Friday, April 19, 2013

Dragon's Awakening

Dragon's Awakening is a variation of two different events and I have to say it's pretty interesting. Rage of Bahamut combined the standard raid event with a grow your pet event. So, what to do?

Raid Aspect

The raiding is the core aspect of this event. This means that the best way to do well is to purchase raider cards. The additional damage they do just can't be understated. Ideally you will stack three of them and participate heavily. This will normally be enough to net a nice reward.

Donation Aspect

The secondary aspect of course is feeding your dragon for rewards. The items you feed the dragon can be anything from your normal rares/hr sitting around to the random event cards and berries that appear. The key though is you'll be actively donating.

The Cycle

The interesting part of this event and what I want to touch on most is the flow/cycle. This event is tailored to help get rid of some of excess cards on the market and help the economy (now it won't really work but I'm not going to spend time discussing it here) as well as allow people to feel like they are getting something while doing it.

A player will begin by going through quests which will lead to downing raid bosses. After these two tasks are done the player will figure out what to donate to their dragon and do so. Now the fun part here is the player will then have (hopefully) shards/rewards that give them the ability to go through another series of quests and raid bosses to get more stuff to donate to their dragon.

The reason I like this shift is that this extra stage not only helps newer players contribute but it also offers a longer period of entertainment per session. This may be annoying for some who just want to log on and get their stuff done before logging off (me) but it's really enjoyable for new players, and if there's one thing the game needs its a stream of new players.

  • Don't waste HP buying cards to donate. I know it's the purpose of the event but realistically you're not likely to get ahead that way when you could do missions and battle raid bosses with that HP.
  • Get Raider Cards ASAP. They may sell for a lot at the start but the time you spend using them and the HP you save is increased the longer you have one.
  • Help by attacking your Order's bosses.
  • Events like this are a great time to skill up cards.
  • Events like this are a great way for newbies to stockpile rupies.
  • Have fun and try not to play until you burn out.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Farming Games

So, I have a friend who really enjoys Farming Games. Of course it's a girl and she pointed out immediately to me how TCGs were an equally pointless and time wasters. Of course I pointed out to her how at least what I played had competitions.

Now, I'm not one to Judge, unless you think any (main) Final Fantasy after X was decent, then you're a naive twat with no sense of good storytelling and gameplay who only has a hard on for graphics. But, I would say that TCGs are significantly more interesting than farming games.

Farming games generally are purely single player with no interaction where you plant, plant, plant, log. Then you come back four hours later, see your crops grow and click harvest, harvest, harvest, sell, sell, sell, plant, plant, plant, log. But this cycle is the same, constantly.

It's the equivalent of playing Rage of Bahamut for the quests. Nobody is going to sit there running 4-4 over and over again as an entire game.

Maybe somebody can explain it to me, but I don't see why anybody would want to play a farming game. There is no depth, no events, no competition. Your competition is literally who can grow the most wheat? The sheer premise of a farming game standing on its own is absurd to me.

How we can make "farming" work

Now, I'm not anti-farming. I'm just anti-farming as an ENTIRE GAME. If in Rage of Bahamut I could plant seeds that grow HP for me, I would do it, and I think that's the key to farming in games.

I feel that farming makes a lot of sense when you are farming for a resource you can use. It also gives players something extra to do during there downtime. The biggest problem with farming games is you're farming for the sake of farming. You get wheat to sell to buy seeds to get more wheat to sell.

But if your Guild in Rage of Bahamut had a communal farm where players could daily come and plant and tend for a communal HP or something, that would be interesting. Is this a perfect idea? No. But it's a start, and I'm sure several people are already intrigued at the concept.

World of Warcraft even introduced the farming aspect of their game in Mists of Pandaria. Overall, the idea of merging the 'farm' aspect of games into another, makes both types of game a bit stronger. Ultimately, Rage of Bahamut (as well as other mobile games) could benefit greatly by absorbing other concepts into themselves.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Pirate this serious?

I downloaded a game called Pirate Maidens to begin with...knowing full well it was. For work I need to be well versed in a huge variety of mobile games. And when I come across a game with a name like Pirate Maidens...I just can't not download it.

Now, I'll begin by saying...this just isn't a good game. I didn't expect it to be. The reason I felt like talking about it though, is it did make me laugh my ass off, and it did have some neat aspects.

So, what about it made me laugh?

Pirate Maidens is about collecting scantly clad female pirate cards. Obviously the game is designed around the titillation. So, when I collected the first card and there was an option to click a button and hear the character describe themselves, I cracked up. That's right, when you collect a card, you click a button and (In Japanese) the card tells their story.

I couldn't help but think to myself...some game developer decided that hiring voice actors to say the dialog for each of the cards was going to be the ticket that made this game a winner! I actually called my fiance over laughing to say 'hey, hey, look at this', and she was cracking up.

So, maybe the feature does its job, because I wouldn't even be talking about Pirate Maidens if it wasn't for that feature.

The game doesn't do everything bad

Pirate Maidens actually put a lot of effort into trying to build a story around the game. Of course, any story is weakened when being told by big breasted pirate women. But, I felt it was interesting that in their story mode, they actually decided to have a story, which is something to applaud.

Another feature I thought was interesting was that occasionally a pirate NPC would pop up and you'd battle them. After beating them you had the option to try to convince them to join your crew. You could use an item for 100% chance of winning them over, or you could take the 10% chance you seem to have to get them. Still pretty neat though.

What they should have done

Had they taken an approach of have a pirates vs marines vs merchants type scenario and had male and female pirates/marines/merchants as well as monsters they might actually be a competitor. People love pirate stuff like they love ninja stuff and fantasy stuff.

Now, it's easy to look at a game and say what they could do better, but this is one of those rare instances where I look at something and think...seriously? Somebody pitched...lets have a TCG filled with a bunch of ecchi big breasted pirate woman. Then somebody came in and know what would be awesome? Lets have them talk! And then somebody high up said...THAT'S A GREAT IDEA!

And even now, I'm laughing my ass off picturing the meeting where this game got a yes.