RIP Fallen Earth

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Just a man, a horse, and his frying pans

There was some sad news on Tuesday. Fallen Earth will be taken offline on October 2nd, 2019 following its 10th-anniversary event. Little Orbit cited low population and bad server performance as the main reasons to shut it down.

Fallen Earth is one of those free to play steam games that I always like to go back to every now and then. Earlier this year, I was getting back into it and playing it fairly often. It has a unique setting, decent combat, and a very in-depth crafting system.

The player population was in the 50s on any given night. While it made the game feel as empty as a post-apocalyptic world should be it didn’t give me much confidence in the longevity of the game. Eventually, I just didn’t want to put more time into it because I didn’t know how much longer it was going to be around. I kept an eye on Fallen Earth to see if there were any updates to the game over the year. While there was some developement it wasn’t a whole lot to inspire confidence.  

There is some hope though. While the game in its current form is being taken offline there are plans to continue working on a new version. It’s hard to say how this will play out. I’m giving it a 50% chance that Fallen Earth will return to us. I personally hope it does. Fallen Earth is such a unique game in the MMO space I think a fresh coat of paint and better server performance could do it some good. I also think reworking the free to play model would also help in the future. When your game has such a heavy focus on crafting, it’s frustrating when you can only craft 2 items at a time that take 15+ minutes without paying.

This month  I plan on revisiting Fallen Earth one more time. I’d like to see as much of the world as I can before the servers shut down. Road tripping seems like the best way to say farewell to the game.

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WoW Classic is Not for Me

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Rogue Stuff

I’m gonna be that guy. That guy that comes out and says, I’m not into WoW Classic. I tried,  I really did. I put in some hours over the long weekend and most of the time I asked the question: “Am I having fun?”.  That answer was no far more often than not and I’m trying to figure out why.

I managed to get an undead rouge to level 10 by the time I packed it in. At first, I liked the novelty of no quest markers on the mini-map. That ended fairly quickly when I had more than a couple active quests and couldn’t figure out where the NPC was for the turn in. Those quest markers have become such an integral part of games now it’s hard to imagine a game without them.

I tried a few characters. Before the undead rogue there was a dwarf priest who I got to level 9. I wasn’t enjoying having to wait for my health and mana to come back up after one or two rounds of combat. I rolled an Orc Rouge to check out their starting area. I stuck with that for a level or 2 until I had the idea that I really wanted to play an undead rogue.

I can see where everyone else is coming from. The sense of community in the game is great. General chat is full of people talking and sometimes even being helpful. There are roving groups, random invites, and even some conversations to be had while leveling. I joined a guild and had a good time chatting with the people there but that isn’t enough to hold my interest.

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I spent a good chunk of time on my priest like this.

I know a lot of that is because I don’t have that nostalgia to get me into the game. I don’t have friends who want to play it with me either. I came in curious to see how it all began, what it was like 15 years ago. Turns out, games have come a long way in 15 years, I’m sure to no one’s surprise.

I would have loved this game in 2006. I was a freshman in high school, this was exactly the kind of game me and my friends would have loved playing. Many of us were playing Runescape the year before and I think most of them would have been playing World of Warcraft if they could have gotten a subscription. Classic is grindy in a way my highschool self would have loved. Grinding weapon proficiencies, joining groups to level, finding quests in a giant world, and working on professions. There’s a ton of time to be sunk here and that’s just something I don’t have as much of anymore.

And I think that’s what it’s really all about. I spent a good 10 or so hours playing to get to level 10. Unshared tags make it hard to get quests done. Grouping up is a way around that for sure but the quests still take a while because others are also doing the same quest that isn’t in your group. Everything feels slow and I just don’t like the pacing.

Right now, I can’t see myself putting a ton more hours into Classic. I may dabble a bit more in the coming weeks, I still have a full month subscription after all. Or maybe I’ll go try out retail again and see how that goes. In the meantime, I look forward to reading everyone else’s stories from their time in Classic. I’ve said this before, and it may just be true, I enjoy reading about WoW more than I like playing it.

Trove Team Letter 2019

 

Trove press.jpgTrove, as of the time of this writing, has been down for 50 hours. On August 27th, the team announced there would be a 12-hour downtime as they moved the server to a new location. They must have dropped it somewhere along the line, maybe down a flight of very large stairs. As usual, players are calling for fair compensation for not being able to play for 2 days. I’m more than content to play something else, maybe a certain MMO with a new classic server.

But there is good news on the Trove front. Out of the downtime came a Team Letter about the future of the game. They’ve now moved beyond what the team at Trion had planned when they released Gardening 2.0. Now it’s time to see what Gamigo has in store.

Moving forward, the plan is to release two major updates, two minor updates, two quality of life each year while continuing the hotfixes every other Tuesday. Consoles will also get these but rolled into 2 ultimate updates a year. There will continue to be 2-week events throughout the year, the team says they’re trying to get these events out at least every 2 months.

Four types of content updates for new gameplay, features, and bug fixing:

  • Major Content Update – Focused around a major feature like Crystal Combat or Gardening
  • Minor Content Update – A gameplay enhancement, like Bomber Royale Season 2
  • Quality of Life Update – Improvements to the gameplay experience, focusing on bug fixes.
  • Hotfixes – Small updates, as required, targeting new or critical issues.

So it looks like there are plans to keep producing content for Trove. Which is a relief, I was a bit worried after Gamigo bought Trion that the game would slowly fall into maintenance mode. There is an upcoming patch titled ” From the Deep!” that will focus on fixing the Club leveling system as well as add big, bad, bosses to the Geode Topside Worlds. These new types of bosses will have a higher rate of dropping crystal level 3 gear as well as some unique rewards. More new things to kill is technically new content.

There are some patch notes for From the Deep! currently on the PTS. This patch goes into a little more detail about the new Leviathan  World Bosses. They live underneath the surface of Geode Topside and will despawn if not defeated within 15 minutes of spawning. They’ll drop an ego potion for those who defeat them which makes your head bigger, this is something I very much want. They’ll also drop Torches which are temporary equipment that adds light. Presumably, to make it easier to get into higher-level Geode Topside Worlds.

At least there’s a bit of a plan laid out going forward. After the gardening update, it felt like there wasn’t much discussion on what comes next. I will definitely take a few new world bosses over no content at all. And with the Club leveling balances, maybe my small little Club could actually get some guild buffs. Now they just have to put that pesky server back together.

The latest update, at 2: 43 am EST, stated they’re looking to finish the server move today. No ETA on when the game will be back online.

 

 

Trove: Buisness as Usual

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It’s hard to tell but there’s like 6 of us in here

I still look forward to Monday night Shadow Towers with Jay every week. Once again we were able to complete the whole Shadow Tower on Ultra getting the max rewards for the week. We’ve started to develop a small group from players we meet on Twitch. We’ve been trying to help out newer players with getting over the Stellar gear wall when we can and have been giving advice when asked. It’s great to be able to give back to the game’s community.

This week I got the 3 star, stellar, empowered, water gem I needed after 2 months. It even had the correct stats and everything. Currently, I’m pumping gem dust into it until it’s maxed level to swap out with my 2 star stellar. Once that’s been socketed, all I need to do is augment the gems and continue to ook for a crystal level 3 face. Waiting for the right empowered gem to drop was such a slog, at least these next steps I can actively work on without praying for good RNG. I may be able to boost my Power Rank to 30k which is the next milestone. He’s sitting at 29701 right now.

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What Trove looks like 90% of the time.

I was also able to replace one of my gem’s first hit stat with a % max health. This boosted my Dracolyte from 500k to 700kish health, and man does it make a difference. I’ve noticed my survivability in higher-level shadow towers was a lot better. Also, I’ve had to refill potions way less in U-10 Geode Topside. The less time I can spend refilling the more time I can spend looting.

 

 

 

A Brief Moment with WoW Classic

 

WoWScrnShot_082619_181511.jpgWhile waiting for Jay to log into Trove, I wanted to see if I could get into WoW Classic. I’d been reading queue times were horrendus so I didn’t have much hope at 6:30pm EST, a half hour after launch. The queue for my server, Myzrael, was 2 minutes. Much, much, MUCH, shorter than I was anticipating.

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When I got in I was greeted by dozens of dwarves. Dwarves and gnomes everywhere. Around the first quest giver, around the first spawn point, and there were plenty bludgeoning wolves just down the hill.

I don’t know what I was expecting but it certainly wasn’t to burst our laughing. There was something just so funny about the sheer amount of characters running around. I joined the crowds for wolf slaying. Fighting for each spawn to collect a meager 8 meat. After 20 minutes I returned with my hard-won prize and settled in to do some more. Except that’s exactly when I was called away.

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I tried to get back in and play a bit more before bed. I wasn’t sure if this was going to be possible. I was greeted with a 76 minute wait.

Ah, that’s more like it.

 

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Jumping on the WoW Classic Train

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I didn’t grow up with World of Warcraft. I wasn’t allowed to have an account in 2004 and my parents didn’t see the value in having a subscription for a video game. I don’t have any pining nostalgia for it. I don’t have a long personal history with it where friendships were forged and memories were made. But, nevertheless, I am interested in Classic. I’m interested to see how well it does, how well it’s received, and if it’s everything everyone wanted. I decided today that I will be exploring it when it launches next week.

WoW has always been this big, intimidating, game to me. It’s a 15-year-old game and there’s a lot of content and history with it. I’ve given it a go a few times and have found my time with it enjoyable but it’s never stuck. Classic feels like one of the big moments in gaming and I don’t want to miss out this time.

I’m interested to see where it all began. I know from my experience on EQ2 progression servers that this won’t be kin to launch. People already have the knowledge they need, they have the internet for the knowledge they don’t have, and there will be plenty of people rushing to the end. But I think it will still be a lot of fun to be a part of.

I’ve reserved names on a Fairbanks PVP server and Myzrael Normal server. I’m interested to experience what a PVP server is like but I want that back up option with my preferred name if I don’t end up liking it.

I want to see how this all plays out. People have been wanting this for years and now it’s finally here. I think it’ll do well for the first few months. I do wonder what the drop off will be after people have their fill of nostalgia. A part of me knows that forums and Reddit will be full of people complaining, but that’s par for the course.

And now we wait!

Trove: Even More Dragon Taming

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My last long term goal in Trove was to get all of the Primordial Dragos. Since I completed that I’ve been looking into what’s next. I’m at a point where I’m working on maxing out 2 classes and don’t have the interest to put time into more right now. My shadow hunter still needs to max out his gems. My dracolyte needs a 3 star empowered water gem with the right stats. Both of them need a full set of crystal level 3 gear. All of these are hard to get excited about and work towards. There’s not much I can do for these except play the waiting game and hope for good luck with drops.

So I’ve been looking at what I can work towards as a medium-term goal. One of the things I’ve been meaning to do for a while is to start crafting dragons that need dragon eggs. I have 6 sitting in my storage taking up valuable slots. I’ve put them on the back burner because the Primordial Dragons required all of my dragon coins for so long. There are 31 Dragons I still need to collect. These are the dragons I’m looking at crafting in the future. I’ve chosen them because I have the eggs and because they have the permanent stat boosts I want.

  • Inora, Flame of Enlightenment: 10% Max Health, 3% Attack Speed, 500 physical damage, 50 Magic Find
  • Yorin, the Dusk Shadow: 1000 Max Health, 10% Critical Damage, 50 Magic Find
  • Flakbeard, The Relentless: 10% Critical Damage, 1000 Max health, 50 Magic Find
  • Selene the Celestial Storm: 1000 Max Health, 1% Critical Hit, 50 Magic Find
  • Aurym, Keeper of Histories: 7% Attack Speed, 1000 Max Health, 50 Magic Find
  • Erel, The Ironbolt: 1000 Max Health, 1750 Health Regeneration, 50 Magic Find
  • Draccolatl, The Mellower: 5% Health Regeneration, 1000 Max Health, 50 Magic Find

Each of these cost 300 dragon coins and some crafting materials. If I log in every day and complete my daily star bars and 1 hourly challenge I can get up to 168 dragon coins a week plus some extra from weekly tomes. That’s about one new dragon every two weeks. That should keep logging in for a good long while.