First Impressions: LOTRO and Guild Wars

First, a link to a GREAT post on the West Karana blog: Dogs and Frisbees: Why your MMO sucks.

“…3) If I’m on a Quest, it better not be a Quest to cross the street or kill a zillion of some nearby mob which isn’t bothering ANYONE. I do Quests for Holy Grails, or to Destroy the One Ring, or to Avenge my Family. Killing puppies in the North Downs isn’t a quest. It’s just sad.

4) Mobs shouldn’t stand around looking stupid. They should see you before you see them, scatter for the trees, call their friends, instead of just standing there while you kill them. I’ve read lots of times that devs feel giving mobs some actual AI would be too challenging for the average player.

5) If I am going to be in a battle, it better MEAN something. If I just killed one hundred hapless orcs, there better not ever be an orc within a league of me. They better be running screaming saying, OH NO! NOT HER! RUN!!! I should be being stalked by some sort of ORC GOD for killing so many of them. Yeah, maybe that orc god wouldn’t be kind to me when he caught up with me and took out payment for killing a hundred of his followers, but dammit, there should be consequences for killing stuff.”

Amen, brothah! Hallelulia, sistah! :D

Guild Wars:

I wouldn’t actually call this an MMORPG. From what I can tell, aside from the town areas, you’re in instances, not in a persistent, shared world. You can make a party in a town and go out to quest, but it’s not really a MMO. Aside from that, it’s been fun in a lightweight, casual sense. PvP isn’t that important to me, although I used to do a lot of it on Kit, so that’s probably not an area that I’ll explore too much. Movement still pisses me off a bit, and there is a clunkiness to interacting with the environment – talking to NPCs, looting, etc. Nightfall is much better, with more of a storyline, than Factions.

Pros: It is fun, and it’s certainly pretty. A bit too pretty in regard to avatars…does every one have to be beautiful? If you just want to run around killing things for an hour or so, enjoying the scenery, this is a good game.

Cons: As above, but no major ones if you don’t think of it as an MMO. One thing, though – if I get a quest, and the area around me is unexplored, please give me a hint as to where I should go. I don’t need my hand held, but a simple “in the northwest” pointer would help loads. Is that too much to ask?

LOTRO:

I’m actually starting to like this a lot, although I haven’t spent much time playing it as of yet. I started a hobbit, and their starting area is much better than the elves – it feels like the Shire, and you are immediately introduced to story in the conflicts that you stumble across – dark riders interrogating hobbits, etc. I think I might get more involved as I go on.

I am reminded by the quote that I read (and I cannot for the life of me remember who said it) about LOTRO being the methadone of WoW. You get invovled, but to a lesser extent, never really as addicted as you were to WoW. That’s probably a good thing. :)

Pros/Cons: Very pretty environments, but the avatars bother me. I don’t want exclusively pretty avatars, but I simply cannot find a face on any race that I like, and the hair really bothers me. Shallow? Yes, but the way that my avatar looks is important. It’s something that WoW does very well. I can’t make any judgments about gameplay yet, as I’ve only done a few of the starting quests sofar, but it definitely has possibilities.



5 thoughts on “First Impressions: LOTRO and Guild Wars”

  • Regarding Guild Wars… You have both a star on your map indicating the location you should reach for that quest and an arrow pointing to that location on your radar.

  • Yes, I can see the arrow, but what happens when there are multiple quests? I just get one arrow. But you’re right, it is a help…it would just be more user-friendly, though to have it in the quest text as well. It makes it easier to consolidate quests, for one thing – as in going to do all the ones in the south first.

  • Press L to open your active quests, click on the one you want to know where it is, the star and arrow will update to that quest. This is called the active quest. Whenever you accept a new quest, it is automagically seleceted as the active quest.

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