Wednesday, May 31, 2023

The most boring New World Season 1 challenge

 Finally done watching paint dry to complete the season 1 challenge for capping forts.

New (World) Ideas: Fort PvP Zones

new world ideas
 New (World) Ideas is a series of posts in which I present small changes that New World could make that would improve the game.

 There is nothing more annoying than running all the way out to a fort in the open world in New World and realizing you forgot to enable your PvP flag.  Back to town to set your flag, back to the fast travel point, and then the joy of running back to the fort (mounts please!).

 The new idea: how about the fort and the area around the fort is always PvP?  Upon entering players get a warning about being flagged automatically and can back out if they choose.  Otherwise after a few seconds they are flagged and go about their business of watching paint dry capping the fort.  If a player leaves the area they return to their previous flag or unflagged status.

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

New (World) Ideas: Upgrade Costs

new world ideas
 New (World) Ideas is a series of posts in which I present small changes that New World could make that would improve the game.

 For players that like playing a variety of builds in New World there are a couple barriers to switch too much.  First is acquiring gear; it can take years to get the right piece(s) of gear for a build with the random gear system.  Second; even if you have the gear it is prohibitive to have it all upgraded to 625 gear score via umbral shards.

 The good news is for those that like playing a lot of builds you don't need perfect 3-perk legendary gear.  You can get elite 2-perk gear that is more than sufficient for many builds.  The bad news is that 2-perk elite gear still costs the same to upgrade as legendary gear so it is a feel bad everytime you pump some precious umbral shards into a purple item.

 The idea for today: reduce the umbral shard cost to upgrade gear based on it's rarity.  Legendary gear stays the same as it is today but 2-perk purple gear could be reduced to 50% of the current cost and even blue/green gear could be reduced to something like 25%/10%.

 This would encourage players to try more builds and increase the use of the non-legendary items in the game.

Sunday, May 28, 2023

Throne and Liberty bad?

 RIP Throne and Liberty.  It was good knowing you while you were just an exciting possibility.  I will still give it a try but the video from the beta test in Korea is not looking good.  The game looks like it plays like a decade old game with a fresh coat of current generation graphical paint.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Wayfinder Beta Day 1

 I can barely play this game with the damn watermark text spamming my screen.  I also can't talk about the game because its under NDA.

 But here is a video of someone that was allowed to share the first few minutes of the game:

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Exciting New World News

 Big news from New World today! Season 2 is coming and with it a bunch of game changing features: transmog, cross-world OPR, new arena map, raid groups and content, seasonal event, and more!  New World is continuing to deliver on it's road map and make big exciting changes.

 Anyone that was doubting the commitment to New World after the recent Lord of the Rings MMO announcement should not have any lingering doubt.  This next season is jam packed with cool stuff and no doubt many other small tweaks and balance changes under the hood.  I am personally looking forward to this!

 Also hidden away in the announcement was a change that was not on the Road Map.  Some shenanigans will be afoot in First Light.

First Light Retraction

First Light has fallen to the might of Artemis and her Angry Earth horde! The Settlement, Fort, and Trading Post in First Light are now closed. A wall of thorns has erupted along the border, barring all access into the territory until further notice.

    All Housing related items will return to Storage and can be found under the “Old First Light” tab in any Storage shed.

    All Trading Post orders in First Light will eventually expire, but no new orders can be made in the territory.

    Companies controlling First Light at the time of Retraction will be refunded for their losses.

    First Light’s Faction Control Point (FCP) buff has been moved to Weaver’s Fen, and Weaver’s FCP buff has been discontinued for now.

We have big plans for the territory. This is only the first step. Stay tuned for more news about the future of “Old First Light.”

 They are basically wiping out First Light and all citizens housed therein.  This is a pretty big change not to have outlined in any sort of road map.  I am very curious to see where this goes!  Nothing shakes up the mundane like a full-fledged city in an MMORPG being taken out of play!

 There is so much in this update and probably much more hiding under the fine details such as balance tweaks and changes.  For a summary you can dive into the May developer update.

Monday, May 22, 2023

Farming Glyphs in New World

 What am I up to in New World?  Farming glyphs!  Specifically: Above Glyph Stone and Sun Glyph Stone.  Why?  So I can craft some Runeglass Case of Igniting?  Why? So I can make Runeglass Gems of Igniting for my heavy armor Flamethrower build!

 So if you need me I'll be solo inside "The Wall" or Solarium Khepri farming away.  As a note: I both dread the wall for being a maze but also for it's little escape rooms.  There is no feeling like opening the glyph doors, quaffing some potions, and rumbling with a few elites in a room that barely fits the chest you are about to loot.  The best part is when the door locks behind you and either you are leaving in body bag or with the loot.

 What are you up to in New World these days?

Saturday, May 20, 2023

New World Arena Win

 Just sharing this sweet scoreboard from a 3v3 arena match in New World.  Playing as my Heavy Armor Flamethrower build.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Idea: Fix to balance New World range DPS in PvE?

new world ideaNew (World) Ideas is a series of posts in which I present small changes that New World could make that would improve the game.

 Ranged damage in New World end game PvE is a problem.  Here's an idea to fix it!

 New World recently changed the Bane perks on ranged weapons to do more % damage than the % damage increase bane gives on melee weapons.  This was meant to "fix" that ranged damage was under-powered compared to melee in PvE content.  This was a poor "fix".

 My idea for a true fix would be to nerf the crap out of melee.  Seriously!

 The reason melee is so good in PvE for the most part it hits multiple targets on normal attacks (light and heavy) while ranged does not.  Ranged hits a single target on normal attacks (yes there are a few upgrades where there is some splash but its not default like it is with most melee).

 It seems like the better approach for melee would be that it does high damage to the first target hit but reduced damage to any additional targets hit.  The game has the tech to do this; it already understands first vs additional targets hit for perks like Trenchant Recovery.  

 This would create more value for true area-of-effect abilities instead of the default melee attack being area of effect.  It would also balance damage between ranged and melee as they would both be primarily single target damage.

 And if this sort of approach was taken the response would be apocalyptic from the New World community. Good.  We need a little drama.  If this idea sounds as dumb as you think it does; leave a comment!

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Start digging New World's grave?

 The studio behind New World has announced it is starting work on a new MMO set in the Lord of the Rings universe.  The natural question is: who's gonna start digging New World's grave?

lotr mmo
 Amazon Games has announced it’s making a new massively multiplayer online game based on The Lord of the Rings. Development is being led by New World studio Amazon Games Orange County. This is an all-new production, separate from an earlier attempt to make a Lord of the Rings MMO that was canceled by Amazon in 2021.


 First I want to say my inner geek chafes when these announcements say "Lord of the Rings" when really the setting is Tolkien's Middle-earth.  If the announcement had read "Middle-earth MMO" my interest would have been doubly peaked.  So I am long term hoping

 Of course this announcement hit the New World community with many now jockeying for position to be the first one in line to get a shovel for the grave digging.  Clearly Amazon Game Studios is going to starve New World to focus on this new game.

 Combine this with the "gear reset" fears and we all should just stop playing New World I guess.

 RIP: New World 2021 - 2023

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

New World Gear Reset?

 New World can't stay out of the crosshairs of the content creators.  This time answers to a Discord Q&A are making the rounds (sorry don't know if/how I can link to Discord posts). Specifically comments regarding the Season 3 road map item around a gear score increase and what that means for player's current gear .  The answer was short and sweet, but lacked clarity on what it really meant so of course the community is taking it as "New World full gear reset! Stop playing now!".

If you want a larger summary of the Q&A along with the tidbit stoking the gear reset discussion watch the video I linked (embedded below as well).


The gear reset tidbit is screenshotted below (along with Jay Oddity's spectacular noggin top).

new world gear reset

 As I said in the intro: short and sweet, but lacking clarity.  On one hand it is saying 625 (max gear level currently) gear is not upgradeable and then saying some sort of new system is coming for gear progression (which is assumed the Season 3 road map bullet item for "gear score increase).

 At face value a level-headed reader is walking away with "player's won't upgrade gear that is 625".  A less-than-level-headed reader walks away with "625 gear will be worthless! Don't waste time playing the game!".

 Unfortunately MMORPG history is sort of on the side of the less-than-level-headed readers here.  When World of Warcraft launched its first expansion many players (a lot who were brand new to MMORPGs) were shocked to find out that a green item from the expansion trumped some of the best gear gained in original World of Warcraft.  Every expansion since has reset gear in a similar manner so the assumption is this is where New World is headed.

 Personally I take the statement as an indication they are increasing gear score and coming up with a new system for adjusting gear score.  The key word I hit on there is "adjust".  That reads like gear may not be upgraded in the future and may have other methods for adjusting to meet gear score requirements.  I am hopeful this means a more horizontal approach than a strict vertical approach.  Or possibly automated scaling up and down based on other factors which would allow

 New World already has a gearing problem.  There is no real way to ensure you get the gear you need excepting for some farmable named gear sets that have niche use cases (such as the Harbringer gear sets for Angry Earth content; useless elsewhere).  If players want best in slot gear in New World it's basically a lottery system.  Either they get a drop from a high level mutation, an Outpost Rush crate, or through the mystic toilet that is crafting.

 Knowing that there is an underlying gearing problem I am hopeful this statement is AGS taking a good look at the problem and working towards new and exciting solutions instead of bandaid fixes over the top of what we have.  If this is intended to coincide with Season 3 then we are likely to find out more details a few months from now.  And months are like years in MMOs; so if you are questioning if you should play New World and upgrade your gear then all you need to ask yourself "are you having fun?".  If yes; then upgrade away.  If you answered no; stop being a troll and go somewhere else.

Monday, May 15, 2023

What'd they do to my boy!?

 Changes to the specialist Irish are coming to Battlefield 2042.  EA DICE announced the changes on their latest Inside Battlefield podcast.  The big change is a significant NERF to Irish's APS-36 Shootdown Sentry.

battlefield 2042 irish

 Irish's sentry, as it stands currently, takes effect immediately once deployed (i.e. it starts shooting down explosives) and intercepts all explosives until such time that the sentry is destroyed.  Basically it is an infinite explosive defense if it is not destroyed.

 The upcoming changes are:

  • There will be a "boot up" time before the sentry is active
  • There will be an "active" mode where it can intercept explosives
  • There will be a "inactive" mode where it cannot intercept explosives; aka cooldown mode

 Oh boy!

 These are significant nerfs to Irish's sentry and I have some reservations.  One of the long standing problems with Battlefield games is "explosive spam".  Trying to defend a point?  Trying to defend the little bit of ground you took over on attack? Prepare for a never ending flood of explosives being lobbed into your general area; especially in game modes like breakthrough.

 Irish's sentry is critical in the current state of the game to combat explosive spam.  Without the sentry confined spaces or bottlenecks would be unplayable.  Anyone that has played a round of breakthrough without anyone playing Irish know how miserable the experience can be.

 Pushing players into open areas exposes them to other Battlefield detractors such as vehicle campers and snipers.  In modes like breakthrough it may become impossible to either defend or attack some points (attackers rely heavily on Irish's sentry to push forward and hold areas; resetting the sentry position a few feet forward as the push makes progress).

 While the sentry is great for combating explosive spam it also has some areas where it can be abused.  The most egregious abuse is vehicles camping just off the main battlefield protected from any long range anti-vehicle attacks since the rockets are considered explosives.  In modes with out of bounds areas for defenders; attacking vehicles could park, drop a couple sentries, and be impervious to attack.

 What confuses me most about the changes is that it hurts defending against explosive spam in close quarters but is not much of a deterrent against the abuse by camping vehicles.  Vehicles are often far enough away that even with a cool down period the sentry is still a near-impervious defense.  Outside of multiple players coordinating attacks there isn't much risk to vehicle campers still.

 The developers also stated they wanted to improve the pick rate of Irish (and Dozer who they also covered in the podcast).  As I see it there is even less of a reason to select Irish now than there was before.  As an Irish fanboy; I can't see myself picking him if his sentry is gutted.

 So in conclusion: what'd they do to my boy!?  The only change needed was to make it so the sentry didn't stop rockets so vehicle campers couldn't sit untouched, but instead we are getting changes that will actively encourage more explosives spam...

Friday, May 12, 2023

New World Hardcore?

new world hardcore mode
 With the recent buzz around hardcore play in World of Warcraft Classic hardcore it has folks in the New World community talking about alternate game modes.  Of course hardcore (if your character dies its deleted) is the mode that occupies mindshare, but I want to propose a different game mode for New World I'd like to see.

 I call this game mode "Open New World".  The key changes:

  • No instanced content (no Outpost Rush, no PvP arenas, no Expeditions, no Trials)
  • Factions are optional (i.e. players are not required to join a faction)
  • If a player joins a faction; PvP is always on

 The big change here is "no instanced content".  I really enjoy New World's open world content.  I love looping around the open world and doing stuff.  I don't dislike the instanced content but wish there was more content in the open world and more players there doing it.  Removing instanced content will force players into the open world.

 Now that we have players forced into the open world let's enable PvP by making it so joining a faction is electing to be always-on for PvP.  Players can remain faction-less if they don't want to PvP and companies can be either factionless or faction (if faction; all members must be in the same faction).

 Some other changes to go with this:

  • Make it so certain resources can only be gathered by faction players so that players compete over resources at the top end.
  • Update fort captures to be events that encourage players to show up (basically an OPR replacement)
    • Move OPR caches to fort capture as rewards
  • Update Elite POIs to have mutations and have former expedition rewards (expedition replacement)
    • Rewards scale off players in the area; the more players the less the rewards

I'd play this version of the game in a heartbeat :)  Would you?  Leave a comment.


Thursday, May 11, 2023

Challenging No More

challenge accepted
 And we're back (nothing too major; thankfully).

 While I was away New World decided things needed to be less challenging.  Update 1.9.3 is on the live servers as of 5/10 and with it numerous season pass challenges and activities were dialed back making them challenging no more.

As an example; this challenge was reduced:

Outpost Rush Domination
    Reduced required Outpost Rush wins from 100 to 30

 The season is approximately 97 days long (Apr 3 - July 6).  For this challenge at its original goal of 100 it would mean a player would need to net at least one win a day if they play every day.  That seems like a good challenge.  It is not something everyone will get and feels like an accomplishment if you do make it.  But moved to 30; that isn't much of a challenge and many more players will hit the challenge complete.

 If you follow the release notes an axe was taken to many of the challenges.  This is unfortunate for anyone that was pushing for the original targets in the hopes of gaining the coveted "look at what I did!" feeling.  In my own experience I logged into several challenges and season journey steps being completed; netting me 5 pass levels (putting me at 90+; cruising to 100).

 On one hand I am a fan of when things are made easier on players, but at the same time I like actual challenges.  So I'm on the fence with all these changes; though considering I am pretty much done with the season pass and journey it doesn't really matter much.

 My hope is the New World dev team learns from Season 1 and makes future season's and their challenges actual challenges.  Tie unique rewards to them so that players can feel rewarded for hitting the challenges.  These don't have to be game changing rewards, but there is nothing wrong with throwing out some unique housing items or cosmetics or titles.

 With that said I do want to give credit to the devs on other changes that made things less challenging for the better.  My favorite is the reduction of Flame Cores required for a cast; down from 10 to 3.  Also you can now create 6 casts per day - up from 3.  Also the gear you get from the casts is much improved.  This will make the "craft X casts" season challenge really easy now, but there is some great benefits from this.  

 The change opens another path to turn gold into umbral shards as you can just buy 18x flame core each day, craft 6 casts, and each one rewards up to 400 shards for up to 2,400 shards a day (not to mention you get improved Human Ward/Bane gear from the casts as well).  Combine these shards with shards you can "buy" via infused fragments and there is a good path for converting gold into umbral shards for those players that don't want to get them via other means (players like me!).

 Anyways; I am off to grind more named gear drops which is my current kick in New World.


Sunday, May 07, 2023

Emergency Room; No Gaming

 What a week.  My phone died (original Google Pixel was 7 years old) and then my youngest ended up in the Emergency Room.  No gaming this weekend.  My youngest is good though; just had to rule out something more serious than a common stomach bug.

Thursday, May 04, 2023

Cuatro De Mayo!

Happy Star Wars Day

may the 4th be with you

May the 4th be with you!  You'll need the force if you are trying to run Star Wars Jedi: Survivor.

Wednesday, May 03, 2023

New World: Farming The Tangle

Farm. Sleep. Repeat.

 With my Infernus farm build resulting in acquiring Infernus I wanted to look at what else I could farm up using the build.  Fortunately there is plenty of stuff to farm in the general vicinity. Specifically I am now on the hunt for parts of the Corrupted Rage set: specifically the gloves and helmet (as I have Chardis pieces for my other Ancient tank gear set).

 And the helmet dropped for me last night so just need to nab the gloves! 

horns of corrupted rage new world

 So I will be in The Tangle farming away if you need me!  If you have any other recommendations on items to farm for drop me a comment.

Tuesday, May 02, 2023

Ashes of Creation Looking Better: Mage

Mage Preview

 Ashes of Creation featured the mage class in their most recent monthly update.  This was the most promising look at the game in a while.  

 First, I want to highlight the format to this archetype preview was better than it's predecessors.  There was structure and thought behind what was shown and why it was shown.  Details of abilities accompanied the on screen display.  Abilities were showcased before jumping into content.  I walked away understanding the direction they are headed with the mage.  In past archetype previews I didn't walk away with an understanding of the class.

 Second; USER INTERFACE! We saw USER INTERFACE!  Finally.  The UI is critical to understanding the game.  We saw two stacked hot bars, some indication of equipped weapon, cool downs, and a little bit of the inventory.  UI needs to be featured more.  It is the biggest missing piece to help drive confidence the game is making more progress than just being able to show off animations and basic combat.

 We also got to see a few other things.  Most notably was the gliding (flying?) mount (23:12 in the video).  The animation from take off, gliding, to landing were awesome.  Enemies also aggro'd as the mount glided or walked past and there was quite the train of enemies gathered up.  I am not sure if this is how aggro is intended in long run, but definitely some early-days MMORPGs vibes there!

ashes of creation

 Also numerous times in the video we got to see the character traverse various world obstacles. The traversal looked smooth and gave me confidence that they are headed in the right direction for movement and how it feels to the player (i.e. I can climb that rock in front of me vs it being an invisible wall).

 This is the first class preview where I can give a solid "thumbs up".  The more of the various game aspects that are mixed into these previews the more confident I will be that the game is heading towards a test!