I wrote about Maplestory in this weblog few times, i played it many times but never stick with it, the 2D world of Maplestory makes it look like a simple game but it’s not, there are many systems in the game and i didn’t understand how they work.
Recently Nexon announced Tera Burning event, the event allow the player to create one burning character which gain 2 extra levels every time you gain a level, this buff remain until level 200, the game have 275 levels currently.
So i thought i will make a character, reach level 200 and learn while leveling, if i don’t know something i look for it while playing, and it worked, at last i have a character i will not delete, and i’m starting to enjoy the game more.
Also Nexon worked on the interface, the new content guide offer so many options for leveling and events:
At each point there are many zones and Theme dungeons to try and in the bottom the rewards you can get, in the top 2 more tabs for bosses and a content that a player can do at any level.
Maplestory is a grinding game, the main thing you do is killing mob for hours, you’d think i will hate it for that because i don’t like too much combat grinding in other games; but i don’t, there is something about it makes it different kind of grind, it’s like Diablo 3 with seasons, people do them over and over.
The other thing that makes Maplestory fun for me is figuring out how the game works and i’m starting to understand that, while levels are important the gear is more important than levels, in many MMOs you can be high level with low-end gear and you’ll be fine for questing, this is what people do in WoW for Iron man challenge, in Maplestory it does not work, you need to upgrade your gear to fight mobs at your level efficiently.
Also the game offer a way to level your account, it encourage you to play other classes to build up a team of characters, they provide for each other passive abilities to make them stronger.
That’s just an example of the many systems in the game, i may write another post about some of them.
By the end of the second zone in Neverwinter i got a quest to join a dungeon, gave the dungeon a try and the queue time wasn’t too long, the game scale players to the level of the dungeons and high level players have a reason to do them to collect a coin.
But that means they are overpowered and the dungeon run is fast and there is no chance for a new player to slow down and look around or understand what’s going on, i followed the high level players, did my role, finished the dungeon.
Went back to the main quest hub where i found more quests to send me to the next zone, so this is how things will go for the next 60 levels, i didn’t find a reason to keep going, the game is nice but not for me.
Blizzard announced The starting of Ahn’Qiraj patch in PTR Classic, and added 4 slots to inventory if the players added an authenticator to their accounts, Blizzard wants people to secure their accounts, of course this is Classic and Blizzard can say “Cla” and people will argue to no end about that.
Anyway, in Star Wars The Old Republic you can secure your account by adding an authenticator, but SWTOR goes further to encourage people to do that, if players added the security key they will get 100 Cartel Coins every month which can be used to buy from the game shop, and there is a vendor sell stuff to just players who added the security key.
The vendor sells mounts, decorations, cosmetics and a pet, and since i have the new iPhone SE (gift from my sisters) i thought i’ll add security key to my Blizzard account and SWTOR account, in WoW i know i get extra 4 slots in the main bag, but in SWTOR i didn’t know what the vendor provide, i saw the mounts and the decoration, then i saw this pet:
It’s a Mouse Droid, i remember spending too much time reading and searching about these droids, there are people who build them, there is a community for people who build this robot, and in youtube there are many videos for them, there is too much information about these machines that play a tiny role in the movies.
Anyway, this is another suggestion i’m sending for Blizzard, make a security vendor who sell things just for players who used the key to secure their accounts.
After playing LOTRO for a good amount of time i thought i’ll stop playing it for a while to test another MMO, this is a rare chance to try other games because when i go back to WoW it’ll take my whole gaming time, and honestly i miss WoW, it’s my home game.
Neverwinter is MMORPG in the world of Dungeons and Dragons, i didn’t know DnD until i started browsing the web and going to geeky websites in late 90s, i wish i know the game back in the 80s and have some friends to play with.
Sometimes i think of buying DnD novels and just read them and immerse myself in that world, and you know what? why i’m “thinking” about this?! i’m just procrastinating! soon i’m going to buy few books, i may as well buy the novels.
Anyway, the game, i played it to level 15, it have the usual MMO systems, classes, races, quests, combat, loot and in this game there is lock boxes, a gambling system many free to play games have which makes me grateful for WoW because it’s a subscription and you get the whole game, also i appreciate LOTRO more because it does not have lock boxes.
What made me want to play this game is a city that needs reaching level 70 first, so it’ll be a long journey if i kept playing, so far the game is nice, the progression system give the players a lot of options to … progress, the combat is quick and action based, there is limited abilities you can use but there are many of them you can change.
At low level it feels a little like Diablo but less fun, the story is ok, the quests are linear and the lead to some kind of stronghold or dungeon or sewer! what is it with DnD and sewers?! not complaining here because these are fancy sewers, they have secrets and treasures.
This video give a fair review for the game, the video is old, it talks about The Foundry system which is removed from the game now.
One more thing, so far i don’t feel there is an open world in the game, i know there are zones but they are restricted, in WoW you can run from Stormwind to Ironforge without seeing one loading screen, in Neverwinter each zone need a loading screen.
So i like the game but not enough to keep me play it, i’ll keep going to level 20 and maybe things will improve.
It’s time to leave The Shire, i spent my time here running around delivering mail, carrying pies, trying to find fireworks for Lobelia Sackville-Baggins, dealing with good-for-nothing dwarves, slaying goblins, spiders, wolves, and crafting armor for myself.
I’ve done most of the quests (except the chicken quests!) and most of the deeds (achievements), all the quests remain in my quest log take me to Bree-land, but before doing that i bought i rabbit pet by doing 2 quests for Bingo Boffin, also i bought a house, tried to decorated with few items, and started my fashion journey with a simple outfit.
LOTRO feels familiar and comforting, it feels like i’m in WoW but in the past, maybe because the game is old and i’m still at low level, or maybe because The Shire zone feels like home or my dream place, an agrarian society who value family, friends and food, and i just realized they sound like pandarens!
The game offer the usual MMO content, take quests, do stuff, go back and repeat, in this regard LOTRO is not much different than any other MMO, i think reading the quest text and investing in story of the NPCs is more important in this game, but as usual i start with reading the quest text then with time it felt like a chore even when i’m trying to slow down.
There is crafting and it’s divided into vocation and profession, learning any vocation gives you 3 professions, i chose Explorer which made me a tailor, a forester and a prospector, the tailor is the main profession which makes armor for my class, forester provide leather for the armor and the prospector provide nothing so far!
Any profession have multiple tiers, leveling a tier open the next one but also open the second level of the tier so you can craft better items, in other word you can level each tier twice, and in the second time you can craft better items.
My armor is mostly crafted by me, crafting so far provide the best armor for my level, i like this so much, it’s different than WoW where crafting at low level is almost useless, and i love the idea of being able to craft better items.
It makes sense, imagine in WoW you are leveling Blasksmithing, and you have enough reagents to make 15 of Copper Claymore, all of them will be exactly the same, this is not crafting this is photocopying! add a little of RNG so when you craft an item many times you learn how to make a better version of it, so it becomes a green item with stats, then a blue item with more stats, then a purple item with better stats and an equip effect, or say the sword level up with you to maximum level of 30 for example.
Blizzard provided tiers for crafting items but they are about consuming less reagents when crafting the items, not a bad idea but also not a great idea … i can’t believe i’m going to say this: add RNG to it as well! if you craft the same item many times you learn how to do it more efficiently and use less reagents, at least this means no recipes locked behind reputation grind or elite PVP.
LOTRO is free to play and so far i didn’t buy anything from the game’s store, but i’m a little hesitant to spend money on the game because of things like inventory space.
To expand your bags you have to buy space from the store, to get more bags you need to buy them from the store, the developers trying to push the players to buy stuff by making inventory management a little annoying to handle, and the game give you so much items that you’ll need to always go to a town to find a vendor who buy your trash.
There is a limit for gold which is 2 gold, i reached this quickly and it pushed me to buy a house and decoration and a mount, not a bad thing but the fact is i need to unlock the gold limit by buying an item from the game’s store.
In many UI panels you’ll find a button to the store, unlock traits, accelerate reputation gain, add vault (bank) space … etc, i just don’t like it, i think inventory bags should be a game system not monetizing system, i don’t mind other stuff, but bags? just no.
I have to mention that the game gives the player LOTRO Points which can be used to buy stuff like bag space, but you need to do all kind of deeds to be able to buy anything, i bought Riding Skill with 95 points, 5 bag spaces need 325 points.
So in conclusion: i like the game, i don’t like the business model but it’s not so bad, i’ll spend money on the game because i want to keep playing it.
In LoTRO i’m still playing my hobbit hunter and still in the Shire, the zone is huge and the quests require a lot of running around, it’s a slow process but so far i’m enjoying the game.
While exploring the Shire i found vendors called Outfitters, they sell cosmetic items for a low price and for low level players, i liked this, it make me wonder if there is anything like that in WoW? the Shire is low level zone like Elwynn Forest or Dun Morogh, i’m sure these zones in WoW have no cosmetic vendors.
Wowhead have a list of 400 cosmetic items, some are random drop from boxes or mobs, some are crafted and many are provided by vendors, like:
Most cosmetic items require either a special coin or an event, there is no low level cosmetic vendors, i know this but i wanted to make sure.
Now imagine this: a new player who just finished quests in Northshire and going to Goldshire, there is a new vendor there sells cosmetic items for a cheap price of few coppers, the vendor have a quest provide one free item and ask the player to transmog it and tell the player to go to Stormwind to do that, there is already 2 other quests in Goldshire ask the player to fly to Stormwind.
There are many vendors sell white items that almost no one care about except role-players, vendors like:
These items can make sets, they look like sets but they are white items so one one can use them for transmog, add to that many grey items and you’ll have a lot of option for low level transmog.
I’m going to send this as suggestion for Blizzard, there is a need for cosmetic vendors who sell items for a low price, these items does not need to be hard to get or walled behind a grind or a reputation.
Looking at my copy of Lord of The Rings in the bookshelf always makes me think that i should read it again, first and last time i did that was in 2006, it also reminds me of Lord of The Rings Online, or LOTRO, a game i find so charming but i didn’t have time to play, now i do.
It’s been a long time since i played LOTRO, when i started the game i found that i made a Hobbit name Dreano, and he was stuck at the very first zone, i did nothing with him and i don’t remember why i chose this name, probably hitting the randomize button few times then making the character on the first name that no one have taken.
The game is old, that’s my first impression, the graphics, interface, animation and even the font for the text, all of it tells me that it’s a game from 2006, but that’s does not make it any less charming or fun.
The plan here is to go slowly, to explore the game and the lore, to connect it all with the books and maybe the movies, i can’t say i’m a fan of Tolkien’s work since i only read the books once, but maybe this is something i want to do, like i did it before with Harry Potter books.
LOTRO gives the player a chance to explore and live in Middle Earth, the game offer an accurate map for the world, the places you read in the novel and the stories you’ll find them in the game.
It is a different game than many other MMOs because it is restricted by the lore, you won’t find for example neon-green firebird as a mount, mounts here are mostly horses, and some elk and goats! the same thing for the races and the zones.
My hunter Hobbit started in the town of Archet which is the starting zone for Humans and Hobbit, it is a small area and an instance separated from the rest of the world, the town of Archet facing a threat of a gang led by a traitor, i was sent to gather information, rally allies and try to protect the town.
Then i was sent to the open world and to the Shire where Hobbits there wanted me to deliver pies and mail!
When i deliver pies i have to avoid hungry Hobbits who i’m now sure are wizards or dogs who can smell the pie from miles away! because i put a distance between me and them and yet the eat the pie from a mile away.
Delivering the mail have same problem but with nosy Hobbits, i have to run far away from them so they can’t take the mail.
Running around the Shire i found a farm full of chickens, after doing quests for the farmers where i deliver eggs for hobbits i found a chicken with a quest, it turned me into a rooster who have to go all over the Shire to check on other chicken, see if they are safe.
As a chicken i have no fighting abilities, i’m level 1 and have to run fast from the mobs, now that’s a start for an epic adventure!
I have so much fun with the chicken quests, and that’s all i did in the Shire, delivery and running while being a chicken.