Monday, August 31, 2009

Age of Conan - End of month Community Letter

Craig Morrison, Game Director for Age of Conan has released the latest community letter detailing game updates for the coming year.

Some of the highlights include

  • Rise of the Godslayer

Includes information on how the world will be less linear and more open thanks to Khitai not being well mapped unlike Hyboria in general.

Also, discussions on...

  • Splitting the future updates up into smaller parts
  • House of Crom and Iron Tower
  • Tier Three Raiding
  • Guild Renown
  • And the Veterans System

Click this link to read more...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Age of Conan - Conquerors revamp

Now on the Test servers. The changes per the Funcom Testlive forums

"The Conqueror buff system of Auras, Battle Cries, Formations, Orders and Commands has been streamlined and improved. Players now have 6 team abilities divided into two types of buffs: Disciplines and Formations. Players have 3 Disciplines and 3 Formations to choose from, and may have 1 discipline and 1 formation active at any time. During the course of a battle, a conqueror has the choice of either temporarily replacing his active formation with an aoe/team-effect banner, or replacing his active discipline with a more powerful solo buff. These actions may be achieved through new abilities granted to all Conquerors called "Plant Banner" and "Grant Technique." After the temporary effect has expired, the original buff which was replaced is reapplied."

Read the original notes here.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Age of Conan - The Palace of Cetriss - New Stygian Update?

AmazingAvery, Age of Conan Advocate for MMORPG.com has found several pieces of information which leads to some discussion that a future area for Stygia may be in the works.
He states....
_________________________________

So glancing around [Funcom sites] I noticed some new concept art just recently put out without anyone picking up on it.
Looks like there could be some development coming down the road.
If it is anything from a lore perspective then we should be in for a treat.

If you really are not into the lore then there is really just the pictures to look at here ;)

Basically it seems to be tieing in a pastiche called:


Basically the premise of the book is, a sorcerer has cast a deadly spell on Conan, hoping to harness the mighty Cimmerian's skills for his own evil purposes. Conan's only resource is to ally himself with the sorceress Zelandra, who promises to help the warrior if he steals the wizard's cashe of Emerald Lotus. The wizard being Ethram-Fal with his abode being the Palace of Cetriss which lies to the east in Stygia, near an expanse called the Dragons Spine.
What we know from the lore is the Palace of Cetriss is an ancient, abandoned palace carved into a cliff of living rock in a canyon amid the crags of the Dragon's Spine in eastern Stygia.
It was the abode of Cetriss the mage during the days of Old Stygia, 3000 years ago. It was here that he created a living flower-fungus hybrid, the green lotus.
He used the sorcerous powers of the lotus to keep the world-hungering Empire of Acheron at bay. (as per the book noted above)

Going back further in lore history, The Acheron Empire's area roughly corresponded to Aquilonia, Argos, and Nemedia, and its dominion later extended over western Koth, Ophir, and Corinthia. The latter three nations were also under the hegemony of Old Stygia at one time, apparently falling to Acheron at a later date. It seems likely that Acheron overextended itself by annexing these Stygian satellites, leaving its northern frontier vulnerable to the subsequent Hyborian invasions.
The exact chronology of Acheron is shaky; but it seems to have flourished for about 2,500 years, a theocracy under the control of wizards. The barbarian pressure of the more vigorous Hybori pouring down from the north ultimately destroyed Acheron. Its demise took place 3,000 years before the time of Conan.
The resurrected wizard Xaltotun attempted to restore the ancient kingdom, but was frustrated by Conan.

On a side note, can you see all the things Mage here? Who said Hyboria had little lore magic huh! Which leads us on to the recent concept art quietly put out on the web which looks like some development tie in is under wraps at the moment:

Lady Zelandra:
Notice it says The Dragonspine concept series?

The Dragon Spines themselves:


And finally the Palace of Cetriss! :


And

Could this be the Stygian update people have been asking about?

Could this be Tier 3 raiding ?

Is this the interim updates post 1.06 and pre Godslayer Expansion?

Who knows, all I know is the book is a damn good read and something is up!

What do you think?

Lastly, here is some info on the Palace of Cetriss from the Conan D20 game by Stefan Strysky, which may be a source of inspiration for this area, and is a bit of a wall of text so everything below you can of course skip if you want For me though I love this stuff!

Amid the southern wastes of Stygia in an area little known or travelled there is a row of small peaks called the Dragon’s Spine. Legends tell that three thousand years ago when Old Stygia waged war against Acheron, Cetriss, a powerful Stygian sorcerer built a temple in the maze of canyons that form the approach to the Dragon’s Spine Mountains. In this palace Cetriss discovered the secret of the Emerald Lotus. The plant’s properties enhanced sorcery and allowed the Stygians to defeat Acheron.

Afterwards Cetriss disappeared into his palace never to be seen again. Some say he discovered the key to immortality and elevated himself alongside the gods. The Dragon’s Spine and the Palace of Cetriss make a tempting destination for adventurers. The area is remote enough to have kept away robbers and looters and the secrets rumoured to exist in the palace are too much for a hardy band to resist.
The Dragon’s Spine lies far off the trade roads in the desert of southern Stygia. A few brave caravans pass the jagged peaks on their way to Shem or Keshan but the area is mostly devoid of life. Except for time-haunted Pteion to the east there is very little evidence of civilization.
Characters will need some expertise in overland survival to live through the trip. Knowledge (geography) and Survival will be essential to staying on course and not getting lost in the sandy wastes.

Dust storms are a constant threat. There are other threats besides the environment.
Small groups of bandits patrol the caravan road running north to south. Horrible creatures residing in forgotten Pteion occasionally make forays into the desert and woe to anyone who meets them among the dunes. Yizil, desert ghouls whose strange night-time calls sound like hyenas,haunt lesser ruins scattered in the desert. A few of these ruins – outposts of those who built Pteion– also contain demons bound to the sites through ancient magic.
Even though the Dragon’s Spine is visible from a great distance the mountains are not easily reached. They sit amid rocky uplands that form a maze of canyons, cliffs and cul-de-sacs. The palace itself sits at the end of a canyon on the north side of the Dragon’s Spine. Rather than a free-standing building, the Palace of Cetriss was carved out of the canyon wall. Only the
front fa├žade reveals its presence as an artificial structure.
Water sources in the uplands are non-existent except for the shallow pools and ephemeral streams left after a rain storm. Half a day’s walk north of the Palace there is an oasis.
South of the Dragon’s Spine the arid land eventually falls towards the Jeluba River.

Age of Conan - Servers are fine

Craig Morrison. game director for Age of Conan had this to say:

I think we are comfortable that the majority of the servers have good healthy populations. There are a few though are possibly a little below where we would prefer, but were retained for specific reasons (as with the Oceanic flagged server)

I don't think that we would consider any major merges at this stage. The server populations are very stable, and are certainly not dropping in any significant way. Of course those servers that were originally lower are still at the levels they always have been.

The trials and re-evaluation period obviously brought more players onto the servers and now those periods have ended there will naturally be less players online than there was during the trial periods.

The overall levels on the quieter servers aren't any lower than they were originally though so it may be that we consider some merges down the line but it isn't something we feel is necessary just at the moment.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Taking a break

I will be logging off the "Interwaves" for a while, and will probably not post much anymore.

I was hoping to drive some conversations about AoC in general and discuss the game as a whole. But, it does look like traffic has dropped way off here, and I can only assume no one wants to read about the game.

Pretty disappointed actually.

I know I had an avid few of you, and I really appreciate your visits. I would just rather focus on the game as a whole and play it, and not discuss it I guess.

I suggest if people are on the fence, you should play as well.

I have really lost interest in the MMO genre as a whole though and I am unimpressed with how the genre has progressed. I have the one game I enjoy at this time, and I guess that is where I will be for the foreseeable future as well.

Good luck everyone, and have a pleasant trip on the net. I will leave the site up with my book readings and my character data at least.
I will also post a link to my photo albums, and drop those here for anyone that wishes to see them.

Cheers and thanks.



Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Age of Conan - Dark Templar Impressions

Last week, patch 1.5.5 was applied that did a revamp of the Dark Templar in Age of Conan. You can read more about the changes here...Since you can read these, I do not want to run on about the changes overall. I want to talk a moment about how the Templar "feels" now with these changes.


I have noted first that depending on the trees you choose for feats, that you must either go "Survivor" or "DPS'er". Before I could spread out the love and be a good Hybrid of sorts (get some decent damage and not die so easily).
Now, if I do DPS, I can feel the danger of death looming at my feet.
the two pictures show that right now, I am testing the DPS tree, which closely matched what I had before revamp.



Another change is new abilities that work against casters specifically. The Dark Templar is a killer Anti-Caster Tank now.
One noted ability can crank your protection from magic damage up to 2500+ points...holy smokes. Mainly invincible. Others drain mana like crazy.

Basically, if you have a casters dungeon crawl coming, better add a DT.

I tested this against a particularly cranky caster boss in the Slaughterhouse solo dungeon. This boss can have you running and hiding behind various poles in the room to avoid damage and downing pots to live.
The magic damage has been pretty bad.
Now, I am able to stand in front of him longer and smack on him thanks to the protection spell, and had to run just once (and without a pot) and then took him down on round two of attacks.



Finally some trees can get you so many skills, that trying to figure out which ones to use, makes you crazy.
Several skills allow you to stun, drain, protect...oh and summon a demon.
Still feel some skills are quite odd to this class, but I digress.

I am still getting used to the changes, so I still need to play with him a bit. I also have not run a raid in a while, and I am not sure how viable he is or where the Dark Templar actually fits in.
But, for now, the changes were quite different, and I am still playing with my spec, and seeing if I need to go down a new path. I will try the protection set...but, with no raids, I am unsure if I need that

I will report more on if any changes take place and how they work.

Cheers

Monday, August 24, 2009

Fashion...turn to the left..

(Hey, if I can use anything Bowie..I will do it...lol)

Well, I am back. A nice weekend away, and still very tired...but, had a good time eating and shopping.
Anyways, today I wanted to get some pics out there of what my son has been collecting on his Dark Templar.
Armor up the wazoo. What you will see actually is not only pieces that are world drops, but some unique finds that are only available by entering dungeons and epic zones.
I have discussed the epic zones before, but basically, all bosses will drop a unique and blue item in these areas.
So far, FoTD is the easiest to find groups of bosses close to each other, where you can get the most bang for you buck. Several others prove to be more difficult, but have some great gear.

What follows is some of the various outfits he has put together into his RP sets....enjoy.
















Also some great shields...





And an interesting weapon...(yes, that is a arm and hand,,,)



Then I always try to catch a few others out there who have gained raid sets or other varieties...these are quite nice...











Ok...that is all for today. Think of it as my fashion blog entries. Just like to have these every once in a while...especially when I see the "No variety in armor" posts. I just point them here.

Sorry, there is...you just have to put some effort in. This right here is a perfect reason to group up when you want to just solo the game...

Cheers

Friday, August 21, 2009

Out of town this weekend...but..

I am working on a few things.

First up, patch 1.5.5 hit this week with a revamp of the Dark Templar skills. I am studying these changes and trying to get to grips. There are a lot more skills to use on hand, and I am learning how they all mesh. I feel a bit weaker now than before...but, I can kill pretty fast and with so many stuns and protections versus casters, it sure is proving to be interesting.

Next up I am investigating the economy of our server. The wife is heavy into using the trader and learning how people are selling goods and what goods are worth money and which are not, and finally how some people are so lazy, they cannot search for prices and throw items up for ridiculous amounts, ruining the system in place.

Finally, a while back I started working on my Bear Shaman after the 1.5.4 patch...but, put him on hold for another player in the Creeping Darkness guild.
I have not had a chance to discuss those changes and I hope to get back to him soon. The "Trio" (myself, wife and son) have debated a new team to play with. Maybe he may be used there...not sure.

All I know is I wish to see him in a Team setting.

But, for now...I am escaping. When I return, first up will be another Fashion Show for you all. The son has collected quite a bit of armor, and based on what we see, there is more variety in style than most think. The secret? EPIC and Dungeons...

Until later...CHEERS

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Age of Conan - Rise of the Godslayer

Announced on Tuesday, Funcom unveiled the information along with trailers and more for their new expansion for Age of Conan...Rise of the Godslayer

There is quite a bit at the link noted above, with an FAQ and screenshots section, so I will not bore you with those details.
Instead, I would like to talk about what Funcom is doing with this expansion...

A Horizontal progression system.

I do not think we need to go on about how bad the launch of this game was...but it was, and if anything, people still feel the game is not even done. I beg to differ on this at times, as I can play the game EVERYDAY, and I enjoy it immensely, even if others cannot find that.
This may be my own personal changes in how I feel about MMO's (I have yet to get excited about any new MMO on the horizon, and all of the betas that use to excite me a year ago, now bore or disappoint), but everytime I log in, I am busy and having fun.

So, with this announcement, I think the major issue to me was...please do not add more levels.

Funcom did not (thank you!).

Instead an alternate system of new abilities, spells and combos will be added to the current level system. They also discuss the "Advancement Point System". Or, as I like to call it...achievements..

That is what it boils down to. Yet, it is not, and that is what rocks about it.

"You will earn points to spend on new abilities and combos, many of which will naturally have an Asian martial arts theme. You will also be able to train your abilities to a more powerful level using an offline, time-based skill-training system not unlike EVE Online's. The aim is more depth to combat and a diversification of each class, allowing them to take on more roles, according to Morrisson."


You can read a lot into this. And it almost feels very "Guild Wars", where you focus on specific areas of achievement depending on what types of skills you wish to use. I actually thought the idea of the offline system is ingenious for a Fantasy MMO, and have only seen one Fantasy based MMO try it...but, I cannot even remember that games name (PS: It has been shutdown, I know that...lol)

So, what does this do? Well, for new characters, they will have more areas to look into for training. The feat system is already pretty fun, but this new system speaks of "training" these attributes, which sounds way cool.
For older characters, it is another reason to play than to raid.
This system makes it viable for new and old players in so many words...no one is left out.

This also precludes another norm for expansions...new classes. RotG (hehe...new acronym...yea) by having this new system will make it so any class can learn new abilities, so why introduce a new class to cause more balance issues.
And THIS is the final piece of that puzzle that makes it complete to me.
Thanks to using this system, balance can be kept to a minimum and with a set of skills across all classes, they only need to balance that skill within the context of the current game. Not make it so this new set of abilities are balanced against all the other class skills.

Hope that makes sense.

If anything, Funcom took a very safe method with this expansion. They can continue working on the game, balancing classes, balancing PvP (which this expansion does not add a whole lot of, but is more PvE oriented...just what niche games thrive on), and let the new content add onto the current game.

Many other things were discussed and you can read them at the above links. But, with things like mounts you raise and train, new gear from factions, new dungeons (an AoC strength) and a new race with an alternate storyline in Tortage (which some people are still bummed about...meh, I can whip through Tortage in 3-4 hours, so a new story is cool,,,and does not hurt me.)...this looks good.

Hopefully it will be priced reasonably, and as long as Funcom continues working on the current game (the next patch session, 1.06, will be a major Guild system revamp), I am pretty excited about this expansion.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Monday Night Casuals Strikes Again!!

Another night, more players join in, and we not only expand the Guild City, we also finished a dungeon as a team for the first time.

An exciting night again, as we got underway.



The first order of business was to set up a contribution to the Creeping Darkness courtesy of our personal family guild, Simple Complexities!

We handed over 14 Gold.



This allowed CD to first install ALL workshops for our crafting professions in the city. Omuro, the guild leader, let Tashar, my son pick where the buildings went as well. It was momentous.







As Shanrhiana, my wife was the main money maker, and the one who contributed a large lump sum to this effort, Omuro built a gate in her honor as well!


Now all we need are some uh....walls...lol

The group then headed to the Field of the Dead and entered the Cradle of Decay.

Our group consisted of Krayor (a new player to the Monday Night group) as a Guardian, Deathblooms (a Necro), Omuro a Bear Shaman, the wife as Ranger, Tashar, my son as a Herald of Xotli and myself as a Tempest of Set.

We started to mesh immediately as we started to learn our place and our job. The bosses in this dungeon were important as each are scripted in a certain way. No one, but myself and the wife and son had been here, so we helped each learn how we needed to take out the bosses.
The teamwork was phenomenal.

We had a few hiccups, but hey, for the first time, this was not too bad.

The fact we completed the dungeon and logged off by 10:30 EDT is a testament to the Casual Guilds teamwork, and how much we could accomplish in that 3 some hour time span.

I am quite pleased...heck even my wife who hates dungeons was totally impressed at how well the games grouping works. She was not overly happy with the Ranger choice she made, but really had fun with it in a group.

So, now the planning begins for next weeks meet. I am looking to set a goal to get to level 55 before we move to another major adventure. This means we either level during the week or will work on leveling that Monday!

For now, I am looking at the info this week for the Age of Conan expansion that has just been announced. I will try to pool some more information on this and do a post later this week.

For now...cheers all.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Generalizations (Or, whats up in General!)


Ok, so, as we know, I have pulled my Xfire client. I also have tried Raptr with utter failure. Thus, my time I play is not really tracked anymore.

Guess it doesn't really matter...does it?

I thought at one time maybe it might be important to show just how much fun I am having in my game of choice (Age of Conan...duh!!), but, I guess the cat is out of the bag. I am so into you AoC, I could squeal.

But, for posterity's sake I will state...I play Age of Conan about 1.5 hours in the mornings. About 1 hour in the afternoons and about 1.5 hours in the evenings. (4 hours a day?)
Mondays will be about 3 hours in the evenings now thanks to the new Casual Guild! (7-10pm on the money!)
Weekends can vary. We have 3-4 hour sessions a day, and maybe twice a day...Fridays can get up to 4-5 hours. One Sunday we played 6 hours straight with snack breaks (and smoke breaks for the wife...I quit about 2 years ago now..)

So, do I need to be in the Second Skin movie part 2?

I digress!!

________________


Next Monday, the Creeping Darkness Casual Guild will be tackling the Cradle of Decay in the Field of the Dead zone in AoC.


This group instance was added during the patch 1.4 days, and allows 6 players in their upper 40's to tackle this easily. We will probably have 4 to 5 level 50's.

Hope it goes well. Should be quite interesting.

Of note for this instance is there are 3 major bosses, and each are scripted, to make the encounters more interesting. What I basically mean is there is a unique way to defeat each mob, and it is not a standard tank and spank (which is good, as we have no tanks yet....).

Can't wait to see how this goes. I will be back here to cry when we fail of course...just a side note.

_____________

Well, that is it for the weekend. Hope everyone has a great one, and I will make sure to get as much game time in as I can to skew my actual results from before...

Cheers

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Putting out Fire with Gasoline (XFire that is..)

(Nods to David Bowie on that title...Cat People...AWESOME!!)

So, here is a story.

I usually take time every 3-6 months depending on how a computer is doing, to reload the OS.
I am a masochist. What can I say...
I have 3 systems in my home, and after having worked on computers for 15 plus years, I know NOTHING does a system better than an OS enema.
Especially with Windows 7 on the way, I am in "test" mode to make sure of what works and what does not, so I am ready for when that apocalypse hits.

So, I loaded up my MAIN system (hooked to a 42" TV in the living room) with Win 7. I loaded drivers and what not...but, this time..I decided to NOT load XFire.

This all came about due to a complaint by Blamefulgecko having crashes every hour in Age of Conan. Now, I have NOT crashed in the game, but I have noticed performance issues.

Thus, one of the reasons for the reload.

But, what if it is something else? What if the reload was not needed? But, like I said, I was ok with that...but what about XFire?

I had mainly used XFire as a tool to record some video that I have not really posted much of. I had also thought of using it to do voice chat.
And if anything, I kept it loaded to keep track of my game time in Age of Conan. I liked seeing how it ranks right now as the most played game in my list too!!
It also has allowed me to track friends playing the game, and we have built up a list of people on the Xfire community.

But, I am afraid I have put out Xfire (nice pun there Edge..).

The game is running considerably better now since I have not loaded it. I also have alleviated an issue of a black screen on exit in DX10 mode. It never happens anymore, when it was happening on a regular basis before.

So, a note to those who have crashing issues and run Xfire? Looks like it is time to say goodbye to this program, and just forget tracking how much time you spend in game. We all can find another tool to communicate with soon. I am looking at Raptr to see how this plays with AoC, and if it also causes issues, then we may just have to tweet our schedules on our own (sure did like Gamerdna's tracking on Twitter...)

But, I prefer this game running top notch, as when it does, it is gorgeous, and runs like a dream.

And BTW, forget Vista, Windows 7 is truly the better OS.

Also?....CHEERS!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Monday Night Casual Guild Report

Last night was the first meet up of the new Casual Guild, Creeping Darkness, formed by Blamefulgecko.

It all started as a simple question on Twitter. Can Age of Conan feasibly have a Casual Guild like some other MMO's (Everquest 2, LOTRO, etc..). I thought of the many ways this could possibly happen. What with City Building, Dungeons, quick finish on quests and just grouping in general to do things makes the game more lively.

I can tell you, that our first night proved this. With just four of us, we whipped through a section of landscape to reach a quest that could take one or two players an hour to do, in about 10 minutes.

But, our first meet was just to discuss some things. Like type of crafting we need, and quick hellos.

We have an Assassin, Ranger, HoX and ToS that are at level 50 or above. Several lower levels (a 36, and a 12..) also. I will try to do a roster and post that soon.

We also have a guild site here

Several things of note happened. First, the 50's all finished their Destiny Quests. Several members started gathering, including my son, who had some items he put up for sale, and he smacked ONE GOLD into the guild bank as his contribution! (Way to go son!).
The wife started doing gemcutting and is working on selling these off to contribute to the Guild Bank.
We found out how many mats we need for our next wall to go up at the Guild City as well. So, we have started to gather those goods.

I needed to log, but, my wife and son stayed up a little later and met with the guys from Channel Massive who are doing the casual thing in Creeping Darkness as well. I pray they do not know TOO much now (scared the wife may have been TOO open????).

We all had a great time, and already planned a night of dungeon crawling next week in the Cradle of Decay. A unique dungeon with scripted boss encounters that need to be tackled a specific way.
Not easy...thats for sure.

Thats all for now...have a good one and Cheers!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Quick post - Whats up?

Hey all

So, isn't it odd that I run a game blog about Age of Conan, yet have been playing the game so much that I do not have time to post?

ARGH !!

Anyways, I am currently hard at work as so much is going on now.

The Monday Night Guild (Creeping Darkness) will have their first meetup tomorrow (yup...you guessed it...Monday). New characters will be made for the son and wife, and my level 49 Tempest of Set is in. The leader of that guild, Omuro (Blamefulgecko on twitter) is working defiantly on his Bear Shaman to get him to level. We also have a tank who may need some help as well (lower levels)...but that is what the plan is all about!! A set team playing regularly, leveling, hitting dungeons, working on gathering and resources...building up the Guild City (especially for the next patch, 1.06, which will be introducing Guild incentives, kind of like EQ2).

BTW, before I go on, a quick shout to Blamefulgecko, who has started a new blog. Make sure to visit him here.

I also am testing the latest revamp on the Bear Shaman. But, I have not had too much time, as also the family guild has been dilligently leveling, and have hit the 50's. We need to do our Destiny Quests, crafting...

AGHHH...See what I mean?

Did I mention, the next iteration of the 1.05 patch (1.05.5) will be a revamp of the DARK TEMPLAR??...OMG...WHY?

Seems I got a lot to do. But, I sure do not want to forget you guys. Hopefully I will get some posting going on this week. And as always...

Thanks for stopping by. Cheers.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Age of Conan - Angry Rant and Bear Shamans

I have a new post up at Angry Rant News about the balancing act that Age of Conan is doing, in regards to balancing the overall game and classes...

In particular, I discuss todays patch (notes HERE) and the changes to two classes that have really "sucked" for me.

Bear Shaman and Barbarian.

In honor of todays patch, which is a revamp of these classes, I have a level 20 Bear Shaman ready to rock, and level using the new changes. I hope to have him in the new Casual Guild for goofing off with...but, I will try to make some notes of how the class feels now after this update, and report that here also.

Hope everyone is having a good week, and will be back to chat soon.

Cheers

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Age of Conan - Bugs that bug me

If you are not quite doing it yet, then by all means, check out Twitter (no need to sign up either...but just to read).

Quite a few bloggers are using it now, and getting their thoughts out there in a Readers Digest version.

I have a current streak going today called "AoC bugs that bug me". If anything, Age of Conan lacks some fundamental Q&A, and it shows with so many silly little bugs. The hope is more polish will go into the game as it continues...but no one knows for sure.

Got one to add? Please post a comment here.

Anyways, head here (http://twitter.com/openedge1) to see if yours is mentioned...and if not...let me know here.

Cheers

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Work is BUSY - But some AoC news

Well, work has really become slam time, with contacts needing to be made, lists to compile, and more...
I just have not had time to write.
Then when I get home in the evenings, eating supper and mass quantities of Age of Conan take what little leisure I have left.

But, starting this week, I have been discussing a Casual Guild with another Tweeter on Twitter, who happens to live in North Carolina (my home state) and we are trying to organize a "Set Night" guild.
Thus, we would play a specific night, a specific time, and have specific goals.

The guild already has a tier one city, thus, we will continue building upon that. Our main goal is for when the wife and son hit 50, they will create their free level 50's. Then those characters will go into that guild.
I added an old character, a Tempest of Set named Ethalos to that guild already (the guild is called the Creeping Darkness), and am power leveling a Bear Shaman as well, so I have a variety to choose from.
We will all try classes to complement, yet be ones we wish to play or have never played. The wife is looking at a Ranger, and the son ...a HoX.

The guild will be actively recruiting those who just want a guild to hang out in, and have a purpose. The city is one goal, dungeons another (as I still believe Age of Conan has some of the best). We will need to set priorities on levels (I am suggesting a 5 level moratorium...so, basically no one is more than 5 levels apart, which should eliminate XP loss in groups, and all doing the same quests).

The guild is on the Set server, so if you are reading and looking for a home to hang...come join us.

Cheers for now

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Age of Conan - Bear Shaman - changes a coming

The Bear shaman has been one of those classes that has been elusive to me as a "good" class...yet, it fascinates me due to it's Celtic like nature.

Well, this may all change thanks to a revamp. Seems complaints of where the BS fits into the scheme of the game has been heard, and now a major revamp is on the way..

I am quite excited, and thought I would share the Test Server notes that shows just how much is happening with this class...and let me say..WoW...thats a revamp.

Enjoy.

BEAR SHAMAN
* Added a new mechanic to the Bear Shaman: While the Bear Shaman has any Manifestation active, any target hit with Internal Bleed will suffer from the following effects:
- Manifestation of Winter causes the Arctic Slumber vision. The target is drained of stamina and mana over time and when this effect expires, they are snared for a short time.
- Manifestation of the Sun causes the Desert Bloom vision. The target takes fire damage over time and when this effect expires, the Bear Shaman receives a damage boost for a short time.
- Manifestation of the Forest causes the Tree of Life vision. The Bear Shaman gains a self-stacking Armor and Protection buff and when this effect expires, the Bear Shaman gains additional Armor and Protection for a short time.
- Manifestation of Spirit causes the World Walker vision. The target takes poison damage over time and when this effect expires, they suffer a large amount of damage.
* Changed Manifestation: Hostile Territory to Manifestation of Spirit. This spell is gained at level 15 and pulses a 5% damage debuff to all enemies around the Bear Shaman.
* Manifestation: Enfeeble has been replaced with Manifestation of Winter. This spell now has only one rank is gained a level 35 and pulses cold damage on all foes around the Bear Shaman while active.
* Replaced Spirits of the Earth with a new Spell - Manifestation of the Forest. This spell reduces the physical invulnerability rating of all foes around the Bear Shaman by -10% while active.
* Replaced Spirits of the Debased with a new Spell - Manifestation of the Sun. This spell reduces the hate generated by the Bear Shaman and reduces the incoming healing received by all foes around the Bear Shaman by -10% while active.
* Renamed Manifestation: Regrowth to Rune of Regrowth. This spell no longer shares buff lines with any Manifestations.
* All manifestations have had their durations changed to 25 seconds, their cooldown changed to 50 seconds, and their cast time reduced to 0.5 seconds.
* Reduced Aspect - Blood Fever to a 3 point feat. This feat no longer grants a new ability.
* Changed Blood Fever to increase weapon damage by 5/10/15% while any Manifestation is active.
* Changed Untamed Regeneration to no longer grant a new ability. It now grants the same amount of regeneration while any Manifestation is active.
* Internal Bleed III has had its combo-sequence reduced from three steps to two (UR>UP)
* Internal Bleed IV has had its combo-sequence reduced from four steps to two (LR>UP)
* Added a New Feat: Mutilation. The feat is located above Bewilder in the Wrath tree and increases the critical chance of the Internal Bleed damage over time effect by 5/10/15/20/25% per respective rank and increases the critical bonus damage by 60/70/80/90/100% per respective rank.
* Crushed Bones has been changed from affecting the combo opener for Internal Bleed to affecting the finisher damage. The bonus has been recalculated accordingly.
* Crushed Organs has been increased by an additional 1% per rank.
* Removed all Spirit Totem spells. Some of the bonuses granted by these Totems has been added to different Claw effects as follows: Claws of Corruption and Claws of the Reaper now provide additional Combat Rating (Unholy) passively. Claws of Life and Claws of Stone now provide additional Armor passively.
* Ursine Spirit has been moved to the place Spirit Totem: Miasma used to occupy.
* Spirit Totem: Miasma has been renamed to Gangrene. It now increases the periodic damage of Manifestation of Winter.
* Spirit Walker has been changed to modify the damage over time effect and the ending damage of the World Walker vision.
* Shards of the Earth has been changed and now significantly increases the damage of Ursine Crush.
* Ursine Roar no longer grants a spell and has been renamed Ursine Spirit, and is now located in the Spirits tree. It now improves the the damage debuff component of Manifestation of Spirit by 1/2/5% per respective feat point.
* Added a new feat to the Wrath tree: Winter's Bite. This feat increases the power of the mana and stamina drain effect of Arctic Slumber and the power of the ending snare effect caused by Arctic Slumber.
* Scarred Hide has been changed to have a chance to give the bonus armor buff on all physical hits, not just critical hits. The proc chance has been adjusted down to 3%/8%/16%.
* Iron Hide has been significantly improved. The duration has been lowered to 6 seconds, but it will now fully absorb up to 100 attacks during that period. In addition, attacks against you while Iron Hide is running will grant you a damage increase during and after Iron Hide activation. The more attacks you absorb, the higher this damage bonus will be.
* Ursine Crush has had its cooldown lowered to 1 minute.
* Created a new 3 point feat on the third tier in the Wrath tree: Ursine Fury. This feat increases the duration of the stun effect caused by Ursine Crush by 0.5/1/1.5 seconds per respective feat point.
* Created a new 1 point feat on the sixth tier in the Wrath tree: Ursinity. This feat reduces the cooldown of Ursine Rush by 15 seconds.
* Created a new 2 point feat on the eigth tier in the Wrath tree: Rampaging Crush. This feat increases the radius of Ursine Crush by 1/2 meters per respective feat point.
* A new feat Spirit Bear has been added into the Spirits tree, as a requirement to Booming Roar. When you perform a physical critical hit you have a 10/20/30/40/50% chance of spawning a Spirit Bear, and whenever you perform a fatality a Spirit Bear will be created. Regardless of how the Spirit Bear is summoned, a Spirit Bear cannot be summoned more than once every 15 seconds. The bear attacks with you and stacks up the Physical Torment debuff on the enemy. Additionally, if you have Claws of the Reaper running, it will apply the Claws of Stone debuff on the target, and if you have Claws of Stone running, it will apply Claws of the Reaper instead.
* Claws of the Reaper now provides all players attacking the cursed target with a damage boost if they are currently affected by Renewal.
* Switched the locations of Claws of Life and Claws of the Reaper.
* Increased the bonuses granted to the Crush Armor combo by the Rupture feat to 20% (up from 5%).
* Bloodthirst has had the final step of its combo-sequence changed from UP to UL making the new sequence LR>UR>UL
* The damage of the Bloodthirst combo has been increased.
* Blood Champion has been changed from a clickable to an additional passive damage bonus when casting Blood Flow. The damage bonus has been reduced to 6/12/18/24/30% weapon contribution.
* Increased the duration of the Blood Warrior effect to 15 seconds.
* Ursine Rush has been changed to a 1 point feat.
* Changed the Rune of Slaughter feat to "Slaughter" This feat now passively increases Armor Penetration.
* Added the Physical Ruin proc to the Rune of Aggression spell.
* Increased the cooldown of Rune of Aggression to 45 seconds.
* Slightly increased the weapon contribution bonus gained from Rune of Aggression.
* Weight of the World no longer grants an ability. It now increases critical damage by 2.5/5% per respective feat point.
* Battle Roar no longer grants a new spell. It instead provides a reduced bonus to weapon damage and max health passively.
* Increased the Miss Chance debuff values of Ursine Brawl to 3/5/8% per respective combo rank.
* All ranks of Ursine Brawl now share cooldowns.
* Increased the bonuses granted by Ursine Onslaught to 9/18/27/36/45% (up from 2/4/6/8/10%)
* The cooldown of Ether Theft has been reduced to 25 seconds, down from 30.
* Lycanthropic Bite has been made instant-cast, down from 1 second.
* Ursine Crush has been adjusted so that the damage component occurs before the stun component.
* The casting time of Booming Roar has been reduced from 1 second to 0.1 seconds.
* Renamed the Fierce Recovery blocker effect to 'Hibernation' to avoid a naming conflict.