Casualties is playing Order on Badlands and Destruction on Monolith. Last night I played Destruction. I had transferred a few of my older characters over from the old underpopulated server, but this amounted to my rank 9 Black Orc and a whole mess of guys in the 2-4 range. So I did some housecleaning, deleting all the characters on every server but the two mentioned above, and making some fresh ones on the Destro side. Of those, I played two, a Blackguard and a Marauder, getting both to rank 5.
I played for about four hours total. I was queued for scenarios the entire time. And not a single one fired.
Yeah, I enjoyed myself anyway, and maybe last night’s experience wasn’t representative, but when you start to get up into the latter half of Tier 2, doing straight PvE isn’t going to cut it.
Readers may recall that population balance issues were a big part of what soured me on WAR the first time around. It appears that the situation has not been seriously remedied; Either WAR’s queue system is completely broken or Mythic is doing an incredibly poor job managing populations. I kept an eye on Monolith’s population throughout the night, and it never peeked above Low. Clearly, the halfhearted free transfers are not consolidating populations in the way that server merges would, and the population caps on individual servers are too low, leaving only a very narrow band of numbers where all activities are viable.
This is not to say that there aren’t other servers where the action is hopping, but I have little tolerance for this kind of situation; if it doesn’t improve or at least start showing signs of life, I’ll be abandoning Monolith for a better server, preferably one of the RP servers, which tend (over different games) to have both larger and more mature populations.
All this said, Badlands seems much better; Wednesday’s Order experience was positive at least in Tier 1 – Tier 3 seemed fairly empty when I was on, but at least scenarios were firing.
I did like both the Marauder and Blackguard classes – the latter in particular works better for me than any other Dark Elf option, and while I was never a fan of Chaos in the tabletop Warhammer games, I’ve enjoyed playing them in Warhammer Online. The starter zone is one of the better ones in the game and the characters have a cool look to them. I have no affinity for the Magus, but then I’ve never gotten one above rank two or so. Thus far I’ve gotten the Chosen, Marauder and Zealot all to about rank 5 and had a good time with all of them. Since I refuse to play a Goblin and don’t much care for the Dark Elves, this makes Chaos my primary avenue Destro-side.