done, and received the codes however, unluckily, the guild shut down and I lost contact from the GM. A situation has arisen just recently after Mythic shut down their old beta center website and started a new one for the Open Beta codes. Unfortunately, since the GM sent me the codes through the guild website mailing system I can't retrieve them, after the website was shut down. I have sent him an email since and hope that I will be able to receive them in time to try out the WAR open beta but who knows?

Now I'm pondering whether I will really mind whether I miss open beta or not. I saw it as an opportunity to test out all the classes and decide on my main, but it isn't that significant. After the NDA lifts everyone is going to be posting like crazy over what they think so I'll be getting plenty of info about it. The deluge of information and hype at the moment is unbelievable and I feel myself slowly turning slightly mad. So, open beta looks great, and I would be off my socks if I get my codes and get to play, but if I don't then I'll be satisfied to wait and play the game on launch with my new computer. (Which still has not arrived...I have limited patience courier people...I need my little beast) What I am really looking forward to is a couple of months after release when everyone is just cool, calm, somewhat collected, as they get to relax and just truly enjoy the game. Hype is extremely tiring...I feel like a nap.

Less is more

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I had the best idea for a blog post today but then I forgot it before I could write it down, so instead I'm just going to write whatever comes to me and hope that it will come back so I can make it a post for tomorrow.

I was reading a post from Tobold today as he was discussing what he would be playing in the next couple of months, between WotLK and WAR. Tobold appears to be a pretty hardcore PvE player who rarely PvPs. WAR will have PvE in it but it is not a focal part of the game unlike WoW. However, I don't want to talk about PvE and PvP, I want to talk about numbers. Keen an Graev discovered this article from gamesradar in which these guys get an in-depth look at a couple fo the dungeons on offer. And I'm not going to talk about that either, I'm here to talk about numbers. Let me explain;

While reading through that article I noticed that Mythic had said that there were armour sets for each of the instances, in fact for every single PvE dungeon. This adds on to the whole lot of RvR sets available making quite a considerable number of armour sets that one can acquire. I think Mythic said it was around 400 sets. That is an awful lot of different types of gear, a massive amount, and there are many potential problems with this.

For starters, one must wonder what people are going to do if they find two sets of armour that they really like, and perhaps have minor differences for different situations in RvR or PvE action, which of course will inevitably happen with so many armour sets. Will we have a quickslot bar that allows one to change instantly between armour sets? And just how much bag space will having these armour sets take up? The other problem with so many sets is distinction. Maybe everyone will look different and crazy, but it will be hard to tell who has got the best gear. I loath to compare to WoW but it has the many Tiers of armour; everyone knows what they look like and they lust for it. But with 400 sets you could be running around with one set of armour, thinking that you have some pretty sweet bling, and all the time your gear sucks, and you, along with many others, never knew.

Big numbers are not necessarily good; in LotRO there were a ton of deeds you could do to get a prestigious title but after a while, there were so many that having a crazy one that took you 8 hours of grinding salamanders for is never noticed. If you tone down on something then it becomes more noticeable. I will be interested to see how Mythic pull the feat off, fingers crosses that they know what they are doing. Then again, my number of 400 could have been somehow completely tired imagining (Too many tests and early mornings) and this post will have been a waste of time. I still have remembered what I was going to post before but I guess this will have to suffice.

Wrong game

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A few weeks ago I decided to subscribe to an Aussie gaming magazine; PC Powerplay. With my subscription they offered a couple of free games to choose from. The games were Chessmaster, Ghost Recon, Prince of Persian, Splinter Cell, and Settlers V. PoP instantly caught my eye so I asked for that one. Waited for a couple of weeks and got the first magazine which was really good so I'm quite satisfied with my subscription, but only just today has the game arrived. Unfortunately it wasn't PoP. It wasn't even any of the above stated games, instead I have just received Call of Juarez. I don't how this mistake was made and I don't know whether I'm going to keep it, let alone play it. My current computer is too old to ruin any modern game so I won't be able to test it.
I'll probably send an email over the PC Powerplay team an email asking them about the mix up. Have any of you played this game? What do you think of it?

More content - same reaction?

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Remember just a few weeks ago when Mythic announced that they were chucking out a couple of classes and cities? I wasn't too concerned by the news as I felt that Mythic really were taking nothing away from the game because I hadn't experienced the game. However, I know this is different for those that were forced to rethink which class they were going to roll, and in extreme cases whether they were going to even play WAR anymore. Now as I look back I begin to wonder what people were actually getting angry and upset about.

People were angry because Mythic had sold them a product and then changed it 'completely.' They were angry that Mythic had changed the game dramatically just when everyone thought the game was ready to play. People were upset because they thought this signified that Mythic were not really near finishing at all. And of course, people were upset because their favorite classes had been removed.

Now I don't want to rehash the whole situation, and what I think of their ideas. I think I may have done it in a previous post anyway. What I want to suggest is what would be the response of the same people if Mythic had added instead of removed content to the game? I mean what if they had added a whole new race, with 4 new classes who could choose between Order and Destruction? What if Mythic made these characters amazingly good, and so much more interesting then many of the original classes. What if they had added in a ton of stuff that changed the whole concept of RvR? Would people get angry at Mythic because suddenly their favorite characters all of a sudden looks puny compared to the new classes? Would they complain that Mythic had changed the game completely just before the release of the game?
I'm sure there are many different things to discuss in relation to this topic and I look forward to hearing your comments.

20 years in the future

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I was talking to a friend the other day and we were discussing what games were going to be like in 20 years. Games have developed astronomically in the last 20 years but could they do that again? My instance idea was of course not, graphics already are incredible, virtually life-like, think Crysis-they really can't get any better then that. But the longer I thought about it the more I realized that I was looking at it from a very linear view, meaning that graphics aren't the only things that are going to improve greatly. Here is my idea/hope of what games are going to be like in another 20 years, this is from the view of PCs.

The computer, monitor, keyboard, mouse, and speakers will all be one single piece, slightly like a console. There will be of course the option to buy additional speakers but it is not a necessity. Games will be nearing current Pixar animation-like graphical detail. The gaming worlds will be much more interactive, such as leaves blowing out behind you as you gallop past on your tame war tiger. (In World of Warcraft; The Wrath of the Never-ending MMO) Damage models will be almost life-like, violence in games will need to be reduced because of it's life-like feel and atmosphere. There will be a huge array of animations for the simplest of things- instead of bumping into a log and having to either jump over it or move around it, the player will be able to simple 'climb' over it with only the slightest pause. AI will be beefed up and bots will be programmed to play exactly like humans, programmed to make minor mistakes, but also to think for themselves in a much broader way then in today's games. Oh, and you will never need to go to a store again-you will be able to buy any game online, download it in a matter of minutes and play it.

Some of this prediction is pure wishfulness, but I believe that much of it will occur. The strength of the gaming community is only growing and more and more 'casual' gamers are popping up. Gaming is not just for nerdy teens anymore, it is for everyone. As such the industry will get bigger and bigger, with more money being invested in new technology. I mean, just imagine what the people in the late eighties early nineties would have said if we would have shown them this;

as opposed to this;

What I hate about some guilds

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This post isn't meant to be just a 100% negative post funneling all my rage its just meant to be about what I really can't stand about certain guilds and what they are doing wrong.
Maybe its just me but I hate hardcore guilds in general. I also dislike many 18+ guilds' attitudes towards others. I don't like guilds who's only aim is to get over 1000 members regardless of their level or status, meaning that they don't kick anyone despite them having not played the game for over a year. (Yes I have seen it) And I don't like guilds whose higher lvls form a whole little elite group amongst themselves and you only get counted in after you get to their lvl of awesomeness. You might say after this that I am a guild hopper and I guess that is true, for the times that I played WoW and LotRO I didn't have very good guild experiences.

In WoW I mostly got entangled in guilds that really didn't really who I was, or where I was in the game, just that I was a number in the long list of members. Hoarding members is not productive or helpful and yet you still see guilds advertising that they "now have over 400 members!!!" The guilds often tend to be run by a lvl 32 kid who spends more time spamming general chat with his guild advertisement then he does actually moving his piddly little character around.

Then there are the hardcore guilds who do care about their guild numbers, and also care about where you are from (what timezone) what class you are, what spec you are, how long on average do you play on weekdays, how long on average you play on weekends, and the biggest thing of all; whats your gear like? After all this, if you manage to squeeze in they will slap a one month trial membership on you until you prove your worth in the higher eclipses of the raiding instances. I understand all this, I know that there are always people that are not satisfied with playing normally but it still gets irritating to go through all the questions and tests just to find that your resilience isn't up to scratch.

18+ guilds are kind of a pet peeve for me and not just because I'm not 18. The rule is obviously set in place so the guilds don't get flooded by squeaky voiced kids that ask to be run through instances all the time, and also so that everyone in the guild is able to swear and tell dirty jokes without an angry parent beating them over the head, in summary; immature people. I understand this, and that isn't what I hate about these guilds, its the all too often fact that the rule is disregarded, and I don't mean that in the literal sense where the guild allows a 16 year old (like me) to join, but in the sense that they allow immature players in all the time. These players are often over the age of 18 and this is used almost as a badge that prevents them from being accused of the horrendous crime that is immaturity. Too many times I have entered a 18+ guild (I am just a naturally mature person...most of the time) and found myself hating it because everyone was studying me all the time for any stupid, or bad taste remark while all the other fellas where acting like obscene apes. Age does not equal maturity.

Finally the guilds that have a hierarchy of members that are of a high lvl and that seem separate from the rest of the guild. They never help anyone, never give advice, and only help those that can help them. Its a sad site to see a guild in this state for it always seems to end that those member eventually leave and the rest of the lower lvl players have to rebuild up once again. Its happened once and it was pretty bad.

Thats a lot to hate, I have just realized that its become a pretty long post, it wasn't really mean to be. Guilds can make you enjoy a game for a lot longer then you would have alone, but there are a lot out there that make you want to quit the game. Since the guilds play such a significant role in WAR I think its very important to find the best guild for you. It is a matter of personal preference as some people will accept things which others would leave for. Just a few days ago I was in a great WAR guild and this were looking really exciting with the looming release of the game, and all of a sudden the GM had had enough and the entire guild just folded. It was pretty saddening as I had hoped that I would have stayed there for a long time, but once again I have begun my search for the perfect guild. Funny but I have never even considered going through WAR without a guild.

Updates

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You may have noticed (those who actually stuck around) that I haven't posted in a few days. As this blog is about my gaming experiences I didn't want to clutter it up with random nonsense as I was starting to. The fact is that I'm not really playing anything at the moment. I have dabbled in a couple of games but none were very interesting. WAR is looking amazing and all I can really think about is it. I'm starting to wonder whether my expectations for the game are too high but I truly believe that the game is going to be incredible.

I am still working on getting a new computer. As a student I have a pretty low budget but all I really want to be able to do is run WAR on high graphics. I have trawled the internet for quality stores that sell decent gaming computers for good prices and surprisingly found that eBay was often the best value place to shop. During my searches I often came across sellers that were trying to unload cheap computers onto those who are not so technologically savvy, but in the end I found a great computer for a very good price. It has a Intel quad core Q6600 CPU, 2GB of corsair ram, a nVidia 9600GT, as well as some other bits and pieces for under 800 bucks. It should be able to run WAR smoothly so am hoping to get it soon.

As a final note I found this eBay seller selling the preorder codes for the CE, that wasn't particularly interesting, but the fact that he had listed the system requirements for WAR was interesting/suss. You can check it out here.

Letter to the editor; ignorance is bliss

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Here is a letter I wrote to a gaming magazine today. I'll just stuff it onto my blog for filing purposes, and also because I haven't posted in a while. I guess the letter slightly mirrors my writing style for this blog and its not much of a letter, fulfilling the role of a blog post very well.

For some time now I have noticed that many other friends who are unusually obsessed about gaming (At least, slightly more then me) continually compare recent games to ones that they have played before. They say that WoW was nowhere as good as Ultima Online, that they liked certain aspects of the first COD better then a game that was made 10 years ago, but they aren't quite sure whether COD4 is any better.
To me these people never seem to be able to enjoy any part of a game because they recall back to another game where the gun models looked shinier. With a seemingly endless inventory of previous gaming experiences from which they can pull out any example of something better. To me I would think this would take all the enjoyment out of the game.
I am particularly new to games so I do not know the history of gaming in the 80s, and I haven't played every fps that was released in the late 90s, and I enjoy it this way. The way I see it is if I did play all the fps games during the late 90s and knew the history of gaming in the 80s then I would do exactly the same thing as my friends and thereby, perhaps unknowingly compare the modern games to the ones I enjoyed ages ago, thus making me unsatisfied with the game. Whereas I could have enjoyed myself perfectly without the torturous knowledge of some aspect being slightly better in another game. That is why I value my gaming ignorance, and will stick to my narrow-mindedness despite what others might say.

Tutorialization

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For the past couple of days I have been playing Sid Meirs' Colonization. After writing up a post about it a few days ago I started looking around for a place to download it. I was a bit uncertain whether it would actually work on this computer and was not to suprised when a few downloads turned out bad. However, I eventually found one that did work and have been playing that since. It is very much like the Sid Meirs' Civ series but despite the horrible graphics I find myself loving this old game. Everything is right about it, and even me who is a hopeless tactical player, can appreciate and enjoy it. Being the tactical failure that I am I first played it on easiest which basically lets you win. But non-the-less it was very enjoyable.

My sister noticed me playing the game and asked if she could have a go. I left her alone for an hour and came back to see chaos. She had no idea what she was doing or what she was supposed to be doing, saying that the game had no tutorial from which to learn what to do. And I realized that she was right. The game just launches you straight into the action-packed world of building your own colony without explaining a whole lot. This seems to be true for many of the early games; the player is just expected to 'figure it out' with minimal explanation. It may have been difficult for my sister, who is definitely not a gamer, to play properly without a tutorial but I had no problems even though I hadn't played for over 8 years.

Nowadays nearly every modern game that comes out has a tutorial. Sometimes these are separated from the game's overall mission or storyline before you get to play the actual campaign, while others integrate the tutorial into the campaign/story. But they all have a tutorial. But why? What has changed through the years? Do modern computers and games provide a much steeper learning curve then they did back then? Or were games just for ultra nerds who didn't need tutorials? I have to say that I detest tutorials, many leaving me feeling more confused about the game then when I started. For some games they don't need much of a tutorial like Call of Duty because it is simple and everyone has played that kind of game before. But its rare that you come across a game which is different to others yet is simple enough not to need a detailed tutorial. I consider colonization to be one of such games, except I think my sister would disagree.
 
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