Tuesday, November 21, 2023

The First Thirty Seconds Are Pretty Good...

I'm always saying I wish I could write shorter posts. Well, here's one.

It's a First Impressions piece on a new MMORPG-related game. It would be a much longer post if could play more than thirty seconds at a stretch. 

So far that's all I've managed. 

It's not because the game's difficult. It's not difficult at all. 

It's because it keeps crashing.

It's probably my fault. I'm not playing the game in the way it's intended. 

It's a mobile title, available for Android and iOS. I'm playing it on PC, using Bluestacks

It installs normally. It starts up just fine.

Every time I play I get a couple of fights in or I open my bags or I click on a reward and the whole thing freezes.

It's frustrating. It looks like it might be fun. 

From the little I've seen (The first three fights, mostly; the map up to what you could think of as the second screen) the mechanics are simple but satisfying. 

It feels good to play. Just not for long.

Gameplay is simple. It's just as well.

There seem to be absolutely no instructions at all. 

No tutorial, no tool-tips, no cut scenes, no explanatory notes. It just... starts.

The PC controls on Bluestacks work well. Your character follows the mouse pointer as you drag it. 

You click on two buttons (A sword for melee, a pistol for range.) to fight. 

To do everything else, you click on a Backpack icon to open a menu. Rewards, quests, level-ups and so on. 

Clicking stuff there is what caused most of my crashes.

I'd stop clicking there but it's hard to avoid. The fighting is sedate and steady but the rewards you get for doing it are manic. 

Mobile games seem to thrive on hurling rewards and power-ups at you. This one's no exception.

I'm guessing it must either slow down eventually or start costing money but it's only a guess. I can't keep the game going for long enough to find out. 

I think I started it seven or eight times before I gave up. More, probably. 

I tried different virtual machines, different settings. Nothing made any difference.

I suppose I should try it in NOX, just for the sake of science. Hold on a moment... 

Nope. Crashed there after about ten seconds.

Until I can get the thing to run, I think that's all I have to say about it. 

These are my First Impressions: Might be fun if it worked.

Oh, I suppose I should say what it is. It's Pirate101: Plunder Hunt.

Let me know if you get it to run, won't you?


  1. Pirate 101 is one of those oddball MMOs that I have meaning to do a post about because it's like nothing else I have ever played and I have never seen anyone else cover it in any detail. It is to FF Tactics and Pirates of the Caribbean what Wizard 101 to Magic the Gathering and Harry Potter.

    1. I was going to say there's someone on my blog roll who knows a lot about Pirate 101 but it's Stingite and he already left a comment before I got around to mine. There are a couple of posts here by me about P101 but I never really got on with it like I did with Wizard 101, which Mrs Bhagpuss and I played for a few months once.

      Also, top class analogies there! Spot on.

    2. That was me on my Kindle which is obviously not logged in to Blogger!

  2. Same company that made Wizard 101, I believe. And it was on PC too, now that I think about it.

    I thought Wizard 101 was okay, as far as it went, but you enter into pay-pay-pay territory real fast, and when I cleared it for use with my kids I told them to forget about putting in any money into the game. Just stick to the free areas.

    Then ended up playing LOTRO and SWTOR instead.

    1. When we played we just subscribed. That way it's the same as any subscription mmorpg - you get everything. I don't know if it's different now. In retrospect, I kind of wish we'd bought some of the zones but you're right about that being an expensive way to play. It's a very good game though.

  3. Thanks for posting. I actually had no idea this even existed. I've played it for about 30 minutes now, and I'm thinking every time it's freezing on you, it's actually trying to play you an advertisement and failing. Half of my playtime has been watching ads so far.

    1. I wondered if you might post about it. I read a short news item on MasivelyOP about it or I wouldn't have known about it either. Interesting idea about ads causing the freezes and very plausible. Bluestacks shows ads in a separate panel to the right (which doesn't display in full screen) and I doubt those ads have anything to do with in-game ads. I can see a problem right there.


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