Archive for the ‘Other MMOs’ Category

PC Gaming Woes Still Exist

24 August 2015 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_pc_gaming_woes_ivanI was reading an Ars Technica article a few weeks back that was ruminating on the benefits of PC gaming outside the usual “graphics are prettier” argument that’s tossed at console fanboys. I’ve long straddled the fan boy arguments. Entering the rabbit hole only for the creative copy and memes. Anyways, this article, which I was unable to find in 10 minutes of searching, was discussing how great being a PC gamer is. I kinda chuckled while reading it. Not because it was grossly inaccurate or adding to the flame wars but because it was at odds with my personal experience at the time.

You’ll recall numerous issues with Comcast. Complications with box heating. Drivers causing random crashes. Upgrade woes followed by authentication conundrums. Juggling all these issues while streaming 2-3 times a week was an arduous task. Hence my reaction to the article, the mild chuckling to myself. Yes, of course PC gaming has come a long way despite what seemingly every Wall Street analyst and “market research” company espouses. Steam has consolidated the distribution market, making Valve millions. There’s no better time to be an indie developer. Games are more often than not released on multiple platforms, including PC, than not. Multiplayer largely remains completely free and the free-to-play genre continues to explode everywhere. General support and compatibility are better than ever. Continue Reading

What’ll Get Me to Pay in Free-to-Play Games?

14 August 2015 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_wildstar_f2p_purchaseIn general, I’m a major purchaser of everything video games. I’ve kickstarted a fair share of titles, the latest being Bloodstained. I grab magazines, retro titles and items, Collector’s Editions and far too many versions of 3DS. Yet F2P games have made little dent on my budget. Comparatively, that group of purchase may not register higher than rounding over the course of a year. Perhaps most shocking is that I truly don’t know why F2P games take ~<1% of my gaming budget. An obscene inverse relative to how much I play them. This general lack of interest flies in the face of my former role as a Community Manager where I helped get millions of other players to purchase in-game currency.

I can count on one hand the amount of free-to-play purchases I have performed this year. Or I could use a goose egg. It’s that bad. Over the years the genre has flourished, it may be two hands. What has made me pull the trigger? That’s secondary to the important question; why haven’t I been pulling the trigger? Continue Reading

QuakeCon 2015: Bethesda Debuts BethesdaNet

23 July 2015 | No Comments » | Jeremy Whittington

bethesda-net-landing-pageBethesda has joined the ranks of gaming companies to host their own platform for game delivery. It will be interesting to see how it turns out. There is a very loyal fan base for Bethesda and its games, but seeing what happened with Origin and the exploits on the Xbox Store I’m skeptical to say the least.

BethesdaNet is in its initial launch phase. They have plans to build a community around its games and allow people to chat with friends and the community team. It will also be integrated with other features like DOOM SnapMap, re-branded support forums, and more!

You can check it out here: https://bethesda.net/

Keep following our feed for any breaking news from #Quakecon2015!

Heart of Thorns: Small Additions Bring Big Changes

19 July 2015 | No Comments » | Thirstyriver

As an avid Guild Wars player since the original title came out in 2005, I obviously had an obligation to move on to Guild Wars 2 when it was released seven years later.

Unlike the original title, Guild Wars 2 did not have the option to have a multiclass character. How this worked in the original game was that your class was able to have a major and minor class, allowing you a plethora of combinations and playstyles. Wanted to be a tanky support? Why not make a Warrior / Monk? Wanted to quick, evasive, and lethal? A Ranger / Thief was probably your best bet.gw1_1

However in the 2nd title ArenaNet went with a different approach. Instead of having the ability to have multiple classes per character, each class was refined by weapon sets and trait lines instead. Now at launch a lot of players (including myself) had agreed that this ending up feeling stale up to a certain point. Without the ability to mix and match classes you were bound to a certain amount of core skills that no matter how you built your class you were stuck using them.

Lately though, ArenaNet has answered the outcry and completely revamped the trait system. While this doesn’t directly affect your core skills per weapon, its approach made the classes feel new again. In a recent overhaul, each class was given a new elite skill along with a few new utility skills. And like any other MMO, adding anything to the game requires a huge amount of time devoted to balancing the classes. Amazingly ArenaNet has done a fine job keeping each class in check in all 3 major aspects of the game. PvE, PvP, and World vs. World. Continue Reading

Instance Gratification 35: Draenor Dagger Distribution

7 July 2015 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_instance_gratification_hellfire_draenor_daggersInstance Gratification is the return of one of our premiere video outings. Originally featuring the cast of founder bloggers thrashing World of Warcraft dungeons and viewer runs of Dungeon & Dragons Online, the reinvigorated column heads to the realm of the Twitch channel. Come join us every Tuesday for dungeon dives, solo attempts and general loot hoarding in your favorite games.

Solidsamm was created with one express purpose, to introduce the world to the wonderfully sharp edges of his daggers. Backstab, Fan of Knives, Eviscerate, as any true rogue knows these abilities are best handled with a small, easily concealable blade. It should not be the size of an entire character. Nor even a measurable portion of one. If that were the case it’d be difficult to slip them in betwixt someone’s ribs, Forsaken aside. Furthermore, it’d be nigh impossible to Kidney Shot an adversary with the hilt the size of your thigh.

I digress.

Solidsamm was meant for one thing, DPS. He hasn’t performed his sole purpose for existing in far too long. One could argue he’s in the past right. A past where he didn’t even exist yet, so distributing any daggers would be ahead of his time but we’re not getting into time paradoxes today. Or ever, since the current state of lore – among other “features” – in the World of Warcraft simply makes me sad. Instead we’ll be getting our questing on, then, ideally, our dungeoning on to head towards raiding as a rogue. Because healing has become oh, so boring! To think I was so excited to heal again once upon a time…

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and general shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which is scheduled to kick off by 7:00 PM EST and run for an eventful two hours.
Continue Reading

Instance Gratification 34: Wakanda Shall Level Cap (Giveaway)

30 June 2015 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_instance_gratification_marvel_heroes_black_pantherInstance Gratification is the return of one of our premiere video outings. Originally featuring the cast of founder bloggers thrashing World of Warcraft dungeons and viewer runs of Dungeon & Dragons Online, the reinvigorated column heads to the realm of the Twitch channel. Come join us every Tuesday for dungeon dives, solo attempts and general loot hoarding in your favorite games.

That’s not to say that the level capping will happen during today’s stream but you better believe my Black Panther, whichever sex I stick with, will be hitting the proverbial wall in the near future. My Marvel Heroes play has almost been entirely presented online via Instance Gratification and F2P Friday. This means you can check out almost every twist and turn in the original story from Bendis before diving into the Norse pantheons twisted by Marvel for their own purpose.

After sending a few flurry of knives at Dr. Doom I’ve made my way to the numerous other challenges presented by Gazillion. It’s really quite insane how much the company offers us gamers. Not simply content to group up and defeat, but hard modes, alternate crafting mechanics and ridiculous options for character, team and team-up customization. I’ve plenty of challenges and even a one-shot or two remaining, which’ll be tonight’s focus.

Frankly, I still don’t understand a lot of what’s still on offer. But that’s okay with me, in some scenarios, these days. As much as being the best is enjoyable, it’s also fun to find things out by mistake. Or from a group members, the community or a complete stranger. More recently I’ve realized that freaking out on a stream only to determine, for instance, that there’s a loot vacuum button and auto vacuum options. Doing so in this capacity ensures that I’ll likely never forget that feature. Because, well, it kinda made me feel like a jackass.

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and general shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which is scheduled to kick off by 7:00 PM EST and run for an eventful two hours. And yes, Random Hero Boxes will be on the line! Continue Reading

Blizzard’s Monetization of its F2P Games

26 June 2015 | 5 Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_monetization_business_model_blizzard_f2p

If there was any doubt in the F2P model the success of Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft has made it perfectly clear that it’s not a niche and isn’t going anywhere any time soon. It’s here to stay, simple as that. While World of Warcraft likely won’t ever be making a full transition it’s quite clear that Blizzard Entertainment is at least analyzing the model for its future titles, constructing Heroes of the Storm in this realm. Recently, Blizzard has touted some new content, even features for its two F2P universes.

The ~$10 price point for the hero portraits in Hearthstone, and skins and heroes in Heroes of the Storm come off as high. Begging the question is Blizzard over pricing these items, is Blizzard producing more “up market” items or, like Nintendo, does Blizzard believe the price points of many F2P shops are simply too low to be sustainable long term? Continue Reading

MOBA Monday: A Squirrel God You Say? (Giveaway)

22 June 2015 | No Comments » | Patrick "iTZKooPA" Mulhern

lh_moba_monday_smote_founders_pack_xbox_one_release_launchMOBA Monday is a weekly showcase of how to perform, eh, let’s go with adequately – we hope – in a massive online battle arena. The streaming squad features the hottest, upcoming or most interesting titles of their and the communities fancy for a few rounds of PvP shenanigans in our weekly Twitch channel staple.

We’ve been plugging along in SMITE for ages. Years actually. Unlike some titles, getting in on the ground floor is fairly inexpensive. Snag a Founders Pack and you’re in the game with full access. Naturally, that’s if you want to pay at all. Of course, I’ve found quite a bit of value in that pack. Years played and all. Conquest, the since-retired Domination, ages of Arena. That’s given me some skill in the game. Not much mind you. I’m stuck being a Bronze League scrub. Probably should practice more.

That’s exactly what’s going to happen later tonight. In addition to a collection of Conquest battles, likely seeing me rolling around as a guardian, we’ll be slipping in a little giveaway, or two, or three. We caught up with Hi-Rez Studios during this past week at E3. The team was camped in the Microsoft booth for a very good reason. SMITE will be dropping on Xbox One this August.

Oh, and the game has a freaking squirrel god from Norse mythology. Yeah, I can play as a screaming, gossiping squirrel. You thought bees was crazy.

All this and more shall begin around 9:00 PM EST. Hit the jump or head directly to the channel page to watch live. We’ll be giving away a god and recolor skin during the SMITE portion of the stream. Don’t forget to follow for all the updates and giveaway opportunities. Continue Reading