Archive for September, 2010

T1 Dungeon – Hunter’s Vale

September 30, 2010 4 comments

Before I jump into my ‘regularly scheduled programming’ I quickly turn your attention to the September Producer’s Letter. Personally I find it another disappointment – no new information, just a rehash of what we already knew, aside from the information of the PTS going up in October. I guess Carrie spends too much time playing Minecraft to write something informative; at least she could have changed the verb tense to show that the awards for the anniversary were already sent, not will be sent.

Anyway, on to the dreadful discussion of PvE! Don’t worry this is actually leading to something from the innovative mind of yours truly. So I want to go tier by tier in this analysis – actually more like renown bracket by renown bracket which is really how the games progression is measured anyway. What I’d like to do is look at a few aspects of every dungeon and use this information. So what I’ll be rating dungeons on are a few different aspects: time commitment, layout, design, boss mechanics, loot mechanics, lockouts, and as a side dish – lore. Thats right, if you’ve studied etiquette then you’ve got yourself a seven course meal on your way. Sit up straight, no elbows on the table, and never blow on your soup! Read more…

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Eka’s Crusade

September 29, 2010 1 comment

So I’m going to call myself a liar. I know I’m messing up my own next string of threads but I quickly and briefly had to interject (just once!) to cast the light on a thread I’ve started on the official forums. Simply put – I am not happy about the introduction of Skaven in their current form – more or less as skins players don to assault keeps (both Order and Destruction). I have no qualms about the new mechanic for keep takes, it sounds interesting and interactive; my qualms lay in the fact that this introduction of skaven pretty much nixes any implementation of them as a playable army AND that Order has the same mechanic. I would be far happier if Destruction got skaven for this RvR mechanic and Order got Ogres (Ogre Tyrant = Rat Ogre, Ogre Butcher = Pack Master, Gnoblar = Gutter Runner, Bull Ogre = Warpstone Engineer). There bam, solution where lore isn’t killed. I know tons of people are citing the Gotrek and Felix novels saying ‘Hey look the Empire worked with the Skaven!’ Um ok the Empire is a a buncha sleezbags that will do anything to win, glory for Sigmar et al. The High Elves and Dwarves would NOT ever work with Skaven. Then the wise asses go ‘well slayers would never fight with elves so screw the lore anyway!’ Um… slayers weren’t suppose to be playable in the game, Hammerers were. So originally it worked out fine. And to those who say ‘GW signed off on it so its ok” – well I’ve emailed Games Workshop about this the second I heard about it and without going into details and such I was told “Yeah we don’t like what Mythic is doing either, but they have a contract and we can’t do much about it, I suggest you contact them if you’re upset.”

Anyway I’m not going to argue with myself – if you would like to support the crusade against Mythic take a look at my thread and show your support, any is much appreciated!

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Start of Journey #2!

September 28, 2010 1 comment

So today I just wanted a quick post to keep my readers appraised of my intentions and direction of the blog. I’ve already begun pounding out my next string of posts in me head. Now this is a warning – the path I am going down may seem dull and dry to many, but alas it will be a path down the realm of PvE. I hope my readers forgive me for going in this direction but I hope that the end result is a product that will make the imagination run wild! As an indication of the future – the next few posts I will analyze dungeons in Warhammer – mainly those accessible to Order since my highest level Destro toon is level 7 (I think…) =\. If anyone has knowledge of these dungeons and would like to do a guest write up, by all means! I know for many who have been playing WAR for months or years will already know much of what I intend to cover the coming week, but my hope is that once you see why I did my analysis you’ll appreciate it. I hope the discussion of PvE doesn’t drive too many of my viewers away =P

Allow me to emphasize: this will not be a walk-through of the dungeons. This will be an analysis of the dungeons layout/design/and boss mechanics. If you want a walk-through I can happily email you one I wrote up for my guild.

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1.4 Information on the Horizon

September 27, 2010 1 comment

So today I will be brief in my post simply because there is A LOT to read about the future of Warhammer on other blogs!

Now as per usual I will chime in my own thoughts, but try to keep them to the minimum since I am none too happy and wouldn’t want to scare anyone away. Simply put – based on the information that has been thus issued I am pretty upset about this patch for several reasons.

  1. Last summer many people (on Gorfang) quit War because they couldn’t progress their gear past Dark Promise and Annihilator (the lucky few got their hands on some Conq). People were begging Mythic for a second ramp to the lord room in forts so they could become more do-able. Cities at that time on Gorfang never happened. What did Mythic do? They axed the forts and proudly announced that cities would get pushed more! (as if it was a good thing). Lo and behold the city (Altdorf) was pushed about three times a day, four times on bad days. More people quit because it turned into endless city defenses. Now Invader gear was raining from the heavens like candy, and conq could be bought with excess crests. Mythic used the axe when the scalpel should have been used. Now they propose a system which is meant to make zones harder to flip in the “easy” sense that “all you need” are both the keeps (which are harder to take/easier to defend). So once again they go at it with the axe. I fear that now the city will once again become a grim memory of the past – unless you play destro on Gorfang and push the city at 4am. Don’t get me wrong – the city as it is today is what it should have been, but it still occurs too often. The easiest solution to all of this could have been implemented oh last July when people started jumping ship if Mythic just gave us what we wanted – a second ramp in forts. That’s all we wanted. But no, Mythic always knows best.
  2. On Line Shopping – I am generally opposed to spending more money on a game when we have to pay $15 a month for the service we receive. If it was purely for vanity items I would be ok with it – but ‘vanity’ pets with minor buffs? Mounts with different stats? And seriously what kind of pet are you going to give every class… those hounds? War is a grim MMO about death and destruction; this is not Hello Kitty Online where we get a butterfly pet increasing our baking skill by +17.
  3. Skaven – I am ok with the changes to the keeps, especially the aerial bombers (a concept I actually thought existed in the game when I started playing and set foot in Ekrund and all the gyrocopters were flying about bombing the greenskins – I was sorely disappointed to not see them elsewhere). But to have the keep essentially being taken by Skaven? Let me simply – you need a rat ogre to pound down the gate, you need a pack master to heal the rat ogre, you need a warlock engineer to heal siege weapons to keep the enemy’s siege weapons off you, and you need a gutter runner to destroy the enemy’s siege weapons. So essentially the entire keep take can be done by a warband of Skaven. I am terribly sorry but wtf is this, Warhammer: The Age of Skaven. I can already foresee everyone turning into skaven for a keep siege. Oh and what about the bloody point where Skaven don’t fight with Order? (Andy can shove his Gotrek and Felix reference up his butt since I’m willing to bet he hasn’t touched any War literature, including army books). The keeps seem like they will be fun, but the skaven is the biggest disappointment yet. You know, like when we got LotD and the Tomb Kings and it was just a huge PvE sandbox. The players want playable skaven and Mythic is just pounding a square peg into a circle hole. “Here’s your skaven lads, enjoy playing a class meant to take keeps!” I do not want to see Order playing Skaven. I want destro to get playable skaven from level 1 and I want them to be a class you play and love, not a ‘its that time of the day, time to put on my skaven skin’ class.

I am sorry, I love Warhammer and the lore behind this game, but this is a bastardization of everything War is to me. I will continue to publish my remaining thoughts on my blog until this patch goes live. Once 1.4 hits the big screen only the entertainment value will keep me playing, and due to the level of discontent I am feeling now I do not know how much longer that will be. Mythic stop butchering Warhammer’s lore. Stop ‘fixing’ Warhammer by implementing stuff only you think is cool, try to listen to your community who actually play the game.

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Something’s Wrong in Altdorf…

September 26, 2010 4 comments

Ok call me crazy, but I smell a foul plot. I’m going to be brief with this post so I can gather all the Witch Hunters I know and purge Altdorf of its evil. I don’t know if its the work of Tzeentch, Skaven, Dwarves or whoever, but I’m ringing the alarm bells now.

So here we have exhibit A – A portrait of the Grand Theogonist Volkmar done last fall

Exhibit B – In Uncontested Altdorf

Exhibit C

Exhibit D

Exhibit E

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They Came in Twos

September 25, 2010 Leave a comment

Today I would like to discuss a concept I’ve had for a long time but never really fleshed out – and I certainly do not intend to flesh it out today but mayhaps bring it up and see if anyone else has cool ideas.

In Warhammer’s sphere of PvP and PvE generally speaking the most group diversity is desired. You don’t really want two of the same healer or tank because of overlapping buffs, and the same for dps classes. I however would like to propose a system that would make pairing up with your similar class-mate ‘fun’. It would become activated much like how one apprentices another. For the sake of simplicity we’ll call this system ‘Partnership’. So you right click on your class-mate’s portrait and ‘start a partnership’ and the head of said relationship is the highest ranking person. Upon entering this relationship both players get a buff (like the buff you get for wearing 8 pieces of sovereign). If they click their buff within say 10 seconds and are within ‘x’ feet of each other, then their special ability is used. Read more…

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A Game of Numbers…

September 24, 2010 1 comment

So before I jump into today’s topic I’ll quickly redirect you to the proposed Marauder changes thread. I’m happy that Mythic is finally giving this class attention as in the many months I have been playing WAR they have been up there in the neglected-boat with Engis, SWs, and Magi. As someone with a SW as a main, 1.3.6 left me utterly disappointed with the carpet-bomb RDPS changes, but that’s another issue. One thing I will say is how flabbergasted I am with all the destro asking for Marauders to get pounce. This is seriously a -palm face- moment. Of all the nice toys the Marauder already has (aoe KD, AP Drain, a pull that doesnt aggro guards and cant be parried like the gay-ass WL pet) and is further getting (positional armor pen, guaranteed crit under-50-finisher, a +50% damage tactic) I am genuinely worried that this class is getting too much TLC. The TTK in WAR is already rather absurd and Mythic introduced the defensive Sovereign sets to offset this. Apparently they didn’t realize that not everyone wears Sovereign or has been lucky enough to beat the RR23s in winning some. If Mythic was a doctor and you came in with a cut on your finger, they would recommend amputating the whole arm. Instead of using the scalpel, they use the ax. Ah well, /end rant. On to the post!

I am not a math person at all, yet today I bring to the table numbers. I’m talking purple numbers. Yes, today I would like to address the change to increase the renown cap to 100. Now I’ve already addressed these changes in a prior thread before they were announced; I know, I’m an oracle. You can read that to see my feelings in regards to this change and I wont try to repeat what I’ve already said because this post is simply about numbers, however I must quote myself just once from that post.

This ‘expansion’ in my mind does not smell financially wise decision at all. In fact all this expansion does smell like is financial incentive without any thought. “Gee how do we get player to play longer without actually giving them new places to fight or new things to do… I know raise the cap!” Lets face it people who are already RR80 and still play are not playing for the gain, theyre playing to kill. People who unsubbed probably left because there was nothing new, the renown was a grind, or the game wasn’t to their fancy (bugs, PvP orientation, etc).

Ok that being said, Mythic is fishing for money, good for them. On to the numbers!

CAUTION: This post may cause tears! I am not responsible for any pets that ‘go missing’ in your oven. Read more…

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WAR Turns 2!

September 23, 2010 Leave a comment

When I started my chain of posts on the six new armies and their archtypes back in August I stepped away from the ‘reporting’ on the goings on of Warhammer Online and let my fellow bloggers keep you up to date on those issues and wave the pitchforks and torches. Now that I’m back to ‘just blogging’ (for now) I get to look back on the… how ever many days I missed, and see whats been going on. Read more…

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Conclusion of an Epic Journey

September 22, 2010 6 comments

So today I would like to wrap up what was pretty much the focus of my posts for the past… six weeks? A couple months back I started my project with a friend aiming to design classes to fill the four arch-types for armies that could possibly be added into Warhammer Online. I hope that I have given my readers food for thought and perhaps caught the eye of a developer whose brain has run dry. Thanks to feedback from you guys, certain issues were raised with abilities/tactics/morales/mechanics and I promptly tried to address them.

When I started the process my first thought was ‘well no race’s mechanics are exactly mirrored in another race’ and with that I set up the minimum for at least two pairings for any expansion. Although I know many of my readers longed for a third realm composed of Skaven and their minions, I have given up hope that Mythic has the resources to restructure the game in its current state to fit in the mechanic of a 3rd realm, but they are welcome to surprise me! Smashing the six armies I presented in the existing alliances did pose several lore-problems such as neutrality and in-fighting and I tried to address those issues in the preludes, which I put much thought and time into and I sincerely hope they were both informative and a fun read.

I hoped to present twelve mechanics which were fresh and new although encompassing some aspects of existing mechanics. Whether I succeeded or failed is up to the reader, although I will admit that in some cases I presented an archtype of an existing class in a new light – how I think it should have been. Many people have different ideas in regards to which class would better fit that archtype and it may be easy for them to simply say ‘I want a Rat Ogre for my Skaven tank’ I think I presented compelling arguments for my classes in both their mechanics and abilities.I intentionally did not put damage/heal values because for me what was important was what the abilities does to show the role of the class, any display of numbers would be pointless in my mind because every tool-tip is modified by level and mastery points and of course subject to balance.

I concluded each pairing with a map of where I would locate the different tiers to familiarize my readers with the geography of Warhammer and to show that a campaign can be designed in a more linear and reasonable fashion. I also went as far as locating exotic locations in the lore for dungeons and a tier 5 for that pairing. I have received some requests in regards to my views on how I would design one of these dungeons and for that I shall have to ponder. It is my sincere hope that I have provided you, my readers, with some entertaining material and that someone at Mythic has caught sight of my work and is saying ‘hey that’s doable and makes sense…’

My only regret is that I do not have more artistic and computer talent to take this up a notch, to go further. I had hoped to make tool-tips as one can see on because I figured pretty visuals would help people envision the class as I see it, but alas that is for another. I shall continue to take in feedback and readjust classes as people bring issues to light but other than that I solemnly close the chapter of Eka’s Expansions for the Wood Elf v Beastmen, Lizardmen v Skaven, and Bretonnians v Vampire Counts campaigns.

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Bretonnians v Vampire Counts Campaign

September 21, 2010 Leave a comment

Today I conclude my final campaign, and as per usual I must include maps because I love maps! Once again I am following the standard model of Tiers 1-4 as red/blue dots with capitals (even though Mythic hates capitals) and including my idea of locations for Tier 5 and a dungeon for the pairing. I hope I do my readers justice in designing this campaign – I know the Vampire Counts are a very popular Warhammer army and I have gone against the grain in my design of it. Despite Games Workshops focus on the Von Carsteins I have turned the focus west to the other Bloodlines with distinguishing characteristics; I compensate for this with my version of Tier 5 for this campaign. So without further ado… Read more…