Category Archives: PLAYED

The Return to WoW

 

World of Warcraft: Legion

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The Return to WOW

By Christopher Schmaltz

It’s the content, stupid.

Legion has come. Or should I say, the Legion has returned. Not too sure how to phrase that in World of Warcraft’s wacky in-game timeline shenanigans. Regardless, there is a new expansion to WOW, and it has me playing again.

The previous expansion, Warlords of Draenor, was interesting and fun to start, but as it matured, the content became stale, and frankly the garrison feature became work. The rewards weren’t immediate and visceral, and the upgrade path was muddled and too grind-y for my taste. I stopped playing at least six months prior to Legion dropping (probably closer to a year actually), and really didn’t miss it. This is an amazing statement from me too. Once I started playing WOW, 8 years or so ago, I played constantly and with enthusiasm (my wife can attest to such with chagrin).

I had definitely moved on in my gaming life. Playing Destiny, Civ V, Rocket League, some Halo, even a platformer or two (if you haven’t played or seen Ori and the Blind Forest, you need to give yourself that gift – amazing game).

I really like to play a good video game, and the variety in the games I’m playing has been terrific.

But WOW is the granddaddy for me. It fills the D&D hole in my life left by wife, family, job, podcast, home ownership, children concerts and events – basically all things that I love about my life, but that leave me unable to spend 4-5 hours plus with people running a tabletop D&D campaign on a weekly basis. I grew up playing D&D for long, long hours as a kid and young teen, and it is forever imprinted in what makes up, me.

So, when the Legion date was announced and then when the Warcraft movie came out, the WOW spark was relit. I actually logged on to the game to prep my main and alts for the Legion drop.

Legion went live on August 30. I’ve been playing it since day 1. I haven’t played anything else since day 1. This is aided by the fact that the Destiny expansion, Rise of Iron, goes live on September 20, and so it was easy not to play it at the tail end of its current expansion.

Still, Legion is a return to everything that makes WOW fun. Filled with story, gameplay content, and new things to do, these last 3 weeks in game have been a ball. Got my hunter main to max level (110), and now focused on gearing him up.

I hope to make this an ongoing series on my play time in Legion. We’ll see how often I get something written and posted, but for now, Legion is great fun and the return to WOW has been outstanding. See you in game, and FOR THE ALLIANCE!

Chris

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Reflections of a New Gamer

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By Andrew Schmaltz

Something happened recently, something I never would have expected to bring me joy or a sense of accomplishment.  Something totally intangible but still completely weighted with the power of time spent and skill achieved.

This thing that happened that made me feel so good?  I leveled my Titan to 30 light in “Destiny”.

I am not a gamer, in the strictest sense of the word.  I have an Xbox 360.  I pay the yearly subscription for an Xbox Live Gold Membership.  I am a fan of the Halo franchise in that I buy the game and play the campaign.  But I don’t clamor for the new Call of Duty. (Honestly I find those who play endless hours of PVP deeply annoying).  I don’t even really like The Batman Arkham series.  And I love Batman is almost all his forms.

So why has Destiny affected me so?  It is not a perfect game, far from it. Level 30 isn’t even the level -cap so it’s not like I “beat the game”.   Games like “Destiny” aren’t beaten, only played.  And I have not developed a community of players to share the gaming with.  The Brothers Geek don’t play together all that regularly (mostly a function of our differing schedules).   And I wouldn’t even say I am that GOOD at the game.   I don’t score the most “kills” when the Brothers Geek do play together.  I die consistently more than my brothers.  I don’t have the best armor in the game or the best weapons.  I have never even been inside the Raids.

Is this addiction?  Is it merely compulsion?  I can’t just be that.  I don’t get a dopamine hit every time I play.  Is this why people play golf?  No one will ever be as good as Tiger was, likely ever again.  No golfer can honestly think they will be.  But they still do it.  They find joy in the attempt to push themselves to swing just a little bit better.   So that might be it.  I have had just enough success to keep me coming back. I have enough good swings to make the next round worth it.  The next round, I’ll hit further and I won’t just par the hole, I’ll birdie it.

Or I just gave up and needed to contribute to the Podcast more.

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Episode Twenty three: Do the Fremen celebrate Christmas?

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Discussed:

Our collective Man-Crush Benedict Cumberbatch will be Doctor Strange.  He’s never bad and usually extremely good in everything.  We approve.

Marvel projects on Netflix will be abundant.  Is over saturation approaching?

“Terminator:Genisys” trailer debuts.  It has a unpronounce-able name, a crusty old Arnold and Daenerys Targaryen with brown hair.  We remain skeptical.

Correction: Andrew identified the “not ugly” woman in “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” as Eliza Taylor when in fact her name is Teresa Palmer.
Seen:
Comic Book show Mid-season finales are discussed in detail.  Some are stronger than others, however, we remain hopeful for all.  Patrick continues his Netflix/Anime trek and reports on “Sword Art Online”. Christopher and Andrew are intrigued.

Read:
Patrick finishes “Dune”.  It’s amazing.  He will continue the series.  He has started “Storm Front” on his Audible app.
Christopher is current with “Batman: Eternal”.  It has become an act of will.
Andrew read Invincible #15. Battle Beast returns and he remains bat-sh*t.

Played:
Christopher has level capped his “main” on WoW.  He is enjoying building his garrison.  He has followers.  It’s all terribly MMO-ey.
All the Boys play “The Dark Below”, “Destiny’s” first expansion.  We are enjoying the new content.  The Quest missions are challenging.
Patrick describes the new raid, Crota’s End.  The words “insane”, “hard”, and “fun” are all used in different combinations.
Trivia:
Name the highest grossing “Christmas” film ever and it’s box office take.

The Boys are nowhere close.

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Watch Patrick Play Destiny!

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Patrick plays Destiny with his Friends, you can watch live, or watch past Broadcasts. Patrick is still new to this, so pardon the strange length of some Videos.

Also visit his Channel on Youtube to watch more Videos, Should publish more soon!

https://www.youtube.com/user/washburn300/feed

http://www.twitch.tv/washburn300

My Latest Video

 

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Back to Skyrim

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By Patrick Schmaltz ( 7-16-14)

Here I am back to Skyrim. Sometimes I just get a hankering for some Role Playing, and I have to play something. All roads lead back to Skyrim I have played it 200 hours already and beaten everything there is to beat. My character was maxed out, or so I thought. I read somewhere that you can “Legendary” skills that are 100 and they reset to 15 and you get the skill points back, and you will level up more. Well that sucks and is awesome. I have been running around all this time not really leveling when I could have and now there isn’t much left to do. Except find EVERY dungeon, and do EVERY side quest.

I really do love this game. I thought about starting a new character and then I realized that I would just make the same character I had now. You can really get ALL the classes in one character. Warrior, heavy armor and two handed weapon. Sneaky archer, leather armor with bows and sneaky skills. All skills can be improved just by switching your equipment. Then there is the magic, which is broken in my book. You get to a point where weapon damage ei, sword, bow, hammer, axe, far out deal the magic damage. Why you ask? Two enchants to armor that make you deal more weapon damage and decrease spell magic cost. An example of this is having an enchant that will increase weapon damage by 20% on your chest piece. In combination of enchanting and Black Smithing and alchemy you can increase this number. But you can not increase spell damage.

There is no Spell Damage Increase. Sure in the Dragonborn expansion, they added enchants to some special items that increase the damage to fire spells. (Ahzidal Mask) You can’t take this enchant off and apply it to all your armor, actually leveling the playing field between weapon damage and magic, so in my mind it is still broken. Side gripe, you put so much enchants on your armor at one point that spells effectively cost you nothing to cast. ( -100% destruction spell cost) Then what the hell was the point of putting points into Magic when I leveled up?! I could have put those points into Health and stamina, and not wasted them. True in the beginning you need them until your enchanting is high enough, but this just makes those points spent useless, and gone forever.

My character is so powerful now that it doesn’t really matter. I can one shot most things, and have enchanted rings and necklaces that make it so depending on what enemy I am fighting they won’t hurt me. I will go into greater detail about my Skyrim Characters Stats another time. (Note playing on Xbox 360)

 

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