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One among None, yet so many among One.

Argh; Why hast the God I worship forsaken one of his sons with a Gameless commune! I never did quite Fit in, But this is rediculas... My thoughts on What I read, do and a little on what I count on doing.

Author: Bockin

Atlantica Online; a Lowbie Review

Posted by Bockin Wednesday July 23 2008 at 12:53PM
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Well, after playing the game for a bit, I'm fairly sure I can get a good review on the first ten-fifteen levels of a game, which are Very important for newcomers.

First and foremost Character Creation. I'm getting rather tired of Character creation in games these days only featuring one costume, or two of a diffrent colour; if your going to offer more than one, just go ahead and offer ten, else theres no point. Now, as for choosing hair and face, There seems to be a few good choices to go with, in addition to the good veriety of weapons to choose from, ranging from a sword to a cannon. Now, I enjoy this feature; You choose your Weapon, and based upon what that person might need, like more Strength than Dexterity with an axe, and Visa Versa with a sword. Now, as I'd personally like to atleast have a Height selector, but Regardless.Now, I was hoping that the voice would change a little depending on the weapon, as well as the build of the Character, but moving on.

I jumped right into the game, baisically skipping storyline; I tend to try gameplay at first, then later go through and test a storylines limits later when I get bored. Soon as I get in, the Greeting I put for my character is sent through the whole channel. Now, I put the basic 'Hail' thinking it would pop up some time later with me going 'Oh', but instead mine is quickly thrust into an endless sea of "Go away", "Hail", "Insert RP here" etc.

So, I decided to ignore the huge amount of what could thusly be called 'Greetings Spam'. If this games Pop reaches WoW standards, it will be unplayable, thusly preventing it from doing so, so it won't be a problem I suppose. Still, a Button to turn off my Greetings would be nice. (Also, I havn't played in a couple of days, and they seemed to be updating fairly often, so Hopefully it's fixed already)

And thusly, I moved on to the Quest giver, whom would be the first of 'Well Endowed' Female characters this game seems to be filled with to the brim. A little unsettling, to be sure, but most games seem to do the same thing anyhow, so it's popular.

The first quests seemed to be getting everything ready; Now, this game is a Turn-Based MMO, so I was skeptical to say the Least. What made me even more nervous was that the game wanted me to hire a couple of minions now and bring the party up to a nice 3 or so. More uneasyness. The minions seem to be of an above average veriety, with a swordsmen, Pikemen, Gun user and I do not quite remmember the last one. These were gender specific, so there was little customization for your minions. Now, I went to name mine, but come to find out, you have to get a special item to do so. A little silly, if you ask me; I'd at least like them to be pre-named if that is the case.

Now then, I grabbed a Spearmen and a Gun-Chick to fill out my party of me, a Cannon man. Now I need to learn combat, so I'm off to do so. Now, running is diffrent here; you have not just an auto run key, it's an auto-run-to key. This means it runs me to where I need to pick up Quest and Runs me then to where I need to kill X and bring back Y etc etc. A neat addition, but might be a bit of a bore when you can just run everywhere; On the upside, it seems to have a time limit, allowing players only to use it for X days. Now, this isn't just an Upside in my opinion anyhow; It could be frustrating after it expires to run everywhere. Ah well, on to the Combat!

I pull up a killing quest against enemies who seem to have no arms, or at least no armamants, as they just stand by and wait for me to kill them. You can actually see the enemies, and when your attacking, everyone see's two swords above your head, as well as the monsters head, indicating combat. Now, when I try to click on an enemy with swords, say's you can't join this battle, or not in thsi players party; So I assume you can join combat, considuring the Chat doesn't change inside and outside of combat.

Now then, inside of combat, It seems to run Exceptionally fluidly; Turns run like a certian Ending Dream game of which I won't mention should run, but it moves about as your turn expires in time as you select what you do; the character act acordingly as soon as you click attack. Now, the weapons come and truely shine at this moment; My canon deals damage in a large Boxed area, good for Area of Effect. The spear seems to run through a single enemy, dealing damage to one behind it to a lesser degree, but the downside is you can't attack wherever you want to; have to target the front line first. The Gun operates very much the same, just with the slight change that you can be in the back of the party, making it so you can only be attacked from a ranged attack much like the Guns or Spears, and, if far back enough, only by an Archers arrow or (I have no actual knowledge of this, it's only speculation and asumption) with a stave. (I had a Priest Party member who used Staves, and she could attack any single target much Like the Archer I recruited before hand, a bit later in the review).

So the combat worked Phenominaly; it was fast, turn based combat with a feel of real strategy to it. You could move your members where you wanted, and have a great deal of Freedom with diffrent mixes of Merc's and your player. All the merc's look diffrent from the player characters, and the players change as the armor they wear does, as well as the weapon. I didn't see any changes happening to my minions as I went along, but, after examining my 'Lore book' as I do believe it was called, it revealed that later, they could take diffrent forms, for a cost, at a certain level.

After defeating enemies, instead of finding any new gear, I picked up a box. This box rolls for a certain piece of equipment that, if it won't fit in your invintory, is sent to your mail box. The invintory worked rather well as well, with each character having something like 8 slots, and all your merc's could carry the same amount. After using at least Twenty of the Boxes, I can assure you it will only create an item that your party can use; I never got a Stave till after I aquired a Priest, or a bow till I got an Archer. It also rolled on Armor, so It took me a bit to get even a single character half a set of decent armor. I also got strange gems in my invintory that I could pick from Armor or Weapon. These were aptly named Upgrade gems, so I decided that I would use them later, but still looked into it. First, you need one of these gems to upgrade an Item. Second, you need to Identical items, For example; in order to upgrade my Cannon, I needed a second cannon and a Weapon Upgrade Gem. Now, It formed into a +1 Cannon. Now I would need two of these Gems to upgrade it, as well as a second +1 cannon. The good thing about all this seems to be that you can NOT fail.

I very much liked this system; It provided an upgrade system that flowed well from weapons to armor, and was simple enough for a complete noob to use. It also has a button to Automatically pick up a possible upgrade from your invintory and ready it for use (Or, if I had a +1 cannon and two rubies, as well as my current +1 cannon in my invintory, It would come up with those), which I nice for quick upgrading.

Now then, I also picked up another box that dropped very random things, like animal fur or certain herbs, as well as every once in a while a healing item. Now, I didn't notice it until I got an item that let me do so, but you can't sit emote in this game; it seems to have to earn that, and it seems to heal you at a good pace. Later, I got an Auto Loot emote, which made looting a bit easier, considering you had to pick a person who hadn't acted that turn to loot and waste their whole turn; in this case, you'd press a button and everyone who could would go about looting.

Items work a bit diffrently; you have to equip it to 1-2 (Or 3, I forget exactly, But I do believe it's 2) Slots in order to use it during combat, and I had no way of Rezzing a fallen Merc during battle. I don't know if You can die and a Merc can rez you, But I'm guessing that if the party leader dies, the party falls. I never died, so Never had that problem.

The transition between Mob levels seems to be either quite fluid or can be a Vast increase in power; Or, if those fairy's you just killed were too easy, and you run up to a strange Tree-ish thing nearby, it will probably kill you. Speaking of Mobs, they need to Nerf the Unicorn Lightning; That killed party members in a single hit for me, And was a bit of a worry with my leader in the front (Promptly moved to the back).

After running over a few kill quests, I saw other quests in the game that I could pick Up as I went along. Eventually, I made it to a city, where players and Very, Very few NPC's seem to hang. I could open the market and buy from anywhere in the city, including NPC vendors, as well as the Auction house. Player owned buildings seems to be possible with the right investment; I didn't investigate.

In the end, after running around, recruiting two more Merc's and moving about trying to kill and level, I found the game a very good experience; thus far I found no bugs, and Everything seems to run fine. Only thing I really, really found annoying to the degree of me wanting to hurt an NPC is that the letters seem t

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Didn't like that too much, but regardless... I highly suggest you check it out if and when you can, if your looking for a new flavor of MMO's. Not quite for my taste, but it was Very fun while it lasted. Oh, and this is about half of My experience with the game, most of the more Standing out features; theres much more depth to this game than Met my eye, I know that.

Warhammer Beta; Open next Month, and why it Matters

Posted by Bockin Wednesday July 23 2008 at 11:25AM
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Now, this is just speculation, but Mythic's been dropping info since the big 'Cut', and most of it ends with 'We'll be able to show you MUCH more soon'. Is this the big hint that open beta is coming? Most likely, but next month? I think more than likely with it only being a coupla months before release.

So, for those of you who don't know what open beta is at this very moment, Which I'm fairly certain that anybody reading this does know, it doesn't mean it in the triditional sense. Open Beta means NDA lifted, like most OB phases, but does NOT mean that Everyone will get in. CE preorderers, such as Myself, as I'm sure Thousands will be entering, but not Everyone.

What I mean is, it won't be you signing a 'I will report bugs and not use my own Behind as a hat while doing so' thing, like lots of open beta's, but one that I'm sure they either draw randomly from a giant vat of names and say 'Oh, he's in', or pick from the ones with the most experience. I would suppose the first.

But enough of that; with open beta coming, two major features being watered down (In a sense) with the cut of 4 classes / cities, we'll see how all this effects the warhammer commune (At least, the online one).

What do I think? Well, with as many weeks that I've been waiting on Warhammer to let me in, as I'm sure i'm in a long line, I believe that, if I weren't trying to get in, I'd still be excited. It'll prove if they have the fortitude to stand up to the *Real* inevetible city that is World of Warcraft. Now, Why is it such a big deal, some of you may ask? Because majority of the people interested so much in Warhammer come from warcraft (Must be the first three letters that attracts them); after a few years, I myself quit.

I never got a 70 (I was Pre BC, so 60 was my cap, and I made it, so I quit there), I never raided Kara, I never even went into more than five un-ranked Arena matches; I was satisfied with the Immense game before reaching cap, because you couldn't do anything in Warcraft; Congradulations! YOU are the best PvP God on the Server! You win NOTHING!

Anybody whose played warcraft past level 50 knows it's the same raid experience (More people? Who cares? Just harder to attain the loot you want), Same PvP (Only diffrence is it's more set in stone who you do pvp with), and no leveling. The leveling, believe it or not, is what I enjoyed; going into a far off new land, exploring the vast worlds, not even really killing unleas it yealded a quest to advance what the feeling of the area was, mabye even going against a boss or two with a buddy or four. I wanted Ambience, I wanted a wholesome experience, I really even wanted to kill some gankers so they could Rot on the ground, only to respawn and get killed three more times before I was satisfied with thier lesson.

Honestly, I wanted to get to level 60, the cap set down by the game in the first place. Who cares if level 60 was STILL the cap? Even if Wrath did have the same Cap, I'd want more races, more places, and more content for everyone, not just those who are looking for a higher level of playing. I love to pvp and raid, but WoW just had all the same thing. I saw no innovation, except what I saw at level 60, so that'd be ten levels of boring to get some fun.

But, regardless, back to the subject at hand; Open Beta. It comes, hopefully bringing plenty of players to have fun killing and partying with, all from diffrent aspects of everywhere. Maybe we'll even see some non-mmo players coming in. Of course, with the Gaming age raised to 35, at this point, by the time the adults get done with a game, the kids will have the world to themselves and the game will change pace to keep them happy. Or kids won't play it because their dad is wrong about music, movies and entertainment all around because it's the cool thing to think your parents are horrendeous evil overlords these days. Why? Because they don't know any better.

Anyhow, Yeah; Open Beta, good or bad? Who knows? Why? Because we'll have to see what lies behind the hill we've been climbing since last year, and now that we near the top, more people than ever are watching.

Warhammer Cuts; The Good, the Bad, and the Late.

Posted by Bockin Tuesday July 15 2008 at 1:56PM
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Well, it seems like WAR is coming soon, but a little has been lost on the way; 4 Capital cities, 4 Classes, Real time character changes (Based on Level), and quite a few Pre-orders that come to my ears. Seems that people are taking them cutting content as something suprising; I could see it coming, as I am sure others did as well. WAR is, not  was a great idea, and it Believe that even though Mythic seems to be trying to cut some slack, it still will create a Great game that I Will play for more than my fare share of late nights. Now, as always with everyone, I could be wrong, but I don't think so. Why is that, of course? Because; at least they're being Honest.

They seem to care about the audience of the great play before us more so than whats good for them; they promised too much, and are feeling the pains that many games go through; So much to make, so little time as it feels. Some games don't care enough for the players to tell them "Oh, sorry, but we're cutting this and that" Till it's three hours before the Grand opening. Now, what if they waited and played things out? "Sorry, but this class is MUCH more powerful than this one, and this guy is less useful than a glass canon... without the canon balls"

So, in the end, we'll have no Ork Choppa's running about hacking and slashing, no Dwarven Hammerer's, lovingly reffered to as a Rock rolling down a hill with a hammer and a beard tacked on; no Emo-tanks, as I'm sure they would be called at some point, getting more angry as they cut into enemies, and Alas, no Human Knights, running about with tall feathers and long swords, slashing and leading the way into battle.

And, No more "So which castle should we siege this week, Bob?"; but, alas, all is not lost. By doing what might turn people from a game, risking the massive blow of lobbing off a broken leg, waiting to be healed, they just amputated, and may suffer dire consequences for the loss. Now, what else is so good about the cut? Well, we get a more focused team.

I'm sure sleepless nights were spent, running around like a chicken with no head, trying desperatly to get that ability that this class needs, or how to weaken such to balance whatever. Now they can rest a bit easier, as the list has been shortened and content can see more attention, like the two Great cities that we'll have now, as well as a balanced product.

So, in delaying what they could have done, they are settling with what they can do. They feared, I'm sure, that another delay would mean losing even more attention than they already have lost, and in doing so they could drift off without a sound; They want that burst through the door, to attack when they think the weakest point is, and they aimed well. With WotLK coming at the same time, as well as Fallout 3, Starcraft 2, Spore and half a dozen more Titles that will move the gaming industry, I think that it won't be missed on store shelves in the mass of Great Titles.

So, Missing one leg, maybe even less, they are moving carefully, which in the end, is the most important issue. After all, a Mostly PvP based game should be balanced, and 20 classes is a bit much.

Meh; Blizzard among us

Posted by Bockin Tuesday July 1 2008 at 11:26AM
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Seems this year Blizzard is pulling from every game they've made; Diablo 3 announced, Starcraft 2 launched, WoW expack (No big suprise there, although). Hopefully, they will just decide to improve the game making buisness rather than do damage along with improvement. With the launch of WoW, they brought an entire new era to MMO gaming. Every one is trying it these days. However, this in effect means that there happens to be more Crap than Gold; people are just trying to replicate what Blizz already did, turning some hard work (Or just a guess followed up with a poor game) into some kind of revenue to make them a rolling ball of money.

I, personally, played Warcrack for the fact that I really liked Warcraft games; played every one of em before WoW. And I played other blizzard games; Diablo was a great game to just run about hacking and slashing at Demons, and Starcraft was another RTS that attracted a ton of players. Starcraft it still popular to this day, having at this point it's own slew of devout followers. And now we have Diablo 3 and Starcraft 2 both making appearances this year; Starcraft will be played before Christmas, and Diablo 3's either coming Christmas next year, or, knowing Blizzard, the year after around either this time or the same time of Starcraft. And, to top it all off, a New MMO is (Or was, Havn't heard anything myself) by Blizzard is in the works. Seems all that revenue from WoW is going to be used in all this ambition.

But Is Blizzard a good thing for the Gaming world, overall? Will they bring ruin to the MMO market with the next hit they're bringing up (Which people will play just because it's from Blizzard)? Or will they reinvent modern gaming in ways that we can't foresee?

Personally? I don't think bringing in a new group of people into gaming can be bad; these days, you have entire families playing MMO's, all living in a virtual world where they can go around slaying evil or people they assume evil. People across the globe are becoming friends over the Net now, with them running guilds, farmings instances and killing players.

These days, MMO's are a household term, when before WoW, they were only seen as something that was 'Extremely Nerdy'. Now you have people of every kind playing MMO's, as they are the most popular market for gaming at the moment. Hence you have even this site, devoted to MMORPG's, with the best list of Games I have read to this day. Now, as for what everyone believes Blizzard is, saying they are ruining gaming as we know it, well, they are; Because either Gaming will move, or Blizzard will. Seems Gaming is, with 10 Million people of Warcraft. For the best, or the Worst, things are going to change, even more so than they have already, because all this MMO'ing has to stop sometime.

Why am I bothering to mention all this? Because Blizzard is on the Move, and it's tied in with the MMORPG Genre tighter than any other game in history.