With Firefox and (finally) Chrome trying to make the web safer, both browsers are now less tolerant of potential security risks, flagging sites as containing questionable content much more aggressively. And The Flag Counter widget, which I have been running for almost a decade in my side bar, apparently started causing the site to be reported as a risk at some point in the last month or so.
After some tinkering and manually updating one embedded URL to be HTTPS things seemed to be kosher again and various browsers stopped declaring the site a danger.
Thanks to MagiWasTake of the Indiecator blog for pointing out that recent browser updates were causing the blog to be flagged as unsafe. It should be all good now. But if it isn’t, let me know. I’d rather just remove Flag Counter than have an “unsafe site” warning pop up when people land here.
One Year Ago
Epic Games had announced their digital storefront the previous December, but we were finally getting a deeper look at their strategy for taking on Steam. One word: Exclusives. (Some of which were already up for sale on Steam, then withdrawn, making as many people angry as happy.)
Over at Activision-Blizzard they announced record annual revenues for 2018, then laid off 8% of their staff. I suppose, in hindsight, they predicted 2019 correctly.
Daybreak gave us some details about their planned special rules EverQuest II PvP server. On the same front, the plans for the EverQuest anniversary servers sounded a bit muddled. They gave us a revised plan for all servers before the month was out.
Meanwhile, the PlanetSide Arena launch, pushed back to March, was pushed out again, this time until “summer,” with a planned simultaneous Playstation 4 launch given as a reason.
I also wondered what EverQuest III should even look like, were it a possibility. I doubt that it is, but it is fun to speculate.
All of that aside, with the approach of the EverQuest 20th anniversary I started logging in to play a bit with a fresh character. I started on Vox, a standard rules server, with an eye on the tutorial. I ran through the revolt in Glooming Deep.
I was also rolling back into WoW and Battle for Azeroth for a bit. It was a change up from LOTRO.
On the EVE Online front it was announced there would be no alliance tournament for 2019. The February update brought us some fixes and the Guardians Gala event. CCP was also talking about letting people buy skills straight from the character sheet. There was also talk of a new launcher coming.
I wrote something about the time zones of New Eden, it being a world spanning, 24 hour game.
I wrote a bit about the city of Waterdeep, the heart of TorilMUD.
Twitch offered me a free trial in Final Fantasy XIV, but I couldn’t get it to work.
I was on about there being no good expansions again.
And there was word of a smaller Switch, the end of the Wii Shop Channel, eports was stomping its feet and demanding to be taken seriously, and the Olympics rejecting esports all wrapped up in a Friday bullet points post.
Five Years Ago
Sony Online Entertainment ceased to be, having been sold off to Columbus Nova and rebranded as Daybreak Games Company. The launch was not auspicious to my mind, with Columbus Nova issuing a questionable press release while the new company shed many old hands. Still, classic Norrath seemed to be safe. New progression servers for EverQuest were announced fairly quickly thereafter.
H1Z1 was out in early access (or “recently launched” according to Colubus Nova) and having some issues. Polygon took my own point of view in stating that if a company is out there taking money for a game then they felt entitled to review it as it stood.
Massively and WoW Insider were recreating themselves as Massively OP and Blizzard Watch.
I was also still flailing about a bit with Elite: Dangerous.
Star Wars: The Old Republic seemed headed back to that vaunted fourth pillar.
The Tiamat expansion hit EVE Online, unleashing the Svipul menace. CCP was bribing people to vote in the CSMX election. And for the monthly blog banter walking in stations came up again. I was also figuring out how to change my space clothes and Reavers were making a difference.
The now defunct BattleClinic had just finished their site overhaul, allowing players to mine more data out of their kill mails.
Then there was Juche.
And, finally, a farewell to Leonard Nimoy.
Ten Years Ago
We learned SynCaine’s dirty secret.
There was another press release or some such for a Wheel of Time MMO. My call then: It isn’t going to happen. And it still hasn’t happened. And it isn’t going to happen.
Ten Ton Hammer made a list of their Top Ten PvP MMOs, and there was some chagrin that Ultima Online didn’t make the cut.
For reasons I cannot recall, Conner at MMO Fallout started looking into how MMO companies ranked over at the Better Business Bureau.
There was an announcement for a new game… World of Tanks!
In World of Warcraft, the instance group did Scarlet Monastery, Uldaman, and got as far as Zul’Farrak in our horde adventures, though we were still forgetting we could use the Dungeon Finder. Otherwise we were running around doing holiday events and the like. Also, I finally fished that last coin out of the fountain in Dalaran.
Oh, the Dungeon Finder. My first runs with that were… not so good. I seemed to run into some cliche bad groups.
Meanwhile, WoW decided to emulate WebKinz and start selling stuffed animals that had codes for in-game versions. My daughter wanted that Windrider Cub real bad.
Over in EverQuest II the Sentinal’s Fate expansion launched. The sixth expansion for the game, it raised the level cap from 80 to 90. I remember almost nothing specific about this expansion
The Azeroth Advisor went buh-bye. Thanks for killing it 38 Studios! I saved all the email tips they sent me, however they were all pretty much worthless post-Cataclysm. Also, they were full of live links that no longer work. Ah well.
Finally, there was Star Trek Online. The head start ended, The game went full-live, I was fiddling with my super special pre-order collector’s edition junk, and I gave out some codes in a caption contest. There was even some new content. But by month’s end, STO faded for me. Worst gaming purchase of the decade for me.
Fifteen Years Ago
The Dragons of Norrath expansion launched for EverQuest.
Twenty Years Ago
The Sims launched, becoming a staple of video games sales lists for well over a decade and one of the best selling video game franchises of all time.
Most Viewed Posts in February
Search Terms of the Month
will there ever be another everquest
[reply hazy, ask again later]
is it easy to learn everquest if boost to 85
[Oh, heavens no!]
karmafleet which race
[They are down with whatever you are]
i did a search on the internet for somewhere with a warm sea, not cold. with is a none words
[And yet somehow you arrived here]
Spam Comment of the Month
Anything cam have an innuendo with food and/or sex if you try hard enough…
Again, think outside the trapezoid
Game Time from ManicTime
The measure this month shows that I tapered off quite a bit when it came to EverQuest II. That was both because I ran out of steam on my desire to get more characters to the level cap… four is pretty much three more than I have ever had… and because things picked up in both WoW Classic and EVE Online.
- WoW Classic – 69.29%
- EVE Online – 22.07%
- EverQuest II – 8.36%
- World of Warcraft – 0.28%
Those percentages do not reflect the raw data reality, in which I spent less than half as much time on video games in February when compared to January. I was away from home for a week and I didn’t have as much free time when I was home.
A new SIG and a new deployment gave me something to do in New Eden. I was out in Venal with the GEF. The DDoS attacks early in the month made playing problematic at times, but CCP got past that eventually and even gave us some skill points for our trouble.
I have tinkered with some alts, but the drive to level up has faded somewhat. I had considered seeing what it would take to roll a fresh character from level one to the cap, but upon reflection I guess it would take more than I had in me. Still, I was surprised to find I still had a free character slot and now I have a level 20 necromancer hanging out somewhere.
I have been moving along pretty well in the quest for level 40. This has been largely due to exchanging gifts with buddies in the game, which yields 100K points when you hit maximum friendship. I have also had some fun with the new Battle League. I want to keep going with that at least until I unlock the Pikachu wrestler outfit.
Level: 38 (61% of the way to level 39)
Pokedex status: 512 (+17) caught, 545 (+20) seen
Pokemon I want: Lucario, which is tough because I never any in the wild.
Current buddy: Dewatt
World of Warcraft
As I have written almost every month since summer, I pretty much only log into retail WoW for Darkmoon Faire.
Back to the instance group and my alts in the land of vanilla. I am still happy with the experience. The combo of simplicity, difficulty, and lost memories around so many corners will keep me going for a while still.
Another busy month in RL for me… though with the Coronavirus running about maybe everything will get cancelled and I will just stay home and play video games.
The instance group will carry on in WoW Classic. Once we get past Razorfen Downs it will be time to ramp up for Uldaman and then Zul’Farrak.
Out in New Eden we will have to see if the GEF deployment will continue. There are probably fights to be had and structures to be shot still, but target of the war, Darkness, has disbanded. Oops. And then there all the new things that CCP has in store for us.
As mentioned earlier this week, EverQuest is coming up on its 21st anniversary. I’m not sure it will be as big of a deal as 20, but we shall see.
Finally, RimWorld has an expansion and a new update patch. After a couple of revisions it looks like it has settled down so it might be time to break that out again.
One thing that won’t be happening next month is GDC up in San Francisco, which has been postponed until late summer due to Coronavirus.