Archive for September, 2005

EUO vs World of Warcraft, part 2

Wednesday, September 28th, 2005

Last week I cancelled my WoW subscription, so that is that. I learned what I bought WoW for to learn, and have otherwise gotten bored with a game firmly strapped to the rails of MORPG mediocrity. It’s easy enough to spend 24 hours on a character, but then it just grinds to halt at around level 20 (with 40 levels and countless months to go). You really need some RL friends to pass the time in this game with - and I couldn’t even con any of mine into accepting my “1 week free” cd-key.

As far as the remaining issues foreshadowed in part 1 are concerned, I nether have the energy nor feel the necessity to formally complete this ‘picking of EUO & WoW to shreds’ business. I don’t mind making some random notes however. For example, I liked WoW’s party system and consequently stole a few bits and pieces from it (specifically, the party list in the player status panel).

I also liked WoW’s quest system, but in reality, it’s pretty much the same as EUO’s - just extremely polished, and maybe a fraction simpler. One thing I found shocking at first: I went to a lot of trouble in EUO to make ‘assassination’ quests appear believable, and WoW made no attempt at all. In EUO you start the quest, the target spawns, you kill the target, you return. In WoW, the target is always there, even before you have started the quest, and you can even kill him over and over again if you feel like it. This is very unrealistic and maybe even immersion breaking for some (me for example). Easy to implement however, and immune to the unreliabilities of the EUO method. I like my way better thanks.

Partying was often fun in WoW, but it’s fun in EUO too. In a group the pace was picked up, you could take on more than one mob, and it almost approached a Warcraft 3 kind of feel. Nothing compared to the furious keyboard mash of EUO though, but still a saving grace for a game that’s infuriatingly slow. Apparenlty Everquest 2 is even slower, but I don’t have any plans to trial that.

The classes in WoW are all pretty much the same, though I suppose if you took the two extremes they may seem a little different. This is where the player character becomes a totally cookie-cuttered product of the system. Apart from the pathetic talent tree (a thoroughly watered down cross between a set of perks and the skills tree from Diablo 2) and the vaguely random items you pick up along the way, every Druid of equal level is the same, every Mage of equal level is the same, every Priest of equal level is the same, etc etc. There’s no pre-planning, no strategy, no builds, just bump and grind. This is what killed it for me I think, though $15 a month worth of insult to injury didn’t help either.

If I could think of something to write, I’d be too scared to write it

Monday, September 19th, 2005

Maybe innocuously, I voted for the hippies in the Marrickville by-election last weekend, but now I fear that the combination of that, being a part time blogger, and being a foul-mouthed tryannical game maker will incite the new gestapo to kick down my door any minute now and cart me away for incarceration and interrogation. Perhaps it is only my terrible ego that leads me to believe that I could actually be a threat, but really … who knows?

Well the fear isn’t that bad, but you have to wonder about what the hell is going on in this country when seemingly harmless hippies are being deported for no apparent reason at all. It’s not so much the fact that Scott Parkin got cuffed’n’stuffed, packed up and shipped out, and not least of all billed for 11 grand, but the fact that nobody will tell us why. It is insulting at best; it is another step in the systematic dismemberment of our freedom of speech marking the nuclear dawn of a new age of despotism at worst. How can we be allowing this to happen, and why hasn’t the goddess Miranda said anything about it?

This neo-conservatism has got to go, but what real alternative is there? The aforementioned hippies that smell, spineless shadow of a dead trade union movement, and a bunch of clueless christian fundamentalists with their sordid and reverberating nationalism have absolutely no idea at all. The whole world is fucked and we are all going to hell.

It actually crossed my mind a couple of times this week to get myself into politics, but I don’t think my nerdy brand of gonzo-romanticism would wear with the voters. Besides, if EUO is anything to go by, there would be more incarcerations and deportations than ever before, if I took control of this shithole. Yeh, I’d be a regular Il Duce. But it couldn’t be much worse than what we have now. I mean, just look at the awful caliber of people running the country as we speak …

I’m eating a banana in the elevator

Monday, September 5th, 2005

How can I explain these strange bouts of euphoria and light headedness which for two days in a row last week struck me for no apparent reason at all?

Maybe it’s the rockmelon and yogurt fruit drinks I’ve been making, or because if you do a google image search for slut, comes up first with a picture of a very skanky Catherine Zeta Jones. Or maybe it’s due to the fact that EUO is nearly done, or even my talkative cat, or the fact that in WoW, by playing a Night Elf druid, you get to be a bear at level 10 - something that for me that will always remain somewhat elusive in “Real Life”.

Salad days indeed. Not even the user comments on slashdot or Liz Hurley’s weird upper lip appeared to be having a negative effect. But as I write this, a few days later by the gregorian calendear, things seem to be restored to normal. Bored at work, overworked at home. In my lunacy I concluded that the Night Elves probably listen to My Bloody Valentine too. The difference between them and me however is that they have a good excuse to own an iPod, with all the running around that they invariably have to do. I’m generally not running anywhere.

Post patch EUO requires serious vitamins, and only my secret (carrots, celery and rockmelon) and very special blend of exotic fruits, veg, and gluten-free “friendly bacteria”-infused dairy can get me through this shit. But I’m kicking myself: I forgot to buy a cheese and bacon roll from the IGA, so a non-redknobbed banana chaser will have to do. Even David Koresh had his moments of weakness.