Daily Archives: January 8, 2008

Into The Burning Sea

The Pirates of the Burning Sea pre-boarding party/pre-order/early bird start began yesterday.

For those not in the beta but in possession of a pre-order box (which had the sound track and a pair of product keys and not much else) getting started meant downloading more than 5 GB of installer and data.

That part actually went pretty smoothly for me. I was home from work (one more day of vacation before the return to the office) so got to begin the download just after 10 am Pacific time.

A power blip that turned off my computer kept things from being perfect, but by mid-afternoon the files were all downloaded and by the evening I had time to install and log into the game.

As stated before, I rolled up on the Guadeloupe server and by mutual agreement between Potshot, Gaff, and myself, went French. We figured that would be something of a contrarian play, plus, as I pointed out, bad French accents on Skype are much more palatable than bad English (think Ren-Faire nightmare) or bad Spanish (which I can do, but it requires a lot of lisping to be authentic) accents.

Just to give myself something of an out, and another accent to work with, I gave my first character a German name, Germans show up just about anywhere during that time frame. So I present Friedrich Voss, Freetrader.

friedrich-voss2.png

He’s bald under that hat.

I am a little disappointed that the “print screen” key does not take screen shots. Still, it can be done the old fashioned way, by hitting that key than tabbing out to paste into a graphics program.

For a first night, things were not too bad. No flying colors, but nothing too horrible.

My biggest problem appeared to be lag. Major, long-term, lag, that manifested itself mostly at sea. It took me four tries to complete the tutorial because my boat would sit quite still, refusing to move an inch regardless of where the wind stood or how much sail I laid on.

If I was lucky, I might suddenly warp someplace useful… or the enemy might actually warp within range of my guns, but that luck was uncommon.

Still, I managed to get off a broadside or two and actually sink some ships. Here I am at the second tutorial run, finishing the combat segment.

Broadside

Broadside

Yes, the enemy are “Bilge Rats,” so your first quest… your first few combat quests… are literally “Kill n Rats.” Some humor in that I suppose.

Unfortunately, after the combat you must rendezvous with another boat, and my own craft stayed resolutely in place for 15 minutes, unable to close the 400 yards between myself and the tutorial end.

At least you can bail on missions mid way through and restart them again in town. And all that tutorial running got me to level 3 pretty quickly.

Later, in attempting another sea combat mission, the lag grew so bad that I decided to call it a night.

For a first night I was able to:

  • Download the client
  • Patch (yes, immediate patch required, 25 mins of download)
  • Create a character
  • Finish the tutorial
  • Find my trainer
  • Do the “around town” tour quest
  • Meet up with Potshot

Compared to some MMO first nights, that isn’t so bad.

Still, they will have to fix the performance issues at sea muy pronto, as tonight was a first night, but a very light one. When things go live for real, that kind of lag could be a disaster.