Despite my disappointment in the Elder Scrolls Ask Me Anything, I am still rather excited to play it. A friend and I have been discussing it and decided that both of us would be seeking the path of the werewolf. It limits the build as the transformation takes your ultimate slot, you become weak to silver weapons and poison, and in form you are a melee glass cannon. As poison arrows are a standard bow move, turning form and gaining attention from a group in PVP can be suicide, but we're excited to try it hunting down stranglers and loners.
It made me realize I had never tried the werewolf in Skyrim, lately I've been correcting this.
Great fun to take out Bandit camps though I'm trying to avoid killing any innocents. I just recently acquired the Ring of Hircine, which allows me to turn more then once a day. I think I'll head into the Dawnguard expansion, as I'm not a fan of vampires, I've never done it.
The devs for ESO held an 'Ask Me Anything' on the reddit. I gave it a quick read and wish I hadn't. Here's what I got out of it.
They had originally intended that you would be able to flag yourself with certain tags such as 'Roleplayer', which would help place like people together within the Megaserver, to make up for the lack of individual servers. Not only is this not going in to launch, it is no longer on the table. Ouch. Like Guild Wars 2 it is going to be impossible to foster an RP environment, something that's a major draw to me. Roleplaying is how I like to spend my downtime, or just hang out in game when not focused on PVP or questing.
No plans for speech bubbles. Ouch... I'm not good at following chat boxes, that mess of text is hard to read when focused on where your running or the troll smashing your face. What RP I would be able to find is also hurt now as I try to read the lines of a specific person in the ocean of global and guild chat channels.
No plans for dueling, WHAT!? If you want to be a PVP game, this should be in. 'We want to keep the pvp between alliances' is fine, but duels are how my friends and I test builds and train each other. Even in Smite, we often play 1v1 joust challenges to try things out.
You can be in five guilds (cool!), they are tied to your account, not your character (not cool). In WoW, I have no one on my Real ID who isn't a personal friend, because sometimes I just want to relax after to work on an alt and not be bothered. I like grouping with guild mates to rp, to do the occasional dungeon and almost always to pvp, but sometimes, I just want to quest, and not explain myself as to why alone.
These things are a big deal for me, The Elder Scrolls is a roleplaying series, but apparently they want little to do with the RP community. Things can always change, but overall today left a sour taste in my mouth about the game. I really liked Guild Wars 2 when it first came out. Played constantly until about level 40, but the lack of RP caused me to grow board because I had nothing to do unless I was working on the quests. Some of my favorite WoW memories involve sitting in the bar in Brill pre-cataclysm.
But perhaps I'm just not the demographic anymore. The MMORPG has forgotten what the RPG meant, too often it's all about progressing content or esport pvp over the actual experience of the game and world.
I'm still going to play you ESO, but now I have to wonder.... for how long?
Edit: I have already been corrected, seems RP flagging is still somewhat on the table. (phew!). So is mentoring which is another feature I think should be in all MMOs.
After 4 days of rendering errors, we finally got it all sorted out, I present to you Three Headed Gamer's third video review: Hearthstone!
A note on my ranking, the fun score isn't for how much fun I had. It's how much of the game I find fun, it leads to a small issue where smaller games have an easier time getting a higher score. Our next video will be for a game I have had a TON of fun in, but from only about 20% of the content leading to a lower score.
I was hoping to be able to link to our 3rd video review today, but something keeps failing in the rendering. I actually haven't had a lot of time to play games lately, part of that was due to teaching a march break science camp last week. The other part is that I'm entering my third month hunting for a full time job. Which leads me to my next point, gaming on a budget.
In the past few months, I have spent very little on gaming, I'd rather eat. So free to play games have been important. Banished and Space Engineers were gifts. Elder Scrolls Online was pre-orderd before this transitional period between full time jobs.
Loadout, Smite, Mighty Quest for Epic Loot, Hearthstone, Path of Exile, these are all free games I'm dipping in and out of. None are the immersive experience I'm really looking for and so I do upkeep a subscription to WoW, which, ESO's first month pending, may swap over.
I'd love to talk more about ESO, across the 3 beta weekends I only got 6-8 hours of game play in. I chose to be a Dunmer or Dark Elf of the Ebonheart Pact. This isn't going to change, the Nords, Dunmer and Argonians have always been my favorite races, back in the days of Morrowind, they were what I played. I've always loved snowy landscapes, it actually pains me to see the snow melting outside. The dunmer had incredible lore, and the argonians, well they just look cool. I went Nightblade, this also won't be changing. I like the stealth theme and the teleports. What is changing is my choice of weaponry. I initially started dual wielding, but it was actually quite boring. I had a lot more fun when I changed to sword and shield. I get to start playing again on the 30th, while I hope I'll be working that day, I may just take a day off job hunting if I'm not.
While the graphic quality isn't best around, I do need to say the game looks damn good.
If you know the name Sheogorath, you'll know why I was both happy and terrified at this moment.
The NDA for Wildstar has fallen, awesome. Basically what I'm reading is a
confirmation on all my fears. While I actually like the art style, it's
the rest that falls flat for me. Telegraphs have a place, they let you
know when special or powerful attacks are going off. Not EVERYTHING.
Have you watched any of the PVP videos? The entire floor is coated in
area warnings, if you're tired of playing safety dance in WoW, this
isn't your answer.
That's the end of this post, next I get the chance I'd like to rant about meta games for a while.
Remind me to never again to say 'tomorrow, this!'. I don't think it ever worked out, something in the laws of the universe prevents such a statement from ever being true if it exits my own mouth.
Ubisoft is listening to players in Mighty Quest for Epic Loot. Last week they stated a balancing patch was in the works. Notably, traps needed a slight nerf and monsters needed a buff. Huzzah! A 16 point slow attacking creature didn't do the same damage as a 3 point spring trap sending you into a 1 point fire mine, let a lone a field of fire mines. I look forward to this change.
Pay Day 2 has announced their stealth roadmap. I don't really like the direction they are taking it, but I'm willing to give it a chance. I don't really see why there is a limit to the number of body bags one can carry, when everything else is put in a bag when picked up. I seem to have 60 bags on me to grab the ammunition in the train heist alone. Respawning guards also confuse me, who sends more guards without calling the police? If they realize guards aren't checking in or have gone missing, that's time to call the cops. This doesn't change the shootout game, which is still fun in it's own right, but I worry stealth is going down a dark path.
ESO, it's coming. I liked beta but didn't get far, I've pre-ordered. I honestly don't know what to write on it. I mentioned in an earlier post that I wish the tutorial could be optional... and now it is! Huzzah! I did change from dual wield to sword and board and I'm loving it. I use assassination skills to teleport to the target, puncture it's armor (and somehow add the lost amount to my own), a bit of normal combat followed by an assassination skill that does extra damage when the enemy is low on health.
Space Engineers, it's space Minecraft, with flyable ships. Honestly? That's about it. Alpha Minecraft. In space. The realistic space physics are neat and cause thinking as to where place your gyroscopes and thrusters.
This was my first project, the Sparrow MKI.
My roommates seem to focus on space stations and large ships, so I started building small ones. The Sparrow is a general purpose get around ship.
After I did something for me.. something special... here's a hint.
That's right! I made an Arwing from Starfox!
I've made a few other ships, but I'll save those for another post, which will be at an unspecified future time to avoid jinxing myself.
Last week, Payday 2 had a major update, and on the surface, it looked like it was going to be awesome. But deep in the patch notes where some changes to how stealth worked in that game, and I haven't enjoyed it a single bit. I could make a post about, but I found another that sums up my thoughts and feelings exactly.
I don't know about you dear readers, but the past few days have just flown by in a blur for me. Lots of gaming related things have happened that as of this morning has me trying not to mash 7-9 different ideas into a massive wall of text. (At least no more massive then usual.) This is just a side note, but the hardest part of blogging is that you either feel you have nothing, or everything to talk about. Right now I feel I have everything, today I'll keep it to one game.
This weekend, when I had time, I played three games:
The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot
The Elder Scrolls Online Beta
Today will be about the first. The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot, a game that could also be known as 'The Elitist Quest for Elitism'.
It's a game about trying to prove you're better than other people. It's pure unadulterated elitism. Normally I hate elitism, but generally in games not designed around it. This game is.
Basically, you build a castle in the sky. This castle holds your loot, and you need to protect it. Build up your defenses to keep other players out, but there is thankfully one catch to that. To stop you from building an impossible to beat castle, you need to 'validate' by invading yourself and succeeding.
How do you get more loot?
Invade your neighbors! Show them how bad their defenses are! Avoid the traps, kill the monsters!
While building your defenses can feel like Evil Genius or Dungeon Keeper, invasion plays like Diablo or Torchlight. Get to the end and you actually steal resources from the owner. That being said, once a castle's defenses are beaten, a shield goes up. When the shields are up, a castle can be invaded, the invader can gain loot, but the owner can not loose further resources. How long the shields are up depend on the level of the invader vs your castle. Someone who's a higher level then you ravaging your castle place a shield of longer duration then if a lower level walks through. This prevents you from going to bed for the night and returning the next morning completely broke.
Crowns are the point of the game, they are the ranking system. If your defenses kill someone, or you successfully invade another castle (shielded or not), you gain crowns. While the game is massively multiplayer, at no point do you actually play with others. Only against. No guilds, no teams, you vs everyone, for everything. When a game is built around elitism, elitism can work.
Now here's where I cause Gevlon's ears to perk. My 'fun' in the game has dwindled a bit in the later levels. There is one tactic I am seeing more and more in castles, and I just don't enjoy trying to get through. A narrow hallway of spring traps that launch you into fire mines. I'll avoid terms like 'cheap' or 'unfair', after all, it's a game of elitism and people don't want me to beat the castle. But, I will say it's a tiresome binary mechanic. Walk on spring trap, walk back before it activated, walk forward and trip next trap, walk back before it activates, again and again. When you get to the third trap, the first has reset giving a narrow space to maneuver, one false step and you land in the mines, and die. I get though I'd say 70% of the time. But I don't enjoy it, where everything else is a fight for survival, this is binary. I either do it perfect, or die. Now worse yet, I'm starting to encounter slime walls in front of these spring traps. They slow you down, so you can't walk on, trip and get off before it flings you into mines. My class has an ability to flip over some of these, but not far enough. I land on a springtrap, can't move for a moment after landing, and get flung into mines. It is currently impossible for the archer to get through. No combination of class abilities can get you through, and this falls of the game developers more then the players. After all, it is not a game of fair play, and they managed to validate so somehow they go through themselves.
There's a limit to how many monsters can attack at once. Fill the room with three hundred monsters and they will still only attack 6-8 at a time. I think something similar should be done with traps, perhaps increasing the power cost of traps would help, at any rate, I think something must be done.
That rant aside, I still very much enjoy the game, even if my personal defenses are falling behind those of others.
Ok, one other topic for today.
If you made it this far, let's be friends! But really, starting this blog has been great, one of those things I talked about for a long while but never started for a number of weak non-reasons. Another thing I had talked about for a while with some friends was the idea of doing some youtube game reviews, well starting my blog got them to finally start.
Our first video was on Loadout, I;m hesitant to link that one because multiple issues combined with hitting the deadline equaled pretty poor quality. I'm much happier with the second video and look forward to improving again on the third as we get used to our pipeline.
What do you think? Leave a comment! Or don't, I'll continue posting and ranting regardless.