Giving New and Old Games Their Time in the Spotlight

Some time ago, I took Everquest out for a trial run, but I never really got into it because the controls felt alien to me… I mean, pressing H to hail an NPC? Typing words to talk to an imaginary being through the internet? Preposterous, right?

I’d been conditioned by the Eq2/WoW-era RPG to demand an experience that was similar to itself, to the point that I’d never really given the first Everquest a proper run-through because of its naturally different style of play.

I want to rectify that due to my current situation. Right now, there are a couple of AAA free-to-play MMORPGs I’ve not tried, and with my current need to conserve my money, it seemed like a good idea to go and revisit Everquest, especially since I actually have quite a bit of Station Cash on my account that’s doing nothing there.

At the same time, I’ve set EVE Online on an 11-day training regimen, even though I have only four days left on my sub. Whether it trains past day four is beyond me, but at least I’ll have a better inkling of what my plans are when I come back.

In addition, I want to try another genre I’ve yet to actually experience: the superhero game. I’ve downloaded DC Universe Online for a run, and I’m going to make an ice character for use.

My SC will go more to Everquest, probably, mostly because DCUO doesn’t seem to have housiing. Hopefully, I’ll enjoy Everquest and DCUO and, perhaps, even a bit of LOTRO, even without spending for anything with more money than I’ve already invested.

At the very least, some new and old games will get their time in the spotlight.

My thanks to Kaozz of ECTMMO for reminding me of the Everquest F2P transition that’s happening.

Falling in Love with the Idea of a Game

Back in September of 2010, I wrote about how I found myself falling prey to gaming hype and how I seemed to gravitate towards games with the purpose of becoming a pundit of sorts. I’ve altered my stance on the the idea of becoming a force to be reckoned with in the game blogging world (there are far better things to worry about, like finding a job, falling in love, and learning how to manage finances). Since then, I’ve noticed I’ve been making a rather large number of gaming purchases, which worries me somewhat.

The ever lessening time I spend affixed to one game (a month ago, I was playing Guild Wars, then two weeks ago, Everquest 1’s trial, and now, I just bought Dead Space and Magicka on Steam) makes me think that I am less of a gamer because I do not love gaming, per se, but rather have grown to love the idea of a game.

This is worrying because I have yet to find a job. This is also worrying because it’s a waste of money that could be accruing interest in the bank. This is worrying because falling in love with the idea of something, ANYTHING, instead of the reality that is there makes me think I haven’t grown as a person.

Around seven or eight years ago, I was enrolled in a mandatory college class for religion (Catholic universities like the one I went to have mandatory religion subjects to foster personal growth in students) called  Marriage and Human Sexuality. One of the things I learned in that class was that there’s a difference between loving someone and falling in love with someone.

According to that class, you can fall in and out of love with someone, and that feeling you get when you fall in love might seem genuine, but can quite possibly be a mixture of a crush with your own projections of what you want in a partner, which may not actually be in that person you’ve fallen in love with. Once the honeymoon phase is over, and the cracks begin to show in the relationship, the illusion reveals itself, and you fall out of love.

Back then, I realized that, lonely as I was, I knew I didn’t want to simply “fall in love” with a personal illusion of a woman I’d gotten to know. I wanted to love and accept someone for the good aspects and not-so-good aspects they had.

I thought I could extend that sort of thinking to all the different aspects of my life, which is why I try and take pains to think about the things I do or engage in. When it comes to gaming though, I feel like I never learned anything from my class back in college.

True, games and people are different things and I may be too hard on myself, but it doesn’t diminish the distress I feel when I think about how I buy games, play them for a short while, and then never finish them. It’s like I’ve fallen in love with the idea of the game, but found that my projections of what I expect that game to be do not mesh well with the reality of the game, and I shelve the game for failing my perceived ideal.

It’s a waste, and yet even with that realization in tow, I cannot help but still want to purchase new games with the hope that they will astound me and lead me to some great divine epiphany of awesome that I cannot comprehend but simply bask in.

It scares me to think I haven’t grown as a person. Perhaps I should give myself some credit for at least realizing that something might be faulty in my acceptance of hype and my constant failed relationships with games.

That said, I wonder if the ones who are truly fanatical about games can even see the deficiencies in the games they say they love. That blindness to truth seems even scarier than any issue I might have at present.

Heading to Old Norrath, or What Did I Get Myself Into?!

I had a couple of choices for title names in my head, which included, “Heavens be damned, I cannot run!” and “How Doth One Respondeth to an NPC?” Ultimately, I decided the simplest two titles would be the best.

Reading about the time-locked progression server for Everquest made me realize something. The very first MMORPG I wanted to play was this game I saw in Inquest Magazine called Everquest, circa 1999-2000, and despite all the expansions that have come for the game, I could actually have the chance to experience the very game that made me want to be an MMO gamer to begin with.

Sadly, I’m not the same person I was in 1999. Hell, I’m not the same person I was in 2009. My preferences have no doubt changed due to the coddling by current-generation MMORPG traits, so I wanted to see the extent of my coddled nature by engaging in the trial for Everquest, called Escape to Norrath.

The first thing I said to myself when I was first able to get into the game world was, “Dagnabbit, what the hell is up with the User Interface?” It was everywhere, covering most of the screen and obscuring my character’s vision severely.

The second thing I noticed was that pressing the WSAD combination of keys did not make my character move.

Eventually, after closing some windows, I realized that I needed to figure out where to go to change my button layout, and I found out that the reason why I couldn’t move was that the game relegated the movement buttons to the right side of my keyboard on the arrow keys. With that fixed, I began my adventure… for all of five minutes.

One of the Escape to Norrath quests had me learning to equip armor. The problem was the quest prompt told me to equip the armor and then respond to the questgiver through main chat. Unfortunately, I didn’t know what to do to get the questgiver to continue the quest, so I quit the game and did some errands and bought McDonald’s food, and wrote this.

This game will definitely take some getting used to, especially for someone who’s used to the luxuries of the current generation of MMO game.

Has Anybody Here Seen My Corpse?

Post and nostalgia inspired by Syp of Bio Break and Ysharros of Stylish Corpse. Please bear with me.

Long long ago, in the twentieth century, I was a high school student who had seen something that looked 100% awesome: it was a a multi-page spread on a magazine known as Inquest/Inquest Gamer about a marvelous new game that had come out. It was called Everquest, and it was something they called an MMORPG, or Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Game, and at the time, I never knew something like that could exist.

Apparently, people could actually play a game with hundreds of other folks at the same time on something called a server, and those people could play a game set in an intricate and harsh world that allowed for a new sort of role-playing opportunity that wasn’t known to Japanese RPGs like Final Fantasy VII and Xenogears.

I wanted to play that game so bad for months… until I finally grew out of that phase and thought that I would never be able to play that game ever.

Now, in the twenty-first century, I am reminded of that short anecdote because Syp and Ysharros are talking about that game’s successor, Everquest 2. Apparently, it has tons of classes and races, and is supposed to be awesome. Unfortunately, I missed out on buying it because I still have a sub to LOTRO, and I bought Fallout 3: GOTY on Steam instead.

Methinks that I might give it a try in the future though, if the price comes down again. Thing is, I have no idea which version to get… only the nagging impression that I SHOULD be a monk in some capacity.

That said, it’s something to ponder for the future, and something I will definitely look into when the buying price goes down again. Till then, have a bit of nostalgia on me. Here’s Electric Fun Stuff’s Has Anybody Here Seen My Corpse? for your enjoyment, along with a link to download their music.