Daily Archives: December 8, 2011

Raptr: MMOs? None Were Released in 2011

Raptr, the game play tracking and social network tool thing that seems a lot like Xfire… because it was created by the same people who made Xfire… where was I going with this…

Oh, yeah.

Raptr announced their Most Played Games for 2011, restricted to games launched in 2011, despite the fact that we still have 23 days to go here.  Maybe nothing else important is launching this year.

What?  Star Wars: The Old Republic is launching this year?

Well, too late and too bad!

In fact, of the categories Raptr chose to acknowledge, MMOs barely make the cut.

The categories are:

And while you might think “Open-World Game” would include MMOs, that is actually just single player open world games like Batman: Arkham City or L.A. Noire.

No, the only mention of MMOs is in the final category, the one about Paid-to-F2P conversions.  That covers MMOs, because it seems if you ran some sort of crime or crime fighting MMO… Champions Online, DC Universe Online, City of Heroes, All Points Bulletin, or… well, it doesn’t quite fit but I’ll make it fit… Global Agenda… then apparently 2011 was your year to go Free to Play.

So, from one angle I suppose congratulations are in order.  Raptr managed to do a “Most Played” list that squeezed in MMOs from such an angle that they avoided mentioning any fantasy MMOs… like Rift maybe… along with Star Wars: The Old Republic.

Was it really that bad of a year for MMOs?  I know my 2011 MMO Outlook ended up on the sad end of things, but were there really so few launches?

Was the slide to F2P really the big event for 2011?

Ganking Tourism

Suicide ganking.

It is just one of those EVE Online things.  People have written complaining about it.  People have written guides on how to do it.  People have organized events dedicated to it.

Even having been a victim of it once, I have never actually seen it happen.  I was AFK when it happened to me, which is why it happened, of course.

The Goons, while busy elsewhere, still have their anti-ice mining event going in Gallente space.  I have a friend in a Goon allied corp and he was keen to give Mackinaw ganking a shot. (Mackinaw’s are the ships used to mine ice.)

So the other day he said I should fly out and meet in at Tolle, a system that sits between two stars with ice belts, and I could be his target for jumping in to attack miners.  I agreed, wanting to see this happen at least once and not really having any other mission going on in EVE.

Tolle was 20+ jumps from my location, so I just hopped in a shuttle and started on my way.  About half way there my friend suggested that I come in a ship that could salvage, like maybe a Noctis.  I turned around, flew back, swapped into my salvage destroyer and flew out and parked in Tolle.

Once there, other events overtook and no ganking occurred.

The next evening though I got on and it looked like something might happen.  He and a corp mate were stalking Mackinaws already.  They wanted to know if I had a ship handy that could warp cloaked.  I do in fact have such a ship.  I have a fully fitted Buzzard.  It was just sitting in a hanger 20+ jumps away.

The reason they wanted that is because ice miners, when they are not bots, are decidedly suspicious of random ships warping in and and laying along side.  The miners tend to just warp back to the station when you do that, which can be amusing in and of itself.  It is like sending a flock of birds into flight.  I spent a little bit of time doing that.

Chasing Mackinaws

Those that did not flee at the mere sight of a Cormorant pulling up alongside generally had some more active defenses going on, like this group which had a pair of Dominixes… Dominixae… a couple of battleships reinforcing their Mackinaws.

Domi Reinforcement

I went off then to check the other ice system and did find a big formation of Mackinaws, with two Orcas riding along and another Orca hauling back to the station.  They did not appear to be spooked by my presence in the ice belt.

Mackinaws in formation

My pal asked me to move about 250km out of the belt and bookmark that location, so he could use it as a “perch” from which to strike.  Of course, I failed to do that correctly.  I managed to bookmark the ice field directly rather than my spot 250km away.  I’ll have to go back and figure out how to bookmark a spot in space again.  It has been a while.

My friend got his Brutix in system and ready to go.

Brutix ready to gank

While he did that, I went back to shadowing the Mackinaw fleet.  That was when we discovered I had screwed up the bookmark, as the Brutix warped in about 20km away.  Still, the mining fleet did not disperse, align, or even stop mining.  They just carried on in formation.

They just keep mining

That made things easier.  I was asked to get in close to the fleet, less than 5km if possible.  I set myself to follow the middle Mackinaw at 2,500 meters and just became part of the traveling circus.  I said I was in place and in the Brutix jumped and went to the attack.

Brutix opens up!

This is when I realized that I forgot to launch FRAPs, because I wanted to make a video of the attack.

Anyway, the Brutix went in, opened fire, CONCORD shouted, things happened on the far side of that obscuring Orca in the picture above, and before I could fix the camera angle, it was done.

A Brutix explodes

The Brutix was just a wreck (note the name of the ship in the picture above, that is the straight from the Goon playbook) and the Mackinaw fleet continued on mining.  You can see my Cormorant, brightly lit by the explosion, in trail behind the formation.

This is the point where I am told the Goon handbook says you are to “stink up local” by taunting the infidels and shouting Allah Akbar!  That is the whole Goon Jihad theme.  Watch the movie.

That did not go as planned either and I ended up chatting with the guy running the mining op for a bit and taking a bunch of screen shots, since it is not every day you see a formation like that mining.

Pretty blue lasers

I am glad they put the blue lasers back for ice mining.

The fleet actually moved a couple of times so I could get some good shots.  I put one of the more dramatic shots over on EVE Online Pictures after giving the URL in local.  Meanwhile, my friend was casting about for another ship.

And then it was time for dinner.  I said good bye to everybody and logged off.

I still have not seen a suicide gank in person, though I did get some nice screen shots.

My friend and his companion kept at it and managed to knock off a Mackinaw eventually.

Maybe next time it will happen when I am on… and have remembered to load FRAPs.

Oh, Now That Ain’t Right… SOE Nyet!

And here I was worried about character slots and they switch up languages on me!

But is says "English" in the corner!

Truly an age of discovery this is turning out to be!

Dasvidaniya for now SOE!

(Okay, changing away from and then back to English fixed it, but another fly in the ointment. On the bright side, all 15 of my characters seem to be present and unlocked.)