Category Archives: YouTube

Happy Fifteenth Trogday

It was 15 years ago today, over at Homestar Runner, that Strong Bad email #58 introduced the character of Trogdor the Burninator.

The Homestar Cast

Back in those days, before YouTube was a thing, the now dying and soon to be dead Flash format was all the rage and the whole Homestar Runner site was created in it.  Now you have likely have to activate the Flash plug-in to see any of that and probably cannot see it at all on your mobile device.

But back then, in the dark days before YouTube, Flash was the shit for movies and games on the web.

Fortunately the Homestar team has moved much of their work over to YouTube, including Strong Bad #58.  (They also still produce new content, like the latest entry in the Dangeresque series.)

Now you too will be able to draw a dragon.

In celebration I am wearing my now somewhat aged Trogdor T-shirt today.  Meanwhile the Brothers Chap have converted the Trogdor Flash game over to HTML 5 so you can give that a try.

For those too young or who missed it back in the day, the Homestar Runner Wikipedia entry… or the Homestar Runner Wiki, because the internet will obsess about anything and everything… are there to aid your journey.

And if you are in or around Decatur, Georgia today there is an event to celebrate Trogday.

Keep on burninating!

Extra Credits – The Data Dilemma

Extra Credits this week takes a look at the data companies often use to measure success versus things they may be ignoring which can erode player trust in a given franchise or company.

Obvious comparisons to recent events are obvious.  Also somewhat interesting to me given my efforts to rank WoW expansions earlier in the week.  I suppose I could add in another version of the ranking with how much each one affected my trust in Blizzard.

Planes of Prophecy Expansion for EverQuest II

It is that time of year, the expansion season for the Norrath franchise at Daybreak, and today the first of the pair to launch is EverQuest II which is going live with the Planes of Prophecy expansion today.

Planes of Prophecy

As down as some people are on Daybreak (looking at you Massively OP) I still see a victory in every additional expansion they manage to ship for EverQuest and EverQuest II.  Even though I don’t play either any more, and really can’t bring myself to stick to either when I try, they still both occupy a special place in the pantheon of MMORPGs for me.

Anyway, the fourteenth EQII expansion takes us to the elemental planes again, as the title indicates.  I guess that counts as something of a nod to nostalgia as it even has the same acronym as the famed/infamous 2002 Planes of Power expansion for EverQuest.

The feature list reads as such lists tend to, with more of just about everything including levels, quests, zones, raids, and so on.

  • New Zones including
    • Plane of Magic
    • Plane of Valor
    • Plane of Innovation
    • Plane of Disease
    • Bastion of Thunder
    • Solusek Ro’s Tower
    • Brackish Vaults
  • New Heroic Dungeons
  • New Event Heroic Dungeons
  • New Solo Dungeons
  • New Duo Dungeons
  • New Raid Dungeons
  • New Large Overland
  • New Hub Zone “Coliseum of Valor”; provides access to dungeons, raids, and public quests
  • Alt-Friendly Keyring System: If you unlock a new heroic or raid zone on your main, your alt will also gain access to it.
  • New Signature Quest Line
  • New Public Quests
  • New Timed Key Quests
  • New Collection Quests
  • New “Soulbound” Weapons: Soulbound weapons will be able to level up and become even more powerful!
  • New Weapon Type: Crossbows, a ranged weapon usable by all
  • Adventure Level Cap Raised to 110
  • All Ascension Classes Level Cap Increased to 15
  • Guild Level Cap Increased to 250
  • New Factions
  • New Achievements
  • New Items
  • Tradeskill Level Cap Raised to 110
  • New Adornments for Crafters to Make
  • New Tinkering Recipes
  • Mercenary Level Cap Increased to 10
  • More Mercenary Gear Slots: Six new slots for hands, legs, feet, and 3 additional accolades

Lots and lots of “new” and “more” on that list, enough to keep people busy for another year… or at least until the spring game update.

A few items jump out at me from the list.  I am curious as to how this Coliseum of Valor will work, or what it actually is.  Is this the EQII version of the Plane of Knowledge?

Then there are crossbows because… well… I bet they look cool.  Still, that seems like something that wasn’t really missed for the last 13 years, so why bring them in now?

And then there are the new Soulbound weapons, which on the surface sound a lot like Artifact weapons from WoW Legion or Legendary weapons from LOTRO.

Which is to say it could be a good idea, but it could also be a bad one.

I actually ended up liking the Artifact weapons in WoW Legion even though, for example, every retribution pally gets a copy of Ashbringer.  That you can unlock special looks for each artifact weapon helped on that score.

The downside is that artifact weapons will cease to be a thing come the Battle for Azeroth expansion, which will leave an awkward 10 levels towards the end of the level curve where you have to get and upgrade a special weapon that you’ll likely throw away before you’ve had a change to fully upgrade it.

As for LOTRO and legendary weapons… ugh… that seemed like a good idea back in Mines of Moria, but it quickly got old for me there and Turbine’s, and then Standing Stone’s, continued use of the awkward mechanic is on the long list of things that keep me from going back to play the game.

I haven’t followed the updates for the expansion, so I am not sure what path Daybreak plans to follow here, but I am wary none the less.  And what do these new Soulbound weapons mean for Mythic weapons, yet another category I am told exists.  I am clearly out of my depth here.

Anyway, you get all of that when you buy the standard edition of the expansion along with a level 100 character boost.

But, of course, the expansion comes in three flavors, the same as before, so I don’t even have to crop up a new graphic for the pricing and can just roll with what I did in 2015.

Premium packages available for premium prices

For the Collectors Edition you also get a trade skill level 100 boost and a 5 ascension level boost along with an array of other items, and with the $140 Premium Edition you can add on a 10 ascension level boost as well as even more… um… stuff.

You can get all the details from the expansion order page.

Sadly, if you’re reading this and have not ordered yet it is likely you missed out on the Clockwork Calamity illusion pre-order bonus item, some aspects of which Bhagpuss has demonstrated in a video.

Bhagpuss also has some words about the expansion in his post today which are probably better than my own as he pays more attention to EQII than I can manage.

That is it, another year and another EverQuest II expansion.

Addendum: Even Daybreak says the expansion is live now.  Hit level 101 before December 12th and get special painting for you house.

Feature Creep – On The Cost of Making Video Games

I saw a post over at Massively OP trotting on the argument that video games should cost more because they are more expensive to make than ever, that being part of the justification for the EA lockbox and pay to win scheme in Star Wars Battlefront II I was on about yesterday.  So it seemed timely for this video to show up.

The summary, should you want to skip, is that big companies like EA and Activision are actually making less games, spending less on making games, yet pulling in more revenue than ever because microtransactions, season passes, subscriptions, and all that money spent after the box sale more than make up for the AAA box price staying at $60.

Basically, it turns out if can keep one game going with post-launch addons you don’t have to make any more new games.  Imagine that.

Honest Game Trailers – Pokemon Sun and Moon

Honest Game Trailers continues its journey to review every release generation of the core Pokemon RPG series.

More blunt that usual about Pokemon being essentially the same damn game over and over, but fans buy them over and over as well, so I guess repetition isn’t much to complain about given the success.  I know I’ll be buying Pokemon UltraSun & UltraMoon when it comes out next month.

For those dying to see previous entries in the series, here are the links: