Blog Break

Don’t worry, the blog isn’t broken, I’m just giving everyone an update.

Remember how I said my erratic schedule was going to level out? Well, I was wrong. I haven’t been blogging as much as I would like, but at the moment college and other commitments have taken priority. Mind you, I am loathe to do this; between higher education, the Free Play Podcast, and a few other projects I have in mind, I am going to be taking a bit of a break from blogging to better pursue these ventures.

Lately my posts have felt somewhat forced, and I haven’t been paying as much attention to the rest of the blogosphere as I should. While normally I would not announce this, I think it’s better to let everyone know that I’ll be on a bit of a hiatus rather than leave you all hanging.

I’ll try to be back soon!

Riknas, signing off!

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Bringing Back Free Play

Do you remember the Free Play Podcast? You know, the funny yet informative show that Riknas, Andras, and Joe did? The podcast where every week they would get together and review a F2P MMOG? Yes? Good for you!

Wait, you don’t? What is wrong with you?

Hey again everyone. It has come to my attention that the Free Play Podcast is no longer available off of iTunes, nor can it be streamed through its original host, VirginWorlds. I personally find this to be distressing, and would like to see it restored. Fortunately, I have almost all of the records of the podcast on my hard drive; I just need to go through the necessary steps to put it back up. Hopefully it won’t be too difficult…

If anyone would be interested in helping revive this project, please comment here or email me at RiknasSarn (at) gmail (dot) com.

Until then…

Riknas, signing off!

A Quote Post

I didn’t know we were allowed to use these as blog posts, but apparently we can.

I remember hearing these words on a podcast some time ago:

“MMO’s don’t need to be difficult, but they should always be complex.”

Don’t you agree?

Riknas, signing off.

It’s All A Blur

Hey there internet, how’s it going? I just recently had a thought: Wouldn’t it be really interesting if I was a cat? I mean, really, that would be pretty crazy. Not only would I be blogging about online gaming, I would be a cat blogging about online gaming. I could start adding new perspective from my feline intuition, and I could record myself playing online games knowing that everyone would watch it and think, “Man, look at that blogging cat! It’s just so adorable!” My readership would sky-rocket, let me tell you.

D’awww, look at him discussing the intricacies of social gaming and online human interaction! Cute!

Oh yeah, I also thought about the blurring lines between multiplayer and single player video games. Mind you, I’m talking about metaphorical blurring, not to be confused with the blurring of your vision after seeing your own mother naked… Don’t think about that last bit too long, or you’ll start to experience the vision blurring as well.

Anyway, people have often complained about multiplayer being forced into games that they feel are meant to be single player. Then, they follow-up by saying that the multiplayer dynamic either weakens the single player experience, or takes away resources that should be going toward the single player experience. Not only that, but the people that buy the game and play the multiplayer content will apparently destroy the franchise entirely by allowing this terrible trend.

At the same time, many a person points out the growth of single player friendly content in MMOs, which  also happens to be destroying the value of the multiplayer experience. This leads to the growth of “solo players”, a blight which soils the name of our multiplayer games and will ultimately tear the genre apart by its seams until the MMOs are all just single player games with an optional co-op feature.

Multiplayer games aren’t exclusively multiplayer, and single player games aren’t exclusively single player? As in, we can now play games in more ways than one? That sounds more like progress to me.

Riknas, signing off.

Now Playing: Dark Souls


Hey everyone. I know I haven’t posted in a while. It is my fault, I must confess. My posting schedule will remain erratic for a while, but it should start leveling out tomorrow. In the mean time, let me point out that  I’ve been playing Dark Souls with Donovan for a little while now, and we’re having a great time. Because I finished Demon’s Souls prior, I’m sort of used to the games difficulty. If anything, I actually feel quite used to it, however I noticed he was really pissed at the game when we first started.

 
The game is seriously unforgiving, and more than willing to kick you in the teeth with difficult bosses, lack of save points, and brutal punishments for dying (amusingly enough, the name of their website is “preparetodie.com“). Even so, the level design is absolutely fantastic, and Donovan went on to say that the game’s graphics are beautiful and has a very gritty feel to it; some of the monsters are actually terrifying to meet. As for the difficulty, the best way to handle it is to develop a sense of masochism, knowing that the difficulty of the game itself is its own sort of feature. That said, if you want to try and work with us on Xbox Live, my username is Riknas, and his is “VOAN” (the “O” is a zero, by the way).

Now excuse me, I have to go trudging through some sewers…

Riknas, signing off!

I Have A Name

It’s Joshua “Riknas”. You can use Joshua, or you can use Riknas. If you really feel like it, you can use them together like a title or even alternate between the two every time you decide to mention me. My only request is that you spell the names correctly. While I appreciate those of you that have given me shout outs and linked to me, it would be really awesome if  “Riknas” or “Riknas Rants” would actually be spelled the way I just did, I even keep it on the top of the webpage and everything; it’s the way you spell it if you type it in to Google or on your URL tab.

Of course, if you’re doing it because you thought my names are too boring, by all means let me know and I’ll see if we can work something out. I’m not going to actually go over the misspellings I’ve seen; I feel that would be in poor taste on my part and would be too much like pointing fingers at people. Suffice to say, there have been far more typos for my name and website than I had originally thought possible…it makes me sad.

Just figured I would let everyone know.

Riknas, signing off.

For My Fellow Secret Worlders

First of all,  I want to thank those of you that have stopped by to check out some of my Secret World articles. Since I don’t actually talk about the game a whole lot, today I wanted to mention some other places to help you get your fix for The Secret World.

Now, the main reason I know about the The Secret World MMO blogs is thanks to Triple Skull and his blog: One Shard. Even if you’re not a die hard Secret World fan, I recommend checking that guy out. Also, be mindful of the other Secret World blogs he (and I) personally recommends like “The Secret Malaysian War Agent“, CGN: The Secret World and The Hydra Initiative. Keep up the good work guys, I hope to see you in game soon!

Riknas, signing off!

Bio Broken

Honestly, I can’t think of a way to work the title into something kind of clever, but it sounded kind of cool to me. That said, today Syp of Biobreak put up a guest post I wrote about The Mobile Revolution in online gaming. Go check us out over there!

Riknas, signing off!

A Tragic Cycle

And I’m not just talking about the broken bicycle above. Look at enough articles on Massively, see MMO videos on Youtube, or look at the mmorpg.com forums long enough and you will see so many angry or insulting comments that the sheer amount of negative energy would leave a hippie catatonic and foaming at the mouth.

It seems that each year there will be one game in development that everyone will latch onto as the MMO that will change their lives and the game industry as a whole, and insist it can do no wrong. This MMO will be so amazing that it will cure cancer, end world hunger, and if someone is trying to mug you, mentioning the game will cause them to stop and ask if you’ll play it with them, then send on your merry way with their email address so you can add them to your friends list when this perfect game launches.

Meanwhile, we will scoff at every other online game in existence and then laugh or pity all the idiots that actually intend to play games that are not this upcoming messiah product. As such, every article not about the upcoming messiah game will be lambasted or dismissed; the game looks stupid, the devs are lying to us, or the update is too little too late because hey, our perfect game is already being released. Then there will be a small prayer about how the servers for these games should be shut down so that it can make room for the rest of the internet and we will no longer have to be burdened with the existence of these worthless games. Indeed, no matter what the article is we will find something wrong with it. For example, in the event World of Warcraft offered mohawk hair styles to other races, the forums would alight with a variety of opinions, all of them negative. The first would be in anger that all the previous hair styles were fine, why do we need more? Another would cry out how this is breaking Warcraft canon and doesn’t make any sense, while another cynic goes on about how this is proof that Blizzard is once again kowtowing to the Mohawk Overlords who always seem to pull the strings.

I know that many of us have agreed that the large number of MMOs have led to games cannibalizing each others populations, but guys, we really don’t to shut down every other game beside the perfect one; never mind the fact that after game’s release, we will then find at least half a dozen reasons to crucify it and say that the only logical conclusion is to wait on the next prophesied online game.

Eugh.

Riknas, signing off.

The Free Play Timer

Hey everyone. I just wanted to chime in on an interesting thing I’ve been hearing for a while now. “I’ll try it when it goes F2P in ___ months”. Don’t get me wrong, I understand the sentiment, but I think there are a couple disturbing implications with this attitude. Between buying the game, free trials and buddy keys, none of these options are compelling enough to even try the game out. Only when it’s entirety is available for free is it worth investigating.

Not only that, but saying that the game will obviously become free-to-play is also an insult to the people playing the game right now. Because apparently everyone enjoying themselves at the moment is simply a fool that doesn’t know they’re paying for something that is obviously not worth fifty cents a day.

The only thing worse is that we say that about every game now, therefore every title is doomed to become F2P. Is the subscription payment option failing so much? I hope not, but I guess we’ll see.

Riknas, signing off.