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Rift – Nightmare Tide

I’ve been playing nothing but Rift since the expansion came out.* If you even remotely like the game, you should definitely check out Nightmare Tide. I’m a little biased though, since I think Rift is the best themepark MMO out there, far surpassing WoW in every possible way. (Except in the amount of available content and player population.)

Just thought this was a nice vista in Goboro Reef.

A nice vista in Goboro Reef.

Good things about Nightmare Tide:

Ridiculously Plentiful Gathering Nodes. In Storm Legion, mining and foraging nodes are pretty few and far between. In Nightmare Tide, you trip over them every two steps. My mage started with Foraging at 375 but Mining at only around 50. (I had decided much earlier that I was going to add all of the gathering skills to my main, but hadn’t gotten around to leveling them.) So I went back and leveled up Mining before I spent too much time in the Plane of Water. It only took a couple of hours to get from 50 to 300 in the “old” zones. But then I hit the Storm Legion zones and progress ground to halt. It took most of the day wandering around to get from 300 to 350, because suddenly you couldn’t find any mining nodes, and on those occasions when you did, you only got like 1/3 of a point! Once I got to 350 it was easy to get to 375 by grinding on some mobs up in Dendrome. I also leveled up Butchering and ran into the same problem. Huge dead zone between 300 and 350. Then you go into Nightmare Tide and you can’t move an inch without hitting a plant or a mining node or something to butcher. This is what I call a good adjustment by Trion. (It would be nice if they could go back to Storm Legion and double or triple the number of nodes.)

Carnage Quests A-OK Now. In Storm Legion, I became pretty irritated by all the Carnage quests. It got so that I actively tried to avoid killing things so another stupid quest wouldn’t attach itself to my already-huge list. I guess it’s not that I didn’t like the quest objectives, it’s that you could never finish one before two new ones popped up. In Nightmare Tide, I’m not seeing that anymore. The Carnage quests seem to be just right. (Or maybe I’ve just gotten used to them.)

Zones Appropriately Sized. In Storm Legion, the zones are enormous and they seem mostly empty. Except for the accursed Carnage Quests. In Nightmare Tide, the zones seem to be just the right size. Or rather, they are still enormous, but there is stuff in them all over the place.

Gyel Fortress, the location of a new dungeon in Nightmare Tide.

Gyel Fortress, the location of a new dungeon in Nightmare Tide.

Leveling Pace Exactly Right. Unlike Storm Legion, where leveling from 50 to 60 was a rather daunting grind-fest, leveling through these three new zones seems just right. I have not yet gotten Patron status, and I don’t feel any need to do so. Without any bonuses (other than the 25% bonus they gave because of the outage) I’m still plugging along at a decent clip, even out-pacing the zone quests a little bit. So if you end up using a lot of bonuses, you’ll probably zoom to 65 in no time. So 5 levels in 3 zones seems like the right call. Good expansion size. Now if we could get one of these every six months instead of every year, it would be even more awesome.

Minions. At first I was befuddled by the minion system. I didn’t really know what it was good for. But then a weird thing happened. I kept sending out minions on adventures even though I didn’t fully understand the appeal, and then I still kept doing it, and then later, I still kept going back and sending out more minions on adventures. I don’t exactly love it, but there is something really compelling and interesting about it that keeps me coming back. I even bought two more slots. It seems to be the only way to get Artifacts in Nightmare Tide zones, because I haven’t run across a single Artifact out in the wild yet. Also you get just crap tons of Dimension Items, if you’re into that. I’m not particularly into that, so I just keep dumping them into my trash heap of a dimension to get them out of my inventory.

76 stages in a Silverwood Nightmare Rift is the best I've done so far.

76 stages in a Silverwood Nightmare Rift is the best I’ve seen so far.

Nightmare Rifts. These things are awesome. The only problem is that some jerk wad will inevitably try to sabotage the group’s progress by pulling mobs away from the center. (Public Service Announcment: Make sure everyone is on board with pulling the mobs to the center so everyone can AoE them down faster. If you’re a DPS and you get aggro, run to the center and stand there, don’t run away like a dufus.) If you’re in a big guild or whatever, I think you can open private Nightmare Rifts so you can avoid that.

By the way, if you’re afraid that the expansion is all about swimming, don’t worry. You only have to swim for about the first 15 minutes. Then it’s mostly land again. (Which also means you mostly wasted your money if you bought that shark mount.) There was much, much more swimming in the Song of Dreams mini-expansion last year. (Last year?!? Good lord I didn’t realize it was that long ago.)

* I almost killed off my geese in ArcheAge.. I logged in to find them starving and half of my fruit trees had already died off. By the way, I have heard people say they think ArcheAge is somehow similar to the look and feel of Rift. I just can’t see it. They are totally different to me.

Rift – Nightmare Tide is a post from: Endgame Viable

 
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Heal to Full podcast: Parsing offers healers useful info

I got asked a few months back a question about what hea […]

 
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#Slowvember

I am not burnt out. I am not out of things to say. I am not tired of writing. However, in November, things are going to slow to a crawl here. Partially, because I hope to have a new, full-time job soon along with a girlfriend back from a ten day vacation. Those two alone […]

 
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[Landmark] The Endless Beta

Two nights ago I logged back into Landmark for the first time in months, after what seemed to be the world’s slowest patch. I left Landmark towards the end of the closed beta, for lack of things to do and being fed up with the claim upkeep system and continuously losing my Inn of the [...]

 
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Happy Halloween from Beyond the Veil

Last night, the BtV crew celebrated the advent of the Halloween events in The Secret World. Focused around Solomon Island—which, as I mentioned yesterday, is locked in a perennial October—Halloween has special significance in this Lovecraftian wonderland.

Funcom has these awesome party packs in the store. Much like mystery boxes, they contain all sorts of random goodies. But the party boxes drop goodies in the bags of up to twenty people standing nearby, as well as the purchaser. We shot off several during the show, and I got almost a complete Baroness Samedi outfit in Lumie blue, some bloody vivisectionist clothing, and access to a bunch of new make-up options (to be used at Occam’s Razor, the in-game barbershop). We also had a bunch of minor contests and giveaways. I think pretty much everyone that was standing around watching the show got an in-game T-shirt or title.

TSW has such a great community. I am more deeply involved in it than I have been in any other MMO, and I actually consider myself a bit on the fringe. We had a great time last night joking and laughing, and dancing. And giving stuff away, which I think we don’t do often enough. I hope everyone who attended the party/show enjoyed themselves. We didn’t talk a whole lot of what’s going on in the game, since few of us had had an opportunity to run the fresh Halloween missions, or the classics they’ve trotted out from years past. So the remastered show may not make much sense, but there were plenty of moments when high-larity ensued. Because we’re all 12 years old, apparently.

Keep your eye out for the remastered episode and all the rest on Holosuite Media’s RSS feed, through iTunes (with older episodes here), and through Stitcher. You can catch the live Beyond the Veil webcast every Thursday at about 7p.m. EST (midnight UTC) on Twitch. Beyond the Veil is produced by “Xander Hayes” and Holosuite Media.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. If you are reading this post through RSS or Atom feed—especially more than a couple hours after publication—I encourage you to visit the actual page, as I often make refinements after the fact. The mobile version also loses some of the original character of the piece due to simplified formatting.
 
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October in Review

The Site Not much to complain about this month.  I changed the site theme a few times one weekend, but still cannot find one that is better than the current theme on all fronts. I converted a couple of much-used tags into categories on the blog, so if you want to pull up, as an […]

 
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A Glance at The Walking Dead: The Game Season 1

Happy Halloween Everyone! I thought it quite fitting and ironic that these last few weeks of gaming have been intense, suspenseful, questionable, and even down right horrifying.  It’s Halloween and nothing else would even be right…right?  Well anyways….Zombies have completely overtaken my gaming experiences of late and it’s all due to the amazing work that […]

 
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My History with Kickstarter

Some great games have been funded though Kickstarter – Dragonfall Returns, Wasteland 2, FTL. However, many games that get funded don’t actually get released, draw out the delivery timelines significantly, or under-deliver. I’ve seen a number of people on Twitter who seem … Continue reading

 
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Will I roll a new Beorning for LOTRO?

Lord of the Rings Online’s Update 15 is scheduled for next Wednesday, and while it’ll have plenty of stuff for my Captain to do at the level cap, there’s also the siren’s song of the first new class for the … Continue reading

 
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“World of Darkness”, back from the grave!

Fans of the beloved tabletop roleplaying game “Vampire: The Masquerade” were crushed earlier this year to learn that CCP had cancelled plans to release their “World of Darkness” MMORPG, which is based upon V:tM and had been in development for six years. The fans begged for CCP to reconsider, or at the very least to […]

 
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Halloween 2014: The Secret World Brings Awesome Back

I visit Kingsmouth for the awesome Halloween event in #TSW(Read more…)

 
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LOTRO: Demon Bear!

Based on one of my favourite Comic artists: Bill Sienkiewicz’s ‘Demon Beorning‘…just how did he know… More of his Beorning pics: For further reading I recommend: When Comic Books Ruled The Earth “Why a bear?  What am I, a cultural anthropologist?”

 
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Winter is coming

Published on October 31, 2014 by in General

A lot of people express (loudly) their love for the fall season, and while I used to be a huge “spring” guy, in recent years I’ve come around to join the autumnal camp.  I feel very alive and full of … Continue reading

 
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Predictability of games

Published on October 31, 2014 by in Uncategorized
Azuriel is talking about Civilization: Beyond Earth and complains that after an interesting start the end game becomes a formality, where you already know you won, but still need to play for hours to actually win. Meanwhile Zubon talks about a board game where the better player always wins. And Stubborn mentions: “Okay, most recently I’ve been playing X-Com (I haven’t fully rage-quit just yet, though I was close the other night when two 90% to hit rocket attacks missed their mark followed by an 88% sniper shot missing, causing one of my people to be killed the following round, but I held it together and played on).”.

What do these posts have in common? They are all about predictability of games. Games tend to start out in a state of maximum unpredictability: You usually don’t know who is winning before the game has developed a bit further. At some point it becomes very clear who is winning, but unless a player concedes (and an AI player frequently isn’t programmed to do so), the game goes on in a very predictable manner. And then it comes down to the amount of randomness in the game whether the game becomes totally boring, or there is still a chance for a reversal of fortunes.

Having said that, a lot of people like knowing early that they are going to win. Not everybody is playing games in a competitive manner. Most people are quite happy for example doing quests in MMORPGs for hundreds of hours, where they always “win”, and only rarely encounter minor setbacks. Other players manipulate, cheat, or pay money in order to make a game more predictably a win. Even mild-mannered Stubborn can get close to rage-quitting if his 90% win chance turns into a loss.

That poses a challenge to game design. Do we really want a “No Longer Delay the Inevitable button” as suggested by Azuriel? Or do we want games where up to the very end it isn’t predictable who is winning? (There are actually a number of board games with hidden scoring systems that work like that). Do we want more randomness in games, so they become less predictable, or do we prefer less randomness and more predictability?

 
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Lalafell Rescue Squad

Rubber Snake Attack Instead of coming home and gaming like normal last night, I actually went out and did something sociable with actual living and breathing people!  I know it is a shock to the system to fathom the ramifications of that statement.  Several months ago a group from work attended the live RiffTrax showing […]

 
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Bragtoberfest, I am Proud of You!

Thank you to Izlain at Me vs. Myself and I for putting together a great month of gaming for bloggers. I told him before that I thought Bragotoberfest is an amazing idea and he was right as well when he told me that gamers need some event like this RIGHT NOW. Gamergate has made it […]

The post Bragtoberfest, I am Proud of You! appeared first on XP Chronicles.

 
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When my hobby becomes your job

Published on October 31, 2014 by in Uncategorized

I am sure some may have seen the guild Method is looking to branch out and become more of a professional E-sports team.  If you are unaware of what I am talking about, link to the fundraiser. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/method-a-gaming-team-and-community Not looking at the lower level funding, selling shirts, coaching sessions, etc, they are trying to raise […]

 
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Are You Ready For This?

One Zul’Gurub Run.It’s just about twelve days before Warlords launches, and when even Mr Alt starts farming for gold, you KNOW things just got real. We’re at the stage now where being big and clever’s pretty much out of the window: there’s one last wee…

 
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Steam key resellers

Published on October 31, 2014 by in Uncategorized

If somebody offers you a designer watch or handbag for a very low price, sold out of the boot of his car, you would be suspicious. Either the item is fake, or it is stolen. So obviously I was wondering the same when I bought the Civilization 5 complete…

 
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Growth Mindset

Yesterday I tossed something important in as a one-liner. Let’s unpack the concept a bit and apply it to gaming. “Growth mindset” is the idea that your abilities are not fixed. Failure is not final, just an early step in learning. It is the difference between “I can’t do that” and “I can’t do that […]

Growth Mindset is a post from: Kill Ten Rats

 
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