DragonAge 2 Mythconceptions

The countdown to my next RPG lovefest is slowly ticking away (anything that comes after my Jan. birthday is too far away for my liking) I am (like the fan girl we know I am) keeping up on all the pre-release tidbits that are coming out. Enter Stage Right! (if you get that reference you get a hug) Gamespot’s behind the scenes look at the making of game. Peruse down the comments and you get the normal mishmash of complaints about the game, but a lot of the are easily dispeled and I’m in a mood to cast “Dispel” (more…)

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Published in: on December 13, 2010 at 12:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Season of Giving

Gamers! It is that time of year when we gamers prove that not only are we geeky but giving as well! Perhaps you haven’t found the perfect charity blending both your geekiness and desire to help. Perhaps you have thought about donating but never have.

Child’s Play

I could espouse to you why I feel Child’s Play is a worthy charity for you to support. Instead, if you have any doubts about what makes Child’s Play such a wonderful and fabulous charity go read the letters here. Essentially, your money goes to buying toys and games for Children’s Hospital. Helping brighten even a little a child’s time there. The letters are more compelling than I will ever be so take a moment and read over a few.

Additionally, it is great to have a charity started by gamers and supported by such a larger gamer community. I know the economy has hit hard, but if you have the ability to give this year, please consider Child’s Play.

Published in: on November 18, 2010 at 1:51 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Deus Ex Revisted

There are few games which revolutionize the way we view our video game industry. Half Life blew the doors off of FPS; managing to be PC Gamer: Game of the Year 3 times. I remember playing HL when it came out and being blown away how awesome it was and then that I was enjoying an FPS. Another game which engaged me enough to enjoy first person was Deus Ex (do you see that PC gamer chose well and placed it top?) DE wowed with real choice and options affecting the game in a very real manner. Games which offer you a myriad of ways to get an objective done owe something to this game. *eyes sand box games*

If you haven’t taken the time to place this game or it has been ages since you have dusted it off; now is the time. Deus Ex: Human Evolution is on the horizon for 2011. Now before the naysayers remind me about the evilness that is Deus Ex: Invisible War, let me say that I know, I feel your fear to let hope spring up. It is far too early in the game development to get hopes to high. But it is definitely worth giving some tentative hope that Eidos has learned form DE:IW and will return to choice and offer much better controls. Part of my hope springs from the fact this is a prequel so the crazy time line is off. The game is returning to its roots of a near future world, which could be around the corner. The promo trailer gives me back that feel of conspiracy and movement just under the surface. These are elements that drove the original game, compelling you to go keep at it and go further.

It is odd for me because so many of the games I am looking forward to from now to the end of 2011 are sequels (and really a prequel is just a sequel in reverse ). But while most of them give me hope for playing the characters or stories I have come to love few have a game trailer that made me giddy for. (I mean Hello! Bioware Fan Girl!) I was excited for the Dragon Age 2 trailer but it didn’t make me grab my husband and force him to watch it. However, the Hub couldn’t get away from me wanting to share the DE:HE trailer with him. All I ask is it be a worthy successor to the original. I have hope if Bethesda can breathe new life into Fall Out and do so with stunning results, perhaps Eidos can bring back Deus Ex and bring us a worthy game to stand next to the original. I don’t doubt that it can be done; only if it will be done.

Published in: on October 20, 2010 at 3:59 pm  Leave a Comment  

Neverwinter Nights Resurrected?

*looks around and taps on the screen* I’m glad you are sitting down. We need to talk about the new Neverwinter Nights announcement. Talk a walk over to this article on PC World. Yes, you read that correctly! Cryptic is redoing Neverwinter as an MMO.

For those of you that may not be familiar with the awesomeness that is Neverwinter Nights 1 and it’s expansions (all other games should be forgotten, this is not just my inner Bioware fangirl talking) This is a game based on Dungeons and Dragons 3rd edition rules with the expansions bringing it more in line with 3.5 ed. At the time, it was awesome! Honestly the expansions are more awesome and Bioware knocked it out of the park with Hordes of the Underdark.

The world is set in the new 4th ed DnD version of Forgotten Realms. 4th ed seriously has a myriad of classes (in the basic Player Handbook alone there are 8 classes). So it boggles my mind that they have announced you will only be allowed to play one of five. I understand the idea that you then have an easier time of coding and planing for the class combination. However, you don’t capitalize on one of the best things about the newest edition customization through the plethora of choices! You have the opportunity to get the character that fits your play style best accordingly.

I don’t play the Cryptic games and I won’t comment on their ability to successfully launch this MMO. Cryptic is behind Champions and Star Trek Online, having seen both at Pax ’09 they were very pretty. They aren’t my genre of games *shrugs*. If you are familiar with their products, let me know how you find their game play.

I’ll be honest as much as I love NWN, this iteration of the game doesn’t rank on my to watch list. I understand Bioware is busy with Star Wars: Old Republic MMO (which IS on my watch list). I know I have a Bioware bias, I’m honest about it. In that sense of honesty, I’d rather have seen another Neverwinter single player/moddable game ala the first by Bioware. Even if it wasn’t going to be done by Bioware, so long as it was done better than Neverwinter Nights 2 and all the evil that game entailed.

What made NWN great and kept that game alive and beloved in the hearts of fans was the modding. Atari at least seems to have taken notice to this by announcing players will be able to create quests and content. It is interesting idea and I will look forward to seeing how that actually gets implemented. User generated content really is a great marketing strategy so long as they make it user friendly. This is something that players of FPS games are used to having with player made mods and maps. Remember Team Fortress and Counter Strike all started out as community mods for Half Life waaay back in the day. (Did I just date myself?) These mods were so successful with the community that Valve pulled these modders on staff.

Obviously, I thump the products I love (Bioware, Steam, DnD, and Wow).  Not to say I’m not open to a new studio taking over and doing something new and different, just give me choices and options when you do. The precursor to this MMO gave me great character customization (for the time) from both the class and skill choices to how my character looked. It also created a wonderful and thriving community which exists today. The real challenge is can Cryptic capitalize on this?

Published in: on August 25, 2010 at 11:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Current Obsessions! Wargaming returns!

So, the Hub has stumbled onto internet gold once again! (Honestly, he rocks at this whole stumbling upon rocking things on the net) This if for all you wargamers out there. Wander yourself over to Podhammer, these are great insight into Warhammer Fantasy and the Aussie tournament scene.  The Hub and I listen to them together and he has worked through most of the backlog of their podcasts. *sighs* The Hub’s ploy has worked and I am seriously thinking of returning to Warhammer (especially given that 8th edition has been announced). The only real question is what army? I have a wood elf army (the Hub is painting them and taken them over so I guess I really don’t have them anymore…but this is a marriage and we share right?…right?) I won’t be playing his night goblin army! I love it and it is pretty awesome, but he loves random elements to an extreme I just can’t reach. I’ll make a final decision in July after the new book comes out. The changes could be big enough to change the way the armies play and I’ve finally decided to be logical about my army decisions going forward. No more deciding the fluff and miniatures are what will make me pick an army (*weeps on the inside*) and instead I will pick an army based on it matching my play style and what I enjoy playing. Oh and they have themed dice…hopefully they will be back in stock by our anniversary because I know for a fact the Hub wants a set.

Secretly, my heart still belongs to 40k and my Sisters of Battle *shakes fist at GW and their screwing with my army* bastages… If you too harbor a love for what is 40k take an ear over to 40k Radio. They do extensive coverage of AdeptiCon, which is the largest North American 40k convention. I dream of going, but then I also dream of Games Workshop fixing my girls and I have yet to see that materialize (but it won’t stop me from wishing). These guys do tacticia, reviews, interviews…(man all the podcasts the Hub listens to do…makes you wonder why? 😉 ) Oh and an off hand comment about thinking about starting a ‘Nid army has the hubby talking to me about paint schemes, one day I will learn to keep the random army thoughts to myself…but space hulk was super fun and I love ripping space marines with claws…*looks wistfully as tyranid models*

Finally, us look at the two podcasts he/we listen to which cover more than just one system! World’s End Radio who cover both Warhammer Fantasy and 40k, if you don’t want to listen to mulitple podcasts and you play both systems, walk yourself over here. (But really you should listen to all these podcasts)

D6 Generation (I love their moto btw!). Two things to know; first they cover tons of games not exclusive to wargaming and second…hmm yeah so they are a 4 hour pod cast! So, break it up a little bit or like the Hub do it while you are painting and know when it stops so do you and go stretch or something. 🙂 Hey what am I here for if not to be helpful?

Published in: on April 21, 2010 at 8:17 pm  Comments (2)  
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Wonderful News for Forgotten Realms!

Godborn

Much anticipated by me!

Ok this is completely unrelated to WoW… shush! I squealed with joy when I got the news so I am sharing!

I don’t know about you, but when I love a series of books I seriously love them and wait on pins and needles for the next book to come out. Unfortunately, I am also seriously forgetful. I was heartbroken to learn that Paul S Kemp’s work with Forgotten Realms had come to an end. While working on a future post about D&D I was drawn over to see when the omnibus for his Everis Cale series would come out (because someone I used to game with destroyed my copy of Twlight Falling…*curses his name venomously* (there is a small hell for people that destroy other people’s books and don’t replace them)  *cough* Where was I? Oh yes…the stars aligned and Mr. Kemp will be continuing his series. My complete inability to keep up with authors I like inspired me to add him to my facebook. (which the Hub will tease me for later since I ignore facebook most days…I am so bad)

That is all…return to your regularly scheduled WoWing.

Published in: on April 19, 2010 at 10:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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One Rule to Rule Them ALL

If you are unfamiliar with MC Frontalot, Mike Doughty, or Wil Wheaton then this post will hopefully change that.

I was introduced to Mike Doughty’s music via the Hub when we first started talking. And if I take nothing else away from the early days of our relationship it will be the vast amount of music I was “forced” to listen to. Mike’s Haughty Melodic started to receive regular rotation on my play lists and still is my favorite.

MC Frontalot is a nerdcore artist I had the pleasure of being introduced to via…PAX! (what? Going was the geek highlight of my year)

Together they made this song about…Wil Wheaton (who we know I adore since I have posted about his book previously)

Why am I making you read all this? Well I’m not twisting your arm to make you read for no reason. There is a WoW related story in here somewhere, if only I could find it…*wanders off on a tangent*

You see the Hub and I in our geekly marriage listen to pod cats and other geekly stuff together (usually while I run 5man groups sans sound) Last night we were listening to Radio Free Burrito and heard the song. In one of those magical moment I looked at the Hub shocked “OMG! Is that…Mike Doughty with MC Frontalot? And are they really singing what I think they are singing” The Hub looked over with one of those grins and he tabbed over to check on MC’s website for more info as we listened to Wil.

But really that song could be a theme song for PUGing. Today, I went to heal a heric random pug desperate to get my extra badges so I could buy yet another boomkin item for Delith…oh right so I decided to drop feral (I hate melee) and go resto/boom. While in said pug this song played in my head the WHOLE freaking time. We had a nooblete little DK (and I mean that in the best way) who wanted to need an offspec 1hander for his dual wield unholy build. We had a hunter who spend the entire freaking raid berating and belittling him for the idea and for his supposed lack of DK tanking knowledge. My friend Xandi was on his tank reminding me why I have a deep and abiding love both for pally tanks and for his tanking in general. I really from the get go wanted to just say HUNTER! Don’t be a Dick…actually stop being a Dick. But instead I decided to be nice (for the moment) and send this poor DK (who admitted he doesn’t know much about tanking and is just starting to get the gear together for it as he has focused exclusively on DPS previously) a tell expressing my sorrow that the hunter is being a dick and to ignore him the rest of us are cool with whatever etc. I mean if someone admits they are new to it but that the item is overall better than what they have…STFU! Geeezz don’t spend the rest of an instance being  jerk about it. Alas, the hunter couldn’t/wouldn’t let it go and even as we were doing loot kept it up.

Song in my mind, patience all but evaporated even in the cold Halls of Reflection I left the hunter with my parting words. “Remember, Wil Wheaton says, DON’T BE A DICK!” I am sure the sentiment was lost on him and did nothing but soothe my frayed nerves. Xandi at least agreed the hunter was a dick and deserved to have someone other than the object of his ire tell him so. So my little friends of the nets, go listen to the song and in your next pug remember, “Don’t be a dick!”

Published in: on February 27, 2010 at 2:54 pm  Comments (1)  
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Dungeons and Video Cameras?…WHAT?

Every once in a great while an opportunity comes by that cannot be ignored. Below is the link to a great experience I got to be apart of. Who knew being a Dungeons and Dragons DM would net me on the net? It isn’t WoW related but I was just so excited to see the finished product that I wanted to share it with the rest of you. Btw *cough* I’m the girl from Seattle in case you can’t figure it out. The Hub even makes an appearance *grin*

The whole group of people I met doing the video and and interview were just awesome. They braved AWFUL weather in Seattle (freaking heat wave and I don’t have AC) to sit and chat with us, watch us game, and hang out with each other. My friends are in here, my family is in here, and well I’m in here. Also if you are thinking about being a DM, then you definitely need to check this out 🙂

Dungeons and Dragons Interview

Published in: on January 22, 2010 at 11:02 pm  Comments (4)  
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Dragon Age: Origins

I will do my best not to give you too many spoilers. But this is fair warning that I’m prolly going to say something you don’t want to know if you want to experience the game pure.

First, let me thank Bioware for the love a care they obviously put into this game. I remember seeing the Dragon Age title on their forthcoming titles for years now and wondered what was up with it. The wait was well worth it for the  game Bioware produced. In fact, it was almost enough to make me think EA may not destroy my favorite game company. (I’m holding judgment on that for the time being. Yes I’m a hater)

Graphics: Well overall this are very beautiful. There are some areas that appear less developed than others. But overall the game looks great. Mind you I’m playing wide screen HD so your mileage may vary. The character models are a HUGE improvement since NWN and you can really see the progression on customibility even from Mass Effects. (which I just picked up on Steam. *taps her rpg gaming vein*) So Kudos to them on the graphics. I really felt like I was immersed in the game from the get go. Getting to have such large control on how my character looked was a big draw for me. If you haven’t picked up the game yet swish over and download the character generator. It’s free and you get to play with the models!

Story: I won’t go into too much detail about the story but…As the name implies there is an Origin story. Which I thought was damn skippy. I’ve only played through 2 so far, Mage and human noble but what I’ve seen has impressed me. Normally you start off in an rpg game already experienced, this time  you get a better feel about where you are from. No personality traits are forced on you, but you definitely understand where your character is coming from and why he/she is so drive. Overall the dialog for the game is seriously improved over past rpgs. You can definitely tell Bioware listened to their community and gave us a rich world, with a rich history, a compelling story, and dialog that didn’t seem like a prepubescent boy wrote it. This isn’t some wish fulfillment story about power. It is far more gritty and mired in reality. The struggles of both the characters and the world at large seem believable and thus engaging. Your companions along the way are actual people with thoughts, feelings, and agendas of their own.  Unlike previous games, pissing them off will make them leave, another nice element as you work on the main story. There are TONS of side quests to keep you occupied as well.

Combat: Bless them for keeping the pause combat in the game. It allows for greater control of the battlefield and the abilities of your party members. Enemies like to kill you…a lot. So playing smart in any combat is a big plus and aided by the pause. The group AI is customizable with combat tactics and behaviors. Another plus for them since I like to send my range guys ahead to kill off opossing range guys and leave my melee sitting infront of me to absorb their melee. Default will send your party after your target. The tweaking is minor and I go back and forth depending on the fight.

Published in: on November 9, 2009 at 12:52 pm  Comments (2)  
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Zhavi’s New RPG Crack

*unhooks herself from the crack that is Dragon Age* OMG! I forgot how much I love RPGs. *rolls around in all that is RPG goodness* Engaging Story? CHECK Pretty graphics? CHECK (The hub as been watching me play as we both have been impressed how the game feels like playing a movie. I really just love it. Maybe this is the medicine I needed. A break from a grinding time sink game for a game that has an actually storyline. So if I post gushing posts about my love for Dragon Age over the next bit you will have to excuse me.

I have been very impressed so far and it has COMPLETELY made up for the horrible taste that NWN 2 left in my mouth for rpgs. (special love is given to my father-in-law for gifting me a game.)

Published in: on November 4, 2009 at 7:01 pm  Comments (4)  
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