Archive for May, 2012


Oh happy day!

Very short one today, mostly just so I can squee over how amazing Planetside 2 is shaping up to be. How amazing, you might ask? Well, besides looking at Totalbiscuit’s videos, we finally got to see something I’ve been very interested in. Care to guess what it is? I’ll give you a hint.

For those of you who don’t feel like clicking a link, let me just show you why today is one of those rare days where I get to be in a good mood:

NC Female

Looks good, right? It gets better.

TR Female

Really? Really? She looks like shes outfitted in military gear! You know, what the TR are famous for. Oh man, I’m so excited for this… wait, what about the Vanu?

VS Female

Nope, nope. I can’t stand it anymore. I have to have this game. Keep in mind this is only the Light Assault armor. There are more armor models for Infiltrators, Heavy Assault, etc. But with everything looking this good already? SOE, you stole my heart. I can’t stand not playing this game now! Very eagerly awaiting beta.

Oh boy. Oooh boy. I’ve been  waiting on this. The newest addition to League of Legends, provided by the one and only Meddler of Riot Games. I was eagerly awaiting this champion, because Meddler also made Ziggs. Dying to know if that was a one-off or if he’d keep up the same quality of work. And did he ever nail. Meddler’s now sitting with Xypherous a favorite designer, and that’s about the biggest compliment I can give. Now, with that out-of-the-way, let’s take a look at how Varus actually functions, and break down his playstyle.

Varus, The Arrow of Retribution:

(Passive) Living Vengeance: Varus gains attack speed for a short time after killing a target. Minion kills grant Varus 20% attack speed for 3 seconds. Champion kills or assists double this, giving Varus 40% attack speed for 6 seconds.

Piercing Arrow:  (first cast) Varus draws his bow back, charging up a powerful shot. Range and damage are increased as you charge, up to a cap. If the spell is held for too long, Piercing Arrow is cancelled and refunds half its mana cost. (second cast) After charging, Varus fires a long-range attack, dealing damage based on how long the skill was charging, up to a cap. This ability does diminishing damage the more targets it passes through.

Blighted Quiver (Passive ability): Varus’ arrows apply blight to any target hit, along with a small amount of bonus magic damage. Blight stacks up to three times, and can be proc’d by any of Varus’ other abilities, dealing a percentage of the target’s maximum health as magic damage for each stack of blight.

Hail of Arrows: Varus fires a hail of arrows at target location, desecrating the ground under it. Enemies on desecrated ground suffer a move speed penalty and receive 50% less healing.

(Ultimate) Chain of Corruption: Varus fires off a tendril of corruption, binding the first champion hit. This corruption will spread to any nearby enemy champions, rooting them in place if the tendril makes it to them. This effect can continue to spread until all no targets are available, but can not spread to the same champion more than once.

Varus excels at poking and long-range harassment, even more than most other carries. His Piercing Arrow ability has the single largest range of any non-ultimate skill shot when fully charged, and hits like an absolute truck at full charge. Varus has an insane amount of tricks up his sleeve, allowing for truly impressive play. With proper vision, Varus can easily snipe red or blue buff, dragon, or even Baron Nashor with a well placed Q, easily granting himself and his team a large advantage. Hail of Arrows applies a decently sized area that slows enemies and reduces healing, making it an essential skill against enemies with sustain, such as Soraka or Dr. Mundo. His ultimate can easily change a team fight, spreading out and binding an entire team if they clump together.
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Tera: The good!

Whoops. Seem to have forgotten to actually get this out last week. Let’s just blame Varus and call it a day. I’m seriously putting Meddler up with Xypherous as my two favorite designers. But that’s enough about angry-bow-man for a while, he has his own post coming up. Now it’s time for TERA! All the good things I’ve been waiting to say, it’s time to put to light.

First, and most obvious, is the combat. I know, I know, I harp on this all the time, but trust me, it truly is worth it. There is no such thing as tab-targetting or “spell-hit/accuracy” or whatever. If you want to hit it, you have to aim at it. There are a few auto-lock skills, but these are mostly in the realm of healing or AoE skills, like archer’s volley, oddly enough. Monsters actually take direct location into account, it’s very easy to dodge some attacks simply by moving away. This is easy to practice in the start zone, watch for the telegraphed attack and then walk back a few feet.  Unlike all it’ contemporaries, monsters in TERA will miss if they do not physically connect with you.

Aggression from players also carries positional based rewards. A lancer has the largest melee-attack range in the game, but at its longest you’ll only tap an opponent once. Attack when they’re in your face? The lance will proc up to three hits on that target. And any other target you hit, there is no “damage  cap” that reduces outgoing damage. If you can line up one-hundred minions (and not die), you’ll nail all of them for the same damage as any other, with any melee weapon. Caster’s have their attacks stop at one target, but gain powerful long-range abilities to compensate. There are literally endless combinations of play-styles, classes, and monsters to interact with in the game. No two players will ever approach a problem the same way, even if they are the same class! I’ve seen tank and damage lancers who are soloing, and those that augment different skills when dungeon running. The possibilities are endless.
Seriously, I can’t tell you how much I utterly adore the combat. What other game would I go out of my way to kill something just because I want to? Well, besides Monster Hunter, smart alec. Really, I would never do something like… this:


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TERA (belated) Tuesday: Archer Class

So this was delayed because of my little whinge on Tuesday, because that’s kind of my thing. I like picking apart games, especially ones that annoy me to figure out why. But now that I’ve got all that ou of my system, I can move back to enjoying the game. Seriously, despite all that I’m still playing the game happily. So next time will (finally) be all the things I enjoy about the game. But for now… the Archer!

Archer:
Role: Damage
Difficulty: [***]

The Archer is TERA’s answer to a long-range sniper class, although it’s a bit wonky. It does feel like you get to play a long-range sniper if you would so desire, but they still have the same basic attack range of the other classes. However, this is toyed with in an interesting way; quite a few of the Archer’s skills do increased damage the closer you are to the target. Which would make sense, being that you’re shooting straight ahead, so that arrow is as strong as it’ll ever be right as it leaves the bow. Alternatively, magic. Magic did it. For a good comparison, consider this: The Archer is the physical version of the Sorcerer, only where the Sorcerer has insane burst and crits, the Archer deals steady ad consistent damage.

Skill wise, Archers get a few fun things to play with. The classic “hail of arrows” and “piercing shot” are all here, and you get those pretty early on. But, do remember what I said before, most of your ranged skills do more damage the closer you are, so knowing how close to be to something is the key to perfect use of your skills. The targeting on Arrow Volley can be a little weird at times, but the skill is still alright for aoe-clearing. Like a certain other game I could name (or twelve), Archers in TERA also gain access to several traps to help out. These come in various flavors, ice-burst slow, big area fire, and so on, and can be fun to use and set up in a chain. Thankfully they also have a close-range smack with a chance to stun, giving you all the time you’ll need to hop away from the fight, rounding out their already fun skill kit.
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TERA: The Garbage

So, today is the day that TERA goes live, hooray! Or I would be saying that, if I wasn’t so infuriated with the game. So, instead of doing the Good bits today, we’re putting it off while I vent all the other things that infuriate me. So here we go, another full article on things TERA does poorly. Once again, keep in mind I am (for now) still playing the game, even if one of these pushed me closer to quitting than any other one. In no particular order…

Loot:
Why is it the default loot settings are absolutely retarded for loot? By default it sets to superior gear only as the minimum. If you don’t know about how loot works, the first piece of good loot is usually Rare, which is blue. Because of this single stupid setting, you will have to spend the first five minutes of every single instance trying to get whoever randomed to party leader to change the loot settings for you. What happens if you don’t? The odds of you getting the loot you want are minimum at best. The first run I lost the best lance I could possibly get to a Berserker, who got nothing else. The Priest got plate armor and I got a bow. Keep in mind you can’t trade if you aren’t from the same server, so if that loot randoms to someone from over-yonder, it’s gone forever.

Prologue:
Please believe me when I say the actual game is not as bad as the prologue. You can’t rebind skills, the quest texts is unclear, and the ending is a literal ass-pull. To expand on the last two, several times I had to run around like a headless chicken just trying to get the next phase of the quest to trigger. After that, I got a quest saying “fight your way to the top of the cliff.” Which I did. With no problems. Only the next phase again didn’t start. See, what it should have said is “kill every living thing between you and the back wall.” Since this is an MMO, you will be trained that things respawn, and will assume it as a given after a while. There is no indication that nothing will respawn once you kill it here.

To be fair, the Prologue is also extremely pretty. I'd live there.

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