Archive for February, 2011

Sporadic!

A few random things on my mind lately…

Karen and I have a new apartment! ^.^ Right now there’s not much in it but a bunch of random things I’ve unloaded over there today. I’ll take some photos and post em here and Facebook once it gets a wee bit more decorated. Shouldn’t take too long, Karen and I are shopping for furniture this weekend. Oh yes, did I mention I get to see her again?  Yay!

Speaking of Karen, in all the time we’ve dated long-distance, we never have done a Skype video chat until last night. What the heck? Can you believe it? I think it’s because when we first started dating, she was still in college and didn’t have a headset or a webcam. And then she was working nights so much. It’s only been recently she  got a laptop with one, and I bought her a headset when she started playing WoW.  Last week on our “WoW date” she was having trouble with Vent, so we got on Skype. Hearing everything going on around each other was hilarious. Then last night we were talking on the phone, and my battery ran out, so we got on Skype…and proceeded to stay up until nearly midnight videochatting. I can’t believe we never did this before, but we’ve got 2 months or so until the wedding, so we’ve got a little more opportunity, heh.

Also, if having Karen here this weekend wasn’t awesome enough…Daniel Cazac’s in town, so we’re gonna hang out with him for a bit too.

I’m seeing a rash of my friends abandoning WoW, mostly for the forthcoming Rift I’ve discussed before. It’s kind of weird that I don’t feel the same desire, but stopping raiding has opened up a lot of new dimensions in the game for me, so I’m not ready to fully jump ship yet. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still gonna play Rift, for the Doghouse podcast if nothing else, I just thought the phenomenon was noteworthy.

My Godson apparently figured out how to turn the TV and the Wii on. He hasn’t quite gotten the hang of playing games yet, but he knows you gotta shake the Wiimote a bunch.  His fifth birthday present’s gonna be a Troll Warrior of his own from his Godfather.

I record another episode of the Anecdotalist podcast tomorrow. You should listen. And submit stories. Anecdotalistpodcast.wordpress.com, or there’s a link over there to the left.  Go subscribe, durnit!

I’m gonna be a husband in 67 days. ^.^

Karen is kicking my butt in Words with Friends on the iPhone. I plan on retaliating by kicking hers at You Don’t Know Jack on the 360!

Okay, I’m done. Back to work. Later!

Rift, the new MMO contender

So I have to tell you guys, I’m pretty excited about Rift.

Rift’s a new MMO coming out of Trion Studios. It’s mostly still fantasy-based, though there are some steampunk elements taking place in there.

What makes it so awesome is the familiarity. Much of the UI and control system is a complete mirror of World of Warcraft. The gameplay basics are all still there, so you feel like you can move around and interact with the world right away (assuming you’ve been playing the game for a while).

However, there are any NUMBER of ways the game’s different: Graphically, storyline-wise, but the thing that has me the most excited is the Soul system.

Allow me to explain by way of comparison. In WoW, you pick one of 9 classes. Each class has three “talent trees”, which focus on a specific aspect of what that class was designed to do. You gain “talent points” every other level or so, which you can spend in one of the trees to gain bonuses. Essentially, you pick one aspect of that class and decide to maximize your potential in it. As a Warrior, you can choose to specialize in Protection (fighting with a sword/shield, sacrificing damage for survivability), Arms (focusing on doing damage with a big ol’ 2-handed weapon), or Fury (focusing on doing damage with a weapon in each hand). You can pick any of the three to be good in, but you only have the choices of those three trees.

Rift does it a little (okay, a LOTtle) differently. You have one of four classes to pick from…but you get to pick three entire trees from 8 possible options. So you not only have a choice of which tree you want to spend the most points in, but you also get to pick the other two trees that you sub-specialize in as well. Mixing and matching these combos gets you almost endless options for a character, and endless options for what he can do. It’s amazing. When I frist jumped into their beta, my head was spinning as the wide variety of things I could choose from.

I didn’t get very far in the Beta, on account of playing DC Universe Online for review purposes (which you can read here if you’re so inclined), but what little I did play I was loving. The storyline is something brand new, Rift isn’t based on any existing intellectual property, so not having any history to draw from is somewhat daunting, but considering you start the game on the very edge of the End of the World, it’s still very exciting. I’m hopeful this game does well, and we’ll see some expanded universe stuff to sink our teeth in as well.

If you want to read more about this game, head over to my preferred source of info, www.telarapedia.org. You can gett class/Soul info, backstory, all kinds of good stuff.

The final beta event is going on right now. If you want to try it out for free before it goes into stores, head over here to sign up!

I’m pretty sure I’m going to get this bad boy. How much I play it, well, we’ll see. I know a LOT of my guildmates are canceling their WoW accounts to play this. They’re bored with WoW now, and are looking for something fresh.

Me, I wouldn’t say I’m bored with it, but my interest isn’t near as high as it used to be. I’ve given up raiding, and so I’ve been using the amount of time I used to play it to do other things in the game or play other games in general. There’s still plenty I’m liking, especially playing with Karen, but on the whole…the enthusiasm isn’t what it used to be.

 I’m pretty sure we’ll be reviewing this gamefor the Doghouse podcast, so once I get that, I’m going to get Karen to try it out with me. If she likes it as much as I do, we might make the jump together. Gaming with her is a lot of fun, and I want her to be a part of whatever I end up doing, either way.