Sunday, November 24, 2013

Wurm Online & Dragon's Prophet

I knew this would eventually happen, and I've mentioned it in past posts. I've gotten a bit bored of Dragon's Prophet. Not because the game is bad, not at all. The game is fantastic and I still log on daily to work on my dragons. It's just that I've been reduced to repeating Public Events each day to level up because there's no quests. It's quite annoying and almost ruins the game for me. I still log on whenever there's events, and I try to log on enough to set up my dragon processes and let the guild know I still exist.

Other than that, I've been playing Wurm Online lately. I started with Xycrone and Nargato and we've been having a bit of fun. It's been going a bit slow, but that's to be expected as it's Wurm. I'm not sure if they'll stick with the game, they seem to like it though. We're part of a village called Minowick at the moment, but we went off on our own so I could introduce them to the game more easily. I'm not sure if we'll continue to live off on our own or just stick with Minowick. The cool thing about Wurm is that there's so many options.

Soon, Wurm should have bridges. Not sure if that will affect me, but it seems quite cool. I'm kind of torn between wanting to start my own village, or just sitting back and being apart of one. The issue is I have my own ideas of what I think would be cool or interesting, so it makes it hard to sit back and follow the plans of someone else. On the other hand, I don't feel like dealing with the stress of running a deed on Epic, I've done it once already and it was annoying to say the least. And it's not because of raiders or anything, it's dealing with neighbors and villagers that gets annoying, as there always seems to be an never ending source of drama.

Other than Wurm and Dragon's Prophet, I've been playing a lot of Gotham City Imposters, World of Warplanes (review link) and World of Tanks. That's about all I have for this update.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Still Playing Dragon's Prophet

So I've been playing Dragon's Prophet for about two weeks now. I've been putting in 4-6 hours a day. Sometimes more, sometimes less. So far, things have been going great and I haven't gotten bored of the game at all. I'm truly surprised at this. I figured by now I'd be long gone and looking for a new game. Mostly because I really hate quest grinding.

As I've said in the past, I'm guessing it's the housing, the dragons, and now the guild features that are keeping me hooked. It's taken quite a while, but I'm finally able to say that the $40 Dragon Pack I bought for the game months and months ago was worth the money! So far, I've spent about $100 on the game (including the $40 for the Dragon Pack so long ago), and I haven't regretted a dime of it. About $30 of that $100 is going towards helping out guildies and buying a $15 SC card for a contest I'm holding for my guild.

So far I've reached level 48. I would be higher,but as with the past couple of days, I got a bit distracted with other things in the game and didn't get a chance to level. Tonight I went dragon hunting, trying to find dragons with great abilities that I can transfer over to my Chaotic Terror ancient dragon that I got from the Halloween event. So far I've given him Tough Hide, which will give him a nice boost to his defense stats once it's leveled up all the way, but now I'm trying to find nice healing abilities for him. I found one, but I'm going to keep searching just in case I can find something better.

Amitabha should reach level 4 tomorrow, which is nice. We're picking up the pace in leveling as we get more active members. I'm hoping to keep the guild a bit small, as I don't want to be a random zerg. However, we're also doing our best to accept newbies  to give them a hand. Introducing people to this game is a blast, just as much fun as it was in Age of Wushu. Both games are a lot more deep and complex than they initially seem, so there's a lot to learn and I feel like I've only just scratched the surface myself.

Since we reached guild level 3 and unlocked the flute gathering process for our dragons, we've been having a blast trying to get something good. Setting up 6 5-hour flute gathering processes and then getting on the next day to see if you got anything good is great, but nothing beats the excitement of seeing what you summon when actually using a good flute. We've been gathering in our Sanctuary whenever one of us has flutes to open, so it's become a pretty big deal within our guild which makes it all the more exciting. So far we've got one ancient out of all of us, but then again we've only had the ability to gather the flutes for two days.

That's it for now. I'll continue to update the blog with what I'm up too in Dragon's Prophet up until I get bored of and quit the game. And even after that I'll continue to update the blog still. I should be making an OnRPG update on what I'm reviewing/have reviewed in the next couple of days. So far this month it's been nothing but browser games, none of which haven't kept be interested enough to stick with them for long. Anyways, thanks for reading.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Dragon's Prophet

Lately I've been playing a game called Dragon's Prophet. I've covered it a few times in the past, doing a couple of press previews and writing a "First Look" article. I've got to say I've always been fascinated with the concept with the game, ever since I first heard of it. I even purchased a $40 Dragon Pack in anticipation of the great dragon-backed adventures I would have.

My first introductions to the game was through the Taiwanese version. Plenty of times in the past I've played the foreign versions of games before their North American release to get idea of what they were like. I've done it with ArcheAge, Swordsman Online, Age of Wushu, and many others. So, I did the same with Dragon's Prophet and I have to admit I had a lot of fun playing this early version of the game. There were some bugs, of course, and some things I wasn't a big fan of. But I did enjoy it.

When it came time for the press previews, things seemed to be going well. I noticed that some things had been improved since my time in the Taiwan closed beta version of the game. I was still excited. Unfortunately, by time the closed and open betas came around, which was when I wrote my First Look, things were looking grim. Promised features were months and months away from being implemented, the starting areas of the game felt way too cramped for a game that focused on riding on the back of dragons (often flying). And overall it just felt like another quest grinder that wouldn't amount to anything, but I still optimistic and decided I would just forget about the game for a bit and then come back at a later time.

Well, almost two weeks ago I decided it was time to come back to the game. Or should I say, I logged into Team Speak to find that several of my guildmates had downloaded the game and I decided to join in on the fun. The first two days were great, we had a blast and it seemed like a great game. Unfortunately, after that we found out (via a friend of mine that is a vet of the game) that Dragon's Prophet was a bit "pay to win." This put a damper on our moods, and in the end resulted in two of us quitting. However, two of us decided to remain and we've been having a blast.

We know we probably wont be so optimistic later on down the line, but for now we're having fun capturing dragons, completing epic boss battles, and seeing how far we can get before the "Pay to win" aspect ruins it for us. Neither of us are afraid to put a bit of money into the game, so we've unlocked dragon slots, extra inventory/bank space and some other convenience features.  We've both bought houses and have found that we quite enjoy the housing system available in the game.

So, lately this is what I've been playing. I'll write a few more in-depth posts over the next week or so, probably include a lot of screenshots as well. Till then, see ya later!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Dark Age of Camelot and Champions of Regnum

Lately I've been playing Dark Age of Camelot (DAOC) and Champions of Regnum with a friend. They've been playingd DAOC off and on over the years, so they've been introducing me to the game. Oddly enough, I was immediately hooked on the game because of two reasons. One reason, and probably the biggest factor, is the PVP-centric gameplay. I've always enjoyed PVP, and I tend to find games that center around it a lot more fun.

The second reason I've been enjoying DAOC is the large selection of classes. Most games nowadays are consider diverse if they offer six classes. DAOC offers a lot more than that, and most are pretty unique. So far I've made a Runemaster, a Bonedancer and a Vampiir. Playing DAOC has made me realize that it's not just the Nostalgia that makes me love old games and keep coming back to them, it's the diversity of their classes and gameplay.

 Trying to figure out how AOEs work...

For example, Istaria, another old game that I played for several months back in 2010-11, there are a lot of unique and interesting races and classes to play. You can be anything from a fairy to a half-giant. The classes available are pretty numerous compared to most games, too. Because of this, there are ton of options in play-style. There's also player housing, something that is slowly becoming the norm for MMOs again (Thankfully). The numerous race choices (that include dragons that can fly, which is why I liked the game so much :P)

Another old game I liked a lot because of its classes were pre-NGE Star Wars Galaxies. The game didn't make you choose a class when you played, instead you would just do things, get exp and then buy skills from trainers. It was great because people could basically create their own classes that fit their play-style, or just follow the various skill trees til they hit master in it. Age of Wushu was also a great game due to how free-form it's classes worked - you started with no class and then could learn any skill in the game, from any school. It was great and I wish more games were like this.

Just to be complete, I'll mention other games with similarly diverse skill or classes system. Darkfall (Original and, to a lesser extent, Darkfall Unholy Wars), Mortal Online, and Wurm Online. I made a thread and people brought up their own favorite games with a lot of classes. Ragnarok Online was the one that was brought up the most. Feel free to post your suggestions/favorite games with a lot of classes.

As the title says, another game I've been playing the past week or so is Champions of Regnum. I've been playing this casually, so I only have a level 26 Barbarian. I've participated in a bit of PVP, but all I've been able to accomplish at this level is a couple of stuns and a lot of dying. I made a new character, a mage, to level up with the same friend I was playing DAOC with, but so far we haven't played to much.

The appeal Regnum has for me is the RvRvR-centric gameplay, along with the pretty neat class system. Honestly, there aren't many choices, but I'm a fan of the divergent path system. That is, you start as a fairly generic character and then later on advance into something else. For example, my Barbarian started as a warrior and could have gone the path of a Knight but I chose Barbarian instead. I plan to take my mage down the path of a conjurer so it can support others in combat. I like having choices in a game, and choosing which path your character will take is a pretty nice one to have, I think.

Anyways, that's it for now. I've done five articles for OnRPG this month. One of which is a review on the recently released Path of Exile. Feel free to check it out and leave a comment to let me know what you think of the game, or the review itself. Thanks for reading.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Update: MechWarrior Online, Fallout Online: Reloaded, and more

So, I've been playing MechWarrior Online for a few weeks now. I started it about the same time I started playing Fallout Online: Reloaded. A couple of days ago I started writing a review for the game, so that should be done tonight. It's been a lot of fun playing MWO, so reviewing it is proving to be fun as well. I'm not sure which game I will do next, but it'll probably be a few days before I get anything assigned to me as this months deadline is day after tomorrow.

One thing I can't help but think about while playing MWO is MechWarrior: Living Legends. Honestly, I feel that MW:LL had more going for it than MWO currently does, and it's a shame that development had to be shut down. However, it's understandable because the guys who were working on the project were using CryENGINE (which is also the engine MWO uses), and they got employed by the folks behind the engine. It wouldn't have worked out, having employees using the same platform and idea that a customer was using, even if the employees had the idea first.

Other than MWO, I have been playing Fallout Online: Reloaded. I'm slowly getting bored with it, unfortunately. The reason behind this is that I'm just not having a fun time grinding up my characters. I've got one character up to level 17 now and will hopefully have him up to 24 in a few days so I can do some PVP. Hopefully getting into PVP will help me enjoy the game more. It's almost the same scenario that I ran into with EVE, I've been stuck doing the crafting side of things which I honestly like a lot, but I just can't seem to break into PVP which is something I really want to do. In the end, if I can't get into PVP soon, FO:R will have the same fate as EVE has at the moment - stuck on the backburner and ignored until I get that Fallout/sci-fi itch again.

Speaking of EVE, my characters are coming along quite nicely. Another 12 days before my industry character can use Exhumer's, and just 5 days until my combat character reaches level V Upgraded Weapons. I really need to take the time and get them both an updated clone, though. I guess I'll continue to skill up for 2-3 more months before I try and get back into the game. And even if I don't get back into the game anytime soon, I'll have a couple of slightly developed characters to jump back in with.

Another game I've been eying is the Artemis Starship simulator. Previously it was a rather clunky piece of software that allowed you to 'simulate' being on the command crew of a star ship with some friends. Recently, they've upgraded it a bit and put it up on Steam for $7 and I have been thinking about getting it along with some friends. However, the more I thought about it, I realized that I could essentially get the same experience with Shores of Hazeron, and SoH has a ton more features compared to Artemis anyways. So I'm still on the fence, but I really do want an experience similar to what Artemis has to offer so I've been on the lookout for those types of games lately.

I've noticed that a lot of the people I know from the Duchy of Wessex have gotten back into Mortal Online. To be honest, that's made Mortal seem a lot more appealing. Almost like getting the "dream team" back together or something. I'll probably sit on the sidelines and lurk in the forums for a week or two and see if things hold steady.  If they do, I'll go ahead and jump back into the game. The fact that I have a bunch of fully developed characters and a guild that I know participates in PVP waiting makes it very appealing.

I'll go ahead an close up the update here. I'm going to try and take the blog into another direction. I'll continue to post these crappy updates that no one reads (well, it tells me that people read it but no one seems to comment except for spammers), however I'm also going to start posting neat games I find, impressive sales for good games I come across, and other stuff. Maybe include some mods I find for games I like. Anyways, thanks for reading.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Update (Fallout Online, EVE, and more!)

So I finished my TERA review a few days ago, and I also completed a review on a neat browser-based title called VEGA Conflict. I was quite surprised at how much I liked both games. VEGA specifically was a rather pleasant MMORTS experience and I'm still playing. So, if you play and would like to join together for some stuff, let me know. Next up my list of games to review is the new America's Army game which I've been playing a bit already, but I plan to start playing hardcore tonight so I can get the review out in a few days.

I'm still playing both EVE and Fallout Online: Reloaded. I dropped Fallen Earth because FO:R provides everything it does and more. And while I do like shooter combat, it's not enough to make up for all the features it doesn't provide and the typical MMO progression when compared to Fallout. EVE... I've kind of stepped back from EVE For a bit, just log in to set up my skill queue. I had hoped to get into PVP, but I'm just not in a position to be able to commit to any corporation that could provide fun PVP, and I don't have the time to run the Amitabha Industries corporation as I would like to.

I do have a couple of funny stories to tell about Fallout Online: Reloaded. I've started up a small trading/crafting faction called Free Miners Federation. Thanks to donations from some very helpful members of the FO:R community, I was able to build an outpost fairly easy. Since then, I've gotten a few members and we're slowly growing. Unfortunately, one of our first members turned on us. Which is the first funny story.

So this guy, known as DemonHunter, joined our faction and was initially very friendly and helpful. For a couple of days he was a good faction member. Then, the other day, he donated 20,000 caps to go towards our faction getting our own private mine. I think that's very cool of him, so does the other guy in our faction, and I log out for a few hours. I log back in and all the stuff in the base is gone (most of which he helped gather) and there's his initials out in front of the base in Brahmin shit. This is hilarious because he essentially got the short end of the deal - we got 20,000 caps, he got roughly 4,000 caps worth of very easy to get items and resources. So while I do kind of want to be mad at him for trying to screw us over, I just can't.

This next story is even more hilarious. So, we have one member (Hippie), who primarily uses radios for communication. Hippie happens to go AFK and then a few minutes later some guy jumps into our public channel and says he's Hippie's alt, and would like me to lead him to our base so he can be put in the faction. I'm busy with other stuff so I tell him I will in a bit. All the while, he's still acting like Hippie and the real Hippie hasn't spoken up or anything yet.

So I eventually lead the guy to the base and put him in the faction as a recruit. He initially doesn't do anything. Just runs around and explores. He even continues to play along as if he was Hippie. Needless to say, I'm extremely skeptical and I stay at the base and follow him around the whole time. Then, out of no where, the real Hippie shows up and immediately I start typing, "/r KILL HIM!" a few times Hippie uses his minigun to saw the guy down. He had 700+ caps on him plus a few other neat items. We all had a good laugh and I set the guy to hostile/enemy of the faction. We decide on a new general chatter channel to use, set up a couple of backups that we only use when we think we've been compromised and move on.

Now that's not even the funniest bit. A few hours later I get a PM on IRC by some guy telling us we need to be more careful because his faction (with PickMyCock's help) had just looted our Outpost and taken our vehicle. I found that a bit weird because I had been in our base crafting the whole time, and we didn't have a vehicle. I tell the guy and he's a bit confused (so are we). I end up logging off for the night.

Next day, I log into IRC and get a message from the same. Here it is:
<******> Funny story. That guy you killed accidentally took us to his own base, but was to embarassed he didn't say anything. He let us take his stuff, and didn't say anything. Dug around, found out the truth and gave the stuff back because holy crap that is pathetic.
<Apoca> Wow, that's pretty incredible
<******> It's really, really sad the lengths that some people will go to impress others. Too bad for him, that we don't value people who lie and throw themself under the bus in an attempt to gain favor.

 Man, I love this game! So many epic things happen in it. (failed) Espionage, base raiding, stealing, and more. It's what I originally envisioned Mortal Online would be like. Mortal has a decent number of the same features (MO is a bit softcore compared to FO:R tho), but it just doesn't work as well as FO:R does. Oh well. Anyways, that's it for now. Thanks for reading.

Monday, September 2, 2013

EVE Online, Fallout Online: Reloaded, Tera Online, and Fallen Earth

I'm still playing EVE Online, but it's sort of taken a backseat for now. I knew this would end up happening. I like the game, but I just can't seem to find a group I fit with, which is the same issue I had in my previous attempts to play. Unfortunately, the only person I know that plays is busy with other games and doesn't have much of a will to play. I've tried to make Amitabha in the game, but I honestly do not know enough about the game to feel comfortable leading a corporation, so I'll probably end up putting that on the backburner once my combat character is to a decent position in its development.

My industrial character is about 20 days away from being able to use Exhumers, give or take a few days. At 1.8M SP, too. I'm not sure if I'll resub it once the time rolls around. I may just put EVE into the position of "back-up" in my current line-up of games. I'm still making a decent amount of money with him (well it's mostly thanks to the use of my friends 30m SP industrial character), just broke 200m in profits, and that's with extremely sparse playing - maybe a one-hour mining session every couple of days. I'll probably end up continuing my main character subscription to at least get its production and refining skills to a decent level so I can maybe one day be independent and not need to use my friends alt, as I'm sure he'll want it back to himself sometime.

My combat alt is coming along nicely, almost at 600k SP, and I just got my Small Hybrid Turret to V which is going to open up a lot of doors for me in terms of weapons. I still have yet to do one instance of combat, though. I'm thinking of trying to get into Faction Warfare to see how that is. My goal is to get into one of the SOV/0.0 alliances and trying out large fleet combat. But no telling when I'll be able to get into that, or when I'll feel that I'm ready to commit to that. I got this account pre-paid for three months, though. And it's not even two weeks old yet. I'll be skilling it up a lot during that time.

In other news, I've been playing a lot of Fallout Online: Reloaded these past three days. I've never played Fallout 1 & 2, and now I'm regretting it. I did buy them on GOG sometime ago, so I'll probably download them and give them a play sometime in the near future. But for now, I'm having a blast in FO:R. It's basically Fallout meets UO. It has pick-pocketing, lock-picking, housing, player factions, player faction bases, territory control that allows factions to take controls of towns and dictate the laws in those towns and collect taxes, vehicles, a companion/slave system... so many features that it's hard to believe that this was made my volunteers. It has just about everything that makes an MMO fun for me, an awesome setting, an active community that has between 150-350 players online usually, and more.

I've liked the game so much that I've even started to write a guide for OnRPG users, trying to help them get started in the game. I plan to set up a public OnRPG shelter for members to use as well. So far it seems like Powster is the only other user that is actively playing though. One of us can usually be found in the OnRPG IRC channel that we've set up for FO:R and you can go there for help (if you decide to play). Anyways, I'll go ahead and quote a post I made on OnRPG earlier.

"Slowly progressing. I keep getting killed - I have a lot to learn about the game. Probably would have been good if I had actually played Fallout 1 or 2 at some point. Kind of regret I hadn't, now.

So far I've got a regular tent and now I have a shelter. I set my shelter up right next to the NCR Protected Mine (basically as close to it as you can get). I've built up my stock of minerals and iron ore. Basically that means I can produce money with extreme ease. At least to a certain extent. For example, it takes me all of two minutes to make 1,000 10mm ammo and take it to NCR and trade it for 2,100 caps.

I'm glad I went and got the Ranger support perk. That means all my tents will be shelters instead of regular tents. Shelters are nice due to increased storage, the ability to lock your door (just in case, I guess), and they come with a work bench. On top of filling my storage with minerals and ore, I've also filled it with wood. Basically everything you could want for most basic craftings. I went and got the Small Guns gunsmithing profession (level 1, required 50% repair skill. I plan to go for level 2 which required 100%), and I also grabbed Armor smith level 1. I plan to go for most of the professions so I can be able to craft a wide variety of stuff. I've been keeping my eye out for good blueprints in the towns, but none have jumped out at me and made me think I should buy them.

I've been toying with the idea of buying a private mine, which cost 70,000 caps. This would give me access to a private mine that has high quality resources available. Downside is that it takes longer to respawn ore compared to a regular unprotected mine (or so the wiki says). However, it is private and therefore not as dangerous as a regular unprotected mine which is usually the only place to get the high-end ores.

I'm also on the lookout for a Brahmin. I plan to get one as soon as I can, and also get one of those carts you can attach to them. I may eventually try to buy a vehicle, but I'm not sure where to get one yet or if I would be able to keep it (I still have an issue with staying alive... need to learn a lot about this combat system).

Eventually I want to set up a sort of base of operations that OnRPG can share. I'll probably set up a shelter near NCR's mine (perhaps between NCR and the mine) and I'll bring anyone from OnRPG who wants to have a place to craft in safety go there. I'll also fill it with some resources for anyone to use, too. If you want to get the location of the OnRPG shelter (maybe we can make a faction and get an actual base someday), contact me on IRC (link in my guide). We'll meet up and I can show you. Of course, got to wait for me to actually put it up first :P

Edit: I can also provide some basic weapons and ammo to those who want to help spread the opression of hte OnRPG Militia across the wasteland. Once I get the Shelter up and running, I'll try to keep it stocked with weapons and ammo as well. And maybe eventually some armors once I figure that out... "

 Another game I've been playing is Tera Online, for the purpose of reviewing it. It's a pretty nice game, and damn is it beautiful. The only thing I'm not liking is how repetitive it feels. It seems like they put all this work into making a fun combat system, and then didn't have the time to develop any interesting gameplay features past that. Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of neat stuff there. It's just almost drown out by the repetitive gameplay. I should finish it early next week, and then it'll be on to the next game to review.

The last game I want to talk about is Fallen Earth. There was a thread on the OnRPG forums about playing, so I went ahead and downloaded the game. I've got to say, I'm surprised at how fun it feels. Of course, I'm only level 4 and playing extremely casual. I'm a bit disappointed that PVP doesn't seem to play such a major role in the game. Honestly, all it needs to be on par with the above mentioned Fallout Online: Reloaded is more emphasis on PVP (even if it's Faction Vs Faction), and some form of playing housing or at least base-making for clans. Then it would probably be the ultimate in Post-Apocalyptic wasteland online experience. I'd miss the stealing/lockpicking/backstabbing factor of FO:R, though. But it may be worth it for the first/third-person experience that FAllen Earth provides.

The thing I like the most about the game is the atmosphere. It's got that post-apocalyptic feeling to it, even if it's a bit weak. Sure it's got hostility, but it feels like you're entering the game during the last few years of "lawless, dangerous wasteland" as a majority of the people seem to be living fairly comfortably. Plus there's the endless hordes of enemies that is typical to a quest-grinding MMO (which Fallen Earth is). However, the atmosphere, combined with the fun combat, vehicles (most of which you can shoot from, including horses and vehicles with weapons mounted on them). I'll just ago ahead and quote a post I made on OnRPG that sumps up how I feel about the game pretty well.

"It's a pretty decent game, at least so far. I mean, the gameplay itself seems fairly generic (Go out and do quest to level up). However, it doesn't feel like a boring generic grinder. I mean usually I get extremely pissed when the questing is just generic "Go out and collect X for me because you've never met me and have no reason to. Oh sure you'll get a subpar reward for risking your life, but that's it." But the setting of this game makes it feel like you're in a similar world as that in Fallout. And honestly, the level system is almost an exact copy of the original two Fallout games, which is extremely nice as it's not a generic cookie-cutter system.

The world has a lot of atmosphere to it. The only thing that could improve the game, at least for me, is if they released a completely open-PVP server where you could attack anyone at any time, where you dropped all your stuff when you die, and they added in stealing. Then if they took it a step further and added in pre-determined locations that clans could build bases to get access to expanded content (such as being able to craft the higher end gear or something), that could be attacked/sieged by others so a sort of player politics became part of the game, it would probably instantly become my go-to game. Until then (and I highly doubt it will ever happen, unfortunately :/) I'm just going to play it casually when I need my post-apocalyptic fix.

But really, this has the potential and the framework in place to become what Fallout Online Reloaded is, but in 3D, action-based combat and without infringing on any copyrights."

That's about it for now. I'll make a new post here in a few days, probably after I get my next review assignment. Oh! I might as well mention that I've been playing Hawken, MechWarrior Online, and Natural Selection 2 quite a bit the past week or so. I've been having a craving for mechs (as evident in my recent mecha anime binge...), and Natural Selection 2 was on sale for just $6 and came highly recommended by a few friends. All are great game and offer some fairly unique gameplay, which is something that I sorely need nowadays. Anyways, see ya and thanks for reading.

Monday, August 26, 2013

EVE Online + What I'm Currently Reviewing

So, I've recently separated myself from Age of Wushu/Wulin completely. It was hard after playing the game so hardcore for those few months, but well worth it in the end, I feel. The game was just poison in its current iteration and I've gained a whole new weariness towards foreign-developed MMOs. It felt like no issues would ever be fixed and that the companies running them just couldn't do anything right - be it due to lack of know-how and experience, or just a lack of numbers to do anything effective. It's even had me second-guessing my hype towards ArcheAge in fear that I'll come across the same issues when it comes to NA, however my experience with both the Korean ArcheAge and Turbine have been able to put that feat to rest, for the most part.

Anyways, EVE Online has filled the void that AoW left behind. I'm a bit torn about the game, actually. I love it and the setting a lot, but leaving AoW has caused me to leave behind the guild I built, as no one seems to be interested in coming with me to EVE, either because they do not think they will like it, are to embroiled in AoW, or just don't want to pay the monthly fee. I haven't had an issue with the fee, as I've always been a pay-to-play player and dropping the monthly fee for one or two accounts isn't much of an issue for me, and it even instills a sense of fairness in me for some odd reason, even though it's quite possible to essentially "buy" ISK in EVE via the PLEX system.

So far I've been focusing mainly on industry. I had previously attempted EVE sometime last year, so I came back to the game with a character that had somewhere around 800,000 SP for industry, as well as a Retriever a friend had donated to me. This time around I had no other games to distract me, so I was able to dive into it right away and I've spent the last two weeks doing non-stop reading about EVE (even while playing thanks to the in-game browser). This game has an insane learning curve - there's been several books with 400+ pages of info published, and countless wikis, guides, and more. It's a lot to take in, but the overwhelming amount of data is a bit nice compared to the shallowness of most MMORPGs these days.

My friend, Nihilanth, has been helping me out quite a bit. He's even given me access to his 34M SP industry character which has helped a great deal. Coming back to the game with the possibility of giving myself Orca support, or flying both a Retriever and a Mackinaw has given me a large increase in possible profits from mining. As a side project and a way to have a bit of fun, we've decided to give ship production a go with a plan to feed off the Factional Warfare market. Today was an exceptionally good day for mining, as I woke up earlier than usual and found that the belts in my home system were completely replinished and I ended up mining somewhere around 35M Isk worth of minerals with the Retriever + Mackinaw, primarily going after Pyroxeres and Scordite as a secondary.

The only issue I've run into is that I have no way to transfer large amounts of ore and minerals to systems that they would sell well in. Currently working on fixing that (a Badger just doesn't cut it, but I'm working on an upgrade), but for now I've had to rely on the kindness of others and courier contracts to move my cargo to the correct systems. Part of the issue is that I'm practically drowning Tritanium half the time, and I need to sell it to keep up with the money required to purchase resources that I just can't easily get in or near my home system. Although, that cost only comes out to around 13M isk for every couple of ships produced.

I've been enjoying the industry side of things quite a lot, but I felt a need for PVP and decided to set up a second account using the "Sidekick" program that allows you to make a new account for only $24 (which includes the first three months of subscription, it's a great deal and I'm even thinking of getting another account to go with it). I decided to make this guy a Gallente ship pilot as, from what I can gather from talking to people and reading on the net, they tend to have the "better" PVP ships. And holy shit does the Megathron look badass, kinda like some sort of 1950's muscle car-tank hybrid.

We started an Amitabha corporation called Amitabha Industries, but that honestly hasn't been going as well as I had hoped. I just don't know much about the game yet and I don't want to spend half my time spamming recruitment only to come across a question, inquiry, or whatnot that I don't understand or can't answer. Unfortunately, Nihilanth doesn't have the time to get on and recruit or much else due to work + DOTA 2 addiction. I plan to keep at it, and have even gotten two members, although they seem to have disappeared the past couple of days. Anyways, here is the new Amitabha logo I created for EVE Online (Yes it is a copy of the EVE logo)

Besides EVE, I've been spending a lot of time in League of Legends. I find it more calming that DOTA 2, where I feel like I've got to be completely on top of my game every time I play. Plus, similar to EVE, DOTA 2 has a lot to learn compared to most other games and that's just not something that interest me right now since I have EVE. I've found that I enjoy playing supports quite a lot - Soraka, Blitzcrank, and Sona being my favorites.

I recently bought Sona, and I do fairly well with her. The bad thing is that I usually end up becoming more of a carry than a support in most of my games. I just can't seem to help it, as my Q just stacks up the kills unintentionally. Right now I only know how to play her well enough where I either do damage or I don't do damage and it's extremely hard for me to notice when I should just sit back and let my ADC do the damage instead of trying to hurt the enemy as much as possible. Most of my games end up with me getting insane K/D for a support, which one of the guildies I usually play with doesn't like at all and he seemed quite pissed about it. It's ended up with me deciding not to play with him (or any of my guild, probably) for the foreseeable future as I can't put up with them being generally low-skilled and assholes at the same time. It's one or the other for me.

Currently I am reviewing Aika Online and I've got to say I'm not to thrilled. I was originally excited because I love games with a strong PVP component, but it was almost completely unbearable to play it. I've come less and less tolerable of generic grinders in recent years, and Aika is definition of generic (quest) grinder. The only saving graces it has are the Prans (which are pretty nice, actually) and the PVP, which has been suffering due to people grouping into one nation and leaving the others severely outnumbered and an overall low population for all nations. I'm almost done with that review and will be re-reviewing Tera Online for MMOHut afterwards.

That's all for now. Back to EVE for me. I'm about one hour away from being able to use Modulated Strip Miner II's with crystals on my main, plus Nihilanth will be moving the BPO that he purchased soon and that will hopefully mean that we can start producing today or tomorrow and a bit more income will come in. Thanks for reading.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Age of Wulin and Wurm Online

So, after a lot of thinking and planning, I have decided that Amitabha will be playing three games at the same time now. First is Age of Wushu, which we are currently playing. Second is Age of Wulin (technically the same game). The third is Wurm Online. I decided on Wulin because Snail sucks, but we're going to continue playing Wushu despite this because people have invested a lot of time in their characters and it'll be a good source of info for the future of Wulin.

We are going to play Wurm Online because it is still the most amazing sandbox experience out. Maybe in a year two that will be different, but for now it still holds true. We will be playing in conjunction with with the gaming community Duchy of Wessex, who will have their own religiously themed expedition into the game. This will mean we will have a close ally to trade and fight with, which is great.

We will also be having the help from my friends at Ordo Lucius, who has been playing Wurm Online for years now. They will help provide us with some starting tools, some highly skilled labor, and maybe some seeds and animals. Overall it should be a smooth start and an all-around fun time. I'm really looking forward to it. Feel free to register at our website and join us in any of the games we plan to play (including ArcheAge in the future)!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

What I'm Currently Playing + Some Thoughts

Right now I am playing Panzar: Forged By Chaos and Age of Wushu. I started playing Panzar because I needed to review it for OnRPG, but I've been having a really fun time with it. I don't know what's wrong with me lately. Usually I have a hard time liking a game, and an even harder time sticking it to it for long. I've been playing Age of Wushu for about two months now and have no feeling that I will stop anytime soon. That is probably partially due to my guild, but the game itself is great.

I'll talk more about Age of Wushu later, though. Back to Panzar, it's been great playing it. Despite needing a bit more polish (specifically with the physics), the game has been a blast to play. I'm glad I live in 2013 and can play games with amazing graphics on a huge screen. I can't wrap my head around how we'll be gaming ten years from now - probably something like the Oculus Rift. I just turned in my review and plan to continue playing it casually.

Next up on my review list is Autoclub Revolution Racing. It seems like a pretty interesting racing game, but I've got to admit that the name is a bit off-putting. It gives off a second-rate game vibe. Shortening it down to AutoRev Racing may have been better, but then again that seems kinda cheap, too. Thinking about the name of this game has gotten me thinking about how much the title of a game will affect your willingness to play it. Or maybe even affect how much fun you have in the game itself.

Anyways, back to Wushu, as that is what I'm spending a majority of my time on currently. I recently got my Elder title back in the Shaolin school. On top of that, my Vice Leader (Dhatu) got the School Leader position. I am hoping that more Amitabha will get school positions this upcoming Sunday, as I would like for us to dominate the school leadership. Not because I want power (being in the school leadership doesn't give you much, really... just some neat robes and titles), but because I feel proud knowing that Amitabha has a lot of strong Shaolin.

Tomorrow is the (hopefully) final guild war for the SkyClan base. If things go well, we will win their base. We've leveled up the blue prints for a few of our buildings in preparation. I really wish I would have known you could upgrade blueprints without a base, because we're pretty far behind at the moment when we could have been much further along. Anyways, that's about it for now. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Age of Wushu Blues

So, I've been leading my guild (Amitabha) for a while now. We are finally about to get our first base. It's late, way late. We're behind, unfortunately. I blame my lack of knowledge about the game when I created the guild. And to be honest, it probably would have been better if I had not made the guild with the tiny bit of experience I had with the game when I started it. But, then again, I probably would have quit a long time ago if I didn't have Amitabha to keep me motivated.

To be honest, we're in a pretty good spot right now. Even though one of my Vice Leaders split from the guild and took a decent chunk of our members with him. We are in a good alliance, and that first base is just a day away. We are fighting wars pretty frequently, which is great fun. We are rebuilding our list of active members, too. Partially because the initial hype of a new server is over, and partially because of the split, we aren't able to produce as many numbers as we were a month ago. A month ago we would have had a full raid part instantly. It would have been 90% new characters, admittedly, but that number of people is formidable.

Now, we struggle to achieve half a raid party, even with a week advance notice. The upside to this is, even though we struggle to get a raid party half the size of our initial numbers, we now have many more higher levels than we did back when we could field a 48-man raid group easily. So, in reality, we are much stronger. It's hard to realize that without thinking it through like this.

One issue I've been having lately (and it seems a majority of US-based guilds have), is keeping everyone organized. There are in-game means (Daily message that flashes whenever you log in on your screen), and out of game methods (website frontpage event calender with countdowns, and a massive news feed that is updated almost daily), but people seem to be oblivious to it. We're slowly getting people to realize we have a website and VOIP program (which at war times will almost nearly reach capacity... but that capacity is 25 people).

Everyone in my guild, minus two people who players on Blue Dragon for a short time before White Tiger released, started playing the game at or after the release of White Tiger. We've had to learn a lot the hard way. We are just now finally getting our act together when it comes to instances. We are getting better, but have a bit of a way to go. We've basically mastered GCC normal, but have yet to try GCC hard with just our own guild members. It's embarrassing to admit we're so late to the party, but I've never been one to be secretive, especially when it's a game.

Unfortunately, I've recently had several bad run-ins with Snail USA. And I'm not the only one. But, I will speak of my incidents. First, when I was participating in a guild war. Right towards the end of the war, when everything was starting to come to a close, a GM logged into my account. I did not know this as I had no prior warning, and I immediately assumed I was being hacked. So, while I was reloading an new client and logging back into my character, on my other screen I was quickly changing my Snail account password. I was told immediately upon logging in that the GM understood this was a guild war but it would only take a minute (a friend watched my character and the GM was on my account for at least 5 minutes, not counting the 40 seconds or so it would take my character to log out), and that if I kicked him off the account again he would change my password.

I complied and allowed him to do whatever it was he needed to do. I didn't understand why I had to let a GM rummage around my account when an extremely important event for my guild was happening. I had not been contacted by PM or email before this happened. It simply did. While this was going on, a guildie informed that something similar had happened to him a day earlier, and that the GM had sent a COD from another account (his GM account, I assumed) and took liang off his account because there was supposedly a mix-up during an event and Snail had somehow sent gold out to a few thousand accounts by accident.

To be honest, I'm completely mind blown by how unprofessional this war. First, you screwed up, not the players. If you send a player gold and he uses it, it's your fault not his and he should not have VIP time, liang, or items removed from his account for it. How was he to know that the gold sent to his account was not supposed to be there? And why would you have to log into their account and send a COD (Cash on delivery for an item sent) to their account to retrieve it? Do you really lack GM tools?

And the kicker? The kicker is that I didn't even receive any of this gold. So this GM blindly guessed that my account might have some of this misplaced gold on my account, logs into it during a guild war time THAT THE GAME FORCES AT THE SAME TIME EVERY SINGLE DAY, and then send me this incredibly rude email.


Recently, this account received some gold that it had not purchased.
This was aside from any gold purchases the account performed through
our top-up systems.

In some cases, a portion of the gold was spent before it could be
reclaimed. In all cases, Snail Games reclaimed enough Gold, Unbound
Silver (Taels) and VIP time from the account to equal the amount of
gold that was mistakenly sent. We apologize if any of these figures
are different than prior to the incident, however we were careful to
remove only the appropriate equivalent, and will be unable to provide
further exchange between these different currency types.

At this time, we have determined your account to have been fully
addressed with regard to this matter, and no further action is
necessary on your part or on Snail's. We thank you for your patience
as we worked to resolve this matter, and we are taking appropriate
steps to ensure such an incident does not occur again."

The above email tells me that they seem to think this was an issue caused by two parties. It also tells me that Snail is oblivious. Because, like I said there was NO GOLD on my account. I do not buy gold except when it is to reapply my VIP. Yet they send me this blind mass email that states that I did receive gold (when I did NOT). They then go on to say that they reclaimed gold/taels/VIP time to what they probably guess (knowing how professional Snail is) is enough to cover the gold that THEY sent, and if they happen to be wrong that you're screwed and there is nothing that they will do to fix it. They finish up by telling us that they will be doing nothing more, even if they happened to have wronged you, and that they will take " appropriate steps to ensure such an incident does not occur again."

I am honestly surprised that Snail China would allow this kind of horribly outrageous nonsense to go on, dirtying their name. Is this really how they want to be seen? As the people that screw up and then punish the players in very unprofessional methods because of it? Really Snail? Are you being serious with this bullshit?

And that's not the end of it. My account was recently hacked and 39 gold plus several hundred taels were stolen from it. Luckily, the character that got stripped was my Blue Dragon alt that I do not play often enough to be affected. But, none-the-less, I paid over $9 for that gold and I do not want my money to be going to waste like that. So I reported the issue. I carefully explained just how my account had been stripped and provided proof that it wasn't I that had done it. To begin with, this hacking was extremely strange because I had have never in all my years of gaming had any of my accounts hacked. I find it weird that I suddenly, after starting to play this game, find my account hacked.

After I reported this issue, this is the email I got in response.

Thank you for reporting your account to us. We are having our security team re-verify the integrity of our systems to ensure that they have not been breached. It appears your account has been compromised by a third party. As account security is the responsibility of the player who holds the password, Snail Games is unable to give items/currency to any account that is reported as compromised.
We are currently investigating these reports, however there is currently no indication that Snail's systems have been compromised. We can understand your frustration at someone gaining access to your account. We are continually monitoring our systems for any potential or actual breach, and have not found such an event to have taken place. The most common causes of compromise are phishing sites, trojan keyloggers, and account sharing. For information on how to protect against these threats, please visit us at
Snail Games Support"

Again with another canned mass response that everyone gets. They start off by assuring me that their "security team" (which, if I guess based off how professional Snail has been so far, is probably some poorly paid angry 21 year old) is verifying that their account system hadn't been infiltrated. They tell me that it's my responsibility to keep my account data safe (even if I'm not the one that leaked it), and that they cannot reimburse me for any items lost, even though they have all the tools they need (I assume) to track where the money went (considering the CODs that hacker used to strip my account were still in my inbox and all the sent money was visible in my outbox).

What's funny is that MANY, MANY accounts are being hacked. There is obviously no other explanation other than that Snail had their account system hacked/compromised. You do not get that many hacked accounts without that happening. One person I know, who is the most diligent user I have ever met where passwords and account safety is concerned, got his account "hacked" a few days after starting the game. Funny enough, it was right after he had gotten VIP for the first time and had bought a bit of extra gold for a few hundred liang to help start him out. This is basically the same story that hundreds of other users are telling. They are fine, then they buy VIP and BAM they get hacked. It's fishy, to say the least.

I wrote an article not to long ago titled, "Has Snail Messed Up?" As an answer to that article, I have titled this article, "Snailed Has Messed Up." Because that's just what they've done. They've provided shoddy server connections, a buggy and poorly translated mess, mass banning that has ruined thousands of players experience, zero customer service (I have yet to talk to someone who has had a ticket answer, even during the hours that customer service is supposed to be available) that will not help you if you are hacked and will log into your account during important events, and to top it all off they will punish YOU, even if THEY are the ones that messed up. GG Snail. Good game.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Addicted to Age of Wushu

So, originally I had planned to make Darkfall: Unholy Wars my "main MMO" that I play when I'm not playing something to write about it. Unfortunately, at the last minute (a few days before launch :/)the guild I was in fell thru and decided not to play Darkfall. I ended up joining another guild, but having to play with a bunch of guys you aren't familiar with, especially in a game like Darkfall kinda kills your will to play a game.

I had previously made the decision not to play Age of Wushu at launch, as the last time I played, I got sucked into it heavily and I ended up spending way to much of my time on there. And then after that, due to lack of participation in the guild I didn't get my character very far, though I did get up to 33 on my first internal. I ended up quitting.

Well, since Darkfall didn't work out I decided to go ahead and give Age of Wushu another go. I played for a few days, developed my character rapidly, did very well on instances and ended up making my own guild, Amitabha. Just like in Closed Beta, I made a Shaolin and I love it just as much as I did back then. I'm not sure what I will do with Amitabha, I am thinking about handing it off to one of the more dedicated members, as I am not cut out for leading a guild. I much prefer following and helping than leading.

Since the start of the server, nine days ago today, I have poured a lot of my day into the game. So far it hasn't gotten boring, and I'm kind of afraid. Normally I would get bored at this point, but I've been hooked. Between doing spy missions, Team Practice, gathering, crafting, and instance running, I'm constantly busy while in the game. When I log out I'll throw up a stall and hope to sell my ares for the day.

And my guild is working towards getting to a point where we can upgrade to guild level 2. This will allow us to take a guild HQ and we have our eyes on one of the two in Shaolin. Since we are a primarily Shaolin guild, it makes sense.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Ship & Thinking about Bioshock Infinite

So I just bought The Ship, an awesome multiplayer game centered around murdering and trying to stop yourself from being murdered. It's only $5 on Steam currently, but the sale should be ended on the 29th with the rest of the indie games sale. If you see this before then, I suggest you grab it while it's on sale, as it's usually $20. It's well worth $5.

Right after buying, I went ahead and played it for a couple of hours. I had a blast and it was very easy to get into. It's one of those games that is simply incredible to play with friends in skype/TS/Vent/Mumble/Etc... I haven't gotten the chance to test this yet, but I am 100% sure it is. I can't really think of any other games like it, but I'm pretty sure I've seen similar mods for HL2 (and the game is based on the Source Engine).

Basically, you spawn as a random character. You can choose to be a hunter (where you need to hunt someone while someone else hunts you) or a passenger (where you just roam the ship and hope you don't get stabbed in the back, but do your best to defend yourself if you can).  While you're hunting/being hunted, you will need to do stuff to keep your character happy and healthy. This included using the bathroom, cleaning yourself, eating and drinking, reading, getting some entertainment and even sleeping. It makes for a pretty interesting experience, trying to kill someone while your bladder is almost ready to burst.

I streamed all of my first play of the game, and I plan to stream some more when Kay is online. I went ahead and gifted her the game, so hopefully we'll get a chance to play for an hour or so tomorrow. If you're interested in seeing my hour and a half of gameplay, click here to watch it. Feel free to follow me on my Twitch, as I stream daily and usually for several hours. From around 4pm until 6am. Anywhere between there.

As for new Bioshock game, I am really thinking about buying it. I haven't bought myself a single player game in a while now. The last single player game I bought was Skyrim. I put a good forty hours into it and haven't played it sense. Well worth the $60, but I don't think Bioshock would have that much playability.

Generally, I just watch livestreams or youtube Lets Plays, as what I really want from the single player experience is the story. I did watch about two hours of gameplay of the game on youtube and now I want to play myself. I did a quick google search and someone claimed there was eight hours of content with just the main storyline alone. I'm not sure how accurate that is, so I will be asking around a bit more before purchasing (if I do purchase it). I might just continue to watch gameplay on youtube instead and save myself $60 I'll never get back.

Which makes me wish that it were possible to resale games you buy on Steam. I can understand why developers and publishers don't want to give you the ability to do it, but it's annoying not having that option like you do with console games. I don't know if that $60 will be worth the "eight or so" hours of gameplay I will get. Someone said it could be up to fifteen hours of content if I do all the side quest and stuff, but again, is it worth it?

I love steampunk, which is why this Bioshock game appeals to me so much. 2013 seems to be the year of the steam. There's City of Steam going into open beta later this year, Bioshock, Guns of Icarus Adventure Mode up on kickstarter, and there's probably more that I can't think of right now. It's going to be a pretty good year for gamers who enjoy the steampunk theme. Anyways, thanks for reading.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Thoughts from Dragon Prophet Taiwan

Unable to control my excitement for the up-and-coming Dragon's Prophet, I decided to play the Taiwanese version of the game. Right now, the Taiwanese version has just finished up the first (open) closed beta. They had originally planned to jump straight into Open Beta after this, but have decided that they will instead do two more closed betas. I think this is an excellent choice because there are a few major bugs that needed to be squashed still, and a lot of polishing to be done. I will detail these later on in this post, though. I took several videos and a lot of screenshots so I could share with anyone else that is interested in the game.

Before I get started, I will sometimes put (Theory) before something. This means that what I have posted has not be proven (at least to my knowledge) and could be wrong.

First, let me say that despite having put in several hours into the Taiwanese version and gotten to above level 20, I have yet to scratch the surface of the game. I was not able to get into crafting, except for a bit of guessing around. I was not able to figure out how to level up my dragons (though I have a theory on how to do it), and I was not able to get into the player housing or "Frontier." Needless to say, I missed out on a lot of the game. Fortunately, however I did get a pretty good idea of what the lower level experience is for a new player, and I can share that in great detail.

Lets talk about what I did find out concerning the game. I do know that there are several types of dragons. By types, I mean the way they look as well as the kind of dragon they are. Dragons are attached an element, but I have yet to gain an understanding on just what this element means besides giving a vague idea of what kind of terrain the dragon is good with. Each dragon is spawned with a random set of abilities from a pool that the type of dragon it is has available to it. Some of these abilities are useable by you, some are not. Examples of these abilities are buffs that will raise your total HP, give you damage bonuses, give you damage reduction, healing over time abilities that have an area effect (good for team fighting). And that's just the few I came across as a new player in the lowbie zones.

Not all dragons can fly, as is obvious if you watch the trailers. Some can swim, some cannot. Some can run extremely fast on the ground, while some will crawl at a mind-numbing speed. Basically, that means there's a dragon for every situation. A dragon that can only fly at the speed of someone who is sprinting on the ground may not be helpful in a flatland type area, but would be a life saver in a hilly, jungle type area. I also know that some dragons cannot be used for fighting, but I have no idea if some dragons can only be used for fighting and cannot be mounted. Another thing I noticed is that you can have up to five (or maybe it was six? I have a screenshot of it somewhere) dragons with you at a time, while you can only summon one at any given moment.

In the screenshot above, you see the Dragon Stable (or sometimes called the Nursery). In this place, you can store spare dragons, (theory) put your dragon through training regiments to gain them experience for leveling up, set your dragons stats (after they level up), (theory) combine or transfer skills between two different dragons, and a few other things I have no figured out. Just about every town or settlement has one of these, and they all seem to have a fairly unique and interesting design. One of the first thing I do when coming to a new town is check out how the stable looks. Another thing you can notice is several "locked" slots. These can be unlocked by spending diamonds (cash shop money), I believe it was 30 diamonds for each slot.

Dragon taming is done by jumping on a dragons back and fighting for control by playing a mini-game. There are a few factors that go into your chances of success. 1) Your level in relation to the dragon. Obviously, if you're a lower level it will be harder, and if you're higher level it will be easier. 2) (Theory) How full your SP bar is (the yellow bar under the Health and Mana bar). SP is gained by attacking things. 3) (Theory) How much you've damaged the dragon before attempting to tame. And 4) How skillful you are while playing the minigame. It all plays a part in your chances.

Dragon taming

The taming mini-game is pretty straight forward. You control a dragon head icon with the WASD keys. The goal is to keep the dragon head icon within the inner-circle, which will cause the red bar on the right to go up. Whenever the dragon head goes out of the inner-circle, the yellow bar on the left to go down. You want to get the red bar into a certain threshold before the yellow bar runs out. If you do, you tame the dragon and he is now yours. This can be hard, though, as you can see from the video.

As I mentioned earlier, dragons have several uses. They can be used as a mount, or as a fighting companion. Whenever you use a dragon as a mount, you can have him out for as long as you please and can summon him whenever you like (as long as you are not in combat). However, if you want to use a dragon as a fighting companion, it will consume your SP while it is out and fighting. This means that unless you generally only have a limited amount of time to make use of your dragon in any given combat situation. I'm not a fan of this, and from what I've read on the Taiwanese forums, not many people are.

Speaking of combat, it's pretty fun. Some people have said it can feel "clunky," but I don't agree with this. There are times when I have a lot of lag (but I'm connecting to Taiwan from the states, so it's to be expected) and it can feel very difficult to work with, but most times it felt smooth as can be. The combat system itself is somewhere between a targeting MMO (where you select opponents and then use abilities/attacks) and a free target (kinda like Tera). It's hard to describe, so you'll just have to watch the video I am putting under this, or try it out for yourself. There are a couple of glaring bugs with the combat at the moment, though. The first is that sometimes opponents will randomly become unable to attack you, and you cannot attack them either. This doesn't stop them from trying, though. The other is that when fighting near elevated terrain or buildings/props, your attacks will not connected with whoever you're trying to fight. I only tried playing as a heavy warrior which has large sweeping melee attacks and lots of AOEs.

Dragon\'s Prophet combat as a warrior

Another thing worth mentioning is the character creation. I found it to be more than decent. Not as advanced or in-depth as some games, but there is definitely a lot of freedom with it. I played around with it and was able to create some pretty nice (and horrible) characters. The video below is of the male character creation, but I also play with the female character creation in another video on my channel.

Dragon\'s Prophet character creation

That reminds me of another glaring bug I came across. I'm not sure if this was due to an actual bug in the game, or because I was running a client meant for Taiwanese computers on my computer. Or maybe it was my connection to the server that caused the issue. Either way, the problem is that sometimes textures would fail to load, or would load only partially, or wouldn't load correctly. Here are a screenshot showing examples of this:

I'm going to go ahead and close up this post by mentioning one final thing. The Taiwanese version of the game seems to be more than a bit cash shop heavy. Just about everything can be made a lot easier by use of diamonds. You can upgrade equipment with a much larger chance of success with them, or come back to life with full health and mana right where you die with them. I am hoping that Runewaker and/or SOE decide to change this before it comes to NA, as it may be a game killer for some. You can buy some sort of gear, but I have no idea if it's good or not. Judging by some of the numbers (you can see them in the screenshot), the gear is middle or middle-high grade. That's compared to the level 20 gear I've looted.

I'll end with this: Remember that everything I post about is from the FIRST closed beta of the Taiwanese version of the game. Things can, and probably will, be a lot different and more polished by time you get a chance to play the game. So do not judge the game completely on what I've posted. In fact, do not judge it at all. Just use this post to give you an idea of what the game will be like. Thank you for reading.

Click here to visit my screenshot album for screenshots of the Taiwanese version of the game.

Guns of Icarus Online - Steam Sale and Contest

One of my all-time favorite games, Guns of Icarus Online, is on sale for $5 on steam. Or $11 for a four pack for you and your friends. It's a great deal. Such a good one, in fact, that I went ahead and bought a four pack so I could give away three copies of the game. You can enter the giveaway by visiting the OnRPG thread where I am hosting it. It has a big of a spin to it, but anyone is welcome to enter.

As for the game itself, I was introduced to it when I was asked to review the game. You can find that review by clicking here. It's fantastic, whether you like steampunk or not. It's a really great team-based game that absolutely required teamwork for you to succeed. Whether you like being a captain, a gunner, or an engineer, you can do it. Each person has an important role on the ship.

In the future, the devs have expressed that they plan to release a DLC/new game that will offer not only the team-based arena gameplay that the current game does, but an adventure/RPG mode. I am looking forward to this a lot. Hopefully we'll get it in a year or tow. I've got almost nothing but good things to say about the game (the only thing I could complain about is the concessional lag spike...but every game gets that).

Anyways, he's some gameplay I recorded a week or so before the sale started. Also, some links to the stuff that people have posted as part of the giveaway.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Dragon's Prophet

Today I purchased the $40 Founders Pack for Dragon Prophet NA (by SOE). Had a nice discussion over at OnRPG before I decided which pack to go with. I was on the fence between the $90 and $40. At the time, it appeared that there really wasn't much bonus (at least for me) to getting the $90 pack over the other two. Unfortunately, later on after I had already purchased my pack, the buy page was updated and it was clarified that you also got a house with the top two packs. This sucks for me, because I would have bought the $90 pack if I had known I would get a large house with it, rather than the small house with the $40 pack.

I might contact SOE and see if I can upgrade, but to be honest, I don't really feel like it anymore. Oh well, I start with a small house. I should have the ability to upgrade to something nicer later on. And if I join a guild, I will probably do what I always do when I join a guild: Focus on the guild rather than my own stuff. It took me years before I finally decided to build my own house in Wurm, and I still have yet to have my own house in Mortal Online (tho I did briefly a year or two ago, didn't last long however). I only had a small house and a bunker (gotten from the Mustafar expansion) in SWG.

Anyways, when I do get into the NA beta for Dragon's Prophet (should be on the 29th), I have a pretty good idea of what I should be doing. I plan to play it semi-hard, even if everything will be wiped. I am hoping the closed beta wont last long, though. The Taiwanese closed beta is supposed to last for two more closed beta events and then transition to Open Beta right after. SOE will probably do the same. Though there is a disclaimer at the bottom of the buy page that says that it could take up until December 2013 for the Open Beta to come out, and we don't get the Founder's Pack items until the Open Beta.

Until the 29th, I will probably be playing mostly Neverwinter, as I just got a beta key for it from Click here to see if there are any keys left. It doesn't start until tomorrow (the 22nd), though. I'll be splitting my time between Neverwinter, Smite, and sometimes Tera until Dragon's Prophet on the 29th (or later, if things get delayed). Anyways, thanks for reading.