Monday musings, The Coffee Break 15 August 2016.
Been a while since we have seen a coffee break on here has it not? Well I figured it was time to write an article for the readers as I am sure some of you out there are dying to read what I have to say (probably not, but hey wait until I perfect my propaganda techniques, then you will be eating out of the palm of my hand!).
Right where do we begin, well I finally tried out Heroes of the Storm, and as a person who generally dislikes MOBAs it was a nice change to see a game grab my attention and really entertain me for hours on end. Indeed Heroes was quite easy to pick up, and playing against AI is a nice feature when all other MOBAs tend to make you play against other players only – I get enough of that in World of Tanks.
Character-wise, I initially thought Nova would be fun to play, but it turns out there are particular play styles that just do not suite my approach to combat – Nova being a prime example. When you load up as Nova, you have to select your targets, you have to engage single targets when they are exposed or alone as you lack the cone of fire or area of affect attacks that other heroes tend to utilize (some, not all). With Nova, I found it increasingly difficult to contribute to my team as I was used to Valla (the Demon Hunter) who possessed a few multi-target attacks. With Valla, you can hit and run while damaging multiple enemies at once – a very handy tool in the arsenal when you need to quickly kill off some pursuing minions.
Sylvanas was also quite fun to play, and her attacks were somewhat similar to Valla albeit with some key differences in how she deals damage (more so condition than raw damage per se). Sylvanas tends to require a few other players in tow in order for her to do any real damage (as I have found through several matches), but then again the game works if players concentrate on key areas with minions in tow to provide maximum damage output so that is not something new. Now in terms of skins, I immediately went with the Ranger-General skin as I felt it was a better fit for the character – though her dialogue of: “victory for the Forsaken” sounds odd without her undead echo.
Moving along I recently reinstalled World of Tanks and after several matches where I died while trying to even dent the enemy armour I decided to invest time into earning some heavy tanks. Indeed by now in-game I have unlocked the Matilda which is a British tier 4 medium tank; not quite the heavy tank I had in mind, and yet it functions similar to a heavy tank in some respects. Now back before I stopped playing World of Tanks, I went light tanks and tank destroyers; the problems arose when I unlocked the tier 4 Chinese tank (the only tier 4 Chinese tank) the M5A1 Stuart, and discovered (upon return to the game earlier last week) that it was a pile of crap against KV-1s and 2s – don’t even get me started about versing premium tanks in that tier. Thus after hearing: “we couldn’t penetrate their armour,” or “we didn’t even scratch them,” I said to hell with it and started working on unlocking heavy tanks (the Matilda is classified as a Medium, but thus far it works well as a substitute until I can unlock the next tier).
In-game I have managed to get at least a few kills per match before being eliminated, and this is a nice change of pace from the M5A1 when I can only take pot shots at the enemy or spot them for the team – it was not fun when THEY spotted you and fired on you as your armour was paper-thin. Thus far I am enjoying using the Matilda, and I will definitely keep this tank in my arsenal when I unlock the next tank in line.
One surprising thing to note is that the Czech tech tree is now available, and I have begun to work on those vehicles to see if they are worth the time and effort. First thing to note about the tanks, they look good colour-wise; I like the Khaki-brown paint job they have, and the vehicles perform about as well as any tier 2 or 3 tanks would in-game (French tanks didn’t do so well in this category so I have seldom unlocked anything in their tech tree). Right now I’m on the LT VZ. 35 which is a tier 2, and it’s got some decent stats with a good 37mm gun which can penetrate most armour in that tier, and the top speed is about 34km/h which is good compared to some of the tanks in the same tier. Suffice it to say I like it, and I enjoy rolling into combat in this tank from time to time; their starter tank however looks weird. The Tier 1 Czech tank, the Kolohousenka looks like an Ice Cream truck that someone took, added some thin plates of armour, two track assemblies, a turret, and called it a day. The thing runs poorly, but it’s gun did alright for the first few matches where I managed to kill some T1s (US Tier 1), and a few other vehicles as well – but I sold it (which got me nothing) and converted the crew into the LT VZ. 35 because they would be playing cards forever in the barracks if I did not.
Ultimately it has been a good week for gaming on my end – two free-to-play titles that I dived into or dived back into (in the case of World of Tanks) which provided a nice alternative to premium titles where there is a barrier of entry (a cost to buy the game before you play). With the recent issues surrounding No Man’s Sky on PC, and the disappointment of titles like Halo 5 Guardians I cannot help but wonder if it is worth it to invest into a game financially at the start (one can wait of course), or try out the free-to-play market where (while there are some god-awful titles that should be sent to the deepest, darkest depths of Hell for existing) there are a good portion of decent titles that are worth your time and – in some cases – money. Only time will tell, but in the mean time I will go on to enjoy Heroes of the Storm and World of Tanks – both are good games, and why toss them aside when I could just keep playing them?
Well folks this is it for the coffee break for the 15 of August 2016, take care out there and I shall see you all next time.