This next block contains some interesting titles, and one not so interesting one. One is dead, one has waned in quality (as I’ve been told) and one has improved. I haven’t checked back with a single one of them yet, so I’m still looking at these from the time I reviewed them.
THE GRINDSTONE TRIBUNAL:
Part of what I was doing with the still ongoing “Tell us how you really feel…” series was to cut any and all pretense on how I feel about games. I don’t feel a review needs to be filled with angry rants and excessive hyperbole to express one’s love or disdain over a title, and technically MMO Grinder is more of a report and resource. A guide to help you decide if you’ll like a game or not. Neutrality is mostly at the forefront and it’s up to others to project their own interpretations on what I was really saying about the title.
But this… THIS is what we’re really saying about the title.
From this point on, “The Grindstone Tribunal” will take a few of the most active players of Grindstone who worked on the most recent title with me, allowing a few of us, myself included, say our true piece on what we really feel about the game we just played and place it under the video exclusively on this site. Don’t look to start arguments on Youtube due to misunderstood takes on what was being said… Here is where we’re cutting the bullshit.
This round, in addition to my own take, I’ll be including the thoughts of Co-Writer Setch Dreskar, longtime Grindstone members and supporters Nate “Karis” McPherson and Paul “Dobar” Matson. Read on and enjoy!
In this block we takes two stops in SoE town, one in a broken but kind of amazing title, followed by a polished but far less well-aged one, and then whatever the hell Requiem was thinking. Read the rest of this entry
The block brings us back down to three episodes, only two of which I still make mention of, and only one of which I still play with any sense of regularity. Fun times go!
Looks like it’s time for another special episode that would now technically qualify for a regular episode, another game by the same publisher, and a game that Grindstone has a heavy presence in… while I do not. Weird coincidences are weird.
Today brings us to a very special block. Despite starting with something that’s not entirely related or connected to the show, we’ll be going over the game that spawned Grindstone in the first place, bringing MMO Grinder from “Me vs. the MMO I’m playing” to a community project that’s been written by committee ever since. Kinda. It took a while to get there, but this was definitely the catalyst. Also there’s a third game that was a horrific disappointment. Let’s rock.
It’s likely no secret we are in a bit of a rut here at MMO Grinder. Both my co-writer and I have had a harder time keeping a balance of interesting games to look at while keeping up with a pace that lets us really work on playing these games with the community we’ve worked so hard to form. Summer is more or less here depending on if you’re one of those people who thinks it starts on Memorial Day as opposed to June 21st. People are out of school, but they’re also taking advantage of this weather, and the MMO Market itself has been in a bit of a rut, with the biggest news going to titles that were all the rage last year being converted into Buy-to-Play or Free-to-Play titles. There’s not much to work with there, regarding the main show, as most new and anticipated MMO games are either trapped in betas, or so far down the horizon there’s no point in holding out for them.
I’ve also not spoken of Patreon too much on this site, and mostly because I don’t want people to think it’s a requirement to enjoying this show, or community. There’s already too many people who think playing the games along with us is a paid-only exclusive perk (Maybe I should go about changing the wording on those.) You don’t need to be a Patron to make a suggestion, just to make one “official.” You don’t need to be a Patron to play along with us and give feedback, only to have access to the official script and writing process. I have no desire to hold my videos “hostage” (by offering an early-access tier) so all new releases will be availble to the public when ready… but I really should think about having Grindstone screen them before I go live. Scheduling is just too tight.
And there’s the problem I’m having. Scheduling is just way too tight to balance the amount of time a lot of us want to play these games, the time we need to include side content and backtracks that are sorely needed for so many titles, and the time I need to live my actual life.
For a good long time I’ve wanted to step back to only releasing one full Grinder episode per month, giving a lot more time for things like side content, community play days, and of course, streams (as much as I despise streamer culture.) We’ve even been very back and forth on a podcast, to which we’ve still not ironed out the particulars.
Going monthly on a Patreon is always something that irked me. It’s like paying me to exist, and I’ve always preferred having at least something to show for it. If we were to go monthly, I think that would make quite a few more people less wary about putting something down, since they won’t feel like I’m trying to mine videos out of them. (Of course you can set a monthly limit, as many often do.) The dropoff from multiple videos is significant, but still potentially net more per video than just opting for a flat monthly. I would have to adjust some goals, though. Perks levels are just fine.
So with all that in tow, how would you prefer we go forward? June is still slated as a two episode month, and likely I’ll be releasing the next full episode within the week, and the next episode after that near the end of the month, as usual. If episodes were to be released once a month going forward, they would likely be released mid-month to allow for the biggest window for time regarding Patreon (provided I don’t shift to monthly, that is.) Vote on the poll below and offer more detailed opinions and feedback in the comments. You don’t have to be a Patron to vote on this and offer feedback. I wouldn’t have posted it here if that was the case, and scheduling changes would affect everyone who watches with any sense of regularity. I’ll close the poll at the end of June and talk about the decision we’ve made from there.
Granted this could all change come fall/winter again, and if the MMO market picks back up to offer some more interesting titles.
I have some words to say. Some traps to lay. This is the block that contains TERA, SMITE and… well Age of Conan but who cares about that game anymore? Those of you who kept asking “Why did you say that about SMITE in your Heroes of the Storm Sidequest?” You’re about to find out.
Alone we walk the path of “meh”. Our minds too weary to get excited over anything anymore. This block carrying me over from 2012 to 2013 held little that I was overtly fond of, but each was a vastly different title with their own merits. Time to jog my memory.
Today we’ll be going over another three games, one that surprised me in a big way, one that didn’t surprise me in the slightest and one that was a game that I played. I have come to realize just how “meh” I am on a lot of these titles. Sometimes the illusionary objectivity is just my inability to care!