A Game Best Played With People

Me and Arbitrary (last night)

Me and Arbitrary (last night)

The best and most standout parts of WAR are undoubtedly the Public Quests and the whole RvR setup. This is not to knock the questing or tome, but the activities I was enjoying the most by a long long way in game involved hanging out with other people. I found during beta that I didn’t much log on in the mornings and preferred to be around prime time, purely because the game was less interesting to me during the days. What pleases me is not necessarily what pleases others, but I do feel that the game needs other people. It’s both a good and a bad point. On the one hand, it’s an MMO, and playing with other people is THE major selling point. It’s incredible to finally find a game which plays so much to that particular strength of the genre. On the other, it won’t be so much fun if you play far outside prime time or in a very low populated realm/side. Scenarios will certainly help out here, by offering the option of numerically balanced(ish) RvR in capsule form. Plus they are fun.

I like single player games, and I think it’s handy for there to be activities in MMOs that don’t require lots of people. But there are some great single player games out there and I don’t need to get that particular fix from an MMO. I think that this aspect in particular of WAR will shape how people play it. The fact that it’s significantly more fun with other people and less fun solo will encourage people to moderate their hours. I don’t think that an MMO needs to be all things to all people, and I’m happy with the design decision to focus on the core strengths. That’s something I am taking away from Open Beta, with its increased number of players and servers.

What we did last night

Something here doesnt quite fit

Something here doesn't quite fit

No, I mean the printable stuff ;P Most people by now are getting their open beta access sorted out here (not all, though) and we had a lot of guildies online. So we decided to do ‘something’ together, and formed up a warband.

Then it was out into the unsuspecting world for some world RvR and objective taking. I don’t personally belong to the set of people who believe that zerging is evil. It can be quite fun in moderation, and it’s a nice gentle introduction to RvR for people who haven’t done much before. As long as they stay with the zerg (and the zerg waits for them if they get lost) then they can get a sense of what it’s all about.

As it happens, we had some good fights in Nordland, some of which we were outmanned and flanked from all sides. We took the ship objective (which is probably the most fun because of it being a ship — PvP areas are like playgrounds and the terrain and ships etc are like toys and climbing frames, at least that’s my theory) and the Festenplatz. Chaos did finally outzerg us so we decided to move on to High Elf lands.

In the Plains of Bone (earliest Elf world RvR area), we did outnumber the pitiful forces of Destruction. So naturally we chased them all over the map and took all the objectives. This is WAAAGH! They’ll probably do the same to us tomorrow.

Apart from being surprisingly good fun just to be running around and joking with guildies in game (at last), I was struck by how much the RvR newbies enjoyed themselves. And it wasn’t just a random group outing, there was a decent amount of renown and xp involved from taking those objectives and doing the associated quests, so everyone also benefited. To me, that’s good game design. Make it beneficial to do things that are fun. And vice versa.

Spot the Girls?

Spot the Girl?

And one last screenshot. This is our zerglet, having just taken one of the elven objectives (Altar of Khaine, I think). You see the dashing archmage in the background? I took this shot because someone had just commented that male and female high elves looked similar, and noted that pretty female archmage as an example. We pointed out that was actually a bloke 🙂

11 Responses

  1. We did a scenario at 6am today. Was awesome. Clearly though Order are the early risers as it was a bit of a trouncing we gave Destruction. Cheered me up that it was open that early though.

  2. It’s true I tells ya! All the robe wearing Elves look female when viewed from behind!

  3. Gah, pity I missed it, looks like it was a lot of fun… Looking forward to getting some proper time in next week for massed zerglet action!

  4. *muttergrumblesoddingpatchermoan*

    I really like the random tunnels that you get in RvR zones. Tiny short things yes, but they present options!

  5. I think you’re on the same beta server as me (picked the first one that popped up), but when I have roamed around there has been low to none open RvR. Mostly in the Empire-Chaos pairing, in the Elf areas I have only seen one high elf (which I killed).
    Drop a line in the IRC if you are planning a raid and I will be sure to meet you 😉

  6. I’m more of less out till tonight and then off to London tomorrow, but if I get the chance I will Regis. We’re on Karag Dron!

  7. I prefer to call it the “boat objective”.

  8. Sounds fun, wish I could hang with you guys sometime! Ah, the world is too big, too big.

  9. Syp, given our guild’s ever rising membership, the problem is more likely to be not tripping over us constantly :p As Arbitrary has pointed out, we’re on Karag Dron, and despite being a bunch of grumbly old farts, we’re really quite gregarious 😀

  10. Grimley, I think the problem is that Syp lives in that funny place where they play that game that you enjoy so much. You know, that rugby derivative will all the pads, confusing named after another more fittingly monikered sport 😉

  11. You mean that Other Game, the one that Sunderland FC is woefully bad at? As for Syp, I can see him moving over here if McCain gets in for 4 more years of the same 😉

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