Archive for the ‘General Commentary’ Category

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Random Thoughts From A Stuffy Nose

August 25, 2008

*blows nose for the tenth time into a kleenex*

So… you know how the other day I was musing comically about “skipping” my first day of class for this semester to hit Warhammer Online’s head start date? I wasn’t really serious, of course, but irony likes to take a chunk out of my butt now and then even so. I called the seminary today to find out where my booklist was — full of enormous chunks of paper that could most definitely kill a man if they were flung with any serious force — and the registar lets it slip (wait for it) that classes start next Tuesday.

*blink* As in, September 2nd. This was, I told her, good information to know, as I would’ve probably skipped my first two weeks of classes and not even known about it. You know how you have those dreams about high school or college classes that you somehow skipped and it’s finals day and you don’t remember ever going to that class? I think I almost had the real life version, today.

Anyway…

Mark Jacobs came back with even more words, including feisty adjectives, detailing some of the problems and glitches of the preview weekend. I kind of admire him for this, in that he didn’t spend much time tooting Mythic’s horn (which, of course, makes a “waaagh!” sound), even though in my opinion they did far more right than wrong for this event. He just launches into the identified problems and how they’re looking at fixing them. One BIG little note that he made looks to correct one of my concerns of the game: they’re looking to implement a 0.3 second queue timer so that after you hit a first skill, you can queue up a second skill shortly thereafter. It should make combos and skill chains easier to pull off, and I appreciate that. I always liked how City of Heroes would let you queue up a second skill while your first one was going off.

There’s just a crapton of new info out there, and even though we’re weeks yet from release, you could probably dive into the new databases and wikis and forums and theorycrafters to min/max your WAR experience before you ever touch foot in the game. You can spoil huge chunks of the Tome of Knowledge unlocks, experience other people’s gameplay vicariously through videos, and come up with a streamlined power leveling path to 40. I’m sure there are people out there doing all that, and more.

Me? I’m okay with a short WAR break here. Ever since getting into beta, I’ve put up a shield around my gameplay experience that’s limited me to enjoying A B and C, but not D-Z. I don’t care whether or not my first week is perfectly planned so that I get the jump on everyone else and dominate scenarios, I just want to be able to slowly enjoy the game, squeeze out all of the enjoyment in each zone, and go at my own pace. I also realized that over the past couple months, I’ve really weaned myself from my daily necessity (addiction?) to logging into a MMO for my gameplay downtime (fix?). It’s pretty nice to not feel pressured to play every night, but to enjoy a wider assortment of activities for my evening hours. And it’s going to help over the next couple weeks when I really won’t be able to play, even if I had the time.

Finally, I have a small request to make — a couple friends and I are still feeling out options for a good Order (Core ruleset) server. We’ve found a couple promising guilds, but we’re not quite sure about the fit yet. I’m insanely pickly when it comes to guilds, because I know from experience that if I don’t fall in with the right sort of people and structure, it just kills the gameplay for me. I need a guild that has a great sense of humor, that isn’t uptight, yet is structured and led and motivated. Mature personalities/older gamers always a plus, and somewhere between a level of “just six guys” and “five MILLION guildies!” would be great. If you’re in such a guild or know of one, please point me in that direction. It’d be great to check out some more guilds while we’re waiting for launch!

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The NDA (National Do Answer) Week In Review

August 23, 2008

It’s been a really crazy week, posting-wise; obviously, I had a ton of stuff ready to dump on you, with loads more to come. In case you’re blitzing everywhere or are new to the party, let me recap the NDA-drop articles I’ve done so far:

Podcast

In General:

First Impressions series:

I figure lots of people are playing the preview weekend instead of surfing (as evidenced by my blog hits for yesterday and today), but if you get a chance next week, I still really could use some help forming the Greatest Hits for WAAAGH!

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WAAAGH!’s Greatest Hits: Under Construction

August 22, 2008

Unless you’re psycho-scary and stalking me and probably lurking right behind my office chair RIGHT NOW (eek!), then you might not know that this is my… drum roll please… 246th post on WAAAGH! since its opening in March.

I fully expect to keep on blogging like crazy through launch and beyond, but as we get nearer to that date, I get a bit concerned that some of the best posts on this blog might get buried for all time, never to be dug out again unless a blogaeologist hunts them down, dusts them off, and puts them in a museum somewhere.

So I need to ask you, faithful readers, for a favor. I’m going to be putting up a “Greatest Hits” section in the right sidebar there with the best, most interesting, most controversial or most well-written posts that’s been done here. Not for my own ego (which inflates and is popped on a daily basis, courtesy of being married, working with teenagers, and falling down for no reason), but to help out newcomers to WAAAGH! who might want to check out the best of the best without sorting through hundreds of back posts.

If you could, take a minute and dig up some of your favorite WAAAGH! posts, and throw them into the comments section right here. If you could include the link URL, that would be even more spiffy, but the title of the article would do just fine. I’d very much appreciate it — thanks!

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An Anonymous Love Letter

August 13, 2008

It’s a great big world, and if there’s one constant it’s that if someone wants to bash you over the internet, chances are they’re going to hide behind the cowardly skirts of anonymity as they do so.

So new rule at WAAAGH!: as much as I ever hate having to censor comments or delete them outright, I’m just drawing the line when someone decides to get snippy, crude or mean as “Anonymous”. If you have something to say, say it as yourself or just keep them lips zipped.

(And really, if you’re here to flame, even as yourself, you’re gonna be nipped too.)

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A Very Special Guest Post

August 8, 2008

Howdy from Texas!  It be hot!  I be out of the loop!  So here, for a special treat, is my friend Lance — who knows nothing about Warhammer Online — talking about Warhammer Online:

Yes.  I know nothing.  Looks fun though, fun and time consuming in a really fun make my wife angry cause I haven’t come to bed in four days kind of angry.  Hmmm…  Been a while since I’ve done laundry, but I am not sure how much that relates to knowing or not knowing about Warhammer.  Nothing maybe. 

Japan.  Let’s talk about Japan.  Ever been there?  Small group of islands over there.  Land of the Rising Sun, but surprisingly, the Japanese don’t really know that expression.  My father gave a speech at my wedding last March, and made reference to the Lone Star of Texas and the Land of the Rising Sun coming together.  The Japanese audience were a bit clueless.  My wife (Japanese) asked me what he was talking about.  I said, “Japan, dude.”   She said, “Don’t say Dude to me.”  We had an argument.

We’re fine now.

Oh yeah… Land of the Rising Sun.  Guess it comes from their flag and WW2.  Everyone else called them that, but they did not. 

Got it?

Now, speaking of things that start with the S, let’s talk about Syp.  He’s been to the Land of the Rising Sun, as well.  Came early in this century.  Yeah, I’ve known him since college – roommates, as it were.  Yep, probably the best and most interesting roommate.  I’ve had several.  He’s the only one that made me watch Twin Peaks.  I thank him for that.  My life is now forever changed.  He also kept me interested in the college radio station on our campus.  Kind of fun the first year I did it, but once we got our own show, the fun began.  Hella fun.  Except for the time he accidently turned the headphone volume all the way up and said something.

Ouch. 

Ahhhh…. College memories.

We had the best bunkbeds.  And the worst room planning skills.  But fun.

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A Plea For Civil Comments

August 6, 2008

I generally don’t like editing or deleting comments on this blog — I appreciate people speaking their mind, and I only take action if the comment is intended to be offensive, trolling or downright mean to another person.

In the past couple days, I’ve been a bit dismayed at some comments on this blog that are, shall we say, less than kind toward other commentators… maybe not “mean”, per se, but inching toward that line.

I have no desire to wield my censorship stick (and believe me, oh yes, I do have one, and it glows and everything!) on the comments section, but I need to ask that you guys who read this blog and care enough to comment on the articles — which I love, by the way, thanks! — please PLEASE keep it civil down there. If you disagree with someone, fine, say so, but do so in a way that will allow the two of you to be snuggle buddies after all is said and done. If the spark of fierce emotion lights up deep within your soul, find a fun, creative way to let it out rather than a stream of potty talk (I like that phrase).

I would appreciate it, and so would the other people who visit, read and comment on WAAAGH!

In other news, since apparently nothing is going to happen this week other than GameSpy ticking me off, I’m going to take off from Thursday through Saturday on a last-minute visit to Texas to visit a friend who’s getting married. I’m going to detach from my computer for those three days — not even taking my laptop — so I’ll be a bit incommunicado until Sunday. The good news for you all is that this is me tempting fate, and you just know major major news will drop the second I’m out of town, so I’m happy in advance for that. Y’all need it.

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Random Q&A Monday

August 4, 2008

Question: How many blogs do you visit daily?

Answer: I keep tabs on about 95 blogs with Google Reader, which accumulates around 200-400 posts a day that I skim through until I find something interesting.

Question: How do you pronounce “Syp”?

Answer: Like “sip”. Some people — weird, eerie, godless folk — pronounce it “sype” (rhymes with “type”). Those people are not to be trusted.

Question: Where did you get that name?

Answer: I gave it to my gnome warlock in World of Warcraft around October 2006. It doesn’t mean anything, except that it fits within my three-letter-name theory. I don’t usually carry over names between games or have a consistent handle, but for some reason I just went with Syp when I made this blog.

Question: Is Chrono Chaos, like, real? Is it forming in the game? Are you leading the guild?

Answer: In this timestream, Chrono Chaos is a pretend time traveling WAR guild. You may pretend to join it, and pretend that you have that guild tag under your Warhammer character’s name, but that’s the extent of things. I’m not forming or leading any WAR guilds — I just don’t have the time or energy for it (after all, my blogging juices must be replenished nightly via the blood of the innocent).

Question: What happened to the photo contest?

Answer: All results are in, and I’m working on getting it ready to be posted soon. Like, maybe tomorrow. Sound good?

Question: Decided on a guild yet?

Answer: Nope. Still in a holding pattern for various reasons. There’s a possibility I might join two, one for Order and one for Destruction. Or I might be a one-person guild: Syp <Waaagh! Blog>

Question: How’s closed beta going? Any good stories?

Answer: There is a beta and I am in it. (I’m now tempted to start singing the “Stonecutters Song” from The Simpsons… “Who controls the British crown? Who keeps the metric system down? We do! We do!”)

Question: I very, very much want you to conquer the world in the Road to War. How can I help you do that, Syp? Start honing my plowshares into swords? Put my neighbors in headlocks and give them noogies?

Answer: Nay! Just ignore every other blog and put “bigbanana -at- hotmail -dot- com” as your Road to War recruiter. Then… go ahead with the noogielock.

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50 Tidbits I’ve Loved In MMORPGs

July 28, 2008
  1. Non-combat pets. I’m a sucker for a loyal whatever to follow me around like an adoring fan trying in vain to get an autograph.
  2. Level-matching systems. Any way to let me and my buddy, who are 15 levels apart, have fun in the game together is a wonderful thing indeed.
  3. Hype.
  4. Speculation.
  5. Analysis.
  6. Being wowed by the littlest details done right.
  7. Great music that makes me want to stay in one spot until I’ve heard it all.
  8. In-jokes, puns and gags.
  9. Stupid ways I’ve died and am proud of them.
  10. Finding the right mix of guild for me. It’s harder than you’d think!
  11. Murloc movie title jokes. Lord help me, but I still think they’re funny.
  12. Combat pets. Loyal friends who kick butt for you while you hid in the corner from the Blair Witch.
  13. Going into a new zone for the very first time.
  14. Spending a half hour creating the perfect character — look, name, class, race, server, etc.
  15. Deleting that character right after logging in to make an even better one.
  16. /burp
  17. Having a trusting friend follow me blindly off a cliff.
  18. A responsive, intuitive user interface.
  19. Water that looks like water, not just blurry white fuzz.
  20. Discovering a new trick for an old skill.
  21. Funny, dumb or unique-looking gear.
  22. Saying something really weird in guild vent when everyone’s getting far too serious about a raid.
  23. Playing tag in the middle of a raid, or better yet, hide and go seek.
  24. Logging in to a mailbox stuffed with more money than Job.
  25. Responding to beggers by mimicking everything they say. “Can I haz gold?” “Can I haz gold?” “What?” “What?”
  26. Finding people in real life who play the games I do. And then having very awkward conversations with them about it.
  27. Destressing after a long day by lopping the head off a dragon and wearing it as a codpiece.
  28. When someone is randomly nice and/or selfless toward you.
  29. When I finally reach a huge goal and reap the rewards.
  30. The sense of advancement and achievement that is measurable and noticeable (unlike real life, sometimes).
  31. Feeling like I get my money’s worth out of a game.
  32. Getting sucked into race/realm/faction pride.
  33. Discovering that a class you’ve long overlooked is actually pretty fun to play, after all.
  34. Weather effects.
  35. Scripted events – in the game world, or in dungeons.
  36. The rare occasion when the game can honestly surprise me or catch me off guard.
  37. Being able to develop your character to fit your personality and playstyle.
  38. Taverns.
  39. Being almost at death’s door, then killing a guy to hit the next level — BING! Full life!
  40. Flying.
  41. When a skill or power that I use seriously impresses the rest of my group.
  42. Finally getting to the point where dying doesn’t bother me (nor wiping).
  43. Playing a girl toon and getting hit on by a guy, then /yell “I AM A GUY AND YOU JUST HIT ON ME AND NOW YOUR SEXUALITY IS IN QUESTION!”
  44. Unleashing a day’s worth of crazy in guild chat.
  45. When I say something completely ridiculous in guild chat, and a newbie guildie believes me, and then I have to go along with it for the rest of the night. (“Why, yes, I was a former spy for Belgium…”)
  46. Getting that kill/node/drop/quest item out from under the nose of a competing player of the opposite faction.
  47. /kiss and /hug to any players who start to get mean to me. If they’re really, really mean, I might Care Bear Shine on their butts.
  48. Reading up on the game when I’m not playing it (but, y’know, not ALL the time… that would be addiction!)
  49. Seeing a game you love suddenly achieve pop culture awareness.
  50. When I beat the game and see the coveted “THE END” screen. Yes, it really does exist! You’re just not good enough to get there, I guess.
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Chaos Comments!

July 27, 2008

Step One For How Syp Got His Groove Back: responding to all the 50+ comments you guys left on my blog this past week. Thanks! That’s so awesome to come back to!

“I’d like to hear more about the mission trip you went on.”

I have another blog, Watchman, which deals with my spiritual and pastoral life, and if you’re interested, I just put up a post on the week here. There’s lots I didn’t talk about, such as the organization that runs these trips, Group Workcamps, has been putting these community-changing weeks for 31 years now.

“I got into beta. I did not get into beta.”

Congrats and so sorry, Charlie. Hopefully the streetcorner urchins begging for a beta spot will be granted their wish very soon!

“The NDA is still in place — curses!”

Actually, this makes me a bit happy. My only serious worry this past week is that the NDA would drop while I was away, and I’d have even MORE to catch up on upon returning. I’m excited for that day, and I think (hope) it’ll be soon. Lots to do before then!

“Squee — September 23 release date! Mebbe!”

We’ll see, and I’ll post more on this later. Promise.

“Where’s my epic unicorn mount?”

Long story short: we got hungry, it looked tasty, we have no regrets.

“How many blog posts do you read anyway?”

Way, waaaaaay too many. My Google Reader tracks about 100 blogs, with more added every week. I do try to cull them somewhat (and they’re not all WAR-related), but one week away from my computer just made this account explode. I’m going to start reading all of them this afternoon.

More later!

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7 days, 1100 miles, 35 comments, 127 e-mails, 1000+ blog posts to read

July 26, 2008

Hey, I’m back!  Miss me?  Don’t know who I am any more, because I’m like some vague father who abandoned you all to the ravages of the internet latch-key kid culture?  I know, I’m sorry.

Anyway, I’m back and completely exhausted.  I’m going to do my best in the next day or so to catch up on what’s been happening and get back into the groove, but in the meanwhile, I’d love to hear what’s new with you guys!  Any new beta takers?  Is that pesky NDA still in place?

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