Posted in Anxiety, Depression, Game Review, World of Warcraft

Level Scaling Impressions- World of Warcraft Review

Personally, I’ve played World of Warcraft since late Vanilla WoW. To most, that doesn’t mean much, but to us old timers- we know the struggle of finding great tanks, great healers, the best sappers, savvy sheepers, and the horrendous DKP. (-50).

I found myself grinding in holy for my first undead priest to max level because I didn’t know how to quest, or that different specs were substantially better to level with.

I remember needing to get groups for the tough quests, getting into my first guild, starting my own guild, and when Wrath of The Lich King came along, raiding Icecrown Citadel every tuesday night at 7pm PST, for 3-4 hours straight.

I fell in love with bear tanking in late Burning Crusade/early Wrath of The Lich King, so when Cataclysm hit the live servers and bear tanking was broken at end game when our guild was finally ready for it- I quit.

I found myself coming back every expansion, hoping to relive that nostalgia. To get that same giddy feeling with online comrades when finally beating a boss that you’ve all struggled to defeat for weeks.

Every expansion would reignite my love for the game for about a month and when the old feelings didn’t stick, I would sadly go and cancel my account.

I played through Pandaria, (Pandas are my favorite animal, sue me) and although I loved the story, most of the end game was severely lacking with the introduction of LFR loot being damn near identical to guild ran raids.

When I heard that the same level scaling tech that was released in legion was coming out across all previous content, I immediately hit subscribe and tried it out.

Before level scaling, even without Bind on Account gear, you would find yourself outleveling zones. You would always be forced out of a cool quest line or zone due to the lack of experience or rewards via green/grey quests. The mobs were easily killed in any specialization, and dungeons could have everything be pulled from the entrance to a boss and AoE’d down.

When I finished all of Tirisfal Glades since the level scaling tech was patched in: mobs were still doing decent damage, all quest rewards were decently helpful, rare spawns took a big chunk of health if not geared or prepared to engage with, and I was never penalized for doing every-single-quest.

I finished an entire zone and found myself loving the ride of the grind whereas before I was hating nearly every second of the leveling process.

With that zone done, I moved down into Silverpine Forest. I felt an immediate hatred for Garrosh, a kinship with Sylvanas, and a general dislike for Worgen kind.

Again- I rushed through the entire zone not because I wanted to level quickly, rather I wanted to see how the story would play out. I was intrigued throughout the leveling process of the entire zone. Every quest felt like it was suppose to be done at my level EVEN WITH BOA GEAR!

I went to Hillsbrad, where I was surprised to see that The Forsaken had dominated the zone which had been so scary for horde to wander around in previous expansions. Lore that I had never experienced before because I could camp in a major city and dungeon my way to max level in a matter of days was being experienced by me, just like the old days.

There was even a quest to kill a giant Yeti, where I had to hit up general chat to look for others that were also struggling to kill him.

Every zone from there on out, I’ve completed fully. By the time I hit level 61, I found myself saddened to leave Azeroth for Northrend/Outland. (Yeah, you can pick which expansion you’d like to go through).

My husband would hear tales of my adventures when he would get off of work and decided to create a character with me, and we’ve been leveling together since.

I can’t stress enough how cool it was to have him come to Northrend with me for the first time. To have him experience the lore and the quests that I fell in love with as a teenager. To have him engage in jousting via Trial of The Champion dungeon.

To experience everything the way it was suppose to be. The way I used to. The nostalgia has stood with me, and I don’t know if that’s necessarily a good or bad thing yet. 😉

However, level scaling has gotten my husband into World of Warcraft. It’s gotten him to fall in love with dungeons, quests, factions, lore, and zones. To actually appreciate them for what they are: works of art.

My hope is that you take some time to give it a shot yourself, and we see you in game, whether you are For The Horde like us, or you are For The Alliance and we engage in the battlefield.

My hope is that level scaling in this game has made you as happy as it has made us.

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Posted in Dead By Daylight, Game Review

Review – Dead by Daylight – Current State

This is an update to the Dead by Daylight Review as of March 23, 2018.

The game has come a long way since I first posted about it many months ago!

So, where do we start?

Matchmaking has been updated severely. You now get placed into a match with survivors and killers being relatively the same rank as one another. Occassionally the game will place you with someone who is higher rank than you, but their countermeasure for this is to place someone at a lower rank than you to cause an average equal to yours. For instance, if someone is a rank 1 survivor, and you are a rank 10 killer, then they would most likely place some rank 10’s in there with a newer player to make the average closer to your rank.
Maths example: 1+10+10+20 / 4 = 10.25

This has resolved my biggest frustration of the game, which was getting qued against players who were simply much better than you. It help eliminate the “what am I doing” phase, and enables you to learn at a decent pace what works/doesn’t.

In regards to “leavers/disconnecters”, the developers have taken a stance that if someone is going to “DC” that often then they probably shouldn’t be playing this game at all anymore. If someone has a DC or rage quitting ratio then they are flagged, investigated, and banned.

On the same topic, those who disconnect now get nothing. No points, no shards, nothing. If a survivor disconnects, not only do they get nothing, but they lose their items and offering used for the match; killers also receive a blood point bonus and additional scoring points when a survivor disconnects.

When a killer disconnects, all survivors are suppose to keep their items and collect their blood points that they accumulated up until the point of the disconnection. This does not always happen, and survivors can potentially lose an item, an offering, a rank, or any combination of the three.

 

That being said, it brings me to one of the biggest issues this game has at the moment:

Killers being weaker than Survivors.

While that may seem like an odd statement, it is entirely true and factual. Survivors have taken on the general attitude of teabagging, looping, flashlighting, decisive striking, and more. While these are their main goals of the game, the combination of these on survivors makes it rather frustrating to play killers, especially when learning how to play a newer killer or if you are simply an inexperienced player matched with a higher skilled individual. (which doesn’t happen all the time I might add)

In my opinion, it’s the cause of the attitude of survivors which causes the frustration of killers like myself to want to rage quit. Rather than accepting that they are better, or more skilled, they can hold the match hostage by not escaping, run circles around bad killers by juking, loop through three or more pallets and then disappear, and the kicker: if you actually manage to hook or sacrifice one of these players- they resort to name calling and racial slurs. On the flipside to that, if you don’t manage to kill anyone because of the reasons stated above, many survivors will throw out a “noob killer” to stroke their ego.

All of that being said, it doesn’t happen all of the time, and the developers do have a nifty report feature at the end of the game where you can let them know who is being stupid and for what reason. More use of this could actually result in some of the more hostile and toxic members of the community being removed or dealt with.

All in all, the game has continued to make a positive advancement, and the developers are taking the steps they need to in order to make the game more appealing for all. Whether that be through tutorials being added soon, character customization options, purchasing dlc with in game currency, or weeding out the toxic players.

 

I still can’t recommend this game enough.

Posted in Dead By Daylight, Game Review

Review of “Dead By Daylight” – PS4

My first experience of this game was sitting my by bed, surrounded by darkness, with my face illuminated as I watched Jesse Cox and his friends run around as a killer, murdering the survivors and wiggling free from the killers grasp.
Initially it had me giggling, and it seemed fun, probably due to the group of friends joking together and playing around, even though the situation is literally playing with the idea of someone playing as a slasher psycho from some sort of horror movie.

I had talked to my husband and my sister periodically about the game since seeing the video, and we’ve investigated reviews little by little on YouTube.

Yesterday, my husband and I decided that we would purchase the game, and in order to convince my sister, I brought it to her house for her to give it a shot.

We took turns, lurking in the brush, hiding amongst the trees; it wasn’t long before we were screaming at the television, running away from a man with a chainsaw, or a madman doctor that kept electrocuting us.

We decided immediately that we were both hooked and as the night started, and all four of our consoles were ready, we logged into the game.

 

The Concept:

The general idea is good versus evil. A group of up to four campers are placed around the map with the goal of repairing three or more generators. Once the required number of generators are repaired, two exits are added to the map – one on either side. A small twist however, is that a survivor must channel opening the door via a button or lever system directly next to the exit. Once channeled, the door is open for any survivor to run past and leave the zone, unable to return, but given points for surviving the encounter and the ability to keep the items they found or started with.

While all of that is going on, you are placed in the map with someone playing as the killer. The killer is unknown to the group of survivors until they are met on the map face to face. The killer is unable to be destroyed, but generally moves slower than survivors. Especially when it comes to the drop-able barriers, and moving through windows or jumping over fallen logs. The killer is a being with one motivation, to please the “Entity” by killing all survivors. Generally each survivor has about 2 hit points. Getting struck once drops you down to one health, which causes you to bleed, stumble, and/or run slower than normal. The injured survivor also breathes louder and grunts in pain in this state. Once survivors are struck in this state, they are dropped onto their stomachs with essentially “0” hit points, crawling for their lives.

If another player manages to get to them before the killer picks them up, the crawling survivor is then able to hobble as if they had 1 health again. However, if the killer picks up a near death survivor, they are able to hoist their bodies onto one of many hooks stationed throughout the map. Survivors are then given a slowly depleting health bar that once depleted- they are immediately “sacrificed” and removed from the map.

Survivors can get to an ally and remove them from the hook, giving them the chance to hobble away as if they once again had “1 hit point”.

There are things in the game such as med kits, and toolboxes which make healing an option for injured survivors and speeds up the process on repairing generators.

 

There are also many…MANY…”perks” or abilities you can equip on killers and survivors, in order to customize the way you would like to play the game. Whether given the ability to see allies through walls, run faster to escape the killer, or to instantly kill crawling survivors without the need of placing them on a hook.

Dead by Daylight has a selection of survivors available, each with their own talents and traits; in addition to a variety of killers which increase the replay value of the game immensely. Add in to the fact that their are MANY maps, which make learning the ins and outs of each map (hiding locations, generator locations, things to jump over and walls to place) every game quickly ends up feeling relatively unique to the previous ones played.

However, there are some issues with the game itself that can affect the “fun” aspect of Dead by Daylight.

Dead by Daylight has some seriously annoying coop play. You can go into the mode of “Kill Your Friends” which allows you to select one of your friends to be the killer while the others are survivors. An annoyance is that there is no tutorial that shows you how to switch between the roles, so my family of four kept leaving in between matches to open up a new lobby started by the player that wanted to be the killer.We learned after days of playing that when in that game mode you can select the “spectator” button, which immediately turns into the “killer” button. You can only change in between the three rolls, in that exact order. The game can bug when doing this, thinking there are two killers. It will let you start a match, but it has glitched and crashed the game every time we did it this way.

Dead by Daylight doesn’t let you gain “bloodpoints” when you play in the “Kill Your Friends” mode. This is rather frustrating because you can spend hours playing with friends, only to gain nothing for your games against random players in a public lobby.

Another frustration is that if you decide to choose the “Survive With Friends” game mode, up to 4 players are put into a group, then put into matchmaking. The most irritating thing about this, is that the matchmaking system does not seem to place you with people around the same skill level as you. Nor are you placed with people about the same level. We were constantly grouped with killers that were level 20 or higher, and had a HUGE advantage over us, which was even more annoying because most of our matches were played together, so we didn’t get the “experience” or “bloodpoints” to use in multiplayer. Then you have to add on the fact that there are NOT a lot of people wanting to play as the killer (for various reasons, some were similar to the complaints above- just revered for the killers Point of View) so we waited for 10 minutes at nearly every attempt to play in the “Survive With Friends” game mode.

The game has a decent connection at almost every attempt to play, and we barely deal with disconnects. However, there is a huge problem with a killer leaving if you are decent at hiding. It is extremely unfair that when a survivor leaves the game or disconnects, the killer gets a bonus to their score/experience. If a killer leaves, you “disconnect from host” and get nothing. No experience. No “Bloodpoints”. No score. Nothing.

 

All of the complaints aside- we spend hours playing this game, shrieking over our headsets because the thumping heartbeat when a killer is nearby, the exploding hag traps that pop out at you, the crazy chainsaw wielding hillbilly, teleporting nurse, and doctor that makes you hallucinate causes us to nearly crap ourselves. You are on a  constant adrenaline high, hiding from a killer, trying not to attract the killer while repairing generators, helping caught allies, and screaming for help when you are on a hook and about to die.

This game, for the price of $29.99 was definitely one of the better purchases we have ever made on the PlayStation 4. We have gotten hours of entertainment that never feels entirely boring, and even though there are bugs periodically that cause you to crash, and the matchmaking is entirely frustrating at times, you can barely ever stop the adrenaline coursing through your brain.

Every game leaves you in that fearful sweat or that intense level of focus as you are running through cornstalks, attempting to evade a man wielding bear traps.

I simply cannot recommend this game enough, and you can bet your ass we will be buying the Halloween DLC that adds “The Shape” (Micheal Myers from Halloween) killer to the fray.

If you are a horror buff or an adrenaline junkie, or simply love to goof off with friends, buy the game. Perhaps we will see you and scream for our lives together. Perhaps we will piss our pants at the same time. Perhaps you may be on the bloody end of our claws as we chase you through the night.

There is a lot I didn’t talk about in this game but rather than spoiling all of the content, I firmly believe you should buy this game and give it your best shot. With an open mind, you won’t be disappointed.

(Note- the hit point references are not a real thing, but some people understand when numbers are used, so THAT’S why it’s in here 😉 )

Buy for Xbox:
http://www.gamestop.com/xbox-one/games/dead-by-daylight/147923

Buy for PlayStation:
https://www.playstation.com/en-us/games/dead-by-daylight-ps4/

Buy for PC:
http://store.steampowered.com/app/381210/agecheck