Patch 7.1 Reveled for WoW:Legion

World of Warcraft Legion is here. And only being a week into it’s life so is the reveal of the next major patch, “Return to Karazhan.” Veterans of World of Warcraft will gather together once more wear their finest garments for the return to a palace where the former great Medivh once called home

Patch 7.1  according to Wowpedia will feature:

  • A new 5-man Karazhan dungeon with nine bosses
  • A “Small Raid” within the Emerald Nightmare and the Nighthold to conclude the Stormheim story line
  • Add on content to the Suramar story to continue the Nightfallen story line 

The patch is expected to release on the Public Testing Server (PTS) within the month of September.

Join the conversation on the Blizzard Forums: Patch 7.1: Return to Karazhan

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“You are not prepared!”No, I was not.

Legion has dropped this week and as expected it has taken my attention like an uncontrollable green storm. It’s pretty fantastic. In the next couple of paragraphs or so Ill do the best to remain as spoiler free as possible. Now it’s worth mentioning that I’m not that very far but some amazing things have happened so far.

Legion begins almost exactly where Burning Crusade left off. If you start as Demon Hunter which, of course is the new class. They’re pretty fun I will say but if I’m having to rush into battle in the name of Azeroth. I’m heading in as my Night Elf Druid, Taurile. WoWScrnShot_090116_163116 Ah, I remember the first time she and I ventured out into the world and began questing. She was once a lowly druid scouring the grounds of Darnasus for herbs and roots. Studying the whisper of the tress and ways of the beast that roamed them. That is until the call came that it was time for her to leave her novice life behind and head into the world and fight in the name of Elune and the Alliance. With me at the helm and the love of all Night Elfs in my heart there was no way we could fail, but we did because playing a game like WOW has a pretty steep learning curve. Frankly, I’m still learning to this day.

This expansion is no different. When it comes to learning curves that is. I did not play much of the prologue for Legion and I kind of regret that. Mostly because I’m unfamiliar with the changes that have gone into this game. Plus I’m terribly under-geared for a solo play through. Which is why im taking it slow so I can learn the new styles, sets, changes, and a ton of other stuff im putting off to learn. But that’s okay all in good time I suppose.

!SPOILER ALERT ! You’ve been warned!

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The prologue of this game immediately sets the tone that this is going to be the final battle for many. This is the battle that is going to determine everyone’s fate and if the right people don’t lay down their lives, there will be Hell to pay. You eat your last meal, receive a blessing, polish your blade for what could be the last time, and it’s time to go. You take an air ship to the Broken Isles because the Legion has burst through the lines that once held them at bay, but no more. They have arrived.

This is the part of the game where I got to experience something that I have never experienced the entire time I have played WOW. A massive group of people playing at one time. I’ve always heard people talk about the “good ol’days” where Burning Crusade was where the true fans made their marks in the game and where massive amounts of people populated servers forging full blown player economies. I can finally joins those ranks of players, for how long, where that’s up to end game content to decide. But getting back to the game. As my massive group of players pass mob after mob we finally make our way to the final boss, Guldan.

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The final boss battle leads into some amazing cut scenes that putting into words would do no justice and because there are two version of that outcome it’d be way too long. So I’ll just link the videos. Again…

SPOILERS!

 


The ending of this intro really put it all into perspective and it was infuriating to see King Varian Wrynn and Vol’Jin die. The only solace I could take from this was that they both passed defending what they believed in. A better Horde. A better Alliance. A better Azeroth.

The game tugs on your heart strings in every way. There have been scenes that have literally broken my heart because you spend so much time learning their story and investing in these characters that you feel awful to see them go. But again, this is a battle (expansion) where all those that need to will lay their lives down for Azeroth. It’s a hard pill to swallow but it’s the truth.

One of the best changes in Legion is the Guild Hall’s set for each type of hero. For Druids it’s the Dream Grove. WoWScrnShot_083016_165556The Dream Grove itself is often confused with the Emerald Dream because of how pure it is in both spirit and nature. It may not be the Emerald Dream but it’s as close as it can get in the physical world of Azeroth. It’s no wonder why Druids would call this place home.

There have been a myriad of changes to World of Warcraft so far and people have already deemed this expansion the best yet. All this with only being officially a week into its release. It’s a great sign to see WoW reigning like it has in the past because it proves that when the call is made the heroes of Alliance and Horde will come out in full force and fend off any threat the Legion thinks they can throw.

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Just a little heads up. I’m working on a bio/intro on my Druid and her adventures through out Legion. So far it reads fairly well and I’m excited to see it grow. Because man-o-man do we have some tales to tell. I’ll post more soon!

Update: The Word of The Day; Adversity

Life is about adversity. Sometimes we get knocked down for whatever reason. Maybe it’s our fault or maybe it’s because we put too much trust in something or someone. You can never really know. I am in every way, even though sometimes it doesn’t seem that way, determined to make something of my self in the gaming industry. However, today that run with Gamestop has ended. It’s not technically official yet but all signs point to me being released for a myriad of reasons. Reasons not necessarily reflecting of my work but that of a store that requires a “fall-guy.” That fall guy being me. It’s okay however. I wont cry over spilled milk. What’s done is done.

(I’m not supposed to talk about it, pft. Also that was my opinion on the situation)

Now to the future.

I’m a person of plans. I need to make plans to make me feel like I’m doing something in my life. This situation is no different. I need a plan and I have one. I hope. It’s better then just sitting here in my sorrows about losing a job that paid me less then minimal wage for at least a year. No thank you. However this does mean that streaming is no longer just an idea but could be the very thing that makes me feel like I have some kind of control in my life again. Streaming could very well be my outlet from this crappy place I’m in, who knows.

But I do need a more stable plan because hell my computer could explode before I finish this. I mean I really hope not because I’m in no place to replace it financially.

I think I will take my uncle up on an I.T. job he spoke to me about not too long ago. Of course there will be an adjustment but again life is full of adversity. Everyday. However that adversity doesn’t define us, no. It shapes us and molds us because when we face whatever adversity comes our way it’s the way we respond and recoil that makes or breaks us.

I have to adjust but not break.

No Man’s Sky: Travel With Me

One of this year’s most anticipated titles has finally been released and has been out now for about two weeks. The game, No Man’s Sky and according to Steam the reviews for the game is practically at a dead lock. 49,257 reviews and 52% of those votes leave No Man’s Sky at a less than stellar “Mixed” review. But why? Did we over hype this game like we tend to do with every other game or did Sony and Hello Games just mislead us, it could be both. Regardless, No Man’s Sky is still a very unique game that inspires the gamer to embrace his or hers sense of adventure through time and space.

I haven’t yet put in the time that I wanted to in NMS and with Legion just around the corner I may not be able to fully give it my attention but it’s not going to keep me from trying. Collectively I have put in a little over 20 hours in NMS and so far from what I have done and what I have felt, it’s that the space odyssey game that is shrouded in mystery I have been looking for sense I finished Mass Effect for the third time.

The beginning of the game was a little rough I can admit. Mainly because I wasn’t really sure what I was playing. And when it comes to playing a game with limited direction the feeling of being overwhelmed by a new game can be defeating. Also it didn’t help that the red blob known as Atlas wasn’t much help in guiding me on my new found journey. So safe to say I spent the first hour or so trying to figure out the mechanics of the game. Honestly I’m still learning but the further I delve and the more words I learn throughout the planet the bigger fan I become.

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NMS is at its core an immersion game. A game that drops you in the middle of a desolate planet with not much more advice other then “just survive.” It’s a lonely game that at times has made me feel exhausted about seeing the same mountain or hill over and over again. But to know that there might be something new just over the mountain range keeps me trekking along. Scouring the planet for a particular metal or element while your life support meter drops and the flashing of lights from your suit begins. This brings out the fact that this game isn’t just about exploring and discovery but it’s also about survive. When I play NMS or any game for that matter I easily let the want to adventure get the best of me. Luckily in most games it’s not such a bad thing because of the sand box map layout. However in NMS adventuring just a couple meters beyond a valley could really get you turned around, but If my feet can take me there. I’m going. The great thing that I realized on Sunday was that you can actually ping a marker in distance through the binoculars. Whether it be a trade hub, drop pod, or battered down shelter the marker tool helps keep you moving without getting to far from your target of interest. This for me makes the game that more immersive. Not only are they areas to save your game or to upgrade/sell your gear but they become these areas that you actually look forward to. They become areas of great relief after walking for hours on end in hopes to discover more of the games lore. This past Sunday I made it a personal mission to dig a little dipper in the language in the game and because there is no actual map of reference you just need to follow your feet. So I went. In a span of two days I discovered a fair amount of words.a-strange-planet-landscape-from-no-man-s-sky-video-game-by-hello-games But the crown jewel was when I came across a massive stone that showed me more of the language which led me to understand that there is way more to this language then just game filler. I’m on a planet that is mostly inhabited by creatures native to this planet and yet there are stones with lore enlightenment willing to teach me. But because I was low on inventory, because I’m a hoarder, I needed to return back to my ship. It took me at least an hour to get back. Sure the marker said “Arrive in 21.00” but it doesn’t count if and when you get side tracked. On arrive I had this rye smile that I was home or at least somewhere where I knew where things were. Close to home as I’m going to get for now.

Which leads me into, what I think to be a very special part of the game, the alien interaction and their language. It’s not known why or how you arrived on this planet. Are you the last hope for some nearby dying planet that is looking to relocate or are you simply a rocket man burning out his fuse up in this galaxy alone. We don’t know yet. But we aren’t alone that’s for sure. The language is a key part throughout No Man’s Sky. If you want to trade you will need to know a few words so you don’t offend or scare one of the organic life forms. More importantly the language is going to further delve into the lore of NMS and with a game that is going to be further expanded through patches I would recommend that in this universe word farming is pivotal. Also to get a better understanding of what the language lore might bring in the future check out the official PlayStation Blog NMS a Universe Filled with Lore and Language.

All in all I enjoy No Man’s Sky. I look forward to finding new planets and species. Learning more languages and meeting new aliens. Sure it may have been subjected to over hype by us gamers and maybe we expected it to be so unique that maybe we can’t even appreciate it in our time, much like the Nintendo Game Cube. However No Man’s Sky is it’s own game and if you ever dreamed of drifting alone through space in hopes to find adventure and mystery No Man’s Sky is your game. Take it for what it is and not for what the mass media painted it to be. No Man’s Sky is a unique adventure and a breath of fresh air.

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The Harbinger of Good Times

It’s been about two weeks sense the release of the augmented reality game and its unified people in what seems to be an unifying time. It has been a game changer in so many different levels when it comes to being social with other people. And it’s very pleasant to admit that. In a time where things can seem bleak and unreal, Pokemon Go has brought out the fact that even a simple (but not very simple) mobile game can really bring people together. So long as the goal is to catch little monsters that we grew up watching every afternoon after school. Regardless, the game is amazing.

I am and have never been a fan of mobile games. I could never understand the desire to use your mobile phone battery for any other use then its intended purpose. Because let me tell you, the commercials with Arnold Schwarzenegger walking through battle field trying to get me to play some tap-tap version of an RTS game does not intrigue me. Walking around my city with the sole purpose to “catch them all,” does.

Pokemon Go since its buggy and yet very well received release has brought about what it means to be social in your community and frankly what it means to be active in your city. The very first day that Pokemon Go released I noticed more and more people with their noses in their phone, trying to desperately hide the fact that they were trying to catch a wild Rattata. As if that was something to be ashamed of. It’s funny because not to long after the release a guy came into my store with his three kids and I saw his phone in his hands slanted out as if he were trying to sneak a peak. It made me think of what he might be doing, but then I heard the app music of Pokemon Go. I looked at the guy and said “Hey, whatcha doing there man?” The guy instantly looked like he got caught doing something really embarrassing. He looks up underneath his cap and with a full on gold grill and tells me “Man, I’m just trying to catch this rat here!” I burst into laughter and told him “Me too man!” as I showed him my phone. He laughed it off and said “Man, these kids  (as he looked down at his own) don’t understand this. This is what we grew up with.” And he’s right.

One thing that I have noticed is that there seems to this misconception that this game is restricted for the use of children solely. Sure there have been arguments on both sides. But maybe the people who are saying “It’s for kids!” are those kids who grew up not caring for Pokemon or maybe they’re just too cool to sit with us. The game however doesn’t really seem to be for kids because the purpose of the game is to adventure in the wee hours of the night to catch that Abra who continues to tease me by only walking in front of the field of my house between the hours of 11pm-4am. These are not hours that a child should be out. Just sayin’. This game however is for all of us who grew up watching this show where we were taken to this other world where these little pocket monsters inhabited it. All the while a select few of ten year old children were lucky enough to begin the adventure of their young lives, to train and catch Pokemon in order to  become the best trainer in the world. This is something that many of us grew up wanting to be. Something that made us explore that random grove at a park pretending that there might be a Bulbasaur or Weedle hiding in the thicket. It’s what we’ve waited for.

I can be honest and say that my passion and love for Pokemon has subsided with age. Mostly because I could never really get in to the DS games but with Pokemon Go the passion is back. Sure it could be nostalgia because I’m so hipster and believe in that stuff or maybe it’s what I’ve been waiting for. Getting a call from friends to go and grab a few beers has turned into, “We’re going to catch Pokemon at the lake. You rolling?” And of course I do. How else am I ever going to get a Gyarados.

Regardless you shouldn’t feel embarrassed or childish for playing this game. It was made for you. I was made for me. It was made for the kid that stills lives in us who carries the desire to become the best Pokemon trainer in the world, in our world.

P.S. Team Mystic!

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Hiatus: Update

It’s been sometime sense I have written anything. I could say that I blame work, personal life, and as of recent Pokemon Go, but I wont. I just lost the fire to feel like I need to write like my life depends on it. Because it kind of does. That could be why I think I need to write, but don’t have the wont to because my life kind of depends on it. That’s a harsh reality when you think about it.

I’m trying to get myself out of this funk because there are things I want to write about. For example Pokemon Go, the new Overwatch character, and the latest development that’s going on at work. I just need to have the want to do so. Ill figure it out hopefully. Stay posted. Maybe tonight I’ll write about my latest adventures of Pokemon Go, because man-o-man is that game ruining my life but potentially advancing my love life. That is if I had one.

E3 2016

Another E3 is here and I’ll be honest and say I haven’t actually kept up all that much on what’s going on. Primarily because I worked yesterday morning, but I did however make it in time to see Sony run away with yet again the honors of slaying it on Day Zero.

With E3 here and live it brings about that feeling in me that makes me think, “How awesome it’d be to be there as a part of this industry.” This is now my fifth E3 that I’ve given my focus to and it seems that every year it feels the same. Not in a bad way but in a way that makes me feel renewed about my interest, passion, and overall gaming community. It’s a week where gamers all around the world sit on the edge of their seats and wait in anticipation to see what is lined up for the coming year and the near future.  It’s like Christmas in the summer, just better. It’s much more hopeful.

We are all so lucky now to live in a time where we have access to instant information via twitter and constant coverage thanks to sites like Youtube and Twitch.Tv. It’s a blessing but let me tell you I really do miss the G4Tv days where Adam Sessler, Morgan Webb, and Kevin Pereira ran the floor covering all the up to date info on what was going on during E3. It felt even more like a special event. I remember I had it all set up. Wake up in the morning, coffee, set up my laptop, iPhone, and TV. That would be my entire day. I spent all day sitting and watching live coverage and reading every update I could find. Even on games that I could care less about, but the point was that this was a time to learn and see what every company was doing. What they were planning, the moves they were making, the new IPs on the verge and what companies were teaming up with what console for the year. It was a time and still is that time to see the business side of the gaming world but most importantly the creative side of the gaming world.

Day zero is the show and conference king of E3. All the major Platforms come out to bring their best for E3. A couple years ago it was the release of the new “Next Gen Console” for all platforms, Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony. The head liners were the reveal of the “Xbox One”, “Nintendo Wii U”, and “PlayStation 4.”It was the best way to enter this new generation of console gaming, underlined comments via twitter, ridiculous console prices, crazy launch day requirements, and hopeful titles to carry these consoles into a new age. All I could remember was how excited I was about seeing console gaming on a new level. I was also a little scared because I knew it would cost money which at the time I didn’t have but excited none the less.

Yesterday brought forth that same excitement.

I went into work in the morning knowing that I wasn’t going to be able to have my phone out checking my twitter to see what is going on but I did however get a call.  It was around noon when the store phone rang. I answered and it was a guy asking me if it was possible to preorder the new Xbox One console. I was like “New console, didn’t that conference just start?” The guy on the phone says “Yep.”  I instantly in my head thought they are launching off their conference with the reveal of a new upgraded console. That can’t be good. What was funny was I actually said this to the guy on the phone and his response was too funny. He just kind of stuttered and said “Huh, yeah?”But for some time now we have all known that Microsoft has been slacking behind the PS4 in sales and popularity. So revealing a new console to hopefully change the way people look at Xbox was a must need move, but this isn’t the time to compare and contrast the two consoles. Maybe at the end of this week when all is said and done. However, being home in time to watch the Sony conference was amazing. Seeing the orchestra and the stage instantly set the tone for what was about to take place. It was a conference for games and the gamers that play them. “The drums, they are coming,” okay so I won’t reference Lord of the Rings too much, but the DRUMS! And then we saw it, him. This brutish, hulking of a man with familiar tattoos and the burliest of beards that even puts mine to shame. Stood there and arose from the shadows, Kratos. Kratos has been a figure head of the PlayStation since PS2 and to see his rebirth on the PS4 put a smile on my face for nearly an hour and eighteen minutes. Just thinking about it is giving me chills. This is the magic of E3 where anything can happen.

And we still have the rest of the week to delve deeper.

But this is truly why I love the gaming industry. Change is about and everyone is on edge to see what new games are on the horizon. Nintendo had their conference this morning which has slowly evolved from an actual conference to a gab fest where they just talk about the games with the creators. Which is still great, but forty minutes of Pokémon Sun and Moon is a little too much. But we did get a chance to see the new Zelda games which looks great. So with that, Ill wrap this up and like you I will continue to stay posted on what’s going on at E3 and later on this week I’ll do coverage of the games I’m most looking forward to. So, should be fun.

So until then happy E3!

The Side of Gamestop I need.

If I’ve never mentioned it before I think it should be noted that I work at Gamestop. For two and a half years now. However the thing about Gamestop is that at the end of the day if you work in one of it stores, it’s just retail. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not the worse place to be employed it’s not the best… But for whatever reason, be it the people I work with, the day-to-day work, or maybe it’s the fact that I get to talk about video games for a living, right now… Hopefully in the future, just on a larger scale preferably. I enjoy my work and according to my managers I do a good job but Gamestop is just a store. It’s retail. The manager cares about number of sales on certain products. The assistant store manager cares about order and cleanliness. Now I like my managers, I do. They are cool people. We get along really well and working under them I have grown into my role at the store, SGA (Senior Game Adviser.) Basically I’m a shift manager. One of the things Gamestop does so I don’t have to get paid more. That “thing” being called an SGA and not a shift manager.

But this is not about the money, by any means. It’s about an opportunity.

Money doesn’t drive me. It never has. Probably never will. As a “man” I probably would make a terrible provider, but whatever.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I was confronted with the idea of “What is it that you’re going to do?” Like in your life, er well with my life. It’s a question that hits everyone at some point. And you either knuckle up or just call it quits and give up or put it off. I’ve put it off long enough I think. So I committed myself to the idea that I want to get into the gaming industry not as a designer or developer but as a journalist. Sounds easy enough, well it’s not. At least from my understanding it’s not. This is why I came here so I could document everything about my gaming. “A place to write after I game.”

I’ve been away from it now for a lot longer than I would have liked, but with the release of Overwatch I’ve been occupied. A little…

So here I am trying to grind my way through the muck of the internet to get noticed for my literary skills and my “unique” take and approach to gaming. I still think that it could be done. But sometimes you need something real to rely on. I told my manager what it is that I’m trying to do now and he referred me to the career profile through Gamestop. It turns out that Gamestop has a bunch of jobs that more or less is what I want to do. So I figure this is my chance to make something in the company. I take pride in the work that I do. I may not talk about it because that’s just not my style, but I do. So here I am with a plan. A more solid plan with a foundation already made. I’ve spent some time here with Gamestop and I’ve put in good work. I’ll continue to do so. Because if I want to take advantage of a career opportunity through Gamestop I have to continue to take pride in my work and continue to do good work. I still need to talk to the right people and get advice from people who know how to get to the ultimate goal. But that’s all in good time. For now I’ll continue my writing, my gaming, my “good” work at work.

So here’s to a hopeful future.

Whoever’s reading.

 

Grinding my way to the next step.

As I sit here and begin to type I begin to ask myself, “What’s the next step?”

What can I do to make this whole video game journalist thing an actual real thing and not just a dreaded hobby. I want to take the next step but aside from trying to be active through social media and writing when I can. I’m not sure what that next step is. Should I stream and throw myself into that again and go through the grind of streaming all over again. Or should I continue to write and blog all that I can until I get noticed by a significant amount of people. I’m not sure anymore. It’s hard to stay motivated through this feeling right now. Sure I can call it a slump or frustration because I just don’t seem to be yielding the views or notes that I wish I could have here, but I have to continue.

Nothing worth while comes easy. There almost always has to be a grind to get where you want to be or have what you want to have. Being a gamer is the epitome of that reality. Grinding is as much apart of life as it is apart of gaming. Think about it. In an MMO, (Massive Multiplayer Online) to get anywhere worth while you have to grind levels. It would be nice to have that armor set that only drops in that one specific dungeon, right? Of course it would be but the catch is you only have one chance every week to attempt to get it and each piece of gear has a 10% drop rate. So nine times out of ten you’re going to get some crappy gear for a warlock that you don’t use anymore because they nerfed him. So you work on it. You word hard towards that goal, because you know that when you have it and achieve it, its all the more special because you’ve earned it, it wasn’t purchased, wasn’t traded for, and  no one handed it you. You earned it. Relish in that fact.

This is where I am right now. It’s not a wall that I have hit because I feel fine. Mentally that is. I’m prepared for this grind but the issue is that I can’t quite tell what the next step is for me to take. I my self am a person of planning. I need a layout. I’ve done pretty much everything with some kind of organized plan. Whether it involved gaming or not. So here I am 1:17 AM asking the universe, whats next.

“Keep Grinding.” Was the motivational message Kevin Pereira left on his Instagram the other night. Simple, wordless, straight forward.

kevper “a simple message of hope.”

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a simple message of hope.

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Since seeing this it’s been kind of a wake up call that feeling like your work is fruitless and unrewarding is part of the grind. But you keep at it because, like many League of Legends players will say, “Still Worth.”

I’ve followed KP since his days back with G4tv  on “Attack of the Show.” An early inspiration to the desire of having some kind of life that evolved the gaming world and its community. So I take his simple message to heart. “Keep grinding.” It’s like the phrase of the night or week. Maybe even the month. Who knows, but I will take these simple words to heart and if you are like me stuck in a rut. Take a tip from Kevin P. Keep grinding.

The Tale of Two Dragon Brothers

Earlier today Blizzard released their third animated shot entitled “Dragons.”

The animated short “Dragons” delves a little deeper into the rocky relationship between Hanzo and his brother Genji. We learned that the two were brothers when the announcement trailer of new characters dropped a while back during the closed the beta. But never really knew the extent to why the two were on opposite sides.

The video goes into some detail setting up the two characters’ bio in a classic Japanese story telling kind of way. Which is ultimately leading to the final climax between the two brothers on a balcony in Hanamura. The video is jam packed with emotions and feels. For me at least it’s inspired me to work on my ninja skills when Overwatch drops later this month on the 24th.