Dead Horses and
May 19th, 2008 - By
Every online gaming community in the world has a specific ebb and flow
to it and Vanguard: Saga of Heroes is no different in this regard. With
this week's release of Age of Conan, the commentary has been more mixed
recently than in previous weeks. Gamers had a chance to check out the
recent beta, helping them solidify impressions of their own one way or
another. The recent debates have generally settled down and as I stated
in last week's newsletter, I for one don't think AoC's release will
have much of an impact to our subscription numbers.
In the last couple weeks, I've noticed an increasing number of topics
that have been beaten to death, resurrected, beaten to death, and
resurrected yet again. Just because I enjoy playing a class that allows
me to resurrect my opponents, does not mean I (or any of us for that
matter) enjoy rehashing the same topics we've already debated
until we're blue in the face.
One topic in particular I've seen rearing its head again is the debate
about the upcoming Vanguard trial - Starter Island, Trial Isle, or
whatever else you may wish to call it before it's released to the
masses. Thanks to Vanguard developer, Tiraslee, for hopefully putting
this particular horse out to pasture with this
. Things aren't written in stone, but for now, it has
been decided to not
change, revamp, or remove the current starter areas. This may very well
have been decided by the extremely passionate uproar of the community
months ago, but now that the areas are currently not going away, it's
time to let this issue rest.
Another topic that's been coming back into debate is the wish for a
"hardcore" server. This idea originally started out as nothing more
than a simple discussion between the Vanguard community and the
development team. Unfortunately, this devolved into a full-blown
spectacle that quickly took the "Most Overblown and Inappropriate
Reaction" trophy I've ever had to give away and to this day, remains
the reigning king. The issue has been talked about before, and we've
been informed multiple times that it's simply not a viable option for
the development team at this time. I'm sorry, but it's not. I'm one of
those players that would fully support a hardcore server being opened
up for those that wish to play on it, but it's simple not in
the cards, so it's time to let this issue rest as well.
That enough of the Dead Horses section for today, so let's move on to
the Phoenix Ashes part, shall we?
As it currently stands, Vanguard has no trial available to the masses.
There has been no wide spread announcement of old accounts being
reactivated for 30 days. There has been no Vanguard 30-day Free
Keys distributed to the masses either. Despite all this, over
the last few weeks there has been a noticeable increase in the
population. It's not as drastic as it was in December of last year when
all accounts that had been inactive for 60 days were reactivated for 30
days, but it's there and it's palpable.
It may not be immediately obvious, but the next time you play, take
some time to hop through a few riftways and take a look around. For
those players that have turned off their regional chat channels (I
sometimes envy you), turn them back on and notice some of the new
players asking various questions. If you start a new alt and grab a
pickup group, see how many members mention that this is their first
There are a number of Vanguard communities that have a section
dedicated to new players asking questions and (hopefully) getting some
helpful answers. Take a look at some of these, even if it's just to
answer a question or two. New players are slowly coming into the game
of their own accord right now, and if we want Vanguard to do as well as
we believe it can, we have a responsibility to help these players
adjust to their new surroundings. At the very least, we should let them
know they are welcome among us. I brought this topic up in a newsletter
long ago. It's as relevant today as it was then, so if you
missed it, it's worth checking it out.
The last thing I wanted to talk a bit about was this year's Fan Faire,
set for August 14-17 in sunny Las Vegas, Nevada!
I've been playing SOE games for almost 10 years now (no laughing about
my age, ya whippersnappers!), but I've never gone to a Fan Faire yet.
I've always wanted to, but it never seemed the right time. I think this
may finally be my year. I'm going to try and make it, and will
certainly let everyone know I'm going if plans work out. It seems like
a lot of fun and should be a great time.
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