Heart of Thorns: Small Additions Bring Big Changes

Posted by on July 19, 2015 - No Comments »

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. Read more…

F2P Friday: Brawlhalla to the Rescue! (Giveaways)

Posted by on July 17, 2015 - No Comments »

f2p_friday_brawlhalla_brawlball_brawlsketball_giveaway

Come with me if you want access, skins!

F2P Friday is our weekly showcase of the growing free-to-play market, from MMORPGs to first-person shooters and beyond. The stream team will feature the latest, greatest and just plain fun games that cost you nothing to play. Ever. Granted, you should throw the developer a bone if you enjoy a title, but you don’t have to.

Earlier today I sat there, dipping a long shoestring fry into a vat of ketchup. The turkey burger was fancy, a superb coleslaw atop it and a spicy aioli combined to add the juiciness the turkey meat naturally lacks. The “juices” melded with the spiced patty well, not perfectly distributed but enough to take the twang off the overzealous seasoning. Munching a piece of spud I decided the ketchup was of questionable mix, likely containing high fructose corn syrup but I needed something to peak the senses as I wracked my brain for a challenge for tonight’s show.

Aimlessly eating I contemplated. There are plenty of options for F2P Friday and more coming every day, but bouncing all over the place isn’t gratifying. Nor does it make for a consistent show. Most importantly, the idea of being listless, unfocused in my gaming has been upsetting. I’m not perfecting or beating anything. Once that self awareness struck I went over the list of currently installed F2P games, two card games, an action MMOG, a dungeon crawler and whatever you would categorize Brawlhalla as.

Having heard about Ant-man patch issues over in the Marvel Heroes universe the decision became apparent. It’s time to begin my training in the latest game modes, Bombsketball, Brawlball, before I continue my tutelage in 1v1 Ranked. Gold tier here I come!

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which is scheduled to kick off around 7:00 PM EST. This week’s giveaways begin immediately! Read more…

Infinite Crisis Community Jumps Ship ASAP

Posted by on July 17, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_community_closing_Infinite-Crisis_Battle

A few weeks back Turbine Entertainment made what must have been an agonizing decision to pull the plug on Infinite Crisis. Its first foray in a multiplayer online battle arena had only launched weeks before after a large showing at PAX East and the recent addition of Ranked play. Why it was cut is still largely unknown. I mean, why drop all that money on a booth at a major event less than two months before such a tough decision (logistics of conventions is a strong reason).

My heart sank when the announcement came across my desk. We’ve followed the game since its original announcement, snagging numerous exclusive interviews with Cardell Kerr and others as we followed along alpha and beta stages. Then boom, we find out the game has a few more weeks of life. August 14 it will be no more.

I wanted to celebrate what was, and what could have been the ensuing MOBA Monday. The rest of the community didn’t care. It was gone. It didn’t matter that prices of any customization, be it cosmetic or an enhancement, had been set to the lowest possible price. Seemingly everyone took their ball and went home. I gave it 20 minutes doing the would-be sign-off show before giving up. I accidentally left the game running in the background, waiting for a queue.

One finally came. Over an hour into the show. Read more…

MOBA Monday: Let’s Play Dead Island: Epidemic

Posted by on July 13, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_moba_monday_dead_island_epidemic_big_hoarderMOBA 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.

Dead Island: Epidemic is a perfect acronym for a zombie title. We’re positive that wasn’t a mistake. That the marketing department had a moment of brilliance in a round table meeting that ended in fist pounds and shouting. We’ve played it a few time in the past and it’s time to check back in on Deep Silver’s MOBA. One which enters the fray by completely trashing your typical two or three lane pushing map by, what for it, adding a third zombie-forsaken team to the mix. Yeah, it’s borderline FFA.

Queues have been a bit of a hang up in our past streams. Thankfully, DIE has gone open beta. Moving so far as to enter open beta testing. Outside the pure PvP potential of a full on epidemic, there’s always the entirely co-op experience that we’ve, against our strongest attempts, focused on up until this point.

The crafting system developed by Stunlock Studios is quite intriguing. Obviously, I’ve only sunk a portion of time into the rabbit hole, but it’s far more enjoyable than the token rune system in League of Legends or the more customizable two-tier system employed in the soon-to-be defunct system Infinite Crisis.

All this and more shall begin around 9:00 PM EST. Hit the jump or head directly to the channel page to watch live. Don’t forget to follow for all the updates and giveaway opportunities. Read more…

F2P Friday: Haven’t Played Hearthstone in Forever

Posted by on July 10, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_Blackrock_Mountain_f2p_fridayF2P Friday is our weekly showcase of the growing free-to-play market, from MMORPGs to first-person shooters and beyond. The stream team will feature the latest, greatest and just plain fun games that cost you nothing to play. Ever. Granted, you should throw the developer a bone if you enjoy a title, but you don’t have to.

The last time Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft was on this show it was hosted by our resident addict. Shaktaji took the reigns entertaining with her own brand of card-based mayhem, brainstorming and random number generated groans. That time distance is, for all intents and purposes, the last time I took to Hearthstone with any regularity. I’m not sure why or what happened. Burn out, card fatigue, skill gap, time or alternative interests, but I’ve definitely stepped away from Blizzard’s card cashcow.

As with World of Warcraft, news is buzzing around Hearthstone thanks to incoming content, so why not return for a peek at what I’ve been missing? After all, one has to get their bearings on the offerings of Blackrock Mountain before the rumors new expansion blows away all preconceived notions of a viable deck.

Be sure to subscribe to the channel for all our streams, giveaways and shenanigans. Hit the jump for the livestream, which is scheduled to kick off around 7:00 PM EST. Don’t forget to check out our game of the week over on Poki.com! Read more…

E3 2015: In Pictures

Posted by on July 10, 2015 - No Comments »

P1020236
Read more…

SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained – Ravana

Posted by on July 10, 2015 - No Comments »

lh_deities_demigods_gods_smite_ravana_Default_CardSMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained is a column dedicated to introducing prospective players of SMITE to its massive backstory of lore. From the Greek to Hindu, each week we’ll look at two characters from a major pantheon and provide a quick recap of their history and in what capacity their digital incarnation will represent on the field of Hi-Rez Studios’ new MOBA.

Lore: Ravana is one of the major gods in Hinduism. The ten-headed being was the primary antagonist of the Hindu epic Ramayana, one of the major Sanskrit poems from Valmiki. Described as the king of Lanka in the epic, Ravana was the brother of the sleepy Kumbhakarna and Vibhishana born into a powerful family of a great sage and princess. That crown came at a cost breaking family bonds by usurping the throne from his half brother Kubera.

Ravana was universally known as a great scholar, despite being described by some as aggressive and arrogant. He used his scholarly prowess for himself and bestowed it upon others. Even the great Rama once called him the Great Brahmam. That is until Ravana kidnapped Rama’s wife Sita while he was in exile. The dastardly feat began a major war between the powerful beings that rival the epic battles from the Lord of the Rings. The fury of Rama took him through all comers until he stood toe-to-toe with Ravana in singles combat. Ultimately, the Demon King of Lanka was felled. Read more…

Instance Gratification 35: Draenor Dagger Distribution

Posted by on July 7, 2015 - No Comments »

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.
Read more…