Friday, August 29, 2008

Click It or Ticket

Wilhelm doesn't believe he should have to read the fucking manual.
To that I can only ask, how well does RTFM work as an answer in your world? Because it doesn’t fare so well in mine, so RTFVM isn’t going to fly. (V is for virtual for those who are still in shock after following that link and finding out what the F stood for.)
Now, he does have a somewhat valid point. Games, especially MMORPGs, can't abandon new players to simply learn from a manual. There needs to be something there the moment a player logs into the game to direct them in the right direction.

I think Wilhelm has some valid criticisms of WAR. The game does drop in new players disoriented from their starting quests (a bug maybe?). Yellow dots on the map are confusing.

However, the question I have is whether or not a player that refuses to read the manual when presented with a problem has any right to complain? I can't walk into court and say "But your honor, I didn't bother to find out whether or not I needed to wear a seat belt in South Carolina!" and expect to walk away without a ticket. I can argue that the state didn't put up enough signs. I can complain that the signs are hard to read.

There are valid arguments on both sides here. At some point the state can't be blamed, after all there are signs at the state border, on the highway at various intervals, and continuing television commercials telling drivers to Click It or Ticket. However, if these items are not in place, I have a valid argument (but I am still not absolved of being guilty).

For Wilhelm, he feels that Mythic has not reasonably planted enough signs or aired enough commercials. I'm not quite sure what he expected though. There is no evidence he has these complaints about other games he has played, and he seems to have adjusted over the years he has played them. Actually, he mentions that WAR simplifies a lot of things into a single tome of knowledge (an example directly compared to EVE's hundreds of screens).

There are other leanings in his post that show he didn't even really try. For example: he heard somewhere that Public Quests > sliced bread. In his experience, he didn't really get them. To quote:
This is supposed to encourage community and cooperation. It does so about as well as WoW battlegrounds do, from my own limited observations. Everybody ran about in a mad rush at each stage with no plan or order. However, the “everybody” was enough people that we defeated each stage and nobody died.
There in lies the problem, he didn't adjust. He felt it was a WoW battleground and evidenced by his own post, played like it was one. It didn't seem he tried to learn about open groups, even with the giant pop up when entering the area, which are all over the place in Public Quests. He didn't bother to click his Tome of Knowledge unlock to figure out what the quest was about. He failed to notice the constant stream of +influence messages and quest pop ups detailing his progress in that area which would net him rewards. Worst of all, he just assumed everyone else was in it for themselves.

Wilhelm didn't seem to really try. He missed the forest for the trees. He ran around in WAR as though it was WoW. Bartle was right, he has played WAR before, it was WoW.

Repost Movie Thoughts: Serenity

I am cutting and pasting some thoughts I posted on my old reviews blog. Serenity, the movie, is up first.

Having never seen the Firefly TV series that inspired the movie Serenity, I had no expectations or knowledge of the lore behind the film. Therefore, it really wasn't on my radar as a "must see" movie. It is rare for me to miss a major Sci-Fi movie during its theatrical release, but Serenity didn't gain steam until after it hit theaters. Still, I am disappointed I missed this one in theaters.

I did not go to Blockbuster looking for Serenity, but when I saw it on the shelf I knew I had to rent it. Not that I hadn't meant to see it, but it just really hadn’t been on my mind. Fortunately, I did rent it and will now be exercising a bit more determination in getting the Firefly DVDs.

Overall, I found the acting to be a mix of good, OK, and so-so. There are spots of brilliance and there are spots of mediocre. The dialogue is strong throughout the movie, but sometimes the delivery is just not convincing which is a bit disappointing in a movie so heavily involved with the characters. Most of these flat spots hit during roaring battles or other special effects scenes.

The good news: the acting does not kill the movie in any spots! The acting is solid. I knew none of the actors by name and even after watching it I doubt I will remember any by name. As I said the acting is solid all the way through, but no one really stands out. This helps the movie, because one overpowering actor could have really disrupted the balance in a movie with a very this is our crew sentiment.

Next, we have the special effects which can make or break any Sci-Fi movie. Serenity definitely doesn't disappoint! The entire movie is a visual feast and most of the time the effects blend amazingly well with the live action. As with most Sci-Fi, there are scenes that just don't fit, uncanny valley and all.

What really makes up for the lows in special effects and acting is the rock solid story. Having no idea how it ties into Firefly, I only know that I want more. While I wouldn't place this as one of the best Sci-Fi plots ever, it definitely ranks up there as one of the best in recent times. Recent, as in the fact it wasn't written thirty years ago and just recently was made into a movie.

I recommend this movie to everyone that has any interest in Sci-Fi. Go out and buy the DVD because the movie is damn close to making enough profit for them to go out and make part 2 and maybe even part 3! I am more than glad to add another movie to my collection!.

My final question: is it just me or is Mr. Universe the same actor that was driving the car full of potheads in Super Troopers?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Those Worried About the Game Side of Spore

Spore will be a culmination of years of real time strategy games, simulation games, and a plethora of game technologies. It will be a game that finally puts the package together. However, in that attempt, Spore has lost some players that are wondering where the "game" in Spore will be. Look no further than the following video highlighting the civilization phase of Spore.

Oi

Dwarf Badge- Prima Games Warhammer Online Class Quiz

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

WAR Delayed, L4D Gold

Oops, screwed up the title.

Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) has gone gold.
Mythic Entertainment today announced that the highly-anticipated MMORPG, Warhammer® Online: Age of Reckoning™ (WAR), has gone gold and will open its servers on September 18, 2008 at an MSRP of $49.99 in North America.

“We’ve done our best to create the next great MMORPG experience, but it’s the fans that will bring our world to life,” said Mark Jacobs, vice president at EA and general manager of Mythic Entertainment. “The Day of Reckoning approaches and it’s going to be glorious! It’s time to go to WAR.”
Left 4 Dead (L4D), Valve's co-op zombie shooting masterpiece, has been delayed so the launch can coincide with Half-Life's 10th anniversary.
Well the date has been changed again, and now Valve's highly anticipated co-op survival horror has different release dates for North America and Europe. Left 4 Dead 411 made a request to Valve for definite confirmation, and Doug Lombardi responded, "Nov 18 in the States. Nov 21 in Europe (US retailers do 'new release Tues' and the EU does that on Friday)."

The new release date still ties in with Half-Life's anniversary, as the game was originally launched on November 18, 1998.

Monday, August 25, 2008

I had a WAR Weekend , My Rabbit Had a Beauty Day

The Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) Preview Weekend has come and gone. It was so grand that I spent Sunday giving our pet rabbit a beauty day instead of playing. No, it wasn’t because the game wasn’t playable. It was because WAR is fun, no matter how little or how much time you spend in game. Actually, I had a metric ton of fun, but that doesn’t mean the game was perfect. Far from it, but I learned a very valuable lesson: having fun in a game trumps many flaws.

My desktop machine specs:

Video card: MSI 9600 GT OC
CPU: Intel Q6600 @ 2.6 GHz (that’s a quad core btw)
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Operating system: Windows XP Pro x64

Pros and Cons

I am going to break this down into a Pros and Cons list, as that will be the easiest way to get my thoughts down.

Pros
  • The game performs absolutely flawlessly on my machine. No FPS or graphical issues at all during the weekend.
  • Lag was a non-factor. Lag that was encountered was minor and rarely persisted more than a minute.
  • Massive RvR battles were absolutely awesome, both in performance and fun. Even with 100+ players on screen, the game ran fine and was 100% playable.
  • Combat was slower paced, allowing for longer life expectancy. This goes a long way towards making the RvR a lot of fun, as players rarely die the second someone touches them.
  • Battle-ranking evens out the playing field in RvR and makes low-level RvR enjoyable.
  • The ability to queue for scenarios anywhere in the zone supports the RvR and PvE progression idea.
  • Also, being able to form cross-zone parties and queue for any scenario in any zone a party member is in helps alleviate pointless travel.
  • Open grouping ensures that players can easily find others to play with.
  • Public quest system takes questing to another level, provides some reasoning for the world, and offers great socialization opportunities.
  • Quest objectives are outlined on the map. At first I didn’t like it, but I now prefer it over using spoiler websites.
  • Easily accessible travel to other racial pairings, warcamps, and capital cities. Hopefully this stays intact for launch, but I can understand if Mythic restricts it a bit.
  • Tome of Knowledge is impossible to “preview” as it is immense. I was absolutely blown away by the few things I took time to browse through.
  • Easily customizable UI out of the box.
  • Guild tools are just fucking awesome. Guilds and what they can do will be the centerpiece of WAR.
  • Crafting is fast, fun, and easily funded. It focuses on consumable items which I used a lot. I made over a hundred potions and used every single one by the end of the weekend. I bought most of the basic supplies up front and scavenged the rest from dead enemies in RvR.
Cons
  • Crash to desktop problems for many people. Personally, I only crashed twice in about ten hours of play.
  • Combat responsiveness needs work. Hard to tell what skill is being used, if it can be used, and many other perceptual errors that make combat feel sluggish.
  • Better visual feedback needed for the player and the casting bar needs to be reworked.
  • Spell effects were hit or miss. Sometimes I saw them, sometimes I didn’t, for both team mates and enemies. I was hit a lot in RvR by stuff I never saw.
  • Scrolling combat text failed. It was off center, small, and often didn’t work.
  • Default chat window filter needs to be reworked. There was far too much spam that should be in the combat window by default that makes it hard to keep up with conversations.
  • There was a gear imbalance when higher tier gear is able to be used in the level tier below where it is acquired. For example: Tier 2 renown rank 6 gear with level 18 stats in Tier 1 (levels 1-11).
  • Healing felt very overpowering in the lower levels. Playing DPS classes, I felt it was impossible to kill any healer without the assistance of two, three, or more players.
  • Tanks were always the top damage dealers in RvR. Not because of DPS, but because they never died and therefore always were doing damage.
  • Class specific issue: Shadow Warrior hotbars often reset, making it impossible to use my current stance-specific abilities.
Conclusion

I have no conclusion. The game is absolutely fun, but needs work. I will be in at Open Beta and the Head Start. I am glad that I chose to play a tank at launch. This game isn’t going to be perfect, but it is going to be fun and that is exactly what I’ve been expecting.

Update: 5 Sept, 2008 - Preview Weekend + addressed many of these Cons.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Team Fortress 2 Guest Pass Available

I have been awarded one 3-day guest pass for Team Fortress 2. Whoever I give the pass to will receive a free copy of Team Fortress 2 that they can play for three days, no strings attached. The only requirement will be that the person receiving the pass will need to have a Steam account or be willing to create one (its free!).

All I ask is that you plan to use those three days wisely and if you end up liking the game, spend a few extra dollars to pick up a copy. It is by far the best FPS game I've played in years.

If you are interested please leave a comment and an e-mail address. I will make a decision on Monday the 25th (to give all the WAR Preview Weekend players time to respond).

Jumping Sharks, a Colloquialism Examination

It often amazes me how things come in pairs on the Internet. Today is no exception.

Shark, Jumped, a post from Grouchy Gamer, is a great example of properly using the colloquialism, jumping the shark.

Warhammer Online: The MMO that jumps the shark, from Brent of Virgin Worlds, would be the opposite; a how-not-to-use the jumping the shark colloquialism.

First, let’s examine the full meaning of jumping the shark:
Jumping the shark is a colloquialism used by U.S. TV critics and fans to denote that point in a TV show or movie series' history where the plot veers off into ridiculous story lines or out-of-the-ordinary characterizations, undergoing too many changes to retain the original appeal of the series. Shows that have "jumped the shark" are typically deemed to have passed their peak as after this point critical fans can point to a noticeable decline in the show's overall quality.
As mentioned, Grouchy Gamer (aka Genda), hits the nail on the head. Blizzard’s recent addition of a motorcycle as a mount in the upcoming Wrath of the Lich King expansion for World of Warcraft is a fine example of jumping the shark. The motorcycle is completely out of place, even in the pop-culture-phenomenon that is WoW.

Fans critical of WoW will be able to look back and point to this very item as the possible downturn of quality in WoW, just as Genda has. Especially in the soon-to-launch-face of WoW's potentially stiffest competition yet, WAR. History will be the ultimate judge, but the concept of Blizzard jumping the shark is at least there.

The concept is not there with Brent’s ramblings on Virgin Worlds. Brent spends the better part of two pages explaining how Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) is one giant plateau of MMO game play. According to Brent, WAR brings nothing new, other than Public Quests. In his eyes that means Mythic jumped the shark with WAR.

When confronted on the idea that he may be missing the point of jumping the shark, Brent offers no defense. Darren of Common Sense Gamer gets involved, but fails as epically as Brent in understanding the colloquialism. Neither can point to any change that WAR is bringing that is equivalent to “The Hog” of WotLK. Actually, both seem to agree that WAR will succeed and in the process of succeeding will bring a great new feature to the MMO genre with Public Quests.

Brent is just tired of the current MMOs and he is waiting for something fresh and new, different from the games that have come before. His burn out does not mean WAR jumped the shark and it is obvious to me he wanted nothing more than a flashy headline.

There is a war of words in the comments where I try to get Brent and Darren to understand jumping the shark, or to at least get Brent to inform us what he defines as jumping the shark. Brent and Darren offer nothing more than attacks. According to them, I just don’t understand.

Maybe I don’t understand. I’ll let everyone that wants to comment here tell me which of the above articles properly uses jumping the shark.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

WAR Isn't Fun

"I’ve already played Warhammer. It was called World of Warcraft." - Richard Bartle
Bartle was right, he did play WAR already, and it was WoW. Just like Bartle, many players will try to play WAR as they do WoW and then wonder why they aren’t playing WoW or state they are sick of playing WoW. That’s fine. No one can force them to change their mind on how to play MMOs.

Unfortunately, Bartle gave validation to many “WAR is just WoW” viewpoints. However, many seem to have missed the part where Dr. Bartle admitted that he played a lot of WoW and had fun doing so. So, if he already played WAR, and it was WoW, then WAR is probably going to be fun to some degree. Bartle was simply burned out.

This brings me to a post at Virgin Worlds where Brent asserts that WAR just isn’t fun. Sadly, Brent uses Dr. Bartle’s quote to defend his position. That doesn’t add up, as WAR has to be fun by Bartle's assertion. Brent's view shows the effect that Bartle’s ill-fated quote has had on those looking for evidence to indict WAR as a failure.

I don’t dislike Brent and I’m not going to start throwing hypocrisy around again. I want to look into why Brent views WAR as a foregone failure. It starts in the recent Virgin Worlds Podcast #127, where Brent spends a lot of time talking about the “next generation” of MMOs and how games coming out currently are “last generation, nothing new to see here, move along please”.

It is evident that Brent is not interested in the current generation of MMO games and it is unlikely he would view any of them as “fun”. I wish Brent would just come out and say that, instead of looking for validation to prop up his opinion in misguided quotes and propaganda.

Unfortunately, Brent makes the argument that Sony Online Entertainment has a slew of upcoming next generation games, while reporting from a SOE-sponsored fan-faire. That absolutely dumbfounds me, because SOE has absolutely no games on tap that we haven’t seen versions of before.

Free Realms is an online world filled with mini-games that runs on micro-transactions.

The Agency is an online, class-based and multi-player shooter with persistent world aspects.

DC Universe Online is a super hero MMO that focuses on action and offers a peak at physics based game play.

None of the listed games offers anything new other than the fact that SOE is putting huge development dollars into them. Puzzle Pirates, released in 2003, does the online game world filled with mini-games and customizable avatars already. Doom, released in 1993, not only invented the first person shooter genre, but took it online as well. Planetside, another SOE game that happens to be a persistent online shooter, has been around since 2003. City of Heroes, a super hero MMO, has been around since 2004. Physics-based games have been all-the-rage for the last few years.

It is absolutely SOE fanboy-ish to argue any of them are next generation. I’m sorry, but that invalidates Brent’s criticism of WAR. Brent likes SOE and despises WAR. He is entitled to that opinion, but he needs to stick to it as an opinion, not try and use it as evidence that WAR "is just another WoW" and therefore will fail.

The gaming industry has shown a complete lack of ability to innovate quickly. Change occurs slowly, over time, from release to release. There is never going to be a mainstream game that suddenly changes the playing field in terms of players and mechanics. Some games, such as WoW, will storm in and take over a genre, but not through innovation.

The next generation is going to come slowly over time and those waiting for it will never find it. Every time they look at a new game, they will see something from the last game and claim that they are going to “sit this one out” in anticipation of the next generation.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

WARGASM!

The Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) NDA has been lifted. Feel free to talk amongst yourselves.

Unfortunately, I have an important meeting to attend in five minutes.

Team Fortress 2 Arenas: Fight to the Death

The incoming Wargasm is not the only gaming news of importance today. Valve is hard at work supporting Team Fortress 2 (TF2), new game mode included.
TF2 Arena keeps the class diversity of Team Fortress 2 while focusing goals around combat between two teams. Where other game modes lean towards a broad overall strategy for the team over a number of lives, Arena concentrates on the specific tactical choices the teams make in a single fight.

Arena features smaller maps that play out in shorter periods of time. The round ends once one team has no players left in the arena, or when the central capture point has unlocked and been captured. Rounds tend to be very fast and highly competitive, with an emphasis on your team’s class makeup and your plan to counter the opposing team’s class choices. Arena mode is great for smaller matches of three vs. three players, while still comfortably supporting huge knockdown twelve-on-twelve brawls.
This is a feature that I've already seen take shape on Custom Map servers, specifically for fans of the Spy class in TF2.

The Spy class in TF2 is a source of both love and hate. One second a Spy is destroying everything known to be awesome, the next they are randomly eating dirt. For a long while, after the Pyro blitz, playing a Spy was simply suicide. With the Pyro push receding, the life of a Spy has returned to normal sappin' and stabbin'.

However, it is still a high-stress, often maddening experience to play a Spy on a regular basis. Current TF2 maps are too large to effectively stealth into place. Hallways are too crowded to bypass enemy players. Chokepoints are easily spammed making travel to the enemy backside impossible.

Most of these complaints will now be silenced in Arena mode. Fewer players, smaller maps, and a focus on class cohesion and teamwork will result in a new era of Spy gameplay.

I focused on the Spy, but it is only one of many classes in TF2 that will benefit from Arenas. This will actually be a very interesting game mode for all classes. Engineers will be critical against Scout rushes. Pyros will be critical against Spies. The list goes on and on.

One worry that I have is that I feel there is still no true paper to the rock that is the Demoman. Coupled with a Medic, Demomen are absolutely deadly in TF2. Demomen can be killed, but they are by far the top choice for good players and can easily dominate with a good Medic in tow.

Another worry is that critical hits could ruin the day in small skirmish game play that will be found in the arena maps. One critical rocket from a Soldier and it could be lights out for half a team. On the positive side of critical hits, this may make the Kritzkrieg upgrade for Medics a bit more popular.

The Heavy update gets more interesting by the day. I just hope it comes out before I am knee-deep in Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Anyone Actually Using Road-To-War.com?

Is anyone out there actually using Road-To-War? Mythic really hasn't pushed the website yet and the beta banner across top doesn't inspire me to really care that much yet.

My old account seems to be gone now, along with all the gold. I'm not even quite sure where to go and get information regarding the Road-To-War site currently. There is only a spattering of information spread across various Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) message boards.

Oh well, if the website is officially rolling now, which I am not sure about, I have included a poll for visitors to vote on that will earn my Road-To-War account some gold to throw around in the epic state vs. state battles.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Movie Thoughts: Star Wars: The Clone Wars

I am a Star Wars fan. I am not a blind Star Wars fan and refuse to blindly love the movies. I watch them, because I love the universe behind them. Any glimpse into that universe will get some of my money, but not always my praise. The Phantom Menace started out good, but fell down in the end. Attack of the Clones was full of action, but not much else. Revenge of the Sith made me smile, but only did the end finally make me feel like the actors were earning their paychecks.

My biggest problem with the prequels was the character of Anakin Skywalker. Weakly written and horribly acted lead to a big gaping whole in all three prequels. When Anakin finally rose up as Darth Vader in Revenge of the Sith and screamed "NOOOOOOOOOOO!", I screamed "YES, Anakins gone." This brings me to my thoughts on Star Wars: The Clone Wars and unfortunately the lackluster Anakin rears his ugly head.

Fortunately, the movie is completely computer animated, so no Hayden Christensen was needed. Unfortunately, the character of Anakin still feels stiff and forced through the entire movie. Good thing there is enough action and comedy to save Clone Wars from a failure. The graphics are cartoony, but believable against vivid backgrounds and settings. The important note here is that the movie is consistent and easily fits into the epic Star Wars movie saga.

Also, the move to complete computer graphics opened the door for much better action sequences. I don't want to spoil the movie, but one scene has our heroes scaling vertically up a cliff face while fighting the never ending droid army. It was believable and did not once feel faked for the sake of a live actor. That single scene absolutely convinced me this was the right move for the Star Wars franchise.

Overall, the movie was fun, albeit aimed at a younger audience. The general aim helped me forgive some plot shortfalls and out of place comedy. The movie was a general mix of the classic Star Wars we all love and the new age Star Wars that is hard to enjoy even as a fan. I highly recommend a viewing for any Star Wars fan, especially those with children.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Beta Leaks Gone?

Word on the street is that the popular Beta Leaks website is officially down. Good riddance, maybe now a true beta leaking website can take its place, where actual information is leaked instead of weighted opinions.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ask Not



Just a reminder that Casualties of WAR is still recruiting!

More Beta Leaks

As I sit staring into cyberspace, waiting for the Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning (WAR) NDA to drop, I can't help but notice that there are more beta leaks than you can shake a discriminatory finger at. Some of them are in reference to official press outlets that have been given the OK to start talking, while others are just old-fashioned beta leaks from testers that can't keep their mouths shut.

However, unlike the beta leaks of a few months ago, almost every single one is positive. Minus Brent's "beta-breaking" over at Virgin Worlds, which I am either misunderstanding or he truly has lost his mind. Vacation will do him good.

My name seems to keep cropping up as the sole proprietor of all that is WAR's fanaticism, comments at the above link are no exception. Not sure how it has come to that, considering I've leveled my fair share of criticism towards Mythic over the past three years. Maybe it's because I'm fair and give props to Mythic for tackling almost every single complaint leveled against WAR by testers and cynics alike.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Fact Checking Mission

Ok, I'll bite. Channel Massive doesn't like me. They've said as much in their recent Blog-O-Steria portion of their 53rd podcast (1:18 approximately). Normally, I would just laugh the trolling attempt off, but this one is so full of misinformation and lies that I can't sit idly by. It's time for some fact checking.

I would like to start out by thanking them for crowning me Warhammer Online's #1 fanboy. It is an honor. However, I would like to point out that I do not in fact watch the Internet like a hawk and jump in to comment first on any WAR related story. Fact is, I have been a member of Virgin Worlds since Brent launched the site, so it only makes sense that I may be the first commenter on their blog posts from time to time.

Next on the ticket is the idea that Mythic has over-hyped WAR. Yes, Paul Barnett is a well spoken gent. Yes, Mythic has employed a plethora of common Internet tools to market WAR. Yes, I have been using the same Internet as everyone else. However, I've paid attention to WAR for more than just the two years it has been in the limelight. I understand how those that have followed WAR for only a couple years may have missed the grass roots origins of Mythic's marketing success.

I am also accused of blaming everything on WoW. I find it fairly ignorant that anyone would dismiss the effect that WoW has had on the MMO market and genre. Would WAR be hyped as much as it is if there wasn't a significantly increased market due to WoW's success? Even Age of Conan benefited from WoW and enjoyed moderate success because it was "different than WoW". No, WoW can't be blamed for everything, but it can't be thrown away as though it has done nothing.

The next argument is the big one: the idea that Mythic promised six cities and twenty-four classes for WAR's launch. I challenge anyone to find a Mythic representative promising anything. No one will, but there will be plenty of "this is what we have planned" and "if it isn't working, it will be chucked" comments. This, of course, is the same sort of language that Blizzard used originally when they defrayed criticism after announcing that hero classes would not be in at WoW's launch.

According to Channel Massive, I just pulled the whole "Hero classes at WoW's launch" out of my ass. Channel Massive went as far as self-editing what I assume to be a fun-filled comment, that "WoW's hero classes were just a...". Let me fill it in for them: "a planned feature for launch."
We stated that we planned to have Hero Classes in at launch during earlier beta. Plans change. There was never a "promise". Around launch, we stated that we planned to release Hero Classes as soon as we could. Plans change.

There was never a "promise".

Hero Classes are not planned for the expansion, to my knowledge.

They are actively in development.

We plan to add them into the game when they're done.

That's not a promise.

Plans change. We give you future information when we can, but we do not "promise" these things -- the fact that such plans become "promises" in the eyes of many is the reason we don't give you a great deal of future plans. I've stated our current plan. Take it for what it is. :) - Caydiem
Facts are such a bitch.

This brings me back to my main argument about WARs announced changes. The industry has been here before and the player base has erupted over planned features being cut from a AAA title during beta. Unfortunately, I seem to be the only one that remembered; the only one level-headed enough to use WoW's hero classes as a historical sample of how to treat the WAR situation. The reaction for both situations was the same. The general community was outraged, because they falsely held planned features as promises. I understand it is tough to be fair and balanced in a genre that is built on passion. Unfortunately for Channel Massive, the Internet never forgets.

Look, I'm not angry. I could have easily left this at "eat shit and die", leaving the Channel Massive folks to their ignorance. However, all I've asked from the beginning of this mess was for bloggers, podcasters, and commenters to use facts, not misinformation, to form an opinion. It is alright to have an opinion that Mythic is delivering less than anticipated with WAR, but don't for a second disgrace those of us that have taken the time and energy to get the facts before opening our mouths.

I'm glad that Channel Massive did get something right at the end of the show. There is no way in hell they could possibly be right.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Warhammer's #1 Fanboy

I would like to thank the folks over at Channel Massive for voting me WAR's number 1 fanboy in episode #53. Its towards the end, 1 hour 18 minutes approximately.

For those not prepared, some people don't like me.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Karl Franz Wants Your Head



I've been trying to put my spare time to good use, so I did some photo chopping for the guild I helped form.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Win, Lose

Jets win.

Packers lose.

I wish Brett Favre the best of luck in his trade to the New York Jets. All Favre has to do is show up to lift the Jets' spirits, win a few games to win the fans, and it will be considered a successful trade.

The Packers have to win, not just the regular season, but in the playoffs. I won't say they need a Super Bowl appearance to justify the trade, but anything less than an NFC Championship appearance and its a losing trade. The pressure is on the Packers now.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

September 18th

The day that will live in infamy, September 18th, will mark the launch of the next big thing, also known as Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.

Also, from the looks of things, Mythic is maintaining the status quo as far as monthly fees. $14.99 per month or a bit less if you pay for three or six month packages ahead of time.

The announcement has me somewhat reinvigorated to stay away from any MMO that I may want to run back to while I wait. I may be burned out on action, but I think I can find something productive to do with my time until launch.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

It All Makes Sense: Brett Favre Owns Mythic Entertainment

Wish I could claim credit for this: I'm convinced Brett Favre owns EA/Mythic.
Think about it...

Packer fans have been waiting months for news on Brett Favre.
WAR fans have been waiting months for news on WAR.

The packers announce a news conference yesterday, and packers fans are still waiting today to hear this news.
Mythic announces news is coming yesterday, today we are still waiting for this news.

Football season is closing in.
WAR release date is closing in.

Brett can't make up his mind about retiring.
Mythic wasn't sure if they wanted 6 cities or 2.

Conflicting stories about Brett from Brett and the Packers.
WAR has an NDA.

Brett Favre is on the cover of every EA football game.

Is all this a coinscidence? I think not.

Monday, August 04, 2008

The Road to WAR

The battle lines have been drawn, the objectives decided, and now all you have to do is walk your pansy ass over that hill and down the Road to WAR!

When you get there, don't forget to mention that heartlessgamer [at] gmail.com sent you.

Caution, there may be Casualties along the way.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Action Burn Out

Well, my plan of action is failing. I tried to make it to the Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning launch without having to resort back to playing an MMO.

Call of Duty 4, Day of Defeat: Source, and Team Fortress 2 have kept me busy, but not busy enough. I am bored in most of them and it directly affects my performance, which was not great to begin with. My twitch FPS days are well past me now.

Oh, and Spore isn't here yet.

In reality there is only one MMO I would even consider and that is World of Warcraft. We'll have to see how I warm up to the idea over the next few days. I am not really sure I want to.

Maybe I'll just read some books instead. Yes, my wife would like to hear that.
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