IntPiPoMo: The Stable, Part Two

It’s time now for part two of my run-down of (some of) my MMO characters for International Picture Posting Month.

If you’re just joining us, make sure to catch up with part one, and as always, remember you can click the images to view them full size.

26: Bosmer sorcerer, Elder Scrolls Online

My Bosmer sorcerer in Elder Scrolls Online27: Dunmer templar, Elder Scrolls Online

My Dunmer templar in Elder Scrolls Online28: Altmer warden, Elder Scrolls Online

My Altmer warden in Elder Scrolls Online29: Khajiit dragonknight, Elder Scrolls Online

My Khajiit dragonknight in Elder Scrolls Online30: Breton nightblade, Elder Scrolls Online

My Breton nightblade in Elder Scrolls Online31: Norn thief, Guild Wars 2

My Norn thief in Guild Wars 232: Human warrior, Guild Wars 2

My human warrior in Guild Wars 233: Norn mesmer, Guild Wars 2

My Norn mesmer in Guild Wars 234: Romulan tactical officer, Star Trek Online

My Romulan in Star Trek Online35: Andorian science officer, Star Trek Online

My Andorian in Star Trek Online36: Klingon engineer, Star Trek Online

My Klingon in Star Trek Online37: Drow hunter ranger, Neverwinter

My Drow hunter ranger in Neverwinter38: Half-elf oathbound paladin, Neverwinter

My Half-elf oathbound paladin in Neverwinter39: Tiefling scourge warlock, Neverwinter

My Tiefling scourge warlock in Neverwinter40: Whatever the hell this thing is, Landmark

My character in Landmark41: Castithan, Defiance

My Castithan in Defiance42: Division agent, The Division

My character in The Division43: Aqua Elf paladin, Bless Online

My Aqua Elf paladin in Bless Online44: Maewha, Black Desert Online

My maewha in Black Desert Online45: Mental villain, DC Universe Online

My villain character in DC Universe Online46: Ice hero, DC Universe Online

My hero character in DC Universe Online47: Blade, Champions Online

My character in Champions Online48: Assassin, Riders of Icarus

My assassin in Riders of Icarus49: Asmodian ranger, Aion

My Asmodae ranger in Aion50: Asmodian gunslinger, Aion

My Asmodae gunslinger in AionThe really amazing thing is this still isn’t the full list of all my MMO characters from down through the years, though it does at least include all of the noteworthy ones I have significant history with. There are several that didn’t make the cut, either because I ran out of space, or because I’ve hardly ever played them, or because I’ve already posted all the shots I have of them. I made sure all these are shots I haven’t posted before so they would still qualify for IntPiPoMo.

At least, I’m sure none of them have been posted on Superior Realities before. I can’t promise some haven’t appeared on MMO Bro. I wonder how that affects their eligibility? Hmm…

Defiance 2050: Maybe?

Despite its many well-documented flaws, I have long maintained a soft spot for the MMO shooter Defiance. I really enjoy the setting, and it has some very memorable NPCs. I can forgive a lot if a game has personality, which is one thing Defiance has never lacked.

Cass Dukar in the MMO DefianceThat said, I still haven’t played in a long time, and I considered my time with the game effectively done. That held true until the announcement of Defiance 2050, a reboot designed to improve the game and make it run on more modern consoles.

Immediately, there is an obvious resemblance between 2050 and The Secret World’s reboot as Legends, something I’ve been harshly critical of. And it does seem to be a pretty similar situation: It’s being branded as a new game, but by all reports it’s pretty much the same game with a tweaked progression system.

However, there are a couple of factors that leave me feeling a bit more open-minded this time.

For one thing, I haven’t invested nearly as much time in Defiance as I did in TSW. I only played through the story once, and that was some years ago now. The prospect of having to start over from scratch isn’t nearly as galling.

While there’s definitely still room to criticize the treatment of Defiance veterans, I do think Trion is handling this a little better than Funcom did. They’re not shutting down the old Defiance, they are transferring character slots to the new game, and as far as I know they never lied about adding new content to Defiance only to pull the rug out from under loyal players.

Also, TSW’s progression system was a huge part of the game’s appeal to me. Throwing it all out made for a less interesting game.

Wielding a charge blade in the MMO shooter DefianceOn the other hand, Defiance’s progression has always been one of the game’s greatest flaws. Leveling in Defiance is excessively grindy, convoluted, and unrewarding, managing to be both over-complicated and incredibly shallow all at once.

Normally replacing a classless leveling system with traditional classes would get the stink eye from me, but in this case, I think it might add some actual depth to the game. It sounds like Defiance 2050 will have a greater emphasis on active abilities — Mass Effect style — instead of just being a pure shooter. That would be most welcome.

My greatest hope is that 2050 will not entail such a massive grind. Defiance’s base story was easy enough to play through casually, but the post-launch content quickly became utterly punitive to anyone who hadn’t sunk a massive amount of time into grinding. That was ultimately what drove me from the game, and if that could be fixed, I would be very pleased.

Unfortunately I’ve found it very hard to find any concrete info on Defiance 2050. Trion is running developer livestreams, but ain’t nobody got time for dat, and the media doesn’t seem to be covering the game that much. So I see a lot of potential for 2050 to improve on the original game and maybe even usher in a bit of a renaissance for the IP, but there’s really no way to know if that potential will be realized.

Word of mouth coming out of the beta is pretty negative, but there’s really no way to know if that actually means anything or if it’s just the usual Internet rabble-rousing.

Stahma Tarr in the MMO shooter DefianceSeriously, the gaming community has officially become the boy who cried wolf at this point. If you say every game is a broken cash-grab, there’s no way of knowing which games are actually broken cash-grabs.

The logical part of me recognizes that I probably shouldn’t let myself get excited about Defiance 2050. There’s a lot of cause for concern here. But still, I find the temptation to grab a Founder’s Pack is surprisingly strong…