A thoughtful and personal exploration of games

The Three Games That Have My Attention Right Now

I felt that since it’s still a rather new year, it might be a good idea to talk about what games I’ve been playing lately and it just turns out to be three.

First (and the game I happen to play the least… if by least, you mean about eight or so hours of gameplay in the last four days) I’ve been playing X-COM UFO Defense off and on. This is a game that gives you some special moments. Like the time my base was invaded just the other day… every soldier came out of that one barely alive (seriously, if there wasn’t a save/load feature, I would’ve lost so badly). And there was the terror incident in Lima where that same crew of soldiers slaughtered their way through a pack of snakemen and chryssalids and where I accidentally killed a civilian but shrugged it off as, “Hey, he was two steps away from being turned into a zombie!” It was amazingly good fun, but I was shocked my team survived most of the time.

The second game is Star Wars: The Old Republic. I’ve been playing this game a lot less lately as I burned myself out on it a week or so ago. It’s okay though, it’s not going anywhere. I’ve got a couple of friends who exclusively play particular characters and they’re in the early to mid 40s and I’m a bit jealous of their progress, but I stopped to look around and smell the flowers. I’m a gamer and being wholly dedicated to one game for weeks on end goes against my nature. I need to play other games. That said, I deleted my Imperial Agent and my Sith Inquisitor the other day and restarted them. My Imperial Agent is going Sniper and my Sith Inquisitor is going Assassin. I got my Agent to level four and I was (surprisingly) falling asleep at the keys. Last night I was playing my Inquisitor (dear God, I designed her to be as cute as a button) and I was (equally surprisingly) wanting to stay up later and play even more. I guess that was my body saying, “Hey, I prefer the force users!” To date, my highest level character is a Jedi Guardian on the Rubat Crystal RP server at level 31. I’d just started the Tatooine bonus series when I’d decided to take a break. I’ve developed a new approach to the game: I’m just going to blitz past the group content. If I can’t do it by myself, well, I don’t want to linger around waiting for people to get their stuff together and group up with me, so I’m going to blast past flashpoints and Heroic 4’s.

The game that’s been getting the most of my time or at the very least has been getting some daily attention is Star Trek Online. Since they went Free to Play, they’ve revamped the skill tree and I’ve been having fun taking advantage of the Tour the Universe event to build up money and commendation experience. I’m able to build up just over 1 million credits per hour of Tour the Universe as well as 1200 exploration, 990 trade, 120 recruitment, and 90 development commendation experience. How is this possible? Well… I have the Assimilated Subtranswarp Engines that allow me to exceed warp 10 in sector space and I combine that piece of equipment with the Driver Coil skill that was recently added. Driver Coil does as follows:

This skill improves your Starship Warp Speed and turn rate in Sector Space. This skill will not allow your ship to travel faster than Warp 10 with standard Warp Drive. However, this restriction does not apply to Slipstream Drive or other specialty ‘faster than light’ sector space propulsion systems. This skill also improves your Full Impulse speed and Full Impulse turn rate as well as reduce the power drain on your other systems while in Full Impulse.

So, with a standard warp drive (Aegis Hyper-Impulse Engines) I can travel at warp 10. With the Borg engines on their own I can travel at warp 14. With the Borg engines and a full 9 ticks in Driver Coil I’m traveling between stars at warp 20.93. Before the Driver Coil skill was implemented, the Quantum Slipstream Drive allowed you to travel at warp 20 for 30 seconds with a 2 minute cooldown. Now the Slipstream allows me to travel at warp 29.90 for 30 seconds with a 2 minute cooldown. I can Tour the Universe three times in less than an hour. Hence the payout I described above.

Well, those are the three timesinks of my day. Today there’s a patch for STO and I’m going to be hopping onto SWTOR to play my adorable Inquisitor for a while. I’m planning on making all light side decisions for her just to see how that affects her story. I like being a contrary Sith.

Until next time!

– Elorfin

P.S. Instead of a quote, you should watch this video. I’ve become quite addicted to QI with Stephen Fry and I’ve spent several evenings watching it online. This particular video is pricelessly funny. “They say of the Acropolis where the Parthenon is…”

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