Posted on 2011 under RIFT |
Otherwise known as “Massive Quantities of Ranged, Sustained DPS”. It’s not my line, and I can claim credit for it, but I can still use it. The credit goes to Big Red Kitty, otherwise known as BRK. A little background here… Way, way back, when I was playing World of Warcraft, I frequented BRK’s website, for it was a treasure trove of information, lessons, and all things of Hunter goodness, with a topping of stories from the Air Force as a side dish. At the time, BRK was heavily into WoW, and he introduced THE idea of MQRSDPS, and suddenly it became almost a way of life when playing not only a Hunter for me, but every MMO that I could apply it from there on out.
So the question is, how this line of thinking applies to Rift. I don’t intend to become the Rift equivalent to BRK, but I’ve always thrown stuff out that I felt worthy of discussion. The way I explain things may seem a little backwards, but there’s a method to my madness.
The two key souls that you need to take a look at here are the Ranger and Marksman souls. One only has 66 points to spend at 50, so they must be spent wisely, in addition to picking out the third soul. The Ranger pulls in a synergy between DPS from yourself as well as your pet, and plays, honestly, very much like a WoW Hunter. Provided one spends their points in the correct areas, there’s very little burst damage, as the Ranger bleeds their opponent out while their pet chews them up. For a long-ranged rogue DPS class, this should be at the core of the build. The Marksman, on the otherhand, is very capable of burst DPS as well as mobility thanks to skills like Swift Shot, Hasted Shot, and Hit and Run just to name a few. It’s ranged attacks work very well with those of the Ranger though, so for a second soul, this is optimal. That brings us to the third soul. There are so many to choose from, but only three of them truly stand out.
The first one seems to be a favorite among rogues – the Bard. Throw 5 points into Good Health, and 3 points into Invigorated Soul, and you gain a little healing while still being able to maintain damage output, plus setting you up with combo points to use for finishers. Not my first choice honestly, as while it is beneficial for soloing and PvP, when you’re running with a PvE group, you A) shouldn’t be drawing aggro, thus negating the need for extra health or healing, and B)should you draw aggro, your healer should take care of you (unless, of course, they choose not to heal you for being an ignorant chucklehead and getting aggro.) The upside to this is you also get Fanfare of Vigor (which will only be useful to the group if the endurance buff isn’t being supplied by another class), and Motif of Focus which, while boosting your crit, will also detract from your shot rotation. Total point cost here is 8 points, leaving you with 58 to use in your main souls.
Second is the Saboteur. An easy choice to go with, as for only 5 points in Nimble Fingers you get an added 15% Dexterity, which boosts your attack power, dodge, and crit %. Definitely a better choice for sustained DPS, as the benefits are completely passive, not to mention leaving you with 61 points to spend in your core souls.
Lastly, the Nightblade. This one is a little more difficult to justify, as it’s almost a purely melee soul. It has it’s redeeming qualities, however. As a 0 point soul, the only benefit is Firey Spike, which could be woven into the shot rotation for an added DOT if your target is close enough. For a ranged DPS class though, you’ll be wanting to put points in to Blazing Fury and then Coup De Grace. Each gives a flat percentage based increase to damage from combo-point generating abilities and finishers respectively, as well as unlocking other useful abilities. For 8 points spent, you get the most benefit out of it, unlocking Hellfire Blades for an occasional fire hit, as well as the basic 30-second stealth (Conceal), and Lost Hope, a ranged sap for when your group needs something CC’d. Anywhere from 5-10 points spent here is definitely beneficial though.
Personally, without doing any of the math and before figuring out the core soul build, the Nightblade looks to be the most attractive. Of course, you still have all the other souls to choose from for just their 0-point abilities, but for the purpose in which we are seeking, these three seem the best.
Posted on 2011 under PvP |
Some have, and some haven’t heard, about the new MMO coming out March 1st: Rift: Planes of Telara. I’ve been beta testing it for the better part of the last two months, and it will suffice to say that it will be the long awaited successor to filling World of Warcraft’s shoes. I’m at the point in the beta where I’ve pretty much stopped focusing on quest content, in order to save it for release so that it feels “new”, and have been focusing more on the PVP side. I’m effectively playing a hunter again, although with the way Rift handles its classes, I’m petless more often than not. One of my biggest gripes in WoW was that the pet always felt like a leash around my neck in PVP, as I needed the extra DPS that it offered me, but managing it in PVP combat was a completely different and seemingly more complex chore than it ever was in PVE.
So, this post comes about 12 hours before the start of Beta 6, so I’ll probably have enough stuff complied to show off or at least have a decent rant in my head (that is what I seem to do when it comes to PVP, isn’t it?) after this weekend.
Posted on 2011 under Beta Testing, Gaming |
So, it’s been over six months – all the way back in June – since I posted anything here… I probably could have done a writeup on my August trip to Maine, but other things, such as my persistant laziness, got in the way. 40k has slowed considerably, with several of the local tournaments being cancelled, ad some of the core group that play with seems t be trying to lean away from the tournament style of play and just stick to friendly games. I’m even getting more interested in having “fluff-based” battles, such as repaying through the Taros Campaign, and am also currently woring on a set of rules for a Planetary Empires campaign based heavily off of the original Mighty Empires ruleset. We’ll see how that turns out.
But that’s not really what I’m going to post about When I first started this blog, it was about World of Warcraft. WoW came, then went, then came back again before finally jumping the shark, and I started to write more about gaming in general. Unfortunately, the last year or two has been kind of a flop for PC gamers, especially in the MMO department, though there are a few other failures as well. The Modern Warfare franchise has, in my opinion, gone south; Warhammer Online revealed itself for what it truly was – a badly managed Mythic Entertainment game; Star Trek Online, while not completely a bomb, became more of a niche game; APB failed entirely, as did Chronicles of Spellborn; Champions Online and Aion earned the ire of a portion of the community for various reasons… And as for the new Final Fantasy MMO… Well, we won’t go in to that aside from noting the incredible score it got from PCGamer: 30/100.
But 2011 is looking t shae up as quite a different tory. The tw notables right now appearto be Bioware, who has been going through a hard burn on their first MMO, with a big name attached to it t boot – Star Wars The Old Republic, and Trion Worlds is working on Rift: Planes of Telara, a relative unknown until recent months as their beta tests become increasingly more and more open, and their marketing department steps up their campaign.
So, as such, I should be writing more as I continue testing Rift, and if/when I get into the SWTOR beta, I’ll be writing about that as well. Don’t touch that dial!
Posted on 2010 under 40k, Warhammer |
Fight night down at Wizard’s Keep was fun, despite yet another loss, this time against Imperial Guard. Not enough anti-armor on my part, though I did manage to immobilize one Vendetta and wreck a Chimera, as well as wipe out two infantry squads. Mike was extremely helpful and pointed out that it took him a long time to win a battle too… So, I’m learning, and tweaking. The higher points value armies that we’ve been playing with seem to have helped me out as well.
I did, however, purchase a Gun Drone squad, one of the few Tau items available at the shop, and today spent about 3.5-4 hours painting one up. I forgot to add sept markings for identification until after I took the first round of photos, so I had to go back and add them, but I’m happy with the overall result. For the sept markings, I ended up deciding on the Tau equivelant of TFS, for The Farstrider Scout.
Posted on 2010 under 40k, Warhammer |
That’s my current record with the Tau. Not off to a good start… But what I should NOT say is that I’m doing everything “right” and that I’m not learning anything; I’m not, and I am. I’m sure a large part of my frustration lies in the fact that I still don’t know the rules (big thanks to the people I played with today for all their patience and help), nor do I know all the little ins and outs of each army, much less my own. I’m still forgetting specific rules that apply to me (such as Orks as Preferred Enemy when playing with Farsight), and it’s hurting me. That particular one, had I remembered it, could have bought me some valuable hits/wounds against my opponent’s command squad in the last match we played tonight. Anyway, down to the meat of the matter – what exactly happened today? I really need to start taking notes and pictures, but I always feel that it would some how be intruding, though for the last match we were definitely strapped for time (only got to turn three) and couldn’t have afforded it. So, I’ll try to go from memory.
Read more… »
Posted on 2010 under EVE Online, Rants |
I pulled a rather costly mistake in EVE recently; a combination of allowing myself to be distracted by the ongoing Alliance tournament, flying in low-sec with my freighter, not paying attention to the people in the system and gambling at their benevolence, picking the wrong place to jump to, and then attempting to log out as my ship was being blown to pieces. Ultimate cost to me – 700 million ISK for the freighter, and another 100 million in implants for my clone. Fortunately I was running on an empty hold, having just delivered some cargo (to a member of the corporation who’s corp/alliance mates blew up my ship, oddly enough) and had been on my way to a different station in the same system to pick up a load for somewhere else, so no loss there.
About an hour later I was back in the system, moving my cargo the slow way – in a cargo ship with a hold 1/29th the size of the late Kismet, and I was chatting with the same people who killed me. I think I was being pretty good natured about the whole thing – I know when I made a mistake, and a stupid one at that. But as far as stupidity goes, what followed tops even that…
One of the players – we’ll call him “Max”, because I don’t recall their names – puts out an offer: Join our corp so we don’t kill you anymore. I counter with a joking remark that now they’ve stooped to extortion. He asks me how that is, and I point out that he’s effectively said “Join our corp, or we’ll kill you.” He is still at a loss and replies that that wasn’t what he said at all. Riiiiight. I leave with a “I’ll consider it”, and let the matter drop.
The next day though, I get an in-game mail from their recruitment officer. It’s obviously a canned message, but I’ll put it here because I really don’t think I can convey the stupidity inherant in the message…
Hey, would you be interested in joining a new corp? I only try to recruit people we kill. It usually gets us better recruits, because if they can overcome their loss, reason with their killers, realize their folly and grow a pair, they can become a very decent player when it comes to EVE
So, here’s what I can tell you about the worst alliance in EVE. General Tso’s is a large mass of idiotic assholes that take nothing seriously. They play the game, and they really don’t care what happens. Usually when they fight, they get owned, because not only are they noobs and can’t form any decent mass, but they always pick off more they can chew. General Tso’s are some of the biggest griefers around, but don’t fear them because they are nothing but the dirt on the ground. They like harassing people, and no one, not even members of their own family are free from the agony. When it comes down to it, however, General Tso’s are nothing but a band of interweb dorks with no real social life and try to compensate their small phallus’s by making other people rage in game.
Here’s the serious note. There is nothing serious… this is a game. If you can take getting your balls busted, like to joke about poo, sex and other naughty stuffs, then you should fit in. If you can hold your own, and you don’t get offended by topics such as religion, gore, sexual behaviour mainly composed of the homosexual nature, racism, politics and anything else close to being offensive, you’re already a member and don’t realize it yet. So get your loser ass into our corp, or get your loser ass corp in our alliance. Or war us. We’ll fight provided the tactics are right, until our little bums are red with rashes from getting pounded, and then we’ll run and hide until it all blows over. And then the game goes on…
Toss Jade Elaira a convo. He’s a rather interesting male/female hybrid. Or maybe you’ve already heard of him… Or maybe you know him, you just don’t know it. After all, Jade is sending you this because he’s had some contact, major or minor, with you before.
So basically, you’re a bunch of idiots and losers, and telling me this is going to make me want to join your corp… Why? How? I don’t know, this one is beyond me.
Posted on 2010 under 40k, Warhammer |
This weekend I had the opportunity to borrow someone’s Tau army and play in a Warhammer 40k (40,000) tournament. My first two opponents were very understanding and helpful in trying to teach me how to play, so big kudos to them. It actually ended up being very interesting and very enlightening, dispite the fact that I got my ass kicked all over the table, as it were. By the third and final match though, I had learned to keep moving – the Tau’s strengths are their mobility and their high ranged damage output. Any melee combat that I found myself locked into was typically lost.
There were a few defining and hilarious moments in each match, however, such as the one to the left. In that particular one, I had moved my command squad into a building for height purposes and also because that position was actually behind the rear/right flank of my opponent’s line. My two battlesuits were enough to cause my opponent, who was playing Tyranids, to divert several of his troops; they proceded to climb the wall and slaughter my command squad. Everything after that was pretty much hopeless as I watched my first tank crash and burn, my second one explode from a rear ambush, both Devilfish APCs get disabled, and my infantry get overrun by foes that had superior arms/armor and far outnumbered me. Of the four objectives on the map, I was able to contest ONE – with a wrecked APC – for a loss.
The second match, against Orks, proved to be slightly better. The objective this time was simple annihalation, and I managed to destroy the command vehicle within my first turn, forcing the squad to continue on foot, so I was off to a good start. Unfortunately, that’s about as good as it got. I didn’t move my tanks fast enough, and so with in a short time the Orks caught up to them and proceded to tear chunks out of their hulls. The only upside to this meant that my vehicle-mounted anti-personnel flechettes that were mounted on the tanks were able to whittle down their numbers considerably, and then the ensuing explosion from one of the tanks all but wiped out what was left of one squad. That’s about where things ended, as once again I lost both APC’s, and both tanks, and my infantry squads were down to two troops when the judge called time and the game ended.
The third and final match was against Space Marines, and was also another objective match. While I didn’t come out quite as bad as far as units went, I was not able to contest either of the two objectives. It didn’t help that I had placed mine in a tight corner where my units wouldn’t be able to fight well. The defining moment of this game was bringing my two Piranhas – high speed scout skimmers (Think “snow speeder” from Star Wars and you’ll have a close picture) in from reserves in an out flank maneuver. This placed them well behind enemy lines, and as things had it, right by the building that the enemy commander was in… So I blew it up. Unfortunately, vehicle and building explosions don’t neccessarily destroy their occupants, so all I really did was piss him off. My first Piranha was quickly turned into a flaming wreck, and as the second tried to escape, moving flat out for its full available movement value, the commander shot it in the rear, penetrating the armor and causing that one to wreck as well. The match ended shortly after that, for my third loss.
Overall, what mattered to me was that A) I had fun, and B) I met people. The person who so kindly offered to lend me his army has said the offer remains open for the future, provided I give him a heads up, so I’m likely to be doing more of this soon.
Posted on 2010 under EVE Online |
The great land rush is on, and has been for several hours now. I actually managed to arrange my sleep cycle so that I would be able to get up in time to stake a claim before most of the population of EVE was in on it. Still, the population drove up drastically after 8 am EST, when the servers come back up from maintenance. On my first pass through the Old Man Star system, enroute to pick up my planetary command centers, there was one person besides myself. On the way back, however, there were 14 – and Old Man Star is lowsec. My only mistake at first was bringing a ship with not enough cargo space to hold the command centers – knowing I was going through lowsec, I started out with a cruiser, but eventually ended up coming back with my blockade runner, which I think made much swifter time between jumps.
I’m quickly learning that the Planetary Interaction (PI) system will be a long term investment for those that want to stick with it. I imagine that the prices for certain resources and supplies that used to be provided by NPCs will fall now that these things are provided by the players. Given a few months though, there will be those that get bored with it and go back to their usual lifestyle, and the prices will rise again, though probably not nearly to what they were before. In the meantime, it has become easy to exploit the laziness of others, since there were only about ten or twelve systems that the command centers were seeded in (at least in the Essence region – I can’t speak for elsewhere), and so it’s easy enough to buy a bunch up, take them to a system that they haven’t been seeded in, and re-sell them at a greater price. There are some people charging double what they originally sold for – and they’re being bought. I imagine that eventually these too will become player-created, though whether it is a planet-side construction, or made from a blueprint at a station, I can’t say. Personally I find the planet-side creation of commodities to be a lot more enjoyable than trying to build something space-side.
Honestly, there’s one huge, fatal flaw in the current system. As it stands right now, other players cannot destroy or interfere with your planetary infrastructure… but that ability to destroy what others create is one of the great wonders that makes the EVE universe turn, and evolve! Imagine, if you will, if all of the player owned stations (POS) could never be destroyed or taken over? The universe would stagnate, people would lose interest, and game population would drop.
There is one other game that exists, that the PaleStardevelopers hate to have compared to EVE because they are so vastly different that there is very little comparison. With the release of Tyrannis, that gap grew a little smaller. This game is called DarkSpace, and it can, and will be said, that they did planetary interaction FIRST, and in my opinion, they did it RIGHT too. In their static universe – metaverse, as they call it – planets may be built up as industrial, technological, or just pure “battlestars” where every available build spot that is not required for power or personnel, has some sort of weapons platform on it. The opposing team has the option of bombing it into oblivion, and then capturing it, or simply landing enough troops on the surface to overwhelm the garrisoned forces and capture it with (most of) the infrastructure intact, or any varying level of the two. If the planet is built up in the correct manner by an experienced player (“skill points” have no role in this – it is all up to player knowledge and skill), it takes a large and coordinated fleet to overwhelm planetary defenses and capture it.
I am not saying that CCP should copy Palestar exactly (in fact I’m wondering if they’ll take issue over simply the planetary interaction system being a copyright infringement of some sort to begin with), but change is definitely needed in that area. How to implement such a change in a way that is fair to even the casual player who wishes to stick with PI however, is beyond me, and will likely take until the arrival of Dust 514 to come about.
Posted on 2010 under EVE Online, Rants |
For those that aren’t in the know, EVE Online released their latest expansion, Tyrannis, last week, along with their new social portal, the EVE Gate. With this new expansion, the face of EVE undergoes a massive transformation as they take their next steps into bringing about their console MMOFPS (which I sincerely hope they release for PC as well), Dust 514. Players will now be able to interact with the planets themselves, instead of just mining the numerous moons around the EVE universe, placing structures and gathering resources in what is supposed to be a step to phase out the remaining NPC driven portions of the economy and put it entirely in the players’ hands. The full portion of this doesn’t go into effect until 6 days from now, and at the moment all people can do is train the neccessary skills required to make the most out of the expansion, and I made sure that I’ll have next Tuesday off so that I can try and get my grubby fingers into what is promising to be a massive land grab. But at what cost does this come?
The first, most visible cost already, has been the planets themselves. They’ve changed considerably. One of my “home” systems is Ommare, a second-to-dead end system in the Essence Region, held by the Gallente Federation, and this is where I first noticed the changes. The first planet you see, or used to see, I should say, when coming into the system from Cat, the “opening” to our dead end road, is Ommare X. Originally, it was a beautiful reddish brown desert, or “arid” planet, with a few sparse weather patterns swirling in the atmosphere. A brief side note here – kudos to the art teams that did the planet surfaces, because with few exceptions, they’re beautiful. Now, no longer an “arid” class, this planet, the outermost one in the solar system, has become an “ocean” class planet – pure water, sparse weather systems, and a hurricane/typhoon at each pole. Science, I would think, would dictate that due to the distance from this solar system’s star, it should be an “ice” class planet. Sadly, I do not have any screenshots showing the planet prior to it’s sudden change.
- Ommare VI – Before Tyrannis
The second planet that I noticed had changed, I noticed first. Fourth out from the sun, and home to the Ommare VI Federal Intelligence Assembly Plant, was a beautiful “temperate” class planet, that could have easily been the one and only planet I plunked structures down on.
- Ommare VI – After Tyrannis
Alas, this planet too has changed, and by far for the worst – it has become a ugly, drab white/grey/tan gas giant, with no personality whatsoever. I no longer have any wish to touch this particular ball, even for its resources, and I’m likely going to change “home” stations simply due to the eyesore that it has become.
But on a closer look, I discovered that it wasn’t quite just that the planets had been changed persay, but that the planets had been shuffled around. Now I don’t pretend to be an expert on the planets of Ommare, but I discovered that the planet that had been Ommare X had been moved further in system, to Ommare II. Additionally, there was still a temparate planet in the system – Ommare IV – but it was not the beautiful blue and green planet that had been Ommar VI. Instead, it appears that life has not quite taken off (and perhaps may never), or that it is in the process of dying. Indeed, a simple scan of the planet reveals that complex organisms are rather scarce, and while micro-organisms are more plentiful, all are confined to the landmasses, and neither measure up to what I have seen on more vibrant “temparate” class planets.
Ultimately, one can chalk this all up to it being a game, but EVE has a history of being able to explain a lot of what other games require you to simply have suspension of disbelief, with actual thought out lore and information. So, CCP, I pose this question – what godly power allowed our planets to change so drastically?
Posted on 2010 under Uncategorized |
It’s nearly 4 am as I’m writing this, so one could argue that I’m not entirely awake… We came in earlier than usual, as today is the last day, and we’ll be launching jets out for home in a few hours. There wasn’t breakfast for us at the hotel due to the early hour, so I hiked down to the shoppette to grab something, and ended up getting a Krispy Kreme doughnut. But it was as I was hiking back, savoring the taste of that doughnut that I realized something… It’s hard for me to have a Krispy Kreme without thinking of the guys from the Wingless Cafe.
I discovered the stories of Toad and the Wingless back in high school, and was thrilled with every single one of them, and this is where I heard of Krispy Kreme even before I had ever seen an actual store that sold them. They originally started out on the alt.games.warbirds site, but have since moved to http://agw.bombs-away.net. I took some part in them under the name Iceman, as those days I was pretty young and impressionable, images of Top Gun fresh in my mind, and I’m afraid to say that a lot of what I wrote could be considered godmoding. A few years later, having matured quite a bit, I relinquished the name out of respect for one of the developers of Warbirds, but by that time I had drifted away. Sadly, these days the interest in the Wingless has died, and there hasn’t really been a post since 2008, and I honestly think that it started dying a slow death when one of the core members, Carrot, succumbed to cancer several years before that.
But I know that, like myself, the Wingless will always hold a place in the hearts of those that visited it, and as such will never truly die… So here’s to all you guys – may your guns never jam, your engines never fail, and your bullets always find their mark.