Some Friday randomness to finish off the week.
First up, I installed the new 2.3 version of the Floris mod pack, and so far it’s working perfectly. I did a full reinstall of both M&B:W and the full 2.3 download though, which likely helped keep things clean. It’s absolutely crazy how different yet similar the game feels with this mod pack. Aside from the graphic overhauls, there are just tons of little and not-so-little tweaks that really improve the game overall. So far I highly recommend it, though I am still planning a more in-depth post about the pack once I’ve had more time with it.
Kotaku has a preview of Riot Games new League of Legends community moderation system. It sounds interesting, and hopefully it helps clean up the cesspool that has developed. It very much sounds like something players will be able to contribute to and review while waiting for a game, or while waiting for friends to finish theirs.
Speaking of League of Legends, Aria recently hit level 30, and we have been playing some duo-queue ranked games. Aside from the above-mentioned community aspect, so far things have been very up/down. We will win two decisively, then lose two in horrible fashion. I think the primary reason is that we are still around the 1200 ELO range, which is the starter ELO for fresh 30s, and so it’s before the ranking system has ‘sunk in’ and placed people accordingly. Hopefully we hit 1300+ soon, as at that level you don’t get the newer players and games are a bit more stable and evenly matched. That or we drop into sub-1200 ELO hell…
Finally, Tipa over at West Karana is at it again with her MMO challenge, something I fully support. I think there is a rather sizable population of MMO players who have never really gone ‘all in’ on a game, and hence have never experienced what it’s like to be a full-time player of just one game. It’s a very different experience, and a very rewarding one at that.
Her challenge also makes me consider the current state of the whole genre, as today players can have multiple game icons on their desktop, and can easily bounce around between games thanks to things like the F2P model. Toss in that Steam or other sites frequently discount games to silly levels, and that’s just another source of ‘distractions’.
I remember WAY BACK when I was young and gaming on a Commodore 64 or the Sega Genesis, I would only get games for holidays or my birthday, and that meant playing the games I had until I got something new. Because of this, I played the hell out of games like Shining Force or Ultima, beating them multiple times and playing them until I’ve seen every last bit of dialog and every last animation (and this was pre-internet, so I could not just access something like GameFAQs and get a step-by-step guide. You had to buy a real book to get that!).
When you spend that kind of time with a game, you really get a feel for what the devs were trying to do, rather than just quickly checking in to see the big flashing lights and moving on. Now if a game was poor (curse you Kid Chameleon, Sword of Vermilion, etc) you got screwed, but if it was good, you really got to full experience a classic.
Today I think a lot of people, even when playing something great, get pulled in too many directions, and never get the full experience out of anything. This is especially true and important for a good MMO, because they not only require more time/focus, but also reward it. Being part of a great clan only happens when you put in the time to meet people and get to know them. It’s only really rewarding when you are active enough to be consistently part of something, and a well-built MMO will reward time invested with better and more engaging experiences.
So again, I fully recommend people take Tipa up on her challenge, be it with one of the new MMOs coming in 2011, or with one that is already out. If you have never really done so, you are in for a treat.