With my gaming time mostly restricted to the weekends these days, I’ve taken to pulling all-night marathons, typically on Saturday nights. Last weekend I clocked a mondo session of Champions Online, for example, and the weekend before it’d been LotRO. Last night, for whatever reason, I didn’t really feel the love for any of the various things I have handy. I dropped into Champions and bought a new set of costume pieces with Lifer points and used it to fill a new costume slot for one character. I dropped into LotRO and bought two skirmishes (which are currently on sale,) and ran one of them (Stand at Amon Sul.) But I just didn’t feel like sticking it out in either game for the rest of the night.
Part of the problem was that on Friday night I’d spent probably an hour and a half watching YouTube videos of the new WoW raids. Raiding is something I’ve never really gotten into, having only been to a couple. Watching the new stuff made me interested in seeing that scene. So I reinstalled WoW. I did not actually resubscribe, however – I managed to exert that much willpower.
What I did do was think about games that have a solid dungeon/raiding focus, in addition to being games that I like in other respects. Where I landed was with EQ2X. It’s also occurred to me that while I’ve mildly rebuked EQ2 for the samey-ness of its abilities, I’ve never taken a character who wasn’t a Berserker above about level 15. It’s probably time to remedy that.
Now, EQ2X has several benefits: it’s free, is loaded with content, and judging from the guild recruitment forums, is rife with progression guilds working their way up the raid tiers, and the raids and instances are plentiful indeed. So I suspect I’m going to make an effort to work my way upstairs in that over the next few weekends. We’ll see how long it lasts.
A number of significant changes have hapenned in EQ2X since I drifted away from it some months back. Many of the most pressing issues regarding the limitations on free players have been addressed by making fixes for those limitations available through the store. A lot of the prices, particularly on bags, classes and character slots remain high, and buying bag slots in particular seems like a pricey option, since they’re only good for the character you buy them on, rather than being account-wide as they are in LotRO. With humongous bags being available to fill your existing slots, though, this strikes me as not too prohibitive a stricture.
The prices on character slots, races and classes seem to discourage the playing of alts, something EQ2 has always had an odd relationship with. The game has a much larger selection of races and classes (and content) than many other games, but has always offered a weirdly small number of character slots. Since I tend to have a problem with altitis anyway, this could help to narrow my focus a bit. So I plan to pick one character and work on him exclusively. Right now that may be a Warlock or it may be a Tamplar.
One sticking point is going to be how SOE will introduce Destiny of Velious content to EQ2X when it’s released. Right now Sentinel’s Fate, along with leveling from 81-90, costs $40 to unlock in the game’s cash shop. When DoV comes out, will this be rolled into the base free package? Or will you have to drop $40 for SF and $40 for DoV when both are available? we should know pretty soon, as DoV is scheduled to drop before the end of the month, but having to buy both will definitely put a damper on my willingness to seriously pursue EQ2X into the endgame. It may also push me back to Live, where I have a character sitting at level 50, but where the population is very ripe. So right now, let’s say I’m exploring.