First up was Allods. That was neither alphabetical nor random. It was because, while I was choosing screenshots for yesterday's post, I came across a bunch of shots and it reminded me just how beautiful a game it is. With such great art design, rich with visual wit and flourish, plus very solid gameplay, unusual and appealing races, interesting classes and an all-round high level of polish I'm at a loss to explain either why Allods hasn't been more successful or indeed why I haven't played it more than I have.
I'm in a bit of a mess with Allods as it happens. I can't recall my old account details so I'm stuck with just the fresh account I set up to try the new starting zone. That I mostly played on my Windows 10 Tablet, where it works very well, but I very soon realized I don't want to play games in my lunch-break. I'd much rather read.
That's probably why, rather than just patch, the MY.com Games launcher decided to download the entire game to my PC. I didn't specifically use the launcher but it decided to get in on the act anyway.
This trend towards Launchers that supposedly manage updates for a company's full portfolio of games is very trying. SOE spent many years fiddling around with the concept and it never really worked better than just patching the games individually. Daybreak Games seem to have loosened up on that somewhat. There is still some kind of underlying unified launcher but I have all the individual game icons on my desktop and clicking those seems to start the update and log-in process just fine.
Trion has Glyph. What used to be Perfect World (and for all I know may still be Perfect World to the financial regulators) has ARC. Blizzard has BattleNet and so on. If it's supposed to make things easier...well it doesn't.
After Allods I patched WildStar, which went very smoothly, and then A Mystical Land aka Villagers and Heroes. That also took just a few minutes. I see from their launcher that they've had a level cap rise and added a new zone among other things. I wonder how my sheep is. Dead, probably.
There was a time earlier this year when I was playing EQ quite regularly. Then I changed my All Access membership to the account where my EQ2 Berserker lives and that left the EQ character I was working on, my Magician, stranded on F2P. Well, legacy Silver, but it still locked her out of all the Double XP weekends that would have motivated me to log her in.
At least she's patched up and ready should a window of opportunity arise. I still harbor a theoretical desire to get her to 100 some day, even though the cap has moved past even that landmark now. And speaking of Landmark...
That's what I patched next. I'd been thinking about good old Landmark even before Tipa jogged my memory but I probably wouldn't have done anything about it. Given the total radio silence on the game for most of this year I didn't really expect it would need to patch but it downloaded almost 2GB of something. That sent me to the forums to check the Update Notes but I couldn't see that anything new had been added.
I did, however, find this news posted by Darrin "Talisker" McPherson just a week ago. Well, I call it "news". It's more like news that there might be news.
I'll get the details out to you all soon, but expect some new initiatives, team-up builds and changes to the adventuring side of things. Lets build some content together!I have no idea what that means but at least it's some sign of life.
Elder Scrolls Online came next. It set off at a furious pace as it downloaded a vast pile of files but it soon ground almost to a halt when I tried to save some time by patching Star Trek Online and Neverwinter on top.
They both use the aforementioned ARC portal these days and that didn't recognize either of my existing passwords. Resetting them was simple and both games patched at blistering speeds, apparently at the expense of ESO, which ground almost to a halt. There were several gigabytes of updates for both STO and NWO but together they were done in a few minutes. ESO is still patching as I write, well over an hour later.
That, really, is how I came to write this post. Something to do while ESO is patching. I thought I'd better not try any more until it finishes. It seems to be having hard enough time as it is.
Still to come I can see Rift and Trove (well, I can see Glyph but same difference), Dragon Nest Oracle, ArcheAge, DinoStorm and Lord of the Rings Online. Dragon Nest I actually do want to get back to playing. I was enjoying that one. Rift I've been having weird pangs over. I thought I was done with it for good but perhaps not quite yet. ArcheAge I always meant to get back to someday and DinoStorm I always do go back to, usually late at night on a whim.
And LotRO? Well it's always there, although some of the numbers Ravanel mentions in her recent post make me wonder for how much longer. LotRO has always been a nightmare to patch so I'm leaving it til last.
I tried to limit myself to MMOs I have at least a glancing blow's chance of playing in the next month or three, although by "playing" I really mean logging in, looking at my inventory, wandering around the main city for a few minutes and logging off again. That still leaves a few icons on my desktop that go to MMOs I really can't see myself getting back to any time soon - Istaria, Eldevin, Ryzom - although even though as I type those names I can feel interest stirring anew.
There's also City of Steam, which, being browser-based, doesn't need a specific update and whose main storyline I am determined to finish before they finally shut the servers down, assuming they haven't already - I didn't check. Then, naturally, while patching I saw at least two newish MMOs I hadn't previously heard of that I almost began downloading and as I write I've thought of another four or five that I thought I had installed but which don't seem to have desktop presence any more.
Enough! That way madness lies. And ESO is at 75% now. By the time I choose some screenshots and a title it should be done.