Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Slayers Inquest: End of year edition

The Slayers Inquest: End of year edition

MMO's:  There are many systems for reviews, I have chosen a 4 category rating system with each category scoring out of 10. This will end up with a % out of 100.

·         Overall Rating: */100
·         Graphics: */10
·         Controls: */10
·         Fun or Tedious: */10
·         Maintains Interest: */10

Examples of other rating systems
·         Pros and Cons (putting in the description as good and bad)
·         Overall Rating (out of 100)
·         Thumbs up OR down (final opinion)

Wildstar 2014 (THUMBS UP)

THE RANT: Fantastic game graphically and fun to play, however the fact that is was built for a crowd that don't exist made it fail and the dev's have to rethink and rebuild the game. This game was made for 40 man raids like back in the days of Lich King and the like, but that crowd just does not exist anymore. With many mmo's and not huge numbers like back in the glory days of WOW the only ones doing 40 man raids each week are pre-made gaming groups that exists outside of one game. They are groups that have had the same members for a long time, do not accept new players and go from game to game doing raids which once defeated and no new content is ready, leave the game and find the next MMO to jump into, beat their end game, add it to their list of defeated and move on.

With the gaming groups having defeated the content easily in Wildstar and now all left, due to no new content to do, the game is sitting empty of all but a few solo players slowly leveling to get to the end with nothing to do and no way to get 40 people together for a raid. Players reaching end game are un-subbing as they have nothing to accomplish or do. The achievements are small and not worth achieving as they don't reflect what you would think. For instance there is no achievement for getting all the lore books in a zone as you think there would be. Collecting goods for your house is pointless as again you can only have 4 of the over 80 listed at your house, they cost gold which is hard to get and must be "fixed" (Which costs gold) constantly. As well there is NO POINT to your housing as it is in a private instance which further distances you from the community as the major cities are ghost towns reflecting not many players and players hidden away in their private housing.

The good:  The dev's have, realized this and are correcting their mistakes. A recent release was a brand new 40 man raid, however with not enough players to do the content the dev’s immediately dropped the difficulty (Something they claimed they would never do) making the new raid a 20 man raid. They have also added a brand new “Story mode” feature similar to GW2’s personal story so the soloing crowd has something more to look forward to. They upped gold in the lower levels so players can actually afford a mount and not have to pay real money for CREDD and are not giving in to F2P just yet. The company behind them NC Soft believes there is a market for this game and so far has as well not given into F2P.

The Bad: If sales decline and no one plays this game it is surely coming. The company is in big trouble however with having to discount their game 50% to attract new players. A gamer found a copy of Wildstar in the clearance bin at WalMart for $10.00 and the company still has ZERO advertising with IGN releasing articles headlined as “What is Wildstar?” meaning no one has heard of this game and continues to know nothing about it. There are no ad’s, it is not on T.V. or even featured in gaming articles, there is hardly any news when contetnt is released besides on their own site. With no ad dollars into telling gamers about this game, there is no way to get customers. Even the 50% off ads are only promoted via a Facebook group about wildstar (aimed at people who own it)

·         Overall Rating: 73/100
·         Graphics: 9/10 – Would be 10, however some graphics on floors and planes are bitmapped
·         Controls: 10/10 – Perfect controls, movement, camera and key bindings. Double jump is a huge plus and seeing area of attack is helpful
·         Fun or Tedious: 5/10 – While considered fun, it quickly wears off after your 100th death due to many close grouped mobs and low armor drops
·         Maintains Interest: 5/10 – Hard to score, considering the level aspect of the game keeps our interest as the zones have unique stories. However once at end game there is nothing to do, nor a reason to ever log in again. Alt’s are un-necessary and tedious to re-run the same story while leveling.


Elder Scrolls Online 2014 (THUMBS UP)

                THE RANT: Just what we expected from the makers of The Elder Scrolls. A top notch game with thousands of interactions that gets better and better. The character models have been superbly cleaned up from other Elder Scrolls games where modding was used to achieve the best looking players. Being true to Elder Scrolls there is not over the top armor and weapons, however they are not as bland and boring as RIFT for example. They are more like skyrim with flair!

                The new dye system makes the game hugely more customizable with a very fair system for unlocking colors via achievements that require no gold or lottery to get the rare colors but just your time and effort if you wish to look a certain way. Crafting is very easy and straight forward with an interesting twist in which you can craft different looks to armor and weapons when you find rare crafting books allowing you to make the other races and styles of armor for looks!

                The Good: Finally a game that is not a WOW clone but follows in the footsteps of previous Elder Scroll Games with a bit of GW2 mixed in. In this game you simply DO NOT push 1 to attack, but rather swing your sword aiming at the enemy or heal aiming at your allies. Enemies attack likewise aiming to hit you or doing attacks in various directions allowing you to circle around. The amazing part of this game is the endless, endless builds and ways to attack. Some people may use for example a two handed sword and put all skill points into attacks with two handed swords using stamina as a primary stat, while your twin may but ZERO point into his blade but all his points into his class skills using magic as the primary stat. while the two characters are identical in weapon use, they are completely different in their attacks and damage as well as abilities.  

                Questing is the best over ALL mmo’s. Finally someone got it right, however they had it right all along since it’s the same as the other Elder Scrolls games. When you talk to an NPC you “talk” to that NPC, hearing their voice, seeing their face and interacting with them on an engaging level. You see what they are going through, how they feel and get to ask questions from a list to get more answers if you wish to get further information which actually comes up marked on your map. This method is the absolute best! WOW and clones like RIFT and Wildstar simply are click to accept a written quest no one reads and then follow the arrows on the mini map to see what to do, do it and return to the NPC for a reward while ESO’s quests once complete lead you into deeper quests that further that story until the final quest results in a reward and XP at the end of the quest line without having to return to the NPCs at the start.

                Many of the quests are interesting as well, there are no kill 10 boars hear, but rather social quests where you solve problems with the world around you. Are put through trials, make decisions, close portals to the plane of oblivion, rebuild cities that were destroyed and try to end the villain’s schemes. Some choices you make at the end of a quest line might be “wrong” as your are unsure of who is telling the truth and asked to side with one person over another and once you do you get the truth that you either helped the evil doer or the right person. There is no wrong answer nor does it change your reward, you just get a story to match the ending you picked.

                The Bad: The bad is the leveling. If you were hoping to get to the end of this game quickly you are out of luck unless you wish to fall asleep grinding to the truest meaning of grinding. The only way to get XP in this game in a timely manner is to spend hours grinding mobs in zones as defined by guides. You will level in a normal manner while if you were to quest for 8 hours straight you would only gain maybe one level by doing quests. While the quests are amazingly fun and interesting you don’t level from them. You only level from mob grinding, not even dungeon runs, just mob grinding.

                Not too much else is seen as negative except along with other games this year the lack of space in inventory. Game we PAY for should never have limited inventory space especially when the game is built around having to have mass mats and gear and the like and nowhere to store it. Also Guilds, there are no guilds, nor is there an AH, however the game labels guilds as buying groups in which you can have up to five in which you can buy and sell items like an AH. The major downside is there is hardly any player communication, having been in 5 differing guilds for four months not one person talked or partied for anything. This is a solo game unless you have RL friends or a gaming group to come into this with.

·         Overall Rating: 80/100
·         Graphics: 10/10 – Top of the line graphics with suns reflections off armor. Water, trees and grass as good as skyrim the best in the industry!
·         Controls: 8/10 – Amazing controls for attacking and switching weapon styles quick, however the “E”, “F” and “X” for interacting, picking up and deleting items is tedious.
·         Fun or Tedious: 6/10 – Again hard to score because if you are doing the quests while leveling you are having an amazing time, but if you choose to grind it’s the worst experience ever.
·         Maintains Interest: 8/10 – Logging in you always have something to do or work towards, there is currently no housing or places to sit and hang out, you’re always on the go. However once again when you get to end game you switch zones to keep you questing but there is only one major raid to do and there are no guilds in the game to find players to meet.

Other MMO’s

Final Fantasy – (THUMBS UP) Got an expansion, new jobs, and lots of very amazing up grades. This game is on the rise this year as something very much worth getting into again.

RIFT – (THUMBS DOWN) Got an expansion (Nightmare Tide) which no one played and I am deeming a fail since the last thing that WoW clone needs is more levels to grind after going F2P.

WOW – (THUMBS UP) Got an expansion (Warlords) and continues to do its thing. I am calling the new character art a fail as it’s as bad as Ultima Online 3rd Dawn’s attempt at putting new art over existing art. The fact that their new garrisons are versions of the farm which is held on to by a breath’s width of code put into an old game where at times you can see other players in your instance and spell effects is scary that the entire thing will blow up soon in a code avalanche.

TERA – (THUMBS DOWN) Was working on and or had an expansion, the first in years and no one really cared.

AION – (THUMBS DOWN) Continues to be a very old garbage game with constant reskins.

GW2 – (THUMBS UP) Has busted out this year as well releasing Season 2 of their living story, changing dailies and continuing to add amazing new game play each month to keep the players interested. Diving into this game you can see the thousands of players gather at world bosses for the kills each hour.
Everquest Next (THUMBS DOWN) Released lots of stuff this year none of us played or even looked at.

Archage (THUMBS DOWN) Was a huge flop as none of us even tried this game or looked at it. According to community forums this game is nothing anyone was looking forward to. This will go down another TRIO flop!

SWTOR (THUMBS UP) Got housing, and much more attention which we can only suspect that closer to the new movies release will get much more added and players will sub up in droves!

Minecraft  (THUBMS UP) While not an MMO this game went from a thumbs down with it’s failed plug in's and drastic changes no one wanted to amazing with the upgrade to 1.8 and the new worlds added more stable than before. Just rescued in time, however the community that was driven off now needs to see if it can come back.  

Final Notes

Well it was a good year, ended WOW in spring, got into both new MMO's that dropped and put a good 4 months into both. Played the WOW expansion at the end of the year and dropped all subs for some time in GW2. What will 2015 bring? Hopefully new MMO's to try and to play and to bicker about!

Now enjoy these 2014 images and meme's:

Nice room! I think I will do something like this, if I have the time. Have to say it's pretty slick

Oh good times, my how TRION tried . . . sigh

Was also a great year for ANIME as RWBY got season 2 out in time for X-Mas and Sailor Moon Crystal was relaunched!

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