• Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity
  • Far Beyond My Capacity

Monday, October 31, 2011

In, out, in, out, shake it all about...

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It's less than 50 days now until the release of Star Wars The Old Republic (and probably quite a bit less than that if you have pre-ordered and will get early access).

We now pretty much know everything that will be in the game at launch. To recap very briefly we know that there will be 17 planets, 15 Flashpoints (dungeons) with hardmodes at max level, 2 Operations (raids) with varying difficulty settings, housing in the form of personal starships, 3 PvP warzones, at least 1 open world PvP lake with objectives, an auction house, weather effects, crafting, a space combat mini-game, companions (5 unique ones for each class), as well as 8 unique class stories and completely unique questing between the two factions. That is  a LOT of content for a new MMO.

I thought it might be fun to have a look at what will NOT be in the game at launch however, and discuss the chances of the features making it in, either through patches or expansions.
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Happy Halloween

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Happy Halloween everyone!

Just had to share the most amazing Halloween light show video. Enjoy :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

SHIFT happens

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My keyboard is starting to give up on me. It's a series 1 Logitech G15 and I seem to have had it for ages (though it can't be longer than five years). It's been a faithful companion over the years, never letting me down and lighting up my gaming area with the soft blue glow from the laser-etched keys. I like it a lot, but it's relatively old technology now and I've started to have problems with keys sticking.

It's not really an issue when blogging and working, but on more than one occasion I've been hunting in EQ2 when my avatar suddenly won't stop moving left, or right, or some other random direction and I have to mash the keys to free them up before I run headlong off a mountain, go swimming in lava or into a camp of mobs (not good in the middle of an epic 4x raid, and all of those examples have happened!).
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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Taking the Myth

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I just wanted to post a big shout out to all my friends in Acolytes of Valor, who last night risked virtual life and limb to help me get the final part I required for my class mythical weapon. It was a great raid and I'd never been to Veeshan's Peak before, which turned out to be a great zone; epic and fun.

Thanks again everyone, I'm a very happy warden this morning!

Merecraft wields the mythical Bite of the Wolf

Four tanks and a healer - Part 2

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The second part of the amusing new web mini-series Four Tanks and a Healer has now been released. This is the final part of the story in its current form, so let's hope they get picked up for a full on series. It shows a lot of promise.

I've embedded it below, and you can find the first part here.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Grinding the News

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I finally finished Deus Ex this week. I really enjoyed the game, though I found the various endings a little disappointing in that there did not seem to be anywhere near as much real choice or consequence compared to the original. As I said in my review, the gameplay itself was sublime however (apart from those pesky boss fights).

I've been continuing my time in EQ2, and hooked up with Adurj again this week. We decided to run through the White Dragonscale Cloak heritage quest as neither of us had completed it before. Things went well to start with, but then we hit a huge faction grind that would require us to kill thousands of faction mobs. I thought EQ2 (and most modern MMOs in general) had done away with this sort of thing, but apparently not. It killed the quest for us, and I'm not sure if I will complete it now. A real shame.
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Thursday, October 20, 2011

SWTOR @ GDC 2011

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GDC Online, the Game Developers Conference, took place in San Francisco last week. Unlike other gaming conventions and conferences this one is not about revealing new features, marketing your game or PR; it's a serious conference for games developers to discuss a whole host of subjects from game design philosophy to game creation tools to marketing techniques.

This year there were a few presentations given by developers from Bioware that gave a great insight into how Star Wars The Old Republic is being made and tested. There are two of the presentations in particular that I want to highlight and discuss, but the following is a list of all the presentations given by Bioware personnel along with links to summaries courtesy of Darth Hater.
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Monday, October 17, 2011

Four tanks and a healer

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Just came across this video and it made me chuckle a fair few times. It's an animated tale of five players in an MMO circa 1995 (basically, it looks and sounds like Everquest), and is the first of a two-part series which hopes to become a regular serial. It reminds me a lot of the awesome The Guild, but seems to be a little more on-the-money as far as my EQ memories go.

Anyway, check out the embed below. I'll be keeping an eye on this one.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

SWTOR @ NYCC 2011

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Bioware have been showing Star Wars The Old Republic at New York Comic-Con this week. Whilst much of the information revealed was already known, a few very interesting bits of information were revealed, along with a stunning new in-game story trailer. Read on for the details.
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Friday, October 14, 2011

The Final Curtain

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I can't believe it's been a year. I was chatting to Adurj the other night as we went hunting for the dragon Harla Dar in Everquest 2, and I suddenly realised that it had been a year since I had started playing the game again. I can't believe it has gone so quickly!

I've had a choppy relationship with EQ2 over the years, which hasn't been helped by SOEs sometimes poor handling of the title. When I came back to the game after a three year hiatus however I was impressed at the progress that had been made in offering a much more streamlined and, dare I say it, fun experience.
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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer Details

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After months of rumours it has finally been formally announced that Mass Effect 3 will have a multiplayer component, a first for the series.


Bioware made the announcement yesterday and gave some details on the system, which will see players working cooperatively to defend various parts of the galaxy against the Reapers and their allies. Progress made in the multiplayer game will actually effect the progress of the war in the single player game too through the games Galaxy At War system (though Bioware insist that the multiplayer part can be totally ignored without impacting too heavily on the single player story).
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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Dragon Age Redemption

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The first episode of Dragon Age: Redemption has been released today to coincide with the launch of the second downloadable content pack for Dragon Age 2, entitled Mark of the Assassin.

Redemption is a live-action web series set in the Dragon Age world and is produced, written by and stars Felicia Day (who also produced, wrote and starred in the excellent MMO-based web series The Guild). She plays the same character that is the focus of the new DLC for the game, so it's a nice way to expand on the game's universe.

Anyway, check it out in the embed below. It's quite fun, and has pretty good production values for a web series. I intend to pick up the new DLC for Dragon Age 2 once I've finished my current play through of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, and will have a review up shortly afterwards.

Friday, October 07, 2011

SWTOR: Design philosophy and updates

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Georg Zoeller, Principal Lead Designer on Star Wars The Old Republic made a very interesting post on the official forums this week that I wanted to highlight because it shows one of the subtle but important ways the game will differ from other MMOs.

I've copied his entire post below as it's a really interesting read and a good insight into the design philosophies behind the game, but to summarise he states that TOR class design is different because your class choice does not define your combat role.

In most MMOs you pick a class and that then defines the role that character will play in groups and raids. For example, in EQ2 if you pick a warden you are choosing to play the role of healer, pick a guardian and you are choosing to play the role of tank, and so on. TOR is different:
  • Class choice defines your storyline, your character's appearance, and your gameplay style.
  • Skill trees define the role your character will actually play.
Read on for the full explanation (as well as some other recent updates about the game).
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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Faces and Names

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"Faces and names
I wish they were the same
Faces and names only cause trouble for me
Faces and names
If we all looked the same
and we all had the same name
I wouldn't be jealous of you or you jealous of me"
- Lou Reed and John Cale

Merecraft, Karinus, Udrath, Tobey, Fearillian, Thorney, Draszith and Draszithuss. I've been all these characters and more in my years of MMO gaming.

With the launch of Star Wars The Old Republic getting closer and closer (2 months and 17 days to go!) I've started thinking about what in the galaxy I'm going to call my characters. Normally this doesn't pose too much of an issue for me, as the vast majority of MMOs I've played before have been fantasy based, and I normally start off with a character called Merecraft. The only exceptions to that have been Karinus (in EVE) and Graille (in City of Heroes). The problem I have is that none of these names seem particularly appropriate for a Smuggler in The Old Republic.
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Saturday, October 01, 2011

EQ2 and Transformers - my first vBlog!

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Another slow week in gaming terms this week, mainly due to my lad bringing the plague back from his nursery and infecting the whole family! the only game time I did get was running the Protector's Realm raid with Acolytes of Valor in EQ2. I hadn't done the zone before and it was an absolute blast (thanks to Voltaan for leading the raid), and I also got a lot of great priest drops and the first part of my class mythical weapon quest completed.

There was one slight hiccup however! Voltaan insisted that for the first four boss fights I sacrifice myself in order to make them attackable. It was only after I had bravely died four times and my armour was at 60% that our guild leader pointed out the raid mechanics had been changed and there was no longer any need for anyone to die! Thanks guys!
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