Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Mark Jacobs leaves the building...

And Bioware join the team, it's looking to be interesting times in the future for sure.

This WILL change the development of WAR without a doubt, it's just all in the air. I'm sure no harm will come to WAR, but what of the good?

Hmm, interesting times lie ahead, and I'll be commenting more on this later on...

Monday, 22 June 2009

Ermmm... Maybe not.

So decided to try out a parry build, didn't bother with the renown points in parry nor did I get all the tactics I wanted (just the flat +parry from big choppin'), end result was 30% parry which wasn't too bad and weapon skill was at 487. Then I realised my initiative was crap low at 151 (23% chance of being critted), strength was at 518, wounds at 911 but toughness at 411... Urgh... (elemental resist was nice at 911 as well though).

Yes we can stack parry, but realistically Black Orcs will be totally gimping most other stats. Looks like the +Parry on the Tyrant set is totally worthless after all :(

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Take one Lair Run, add booze, stir and let simmer...

And you have one hell of a great laugh over Vent.

I always say this but its the community and the people you share your time with in game that make your enjoyment so much more. When everyone can just hook up, and have a great night chatting into the wee hours and of course, getting utterly pissed but keeping a smile and a laugh going it doesn't matter if your class is bugged, nerfed, OP or just plain broken. Order hitting IC? Break out the rum! Bomb squad murdering you in scenarios? Crack open a beer...

Do something just a little different, there's no need to focus on the same RvR and scenarios each night.

Enjoy the GAME

Friday, 19 June 2009

The dust settles on 1.3

So with 1.3 out there appears to be few bugs lurking around. It's expected, but still baffles me as to why things that haven't been touched in the patch notes should all of a sudden not work properly (or at all). What Mythic and GOA are at least doing this time though is openly posting bugs they know about and what is fixed, what is due to be fixed and what they're looking into.


This is making the bug fix process much more visible and does give more confidence than before (even though I knew they were fixing bugs, I couldn't see them do it...)

So what else in 1.3 then? They fixed the dismounting in IC (yay!), more talismans (yay!), crafting and currency bags (yay-yay!). So far I like it and have no direct grumps regarding it, they may also be looking into actually fixing WAAAAGH! for Black Orcs.

The live event is a bit... meh... Not really getting into it and don't feel any sense of personal achievement in it, they should have stuck to the influence system for it.

Overall though, it's a major step up and with the number of bugs that slipped into the patch I'm glad the combat and career changes didn't take place as well. Now we just have to sit back and see what happens...

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Sometimes you get little plans

From a gud plan, to da bestest plan... Or maybe not.

So after looking at the +5 parry that Borcs get in the Tyrant set I decided to try and work out if it's possible to make a Parry set for tanking. it looks rough but it might just be manageable on the lower end instances. Key advantage would be not having to respec for RvR/grinding (and looking cool) while the disadvantage would be that in high end instances I'd be an offtank.

Worked out the following so far:

8% base parry
+7% from conqueror set and glove bonus
+5% From gud at big choppin tactic
+0/5/10% from Less Stabbin me (combined with the jump to best plan upon parry tactic I should always be on at least 5%)
+6% from renown
+8% from jewels
And then I can get my morale 1 to pop every 60 seconds for a 30 second 10% parry buff.

So that'll be around 34-44% which isn't great (certainly lower that you'd like for two handed tanking) and with a likely significant drop in wounds. Still it's something different from the cookie cutter mould, so I'll give it a shot. Just need some victims from the Hand of Blood to try this out with *evil grin*

Monday, 15 June 2009

Feedback I gave...

Figured I'd just pop some of the feedback I gave GOA over the official European forums. Don't read if you don't want basic spoilers (I didn't go far as I didn't want to spoil it for myself)


Due to wanting to have some surprises and not wanting to discover everything I've focussed on the opening area at this time. I also have no idea how GOA want's the feedback done, I submitted a load of ingame feedback and bug reports but also noticed they mentioned putting the feedback here.. So they have it twice I guess :)

There were large numbers of people at each area, so the PQ's were easier than intended, I have taken this into account.

Sedjhet Temple

Nice little introduction PQ. Runs fairly quickly and appears to be easily takable with even a small group (laying down the AoE just obliterates the sand worms). It's designed for a group so I would have increased the numbers and spawn rate of the worms to make it a challenge away from AoE massacre. Collecting the urns appears to be a bit of a bore and spread out so I can't see the temple being a quick farmable PQ especially with the forced defence on a 3m timer. The boss looked a basic tank and spank. (2 out of 3)

Aerie of Death

A unique console style PQ. A lot of jumping about on ridges (which confused me to start with as I ran around looking for the eggs). The jumping stage favours the quick reaction players who can play Tomb Raider in there sleep, but it's no competition, just a bit annoying to have to wait out a few minutes. I can see this becoming a relatively unpopular as well due to the scattered nature of the stages.(2 out of 3)

Obelisk of Judgement

My favourite so far. It's contained PQ in a small area, nice constant spawn of mobs which aren't a challenge until you add in the "pewpew lasers of death (tm)". This aspect makes the PQ infinetly much more enjoyable and is a unique touch. The stages are easily grindable and I got a nice 8 hour epic talisman of one of the trash mobs which was unexpected. The boss appears straight forward however it is a little buggy. Your abilities on the action bar remain red to indicate you cannot use them on the boss however if you click/press the key they fire off as normal.(3 out of 3)

Assault on Nekh Ahket

I was unable to find/start this PQ at the time, the area shows up but I guess it must be on a timer? Regardless I explored the area but never came across the PQ update on screen.

Zandri Lion: The debilitating wound debuff does not have an icon, simply a "No Icon/Art" image instead.
Carrion in the Tome of Knowledge: The entry shows a walking, humanoid skeleton. I guess it should be carrion bird instead.
Great Hammers on Black Orcs: Our right hand goes straight through the head of the hammers, poking through the other side. There appears to be missing animations as well (t'ree hit combo for example has some rough shoulder swinging animations but the weapon remains firmly in hand)

Obelisk of Judgement: Some of the mobs upon dying in stage 2 came up on the screen as "You have slain a Invis Placeholder"
PQ contribution lists are broken: It doesn't tell you what your contribution score is nor where you placed on the text box

General Feedback
Map Sound: Please allow us to turn off the new sound that occurs when opening a map. It was never missed when it wasn't there and adds nothing to the feel of the game other than a minor distraction if you open it a few times in a row if you've misclicked or needing to recheck the map. Allow us to turn this off.
Epic Soul Talisman thingies: After getting one on a trash mob in a PQ I got a couple more drops off level 37 mobs in the area. Not sure if I as just lucky at getting them or whether they do drop frequently. If they do drop that frequently then I would maybe lower the duration on the drops as no-one will pay the price for them from the talisman vendors


Feedback on the NEW Tyrant Black Orc set
Naturally I can only see two pieces so have no idea what the other parts are like but lets have a look at the two pieces you can see. Gloves and Belt.

33 toughness
13 wounds
19 weapon skill
3% reduction in being critted
(talisman slot)

Nice upgrade over invader since it's a tanking piece. Wouldn't bother with it however if building a DPS/RvR set.

28 Strength
21 Toughness
21 Weapon Skill
59 Spirit resist
167 Elemental resist
47 Corp resist

Great belt and a massive upgrade from the rubbish we've had the last few sets (+willpower? urgh...). No complaints over this and it makes a part of a nice RvR set as well if you can slot it in.

Set bonuses:
2) +76 wounds
3) +76 toughness
4) +5% parry
5) Reactionary: On being hit, 25% chance of increasing evade, parry and disrupt by 10% for 10 seconds
6) +76 hit points every 4 seconds

The first two set bonuses you certainly cannot complain about, + wounds and + toughness are always good, especially with the inevitable combat changes coming along, however this is where it ends and the head scratching starts...

+5% parry?

This is where I now believe we have a copy of the swordmaster gear (which it is..) all other tanks get +block for the 4 piece set. Swordmasters and Borcs get +parry. The problem is... Black Orcs can't parry, we have no natural parry abilities to make use of them (SW's get "wall of darting steel" which grants them +50 parry with great weapons, we get "cant hit me", which we have to spec high for, gives us block and only works with shields). We also have no +parry weapons. An over sight possibly in having mirror careers but Black Orcs in the current format cannot parry very well and we certainly wouldn't tank end game bosses with a great weapon. I'd like to try a parry build for sure and hope this is a sign of black orcs getting parry buffs but as it stands it's pretty much pointless.

Reactionary is nice, gives a solid little boost but I wonder how truly effective it will be as when tanking, the whole point is not to actually get hit... So this makes you want to get hit to increase your chance of not being hit? I'd rather just not be hit in the first place....

+76 health per 4 seconds: Nice little extra but again it's very little and when tanking you tend to be taking large amounts of damage so having a small health tick is meaningless as it will not save you.

Overall it seems a solid 3 piece set, but dissapointing afterwards. This may change if black orcs are being adjusted in 1.3x when the combat changes come out, but as it stands stick with the belt and two other pieces of your choice for a tanking set. No initiative on the two pieces I've seen nor in the set will not stop you being critted by mobs.

Friday, 12 June 2009

Sneaky testing...

Well I decided to pop onto the PTS tonight to do a bit of testing (and c'mon, there's a chance to get the shroud thingy and a manticore mount) and I have to admit it's looking not too shabby. I forced myself to do nothing more than the opening area and the PQ's and they are quite fun. Yes there's bugs (reported) and some feedback needing done (written and submitted) but I think LotD will be a lot of fun and a good way to pass the time over the summer months while the game settles itself back down and the classes become balanced.

My only real concern is that I fear it will drive a lot out of the regular tier four zones and into one dustbowl making the whole area fairly laggy, but we'll see.

Overall though, it's looking good from my little excursion.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Treasure hunt - WAR style.

So there's a treasure hunt going on throughout this new fangled interwebs. With codes, pictures and lots of other gubbins to be had. Solve the puzzle and you can earn yourself a title or perhaps a swarm of scarabs to crawl around behind you.. Sounds fun and I have to admit it's a cool concept. Glad to see both Mythic and GOA involving the community again (very important for GOA to be seen doing things as well), gives us a reason to stretch our wings out to new sites we may have not ordinarily visited.

Downside though is that it won't take long for the solution to be posted online for all to see (once it's spread to the solvers buddies and guild) and those who are browsing the forums at that time will be able to nab all the codes.. Booooo.

Still, hope to see more things like this from GOA soon, even if I suck at puzzle solving (I'm an Orc, I just hit stuff).

Monday, 8 June 2009

Bloody bomb squads...

Good run of scenarios last night, though the only times we were beaten was when we were up against a bomb squad. For those who have never had the misfortune of facing one, it's basically a guarded and mass healed bright wizard with Ruin and Destruction followed by PBAoE as the rest of the group devestate/debuffs/CC's the area.

It's a sound tactic (others claim it's cheap) and one that I'm totally stumped with how to counter or prevent. RDPS can stay away but us melee classes have to stack up to take out targets so we're easy fodder for the bomb. A mass zerg works through sheer weight of numbers, silence doesn't stop the morale (but go figure how my morale silence gets stopped by the unstoppable buff).

In a 6v6 environment, how would you prevent the bomb?

So out goes combat and career changes. In goes focus testing on Land of the Dead.

Gud job ladz!

As time wore on and we realised that there was a lot of testing still to be done and with the deadline fast approaching it was only right to pull the C&C changes out and focus on LotD. This was the best choice and a much welcomed one by the community. You're starting to earn our trust again Mythic, keep it up and ensure you keep those channels of communication open with us general rabble.

So what's next for WAR? Well we have LotD coming in a couple of weeks and I'm guessing the release will be the 24th/25th June. It's looking good I have to admit. I spent maybe 30 minutes looking around on the test server but purposely didn't test much due to the fact I'm an explorer (and really I am in games). This of course puts me in a nasty position where I'd love to give feedback and test it out to try and scrape a Manticore mount but I want to get the "Ooooh" feeling when I explore LotD with my guildies. Still, maybe there's another chance to get one later down the line.

Well with the recent neglect of the site I owe it to everyone to at least try and get some updates going again. I hate this once a week post rate I have just now, so I'm going to try and drop a few lines of text when I can rather than feeling that I have to write a novel each time I post. A lot of WAR blogs have gone quiet recently, some have just disappeared and so long as I'm playing the game I'll try to post. I'm more than willing to have people contribute articles as well if they want, just drop me a mail (address is over there on the right.. no right.. up a bit.. top bit. No, not that top. Down... Up.. there we go). Also in my personal challenge is to respond to comments more as I tend to leave them a bit :(

So here we go folks, over the next couple of weeks we're going to welcome in a new era of WAR. One that features the cast of The Mummy crossed with Indiana Jones..

Can't wait!

Monday, 1 June 2009

The crystal ball of Lokax (ok it's a shiny rock)

So was thinking about the future of WAR. Specifically how WAR would be able to handle an expansion considering the end game is already set in stone. Got me thinking about what we could see in the future of WAR. So here's my predictions, I'll have to revisit this over the next few months as well :)

Summer 2009: Land of the Dead is released, adds quite a lot to the game and after a few initial hiccups and totally broken encounters a few patches make it a valuable aspect of the game.

September 2009: Mythic announce work on the first paid expansion which will focus on revitalising the end game, including completely redesigned cities and fourth tiers. During this period Mythic do not release any content patches but focus on server stability, bug fixes and class balance.

Winter 2009: More details are released about the expansion and a closed beta is announced for Spring.

Summer 2010: The expansion is released bringing a lot of new players in as well as causing a few people to quit due to major tier 4 changes, people don't like change. It scares them. The level cap is upped to 50 and renown rank to 100. This works due to a total redesign of Altdorf and IC... The other cities basically quietly forgotten about and brushed away and don't even show on the map anymore

Winter 2010: The second live expansion is released adding customisable guild keeps which can be sieged.

2011: The second paid expansion is announced bringing a third realm into the mix. Mythic have been planning this since 2009 and it fits in nicely to the redesigned fourth tiers. Also added are Mythic Levels which go from 1-5 (check out the champion levels for DAoC). Another live expansion is released focusing on siege warfare.

2012: The second expansion is released, no live expansion is released this year due to focus on releasing it however we get some minor content to tide us over.

2013:WAR keeps it's core players, it never makes it's 1m subs but it's got healthy enough numbers to keep going for many years to come. Another live expansion comes out as we usher in five years of WAR.