Cooing Over Other Games’ Dungeons

You know me. I keep saying how I try to find time to play more Rift, LotRO and heaven forbid, EVE, but my time’s limited and it mostly goes to WoW because I have Responsibilities there. But I sometimes find myself cooing with wonder at what I’m not yet experiencing in those other games. And today, Alphaman over at Casual Stroll To Mordor has made me coo over LoTRO’s instances.

You should so read this: especially if you’re not a LotRO player. He’s describing how some new instances work, and from the point of view of an outsider his runs of the new dungeons sound really fun. He walks us through two dungeons, both of which have their own quirks that make them sound a whole world different to what I’m used to in WoW. It was when Alphaman described solving riddles mid-dungeon using emotes that I was hooked.

Challenge Mode is to use everything, which includes several class-specific interaction objects. Make sure to check each passageway, as there are some you can skip to finish the instance but will need to visit for the challenge! Although not part of the challenge, collecting each pirate journal along the way is part of a deed.

There are riddle doors that open by emotes and will change after 3 wrong tries. Some riddles are easy to figure out, others are hard. We just kept trying emotes on the door until we got it, though we did manage to solve a few using the riddles themselves.

I mean, riddles, in a dungeon? Gotta beat AoEing down trash packs.

If you’re a LoTRO player go read, get all hot under the collar for what’s coming to you. If you play another MMO read too! Some of these fancy newfangled ideas are the stuff of gamer dreams, or of waving at your own developers in hope. Alphaman’s post is a little harder to get into if you’re a non-LotRO player given he uses some specific terms but the general ideas are accessible and google’s* your friend for all else.

What do you think – would you like to see some of these features in your own MMO or are they not that unique a snowflake? Or do you have better ideas we haven’t even seen yet?

_Quote taken directly from Alphaman’s post_

_You can find Casual Stroll To Mordor’s homepage here_

  • Hint – “Bullroarer” is, according to google, LoTRO’s test server, not Alphaman’s character’s name.
Read more →

The Spread Of Bad Habits In Low Level Dungeons

Anyone ventured into an instance recently? C’mon, hands up. Specifically low level ones. Big Bear Butt’s got a post today about his recent experiences in a low level instance – well, I say experience, but it doesn’t sound like he gained much in the way of XP while he was there.

Most of his post is an entertaining tale of what happened in the dungeon. He says he was levelling a new druid and felt there came a time when he should try tanking a low level dungeon. Risky business, I know. But BBB explains that he had all the old bear-tank tricks up his sleeve to compensate for the lack of any bear AoE abilities at low level. Wasn’t enough: apparently his problem turned out to be the DPS.

The DPS, two Hunters and a Warrior, actually attacked while I was still running up. I hadn’t even gotten close enough to face pull and boom!

So mobs are on the three DPS and their pets, but not ALL the mobs of the group. I grabbed one of them, and started trying to get the rest, and the healer panicked, exacerbating the problem by frantically casting heals to try and keep all the DPS alive… bringing the remainder of the mobs down on her head.

He goes on to speculate how the tanking classes are balanced at the moment, saying that at the same low level warriors would have solid AoE threat abilities but bears have nothing. He’s hurting a bit over that and I don’t blame him, though I’m not sure I agree with BBB’s conclusion that other tanking classes with their fancy AoE abilities ‘train’ DPS to let all nitwibble break loose within miliseconds.

What do you think – are tanking classes unbalanced right from the offset, and are DPSers spoilt and allowed to switch their brains off by AoE-tastic tanks?

_Quote taken directly from BBB’s post

You can find Big Bear Butt’s homepage here_

Read more →

Achtung Panzercow: Solution To Tanks’ AoE Threat Woes

I’ve been hearing that tanks are having a problem with AoE threat. Well, Linedan at Achtung Panzercow has a theory to help flailing tanks in dungeons. It’s mostly tailored for warriors but it may be useful for other classes, especially if you have a similar talent to the warrior one he’s citing. Which I don’t know off the top of my head, as I’m a willowy healer rather than a dedicated meatshield, levelling prot warrior aside. Or something.

Now if you’ve tanked some heroics the past two weeks, you know that your AOE threat is down a bit, or maybe more than a bit depending on your class.  … Add in the huge DPS increases that some classes got (yes, mages, you can stop cackling gleefully now), and the fact that people still cannot grasp the concept of “wait two seconds to let the tank get agro,” and I’ll bet you’ve been having a moderately frustrating time running your heroics.

Linedan’s idea is short and sweet. While it’s been  around as a tactic used on and off by tanks for a while, it’s not been suggested as a panacea for the tank ailment that is 4.0. He’s anticipated tanks reading it and shrinking back in horror at the idea, and goes on to reassure that it won’t destroy your stats. Well, mostly.

He rounds off with telling us about a Heroic he ran to test his theory, and says it went incredibly smoothly. He even thinks it could be used in lower tier raids, so long as you check your healers aren’t going to have a heart attack. So what’s the magic idea? Go read his post!

What do you think – are there ways round the AoE threat problem, or is this AoE threat problem all a puff of hot air?

_Quote taken directly from Linedan’s post

You can find Achtung Panzercow’s homepage here._

Read more →