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WoW: maybe not

While I haven’t been playing LoTRO so much, I’ve been having a go at WoW. And it hasn’t grabbed me. I know when a game has. I devour as much information as I can about it; on forums, websites, in magazines. But with WoW, nothing. No intense reading round class build, skills, background.

I’ve tried to work out why. At first I though it could simply be that WoW was not LoTRO. But I’m enjoying Rift and have exhibited many of the ‘Berath grabbed by game’ signs. So it’s got to be WoW itself.

Well to start with, I don’t like the Art style. This is probably a major factor. I always thought gameplay trumped appearance for me, but in the case of WoW it has proved an irritant; the mix of archetypical fantasy and cartoon. Not my taste.

I find it difficult to navigate. I have been questing, mainly to level so that I can keep up with my instance group (the reason why I’m continuing to play is my little group). I have found mayself completing the quests in one hub and then being directed to another quest hub. However, on arriving, I’ve found all the available quests to be lower level and instead of getting 1900+ per quest I’m getting around 600. When my main goal is to level, this is frustrating.

Then there are the hills. Why does WoW put things on the top of hils and then make it so difficult to find the way up? Do they think we enjoy the challenge of finding a path amongst a wealth of dead ends and slopes that look as if they can be climbed but can’t be? A couple of times I’ve just given up.

And finally the ‘witty’ modern references and wacky humour. From time to time it does amuse, but generally I am a grim and humourless person, not a Terry Pratchett fan here, it wears thin.

So, not grabbed.

I’ll continue playing because of my Group which I really enjoy and, a positive here, it seems it’s possible to level mainly through the instances/dungeons; there are many of them. They are well designed and I can see the designers trying to be creative; in general I do appreciate and understand the vastness and detail of the World.

But apart from that I will be playing my other games. Probably not too bad a thing in my time-limited life; I have a feeling that WoW will survive.

LoTRO and odds and bobs

Life in LoTRO is still a little slow. We managed to get a Raid group together (23 of us) and killed Thorog. We did it on the second run through and it was pretty straightforward, but most of us really just wanted the title and the chance for a lot of the kin to raid together. We also returned to Barad Guldur for the first time since before Christmas. Numbers have been an issue with this Raid recently, both due to the nature of the Raid and a bit of kin/raid politics unfortunately.

We have had a lot of that recently which has included some lengthy and sometimes heated forum discussions. But hopefully people have now reminded themselves that, whatever their individual preferences, helping fellow kinmates is good. And it’s not to say that these sorts of intra-kin debates are bad. I think it is always good to challenge and review whether it is about the election of officers, a new kinleader; much of the discussion was relating to how the election, nor non-election of kin officials, or just about general transparency and involvement of the membership.

Anyhow, it was Barad Guldur on Friday and we managed to get our rusty and creaking selves through the first two bosses so it is back to the LT on Sunday.  It was nice to be raiding again.

Apart from that, a fair few of the kin have been entertaining themselves outside of LoTRO. As I said, life in LoTRO is pretty slow. We need our next injection of new content. There has been a slight fear that we might find ourselves splintering off into other games. We have an Away team in WoW at the moment and many people have been exploring Rift (the new mmo still in Beta but due out in March). However, in these games, people are sticking together and there is a desire to explore these games with other kinmates so I think we are holding together. And there is the advantage that most of us are lifetime members of LoTRO, so whatever happens, at some point or other, people will return.

And what have I been doing, well the bits of Raiding that we’ve managed and WoW. WoW is impressive in it’s scale, the quests are amusing and manage to be different and the instances plentiful but somehow I haven’t fallen for it. I play weekly, a group of us are levelling up through the instances and that’s really enough for me though I will try PvP. I’m not quite sure what hasn’t grabbed me, I’m not big on the cartoon graphics, I don’t need the humour (I hate comedy and laughing), I find the user interface a bit clumsy; is it just that it is not LOTRO? One of the reasons perhaps why I want to try Rift.

And still Team Fortress 2 which I love. At the moment:

Day no play Team Fortress = Bad day

Day play Team Fortress = Good Day

Life is really as simple as that.