Monday, August 31, 2009

Goodbye to the Shaman

After playing some more with my Tauren shaman, I decided to delete him. The play style just wasn't for me and overall the character felt very weak with long down times between fights. The mage's downtime I can deal with because the character is very strong and able to take down creatures easily.

Still wanting to play a Tauren, I ended up making a warrior and getting him up to level 7. The lack of downtime at the moment is excellent even though he really doesn't feel that powerful.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

What I'm Playing

Blood Bowl - Currently only playing a game or so a night but am still enjoying it. I have an orc team that I am taking through the single player campaign. It has been a while since they last lost a game though a Skaven team (always my bane) nearly ended that streak in the last game. Luckily killing their gutter runner and running the ball in on turn 15 saved me a draw.

World of Warcraft - My gnome mage is up to 10, shaman is still at 14, and the death knight is 74. Haven't played too much of late.

Diablo 2- Started up another playthrough with a friend. Currently going as a dual-axe wielding barbarian. Finished the first act and ran the sewers at the start of the second.

Warcraft 3 - Having played the first two, but never the third, I finally borrowed the disc and am working through a campaign. Currently on the 3rd or 4th mission with the humans.

That is pretty much where I'm at at the moment. Nothing holding my attention for too long and a wide variety of games on the hard drive. My guess is it's the anticipation of the upcoming fall release season. Sure many games have been pushed back already, but it is still looking solid.

Friday, August 28, 2009

WoW: Viewing the Old Content One Last Time

With the upcoming Cataclysm changing the old world completely, I have had the urge to go back and level some new alts on both the Horde and Alliance side. This way I can see the content one last time when it is old and then level a goblin and worgen to see how it changed.

For the horde side, my favorite race has always been the Tauren. So I ended creating a shaman because it is a class that I've never played before. He will end up being an elemental shaman but for the moment his lack of mana is really killing the enjoyment of playing him. Downtime between fights is currently insane. Hopefully once I finish my current quest to get a fire totem things will improve, but it may be a struggle leveling him up for now. After two nights questing, he has reached the barrens and is level 13.

On the Alliance side of things, I ended up making a gnomish mage. The mage is a class I've dabbled with before, but never really played it past level 20 or so. I've got him up to level six and out of the newbie zone so far. It has been far easier to play than the shaman to this point, with no mana problems and the ability to kill most creatures before they even reach me.

The Death Knight is sitting at 74 and benched currently while leveling alts.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

Guild Wars 2 Event System

I was reading Eurogamer's preview of Guild Wars 2 when I ran across this interesting paragraph.

"We actually don't have a traditional RPG/MMO quest system," Flannum continues. "Instead what we've got are Events. Think of them as group-orientated activities. This is one of the many things that will encourage the player to explore the world - you can wander through and never quite know what you're going to see. You might come across a fortress that's being attacked by centaurs, or it might be that the centaurs attacked half an hour before you got there and they hold it now. You might start walking along a road you've walked a hundred times and suddenly there's a caravan travelling along that road that you may not have seen, and you can go help that caravan out."
Reading this puts GW2 on my gaming radar. If they can pull it off successfully, it could be the best quest system in any MMO to date. The thought of being able to run across these random events as they happen would really make the game world feel like a more real, dynamic place. In my mind, this is an evolution over WAR's Public Quests. The PQs provided a nice group event that anyone could join in and work torwards a goal, but it always ended up feeling repetitive and static because nothing ever changed. You could go back to the area at any point in time and the same exact thing would be happening.

At least with this events system, different things will be happening at different times. That well-traveled road could just end up providing you a completely new experience. I imagine that some players will struggle with wanting to do everything in the game, "complete it" so to say, but for me this is a new and exciting possibility.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

TOR Gameplay Demo

Basically showed exactly what we have received in written form up to this point. While exciting to get an extended glimpse, I didn't learn anything new and just reinforced my desire to be a Bounty Hunter. The BH looked like a cooler playstyle and more powerful than the Sith in the video but who actually knows.

You can check it out on IGN if you haven't seen it already.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

WoW Cataclysm

So the rumors were true...

I was kind of surprised but pleasantly await playing it. Will definitely be creating a Goblin early on as they have always been the race I've wanted to play. Guess its back to work on the ole Death Knight now.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Champions Online

Cryptic dropping the NDA for the game did it for me, I'm not going to end up playing it. Didn't even have the urge to download the nearly 1 gig patch for the open beta after reading numerous negative and meh reviews. I was hoping it would be good, but I know I won't play a CoH2.

In City of Heroes, I spent more time creating characters than I actually spent playing the game. I would spend over an hour making one and then get into the boring gameplay and head straight back to the character creation. Never got past the 14-day free trial for the game.

So hopefully Aion has an open beta that I can get into, but if not I'll be sticking with playing WoW on and off and waiting for the single player games to come out this fall/winter. Speaking of WoW, I hit 73 on my Death Knight Wednesday night through questing in Dragonblight. Won't be playing for the next few days as I'm heading back to college today.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Supreme Commander 2

I now realize that in my crowded list of future games I posted last week, I left of one that I particularly looking forward to. Today I was reading the September issue of PC Gamer (missed issue that they promptly re-sent after calling them up), and the title story was on SupCom 2. The article is definitely recommended to anyone who played SupCom or the older Total Annihilation.

The team appears to be taking some of the criticisms from the first game to heart and changing them up for the second go around. First area of improvement is the economy. The first one had a delightfully challenging economy that rewarded properly planning and quality base layouts. The problem was how unforgiving this was. One mistake or pushing construction a little too fast brought your entire war machine to a halt. When this happened, all the fun went out the window as you had to instantly reorganize your economy and play catch up to the other players. Storage facilities are no longer needed which will free up the base for a more streamlined look. This is a major plus in my book because constantly having to build mass and power storage crowded up the base and made it harder for units to find a path through the base and made placing structures harder. One area of disappointment is the removal of having additional engineering units speed up build times. While it required micromanagement of large teams of builders, it was nice to have the option to speed up the construction of the experimental units when you needed it most.

Another area that is being improved is the ACUs. Thank god they have escape pods now so they can be used in an offensive without worrying about them going nuclear. I would assume you would have to manually eject the commander, but that should be no problem as you should always have an eye on his health. There are some more upgrades to make the ACU better on the attack, like AA guns and torpedoes. Yay! The ability to finally walk your commander through water without having to worry about getting raped by subs and ships.

Aeon is now the Illuminate. The new art style is a welcome change with a steampunk type vibe to it.

Tech Tree Changes. No longer will Tier 1 and 2 units become useless by the end of the match. Rather than having tiers, units can be upgraded over time through an actual tech tree. Should be some good strategies for that and the ability to tailor your units how you want them. They give the example of a tank adding an extra barrel, then more range, and finally some AA guns. Should be interesting to see the end result.

More experimental units divided into minor and major classifications. Minors supposedly can be built by the 15th minute of gameplay while majors are more like the ones in the original SupCom. Also there will triple the number of them in the game which make for some interesting army make-ups.

Overall, a good preview that makes me even more eager for this game to come out.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sith Warrior

Via Gamespot, Bioware unveiled the fourth of eight classes in their upcoming MMO, the Sith Warrior. Whether this will be the only force using class for the Sith or if there will be a more force power focused one remains to be seen. My first thought based on their description was that there would be another one but I certainly hope not. My votes for the two remaining classes for that faction are a droid based one, and a pet-class (the most interesting suggestion I've seen is a slaver).

Even though I've sworn off playing a Jedi/Sith as my main class, their description was good enough to make me consider it as a first alternate.

EL: Well, I might have to disappoint you here, but the way the Sith Warrior leads is by physically hurling himself ahead of his group and into the fray, not by sprinkling around touchy-feely buffs for his buddies. That's just not his style. Although, if his refrains from Force choking his groupmates, does that count as a buff?
and...

EL: This was the first character we built, and in many ways, he is still our yardstick for all the other classes. I would not say playing this character is good clean fun because neither "good" nor "clean" is an appropriate term, but he delivers a visceral and satisfying experience. To quote a line from another venerable story: If you think that what's best in life is to crush your enemies and see them driven before you, you should definitely consider playing a Sith Warrior.
They certainly know how to sell their classes.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Star Wars: The Old Republic Localized in French and German???

I didn't think that Bioware's upcoming MMO could get any more massive until I was reading a liveblog of EA's press conference today. All voice over will be in English, French, and German! Three languages and three times as much work for an already large undertaking.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Re-Subbed to WoW

So after reading all the Cataclysm rumors, my interest in WoW was piqued yet again so I ended up re-installing it in an effort to finally get a character to 80. First attempt is my level 72 Death Knight, the closest to the cap.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Blood Bowl Review

Blood Bowl is really the only game that I'm currently playing, but it is definitely one of the best I've played recently. For those of you who don't know the origins of the game, it was originally a board game developed in the 80's. It is set in the Warhammer Universe, so the available races include fantasy stalwarts like Orcs, Humans, Dwarves, and Elves, with more interesting ones like the rat-like Skaven and the Chaos.

From these races you get to build a team and play American-style football in a turn-based structure. A unique concept and wonderfully executed. My personal favorite team is a Lizardmen one based on brutal defense and a quick strike running attack. With this approach I am able to out muscle the small teams and dance past the stronger ones.

Gameplay is kept interesting through large amounts of luck. Winning comes down to 50% luck and 50% skill. So there will be games where nothing goes right and your normally sure handed player will fail at picking up the ball for multiple turns and then the next game will see you pulling off miracle plays. It can become frustrating at times when players are getting injured and dying left and right, but overall it helps to even the playing field.

Due to time constraints, I have only been able to get two online matches in (1-0-1) and the difference of playing another person is readily apparant. Playing against the computer is easy and repetitive, but that all changes online. The two opponents I've played against have been quality guys and fair players. I'm definately looking to get some more play time in the coming weeks.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

What I'm Playing and Future Possibilities

Right now, I'm definitely in a gaming rut. I find myself looking more to the future than playing what is currently sitting on my hard drive. I have a partially finished Oblivion game going and need to get a Mass Effect play through finished (reformatted old computer without copying saved game files).

So right now, the only game that I am able to get myself to load up is Blood Bowl. This is a game I would highly recommend to someone looking for a new game to play. I'll have a review up shortly, but it is a blast to play and I'm just getting started with online play.

It's probably easier to just put a list of games that coming out that I am look forward to rather than describing each one.
  • Tropico 3
  • Scribblenauts
  • Dragon Age Origins
  • Alpha Protocol
  • Diablo 3
  • Starcraft 2
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic
  • Mass Effect 2
  • Battlefield 1943

Yeah, definitely a lot to look forward to at the moment.

I've also had a hankering to get back into a MMO recently, but the thought of getting my Death Knight or Rogue to 80 in WoW isn't very appealing. I only have low levels in LotRO after playing the alpha/beta so long that I never got into it at release. Those are only the 2 currently out MMOs that would I go to, as I won't go back to any of the others I've played (including my first love SWG).

So I have been looking at Champions Online and Aion lately. The CO Open Beta starts Monday so I'm going to try it out then and Aion currently requires you to pre-order it, which I won't do. Maybe one of these two will catch my attention, but I highly doubt it.

Welcome to Morganic's Game Blog

Thanks for stopping by! Here I will be commenting on what I'm playing, what I want to play, theorycrafting, and other general gaming news. I will try to update at least a couple a times a week, but when I'm in a gaming rut it just won't happen as often.

Please feel free to leave a comment with suggestions and ideas for the blog.