Monday, September 10, 2012

A Few Thoughts from a Brain in Need of Coffee

It's a Monday, and it shows.

While I'm waiting for the coffee to hit my system, I figured I'd capture a few more thoughts from MMO space.

White Outs Abound

I didn't notice this on Adelwulf, but when I switched to my Night Elf Rogue, I discovered that the WoW graphics have indeed taken a bit of a hit.  While she was in Dolanaar*, I kept thinking that I needed to get some eyedrops or something, because she --and much of the background-- seemed to be washed out.

Then I switched to Tomakan to go transfer some of my gold and got a big surprise when I saw the old Paladin in the Exodar.  Most of the bright graphical details were washed out in a haze of white.

I can make out enough to play, but considering that I didn't change any of my graphics settings I wasn't expecting this.  While I suppose I can tinker with increasing my graphics settings, if I do it too much I definitely won't be able to play the game due to the FPS hit.  I'm kind of hoping that this is a mistake and will get corrected, but I don't hold out much hope in that regard.

Putting on my Crash Helmet

While questing in Teldrassil and learning the ropes of being a Rogue (more on that later), I'd been killing whatever I came across.  That is, until a killing blow laid my installation low.

I'd been getting concerned about the stability of my installation since the patch, especially when I opened up my bags and perusing the gear inside I could see my toon's animation visibly slow down to a crawl.  I'd been disabling all the add-ons I have to see if that improved anything, but no dice.  But still, I wasn't expecting the installation to crash during combat.

I'm pretty sure that in all the time I've played WoW, I've had the game crash maybe one other time, and that I wrote off to issues surrounding the 3.5 patches + hotfixes.  However, given the graphics problems, the sound problem with the launch window, and some other issues, the pre-release Mists patch hasn't exactly given a boost to my confidence level.  I'd actually feel better if Blizzard were bombarding my installation with a stream of hotfixes, but that hasn't been the case.  Also, I really really don't want to have to reinstall the whole damn game, either, because that could take ages.

If this instability continues, I might end up playing other MMOs because they're not behaving badly.

"Stun stun stun stun... Vanish!"**

I've discovered that the easiest way to confound a Rogue is to randomly switch direction.


You know you're getting annoyed when you're talking back to the screen, saying "Stay still so I can backstab you, dammit!"

Ah, the life of a Rogue.

I thought about entering a BG right as I dinged L11, but then I came to my senses.  There'd be no way in hell that I'd be useful if I didn't have Sap, and I get that at L12.

The more I play a Rogue, the more respect I have for the physical skill of playing one.  It requires more of a safecracker's touch to orient yourself prior to attacking, whereas the other classes I've played are more of the point-and-shoot/swing/blast variety.  But I can see that the fewer CC required in a situation, the less of an advantage the Rogue has.  Steamrolling through instances would put the Rogue at a disadvantage, for instance, because by its very nature a steamroll would eschew any  CC or DoTs in favor of brute force.  Sure, a Rogue could switch to Combat spec for those scenarios, but a Rogue's strengths are in poisons and CC.

Still, the skills that weaken a Rogue in PvE allow it to excel in PvP.  And really, the Rogue is tailor made for BGs, so much so that I may end up revising my negative opinion of Warsong Gulch.

Deviation from the Norm

I've been working on some alts for TOR to see what the class quests are, and I've gotten four of them (Sith Warrior, Sith Inquisitor, Jedi Councillor, Jedi Knight) just to the point where they get their ship.  Having gone through most of the Smuggler's campagin arc, I figured I knew how things worked.  Perhaps it's the WoW-ness of MMOs, but I was thinking along the lines of:    Starting Zone -> Coruscant -> Taris -> Nar Shadda -> etc.

But imagine my surprise when I got the Jedi Knight to his ship, used the holocommunicator, and I was to head to... Ord Mandell.

Wait, what?  The Smuggler/Trooper starting zone?  Where did this come from?

I had to remind myself that I wasn't playing WoW, and that each class quest goes differently.

Oh, and the Sith starship?  That looks awesome.  The Jedi ship, much less so.  I still think that some Corellians took the Jedi Order for a ride when they sold them that starship design.  It takes some balls to be a starship salesman to the Jedi, but like car salesmen everywhere, they somehow managed to get the best end of the deal.

I still like the interior layout of the Smuggler's Freighter the best, however.

*Yes, a female NE Rogue.  I don't want to fall into the segregated trap of having my casters be female while the melee bunch be male, and I still prefer the female NE to the male by a long shot.  I'm sorry, but green hair and beard doesn't do it for me.

**From Wowcrendor's Youtube video, Class Stereotypes.

EtA:  'for', 'from'.  They both start with 'F', right?  Just like another 'F' word....


  1. I do like the class missions that send you back to older planets. Makes everything feel more like an interconnected world and like zones continue to matter once you're done with their main storyline.

    Have you tried PvP in TOR yet?

    1. I don't mind the doubling back to earlier planets, but it still threw me that the first planet the Knight goes to once you get your ship wasn't Taris. I know that the Inquisitor is going back to the Dark Temple, for example, because there was a red zone for the Inquisitor there. However, what'll happen to get there I don't know. Should prove interesting.

      Okay, I've got a confession to make: I haven't done PvP in TOR yet. Nor have I done a flashpoint. I do Heroics when I can, and I do enjoy grouping up, but maybe it's the 'interaction' issues I've seen in WoW that have made me shy away from either PvP or flashpoints. A stupid reason, given that each game has a different social feel, but WoW's influence as my first MMO is still far reaching.