Monday, April 29, 2024

Monday Screenshots 4/29/2024: New World

 Some Monday Screenshots for you; this time from New World!

A screenshot of the arena leaderboards from the game New World
My good friend Indestructible, on Valhalla server, reached #1 on the arena leaderboard.  I am in 12th.

A screenshot of playing music in New World
Playing some music inbetween picking flowers during Springtide Bloom

Sunday, April 28, 2024

Farm Game Fest!?

farm fest steam

 Steam is holding a Farming Fest event starting tomorrow.  Get your farm game on!  As I just got most of my garden planted out this past weekend I'll be on the lookout for a farm a chill game.

Monday, April 22, 2024

Steam Backlog: Fallout 3 (and a fix for crashing when you click New Game)

 This post is part of my running series: My Steam Backlog (see all MySteamBacklog tagged posts).

 I jumped back into Fallout 3!

A screenshot of Fallout 3 pip boy
Oh how I've missed you Pip-Boy!

 First; I kept crashing when starting a new game in Fallout 3 and a little searching directed me to needing a DirectX9 file.  Once downloaded and placed in the right folder I was off starting a new game.

 One thing I realized off the start was that Fallout 3 does not use cloud saves of any sort so all of my past adventures are long gone.  I had to start back out at the beginning which is literally as a baby coming out of my mother.  Then I explored the vault as a toddler > teenager > young adult before finally heading out into the wasteland.

 Once out into the world I had to admit myself the game graphics feel dated.  It is amazing to me how games that looked "amazing" 10+ years ago just don't hold up anymore.  That is both a good and bad thing I suppose.  Good that we've seen such amazing progress in graphics but bad in that I don't get the same sort of nostalgia hit from a Fallout 3 as I do from a stylized graphical game like a Super Nintendo RPG.

 I made my way to the first town in the game which is named after the nuclear bomb at it's center: Megaton.  This is where my journey ended for now as I have to contemplate how I want to solve this particular puzzle :)  Anyone that has played the game knows what decision happens here.

A screenshot of the children's book used to set starting stats in Fallout 3
The clever way that Fallout 3 has you set your starting stats via a children's book... while you are playing as a toddler.


Friday, April 19, 2024

Wilderness here I come!

A screenshot of an email inviting me to the Pax Dei alpha test

 I've been invited to the next Pax Dei alpha test entitled "Wilderness".  This will be my first time testing the game and I am looking forward to this one.  Part survival, part builder, and an MMORPG - right up my alley!

Some more info on the Pax Dei Wilderness Alpha

What can you expect in this Alpha?

For this second large-scale test, we’re going on an adventure!
Our team has been hard at work on every aspect of the game related to challenges, and we now want to test that foundation with our community.

We hope you will have a great time, and we are looking forward to your feedback.

  •  Gear up. We have revamped and introduced new statistics for all gear in the game. With hundreds of items for mixing and matching, you will have no lack of choices in crafting your own role.
  •  It is dangerous to go alone. Denizens of the world will now present a real challenge. Don’t wander away from home without a party and the proper equipment.
  • Master your weapons. We’ve added new spells, combat abilities, and weapon types. Keep an eye on their durability, you don’t want them to break when you need them the most.
  • Welcome to Fight Club. Divine peace doesn’t extend to Lyonesse, our new province. Enter here at your own (mortal) peril, if you’re willing to try out our first iteration on PVP.
  • Build & craft away. We've made multiple changes to the peaceful aspect of the game as well, be sure to check our release notes for a comprehensive overview.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Fallout to the Fallout

Fallout TV series

 The Fallout series on Amazon is all the rage and rightfully so as it recreates not only the theme of the games but also the quirkiness.  I am one episode in and even I, the can't-ever-seem-to-play-single-player-games gamer, am contemplating a jump back into the Fallout games.

 I was reading Tales of the Aggronaut and the post from Belghast: Radioactive Nostalgia.  Both in title and content the post was spot on.  The Fallout TV (is it really TV?) series is spot on translating the game to the screen.  From the look of characters to the well-placed medpacks on the walls everything just feels right in the first episode and I can't imagine it gets too far off later in the season.  

 It is so good that it has many players such as Belghast back and playing the Fallout games.  Even I'm considering going back to Fallout 3 or 4 which I never finished.  Or maybe like Belghast I revisit my favorite in the series: New Vegas.  Regardless of my decision the SteamDB charts don't lie: lots of folks are returning to Fallout games with the popularity of the TV series (see charts below).  You might say there is some fallout... to the Fallout.

A screen capture of a chart on SteamDB showing player count in a Fallout video game

A screen capture of a chart on SteamDB showing player count in a Fallout video game

A screen capture of a chart on SteamDB showing player count in a Fallout video game

A screen capture of a chart on SteamDB showing player count in a Fallout video game

A screen capture of a chart on SteamDB showing player count in a Fallout video game


Monday, April 15, 2024

Major Anvil Empires Test Coming!

Anvil is a massively multiplayer game where thousands of players work together to build empires, wage war, and conquer in a persistent online world. March alongside armies of players in massive melee battles and large scale sieges.

 The season of MMO tests marches forward!  Anvil Empires moves into it's next major testing period on April 18th.  I have not posted about this game before but it caught my attention for a few reasons I'd like to share.

 First, the game is from the same developer as Foxhole and while I never got deep into Foxhole the promise of the game was amazing.   Foxhole is a WW2 themed game where everything must be created by the players; every bullet, gun, vehicle.  Not only that but they must all be transported to the frontline and the frontline isn't static.  Players can dig and build and then destroy anywhere.  Frontlines form naturally where force meets force.  Foxhole is a big sandbox.

 Second, Anvil Empires features an isometric view which always has my nostalgia ringing for the days of Ultima Online.  The view evokes something deep inside of me that I can't explain; like a gamer looking down upon a tabletop game and imaging all of the possibilities.

 While I like the isometric view that was not the case for Foxhole where I found it very limiting for the context.  In Foxhole I have a gun or a vehicle with a gun but I can't see more than a little bit in front and behind me which made it very hard to get a broader sense of the battlefield.  While this was all part of the design and gave value to certain things it also felt constraining to me as a player.

 In the medieval context of Anvil Empires I think the view will work better.  There is more melee scrums than there will be long range warfare.  The view supports that action better.

 On top of the view and pedigree of the developers other hit there is a lot of depth to the game that has been announced so far.  There is homesteading so you can make your mark in the world all the way up to empire building to dominate the world.  And that world is persistent so should minimize how much instanced content there is.

 If the team can deliver Foxhole but in a fantasy/medieval setting then I'm sold.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Hide UI in New World?

new world

 Hiding the UI in New World used to be Alt+H, but after Season 5 it was changed to a default of F10.  That's it.  That's the post.  You can change the key bind in settings if you want.

Friday, April 12, 2024

Venom Bunny!? New World S5 PvP Build

 Came across this New World PvP build from TrickTrick and figured I'd share for anyone looking for a meta build for S5.  This is also very capable in PvE.  The build is Venom Bunny so expect a lot of hopping and get your rabbit facemask skins ready.

 NW Champ link:
 Build video:

 I watch a lot of build videos but what I like about this one is that it has mostly named armor pieces and weapons which are more reasonable to acquire.  Yes, many of these are PvP track named items which can take time to unlock in the tracks but that is probably faster than getting the gold for crafted pieces.  If you PvP frequently then you have probably got a copy of these named items (assume you horde gear like I do).

 Even the weapons are named.  Venom is the new spear artifact from the Siren Queen's arena which, while group PvE content, is dead simple and lots of groups are currently doing it.  The sword options are also named drops that most players probably have salvaged copies of many times before (hoping you saved one in your stash of gear for a rainy day).

 Also I'll admit this is the build I hate running into.  Sword and shield/Spear is the bane of my Frigid Inferno heavy armor flamethrower build.  Too many stuns and interrupts to be able to do any flamethrowing.  Even if I can throw some flame; shield block is a winning defense.


Thursday, April 11, 2024

Eye on Aeternum or Eye on clues? Hippos!?

 The New World team recently started a new video series called: Eye On Aeternum.  With the first one (see video below) the team gave a heads up to keep an eye out (ha!) for clues to future changes coming to New World (similar to how they hid a controller in the background of a video before they announced controller support).

 So of course the community has been eyes wide open and recently we came across.... a hippo!?

An image from a New World developer update showing a hippo in the background
Not so subtle hippo clue!

 For anyone not up to speed on the history of the hippo conversation: when mounts were announced there was a community question about whether hippos would be a possible future mount type.  That idea was shot down but in being shut down the idea -- the possibility -- of hippos was born.

 Personally my interest in hippos comes from the book series River of Teeth by Sarah Gailey. The book series is based on a "what if" scenario:

Years ago, in an America that never was, the United States government introduced herds of hippos to the marshlands of Louisiana to be bred and slaughtered as an alternative meat source. This plan failed to take into account some key facts about hippos: they are savage, they are fast, and their jaws can snap a man in two.

 The book idea is based on a real historical proposal to do what happens in the book: bring hippos to the "new world".  The book expands the idea where hippos become reliable companions/mounts.  There is also the real example of the "cocaine hippos" in Columbia as well.  So while hippos seem far fetched there is some historical context to play with when we consider Aeternum is an island that has visitors from many time periods.  Hippos are also cool.

 There is already a statement from the devs that the plush hippo was just forgotten on set but I'm not buying it.  The same as I wasn't buying that the controller was "just there" in it's original video.  What realistically could we get out of this in the game? My guess would be a pet system and a mini-hippo as a pet; or just a hippo pet as a housting decoration like we have dogs/rabbits/etc today.  My dream though is a hippo mount!

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

A Ghost No More

 Fantastic Pixel Castle (that's the developer) has shared some early prototyping for their future MMORPG under the project name "Ghost".  Ghost for Ghostcrawler who recently left the Riot MMO project to start this new adventure.

Concept art for Fantastic Pixel Castle's ghost mmo

 Ghost is also a ghost no more as we actually get to see some early glimpses on what they are working on.  For anyone keeping track, yes that is more information in a few months time than we've gotten in the years of Ghostcrawler when he worked on the Riot MMO.  The Riot MMO is still a thing though apparently.

 What I liked about this Milestone 1 update was that it talked about wanting players as part of the process while admitting the natural problems that arise from that such as "this game looks like garbage" when showing off early prototype content.  It was reassuring to hear a developer talk through the reality of letting the players ride along with development.  There is a good head on their shoulders here.

 I also like that they went with UE5, a known game engine, instead of what every other "I quit my company and started my own MMO" project seems to do thinking they can build their own engine.  UE5 is powering so many games so good to see another one on the list.  It should help the team move along faster than some others in the past few years working on their own engines.

 And proving it is helping the team along the post highlights some screenshots and feedback from early prototyping (note: this was using premade assets in the UE store so is not representative of the game).  They want to focus on combat and their concept of red/blue zones (static vs procedural) and had both up and going in the prototype.  It is refreshing to see a team that appears focused on a core idea and are "failing fast" through it.

Prototype screenshot for Fantastic Pixel Castle's ghost mmo
Prototype gameplay with UE assets

 This was a cool step of a game's life that we don't get to see all that often.  This update was a fun read and I am looking forward to more.  This game is years away but its looking to be an enjoyable ride to take along with the team.  They also have a podcast, Word on the Street, that I' m going to check out.