I’ve been playing World of Warcraft almost exclusively for a very long time now.

I know the game, in many ways I love the game, and the familiarity breeds a feeling of comfort. I know it’s ways so intimately that there is very little mystery left in the game for me.

It’s a great game, but when the mystery is gone… well, you might find yourself looking wistfully at other games, wondering what they might have new to offer.

Maybe that’s why my relationship with Cassie is still so strong… I never know what she’s gonna hit me with next. Her mystery (and awesomeness) have endless depths. Plus, she has great graphics. :)

The Cataclysm expansion has been out for about a month now, and I find myself… well, kinda bored.

Even with pacing myself, and switching things up, and going back on alts in different zones and doing professions and all the various things the game has to offer… well, levels 80 to 85 are short. I’m sorry, there it is.

Level 1 to 60 is unparalled excitement and awesomesauce, but once you hit 60, it’s even worse than hitting a wall with your muzzle. I’ve done the exact same zones in Burning Crusade and Wrath far, far too many times over the years to feel any excitement there whatsoever.

So, I’ve hit a plateau where the game is still fun, and I’m really loving all the improvements and fun things to do… but the mystery is mostly gone, and I’ve been receptive to bringing a little suspense back into my nightlife.

In a moment of weakness, my wandering eye alighted on a sexy game in hot pants scrolling by, I saw one gameplay video too many, and I gave in to temptation.

I bought a new MMO game. I paid money for it, which implies a certain level of “now I have to play it to make sure I get some value”.

I’ll admit it, I was weak.

I’ve flirted with other MMOs before, but only on a trial basis. I’d purchased City of Heroes and played it, but I gave that up when WoW came along. I’ve gone out on a few dates with other games, but nothing ever really clicked before.

I even tried Champions as a trial, the newer offering of the superhero themed game.

It didn’t grab me.

But then she came along… DC Universe.

It was just so shiny!

It was superheroes, which I just can’t seem to resist as a concept, but also a tantalyzing promise of storylines and quests interacting with the major heroes and villains of the DC world.

Part of what drew me in, I’ll admit, is how I think of DC these days.

When I think of DC, I think specifically of the writing of Grant Morrison on Justice League of America, Flash and most recently Batman. I think of Geoff Johns and his runs on the Flash and Green Lantern, and the older Teen Titans work.

The trailer for the game that sets the theme of the MMO storyline felt right in line with that epic scope. I wanted to take part in it.

So, last night I basically impulse bought DC Universe.

Don’t get me wrong, I did read everything I could about it first. I’ve been following the articles written about it on Massively, I’ve watched some of the developer videos, I read some first hand impressions. I looked at gameplay videos.

It all looked pretty good. I’ll grant you, the thematic armors towards end game seemed kinda goofy, but I can roll with it for a brand new story.

When I purchased DC Universe, I decided to do so through Steam, for no other reason than to support direct digital downloads of games. I could have driven out to Best Buy, but hey… Steam rocks.

The downside of buying a huge game through digital download, of course, is that you might as well pack a lunch and bring a book, you’re going to be chilling out for a while. 

Four hours after purchasing the game, the download was complete, the SOE account was made, all the final ‘i’s were dotted and ‘t’s were crossed. I was ready to begin.

Cassie has been dubious about this entire enterprise, and with very good reason.

Quests, setting, all of that aside, it’s not a WoW clone. It’s what is getting called a ‘button masher’, an MMO in fighting game format. It’s designed to be friendly with a Playstation 3 controller, and so it’s less about careful positioning and range, lots of abilities and macros, and far more about pressing button sequences to build up complex combos. You can lock onto your target so when you’re furiously pressing buttons, you don’t have to worry about positioning. That kind of thing.

It’s more of a twitch gaming and combo sequence game at heart.

That may scare some people, but I for one have no problem learning combos. I’m sure if you sat me in front of Mortal Kombat, Skorpion would be tossing a harpoon and yelling ‘Get over here!’ in no time.

I did create a few characters last night, very briefly. I did play a little bit, enough to get one character through the first intro sequence to escape from Brainiac.

I’ll probably delete that character, but I got a better idea for what I did and didn’t like for classes and stuff. I’m sure it’ll help in creating a new one that’ll last.

Since I’ve been following along with the Massively articles, I am making my characters on the Zero Hour PvE server, and if I can get a character I like going, I’m sure I’ll ask them if they have a spot for another novice hero wannabe.

So far, all I’ve got is a character name I like, and nothing else. But there is that excitement about investigating a brand new game. 

My one regret is that you just can’t try this one before you decide if you’d like to buy it. It’s new enough that they really do want those initial sales, and I suppose they feel the franchise is strong enough to entice people in on the name alone.

I guess they’ve got a point, since I bought it, right? 

Time will tell how it turns out, but for now, I’ll be having a little fun getting the beat down done!

It sure is a strange feeling,wandering off the known paths and well traveled roads of a game I know by heart, and into the wilderness of completely new experiences and shadowy, hidden adventures. I literally have no idea what the future holds in store… I don’t even know what classes can do what!

A brave new adventure indeed. And not a little scary!

17 Responses to “Into the Wilderness!”
  1. Lokyst says:

    Dude, if only you’d said something. I have a 10 day buddy pass. :p

    I am enjoying the game, though I’ve taken the last two days off because I find myself suffering from doom motion sickness.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      I wish I had, but I did a lot of reading of their FAQs and stuff, and nowhere did I see any mention of any kind of trial or buddy pass or nuttin’ for the game.

      If I had had any inkling, I definitely would have asked if someone had a spare one first.

  2. Agora says:

    I am also bored somewhat for Cataclysm.

    I don’t think the 1-60 revamp is as good as advertised if you like to group while leveling. There are no orange or red difficulty quests available in the outdoors and thus, nothing to offer even a minor challenge to a duo. I so miss the days when we had to kill mobs 5 to 8 levels higher than we were for a red difficulty quests. It was slow leveling but it was fun leveling.

    The 81-85 quests suffer from the same “too easy” problem.

    The 1-60 instances are more interesting to us these days. We like to underman dungeons and found the new 1-60 instances to offer a fun challenge when 3 manning. Mana is sometimes a serious issue when fighting bosses.

    The Burning Crusade dungeons can be 2-manned for the most part, except the later instances when they include soft enrage timers or mechanisms.

    The Wrath instances can be 3-manned but again. some encounters offer a serious challenges for the undermanned group.

    The normal Cataclysm can be easily 4-manned while at the appropriate level. The heroics offer a good challenge for a full group if you run with 1 tank, 1 healer, and 3 DPS. They are much easier if you run with 2 healers or 1 healer and two hybrids. We choose the harder path almost always unless we are really pressed for time.

    I looked for a second MMO over a year ago and eventually settled on LotRO. It’s not a primary MMO for me but I suspect will keep playing it long after I quit WoW.

    ***

    Unrelated but does your son play Roblox?

    • Tesh says:

      I found plenty of red or more dangerous mobs while leveling. I just had to go off the quest rails.

      DCUO looks interesting, but I’d rather play it via the PS3. I applaud that it’s doing some things differently from the tired old MMO format. Here’s hoping you have fun with it, BBB!

      • bigbearbutt says:

        Well…. you’d have to HAVE a PS3 to play it on that console.

        Seeing as I sometimes feel like the last person in the country that doesn’t have an Xbox 360, I figure I’m just not the console gamer type anymore. Our poor Wii doesn’t even hardly ever get used by Cassie or I. It sure does see a lot of Super Mario Galaxy with Alex, though.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      I don’t know what Roblox is, yet, but I’ll be looking into it tonight. :)

  3. Dovius says:

    fweh, DC Universe Online, witht hat tiltle, I was afraid you’d started playing Runescape.
    Been interested in DCUO too, problem is that I gotta upgrade my graphics card to actually RUN it.

  4. Angry Gamer says:

    Bored and Angry are not supposed to go together…

    But yes I am bored too. 80 to 85 _IS_ too short. One half of cataclysm’s new content _IS_ in the 1-60 level area where I DO NOT want to play now.

    Perhaps this is the way of things. Everquest (I hear) was awesome until Scars xpac came out then it was NOT awesome. EQ + scars was buggy crap.
    When people left EQ they went to Beta this new game called WOW. So go figure…

    In many ways I feel that the economic dance that players have with game makers leads to better games and game churn. I really thought wow would break out of this and be THE GAME I would play for years. Unfortunately the REALID thing made me see that Blizzard/Actievil sees the future far differently than I do. [yes that’s right World of Farmville is coming to the Battle.net near you… shudder]

    So I will take my entertainment dollar elsewhere and roll a Bounty Hunter in the future.

    Angry Gamer (soon to be Angry Bounty Hunter)

    Stay Angry my friends Stay Angry

    • bigbearbutt says:

      You know, I don’t see DC Universe as being any kind of WoW killer, in any way, shape or form, and more than Conan or Warhammer were.

      It does seem like a fun idea, though. I dearly wish I could play as one of the Green Lantern Corps, but what I *can* do is make a Flash clone, and get a costume similar. I can play as a Batman or Robin clone, or as something similar to Deathstroke. Or Catwoman. And I can play side by side with, or help out, the more famous characters. It does provide a bit of cool factor. I can’t see it as being deep enough to supplant WoW, but I can see it being a great summer game.

  5. Lokyst says:

    On the green lantern thing. Rumor has it the intention is to release a patch with green lantern powers round about the time of the movie’s release.

  6. Natalie says:

    I agree. WoW is still fun, but I don’t feel that “drive” to log on and play, like I did during BC. I mostly log on for friends and guildmates, to catch up on stories, run 5 mans, and have fun.

    I have thought of playing the gaming field, however…

  7. Shane says:

    I leveled a pally tauren tank… 1-60 was great then SMASH outland and things came to a massive stop… it sucked!… then northrend… it sucked as well! then 80-85 where I pretty much dungeoned my way to 85… ugh!

    I agree with a lot of people in saying that Cataclysm is too short, far too short. 5 zones where people are constantly farming, youre always running into someone… WOTLK you could fly around and do stuff all over the place… not with cata, linear progression… oh, of course there are ridiculous NERFs incoming for my main… to the point my pally is starting to look very good when it comes to tanking… especially for heroics :(

    • Shane says:

      on a side note: I would love to try out new MMOs if I had the money and a decent internet connection… currently my internet connection is being useless as all buggery and im almost at that breaking point where I just give up!

  8. Rowtan says:

    Perhaps I’ve not been playing as long as some … I came in just after Burning Crusade arrived … but I’m certainly not bored. I’m currently at the stage where I don’t have enough time for everything i want to do. But this could have something to do with me being a massive altoholic, plus having just started a new goblin (just LOVE those early goblin quests), an achievement chaser (both personally but, currently, also for the guild) and a collector of mounts and pets (casually, certainly not the type to camp for hours on end).

    Currently trying to get my priest ready for raids (whilst trying to grind archeology for the staff), get guild rep with her and with my druid who is the first in the guild to get inscription to max, but needs the guild rep for it to count towards the guild achievement, get the gear and stats for the druid to dual spec to a healer … plus spending time doing old raids for the achievements/drops, and heroics for gearing. We did Sunwell tonight which was great fun, and hoping to finish ICC tomorrow for that achievement :P

  9. KiwiRed says:

    I’ve pretty much given up on Cata – I’ve leveled one character to 85, and just don’t have the inclination to get any more up there (81-85 is just too themepark for me, and I’ve no interest to going through all the same rides a second time). While DCUO is fairly entertaining so far (the combat system is nice and visceral, especially in comparison to the by-the-numbers systems we’ve come to expect from your average mmo), I’m not sure I’ll still be sufficiently interested to play after the free month given how quickly I’ve almost reached the level cap (with just the idea of rolling alts, finishing collection quests and grinding instances remaining).

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