Monday, May 9, 2011

Quick Hits: Early May Edition


I did not intend for the meltdown at SOE to be the only thing to read about here for a week, but RL sort of snuck up on me. I was actually in NYC most of last weekend. On the subject of the SOE meltdown, it is now starting to seem that all SOE games are going to be down at least until June. As Wilhelm notes, this does not bode very well at all for their future. I can't help but think most of SOEs stable will have lost a decent hunk of customers by the time the servers go live again.


Sunday afternoon I made it to the ripe old age of 31 in Rift, an Elementalist with a dash of Dominator and a few points in Stormcalling to get my crit rating up with air spells. I have to say that the Elementalist only seems to get better the longer you play it. Whether due to me sucking less or due to my build coming together, I have had very few "close calls" recently.

Magaera and her pet Kronk

While Rift may not be the most innovative game on the planet, Trion certainly stole the right mix of ideas from previous MMOs. The resulting admixture is still gelling really nicely for me. I also don't think they are getting nearly enough credit for the small tweaks they have added here and there. For example, the crafting dailies to get epic recipes, the ability to customize recipes by boosting the one stat of your choice, and the ability to deconstruct items for mats are all nice additions to their otherwise WoWish crafting system. Likewise rifts may be very similar to PQs from WAR, but the fact that they scale to party size and come to you instead of always occurring in a fixed location makes all the difference. Having a rift open up on top of you when questing, or having riftspawns overrun a quest hub really does make the game feel more dynamic than most MMOs.


Speaking of MMOs that don't get enough credit for small innovations, I'm still playing a good bit of LoTRO. Due to the generosity of one of my kinmates last night, I finally got my first level 65 second age bow. I promptly disassembled all of the LIs I was leveling, which gave me a good number of legacy replacement scrolls and numerous assorted slot-ables for it. I'll need to level it a bit more before it will be able to fully replace my maxed out first age bow, but it already has a slightly higher top end damage.


I've also been having a lot of fun in skirmishes. Lately the system has been clicking for me in a way it previously didn't. My skirmish warrior is becoming a force to recon with, he's almost hit max level and is fully traited out (though many of his traits are still in the teens). I decided to make him a dwarf (a purely cosmetic choice), because dwarves are tough and know how to party ;-)


  1. Yes, the elementalist only gets stronger over time. I see that you have your greater earth elemental...I remember when I played a mage, my pet was my lifesaver. I just kept pouring points into the tree to make my earth elemental stronger as I leveled and improved my pet heals, and it was like I could survive anything as long as I sicced my pet on it first and the mobs didn't touch me!

  2. I really enjoy my Elementalist, though I went Chloro to help keep my little buddy alive. I should try out some other souls to see what else I can do with them.

    And one of these days I need to get back to LotRO. I've never played a skirmish or wielded an legendary. I'm sure there will be time some day, right?

  3. @mmogamerchick: I too have been putting points mainly into making the pet stronger. Lately even his snap aggro has gotten to be quite good, I can open with a spell that hits for almost half the health of a mob and he'll still run up and grab aggro. Haven't had a lot of need for the other pets so far though, even though I think the other elementals are really cool looking.

    @Anjin: I considered that too, it's interesting how many really different combinations are viable. My alternate build is a chloromancer/ warlock/ something else that has really good buffs (spacing). But I've barely used that alternate build, heaven help any party that needs me to do serious healing on it.

  4. I think SOEs F2P offerings are the ones that will be affected most in terms of dropout; for subscribers it may depend on when thetý are up for paying the subscription fee and if they have been onthe fence of cancelling before.

    A subscription-based game has a rather easy way to compensate customers that most people will be happy with - just give some free game time.
    Even through they lose revenue on that that may still keep some for the long run anyway.

  5. @Sente: I'd tend to agree, I think EQ2X is potentially the one that stands to lose the most from this. However, I also worry a lot about their less popular titles, EQOA, Vanguard, and PoTBS. All three of them were essentially on life support as far as I know, I hope they make it through the crisis.

  6. Grats on 31! I agree that Elementalist is a great soul for soloing, but you're really missing out by not putting more points into Stormcaller. Lightning Storm is my all time favorite spell.

  7. @Blue kae: oooh! I will definitely take that into consideration :-)