Thursday, March 5, 2009

Played Lately: Warhammer Online

  • Blogging has slowed for various reasons. But one of them, at least the one I think is interesting enough to blog about, is that I've been playing Warhammer Online again. I know that I just wrote about resubscribing and recanceling the game, but I have a good reason. I finally took the plunge and upgraded my computer. Everything is lights and rainbows in PC land again.

  • Since I still had time left on my last subscription, I wanted to see if the game was any better on a system that can play it dependably. The first thing I noticed was that I had no idea how to play my primary character, a Dark Elf Sorceress. So I deleted her and started over at level one. Although I might miss the renown ranks I'd earned back when scenarios were more reliable, I knew it would be easier to learn the class again by starting from the beginning. I was surprised to discover that I quested so fast that I reached the same level as my prior character within only two days of play. Either my old system was holding me back a lot or Mythic did something to speed up the leveling process. Whatever the explanation, it was kind of awesome.

  • For the most part, I stuck to the questing game, avoiding public quests except to grind for influence. I never saw more than two other people at a time, which makes PQs impossible to complete. Not that I think public quests are the grand advance everyone was hoping for. The extreme number of them and their grindy nature leave most feeling like shallow experiences. Any future game that wants to try this game mode should focus on fewer PQs with greater diversity and, hopefully, dynamic scaling. Of course, I'd like scaling for any group content. Note, I'm not asking for free loot, just the chance to do something epic even if there is no one else around.

  • One thing I missed was the lack of scenarios being played. Every time I would log in, I queued up for all three tier scenarios and hoped for the best. Over the course of the two weeks I played, I was able to play a total of three: once in Tier 1 and twice in Tier 2. The Open RvR areas were pretty quiet as well. I never saw an opponent in Tier 1, though I did get to siege a keep in Tier 2. Of course everyone bailed out when opposition showed up, so that was a massive failure, but I did get to kill a few people. Outside of these few instanced, PvP seems like an endgame goal.

  • When my month subscription lapsed (after two weeks of play), I was disappointed to see it go. I did enjoy my time, but my return to World of Warcraft has limited my time for other games. I may give it another try now that patch 1.2 has launched, but I'll only be taking it a month at a time.

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