On the eve of Reckoning, Boo goes for the eyes

I think it’s time for a catch-you-all-up blog post.  I’ve been bouncing around the past few days playing a little of this and that, and also researching games and awaiting a few on the horizon.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

Reckoning launches for me in just two hours!  I pre-ordered via Steam and Graev will get his copy delivered to the house in the morning because of Amazon’s free release-date shipping.  He decided to get the Xbox 360 version, and I went with the PC version.  I’m going to use a Xbox 360 controller, though.  I really didn’t like the PC controls at all, but the controller felt natural.

I think I’ll be going with a Mage and may branch out to Mage-Fighter if the pure magic doesn’t do it for me.  I’m currently debating normal mode vs. hard… that might be a last minute decision.  I’m completely beside myself with anticipation.  Lots of us on Ventrilo plan to talk while we play, and even the guys who don’t usually play RPG’s are excited to play after they tried the demo.

"Stand and deliver, that my hamster might have a better look at you."

Baldur’s Gate II

Back in December we both picked up BG2 from GoG.com.  We installed the game along with some mods that improve the functionality (but keep the game true to ‘vanilla’) and finally managed to get the multiplayer working.  We’ll be playing through one of the greatest RPG’s ever made together for the first time.

We both have nightmares of getting the game to work on our old PCs.  It proved to be difficult again as we realized you have to run the game in window mode and sometimes use Gameranger to establish a connection to each other.  It works, though, and we’re ready to begin our epic adventure.  Graev went with a Ranger and I went the Mage route.   We got into the game, troubleshooted our issues, and have everything set and running beautifully. I can’t wait to get explore.

Go for the eyes Boo, GO FOR THE EYES!! RrraaaAAGHGHH!!!

Guild Wars 2

My excitement for Guild Wars 2 is growing as my friends begin to hype videos.  I’m still trying to wrap my head around the idea of “no end-game” in Guild Wars 2.  GW2 is sitting on the fence between themepark and pseudo-sandbox (my made up term for games like EverQuest and Dark Age of Camelot).  It wants to be both, and it can be if done correctly.  I’m anxious to see how these public quests truly impact the world.  Regardless of the PvE or progression content, I’m very curious to learn anything I can about the PvP.

Star Wars: The Old Republic

I’m sad to say that most of my friends have cancelled their accounts.  I want to keep playing, see the content, and make the game last.  It’s just not happening for me.  One of my friends, Evalissa, is a major alt-aholic, but she’s expressed her disinterest in making alts.  I feel the same way.  I have no desire to make a character and see the game again.

SWTOR was a fun leveling experience, albeit one with moments of dull sprinkled throughout.  If I had to deliver a final verdict right here, right now, it would be that SWTOR is a 3 monther.  I expected it.  I planned for it.  I was very clear upfront with myself and all of you that I was going into SWTOR to play it like a Bioware RPG.  Mission accomplished.

I’ll keep playing as long as enough of my guild members log in to do content together.  Do I dislike playing? Nah, I’m just not motivated.  At most, SWTOR is a bridge allowing my to cross the void until GW2.

 

  • SWTOR lasted just the first month for me. I actually stopped playing with 9 days left on my sub and almost forgot to cancel! Would have hated to paid that extra 15 for nothing. I never even made it above level 20 on my main either, I just stopped one day and realized I was not really having fun. I switched back over to DC Universe and just beat the crap out of some henchmen… that to me is fun 🙂

    Just got my copy of KOA:R installed, took 30 minutes to get the PC copy registered and working but now I get to play for 1 hour before I force myself to stop and sleep before work.

    Also sent a pic to you guys of my copy of the game that was signed by a group of the devs at a Gamestop here in MD. They put on a good event I have to say, lots of swag and very open to discussing the game, though they all said they have no comment in regards to Copernicus of course.

  • I canelled SWtOR too. PvE was a little worse then I expected but had it’s moments, PvP was worse then I expected and that’s saying something cuz I thought it was going to be nasty crazy suck. . .it was even worse.

  • I cancelled my sub after I left the first payment go through. I wanted to give it another month, but the game has waned. I got 2 characters to 50, and I dunno. I love the classes, I enjoy the combat and gameplay, but there is nothing to do. You can only do so many Warzones, Ilum is dead or a zergfest of kill trading, and Raiding while different, not different enough. I just slowly logged in fewer and fewer days.

    As for GW2, I kind of disagree with the term “no end-game” to me its more like “end-game starts at lv 1” Because there is an bolster and debolster system. You are always the level of the content. So it is always somewhat not a faceroll. Yes you might have more abilities than a normal person that level, or fewer, but it is still not a cakewalk or too hard. I like the fact that I can do lv 50 content on a lv 20 alt with friends, or if they want to finish up a few bits of content in the 30 range, they can come down to it.

    Plus WvWvW tidbits that we know make it sound amazing. It seems like it will feel the awesomeoness of 3-4 day Alterac Valleys from Vanilla. I miss those epic battles.

  • I forgot to add this, but Feb 20th is a day to watch for GW2 news flood. All the press in the current press beta get their leashes undone on the information flood. So I expect some juicy info.

  • Interested to hear more about your BG 2 adventure, it’s one of those games i’ve refrained from replaying due to the “nostalgia factor” – im sure the story would be just as awesome but maybe i would get frustrated with the gameplay.

  • Most games end game seemed to be BG and raids. WVWVW and Dynamic events i can go back and forth to seem like a lot more end game then raids and BG.

    Even if DE were just a slightly better version of War PQ that i could do at my choosing I would like it better then raiding.

    As with swtor, i have lots of free time, a 29 IA sitting in Alderon and i cant get myself to log in.

  • About SW:TOR – have you at least leveled ONE character on BOTH sides?
    Both sides are very different even though you mostly go through the same planets but not at the same places.

  • Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning has been on my “GOT TO HAVE LIST” for a long, long time now. I am so glad it has finally landed. I preordered via Amazon (originally from Origin but canceled that preorder as I liked Amazons better). Side note Origin ripped me off and kept $63 of mine and hasn’t refunded it yet, even though it has been weeks since I canceled my digital download preorder. Anyway I had the Amazon preinstall and played it for about 20 minutes this morning and loved it. I played the demo for just enough to get a feel for the controls. So far I have just gotten about 20 minutes into the game and loving every minute of it. Curt, R.A. and Todd did a great job as far as I can tell so far.

    As far as SWTOR I never made it through my free month. I am holding out hope that TERA and/or Guild Wars 2 will revitalize my MMO gaming but other than the occasional Vindictus and Dragon Nest (F2P Nexon action CoOps) I am doing very little online gaming.

    I spent way too much over the weekend buying games off Steam. Between Bastion, Orcs Must Die, Sanctum, Dungeon Defenders, Trine2, Magicka, the complete Warhammer 40k DoW 2 collection and Space Marine along with KoA:R I seriously doubt I will have a dull moment for some time to come. In addition I finally decided to upgrade my daughter’s DS and get a 3DS and I am sure we will be back to playing a ton of Skylanders on it.

    All in all though I am hoping that KoA:R will keep me going happily at least until ME3 comes out next month.

  • I’ve been avoiding looking into Reckoning as my game list is still large and this game sounds long. Now that it sounds like it’s a great game too: damn.

    Maybe one for my Amazon Wish List or the far future when I’ve got more time on my hands.

  • SWTOR– I’ve said it once I’ll say it again.

    “The MMO is dead, long live the MMO.”

    The MMO code past WoW has yet to be cracked.

  • I also canned my TOR sub recently. The smuggler story was great in chapter 1, but lost steam after that point. TOR did make me think a lot about Baldur’s Gate II. I last revisited the game 6 years ago & played with most of mods installed.

  • omg u never tried the sith storyline? no wonder u are feeling bad ! republic is not only a lot worse in the population side of things, but many people have said the stories of the Republic are simply not as well written and VERY generic compared to the sith ill help u : heres a spoiler-less synopsis of each (to the best of my ability)

    Bounty Hunter : A set-up sparks a bloody path to answeres as you seek vengence

    Sith warrior : A ruthless warrior rises to power under a conniving dark lord of the sith

    Sith Inquisitor : In the search for power a slave learns of his true heritage on a quest for the mysterious artifacts of Tulak Hord.

    Imperial Agent : The agent finds himself in the middle of a galactic conspiracy.

  • Yeah, Keen. Let’s not get hyped for GW2 and get let down. It’s not fun.
    Am trying to keep the hype low. But i’m looking forward to it. From what i’ve heard
    and seen, GW2 is very different from other mmos in about every aspect, am mostly interested in the pvp they are going for “skill only” gear is not a factor. Hoping my
    dreams don’t get crushed.

  • SWTOR went the same way for me. I tested a Sith during my beta month and a Jedi at launch. I just had no interest in making an alt and that was clearly what the developers expected you to do so I cancelled with a week of the first month still remaining.

  • I didn’t renew. My feelings are summed up by my reply to a Team Asunder staff member that commented “it wasn’t a horrible launch by any means.”:

    I am not sure how to gauge what not a horrible launch might mean to different people, but for me, and others represented by the 10’s of thousands of posts on low frame rate issues and Error 9000 dc bugs, it was a terrible launch (http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=250918 & http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=164536). The game started out well, but these issues started to manifest at around the 2 weeks mark, building to a point where for large periods of time I would hit latency spikes and get dc’d every 0-10 minutes independent of server load. During unpredictable windows of non-latency, frame rates dropped to a slide show in warzones and worst of all in open world PvP in Ilum (<1 fps in crowded areas). This combination made the game unplayable and as such I had to stop playing 2 weeks prior to my sub running out. That is a terrible launch experience, one that certainly does not foster resubs. Realize that I am not unique in this experience and these are uncorrected bugs in people with systems above the recommended specs, running graphical options at the lowest possible settings, which are acknowledged by BioWare in multiple respawned 1000 post threshold threads.

    Even if I was not experiencing these crippling bugs it would have been unlikely to hold my interest for longer than 2 months given that the open world PvP is completely broken, warzones are small and monotonous, servers feel dead, and the heavy gear-centric approach de-emphasizes skill and made me feel like the major reason I was even logging in was to get yet another token to buy another item to stay competitive as opposed to have fun. The extreme disconnect between the theme park elements also hurt immersion; switching from objective (now kill) trading in Ilum, to playing in a mixed team in Huttball, repeating the same dailies, and then riding on a roller coaster in space missions was all very random and in the end predictably tedious.

    I think it there will be a large drop off of subs in the next 2 months, and believe is overly optimistic to expect people to resub after 6 months; I cannot think of any reason why bored and/or pissed off players would take the time to reinstall and pay a sub for a game that drove them away a few months earlier. MMO attention spans are short and a game’s best chance to retain subs is to entice them to stay. Once people leave there is little impetus to come back, especially with new games coming up within the year. I imagine that at some point SWTOR will go to a F2P model and then people may re-evaluate it; nonetheless, I have received multiple letters inviting me on an all expense paid trip to Hyboria, but even so I cannot be bothered to re-saddle up my War Rhino and make the trip back.

  • FYI, the last paragraph was in reference to his assertion that “Probably see a dip of subscribers over the next six months, but they’ll start to pick up around 6 months. Around a year or so you’ll see a lot of the founder subscribers come back.”

    I used the $15 (on Steam)I would have spent on a resub on this instead:

    http://www.youtube.com/gothamcityimpostors

  • SW:TOR
    Yea, I very much enjoyed the class story, and most of the side quests where enjoyable to do, but the enjoyment for me was from the interaction and story more than the questing so alts wont work for me unless you could JUST play the main storyline
    Too many ability’s created messy ‘hotbar combat’ where you could not take your eyes of the actionbar, although I think starting with a ‘broken’ class (Sentinel) soured my taste for the game a lot more than if I had mained a more enjoyable one (I enjoy my smuggler a lot more both PvE and PvP but had reserved playing her for my perma duo)

    BG2:
    That brings back fond memories. That and Planescape Torment are some of the best REAL rpg’s you could buy

  • I love the fact that GW2 will not have a traditional endgame. I never played past level 6 in the first game but everything Ive read indicates that once your at level cap your time will be spent running DE’s for their currency, running around doing DE’s because I actually enjoy killing stuff, Collecting rare and hard to find armor sets, trying to get world boss DE’s to spawn, and doing storymode as well as “some” explorable mode dungeons. And this isnt even considering WvWvW and all its 3 faction open world glory.

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