Weekend draws near

Ok, I leave the house at 5:45am tomorrow to start my journey down to London. Friday I’ll be geeking out at the IMAX for Star Trek around 3pm, and then on saturday, from 4pm onwards I’ll be at the Cittie of Yorke pub in Holborn.

Spinks will be there for sure, as will my ever-dutiful husband, and we’re supposed to have the front room of the pub booked (whatever that means). Am hoping Ardua and his wife will also be there for sure, and I know a few others are coming, such as Skar!

My real name is Rebecca (hi all), but I think you’ll be able to just ask for the front room and from there we should be fairly obvious. I have no idea how many will be coming, hopefully enough that the pub doesn’t turf us out back into the main room – but if it does, we’ll still be at the pub, so find us.

Am sure we’ll all be as nervous as one another about meeting people from the online world, but every time I’ve done something like this the nerves soon dissipate, so don’t let those put you off!

Anyone is welcome. I doubt people will just be talking WAR, so if you have friends you’d like to meet in town, bring ‘em along also!

And spread the word, because this is genuinely the last time I’ll be able to pimp it without twitter assistance! (and if you need/want my mobile phone number, just comment and ask for it here and I’ll send you an email, same if you want to contact me for any reason!)


I had  no internet for 22h this week, followed by some heavy-duty overtime at work. Trying to catch up on reading/gaming tomorrow, so expect more then!

Weekend off

There will be a cute animal tomorrow, as promised, but at the moment I’m in the middle of a nasty cold, so am avoiding more work than I need to!

See you all soon (and ps. awesome work on the poll, I was leaning towards Magus anyway!)

What’s new in patch 1.2

Patch notes for 1.2 are out for the PTR, and there’s a lot of them to go around. Josh sums it up in a producer’s note as:

In the notes below you’ll see over 500 bug fixes, 10 plus pages of career balancing, numerous RvR improvements, UI improvements, continued building on our success with improving performance and server stability and a considerable review of our dungeon loot itemization.

As with all test realm patches, the details are subject to change before things go live. So if you are in the US, go test and give feedback!

Here’s the things we were most excited about:

New careers! New scenario (Twisting Tower)! Bitter Rivals event! Multiple Mail Attachments!

We have adjusted the way that the Disorient debuff will effect characters. Instead of increasing all ability cast times by a flat value, it will now increase cast times by a % of the total cast time of the spell. As a result, melee abilities and instant cast spells will no longer be affected by Disorient since their cast time is effectively 0 seconds. Specific abilities for each career affected by this change are noted below.

This is huge. Well, for Order anyway. Instants will now remain instant regardless of disorient debuffs.

Alter Fate: This ability is now affected by the Anti-Resurrection effect present at some encounters.

No more AE res in fortresses.

Knights and Chosen no longer get full aggro for other party members affected by their auras.

Black Orcs and Swordmasters get some more damage in general.

Fetch/ Terrible Embrace have had their cooldowns increased to 30s.

Resistances have been assigned to abilities that didn’t have them.

Witch Elves get some nerfs (and the crowd went wild!!!). Some armour piercing effects are removed, some abilities do less damage.

All chapters throughout the game within Tiers two through four have received a pass on Public Quest difficulty, much like what was previously done within Tier one. All affected Chapters now have an “Easy”, “Normal”, and “Hard” Public Quest. Public Quest points on the map have also been updated to reflect these difficulty levels as well as suggested player numbers to successfully complete.

The Apothecary production skill will now receive the majority of its materials from the Butchering and Cultivation gathering skills.

Bad news there for scavengers/ apothecaries. There’s a lot more streamlining for crafting in the patch as well.

Cultivation has a number of significant and exciting new changes in version 1.2! We have reduced the number of materials needed in Cultivation, allowing players to save significantly on inventory space. In addition, we have streamlined the leveling curve and added plant reaping to produce seeds. This will allow Cultivators to become much more self-sufficient. Finally, we have removed the vast majority of seed drops from the world, since the production of seeds can now be done by harvesting the plants the player has grown.

We have significantly reduced the number of additives needed, allowing players to use additives across a greater number of plant skill levels.

Say hello to your bag space again!

Apothecary has gotten a moderate update in version 1.2. The focuses of these changes were to streamline where Apothecary crafters received their determinants, as well cleaning up and streamlining the progression. In addition, we have added a number of new potions for Apothecary. Experiment with new ingredients and discover them for yourself!

Salvaging has been adjusted slightly in version 1.2, with the primary changes focusing on improving the rate at which Salvagers can skill up. In addition, the results from Salvaging have been adjusted so Salvagers can successfully skill up their Talisman crafting skill without needing a second gathering skill.

So good news there for salvagers/ talisman crafters.  Scavengers/ talisman crafters also make out, and butchers/ apothecaries become self reliant also.

Talisman crafting has been adjusted moderately in version 1.2, with the primary changes focusing on allowing players to create Talismans without needing a large number of additional components. In addition, we have reduced the potency of all Resistance Talismans in order to bring them in-line with other Talisman bonuses.


We have added two additional mount variants for each race. These have been added to the Stable masters in the capital cities.

* We have added three additional mount variants exclusive to guilds only. These can be purchased by visiting the Guild Quartermaster once your guild reaches Guild Rank 25.
* We have added three new improved mounts (Faster & Lower dismount chance) exclusive to guilds only. These can be purchased by visiting the Guild Quartermaster once your guild reaches Guild Rank 37.
New Zone Control Mechanism
To help place more emphasis on Keep claiming and defense, as well as to combat the “defense by not defending” strategy, we are introducing the Zone Control Domination mechanic. With this system, players who take and hold all Battlefield Objectives and claim Keeps in a contested zone (in Tier 4) or a shared RvR lake (in Tiers 2 and 3) have the opportunity to capture that zone, forgoing the standard mechanics of Zone Control.
You have to hold the objective for 30 mins and the keep for 2 hours before it will count for zone domination points. And keeps must be claimed by a guild for those 2 hours.
Hotspots on the main map will now vary in size, determined by how many people are involved. Additionally, hotspots will now display on the pairing maps.
We are introducing the new Rally Call system. At various intervals, players will be called to join the battle in the Tier 1 and Tier 2 RvR lakes. A button will appear near the mini-map, enabling willing participants to jump right into the action.
You’ll be able to teleport directly to a T1 or T2 hotspot in ORvR.
Keep door health will now properly reset 20 minutes after a failed attack.

No more prepping a keep by knocking the door down to 10% and then coming back later with a strike force to finish the job.

The oil at the keep Hatred’s Way is now attackable.

New LFG Window

The Open Party button has finally severed its ties to the player portrait and moved to the Menu Bar. This new Parties and Warbands window now has all information about Open Parties and Party Management, as well as the new Looking for Group system.

Twitter ye Not!

Twitter, my new pastime. It’s a mini-game within the internet, and though I’ve been using it a while it’s really just exploded. You can follow celebs like Stephen Fry, or nobodies like me. And with this new explosion, there’s also a ton of interesting gaming-related twitterpeeps you can follow and interact with in what can only be described as static instant messaging. Personally, I love it. You may hate it, but with it getting into the news, you can guarantee it’s about to get even bigger.

Some twitters I think you should follow (I’m not going to put people’s personal ones… yet, but you can probably find a BUNCH of WAR bloggers and others on twitter with a bit of detective work – or asking people ;p): WARHerald, RockPaperShot, Massively 

Twitter also allows for something called hash tags. If you use a hash tag in a post, such as #Warhammer it can then be searched together with all other posts with the same tag. So I’m thinking, what we need is to agree on a tag for us all to use if we have a twitter post up of interest to the WAR community (using #WAR might be a bit scary considering #war, so we probably need something else). Suggestions gratefully received!!

Also, I’m thinking of making a blogroll-type thing with all the Gaming/WAR-related twitter feeds/people. If you want to be included, then leave a comment here, or tweet me!

(and thanks to Spinks for the much more awesome title for the blog post)

The Age of Blogging

[A quick out-of-retirement post, to suppport this major new initiative by WAR bloggers, who are a FANTASTIC and SUPPORTIVE bunch, and you should join them!! I’ve taken the text from something Syp wrote, hopefully he won’t sue me ;p]

The basic idea behind this little initiative is that we want to help you start a blog about Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning. It’s really that simple!

Who are we looking for? Anyone with a passion for the game who wants to share their Warhammer experience with others.

Why are we doing this? With the rise of pre-release hype and fall of some unmet post-release expectations, we’ve noticed the shrinking of a once large and booming Warhammer Online blogging community. We think there’s room for this community to grow again and we’d like to help new bloggers get their feet wet!

When are we running this initiative? While we’re always available to help out with whatever blog-related assistance you need, BlogWarhammer will be running the Age of Blogging initiative from Jan 1-31 2009.

What will we do to help? We will help promote your blogs by showcasing them on our own blogs. We will also provide as much technical support and blogging advice as you need.

How do you get started? Here are a few free and easy-to-use blogging platforms you should investigate. Let us know if you need any help and please feel free to introduce yourself in this thread!

Traditional blogging platforms
WordPress (and here)


Welcome to the Age of Blogging!

Blogs that support WAR: Age of Blogging and will feature your blog are
Stunty Stomper
The Greenskin
Wizards & Wenches
Way of the Chosen
RP That Way
Tome of Knowledge
Fires of War
Obsessive Focus
Blame the Healer
Echoes of Nonsense
Metro Gamer
Lucky Number 2D6
From the Forging of Ice and Fire

Headstarts redux

Ok, I thought I was going a bit crazy this morning when I read the coverage about the headstarts announced as 14th and 16th at 7am EDT.

Previously, we’d been told 14th and 15th September for these. And that’s what I reported a while back, when the news was given.

I’m not really able to make any comment on this, I suggest though that we assume the American dates are the correct ones and don’t hassle GOA about it too much until the issues with the open beta are done with. Am fairly sure we’ll know before it matters!

The Joy of Trez

Wotcha everyone,

Trez. It’s all shiny, and sparkly, and makes us face unspeakable odds, for just the chance of getting it.

Warhammer Online is no exception to the rule that online games must offer shiny trez. However, it does handle it slightly differently to the accepted norm.

And those exceptions were obvious from the start. NPCs were doling out quests, but they weren’t offering a choice of items that were seemingly picked at random from out of the ether. I didn’t get a choice of light, medium or heavy armour, with a variety of bonuses focused in the general direction of one or more classes. No. My Warrior Priest got offered some Warrior Priest armour, as worn by fashion conscious Warrior Priests. And very much in a “take it or leave it” fashion. So I took it.

It didn’t even strike me as odd that I didn’t get a choice, though. Maybe it was the shininess of getting in the beta, or the bewilderment of a brand new game, but I only started wondering at the restricted choice a long while later.

And then realised that it wasn’t restricted. Pretty much all of the time, I have a choice of Quest Rewards, Influence Rewards, and Renown Rewards. These are guaranteed, put the work in and get the item, items. I can check them out ahead of time, and decide which I would prefer. And on top of that, there are random Trez drops, from mobs and Public Quest chests.

Quite often, from Influence rewards for example, I’d get a choice of *what* item I’d like. Boots or gloves, Cassock or Warhammer, that sort of thing. But they were always from the Warrior Priest wardrobe.

I like that. I don’t have to worry about ending up wearing the epnymous World of Warcraft “Clown Suit”. I get really cool outfits, because the outfits are designed with my class in mind. Not for everyone’s class. So I’ll *always* look like a Warrior Priest. And if I’m not a fan of the outfit, I can dye many of them. It’s not just the stats that are important to me. It’s the looks.

I also love the way that random monstie drops can be any quality, at any level. From grey, through to epic, from level 1 onwards. It’s brave, but great. And the drop rate was far more generous than in other games I’ve seen; maybe this was because it was the beta, but I felt the drop rate was good enough to mean that characters got to play with nice items whilst levelling, rather than just at maximum level.


{Spinks: I agree! I never understood why NPCs in some games were so keen to offer me gear that I obviously can’t use. In fact, I don’t really like the idea of drops at all. I don’t ask my games to be hyper-realistic but why exactly would a pig be carrying(?) a mage’s staff ? And wouldn’t I be more keen to find out about its hapless former owner than grab it and run? The PQ influence system and renown gear vendors were pretty much tailor made for people like me. It’s great. I do the fun things I was going to do anyway and eventually I get to go buy some nice gear which is tailor-made for my class and all matches. And best of all? I don’t feel forced to rely on random drops.

There is one problem though. Despite all this, I have a love/hate relationship with cool random drops. I love it when I win them and I hate it when I lose them! But I can be quite happy with the occasional green/blue/purple that I can use or send to my guild or sell, as long as I don’t feel that I NEED that drop to do the stuff I want to do. So I’m pretty happy with WAR’s loot system, at least from what I’ve seen in beta.}

Post-weekend reading

It’s a bit quiet this weekend, wonder why – but that gives me time for a proper stroll around the forums and fansites, where we get a lot of inspiration and get to see a really wide range of thoughts and ideas about the game. I’d definitely recommend branching out and checking some sites you’ve not checked before in the run up to release.

Thanks first, to Warhammer Conflict for allowing me to enjoy this: WoW Detox (don’t mock, we may all need it someday).

And after Warhammer Conflict, I stopped by Waaaghead, and decided I want a chicken run! Those in my guild (and server), beware! Ten Ton Hammer forums are also discussing chickens – it’s almost a meme!

Away from the forums, Ten Ton Hammer has a really interesting editorial going – will WAR succeed? They present a for and against argument and it takes an age-old discussion point and revitalises it. Take a look and see what you think.

Over at Chewing Pixels, Simon Parkin remarks on his Gamasutra article about Paul Barnett’s talk at Develop Brighton and Paul’s response to his article on Myspace. Paul drops by in the comments of the new piece and suggests further conversation.

Olympic link of the week is to a story you probably all have seen — Georgian and Russian athletes share an emotional embrace on the podium. You see stories like this, and remember why we make such a big fuss about the Olympic Games …

For an embrace of a different kind: A Funcom GM was sacked for cybering with Age of Conan player… you can read the details here and then decide if you want to go look at the transcript.

The Institute of Library and Museum Sciences has awarded a $250k-ish grant to the University of Texas’ School of Information Studies to study and investigate the collection and preservation of MMOs. Here’s an article about it from the professional journal, followed by some links that drew me to it from Kotaku and Game Culture.

Thallian is speculating about WAR’s impact. He actually is pretty positive about it, but cunningly expresses this in a gloomy way. A lot of sound thinking here though, which category do you fall into?

Games Day (UK) I-Spy

I-Spy books were around a lot when we were growing up. Basically they were spotter’s guides that included points for everything you saw, in a little book you could helpfully write on (always fun as a child).

Anyway, in my excitement and nervousness about actually going to Games Day I decided to sit down and create for everyone a little I-Spy sheet to supplement other Games Day activities. Feel free to amend it for US events (you could even use it for Comic-con over the next couple of days). And I’m happy to take suggestions of things I may have missed!

Games Day I-Spy (Google Doc)

ps. the chocolate entry exists to make sure I personally get some points 🙂