February 28, 2009

PTS Patch 1.2: City Siege Improvements & More Crafting Stuff

Mythic announced City Siege Improvements with patch 1.2 yesterday. Seriously? C'mon Mythic, that's a drop on the hot stone named capitol raid endgame. The shift in victory point generation is a step in the right direction, but they really need to fix the empty instance grinding. Now people can only do that for two hours instead of six, but still its a large issue. The server should only open new instances once the existing ones are full and place groups automaticly into existing ones where the group fits on. I know this still leaves issues with eg. a full warband starting a new instance, but still its better to prevent farming then let people chose their own instance. Also the queue system needs to work properly. Reduced time for a contested state means less people will have a chance on invader gear tho, resulting in more raids needed to be able to advance in the other capitol raid content, as you need those superior wards. Let's hope the overall zone domination changes will result in more frequent assaults on the main cities to even this out. I saw one item from the improved purple bags from an Altdorf raid and they sure pimped that stuff. Looking forward to Altdorf raids... I won't rant further on the city sieges, did that before. Let's hope the overall package of changes will result in a fun RvR endgame, but we're not there yet.

I fiddled around with crafting on the PTS more. Still trying to figure out the best way for me to change my main to cultivating, as my Choppa will take a while until rank 40. But i guess once the changes go live I'll do one or two afternoons of grinding materials with butchering on Thulf to stock up and then switch. Those mats then have to last until my alt is high enough to provide stuff cultivating can't. Should be fine. Only problem now is, how to make enough space in my bank or bags? Guess I really have to throw away some BoP greys. :S

Meanwhile i brewed some more potions and while many of the existing pots in my bags have been downgraded it looks like the critical success tiers finally work properly. I crafted some pretty nifty potions. One other thing i realized, and think is good: The materials from the guild vendor will provide less powerful potions then eg. potions brewed with butchered mats. Check the screenshot for a comparison, had to use an extender to create the same result with less duration. The multipliers for potions are pretty straight forward to use. The lvl 1 multiplier (vendor) will give you one extra potion, an uncommon lvl 200 multiplier yields five extra potions. I tried for quite a while yesterday to get my hands on a BoP seed, but had no luck.
From the looks of it those seeds can drop of high level champs/heroes, are lvl 200 BoP and will create the mysterious hybrid potions. Despite what the patch notes said, the plants created are currently not BoP. The potions are quite powerful, but have hefty stability requirements. Here is the first screenshot of such a hybrid potion, courtesy of Djanee.

While being on the PTS i met more readers of my blog, which has been a lot of fun. I appologize if my answers sometimes are delayed, but often i have 2-3 conversations going at the same time, about my blog or the patch 1.2 changes. Today i met two fellow Black Orc players, Neil & Sauce, i want to give a shout-out to. I was really curious if the Black Orc Darkpromise gear had any changes to the models with patch 1.2 and its sad to see, there are no changes. Neil was nice enough to pose in Darkpromise and Invader for me - check out the difference. There are so many nice NPC models, when will those placeholders be changed? Darkpromise on an Orc looks like the stuff my rank three auction house alt wears. Sucks.

On further sidenotes: The overflow system was enhanced, once you make space in your bag the overflow items will automaticly go to your bags, nice. Also the stack buying has finally been fixed. When i bought stacks of mats/containers it worked every time on the PTS.

February 27, 2009

PTS Patch 1.2: Guild Crafting Materials and High Guild Rank Mounts

Tonight on the EU PTS a larger zone domination test was organized. As part of it, GOA created a guild (highest rank) and people could join it. While i had no time to stick around for the RvR, i managed to sneak into the guild long enough to check out all the guild benefits you can buy from the guild vendor. The first screenshot collage shows you all the mats you can buy from the guild vendor (those need different guild ranks) and in addition some potions you can brew with those mats. The rez potion (cost you 62.44s in mats) is really cool - being a standard bearer i can also rez with the banner, but could prove useful. You also see that the snare potions are not fixed and the resulting potion will always have the same effect. In addition to what you can see on the screenshot you'll be able to buy different seeds (only different in level not in type from what you get at every other vendor) and also different containers and curios for talisman makers.

Now the juicy stuff: New guild rank mounts! Since the test guild "Eternal Destruction" was of the highest rank, not only could we buy the guild rank 25 mounts, but also the new improved mounts (faster & lower dismount chance) you can get at guild rank 37. The mounts you can buy from the guild vendor have three additional colors and the faster ones are slightly armored, but have the same color then the other ones from the guild vendor. While normal mounts have 50% speed increase, the armored ones have a 60% speed. So people don't need to worry that it will make such a difference in RvR. 10% is not that much tho, we had a short race and it was a tad faster, but not very. Here are the pics of all the guild rank Orc boars:

The cost of 150g is really cheap for the better mounts IMO. It's just that guild rank 37 is not that fast to reach. Thirst is at rank 29 currently, still some levels to make. I know not all will ride boars, so here is a screenshot of an armored dark elf mount. I also met Oziriz, a reader of my blog, inside the Viper Pit and could convince him with a few coins to show of the Chosen steeds (1,2,3,4,5). Talking about blog readers, i met quite a few during my adventures on the PTS. If you play and see me standing in IC, say hello... :)

At the start of todays RvR event i was also able to catch Magnus (GOA) for a few words on his Black Orc in full Conqueror gear. He was joining the fray to fight Order in Praag himself. Overall i've to say that the atmosphere on the EU PTS is very relaxed and people are willing to test things out. Hell, I've send a huge chunk of bug reports myself. The more i see from the patch 1.2, the better it looks. While crafting has been easy before in WAR, after the patch it will still be easy, but much better to understand for people and they ironed out some bugs. And finally crafting will be useful, all of the trades. Personally I'll need to switch around my trades a bit (due to the BoP seeds/plants), but that's fine.

February 25, 2009

PTS 1.2 Crafting, Mounts and more

The character copy works now on the EU PTS. So i was able to transfer Thulf over and check some stuff. To my surprise the model for the Sentinel helmet changed. O.o You can dye the helmet now, but tbh i liked the old helmet better... wtf? It's still not possible to dye Black Orc Sentinel properly on the PTS. The Vomitous Choppa got a new model and looks very cool now. Many of the higher level Choppa weapons got a new (all the same) model as well. The rest of my items looked the same from what i can remember.

I toyed around with crafting some on the PTS. Apothecary, Cultivating and Butchering are much better now. I can only assume (did not test the other professions), it's similar with the rest. They fixed a lot and streamlined the process, which makes it much easier for people to understand. Cultivating is finally a useful profession and its rather easy to level now that you don't have to grind for seeds. Basicly you buy lvl 1 seeds from a vendor and use plant reaping (Ctrl-Right-Click) to produce 2-4 seeds from it - this process will also yield resins (stabilizers). Usually Cultivating will yield you 2-3 plants from that seed, a super-critical success will also grant you one plant from the next higher tier plus dye pigments. You then convert that higher lvl plant into seeds and start over from there. It's much faster to train then right now on live. Stimulant ingredients seem to be bugged right now, at least i could not make any use of them during my quick test. Seeds & Plants will stack up to 50 now. yay! It looks like there will be some cool/weird potions you can brew with 1.2, like resurrection potions, increased crafting skill potions, +morale and a few others. From the looks of it all apothecary potions will have proper "rare" tiers. The ingredients to multiply or enhance potions work out of the box. Don't bother to much with crafting before the patch, some eg. existing healing potions were downgraded through the patch.

In the capitol cities you can visit your scavenging/butchering trainer and pick up a quest to convert into the other skill with your same skill level. Crafting mats that are not ingame anymore can either be converted into the same skill level "new" ingredient or will convert into some rotten parts, 20 of those can be converted into Chaos Black Dye. Because of this and the other changes to loot tables, dyes will be much more accessable after the 1.2 patch. I already heard about the first new dye from crafting, liche purple.

With the funds Thulf brought to the PTS i was at least able to buy the new "standard" mounts. To check out the other ones you need guild rank, which does not transfer over. The old boar is the Light Brown Ridin' Boar and the two new ones i post a screenshot below:

My Choppa is rank 10 and still a lot of fun to play, I'll definately stick to my plan and create an alt Choppa. Thulf being a tank will still stay my main, the new changes to the Black Orc are mostly great, the Da'Toughest selfhealing was nerfed rather much tho. I did not play around with the Black Orc much on the PTS, was thinking about maybe checking out Lost Vale on the PTS if i get the peeps. But then again, Darkpromise is still nice to gain on live.

February 24, 2009

I'll chop yer head off!

I'm back! But to be honest, i did not miss WAR *that* much while i was gone. I played some good old fashion RTS games online like Age of Empires III and had a blast. Usually that's a bad sign... but today i logged onto the EU Public Test Server to check out the Choppa: It was fun! So i guess I'll stick to WAR for the moment. ;) I never leveled an alt in WAR so far, therefore i hope my Choppa will entertain me until the majority of the endgame, especially capitol raids, improved. Tho i guess when Lost Vale is fixed, that will keep busy for a little while. On a sidenote, if you're thinking about leveling an(other) alt, do it with the upcoming wave of Choppas when they go live. On the PTS atm its (obviously) mostly Choppas/Slayers, but doing PQs and fighting against hero mobs you start thinking: Just oooone tank would be so nice. ;)

The Choppa uses a berserk mechanic, which is quite fun. The longer you stay in combat, the more damage you do.. BUT once enraged to the maximum, you'll die rather quickly if something is hitting you. It happed frequently to me that i died as you really go bersek mode and forget to unload the rage once in a while. The Choppa does an insane amount of damage - at least from my perspective (did not play any DPS before in WAR). With rank 8 i was critting for around 220 damage already. The first "cool" attack skill animation will come with rank 8, when you get Can't Stop Da Chop - you do a kind of jump attack that is really fun to do. I did not take the rank 18 template you can create but started to level a new Choppa, I'll write more about it once i gained some more skills. But one thing is clear, the Choppa is a glass-cannon while enraged and best in combat while not attacked.

I only played a short amount of time but already found a bunch of bugs (2H Choppa weapons labeled as right hand, death respawn pop-up shows 1sec too early, etc.). After i send in a suggestion (to show the different colored mounts in the pens where you can buy them) i even had a CSR talk to me about it on the PTS, guess GOA takes the recent concerns about EU customer service and feedback (we can't access the "official" US forums where Mythic handles feedback atm) seriously and tries hard to give the playerbase the impression they're heard and do make a difference. Many EU players atm are concerned if their feedback or bug reports make a difference at all.

It's not only the new classes on the PTS, but also a bunch of other things. Some of the UI improvements are really good. Group/warband members now got a green gem icon which makes them much easier to spot. The zone maps now have arrows at the sides so you can access the connected zone easier. The new party/warband/open group UI looks promising and hopefully will make it easier for people to find groups as the current non-existent LFG system really needs improvement. The new mailbox UI now got the possibility to send several attachments with one mail. I just hope someone will take over the old zMailMod and throw together the other features of this mod to use with 1.2 version. I took butchering on my Choppa to check out the new apothecary mats and will post more about it soonish.

Downside for the PTS atm: The EU Character Copy is offline and will stay like this for the near future as GOA wants to test tier 1&2. Therefore i was not able to copy my rank 40 main over and eg. sit on all the new mounts yet. I also would like to test the crafting changes more, but can't do that as much as i want without the resources or the funding.

One promising thing: Looks like Mythic fixed the Super-Screenshot or what its called. When i used that option, i created screenshots around 8-11MB. The screenshot is also taken without the UI (even when you have it open), althogh names, etc. do show. Would be great if Mythic at least adds a checkbox if you want the super-screenshot to be "clean", without any names, target arrows, UI, etc. So i can configure that myself. Higher quality screenshots are very much appreciated tho.

February 17, 2009

More Lost Vale HQ Panorama Wallpapers

I'll be out of town until the weekend to visit a friend, therefore no news here until I'm back. To give you guys something to toy around with, i created some more panorama wallpapers from Lost Vale, this time from the final wing. Enjoy!

You can download the large files containing 1680x1050 and 1400x1050 versions here (choose free user).

February 16, 2009

WAR: Age of Blogging Wrap-Up

You think: "Yo Thulf, man you're a bit late... January is over since more then two weeks." Yeah, but who cares? I don't like to rush things and if i write about other blogs/websites i want to have a look by myself and not just quickly post a link to a site I've never looked at. That's why my personal wrap-up took a while longer. But i included all blogs that showed up on my radar since then. You probably have read about the initiative on many other websites, it was a huge success. Not only did a lot of new blogs surface, but IMO also did Mythic/GOA see that the existing blogs work together very well and are a fan-network on their own that can have a good impact.

Here is the third (part 1,2) list of new blogs to have a look at:

A Squishy's Time in Warhammer
A WARriors Tale
Ahh sh**! I left my axe at home!
All Things Rob Wild
Blog o' Knowledge
CDN Dragoon
Confessions of a WAR rvr player
Cry Me a RvR
Da'Toughest (revived)
Flintlocks R Fun
Gaarawarr Gabs
Glow of Mork
I Saw A Ratman
Khaine Stole my Bike
Midget Legion
Portraits of War (drawings and illustrations inspired on WAR)
Rambling On Addon Addon Addon...
Signs of WAR
So, I married an MMO addict
Starbreaker's Adventrues in the Old World
The Blue Scribes
The Casual WAR!
The Dreaded Chosen
The Homunculus
Thunzok: The Blog
War Games
WAR 'n Pieces
Wheres the War?
Wiqd Reflections

I had a look through all the 97 (!) WAR related blogs i posted since we started with the Age of Blogging again and added a few more to my personal link list - which means I'm reading them on a regular basis. Make sure you introduce your blogs to blogwarhammer.net, that's where most of us are watching. Keep on blogging guys, I'll flip through all the blogs once in a while and see how they're doing, maybe adjusting my link list. Of course wrapping up the Age of Blogging does not mean that no new blogs will be looked at. Just that i won't feature any of those long blog lists anymore. I'm happy i found a few blogs that will be entertaining myself on a regular basis and i hope they keep blogging frequently. Keep up the good work!

February 14, 2009

Ragbag & Test Server Info

With Mythic hyping the 1.2 patch and especially the upcoming two new classes many players were eager to try them out on the test servers. In the beginning of February along with some others i was approached by GOA and invited onto the upcoming test server. The test was supposed to be restricted, but under no NDA... so i was happy to be able to try out the Choppa pre-release (will take test server access over Mythic love letters anytime) and write about the new classes. Unfortunately things developed different: Mythic decided to release the patch first to their core tester group, which operates under a NDA. GOA was not able to create legal agreements in this short amount of time (for different countries as well), therefore no "private" pre-testing of the upcoming content. The EU will get a public test server together with the US probably in about one or two weeks. The PTS won't have the two new classes online in the beginning tho, just the rest of the patch. Bummer I've to say. But I'm happy to see that GOA starts to show some love to the EU community and is trying within their possibilities to make things happen - of course those things are easier for Mythic to do. I know many EU bloggers were disappointed about not being included in the "lover letter affair", so if GOA works closely together with the EU bloggers that makes up for it, at least for me it does.

Does anyone play on the Dragonback Mountains server? What's going on there? Seems some players are massively exploiting the Keep Lords and also by purpose trying to bug out the city invader PQs like the Brightwizard College. GOA is taking an official stand and punishing those players harder now. Another issue that Mythic needs to adress is those "banner walls" some people set up, IMO that's an exploit as well.

A little ripper pig told me this magazine is where Mythic gets the new ideas for boar mounts. Notice the Babes & Boars calendar. *laughs*

Watching the Ten Ton Hammer panel discussion video and reading the interview from eurogamer gives you a good impression about the upcoming new zone. Will be interesting to hear how many players you need to beat the Tomb of the Vulture Lord tho. I kind of like the fact that the current high level dungeons don't need a massive amount of people to beat.

February 13, 2009

Lost Vale HQ Panorama Wallpapers

Did not feel much like writing today. To celebrate my new Darkpromise Andsplate i got in Lost Vale yesterday, I created some more high-quality panorama wallpapers, this time from Lost Vale. Enjoy!

You can download the large files containing 1680x1050 and 1400x1050 versions here (choose free user).

February 12, 2009

1.2 Patch Notes Thoughts

Seriously long patch notes, takes a while to dig (or should i say chop?) through. Some major changes to RvR combat, like disorients no longer stacking, Immovable upgraded to 20secs and a large hit to resistances. Resistances will yield diminishing returns after 40% (and yes, Adam says its still going live in 1.2, despite patch notes initially forgot it) and also all resistance talismans values are being halfed. Some changes to armor debuffs as well. It's too early yet to say how it pans out. I'll enjoy my resistance set while it lasts. ;)

Black Orc
A few interesting changes and minor fixes (war bellows persist after zoning finally). The biggest hit is the Da Toughest change/nerf... less wounds/health when triggered. We don't know yet how much it was lowered, so its too early to cry doom. Some skills got a damage buff and I'm looking forward to the changes to Savin' Me Hide (reduce the magical damage taken by you and your group) and Not in da Face! (make you and your group briefly immune to disabling effects), although i liked the cooldown increase which could be used on PvE trash mobs as well. I'll stay full PvE tank specced also after the patch, will see how much its necessary to adjust my current spec. Looks like the annoying bug was fixed that eg. you could get stuck with the Can't Hit Me bar (its under Bug Fixes: Art).

Crafting & Apothecary
Some major changes to crafting incoming. THE buff to apothecary: All buff potions will now persist through death. Finally people will want to buy potions for a reasonable price. Mythic changes the gathering/crafting pairings, which means they will remove a bunch (!) of crafting mats and streamline the overall crafting process. In the long run this is good news. In the short run this will cause some hassle. Apothecary will work closely together with Butchering & Cultivating after the patch. My 200 Scavenging will be pretty useless for me. Luckily Mythic will offer a NPC in the capitols to switch from scavenging to butchering (confirmed so far, maybe other choices). Good stuff. But then again i saw this part for cultivating: All [new] special seed/plants are set to rare, and are Bind on Pickup. Hum, basicly for me this means i have to train cultivating again on my main (as i go to the dangerous places) and train butchering on an alt (which i wanted to do with my Choppa anyway). Question now is, train it now or do it after the patch? Mythic says the leveling curve was streamlined... but still. My bankspace will go havoc as well. Guess I've to get rid of a ton of grey BoP items to store stuff. Interesting as well: What happens to existing ingredients that will be removed? Two things say the patch notes: a) If possible they'll be converted to the new (same) type. b) Stuff that has no "mirror" will be converted in some kind of temporary special item, for 20 of them you'll get some kind of reward. Somehow i have the feeling it will be a lame title, but we'll see. I'm sitting on stacks of epic crafting ingredients, waiting for a crafting fix. I can only cross my fingers they don't all go *puff* in that change. :S

New color variants for player mounts incoming: You can choose from three different ones and with guild rank 25 you gain three more choices. I wonder if the gr25 mounts will have some minor accessories attached to look different. Improved mounts will come with guild rank 37. Itemization for the Invader capitol PQs has be revisited, we don't know yet how exactly tho. No word on fixes to the boring first PQ. New Zone Control Domination system will go in. Capitols will now start to lose rank once pushed into a contested state.

Mount Gunbad, Bastion Stair and Lost Vale get an overhaul. Some much needed changes to LV will go in. Drops will be revisited, some removed, some new stuff (eg. special weapons with procs) added. Each Wing Sub-bosses will drop either Dark Promise gloves or belt, one piece granted. The Wing Main-bosses will drop two DP pieces granted (different careers). More rare dyes will drop as well.

And much more... overall the sheer amount of fixes looks promising I'd say.

Unfortunately i could not spot a single point from my annoying/broken stuff list in the patch notes. But since they're not final yet, there is still hope.

Patch Notes 1.2 (for PTS)

Just a quick note, as i know many are waiting for those... Mythic posted the patch notes for 1.2 going onto the test server soon. It's a looong list, check US herald here.

February 11, 2009

Upcoming Gallery and HQ Panorama Wallpapers

Since i started the blog i wanted to operate a proper gallery to upload my pictures, be able to sort them in folders, etc. None of the free services offered me exactly what i wanted. Voss, a user from our blogger community, recently offered me space on his server with access to a DB, etc. Therefore I'll soonish set up a proper gallery on my own and might also start to post more themed screenshots then i use in the blog posts. Thanks again Voss!
In addition I'll start a series of WAR wallpapers that will utilize different panorama stitching techniques and be properly edited concerning colors, brightness, etc. Basicly the panorama stitching enables me to take several screenshots of the same place and by stitching them together and adjusting the viewing angle its possible to see certain places in a beauty you can't screenshot properly else. If only Mythic would fix the HQ screenshot key to really do high-quality pics with max. jpeg settings. Here is a sneak peek how those will look like:

You can download the large files containing 1680x1050 and 1400x1050 versions here (choose free user).

February 9, 2009

Night of Murder and NYCC news tidbits

The latest live event Night of Murder is on. The event overall looks like more fun then Keg's End to me, I did not participate that much yet tho. Most of the quests you can solve just by doing RvR. The list of tasks is a tad uninspiring to me tho.. while its a lot of different tasks, many of them are boring and you can't really influence when you trigger them. Why are there tasks like "Assassinate 5 enemy guild officers" or "Assassinate 1 guild leader"? Seriously, we could just get a kind of dice item we can use every 20min to try rolling a six - same effect. The marked mobs inside the capitols are nice, as there is life within the cities while people hunt them. They show up as a rank one "suspicious" person and will adjust to your level once you hit them. And yes, i can solo the rank 40 hero mob for the event. You can't kite them around too much tho, once it disappeared in a cloud while i was fighting it still. If you "camp" one of the spawn places for the marked monsters it will take you approx. 20-30min to kill five for the marked quest. I read somewhere you could use the influence daggers from that quest in areas where your realm has an INF bonus to gain more then 430 INF with them, but either it was fixed or its an urban legend. Did not work when i tried it. The rewards look okay to me.
BTW, the Lobbin' Noggin you need to throw five times to a friendly player can be tossed back and forth between you and a friend. So in theory one skull would be enough to finish this for the whole guild.

The most fun thing during this event is the "love note" you can send enemies tho. During RvR there is a small chance your corpse will drop a Thoroughly Lobbed Nog and if an enemy picks it up and mails it back to you, you'll get a pocket item in your mailbox: Your Thoroughly Lobbed Nog. Not exactly sure what it does when you use it, but I'll research later.

There are several news tidbits people could gather on the NY Comic-Con event. Ten Ton Hammer got a nice video of the Choppa and WHA got a nice write-up here. There is also news about new mount options: With guild rank 20 you can buy a color variation and with guild rank 37/38 you'll gain the option to buy armored mounts (slightly faster and harder to dismount), the models used so far look the same just with some armor. Bummer, i hope that will change... guild rank 37 is far away still tho. Our guild is close to 29 now.

Talking about our guild Thirst, we're still recruiting btw.

On a sidenote: We recently cleared wing one and two (then it was late) in Lost Vale with five people, because we had one person drop out right at the start. I was really not sure how far we could get with five and especially Gorak looked tough. It was a fun challenge but in the end we managed it. Just as a tip tho: Should part of your group die inside LV and you don't have wipe recovery available due to skills/banners: Roll on boss loot before you release. The despawn timers on the boss corpses are shorter then the way you have to run back and CSR will tell you "So Sorry, maybe post a suggestion as feedback on longer despawn timers". Happened to us after the Gorak fight.

February 4, 2009

Missing Solo Content

WTF? You ask... solo content? I want Mythic to fix RvR and endgame content to have fun with my buddies. You know what? Me too! BUT what is there to do in WAR when you log in during off-hours, when everyone else is busy doing stuff you're not up to right now or groups are full? Is there anything you can do solo that's fun? And I'm talking about a rank 40 character that does not have to level anymore. Sure, you can join the odd scenario solo, but it really depends on your class and some luck how that will turn out. Often it's not much fun to solo join scenarios. In oRvR chances are, you'll run into a warband and get stomped. I know what some say, its a MMO - you should play with others. But sometimes you just want to idle around and do something on your own. What options are there else or should there be?

If your crafting skills are not maxed yet, sure you can train these... but crafting in WAR is very, very easy so that won't last long. You can start to hunt for ingredients, but you don't really need to as there are only few consumables you really need. I always run around with stacks of those potions i can use for tanking, but neither is it hard to hunt for them nor is grinding mats that much fun. In WAR there is no real hunt for recipes either, so being busy trying to acquire that odd recipe you're missing is not an option. The pre-launch proclaimed "experimental" side for crafting does not really exist in WAR.
You could try to earn money with your crafting skills, but at the moment crafted things like potions are worth pretty much nothing. Talisman makers can make a few bucks and sure you can sell raw ingredients, but nothing really gives you the "feeling" you created something valuable that is worth selling and showing off proudly at the auction house. Crafting in WAR right now is not a fun experience once you get the hang of it and the "products" are only of limited use. The ingame economy is quite broken compared to other games.

Solo Content
Once you hit rank 40 there are not many quests still worth doing. Most likely you'll have solved all existing epic quests with rank 37 or right after. Why not have some loooong and epic rank 40 questline to immerse in? In Age of Conan you had this very long and character defining main quest line you were following all the way up to max. level. Some epic rank 40 questlines with a good story to tell, a few nice rewards along the way and some epic challenges would be great. In AoC there were many instances for that questline you had to enter solo and no one else could help you with. Some of them had good challenges concerning the appearing fights and you had to utilize your character properly to beat them. Talking about those instances, why not have a duo dungeon? I know many play with their girlfriend/wife or best friend. A challenging dungeon for two players could be fun as well. Could be like an epic PQ, maybe 30-40min long, repeatable once a day. And i really don't care if you can only find social clothing in there, just want something unique.

Tome unlocks
Of course there are tome unlocks you can hunt as well. But most are pretty useless when it comes to character development and just fluff. I like fluff, but killing thousands of NPCs (for the unlocks not everyone has) is not that much fun. And once you scouted the existing world there is not so much more to see.

Beside renown, right now there is only so much to do when soloing. Shouldn't there be at least some things to do? I really hope they'll pimp crafting some more. I read in some comment from a dev that they'll have another look at crafting (especially apothecary) again. Let's hope they'll fix the highest tier potions and maybe add some fun (transformation, speed, etc.) potions. IMO it should be possible to advance your characters devlopment solo in some more ways. And if its an epic questline that's highly entertaining, that's fine with me as well. The rewards can also be of a cosmetic nature... new dyes, cool cloaks, trophies, maybe some character customizing stuff you can apply like the CE stuff. Do you log in sometimes to discover everyone else is busy/offline? What do you do? What do you WANT to do?

February 3, 2009

Ragbag with Puppet Paul

Maybe you saw the recently appeared rag doll of Paul Barnett, possibly in the "home invasion" video. Paul's latest video blog entry shows the puppet as well. Looks like the rag doll was created by Angie, a software tester at Mythic, and i think its really funny. If someone creates a muppet show puppet from you, you really made it, no? ;) Check out Puppet Paul Almost Watches the Superbowl and stay tuned at her youtube channel for more.

Talking about videos, the Warhammer Vault has an exclusive Mythic Studio Tour video. Check it out so see some faces and offices. Looking forward to the Pendulum of Doom. On a sidenote about the Warhammer Vault, they got a poll running (right side navi) to vote for your favourite blog. Stunty Stomper is in the list as well, drop a vote should you read their site.

Just to give you an example about the lack of certain bug fixes: Patch Notes for 1.1.1 were posted and finally the red orbs at N’kari will be fixed. But seriously, these are bugged for so long, i can't even remember when it started. Stuff like bugged encounters really need to be adressed faster. BTW, anyone else is afraid Mythic might take a bunch of cool NPC armor models and use it for the Choppa before fixing endgame gear models for Black Orcs? I know i am... if only i could dye my Sentinel gear properly. *coughs*
I'm looking forward to the Night of Murder event and I'll take the fun content vs. grind level for my own judgement about the praised "content patches". If NoM is as uninspiring as Keg's End was, this won't give me a warm feeling for the later coming Live Events.

This comic made my day: Mr. Matthew over at the Greenskin posted a comic about the Mythic love letters, i laughed.

February 2, 2009

Ready-Check for Warbands

Yesterday before some planned large scale oRvR, we were talking on vent about how to improve effectiveness and organization for warbands. One thing I really miss is a ready-check. It should use an easy command like /rdy and then everyone in the party/warband gets a small pop-up where you are asked "Are you ready?" and can click YES or NO. The result (amount of people each) will be printed into warbandchat, better print names from those not ready. The same system could be used to take votes with /vote [message]... like "/vote Do you want to switch the area?" And people get a popup again, voting yes or no. Of course for the vote the no should not result in names being printed out.. hehe. In addition I'd like to have an extra window that shows me all warband people that are not within target range of me, if possible with the zone they're idling around in. All the above only needs to be available to warband leader and assists. Maybe worth thinking about it Mythic, would be nice to have a build in solution, as then it will work for everybody and you can skip the hassle of forcing people to install certain addons.

I'm not sure if all of this is even possible with the current API users have access to, i know custom channels can be used for addon communication tho. So far i did not see any addon that does the above... if you find one, let me know.

On a sidenote, some peeps poked me and asked about my thoughts of the so called expansion, etc. I'll write about it some time, but atm I'm a bit disappointed about the lack of bugfixes. MJ clarified in another statement that there is a large patch coming... but tbh, it has been weeks since the last useful larger bugfixes. So many UI things not working properly, animations getting stuck, etc. Stuff that annoys me every day i login. I couldn't care less about some new zone in summer, when there is stuff i want fixed right now. I can see it in my own guild atm, that people start to become tired waiting for certain fixes - be it for RvR, bugs or endgame content - and take less time to play. When i'm in the mood I might write more about these issues in detail.

February 1, 2009

Completely Off-Topic: Crayon Physics

Have been busy over the last days, therefore no update in my blog. Thinking about the fact that the Mythic "love letters" only went to US bloggers. Not sure if that should bother me, or not...

Have been playing Crayon Physics Deluxe some... awesome fun game (especially when you use a TabletMouse style device) and great concept. Check it out:

Crayon Physics - Castle Challenge from Highway6 on Vimeo.