Jul 16th 2010 12:23PM Thrall w/o Orgrim Doomhammer's weapon and armor might be a "statement", so to speak. A previous poster highlighted on Thrall's comments about feeling like an inadequate Warchief; maybe the shedding of Doomhammer's gear is Thrall's way of saying he no longer feels adequate to honor Doomhammer and lead their people.
Then you find Thrall basically "soloing" the chaotic Maelstrom energies. Given how they've moved the Orcs and rest of the Horde (or not, who said the HORDE leader had to be an Orc?) under Garrosh Hellscream's control, I'm predicting some Epic act of self-sacrifice from Thrall by the end of Cata. The Alliance did it w/ Bolvar for WotLK; time up up the annie and sacrifice Thrall to defeat Deathwing. TBH, it would be the only way to truly end the momentous life of Thrall.
Jun 19th 2010 12:51AM Lol > "WoW Clone". WoW didn't innovate either, they just knew how to market. Everything in WoW has been taken from EQ, DAoC, and the plethora of other successful MMORPG's before it. The UI that you mistakenly think they "took" from WoW, WoW took from the other MMO's.
Were any of you around for WoW's launch? That wasn't flawless either; both their PvE and PvP endgame systems and most of their classes have done 180's with just about every expansion, if not more often than that.
Just because you've played WoW for 5 years, doesn't make you and MMO player. The vast majority of the MMO market started with WoW and have continued with it. You started playing WoW waaay after all the polish Blizz did with it, so when when a new game comes out and doesn't have the 6 years worth of polish WoW has, you immediately quit the game and call it a failure. Every MMO you die-hard WoW'ers accuse of "flopping" still have dedicated communities, loyal developers, and still make a profit. LotRO, AoC, Vanguard, WAR, and even the older ones EQ, EQ2, Asheron's Call, GW, DAoC, etc. still have all this.
I think even making these comparisons to WoW is making your "honest" review horribly bias. I don't hate WoW, I just think far too much judgement is made about games with reference to WoW, when WoW itself was never revolutionary.
Read this - http://www.teamliquid.net/forum/viewmessage.php?topic_id=128252 - for an unbiased review of Blizzard if you're grown up enough to handle it.
Some of the points you made, comparing swtor to wow, are common to every MMO, that were released both before and after wow. Some are fundamental to the MMO genre; without having them is like an FPS that's third-person with swords - that's not an FPS anymore. Your article is full of fact, but the way you presented it really displays your personal opinion - and you're bias.
Jun 18th 2010 1:22PM It's funny because I recently experienced something similar to this, but drew different conclusions. - I recently re-tried WAR b/c of the latest adjustments to T4 play, and wanted to see if I'd have fun again.
It wasn't that I got booted from warbands or groups, so much as I couldn't find any. I'd go to where the action was and there'd be no open warbands. Being someone who had just come back to the game from an extended hiatus, I didn't have a guild and the friends I played with regularly had long since moved on. There were all kinds of people running around, but no open groups/warbands. So I'd broadcast that I was a healer and LFG, and no luck. I refrained from spamming it because I didn't want to be that guy, but it's really not that much fun following around a big warband, but unable to really contribute/add to their strategy.
This was a bit of a discouragement, but I didn't attribute the problem to elitism. As a DAoC vet. (accnt. created in '02), I'd seen elitism in gank groups, but this really wasn't it. To me it seemed like the loyal community that had stayed with WAR through thick and thin, and not bailed like some of us had when we reached T4 a few months after release only to find it unfinished, had just bonded together so thoroughly because for so long their numbers were so few, that as a returning player, you might have been simply overlooked.
In DAoC I was part of a really great guild that brought people in like family; if you were new, we taught you, geared you, helped you, just had a good time w/ good people. But when it was just us for years and years, we would only look for us. We have 12, so there'd be spots for 4 more. Lol, we'd call our game companions in RL and say "hey, you busy, we need a few more" and they'd come; and that would be the first thing we'd do. We wouldn't spam common channels looking for solo strangers or returners. Even when someone would return, the game's age seemed to help. Player X had stopped playing a year ago, but his friends that had played with him for the 2 years before that, sees him return, and he's immediately re-recruited as a prodigal son. This really hasn't happened in WAR because it's not that old.
It's not elitism so much as just how things are. I really enjoyed the game, but to really get anywhere, you need a guild now. That's fine, but how're you supposed to meet a guild if you find yourself constantly following close-knit friends? The WAR community in general inherited DAoC's friendliness, but not it's age. Great game, great community, just really unfortunate circumstances.
Feb 24th 2010 7:15PM Shan'do Stormrage > Chuck Norris
Feb 8th 2010 5:00PM Robin, you should cover a "What to do when you move to casual from hardcore" column some week. I can't be the only player who lost the time to raid or arena hardcore, but still wants to enjoy the game and find other folks to enjoy it w/ that're in the same boat.
I froze my account (and my raiding career consequently) shortly after ToC came out and decided to take advantage of my 7-days free last week. The dungeon finder is amazing, but the whole experience can be soo impersonal. My main's a tank, so if I knew the fights, there could be times when I'd go through a whole 5-man and no one in the group would say more than 2 words. This experience really wasn't what I was expecting from a "casual" experience. Maybe enlighten a new "casual'er"?
Sep 23rd 2009 1:49PM The Abyss will have to define the game, or it will just be another medieval-fantasy MMO clone.
But given everyone's still so low, I don't think it'd be going out on too much of a limb to say the game after the leveling part is the game that was marketed. You could argue many MMO's had ridiculously boring leveling/questing grinds (imo) until you got to the "end game" where EVERYTHING changed. The first time I leveled a character in an MMO was the funnest time leveling. Every character in every MMO after that was just so I could exp the endgame.
The big argument here could be WoW. You level doing quests and the occasional dungeon if you're luck or know someone to run you through. Once you get to level cap, the game completely changes. It's almost like an entirely different game. You could probably replace WoW with just about every other medieval-fantasy MMO on the market in the above sentences and the truth would stay the same.
I'm not at all trying to market this and will heartily agree it's endgame is, bluntly, broken, but WAR was the only MMO I've played in recently that you could level to cap through non-quest/grind methods.
I'd agree with you in deciding to make the "real call" when you've gotten into the Abyss whether or not the game has a soul.
Kinda does make you wonder why so many MMO's have you grind away through all their levels just to end up playing an entirely different game when you're done leveling. Many of which could definitely have their leveling process described as "soulless". Maybe there's a market for MMO's that let you just play the "end game" of the current MMO's w/o the leveling and games where you do nothing BUT level and quest and enjoy a story. /shrug (Great article though!)
Sep 21st 2009 11:46PM Not trying to be rude, but did you PvP in any games outside of WoW? I played DAoC for years, WoW, and WAR, and I loathed WoW's pvp personally. I felt it really lacked much strategy, aside from Areans, but then arenas, at most there were 10 players. Wintergrasp was a nice effort in Wrath, but the timer kinda killed it for me.
I agree with you completely that T4 was a flop, but I had far more fun in DAoC and WAR's lower tiers than I ever did in Arenas, BG's, or WG in WoW. WoW's PvP really felt like it was just included so Blizz could say there WAS PvP.
I appreciate your vantage point though. Much different than mine.
Sep 21st 2009 10:24PM I srsly have been kicking around reactivating my account b/c I need some casual large-scale pvp. Argue what you will, I enjoyed it (and the last time I went back to DAoC, I died a little inside, so WAR's next best).
It's just sad reading T4 "needs attention" from one of the game producers. One of the original things that sent me for a loop was that the 4 careers they added were supposed to be in at release, and there were supposed to be six capitals to siege, not 2.
Can anyone still playing give me a heads-up about which server has a more active pop? It's terribly difficult to find these things online and I've yet to judge if the $15 is worth it for 40 days.
Sep 21st 2009 11:56AM It seems like the major complaint is that people paid up early to avoid the issues usually associated to launch day. That's a pretty fair argument from a consumer stand point; you didn't get what you thought you were paying for. Fair enough.
On the balancing act that seems the be Aion's current server status: give it a week or two. Regardless of how well or poor a game's population, balance, and community turned out to be, it definitely doesn't happen on launch day, or prior to it in this case. I can completely understand the frustration of getting your guild hacked to shreds (you can't just call all of them and say "hey, we're swapping servers!" like you could with RL friends) as it happened to my DAoC guild when a chunk of us ended up dispersed through out WAR's factions AND servers, but give it a little time. Either stick with it and bite through the current auto-balancing for a week or so, or reroll on a server where you can all fit on your chosen faction.
Sep 21st 2009 11:04AM So, I didn't read most of the other users' posts b/c it was 80% flame (sorry if you actually had a nice point I missed), but I did want to say well summarized, Brooke.
Point #3 I think was probably the best way to describe the pvp system in the fewest words; well done. Werit, over on his blog, had a similarly descriptive bit on Aion's PvPvE ranking system.
I've been reading (or sifting through the flame) to get details for over the past month about Aion, and I still have one question that I've yet to find actually addressed.
How "casual" do people see Aion being compared to other MMO's of a similar genre?
This is my last deterrent to buying, as I really enjoy PvP, but am concerned that if I don't play it with every waking breath, that I'm going to be passed and crushed faster than you can say "game launch". This is probably one of those play-and-see things, but hearing a reasonable argument that the end game can still be a blast in PvPvE while playing casually would provide some enthusiasm for us "casual" players.