Friday, July 25, 2008

The insanity

Do you think all the people who pontificate the greatness of WAR and in the same breath denounce WoW as the devil are getting kick back money from Mythic?

Yeah, thats just insane right?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Irony

WAR is not WoW, but it's going to try to be anyway.

Well, that's my view on the subject. As hard as everyone in the blog sphere is trying to convince everyone else that they have given the boot to WoW or will when WAR finally arrives is under the delusion that WAR will offer them something utterly and completely different. I'm here to tell everyone the truth they are hiding from you.


Sorry, but WAR is an MMO. Which means, there will be faction grinding, there will be quests gathered from easily seen quest givers, whether they will have a golden exclamation point over their heads is hard to tell at this point and there will be the all powerful positioning to get the great epic loot. Yes, you will be able to give the evil or good side a great bit of thrashing and you'll be able to capture a capital city (instead of the six that were originally promised) and hold it for a short period of time not that any of this sounds familiar to people on a WoW PvP server.

The problem as I see it, is that people just want something new. Everyone wants to drive a new car, even if its for a short amount of time. That new car feel and smell is awesome. The same is true with new games, people got all excited about POTBS, Tabula Rasa and recently with AoC. Spouting that these games in their own right, will be the answer to WoW. But I can't seem to recall who is still playing these games after spending months hyping them before release?

I hope that WAR is wonderful, but people really should just calm down about the whole thing. It's not going to be a WoW killer, especially with WOTLK coming out around the corner. I can't see 9 million people deciding to jump over to WAR, especially when a new and exciting expansion is getting ready to hit the streets. I think the people that are expect so much from WAR will be very dissappointed if it doesn't out shine WoW. And I am here to say, it just isn't. Because if it wants to succeed it has to do whatever it can, to be as close to WoW as possible without being WoW.

I think excitment about a new game is justified, but I can't understand the animostiy towards WoW in the process. WoW is still a great game. I don't think the graphics are out dated. The design team is always coming up with new and exciting visuals. I believe they will be adding new textures and spell effects to the game thru WOTLK.

That all being said, I do have money down on a special edition copy of WAR. Oh I'm going to play it, but only because it will be new and fun, not because I think it will be a WoW killer or that WoW is ready to kick the bucket, which, personally, I don't understand the thought process of people on that one. Did I mention 9 million subscribers earlier? People that expect miracles from WAR will become very disappointed, and end up, heads lowered, right back in WoW.

My advice, just relax, stop bad mouthing a great game and limit your commits to, "I'm excited about WAR".

Friday, July 18, 2008

Rant of the Day!

So, last night a guild member asked if anyone would be interested in helping him retrieve the first fragment of the Karazhan Key quest in Shadow Labyrinth. I said sure, I don't mind helping, as a matter of fact another guild member, whom I've grouped with on several occasions said he wouldn't mind finishing that quest as well. Which was a bonus since he plays a healer.

So, we get a group together and the three of us guildies start the trek thru SL. Well, the person that asked for help is playing a hunter. Now, I've seen people play very effective and effiecent hunters. I mean the things they can do with traps and pets can amaze anyone. Well, this poor fellow ain't one of them. First thing I notice, since I'm the tank, is that he keeps pulling agro. Which is pretty easy since he doesn't have Omen installed. I had to throw out a few non agressive statements like, "Everyone, Let me get Agro before you start on the mobs." I figured this would work. Well, it did for everyone but the hunter.

The party had problems. The mage would sheep to late or the hunter wouldn't get another trap down in time. Then there was the problem again of letting the tank do his job, which, after a while I told the healer to just let the stupid ones die, he just laughed. lol Lucky for me, the healer was awesome, props go to my homie Wtfrostshock on the Darkspear server, an excellent Shammy healer. The rogue, who was a PuG, was also very good. Sorry, I don't remember his name, but thats pretty good, cause if your screwing up, I'll burn that name into my brain, just to make sure I don't group with you again. His dps was great and he managed to sap when asked.

Now the rant.

Halfway thru the instance, I get information that another guild member needs to finish the key quest, so I decide that since I've already gotten my key fragment, I will let him take my place after we kill Murmur, the end boss. I asked if that was ok with that idea and everyone said, "no problem". I also repeatedly reminded everyone during the run, because sometimes, you have to reinforce certain things by repeating them over and over till people get it thru their thick skulls. Again, no one had an issue.

So, we get to Murmur. I say, "remember, I'm going to leave and get in a guild mate for the key fragment part after we kill Murmur, so everyone, remember, after he dies, we stay away from the vase." Everyone seems ok with this and we proceed to do the boss. This takes two tries, but we manage to get it done. Loot is being handled and everything is fine, till I see the hunter scream for help. Well, the hunter, our own guild member, has opened up the vase, there by releasing the mob yo have to kill for the key quest. I'm just shocked. I could believe this behavior maybe from the rogue or the mage, since we had to PuG them, but to see a fellow guild member boning us? WTF?

So I asked after the fight, what was he doing, did he not understand what we had planned?. No response, nothing. He actually had the nerve to thank us in guild chat later. I like to play nice with the guild, so I didn't say anything is chat, but I was total pissed. I will never waste my time with that hun-tard, Jklancer is his name. Yea, I'm gonna call him out. lol

I don't have any way of chastising him, no power in the guild. The only thing I can do is rant about it here and swear never to group with him again. I most certainly will not be doing any raids with him and will do what I can to inform people of his lack of team work. What a tard. People like that give hunters and guilds bad names. I just hope he doesn't screw anyone else up.

Sorry, I'm done now.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Old friends

It has been great hanging out with my old friend, Nintendo, over the last couple of weeks. First, I managed to pick up the rarest of animals, The Wii. If that wasn't enough, I splurged a week later and bought a Nintendo DS Lite.

I purchased my red DS Lite because there are times with my current job that I have to travel out of town for several days and I wanted a small gaming system to keep me from being bored. Yes I know, I don't really need it, there are books and other forms of entertainment, but I still wanted something to keep me from missing my computer. lol I have to say that I'm not disappointed in the purchase at all.

One of the first games I picked up was Planet Puzzle League. Its a game similar to the popular Bejeweled. Basically, you have to match 3 or more blocks of similar shapes and colors to remove them from the board. The more chains or combos you create the more bonus points you get. There are several different mods of play, including a daily set of challenges. These daily challenges will track your improvement over time, similar to the Brain Age games. So far I have to say the game is pretty addictive on all mods. I haven't found anything I don't like about it.

The next newest game I picked up was Space Invaders Extreme. I had heard a lot about this game and the fact that it was on ly $20.00 made the purchase so much easier. This game is a revamp of the every popular game Space Invaders. If you were born in the late 70's early 80's you'll have no idea what I'm talking about, but next to Pong, this game was revolutionary at the time. Well, they've jazzed it up and given it a bunch of really cool rave music to shoot aliens by.

At its core the game is a basic space shooter, similar to the original. They have added bonus, power weapons and exciting visual effects to update this game. In addition, when you shoot an alien the game produces a musical sound, so as your playing your making music that adds to the fun. You won't need a stylus for this game, the D-pad works fine. There are several mods of play, one being the rank system, so once you play a ranked game, you can upload your score to the global leader board and see how you've done. I'm embarassed to say, that I didn't even get a number. lol

Those are just a few of the games I would recommend to anyone who has a DS. If you can't decided wheither to pick up the Sony PSP or the DS, I say get the DS. It's much cheaper, the Sony PsP is $199.00, the Ds Lite, $129.00. The DS doesn't play music or movies, but thats a plus since you'll not have a lot of down time recharging your battery like you would have to on the PSP after playing a movie.

I found the controls on the PSP a bit hard to maneuver, but that might be just me. If your concerned about using the stylus, like I was originally, don't be, its a very natural way to play games and it won't throw you off. I have spent many an hour sliding blocks back and forth with my stylus on Planet Puzzle league, I just couldn't see playing a game like that with a d-pad.

I have purchased several other games, but I've not had a chance to play them. When I do, I'll let you guys know what I think. Don't worry, this won't be another DS, Nintendo fanboy site, I just haven't been online this week to play any WoW. lol This is a cheap way to say, hey, I'm back to blogging again.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Purple heaven.

A quick post about an interesting thing that happened to me on Friday night.

Our guild decided to do a Kara run. Oakstout, being a bit under geared got drafted to be the Off tank. Since we couldn't field the entire 10 man, we PuG-ed about 3 people, we started really late in the evening, around 9:30PM my time, and I was extremely tired.

Well, now the good news. I ended up scoring 10 Epics on that one run. Yes, 10! The warrior we had drafted to be the MT didn't need anything but Badges from Kara, so I made out like a bandit. The only piece of gear that dropped that I didn't get, irony of the night, was my T4 helm. I'm still running around with 2 pieces of blue gear and 1 piece of green, how sad. I ended up with the tanking sword, King's Defender, and Spiteblade, the dps warrior sword. I also managed to get Moroes' Lucky Pocket Watch.

I just seemed like everything was going my way, but other than the dps sword, everything else I picked up was for a protection Warrior. It was a full clear and I didn't get to sleep until 3am saturday morning, due to buying gems and enchantments for all my gear. I am now at my defensive cap, which is 490, and slowly working on building up my stamina, a must for protection warriors.

Funny thing, all weekend I tried to get a group to do any instance, and now that I'm decked out in purple epic gear, I couldn't find one group to run with, not one. How sad.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Noob Alert!

Here is my noob story of the day.

My protection warrior, Oakstout, has been 70 for about 2 weeks now. So far, I've tanked Steam Vaults, Shadow Labryinth, Black Morass, Old Hillsbrad, and I've off tanked Karazhan. The whole time I was doing all those instances, I had forgotten to purchase my level 70 skills. DOH! No Intervene and no upgrades to most of my agro gathering attacks. I missed like 7 skills, what a freaking Noob.

Lucky for me, a good friend and fellow tank, Ax on Darkspear, who is an awesome tank by the way, helped me see the error of my ways. I actually had to leave an instance last night to go by my spells, how embarassing.

I just wanted to share my personal noob stories. Course my favorite is when I try to summon my flying mount and instead, I summon my land mount. Problem is, I usually don't realize the mistake till after I've tried to fly my ram off the edge of a cliff. By the way, its usually a long drop off the Scryer terrace, DOH! Good thing I have a lot of health. lol

Who has a good Noob story?

Can you save a broken dam with your finger?

Ok so its a slow day for good blog titles, so sue me.

Funcom has again applied a bandaid for an amputated appendage. Here is my issue. If your applying so many changes to a game in seveal (Need to proof read more!) patches within the first month and a half of release the you've got a poorly excecuted game.

To start with, not everyone can play the game due to the upscaled, gorgious graphical detail in the game. I mean, everyone wants perfect nipples right? So, now you've limited your player base to people that have kick ass machines. When they launched the game, where was all the cool stuff that was promised like PvP advancement and rewards as well as working battle siege areas, which the end game kind of depended upon. Not to mention all the bugs still in the game even now. It seems to me like they aren't getting ahead of these issue because they were so far behind at launch it might take them a year to get it all straight. A year they could have spent on more open beta testing, instead of making the consumer the Guinea pigs.

I could go on and on. Lets just say that I'm glad I got out while I could. I have this feeling that AoC will be the next SWG no matter how many disgruntled WoW players you manage to capture. The smart ones will eventually go back to WoW or move on to WAR, even if its WoW with a different skin, objectives, quests, talent advancement, RvR, professions, and basic game play. Oh, well, maybe it isn't like WoW at all. did I get that confused.


...for more info on the current AoC patch notes, you can check out them out (ok, really need to start proof reading. Does that even make sense?) here on Jobildo's site. My pimping obligation for the day is complete. lol

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Me, Myself and I

Today's blog will be a catch all for what I've been up to in the last month. Some of it I've already covered and some I have not, which is the reason for the catch all part.

A couple of month's back I talked about finally working on getting my Protection Warrior, Oakstout to 70. Well, after 3 years, I finally reached that point last Wednesday. I'd been grinding a little on him for over the last year trying to finally reach that top spot, but I always get distracted with raiding on my mage, Gwion. Well, since the "Shoe Fits" guild hasn't been doing anything since my return from Nashville, I decided to finally grind my first character up. Lucky for me they aren't in the same guild.

I'll have to say that I wasn't a Protection warrior until level 62. From that point, I'd been doing the slow grind, occasionally getting in maybe an instance or two, but only with friends and no PuGs. My confidence when it came to tanking just wasn't where it should have been. Well, prior to reaching 70, I gave Steam Vaults a try. I must say, it was a fantastic experience. Every chance I get now I'm in the LFG channel trying to get into any instance I can. So far, I've tanked Shadow Labyrinth, Durnhold twice and Black Morass. Thank goodness none of them have been disasters. Last night, I got an invite to off tank Karazhan, which was similar to tanking with my mage only I died more. lol But a lot of that was because I was a bit under geared for the instance, but it was still a fun and informative experience.

The experience of tanking compared to a ranged DPS character is day and night. If your bored with your DPS character, be it melee or range, try a Protection Warrior or Paladin, the experience is eye opening. You see things for a completely different perspective. Your job is way different. Now, I don't even care about the dps charts. I'm more upset if I'm above anyone on them. lol I have learned that agro is your friend and I love it.

Another big huddle that I leaped across was getting my flying mount, which I managed in a day after reaching 70. I have also, with the help of a flying mount and friends, opened up all my daily quests, with the exception of those in Shadowmoon Valley. I just don't have 5k gold for an epic flying mount skill yet, but I'm working on it.

The only draw back to being a protection warrior is you suck at PvP. That being said, once I get all my tanking gear, I plan to revisit my talent spec and go after some really nice PvP battleground gear. This way, I have a set for anything I'm planning.

Ok, enough about WoW.

I managed to pick up the Spore Creature Creator that is being sold in stores. I got the Target one, which actually has some premade creatures you can assess. It has a lot more choices for body parts than the down loadable demo. So, if your really having a great time with it, I suggest throwing down $10.00 and picking it up. Trust me, you'll be happy you did. You can also change the resolution to 1680x1050, which is native for my 22" and everything looks just fantastic. (I'm not sure if the demo will do this, but I don't remember finding that option available.)

I'm sure you all know by now that I bought a Nintendo Wii. I have to say that this by far is my best purchase ever and any reviews that rave about how this system is fun and innovative are understated. I am having a blast playing Wii Sports with my wife. The bowling and tennis are the most fun so far. You can really get into the spirit of the games. We bounce around and swing our remote like we are really on a tennis court. I'm just glad we can do this in the privacy of our own home, its very embarrassing at times.

I also picked up Super Mario Galaxy. This game is awesome. If your a fan of the Mario style games, it is a must have. The music and controls are fantastic. I've not gotten very far, only because my wife keeps playing Dr. Mario Rx Online, but from what I have seen, its definitely a game I will finish. It might not have a lot of replay value, but I'll probably play it again once I get to the end, just because its that much fun.

Other than a little bit of Pac-Man C.E, I've not done much with my Xbox 360. Other than use it as a dvd player. Scrubs is an awesome show by the way.

I think that pretty much puts me up to date with what I've been playing. I'm hoping to add a Nintendo DS Lite to my collection of gaming systems sometime this week and if I do, I'll let you know what I'm playing on that as well.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

While I had a second, I wanted to wish everyone a wonderful 4th of July.
Hope everyone is doing well, and having a great time with friends and family.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Diablo 2

I just wanted to say that Diablo 2 still rocks.

It's dated, it looks pretty narly on a 22" monitor, but you know what, its still awesome to play.

The Art of Idiocy!

I hate idiocy. It drives me just plain nuts and Funcom, currently, is on top of that list.

First, they release a game that's fun and interesting, but seriously broken. I mean, a demonologist that can't keep his or her summoned minion while zoning into a hostile environment is, well, just first class idiocy. I mean, come on, lets get a few of the more obvious bugs fixed first, at least the ones that will make playing certain classes more fun and less of a hassle.

I just don't see this game going the distance. To begin with, the banker, who also happens to be the auctioneer person, was broken several hours after the game was released and was down for about a week, not a good sign of things to come. Because the game is mostly PvP, they have to make sure the classes, to some degree, are balanced. So we have been seeing small increases in damage output, but also a good bit of damage decrease as well. At this point, I will say that Warhammer's approach, which is "We aren't going to spend a lot of time balancing classes." is starting to look pretty good to me right now. But I digress.

So, here is the skinny. I've decided to quit you Funcom. Not just because everytime I log in there is a new patch, not because you patch things that not only don't interest me, but you still haven't given time to class breaking bugs. I'm not leaving because the lag is an on again off again problem or that the PvP is a useless endeavor.

I'm leaving because you can't freakin bill me correctly. I get a notice that you've decided to aquire your monthly fee early. No problem. Then the charge disappears. Ok, now I have to erase that entry out of my book. Then I see two weeks later, you've decided to take the money again. So, I make the notation, but find out that you've decided to double dip, but not for the full amount, but for an extra 48 cents. What, you say? Yes, apparently, they took the $14.95 fee out for the montly sub, and then dipped again and took out 48cents. This to me is just irresponsible. I mean, I can understand a little problem with bugs and lag, but to screw up a subscriptions billing and to take more than necessary, is just plain bad. In the 10 yrs I've been playing MMO's I've never had a billing issue, not ever.

So, I quit you Funcom. Maybe in the future when you get your bugs fixed and get a better understanding of how to run your game, I'll be back. But with a gamer card next time.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Wii -Tastic

I was going to have this really long blog series about how long it took me to purchase a Wii console, but I am happy to say that my little adventure idea ended before it really got off the ground. I managed to wrangle myself one of those very elusive Wii's this morning.

The wife and I have been thinking about getting a Wii for sometime, but its one of those things where your only serious if you can buy it in the store your standing in when you make the decision to purchase one. This whole getting a Wii was also hampered by the idea that my lovely wife isn't a huge game system hunter. Basically I mean, if it's not in the store next to the checkout line, she isn't likely to spend all day looking for one, nor is she likely to let me look as well. I'm sure a lot of happily married couples understand exactly how this works.

So, needless to say that I was surprised when I got the go ahead about 2 weeks ago to start my search for one. I haven't been blogging about it because it hadn't been a very successful search. I started by cruising the major stores that might stock the item in question, mainly, Best Buy, Circuit City, Wal-Mart and Target. Nothing for a week. Everyone was out. Every time I asked, I got the same answer in exactly the same way. "No, we don't have them in" "No, we don't know when we will be getting them in." "No, you can't reserve one, its first come first serve."

I just thought the shortage would be centered mostly around the holiday season, but apparently Nintendo isn't making great strides or effort to mass produce the Wii like their competitors are producing the Xbox 360 or the Playstation 3. This shortage is good for Nintendo's bottom line, produce keeps selling out, because they don't send out a lot of units.

Now, I did discover in my journey that if an area store gets a shipment in, it will be only once a week and it usually contains between 3 - 6 units, per store if they are lucky. I also found out that people are so fanatic about purchasing these endangered gaming systems that they usually sell out in 3 hrs after the store has them. This would be normal for say Christmas time, but the beginning of summer? Come on Nintendo, get a grip.

Well, I started calling places last week, instead of just casually dropping by to see if they had any in stock. I also expanded my query to include Gamestop, Toys-R-Us and K-Mart. So, I'm calling 6 different places on different days to find a Wii. Crazy? Maybe, but when your wife gives you permission to buy a gaming system, you have to jump on the chance. You can't let this slip away, you have to take the credit card and run. Regretfully, expanding my store choices and calling them yielded nothing. I did discover that K-Mart and Toys-R-Us tended to get more systems in, but they usually sold out in a few hours as well.

Then this past Sunday, I was text chatting with a friend of mine in WoW and to my shock and dismay, he relayed the story of how he had run out that morning and purchased a Wii in anticipation of entertaining relatives this week. Apparently, he drove out to two stores and purchased the game with no trouble. This drove me mad, I decided to take some time and call a few places. The hunt was on again, and at a much more fevered pitch. So I called Target only discover that they had some in, but had already sold out. My luck just sucks.

So, I had made up my mind that afternoon to call the local Gamestop every morning when they opened to see if they had any shipments arrive. Monday was a bust. I pretty much figured out that all the stores got their shipments on the same day, so there was no need in calling 3 stores, all I needed to do was call one. But no shipments on Monday, which was good, because I ended up getting ill that afternoon and had to head home. I would really suck to buy a new gaming system and not be able to play with it.

Anyway, today, I called the local store just after opening. The person that answered the phone informed me that they had not received their shipment yet, but that most shipments arrived between Monday and Wednesday. He suggested that I call back in an hour to give the UPS a chance to deliver, or I could call another store to see if they had received a shipment, since they get them all on the same day. This was probably the most help I had gotten so far on this adventure.

So, I looked up another store on the internet, placed the call and was surprised when the person answered my query with, "Yes, we have the Wii." I said, "I'll be there in a minute." About 30 minutes later and a lot poorer, I am now the proud owner of a Wii console, with an extra controller and nun chuck. I turned down the offer for a extended warranty which I hoped doesn't come back to haunt me.

So, tonight, I'll be braking that bad boy out to give it a test drive. I will let you know how that goes.