Wednesday, November 21, 2007

On Winning And Losing

So I'm slightly steamed after a few games of TF2 today...and it's not because I lost, as I won more than lost today. And it's not because I scored poorly as I did pretty damn's how the games went. Too much fucking offense! Scout rush after scout rush(for the uninformed, essentially taking all the objectives before the match has hardly begun resulting in a quick win) It doesn't matter if I'm on the offense or defense, I despise these rushes and the general attitude of "win at all costs"

I mean, do people really need to win to feel good about themselves? Are their egos so shallow or attention spans so short? I'd rather lose and have a good *fun* game than win with some cheap/lucky tactic. To me a game is all about how you play it, winning and losing simply being a side effect of playing the game. The interactions between players, the tricks, the fakeouts, the mind games, seeing new strategies, the minor little inconsequential bullshit, hell, losing to a *really* good player in a fight but giving it your all. Now, this may seem like a sore loser placing little meaning on winning, but I win more than I lose. I could win all the time and it wouldn't change a damn thing. Winning is better than losing, to be sure, but it's just not what's important!

To put things in WoW terms: It's all about timing that spell lock as that Holy Light has .2 seconds left until cast, managing your cooldowns to get the most out of them, CCing at the right time, losing to a new innovative tactic, getting your ass beat by a better team and learning something from it, eeking out that win against a higher ranked team, but just barely, etc.

Games are about interesting player interactions, tactics, timing, and all the nuances that make the game. To end the game just as it's beginning is like someone telling your the outcome of sports event before you've gotten a chance to watch it on TiVo. It removes the essence of the game, replacing it with a mere "Blue team wins" only to repeat itself again.

It's no surprise I like Affliction as it really drags fights out and gives me those much desired interactions with gameplay mechanics. Burst damage in WoW, especially pre BC came to the same end. AP POM Pyro Mages 1 shotting people, but for what gain? A little honor? As far as I'm concerned they weren't really even playing the game. To blow one person away, then run away until your cooldowns are up, only to do it again is pathetic.

You can play games to win. You'll get that ego boost when you do, and you'll get peeved when you don't. Or you can do more than simply play the game. Study the game, appreciate the game, learn it's nuances and learn to appreciate them. You can have a blast whether you win or lose.

Duel with pistols or duel with swords. Swords are far more interesting, no?

Monday, November 5, 2007

Fun with Orange Box

So Friday afternoon I got Orange Box with much anticipation for Team Fortress 2, included inside. I'll give you guys the rundown on what I've played so far:

1) Half Life 2: I've never actually played HL:2 and only briefly even played the original Half Life. That being said what I've played so far seems really quite solid. The game has a nice story and while the graphics are slightly outdated the overall quality of the game is quite nice. Love the physics engine, character responses, etc.

2) Team Fortress 2: What can I say, it's a great shooter. The art style is quite unique, it had a nice class selection, and the maps are great. I do have a few gripes, however. By and large the pacing of the game is too fast, I'm not talking twitch factor, but just how easily objectives can be captured, and how much easier it is to kill than not be killed. It feels like a battleground where everyone is a AP/POM Mage. Too much offense. Also, the fact that there is no inclusion of a standard Submachine gun wielding circle strafing warrior really pains me. This was likely the intent of the dev team to really make each class have a super niched role, but I've played too many WWII shooters to go without this type of class. I really wish they'd made a class like the Heavy that moved a lot faster, but *actually* requires aim. Also, before buying the game the Demoman looked very interesting, but his effectiveness is too limited to certain locations of a map. Again, super niched, I know. Am I dogging it too much? Maybe. Like I said, I like the game, but I'm one to point out the faults(at least as I see them) in everything. Thumbs up to Valve on this one!

3) Portal: Here is the shining gem of Orange Box. Boy am I glad I paid the extra 20$ to get the collection instead of TF:2 by itself. It's a somewhat difficult game to describe, so I'll just say it's a spatially challenging game that gives you access to a portal gun to create rifts in space to connect two points in order to complete puzzles and finish each level. You really get to do some crazy shit. For example there are several levels that require you to use gravity to sling yourself to location you couldn't otherwise reach. Set Portal A on the ground and portal B high on a wall 30 feet up. You jump into A, fly through B, after you come out of B you fall towards the ground, while falling you create a new portal A, drop through it, rocketing yourself through portal B with the force of gravity flinging you onto a platform you couldn't otherwise reach. While rather short I must say this is one of the most innovative games I've played in years.

Definitely get Orange Box if you can to experience these titles. Feel free to add me, Draele, to friends on steam. Maybe we can play some TF:2 together!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Feedback Submitted!

Sounds like Blizzard is gearing up for the WotLK class tweaks. Leiah, a Warlock player who fed us much info about TBC beta(and has contacts with one of the WoW devs!) has kept us in the know ever since has started collecting feedback from the Hunters! Between that and more recent blue posts on the class forums I think it's safe to say they are looking for feedback.

I spent some time typing up some Affliction specific feedback here which you may find of interest. Feedback on my feedback would be great!


Blizzard seems to be looking for feedback lately so I figured I’d offer mine here. I submit this post saying upfront that I’m 100% biased towards Affliction, not in an “I want it to be overpowered” sense, but in that I absolutely love its unique playstyle and have strong opinions about it.Overall it’s a very solid tree, probably more so than most in the game and doesn’t need a whole lot of “buffs” in the true sense of the word so much as a few idiosyncrasies/gaps filled in.

Here they are, feedback 1-3 being more “fixes” and 4-5 being suggestions for WotLK that would increase the fun factor/feel of the tree.

1) DoT Scaling

2) Pets not gaining mana when you drink

3) Seed of Corruption- Too Strong!

4) Shadowbolt Dependency

5) 51pt Affliction Talent

Check the thread out for the details!