Why WAR, Why?

I have an assignment and had to resub to Warhammer. I do a little freelance writing on the side for MMO magazines, and have done some prior levelling guides for the game. Another one came accross my desk, and with the desire to check out what has changed in the game here was the perfect excuse to resubscribe. Getting “paid” to play games is always good. (“Paid” in quotations – freelance 1200-2400 word single article writers don’t really get paid much. Thankfully for me, it’s more of a hobby than putting food on the table for my family! It does, however, cover my gaming costs, and it’s fun to do to boot). With my prior post being upset about having to put in a CC to get access to the 10 day trial, now I don’t have that excuse anymore. So back to WAR I go.

I have a slew of WAR characters, and thankfully I had a character just in the perfect levelling range for this project. I patched, booted up, reorganized my UI, and began my journey back into Warhammer Online.

1) Lands are still dead: The T2 levelling area is sadly devoid of company for PVE – although chat seems to be a lot more active. I can’t do any PQ’s, because in prime time I am lucky to SEE 3-4 other people, let alone get them altogether in one spot. It is a shame because I love PQ. The PQ and I are tight. Oh PQ, why have you forsaken me?

2) The UI feels less responsive than before: I thought this was supposed to be fixed. To be fair, I am running on High Quality (needed for fancy screenshots) – but I am also running on a rig that can play Crysis on high settings. I also have a beefed up internet connection as I work from home (and hotels) but send large data files all over the world. So, with my PC in good shape, and my internet connection all beefed up, it was sad to see delays when I pressed buttons, and bad timings on attack animations. It broke my heart. Especially because there was usually just me – and one mob – on the screen at a time.

3) WAR has, quite possible, the worst spawning system I can remember. Many quests push you into PQ areas. You can kill a mob, and sometimes it instantly respawns (and aggros)  you. Nothing worse than fighting through two mobs, one “named”, and survive by the skin of your teeth – only to have the named mob instantly respawn on top of you and finish you off. Very frustrating. I understand they up spawn times around PQ areas in case there are a lot of people mowing through the mobs, but really, can’t you check somehow to see if there are people there? If you can’t through code, then at least don’t push quest chains into the PQ’s that will (most likely) be done solo, in a barren environment. Sometimes you will have 3-4 quests all in the middle of a fast spawning, mob pathing area (which is impossible to “clear” to get to your objectives due to the spawn rate.)

I am looking forward to getting back into the oRvR and ran a fun scenario last night, but first impressions were a bit of a let down. I had (have) high hopes to see what other things they have fixed.

2 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I’m still of the opinion that WAR’s PvE is just so poor from the foundation that it’s unlikely to ever be salvageable. The game in its entirety isn’t bad, but I kind of need a decent PvE experience to enjoy an MMORPG for long.

    As for the UI being sluggish, I’m wondering if that’s systematic of recent versions of the Gamebryo engine. =/

  2. @Rog: Agreed, after a second full night playing it. It is awful PVE. Of course, you *want* to give them a pass because the focus is supposed to be RvR/PvP, but cmon, there are enough lessons out there already that shouldn’t make this so tough.

    All that is in my head right now, is if they just scrapped PVE altogether (at the design outset) and focused on a gigantic, ass kicking RvR game they could have done something great. The basics are there, RvR *is* fun, and it just seems like millions of wasted dev dollars (that I have to trudge through, unfortunately).

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