Today is going to shape up to be a stressful one. My boss overdid it coming back from surgery, and will be out of the office today. As a result I will be acting as his proxy, attending whatever meetings he would have had to attend. The beginning of these is having to lead an 8:30 meeting… so I really have to watch the time this morning as I blog. Once again I am under an NDA as stated last night, so there is not much I can say about what happened last night, save for as to say that it was an awesome evening.
Over the years in EQ2 travel has gone from something that took large amounts of real time, to something that mostly involves knowing which travel networks connect in which zones. For example I tend to use Enchanted Lands as a switching station, since the Druid Ring, Wizard Spire and Travel bells are all very close to each other. I find traversing zones extremely quick, and so long as you have a base idea of what travel options are available in zones near where you are going you can get there in a matter of a few ports.
Apparently however this was not easy enough. Based on an article I read yesterday, it looks like they will be offering the ability to teleport to one of the travel network destinations from anywhere in the world for an outlay of station cash. This will likely replace the portable travel bells that already exist on the station cash store. The portable travel bells were nice for emergency situations, and this will likely fill the same bill.
I feel like however, this is a change mostly for players without a guild large enough to host the various travel network vendors. Between my port to home city and port to guild hall, it feels like I always have an option to get back to the travel network rapidly. What it also does is make it so that players no longer need to memorize the directory of “connecting flights” that get you from one travel network to another. There are times I cannot remember just which network goes to this expansion zone or that.
Ultimately it will be interesting to see just how much station cash it costs to port like this. I am completely fine with new conveniences, so long as they do not remove the existing networks. Travel after many years arrived at a point where it made quite a bit of sense and that you could pretty much avoid all the boats entirely. I don’t ever want to return to a time when intra-zone travel is a real-world time sink.
Exploration and Crafting
Yesterday Zenimax released a pretty cool video for the Elder Scrolls Online covering the gathering, crafting and exploration systems. The fact that you can loot the barrels on the docks for crafting materials seems cool, but the highlight of the video is that they get close to what looks like a Nirnroot… and it makes the Nirnroot sound. There were so many times I would be wandering across Skyrim, and I hear that sound. and immediately go into find the root mode. The fact that they have carried that sound effect over… gives me hope that all the other little nuanced things will be there as well.
I am happy to see a lockpicking system in the game as well. Even though it looks like the Oblivion system, which I was absolutely horrible at… it is awesome to see it. I am more aligned to the easy mode lock picking of Skyrim and the Fallout games. I love chests in games, and even more so I am excited that they may be difficult to find. I hated that in WoW chests were just thrown out in the middle of nowhere, in places that made no sense to have one. The chest showing up in the hollowed tree in the video seems about right. I am all about games rewarding exploration.
Spam Mail Personified
I saw this video and thought it was pretty amazing… especially when it gets to the point of the fake virus/speed software that takes over your machine. I have had to rebuild our neighbors laptop at least five times because they managed to get that stupid faux virus malware. I remember one time my mom called me, after being 3 screens deep into an obvious phishing site… because it finally sounded strange to her. I told her that if she had already clicked submit a few times, it was all over but the crying. Maybe this will go viral enough to reach our parents and neighbors… one can only hope.
I mentioned this the other day, but I am massively hooked on the game Guacamelee!, the exclamation point is part of the name… that is just how awesome it is. Essentially at its core is a Metroid/Castlevania game with Mexican Luchador flair. This is one of the newer cross buy titles, in that you get it both on PS3 and your Vita. Up until this point I really had zero interest in a Vita. Don’t get me wrong I like my PSP, but I rooted it and turned it into a portable emulation machine, since that was a far more compelling use than the games actually were.
Also of note… Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is my favorite game of all time. The fact that I could be playing Guacamelee! on a portable device has done more to make me lust after the Vita goodness than anything has to this point. Additionally my little inner circle of friends has been going on and on about Persona 4 Golden… I will admit I am also curious about that madness.
Now I will begin my search through craigslist for a used unit… because I just cannot ever bring myself to pay full price for a new console when there are so many used ones out there in need of good homes. They totally need to make gaming adoption commercials… with Sarah McLachlan shaming us for even existing and not giving all our money to all the consoles. I have 3 rescue cats and 3 rescue ferrets… and still I cannot bear to watch those commercials… just think what it will do for gaming consoles.
Responsible Adult Time
So I need to wrap up this madcap episode of “Bel finds shit to talk about that doesn’t break and NDA!!!”. Just think you are going to get several more of these since I am under NDA until at least Monday. I need to go finish getting ready, gather some breakfast, and arrive at the office with enough time to print all the things and mentally prepare myself for the super important meeting. There are days I hate being a responsible adult, but there comes a time when you are actually though of as a leader in your organization… which scares me. I hope you all have a great day… one that doesn’t involve you being responsible!!!