Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Packed oRvR...

So on my third night of oRvR I finally got to take part in a city siege it was an Inevitable City defence. We won the first two stages but lost stage 3. Their healer an archmage was very good. I loved the new city siege but I need to run it a few more times to write some more. Anyway with the new city siege came lots of players in open realm versus realm which was absolutely excellent so I took some pictures.





Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Organized fun

Saturday night was my first play session in a week as I have been in the America. I was hoping to get to see the city siege but all I got was lovely open RvR. It was slightly frustrating as I wanted to see the new content but order prevented destruction locking Riekland on more than 1 occasion.

I tend to prefer oRvR to scenario’s for the sheer range of combat. You can go from a 1v1 to 100v100 and everywhere in between. The zerg might be a powerful force but it tends to run as 1 which leads to loss of keeps and battle objectives.

This happened Saturday night, as no guild war band was running I ran with an open war band. On more than a few occasions a smaller group prevented zone locks by sneaking to Schwenderhalle Manor or Frostbeard’s Quarry in Reikland. The Manor is an excellent place to defend with a small force. Destruction mainly moved as one (aka zerg) so a lot of the night was spent with most of Reikland under destruction control but reacting to smaller more organized order forces. The classic example is when the Manor is left open or only has a few scouts. They were able to take it and defend, against a greater force. Even when they wiped, the order war camp is close to the Quarry with enough time to take and lock before destruction zerg can reach them.

If most of my time was spent running in an open war band I don’t think my perception of oRvR would be as positive. But most of my time is spent in guild war bands that can turn on a dead goblin. Player’s follow orders and stay together defending or pushing as one and co-ordinating with other war bands to cover battle objectives. Maybe this is why my views on oRvR are so positive? You hear people call War, Waithammer or say its open world PvP is more PvE.
I think a lot if these views come from open war bands or the player bases focus as a whole. If your focus is renown and you just going through the mmo motions you’ll probably spending a lot of time guarding mail boxes or waiting for a objective/keep tick. If you shift your focus to fighting and tactics the style of oRvR changes and in my opinion the fun increases.

I wonder how many zone locks have been lost while the zerg waits for a keep or battle objective tick, or when the zone is under control and hordes of players wait it out in a keep or by the mail box. I have ran with a few excellent war band leaders who seem to always come up with new ways to mess with the enemy, from ambushing just at the right spot, using terrain as an advantage and being able to extract themselves from the fight to see the flow of battle and issue orders to push just at the right spot to roll the enemy.
I am not advocating oRvR is perfect there are lots to improve, but I think the core is there. How to improve it? Would siege weapons, city siege like mechanics in keeps or an alternative to zone locking help? In the end I am not so sure as I said player focus (path of least resistance) and open war bands (disorganized zerg) will always be there to detract from those improvements. It also seems there are a lot of smaller guilds out in oRvR as well. You have an open war band run by 3 people from a guild. They work together but war band chat is none existent, so the majority is left in the dark.

How do we reach this ‘organized fun’? :) I have said it once but having in game voice chat would go a long way to help organization. State of the realm, AutoBand and WARCommander make a war bands easier to lead could these be improved upon and be part of the main game. But how do we get smaller guilds together and move those who mainly PUG into organized war bands? Could guilds have incentives to be larger and participate more in oRvR. Maybe the new player experience could be extending to a tier 4 set of tutorials? Ones that highlight the extra stuff you can gain from being in a guild and ideas of what to do once you hit the level cap. Mythic produced this team play guide does it need to be updated to cover tier 4? I think stuff like this would make excellent video grab bags.

I think giving war band leader’s extra abilities might promote more organization. I would imagine the buffs would only come into use when the war band reached a certain number. You would not want lots of war band leaders of 2 or 3 created just for buffs. Buffs which only trigger when in RvR like slight buffs to speed for the war band when riding mounts or extra renown when the war band leader issues a rally call to fight on him. I am not talking game breaking abilities just little extras to give incentive to fight with the war band.


Saturday, 15 May 2010

Don't mention ze WAR!

Check out Don't mention ze WAR! They even have a video from the Squig Night (but from the dark side). The perfect banner for the sight could be an orc in a pointed helmet.

Friday, 14 May 2010

24 vs 24

It has been a good week in War, we had a guild event of 24 versus an order guild of 24 in a locked zone. The aim was fun, to improve our tactics and learn to play together as a guild. The event lasted around 3 hours I fraps’ed it see below... The variation in tactics from fight to fight where cool, as each side saw what the other did in the last fight and tactics developed. Our war band had lower renown rank players and we didn’t have the numbers to swap out substitutes. But we gave a good account of ourselves and won a number of matches.
I have also been in tier 2 with my sorcerer and I was surprised again how much action there was. I was also surprised by the lack of organization in war bands. I joined around 4 different war bands and all had a silent war band leader and members not just scattered in the zone but across multiple zones.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Krosussaysburn post of win!

Once in a while a post comes along which blows me away and is made of excellence. Head over to krosusssaysburn for their post on possible skaven classes. I particularly like the Moulder Rat Ogre Packmaster concept. I would dump so many of my current characters just to play any one of these.

Monday, 3 May 2010

I am the resurrection

Unless you have had your head up a black orc’s behind (it echo’s in there) you will have seen the latest bomb shell that as of patch 1.3.6 you will be able to play on both sides. I am fine with it as long as it doesn’t lead to exploiting.

I don’t think it is a precursor to another faction. As why wouldn’t you just do it when the faction hits the servers (although maybe it could be used as a hint).

What I would love is if the ability to play on both side meant War moved to single shard architecture as in Eve Online. If they could create the server setup to handle this and it was done due to an improvement in server technology rather than population decline I think this would improve War immensely.

Some have said it is another nail in the coffin for realm pride. With the exception of banter on the server specific forums I have seen very little of realm pride anyway. Even in other games I have not seen this kind of solidarity. Eve Online the solidarity comes out of necessity and survival and generally steams from the need for loot/resources.

I think Mythic are fighting a loosing battle with regards to realm pride as the carrot seems to win. You can see this when it looks like half your realm in tier 4 are standing next to the mail box, or when guilds who once spent most of the time in oRvR retreat to scenario’s to grind for weapons.

If I had control and it was possible I would probably implement the following:

  • Emblems would be awarded for kills on a group basis and awarded on drops and to the winning side. The loosing side would still have a chance of them as long as the actually did some fighting.
  • Zone locking renown would only be awarded if you contributed to victor points.
  • I would increase the chance of armour and weapon crest drops from killing players.

On another note in my haste to participate in the guild Juice night I deleted my level 24 squig herder by accident. I thought he was lost and my characters and I would have to have a collection for our departed comrade. But I logged an appeal in game and he was restored the next day! Now that’s what I call service.