Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Season 4: The End of Warcraft?

The sad part is that I don't feel that this post has a sensationalist title. Whenever I get to thinking about making a post about World of Warcraft (WoW), I feel overwhelmed. Strangely, I do not feel this way when thinking about working on a novel. I think the feeling grows from my own steadily rising sense of helplessness about WoW, which I don't feel when I am in total control as I am when I work. Why do I feel helpless about WoW?

From WoW BlueTracker: Season 4 Requirements and Arena Changes:

When Season 4 begins, Season 3 items will be reduced in personal and team arena rating requirement to:

  • Shoulders: 1950

  • Weapon: 1800

The new Season 4 items will have the below personal and team arena rating requirements:

  • Shoulders: 2200

  • Weapon: 2050

  • Head: 1700

  • Chest: 1600

  • Legs: 1550

  • Gloves: none

  • Off-hand: none

In addition, some of the Season 4 quality items that will be purchasable with honor will also carry a personal and team arena rating requirement:

  • Boots: 1700

  • Ring: 1650

  • Bracers: 1575

  • Belt: none

  • Necklace: none

  • Trinket: none

Have hunter ratings improved at all? Nope, and in fact, they have gone down. Now, like most of you, I play WoW casually. I won't be making a living from WoW. I'm not a professional gamer. I don't cheat; I don't point sell. What I do is play arenas on my main a few hours each week to get her gear over the course of the season. It takes me the entire season to do this. And I've noticed that arenas have gotten steadily more difficult to win as others get better gear much faster than me and my team.

With the rating requirements for gear set even higher than before, in Season 4, my team will get steamrolled. With poorer gear, we'll lose more times and get less points and take even longer to get gear. And as people grow tired of losing, they'll quit. So everyone will move down the ladder. If we averaged 1800, we'll drop to the 1700, and those from 1700 to 1600. If I quit arenas, I won't raid. I have even less time to do that. I already have all my battleground gear, so there's no need for me to run them anymore. Most likely, WoW will lose a subscriber.

My SO has already decided to forget arenas, but since his guild does Sunwell, he will at least continue to play until he gets tired of that. For the time being, I've rolled a warlock on an RP server (forsooth!) along with him in order to give us a way to play together. At least it's nice to be able to go anywhere in the game and not get ganked (someone there even asked me what ganked means--bless his heart).

What will you do?

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Friday, April 25, 2008

Freebie Friday - Sims 2 Recolor - White Marbletop Counters

This week went so fast that I've only managed a small Freebie for you. Next week I'll give out something a little grander.

But by small I don't mean shoddy. I really like my sims to have cheap things that look good. So here we have...
White Marbletop Counter for The Sims 2
...a white marble topped counter, recolor of the Maxis "Krampft Industries Value Counter." Only the counter--top & bottom--are included, the other objects shown in the picture are Maxis objects that come with the game. This recolor should work in any game.

You can download the counter top here, and the base here. Please let me know of any problems.

See you next week!

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Monday, April 21, 2008

Spore Creature Creator in June & Thomas Vu Interview

Hooked on Spore directs us to an IGN article about the Spore Creature Editor being released in June. From the IGN article:

Patrick Buechner: A trial version of the Spore Creature creator will be available for free through a variety of sources including as a download from Spore.com and in The SimCity Box. There will also be a version of the Creature Creator available at retail. The free Creature Creator has about 25-percent of the creature making parts from Spore. The retail version will have 100-percent. It's up to the players to choose which version they want, but they'll all be available at approximately the same time.

I know that I usually post information without throwing my own thoughts in. But after reading it through, I have to admit, this article gets puzzling when the IGN interviewer, after hearing Mr. Buechner's explanation of the editor, asks, "There's no game content?"

The Creature Editor isn't game content? But the interviewer doesn't even know that a release date has been announced for Spore, and asks incredulously, "This is a sign that Spore's really--finally--happening, then, right?"

I'll just...scuttle away from that one.

Artistvrd (from Hooked on Spore) also mentions in a newer post an interview with Thomas Vu--Spore producer--at Play.tm.

"Are you worried that even Sims fanatics will be daunted or even confused by the seemingly infinite possibilities of Spore?" I've seen this question (worded differently) in a few interviews now. The question implies that most people go through life wanting everything spoon fed to them. Or that people don't enjoy learning or trying new things.

Most people who are excited about Spore (and that's a LOT of people--thousands, if not the millions who loved The Sims) can't wait to mess around with it. I've never read about anyone saying they were scared of Spore, or afraid of all the choices. Never. Nowhere. Yet this question keeps getting asked. I think that one interviewer somewhere asked it, so now everyone feels they have to ask it. But I've never yet put down a game that had "too many choices." Have you?

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Friday, April 18, 2008

Freebie Friday - SimCity 4 - Snack-N-Play

Alien Ann's Shoreside Snack-N-Play

This Friday, I have made a 2x2 seaside lot to get your SimCity 4 cities ready for summer.

Snack-N-Play in game
Here's a shot of where it's best to put it--by the beach! But this can also stand in for a beach in a small neighborhood. The plants and lamp posts will vary.

Everyone loves to snack and play at the shore. Even sims! This seaside park plop has games, beach gear, & treats. You will need "SimCity 4 Building as Props" from the Lot Editor Tool Download page in your plugins folder. You can get it from the Lot Editor Tool page, but I have included it in the download that I host.

It doesn't need water to plop. May all your summer dreams come true!

Download Alien Ann's Shoreside Snack-N-Play here.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Smooth Move - MyMiniCity Update

Smooth-Move Reaches 100!
Smooth Move - MyMiniCity
One hundred sims now live in Smooth Move--and our industry is stronger than ever! Looks like we can start building a better transportation network. Stop by when you can.

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Monday, April 14, 2008

Spore & Sim City Goodies at Game On - Free CD!

Via Spores Illustrated and Hot & Cold Spore, the Sunday Herald Sun out of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia reports that guests at the ongoing Game On exhibition (6 Mar - 13 Jul 2008 in Melbourne) will get a free CD:

SUNDAY Herald Sun readers can build their own city and plan its infrastructure with a free copy of the classic computer game, SimCity...

Everyone who has a ticket to the exhibition, which is running until July 13, will receive a copy of this DVD, which also features a sneak peek at Wright's next game, Spore, which will be released later this year. This offer is made while stocks last.

No clue as to what the "sneak peek" could be--it could be a short video, or something more! Maybe someone who gets one will report back and let us know.

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Friday, April 11, 2008

Freebie Friday - The Sims 2 - 3 Loveknot Way

3 Loveknot Way
I liked the last starter lot so much, I decided to make another one. Except this one, anyone can use! I made it on the base game, so anyone with The Sims 2 installed can use it, no matter which expansions you have.
Without further ado, here is 3 Loveknot Way:
3 Loveknot Way

There are several custom recolors I did for the lot; if you want them to show up, you'll need to have The "CEP" - Color Enable Package installed which you can get at modthesims2.com . There is a new version available, so even if you have it already, you might want to check out the new one. The items I recolored are:

Tropical Treat - Painting recolor using the "Suspense" painting base
Simcastles - Painting recolor using the "Suspense" painting base
Maple Wood Counter
Apple Green Cafe Curtains
Stainless Steel Counter Top
Stainless Steel Egg Chair
Stainless Steel Stove
Apple Green Paint with White Kick Trim
Icy Blue Stucco
Maple Wood Tiles
Icy Blue Shower

Very modern/desert look, with the first floor and yard largely decorated. Makes a great shop, too, I think, if you have Open For Business. 19.9k Simoleons, so you can move your simmies right in. Sim away!

Download 3 Loveknot Way here!

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Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Tips for Sims 2: Fast Skilling and Secret Skills

I've noticed that people often drop by this blog as they look for tips to have more fun with The Sims 2. Some of the searches have brought victims er, guests here eager for knowledge about the lastest expansion, and I'd like to provide some more detailed posts to that end. But today, here are some oldies that I was kind of aware of but never really thought about until it was spelled it out for me: vampire meditation, fast skilling up, and hidden skills (meditation, dancing, yoga, and billiards (aka pool playing) in University). They're posted on The Sims 2 BBS but should be visible to you even if you're not logged in.

Many thanks to Sketch Elder and vibrateforyou for making these detailed posts on the Sims 2 BBS for the community. I'll bet you, dear visitor, will find them as clever as I did!

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Saturday, April 5, 2008

New FreeTime Patch REMOVED!

There's a new patch available for The Sims 2 FreeTime expansion pack, and you can get it at TheSims2.com - Updates. Maybe the Hobby Leaders will give their phones a rest!

Looks like it's been taken down due to installation errors.

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Friday, April 4, 2008

Freebie Friday - The Sims 2 - 6 Wanderlust Road

6 Wanderlust Road - Front
Today I have a lot for download. I like houses that you can move a new sim into straightaway--and this little bungalow costs only $19k or so. It's fully furnished, but be warned: You must have all the expansions (you don't need the fun packs, though) because, though I used only Maxis content, I have all the packs, and don't know exactly which ones I used items from! Anyway, I hope it's right up your alley, or down your street. Or something.

6 Wanderlust Road
You can download it here!

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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Fansite Kit Official in SPORE Game Newsletter

Spore logo

Have a gander at the newest SPORE Game Newsletter. There's links to the new Spore Store, a short video interview of the SPORE studio team, and a download link direct from Maxis for the fun Fansite Kit I posted about last week.

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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Shake-Up at EA: The Sims 3 Cancelled?!

Head of The Sims Studio Rod Humble disclosed the sad news in a recent video. Due to the falling simoleon and recent cutbacks at EA, The Sims 3 may not be released in 2009 as planned. You can check out the video here. Sims all over have been heard to say, "Sloof lirpa," which in simlish means something like, "We're never gonna give up."

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