There’s one thing Wow has that ESO hasn’t…

And that is all my friends! ESO went down for maintenance tonight so I popped back over to WoW and I had lots of lovely mail from my guild buddies sending me warm wishes and I had a quick chat with Toco, his raid team is so close to getting heroic Archimonde which is very exciting for them and a brief hello with Matty.. she is up super early as it was very early AM her time.

Thanks guys for reminding me that this game is a lot more than just for solo play!

The way NPCs interact with you in a game

Just a random thought rolling around in my head but does the way NPCs interact with you passively, not when you’re interacting with them for questing reasons, have an effect on a game feels?

Playing wow on the horde side mainly meant that most of the time if you mouse over a npc you get a “whaddya want” or a rude(ish) abrupt greeting, not always but often enough. It wasn’t something I really picked up on until I started to seriously level my alliance druid and all of a sudden the way NPCs greeted me was completely different. They were friendly and polite and even interested in how my day was going at times.

It’s something I’m also really noticing in Elder Scrolls Online, as I wander past an NPC I’ll randomly get a hi, or a hello or another friendly greeting. Now I’ve started to perform little feats of heroism for them I’ll even have npcs mention my past exploits such as “you’re the hero that saved the king” etc.

It adds a friendly touch to the game and thinking about it, it really gives a pleasurable feeling to be surrounded by friendliness from the NPCs.

What do you think about the way NPCs interact with you?

Elder Scrolls Online; first week, first impressions

I’ve been playing Elder Scrolls Online for about a week now and so far I am incredibly impressed with the game. It not only is visually beautiful to play but the gameplay itself is really fluid, intuitive and the questing experience flows so well.

ISorcerer

So far I’m really enjoying the game but with only a week of playing under my belt there is still a lot to learn.There are 3 factions with 3 races each. Each race can be any of the 4 classes (Dragon Knight, Sorcerer, Nightblade or Templar), however each race has bonus attributes that can make them more suited to different class such as High Elves receive a bonus to destruction staffs which are typically used by sorcerers, however there is  so much choice in how you can play each class that you can really take whatever race/class combo you want.

All the classes can equip the different types of armor in the game as well as equip any weapon they come across so there is a ton of customisation in the game. I think once you hit a certain level you can have 2 types of weapons saved with different spells sort of like a duel spec.  Perhaps there is a specific build required for end game but as I’m more interested in just levelling, it feels like there are unlimited choices available. There is a lot of complexity in some ways as each class has 3 talent trees you can pick from, as well as weapon skills, armor skills, crafting skills all of which require skill points to level up;  you get skill points from questing, exploring and levelling. I’m currently just picking and chosing what sounds good.

The quests are done really well.  Most of the quests are mini stories that you follow along, I haven’t come across a single “go kill x number of mobs” style quests so far which makes a really nice change. All the quests are voice acted as well as having text if you want to read faster than the quest giver can talk. I thought I recognised the voice from one of the main story quest npcs and sure enough, The Prophet is voiced by Michael Gambon, the actor who plays Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies.

There are so really cute features in the game, such as when you look in your bag.. your toon actually looks in their bag or when you are cooking, your toon pulls out a cooking bowl.

Looking in bagCooking

The combat is very different to wow. I use left mouse click as my weapon attack, 6 hot keys for spell attacks (there are a ton more spells than just 6 so it means I have to choose what I want to use) and each spell can also be upgraded (morphed) into stronger versions of it once you use it enough to level it up and rather than selecting a target, you simply mouse over the npc you want to attack.

There are so many options you can choose from when making a toon; not only the standard body type/hairstyle,/face etc but right down to size of their legs/hands, voice or tattoos/markings. I’ve been trying out a few combinations of races/classes just to see what I like the most. I chose 1 race from each of the three factions as they start in completely different areas and have different quests. They are still quite tiny at level 8 each (no idea what end level is, I’ll let it be a surprise) so like most levelling toons they are in a hodge podge of mismatched gear that I’ve either picked up or crafted for them.

High Elf Sorcerer currently using a Destruction staff and lots of lightning style spells.

High Elf Sorcerer

A Breton Templar  with a sword and shield though I’m thinking of swapping her out to a Restoration Staff for healing and ranged attacks.

Breton Templar

And my absolute favourite of the 3  is a Dark Elf Dragon Night with a destruction staff and lots of fire spells. So far she has been really easy to solo level with.

Dark Elf Dragon Knight

This is such a brief overview of the game, I hardly feel like I’ve done it any justice. I can really see this game holding my attention for quite a while as I’m fascinated to quest through the beautiful zones and follow the stories of all the different quests. If you were thinking about trying it out, I would 100% recommend you give it a try.

Random Chitter Chatter

I’m waiting for Elder Scrolls Online to finish it’s download so I can try it out. I feel like a real flitterer (definition – someone who flits around from activity to activity) in the gaming department at the moment. I still don’t feel much urge to play wow at all at the moment; it’s Sunday here which means raid, so I’m quietly wondering in the back of my  head how I feel when it’s raid time. I’ve said I’ll come.. so we’ll see.

Starcraft is very fun, I’ve been mostly playing campaign which is pretty good and I’m working my through it but but I am so very slow at strategy games. When I try a few custom games  against the AI I’m generally still putting in my first few buildings when their minions are hammering away with upgraded mobs at my structures.

I was reading some steam reivews of Elder Scrolls and I noticed that steam shows you the time played in the game that the reviewer is talking about. So naturally I was interested to see what I had clocked up in wow so I jumped on and calculated the time played in hours for Zeera and my mage (as I had her for many months before making another toon) and it came to a rather staggering total of 5246 hours. I know I see the /played in days from an addon every time I log in, but converting that to actual hours.. holy crap. I refuse to even let my mind wander into is that a good or a bad thing, it’s a hobby and I enjoy it and I’m not going to delve any deeper.

On the real life front, things are easier and harder. I haven’t had a commercial radio station on in over 3 weeks. You know when you’re happy and in love all the songs speak to you and make you smile… well when you’re not in that state radio stations quite simply suck.

I’ve been getting back into running which has been really good. I have some subconscious thing in my head that when I run for a while I think I want to enrol into some actual race, like a half marathon or even a 10km fun run and I start to train and then I just stop all together. No idea what the hell my brain does. I did it in 2013 when considering the Melbourne Marathon held in Nov, I did it again in 2014 so this year I’ve decided on a brand new strategy.. I want to be able to run 21.1km (half marathon) but no way in hell will I consider running it competitively, I’ll train just for my own personal benefit. So far, I’m running about 8km as my longest distance once a week (Saturday mornings), 4km 5 times a week (after work) and a few 2kms for speed practice a few times a week (in the mornings before work). It seems like a lot but I’m handling it ok so I guess this sort of training schedule is ok for me. I figure if I slowly increase that long run each week I’ll eventually build my endurance up.. it’s goign to be months though, if not a good year to get to the 21km mark.. that is so freaking long but I really want to know if I actually can run that long. The other 2 distances can slowly increase as I get faster but they are limited by how far I can get in 1/2 hour in the afternoons and 15mins in the morning due to real life constraints such as school pick up times.

I’ve also slowly weaned myself off added sugar, by this I mean in my coffee and on my oats in the morning (last 2 bastions of my brain saying I need sugar on these foods). Such a simple thing but I’m so proud of me.. I never thought I would enjoy either of those 2 foods without sugar but after months of dropping it down from 2 teaspoons to 1, 1/2, 1/4 etc I am finding the taste really nice.

Anyway this is as the title says random chitter chatter but I felt like a needed a blogging fix.

Hope your day is going great.

Z

Vol’jins Spear

I’ve been doing a bit of Ashran lately and hit exalted with Vol’jins spear. As a reward I was able to buy the Breezestrider Stallion for gold and apexis crystals.

Breezestrider Stallion

I’m not sure if I’ll keep going with Ashran now I’ve got to exalted. It was quite fun and I seem to have a lot of luck getting into really good groups but it’s not grabbing me that much at the moment. Having said that, neither is the pve content either. I did have great plans to get all 3 tanaan jungle reps to exalted however once I hit revered I haven’t set foot back in there.

Broken

Thank you for the lovely comments but I took this post down. I don’t want to constantly stumble across my words or have my wow blogging space saddened by this.

I’m going ok, one day at a time and I hate that it’s getting easier because I’m scared that means I’m letting go but maybe that’s what needs to happen.

Hellfire Citadel

This raid looks like it will be pretty awesome; I was well and truly sick of the sight of Blackrock Foundry so a change is always a good thing and the fights I’ve seen so far are pretty varied. A couple of mechanics so far remind me a fair bit of Seige of Orgrimmar though the fights themselves are quite different.

At the start of 6.2 I changed guilds back to Deadline.  As I posted about before, they had decided that heroic was the only difficulty they would do and I  had pulled Z out to keep going with mythic progression and Cinder joined the same guild so it was nice to be still raiding with her; we’ve been raiding on and off together since Terrace of the Four Springs. It was great to be progressing again and though the new guild was  quite nice there just wasn’t the vibe that I had with my friends in Deadline. I missed the players enough that  once everyone starting logging back on in preparation for 6.2 I realised I wasn’t going to be happy knowing they were raiding and I wasn’t a part of it.  I told Cinder I was feeling really torn as I loved the progression but I missed our friends and surprisingly she said she had the same thoughts so we both said goodbye to Twisted and rejoined Deadline. I felt a little guilty for leaving Twisted so shortly after joining them but it looked like there was an excess of healers and as the only mythic upgrades I had won were through personal bonus rolls I didn’t feel as though I had grabbed their loot and left.  Toco, the Shaman I healed with is still really friendly and I was chatting to him while  watching his stream of Archimonde the other night, so they are going great.

Hanging out with my friends again is awesome, we’re not progressing as fast as I would have if I stayed but how I feel about being back with friends more that makes up for that. Being involved in guild chat with all our in-jokes and teasing as well as running around Tanaan in a guild group is fantastic, I am glad I’m not missing that. There’s been a bit of chatter about a Sydney meet up for our next guild meet.. hopefully we’ll all be together still in a years time.   I think if Deadline continues to only be a heroic only guild once Archimonde is defeated, I’ll look for mythic pugging progression rather than pull Z out completely.

We’ve just been concentrating on normal for the first couple of times in there as  a few people decided to have a main change and they need a bit of gear for catchup. Our boomy Neuro went to his hunter and my bf changed from Holy Pally to Feral Druid offspecced as Resto Druid (it feels a little odd when he heals as it’s the first time we’ve ever healed on the same class at the same time) and our Monk tank Thor  went to a dps warrior so while it’s all the same people, it’s quite a different raid composition.

So far the fights are quite varied, we’ve cleared the first 6 in there and I can’t decide which is my favourite fight so far. I really like Gorefiend, as getting sucked into his belly to heal adds is quite fun, and I found that you can kill the captured prisoners in the cages around the sides if that takes your fancy. That sort of thing amuses me way more than it should. It would be great if Blizz would put more interactable items in the raid rooms for between pulls.

The other one that I really like so far is Iskar, his story is so sad. He went to Gul’dan thinking he could get his flight back and gets turned into a fel corrupted monster. I really like the mechanics in this fight though, random players are affected by various debuffs and you need to toss an orb among them to clear it as well tanks need to have the orb to interrupt at times. Our raid uses a mouseover macro that throws the orb and puts a message into chat saying who is being thrown to which is nice and handy, though there’s been a bit of personalisation on the various messages that get called out.   At the moment though vudho keeps forgetting the debuffs specific to this fight even though they are saved each time so it’s driving me a little crazy. Hopefully I can figure out what’s going on it with before too long.

We’ll be back in there on Sunday and it should be really interesting to see the next bosses. I better get reading up on them as I haven’t looked past the first 6 yet.

Posts delayed by actual playing

Despite my best intentions to post regularly, I have got well and truly sidetracked by 6.2 and have spent a considerable amount of time playing and not writing  lately. There is so much to see and do in 6.2 so I think I’ll spread out what I’ve been doing over a few blog posts. This one can be all about Tanaan Jungle.

I don’t know how to write this post without it sounding like  a constant stream of I got this new (toy, pet, treasure) as I have been running around like crazy gathering all up the new items. It’s a bit like an extended birthday celebration with new presents each day.  There are so many new toys added  as well as the new Tiny Terrors pets that are dotted around the zone. I was lucky enough to so far pick up 2 of the new pets that have a chance to drop when you defeat them. I also managed to get Toymaster for collecting 150 toys so I can turn into a clockwork gnome on command.

Toymaster

My favourite so far though is the Jewel of Hellfire which turns me into a member of the Burning Legion.

Jewel of Hellfire

Seeing everyone out and about in Tanaan and randomly grouping with people is a great thing. It definitely makes the world feel populated again. Working on the new reputations isn’t too bad at all, every now and again I go down and group up and kill a few of the kitties for the Saberclaw rep. Z can stand there and take one or two on by herself but it’s super slow, groups are much more fun. The only one I can see being a bit of a pain the further we go on is the Arrakoa, their daily needs me to collect crystals that only drop from treasures, rares and the occasional chest spawn. Now I’ve collected almost all the treasures that leaves rares as the only reliable method of getting these so it means a rarespawn hunt each day.

The daily objectives are quite fast and all apart from Throne are easy enough to solo. The only one I found a bit tough was the Temple of Sha’nar but I had that one as my daily from the table today after shutdown last night and it feels like it’s difficulty is now more on par with the other areas. There isn’t a mention of it in the recent hotfix notes though so not sure what’s going on there.

The daily objectives are fantastic for leveling up my bodyguards. I’ve been alternating between Aeda (squishy tank from hell) and Ishaal who I love to run around with. Both are into the 2nd stage of reputation. I’ve found that if one is dead, I can  reassign the other to the barracks and just keep going. Once both are leveled up, that only will leave only Tommok to befriend. I haven’t tried him yet but so far Ishaal is my definitely my favourite, he stays out of trouble and I love Arakkoas so it’s a win-win.

The phasing of the big 4 rares; Vengeance, Terrorfist, Deathtalon and Doomroller was a massive pain at the start with trying to get into a group when it was announced in chat and not being able to get an invite in time but I’ve noticed groups are getting much better at giving everyone assist when they form a group for it, so I’ve been pretty successful with getting into groups lately. I have been incredibly lucky and picked up 2 of the new mounts though if I’m truly honest it’s the medallions that I really am trying to get. So far I’ve picked up 2 medallions which give rep with all the factions in WoD which  helped me tip over into honoured with the Laughing Skull so I picked up their toy as well. The grind to exalted with them is probably going to take the rest of this expansion though so fingers crossed for more lucky medallion drops.

The baleful tokens that create 650 gear are not overly useful though for Z, I did like the way the tokens from the timeless isle were BoA as it meant all my alts would have had a lovely set of gear to don the minute they turned 100. There are a few BoA versions around – the bag that can drop for needed roles in dgns contains some and there are missions from the shipyard but I guess I’m going to actually have to bring my alts over if I want to gear them up. The shipyard looks interesting enough to bring some alts over for the initial quests though.Maybe I’ll finally get around to playing more of my alts.