I’m sure you’re all dying to know some background, but lets get this thing jumpstarted eh?
Two questions linger on my mind right now as a gamer.
The first is whether or not to continue my Sony Station Pass. I bit the bullet and tried it out this month, and I have enjoyed being able to play all the games at one time. But…its just plain expensive! And part of the draw was being able to game hop with my brother, but he hasn’t gotten alot of playing time in lately.
The second is what to do about WAR. I’m a John Doe gamer. I don’t buy games at launch just to check them out, and I sure as hell do not drop $40 without seeing or hearing some high quality and quantity of testimony, usually in the form of my own – as in, give me a freakin’ demo already. But we all know that demos are rare as hen’s teeth in the early life of an MMO, and probably for alot of good reasons (but none that I as a consumer/gamer care about or think are legitimate).
There is a solid part of me that says “pass” and wants to wait until I can try a demo or get some feedback from somewhere. The past year of updates on WAR have been wholely unpositive in nature. Every announcement that comes out it seems has to do with another delay or an apology for dropping another promised feature. Nothing good or extra has been announced! That is not a good sign for starting an MMO.
Prominent among this is class cuts – which is what nailed the coffin lid down on AoC for me. No Lich? No cash from me, sorry. I do understand that there was probably a bizarre need for symmetry (4 class each for 3 races per 2 sides) that some desk jockey came up with and the design team finally scrapped, but…its still not kosher in my book. Back the game up another six months and deliver on what you have promised.
Same goes for capital cities. Have these people played an MMO before? Are they insane? Do they seriously think they can fit half of the population of any given server into one city and not have technical issues?
And then there’s the system requirements. I’m sorry, but if you want to be a contender for most popular MMO, you can’t have high end system requirements, and that, my friends, is exactly what WAR has announced. Specifically, you cannot put your game in every teenager in America/Europe/Asia’s home if your game comes with a 128MB video card requirement! The kid who has the money to have a gaming rig will go – “hey you should come play war with me” and the other kid goes “cool, what do I need” and the first kid says “a couple of hundred dollars of upgrades to your PC” and the other kid goes “LOLWUT” Get the picture?
Beyond that there’s just something twitchy about putting such a high charisma guy in as your creative director. It sounds good on stage, but it also has a salesman’s patter behind it.
Moreover, I’ve discovered over the years in the MMO’s I’ve played that I enjoy swiss army knife/jack of all trades utility characters. And those characters do not exist in WAR (or in AoC either to back up a step). In fact there seems to be very little utility skills present in the game from what I’ve read in the WAR FAQ.
I’m also intrigued. As a table top Warhammer and 40k player, its almost too much to resist. And I do like some of the innovations that have been promised (there’s that key word again). But perhaps more than anything is the draw of community.
See the video requirements are a two edged sword, and the good news is less AOL kiddy speak on servers when you need some techno-savvy to play the game. Not to mention the insane rush of game blogger support that will be present at server launch. I’ve never been in on the frontside of an MMO, and I’m wondering if now would be a good time to have that experience. At least I’ll get a good bit of support and come in from day one in an active and thriving guild. And that’s got to be worth something ($40?) right?