Tags: Guild Wars 2, MMO, mmorpg, Star Wars: The Old Republic, swtor, World of Warcraft
Guild Wars 2 will have plenty of competition. Star Wars: The Old Republic and World of Warcraft chief among them. So it is interesting to see how both games move forward with competition in mind.
World of Warcraft for instance has released information about its next expansion which has left some pleased and others outraged.
I don’t want to seem venomous or hate-filled, I’m not, but a lot of The Mists of Pandaria features seem like desperate measures.
PvE scenarios seems like an attempt to ape or mimic the more dynamic public quests of Warhammer, Rift, or GW2 in a game that can’t really handle their nature. The original Guild Wars and Lord of the Rings Online have similar features, Challenge Missions and Skirmishes respectively that do the same thing.
Integrating a now well worn MMO mechanic doesn’t really impress me and I don’t think it will impress others.
The new class is interesting because it sounds like some of the mechanics are taken out of what a couple of new games are doing. A lack of auto-attack is something both Guild Wars 2 and TERA seem to be going for. The dodge mechanic is also a part of these games. I’m not going to say that WoW is trying to steal their thunder but I will criticize how balanced that will be. Seems like there are going to be major frustrations with those mechanics since no other class has them and nerfs a plenty as soon as they’re released.
Another aspect of all this new information that seems in direct competition with other games is their marketing offer. To anyone who subscribes for a year to WoW you get Diablo 3 for free and access to the Pandaria beta. Seems designed to take money right out of the hands of people about to plunk down cash for SWTOR.
The only thing that looks even remotely promising to me personally is their announced pet battle system. Every non-combat pet is supposedly going to be able to battle other pets, train skills, use items, etc. This is just the sort of thing often mentioned by Guild Wars players and I think even attempted in a way with the Guild Wars Polymock battles. I actually kind of dig the sound of it.
But for me the pet battle system is the only thing that looks remotely appealing. I don’t think veteran MMO players will be chomping at the bit for this stuff.
I’ve never liked the cartoony nature of World of Warcraft. It’s not my style and Pandaria seems like they’re doubling down on that design choice. I mean pandas? Are they just picking the low hanging fruit now? Go after the kiddies and cute lovers? They’re definitely making a choice to go after a younger demographic there. Get them while they’re young I suppose.
Hell, who knows? Maybe that’s actually a very intelligent decision. Bring kids into the Blizzard fold now then hook them up with Titan later.
For everyone else a lot of these features just seems like pandering.
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, World of Warcraft
My Year In Nerd post was missing one thing. The video of the guy in the red shirt at Blizzcon. Not for the reasons you might think though, I was sort of disappointed with the reaction he got.
Joel McHale is my hero for going to bat. His closing words are my favourite.
Sorry for the bad quality, couldn’t find a proper version.
Tags: Guild Wars 2, MMO, mmorpg, rift, Star Wars: The Old Republic, swtor, World of Warcraft
I’ve been focusing on Star Wars: The Old Republic as the main competition for Guild Wars 2, but Rift has surely been catching up in hype and overall excitement in the community. I did not think at first that they could possibly pose as competition to the above games. A distant 3rd.
Check out this beta trailer they’ve unleashed.
What I didn’t understand was that Trion Worlds, though unknown to me, actually had quite a bit of funding. Time Warner is backing them, GE/NBC Universal is backing them. They’ve got game industry talent from all over and a publishing relationship with Ubisoft.
Rift isn’t even their only game, they’re working on an MMORTS called End of Nations. For someone like me who doesn’t even follow RTS games, it was a surprise. I’ve read they’re working on a 3rd game that ties into a future Syfy television show which will debut at the same time.
All that and Rift has a release date somewhere in early 2011.
Okay sure, Guild Wars 2 has little to worry about, they’ve got a built in audience chomping at the bit for a sequel, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Rift does really well.
One other thing, with all the money NCSoft, EA Bioware, and Trion are pouring into their future games, you have to wonder why. I think it’s pretty clear. They think they’ve got Blizzard’s number. Agree or not World of Warcraft is an aging game, and in my opinion they may have made a misstep by devoting so much time to revamping their early levels and not to their expansion.
I think other companies see weakness and are going for the jugular.
Of course it remains to be seen just how good Cataclysm will turn out. Its not like Blizzard is going to churn out a piece of crap. That would be a huge mistake.
Rift is promising a lot from the get go. So are Guild Wars 2 and Star Wars: The Old Republic. If even one of them delivers, maybe WoW will finally have a fight on its hands?
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, World of Warcraft
I would be remiss if I did not offer a resolution post about the whole World of Warcraft RealID thing. They gave in like a drunk teenager on prom night. That’s great and I’m glad that this means that virtually every other MMO studio will probably be scared off anything similar for a while, but there are a few points I wanted to address.
A lot of the people I saw defending RealID seem to have their heads up their asses.
They have every right to defend the system and I don’t deny they had many good points, but the vast majority of people for the system seemed very arrogant about it. They tended to characterize the anti-RealID movement as people who were childish, dumb, naive, paranoid, and generally crazy.
I don’t want to generalize and say that the people for RealID were arrogant in their ‘rightness’, but I don’t recall reading more than one pro argument that wasn’t tinged with condescension.
Saying people shouldn’t be paranoid about being harassed on the internet and then having draconian rules for your own comments section (imaginary example) sort of conflicts with reality doesn’t it? The truth is although its rare, everyone goes through it at some point. Does anyone out there not have a story about harassment, griefing, stalking, flared tempers, crazy guildies, or other non-stable internet types?
Putting all the actual arguments aside, when your paying customers voice their concerns in great numbers, as a business you should probably listen. That’s what Blizzard did, they listened, and no amount of sulking sookie-baby complaints about angry nerds getting their way is going to change that.
What would using peoples real name actually do? Severely limit direct feedback. Slightly cut down on terrible behaviour. Increase security problems. Increase harassment, griefing, and stalking. Decrease socialization, which is sort of the point of this whole thing isn’t it?
I’d like to take a moment to ponder just what the heck is going on in the minds of Blizzard. Its like some Activision bigwig saw this whole facebook trend and the money making potential (potential I doubt will last, facebook is the next myspace and we all know it) and said “Lets do that but with our games!” and didn’t think it through beyond that.
I don’t think they ever dealt with the issue of online identity at any point, and thats very strange coming from a company that is built on alternative online identity.
For all the supposed thought they put into making people use their real names on the forums there were far more arguments against it. My own argument is simple. What makes you think if people are using their real names they’re suddenly princes of politeness? Shame on me for quoting Shakespeare in this context but What is in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.
I think I just classed up this blog by 100%.
Activision Blizzard has a partnership with Facebook, a business agreement that isn’t going to get flushed down the toilet any time soon. Who knows how they’re going to implement their future social network, but they are going to implement it. Hopefully with their players concerns in mind, but maybe not.
As Charles Bronson would say “This ain’t ovah!” Ugh, crap. I think I just nullified that Shakespeare quote.
Tags: games, MMO, mmorpg, video game, World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft has announced they’re going to start using real names on their forums. Now I’m not a WoW player, I don’t really have any gamer friends and therefore don’t really know anyone who plays WoW. Yet if they’ve proved anything over the years, they are a trend maker, and people follow in their footsteps.
Please don’t make me use my real name. Please.
I don’t have a strong opinion on this, because it doesn’t affect me, but like I said, Blizzard is a big influence on the rest of the Industry. Atheist God forbid Arenanet or Bioware copied this.
A few select reasons why this is a very bad idea.
- Removing someones anonymity does not automatically make them a nice person
- Removing someones anonymity does not somehow make them magically accountable for what they say
- Removing someones anonymity would stop about 1% of obnoxious griefers
- Removing someones anonymity would encourage the worst 1% of obnoxious griefers
- People do not want every aspect of their life to be googled, especially their pass-times
- Ensures people who want to harass you online can always harass you
- Ensures people who want to harass you in real life, can find you in real life
- Makes stealing your identity so much easier
- Have a funny name? Prepare to be ridiculed Mike Hawk
- Have a female name? Prepare to be inundated with pictures of Mike Hawk
- Makes using the internet to relieve the stress of real life just that much harder
- The combination of WoW forums and facebook would be extremely unhealthy
- Gold farmers will know exactly who they’re ripping off
- Can’t escape into the game if you’re using your real name
- Can’t escape from the game if you’re using your real name
You know I was thinking about the authenticators recently. It turns out that if you get hacked, and you don’t own one, the gold farmers put their own authenticator on your account. Fun little spit in the eye isn’t it? I can’t imagine how RealID is going to backfire.
Tags: Allods, eve online, games, Guild Wars, Guild Wars 2, Lord of the Rings Online, LOTRO, MMO, mmorpg, Star Wars: The Old Republic, video game, World of Warcraft
Every so often when I’m reading MMO blogs I come across a post lamenting the fact that monsters drop strange things.
“Why do warthogs drop armour pieces? They don’t need metal pants! They don’t wear pants at all! Don’t developers realize that warthogs can’t wear pants!?“
I liken it to early 90′s stand up comedians and observational humour.
“Did you ever notice, when you are sitting at a red light, that when the person in front of you pulls up a couple of inches, you are compelled to move up too? Do we really think we are making progress toward our destination? “Whew, I thought we would be late, but now that I am nine inches closer, I can stop for coffee and a danish!”
While I admit that is a complete laugh riot, I’ve begun to wonder about the people making these comments about loot. They often follow it up with a confidential aside to developers.
“Hey devs! Why can’t we get some loot that makes sense! Warthogs should drop warthog loot! Not paper scrolls!“
I wonder why all those devs out there have never thought of this. It could revolutionize gaming! Warthogs could drop warthog hooves! They ought to come in really handy against that 30 ton basilisk that’s trying to bite off my legs. If only I had some metal pants…
In all seriousness, why can’t people think a little more clearly about this subject. The reason we inch ahead at those red lights is because we’re eager to get moving, in a hurry, or impatient waiting for the light to change. Don’t you think the reason for seemingly random drops from warthogs could also be fairly straight forward?
First of all, to insure a fair and even distribution of gear through random drops, most monsters should have a fair and even loot table. How else do you insure that whole, fair and even thing?
If i have 4 quests for warthogs, bears, lizards and bandits, and bandits are the only mobs that drop loot that could even remotely be considered useful, do you think the bandit area is going to be busy? Do you think perhaps it will be difficult to kill the bandits in a timely manner considering the bandits are the only mobs that drop anything of value?
Realistically, warthogs drop meat, hide, and tusks. If we’re in a game that has moved into the iron age, the tusks aren’t going to be worth much. The meat I can eat, if that were a concern in video games. The hides I can perhaps craft something out of. In any generic game, that’s not particularly exciting or valuable.
I think there’s something to be said for the possibility that just about anything can drop. I’d much rather anything drop, than the same things every time.
You know what else? Some of those quests you aren’t reading explain why those warthogs are dropping scrolls. The scholar who gave you the quest was attacked by rampaging warthogs and dropped his scrolls. The warthogs have gone nuts and ate the scrolls. He sent you out there to get them, but apparently you’re an egotistical maniac who doesn’t listen when spoken to.
Lastly I’d like to make a plea for players to use their imaginations. We are playing games in fantasy worlds, with lore and setting. We’re fighting ghouls and monsters. Is the problem here that bears drop swords, or that you can’t fathom one reason bears are dropping swords.
Humans use swords. Giant fantasy bear eats human. Giant fantasy bear eats sword. Boom. All that hard imagination work done for you.
In real life, sharks, goats, rats, starlings, raccoons, possums, snakes, dogs, cats, whales, and pelicans all eat, chew, steal, nest in, swallow, tear apart and otherwise interact with human objects. Why can’t you imagine fantasy animals and monsters doing the same on a bigger level?
If a sea turtle can get entangled with a a digital camera and film itself as it travels 1100 miles, how come you can’t come up with a story about how a warthog killed a human with a sword, nested with it because it was shiny, and then got killed by you.
Some games have loot that is sensible. Guild Wars and Lord of the Rings Online for instance both have monster appropriate drops mixed in with more “unlikely” possibilities.
I’ll leave you with this question. Would you even play an mmorpg if you knew that you would never get completely inappropriate drops? For instance a human armour piece from a three story tall dragon who has no use for human armour pieces.
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, World of Warcraft
When the $25 World of Warcraft mount was released, one of the things I was worried about was inflation. I figured Blizzard would be selling more and more products at higher and higher prices. Just to see what they can get away with.
In the back of my mind I was also worrying about other companies copying the idea. Particularly games nowhere near as good as WoW. What happens when low rent games, non-triple AAA titles, that are already copying every other aspect of WoW, start copying their ridiculously over priced cash shop items as well? Does anyone here expect Alganon or dozens of other games to NOT follow in the wake of the most influential MMO on the market?
I guess I don’t play WoW so my arguments ring a little hollow, that’s fine. Thing is, I do play games that copy WoW, who doesn’t? Blizzard has opened the floodgates of greed, and now I fully expect ridiculously over priced mounts in Star Wars: The Old Republic, Guild Wars 2, Copernicus, and absolutely every other fucking game in the MMO genre, and frankly any game with online content, for the rest of time.
Thanks a lot Blizzard. You douche bags.
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, World of Warcraft
Weekends are becoming video heavy here at Hunters Insight, I’m not sure why. In any case check out TRH!
Stolen from I’m Talking Games
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, video game, World of Warcraft
You and I, dear reader, know that these offers are complete rip-offs. Forgetting what you can get in the game normally for the price of what you’re already paying, how does a single mini-pet, or mount, add up to the cost that WoW is asking for?
25 dollars is half of a new game. 25 dollars is a complete slightly older game. I could feed myself for a week (if i only drank water and ate one meal a day) on 25 dollars.
What I keep coming back to in my head is, how much did it cost them to make one new mount? Probably one or two artists, a couple programmers, and a week or two of work. I mean I’m not sure, but it’s probably just a reskinned mount already in game.
140k people have already lined up to buy it and it was announced earlier today. That’s 3.5 million dollars if I’m doing my math correctly. In the first day.
I don’t even blame Blizzard. They are a corporation. Corporations have proven time and again they are nothing but psychopathic entities who serve no purpose but their own and for some reason have the same rights as human beings. Of course they’re going to over charge for their products. That’s how capitalism works.
Unfortunately capitalism is also supposed to work on principles of supply and demand. Demand for something that is incredibly over priced should drop. By all rights nobody should be buying this scumbag product from a psychopathic vendor. That’s how we keep inflation in check and all that other crazy socio-economic bullshit.
All my blame for this lies with the stupid, stupid, stupid people who are actually going to buy this thing. Where is your common sense? You like wasting money? Don’t you realize that Blizzard will just sell more of these types of things at even greater inflated prices once you encourage them?
It’s like DownLoadable Content released on the same day as release. It’s like finding out the batteries are not included. It’s like voting for someone when you already know they’re not fit for office. What is wrong with you people.
Tags: MMO, mmorpg, Runes of Magic, World of Warcraft
Poor Suzina. She bought gold for World of Warcraft and then blogged about it. Many people had something to say about her post. It collected over 100 comments and a ton of people blogging about her. I’m sure I’m only adding to the mess.
She made a poor decision and then the blogging community dog piled on her. Oh no, I don’t mean buying the gold was a poor decision, I mean blogging about it. Overall her decision to buy gold is meaningless. She’s a drop in the bucket compared to the numbers of people who actually buy gold, and buy lots of gold.
Having played Runes of Magic, I know exactly how much money people are willing to spend on a game, and it frightens me to think there are people in WoW spending those amounts of money. One highly geared member of my RoM guild spent $2000 in one year. He is far from the only big spender in that game. Those are the types of people who keep RMT companies going, not $10 nickel and dimers.
Playing in a micro-transaction game has really changed my opinion on people who buy gold, legally or not. I don’t agree with anyone buying gold outside the system, but I also acknowledge that some people don’t have the time or will to farm gold. However easy it may be. I no longer think it’s a big deal, or at least I don’t think the people buying gold are a big deal.
The actual RMT people? They’re scum. Hackers, scammers, dishonest scum. I would never trust them with my money one way or another. That, I think, is Suzina’s only failure here, she should not have risked her security for in game gold.
I actually think she’s done a service for the community. She raised the issue in a very visible place. Not only was her post honest and sincere, revealing exactly why she was buying gold and giving us a peek inside the mind of gold buyers, she was very heartfelt. She couldn’t believe someone would treat her so badly over what is essentially a minor issue. She actually feels bad about it, and considering the reaction from the blogging community, I kind of wonder if she’ll retreat from blogging. There are a lot of jerks on the internet.
Okay, yes, the issue is far from minor when we start talking about how RMT affects online gamers. They raise costs, annoy us, steal from us, ruin our enjoyment of a game at times we’re just looking to unwind. Hacking our account is akin to hacking our time, effort, and the soul we’ve put into characters.
What I’m saying is, Suzina is not a villain. Just like people who smoke weed shouldn’t be sent to prison. I suppose I could make a whole analogy out of that, but I’m not going to. It does however confuse me that she didn’t seem to have any foreknowledge of how taboo RMT is in the blogging world or even in game.