Month: March 2020

First look: Tree of Savior

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Character selection screen

It was on my Steam wish list for a long time which makes no sense because the game is free to play, it’s an MMORPG developed and published by IMC Games, a korean company, the game is 2D isometric with unique art style, it looks like anime cartoon but without the bright colors.

The game was developed to be the “spiritual successor of Ragnarok Online” as its Wikipedia page says, one of the developer of Ragnorak Online worked on Tree of Savior and it shows.

The game is a grinding game like many Asian MMOs, and that’s fine if you like this kind of games, there are quests and a world to explore but the main way to level is to grind mobs and the game makes this fun, at least for the first levels.

You start the game buy choosing a team name, it should be unique and you should be careful when and where you do that, i picked a new server which provide exp buff to help new players level faster since the game have more than 240 levels, but i wanted to experience the normal server.

I thought i’ll just start a new team in a different server, but i could not, because i already have one, and i can’t delete the one i have, i need to send a ticket for the support team to delete my team.

Anyway, when you create a team you’ll see a screen of a lodge, here you can create a character and choose one of five classes, each class will have many advancement which are different classes, and each provide more abilities.

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The game starts with some noise, i mean many things in the screen asks for your attention, it’s not confusing but i wish MMOs learn from Blizzard, WoW first hour makes it easy for a new player to understand the game, it starts with one quest, one yellow exclamation mark, nothing else asks for your attention.

Now comes the fun part, first the controls are mostly your keyboard, the arrow keys for movement, the letters keys for your abilities, the mouse is not needed for most of the time, which is something i love so much, it feels natural to me, even some abilities need targeting and you can do that with the keyboard, the developer did great work here.

The world feels small so far and because i’m leveling in a new server i gain so many levels quickly, the mobs are not dangerous, most die by one shot, the bosses need a little more work.

That’s all i have for now, next post i’ll write about other features and system.

Legacy loot for Legion content next week

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Blizzard announced that in the next weekly reset they will turn on the Legacy Loot for Legion raids and dungeons, in the past i wrote about Legacy Loot and how it requires 11 levels more than the content level to turn it on, so Blizzard changed this for Legion at least.

Few days ago i tried to get one item from Black Rook Hold dungeon from the first boss, i tried so many times with a demon hunter, all i got is gold, so now i can go back to farm it and get some items, random but better than nothing.

This is another great step, with 100% xp boost i managed to level 2 alts to 120 and now the third in his way to reach that goal, then i’ll push a Kul’tiran druid to 120, Draenor treasures give so much XP i only i was able to skip Gorgrond and Spires of Arak, in Legion the Invasions give 2-3 levels so leveling went so fast i didn’t do quests in any zone except Val’sharah, and i only did few quests there.

 

Trying Trial of Style

For the first time i joined Trial of Style, i micro-holiday in WoW which allow you to change transmog and haircut free of charge, and in the Trial you can get Tokens to buy transmog sets, the tokens and the sets are soulbound so you need to do it with alts if you want to collect them all.

In the first trial the theme was Faction Pride, the set i used is this:

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I won first place, in the second trial the theme was Champions of the Light, i used this set:

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I won thrid place, the third trial was Freestyle, this one is hard, i won second place:

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I wished the trial theme Mismatched comes up because i prepared this for it 😂

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It is a fun event, and it pushed me to collect more transmog, there are so many items i needed but i don’t have them yet .. now i wish the event last more days, at least a week.

Taming Faultline

I’m slowly going into horrific visions, stopped doing them for a while so my cloak is at level 8 right now, at first i loved the challenge but then it became more annoying than challenging, Scott from Blizzard Watch explain this in his article, i think the visions will stay in Shadowlands so i’m not in hurry to finish them now.

I wonder what will Blizzard remove from BFA when they release 9.0? and how they will deal with Island Expeditions? i guess they’ll make them solo-able like Scenarios in Pandaria.

In the other hand i love Island Expeditions, they provide a lot of items to farm:

Here is what i got so far:

The nice thing about the transmog items is they are all bind on equip, which means you can send them to alts.


Last month i spent it my time in WoW doing random content and with a lot of luck i got:


If you play a hunter and you want a huge pet, you can find one in Blackrock Foundry, While fighting Darmac try to hit him slowly, a clefthoof named Faultline will enter the fight, you can dismiss your pet and tame Faultline, kill Darmac by his own pet!

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Faultline is big! and goes perfectly with any “savage” transmog.

A list of complaints .. about WoW

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Flying between zones

Here is a list of things that annoy me in WoW, i love the game and since i love playing alts i face these little annoyances a lot.

Dry animals! when a quest asks for meat or blood from animals like bears or wolves or hides from mammoths, these animals should drop the meat or hides i need, 100%, all the time, it does not make sense to kill the whole zone and get 6 pieces of meat.

One animal should provide more, in real life one animal can feed many people, yet in games animals are anemic, sometimes they don’t drop anything, sometimes they drop gear! how did this goat have plate chest armor?!

Quest items with long cool down, swinging a hammer to save a trapped baby mammoth should not have a cool down, it is cruel to go to the baby mammoth and tell it “i’m sorry, just 15 more seconds before i can save you”.

Crafting require too much mats, i spend an hour collecting leather or ore, then find out that i can only craft 5 to 8 items, in BFA not one of my characters reached level 175 in any profession except cooking and mining.

Expulsom is a bottleneck, gathering materials require time and effort, gathering Expulsom require RNG, in WoWhead comments someone scraped 3147 crafted item to get 517 Expulsom, they needed about 32k linen cloth to craft the items.

This is insane amount of mats, casual players have no hope collecting this amount of mats.

Soulbinding so many things, now this one is serious, because Blizzard designed some aspects of the game to be anti-alts, even if they didn’t mean to do that, here is some examples:

  • Recipes need reputation to buy them in Legion and BFA and some old faction too.
  • Many crafting materials are soulbound to a character and you can’t send them to alts.
  • All kind of currencies are bound to characters and not to the account.
  • Some old crafted items still bind on pickup, you can’t send them to alts, like these mail shoulders, if you want them for transmog you should have mail class alt to craft them.

There is an easy fix to that, change it to Account Bound, this will make them alt-friendly and players will not be able to sell them in AH or trade them, i need to send a suggestion for Blizzard about that.

 

MMO design in Bofuri

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Screenshot from Project Gorgon

In a Massively Overthinking post the MOP writers talked about what MMO new gamers should know, in the answers Carlo Lacsina talked about anime called “Bofuri: I don’t want to get hurt so I’ll max out my defense” … a long name!

I don’t watch much anime, i saw my brother watching One Piece and Bleach so i watched them for a while, both reminded me of my childhood, watching cartoons means mostly localized old japanese anime or some Tom & Jerry episodes.

Anyway, i thought i’ll give Bofuri a try because why not? and now i watched 7 episodes! the anime is simple and family friendly, a girl live in an MMO world, explore the world, gain levels and skills, fight mobs and loot them, make friends, all of it is familiar to MMO players.

While watching i was thinking about the game design, because what the anime showed is almost what i want from an MMO.

Customize the character, the anime show a classless game, it’s a skill and stats based game where the player can choose to put points in certain stats, the main character chose to put them all in defensive stats which made her slow but almost indestructible.

Weapons define the class, while making the character the player choose their weapon which define their role, the anime didn’t show anyone changing their weapon type, so i’m guessing here that a player can change their role by changing the weapon and the stats.

Using skills to level them or gain other skills, the main character gained poison resistance from getting hit by poison, more defensive stats from being hit by a mob

Some items have special skills, after looting a mob the main character or Maple gained 2 great skills, one from her shield the other from a short sword,

Crafting is a class, the anime showed a character do just crafting for the players, which means a player can’t be good at everything, they need each other to gather crafting material and make powerful items.

Grinding is important, to level and to farm items and materials, grinding usually is something people don’t like, for me grinding is fun in Maplestory and Diablo 3, but not much in WoW.

Exploring is important, the players don’t know the world and the world does not tell them anything, to go to dungeons the player have to find them first, same thing for quests or mobs or items.

This is one of the hard problems today, because data mining and community guides leave nothing to explore, and many developers try to provide a lot of information for the player in the game, without all  this knowledge some people will not play.

On the other hand this is what made some people love vanilla WoW, because the game did not tell them much, a new world to explore and find its secrets.

Quests have no ! mark, one time Maple and her friend saw an NPC who was tied and setting on a chair, her friend healed him many times and they both got a quest completed, there was no quest given to them before that but by exploring they found the NPC and by healing they did what the NPC need and got a reward.

I like that, i prefer to explore and find NPCs who have no quests marks but they offer quests in a natural way, talk with them and do something they require, or help them while they fight mobs.


What i’m looking for is the freedom of explore; both in the world and in character, a world full of hidden places and things waiting to be clicked, and characters that i can make to play different roles instead of playing a class designed by the developer.

I’m sure  there are games provide this, Project Gorgon is one of them, Ultima Online is another, but i’m busy right now with WoW and FFXIV, but hopefully i’ll find time for PG soon.

Blackrock Foundry skip quest

Warlords of Dreanor released in 2014, six years later i found a skip quest in Blackrock Foundry! well … didn’t find, i learned about it while listening to a streamer who was running the raid, the skip quest gives you the ability to jump directly to the last boss, the important boss because of the mount he may drop, so no need to clear the whole raid.

To get the quest first you need to kill the Iron Maidens, on the right of the platform where you fight the maidens there is a gate which hide a storage room, after the fight the gate open and you need to find Goraluk Anvilcrack (funny name 😅) who gives you the quest.

After that you need to clear the raid 5 times, i’m haven’t finished it yet because i just learned about it few days ago.

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The gate before the fight, it opens after killing Iron Maidens

One more thing; recently added a Mage Tower to my garrison which provide 3 portals to Dreanor zones of your choice, i picked Nagrand, Gorgrond and Tanaan Jungle, the portals are near the raids so they save travel time.

I haven’t thought of this before! i’m sure many people forgot the Mage Tower, use it if you are farming Dreanor raids.