Archive for February, 2011

Rift Open Beta Ends

I was telling myself that I was going to have a different kind of blog post next – one that didn’t talk about Rift. However, since the open beta has ended, I thought I’d post some more screenshots and share my experiences as the open beta draws to a close. I’ve been trying to get all sorts of people to play the game with me – to show them that even though it is very similar to WoW, it has certain things that make it special. Some declined, some tried it, and some even bought it. A good friend of mine, Shane [Stardragon], who I have been playing MMOs with for a good 5 years or so, tried the game out. Though he enjoyed his time playing rift, he thought that it didn’t offer enough new stuff to justify purchasing it and leaving WoW behind.

I appreciate Star for trying the game out, I had a lot of fun playing it with him. We even rocked some “Warfronts” [battlegrounds] However, I think that playing the game for ten levels doesn’t really show you how the game will play out, which is very sad. I think that because of how big World of Warcraft is, MMOs these days should be trying to capture and amaze people from the very beginning. While the game looks great, has very dynamic events such as Rifts and invasions from the different elemental planes [Life, Death, Fire, Water, Earth, ect], and a unique class system that is worth drooling over for people who love making unique specs in talent trees, I can’t say that the first few levels really grabs your attention.

When you start playing, the starting zone [from lvl 1-6] isn’t very exciting in terms of quest mechanics. Kill X this, collect this, destroy that, go here. People see the same UI with different tweaks, they see the class combination system, but only have their low level spells, and they lean back and go, “Wow, this is a WoW Clone, and its not different at all.” I sadly made that judgement when I first started playing. But after getting up there in the levels, and leaving the starting zones, did I see the Rifts and the NPC invasions in action, and tried out some pvp, as well as a few different classes.

the nice thing about Rift, though, is that, even though the quests are a bit weak in terms of quest mechanics and such, you can always do something else. Rifts, defending quest hubs from invasions, and pvp, actually give really great experience, which is very nice.

Thats enough ranting, screenshot time!

Read more…

World PvP

Some of my greatest moments within World of Warcraft happened because of the world pvp. Sure, there were plenty of battlegrounds that I played to get my player killing kicks satisfied, but I have very few memories that really stand out to me. When I first started playing WoW, I could remember the huge Southshore versus Hillsbrad fights. Alliance and horde would push each other back and forth between the two towns aimlessly. After awhile, somebody in general chat or raid chat would yell at the wise idea, “Lets retaliate and attack Tirisfal Glades/Crossroads/Astranaar” The raid group is one massive fel swoop would move to the next location, a tidal wave of player mounts and green names [signaling pvp flag].

And of course at arriving to the next destination there would be about half the players, and everyone would die. It would be a good day. After awhile though, Burning Crusade came out, and with it, came flying mounts. While blizzard had implemented World PvP objectives, for the most part, they were ignored. I dabbled in the one within hellfire peninsula, and a little bit with the zangarmarsh one, but it only offered a slim fraction of the fun that vanilla WoW world pvp offered. There was Halaa, too, but that was mostly useless and sporadic fighting.

Wrath came out – no real World PvP objectives, cept for Wintergrasp, which was a fucking joke. Cataclysm is more of the same with Tol Barad, but with queues to keep the sides even. That isn’t world pvp.

With flying mounts brought to Azeroth, there will never be the world pvp that happened in the scale that it used to. No massive scale battles.

You’re going to roll your eyes, but I believe that that will all change in Rift, especially on PvP servers, where the opposite faction will invade enemy territory, and attack their quest hubs. Players will be able to attack enemy quest hubs, also. In Warhammer, attack quest hubs was a major no-no, with super elite guards guarding the place- which was odd for a pvp game, discouraging world pvp like that. With Rift though, on pvp servers, they’ve made the guards guarding towns weaker than if they were on a pve server, and enemy players can totally render an enemy quest hub useless. Epic.

Also, no flying mounts. My hope with Rift pvp is that it’ll be much like the WoW days. Where there was a community, and you knew who the great pvpers were on your server by how badly they were hated by the other faction.

Theres also a dynamic World PvP event that happens in one of the zones I read about, something called an Ancient Wardstone can be captured or activated, which summons a boss that walks around the entire zone basically killing the towns/quest hubs/players in its path. Kinda like a wintergrasp with the bosses roaming outside. Sounds interesting.

Anyways, thats all for my night rift rant 😉 [not so much nightly, but you get it]

More on Rift later. Beta is on the 15th, anyone is welcome. No keys needed.

Rift Beta

Last night and a little bit of this morning I had the enjoyment of playing with my beloved, Lauren [who goes by the fierce name as redshipp] We started playing around 11:00 pm and we ended out adventures at… 3 am. We also picked up where we left off this morning for another thirty minutes. Needless to say, we’ve been having fun in Telara.

So another version of Sketchit was born!

Lauren and I stumbled around the newbie zone which was very reminiscent [or, at least I think] Of the warhammer starter zones for Chaos and Human.. meshed together. Not that that’s how it played out by any means, but the art style seemed similar, as well as the atmosphere. Which isn’t a bad thing.

We killed many an undead-like fiend, smashed magical devices [looted a few grey-quality picnic baskets from “traitor” mobs?] Launched catapults and defeated a very powerful [low level static] Rift at the end of our newbie experience. It was some good stuff. I wish I had taken more screenshots of the rifts and the going-ons of the zone, but I was too caught up playing the game.

I guess I should give some background story lorelol stuff before I go on. Some heretic king guy used not-suppose-to-use technology, which harnessed the power of these dragon like things. Which you aren’t supposed to do, because it’s bad. For whatever reason, that brought the dragons, which brought the rifts, which in turn, fucked up the world. As a normal good guy, I died. But an angel swooped down and said, “Hey, you’re better than this!” and made me a being called an “Ascended,” which is why I’m so fucking powerful. After defeating powerful static rift as a newbie, 200 years have past. Apparently I sacrificed myself for the rift to be shut, but now the gods have brought me back to solve this new rift problem. Oh shit son.

So now we’re back in the “real world” of the game! Serious time!

I played as a “Beastmaster” “Paragon” and “Riftblade,” which means I have a pet, I dual wield, and if I spec’d more into Riftblades, my weapons would have special procs.  Lauren played as a Druid… and something else. A cleric of sorts 😀

Throughout the night Lauren and I closed many a Rift and even defended a town from an enemy invasion. I died once during a rift [damn elite mobs] and Lauren got steamrolled by a large force of invasion mobs 😦

So we took it out on a squirrel.. and collected their tears.. and added it to our collection. [more to come on that later]

[My cat’s name is Frisky, and her faerie pet is named Danny :3]

Anyways folks, I’ll report more on Rift later. Time to make some toaster strudels.

Apologize. Or not, that’s cool too.

A couple of days ago I let my sporadic ADHD gamer side really shine, and I quit World of Warcraft and bought rift. I realize that by doing this, I may have unintentionally given a digital middle finger to a few of my close friends. Actually – all of them.  I don’t have too many friends.

Stardragon [Shane], Donnie, Bobby, and Chris, I apologize. No, I don’t regret my decision. I’m just sorry that I dragged everyone back into Cataclysm in the first place. You resubbed, transferred characters and changed factions. We leveled many a lvl and grinded a few dungeons. However, not long after reaching 85, you find that I’m not with you. Not even three months of having Cataclysm, I quit.

You may go, “Well, I don’t understand, why would you waste all that time and money and then go and leave?”  It’s not a waste. I enjoyed my time in Azeroth, and I’ve seen all the new things there are to see in Cataclysm. I had fun. You have to remember that in the end, what’s most important when it comes to all games is that you play them to have fun. They’re not really investments.  I’m not really much of an end game raider, and when it comes to pvp, WoW’s is nice, but they’ve offered nothing really new for pvpers. A rehashed AB and Warsong Gulch, and World PVP is officially dead. You have to queue up for Tol Barad.

And so I tried out the Rift Beta, and though it wasn’t revolutionary, it offered things done differently, and it was a breath of fresh air. I’ve been playing World of Warcraft off and on for six years. That’s a long time. With Cataclsym, blizzard did really more of the same thing. This is fine – just not for me.

Rift is a game that plays much like WoW, but does a few things differently. All the different class combinations [no more cookie cutter specs] The Rifts, which is a new cool public quest like things that anyone can just jump into. Open PvP zones with dynamic events that happen in them.  It has a very slick interface that’s as customizable as Warhammer’s was. Overall, it’s a very polished game. You might look a few gameplay videos or screenshots and guffaw at how similar the games are, but when I sat done to play it, I had fun.

That’s what matters. It’s a different game. It’s polished. It’s fun.

I had bigger arguments in my head to convince the people I apologized to to actually play with me, but I’m going to go play with Lauren now.