Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Introducing the TOR Nexus

Lately, I've been having trouble keeping up with all the the Star Wars: The Old Republic news and content being generated by the community.  I needed a better (and quicker) way of dealing with them, so the TOR Nexus was born.

What is it?  The TOR Nexus is basically an aggregator, but takes in a bunch of different sources.  Currently, it looks for TOR content at a number of blogs, fansites, BioWare, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Live Streams.  My goal for the project is to keep it simple, quick and useful.

As a blogger, I really don't want to take any views away from someones site.  That's why the TOR Nexus is mostly focused on providing links.  At most a few sentences from an article will be shown.  The goal here is to drive visitors to the content creators.

Main Page.  On the front page, you will the see latest news from nearly all of the sources the nexus uses.

Class Pages.  Each class in TOR gets its own page.  Here you will find the latest community posts, videos and forum threads having to do with the class. For example, check out the Troopers page.

Live Feed.  This page will show you content as it comes into the TOR Nexus.  It automatically updates, so no need to refresh.  Right now this also will show SWTOR related youtube videos as they are uploaded.

You can find the TOR Nexus here:

Please let me know if you have any problems, ideas or questions about the new site.  I still have a bunch more to add, but I hope it proves useful.  A link for the TOR nexus can also be found on my menu bar above.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

SWTOR Story Impressions

There are no spoilers in this post.  Ever since BioWare announced Star Wars: the Old Republic it has made a big deal about the fourth pillar of the MMO being the story.  It's pretty clear this is a driving force behind the game, and it may be what makes or breaks it.  So just how good is the story?

First a little background.  I've played 3 classes ( Sith Inquisitor, Jedi Consular and Bounty Hunter ) into their teens.  That means I have only seen a small part of the story, since 50 is the level cap.

The story aspect of the game mostly refers to the class story.  This long arc pretty much covers the entire leveling experience.  It is the first thing you are introduced to when you create a new character.  So far, I do think the class stories are very well done.  I like all three which I've started and am looking forward to seeing how they turn out someday.

The stories have been pretty unique so far.  Playing a Bounty Hunter feels like a different game (story wise) compared to the Sith Inquisitor even though they are on the same side.  It also cranks the immersion factor up well beyond your typical MMO.  Leveling is not just about getting to 50, it is a journey through the story.

So yeah, I think the class stories are pretty awesome and deserving of the hype.  The side quests on the other hand, are not really up to the same standard.   You cannot level through your class story quests alone, that means you need to get experience elsewhere.  One option is the side quests.

These quests are generally one shots, in that there is a single step.  They are also shared between classes of the same faction, albeit with some different dialog.  It's worth mentioning that there seems to be some planet quest arcs later on which I've heard good things about.   Doing the side quests is not as fun as the class stories, since they are a bit more run of the mill.

In conclusion, I really enjoy the class stories, but am not a big fan of the side quests but am likely to do them once.   Luckily, Warzones award XP so that is another option to use for leveling.

Below is a picture of my Bounty Hunter's newly acquired ship.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Black Fire Pass

One of the big features of last weekends beta sessions for Wrath of Heroes was a new scenario:  Black Fire Pass.   This brings the total count up to three ( Mourkain Temple and the Arena ).  Basically, you want to capture 3 runes and have them all secured at your base.  When you do, your side gets points.

It was a fun scenario, once I figured out what was going on.  There is a bit more running around than in The Arena, but the runes add a tactical element.  The setting is also nice, with plenty of walls and obstacles which can be used to break line of sight.

I did make a video of my first BFP match, which you can see below.  This was my first video since I got a new monitor, so I finally joined the 1920 x 1080 video club :)

Want to see a behind the scenes look at Black Fire Pass?  Head over to Stratics.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

WAR 1.4.5 Q&A

With Warhammer Online's 1.4.5 patch drawing ever closer, it is time for another Q&A with the development team.  Last Q&A, we talked about Fortresses.  This time around, I wanted to cover what else we might be seeing with the patch.  Also, more Fortress details!

1)  Grovod Caverns has been talked about for a while now, will we see its return soon?

Yes, the final polish is being put on now and we hope to have it as planned in 1.4.5

2)  It's Skaven themed, can you please elaborate on how it will work compared to a normal scenario?

Players will begin as their choice of skaven. Fighting will center around control of a single Bomb, which is intended to be used to destroy the skaven machinations of the enemy in the caverns.  High points are awarded for the destruction of enemy machinations.

3)  Will there be any notable combat and career changes coming in 1.4.5?

There will be some changes and fixes, but the primary focus of 1.4.5 is the relics and fortresses, with a side of Grovod.

4)  In the last Q&A, it was mentioned that Guilds and Alliances may be able to claim Fortresses.  High level, how will this work and what's in it for the claimer? 

Correct, similar to the old system, an alliance can claim a fortress and bring more defense to bear for their realm.  Other guilds in the alliance can also spot fortify the fortress with a new mechanic being introduced.

In addition to adding physical defenses to the Fortress, claiming these spots will reward Alliance members with various buffs to help them in their defense of the Fortress. These buffs are localized to the Fortress area where they are gained, and are not the same as any buffs or bonuses gained by controlling relics.

5)  Another aspect of Forts will be the ability to assume the role of a Fort Lord or his guards. Can you give us any details about how and why a player would do this?

The option will be there to allow the Generals (the new replacement for the Lord and guards) to defend on their own.  However, if a brave soul wants to assume responsibility and take on that mantle they will become the General and use that granted power to actively respond to an attack.

There are two reasons someone might do this.  One, it’s fun.  Two, players will always outplay an NPC. There will be four (4) Generals available (Healer, Tank, Ranged DPS, and Melee DPS). They will only be available once the Fortress has been claimed by an Alliance. Additionally, the opportunity to assume the role of a General will only be available while the NPC is not in combat.

6)  Will a realm be limited in the amount of relics they can have claimed?  For example, can Order claim and hold all three indefinitely?

There is no limit on the relics.  Currently there is no time limit either.

7)  Tier 7 Armor Sets, anything you can tell us about how we will obtain them?

At this point no.  The only hint I can give is that they will have a way to earn access that ties into the fortress and relics.

8)  When can players expect to see 1.4.5 on the PTS?

Right now our plan is to get up the initial version of the relic/fortress for testing on PTS in December.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Farewell Lydia

Something interesting happened to me in Skyrim this week. My faithful housecarl from Whiterun, Lydia, died in a fight with a dragon.  This seems to be a somewhat popular topic this week, but I assure you that you will find no interesting uses of her corpse here.

There we were, taking on a dragon.  I generally use a 1h sword and Flames, so I need to be up close and personal. Lydia was using a Warhammer, so she was right up there with me.  I guess she took too much damage and went into her 'don't hurt me' stance.  Since the dragon does AoE,  it didn't save her.

Before that encounter, I purchased the Breezehouse house for a cool 5,000 gold.  Since Lydia is my housecarl she also lives there. After the fight with the dragon, I returned home to store its bones and scales.  I happened to notice Lydia's room was empty but somewhat decorated. It did looked lived in. She won't be coming back.

It's not often that I have that kind of realization in a video game.  Something as simple as an empty room can do it.  I briefly thought about reverting my save to just before the fight, but resisted the urge.  I think that would do a disservice to the game and possibly my memories of it once I've stopped playing.

A Dwarf and an Elf walk into a bar

And they both join Wrath of Heroes.  Yeah, that's the best I could come up with.  PC Gamer brings us news of two new Heroes coming to WoH.  Both of which will be present in this weeks beta test.  I'm always happy to see another Dwarf join the fray. The Elf.... well at least she carries a big axe.

Aessa the White Lion

Read more over at the PC Gamer site.

Gromki the Rune Priest

No video for this guy, but here is some text from the article...
Gromki, the Dwarf Rune Priest, was conceived as a non-healing support Hero, but he’s changed a lot over multiple iterations. While he still has no healing abilities, he’s now moved into the role of a damage dealer with utility. Unlike other Heroes, his available debuffs don’t have durations, and are instead limited to only affecting one target at a time. Our intent was to create a Hero that’s almost a walking debuff, one that you dispel with damage.

Monday, November 21, 2011

SWTOR Atmosphere

As you have probably heard, the NDA for Star Wars: The Old Republic has been dropped.  The game officially launches in a little less than a month, so that gives us plenty of time to talk.  Since TOR is such a huge topic, I'm going to break up my impressions about it into several posts.  This one is about the games atmosphere.

What do I mean by atmosphere?  Mostly, how much does the world feel like Star Wars.  Did they just slap Star Wars on some generic stuff and call it a day?  I can honestly say, no way.  The atmosphere of this game is just amazing.  Instead of writing about it, lets look at some pictures.

Here we have a cantina on Hutta.  A Wookie has just played a now arm-less droid in a game of something.  I'm guessing the Wookie lost.

This screenshot was taken in a hanger bay located in the Imperial Fleet.  In the background you can see Imperial ships moving around.  Two soldiers are discussing something while looking at a hologram.

This is just a random computer terminal I saw in the Imperial Intelligence HQ.  I love this kind of sci-fi stuff.

A view of the Citadel on Drumund Kaas.  This world is always covered in storms, and you can see lightning crashes.  You can also see ship traffic flying around.

This was just a small sampling of the views I've seen over the past couple of months.  I'm constantly saying, "wow, that's cool" to myself when exploring the world.  I am a fan of Star Wars in general though, so that may just be me.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Stratics returns to WAR

It isn't often a 3+ year old game gets renewed interest from a large gaming site.  Stratics, which is still the place to go talk about Ultima Online, has revamped their Warhammer Online site.  This is mostly do to its new editor, our very own Mykiel.

And they are also on twitter:!/WAR_Stratics

He's got a lot of plans for the site, and it is coming along nicely.  Stop by for a visit.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Out with the old nemesis

My journey through Skyrim is going well, albeit slowly.  There is just so much to explore in this game.  I intended to make my way to the Greybeards yesterday, but got sidetracked several times en route.  I did manage to complete one goal though, defeating the Hagraven and obtain Nettlebane.

Her massive fireball was causing me serious trouble.  I ended up using Raise Zombie on one of the witches I had slain earlier.  The key part was to do this while in-combat, so she would go over and attack the Hagraven. This bought me enough time to get close.  Turns out, she doesn't cast when you are in melee range.

Thinking back on it, an invisibility potion would have been a lot easier.  Live (or die many times) and learn I guess.

Mages are still wrecking me though.  If there is more than one, I'm usually done for.  I did discover a cheesy way to beat some difficult enemies.  If they are inside and near a door you can just hop in out, heal (sleep), then go back inside.  I've found they do not regain health during your rest.

I also learned heavy armor does NOT mitigate magical damage.  Looks like I am going to have to start really looking into enchanting my current armor with magic resists and building up a stockpile of potions.

I also have a new nemesis, Spriggans. These suckers are just tough, and they can heal themselves.  I can defeat one, with some potion guzzling   Sadly, the ones I need to kill are not alone.  Not sure a companion will be of much help with this many.


Starting on Thanksgiving (November 24th), Wrath of Heroes will be back for another beta session.  This one looks like it'll be quick, as it ends that Sunday (November 27th) but will run 24 hours a day.  It's a time to be with friends, give thanks and then dominate your fellow man online.

So far, we don't know what has changed for this beta session.  What we do know is that we will be able to choose from 17 heroes.

Everyone's favorite Goblin returns, should be interesting to see him with Conrad the Warrior Priest.  Speaking of Conrad, looks like he will be getting some improvements.

Want to talk about Wrath of Heroes?  Head over to

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Choosing a Class

One of the first steps into a new MMO is to decide on a class to play.  I will often see questions from new players asking which is needed or which is the best.  This is something I've never been able to relate to, as those thoughts have never come up.  My criteria for a class is a bit different.

It really comes down to the idea behind the class and the look for me.  A few years ago when I first started to read up on Warhammer Online, I took a look at the career list.  I was perusing the careers... Dwarf, guns, turret... SOLD!  That's all it took and I never looked back.

The same applies to The Old Republic.  I could trape around in a bathrobe (or curtains for an old movie reference) or I could wear heavy armor and carry a gigantic gun.  Hmmmm, yeah I'll go with the Trooper.  That's just my style.  In fact, I plan on playing all of the non-Force using classes first.  They just are much more appealing.

The power of the class has no bearing on my enjoyment, as evidenced by the Engineer I've played since launch.  The Archmage could be the strongest and most needed class in WAR, but I wouldn't respect myself in the morning if I played one.  No offense to you AM players of course ;)

So how do you go about picking a class?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Skyrim So far

I've been spending most of my gaming time playing Skyrim the last few days.  It's a pretty fun game.  I'm not sure if it a game of the year kind of game, but it is quality none the less.  The atmosphere is fantastic, especially with the mountains.

Here are some interesting things I have found, no story spoilers.  My character is currently Level 8 and I've only done the Whiterun part of the main quest.

Mining.  I've got my smithing up to 24, thanks to being better at spotting ore.  I've found that veins can by in caves, mines or just on rocks laying about.  If you want some precise locations for all types of ore, check out this thread.

Lunar Forge.  I found a forge in some ruins which had special weapons.  Basically they do extra damage when the moons are out.  You can disenchant these to get access to that effect.  You can find the forge near Whiterun, a quest there will actually take you directly to it.

Hagraven.  These, things, are giving me a pretty good beating at the moment.  They toss these huge fireballs at you which do AoE damage.  I'm not sure if they are just at a higher level than me, or if they are always a pain.  I think I am going to look into Resist Fire gear and potions.  Or maybe I'll just come back after I get a few more levels.

Fort Neugrad.  I found this fort while exploring near Helgen.  It had a treasure map, which are always fun to do.

Witches be trippin.  Magic damage seems to hurt a lot.  I'm using Heavy Armor (with several perks) and they just tear me up with their fire and lightning combo.  I end up guzzling potions and eating all of my food just to take them down.

Stray Dog.  While exploring, I came across a Stray Dog.  That was his name.  He started to follow me around and fight with me.  Sadly, he was killed by a bandit during a fight.  I hate having dogs in games, just because I'd rather them not die.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Trooper is the answer

The question is, who would win in a fight?  On Friday, BioWare released a new video discussing the Sith Inquisitor and the Trooper.  I do like these Choose Your Side videos, although I expect some players to take them a bit too seriously.

Sure the SI can shoot lightning out of his or her hands and manipulates the world using the Force.  That's all well and good.  But come on, they wear bath robes.  The Assassin (SI advanced class) can also stealth and get's a double bladed light saber. Yippie...

Have you seen the gun that the Trooper (Commando) hauls around?  It's enormous! They also get to wear cool armor, not something you'd find in a hotel room.  Did I mention rockets and grenades?  The Trooper gets them too.

Ok, I may be a little bit biased.  Sure, I don't think we ever saw a Trooper take on a force user 1 vs 1 in the movies.  They tended to just be fodder, although they did take out almost all of the Jedi in Episode 3.  When it comes to a game, Coolness counts heavily in my opinion.  That is what seals the Troopers victory.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mining in Skyrim

Did you know you can mine ore in Skyrim?  It took me a bit to realize it, but you can!  It's pretty easy...

First, you need a pick axe in your inventory.  Various merchants sell them, or you can find them in mines.

Next you need to find some Ore to mine.  You can try Embershard Mine, which is near Riverwood.  Someone made a video to help find it...

Once in the mine, look around for some ore veins.  It can be on the ground, walls or ceiling, it'll treat it like an object when your target reticle goes over it.  On the 360, the texture is not very obvious.  You'll just have to hit the button and he'll (or she'll) mine the ore until the vein is finished.

Note:  You can get gems when mining too.  Reminds me of a certain MMO...

Having Ore is nice, but to craft we'll need to make an ingot.  For this you will need a Smelter.  Riverwood does not have one, so you should take the ore to Whiterun.

Skyrim Black Falls Barrow Tip

When I was adventuring in Black Falls Barrow, I came across a little problem when trying to use The Golden Claw to enter the Inner Sanctum.  None of the 3 rings were able to be interacted with and the door would not open.

To solve this, I left zone (not the whole dungeon, just the previous loading screen) and came back.  After that, it worked fine.  This was on the 360 version, not sure if it applies to the PC or PS3.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Skyrim Plan

Today marks the much anticipated release of the latest in the Elder Scrolls series: Skyrim.  It just so happens today is a holiday for some of us in the US (Veterans Day), so much gaming should be had.  Well, probably not by me.  I ordered the 360 version and will be waiting for UPS.

Why not Digital Download the PC version?  I really just enjoy playing those games on my 360.  Plus, when I am at my computer I want to be playing other games.  So I have been thinking about what kind of character I will make in Skyrim.

Race.  You can toss out all of the Elf races cause that isn't going to happen. Imperial looks like the choice for me, I know... pretty plain choice.  But they have a skill bonus I am interested in.

Speaking of skills, in Skyrim you can get them all to 100.  The customization comes in the form of Perks, which you only have so many your able to choose.

Heavy Armor.  Maybe it is my Dwarven tendencies, but I can't resist Heavy Armor.  I think it is usually much more interesting looking than lighter armor, and just plain cooler.

Smithing.  If I am going Heavy Armor, then it makes since to have a way to forge the pieces.  Hopefully crafting isn't too tedious in the game.  Usually it does not interest me much when it comes to single player games.

Conjuration.  So this skill (and perks) let you summon creatures and raise the dead.  Yeah, that sounds like something I want to do.

So those are 3 main areas I am looking at for Skyrim.  I guess that makes me into a Battle Mage.  We'll see how it plays out when I finally get my hands on the game.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 6

It's time for another look at some of the upcoming armor sets for Warhammer Online.  We still don't know how we can get our grubby hands on these, but I'm sure we'll find out soon enough.  My money is still on them being a reward for successfully capturing a relic in the upcoming fortress revamp.


Ah, the Magus.  My arch-enemy.  This guy actually looks decent without his flying surf board.  I think it is the white which makes it stand out to me.

White Lion

Ok, settle down.  The White Lion is not becoming a dual wield career.  I don't know why the picture shows him as such, just one of those things.

Rune Priest

I just don't like the armor sets where the backpack puts something over their head.  I know there is only so much room to work with on a Dwarf, but it just doesn't appeal to me.

Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 1 - Bright Wizard, Chosen, Engineer
Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 2 - Disciple of Khain, Knight of the Blazing Sun, Slayer, Witch Elf
Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 3 - Marauder, Squig Herder, Shadow Warrior
Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 4 - With Hunter, Zealot, Blackguard
Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 5 - Archmage, Black Orc, Ironbreaker
Tier 7 Armor Sets - Round 6 - Magus, White Lion, Rune Priest

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


This week, the SWTOR team at BioWare Austin invited a number of fansites down to check out the latest and greatest.  One of the big ticket items they got to see was PvP on Ilum.  This is the only announced world area dedicated to PvP.  Unless you roll on a PvP server, then you can get it on almost anywhere you want.

For the full details, head on over to Ask a Jedi.

Quick Summary. Basically, Ilum has a large RvR lake (in WAR terms).  There are 2 bases: one Republic, one Empire.  In between there will be 3 objectives to be captured. Capture them all and your faction wins.

Reward.  What do you get for winning?  It seems like a faction-wide buff to Valor gain.  Valor is basically Renown.  It is said that the buff stacks, so multiple captures increase the buff.  The lake will also contains rare crafting materials.

Cool Stuff.  The battlefield has Walkers (AT-AT kinda stuff), Bombers, Rocket launchers and who knows what else.  We saw some of it in a video they released a short while ago.

Thoughts.  It's nice that TOR is attempting to put some interesting PvP into the game.  I'm certainly going to check it out once I reach 50, I want to shoot some Walkers!  The rare crafting materials also seems like a great reason to visit the zone.

Overall, I'm not sure how well it will work.  One area to fight in will get old fast for a lot of people.  They say that the zone does not reset (like Wintergrasp) which is a good thing, but then we get to the problem of unbalanced populations.

If the Republic is just more active (or more coordinated) they will gear up faster and be even stronger.  I'm not sure there is anyway to really solve this, especially with 2 sides and limited places to fight.

We still don't know all of the details, so I'll keep an open mind.  In the end, I'm playing TOR for the story so I am not very concerned with the PvP side of the game.  If it turns out to be good, it's a nice bonus.    Who am I kidding, I can't resist PvP.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Lately, I have just been overloaded with games to play and fun stuff to do.  It wouldn't be so bad if work insisted that I, well, work to get paid.  But they do, so that takes a big chunk of time that could be spent goofing off.  Here is what I have going on this month and next.

New Vegas.  I've had Fallout 3: New Vegas for close to a year now and am finally playing through it.  I like it quite a bit, but it is pretty lengthy.  Luckily, it is open enough that I can forge my own way to the end without doing every quest thrown at me.  For example, lets take the Boomers.  I ended up just wiping them out for that artillery nonsense.  Now I am loaded up with grenades :)

Skyrim.  This Friday, Skyrim is set to be unleashed upon the world.  I expect it to suck up a pretty good amount of time in the coming weeks.  I'll be getting it on the 360, although I'm tempted to go Steam just so I can have it when I wake up.

Revan.  The third Old Republic novel comes out on November 15th.  I've read Fatal Alliances and Deceived, so I'm pretty excited about this one.  If you have not read the Darth Bane books, also by Drew Karpyshyn, you should, they are awesome.

EVE Online.  I'm currently working on my goal of turning 250 million Isk into 1 billion.  Researching Planetary Interaction at the moment to see how profitable it can be.

Betas.  I'm in the SWTOR Beta, which I play sparingly just so I keep things fresh for launch.  Wrath of Heroes is currently between sessions, but I expect that to resume soon.

Fortresses.  Warhammer Online is set to bring back Forts pretty soon.  I hope to see them on PTS in the next few weeks.  It's a big feature, so who knows when we'll actually see it live.  I'd prefer they get it right rather than rush it.

The Old Republic.  In a little over a month, Star Wars: The Old Republic will launch.  Hopefully that will be December 15th for me, since I did get my pre-order in on the day it was available.

I left a few games off of the list, like League of Legends and Sword of the Stars 2.  I try to play those when the stuff above is not tickling my fancy.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Money, Money, Money

This weekend turned out to be rather interesting.  I had to spend some money, which was not planned.  I also re-subbed to a game so I could make some money (virtual, sadly).  In both cases, I had some fun as a result.  Lets start with the spending.

I got up Saturday morning to find that my monitor no longer worked.  I had it for over three years, so I was sad to see it go. On the positive side, it means I get a new monitor!  A quick trip to Best Buy and I had an Acer S232.  It's a 23" LED monitor that has a resolution of 1920 x 1068.  Both stats are an improvement for me.  It also only cost ~$169.  It's cheap enough that I can still get a new monitor when I upgrade my system next year.

On Friday I re-subscribed to EVE Online.  I blame Social Media (twitter, blogs) pressure for my return to the game.  The main reason I did it was because I was in the mood for a challenge.  Specifically, I wanted to have to think and plan.  I also found out that my ship was no longer stranded in a wormhole.  I guess it gets moved if your account is inactive long enough.

I'm not sure how much time I'll spend in EVE, what with TOR coming out next month.  It was only $10 for the month, so I think I'll get my monies worth. So now the question is, what to do?

I have $250 million Isk in my bank account at the moment.  My Drake is T2 shield fitted, so has about 33,000 effective HP.  It was meant to take some abuse from Sleepers, and is probably just a bit overkill for my Level 2 Agent missions.I really don;t feel like grinding missions to get to Level 3.

My goal is to turn that 250 million into 1 billion Isk.  I have pretty good Manufacturing and Trading skills, so I'm leaning towards using those to accomplish my goal. I'm open to ideas though.  It should be pretty fun, I'm currently researching trade route and products to sell.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Fallen Earth Brings the PvP

Fallen Earth is a game I have not played in a while, ever since they gutted a lot of their staff.  Recently, they have a couple things going on that makes me think about trying it out again.  First is the fact that they are now a Free to Play game.  By itself though, it is not enough to bring me back.

Secondly, and the really tempting reason, is their latest dev blog about PvP.  Here's a blurb...

The Territory Control area has 13 control points that Factions can hold. These control points work a lot like the existing Faction Control system, but with some nice additions. Six of the points are out in the open and will be harder to defend and maintain control of. The other seven points are actually inside of keeps (including one bad-ass huge keep in the middle of the area) that will provide much better defense, as well as some other nice perks.

If I remember correctly, there are 6 factions in fallen Earth, that's even better than 3 :)  Stuff to fight over is an important part of any PvP system.  Now the question is why...

If your faction holds any of the 13 control points in the area, you'll get a nice buff that will improve based on the number of points you control. That improvement will max out at 4 control points. The buff will increase death toll, faction, and experience earnings and will also give a nice boost to the major offensive combat skills.
And then there's what you're all really fighting over: resources. When you control a point, you'll have the ability to create and place your own harvesters that will generate some nice resource nodes in the area surrounding your control point.

So you can get buffs and resource nodes, the latter of which is pretty important to crafting.  The control points themselves sound pretty varied.  There are some keep mechanics with some of them that have destructible doors and walls.

So yeah, that all sounds pretty good to me.

Last Call for Beta 2

According to the Wrath of Heroes Facebook page, this weekends will be the last for this stage of the beta.  It went pretty quick, but a lot of progress was made between this stage and the last.  I really enjoy the new record keeping, tactics and heroes.  I wonder what beta 3 will have in store for us?

Time for this weekends test:
  • Thursday, November 3rd – 4pm-8pm EDT (8pm-12am GMT)
  • Friday, November 4th – 10am-10pm EDT (2pm-2am GMT)
  • Saturday, November 5th – 12pm-6pm EDT (4pm-10pm GMT)
As far as I can tell, not much has changed between this weekends test and the last.  Zathis and Conrad are still around to be tried out.  

New Fansite.  For those of you that speak Portuguese (or use Google Translate), there is a new Wrath of Heroes Fansite.  It has forums, videos and a Mumble server.  

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Zathis and Conrad

During last weekends Wrath of Heroes beta test, we got to play two new Heroes. Zathis is a Dark Elf Assassin while Conrad is a Warrior Priest. These additions do bring some interesting abilities to the party.  I whipped up a short video to show off some of what they can do.

Zathis.  The Dark Elf Assassin is able to stealth for an unlimited amount of time.  However, he moves VERY slow while stealthed, I mean really really slow.  So you best wait to stealth until you get close to your enemy.  To go along with that ability, he is able to teleport to a target.  That was actually a lot of fun!

Conrad.  The Warrior priest is basically a melee healer.  When he hits with two of his abilities, the group (within range) gets healed.  It's nice to have an alternative to Glowgob the Shaman.  He also has a powerful silence ability which seemed very useful.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fortress Dev Discussion

Late last week, WAR Producer James Casey created a new Developer Discussion thread.  This time it is to discuss the re-introduction of fortresses and their effect on the overall campaign.  This is a follow-up to the Fortress Q&A which I posted a couple of weeks ago.

First up is how Fortresses will fit in T4.  Our goal is that they are an alternate way to RvR and help in the WAR.  However, by opening up those areas again and making them active, despite them not being gated by the campaign, there will still be some effect on the campaign.    

Currently thoughts are to make the relic raid require you to go through the front gate(s), then the front door, and then take out the lords to capture the relic; at which point you'd high tail it out of there.  The questions I have for this discussion is this. 

1. What positive effect for the campaign can you envision from having this alternate RvR up all the time? 

It seems to me it would give smaller groups an objective, for both attack and defense.  It really depends on implementation, it could end up just moving all the players there instead of the Keeps.

2. Is there a negative effect for the campaign that you can envision from having this alternate RvR up all the time?

Midnight and Early morning attacks would seem to be a negative, but again it provides something for players to do during off hours.

There is also the risk of the stronger realm just dominating all of the forts.  Keeping the battles smaller would be key in preventing this from happening.

3. Are there ways to mitigate said negative effect or a way to accentuate the positives that you'd like to suggest.  

I think that the Guild/Alliance claiming of Forts couple help keep the battle small, depending on the benefits of ownership. Allowing owners only quicker access (teleport) to the forts might help encourage them to come to its defense instead of the whole realm.