Friday, March 23, 2007

The Mixed Bag 'O Stuff

So, as the tittle suggests, this post is a bit of a mixed bag...so forgive me for being all over he place on this one. First, is it just me, or is it gotten really quiet in the MMO world all of a sudden. No "real" news to speak of really...which leaves dimwitted bloggers like me (...ok, only me..) with very little to comment on. It is just me? OK, as you were then....

First up is a great interview over at MMOG Nation with Marc Jacobs. I've been reasonably impressed with the information coming out of the Warhammer camp as of late. In this interview he goes over some of his favorite features of Warhammer as well as some comments on the relationship with EA. Marc seems to be quite taken on their implementation of RvR, and honestly, that's the feature that I'm looking forward to on this game. I've gotten over the T for Teen thing, but I'm still not seeing a reasonable justification for the absence of a death penalty. Don't get me wrong, I'm still getting the game and trying it out, so it's not a deal breaker by any means...I just think it's not a good design decision. Marc also brings up on how expensive it is now to develop an MMO. He's certainly right and this does contribute to the early release of many MMOs...the most recent being Vanguard. We've heard a lot about "polish" in MMOs from developers during GDC...I'm just wondering if they've got the cash to do it.

In the category of "Pirate Love", Ten Ton Hammer has got a video preview of Pirates of the Burning Sea. I really didn't see nothing new in the video gameplay wise...but I did get a better look at ships and I also got a better feel of their quest system from the preview. You know, one thing is starting to bug me about combat in PotBS. When you watch a pirate movie, or any movie with sword play (Princess Bride or Pirates of the Carribean for example), the sword play is very fluid and fast. When I look at the combat in PotBS, I don't see that kind of sword exchange. Why can't they implement a continuous, smooth fencing action with special moves in between? This may very well what is in the game, I just haven't seen it in the video previews that I've seen so far. What I see so far is a lot of special moves with long pauses in between swings as recharge timers charge back up. No no no...blades of the swords should always be in contact as we see in most movies about pirates.

Tobold has put up another great blog post about peer pressure in WoW...specifically about getting to 70 quick and staying with that "inner circle" to see raiding content. I got that feeling from WoW as well...not just in our guild, but on our server in general. I can't really quantify the feeling, and maybe it was just me. I knew who the first ten people would be to 70 in my guild just from the way they played in the past. I also knew that those people would form a sub-group and hit the raid content first, leaving some of the other "casual" players scrounging for groups. This seems to be happening to a lot of guilds game wide. It looks like guilds are having a hard time transitioning from the 40 man raids to the 10 and 25. This is the way Blizzard designed the BC end game, and now I'm thinking it wasn't such a good idea. They should have just stuck with the 40 mans.

So, I got my copy of Silent Hunter 4 last night and played with it a little....and I guess it's a good game. The tutorial missions are not very good and kind of leave you out there to learn on your own...which is ok, but not very newb friendly. The graphics are really, really nice and the sound is good too. This seems to be quite a hardcore sub sim, although you can configure the realism to suit your needs...I just need to tweak it to find my happy place. I took a look at the career mode last night and I was hit in the face with a recon mission that involved me traveling from Hawaii to just off mainland Japan. Wow, looking at the map, that's quite a bit of traveling to do. So, that kind of turned me off a bit. Going to keep playing it and see if I can figure this game out. As my only single player purchase of 2007, I'm hoping that it can deliver a nice change of pace in between MMOs.

D out.

2 comments:

Khardamon - Duinor said...

Bel - Khard/Duinor here. Been messing around with VG lately. If you still are, let me know. I created on Hilsbury.

Keep blogging - good stuff here. :)

darrenl said...

Hey Khard,

Yeah, I've switched servers recently. I'm now on the Gulgrethor server.