MMO open world housing is a failed experiment

Bio Break

This past week, Final Fantasy XIV pushed out its Patch 4.1 and with it, a highly anticipated new housing neighborhood. The ensuing housing rush — which lasted mere minutes — quickly sealed up all available lots and shut out the rest of the playerbase from buying one of these homes. It’s a problem that the game’s been struggling with ever since it launched its open world housing system, but now it sounds like things have come to a head and the dev team might actually do something about it.

Reading the news on this, I once again wonder why open world housing is this holy grail that some players and developers seem hellbent on chasing. It’s an ideal, a beautiful mirage couched in the notion of players inhabiting the very world they play, allowing them to stroll through neighborhoods of fellow adventurer’s homes and basking in the connectivity of it…

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Four Demon Temple

Dyson's Dodecahedron

At the edge of the woods behind the manor house is the old family tomb with stairs leading down to the crypts below. Except the stoneworks beneath are evidently not a family crypt.

Four Demon Temple Four Demon Temple

What we find under the old tomb is a reliquary of objects and remains of those dedicated to various dark masters through the history of the family. In the four “corners” of the reliquary are statues of demonic creatures fierce and bizarre – each with descriptions of their names and alternate forms, how to contact them, and what they prefer as sacrifices and gifts. The one statue in the lower right of the map has had most of its names and summoning details destroyed – chiseled away in an aggressive and fast fashion with no effort to disguise the vandalism except that someone then cleaned up the debris leaving none on the stone floors.

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Chasing some gaming treasures for the Atari 8bit computers

The Late Night Session

Now that I’ve been spending more time playing games on my Atari 8bit machines I’m also keeping an eye out on potential bargains.

Game cartridges are what I keep an eye out for as many titles for the system were later released in that format for the XE series machines. Unfortunately they also seem to hold their value too (and then some)… especially boxed copies.

Cartridges are where it’s at.

So much to my surprise I found two games going cheap on eBay I couldn’t help myself. When they are more than a quarter the price of similar items you jump on them quickly. 🙂

The first of my finds is Accolade’s Hardball! from 1985 which as the title implies is a baseball game. Though it doesn’t have any license or player rosters to prop it up the game is a surprising attempt to get the feel of the game…

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DDO and the longer term


Last night once again our trio stepped into Stormreach for some DDO fun. It’s a great game for what it is, a D&D-esque combat simulator.

Here we are having just vanquished the second wing of the Waterworks – the first big multipart dungeon you encounter as fledgling adventurers. I’m the monk with the obligatory basket hat who also happens to be the ‘tank’ in our trio. Of course at this level our Wizard’s summoned rat does a much better job than me….

For those that do not know the game combat is intense and very active. You have to position a lot as monsters do not run at the tank and stand still. Some dodge around you to attack from behind, others will flail around at all nearby targets, some even hop away constantly to open range for missile or spell attacks. If you stand still for long in DDO…

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Let’s Talk About…: Villains


We’re back with our “Let’s Talk About…” series! Check out the previous chats here.

Let’s Talk About… our Favorite Villains

Well, it depends what you mean by “villain.” I’m always a fan on the complex villain. You know, the one who has a backstory and good intentions, or the one who really and truly thinks he or she is doing the right thing. Of course, having a villain who elicits anger or frustration can also be strangely satisfying, as well.

I might consider a person like Handsome Jack to be a particularly good villain, since he truly believes he is (and may well possibly be) the hero. I usually find villains like Saren and Loghain to be interesting, and I really, really wanted to punch Ghirahimpretty much any time he appeared in Skyward Sword, even though he might have had more going on beneath the surface than…

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5 Biggest Worst Video Games That Shamed The Gaming Industry


The gaming industry is one of the fastest growing business ventures. Video Games overall revenue is already bigger than Hollywood and each every week we see big video game releases and some of them which define the gaming industry in the best way possible but then there are some that shamed the game industry because of how horrific they were when released. Today we are counting down 5 Biggest Worst Video Games That Shamed The Gaming Industry



Far too difficult and unforgiving, and feels like another titled rushed to meet its deadline. – IGN
This game literally crashed the industry. Not to mention, the graphics are terrible, the game is impossible, and Atari literally bought an island to bury this disgrace. – Qwerty750
This is definitely one to stop the E.T. obsessed kids screaming, but no game for a grown up. –

4. Duke Nukem Forever

Image result for Duke Nukem Forever

There are…

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Another crafting system


After playing DDO for the first time in over a year last weekend, I’ve just logged in to see what I could do with the random crafting mats that dropped from our foray into some harbour area dungeons.

This is all new, the Cannith Crafting process as it is called. Well in a word it’s complex. This isn’t a bad thing, there’s always a wiki to help out and actually the main process isn’t that complicated. There are restrictions on what items you can deconstruct to act as a base. This caused an immediate gotcha as I wanted a trinket for my monk so bought one super-cheap; only to find that I can’t use an item with a tan background.

Anyway, in the end I managed to split the necessary mind essences and then make my first item, a cloak of Inner Focus +1.

Due to the strict bonus stacking…

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Beginner’s guide to indie: part one

Later Levels

If you’re a regular Later Levels visitor, it’s pretty obvious I’m a fan of indie games. Starting up a large RPG can be an incredibly daunting experience when you’re short on spare time due to a hectic job and family. But smaller titles can fit in well with a busy routine, and there’s something nice about being able to complete a game within several sittings before moving onto the next one.

During a recent conversation with Dan from Now is Games, he asked if I’d ever written a guide for gamers who were new to indie releases. It wasn’t something I’d ever considered but it seemed like a good idea – so thanks to Dan for being the inspiration behind this post!

A disclaimer before I launch into my list: this contains only titles I’ve actually played myself and, as pretty obvious from the content on Later Levels

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6 Great Xbox One Video Games That You Should Play Right Now


So far Xbox One is not in a very good condition even after the announcement of Xbox One S and Xbox One X the momentum that should have been generated is still not there and that is probably because of lack of exclusives. Well, It is no doubt Xbox one is missing out exclusives but there are some that you guys should play right now if you have an Xbox One.



If you’re the type of person who derives joy from angrily banging your head into a boss over and over until you can perfectly defeat it in the most glorious 90 seconds you will ever experience, then Cuphead is the total package. The tight gameplay, accompanied by an incredibly well-realized aesthetic, makes for a truly unforgettable gameplay experience. – Giant Bomb
Cuphead is the marvel we’ve been looking for. A tittle that surpasses all expectations, one of the…

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Beginner’s guide to indie: part two

Later Levels

So your favourite genre of video games didn’t make it into the first part of my beginner’s guide to indie games on Wednesday? Well fear not, for I return with part two today! A big thank you once again to Dan from Now is Games for suggesting I write this series and being the inspiration behind it.

As mentioned previously: the following list contains only titles I’ve actually played myself and, as pretty obvious from the content on Later Levels, I tend to favour adventures or games with strong narratives. However, I’ve made a point of not making every entry a point-and-click (although there are still a few) and hopefully everyone will be able to find something that appeals to them here…


Ok, ok, I know I said I’d be careful about adding point-and-clicks to my list; but let me start off with one to get it out…

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