28 November 2018

Goodbye, WildStar!

"Greetings Sapient beings."

~Caretaker from WildStar
is a quote that I took from WildStar. It's one of many quotes that I enjoyed in WildStar.

Good Bye, WildStar

Since today, November the 28th 2018, the WildStar servers were stopped. They've been running since the 3rd of June 2014.[1] That's a total of 26 days 5 months and 4 years. I've been playing it since the head starts with only one big pause and I don't want it to be nothing. WildStar might not have been a perfect game, no game is perfected. There also might have been a lot of mistakes Carbine did, but WildStar did things right too and I want to tell you the reason I played it, why I think it has some aspects that are really great and what we can learn from it.

Why Did I Play WildStar? 

At first, I didn't want to play WildStar. I'm not a fan of Sci-fi or Science fiction games in comparison to medieval games. That's the reason why I play Guild Wars 2 instead of WildStar, why I play Terraria instead of Starbound or why I play Minecraft instead of Space Engineers, etc.. Well, I don't hate Sci-fi or science fiction. Empire Earth is a game that starts in the medieval and goes through the epochs into the future. I enjoy that, but space itself... meh. Yet, WildStar plays almost completely on a planet with a few space missions here and there. With this barrier removed there was nothing in the way for me. "But you're playing Guild Wars 2. Why switch?", is a good question. Something was missing in Guild Wars 2. At the time I was playing triple trouble was the second hardcore boss they added. Fractals of the Mists has gotten boring over time and raids didn't exist. I am one of the players who yearn for difficulty. Even now I might complain and get angry at my fails, still, the reward is greater than the anger if the difficulty is implemented correctly. This is exactly what WildStar promised. It promised to be a difficult game for hardcore raiders. I'm not a raider, but I get the basic idea behind it and difficult? Yeah, I'm in!

WildStar's Approach to Difficulty

I'm fascinated at the idea of this and at the same time a little disappointed they didn't go through more with it to the end. WildStar uses a telegraph system. This means each and every attack that is not target based uses a telegraph. This allows you to mark the area in which enemies or bosses attack. You know exactly - before - where the damage or area of effect will be. This allows you to perfectly avoid damage as long as you don't have the enemies aggro since the auto attacks can't necessarily be avoided. Furthermore, the first boss of the first dungeon I've seen makes me notice something. The number of telegraphs, the number of safe spots, most of the arena was covered. This really reminded me of bullet hell games. That's actually really awesome. How many 3D games actually implement the idea of bullet hells? Even though WildStar's punishment was hard. You either stand right or you're as good as dead, but you know what you died on. "Don't stand in the red!", is a famous quote you might hear very often in games that use telegraph systems - completely or partially.

So Where Did It Fail?

There are probably many reasons why WildStar ultimately failed, which was revealed over time. Promises that weren't kept from the game developer, complete rework before release, mistakes in the stat system and complete reworks after release, weekly server maintenances, requiring high amount of players for raiding (starting with 40 decreased to 20 everywhere), organizational issues of Carbine and the publish NCSoft, etc.. One of the issues I wanna talk about is something that could be a negative precedent case. 

Difficult Can Work Though

WildStar had its goal to be a difficult hardcore game. Over multiple years, especially triple-A companies avoided developing difficult games. The reason for this is that difficult games don't sell as well as games that work kinda like "everyone wins". Additionally, for an MMORPG, the hardcore community may not be big enough to keep an MMORPG running. Especially since you can't suit every taste there is out there. Does that mean there will never be a difficult or hardcore MMORPG? Yes and no. While I don't think an MMORPG that only focuses on hard and difficult content works, I do believe that it's possible to create an MMORPG that has a casual base and expands with difficult content on top of that. Even better when they implement a difficulty curve that raises the player bases skill level.

WildStar Is No Example For MMORPGs Not Being Worth It

You might, or might not have realized it. The amount of released MMORPGs is rather scarce in the past years. The giant World of Warcraft is still alive and many MMORPGs were stopped. Resulting in a decrease in published MMORPGs. However, WildStar is not an example of there not being the possibility of having a successful MMORPG. As I already mentioned, there were a lot of mistakes done in WildStar that ultimately resulted in its death. That has nothing to do with it being an MMORPG aside from the MMO part. That's similar to making a Dark Souls MMO. It doesn't work as the community is not big enough. MMOs are one of the games that actually need to cater to different audiences and speak to as many people as possible.

With this being said. If you plan to make an MMORPG, don't make another World of Warcraft clone and don't repeat the mistakes that were done. Learn from the mistakes and build on top of them. 

Remember WildStar

I want people to remember WildStar as an example of the good and bad points it had so that we as game developers can learn from the mistakes and apply the improvements or good aspects. I don't know about you but my goal is to improve MMORPGs for players to have an even better experience.
Also, don't forget that WildStar is one of the games that didn't go with the "Ranger" and "Mage" classes. Breaking from the standard.

With all that being said. Thanks to Carbine and NCSoft for making this experience possible despite the bad things that happened. I really enjoyed all the years and it was an awesome experience. Now I can only hope for another MMORPG that learns from the mistakes and improves on it or that Guild Wars 2 expands their content into the direction of more difficult content further. We'll see what the future holds. 

Goodbye, WildStar! May your work be found as an inspiration for further games!


[1] https://www.google.com/search?q=wildstar%20release%20date

21 November 2018

Jinx - The Curse

"Don't Jinx it, don't jinx it, don't jinx it, don't jinx it.
Now you Jinxed it... "

Jinx Origin

The word Jinx also written as Jynx which supposedly stands for a spell or charm and was used to address the wryneck which is a bird that is used in divination and Magick.[1] As a spell or charm and due to its popular use with a negative connotation it could be compared more to a curse instead.

This is also the Jinx I want to talk about. No, not the children's game, sorry.

The Idea Behind It

The basic concept behind it can be explained best on an example. Let's say we have a sports game. (I could use a player vs player match as an example but I won't xD) Before the game starts one person says that they're gonna win (or that they're gonna lose) and another person could add "Now you jinxed it" to it meaning that now they really will lose.

Thinking It Through

First, let's break it down. We have something where multiple outcomes can occur but it's not yet determined which one it will be. We have someone mention one of the outcomes and then a certain outcome to occur that is either the one mentioned or another one. Additionally in most cases when we talk about jinxing we assume a negative result.

Now I know the idea of taking Quantum Physics into consideration here is either overkill or doesn't make much sense as there is no visible relation, however, I think it is important to take this into consideration as we have no idea what really is happening and so this might be one explanation that could potentially be possible if not disproven.

So.. if we take Quantum Physics into consideration and assume that the match's outcome is in a superstate between - let's say - "Won", "Lost", "Given Up", "Stopped". Throughout the game, the end result becomes more clear. If we now take into consideration how magick is used or work we expect the result to be influenced by each participant's expectation and beliefs. These expectations and beliefs then again are influenced by telling that the match will be won (or lost).

This does not only influence the way the people perform but also modifies the reality according to our bubble system (I need some more serious name for that).[2] So for each person that hears this the match's outcome should change accordingly.

Accordingly?

If we assume that if someone says that their team wins. Then their team should be more likely to win right? Well, it's not so simple. Saying and believing that they will win may only be on a conscious level. If we assume that someone unconsciously thinks that this cannot be the case it will result in the opposite. Additionally, if you hear something this might actually bring up memories or thoughts which go through the alternative options even if unconsciously. These may end up playing a role as well.

If you sum all this up you end up with the possibility that regardless of whether you claim to win or lose a match both cases will end up jinxing the outcome or increasing the chance to lose the match.

Generalized this means if you state that an unknown outcome is going to occur it may result in the opposite or different (most often negative) outcome.

Resources

[1] https://www.etymonline.com/search?q=jinx
[2] https://www.greenyneko.com/2018/09/toaru-kagaku-no-railgun-personal.html

01 November 2018

Halloween Special - My Scary Experiences

I was a little busy with stuff, real-life and in gaming but now I'm writing it. As mentioned in yesterday's / day before yesterday's post. I will go through the experiences I had in my life that were scary. 'Cause it's matching the theme of Halloween.

Defining 'Scary'

I'm not talking about shocking situations or being scared of forgetting something or failing a test. I really mean scary in the sense of "Spooky Scary Skeletons. Send shivers down your spine." ~Andrew Gold. I'm going to start with the most recent experiences and then randomly go through them as I go on.

Disclaimer

I'm not claiming any of these stories or happenings as true. Not at all. I'm going to mention them and some thoughts I have about them but if you don't believe these to be what they seem to be that's totally fine. I don't believe them all either. We all know there might be scientific explanations for it.
Additionally, I have no idea how much performing and learning magick attracts these happenings or occurrences. Well without further ado.. let's go!

Clap Behind a Door

This happened at night I assume around one to four in the morning. I usually spend a lot of time until late in the night if I don't need to stand up too early. So, I often brush my teeth at those times. Well, sometimes it's past four a.m. but that's rare. Anyways I went to brush my teeth. I always close the bathroom door so I don't wake anyone of my family with the light and/or the sound from the brushing or the toilet flushing. I was about doing my usual procedure when I heard a clap. I couldn't tell if it was behind the door or in the same room. Given the situation, I assumed it was my father. I don't quite get it why anyone would clap outside of the bathroom. I mean like.. why? It seems... so random. By the way, there wasn't more than that.

Creepy Brother Phantom Thing

I really need to write down my dreams, it's something you should do as a magician/wizard/witch. Anyways I don't remember too many details fact is that I dreamed that I was standing on my bed watching the closet for an extended amount of time waiting for something to happen. Then suddenly the closet door opened and a phantom-like creature came out. It walked towards me and changed it's face to look like my brother. However, something about the face was... off. That got me to panic quite a bit. I tried to calm myself down and put my hands out to touch it nonetheless. This may seem stupid or like coming out of a movie but it has to do with my yearning for having more progress in magick research. Also, I can imagine a foreign creature that wants to help you to change their look to something more familiar to you. Like... I understand the idea of it but.. it doesn't work well in most cases.

Being Dragged Away From Your Family

While talking about bad dreams or nightmares. I once had a nightmare where I was sitting on the bed having fun with my family and everything, when all of a sudden I was dragged out of bed by something I couldn't see. I was scared, shouting like nothing else. Even worse, I woke up on the floor right after that dream of seeing a red light (an alarm clock) from another room. I was lying there extremely creeped out, not able to get back to bed and tried to sleep there. I don't remember what I did after that.

Chain Letters Are Evil

I also just remembered that I once got a chain letter. I already knew the purpose of them and did not really believe in them so I ignored them. However, the fact of dying didn't let my unconscious rest. It was too late to fulfill the requirement of my then. So, to save myself I went to a different room and slept there instead. Of course, nothing happened. It's just a chain letter, right? Right?

White Figure in the Room

I know about people who claimed to see the "black man". For me, I never saw a black man instead I saw a white figure. I was very little then and it most often stood at the balcony or in the pathway to my parent's room. I wasn't really scared of it in particular, I assumed it was like my protecting angel or something watching over me while I sleep. I still think it's interesting to mention it.

Meeting the Shadow People

There are people out there who met the shadow people before. Same for me. However... I think no one met them like this. I woke up from my sleep right to its face. It was looking at me in a weird way like... put your hands into the air and then tilt 90° to the right. It also didn't look human but all rounded, no face, just some eyes. I remember them being white, does that make sense? I don't know. The fact is it didn't look scary wasn't scary but... THE F'ING JUMPSCARE!!! Anyone would react like that if they'd wake up to anything unfamiliar so close! After calming down and looking back it was gone. I can imagine having scared it off. Poor fellow, I'm sorry for reacting like that...

Being Pushed-down by an Invisible Force

If you follow the blog for a longer time you might have read a post about this before. It was a day I was working for my company at home and I decided to take a small nap to refresh myself as I sometimes tend to do in the breaks. I didn't expect this to happen though. I woke up and something pushed me down. Like with great force. So I tried to push back which partially worked. After pushing it back for a little while the force was gone. I immediately jumped to the conclusion that it was a demon, later after a discussion with my mentor it could've been some creature that likes to sit on energy sources and might have decided to sit on me without knowing. For all, I know that the creature could've been scared as hell as well.

Hand on the Stairs

This was also creepy to me as a child, I just imagined it to be my imagination but I actually saw a hand on the stairs. I thought it to be my imagination because it didn't look or seem real. It looked like.. it wasn't there, dunno how to put it into words.

Shadow Boy

This is also one of the dreams I had once. I don't remember the details but I was in the attic and then in our basement in the creepy room with the well in it. Anyways there was a shadow boy. I wanted to help so I put my hand on its shoulder to ask of how I can help and then it turned around and I was shaking and jumped back falling to the ground. Kinda ridiculous because, hey, what did you expect you would see when touching that child? Pffff.

Voices from Another Room

This could've been an illusion from the cold I had at that time, but I was lying in my bed and heard these voices. They could've come from my parent's room or my brother's room but.. that explanation would be too easy. First of all both groups should've been sound asleep. Second of all the direction of the voices came from the living room or somewhere outside the house. Since both groups were sleeping or at least there wasn't a reason to be in the living room it couldn't have been those. Unfortunately, I didn't understand what they were talking about or saying. I did try though. :P

The End...?

I think this is enough for now, I also need to keep some for next Halloween. :P Nah, these are the "best" (depending on definition) experiences I had so far. (from which also stuck).

If you want them to use for your Creepypasta, go ahead, I don't mind. It would be awesome if you refer to my blog though, helps me, you know.

And with that.. happy Halloween! Or.. maybe happy All Saints Day?

Liked the post? Noticed an error? Wanna discuss the content or leave a comment*? You can join or check into the discord to do so! (*Note: Comments are disabled to avoid saving user data on this website.)
>> Join Discord

About Me

My photo
I'm a junior game developer and software developer and I created this blog to share my ideas, thoughts and whatever I'm working on or doing.