Blog Archive

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Head Start T-Minus 24:00:00...

I have to admit, I'm pretty disappointed with the Preselection event.

I can't tell if I'm more disappointed in the playerbase, or NCSoft. I am not even sure how to expand on this topic. But I've seen what kind of company AS is keeping on their forums, so I really wouldn't put it past a portion of the playerbase to try to lock people out of their choice server/factions, just to grandstand or feel empowered by it.

I know that there are many intelligent, good people out there who are going to play Aion. But I never really understood the pissing contests on the forums. Or maybe I just don't have the patience or capacity to deal with people who want to be ugly just to get a rise. And I'm not necessarily talking about trolls.

Now we all know what trolling a forum is, right? A friend of mine explained to me why it's so entertaining for some people, and that's what it is - it's more to be entertaining first, then insulting, because insults always give the 'best' reaction/defense. To a 'troll', the way they win their little game is determined by how much time and effort other people waste responding/defending a statement that took 10 seconds to post. When looking at it from her point of view, I did find it pretty funny. I doesn't matter to the troll that you wrote some powerful comeback, or some intellectual ownage. It matters to them that your will was so 'weak' to fall for their bait.

I wasn't born yesterday, but I am learning new things every day. Sometimes about stuff I already knew. It may not help me become rich quick, but if you've ever stepped back and wondered why people troll, then maybe this brings a new perspective to you as well. I'm sure all trolls have their motives, their reasons.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


I began writing this entry a couple of weeks ago...

So, I've been a bit offline lately in preparation for Aion. I hate to leave my mates hanging on vent, cn aion, irc, gmail, and this blog, but I'm seriously paranoid about game burnout. I'm even paranoid of burning out in open beta. I think it's the single starting zone that scares me the most. I think I could fly through the first 15/20 levels of aion in my sleep by now (Asmodian side) ...

Skip ahead to last weekend: Open Beta Begins...

I've had a wonderful, relaxing couple of weeks- snuggled down into a chair with a 17 book series in my lap.
Night before OBT begins, I double check that my downloads are complete. They are, and I try to login - you know, the test drive. I get to the black NCSoft logo screen, and can't get past it. 2 attempts in 20 will allow me to login. I'm getting dump logs like they are going out of style. This happened to my in Chinese Aion. It has to be something with the patch, right? I mean closed beta was just fine...

16 hours after beta launch, one brand new hard drive and freshly loaded windows xp sp3 later, I am installing the game for the third time in an many hours. I log in at 1:30am, and can't keep going past 3am. My legion mates are already level 15 and level 16.

Fast forward to present day: Approx 10:00am

So 72 hours later and Gheist and I are both level 19 assassins... again. I actually began and level up a cleric to 12, but decided to switch. We already have three level 30 players in the guild, and a couple more on the brink of it. You know, generally I've always played a game to enjoy the ride. But I never really got to experience the PVP I had hoped to in closed beta testing. And I'd love to pvp with my friends who're already up there and holding our guild as the rank #2 guild on our server. Who knows, maybe this speed solo leveling thing builds character. Will I try to be as fast in release? I'm not sure. It's not like we're losing our characters every week in Release ;)

Same day, 2:47pm

Oh god, I'm at work and trying to log into Aion... there has to be an IV fix that can hold off for a few more hours.

Hehe, okay. Not exactly. But I've been trying to not soak my socks with Aion information, and thus my blog has been a little quiet. Not to mention, I still haven't figured out why my blog isn't updating in some of your rolls. I troubleshoot for a living, so when I have to do it 'at home', I tend to be a little resentful. I mean, come on... it's my free time!

Gheist and I switched servers for Open Beta. Goodbye Nezekan, Hello Israphel! An [enemy!] Elyos legion also left the old server and rolled Asmodian with us on Israphel. We're now appropriately named Tasogare Moxy. But the sixty-four thousand dollar question is: how's open beta so far?

The old mates from Nezekan aren't really making a show of force or representing much, and apparantly Tasogare is having the same problems. But I'm too laid back to get bent out of shape or disappointed. I've been doing my own thing! The speed leveling is... neat. But I don't think I will be in a rush to be first in the abyss. We'll see.

Anyway, I am at work, so i'll cut this short and sweet.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Contemplation, Ranting.

So, with all the news out from Gamescon 2009, let's contemplate a little bit on some of the highlights. While I haven't made any formal posts lately, I did take the time to re-tweet the panel videos of Korean Lead Designer Yongchan Jee and Producer Brian Knox. If you haven't checked them out yet, you should! Warning: The following transcription is incredibly lazy and not at all word-for-word. I didn’t have enough time on my lunch break to accommodate!

Interview with Yongchan Jee

My sloppy readers digest of the questions:

1. What truly differentiates Aion's game design from the competition?
First, the concept of PvPvE- Aion combines PvP and PvE at the same time. Second, the flight system works not only for PvE questing, but for
aerial PvP combat. Last, the method of transportation (gliding).

2. Why did you guys combine PvPvE?
In short, MMO's are massive multi player, and the game development team combined both concepts of PvP and PvE into one to satisfy all players.

My notes: I think they may have meant to stress that they w
ant players to play TOGETHER in the world, as opposed to being in their own separate, safe little instances. A lot of dynamics are lost when you close yourself off to the other players in the game.

3. Is there going to be a playable Balaur race or 3rd playable faction?
In short: no, you can't play a Balaur.

My 2 cents: I kind of want to smack you upside the head. Granted, yes, I understand the curiosity. But the game hasn't even released yet, and people are asking this?? When you were being raised, were you ever told to 'try your food before seasoning it'? It is impolite to the cook who spent time making your food to season it before appreciating the hard work they put into the meal. Maybe they seasoned it already.

4. What advice would you give an aspiring game designer?
Most important is your passion. Try to experience as much as possible; do as much
as you can with what you have.

5. Inspiration for the combat system, i.e. pattern engraving?
Sorry to disappoint, but our combat system blends many features and ideas and cultural inspirations.

6. Will there be low level instances before level 25
in development.

7. Will there be legion housing?
In development.

8. Implementing social networking API's or features?
Under discussion.

My thoughts: I wonder if the questioner Timmy meant things like 'wow armory' where you can search your guild or character and admire them all day while you're stuck at work.

9. New abyss zone?
Yes, there is one in development that will be much more compact and concentrated so that the battles aren't so far spread out.

10. Will there be mounts in Aion?
Yes, but they won't necessarily be used for transportation.

My thoughts: Frankly I'm irritated by this question. Yes, I understand the love for mounts. I love them too. I collected entire sets of mounts before. And also - I know I have only played until level 26. That’s just over half of the levels in the game. I can't help but think that the game changes significantly at level 50, and I wonder if we're going to be shitting ourselves over lack of mounts in that stage of the game.

Interview with Brian

1. Will there be any expansions?
Yes, this game is going to go on for a long time. We’re already launching with 3 major updates
my thoughts: really stupid question. Just sayin.

2. when/how is pre-selection going to work?
everyone who pre-ordered can go in, choose your names, races, character classes, customizations, and servers ahead of time so that you can hit the ground running on day 1 of release.

3. Coolest 1.5 features in Brian's opinion?
The Shugo pirate ship and the stigma system enhancement were his favorite features.

4. Were there any aspects in prepping Aion for western market that went unexpectedly well/easy?
The camera rotation using the left mouse button which was implemented. It was a small feature for developer's to change, but had a large player base impact.

5. When will 1.5 patch be available for download?
Working on it right now. Will be 4-5 GB and made available on torrent

6. Is the balancing between the classes okay so you won't find any overpowered class in PvP?
Typically people see things like this: “Whoever you kill is fine. Whoever kills you is overpowered. “ Skill has a lot to do with it, as does the customization you put into your character. I.e. the Stigma, armor, socket enhancements, and your use of the positioning system.

My thoughts: haha, glad you called out the playerbase on a very obviously skewed debate.

7. Plans for interface modification?
Under discussion.

My notes: Wish people would be more clear about add on’s.

8. Will there be other languages other than English French and German?
Not at this time, but it's not hard to adapt, so it’s really ‘as demanded’

9. Playing Aion on a Mac?
Play it on Boot camp.

10. Is there any info about alliances between legions?
Not at the moment.

11. Has a French community manager been chosen yet?
Not yet.

12. Talent system available in the game to make your character unique?
In short: You’re stupid. Please read Aion’s powerwiki about Stigma’s.

13. What are the Preorder rings about?
Pre-order rings are inventory bound items with visual effect that give small resistances.

14. Where can players get new color dyes?
In short: You’re stupid. Please learn to explore your capitol cities for dye vendors.

15. How much freedom does NCWest have to make game changes?
A lot - going forward our feedback gets incorporated into all updated patches.

16. When is open beta?
Announcement should be (this) week.

Audience questions
17. Oceanic community manager?
Not at this time, however we'll hire additional English speaking community managers

18. Sorry, this was hard to transcribe. The way the guy worded his question, it seemed like he wanted to switch between PvP and PvE, but couldn't figure out how to get to the abyss.

19. Will there be a 3rd front in a future expansion?
Never say never, but it’s not planned.

20. Housing system?
We have lots of features to implement, but we want to do them right. If we give you a house, we want it to be something fun, not just a box to sit in.

21. Can you expand on the Slayer System?
Brian didn't hear the lady's mic, so he starts explaining rifting.

Side Note - Slayer System:

Penalties of PvP in PVE Areas

If you go on a killing rampage in enemy territory (does not apply to the Abyss), you will receive penalties for doing so. This is called the Slayer System. The effects are as follows:

1. Depending on the amount of killings you will receive points. If your penalty points go over a certain limit, you will receive the penalty effects. If you kill lower leveled players than you, you will receive more points.

2. The penalty effects are categorized into two. One is a ?Curse? and you cannot use rifts. The second is a ?Judgment? and under this effect you cannot be resurrected in any Kiosk placed in the enemy territory, as well as use rifts.

3. The name of the Curse/Judgment depends on the race. If you are Elyos, you will receive Curse/Judgment of Asphel. Asmodians will get Curse/Judgment of Ariel.

4. Once you come under Curse or Judgment, your location will be revealed throughout the local map for the entire opposing faction members. Also, even if you are under a hiding skill, your title will be seen, making it even easier to be spotted.

5. You must go back to your own lands or the Abyss and wait for a certain amount of time for the Curse or Judgment to disappear.

6. If you or someone else kills a slayer, 12 nearby players of the dead body will receive buffs.

7. The killer of the slayer will be announced throughout the area chat under the format of ?[Race]?s Hero [Killer of the Slayer] has defeated [Slayer] while he was under [Judgment or Curse] of [Ariel or Asphel].

22. Is there going to be any maintenance or downtime?
Servers will be up for 24/7, patches will not take the servers down.


By the way, I read the feedback from the AionSource community in response to the thread stating 'give us your questions about Aion!' and I nearly turned my monitor off in shame. Or maybe I'm just a little shit who tries to come up with good questions, instead of reposting the same stupid questions over and over. You know, I don't really care that you can't swim in Aion. It's a unique feature of this MMO, I think. Sure, it would be pretty neat to glide off and dismiss your wings right into a pond. But I've done it before in beta. Yeah, I took damage in water. And? Is that going to fundamentally change the game if you're allowed to swim? More importantly, why are people so worried about swimming when you can F L Y ???

I never really read forums religiously, but I guess another sour taste in my mouth on the AionSource forums is some of the attitudes on there. I was browsing a ‘legion emblem’ forum where people were showing off what they found or made for their legions. And half of the posts were a bunch of kids making catty remarks about how this photo can be found on google and trying to OUT people who (obviously) modified images of tribal tattoo’s to fit the needs of their emblem. I was really unimpressed with some of these kids, and what’s more, is they have their legion name in their information (or maybe they’re posing under that legion name). But their actions absolutely affect how I look at their legion. No way am I interested in dealing with people who would take in a conceited little stray who thinks his shit smells like roses.

So that’s it for today! I guess.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Class: Sorcerer 101

I found two very nice video's of the sorcerer class done by Youtube author ChillaxinHomez. Whether you are thinking about trying the sorcerer class, or want to learn what to expect vs. pvp, you'll do good to check these videos out. Chill takes you step by step and shows you each ability he's learned, then shows you in slow motion. And won't you be the badass of the team when you're able to identify your opponent's casts by sight? Why yes, yes you will be.

and part 2...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Something I couldn't resist..

Okay, okay.. I know, blasphemy incoming.

So I posted the n00b boyfriend video for your entertainment. But on the drive home from work today, I recalled my favorite WoW spun video. So from the bottom of my heart, to yours...(?) I present to you my all time favorite, World of Wifecraft.

Changes this month

Since closed beta #5, a few developments have been keeping me a bit busy on the Aion front. The beta legion I began with Gheist has come together quite nicely with a solid team of players. We have begun a temporary forum, and while we still have ventrilo to yap on, you people's have real lives and such to tend to. Anyway, we're going to settle on a domain name here soon, and move our work off of my buddy's private hosting. We captured some footage of making mischief, but sadly, no PVP footage yet.

We were held up last weekend by some level 30 Elyos players who were fighting in an area called Morheim. The Asmodian players starting in that area are level 20, so a good 10 levels below them. The Elyos team was trying to score enough abyss points to buy their Abyss pvp sets. Having never gone toe to toe with a level 30 before, my level 20 Assassin jumped into the fray with 5 buddies (yes, 6 on 1) and stared at the "miss", "blocked" spam and watch all of our stuns get resisted. I mean really, who wants to watch a video of you at your luckiest crit of 20 damage meanwhile the opponent's making alphabet soup with your legion name?

It was a bit disheartening that we weren't of level to put up a good fight. What was annoying is that it seemed like these players were preventing us from leveling. Throughout the weekend, we managed to climb to around level 24-25, but didn't complete a lot of the campaign quests we were working on in Morheim. Later, I had a chat with the opponent who was farming Abyss points on lowbies. She was cool - very nice and helpful in answering a lot of my questions. It's hard to pvp against players 10 levels above you, so naturally many people gave up quickly. Being a PvPer at heart, she complained that the Asmodian players were just disorganized and didn't want to pvp. She also didn't seem to care that she was preventing beta testers from getting to content, and possibly even leveling to the point that we could give her a good fight in the Abyss. We had a great conversation, and I hope this weekend I can dig deep down in my soul and find the constitution required to grind out 6 more levels, so that I will have a better chance of retribution!!

At the heart of the matter, I love PvP. I'm not great at it, but I enjoy it. Regardless of whether it was in an MMO like WoW or WaR, or in a text based game like a mud. Player killing makes things interesting. When retail Aion comes out, bring your best; Anytime, anywhere. I dare you. No, I triple dog dare you, if you've got the nads. For beta, I want to dip my toes in the water, bug report and spell check. Giggle when I see an NPC referring to himself as 'her' or vice versa.

I'm not too worried about it. It is beta, afterall.

Oh, I couldn't resist this warcraft video. :)

(Edited: Less QQ, more objectivity!)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Interview from Korea : Armor!

Another short and sweet post.