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The Gaming Gospel

I write about everything that goes with MMORPGs

Author: DaKurlzz

Let's Talk: The Secret World

Posted by DaKurlzz Thursday January 30 2014 at 12:40AM
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So we talked about Firefall last, and now I'm on the subject of The Secret World, a game developed by Funcom. The game is now Buy to play, no subscription needed, and with Issues, which are basically expansions, available to purchase, along with cosmetics and things of that nature. Why do I want to discuss this? This game has probably the best story, and questing I've seen in a long time. It's probably THE best feature of the game. It's high quality, the story is amazing, and some of the quests actually require thinking. A lot of it as well. (As well as some googling). A lot of negativity from the game comes from the lack luster combat, and the developers behind it. I have no problem with Funcom so far, the CS has treated me with the upmost respect, and has resolved my issues quickly. As for other people, I've heard some rather awful things, more than I would like to hear to be honest, but hey... Opinion is an opinion nonetheless. The game has some amazing features, and Funcom seems to be rather interested in expanding the game further and further, which is good for the current players, and future players. Nice updates, means gamers are happy. We want them happy correct? As long as it's good content I am happy with it. The last few issues have been wonderful, and it only seems to be getting better from here on out.

I'm not going into deep detail about why the game is as wonderful as I say it is, because there is a lot to it, I will have a little rundown though. The no class system is pretty well designed, you can max every weapon with time. Story of course, and questing. Very well written, and it's a beautiful game. They worked hard on this game, I can tell. There is a LOT that could be improved though, and this I will go into detail about. Because I want to express how I think things could be different. I will probably tweet this post to Funcom/TSW Devs in hopes that they will read it. One of the biggest things that bother me is the lackluster combat system. It's linear, and can be very boring. That changes when you are in dungeons, and fighting a boss mob for a quest, but in general I find it very boring, and tedious. There are of course situations where it's extremely fun, but not a lot... It's sad, because if this game had a better combat system, it would be my #1 MMO, that is the truth. Another thing that really bothers me about the game is the Dungeon finder. Maybe, i'm spoiled from WoW, or FFXIV finder, but I feel like the game's finder could be improved by a large portion. At least they have a system in place, but it's not as good as it should be.

I see more people spamming LFG for the first dungeon Polaris, then using the actual finder. Hint: There is a problem with that, at least for me. I still was able to find parties for it, but... Not as fast as I could like. So, I hope Funcom can look at this, and say hey, maybe we can find a better system for this, and eventually implement it into the game. That would be wonderful, again... It's not a big thing for me, but it could be improved. Another thing that really makes me pretty upset, and it's a real turn off, until I got past it. There is a huge spike in difficulty when you reach Savage Coast, compared to the first area. A lot of people, including me have died many, many times in Savage Coast because we weren't prepared skill wise, and item wise. Huge turn off, I doubt they will fix that because, it's been going on for so long, but I would love to see that being fixed, or tweaked in a way that the spike in difficulty isn't so HUGE. 

This is probably the biggest turn off for me, but you learn to deal with it slowly. Aggro. This game has a problem with aggro, the system to me is broken, and should be revamped, and taken a look at. Aggro is extremely difficult, even in the first area, terribly hard in Savage Coast. I mostly die to Aggro mobs, that aren't even in my area, and are off screen, and I can't take on two mobs, because of the difficulty spike. Not possible, unless I run away, which I ain't no bitch, but sometimes I am forced to be. I'm not an expert on this, I don't know how they designed their aggro system, but I wish they would take a look at it, and they would find some huge flaws in it. You learn to adapt to it though, and learn how to pull, but you shouldn't have to put a lot of practice into that. That gets boring, and turns people off. I maybe am being a little harsh on this subject, but it's just... Ugh, so difficult for me to get past.

The huge spike in difficulty, I don't think will be taken a look at, but it should be. I think they really should tone it down a notch, and not have people be smacked in the face with such force. Blue Mountains isn't as bad as Savage Coast, because you learn from it, but like... Whoa, huge turn off. Sorry Funcom, but please look at that. People have complained about it, and have been vocal about it on the forums. I'm sure they have seen it, and hopefully it makes them think about it. Please! Funcom! LOOK AT IT!

Though, as those flaws kick in, the game is beautiful, the stories, questing, and everything else really turns me on, and makes me play it more and more. It's a high quality game, that is only buy to play. You will find it on Steam for 29.99. For what the game offers, it is defiantly worth the money, and you will get more than your money's worth, I promise you that. It's defiantly worth testing it out. There are buddy keys you can get to try the game out, since there is no "Official" trial. People hand out buddy keys, and I will as well. Not that big of a deal for me. With the game getting frequent updates, Funcom seems invested in this game, which again... Is a really good sign for the future of this game. It deserves a lot of attention from them, and from future players. Right now, I am currently playing the game, and loving the story line, but I've talked about the drawbacks of the game... It's a slight killer, but not at all the way of me getting rid of the game entirely... Ahem, Guild Wars 2. That being said... Until next time ya'll! Cheers!

Let's Talk: Firefall

Posted by DaKurlzz Tuesday January 28 2014 at 11:55PM
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I read a lot about other MMORPGs a lot of time. Even when I'm at work, and I have been keeping my eye out on Firefall, I had such high hopes for the game, but when it was released, I found myself lost, bored, and confused out of my mind. I visit their forums from time to time to check up on everything, Milestones and all. The game intrigues me a lot, and I like what they are doing. I love shooters, and I love MMOs. Red 5 has been through some rocky times I would say, with the recent firing of their CEO Mark Kern. I think it was a really good decision on their part, and it sucks he would be fired and lose his job, but the game wasn't going where it needed to be. It has a TON of potential. Now, I don't know what Mark's end goal was, but with the way the game was going, but it was terrible to say the least. Red 5 is extremely vocal, and their community managers are always talking, and even the developers. Talking about what their goal is, telling people how it is, and letting people know their voices are heard. I watched their Firefall stream friday, and dI was impressed on what they covered, and things like that. They seemed really involved with everything. It's nice to see that. The game has been in this "Open Beta" stage for a long time now. A LONG time. I don't think it's a bad thing, because it's not officially been released, but you know... I think it's a good thing it's not officially released. It shouldn't be at this stage of their game. I don't think it's right now worthy of a full release. They need to do a lot of work before it can become that. I play the game now and then, just to check up on it, because honestly I love the feel and style of the game. That's what keeps me thinking about it. I wish it could be the game I play all the time, but it's just not there... It certainly has the potential to be... But it's just not there yet. 

What Red 5 is doing is pretty well done. Of course, they have their issues like anyone else would, the game needs a lot of work, but it's coming along piece by piece. The reason I wanted to discuss this game is because it has a ton of potential. It has a great company backing it, it just recently acquired their B funding. The game is looking up, and it looks like people are funding the game, and have hopes for it as well. I think it's more of how the game is managed, and how open the developers are. They are really active with the community. I would love to be able to sit down with one of them and pick their brains. Have they come a long way? I would say so, but they still have a lot to go. They said Firefall would have a official release this year, and I hope they stand by their word, because It would be nice to have some more Firefall advertisements. I don't think it really needs that huge push for advertisements right now, because of the stage of the game. It deserves new players by all means, people need to try it out for sure, but when the Official release comes by, I hope Red 5 does a surge of advertisements to help the game grow. The community in the game seems to be pretty close, I've met a ton of strangers who have been very nice and showed me the ropes. Recently logging in, the game seems to help new people understand mechanics, and things of that nature. The game desperately needs that, because I got lost within the first two minutes my first go at the game. Huge turn off for me, but they have improved it. Good for them.

“This additional round of funding will offer us the means to execute on our plan for successfully launching Firefall in 2014.” said James Macauley, acting CEO, Red 5 Studios. “This is the year Firefall takes flight. The entire Red 5 tribe is focused on creating top quality content that will take Firefall to the next level and we are excited for this next stage of development.” This was posted on the Red 5 Studios website, and I hope James can keep to his word, and keep that quality content coming. It would be a shame for this type of game just to disappear on the face of the gaming world, and never be mentioned again. It does need attention from other people. Advertisements should come in when that launch comes. It needs to happen Red 5. This year they also stated they would put PvP back in the game. It was taken out because of some issues (I don't know exactly why), but I would love to see PvP in this game. Sadly, I did not have the chance to partake in this but I'm hoping I will be able to this year. It would seem like a blast. 

A story based campaign is also being released later this year. I'm not sure what this will be like, I hoping it would have a good quest line. The most confusing thing for me is the questing... I'm not sure where I am going, or what to do... I sort of just ask people and follow what the screen tells me. I hope they have a plan to fix that, or make it better to understand. I'm not dumb by any means, maybe I'm not looking at it right, but that's how it feels to me. So i'm hoping this story will come with some awesome quest, and some really epic writing. Don't disappoint me Red 5. So with what they are saying the game will do in 2014 comes to life, it looks really bright for Firefall, and Red 5. I personally don't want this game to go to waste. I know Red 5 has put a lot of hard work into it, and continues to do so. I'm happy with the direction their going with now. Mark Kern didn't really put me at ease where he wanted to go with the game. Some people described his management as "Schizophrenic". Let's hope the new management can come up with a solid game play, and keep to that goal. Red 5 keeps updating us on what they have planned for the future, but there is a difference from saying, and doing. I can understand that there will always be changes, and unforeseen things, but they really need to keep to their word here. I don't have trust issues here, I would just like to see what they tell us will be implemented into the game. Ahem... Open PvP please.

I will continue to keep my eyes peeled to Red 5 and Firefall. I'm hoping development will continue with this strong passion they have for the game, and the community. Don't fumble now guys, keep it up. The game has SO much potential to be great. The thing is... Is it to far late for Firefall/Red5? I don't think so. Sure it's been a long time, and the game has been out for awhile, but It's not to late for them to pick up the pace and show what they got. Many people have maybe forgotten about the game after their first glance, but you should really take another look at the game, read up on what Red 5 has planned, and give them a little more time. The deserve that after all. Some people may think differently but... I'm willing to give them some more time. I haven't lost hope yet. Again, I think without Mark Kern development will be a lot better. I hate to say that, because the guy lost his job, but... Firefall needs good direction, it needs a solid game plan. 

It you haven't given Firefall a look yet, I suggest you do, and if you have, take another look. You might be surprised on what you find! 2014 looks really good for this game, and I will continue to keep my eyes peeled at this one. Till next time! Cheers!

Blog #69 Return To Eorzea Part IV

Posted by DaKurlzz Monday January 27 2014 at 1:51AM
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The grim days have long been over with, and I have had some very enjoyable days. One of the things that keeps me going in the Story line. It has grasped me like every other Final Fantasy story, so it's really kicked in high gear for me to quest, and continue to play for the story. Unlocking new dungeons, etc. The world isn't as grim as I once looked at it to be. I'm going to be changing this blog series name after this post, so you will see something different next post. The game is still going strong, stronger than before. Everyone needs those grim times I guess. I've been actively participating in FC Dungeons, and things of that nature to get more involved in the game. There is a huge difference between Dungeon Finder, and playing with a few good friends. The game is really looking up for me. I'm continually logging on, and playing for multiple hours. I'm glad I went through the grim times, because I don't want to go back to previous MMOs. Not just because FFXIV is newer and shiny, it's because it's just a good MMO for me. I could go back to World Of Warcraft, enjoy my twink, and pvp for about two hours and log off, and probably never log back on. FFXIV is totally different, I have multiple reasons to log on, and probably will even when I hit end-game. Who knows? I was running a Dungeon for a bunch of my FC peeps, and we did brayflox. It has some interesting mechanics involved with the last boss, and I'm tanking it. (I love tanking in this game). The boss required a lot of movement, timing, and other things. I love being able to explain to people how this will work, what to do at this time, and at that time. Makes me feel like a true leader. Sure, we wiped one time, because our healer got destroyed from lack of attention, but we crushed the boss the next time, and had fun with it. I've ran that dungeon multiple times, and taught a lot of people about it, and it never gets old. The fact that the item I want didn't drop does get old though. QQ. 

I've been improving my tanking ability a lot recently, learning rotations, and things of that nature. How to maintain aggro, what to do when you lose aggro, and etc. I'm very good at doing one rotation, bad at another. So, i'm leaning towards the one i am good at, and when I am in a comfortable group, I try the other rotations. Eventually I hope to get both down. I'm just entering a new area as well, and a ton of quests have been opened to me, so I am super excited about that and the next part of the story line. I won't post any spoilers at all, but it's getting really interesting!

As for the stream, My internet has been jacked recently (Thank you AT&T), and due to that I haven't been able to test it out, and stream like I wanted to. Our power keeps getting knocked out due to the snow and stuff, so it's been rather frustrating for that. I want to stream the game pretty badly. If I wanted to do youtube videos, I would probably have to invest more money than I want to at the moment. Probably down the road I will, but as of right now, I am just going to stick to streaming the game as much as I can.

I've been writing here for a long time now, and having been able to finally settle down with one game, I haven't posted blogs like I usually do back in the day. I sort of have matured in a way that I just want to write about the game I am playing, and not rant and rave on issues that I think MMOs have. Sure it's fun to let some hate out, but i'll save it for the other people here on the forums! As I said though, I will be changing the name of the series in the next post. I don't like the name I have for it now, and I've already "Returned" to the game, so not much sense to continue with the name I have now. But I'm glad I continue to write here, and not move to some other website. I love writing about FFXIV a lot. I know I had a blast with SWTOR and writing that, but this seems much different, in a good way. I was set to post a full review of SWTOR, but I canned that idea, and just continued to write about FFXIV. I'm not into the whole "Rating" system. I don't like giving games 5/10, or 10/10 or whatever. I think it's rather misleading, I would much rather just tell you how it is then let numbers do it for me.

As I enter new areas and try the new dungeons, the game spark keeps getting bigger and bigger. Cutter's Cry was really interesting, and the last boss fight we wiped two times because I can't remember two things... It wasn't frustrating we found it rather funny I couldn't remember colors and what they meant. It goes to show you how much intelligence I really have. (Not a lot). As soon as AT&T fixes their stuff, I will be streaming, and hopefully under the MMORPG.com name. That would be awesome if I could do that. But the adventures have been swell so far. Grim days are over, and it's time to focus on the story line, and continue the adventures of my Paladin. I'm only ten levels away from 50! So it's the home stretch for me, and it's going to get better and better from here, I assure you! Until next time! Cheers!

Blog #68 Return To Eorzea Part III

Posted by DaKurlzz Tuesday January 7 2014 at 7:28PM
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Times are becoming Grim in FFXIV. Not to say it's becoming lackluster or anything, but I can see many complaints are valid by many of the players. Having a great free company will only take you so far, I guess that applies to every MMO. I was recently trying to level up a alternative class (Coj), and I've done most of the beginner quests in the starting areas, so I was of course left with Fate grinding. Now from 1-15, it wasn't that bad at all, but now it's becoming so what aggravating, to the point that I gave up and logged off after awhile from boredom. I don't get bored easily nowadays, FFXIV usually gets my attention pretty well. I thought to myself the next time I logged on, when I do other classes, If I do them, am I going to be left with Fate grinding? Dungeons are good, I enjoy playing the tank role, and aggroing as many as the room has, and being able to tank it pretty fast, that's a good part for me, but now... I'm beginning to understand why people only play it for about a month or two. Now, I was pretty happy about 2.1, a lot of people were angry about prices of housing, but I believe they will be fixing that, but still... Kind of harsh the prices were. The economy in this game is far one of the worst i've seen, (At least on my server). I haven't really touched crafting at all, i've never been a huge crafting fan myself, but from what I have heard, it doesn't... Get you that far, and doesn't help you that much. Gear usually comes from later end-game dungeons, and coil runs, if I remember correctly.

As much as I love the Final Fantasy series, this game is lacking that feel of Final Fantasy. The classes are fine, the races are cool, but it's just missing that FF feeling, am I the only one to feel this way? I hope not. I didn't log in for about two days, without any desire. I felt that if I didn't log into a game that I am paying monthly for, and have the time to login and don't... Something is defiantly wrong here. I want to play the game every day if I'm paying for it. I don't think I am the only one who feels this way. I will continue to play the game, and hopefully the grim days will be over soon, or will start to come to good days. Not all the days have been like this, just recently. I feel this game is more like WoW, or some other MMO (I hate comparing everything to WoW), and not staying true to FF roots. Someone joked and said "We know SE has jumped the boat, when Cloud and Sephiroth enter the game). I lol'd so hard, I really hope it doesn't come to that. I'm confident that SE has the right intentions for the game, I just hope the implement it correctly, and not screw things over, and have FFXIV AAR, 3.0. You know what I mean? They took the time and effort to make a great MMO, Let's not screw it up now. If the gaming days continue like this, I will likely un-sub, and play something differently. (Maybe, Guild Wars 2, or SWTOR again). Until then I will play this game, I really don't want to go MMO hopping, because it usually makes me waste money resubbing to WoW and only hating it, and being bored and out some money.

I know i've sounded like a true fan boy of the game, and it's true, but I've learned that being a fan boy can be a huge let down when the grim days hit. So, I will see where the game goes from here, I will defiantly keep you all updated on what happens, if anything, like I said, I'd rather not MMO hop. If I do, I will likely, give Guild Wars 2 a huge try, even though I am practically begging for information about the game now. I will try the Official forums for some answers. Anyways, cheers for now! 

Blog #67 Return to Eorzea Part II

Posted by DaKurlzz Wednesday January 1 2014 at 1:40AM
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It's been awhile, longer than it should be then. Anyways, I have been having a blast since having my account back. Already have a Paladin, and my tanking skills have increased ten fold! I guess, in this game I like tanking more than any other role. One of the things that have me amiss though, is that this game gets a lot of hate. I know why of course, I read them and all of them have valid points. Economy, Housing, End-game, etc. Now I can nit pick if I wanted to, like anyone could, but i'd rather not focus on the negativity right now. 2.1 Implemented a lot of cool stuff, and I believe SE will continue to add good content to the game. I have not hit end game yet, but I will tell you all about it when I do. My Free Company, does a lot of End-game stuff, so I get to hear it a lot of VOIP. I mean, nothing that people have nit picked about have come to my level yet, but I enjoy crafting, and leveling, and doing dungeons, and overall happy with the game play as it stands. The game is pretty perfect for me. The design is flawed, and not perfect, nor any game design will be perfect, but this game does it really well for me. I find myself enjoying the story line, the questing, crafting, tanking, and enjoying myself with the FC. That's is what really keeps me going a lot of the time. My Free Company, is always active 30-50 people online at all times, so we are always up to something. It is one of the few things that keep me coming back. I've stated in the past that community is a big part for me in any MMO. So i'm overjoyed when the game I love has such a great community with it. The server in general is really nice, don't get me wrong. We have very few trolls, and such like that. As I talk to them, and their experiences with end-game, compared to other games, it's true they say it is lacking, but it's fun! As long as it's fun for me, I will continue to play it, that would be anybody I guess. My FC pushes me to do crafts, and level up other classes for specific skills, teaching me to be the best paladin in the Duty Finder, which is always good. I'd rather have someone trying to push me to get where I need to be, and get better, than no one at all. So, life is good there.

My favorite instance so far would have to be Manor. Extremely fun, easy going, and it requires some skill to not be able to wipe. (Unless you have an amazing tank like me) Hazah. Tanking is very different in this game, and I've had a lot of my FC tanks tell me what to do, and go on runs with me. I never expected it to be so complicated, and have math with it. The more you know right? I'm a Paladin, so tanking is a little different then most classes it would seem. I've died my fair share of times, only because I don't know exactly what I am doing, or I don't know my own limits. Either way, I am learning new things, and going by it, and improving from it. So it's defiantly fun to learn all of this, because I am in a way challenged. In WoW, or other games, tanking was pretty straight forward, in this game it is really different. (I'm not saying tanking is easy in WoW). With that, I am leveling other classes to have their benefits as well. Example would be Protect, Cure, Stone Skin, Etc. There is a lot of things that I hope to improve in time. I hope 2014 brings an expansion to the game. I would really look forward to that. I know they stated big content updates every three months, and I hope they keep to their word on that. The game has a lot of potential to be added on. More story lines, more everything. I think it can be very expansive, and I hope SE realizes the potential it has for that. I would hate to see, after Extreme titan, it would be SUPER DUPER TITAN! That would be plain silly, and over used. I am hoping for unique content to come out down the road. I am excited to see what 2014 will have in store for FFXIV.

I don't see this game going free to play anytime soon. The game is thriving, and a lot of people are playing it, and I have high hopes for it. I don't mind paying a Sun for it, and you know for once... I hope this game stays with a Sub, and doesn't go free to play. I think it will be just fine, even when ESO, and Wildstar come out. I sound like the biggest fanboi out there right now, and I apologize for that, I am a fan on this game, a big fan. That doesn't mean I love every aspect of the game. I would change some things if I could. We will see what happens down the road. The game is challenging to me, and I am truly having a blast playing it. 

I've been testing the live stream on twitch, and everything seems good. Sound, and video quality are pretty swell, and I have shut down most of the lag spikes that happen. So, hopefully by tomorrow night I will be streaming so FFXIV. Until next time! Cheers!