Troubling Times

Hello Friends!

Let me tell you, I have been in such a RUT when it comes to MMOs as of late. I have found that the things I really want out of an MMO, as a whole, is hard to find.
What I am looking for:
-Dynamic story that keeps me enthralled
-Plenty of options of things to do besides grind/typical end game
-In depth crafting system
-Tons of activities to do where leveling isn’t the only thing to do pre-end game
-Active role play community
-Sandbox-esque that will support me if I just want to be a baker

As you can see, it’s a little all over the place; wanting story and ‘theme park’ like set up and a sandbox at the same time. I think a big part of it is game depth for me. I have played my fair share of MMOs and bounced around between them. Hell, I have 7 MMOs downloaded on my computer [yeah. I know. I have a problem]. I play one for a bit and it doesn’t grab my attention like the it used to and I find myself drifting. Now, I know a big part of that is the fact that I have high level characters that have done most of the content in all of those MMOs, minus the few I just can’t get in to. Just this past week, I have logged in and played 5 different MMOs and just haven’t felt that connection. As I am writing this, my husband is downloading number 8 onto my computer for me to try out. So far, the ones I have downloaded are as follows.

Final Fantasy XIV:
Let me just say, I love this game. So much. I currently am not actively subscribed to the game, but I love it none-the-less. From that love, I can honestly say it is not enough to hold my attention. When Stormblood came out, we gave it a couple weeks to see if we got the itch to pick it back up. Inevitably, we did :P. We played through the story and I busted butt to get geared on my Paladin. From there I joined back up with my old static to fill a tank hole they still had. After doing some primals, I ended up power leveling a Warrior to better fill our limit break bar [we already had 1 paladin]. We started working on savage immediately once it came out. It was a lot of fun. Sadly, my anxiety took hold and I started having panic attacks during raid. I was stressed by the static and the need for the tanks to up our DPS to make checks. I downloaded ACT and spent most of my time in game standing in front of the training dummy at the FC house parsing my numbers or going into Sky to test against various primals and raid boss dummies.

All that aside, once I got 2 level 70’s and just shy of max ilevel fro the time, I couldn’t find anything else to do. I grew tired of running my roulettes every day, hunts weren’t keeping my interest, trying to get back into crafting deflated my gil income/kept getting held back by not having solid crafting gear and I had no drive to start leveling other classes. I’m really sad that I reached that point so quickly in FFXIV. I really love the game, the combat, the story, pretty much all of it. The fact that after a couple months of not playing, I started to burn out saddened me.

Black Desert Online:
On pen and paper, this should be my favorite MMO out there. Action combat that requires skill and focus, indepth crafting/worker system, theme park elements with some questing, sandbox elements that allow you to play how you want, etc. It really is a stunning game. But I do have issues with it. I have a couple issues with it that holds me back from playing more. First, is the lack of things to do if you don’t want to craft/build a worker empire. I have found that once my main character hit soft bap and got her awakened weapon, experience slowed to a crawl and I didn’t have much to do. Yeah, there are daily and weekly chests, boss scrolls, pila scrolls, world bosses, crafting, etc., but it feels all gated. I don’t have a high enough gear score to move into the newer things [Valencia/Kamasylvia]. I could buy the gear, but that requires a ridiculous amount of coinage to attempt. I could updgrade it myself, but that would also take a fair amount of money unless I spent hours trying to grind for the basic gear to drop. That also requires a fair amount of knowledge of fail stacking and downgrading gear. The major way to get money in the game is grind spots like Pirates which are heavily contested with people. I have no problem with open world PvP, but after the 100th time being forced off a spot that I had been at for hours with no problem is really annoying. The workers and crafting system is really nice. My only issue with it is not having enough energy when I’m out gathering [butchering in particular] and having enough contribution points to have substantial bank space for all the things the workers are gathering. Now questing does help that a lot, so I know if I just did more quests fro the Contribution XP, I could lessen that issue a bit. So overall, I have logged in a couple times the past few days, killed some stuff, butchered some wolves, and waited around in various cities waiting on my workers to finish some rounds of gathering so I could start making beer, hot tea, etc.

Wakfu:
I’ll admit, I’ve maybe played 5 or 6 hours of this game. It intrigued me when Noro mentioned last weekend that it was a isometric MMO with turn-based combat. I am not usually a huge fan of that, but I have been playing Divinity Original Sin 2 and loving it, so I figured I would download it and give it a shot. I was shocked in myself that I kept going logging back in and playing some more. The combat felt fun enough and the graphics were cute. Overall it seemed really nice… until I got to the first “major city.” Then I was trying to figure things out and it seemed pretty empty except for a few places. General/world chat was about what I expected for an MMO that is probably filled with 12 year olds, but it wasn’t awful as it could have been. After stumbling around and trying to make sense of everything, I eventually gave up. There was very little that I could find explained even with the tutorials on. I will probably give it a shot at some later date, but right now, I have kind of written it off.
Dofus:
This I downloaded because I saw some very interesting discussion on whether you should play Wakfu or Dofus. Most people seemed to say it really depended on your place style and which you preferred, but there was an overwhelming amount of people that said that Dofus was more populated with people and still pretty active all things considered. So I downloaded it and gave it an honest try. Like Wakfu, it’s okay. I wasn’t immediately smitten with the game, but it did feel nice and look good. There did seem to be a lot more activity and chatter going on in the game, which makes me think that it is still somewhat active. I did bump into a few people which just made me cringe about what seemed to be the age of everyone that I was playing with. I don’t know why that matters to me, but it does. I just have grown tired of the younger crowd in MMOs as of late, so it’s always on my mind. Similar to Wakfu, there were a lot of things that didn’t feel really well explained. I ended up getting pretty annoyed and decided to shelf that game as well. Maybe in a different mindset it would be more enjoyable, but it’s not what I’m looking for right now.
Archeage:
God I want to love this game. There is so much about it that I love, even though I’ve never gotten a character past level 25. The crafting system, the quests and sandbox aspect, non-instanced housing, class system, combat, open world pvp, crime system, ships and ship combat, mounts, ugh the list goes on and on. But I just can’t seem to play it. I get going and things look great, but then when I try to find a community, there is none. Yes, there are still a bunch of people playing the game, but they’re not easy to find welcoming. Not to mention the HUGE amount of cash-shop issues and pay-to-win aspects in the game. To be competitive and stand a chance in open world combat, you would need hundreds if not thousands of dollars to sink into the game. Or, you know, eternity of time to play the game to grind to that point. For me, the lack of community and the general “dead-ness” of the game paired with the massive pay-to-win set up of the game…. I just can’t play it. I want to though and probably from now until I find that one MMO that I can really sink time into, I’ll probably redownload it every couple months to try again.

Guild Wars 2:
This is my baby. It was my first introduction into MMOs when I was an adult [even though I played the shit out of some Runescape classic back when it was the only runescape and was played in a browser]. I seem to always have this game downloaded no matter what. It is so easy to drop in and drop out of this game. The collection system makes it really easy to jump back in. I will say there were a lot of changes from the last time I logged in [i.e. fractals, raids, pvp structures, etc.]. The part that stops me from loving it so much is the fact that I have all characters to level 80 with all the available crafting classes to max level as well. We came back right before Path of Fire, and honestly, I haven’t even finished it yet. I just can’t find my motivation. We did join an RP guild and that has been really fun, but it’s been hard to log in and figure out what I want to do when I’m not at an RP event. I’ll keep it downloaded for when the mood strikes to play, but it won’t be my main MMO.

World of Warcraft:
This game and I have a weird relationship. I have several higher level characters but haven’t really played the game. When I did play, we used dungeons to level through to try and get to certain ranges to do things with various RP guilds. This last time, I downloaded it and started a brand new character with no artifact gear with the hopes of doing the zone quests and really delving into the game. It honestly didn’t last long. Whether it is the people, the graphics, the gameplay, the community… I don’t know, but this is one game that I just can’t bring myself to play no matter how much I feel like I want to. I might try again in the future, but we’ll see. For now, it’s just going to have to be a game that I love the lore from and read the books on, but don’t play.

Those are the games that I currently have downloaded on my computer. I have another one downloading right now, so I’ll definitely have to take a look and see how that shapes up. It’s been a trying year for MMOs and I, for one, cannot wait until some of the new ones on the horizon come out, provided they deliver on what they’re promising that is.

Any one else stuck in an MMO rut or have any suggestions to MMOs to try out? Let me know!!

Cheers! ❤

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Ashes of Creation: The New Kid on the Block

There is a new powerhouse in the MMORPG scene that is shaking things up. If you have not heard yet let me fill you in. Ashes of Creation is a new sandbox MMORPG by Intrepid Studios. Although this is a new company, between all the staff they are sporting over 40 years of experience with MMOs combined. There has been the occasional joke that Intrepid Studios plans to “make MMOs great again,” which I honestly hope that they do. There will be no box price on the game, a monthly subscription and a strong stance against the game being pay-to-win. In interviews with Creative Director Steven Sharif, he stressed that he was coming at this from the perspective of an MMO player himself. This all bodes very well for the company as a group of people that can get it right this time around.

Throughout May, the game was on Kickstarter for a surprisingly low amount of funding it was looking for; only $750k. The money raised was planned to help hire on more staff, allow more development of ‘extras’ and to allow for more additives to the game. The core game itself was already funded through other means. Not only did they hit their funding goal, but exceeded expectations raising over 3-million dollars [$3,271,809 to be exact]. It set countless bars as becoming quickly funded and one of the highest funding video games on Kickstarter. Huge success brought in a huge amount of interested gamers willing to check it out and ultimately back the game.

Intrepid wanted the community to be a part of the creation of this amazing project. They definitely set the bar high for similar companies offering not only weekly Q&A videos, but three streams per week with questions being given from community members and MMO youtubers/streamers/podcasters. The fielded questions from their community discord, forums and directly from the Twitch.tv chat. Throughout the whole process, they pushed that they were a different company that was going to be 100% transparent and truly involve the community.

So with all the communication, success and outreach this company and game seemed to achieve, it was hard to not be excited about it. I can proudly say that both my husband and I backed the game and cannot wait until the Alpha’s start to really get into the game. With all this excitement, there are several thing to be both ‘hyped’ and worried about.

Node System:

Let me start off by saying this is very different from anything out on the market now. The premise is that every server is a ‘clean slate’ and it is up to the players on what areas get developed. Everything the player does from crafting, gathering and questing all combines to level up the node itself. From there it progress from varying civilization sizes from a few tents to sprawling metropolis. As these nodes level up, quests, dungeons, and events become available to the players while the node is at that level. This means that some content in the game may not be seen for years as certain nodes are undeveloped or never get above small villages. Players can become citizens to those nodes, own housing within the node as it progresses and even own property [Freeholds] within the Zone of Influence [ZoI]. Only so many nodes can be developed at one time and nodes can be sieged and destroyed. It gives meaningful PvP and control of the game to the players. It is a huge revolutionary system that feels like it touches the nostalgia in a lot of us MMO players of a time when servers mattered and we, as players, felt like we were a part of the world.

There are some things that make me hesitant of this system though. The community. I know that it can be a doom and gloom outlook, but the players today are not the same as when Everquest and Planetside were new after the reign of MUDs. The player-base has evolved and adapted to the products we have been given. I will be first one to admit that a huge issues I have with MMOs recently has been an answer to the change in how we want our content given to us. Some players today want everything at once and are apt to rush through content to experience all that they can. Many have become lazy and started expecting the games to give them what they want or think they deserve with little to no effort. There have been games that have tried to break that mold and make things difficult to get and require work, but those have not been all that successful in the current market. Because of this, I am worried. I hope that the community can band together and be better than what the current game trend is going for. It seems like this game has shown a huge spotlight on the MMO industry as a whole showing how it has slipped into a “cash grab” market where it sees huge amounts of players for a couple months then there is the hemorrhage of players as we all seek another game to keep our interest. I really do hope that this community can band together and make this a great game that is inclusive, inviting and a good environment to play in. Last thing I want to see it a chat like what some MMOs on the market have right now.

Player Owned Inn/Taverns/Stores:

This is every RPers dream: the ability for my character to own a tavern and ACTUALLY be able to sell items and provide a service instead of just say that I do it. This system seems like it is going to be so much fun. In an interview, the Intrepid team said they were messing around with the idea of being able to sell food/drinks/items that could give a boost to the player while they were in the area around the tavern questing or doing other activities. They even tossed around the idea of hiring NPCs to act as venders to sell and trade items. There was also mention of setting up shopping stalls in cities that you could fill with crafted items to sell to other players. As a roleplayer, I am overjoyed about the fact that I could own an Inn/Tavern and set up a shop to sell my wonderfully made leather goods. Add that to where your actions have an effect on the big picture world and you have just described my dream MMO.

With all the possibilities that this opens, it does add a fair amount of doubts. There have been a lot of questions about how Intrepid is going to combat taking advantage of various aspects of the game. The one thing they have been relatively quiet on, in my opinion, is the roleplay community. It has been said that there will not be a dedicated RP server because they hope that people will take up the mantle to create RP on all the servers if that is what they want to do. Sadly, that is not how a lot of RP is handled in these games anymore. There have been several games that have a strong RP community but are still subject to various amount of harassment. Even on World of Warcraft’s biggest RP servers, Moon Guard and Wyrmrest Accord, you will still find people being openly rude and harassing people as they try to RP in the open world. There have been other games where RPers have been driven into RPing in private rooms to keep from getting targeted by this kind of behavior. It is a very real thing that is out there. As a roleplayer, I worry about what will happen to the players that do want to roleplay. Without some set expectations of what will be able to be reportable or what will be tolerated from both sides, it has me a little leery. I hope that the community is strong enough to band together and really foster a good relationship with non-RP and RP players alike to make this game enjoyable for everyone.

Original IP:

I think this is the most interesting of them all. This world is a completely new place with it’s own lore, races and background. There have been several games that have had new worlds coming out, but it seems like not many of them stick. The major powerhouse MMOs that are out today have rich backstories and even other games to build off of. World of Warcraft has several years of written fiction on top of the three previous Warcraft games, Guild Wars 2 has several written works and a lore heavy predecessor game to build from, Elder Scrolls Online, although it is prequel of sorts itself has an expansive lore that ties all of the Elder Scrolls series together and even Final Fantasy XIV has a unique world with its own lore, but a huge expanse of previous games and story lines to mess with and loop in and out considering it is a ‘numbered’ Final Fantasy game.

Ashes of Creation is a brand new. This makes me very excited as it is something that we have not seen yet with a story we know nothing about. Just the idea of a new world to explore and secrets to unfold makes me so ready to just dive in. Intrepid has said very little about the story and lore for the world overall, even going as far as not releasing the name of the world where this game is taking place. However they have said it will have a rich and deep lore with a lot of things to explore and discover, especially more so with the underrealm stretch goal that was reached during the Kickstarter. There is so much promise in what they say it is going to have, it is hard to not be at least a little excited about this new IP coming out.

With that, there are risks. The ‘heavy hitters’ that we have right now seem to at least be able to attribute some of their success to having such strong legs to stand on. Add in all the fears and worry that comes from crowdfunded games these days, there is a serious worry about the ability and prospect of getting the game that they have promised. I know that is a common worry with most games but it is still there. I have no doubt that the company is strong and driven to make this game. However, you do need to keep a small dose of skepticism. Not to point fingers, but there have been companies before that promised all the things the players wanted to hear only to turn their backs and not deliver on the game. I do not have any experience building a videogame from the ground up, but I can imagine it takes a lot of work. Add on top of that keeping your game original and building in all the lore and all the features being promised and it would seem like there is a lot to be done. I worry that with all of these ideas something is going to give and it could vary from just something small to something detrimental to the community or even cause the game to be scrapped.

Overview:

Overall, this game looks fantastic. I am so excited for so many things they are looking to do; way more than I had the time or space to write about here. With all of that excitement there are some doubts and fears that come along with it. Up until recently, they were showing such promise to deliver a game that was going to bring the whole genre back to where it could have been. Intrepid has fresh ideas that tug all the heartstrings of all the old-school MMO players and the new generation that is tired of how things have been. I really do hope they stick to that moving forward. Keep being open, honest and getting their players involved. I know I will be ready to get started day one of those Alphas and help make this game a place that I will be calling home for many years to come.

What do you think of Ashes of Creation? Excited? Nervous? Let me know in the comments what you think!

The Revival!

Hello everyone!

Dang it’s been a long time since I’ve been able to update this! It’s been quite the year. From moving to a new apartment, changing jobs, lots of crazy random pop ups it’s been an eventful year! I am super excited to be back and get this going again! I wanted to let you know there will be some things that will be changing. Jeremy and I have some awesome projects in the work and I will be re-launching the website; this will include going back and moving the posts from a year+ ago off the site to start fresh. It will be at a different domain [mmofools.wordpress.com] as we make the transition :D. Other than that, nothing will change. It will still be us sharing our passion and love for MMOs and all things about them!

I hope you stick around to see all the awesome things we have in store for this site! I truly cannot express my level of excitement and I look forward to getting started!

Cheers! ❤

Black Desert (A review too soon…)

Now, I am not actually going to review this game here. Though I am sure you’ll be able to get a feeling on what I think of the game by reading this, my intentions here are actually to complain about folks posting reviews of Black Desert who openly admit to having only scratched the surface of the game, and yet give the final verdict or assign it a score. Good or bad, I think this game requires much more time and effort to appropriately form an opinion.

So, Black Desert launched in NA and EU a little over a week ago now. Maybe up to two weeks. I was a day or so late waiting on a friend of mine to let me use his 7 day trial. I had not played a “sand box” mmo before, but I was intrigued by the idea that the main narrative and majority of the activities you would do each day are almost completely up to you as the player. No more quest chains that are perfectly designed to take you to each end of the map at just the right level, and huge set pieces to frame the events taking place.

Instead this game promised  to be almost a life simulator… just with Elves and Goblins tossed in for good measure. You are pretty much free to decide what you feel like doing, and then it is on you to find the tools and means to get that done. Want to build a ship and go sail the sea and catch fish? Yep. Invest in the port town, spend a day or two gathering resources, then hire some workers to construct the parts needed. It will take about 3 days for a semi casual like myself, but even serious no-lifers will have to wait as the ships are build in real time. Took 22 minutes per log to build my raft, and I needed 25 logs. what is that… nearly 10 hours? not to mention gathering the materials needed.

And this is just the raft. There are Ferries, Fishing Boats, Guild ships, each requiring more materials, or even a city with a better Ship Building facility.

I know that was a bit long winded, but that is just one tiny aspect of the game, and you need to be able to gather wood and stone, have enough contribution points (a currency you spend on workers and trade routes) to buy workers and their lodging in the city, AND have a high enough fishing ability to make this worth it. And all the trades are like this! The game does not just let you level a cooking skill, the game lets you BE a cook. or a hunter, a gatherer, a fisher, or a market specialist. Form trade routes and study the economy of the different cities (yes, different cities pay different amounts for goods so it’s best to form trade routes and ship goods to the various towns.)

So I guess my point is that it dipping your toe into a game as vast as this and then turning around and writing a review saying “7/10 not sure if the game will work without any endgame, but the combat was fun for a while… if a little grindy” is totally undervaluing the game or the gamer’s time.

I saw someone mention on the reddit, I think, (and I am paraphrasing here) say that it isn’t that Black Desert doesn’t have ‘endgame’, it’s that it lets you into the end game the moment you start your character. So folks who have always played games like WoW or FFXIV with traditional raids and hardcore dungeons will probably rush to the soft level cap of 50 in Black Desert and then say there is nothing to do. But that does not make it true. The only thing getting to 50 (well it unlocks at 45 I suppose) is you are flagged for pvp any time you are out of a safe zone. Otherwise, a level 10 and a level 55 have the same things to work toward.

How is that not fantastic design? Want to build a shipping empire? Go ahead! We wont even make you wade through 100 hours of level grinding just to start!

That is not to say that Black Desert is without fault, and I am certainly not an overhyped fanboy. I have had my share of issues with the game and I have seen and experience a few bugs and some odd interactions. I will be keeping a close eye on that cash shop as well, I know the usual worry is pay to win, but my concern is the price itself. A $30 costume does feel a bit greedy, and I am constantly annoyed that if you want to buy something that’s $35, you need to buy $50 worth of the currency since they limit your options for amounts.

But, that being said, I have not played even close to enough to write a true review of the game. There is so much to do, and even more that is coming in the next several months as we catch up to the Korean version of the game.

I am just so tired of reviews being rushed out the door incomplete or rushed. Especially for games as huge as Black Desert.

 

/endrant

Noro and I did something….

So yeah… we did something :P. With a lot of people missing from FFXIV right now as people have been moving and taking a break waiting for new content, a lot of our friends have been branching out to other games, one of which is Blade and Soul. Now, I’d heard them go on and on about it, but I never gave it a glance…. until recently. After seeing some people from the ARK:Survival Evolved group that I play with rant and rave about it, Noro and I decided to look up some stuff on it. The trailor looked pretty good, so I looked up some streamers on twitch to see what it was like. It seemed just as action combat focused as Wildstar without the telegraphs and trinity. HMMMM…. it’s completely free to play, so Noro and I said, sure! We decided to give it a try. Yesterday we downloaded the game and gave it a shot. We sat down at about 8:30pm and before I knew it, Noro was telling me it was almost midnight :P. It was a lot of fun. I went in with no expectations or ideas of what I was getting into.

Tonight, we played a for a little bit longer. It’s a lot of fun :D. We’re both level 10 and having a blast. 😀 So meet Zoei Motokawa.
Screenshot_160122_009
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I don’t have a lot of time to write out my full thoughts on the game so far, so look forward to that in the near future. I should really be writing campaign stuff for tomorrow’s Dungeon World game [I’m currently GMing a campaign in Dungeon World. Look for more stuff on that at a later date :D]

Happy Gaming! Cheers! ❤

RED MAGE!

I saw an interesting post on Google+ relating to FFXIV yesterday. They said they saw in an interview that someone at Square Enix made a mention of how XIV is nearing the halfway point of its life-expectancy. I’m not sure I agree with that, but most of the other posters on THAT comment interpreted it a lot different. Then, in the post, this person went on to ask what classes should be put in the second game (or added into XIV later).

Most of the comment replies said there was no way that FFXIV was about to end. Heavensward is about to end and they’ll spend a few patches setting up the next story arc for 4.0… but they didn’t acknowledge the main point.

I think the OP meant more along the lines of Overall Life Expectancy. Start to finish… big picture kind of thing and idk… MAYBE it could almost be half way… probably not though. I mean, they only have one expansion, unless you count ARR but I think most folks don’t. not to mention, latest count on subs puts them over 5 million, meanwhile WoW (which has made it more than 10 years) is dwindling down around 6.5 million. I mean, let’s be real, Final Fantasy is about to surpass WoW in sub numbers. Do you really think SE will call it quits after 5 years with THAT kind of audience? No, probably not. That being said, SE does have something holding them back that will need to be dropped soon, in my opinion.

I think ps3 is limiting their options on pushing forward, and I think the end is likely coming for that console. Even Heavensward runs like crap on a ps3. I see Zoei struggle with that pretty often. It is pretty much only good for gathering materials, and the occasional farm of some certain content. She can’t heal it though, whatever content she does. The lag and the graphic stuttering are just too much to get past for her white mage. It just looks like this is something they’ll need to drop support for pretty soon. Maybe not take support away entirely, but make the next expansion not available for ps3 and lock those zones? I don’t know, and I won’t pretend to have those answers.

As for what they’ll ADD… I didn’t play XI but I would be really interested in this Dancer class. Sounds like a really interesting thing. Apparently it was a healer that danced folks back to full health? Maybe I’m wrong on that one, but the theory is cool and I think it could be an interesting addition. Puppet Master is one I see every once in a while. It sounds cool, but risky. Summoners already complain that their pets are hard to keep control on, and too much of their dps is attached to the Egi. Can you imagine a class where nearly 100% of the dps is from the pet?? Oh man.

This is, of course, not to mention the overwhelming call for Red and Blue mages in XIV.

I know XIV has drawn pretty heavily from some of the old games (Is it IV V and VI?) as far as classes go, so maybe something more like the synergist and saboteur “classes” from XIII? One that specializes is buffs and boons, another that is almost 100% debuffs.

The thing that is scary about cool unique classes like this, for me, is there are a lot of places in the game now that would be really tough on a party where one of the dps slots were filled by a class that did little to no dps but just augmented the damage done by the rest of the party. Dps checks would be a nightmare… and if you got both??? Ugh…

My brother and I had a long conversation about this when a post on the reddit blew up about the Red Mage coming to XIV and how they would implement it.

Lots of folks seemed to think that you would need to add a 5th slot to the duty finder for this “support” role, and add Red Mage, MCH, and BRD into it. I suppose if they did that, then I can see this being more geared to the Synergist and Saboteur type of roll I’d like to see.

BUT, then you’d suddenly need a serious rebalance of all the previous content to add a 5th player into it… account for dps checks, puzzles and traps… all that stuff. I think a fair way around this would be to add the 5th slot to content going forward. Pre 4.0 content could remain unchanged, and then 4.0 forward would allow that 5th slot. (Plus a 9th slot… maybe even a 10th slot for the new raid content…)

Frankly THIS is why I would suck as a Dev. People want all this new stuff… but hate all the options on how to implement it. Everyone seems to want a Red Mage, but no one can agree on what roll it would fill, or how to make it fill multiple roles. It can’t be as powerful as a White Mage AND a Black Mage AND a Melee dps class, but it also can’t really be the jack-of-all-trades that the Red Mage is in some of the old games because those were all about party composition and such, while an MMO doesn’t focus so much on that. Sure, balancing a party is a good move for any raid team, but at the same time, a class that is just “OK” at filling multiple roles, but isn’t good enough to outright replace another class in a pinch isn’t going to get picked up.

For a Red Mage to feel like the one in IV or VI, the MMO player is going to get left out of a lot of stuff.

But… all that being said… if folks could be okay with a class that felt different that the traditional Red Mage but still filled the same basic role, then I think there is an interesting class that could do exactly what this SHOULD be doing.

In The Secret World there is a very interesting class system where essentially you pick a pair of weapons and those become your class. So if you take machine gun and sword you become this high DPS badass, if you take the Hammer and a pistol you are a mage hunter type class…

But if you take the Blood magic and brass knuckles you become this really unique melee healer who heals allies based on your DPS output. So I thought about it…. And realized this could be the starting point for a FFXIV Red Mage.

What if the class starts out as a generic DPS class, right? Give them a rapier and an offhand focus or something. Make their first basic combo attacks do fire damage (like they were casting BLM spells from close range) a basic sword slash, then a Fire slash, then Firaga slash or something ( they can use this since it’s called Fire III in this game instead of Firaga) The second combo could be ice or lightning themed. It doesn’t matter for this discussion.

Then, at level 30 when the Job Skills usually start popping in, give them a buff (maybe kind of like Ninja’s Mudras) that redirects a percentage of damage they deal to an AOE heal. Not enough that the healer should be worried, but enough to keep the other DPS classes topped off (assuming no huge slip ups on their part). At 45 or 50 give them another one that lets them focus this healing percentage to the target of the target (would focus the tank more often than not)

These buffs would actually take a percentage of the damage dealt and reflect that as healing, maybe 10%? I don’t know, balance isn’t my thing, anyway, this would reduce the Red Mage’s damage for the duration of the skill, and you could either have it up indefinitely like Gauss Barrel where you toggle it on and off, or make it like a bard’s song and you can keep the buff up until you run out of mana? OR, you could do it more like a Dragoon jump, where it has a shorter effect but more potent with a long cooldown.

Like I said earlier, I’m no Dev, and I won’t pretend to know all the balance crap that would need to go into this. However, I think this would work out pretty well and be a pretty cool balance between both black and white mages.

wow reddit… just… wow…

-Perches on Soapbox-

You know… I’m so sick of folks who cannot seem to understand that no matter how strongly they feel about something, it doesn’t mean everyone feels the same way. People are different, and complicated, and yeah, sometimes stuff pisses you off. That doesn’t mean that you can make blanket statements that include me though!

The FFXIV reddit community should be ashamed of itself. I get it, it’s the internet and we all want to pretend we have a right to be belligerent and entitled all we want and no one who disagrees is allowed to ever say a word. But seriously… It’s time to fucking grow up.

I mean… Look at WoW. Everyone knows they have a terrible vitriolic community on their forums. The blizzard forums are a place you only dare go to read people trashing each other and Blizzard. That’s all that is there. A new player asks for advice and he/she is dog piled by haters saying that they should get the hell out of their game cause it sucks and you’ll never succeed, oh, and btw YOU suck now and YOU are the reason LFR sucks now, and YOU should go kill yourself because you rolled a DK and no one likes having those emo posers in their groups.

Diablo’s forums were the same way. After launch people were such entitled little bitches that they demanded the team be fired AND everyone who paid be returned their money AND that blizzard remake the game and provide it free of charge to everyone affected. And by modern standards, D3 was not bad at launch. Not great, I won’t lie about that… but it wasn’t worth the fuss it received.

Now, you might be thinking “But Noro, all that complaining and criticism lead to the overhaul of the game and the improvements added in Reaper of Souls. All that gave us the incredibly improved game we have available today.” Did it though? Do you think the Dev team looked at the forums and saw a bunch of entitled babies crying about a female model for Diablo and thought…? “Yeah…These guys get it… how did we not see this before?? FIX IT! FIX IT NAO!!!!”

Doubtful.

I bet it took months and months of sorting through the rabble rousing looking for well thought out and constructive posts before they even had enough information to START to form a cohesive thought about where to begin improving the game.

This is where we are with FFXIV right now. The vocal minority of the game (and I say that because most folks in-game seem must more optimistic, even if they see these flaws) has called for all of us to cancel our subs. They want us to leave the game and back them in their call for SE to fail.

But why? Why would we want this game to die, just to prove a point about entitled people demanding more content? Doesn’t that seem counterproductive? In a world where MMOs are on their way out of popularity, do we really want one of the major ones to be crippled by some brats on the internet?

People keep comparing this game and it’s patch content to World of Warcraft and don’t seem to understand how that isn’t actually a fair assessment. They say that WoW has hundreds of bosses spread out across something like 40 dungeons, plus dozens of raids each with 4 levels of raid difficulty. And completely disregard that more than half of that content is only run by folks who are leveling up, and then it is NEVER seen again. By anyone. And the past raid content isn’t even run by folks who are leveling. It’s just forgotten. Maybe someone looking for a glamour piece will go solo it for a bit until they have the drop they wanted. But that’s really it. And yet these same people who forget that are saying that SE forgets about old content and so much of it (Like coils now) is completely irrelevant and should never be done… except that the game will sync you to the appropriate item level so that the content can remain relevant.

And when SE makes us do old content, like Law Farming or the new Anima grind, people get all riled up saying they are rehashing old content as a lazy excuse to not give us new stuff…..

I mean… for fuck’s sake… let’s not forget that yesterday’s patch is 3.15… it’s half a patch… it’s not the next major drop… it’s the mid-point to add the new relic quest… that’s really it. I mean, if this was 3.2 or even the final patch for the Heavensward expansion, I’d at least understand the annoyance… but this is just a patch for this one thing. It wasn’t meant to be a full size patch and was never advertised to be one. So why is everyone so up in arms about a lack of content?

I just… I don’t know… If you don’t like the game, don’t play it. If you’re feeling burned out, play something else for a while, you don’t even have to unsub if you don’t want to. If you don’t agree with the decisions the devs are making or the business model of the company, then maybe you should make the choice to not support them and leave the game. Vote with your wallet. But don’t hoist yourself up to an artificial place of power and call for everyone to rally behind you and demand that all 5 million players unsubscribe just because YOU aren’t happy with something. And do not pretend to know what someone else wants. You don’t. You’re wrong. I am not some fucking zombie that is going to base my likes and dislikes on some asshole on reddit.

-Gets off soapbox and puts it under the desk-

Okay… sorry. I check the reddit pretty much every day and while I typically ignore the negative posts, the number of awful, entitled, fear mongering assholes has grown exponentially since the patch notes came out yesterday. And when I saw that person calling for everyone to cancel their subs to send a solid message to SE… ugh… that shit just kills me.

 

Choose one, baby, your head or your heart

Okay, the title might be a bit dramatic… but it’s a good song. 😛

Tonight, I’m sitting here, realizing how long it has been since I last wrote here. Wow, btw. And yet I find myself at another crossroad and I figured writing about it might help. Maybe.

Since I left Final Fantasy a few months ago, I haven’t really thought much about going back. I see the screenshot and folks’ updates in my google+ window and I don’t really think anything of them. Frankly I didn’t really miss the game much at all.

I have been playing Guild wars 2 and Wildstar. both free to play, both pretty damn great. They have their flaws, of course, but for what they are, I love them both quite a bit.

I knew Zoe would go back though. To final fantasy I mean. She loved that game so much, and it was a really tough call for her to unsub for as long as she did. I’m glad though. I can tell she missed the boys, and healing, and controller support, and raiding, and a whole lot more.

She has put a lot more effort into trying to play wildstar than I expected. I know it’s rough for her. Those wounds are not fresh… but they were really deep. I appreciate her trying, but I know it wont last long. it’s double xp weekend over there, and she hasn’t logged in once. She’s trying, but it’s just not going to happen.

She was playing guild wars 2 as well with me. Mostly intrigued by the promise of healing on a druid. And while ANet did deliver.. technically… they didn’t really mention that the only part of the game where healing is viable (read: Needed at all) is raids… which are so easy most guilds had finished the first one in only a couple days. So while it is an option… it’s not a full time job. So it’s not going to happen there either.

My brother is also trying to play both games with me. Only problem? he’s gone and got himself a girlfriend who doesn’t really play MMOs. though she does play games like fallout, and even seemed to enjoy gw2 for a while. But he is so damn slow. mostly because he does a lot with her, including just sitting in his room on his laptop watching her play fallout. But I wont judge too much.

only real issue with this is that it’s getting kind of lonely. I don’t NEED to play the same game Zoe is. i’m not that needy or anything. But I have not found a guild in either game that is a good fit. I found a couple that I can use to get where I want to be in the game, but not one where folks actually talk and interact like they know each other, or at least give a shit. I say hi or yay or something in my wildstar guild and folks are honestly confused about why… I mean… that dude that just logged on, maybe I was saying hello to him? whatever…

And tonight was a strange event for me. I was logged into wildstar, doing my thing. (13-42 in like… 6 hours this weekend… seriously…) and I happened to look at the tv (she played on the ps3 for a bit) and saw her in a dungeon with Vel and Dirge… and I had a strange thought…

 

“would I rather play a game I love by myself, or a game I thought was ok with folks who I like being around?”

I logged out of wildstar shortly after. I don’t know if I want to come back to final fantasy yet. I really want to raid in wildstar and finally see some of that shit I have been missing for so long. and I would at least like to try the raids in GW2 for myself…

But how good will those be if I am with a pug? Or a even a guild run since those will feel just like pugs because I don’t know these people, and they don’t WANT to know me.

I miss Vel, I miss the boys, I miss gaming WITH my wife and not just next to her, and for what it is worth… I suppose I do kind of miss Final Fantasy.

Sad thing is, I know my brother wont come with me. He has said it a few times now, but he claims he will never again pay for an MMO sub. Claims there are too many good ones that you can play for free so there is no point in going to a sub game.

gonna have to sleep on this one I think….

“would I rather play a game I love by myself… or a game I thought was okay with folks who I like being around?”

What a Month

Oh.My.Goodness.

It’s been a hell of o a month. I wish I would have been able to update more, but a lot has changed around here. I’ll break it into categories 😀

GAMING:
So for starters, Noro and I started getting into the new story with Heart of Thorns in GW2. It’s been a lot of fun. I leveled my asura [Zee Kya] up, got most of Druid unlocked, and she is in full ascended gear now. Oddly enough though, I have spent most of my time in Magumma on my Reaper [Necro]. The Druid healing is awesome, but in PvE and open world, it’s not the greatest. It just doesn’t scratch that healing itch that I was hoping/looking for. That leads me to my next big game change. I have resubbed for FFXIV. I REALLY missed the boys and I missed healing/raiding. So, after talking to Noro, we decided that I should resub. So I am back in FF. It’s been nice. I’m not playing it exclusively or religiously. I show up a couple nights and week to do fun stuff and then I show up on raid nights. We will be taking down ThEX on Sunday which is awesomely exciting :D.

And it that wasn’t enough new gaming in my life, Noro and I have redownloaded Wildstar and have started playing. This was a very hard decision. Hard for a lot of reasons. Noro and I played Wildstar on the exile for a long time. We met some awesome people and really enjoyed our time. We started to get burned out and things got really rough… D: A lot of emotions where hurt and I spent a lot of time in the end crying and feeling awful. That is when we went to FFXIV. Now that Wildstar is Free-to-play, Noro wanted to check it back out. I was really really hesitant. We logged into our Exile characters and were guild-less [not shocked], friendless [incredibly sad] and had no idea where or what to do. I checked out my house and ran around for a bit, but I couldn’t handle it. The game looked fun to play and I knew it had hard end game content. Seeing my exile characters…. I lost it. I started crying and it was rough. But then, Noro and I talked and I realized that I was blaming the game for all the shit that had happened. It wasn’t the game’s fault. It was the people and the situation that made me cry myself to sleep for months. It wasn’t the game that made me feel lonely and isolated. Once I came to that understanding, I decided that I wasn’t going to let bad experiences ruin a really great game. This time around we have committed to start on the Dominion side. I really hate starting over, because I really want to get into the endgame content that I never got to do, but I could not handle being on my Zhilly or Onya. I’m giving the game a chance, but I don’t think I’m ready to be back on exiles. It’s too much for me at this point and I”m willing to admit it.

REAL LIFE:
So Noro and I moved into our own place almost 2 months ago. I couldn’t be happier. The reasoning behind it sucked, but it’s great to be on our own again. 😀 I’ve had a hard time dealing with family and adjusting to not having my family around. It really sucked to have these major changes in my life and no one to talk about it with. I couldn’t pick up my phone and talk to my mom. I couldn’t call her. It was just too much. Recently though, as in today, I received a call from my mom. She wanted to invite me to go dress shopping with her and my sister and her daughter [my niece]. She also wanted to apologize and see if we could put everything behind us. She said that she missed me and hated not having her daughter. We talked some stuff and came to as good of an understanding that we could have. It feels like a huge weight has been lifted. I’m glad to have my family back, even if it’s only my immediate family. That’s all I need. I’m just relieved to have my mom back in my life. It sucks not having any family to turn to. I don’t know what I would do without my husband and my family. They’re everything to me. ❤

I’ve also been giving a lot of responsibility at work. I now do all of our pharmacy’s billing for our Emergency Drug Kits [both the PO/IM kits and Refrigerator kits] along with the Respiratory Emergency Kits. It’s a lot to deal with. I have to make sure that I bill the correct person for the medication they were given, make sure it’s dated for the right date and make sure that we have current orders/keep in constant contact with each facilities DoN [Director of Nurses]. I am the only tech that is trained to do this billing. The only other person who knows how to bill for our EDKs is the head pharmacist. So it’s a lot of responsibility to be given. I love doing it. It’s a lot of fun. It makes sure to keep me busy at work. I’ve also been training on doing Compounding. That’s where we make custom drugs for specific orders. Whether it’s crushing pills and mixing it with certain liquids to produce a new product, dissolving capsules into Sodium Bicarbonate, or mixing different ointments and creams to make custom topical, i get to learn how to make them all. Overall, work has been crazy stressful; we’re understaffed and overwhelmed with the work load. :/

So, it’s been a lot. I’m juggling 3 different MMO’s [although GW2 has been put towards the back of the list and game time]. So with all the gaming, I have some upcoming goals that I hope to hit within the upcoming weeks/months.

Final Fantasy:
-Get full drop from Void Ark for my WHM
-Take down ThEX with the boys
-Finally get AST and BRD to 60

Wildstar:
-Hit 50 on my Spellslinger
-Get myself keyed for raids [thankfully we’re in a great guild that just started raiding and that are helping build their roster :D]
-Work my massive housing plot adventure.
-PvP and kick some Exile BUTTS!!

So I have a lot of stuff going on. I’m really excited though. I know I say it every time, but I will try to keep updating this blog. On the side panel, I’ll update character names and such for the games I play. If you ever see me online, feel free to say hello. I love meeting new people 😀

Cheers! Happy Gaming ❤

A Return to Tyria

So like I briefly touched on last post, Noro and I have been looking into playing Guild Wars 2 in our gaming absence; well, we have started new characters and are working through the game again.

For starters, WOW this game is FUCKING GORGEOUS! I swear. This is the prettiest game around. 😀
I mean, look at it
gw687

This place is amazing. This is a hidden spot in the Sylvari City called “The Grove”. People call this the Garden of Dawn. I mean… wow.

Secondly, I really like playing this game. I’ve missed it. Noro and I have started new characters [ones that we’re interested in the new specializations for] and have been playing with Noro’s brother and girlfriend. It’s been a blast. It has also allowed me to reconnect with my best friend Christian. I have been friends with him for 3 years and it’s so great to game with him again.

I’m running a ranger that I hope to one day soon turn into a druid. 😀 She’s a cute fucking asura 😀
gw692
Bow down to my cuteness.

I’m super tired and have to get up early for work, so I’ll write more later about thoughts and such.

Cheers! Happy Gaming!! ❤