Just like pretty much everyone else, I bought Sims 3 and played it for awhile yesterday. I started off in a full family with two kids, a husband and me, and it didn’t go so well. I restarted living single and had plenty of time to myself, lots of chances to learn and have fun and relax, and never once felt hurried, and in all ways my life was better without a family. But at least I didn’t make my family the cast of Joss Whedon’s Firefly. Yet.
When I say GUILD, you say DRAMA. Guild — DRAMA! Guild — DRAMA! Why do those two words go together so well? There’s this ideal of a guild being a group of good friends who gather together to do things in-game for no better purpose than the pleasure of each other’s company.
Yeah, and I’m about to strap a rocket pack to my back and fly to work. Guilds are started with the best of intentions but always seem to end up mired in drama. Angry Raider’s character Grabthar (by Grabthar’s hammer… by the Sons of Warvan…) lasted a week in his new guild. Everyone was great, friendly … and twelve years old. The guild master demanded he follow his orders and all the little’uns were looking for power leveling. So that didn’t end well.
Spinks tells the sorry tales of two guild hoppers, both of whom decided to switch guilds for guilds further up in the World of Warcraft raid progression. One hopper was treated like dirt by his new guild, the other is only as loyal to the new guild as long as they keep bringing the shinies.
Doesn’t matter what game it is. EverQuest was much, much worse.
Maybe it’s just as well Wizard 101 doesn’t have guilds. It does have, by the way, full voice acting for every quest in the game, so it’s a little surprising to learn that Bioware’s Star Wars: The Old Republic will be the first fully voiced MMO. Um, Wizard 101? And I doubt it was the first.
It’s okay. I figured out how to tell when an E3 game company rep is, um, stretching the truth. Their lips move.
Speaking of Wizard 101, the Evil Theurgist found some lesser evil in the cast picture of W101’s new world, Grizzleheim. Blood? Could we actually be killing stuff in the new expansion? Maybe those glowy swords could do more than fan up a healthy breeze? Could happen. Thomas the Friendly Necromancer serves up some top sekrit promo codes for Wizard 101 that nets you a pet, an end table, gold and an amulet for the cost of free. Cool stuff.
E3 brought news that Square-Enix would be following up their breathtakingly kooky (and grindy) MMO Final Fantasy XI Online with the innovatively-named Final Fantasy XIV Online (rumored for the past four years under the code name “Rapture” and apparently featuring some very new game mechanics if you’ve been following the leaks). The game is promised to be on the PlayStation 3 only, and also the PC. And probably a year or two, the Xbox 360, if this follows the same arc as its predecessor.
Unlike the extremely, super-grindy, group-required gameplay of FFXI, the new game will have content for soloers, groups, and raiders. Whether this is solo content like WoW (who needs groups?) or more like EQ2 (you can solo, but you’ll be wishing you were in a group), who knows?
Beau doesn’t care. He doesn’t even play MMOs. At least not as the games they have become. He plays them as the worlds they want to be — where hanging out and having fun aren’t wasting time, they’re the entire point. Read the comments for some excellent thoughts by Bhagpuss on how MMOs came to their current sorry score-obsessed state.
Ravious at Kill Ten Rats has some thoughts about SOE’s new shooter, The Agency, based on its showing at E3. Gotta admit, it’s looking better and better.
Werit takes us on a tour of Warhammer’s new unlockable PvP/adventure zone, The Lands of the Dead. There’s been a lot of speculation on whether this will solve the realm balance issues that exist on most servers, but we won’t know that for awhile. Still — looks quite nice!
Lots of people trying out Vanguard again to check out the new changes. Ardwulf returned to Telon to soak in the ambiance of a vast world waiting to be explored. Openedge1 had a somewhat chillier time with it.
And lastly, Gordon at We Fly Spitfires wonders why people always choose beautiful looking avatars in their games when they could be fat, balding old men with beards? Because, why the hell not?
See you Friday, and keep gaming! Now to just get Sims 3 running and see what my virtual me does when I’m not there to remind her to eat….