When I tell people that I play an MMO, everybody asks: “Do you have a level 80 yet?“, and I have to tell them that no, I don’t, because in Warhammer Online, you can only be level 40. They look at me like I’m green, and from Mars. “What dude? You don’t play World of Warcraft? Why? Why? WHY!!?“, and then I try to tell them, but they never listen. That’s why I’m writing this post.
If you think World of Warcraft is the only MMO out there that’s worth playing, I hope you’ll read this, and see if I can change your mind.
Let’s look at pvp first.
In WoW, you can run into your capital and join a pvp battleground. You will be placed in a team with others, and you’ll be within a certain bracket. Level 1-11, 12-21, etc (if I’m not mistaken). There, you’ll meet casual players, hardcore players who are tired of levelling their lowbie so they do a battleground, and twinks. A level 11 rogue, with 1300 health (when Average Joe has around 300), with armor so thick and magical nothing will penetrate (unless, of course, you’re a twink too), and weapons with the best enchantment you can get. He will stealth up behind you, and kill you before you even know you’re dying. Real fun this. And, he’ll stay there without gaining xp, so you will meet him on every character you roll. And he’ll kill them, one after the other.
In WAR on the other hand, you can click an icon on your minimap from the moment you spawn after rolling your character. In due time, that is when the parties are full, you will be invited to join a RvR (realm vs realm, as in High Elf vs Dark Elf, or Dwarf vs Greenskin, or Empire vs Chaos) scenario. When you accept, you will automatically be transfered from wherever you are to the scenario -and after the fight, you’ll pop right back where you left! No running around to find your scenario at all. Every character smaller than level 8, 18, 28, or 38 will be bolstered – that means they’ll get the extra health they need. (As in, if you’re a level 1, you’ll gain a temporary increase of 7 levels with health.) People will gain xp from the scenario, so you won’t be facing the same twink over and over again, and people will not have the best equipment there is, because they’ll outlevel it soon, and they will find better soon.
No twinks, no running to find your scenario entrance, no super-gear, no “imba” people – I say WAR wins the first round.
The experience of xp
In WoW, you can do either quests or instances to gain experience. Oh, and you can grind. Repeatedly slaughter the same bunch of monsters, over and over and over and over and over again, until you reach your wanted level. Instances are good, because you might get lucky and grab some boss-loot. Something “uber”, an item that you’ll keep for at least a good twenty levels. You will also work as a group, and share some fun times. And, you’ll get some decent xp. When you quest, you do “kill X mobs”, and “run from X to Y doing Z”, and that’s normal for MMO’s. A bit dull after a while, but still. You’re getting there, right?
In WAR, you can do quests, just like in WoW. But you can also join a public quest. A open quest, where you’ll need a party to complete the main objective, and where you’ll gain xp as you clear the secondary objectives. (Say, first you need to kill 100 evil elfs for stage one, then you’ll have to kill 10 evil elf champions for stage two, and in the end, you’ll have to kill the elf hero, and his entourage, at stage three.) And, there are new chapters everywhere, and more PQ’s to each chapter. The rewards you’ll get will be usable for a level that equals the chapter number, times two. (So, if you do chapter 3, you’ll get rewards for level 6.) Most likely, you’ll find an epic drop on the hero, and you’ll also roll for loot. This loot comes in a chest, with bags of various values. And, as you do PQ’s, you’ll find that you’ve got quite decent gear, without having to pay an arm and a leg at the Auction House.
After a day with PQ’s, you might want to do some RvR, and you join an open RvR warband. Up to 24 players to each warband, there might be a lot of pvp to attend. You might attack, or defend, keeps – depending on what side of the conflict own it, and you’ll gain experience claiming battlefield objectives. Winning objectives, capturing or defending keeps, and killing opponents, will all give you xp. The bigger the group, the faster you can do things, but you’ll get less xp. It is quite possible to do nothing but oRvR, and gain level 40 without doing anything else.
Even if WAR doesn’t have instances, there is so much more to do than grinding and quests. You’ll be working together with other players on a whole different level than in WoW, because most of the content is made for groups. The good thing is that more often than not, you’ll manage to kill your way through the PQ, even if it’s considered a hard one. So, again I’ll have to declare WAR the winner.
Let’s make stuff
WoW has one of the best crafting systems in any MMO. It’s been a while since I played it now, but as I remember you can make potions, you can sew your own robes, leatherwork your new armor, mine, create plate mail, pick flowers, make runes (after Wrath of the Lich King), and a bit more. You can cook, do first aid, and even fish!
In WAR you can scavenge and butcher, two skills that work in a similar way, except one is picking humanoid parts, and the other is picking animal parts. You can cultivate the various seeds you find when you loot monsters, salvage magical components, and you can make talismans or potions. Not so much to choose among, and every guild worth a few copper will have at least one expert talisman maker, and one expert apothecarist.
So, due to the lack of interesting crafts in WAR, I’ll give one point to WoW.
What do you guys think so far? I’ll hopefully be back with part two in a few days.