Random thoughts blog incoming.
Played a little more Heroes 6 beta 2. Huge improvement from beta 1. All the little UI errors are gone, skills and spells make a lot more sense now, and the multiplayer is much better. I was a little worried Heroes 6 would ship like other Heroes games before it; a solid core that lacked polish, so hats off to the Heroes 6 devs for delaying the game, holding this extended beta testing, and really taking the time to get the game right. Very happy with Heroes 6 right now.
Actually, I see no reason at all not to have free QA work (beta testing) done for an upcoming game, MMO or otherwise. Why pay for something when you can ‘grant’ fans early access and have them do it for you? Only reason I can come up with is if your game sucks and you are worried about negative word of mouth, but that’s easily solved by not having your game suck.
Still playing Global Agenda, still having fun with it. Highly recommended to anyone looking for a quick pick-up-and-queue game with some FPS-flavor. The level 30+ ‘raid’ content (10 man PvE missions that take 15min or so) is a nice change of pace, and the once-every-hour timer on it makes it seem a little special when you catch it. GA might not be an MMO, but it is a solid game.
Also still playing Borderlands with three others (thanks Steam sale). Another solid game, very Diablo-ish in many ways; kill stuff, find chests, get loot, level up, repeat. What is nice here is that usually in a shooter the weapons are all pre-determined and balanced (boring). Borderlands says screw it and randomizes it all, leading to some very interesting combos. Bit different to have a shotgun that shoots acid or missiles, verses say a sword that happens to be on fire or frozen. You still swing the sword, and while the fire is nice, it’s not game-changing. Going from one shotgun to another is (nevermind different gun types).
Also playing the game with three others means the mob difficulty is jacked up, which makes things interesting and a little more memorable. In my solo game, while I’m more into the lore (inside joke that is quickly not becoming inside) I blaze through areas without trouble, and it just feels a little… cheap? Anyway just another example of challenge = good. When you work for something it leaves a more lasting image.
Oh and Final Fantasy Tactics is CRUSHING me. Reloading almost every battle at least once and loving it. Fun to play a game somewhat balanced around min/maxing without min/maxing.