Mists of Pandaria…… Smooth rollout so far…..

I was annoyed that Mists of Pandaria rolled out at 2:00 am my time. (Central US)  I was like, “What was Blizzard thinking?”  I woke up at 4:15 am and logged in and played for thirty minutes.  It was smooth and working…. And there weren’t a million people all trying to do the same thing.  Ok, maybe starting on a weeknight/school night in the middle of the night was the right thing to do.  Since this morning I have played a few hours off an on.  Mostly trying out the first couple of instances, fast and fun so far, and the pet battle system.  Fun for us people too old to have enjoyed Pokemon.

The Art is interesting and engaging.  The Hozen monkeys are fun to zap with an Arcane Barrage.  The Panda Bears are cute and deadly.  The mood is a bit more bright and the game a little more comical which is good to “pander” to a younger audience with more and more to play on the Internet.

So well done Blizzard.  So far the Mists of Pandaria is a great expansion.  I guess we do some leveling and collect some gear and see how it progresses.

Oh My Gosh Stop Whining Torchlight 2 Players…..

Torchlight is a Diablo III like game that cost 19.95 you can buy it on Steam and was a lot of fun.  It worked on Mac and PC.  Wheeee.  It is made by a smaller company called Runic Games which the last place I read (on the Internet, every thing on the Internet is true or you can’t put it on the Internet) had 30 employees.  I coughed when I saw that.  I hope to hell they are outsourcing their data center and server and user support…….  Otherwise they are not getting any sleep anytime soon…..  Maybe years…..

A few or more months ago it was announced Torchlight 2 was in development.  People have waited a while and there were lots of oohs and aaahs and pent up WHERE IS IT? September 20th, yesterday was launch date.  Insert much rejoicing here.

Torchlight 2 is a much more complex product than the original Torchlight.  When the developer that Torchlight 2 would support MULTI-PLAYA,  LAN play, and online servers I was happily surprised.  Remembering it is a 19.95 title……  That is a lot of game for 20 bucks.  Exciting Stuff.  (Remember that 30 employees stuff….. exciting and scary)

So the eldest under 18 in the house bought a 4 pack for himself, his brother and friends.  And he downloaded the software from Steam yesterday and was surprised that on launch day the online play servers didn’t work.  He has never played WoW on patch day either.  He didn’t play Diablo III on it’s first day either.

As someone with 25+ years in IT infrastructure I know from hands on experience any time you roll out something big, no matter how much you test it, you can’t test for everything.  Too many variables.  Too complex.  Finding 10 or 20 thousand people to help you test is called a live Beta.  Last night things did not work but….

I read a lot of whiners complaining that it should have worked at launch in the steam forums. Let them whine!  Ok, stop now, you have whined enough.

It is a $19.95 game that you will eventually use for 100 hours at least if you are any kind of gamer.  The two hour movie you took your significant other two last Friday was 3 times that with 2 tickets, popcorn and a drink…. Please…….  Shut up and wait a bit.

I am sure the servers will be working soon.  I am not worried about my 19.95, even the single player game is fun enough…..  I don’t feel cheated.  I am 49 years old and maybe I have learned some patience.

Rant mode off….

Go kill some ratlings….




Paragon System for Diablo III Hooray!

The latest news about the 1.04 update has some exciting news.  A hundred levels of Paragon.  Each Paragon level will give you stat boosts and 3% more gold and treasure find.  The border of your character portrait will change every 10 levels so people you are playing with know you have become uber l33t!

I want more trunk space, where am I going to put all the loot?

The magic find will top out at 300 (Before Nephlem Valor)  This means the stat will mean less and less on your gear as you get your way to level 100 Paragon.

Read more at the battle.net blog…   http://us.battle.net/d3/en/blog/6968517/

Playing Too Much Diablo? Go back to Skyrim…

Dawnguard DLC has arrived on Steam.  You can now stop Vampire’s from blotting out the sun.  Or become a Vampire, and help blot out the sun.  Or maybe you just want to be a better werewolf.  It is all in the new $19.95 download from the nice folks who brought you Skyrim.  You need Skyrim to play this but you already knew that.

Click here to order… http://store.steampowered.com/app/211720/


Mist of Pandaria or the Return of the Thing

I started playing the beta of the Mist of Pandaria, the next installment of World of Warcraft. You get to play a Panda. It is like being Jack Black but without all the up front money or the residuals. The first few levels of the beta are like the first few levels of hell. You have a couple hundred people trying to turn in the same quest. You can’t even SEE the quest giver. It takes thirty minutes and a how to on You Tube to turn in a 30 second quest.

Diablo III Demon Hunter




So far I have been enjoying Diablo III.  I have been plugging away at it and so far have a level 41 Demon Hunter who is in Nightmare Act II.  Above is my so originally named “Batman”.

Diablo III is a game that pits you and up to 3 others against a world that gets more difficult as you play.  While playing the Beta a lot of people remarked that it was “too easy”.  Well the part of the game that was included in the open beta was indeed simple.  The entire first act (of four acts) was created for you to learn the controls and basic game play.  It was not challenging especially to people used the Diablo and Diablo II games.  When you finish the first four acts that compromise the basic game or normal then you unlock the next difficulty level.  Normal, Nightmare, Hell and Inferno.  I have been challenged by the Nightmare difficulty level because I was not careful about my weapon…..

I like the idea of shooting the bad guys from range.  The Demon Hunter character type is good for my preferred style of play.  With spells and shots that slow his enemies you can trap and tumble as much as you want.

To let you customize your game play you can choose to put gems in weapons and armor that have “sockets”.  Gems start out tiny in the game but you can combine three like colored gems to create the next better gem type (or cut).  This is nice when you have an advanced character and start a new one, you can use hand me down gems that give you better stats earlier in the game.

You earn gold in the game and you can spend it on what others find in the game in the public Auction House.  If you look you can find weapons that might have dropped while others were playing that you have not seen.  The Legendary weapons generally do better DPS than the common or “Rare” weapons and I have not found one in my game.  I have purchased them for others to USE in my game though, and they make the more difficult levels a little less difficult.

I am still exploring and will review more soon.  I am looking forward to being able to play with friends in Europe, that should be working soon.  Until next time, may your sword be true and extra pointy.