News and observations from the past week.
I keep thinking I should write real posts about stuff, but I’m having a hard time finding anything that interests me enough to write more than a few sentences.
In The News
Star Wars Galaxies creator Raph Koster to release postmortem book on MMORPGs. This sounds very interesting, although I doubt it will go into the level of detail that I’d want. I want to see the actual source code, not stories about meetings or whatever. But still, it’s a cool idea.
Lord of the Rings Online changed all their class mechanics around. This seems pretty significant, though reactions from LotRO players have been pretty sparse. I, for one, will be terrified to find out what happened to my Hunter, the only class I knew how to play (and that was after the last sweeping changes forced me to re-learn it again).
Valve rather dramatically announced they won’t try to police content. I assume this is a followup to the controversy swirling around Steam potentially removing sexy cartoon games, and the controversy around that “Active Shooter” game. I personally don’t mind the decision and might even be inclined to applaud the Libertarian stance, because I’m perfectly capable of using my own judgment, thanks. But from a business perspective, it’s the kind of decision that can only hurt Valve’s image, it can never help them. It’s a topic that deserves its own blog post but I don’t really have anything new to add to the discussion that’s out there: The Ancient Gaming Noob, In An Age, Hardcore Casual, Tobold, and surely many others I’ve missed. The biggest takeaway is that this isn’t “opening the flood gates,” it’s “deciding not to close the flood gates.” I haven’t gone to Steam to discover new games in ages. It might as well be a blank page with a single search box to me.
Final Fantasy XIV is abandoning the greed-only Alliance Raids. I haven’t seen these greed-only raids, but it sounds like a good move to get rid of them. I never fully understood the logic of adding them-it was as if they were saying nobody ever used alliance raids for gearing a character, and I did that literally all the time. I’ve never once had trouble going through an alliance raid with an “undergeared” alt job so I can roll need on … well, what I needed. That’s kind of the whole purpose of learning the mechanics: So you don’t get killed when you’re undergeared. The idea that you have to be geared to play in the raids-that’s the flawed thinking.
I haven’t played much of anything this week. I played a few minutes of Dark Souls Remastered, which does indeed look remastered-though I’m not sure I’m prepared to say it looks better. Somehow it made the game look more cell-shaded than photorealistic. But not having to install the DSfix tool to make it even playable on PC is a great feature. I want to record a complete playthrough of it, but I’m torn between whether to play it “normal,” to get a clean recording of the whole game for posterity, or play a Soul Level 1 “challenge” run.
Correction! I almost forgot, but I actually played some solitaire this week. I was looking for a game that would lightly occupy my time while my brain processed other stuff (it’s been kind of an intense week), and nothing on my hard drive filled that need. I thought, “Man, I wish I still had the old Microsoft solitaire game because that would be perfect.” After some searching I discovered that there actually is a Klondike game buried in Windows 10 and it was exactly what I was looking for.
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