GW2: The Big News
Seems like many folks were caught afire with the confirmation of the new GW2 expansion. I kinda forgot that whole thing was going on (too busy with FFXIV and H1z1), so I got my info from the blogger round-ups. Some things sound interesting to me, such as the new class, sub-classes, expanding on weapons the current classes have.
Some things, like guild halls, are two years too late – our little medium-size guild died after the release of the guild challenges when we discovered the whole system really catered to larger guilds. Just never could put the guild back together after that, and I became too discouraged with the game to keep pouring effort into it.
But there are some things that I’ve heard that I’m not a big fan of. For example, Bhagpuss noted here that:
He placed enormous emphasis on how “challenging” the new maps would be and how group-focused the expansion is.
That’s a double ew for me. I haven’t liked Anet’s definition of “challenging” for quite a while, because usually that just means annoying mechanics that hinders me from having fun (ala the Karkas and the Mordrem). Also, I’m not sure I like the whole “group-focused” thing. If this means we have open-world group goodness, such as the dynamic events we had when the game first released, I’m all for it. If this means forced grouping in the terms of dungeons, no thanks.
No new race and only one zone of jungle are disappointments considering how much GW1 could pack into a single expansion back in the days. Not interested in GvG, WvW or Legendaries.
So overall, I’m in a wait-and-see stance. I may not even pick this up on day one… might wait for reviews, patches and sales.
Played a bit more in H1Z1 and still echo that it’s very very frustrating trying to regroup with friends after tragedy strikes in this game. We managed to get into the game right after the patch on Friday night, and that meant we finally scored some loot for once. After finding a backpack, knives, hatchets and all sorts of good stuff, I finally felt pretty good about my status in the game.
We were making the long trek to pick up a new fourth member of our group. Climbing a steep cliff, I came face to face with a bear at the top. One swipe of its claw took half my life. I started to run. The bear simply wouldn’t stop chasing no matter what. Eventually, I was able to reconnect with my friends, and they did everything they could to try to take the bear down as it chased me in circles around them. Finally, my stamina gave out and it mauled me to death, then turned and mauled two other members of my group before they could get away.
Okay, so I know this is a survival game. But how fair is it that a bear can kill in two hits and you can never, never run away from it because it simply won’t stop chasing you?
So we lost all we had, got scattered across the map yet again, and spent another 3 hours trying to get our group together again before we could have any meaningful play. By then, all buildings were once again picked over, and with no loot to be found, it became yet another night of fruitless time wasted.
I know they’re putting out patches to fix this. And they need to. Our H1Z1 team didn’t even meet yesterday, and I wonder if their interest is already waning.
FFXIV: Primal Time
I put a lot of time into FFXIV this weekend, continuing through the main story scenarios. While the story and language has its quirks, I still feel this has been some of the best story-oriented gameplay I’ve had in an MMO in a long time.
As I get closer to the newer content, it feels like the team really started to hit their stride. There’s much more voice acting. The story knows how to ramp up the tension by building a backdrop of rebellion boiling in the shadows of Ul’dah. On the other hand, the Scions are dealing with primal after primal – some more vicious than others.
We also get a lot of foreshadowing, proving that the team has known where it wanted to take the game’s development for a while. We get the first hint of the new dragon race that will be coming with the expansion, see how Mor Dohna is starting to be built up, and the logic behind the previously released rogue class, which leads to ninja. Very cool!
Moral questions are brought to light in the middle of all this. Beastmen summon primals out of fear of man and desire to be protected. Man, in turn becomes threatened by the primals, and strikes back with violence. Don’t both sides have a right to live in peace? Who is in the right? How is peace ever to be obtained if neither side tries to come to terms with each other?
And me, the Warrior of Light, continues to be put at the lead of the story as a person who stands out above the rest. Even the wisdom of Ramuh judged my character and found the truth. While other primals, such as Leviathan, simply lash out in fury and destruction without desire for understanding.
So I’ve finally beat Leviathan and Ramuh, and currently sit in the middle of the patch 2.3 content. I’m also working hard on getting pieces of my ilvl 100 armor, and slowly accumulating more atma for my weapon upgrade. I feel pretty good about my progress on Zuri, and think that I should be able to catch up with the storyline before the expansion in March.