Confessions of an RPG gamer

And now it’s time for something completely different.

I thought we’d take a break from the usual news heavy blog format for a change of pace, something that I hope is more of a discussion piece than the norm, which usually involves me ranting for twenty minutes. I still rant, just… not as much.

I’m a Quest Completist:

This specifically drives my erm… guild mates nuts. I MUST complete all the quests within a specific area before moving on. If I see a bunch of golden exclamation marks pop up in a city, I have to have them. I just don’t feel right not solving everyone problems. Even if one of those quests takes me half way around the world to the other side of the planet, on a different continent, where I find a whole new slew of quests, I must return to the original location to turn that quest in, and finish the quests there first.

I finished Mass Effect 1 today (just in time for part 2!), and this failing made finishing Bioware’s space opera incredibly difficult. As most can at attest to, Mass Effect, despite everything it does right (and it does a lot right) has some of the most banal, most tear-your-hair-out-cus-it’s-like-watching-paint-dry, boring side missions. But you know what? I did ‘em all.

I’m a Pack Rabbit:

Hmmm… that looks like an interesting item. It might be useful some time later in the game. I’ll just put it in my knap-sack here… and then forget about it till the end of the game. “You are over-encumbered and cannot run”. I’m far too familiar with this phrase, whether the game is Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, or Age of Conan, I’m always running out of inventory space. Why? Because I hoard items like no ones business. I’ve taken that old boyscout mantra to the absolute extreme, always be prepared, you never know what you might need, so stock up on a little of everything.

I’m a Spendthrift:

I prefer the term “economically prudent” myself, but whether it’s aoc gold, aion kinah, or Fallout 3‘s caps, I just can’t get enough of the shiny gold stuff. I love, love, LOOOOOVE seeing that number climb. Maybe I’ve got a Scrooge McDuck complex. Come to think of it, how cool would it be if Blizzard created an instanced player housing style money bin where you could invite all your friends over for a swim in some wow gold? Oh! Oh! And what if the pile got larger and larger the more wow gold you had? *sigh* we can dream I guess.

I can’t stand Japanese RPG’s:

This one hurts a bit, because I used to quite like them. All the way up to the PlayStation One era, I was playing games like Parasite Eve, Final Fantasy VII (and VIII) and Vagrant Story. However, somewhere along the line in the PlayStation 2 era, I figured out I was playing the same game over and over and over again. The androgynous main, emo/angst-ridden main character, nonsensical storyline, linear gameplay… where was the innovation? Where was the player choice? What happened o the Parasite Eve’s and Vagrant Story’s of the world?

I never buy DLC or expansion packs:

Well maybe that isn’t entirely true. I do own Burning Crusade. At EpicToon HQ we have pretty much every expansion for every MMO we play at the offices, so maybe I get my fix there, but even though I wanted to buy Shivering Isles for Elder Scrolls IV, and Bring Down the Sky for Mass Effect 1… I never did. I’m looking at Return to Ostagar right now and thinking “Yeah baby! I’m gonna get that!” But the truth is that once I’m done with Dragon Age: Origins, I’ll be ready for Dragon Age 2, and Return to Ostagar will be but a distant memory. I looooooove Age of Conan, but when Rise of the Godslayer hits, will I get that?

MMO’s drive me nuts:

And yet I can’t stop playing them. I don’t get it. I know why they drive me nuts, it’s because I never really feel like I’m in charge of my own destiny. By design in an MMO, you can’t really alter the world around you or the NPC’s you interact with, because everyone else also lives in that world and needs to do the same quests. It’s why, when you leave Tortage in flames at the end of the first ten levels of Age of Conan, you’re shocked to come back ten minutes later only to find the place in pristine shape.

Admittedly though, time and technology seem intent on changing that. With the advent of phasing, games like World of Warcraft are able to make the same location appear different for different players at different points in the quest line. Also, games like Bioware are creating NPC’s and companions who are reactive, who can decide to leave your group in Star Wars: The Old Republic if they don’t like the way you run the show.