As an MMO enthusiast blog, Massively has always had a special appreciation of the dedicated (and unpaid!) writing that gamers put out on their own blogs every day. Every week there are dozens if not hundreds of terrific posts on MMOs out there, and since I’m the resident loon here who reads pretty much all of them, I decided to start up a biweekly column to point you in the direction of some of the best discussions going on in the blogosphere. We’ll see posts on specific games and general topics, geeky gushings and zany rantings.
For our inagural edition of Global Chat (yes, I’m recycling the name from a long-dormant feature on this site), we’ll take a look at how outfits tie into identity, surviving MMOs as a chicken, a requiem for a gold farmer, and so much more!
1. MMO Gypsy: “Second skin: The perfect MMO gear and impact on long-term commitment”
While Syl won’t argue that identity starts from within, she does make a good point that how we choose to look on the outside reflects how we see ourselves — even in-game. “Clothes can be a powerful catalyst of self-expression, even self-discovery and confidence building,” she writes. “There’s a reason why many actors, especially method actors, require authentic clothing that goes with the character they’re not just playing but becoming. Inner and outer transformation go together.”
2. TweakLOTRO: “Mother Hen’s Chicken Guide”
Life as a chicken in Lord of the Rings Online is tough, but an adventuring chicken? That’s hardcore! Fortunately, we have this extensive guide by Rozalinde to help us through all of the chicken play quests, step-by-step.
“Precious few players have been able to complete Free Range,” Rozalinde said. “You could be one of them!”
3. Why I Game: “GW2: The Gates of Maguuma first impressions”
“At long last, it seems [as if] ArenaNet has worked [its] way towards something good here, through the iterative design of the first season,” Jeromai optimistically begins. He goes on to say that season two actually feels more like the classic mission approach of Guild Wars 1 — and that’s a good thing indeed. Jeromai also gives a big thumbs-up to the new soundtrack added for this update.
4. Lowkey Gaming: “Destiny alpha impressions”
Will Bungie magic strike again? Lowkey Gaming thinks so after poking around in Destiny’s alpha: “Destiny is going to be a huge game, with great control, amazing graphics, and unbeatable fun factor.” Major kudos was given to the game’s gorgeous look and art style, so get ready to screenshot the heck out of this one when it arrives!
5. Occasional Hero: “Do we really want to be the bad guy?”
Rolling a Necromancer in Guild Wars 2 sparked a deep period of soul searching for ChaosConstant. Do people, he wondered, really choose to play a bad guy when given a choice?
“I’m no psychologist, but I’m pretty sure that many people might think they would like to indulge their own dark side but in the end wouldn’t actually find it a satisfying experience,” he mused.
6. Healing the Masses: “Wandering about worlds”
What MMO worlds do you really love to explore? Which ones have you hammering on the screenshot button like there’s no tomorrow? J3w3l recalls several of her favorite game worlds, past and present, with a special emphasis on their art: “I play a lot of different genres and a variety within these, but the worlds I always seem to get more enamoured with are the ones from MMOs.”
7. XP Chronicles: “The story of a gold farmer: real supply and demand”
Doone takes the interesting position of standing up for gold farmers, drawing upon a personal story involving a guild mate. Should we be more sympathetic to farmers who are doing such things to stay out of poverty? Doone says yes.
“The gold farmer I knew was working,” Doone writes. “It was a job. Based on his circumstance, he was trying to find a balance between economic stability and enjoying a game with friends. But several things made that impossible, and in the end, we had to choose our economic welfare.”