A Better Night


image Roughly a month ago I wrote a piece about the WoW Token, when it was officially announced and seemed to be something coming into the game “Soon ™”.  There are a number of websites that index the price of wow gold, but I don’t plan on linking to any of those for reasons.  At the time of writing those sites seemed to indicate the going rate for gold was something along the lines of $15 for 30,000g.  Now the strange thing was that there were some absolutely insane outliers, like sites offering nearly 100,000g for $20.  Now this week the WoW Token has launched, and I have been watching it thanks to an extremely excellent market website showing the current token price.  Firstly I expected the token currency to drop in gold value, but not this fast and not for this long.  I expected there to be a significant rebound once players started snapping them up in lieu of making subscription payments… and we may still see that towards the end of the month.  The token started at 30,000g, raising to 35,000g and then tanking quickly down to as low at one point as 18,000g before coming back up and hovering around 25,000g.

All of this while more volatile than I had expected, doesn’t really shock me.  What does shock me is the reaction from the third party gold sellers.  Those same gold index sites seem to be painting a bizarre story.  Gone completely are those 100,000g outliers, and they have been replaced by values that are almost lock step in line with the legitimate wow token pricing.  I expected that as the wow token gained traction that the third party sellers would start offering more outrageous deals trying to tempt players into taking that risk.  Instead if anything it seems like the WoW Token is now setting the standard operating price for gold regardless of how you obtain it.  This is just puzzling to me, and I cannot fathom why this would be the result.  Now as far as the WoW Token goes, I still think we will see a significant climb in price as folks subscriptions start coming due.  For me personally the WoW Token still is not “worth” the price.  Now if I could buy one or two of them and immediately purchase some big ticket items… I might be enthralled.  For the time I already have access to the sorts of gold that it is currently worth so it is not a huge draw.

A Better Night

Wow-64 2015-04-10 06-18-41-75 Tuesday night was unequivocally horrible.  I am still not sure what was wrong, but for whatever reason we were completely off our game.  We started as we often do with Heroic Blackrock Foundry, and downed Hans and Franz without much issue.  Then we moved on to Gruul and wiped until we had lost our will to live.  Finally towards the end of the night we moved on to Darmac… and squeaked by with a victory by the slimmest of margins.  Last night once again we started with some attempts on Heroic Gruul, only to end up wiping over and over once again.  I am not sure what has happened to us, or happened to the encounter… but it went from something we can do fairly easy to being damned near impossible for us.  Thankfully we chose to shift gears and take on Normal instead after a handful of wipes last night, and in a large part that made for a more enjoyable evening.  We went on to clear all of the content we have cleared before in the past, and since we were used to bashing our skulls against heroic… it seemed pretty simple.

The problem is we still have yet to touch the Iron Maidens fight, make any real progress on the Heart of the Mountain encounter…  and then there is still Blackrock.  I really want to make some traction on those fights and get to a point where we can at least say we are clearing normal.  This piecemeal heroic work is nice, but it feels like right now we are doing it in lieu of forward momentum on actually beating the instance.  This is one of those places where I am torn, because by god I really really want my heroic sword from Gruul.  Once again I am pantsless, and I am trying to keep from going through the bullshit required to craft a comparable pair.  I know the second I do… I will get a heroic drop, or mythic pair from my bi-weekly garrison crate.  I simply don’t want to deplete all the money I have to make it work.  Maybe the effect of the WoW Token will drive the price of Savage Blood down…  with people trying to sell them in order to make the gold to “make rent”.

Elder Scrolls Online Console Pre-order


One of the cool emails that I received yesterday was to notify me that for the next thirty days I had the option of purchasing a digital copy of Elder Scrolls Online for my console of choice for only $20.  This was one of the big selling points that they made several months back when they announced the official launch date of the console version.  If you purchased the game prior to April 9th 2015 on the PC you could then get a cheap copy on the console, as well as the ability to transfer your PC characters to the console version as well.  Since I was a long time alpha player, and ultimately a launch day player this was no major incentive but I am absolutely taking advantage of it.  I honestly wish more games would give you a significant discount on other platforms when they re-release the game.  For example I have purchased State of Decay on Xbox Live, Steam, and will more than likely purchase another copy when the Year One Survivor Edition comes out.  It just feels nice to have at least some sort of a break here.  As such I have already pre-purchased and am hoping that it offers a preload of the game as well.

From the day the game came out it always felt like it would potentially work better with a controller.  I will tell you the real reason why I am picking it up with the ps4 is that I hope to play it through my vita.  I spent a fairly significant amount of time faffing about in Destiny while playing on my Vita, and I cannot imagine a better experience than hanging out in bed and playing some Elder Scrolls Online.  Similarly it gives me something to do while waiting on other things to happen in other games.  Upstairs I have my ps4 set up beside my computer, and in the living room I have a PSTV so I have four places I can comfortably play some Elder Scrolls Online.  I am amped for this release and I am hoping  the game finds its true potential with the console audience.  Right now the console players really do not have that many “meaty” mmorpg options, with Final Fantasy XIV pretty much being the absolute best choice.  Elder Scrolls Online should cover a very different niche of players, and I think it will ultimately be extremely successful.

Race to the Bottom

Bel Folks Stuff #6 – A Good Friday with Liore

Listen to the Episode Here

I had these grand ideas about having two episodes during the month of March to make up for the fact that I missed a February episode.  That never quite worked out.  I had a handful of people that I had talked to but scheduling never quite worked out since I try really hard to squeeze these episodes in whenever my wife is otherwise busy.  With the weekly schedule of AggroChat and the various guest spots I end up getting called on to do, it means she is having to bend her time around me quite often, that I try my best not to make this podcast also do that.  As such I tend to schedule people on a whim, and I am super thankful that the amazing Liore was amicable about that sort of timing.  I literally talked to her Thursday to see if she was available, and we recorded on the afternoon of Good Friday since we were both off work.

Liore and I have known each other for what feels like forever.  She’s been in my guilds, I’ve been in her guilds… and for a period of time in Rift we raided together multiple times a week.  During all of this time we have forged an unconventional friendship.  It feels like we end up on opposite ends of so many discussions, but at the end of the day we do so with the greatest of respect for the other.  During this podcast we talk about all sorts of things, but one thing in particular we highlight because we found it extremely humorous.  Both of us have been getting commentary from the community about a supposedly rivalry between the two of us since we do similar columns now for gaming websites that are technically in competition with each other.  I had a blast spending the afternoon talking with Liore, and had I allowed myself to do so I could have easily spent another full hour chatting away.  I always love it when the conversation flows naturally.

Race to the Bottom

wowtokenresults Yesterday we saw the release of the WoW Token out into the wild, and the demand for gold greatly outstripped the availability of people snatching up subscription time.  At the beginning however it was skewing the other direction.  The token started at a prematurely low 30,000g and I watched it yesterday raise up to 35,000g before taking a big dive into the territory that it is currently sitting.  Someone thought ahead and created an excellent stock market like tracking system on https://wowtoken.info/ and you can see the bottom starting to drop out.  Thing is…  most players already have an active subscription for the moment.  It was not until the end of the month when in other games with similar systems we started to see the demand finally climb again.  My advice, just like Wildstar is to snatch up these cheap tokens now because once the system matures a bit you will be paying significantly more per month of subscription.

The reason why I feel like this is the largest benefit of a system like this is it removes the temptation of players to turn to less than legitimate sources of currency.  When I wrote about this a month ago, my research at the time indicated that in the aftermarket this same $20 was buying players around 100,000 gold.  This means the legitimate route now costs you roughly five times as much as the illegal market, which is still going to be a huge draw for some players.  The WoW Token is a failure for Blizzard unless they can squash the third party gold sellers by starving them of their market.  Right now the token is new… and a lot of people are trying it out.  Given a month or two of sanity they will realize that it is greatly overpriced.  I guess for me, I won’t be doing this token unless I can buy a couple and get a big ticket item like an expedition yak, one of those things I have always wanted but was much too far out of my price range.  I have a feeling that this is going to be the case for your average customer.   If by the end of the month we do not see a massive spike in the price of a single token… then I will be extremely surprised.

End of an Expansion

ffxiv 2015-04-07 17-25-22-55 Now for the hardest part of my morning… how exactly do I talk about the wrapping up of the storyline in Final Fantasy XIV 2.55 without giving any spoilers.  I chose a very careful screenshot out of the stack of them that I took because this one really doesn’t say much about what is going on.  In the most spoiler free fashion I can, I am going to talk about my impressions of the events.  I have to say Final Fantasy XIV knows how to end an expansion.  This is hands down the most satisfying and at the same time most anxious ending to an expansion I have ever experienced.  In games like World of Warcraft everything is generally resolved at the end, and all the loose bits tied up… because the intent is for that expansion to live on its own forever without actually continuing the storyline in the next expansion.  In Final Fantasy XIV…  every aspect of this closing means massive ramifications that will hopefully be resolved as we travel into Ishgard.  Instead of wrapping up the lose ends neatly… for each one that is concluded two more ends stand open waiting to be explored.

The awesome thing is… this game has proven that it WILL actually explore them.  How frustrating has it been in the past as games have hinted at things, that never saw fruition.  After all there are still I believe three portals under Wyrmrest temple that go nowhere, that will likely NEVER go anywhere because the narrative has moved on past the original plans.  I expect that each event that happens during the closing of “A Realm Reborn” is going to factor heavily into a future storyline chain.  It was a pretty shocking and brutal conclusion, but it makes me damned happy that I am playing this game.  I quite literally did not see this one coming, and I highly suggest you push hard so that you can see this content before the expansion.  I pushed through in part because my friend Ashgar said that the trailer that was releasing this Friday supposedly spoils some parts of this impact.  As the credits rolled they showed a number of scenes from the past block of content… and I have to say sometimes you lose sight on just how much we accomplished during “A Realm Reborn”.  I am extremely excited to see what happens as we turn our eyes “Heavensward”.