Hallowe’en screens..

Our Witching Night, in pictures:

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It had to happen eventually

I got a quest to kill a pig. I feel strangely vindicated.

The pig must die

The pig must die

We want to learn!

There’s been a ton of talk about open RvR in Tier 4 of late. Why? Because all us pesky early-adopters are hitting Tier 4 and we write and gripe about the things we do. And I do take the ‘wait-and-see’ approach, especially as there are more and more tentative forays into Tier 4 RvR all the time on our server, and I think it’ll be the same everywhere, though not always at the same timescale. Mythic knows there’s a problem, they’ll do their best to fix it. And people signing up generally want to play an RvR game, not a game of Serpent’s-Passage-till-your-eyes-bleed.

I do have one complaint about Tier 4 and the campaign there though, and I personally believe it’s a valid one. Why didn’t they train us in how it all works at the lower tiers? I mean, we got to understand capture the flag, the various ways and means to capture battlefield objectives and increasingly larger keeps. We got to learn about siege weaponry (love!) and postern doors, and yet, the moment you get into Tier 4 you get a whole new set of things to get your head around if you don’t go and read up everything there is to read across the web on it.

Zones being locked. It’s a bit of a mindfuck, when you’ve not really seen it before. And then the campaign moving elsewhere.. and yet you can still drift around the open RvR areas (I use drift because I have a gyro!), and not see anyone. Yes, it’s locked, but it feels strange, almost eerie. And you still get nice xp for scouting the objectives! And then instinctively knowing all the stages you need to go through to capture a zone or to head for the Inevitable City. I’m not stupid, but it is quite tricky to go from ‘wander anywhere and take whatever keep feels nice’ to being directed for the good of the final campaign. We’ll get there, but I wonder if there was any way to do it differently. And I wonder if that’s some of the reason the spontaneous open RvR isn’t as plentiful in Tier 4 as everyone seems to be reporting it is in Tier 3.

Anyway, just another quick thought from my weekend away from the game.

They call me MISTER Poppet!

Wotcha everyone,

Yes, it’s another part of my ongoing random musing about names.  Particularly on Role-Playing servers, seeing as that is my server type of choice, and at the moment, I’m musing about second names.  Surnames.  This one’s particularly rambly, so you might want to get a brew in and relax.  And enjoy the journey.  Sorry.

So, here I am at level 20.  I get me a horse and a surname.  It’s almost like a coming of age ceremony, similar to your first legal beer, or your provisional driving license.  Just with less fanfare from your parents.

And seeing as I was in Altdorf sorting horse (no, I haven’t named it.  I make it a policy never to name something I might one day eat.  And there’s good eating on a horse) and surname, I decided to do my bit for Altdorf, and finish off some of the quests sitting in my Tome of Knowledge.  No, it wasn’t about clearing some space in there, and it wasn’t about getting some easy cash and quest xp.  No.  Honest.

Booting down doors, taking names.  Investigating corpses floating in rivers, and generally being seconded to the Altdorf Rozzers.  Quite fun, really.  And within I few minutes, I’ve got the line; “They call me MISTER Poppet!” running around in the Movie-In-My-Head(tm).  Lots of fun, really, and as mentioned earlier, the side effect of helping Altdorf out left me with a warm feeling in my tummy.

It was only later that I started checking out other people’s surnames.  Sometimes things are just going too quickly to take note of *any* names, never mind two for the same set of pixels that I’m chasing around a battlefield.  And I’m visually lazy.  I spend a lot of time at work having to be very accurate about what I’m reading, so on my own time I slack.

But every so often, a name registers in my subconscious, and batters through the wall to my… umm… very conscious.  Sometimes it’s a really nice name, one that makes me immediately hate the owner for having a better imagination than me.  Hates them!  Really hates them!  Whilst congratulating them!  And others, I read a name that makes me wince.  Anyone that thinks the name “Shadowbladedeathdancer” is ok for a name, or even worse chose it because “It’s cool” deserves to have their internet rights removed.  I apologise if there actually is a “Shadowbladedeathdancer” out there.  It’s a name I chose at random, and I wasn’t singling you out for scorn.  Even if you deserve it, for having a name like that.  It’s not cool.  It’s not a name.  It’s words stuck together!

In between the two extremes we get the “comedy” names.  Sometimes it’s an innocuous enough name, whose comedy is only released at level 20 with the addition of the surname.  Sometimes not.  Either way, the question of whether or not comedy names are acceptable is not something that will be resolved in this rambling pondering; I first encountered the “issue” of comedy names in a forum post shortly after I started playing Everquest.  It’s going to be going for a long, long while.

The issue here is that, just like World of Warcraft, comedy is a part of the world.  And therefore, part of the lore.  So when the self-appointed Lore-Police start screaming about names, and comedy names at that, they don’t have a leg to stand on.  When the NPCs have comedy names, how can reporting comedy player character names be enforced.  It gets worse; the original Intellectual Property evolved over many years, and there are scary amounts of incidental and obvious humour;  One of the early army lists for 1st edition was called “The Insane Conjurations of the Necromancer Colin”, or some such.  And one of the 2nd edition Regiments of Renown, whose name I cannot remember despite getting all het up about it, was a regiment of sea-elves tasked with guarding ports.  Their usual challenge (in Elven, of course) was “Elo cailor, gotda leit?”  Even when I first read it, I groaned.  [I await anyone who has the original information who can correct my shoddy failing memory.  I was about 15 when I first encountered Warhammer, so it’s been a while since I have seen the original.  If you could correct it, well done.  Not only do you get 25 Hawley-points, but you’ll be making the inner child in me happy for getting some of it’s history back accurately.]

No, you don’t need to ask me, I will happily volunteer the information:  Yes, I am considering starting to greet Elves with that phrase in game.  It’s part of the lore, after all…  I just need the correction/confirmation to arrive, and I’m away.

So when the self-appointed Lore-Police report your comedy name, do you get to report the Van-Rentls of Marienburg for their comedy name?  Yes, another old piece of the world, there.

And I suppose the other question is this;  Do game designers get a “Get out of jail, free” card from what some people might refer to as the “Lore-Wielding Assassins of Joy”?  No, I don’t use that term.  Never.  But the point is that we don’t get to even comment on NPC names, so why do they get to change ours?

Personally, I hate to see an obvious gag name.  With a passion.  But I understand that they are a part of the world, so I turn a blind eye.  Of course, that blind eye means I won’t be healing them and won’t be helping them.  Swings and roundabouts, really.  With a comedy name, you need to be able to duck and weave…  But I respect them enough to not start reaching for the “report” button whenever someone with a comedy name batters me into the ground.  Again.

Cheers,
Hawley.

Attack of the RSS!

It’s quite a task when you go away to come back to thousands and thousands of things in your feed reader. And I’ve literally just started to go through them, because I want to read everything, some of it from blogs I’ve recently added, so I thought I’d make a post for me to link the highlights from the last few days, as I read through them. Stream of consciousness, hello!

Goblin Rampage has some comments on open RvR on Darklands (an Oceanic server), and it’ll mirror others’ experiences quite well. Looks like their Tier 4 is picking up now, just as ours is. Baby steps…

The Inevitable City has a whole bunch of interesting posts, including this one about wanting a feature to play your character phrases at appropriate times (ie. my Rune Priest would never say ‘Hello Handsome’ when I click on her for something). He follows up by listing all the Chaos female and Greenskin phrases.

Quick yay for Esri, published in Massive Gamer Mag!

A campaign I’m willing to get behind (as I know he’ll support tome unlocks for healers. rar!).. Warhammer Tank reminds us of why damage taken is a very important stat. Seriously, I think it does need to be looked at for renown and xp in RvR – and we were all shocked at the Herald hint on how to increase renown as a healer by looking after your dps’ers. Denizens of Xibalba agrees.

Keen made a stand-out post about Tier 4 open RvR. It mirrors how many are feeling. I think his decision to make an alt and keep an eye on it is a good one. We’ve done the same and in one day back home, I’ve done more open RvR than in the two weeks beforehand. Finishing (for me, but not for the warband) in a massive fight in Praag. Normality restored.

Skimming Massively (cos it’s too long to read it all), I see that in an interview with Ten  Ton Hammer Paul Barnett says that if you like dwarfs you possibly look like one. I admit it, I do! Ardua from Echoes of Nonsense.. doesn’t!

Onto Waaagh. Lots, of course. All good. Just read it. One I wish I’d read straight away – the 50 small attractions of WAR.

Now really, I went and read everything and it’s taken me quite some time. I wish I could link to every post I read and thought ‘hrrm, good point’, but then this post would become crazy! So this is just a quick run-through, and something I’ll perhaps do again every so often. We do read everything we can when not in-game, at work or actually being made to do nasty Real Life(TM) things.

Thanks to every member of the WAR community, or the general blogging or gaming community that fills my downtime with interesting content, that I simply couldn’t get elsewhere.

October Newsletter hits

Brief highlights again, as I just got home from work and want to play 🙂

  • Heavy Metal event advertised, Nov 18th-Dec 2nd in Europe (so place your bets for launch of 1.1 here), scenario called Reikland Factory – open to all levels, all tiers and doesn’t contribute to campaign. 10% bonus to renown for playing it. Basic influence gives a trophy, advanced gives a cloak, elite gives access to the two new classes a full week early.
  • Overviews of Knight of the Blazing Sun and Blackguard
  • Witching Night announced – now till Nov 4th (has a couple of mask photos)
  • Advert for Red Alert 3 and Kossar’s Helm
  • Mark Jacobs’ State of the Game (for those who don’t know it already)
  • Concept Art – Order Epic Armour, Greenskin NPCs
  • Paul and Adam Gershowitz podcasts on Knight of the Blazing Sun and Blackguard
  • Paul’s videophone blog
  • Grab Bag (as previously reported)
  • “WAR Europe is the place to go for the most up-to-date news regarding your favorite (sic) game and ours – Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning!” (I had to quote this, as I’m still laughing)
  • Developer Profile: James Casey (Content Design Lead)
  • Blackguard and KotBS wallpapers
  • Community Spotlight – Warhammer Movies
  • Ads for Empire in Chaos (Warhammer Online novel) and joint DAoC/WAR subs for Europe

Big November Event! Daily quests, new scenario, preview of new classes!

Arrgh, as usual, just after we wrote some other post Mythic make a big announcement! *shakes fist at timezones*

So, we have an announcement about the November Live Event, dubbed “Heavy Metal”.

When the Heavy Metal live event begins on November 17th, players who log into WAR will see a new tab in the Tome of Knowledge. Clicking on this tab will open the Live Events page, where each day we’ll place a new daily task. Completing these daily tasks earns influence, just like you’d earn in a public quest. There are rewards for Basic, Advanced and Elite influence, culminating in the ultimate prize: the chance to play WAR’s new classes a full week before they’re released to the public! This last reward won’t be easy to earn, and players who want to get to the Elite level will need to log in each day and complete on the daily event.

And if that wasn’t enough, there’s a special live event scenario that will be available to all tiers for the duration. And it grants extra renown to players.

I’m hyped, Mythic sound as though they’d taken out all the stops here! I love daily quests and scenarios. And now it’s going to be harder than ever to decide which game to play in November. Game is very much ON.

Edit: Nov 18th for European players