Ten Ton Hammer Network News

  • Describing the Typical WoW Player with Numbers

    Ethec gets his geek on to pour through the amazingly detailed census numbers available for World of Warcraft. Which faction is more popular - horde or alliance? What about race and class? Are there more active players on PvP or normal servers? The answers may surprise you! Plus, you know the reasons commonly given for World of Warcraft's incredible popularity, is there another reason lurking in the numbers?

    "When people talk about World of Warcraft's success, they cite accessibility, availability of quests, directed play, and other qualitative mechanics directly attributable to… well, fun. But one of the best kept secrets of World of Warcraft's success can be expressed quantitatively, Numb3rs-style, through math. Check out the descriptive statististics to the right. K values from zero to two indicate meso-kurtosis, or (literally) a flat level distribution, and low positive skewness indicates a gentle downward slope in population as levels increase - both signs of as healthy a MMORPG population that can be hoped for. Omitting level 60 - which I'm comfortable doing since, by most accounts, the level 60 game is an entirely different game than the 59 levels preceding it - World of Warcraft meets these conditions more than a year and a half after its inception. This mathematical fact makes WoW a rarity among MMOs, most of which coping with vacant low-to-mid level zones, snaring these games in a developmental tailspin of catering exclusively to players heavily concentrated at high levels."

    Keep reading to find out what other interesting facts Ethec has to share. Don't forget to stop into the forums at WoW Ten Ton Hammer to let us know what you think.

    Thu, Jul 20, 2006
  • Top Ten Reasons To Play a Cleric

    When it comes to Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach (DDO), you might say Brennie is a cleric fanatic. He can't stop talking about them. And if you read his top 10 reasons to play a cleric, you'll understand why.

    "Just like a keg at a frat party, a cake at a wedding reception, or a clown at a birthday party (okay, maybe not the clown) everyone wants you in his party! Waiting for a group to invite you, or waiting for that group to finally find a healer is a non-issue. Why? Because it’s just not a party without a cleric!"

    Do you play a cleric? Is your reason on this list? Get clicking and check out the list at DDO Ten Ton Hammer.

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Guide to Cleric Enhancements I

    As Cleric Week comes to a close, Zed brings you a fantastic guide to cleric Enhancements in Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach (DDO). He covers all of the Enhancements available and explains which ones make the most sense in DDO.

    "Improved Empowered Healing I – III
    Text: Using Empower Heal Feat costs you fewer spell points for each spell cast while in that mode.

    Comments: This is an essential Enhancement for the healing cleric who chooses the Empowered Healing Feat. It reduces the number of spells points to maximize and improve the amount of healing given. Coupled with the Greater Devotion line of Enhancements this should be the staple of the healing cleric."

    Head over to DDO Ten Ton Hammer to read the rest of this guide on Cleric enhancements.

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Healers: Unsung Healers

    No, you can't log in and play a healer in Vanguard: Saga of
    Heroes just yet...unless you're one of the lucky few who's beta testing the
    game. But we've got a guide to healing, nonetheless. Medeor discusses what
    it takes to play a winning healer in an MMO, complete with sports metaphors.
    If you're considering a healing class for Vanguard, you'll want to give his
    humorous guide a read.

    "Have you picked up on the connection between those sports
    positions I mentioned and the healing character types? It lies in the fact
    that if the person playing the position does the job perfectly, nobody
    notices. If I snapped the football to the place kicker and he kicked a 50
    yard field goal, the kicker got all the glory. Similarly, if I heal
    perfectly during a boss mob kill, we continue rolling through the dungeon as
    if nothing happened. Now if I snap the ball over the punter's head and the
    other team runs it back for a touchdown, well...that might be equivalent to
    a full raid wipe."

    Medeor continues his thoughts on the art of healing at Vanguard Ten Ton Hammer. Do you feel the same? Let us know in the forums!

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Do You Follow Lore?

    The story makes the movie, but is this true with video games also? RadarX takes a look at lore in EverQuest 2 and ponders it's necessity in the modern MMO.

    Every good movie revolves around a well written story that draws in it's viewers and provides an element not found in more cookie cutter films. Video games are no different, in that a great game needs an amazing story. Immersion is a key point of focus I see tossed around industry news, stating that the players need to "feel a part of the game." This, however, works all too well when you're playing Doom 3 in the dark and a cat jumps in your lap. I felt immersed, but more importantly I felt the need for new underwear. One of the things that made the original EverQuest so powerfully immersive was it's rich lore. The story of every race, city, and dungeon was woven into a detailed tapestry of history, providing a vivid picture of Norrath's background.

    Learn more about how RadarX feels about lore in MMOs at EQ2 Ten Ton Hammer. Do you agree? Do you keep up to date on the lore in your favorite MMO? Let us know!

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Auto-follow Woes

    If you've ever grouped with a Ranger, you'll know they never know where they're going. Kiara takes it to all new extremes and proves why there really needs to be a warning on auto-follow in EQ2.

    Ah yes, another day in the life of, well... me.

    So. I get lost. Like a lot. Like all the time. We're talking paper sack, GPS, compass, map, flashlight, and sherpa kind of lost. Now, I could chalk this up to being directionally challeneged. Or say it's SOE's fault for making the game all maze like and junk. But who are we kidding? My downfall? Auto-follow.

    Have you had experiences like Kiara? Keep reading and then follow us over to the forums at EQ2 Ten Ton Hammer to let us know what your thoughts are. Better yet, tell us some of your auto-follow horror stories...

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Why do they Serve Lambchop with Mint Jelly?

    Good freaking question. To find your answer, you're going to have ask Kiara because I don't have a sock puppet fetish. Kiara examines the quests that never seem to end, and why they annoy her so.

    I've run across a few quests here and there that I singularly dislike. One of which, is the Hooluk hat quest thingie. That chain is the most evil creation ever, and I'm convinced that a dev was tiffing with the spouse the day the chain was conceived.

    However, even the dreaded chain pales in comparision to the Claymore quest. I've dubbed this "The quest that never ends" and have in fact sung the song a number of times. Needless to say, the guild is thrilled with me over this. It isn't enough that I sing it in Ventrilo, but I must also type out the entire song in guild chat. Not just once, but pretty much until I'm threatened with expulsion from the guild... Which reminds me, I need to macro that.

    Keep reading to learn more of Kiara's thoughts on this. Don't forget to weigh in with your comments in the forums at EQ2 Ten Ton Hammer!

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Ganked!

    Jeff "Ethec" Woleslagle returning for another ersatz "Loading..." a.k.a. Ganked! Our very own John "Boomjack" Hoskin is enjoying a weeklong vacation with the family.Yesterday we speculated on some of the freakishly big roadside attractions the Hoskin family van will drive past en route to whereever their destination may be.Too bad they've already left, because today I've found the perfect vacation destination for the 22% of you MMORPG types that have kids. This is no joke, apparently a company called Creative Kingdoms sets up MMORPG style quests, gear, and backdrops inside family-friendly resorts across North America.

    You're just two clicks away from a more sublime knowledge of MagiQuest, plus that same Loading... style humor and news you can't really use!

    Ganked! July 19, 2006

    Wed, Jul 19, 2006
  • Second Opinion: Cleric Spell List Level 2

    Have we got a treat for you clerics this week! Our Brennie has taken a look at our guide to 2nd level cleric spells and offered up a second opinion--absolutely free! Brennie runs through the complete list and offers his view of the usefulness of each spell.

    "Find Traps
    Two words: “Use” and “Less”. Unless you have a high search skill to begin with, or are multiclassing as a rogue, this spell is entirely useless. The bonus to search is actually rather minimal, and even if you *could* find a trap box (which usually requires a single-class rogue with a maxed out search skill to find), only a rogue can disable it anyway.

    Rating: 0.5"

    Read more about Brennie's thoughts on the 2nd level cleric spells at DDO Ten Ton Hammer. Don't forget to add your thoughts in the forums!

    Tue, Jul 18, 2006
  • Blackburrow Zone Guide

    Blackburrow is one of the favorites of the low levels explorers. Packed full of danger and loot, this dungeon is simply a perfect place to drag your friends to for some excellent experience!

    Blackburrow is one of my favorite zones. Having spent time in Blackburrow in old Norrath (EQ1), I was so excited to see the place that I loved, survived the shattering, and in nearly the same footprint as it had previously.

    Blackburrow is a typical dungeon, set up in the typical dungeon style. Easier mobs are located to the front, while the harder, more challenging mobs are deeper inside. This zone is packed full with gnolls, spiders, and other little creatures roaming about, and is a great place to spend some time in your early levels.

    Learn more about Blackburrow at EQ2 Ten Ton Hammer. Tell us about your experiences in this zone in the forums.

    Tue, Jul 18, 2006
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