So many games, not enough time

A busy few weeks have left me unable to find time to write much. I've had a lot of things which I've wanted to write about, but no time. That's bad for me – they sort of bounce about in my mind and I end up writing half finished versions of things in my mind whenever I have any small amount of spare time. What this means is that when I actually get around to writing something it ends up paling in comparison to whatever I dreamed up in the shower or on the train. Whatever.

So to help get some of these half finished posts out of my head, I'm going to write a little bit about some gaming related stuff.

Here we go, in no particular order.

My ongoing on/off relationship with World of Warcraft continues. For over a year I resisted this game, simply because it wasn't Star Wars Galaxies. It took SoE to murder, bury, and then piss on that grave (twice) before I left SWG, at which point I decided to wait for the 'next big thing after WoW' to come along. See, I'd played a whole lot of MMO games before most people knew what the damn things were, so I knew they came and went pretty quickly – right? Yeah, not so much with WoW. It came pretty obvious that the next big thing I was waiting for was simply the next WoW expansion, so here I am, a casual player in S1/S2 PvP gear awaiting Wrath of the Lich King along with everyone else.

All of that was simply a lead in to posting a link to a round up some Lich King related info, including changes split up by class for those who don't have a full range of 70s. There's a reason World of Warcraft is so successful – their product is so slick, so well supported, and so large by comparison to anything else, they really have set the standard. If you're playing already, you're going to get Wrath of the Lich king, so you might as well read up about it.

Sticking with Blizzard, Diablo 3 was recently formally announced after much speculation. There must have been so much temptation to do so many things with D3.. things which would have had the potential to ruin the franchise for many people. By the looks of the gameplay video up on Blizzard's site it seems as though they took a successful formula and enhanced the graphics a lot (and I'm assuming there will be support for more than 800x600 this time, right?), added some new classes, new skills, and not messed with anything else. Awesome. I loved D2, and D3 has me really excited. My one hope is that they give Battlenet the ability to store characters for longer before deleting them, or keeping them forever. It'd be nice for returning players to know that their range of level 50-86 characters were still there waiting for them should they want to come back for a quick whirl.

Wandering off the Blizzard path, I played a little bit of Age of Conan recently. When I say a little, I mean, a little. It just didn't inspire me to want to care. It looked nice, but not nice enough to excite me. I think their graphics quality detection might have had something to do with that – I mean, thanks guys, I'd love to run your game in 2560*1600, and I realise that it's my desktop resolution, but really, it's not gonna fly even if you recommend it to me. I didn't spend enough time playing to really comment on the game that much, but plenty of others did. The summary seems to be that there are a lot of things missing, a lot of bugs, and a lot of lost potential. I realise the money behind these games is immense, and the pressure to release a game is huge, but at some point game designers are going to learn that a poor impression around launch time will kill a title and kill it quickly.

All in all it's feeling like a good time for anyone needing some distraction from reality. Bring it on.

Posted on Sunday, June 29, 2008 10:39 PM |

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