Tag Archives: World of Warcraft

#408 A year without World of Warcraft

I was looking back at my old posts this month and I noticed that it was this month, one year ago, when I made the decision to end my multiple year long, uninterrupted, World of Warcraft account (Be MOP #253)

this was the same time as I was graduating from college, kinda like the last sentence of the previous chapter of my life

this was the same time as I was graduating from college, kinda like the last sentence of the previous chapter of my life

 

What is more impressive with is that I have stayed away from World of Warcraft, not coming back for the Siege of Orgimmar patch, the when the reveal and the beta of the Warlords of Draenor was announced. Unlike some of my other friends I did leave the years on Azeroth bitter or looking back on my years playing with bitterness. If you remember I left World of Warcraft not because a game decision from Blizzard or because I hit a gamer’s equivalent of ‘rock bottom’ it was because I was guildless and  I was burnt playing one game, almost exclusively, for years.

Looking back I am glad my years in Azeroth, it was a costly experience yes, but it was an experience none the less. It was only from my years of playing World of Warcraft: I have realized and got a hands on experience on what is needed for a good team composition and what makes an amazing teammate (Be MOP #103).  Because of the years of listening to World of Warcraft podcasts and reading the strategy guides of the latest 5 man dungeons and raids, I have experience and learned about good and bad game play mechanics which I used when describing why Super Mario 3D Land was fun for me (Be MOP #349)

Most importantly of all playing World of Warcraft gave me the opportunity to create this blog, and with that I have dramatically improved my writing style and techniques which is amazing considering a few years ago I had some terrible writing and testing anxiety. While this blog has not cured my anxiety, I have seen improvement over the years in how I write from forcing myself to write something -anything- every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

 And World of Warcraft  has continued  helped me even after leaving the game

World of Warcraft was the gate way to the PC gaming platform, before WoW I never picked a PC game having gaming experience be limited to the family Nintendo system, but over the years I have bought better and better gaming laptops to handle the newest expansions and to preform better when I am needed the most in a raid. As a result I had a pretty nice machine to adequately run current PC games on Steam.

It was only after WoW when I paid attention to the other offers (humble Bundles and weekly sales) that were happening on the other side of the PC gaming world

It was only after WoW when I started to truly pay attention to the other offers (humble Bundles and weekly sales) that were happening on the other side of the PC gaming world

 

Because of World of Warcraft and blogging about it for so long it has gave me the blogging experience on how to write blog posts  continue blogging about general videogame topics, something I do not think I could have succeed in the way that I did the get go. All that blogging experience and confidence helped me take the leap into creating, and broadcasting on my own Twitch account, something I know I could not have done without this blog giving me confidence and experience on how to talk to people with my own voice.

As a result from my year of writing about other games all these posts has helped me focus and form my own opinions about other videogame topics. From the silliness of a moral dilemma I have with Tf2′s hats (Be MOP #254) to the more pressing problems with pre-ordering games, hacking up content of the main the game to sell as exclusive gaming platform perks or DLC for extra profits to, to the videogame company’s love of  Bullshots (Be MOP #348).

Now, most importantly, I do not have to worry about getting the most value out of my monthly subscription I feel less guilty spending my nights playing games of other generas and a because I am no longer in a dedicated raiding group I have a free-er schedule to actually play these games. A full time job does interfere with my preferred gaming schedule but because my job gives me money each week to buying MORE games and other things, I am inclined to let my job eat up the majority of my week.

Looking back, even though I know I am never going back to World of Warcraft (Be MOP #375) I  do not regret any of years leveling up my characters, chain running instances and raids, grinding for dailies, or hunting for the rare achievements in the game because it helped be grow into a better gamer and a better person on and off line.

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#400 How Far We’ve Come

Today is a big milestone for me, this Monday is the 400th Be MOP post! What makes this milestone truly impressive is that it is the 400th Be MOP post without skipping a beat on my Monday, Wednesday, Friday schedule that I have set in place with my first post that I made two and a half years ago. This means I wrote through all of my college finals, every sick day, every snowstorm that caused a blackout, and everything that happened to me in my Post-college life.

Looking back on some of my first couple of month’s posts it is amazing how short some those post actually were.

Looking back on some of my first couple of month’s posts it is amazing how short some those post actually were.

 

I have mentioned this before but the Be MOP blog was the result of a winter time walk down main street of my college town, the week before my Juniors finals, and experiencing an early Quarter-life crisis when I realized that I was just a Political Science student, with no minor, soon to go out to the world in just a few short years.

To top it off were people out there who were just a little bit older than me making a living from playing and writing videogames, a job option that was very appealing to me, and I was no where close to being on that track for that sort of career path. Although looking back I was already making some money from writing about videogames, it was just too inconsistent for my liking.

I was actually waiting for WoWinsiders next call for submissions, which was scheduled to return soon before coming to the realization that i could publish these thoughts by myself.

I was actually waiting for WoW Insider’s next call for submissions, which was scheduled to return soon before coming to the realization that I could publish these thoughts by myself.

 

When I first started BeMOP.wordpress.com so long ago I had no idea that it would last for this long, even during my transition from experiencing burnout from World of Warcraft to writing about PC and general gaming events.

And because of little blog I have:

  • dramatically honed my writing abilities
  • 200+ WordPress followers
  • a Twitter account and now it has grown to 500+ followers
  • the confidence to add ‘blogging’ to my resume. (the same resume that I submitted to get my current post-college job)
  • started a Twitch Stream and soon after got accepted in the Streamer Partnership Program from Infinite Crisis.
This one email made my week

This one email made my week

 

For today I just want to say, ‘Thank you’ to everyone who ever stopped by or left comments on this site, swung by my Twitch Stream, follow me on Twitter and even enduring through every single political inspired posts about videogames, literally none of this could be possible without you guys and I thank all of you because of this. It really makes my days and helps motivate me to push through the days when I was hit over the head with writing block and I have the days when I do not want write about anything.

To anyone who is still hesitant about starting or continuing their blogging/streaming experience, start now and just keep going. You might not always pump out your best quality works all the time but you will eventually improve day by day, week by week. Even if you do not get noticed right away, it is better to start building a background of quality content that you can pull up any time to prove you have a solid history of writing or producing content rather than waiting to come up with the perfect way get famous with your debut.

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

5 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

#375 What items would I buy from a F2P store

I might have mentioned on this blog before that I have a personal policy against buying anything for myself in Free to Play games. A stingy policy I know, but that policy stops me from paying through the nose for every cosmetic items and every new champion the company constantly pumps out. That being said I do not have a policy of putting money in the F2P market, over the past few years my brothers and I have bought and traded Riot’s League of Legends IP cards for our Birthdays and Holiday because we have all reached that point where my brothers and I no longer want to be gifted stuff, but rather items that we can use.
But because Birthdays and Holidays only come once a year and on top of my purchasing policy of mine makes I do realize that this make it difficult for game designers and the people behind new games like Infinite Crisis and Heroes of the Storm to gather information about my purchasing patterns.

Even though I do not often vote with my wallet that does not mean I should not have a say on what items should be sold in the game. So for today’s blog post, to give the people at Infinite Crisis, Heroes of the Storm, and every other ARTS/MOBA, and F2P game a break I am going to give a quick recap on the few item I have bought in the past when I was at F2P checkout line.

First WoW, now this? I should start charging for my marketing insight and data....nah Im just going to blog about it for free.

First WoW, now this? I should start charging for my marketing insight and data….nah I’m just going to blog about it for free.

Just like yesterday lets cover the types of items that I have sworn to never going to buy from the F2P game:

My first rule is to never pay for in-game boosts/advances that unbalanced the game, this policy is easy because do not play those games where you can gain the upperhand by outspending the opponent.

The next rule I have is never to buy anything that I can earn.

This extends from the champions themselves, extra skill pages in League of Legends, Stolen powers in Infinite Crisis and EXP boosts in the game. Paying for all of those items are for the lazy and it is foolishness to spend money on those items compared to all the other things that could be bought from the online store. On top of that buying shortcuts in the game to the rewards you want seems to be counterproductive to what a game is supposed to be.

After being scorned I will never buy a pallet swapped skin of a champion ever again. This comes after buying the Phantom skin for my favorite League Champion, Karthus when I first got my hands on some microtransaction credits. If buying EXP boosts and champions are lazy on behalf of the player, this is laziness on the game developers to add these slightly changed models into the game. Granted this was a relic of Riot’s older policy on skins, like Nightmare Cho’gath where they just change the colors around and placed it on the store shelves. Now it looks like Riot and good game developers are moving away from this practice and are putting more effort into the skins they create now. In my defence I only bought the Karthus skin because it was a part of the first category of reasons I would buy a skin because it was a holiday skin or a limited edition skin.

Last christmas my brother game a few Riot IP gift cards and as a result I brought a Snow Day Ziggs, a skin that has the bomb enthusiast champion be decked out in snow gear and Riot switched out his normal bombs with snowballs and icicles. Those snowballs and icicles are actually serves a nice segway into the next, final, and greatest reason when it comes to buying a cosmetic skin because there is something special added than the original champion

I am a sucker for once a lifetime deals. Shhh keep it a secret through

I am a sucker for once a lifetime deals. Shhh keep it a secret through

Whether it be added and cool particle effects or a part of history I want to see that the skins that was creative, unique, and most importantly of all see that the game developers actually put some time and effort into it. Two perfect examples of that are the TPA or SKT skins that Riot created after each team won their Worlds championships and the Clark Kent Superman from Infinite Crisis. Something that I can resonate with and that I can show off and something that justifies my choice of giving the free to play gaming company my money.

Also do not tell anyone in videogame marketing team but I will go to the ends of the Earth for a free skins, weather it be waiting hours at PAX Expo hall for convention handouts, Facebook events, surveys, or authenticating my account. You name it I have done it, within reason, for the sake of getting a cosmetic skin for free.

Also do not tell anyone in videogame marketing team but I will go to the ends of the Earth for a free skins, whether it be waiting hours at PAX Expo hall for convention handouts, Facebook events, surveys, or authenticating my account. You name it I have done it, within reason, for the sake of getting a cosmetic skin for free.

 

Be Careful, dear reader, with this information that I have shared with you today on this public blog. I wrote this post with the intention of providing my thought process during the few times of the year when I have the money to purchase microtransactions so that videogame developers can take this data and make skins and cosmetic items that are not more appeal more towards me but to make skins that are more worthy to buy to everyone.

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#374 What would bring me back to WoW?

A new expansion of World of Warcraft is on the way to the beta testing phrase. I have not been keeping tabs on the development of this expansion as much as I usually do, but as usual Blizzard is expected to get a bump in subscription for that business quarter from people coming back to their game. Now that I am no longer playing WoW I am a part of the ideal demographic for Blizzard to advertise to get me back to play and subscribe to Warlords of Draenor. Today I am going to take out the middle men that comes from all the marketing studies and focus groups and I, a burned out WoW player, will tell you and any Blizzard employees reading exactly what Warlords would need to do to get this potential customer to get back into World of Warcraft.

buckle up guys this post is going to be a doozy

buckle up guys this post is going to be a doozy

First I want to start out with listing some features that are not be the main reason to get me back to playing World of Warcraft:

I am going to return because of the newest features and improvement to the game play. I have solo-leveled a mage through all of Outlands and I have raided as a mage from Wrath of the Lich King to Mists of Pandaria. During those times I was forced grind through some ridiculously long quests and I was asked change mage specs that I did not originally play as nor liked using when I was in the raid for the sake of doing the most optimal for damage towards the raid boss. If I were to come back to World of Warcraft I will play as a mage and  if I want to raid I will find a way to raid. It does not matter to me if Blizzard changed the class mechanics or if they simplified the talent system again I will find a way around those hurdles so I can play as a mage again.

 It is not just mage but my mage, the my first character I ever made in WoW.

It is not just mage but my mage, the my first character I ever made in WoW.

 

Secondly the lore and story of the expansion will not get me to pack my bags for Azeroth. This might be a big surprise for my long time readers that the lore will not get me to playing since I have written dozens of Be MOP posts about my love of the lore in the game and how I can draw parallels to other stories and events outside of the game but during my hiatus from WoW I have been playing other games and catching up on my comicbook collection. While I was playing those other games and reading the latest issues of Spider-man I realized how much quicker other games and media are able to tell their stories in the span of a few hours or a few weeks than the months or years it takes Blizzard to tell the full saga of what happened between the Horde and Alliance in the new world. If I hear the story of the game is interesting enough from my other friends then a quick trip to a WoWWiki will get me filled in on everything I need about the game without having to log into the game.

 

I started to come the this realization at the start of my burnout phase, when I got frustrated that I had to wait until the next raiding content was created and polished to a shine before learning about what happens next in the war.

I started to come the this realization at the start of my burnout phase, when I got frustrated that I had to wait until the next raiding content was created and polished to a shine before learning about what happens next in the war.

Now that we got those out-of-the-way I want to talk about the two things that would get me back into the game.

The first thing that might get me back to playing Warlords is another subscription bundle similar to what they did to lock players into playing the game during the lull between Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria. Way back in the early days of this blog (as a matter of fact the THIRD Be MOP post I have ever created) I wrote a wonderful post that broke down and game a dollar price value on everything that was in the first World of Warcraft annual pass. After doing a bit of math I decided that paying for one year of World of Warcraft was giving me enough of valued content where the actual cost per month to play WoW as just under half of the normal $15 asking price.

I realized that this was an old post but until I had to edit this post and find the pictures I did not realized HOW OLD the annual pass post was

I realized that this was an old post but until I had to edit this post and find the pictures I did not realize HOW OLD the annual pass post was

 

But the biggest feature that would get me to resubscribe would be my friends and a video game social network. After unsubscribing from World of Warcraft and letting enough time past to see why what kept me going and why I left without bias, the main drive for logging in was the my raiding group. Each weekend I would log in and group up with the same bunch of people to take on the next big raid boss and progress through the current raid. It was talking and socializing with my raiding and real life raiding friends, telling stories, swapping tricks and class secrets that kept me excited and invested in the game. That investment would show by logging in every day to complete the same dailies, spending hours farming cooking materials for the right ingredients to make the best fests and -most importantly of all- to continue to invest $15 a month into the game. The main reason I left the game was because the Cataclysm guild I belonged to dissolved somewhere between the transition from Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria, once the guild fell apart I felt lonely because I was just playing WoW by myself and I did not want to go through the hassle of either spending more money on a character transfer or seeking out a raiding guild that fit perfectly in my existing schedule.

That being said, I do not think I will ever return to the game because the window of opportunity to really play the game has closed. Since I left World of Warcraft in the summer after I graduated college I have found a full-time 2nd shift job, I now have college bills to pay off each month and between those two I have the other games to get through on my Steam backlog and I have to keep up with my Twitch channel.  I just do have the free time anymore to raid every weekend, let alone trying to fund the monthly subscription on top of everything I am currently doing. I guess this is goodbye to World of Warcraft for me, it took me the act of writing this post to realized that nothing Blizzard could do, save for during WoW free to play would get me to redownload the game client. I do hope that Blizzard the best for the newest addition to their game but it looks like I am not ever going to come back to my mage, which is a bit sad but at least I can thank Blizzard for the years of entertainment and the years of slowly training to be the component video game player that I am today.


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

 

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#366 The ARTS era of Gaming

This week I am still going trough all of my PAX East loot , going through all the pins and giveaways and entering any and all codes I was handed on the expo floor.

Between everything I noticed that a common theme of the free beta tests and games were for existing or start-up MOBA games or as I call them, Action Real Time Strategy games (or A.R.T.S for short) It seems that the ARTS genera will be the go to PC game for any company in the 201Xs.

Currently we have; League of Legends, Heroes of the Storm, Dota 2, SMITE, Heroes of Newerth, Infinite Crisis, Dawngate, Magicka: Wizard Wars, Orcs Must Die: Unchained, and all the others that I forgot.

 

Too many launchers....and I intend to play all of them

Too many launchers….and I intend to play all of them

 

It reminds me of the last decade, where we saw every gaming company and their dog create a Massively Multiplayer Online game like; World of Warcraft, Rift, Lord of the Rings, Star Trek online, Star Wars: The Old Republic, DC Universe Online, ESO and all the others I forgot to name.

With the end of the last decade we saw that most -if not all- of the MMO companies caved from the popping of the MMO bubble, forcing most of them to go Free-to-play.

The question is will this A.R.T.S bubble pop the same way? Because these games are not are based on a monthly payment plan, so people like me can be subscribed to multiple titles of the same genera. With the introduction and how these games are built around microtransactions these games can easily be supported by the 1 or 2% of gamers that spends a ridiculous amount of money at the online store page.

The problem these A.R.T.S games now have to face -at least my guest is- would be competing with each other on how to woo the MOBA/ARTS base to spend their free time and eventually money on their game rather than their competitors. The multimillion dollar question is how? Heroes of the Storm will have Blizzard marketing advertising power, with the appeal of free palette swapped skins. Dota 2 had more complexity and all the champions are free to play from right out of the gate. Infinite Crisis has the allure of having every DC comics Super Hero you or I have ever heard about become a playable character And League of Legends is getting ahead by just being popular.

I know there is marketing term for when a company doesn't need to advertise it's product because it is so popular....It is like the Apple/Iphone effect.

I know there is marketing term for when a company doesn’t need to advertise its product because it is so popular….It is like the Apple/Iphone effect or something.

 

On top of the question. ‘How to get the ARTS players to play their preferred game’ the other question is ‘How to make a new ARTS game that is different enough in-game play or giveaways to comfortably compete with the other, established ARTS companies.’

The first company that can come up with solid answer to those two question can dethrone LoL, HotS, and everyone else in the market.

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#365 Thoughts on the PAX East Heroes of the Storm Panel

One of the Pax East Panels I got to sit on Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm dev talk panel. Last year I missed Blizzard’s PAX panel, where they officially announced the launching of their new title, Hearthstone so this year I made sure not to miss a minute of this year’s announcements.

As a bonus treat to the few people who attended the panel you were able to hear what I sound like in real life, I was the person who asked which heroes the devs would add if balancing was not an issue.

As a bonus treat to the few people who attended the panel you were able to hear what I sound like in real life, I was the person who asked which heroes the devs would add if balancing was not an issue.

 

The panel went over a few things; first, there is no official release date on Heroes of the Storm and that there are no beta keys for the Heroes of the Storm. Two facts that everyone at the Heroes panel and booth were adamant about getting that point across to everyone at the convention. While Blizzard said that they are adding more people into the program each week, the only way to get in is opt in through their website and keep checking your Battlenet launcher to see if your gaming library has been updated.

I'm still not the beta but this new method of how Blizzard goes around handing out betas has guaranteed that at least one more person downloads and uses Blizzard's new cross-promotion gaming launcher.

I’m still not the beta but this new method of how Blizzard goes around handing out betas has guaranteed that at least one more person downloads and uses Blizzard’s new cross-promotion gaming launcher.

 

After Blizzard’s PSA about not trusting any emails that claims to have Heroes of the Storm beta key, the Developers then moved on to reveal some of the new heroes and mechanics to soon be added to the game.

While we have some heroes like Zagara and LiLi the one that stood out to me was Murky, the baby murloc. When the devs started talking about the inspiration for this hero, they said they wanted a hero that was incredibly weak, but the mechanic is that Murky lays an egg somewhere on the map and while he will be dying a lot he’s purpose is do little waves of damage to the enemy’s health over a continue waves of recently hatched Murkys. Chipping away the enemy team until they either cave from exhaustion or another teammate comes in for the assistance for the kill or the capture of the map objective.

A hero based around dying over and over again. Sounds like a perfect fit for me.

A hero based around dying over and over again. Sounds like a perfect fit for me.

 

Between that and everything else I have heard and seen about this new game I can say it looks fun. I do not take that word lightly, remember I wrote an entire blog post about why the recent Mario game was fun (Be MOP #349).

What also caught my eye was Heroes of the Storm’s approach to heroes skins. While it is a free to play game and it will have cosmetic skins of the champions and mounts for sale on the online shop Heroes will also be providing free in-game cosmetic palette swapped skins for the champions as a reward for playing with that one hero for a set amount of time and there will also be an ultimate skin that you can unlock once you max out that hero.

While Blizzard has the iconic PC gaming characters at its disposal, I think the free unlockable skins and designs will provides as the more important tool for the Heroes of the Storm marketing team when trying to advertise and the game above the other competitors that are currently on the market.

Heroes reminds me a bit of Pokemon, the creative team goes to town making monsters and creations with unique gameplay and then the Pokemon Company threw the entire project at the player base and the fans are the ones who create the competitive gaming leagues and separate the heroes into various tiers of usefulness. Which is something that Blizzard have said from the beginning.

 

My only PAX East regret is I was not able to get into the League of Legends gamplay design panel to see the different approach Blizzard and Riot have designing the character’s roles and move-sets  for their games.

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#363 Guest Post: Pax-tivities

Since I am attending PAX East this weekend I thought it would be a good idea to set up a guest post with another blogger that also going to the convention. So today Stubborn of sheepthediamond.wordpress.com will posting for Be MOP and I will have published piece about what to bring to these events on his website. Be sure check it out once you are done here.
—-

Dear Reader (of someone else’s blog!),

Going to conventions, particularly for the first time (or the first time in a new venue), can feel overwhelming.  Too much time during my first PAX was spent confusedly looking at the schedule and the map, trying to work out what was where.  Since PAX changed venues after that, too much of my second PAX was much the same.  However, since I’ve been a few times, I thought I’d write a handy summary of the variety of different things to do around the PAX arena.

At the top of my list is always panels.  As an educator and, as the cliché goes, a “life-long learner,” I love going to hear people speak on a variety of topics.  There’re three basic types of panels: the shill panel, the feedback panel, and the true discussion.  Each has its own merits and drawbacks; at a shill, you’ll hear a lot of very tempting information about a product.  You can often ask questions about the product, too, though the answers you get may only be in “beta” form (meaning they may never come to pass).  If you’re really interested in a game, you absolutely should go to a shill panel, but if you’re on the fence, don’t expect a fair review.

In feedback panels, developers often ask the audience for input on how to do something.  It may be how to better the community in League of Legends (been to that one) or how to further develop DayZ (my buddy went to that one), but often it’s a great chance to speak to the actual team leaders behind a game’s development and get some time to voice your ideas.

The discussion panels are often my favorite; they can cover a variety of tough issues like female representation in games and game companies or how to publish your first indie game.  These panels often have the most honest and interesting exchanges, as in last year’s Extra Credits Q&A when James Portnow, their resident game designer, basically trashed a lot of “game developer” for-profit schools but also gave some really insightful and important information about how to pick a good one.

Whatever you do with panels, try at least once to step outside your comfort zone.  Are you a dude who doesn’t think the whole female gamers thing is an issue?  Give it a try; you might have your eyes opened, as my buddy did.  Are you not particularly interested in indie games?  Go to one of their developer panels and hear their stories; you might be surprised!

Of course, at any convention, there’s going to be an Exhibition Floor.  This wildly crowded shopping mall reminds me of a carnival, with all sorts of sights and sounds to experience.  I don’t spend a ton of time on the floor, but I always go to every booth to at least look at what they have, even if I only stay a few seconds.  The floor gives you an opportunity for hands-on experiences with upcoming games.  I first heard about The Last of Us on an exhibition floor several years ago, well before the final product was nearing completion, and even then, I was intrigued.  As a result, I followed its development from there on out.

Sometimes browsing lets you find new and exciting things, but other times you may have a target in mind.  Last year I bee-lined for the League of Legends booth, having heard of free goodies being given out.  I got two free skins as well as some inside information on a secret contest that was running to find Teemo mushrooms to win a Teemo hat.  Many booths will give out freebies of some kind, whether it’s a closed beta key, a plush sunshroom, which my wife scored from the Plants vs. Zombies booth, or a kiss with a Zombie, which my buddy scored from the same!  I’d recommend you hit the floor later on Saturday, as the crowds usually die down as time passes, but doing so runs the risk of missing out on swag that they might have run out of.

A third option – and something that I consider to be really generous and unique – is the game library.  You can peruse hundreds of board, card, and pen and paper role playing games, trade in your driver’s license, and play any of these hundreds of games for as long as you’d like.  The result is always a ton of fun.  I’ve bought several of the games I first tried there.  Others I only enjoyed with my friends, then just put back.  Whether it’s controlling berserk robots, throwing Romans into a volcano, or simultaneously cooperating with while secretly plotting the downfall of your friends, every game has the potential to be a lot of fun.

If board and card games aren’t your thing, there are huge rooms dedicated to letting you try computer and console games for free, as well.  You just wait in line, then get a computer or console pre-loaded with many current games from which to choose.  The lines for those sections can be long, though, so don’t wait until late to do this!  We’ve been turned away twice due to line length and time, though both times we’d just wandered over for the heck of it, so it was no big loss.

Lastly, there’re a whole slew of activities that I’ve personally never done (since I’m an old man) but I’ve heard great things about.  Both Friday and Saturday night there are amazing concerts with some very famous performers including MC Frontalot, the Bit Brigade, and Metroid Metal (among others).  Like I said, though, I’m an old man and value my hearing too much, so I’ve skipped those in the past.  My old buddy’s younger brother (who’s my buddy, too) goes every year, though, and really enjoys them.

There’s also the Omeganaut championship, a gaming challenge for random attendees who play for some very attractive prize packages (like going to Germany for a European gaming convention).  I’ve gone to the final round the last two years, but the semi-finals are spread throughout the convention.  I haven’t been, but I’ve heard they’re a lot of fun, too.

Lastly, again, since I’m an old man, I don’t attend after parties, since I’m too sleepy, but my young buddy said some of his fondest memories come from just hanging out after the convention center closes in someone’s hotel lobby, playing games and meeting new people.  If you’re young and have an endless battery, you might want to try that, too.

All of these options only skim the surface of what’s available at PAX.  Each one is really a bundle of hundreds of other options, experiences, and memory-makers from which to choose.  I’ve never regretted a single decision I’ve made at PAX, whether it was to go to a midnight movie that got suddenly cancelled and instead had a celebrity come out and do a Q & A or to take my buddy to a mind-expanding panel and watch him grow a little, or to gush like a fool about The Secret World and get some closed beta keys and some free TSW swag.  Every year I’ve gone, I’ve loved it, and I’m excited to go again this year.  If you’re going, I hope to you enjoy it, too, and if you’re not, consider joining me next year!

Sincerely,

Stubborn (temporary Bostonite)

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#362 The Liebster Award

This weekend I received a notification from WordPress that I have been recognized by Growing up in Azeroth for a Liebster Award! While I usually do not like talking about just myself on this blog too much, for today I will gladly make the exception.

 

I believe in the rap world this type of thing would be called a 'cypher'

I believe in the rap world this type of thing would be called a ‘cypher’

 

1.    What is your favorite noob moment in WoW or another video game (the more embarrassing, the better  :D )?

I talked about this one before (and it is my favorite drinking story) by my biggest noob moment was the time I gave up a chance to meet Emma Watson  for a virtual dragon (Be MOP #12). If I was to reveal another major noob moment my another favorite moment was equipping an agility dagger on my undead mage while leveling through the Mulgore zone because I thought that stacking agility would make me run faster.

 

this is one of those times where, even if I had the chance to redo everything all over again I would still chose to stay inside for the night because I get more mileage telling of the story that almost happened instead of what could have happen.

this is one of those times where, even if I had the chance to redo everything all over again I would still chose to stay inside for the night because I get more mileage telling of the story that almost happened instead of what could have happen.

 

2.    You are going to be trapped in a hotel with your family for one week.  You get to choose one book, one board game, and one video game to have for that week.  What would you choose and why?

If I was trapped in a hotel with my entire family, which for reference we are talking about my two parents and five younger siblings, I would have to pack my copy of the completed works of Hitchhiker’s to the Galaxy. For games I would have to choose two co-op games with near infinite replay value that I could play with my siblings, for that I would have to bring along a pack of Uno cards and Super Smash Brawl for the Wii or if we wait a few months the Wii U.

 

I was tempted to put down one of the Mario Party games but towards the end of the week that hotel building would start to look like the set of Stephen King's The Shining. 

I was tempted to put down one of the Mario Party games but towards the end of the week that hotel building would start to look like the set of Stephen King’s The Shining.

 

3.    If you could have one WoW spell in real life, which one would you choose?

This one is easy, because I have about an hour-long commute I would have to pick one of the mage’s teleport spells so I can cut down the time and gas money I spend each week getting to a from work.

 

4.    Zombies or Unicorns?

Unicorns. If only because Unicorns do not go out of their way to hunt you down and kill you.

 

5.    What is your favorite WoW joke/pun?

“I love this planet! I come here; I see cow and chicken and ride little horsies. THIS PLANET HAS EVERYTHING!” Draenei Male.


6.    It’s the last day of WoW before the servers shut down permanently.  What do you do?

Probably take a walking tour of the world and revisit my favorite Warcraft zones (no particular order: 1000 Needles, Hellfire Peninsula, and Tirisfal Glades) and for the final hour I would end up /dance -ing on top of one of the major city’s mailbox.

 

7.    All time favorite movie?

V-for-Vendetta-movie-poster


8.    If you could kill off one WoW characters to bring another WoW character back, who would you kill and who would you bring back?

Besides Garrosh, I would kill off Malfurion Stormrage and bring back Millhouse Manastorm just so that Blizzard or the players can kill that gnome again.


9.    What was your first WoW character? (Calling it now, it was a night elf hunter!)

It was actually an Undead Mage, the same mage that took me from beginning of Burning Crusade all the way to wilds of Pandaria.

 

I still kept some of my old WoW screenshots. I think this one is the equivalent of that embarrassing childhood photo your parents still keeps around

I still kept some of my old WoW screenshots. I think this one is the equivalent of that embarrassing childhood photo your parents brings out at parties


10.    What was your first video game ever?

The first video game that I ever owned was a copy of Pokemon Red. It is actually one of my favorite memory. It started with my parents calling me down to the kitchen where they then presented me a fresh out of the box GameBoy color, Pokemon Red, and the official player guide. While my parents watched as I picked my first starter and played up to Viridian Forest and beyond throughout the school night. Playing with electronics or watching T.V on a school night was an unprecedented event back then and which probability made it so memorable.

11.    What is the one food that you want to try, but are too afraid to?

I really want to try any tropical dish that has pineapple in it, but because of my Anaphylaxis food allergy to the fruit I am  too afraid to try a bite of it. One day I might grow out of the allergy, like the rest of my family, but I certainly do not want to test that theory without proper professional medical supervision.

 

It is more funny to think that someone born in New England would have such a deadly allergy to a fruit that is grown on the other side of the world.

It is more funny to think that someone born in New England would have such a deadly allergy to a fruit that is grown on the other side of the world.

 

Now for the random facts portion of this post:

  •  I have met both Chuck Norris and Oprah Winfrey
  • I used to fence (the sport) while I was middle school and high school
  • One of my most prized possession is a mint condition, still in the box,  original Mighty Mophin Power Rangers Megazord
  • I was a member of the audience of Good Morning America during my first and only trip to NYC
  • My absolute favorite Batman movie is and always will be Joel Schumacher’s Batman Forever
  •  I have previously ran for a seat of State Representative for my district. While I did lose that race, I plan to get back on the horse and try again next election cycle.
  • My voice was recorded on one of WoW Insider’s live shows. Try to guess show number, and which one I was.
  • My first MP3 file was of BareNaked Ladies’s song, One Week
  • In Highschool I went on a school organized week long spring vacation trip to London, Paris, Brussels, and Amsterdam….with my younger brother and my mother.
  • My family keeps a few dozen chickens as pets. Not livestock but honest to goodness pets, each with their own names and personalities.
  • You can all thank my mom for getting me to start blogging after she used my name to sign up for a WordPress account and created a blog for me to build and update as a project to help the family get a dishwasher in exchange for a few dozen eggs. But that story is for another time.

Alright this post is getting on the long side so it is time to pass the nominate a few more bloggers for this challenge, for that I choose

http://www.alternative-blog.net/

sheepthediamond.wordpress.com/

arcanewordsmith.wordpress.com/

and YOU! If you have not been formally nominated for a Liebster Award consider yourself invited to join in on the fun.

 

My questions for you are (and because some of questions that I had to answer were so good I had to pass them along):

1.What is your favorite noob moment in WoW or another video game

2. You are going to be trapped in a hotel with your family for one week. You get to choose one book, one board game, and one video game to have for that week. What would you choose and why?

3.  All time favorite movie?

4. What was your first video game ever?
5. What is the one food that you want to try, but are too afraid to?

6. What inspired you to start blogging?

7. What is your most prized possession?

8. What new game are you the most excited for?

9. What was your first music album? First MP3 file?

10. What is your favorite blog post that you have written on your site?

11. What was one question you wish people asked about you?

 

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

#358 The Official Origin Story of my Steam Account

It is the end of the month of March and with this an important gaming milestone, my third anniversary of joining Steam.

A few months ago I was planning to write this post on the birthday BUT because of a touch of dyslexia I confused the 13 for a 31, which is why I am writing this post now.

A few months ago I was planning to write this post on the birthday BUT because of a touch of dyslexia I confused the 13th for a 31st, which is why I am writing this post now.

 

Since my three years of downloading Valve’s Steam 200+ games collection and hundreds and hundreds of hours of gameplay on record. With the celebration I thought now would be a good time to spin the yarn and tell all of you how I started my adventures through  Steam.

It all started with my first Pax East back in 2o11. At the time my gaming experience was limited to World of Warcraft and just that. It was also the only game I played for years and because of my barebones laptop that I could afford on my early college student’s budget.

But going into this expo for the first time with my mother and younger brother just completed their amazing story with Uber Entertainment and one of our family’s pet chickens. It is a really long and epic read that you can catch it all on my mother’s blog found HERE, HEREHERE, and HERE.

The TLDR version is: It started with my brother asking a game developer for a few gaming keys for some friends who had a series of unfortunate events and it ended with one of our chickens starring in a video game.

 I would like to see anyone else try to top that story.

I would like to see anyone else try to top that story.

 

Well that series of events happened and while I was exploring alone on the expo floor I stumbled upon Uber Entertainment’s booth. dispite knowing nothing about the game Super Monday Night combat, beyond the fact of my brother’s excitement to be a part of it, and being a good older brother I bought a digital key  for the game, and if memory served I bought the deluxe key with an exclusive Penny Arcade inspired Cardboard Tube Samurai skin for the assassin character in the game.

A common practice back in the day. Image from: http://mondaynightcombat.wikia.com/

One of my favorite skins in videogames.
Image from: http://mondaynightcombat.wikia.com/

 

After the everything was done and I was back home I followed the instructions on the card and in order for me to redeem and play this game I needed to download and install the steam client. Granted I did not play much of it because my barebones laptop started to overheat the moment the game asked it to run the game in a frame rate above single digits.

From there it is just history, I want to take this time to say thank you to PAX East, Uber Entertainment, and my little brother for opening of the gateway to a brand new world of PC gaming full of free games, charity driven bundles, and some of the biggest discounts in major AAA game titles I have ever seen.

 

Here's to many more great years of gaming

Here’s to many more years of great gaming

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

#357 Heroes I want to see in Heroes of the Storm

Blizzard had a busy week, with the launching of their first expansion for Diablo 3, Reaper of Souls. On top of their impressive launch party but Blizzard also announced that Tyrael will be one of the playable heroes in the their newest game Heroes of the Storm.

This is great news because not only are Blizzard taking a leaf out of Nintendo’s book, Building hype for Super Smash Brawl, by announcing segments of their new game in line with a major release of one of their other gaming titles. But it also means I was completely called it two weeks ago when I  exposed Blizzard’s “No game is an Island” marketing plan (Be MOP #350)

Nothing makes a blogger happy than correctly calling out a multi million dollar entertainment company's marketing plan.

Nothing makes a blogger happy than correctly calling out a multi million dollar entertainment company’s marketing plan.

 

I could go into more marketing material but today, this Friday, I want to create a list for some of the Heroes I want to see in the game. Because the best thing about this game than say any of it’s other competition in the A.R.T.S/Moba genre is that Blizzard already has three expansive universe that they could continuously harvest from for years to come.

One (or all of the) Dragon Aspects from World of Warcraft.

These were my favorite characters from the Warcraft universe, they were there from the beginning with the creation of the Well of Eternity and they fought besides the players against Deathwing at the end of Cataclysm.

Plus how cool it would be incorporating powers like time manipulation into the game.

Plus how cool it would be incorporating powers like time manipulation into the game.

Deckard Cain from Diablo

This character has been an established character since the original Diablo and while playing through Diablo 3 for the first time I felt a bit anticlimactic killing him off in the first Act, it would be cool seeing an old fragile man going 1v1 against Diablo himself on the battlefield.

I could totally see him play as a support/specialist

I could totally see him play as a support/specialist

 

A heroes from Blizzard’s still super secret T.I.T.A.N MMO

We know this project is eventually coming and even someone with no background in marketing can tell you that the moment project T.I.T.A.N is announced or hits the beta that Blizzard will be releasing a special HotS hero from that series. We now the game is in the works, it is better just to get it out of the way now.

 

An Innkeeper from World of Warcraft

I want something like an Inn Keeper in Heroes of the Storm, because it would be hilarious to see a game full of powerful heroes and villains to see one normal NPC in the heroes roster and fighting besides aliens, demons and important world leaders.

If they really wanted to connect it to a franchise they could have it be a new Hearthstone character.

If they really wanted to connect it to a franchise they could have it be a new Hearthstone character.

 

Those are just my pick for additional heroes to add to the game, but I want to know what you think, What characters from Blizzards games do you want to see in Heroes of the Storm? Leave a comment down below I would love to hear want other people want from this game.

And Blizzard, if you are reading this, I can not wait to see you at this year’s PAX East.

 

 


I’m also on Twitter

Be MOP focuses on the world of videogames with my own reflections about the current news and developments that happens throughout the gaming industry. Updates Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized