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 Here we go a demo-ing and a Trial-ing 
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* Spitelord
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Post Here we go a demo-ing and a Trial-ing
Put your reviews/thoughts/gripes about demos and trials, so others can gauge whether or not they need to evaluate new games (especially MMOs) in this forum here.


Mon Sep 03, 2007 1:42 am
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I've been playing Lord of the Rings Online for the past couple of days, and it's pretty satisfactory, so far. From what I can tell you, the first 10 levels or so of the Dwarf start are worth playing through. The humans, not so much. Even at these early levels, there's quite a lot going on. From earning bonuses from completing deeds to titles from doing something odd, there's a lot of information to process. I'll note that while trade skills seem interesting at first, they are decidedly a huge money pit, much like in Dark Age of Camelot (if you're familiar with that one, you'll know what I mean). Best to use it sparingly, or just save it for when you're a high level to twink out your new alt. The big plotlines are resolved with a short cinematic, something I've not seen in other MMOs.

The other downside would be the PvMP system, which isn't really player v player. It's kind of a carebear-style cop-out, really. Once you hit level 10, you can kill 40+ level players on a battlegrounds where you play as a monster spider or orc or worg or whatever. You don't get to actually use all the stats and gizmos and trinkets you've collected to kill other players with your own main. You can go kill the monstering players once YOU hit 40. I'll probably play as a monster sometime before the 7 day trial period ends, and post how that went.


Mon Sep 03, 2007 1:51 am
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Post 
Supreme Commander demo.

Ever since I heard about SupCom, I'm been wanting to play it. I even got into the beta. All worked fine, and I had some fun.

Then, the demo was finally unleashed.

First problem: It requires about 6GB of your hard-drive. The demo is HUGE. However, I managed to download the (1GB!) demo installer, and cleared enough space for the demo.

And all went well. Graphics were all on full, and nothing bad happened.

Then, I made the terrible mistake of building defences. And by "defences", I mean "nearly twenty miles of walls and turrets". And suddenly, it all went horribly wrong.

The game slowed. At first, it was imperceptible. Then, it started getting slower and slower. The only way to solve the slow-down was to turn nearly every setting down. Which was fine, but it removed much of the game's beauty.

I read a review of the game that commented that a PC with the latest graphics card and a dual-core processor ran it, but even that behemoth suffered from slow-down on rare occasions.

If you're interested in SupCom, I would recommend the demo, if only to see if your system can handle it.


Mon Sep 03, 2007 7:23 am
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Post lotro-final opinion
Breaks my heart to say it, but regardless of how well put together Lord of the Rings Online is, it's not very fun. There's enough going on to keep you playing--but only if you're INCREDIBLY BORED. I finally got around to trying the Player v MonsterPlayer today, and even that was fairly disappointing. The battlegrounds are pretty empty. I had a single one-on-one fight, after a couple of hours, and it was a draw. The L50 Loremaster attempted to lure me into the guards at Coldfells, so I took off rather than try to kite him off of them. Here's the main problem with the PvMP system: Everyone plays both sides. The Loremaster actually had to log in to the Monster Play team to apologize for 'accidentally' kiting me to the guards. He couldn't risk being thought of as an asshole by someone he might want to invite him to a Fellowship in the future. There's no rivalry to drive the PvMP. The monsters basically control the whole of the war map, because playing as a monster is a quick way to kill some mobs or hobbit NPCs and rack up some destiny points to spend on their main character.

Utter bullshit. Carebears only need apply.


Fri Sep 07, 2007 2:09 pm
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Post Tabula Rasa
Tabula Rasa is fun.

You have to ignore the long load times, the disconnects, the pauses in action when the game freezes for up to a minute, (my graphics are set to LOW) the lack of ability to respec your abilities, and the Sega Genesis/Super Nintendo level of endless waves of the same. bad. guys. over and over again.

It has a large selection of weaponry and armor.

The abilities are interesting and diverse.

The enemy AI is top-notch.

This game is the new Neocron. Good concept, BAD execution.

I weep that this game is not what it should be. It's still in beta, so say your prayers. If they can smooth out the parts that stick, this is a great game. I'd call it the Halo of MMOs, both in style and enjoyability.

Now, where's the PvP? Because that's going to be a real kick, supposing it HAS PvP...


Mon Sep 17, 2007 7:27 am
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Post Burning Crusade
I activated my 10-day trial of The Burning Crusade expansion of World of Warcraft.

It wasn't my idea.

Life on the Hellfire Peninsula is more or less what you'd expect from Blizzard. Go here, kill that, gather this, and return. They've got a new class of quests called "Daily PvP" that are repeatable every 24 hours. The items dropped and quest rewards are leaps and bounds above the gear you spent so much damn time collecting when you were getting to 60. For three pretty simple quests, I picked up legs, helm and chestplate, all with the stats +19 Agility and +30 Stamina in Mail for my shaman. Pretty decent improvement, considering I did have him running around in Black Dragonscale mail (which, btw, was NOT easy to get).

I've just completed the most fun missions since exploding the Dwarves' flying machine in the South Barrens: an NPC gives me some bombs, and puts me on an armored Wyvern mount. All I do is fly around and drop bombs on stuff. They do massive damage, and I woosh away unharmed. It's really quite amusing, and not much effort was required.

I'll stick with it until the end of the trial period, since I'm enjoying myself, but I'm not fooled. It's still the same game I played for a good two years. I've played it already. It's the game that set an impossibly high standard for other games. But I've still played it.

Developers take note: World of Warcraft and The Burning Crusade is still the game to beat in terms of...well, everything. That is the Gold Standard.


Thu Oct 25, 2007 4:25 am
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Post Damn it (BC review part two)
I've only been at this a few days, and already I feel like I'm likely to keep playing after the trial period is up. It feels pretty good to have an MMO that's interesting and engaging. I've only done some solo questing in here, no PvP or dungeon runs. I'm better than halfway to 61, and enjoying myself quite a bit. I'm quite curious to get my mage at least to level 70, because there's some unique spells between here and there. I quit playing my shaman despite the fact that none of the quest reward gear is all that great for my mage, but it's so much easier to play as one, at least in this area of the game (Hellfire Peninsula). Ugh. Hate run-on sentences. I'm actually regretting a little that for both of my days off this week, my presence has been requested in social situations. Sunday night, I'll be going to Scarowinds and Monday I've been invited to go see 30 Days of Night. That's better than staying home and playing WoW...right?


Fri Oct 26, 2007 12:27 pm
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Post Damn it again.
Can't level up to 61 until I pay for BC. I suppose it's that way to keep someone from Trial-ing it, and then not paying for the expansion, thereby having a level 70 when the level cap for the rest of the game is 60. Fuck. Now I have to choose if I like this thing enough to pay for it or not.


Sun Oct 28, 2007 12:05 pm
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Post WoW 2.3.0 patch notes
Holy Crud.

sunder, you should take a look at this. They didn't add housing, they just added the thing we used most about it: the shared Guild Bank.


Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:11 am
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