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“Champions Online: Superhero Simulator” or “Global Agenda: Superagent Simulator”

August 10, 2011 2 comments

The wait for the next generation of MMOs is unbearable at this point. I have quit WoW. World of Tanks simply wasn’t my cup of tea. I dabbled in Lord of the Rings Online, but it was a barren wasteland, and I rarely came across any players in the first 22 levels in a “well-populated” server, so eventually I just got tired of playing solo and quit LOTRO as well.

I have now downloaded both Champions Online: Free For All, and Global Agenda: Free Agent, partly because I am itching to play an MMO, and partly because they were in my Steam “free to play” section, and it was just convenient to download and install both clients.

Superhero Simulator

I had a lot of issues, I mean a LOT of issues, with Champions Online. I despised the title to the point that I could not bear to play the game a month past the initial “free” month. Even back then, must have been September/October of 2009 or thereabouts, I thought Champions Online would have benefited greatly if it was a free-to-play title, because it had a lot of things going for it. I am not saying free-to-play titles are allowed to have broken game mechanics or unpolished gameplay, not at all. I am just saying that it didn’t make sense to call it a AAA title when the game was dramatically and drastically altered on launch day itself because of blatant balance issues.

When I logged in this time, using the same username/password that I had used nearly two years prior, I was surprised to find my original characters still intact. Now because those characters no longer fit into the free archetypes that free accounts have access to, I could not load the world with those characters and play to my heart’s content, but I was grateful that my old characters were still intact after all that time.

I made a new character. I should rephrase, I am in the process of making a new character.  had actually forgotten how incredible complex, deep and fun the hero builder tools could be in Champions Online. With literally thousands of combinations, even with in the free account, you can create a truly unique looking hero.

Superagent Simulator

A lot of people who play this game had remarked that you could play Global Agenda for any length of time without feeling like you are tied down to a raid or dungeon run at a designated time. You could jump in and out of missions on the fly and play as your schedule suits you, not the other way around. Given the sheer shortage of time that has become the bane of my existence lately, this was a major plus point for me.

I have only played the tutorial of this game so far, and I have been quite impressed with the way the single-player (near) obligatory tutorial section is designed. It has a cool storyline, plenty of interesting cut-scenes and it introduces gameplay mechanics in interesting and unique ways. So far I have had a blast and I will continue to play it until I have a good enough handle on the game to start tackling mission and get into the MM part of this MMO.

Se7en Reasons to Try World of Tanks Beta: “You, Sir, Are a Freaking Tank” or “Lots of MMO, Little Bit of RPG-FPS-RTS-Simulator”

November 19, 2010 5 comments

First of all, I haven’t played the beta yet, so don’t be confused if anything I say makes it seem like I have had a lot of experience with the game. Second, if you are itching to try out a new title, especially one with such an interesting spin on your run-of-the-mill Orc/Human/Space Marine MMOs, perhaps World of Tanks is for you. More importantly, you can try out the game in it’s closed beta stage for free right now. Go here at the official website, and just enter your email address. I got my beta invite within an hour, maybe you will get equally lucky.

The beta is downloading right now, although I am getting abysmal (Hi Matthew!) download rates. As soon as I get in, I will put up a brief overview of what the game feels and plays like.

In the meantime, here is a short list of some of the reasons you should try out World of Tanks:

One: It’s free (for now!)

The game is in closed beta. That means the developers are testing out the game with literally hundreds of thousands of players online and you can be one of the fortunate few to get in on the action and see if the title is eventually worth investing into. You can register for a closed beta invite here.

Two: You sir, are a tank!

Your avatar isn’t an axe-wielding orc, or a dime-a-dozen human, or some fancy spacecraft for mining and other boring activities. You, sir, are a tank! 20 tons of iron and steel topped with a bigass gun. Rock on!

Actually, technically you are five tanks, because you can store that many in your hanger! And that is just to start off with. You can eventually purchase more hangers for your own fleet of tanks!

Three: And there are a lot of you!

World of Tanks offers over 150 different types of tanks to choose from, broken into four categories:

  • There is the light tank, capable of quickly out-flanking the opponents, and excellent for reconaissance
  • Then you can pilot the all-purpose, weather-resistant (I think) medium tanks
  • Not to mention the heavy tanks that you can use to carve up your opponents
  • And finally we have the sniper division with the long-range howitzer tanks

Four: MMO-RPG-RTS-FPS-Simulator

While this may sound suspiciously like marketing lingo, the developers of World of Tanks, to their credit, don’t necessarily restrict themselves to a specific genre or category of video games.

  • The simulator part is self-evident.
  • The tank itself isn’t just a giant heap of metal on wheels, it can be upgraded, improved and refitted to serve the situation at hand.
  • The core of the game is essentially hardcore tank-on-tank action.
  • And finally, unless you use clever strategy to out-think your enemy, brute force will almost never get you the upper hand.

I’m sold!

Five: Massive, Multiplayer, Online!

This part is a little exaggerated. While you can theoretically play with hundreds of thousands of players in the game, a single skirmish will only feature up to 60 tanks on varied battlefields at the same time. Then again, if you think about it, the most popular MMO in the world has 40 as it’s largest raid size. So 60 doesn’t sound so bad. Not to mention the fact that you are a freaking tank. Imagine how big you are (your tank avatar that is, you perv). Now multiply that by 60. There you go!

Six: Quick, Furious Combat!

Call me impatient, but part of the reason I get burnt out on WoW was because every large event takes too long to get into and get out of. An average raid lasts 2-4 hours. A PvP session (arenas excluded) takes 30 minutes to an hour. Enter World of Tanks. Your average battles range from 5-15 minutes tops. If at the end of 15 minutes tanks from both sides are present on the battle field and neither side’s base has been demolished, the game will be a tie, but it won’t trudge on indefinitly.

Short version: You won’t have to hunt down the flag carrier forever!

Se7en: Plethora of Features

  • Your tanks have machine guns for infantry.
  • There is a camouflage system implemented in the game.
  • The game will automatically place you in equal teams to ensure no one side is overwhelmingly powerful, thus mixing tank drivers from different starter nations…
  • … but the game also supports nation-on-nation warfare.
  • Maps are, on average, 1 square kilometer a piece.
  • Buildings can be used as cover; you can perforate a wall and fire through it while simultaneously protecting your tank from enemy fire.
  • Tanks will have crews; crew skills will determine tank performance.
  • There is an in-game economy for tank parts and upgrades between players.

That was more like fourteen reasons right there. Still need convincing? Here is a detailed FAQ.

Blast away!

Categories: Beta, Preview, World of Tanks

Thought of the Day: “Oxymorons” or “World of Tanks Didn’t Think This Through”

November 18, 2010 1 comment

So here are two questions:

1. How is a “tank”, “light”?

2. How do you hit “500,000 active players” in a “closed beta”?

Categories: Beta, Bronte, World of Tanks