Tag Archives: Dark Age of Camelot

Hergthog the Troll Skald is Born

DAOC troll

My new Skald troll Hergthog ready for action

I was perfectly happy trying out instances in DDO, but as I played lately I found out that I really missed Dark Age of Camelot. The Gaheris pve server experiment turned out to be short lived. For a few days, I experimented with a hunter, and though I liked the class, it was just to lonely to try to solo, I gave up after 7 levels because I missed the ability to team up and to talk to other players.

I rerolled a skald troll and on the ywain servers, where I know the b.g.s await and where i can get into some fun and serious grouping. Zergs and PUGs in other games don’t tend to be as friendly or as fun as DAoC, and this time around I plan to spec my toon correctly from now until 50, should I go that far.

I know what awaits me, I have done this before, and I hope to reach max level before the trial ends in 10 days, but it probably won’t happen, I will probably sub to see the journey through. One thing I know, I do not like ToA (Trial of Atlantis) that much, I am not sure that I will go beyond 50, but it remains to be seen. If I am having fun, then maybe. So far I have tried Berskerkers, hunters and skalds and even a bonedancer, all Midgard.

I will document my progress in this latest journey for your amusement. Come back in a few to see how I do and what I discover.

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Treking through Cryptic’s mmo baby one more time

Sorry I have been away so long boys and girls. With grad school quite possibly starting in the fall for me, this has been an incredibly busy time.

Still I have managed to do some occasional sporadic gaming. My friend Mike has got me back into Star Trek Online, and just recently the 14 day re-enlistment trial had me rolling another toon in my favorite game, possibly of all time: Dark Age of Camelot.

Yet, I have blogged about DAoC quite a bit in the past, so I will save that for another day because I want to start focusing on STO. In STO, being now f2p, for some time, I have a very addicting game, especially if you are a fan of the Trek universe and lore, which I am, and with it, I found a willing playing partner, as Mike seems to be thoroughly addicted to the wonders of it himself.

This was a game I never considered getting back into, mostly because I thought the requirements on my vid card would not support it, and I would have to wait to play it until my computer upgrades, but I was wrong, it runs just fine with default or lowered settings and in windowed mode.

So if you never played STO before, I have to warn you, you may get a thrill when you first see your character traverse through his first starship. I rolled an Andorian (don’t ask me why, always liked that race of Trek aliens) and lacking any imagination whatsover, I called him Jack O’Lantern.

Ensign Lantern first entered the world aboard the U.S.S. Summers (named after a certain heroine of fiction who slayed vamps like no other) and he single handedly defended the vessel against a Borg attack!

star trek online opening mission

Star trek Online's opening mission is a satisfying thrill

Yes I did have a nerdgasm when I walked onto the bridge, and seeing that Borg cube on the viewscreen. Apparently in this version of the Trek universe, the Klingons are at war with the federation and the Borg have redeployed themselves, and it’s some new strand of Borg clone, don’t ask me, I was paying more attention to the pretty visuals than to the storyline.

And so I was having a lot of fun, until low and behold, there was space combat! Yet it was time to take over as acting captain of the U.S.S. Summers, under a full blown Borg attack and defend her against the scourge of the galaxy. This is where at first the fun slowed to a crawl, because space combat and maneuvering of your vessel takes some practice, it’s not something you easily pick up. well it might be something you easily pick up, but I was pretty baffled by it at first.

Somehow, I managed to get through the combat tutorial, just as I was starting to get frustrated over the fact I kept overshooting asteroids on my way to rendevouz with another of stafleet’s finest.

Oh I should probably mention that in this game, you go up in rank as you experience and as you do and play the game more, you build together a crew, so after the first mission I got my very first crewmember, whom I named Lil bit in honor of Buffy’s little sis. Her full name was Dawn Bratty, but ‘lil bit for short. I think I will just keep giving my characters Buffy allusions, because it’s a fun little game within the game I like to play. Hey don’t judge me, could have been worse, I could have picked more arcane nomenclatures. But I digress…

I recall the knock on this game upon release a few years back was the lack of a Klingon campaign and the lack of any enjoyable quests. That and the fact it didn’t feel like Star Trek. I don’t really know what people meant by that, this game sure feels like Trek to me, right down to the technical babble and iconic imagery, though I read that there have been many changes, additions and improvements since launch.

It sure does feel like this game has been improved. I had a lot of fun playing, will I be going where a lot of players have gone before for the long term? Well, I don’t see this game becoming my main mmorpg or even main game of choice, but I do feel it has staying power.  A quality no one could ever accuse Trek of lacking.

Your turn: Do you play STO? If so what are it’s best features? What are the most fun classes to play and why?

What can the developers do to improve the game if anything? Why haven’t I ran into commander Data yet?

andorian toonstar trek captain

It sure looks peaceful from this perspective, but trust me there was a full blown battle with the Borg raging in the background.

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Warhammer online latest MMORPG to cross my path

fighting mobs in WAR

I made a few kills myself with my ugly pet thing

dying in WAR is no fun

though in the beginning my toon was mostly dying

The year was 2008. Fall of 2008 to be exact and I remember playing wow and highly anticipating a much hyped new mmorpg in the fantasy genre. It was Mythic’s Warhammer online, based on the popular Warhammer franchise of games. Yet, the game’s launch came and went and I never played the game, until now three years later.

What happened? Well, part of it was my system, I didn’t believe I could run the game with my cheap integrated graphics card, and part was economics: the game shipped with a hefty $50 or $60 price tag and at the time, I did not see myself justifying the cost of another game, when I was already playing wow and paying for wow.

So I read about the game on PC Gamer magazine, even planted a little mini poster in my home office wall. The game launched in September and got mixed reviews, some thought that Mythic made a huge mistake by not employing DAoC’s old tried and true formula of a 3 factioin RvR.

So when I recently could not make up my mind about which retro MMORPG to continue playing, when I was considering resubbing my DAoC account. lo and behold at the Mythic website I was staring at WAR….hmm….a chance to try their endless trial? A second chance to try the shiny new mmorpg I never played back in the fall of ’08. I did. I will give you my impressions on it when I am a bit deeper into the game.

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Can noobs survive in the world of retro mmos?

Dark Age of Camelor gameplay
battling mobs in Dark Age of Camelot is more fun in a group

“The legendary learning curves of yesterday’s MMOs have been severely smoothed in the post-World of Warcraft era….”

So begins an intriguing article by Sean Kavanagh on a new player’s perspective while playing an older mmo detailed in the September/October edition of Beckett’s Massive Online Gamer magazine. I’m not going to spoil the article for you guys, but suffice it to say that Kavanagh’s premise that gamers can actually enjoy a classic mmo experience (in his case adventuring through 1999’s Asheron’s Call) is a valid one.

I found this article interesting because I have come to the same conclusion playing Dark Age of Camelot, a game which along with Ultima Online and Everquest, is probably as classic in the mmo genre as you’re likely to get without going as far back as the graphical MUD days in which some of the conventions now associated with the genre were not yet invented.

The interesting thing is that I myself rolled a toon in AC not too long ago, only in my case it wasn’t a low population that turned me off the game, but I just could not get used to the graphics. As Kavanagh points out in his piece, a game like Asheron’s Call is no match visually for a modern mmo theme park like RIFT, but if you can get past the limitations of playing in a world whose graphic engine hasn’t been updated for several years, you can get some excitement out of the unique features the game has to offer. I experienced one of those features right off the bat on my first night adventuring through the game’s open ended world.

I was befriended by a long time player who agreed to be my patron and I bound allegiance to his character. This was a cool thing, but I must admit to having been perplexed by the myriad of buffs, spells and gear I was given in order to advance my noobish character. Even with the extra help, I just could not stomach those ancient graphics, Dark Age of Camelot has been an entirely different story.

That is not to say that there aren’t some things which newer MMOs have taken from a game like AC and improved upon. The interface isn’t as polished, for example, and it is true that the learning curve for this game is higher than other games, but someone willing to put in the time can get much enjoyment out of it. Turbine still updates the game and  continues to manage it along with its newer properties like Dungeons and Dragons Online.

daoc rezsickness

now where have we seen this before??

As far as DAoC is concerned, playing it has left me astounded in regards to how many of the conventions now taken for granted by players in a game like wow were present in this game: flying from zone to zone, trading items between characters, etc. etc. I like DAoC’s combat mechanics better than wow’s myself, with the familiar D&D phrasing (“You hit the rat for 10 points of damage”) refreshingly intact.

I can’t really say if some of these conventions were in place in DAoC prior to their adoption by modern games like wow because I wasn’t playing DAoC back in the day and warcraft was one of the first truly modern mmos I tried, so maybe some of you mmo veterans can help me out. I know DAoC predates wow by at least 3 years, but there have been expansions along the way. It’s really a question of the chicken and the egg: which game adopted which convention from which.

No matter, if you feel like trying an old mmo like Asheron’s Call or DAoC I say more power to you, you will find there are those along the way who are willing to help. The games may have seen more popular days, but it’s refreshing to see players come back to them and it’s good to have them around as alternatives to the more modern games.

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