Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday Odds and Ends

I posted a little more frequently last week and I may keep it up if the ideas keep coming to me. But I had a couple of things I didn't have time to mention.

First, Beau Turkey (a.k.a. Beau Realmscaster) is continuing his experimental podcast work and hit a home run with RealmsCast #4, a vidcast concerning the new racing content in Free Realms. Beau's avatar actually is narrating the vidcast and I think that Beau just did a really good job putting it all together.

Next are a couple of podcasts that feature interviews with industry professionals. First, Sister Julie and Sister Fran posted the second half of the Scott Hartsman interview in No Prisoners, No Mercy #42. Next week the pair will interview Total Biscuit from WoW Radio. The other podcast is Beau's interview with Acclaim's Community Manager "The Historian" in Spouse Aggro #87. No Leala this week; just Beau conducting the interview.

I haven't expanded on the topic, but I really think that World of Warcraft and EverQuest 2 are slowly becoming the same game, and not because SOE is desparately copying WoW trying to keep the game alive. I think that The Instance's coverage of Blizzcon pointed out a couple of things that WoW is borrowing from other games, including EQ2. The biggest items in Cataclysm are the guild advancement system, finally revisiting old zones and making higher level versions of their instances (EQ2's recent Lavastorm revamp in GU51 and last year's introduction of Runnyeye 2 comes to mind) and the raising of the level cap only 5 levels to match EverQuest's level cap increase introduced in last year's Seeds of Destruction expansion. But is the new path system going to be Blizzard's way of copying EQ & EQ2's alternate advancement trees?

While Blizzard was busy announcing the new WoW expansion at Blizzcon, SOE has been working on Game Update 53, which was released onto the Test server last week. Feldon over on EQ2 Wire has been all over the subject and anyone who plays EQ2 should be visiting his site on a regular basis to stay up to date with all the GU53 news. Another site to watch is MmoQuests as Stargrace is currently posting about her experiences on the Test server. She reminds us all in her post about the new achievements system that the system is a lot like WoW's. Yes, the merge toward the creation of World Of Everquest: The Shadow Cataclysm is a two-way street. I'll be following her posts next week with great anticipation.

I did have one initial thought about all the items that will be tagged with the heirloom flag. Does this mean that the EQ2 devs are going to crack down on the practice of selling "loot rights"?

Finally I get to Eve Online. I've been playing for 3 weeks now and am really enjoying the game. Now that I have some more skills trained up I'm really enjoying flying the Rifter and I plan on being able to start flying cruisers next week. I figure I'll need to start flying a Scythe to start doing some serious mining in areas I can use secure cans. Believe it or not, I also am looking at industrial ships and would really like to own a Mammoth and eventually a Prowler to do a little blockade running. Now that I feel a bit better about my knowledge of the skills system, I'm thinking of writing an article on certificates based on a newbie's experience. I'm glad they were around to help me pick my skills for my Rifter, but they just provide a base and sometimes you have to figure out what's more important, a piece of paper or a more efficient use of skill points. That's a point I just discovered this weekend while playing around with EveMon.

I don't know if I'm going to write a post like this every Sunday, but it was a lot of fun to write, so who knows :)

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