Greenskins

Since I committed to at least trying Warhammer, I thought I should look stuff up. I was briefly planning to go in completely blind and just pick what looked fun at the character select screen, but I can read the same info before I get there.

These guys look fun. Somewhat silly violent green things? I was all about the Tau when I played a bit of the Warhammer 40K game (computer, not tabletop), but the Greenskins just look fun. It will be the same sort of light-RP we get in The Shire, at least if they attract the sort I think they will.

I suppose the Squig Herder is like WoW’s Hunter: archer/pet class. I like pets, and my current The Lord of the Rings Online™: Shadows of Angmar™ archer does not have one. But maybe I could use a bit of a change. I usually don’t tank, but I have always liked the “metal jaw” look of Warhammer orcs. But wait, what’s this? A hybrid healer-DPS who gets bonuses to damage from healing and to healing from dealing damage? Waaaagh!

: Zubon

I suppose this means I will also be trying a Runekeeper in The Lord of the Rings Online™: Mines of Moria™. That is my City of Heroes Defender nature talking: I love hybrid support-ranged DPS characters.

Warhammer Guild Beta

The Warhammer Online Guild Beta starts in July. This means release is getting closer and closer.

Guild Leaders – prepare your recruits for WAR!

It has been one year since the first call for guilds to join the battle was answered and now the moment will soon be upon us. Mighty guilds, long lying in wait, have raised up their banners to make ready and the drums of war resound within their great halls. Legions of fierce warriors form their ranks, and will soon mount their attacks on WAR’s vast battlefields. They stand on the precipice in anticipation, ready to vie for honor and glory in the name of their Realm.

Now is the time for the best of the best to band together as one and clash against their enemies. Starting in July, these guilds and thousands of players will compete for domination in the great arena of the Age of Reckoning.

Like a fine wine, our Closed Beta and all that it encompasses has only improved with time. Thanks to the tireless efforts of our talented development team and the invaluable feedback of thousands of testers, the game is looking great and stands poised, ready to play host to a legion of guilds and their members.

The guilds we’ve selected have touched most every MMO released, and several hail from the frontlines of popular First Person Shooters. These testers cover every play style under the sun, and truly embody the social diversity we will welcome and encourage at launch. These guilds, and many more like them, will be the foundation of a great community that we look forward to serving for years to come.

– Ethic

Wait and See

I will not play Age of Conan or Warhammer Online on launch day. I am taking a wait and see attitude on new games. Prove to me you are worth playing and I will play. Blind faith and hope are not rewarded.

There is no rush. A good game will be around for many years. The longer you wait, the more content gets added. A lot of folks are getting worked up about Age of Conan’s early access program. They have a limited number of slots and they can’t handle more, because they are not prepared. You do not want to be a part of that. Besides, what is the rush? Seriously, it’s not that important.

Relax.

– Ethic

New MMO malaise

I wish I could get really excited about one of the new MMO’s coming out.

Warhammer seems to be the biggest hype machine right now, but for all the neat-sounding gameplay offerings, I just don’t like the visual feel. It seems kind of lifeless to me, a bit like Everquest 2. Like the buildings are made of cardboard, and the players are painted wooden mannequins. Reminds me a bit of Everquest 2. WO’s gameplay may turn out fantastic, but I just don’t know that it’s a world where I’d actually enjoy spending time.

Conan looks much nicer to me, but I’m kind of iffy about the whole barbaric blood-and-guts vibe. The Conan universe is never something that I’ve felt drawn to in book or movie form, and my impression of the game isn’t feeling that different so far.

Like Conan, The Chronicles of Spellborn has some really beautiful imagery; that looks like a world I think I’d like to spend some time in! Unfortunately I don’t have much faith that it’s going to be a solid product. For example, their website doesn’t clearly explain how TCoS will differentiate itself in a way to make me want to spend dozens or hundreds of hours with it. Instead they spend time explaining to me that resistance rank zero to rank +5 is an exponential curve divided in 64 points, which may be a perfectly good design decision , but is just a tad more detailed than I’m really looking for. And if they can’t don’t even have a sense for what I, as a consumer, want to see from their website, I’m not too optimistic they’re going to have a good sense for what I want to see from their world.

So I’m waiting to see what 38 Studios and BioWare have up their sleeves, and keeping my fingers crossed.

– James

Ultima Online, Mythic Layoffs

According to Destructoid, members of the UO dev team as well as some developers at Mythic have been laid off and the rest of team has been moved from the Redwood Shores, CA studio to Mythic’s Fairfax, VA. UO, Dark Age Of Camelot and Warhammer Online will continue but more layoffs are expected throughout these and other Electronic Arts studios.

Mythic Sends You Boobies

I just got the new Warhammer Online Newsletter. This NSFW lady greets you right at the top. Is there some rule that the dark-skinned elves cannot have any clothing, or is that all female characters in MMORPGs? The dark-skinned elves also do not have nipples, it seems.

It also includes a fan art gallery, with the top picture being from a D&D book. I guess no one in the review process owns Tome of Battle. Come on, guys, get some nerds on the project.

I would link you to the newsletter itself, but it is not in their archives as I type this.

: Zubon

Warhammer Online – Beta Test Applications Open

The Age of Reckoning draws near and the armies of Order and Destruction are filling their ranks. So sharpen your sword, unleash your mutation, and prepare to meet your destiny on the battlefields of Warhammer Online.

The Warhammer Online Beta Center is now open. Visit betacenter.eamythic.com to create and manage your Beta Center account today!

– Ethic