Mar 26, 2009

Toeing the Line

Is it just my blog roll that's a bit quiet, a bit dismayed, a bit angry? Even Syp is feeling it and he's suppose to be the light to my shadow! It may just be tunnel vision or one of those things where you notice something once and so you start seeing it everywhere but there is more negativity floating around the blogsphere and forums that I can remember seeing in a long while. And a was Vangaurd: SoH player from beta to four months after launch. I know a negative community when I see one.

I have a love/hate relationship with WAR and I'm sad to say that aside from the IP it isn't anything Mythic has done that's kept me playing. It's been my friends, my guild and it's stellar, awesome roleplay and the great Phoenix Throne community that kept me going. The problem comes around when those same friends start to feel the "blahs" that so many other seem to be feeling. 

I think WAR has a lot going for it, it has a lot of potential. It feels to me though, as if it's standing on the edge of a pin and Mythic's actions over the coming months will push it one way or the other. 1.2 was the polar oposite of a miracle patch. There were a lot of little things that were good, I loved all the map updates, the easy PQs, the rallying cry system. I even like Conquest, when it works right. But they continue to break one thing for every two they fix and give half fixes to deep issues like server population.

I think Mythic is stuck in a situation that is going to get worse before it gets better. My complaint from the start of the game is that there isn't enough to do. The PvE can be fun, but it by far not the best I've ever played and the lock out timers on dungeons plus the limited amount of dungeons mean that even if you happen to focus on PvE there isn't enough to make up 10 hours a week of game play. I had hoped, six months after launch that they would have had the core of the game nailed. Back in October I was thinking of all the fun things that could have been added and improved upon by now, but instead I'm still playing RvR lakes and scenerios. Just in a different sort of broken state than they were at launch. 

I realize that I am not WARs target demographic, and so the things that would make me want to stick with the game are not likely to come around soon, if ever. I'd love to have things like guild housing, casual clothes, more expansion and diversification of trophies and the ToK, I'd kill for the other four cities to explore. But after six months I can't even /sit or /walk. I am a fluff lover. No one system, no one type of play is enough to keep me interested for 25+ hours every week. 

I can have a lot of fun playing Left 4 Dead on XBox Live. And Left 4 Dead does zombie slaying four player action -well-. But I can only explode heads for an hour or two before I get bored. The exact same thing is true of WAR. I play MMOs for their diversity, for the multiple things that I can have fun doing depending on my mood while hanging out with my friends and roleplaying. WAR lacks the diversity, it has always lacked the diversity and Mythic's inablity to fix what's wrong without breaking more things, to own up to the core problems with the game means that I doubt I'll be seeing any diversity for another six months if ever. 

It's example time. EVE is a PvP centric game but it is not solely a PvP game. Yet no matter what you're doing in EVE, you're likely interacting with the core PvP in one way or another. Either you're carefully cloaking through a low sec system trying to avoid gankers while you search for a wreck to salvage, you're praying that you can fill your hauler with ore before someone finds you or you're just safe back in the station producing items used by the PvPers. EVE holds PvP at the center of it's game with a myriad of others things to do that brush you up against the player versus player action. It offers both focused fighting for playeres who are very interested in it and a fun challenge of avoiding and a huge list of other things to do for those who aren't, or who just aren't in the mood at the time. It's a balance of risk vs. reward.

WAR sets it's core on an on and off switch. You're in the lakes, or you're not. You're qued for scenerios, or you're not. And if you're not, then you're probably not logged in because you're waiting on your three day lock out timers. 

So what am I doing in WAR? My current main character sits at 40/24. My previous main character is a WE, and that pretty much sums that up. I run the odd scenerio, I do ORvR when it looks like Order is making an organized push and destro is of course always in need of healers. I struggle through fort defenses and the pee soup lag and ten second Khaine's Embrace casts to do my part for my team. I log on to run dungeons with my friends a few times a week. Are the horrible drop rates and backwards arse ward system making the dungeon play less fun that it could be? Heck yes. But I'm still here, hoping that the game gets better. But how long can you really wait? Vanguard told me four months, and WARs already got two months on that. I'm not sure what my new number is :( 

1 comment:

Czarnal said...

I feel exactly the same, although I'm perhaps a little less depressed about it :)

I play WAR for the IP, principally. The RvR stuff is nice, but if this were WAR-lands or something and not Warhammer, I would never have given it a second look.

The continuing obsession on the RvR aspects of the game is a bit of a slap in the face to those of us who love the world rather than the play style.

But I still love the world they've put together, and I still hold out a little bit of hope.