Saturday, December 29, 2007

New EoL blogger.

I added a new blogger of mention to the links. Lieu, a member of Explorers of Legend, started blogging. Lieu is an Australian and a very funny guy.

Welcome to blogging Lieu!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Busy times.

Been busy in R/L and in game. So busy that I am neglecting the blog. :(

I expect to be posting more soon. Possibly a flurry of posts towards the end of December.

If for some reason I do not get the chance to post.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Belated Birthday to AC

Yup on November 2, 2007 Asheron's Call, the game that started my MMORPG addiction, celebrated it's 8th birthday.

Asheron's Call has a rich story and large world in which players explore and adventure in. The largest highlight of AC is its character generation and advancement system. AC is a hybrid skill/level based system. The graphic are outdated but the content and character development are still one of the best out there.

Congratulations to all the folks at Turbine and all those players that make the world of AC their home.

MMORPG Series: Part I – "The Story"

This component of MMORPG gaming is often overlooked and underdeveloped by the MMO developers and most of the current MMO games have little to no story. Many players view this as more of a role-playing aspect of the game and don’t participate or get involved with it much.

The story of a MMORPG world and how the player characters interact with the story is an important part of any MMORPG. The key to any story is to intertwine the player characters story with that of the world. This feat is difficult to accomplish without appearing too cookie cutter in its presentation. Really how many of the player character’s brothers, sisters, mother, father or some other significant relation died during the “Great War” or were killed by some “Nefarious Entity”?

So for a MMORPG story to work it, needs to be general with respect to the player history. But it needs to draw the player in and cause him to care about the story and what happens to those involved.

Above all else, a players actions need to help drive the story. Does this mean that the players make the story? Perhaps, but the story should have its own outline and direction. A player’s status with major NPC's should be driven by the player’s actions. If a player runs around slaughtering innocent people, good NPC’s should become hostile to that player and the evil NPC’s should view the player more favorably. The NPC’s have an agenda of their own and as long as the player is going along with that agenda, they will assist the player character in any way they can.

In any good story you must have sides. Whether overtly good and evil or more shades of gray, the story often involves conflict between two or more parties, each with conflicting agendas. To me this is what drives the story.

Even the greatest story can be totally ignored by a large portion of the player population. The trick is to forcing the players to participate without them realizing it. The biggest way to make this possible is to make player choices in game mean something. Gaining access to goods, services or areas is a good way to reward players for the choices they have made in game.

In the end any MMORPG with a good story that involves the player characters is on its way to becoming a good game.

Coming soon: MMORPG Series

Over the next few months I plan on coming out with a series of posts that cover the various aspects of MMO gaming. The topics will include; Story, PvE, PvP, Crafting, Housing, Accumulation of Wealth and Status, Group vs. Solo, Skill Based vs. Level Based and World Exploration. A few may be added or removed from the list, but I hope to cover the main parts of the game.

While I hope to provide a broad overview of each of these, I hope to complete the series with a “Near Perfect MMO” post that outlines what I feel would make a game that I would find enjoyable. I do understand that others may not share my vision and thoughts on my Near Perfect MMO.

Have a happy Thanksgiving Holiday everyone.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Initial Thoughts on EQII: Rise of Kunark

Well the Rise of Kunark expansion for EQII came out last Tuesday and with 3 days of vacation time and a bunch of hours of playtime, here's my initial review.

The zones are huge! The creatures in the zones start around level 67/68. In the initial zone there is over 70 quests that can be solo'd by most if not all classes. The second and third zones are equally large and also have large numbers of quests.

The equipment and cash given by these quests are pretty nice, that is if you are not equipped in KoS or EoF fabled. For a non raiding player these zones are full of nice equipment. The cash given from these quests are nice also. This coupled with the No Trade equipment sales to the merchant and you can easily come out with 3-5 plat a night (4-6 hours).

Along with the equipment and cash you will find that the EXP and AA points will flow like it never has before. Now this can be because of the long dry spell since the last level raise. Either way you will have little to no problems leveling and gaining AA. Just be sure to do every quest that you can get your hands on.

To date I find this to be the best expansion released for EQII. I have yet to experience much of the Heroic and Raid content, I hope to be able to update this mid next month.

This expansion is definately worth it. You get every expansion and adventure pack, and at $40US it's a bargain.

See you in game. :D

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Everquest II: Rise Of Kunark

Only a few more days before the much anticipated expansion to Everquest II comes out. Due out on Tuesday, November 13th. This expansion named Rise of Kunark adds another 10 character levels and 20 guild levels to the game. Along with a new player race named The Sarnak. This race is a dragonl-like race.

New zones are also included in this pack. A new area for leveling from 1-20 and newer high end content is available.

I look forward to exploring these new lands and have taken 3 days off to do so.

This expansion includes all 4 expansions and the 3 adventure packs. So if you are just starting out in EQ2 you will have all that is available in game.

See everyone in game.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Team Fortress 2

Team Fortress 2 is a FPS (first person shooter) where you are part of a team that takes on others. The objective: dominate your enemy by capturing control points and taking their intelligence back to your base. There are X character types each with their own unique ablilities and skills.

You can choose to play a Scout, Soldier, Pyro, Demoman, Heavy, Engineer, Medic, Sniper or Spy. Each of these characters are fun to play. Some are more offensive in nature while others are more defensive.

One of the nice features of this game is the build in voice chat. It's easy to set up and is clear and easy to hear. It does not affect game performance and so far has been a asset to the game.

This game does not allow you to set up computer players (bots), so you will need to have people logged in to play or find a server with people on it.

All in all this is a fun game and has a decent amount of replay value. Due to mild violence, parents may want to check out the game before allowing younger children to play.

He's a little teaser trailer that I found online. Enjoy.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Orange Box

Orange Box was recently release for PC and Xbox 360. This is a compilation set of 3 games (Half Life 2 w/episode 1 and 2, Portal and Team Fortress 2). It retails for $49.99us but can be found on sale for less. Currently ToysRUs has the XBox 360 version on their buy 2 games get a 3rd game free promotion that runs till the end of October. Circuit City has the PC version on sale for $39.99, though I believe this sale ends soon. I do not own an XBox 360, so I will only comment on the PC version. I have not played Half Life 2 or Team Fortress 2 yet, so I will leave those for another posting.

Portal is a puzzle game where you navagate mazes avoiding death traps, robots with guns and other obsticles. There are items along the way that help you complete the maze. The bigest one is your hand held portal generator. This allows you to move around the maze fairly easily, but only works on certain surfaces.

The game is relatively short in duration, 4-8 hours of play will get you through all the levels. The game is fun and enjoyable but the replay value is limited. It's a great game for everyone, with no gore or bad language parents will have little to no complaints.

There is one warning however that I must pass to you. If you are prone to getting motion sickness, you may have a tough time with certain levels of this game. I have motion sickness issues on amusement ride and sometimes when traveling. This is the first video game that has almost made me toss my cookies! I had to stop playing and sit in the bathroom for a few minutes. Once my stomach calmed down I went to play again and within 15-30 minutes I was back in the bathroom. My tip if you find yourself getting sick, stop playing and pick up where you left off on another day. You can save the game at anytime.

The game is worth playing and is rather enjoyable. Look for my thoughts on the other games in this box later this month. Until that time, I leave you with the trailer for Portal.

Monday, October 1, 2007

October Days are here.

October is one of my favorite month of the year. The weather really starts to change with the heat of the Summer giving way to the cool temperatures of Fall. The trees start to change colors and life just seems to slow down a bit.

This is the lull before the storm. November and December are the build-up for the holidays and tend to be a bit rushed. The weather is still nice enough to allow for fun outdoor activities and the not-so-fun ones are going away (taking care of the yard).

My thoughts start straying towards the upcoming presidential elections in 2008. The next 13 months we will see an ever increasing media bombardment of political ads and news commentary. In the end it will come down to the same decision as in the past elections, picking the lesser of two evils. Well it's still early and I don't expect to spend much time dwelling on politics, at least for now.

American Solutions is a site that attempt to get people together to discuss issues and purpose workable, real world solutions for them. It's meant to be a bipartisan effort by involving people from across the political spectrum. Focusing less on the Presidency or Congress, but focusing on Local and State officials. The site is still a little new but there's some interesting ideas and discussions forming or in progress there. Oh and for my Democrat readers, don't let Newt scare you off. :D

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A life both real and imaginary

Life as I know it currently consists on two totally different plains of existance. Very similar to what Neo's life in the movie "The Matrix". Past this one simple statement the comparison ends.

Real life is rather mundane, at least in my mind. My work is rather bland, with very few shining moments. Spending eight or more hours in front of a computer my mind tends to wander through my cluttered thoughts. After work I head home and eat dinner with my family. We go over each others day and when asked how my day was I often answer "ok". After that it doesn't take long before I find myself yet again at a computer screen, often sitting for another four or more hours. Weekends are often a blur of activity, with movies, a few outdoor activities and yes more time in front of the computer. My days for the most part run from one to the other. A few days do stand out, but those are often lost in my memories.

My imaginary life consists in the online world of Everquest 2. It consists mainly of a group of friends that I adventure with. This group of friends are in a guild or clan called Explorers of Legend. Guilds are a great way to organize friends and to socialize. During a typical gaming session, I join a group of up to 24 people and go out on raids. Raids are where a large group of people go into an area of the game that is set to be a challenge for so many people. Other nights I can be found running around with a few others doing quests or hunting creatures in the game. This sounds like fun, doesn't it? My imaginary life is not always a smooth one. I have taken on a leadership role within our guild. I like to refer to this as the work portion of my imaginary world, or at least I will from now on. Often this work can be very stressful and sometimes outright upsetting. But I will leave that for another time.

After reading what I have written, I thought that anyone reading this may get the wrong impression and take it as a rant against my real life. This is not the purpose of this. What's the purpose? To tell you the truth, I'm not sure what it is. Perhaps it's an attempt by me to catalog my life in general, in an attempt to better it. Both of these lives have their low and high moments. Either way, both are part of my life.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Big Bang Theory (CBS)

The new CBS show "The Big Bang Theory" has got to be one of the funniest new shows out there! It had me laughing so hard that I was in tears.

If you missed the pilot you can view it online at

Adventures in Blogging

Greetings Everyone!

Well it seems that everyone has something to say on the internet these days. I guess I'll enter the Blogging rat race. Right now I'm a bit busy, but hope to post my rantings here.

As my Blog title implies, I am a MMORPG addict. Some people may already know the term MMORPG and some may not.

Massive(ly) multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) is a genre of online role-playing viedo games (RPGs) in which a large number of players interact with one another in a virtual world. For a more detailed definition please visit

As I think of more to post I will try and update my Blog.