For the last few days my internet connection has gone rather badly wrong. I am getting speeds reminiscent of when we were all on 14.4 dial up modems, which is pretty unhelpful for either EQ2 or Warhammer Online. Virgin Media are saying the local fault may take up to a week more to fix. As Maltheas would say, “Boos!!!!!”. It’s just as well though, as my Dad is visiting in a couple of days and the house needs some heavy cleaning to get up to his standards. So for now Maltheas abides a time in the Village of Shin, pondering the fate of Luclin.
Everquest 2 has launched a recruitment scheme with goodies for both the recruiter, and recruited. If any readers of this blog are interested in the 14 day trial, drop me a note in the comments, and I’ll shoot an invite off to you.
I’ve not popped into Warhammer for a while now. I notice that of the European servers, Burlok is the only one to be offering an xp bonus to both sides, so I’m guessing population is still an issue. In truth, I had started finding the RvR mechanisms increasingly irritating, lacking anything like the strategic depth of PotBS. The simple-minded nature of the war looks set to continue, though the bloodthirsty side of me is somewhat heartened by this upcoming change in patch 1.2 :
To help place more emphasis on Keep claiming and defence, as well as to combat the “defence by not defending” strategy, we are introducing the Zone Control Domination mechanic. With this system, players who take and hold all Battlefield Objectives and claim Keeps in a contested zone (in Tier 4) or a shared RvR lake (in Tiers 2 and 3) have the opportunity to capture that zone, forgoing the standard mechanics of Zone Control.
Each Battlefield Objective and Keep will be worth 1 Domination Point. To capture a zone via the Domination rules, your Realm must have all 6 Domination Points. In Tiers 2 and 3, capturing all six points in a shared RvR lake will give the capturing Realm control of the entire Tier. These are represented as small pip marks on the Zone Control Bar.
Battlefield Objectives and Keeps have different requirements for earning their Domination Point, as follows:
To earn a Domination Point from a Battlefield Objective, it must be owned by your Realm for 30 minutes.
To earn a Domination Point from a Keep, it must be claimed by a Guild and then held for 2 hours. If you lose control of a Battlefield Objective or Keep at any time, you lose the Domination Point.
Multiple Domination Points cannot be gained from a single source (for example, it isn’t possible to get 6 Domination Points by capturing Martyr’s Square 6 times).
If a zone that was taken over by Zone Domination is put into a contested state, all timers and Domination Points are reset.
That should, I hope, help to spread out the zergs a little, by forcing us to defend multiple locations.This new method of capturing zones is as it should have been from the very beginning, though I am somewhat irritated that keeps have to be claimed by a guild, rather than simply taken by the faction.
The change will improve the RvR on the level of base carnage, but it will also greatly shorten the length of the campaigns. A war campaign in Pirates of the Burning Sea takes a minimum of a few weeks, most likely longer with some back and forth, and involves a large amount of strategic planning. I wonder how quickly in WAR, from a starting map, could a campaign be successfully concluded (by the taking of the enemy capital)? With these changes I suspect it could all be done in a single weekend, given ideal conditions.
Now, I know that WAR never claimed to be a game of high strategy, but it is strategic depth that makes each campaign different from those that have come before it. I fear that by having so few real choices in how to go about the WAR campaign, with things changing so quickly that there is no time to think about anything more than the most basic of responses, it severely reduces replayability and long-term interest. I may just be speaking for my fellow strategy geeks though.
Right, I’d better get back to scrubbing the kitchen floor!