Archive for October 2, 2007

Divide the good from the Bane

October 2, 2007 Comments off

While I did not intend to play that much more in the TR beta before release I did however bring all my alts to the tier 3 classes at least and some a bit further. Of these four classes – biotech, sapper, ranger and commando – I must say I like the biotech best so far. Sapper and ranger share the second place and the commando at third for me.

Since they all are 15+ the place to be at that point is primarily the Concordia Divide, the second zone one will encounter in the game. The initial view of the landscape has a bit of the same lush forest feeling as the Concordia Wilderness, but this changes as one travels further south into a war-torn wasteland.

Lush partsStalker in wasteland

The big centre place in the Divide is the Foreas Base, which is the headquarters here and substantially larger than the previous small outposts that one may have visited. Weapon and armor stores can be found here, a prison, taverna, undergound command centre and a few other things. Dropship and wormhole locations are here as well for travel between zones and interplanetary travel (I assume at least).

Foreas baseDropship

Compared to the Wilderness if feels like the intensity of battle has increased a bit overall. While both Wilderness and Divide zones are not that large in terms of distances and does not project a huge land around you, they do provide a nice setting for a small part of a world that is a bit alive and provides lots of opportunity to run into something around the corner, hiding behind some tree, rocks and other formations.

More than in other MMOGs the enemy may actually spot you first and may not just run blindly towards you to get slaughtered – although they have pets to do the latter. And if you fight a number of them in some area you might find a dropship coming in with more troops to support their comrades. In effect basically respawns, but so much more fitting than mobs just reappearing as in other games.

I like exploring the areas, seeing what is around the corner and worked my way to collect waypoints and Logos. It reminds me a bit of the old days in Star Wars Galaxies exploring some of the planets with my ranger/creature handler, although the encounters are of a different kind typically.

As with the Wilderness, there are control points which the Banse side may conquer and which is under attack. Although for some parts of the Divie, the battle intensity aorund these areas were not that high. Maybe they were on a break?

Purgas control point

The game is not without glitches though, even though some are just a bit funny – such as the head- and armorless shock troopers. A truly shocking appearance 😉

Shock troopers

When the tier 3 selection was reached, I had not completed all WIlderness missions, including the Target of Opportunity mission. This meant that for the clone, that mission was reset to start all over again. This is a bad handling in my opinion. Since a number of the parts of the ToO mission involves killing various things in the Wilderness, that character has to go back if he/she wants to complete it for that character. At this point the character may be a bit high level for much of the Wilderness content and it more turns into a grind for that character and a nuisance for lower level characters – the higher levels come into the areas and kill a lot of what they are hunting and more appropriate for their level. As it is now, if you are lower level try to get into less populated instances of the zone. Higher levels – maybe take a bit easy on the rampage or just ignore the ToO.
Hopefully they can change that to keep a partial state at cloning time at least.

Another problem is the less developed in-game community tools – friend lists, clan tools, chat etc. The current state leaves a lot to be desired and it is quite primitive. They should take a serious look at some other titles published by NCSoft (City of Heroes/Villains) which have much better tools in place.

Problems aside, I have had good fun in the game so far, both solo and in groups. Richard Garriott (General British) also seem to pop in from time to time in game to say a few words of encouragement and the beta servers do have a higher load nowadays (between medium and very high). The game is in as much as “open beta” as it will get now, so if you want a sneak peak at the game now is the time.

I see dead people

Categories: Tabula Rasa

Tabula Rasa release delayed

October 2, 2007 Comments off

NCSoft has pushed the release date for Tabula Rasa from October 19th to November 2nd in order to get some more time for testing and stability of the game. This is a good thing, I think also they could probably have extended that a bit more than 2 weeks. They could probably have pushed it closer to the end of November without putting too much risk for Christmas sales. But some time is better than no time.

The official info can be found here.

Categories: Tabula Rasa