Getting The Hell Off Of Nexus

I simply cannot get into WildStar anymore, I've screwed up by rolling up too many alternate characters to feel ensnared in any of them, so now I'm sick of the game.   It's not WildStar's fault, it's a bad habit of mine to keep rerolling in computer RPGs until I sicken of it.

Anyway, this resulted in my Bizzaro weekend going horribly wrong.  Instead of "productively" wasting my time to waste in an MMORPG, I've been hanging out on forums, bickering with people half my age on threads that will be garbage collected in a few weeks anyway.  Maybe I'm desperate for some mental stimulation.

But then I started to play RimWorld, early access version 0.5.492.  Holy crap, there went 14 hours of my weekend I'm not getting back; this game is a massive time sink.
RimWorld is the start of a great game, being developed rather slowly by a largely one-man crew in Unity.  I've spoken about it before, and the short version is that it's basically this:
  • It's mostly a simplified Dwarf Fortress.
  • With a far-easier-to-use graphical interface more reminiscent of Prison Architect.
  • It's on a more intimate scale than Dwarf Fortress.  You won't manage hundreds of "dwarves," you'll probably end up with about 6-10.
  • The setting is that you are managing marooned spacers forced to form a ramshackle colony on a hostile alien world.  It's also a bit of Western, with Lee-Enfield rifles, space cacti, space buffalos, and the like.
  • Thus, part of the game is just surviving, establishing basic living conditions.  The other half is overcoming hostile natives, space pirates, aggressive fauna, problematic weather, and other random events.
  • When you start the game, you choose from one of several artificial intelligence "storytellers" that basically decide frequency of random events.  Not all such events are necessarily bad, as they include the likes of supply drops and visiting traders.
These are the important bullet points.
So many enemies come at you in RimWorld that I have found the only effective survival method involves forcing attackers to endure the explosions from the improvised turrets they destroy.  This probably causes the storyteller AI to overcompensate.
The biggest problem I have with RimWorld right now is that it becomes a chore of overcoming adversity and rebuilding.

For example, the AI storyteller might drop a large number of better-armed space pirates who proceed to set up artillery and shell the snot out of anything that moves, driving most of my space colonists in the halls they have hewn into a mountain.  By the time the enemy has starved to death, a few unlucky shots have rendered my base is without power and my colonists are half mad with the resulting lack of amenities.  I eventually manage to corral the gibbering survivors, repair my destroyed solar panels, and get all the unsettling corpses buried.   For a little while, things are looking up... and then the AI drops twice the number of enemies on me and the cycle repeats.

Cassandra Classic, you sadistic bitch.

Another issue is that I really need the ability to lock my colonists in.  The interface makes queuing to do easy enough, but not finding those things and unqueuing them.  This means, when hostiles show up outside, I have to watch the entrance to the base like a hawk to prevent productive colonists from running boldly out into their crossfire.   Lacking a means to lock the doors, you could build walls to prevent your colonists from leaving, but then attacking enemies will make their own entry, possibly somewhere even less defended.

Exactly why do the enemies want to kill me so badly, anyway?  I can understand the motivations of a mad space buffalo or squirrel: their brains have short circuited.  But visiting space pirates should be in it for the loot.  Instead, they walk right by the loot and try to get at the colonists inside as if they are movie monster murderers visiting a summer camp.  Even if these guys are like Firefly's Reavers, I am still not sure how my tiny little makeshift homestead even attracted their attention.  Do they really hate potato farming?

But all these issues are okay because RimWorld is a work in progress.  I look forward to see what is added in future revisions, possibly even solutions to the above.  Perhaps motion sensor activated light fixtures, because I can't even keep my base perpetually lit for all the power that light fixtures draw.
On a final note, I've learned Firefall is in early access as of yesterday, July 15th 2014, and will be formally launched on July 29th.  Firefall is a pretty outstanding game, it plays a little like Tribes but it's also an open-world action MMORPG with genuine world event mechanics.  Plus, it's free to play.  All this together is ultimately what sealed my hitting that unsubscribe button for Wildstar for now (but then, my subscription runs until early August so I may yet get back into it).


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