zaterdag 26 mei 2012

SWTOR: A quiet universe.

I have been slowly progressing on my smuggler Morenn, who has just reached level 36.
Right now she is questing on Balmorra, progress has been somewhat slow as i am staying away from all heroic quests, no sense in trying them when there are only a few people on the planet most of the time.

It's definitely something i have noticed, everywhere i go there seem to be only a few people on the planet, obviously most people who do play have leveled up and moved on and there are very few new players.
It has been kind of the same with my guild, usually it's just me online and maybe every now and then i see another person logging in, although in this screenshot there are actually 3 people logged in (including me).

So right now i am skipping (dropping) any heroic quests i get and just concentrate on doing the normal quests, obviously i am missing out on quite a bit of content here, but yeah, there's not much i can do about it.

Don't get me wrong though, i am still having fun, the smuggler main story has been quite good and i really enjoy the interaction with my companions, actually in the above screenshot you see me leveling up after a nice chat with Risha in a cantina, who is by far my favorite companion.

I guess i'll be saving that heroic content for later, along with codex entries and holocrons that i missed.

vrijdag 25 mei 2012

38 Studios a final goodbye.

Not even a day after the bad news of the BioWare/SWTOR layoffs came even worse news this time it's a sudden (unexpected) shutdown of an entire company.

A few very good posts have allready been made about this and i think Keen and Graev worded it perfect:
Quote: "Following games closely and being so excited for something, just to have it shut down at a moment’s notice, is the hardest part of being such eager gaming enthusiasts.  Such potential for something fresh or new is destroyed, but we’ll continue to see a new Call of Duty game released every year and a horrible MMO will see the light of day simply because it has a huge publisher.  So frustrating."
 One can't help but wonder what the hell went on on the business side of 38 studios to "run out of money" so suddenly to be closed down like that and i can't help but feel bad for those working so hard on the game, it must be very frustrating to know that now all your hard work will probably not see the light of day now.

I absolutely had my eyes on 38 studios or rather on Project Copernicus.
I did like Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning quite a bit and am definitely not done playing and was quite curious to see what this franchise would turn into, well i guess we now know...

Nicolaus Copernicus - Died 24 May 1543
Project Copernicus - Died 24 May 2012
Irony ?

woensdag 23 mei 2012

It's never easy.

Most of you have probably by now heard of the layoffs at BioWare/SWTOR.
Eventhough it was expected that after a succesfull launch (some) people would  lose their jobs, lots of people get hired on contract base, it is never an easy thing. Especially when it happens to a game or company you like.

However some of the layoffs for SWTOR are somewhat unexpected, especially when you hear that, basicly the guy that put SWTOR out there, the lead community guy, Stephen Reid is one of them.
Stephen Reid was/is for me the face behind SWTOR and to see him go feels really wierd.
It really makes me wonder what is going on here.

I have never been a big EA fan so when EA got their money grabbing hands on BioWare it definitely got me worried. Maybe i am seeing things that aren't there or maybe there where other reasons, but i can't shake the feeling that now EA basicly owns BioWare and most importantly their (very) succesfull IP's (Mass Effect, Dragon Age and a Star Wars license), they don't care that much for BioWare as a company and i wouldn't be surprised to see BioWare dissapear under the EA banner.

I really hope i am wrong, i am a huge BioWare fan and i really hope BioWare manages to stay independent under the EA banner, but i guess only time will tell..

I do wish all those affected by the layoffs the best in their future jobs and thanks for putting out such a great game.

And to however is going to replace Stephen Reid: goodluck, you've got some big boots to fill.

Another thing i noticed was quite a few people posting on twitter that they were going to quit playing SWTOR now because of the layoffs, well i don't know, you want to quit playing SWTOR because you don't like the layoffs... Well guess what, if everyone stops playing there will be even more layoffs.

dinsdag 22 mei 2012

Back in the old days of gaming.

I often hear (read) people say they want the good old days of gaming back, that they really want some "old school" gaming.
Well maybe i am getting too old but when i think old school gaming i am thinking about dying and losing everything having to start over.
A game having 100 levels, you manage to get to level 99, you died and had to start all over again from level 1 with nothing than what you started with at the first place.

Nah, i definitely don't want those days back, i think i am pretty happy with what gaming evolved into, i think i like the WoW generation of games.
Don't get me wrong i enjoyed those days of trial and error trying to beat a game by playing the same levels over and over until i finally managed to beat that last level, but i am also glad those days are over, i rather enjoy the casual gaming we have nowadays, of being able to just start at the beginning of the level i just died in instead of having to start the entire game from the start.

Maybe i am just older than the people making these comments and they are talking about later games, cause i can't imagine (or don't want to) what it would be like to play WoW (or any MMO) with having to start all over with nothing when you die at level 1.
It might be fun for a while but i am pretty sure many will get frustrated and quit very soon.

I do still occasionally play old school games but usually after a few hours i get tired of having to start all over again and i'll just start up something a little more casual/fun.

maandag 21 mei 2012

LOTRO: Trying to get back.

Coming back into LOTRO and trying to get my bearings again i can't shake the feeling of everything evolving around the cash shop and Turbine forcing you to pay real money in order for the game being more enjoyable.

I mean, just as an example, the killing deeds where you have to kill a certain number of mobs for a deed to complete. Now correct me if i am wrong but i do not remember that number of required mobs to be that high, i mean 100 to 150 mobs to finish a deed seems quite normal now.
Now of course you can speed that up by buying stuff in the cash shop (for real money) that will actually give you 2 kills for the price of one, so instead of 100 mobs now you only have to kill 50, which in turn makes the game less grindy and as a result more enjoyable.

Heck wanna do more damage, there's a potion in the shop for that too.
It feels a lot like pay to win to me..

I might get the wrong impression but that's how the game feels to me coming back into it after being away for some time and i have a lifetime sub (VIP account) so i can't imagine what the game must feel like for F2P players.

But yeah, i did buy some of that stuff to speed up my game, heck i logged into the game finding well over 13000 points in my account so i guess i am good for a while :)
Having said that, i would not buy a lifetime sub for the game as it is now, this is not the game i bought a lifetime sub for and i feel screwed  over by the cash shop shit.
I do not mind a cash shop for vanity items, but a cash shop that basicly sells you things to "fix" things that should be ingame is just plain wrong.

I think that if i would not have bought a lifetime sub i would not be playing this game today, i think the only reason i am playing it is because i feel i need to to justify buying that lifetime..

zondag 20 mei 2012

STO: Final Promotion

I have been having a lot of fun playing Star Trek Online and have finally reached max rank (level) on my main, Cynfull is now Vice Admiral :)

The last couple of levels went really fast by just doing the episodes and a lot of duty officer missions, the fun thing about duty officer missions is you basicly do them offline, they can last from a few minutes to a day or 2 and there are always missions completed when you log in giving lots of xp.

So i guess i will be seeing how end game plays in STO :)
I am now finishing up the last couple of Borg episodes and then i have played them all, of course i might go for a re-run of the previous episodes.

I still think i need to work on optimizing my gear and bridge officers, as i really haven't looked into that yet, really have no clue as to what the best gear for all the slots are, so there's still plenty to do.

vrijdag 18 mei 2012

Taking my time in Diablo 3

Progress on my Demon Hunter has been somewhat slow (i think), she is currently at level 13.
I feel i am going slow because i am taking my time, if i have to go to a dungeon for a quest i usually take my time an explore the entire map and killing all mobs before even going into the dungeon to continue the quest.

Now i could of course rush through it and just do the main storyline quests but where would the fun be in that.

If i would have started in hardcore i wouldn't have made it to lvl 13 though as my Demon Hunter died at lvl 11, somehow i wasn't paying attention to my lifebar and ended up dead.
Though i think normal mode is pretty easy, as i haven't used any potions yet, but this one particular time i wasn't keeping my distance from the mobs and just got overwhelmed, so if this would have been hardcore it would have been the end and i would have to start over.
I hardly see my lifebar go down below half, so i just wasn't paying any attention to it or i would have used a potion, i think, at that time i had over 40 in my bags.

It's not a big deal but it would have been nice to make it through the game without dying :)
Right now i feel like after i finish on normal i would like to get through it on hardcore, but yeah, let's first play it through, i also wanna try all the other classes just to see which one i like the most and then get that class through on hardcore.

woensdag 16 mei 2012

Demons Beware

Like everyone else i am also playing Diablo 3.
I started a demon hunter, which i also played through the beta and enjoyed a lot.
I have to admit i have not tried any other classes, but since i allready had alot of fun playing it i decided to roll one again.

I also got caught up in the launch "craziness" and ordered a collectors editon box eventhough i allready have a (free) digital copy through the WoW deal a while ago, i just couldn't resist the CE.

If you are interrested to add me my battletag is Hauntshade#1937

dinsdag 15 mei 2012

LOTRO: And now i should actually play.

Eventhough i have yet to play LOTRO, headaches and Diablo 3 got in the way, my issue got dealt with pretty quick by Turbine CS.

After the initial auto response, which i replied to, i recieved an email asking me for my registered email, birthdate and product key.
Good thing i still have the box laying around and for good messure i also provided a key for the digital download of the Rise of Isengard expansion.

All of this took place on (for me) late sunday evening in less then two hours. So kudos and thanks to Turbine CS.

It was pretty easy to recover my password after CS linked my email to my account again, i still don't know what happened but i managed to log into my account and see my characters, so all is good again.
Now to start playing again, i have both the expansions, Mines of Moria and Rise of Isengard but i have not played any of it yet as my character is still very low level, i think my main is only level 28, so there is still a lot of stuff to do.

zondag 13 mei 2012

LOTRO: Cynheiddon of Laurelin will have to wait.

Yesterday i tried logging into my LOTRO account, i have had a lifetime subcription since launch and decided i wanted to check the game out again as i haven't played in a long time.

When i tried logging in i got a password error, since i wasn't 100% sure i had the right passsword i figured to just use the password recovery, no big deal right?

So i did, after waiting a few hours for an email to arrive (and numerous attempts with different passwords), i decided to try the "forgotten username" option, eventhough i am pretty sure the username was right (i have mails from the codemasters/turbine transfer thing that state my username, but that gave me an error stating that the email has no account associated with it...

I am pretty damn sure that email was right as i use a seperate email especially for LOTRO, but just to be sure i tried my other email adresses with the same results.

Another thing i noticed was that on the email adress i used for LOTRO i had been recieving emails from Turbine right up until Jan of this year on a regular base (you know the storedeals and stuff) and after that nothing.

So that got me thinking and figured either my account has been closed or locked or something by Turbine ( i only played once after the codemasters/Turbine move) or my account got hacked and someone changed the email and password (would explain why i can't log in).
I can find my LOTRO profile and character (or at least i figure it's mine since it's my username and my main character Cynheiddon) on myLOTRO but can't figure out if there was any activity on the account.

So i decided to contact CS and see if they can help figuring out what's going on.
So far i only got one autogenerated email giving me tips to get into my account, basicly saying try password recovery or try the forgotten username thing, which i obviously allready tried..

Anyways hoping to get this resolved quickly.

zaterdag 12 mei 2012

STO: Get back to work!

It has been quite a while since i last logged into Star Trek Online, so needless to say it was really confusing getting into back into the game :)

I am probably (very) late to the party but i actually quite enjoyed the duty officer stuff.
I have not read much about it yet, but it seems like a lot of fun, it really makes you feel like a starship captain when you are assigning crew to do all kinds of tasks ranging from science and exploration to development to trying to catch a crew member who apperantly has contraband on the ship or have the bartender pour you a drink.

Needles to say i almost instantly blew all of my cryptic points on duty officer packs :)
So right now most of my ingame time is spent hanging out on the ship assigning the crew to their duties.

Now to find out what i should spec my char, as there has apperantly been a skill reset and i have to re-asssign all of my skill points and i can not remember how the skill points where distributed... Guess i am gonna have to read up about that.

donderdag 10 mei 2012

A nice welcome.

It's always fun to log into a game and be rewarded with:
An awesome guild message of the day :)

And a really cool pet in the mail.
Say hi to my cute Tauntaun Ram.
So i did manage to do a little gaming today, finishing up my bonus series quests on Nar Shaddaa.
I am actually having some fun again in SWTOR although i am staying away from the heroic quests and just do the quests i know i can solo.

And now it's back to Alderaan to continue the questing there.

woensdag 9 mei 2012

It's that time of the year.

It's that time of the year again for me.
Meaning very little gaming time and often getting in trouble with guilds etc. for not logging on.
Yes that has happened, no matter what you say, people don't seem to understand and that's fine with me, it's just that time of the year where i sometimes dissapear offline and not show up online because i can't find the energy or because i simply can't.

I am always looking at the bright side and i know the sun will be coming up again and everything will be fine..., just not right now.

zondag 6 mei 2012

Who decides you're a succesfull blogger?

Who determines you're a succesfull blogger?..
And what actually is a succesfull blogger?

Are you a succesfull blogger when all you do is basicly repost (gaming) news or comment about said news on your blog, especially news you know is gonna attract people (or trolls) to your blog?
Do high visitor counts tell you that you are a succesfull blogger?

Personally i am first and foremost blogging for myself, if anyone who visits my blog actually likes to read some of my stuff than i am glad and happy they do (i actually hope there are a few people out there who like to read my blog. LOL).

I started this blog in Feb of 2007 but have been blogging way before that, in fact back then it was called a weblog (yes, it was before came and it all changed to simply "blog") and was exactly that: a log on the web.
Most weblogs back then were writing about every day life, things happening around them and commenting on it they were almost like an online diary and that is excactly how this blog started, mostly as my online gaming diary as i felt a need to seperate my gaming from my RL posts, most of my first posts are just a screenshot or a screenshot and a few sentences/words.

Nowadays blogging seems to be all about posting the latest news and those type of blogs seem to be called "the popular" blogs.
I do remember some time ago i had a comment on my blog from someone, who seemed almost angry, with the question why i wasn't blogging about Warhammer Online and why i was ignoring it on my blog, which was at that time all the "popular" blogs wrote about, you couldn't go to a blog without reading about it.
And i basicly answered back that i wasn't blogging about it because i had zero interest in the game and was not going to play it and so i wasn't going to blog about it either.
And that is what most of the "popular" blogs still seem to do, write about the latest "popular" thing. GW2 anyone?

I am not a blogger who writes what people want to read, i write about the stuff i do in the games i play (MMO or other) and about the games i have an interest in or intent to play.

I also believe that blogs are not a place for the lastest news on games, there are plenty of other sites for that that do a way better job.

Do visitor counts actually say you are a succesfull blog, well personally i rarely check my visitor count (i am just not interested in it), and the few times i do i can see that most of the traffic comes from google searches related to whatever post google found related to their search, does that number actually tell you that you are a succesfull blog?
I don't think so, it just tells you that people ended up on your blog via a google search.
But just in case you want to know i get anywhere between 900 to 2000 hits a month, but most of those seem to be hits on old posts.

The only reason i check my stats occasionally is to see if any blogger is linking to me so i can put a link back if i am not linking them allready (yes i still believe in the old ways of weblogging and that is to link back).

Do comments actually tell you you are a succesfull blogger, personally i don't think so, i mean it might show you you have visitors that actually like to talk about the stuff you write or you just have a bunch of trolls trolling your posts.
Are those comments from people that are regular commenters on your blog or just the one time troll commenters that want to poke up the fire.

So who actually decides you are a succesfull blogger?
I think the answer is simple: YOU
When you are happy blogging and enjoy doing it you are succesfull, it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks or what you visitor count says.
And that is also the answer to the question what a succesfull blogger is: if you enjoy what you are doing and you keep writing posts you are a succesfull blogger.

So why the hell did i post this, well this was brought on by the Newbie Blogger Initiative and eventhough i am not participating in it i still wanted to write a bit about blogging and how i feel about it, hence this post.

I do think this is an excellent initiative and it is always great to see new bloggers.
But i also heard terms of "elder bloggers" and "established bloggers" being thrown around and that gave me somewhat of a bad taste, i mean who decides when you are an "established" or "elder" blogger.
To me there is only the term blogger, you either are or you are not.

Sure i personally might disagree on what blogs seem to have become over the years, but that doesn't mean i am a better blogger than anyone else, afterall it is all about what you want to write about and not what i think you should write about.
Heck when people talk about the "biggest" blogs out there i often disagree, cause i either am not interested in those blogs or just see them as one of those blogs that repost news and that's just the thing with weblogs you often visit a few select blogs that mirror your interests and hey if all you are interested in is the latest gaming news you are probably going to be visiting those blogs that post about that.
Personally i am more interested in reading from peoples own experiences in the games they play (even more if they play the same games i play), more of the diary type of posts (like i do), and those are rare to find.

Now there are probably bloggers out there that will be pissed off by this post, well so be it. I am just stating my opinion here, i am not trying to tell you how you should run your blog.
They may or may not see me as on of those "established" bloggers (probably not), i couldn't care less, the fact is i have been blogging for quite a few years now and do seem to know a little about blogging by now and i definitely am still enjoying myself on my little corner of the web and i do hope that those that do read and enjoy my blog will continue to do so, i really appreciate you being around!

Dovahkiin, there can only be one

And so it begun, The Elder Scrolls took an arrow to the knee..

The recent anouncement of The Elder Scrolls Online has left me kind of mixed.
On the one hand i think it might be nice to have an mmo based on the Elders Scrolls series, but on the other hand i doubt they are ever going to catch that what makes the singleplayer Elders Scrolls so awesome in an mmo.

I mean it is just going to be another mmo with the same old same old, with the only difference being it is based in the world of the Elder Scrolls.

You are the chosen one, dragonborn, the only Dovahkiin... and so are the hundreds of other players waiting on you to finish and move on so they can finish their quest to report the slaying of another dragon.

You travel the roads of Tamriel together with your trusty companion,... and so are hundreds of others running past you, or jumping past you like they are playing the next Frogger, killing that dragon that just attacked you so you have no loot..

Maybe it is just that i am tired of mmo's lately, but i am just not interrested in another mmo.
I am really enjoying my (singleplayer) time exploring and slaying dragons in Skyrim without other players ruining  my immersion, my experience.

I am just tired of going into places designed for mmo play, designed to have several players there at one time, so that when you go there alone it becomes almost impossible to go on/complete quest objectives because of the huge spawn numbers.

True when SWTOR came out i was excited but i am hardly playing it, i do enjoy the storylines but that's about it.
Personally i would have rather seen a KOTOR 3, a singleplayer game would have been a much more pleasant experience.

I am tired of seeing great singleplayer games turn into mmo's, there is really no need for that as all we get is just another run of the mill mmo.

Sure i still (occasionally) log into an mmo whenever i feel like it but than i'll just play WoW for a while, i'll get everything i need in an mmo there.
I have tried so many mmo's only to realize after a while it's all just the same, it only has a new, fresh layer of paint and it makes us all feel good, until you realize you've been doing the same thing in your previous mmo's, it just had a different name.

I am sure we will see a quest to kill 10 dragons for a set of dragonscale boots in The Elder Scrolls Online, sure it beats getting a set of boots made out of rat hides but still..

I am also sure i will be checking it out, yes i am sure i will be playing it, afterall it is The Elder Scrolls Online, and i just happen to love The Elder Scrolls series, i might even be excited when i start playing but i am sure there won't be anything different about this mmo, besides the world/lore so after a while i will probably just return to Oblivion or Skyrim.

Of course there is always the hope, that i guess everyone has: This mmo is going to be different...
However one thing that has allready been said was the combat is not going to be anywhere near what it is in the singleplayer as that is apperantly not possible in an mmo... what??
First hint of this is going to be like any other mmo.

Now it has also been said, or rather tweeted by Pete Hines that this mmo will not affect the singleplayer Elder Scrolls series and i hope this is true, however knowing Bethesda that might very well change in the future, they are known to go for the money (which makes sense, it's a business afterall), just look at their xbox exclusive timed deal for the Skyrim DLC Dawnguard, so it would not surprise me if it will in fact have an impact on the singleplayer series.

Now i know that the mmo is being made by Zenimax and Bethesda Game Studios are the ones working on the singleplayer series, but that doesn't mean anything, it's just a different name under the same company.
Guess where the money goes if Bethesda thinks they can make more cash with the mmo..

dinsdag 1 mei 2012

Even a dragonborn needs a job!

Of course slaying dragons and bandits every day or exploring dungeons does get quite boring after a while, even for a dragonborn.

So when i found this mod i was very curious, it's called: Katixas Ciderhouse Restaurant and what it does ?
Well it gives you a restaurant, where you cook food for your customers and make cider.
The cider process actually takes some time (ingame) as you first need apples and by using some eleborate machinery you turn that into bottled cider.

Actually i do a very bad job in describing it, just go to the link on nexus and see for yourself and/or watch this video :)

All in all a mod that is quite entertaining and gives hope for future mods, cause the possiblilities seem endless.
This mod also shows why i love games like Oblivion, Fallout and Skyrim so much...