Shamus Plays: Champions Online

By Shamus Posted Wednesday Jul 14, 2010

Filed under: Column 78 comments

This will no doubt disappoint more than a few people, but my next Let’s Play series is actually just my last one. Go read it, if you like. Or, stick around and read some ramblings about why we’re doing a re-run and what I’m working on next.

The thing is, these things take time to write. Lulzy’s tale clocked in at ~50,000 words, which is just long enough to count as a novel. Add in the fact that each entry required several hours of gameplay and then the time it takes to add in all the screenshots, and we’re talking about a non-trivial amount of work.

I’ve spent the last couple of months casting about, looking for a new MMO. Trek Online is fantastic in terms of setting. (True science fact: It is impossible for there to be too much Trek satire in the universe. If you were to go back in time and replace everything ever written with Star Trek satire, then history itself would be full of plot holes. Actually, that sounds like a pretty standard setup for a Trek episode.) I wrote a few pages of stuff for it, but the game itself had almost nothing in the way of story. Most missions were just generic fill-in-the-blank auto-generated filler. My material was almost completely divorced from the game itself and was basically just fan fiction. That’s not a horrible idea, but it’s not what I want for this series.

I tried a couple of other games, but none of them really grabbed me. APB was so monotonous and devoid of fun that I don’t think I could bring myself to play it for any length of time, no matter how much amusement you might get out of it. D&D Online looked possible, but I didn’t want to go buying little bits and pieces of content à  la carte, looking for stuff that would be fun to cover.

So we got down to the end of Lord of the Rings and I didn’t have a new series ready. I didn’t even have a game lined up. I suggested we run a condensed version of my Champs series instead of just going on hiatus, and that’s how we got where we are now. Most Escapist readers haven’t seen it, so it will be new to them and will keep my spot warm while I come up with new content.

I’ll be shortening the series a bit by combining some of the shorter entries and cutting some of the longer digressions on gameplay.

I’m playing WoW again and noodling around with ideas. Well, actually I’m just leveling a couple of characters. I emailed Blizzard twice trying to re-activate my old account. (Which I can no longer log into since to migration of WoW accounts to accounts.) After a week they finally got around to sending me an auto-generated email saying, “please tell us again you need help or we’ll just pretend the whole thing is resolved.” And no that is not a joke. So, I punished their ineptitude and apathy by purchasing the game again. I’m hoping someday they will all be crushed to death under a mountain of All Our Money.

But now I’m on a brand new account and cut off from all of my old contacts and characters. I forgot what a hassle it is to try and play this game fresh like this. No bags, so you’re constantly starved for storage, which makes it hard to earn money, which is bad because you’re flat broke, which makes it hard to get the upgrades you need, which impairs your leveling, etc.

I rolled on Kirin Tor (Alliance) simply because that’s where I lived last time around. I’m probably going to find another roleplay style server and roll some Horde characters as well.


From The Archives:

78 thoughts on “Shamus Plays: Champions Online

  1. Adeon says:

    I can’t say I’m truly surprised. While I would have enjoyed seeing you lampoon STO there are very few lampoonable missions. And jokes about Starfleet’s new “Shoot First, Ask Questions Afterwards” policy would get old quickly.

  2. krellen says:

    Champions will probably take a while, and City of Heroes’ brand-new expansion comes out mid-August. Maybe you’ll give it another look now?

    They’ve made several upgrades since you played, including a power customisation somewhat like Champions’, a new blingier graphics mode (the water is seriously pretty. I just sit and stare at it for minutes at a time sometimes), and with Going Rogue a promise for deeper and more varied storylines and moral choices (the last issue came with a sort of preview mission for what things will look like, and it’s really good).

    I’m not sure if you stopped playing before Supersidekicking, but it’s another awesome improvement, letting anyone team with anyone else, basically.

    I’d recommend trying Virtue this time around, since you tried Freedom last time. It’s another big server, but it has a really different feel from Freedom.

    1. Daimbert says:

      While CoH might be my favorite MMO ever, I don’t think it being the next thing on the list will work, since if it followed the re-run of Champions Online you’d be making a lot of the same jokes in both, making it look more like a “same-old, same-old” type of thing.

      I think there needs to be at least one other series in-between to allow the superhero jokes to look a little fresher.

      That being said, doing some single player games might be an option, and avoid account issues as well as extra costs. It’s amazing, for example, what stories you can wring out of strategy games, even. And there have been a number of decent Let’s Plays for single-player RPGs.

      1. krellen says:

        I dunno. It could be interesting to look at things from the other side. Champions is extremely silly, while City takes itself much more serious.

        1. ps238principal says:

          So do them both at once. Champions has revamped itself somewhat and added more content, and CoH has improved vastly. Make “Star on Chest” in each game as an alternate universe version of himself. Then both SOCs can have a conversation about who has the worst universe to fight crime in and what have you.

  3. Pickly says:

    You could always try a Guild wars game again. Nightfall’s my favorite one, although it might personally be less funny with features I like in a game I actually play being attacked in the comments below the comics.

    Of course, there are some things in Nightfall that could definitely be made fun of (“Yes, a direct attack. They’ll never expect that”, “We’re asking if you need help? After doing all the work?” “I was really expecting a more ominous name, but I guess yours is fine”, etc.)

    Other than that, if there’s a clever way to do some non-MMO games, that might work as well. Single player RPGs certainly seems ot have all the structure needed for a Let’s play.

    1. Zombie Pete says:

      Yeah, does it have to be an MMO? Although you’re probably sick of it at this point, your take on Fallout 3 would be hilarious for the Escapist readers who haven’t seen Spoiler Warning. Oblivion, Saints Row 2, Borderlands, Fable 2 — the list of potential fodder goes on, and on, and on…

      1. Amarsir says:

        My instinct (and this may be wrong) is that an MMO provides more flexibility in the narrative. More options in creating a unique protagonist, more choice in what to do/skip in what order, etc.

        WoW seems like old ground, so would be less exciting to do in that regard. But it does have the “story elements” aspect that Shamus wants, and continues the theme of him using games I tried and couldn’t stick with.

        I haven’t played it, but Vanguard might have enough personality to make a good LP series. I know it ultimately had issues, but for the early level stuff that Shamus wants it could be a good choice.

      2. Fenix says:

        Oblivion has lots of potential as well as Morrowind. Borderlands could be interesting and you could play with guests.
        However I think the granddaddy would be X-Com. Heres a good example:

  4. Shamus – I feel your pain! I discovered quickly how hard it is to play an MMO, create a comic, AND write about it.

    I’m sure that the Pig & Whistle Society on Kirin Tor will be able to get you set up with bags and whatever other resources you need. And don’t hesitate to contact me (Copperleaf) on that server if you need help.

    May I suggest “Allods Online” as a possible “Shamus Plays” game? It’s free-to-play, and its Russian roots make the quests more than a little amusing/quirky, without being incomprehensible, like many of the Korean MMOs.


  5. asterismW says:

    That’s too bad about your WoW account. I was just thinking it might be interesting to read a Let’s Play from the perspective of a high level character with lots of stuff. But maybe there’s not as much to make fun of the further along you go?

  6. Matthew says:

    Oh! I was playing some Crackdown 2 demo a few nights ago with my brother (we were both impressed by how boring it was and went to play co-op in Red Dead Redemption instead… a mode which we call “who can shoot the other persons horse first?” or “backstabbing – to the extreme!”)… anyway, I digress. What I’m getting to is that I was trying to remember what game the art style remembered me of… and a-ha! Champions Online!
    (Cel-shading, blocky buildings, people who jump over small buildings… almost the same, no?)

  7. BaCoN says:

    Welp, for some reason, I’m STILL playing WoW, Shamus, so if you’re ever in need of somebody to shout at and punch, gimme a shout! I always need more alts!

  8. Hal says:

    As someone who has dealt with Blizzard customer support before, let me give you some advice: Call them. You might spend 20 minutes on hold on a good day, but your problem will be handled very quickly by a flesh-and-blood person (and one who speaks english, no less).

    1. tremor3258 says:

      You can get through, I always got ‘our volume is so high we’re not accepting anyone in the waiting queue’.

      It’s probably the biggest reason I let my subscription drop.

      1. Hal says:

        In fairness, I was a graduate student, so calling when they first open the lines (~11am my time) wasn’t an issue. If you work a normal job, then it’s probably a hassle. Shamus works from home, so his mileage may vary.

        1. tremor3258 says:

          Heck, I tried over my lunch break and was getting dropped out without ever being placed in a waiting queue. I think this was between big patches too this year, so it’s odd they didn’t have capacity.

  9. Skyy_High says:

    I’d like to second the Guild Wars nomination. Prophecies is the most stereotypical “fantasy” setting with a storyline that just kooky enough to work for this kind of thing (and I think I remember that you’ve played that at least a bit). Factions is an asian-inspired continent, but really, the plot and dialog are bad enough that I don’t think it’d make for a good Let’s Play. Or, maybe that means it’d make a good one, I don’t know…Nightfall has a pace somewhere between the very slow Prophecies and the absurdly fast Factions, and the story is more fleshed out than either, imo (but as Pickily mentioned, there are tons of details to make fun of).

    Another good thing about Guild Wars is that you could, if you so desired and were skipping most of the side content, go through the entire story of one campaign in almost the time it takes you to level through the beginning area of most MMOs. There’d be less “pie fetching” quests and more “god killing” ones. Don’t get me wrong, your writing was absolutely hilarious, but the content of the quests you did in LotRO and CO was yawn-inducing. I get that you made the absurdity of the quest itself into the punchline for a lot of episodes, but it might be nice doing something a bit more…grandiose, I suppose.

    Other benefits: no “forced group” quests…by which I mean everything requires a “group”, but the NPC allies available in every outpost are sufficient for literally all of the main storyline. You’ll also do all of your questing in instances, so you won’t have any other players to get in the way of your shots.

  10. Bugbear says:

    I’m disappointed, of course, but completely understand. You just wrapped up LOTRO and I would have expected you to need some time between fresh projects anyway.

    I’m actually more disappointed that you rewarded Blizzard’s poor customer service with more money. That leaves me with a bit of a sick feeling. A friend of mine also had trouble re-upping with WOW a few weeks ago, but she stuck it out and finally got her account running again.

    I was looking forward to a STO Let’s Play, hoping to see what gameplay was like. Still, I’ve yet to hear anything about that game that challenges my initial impression that it was a rushed-to-release quickie adaptation of their existing engine with little to no thought-out story or RP aspects. It doesn’t surprise me in the least that you couldn’t find enough material to work with.

    I don’t totally blame Cryptic on this one, though. I’ve spent five years (since I first started following Perpetual’s efforts) thinking about how a good Star Trek MMO could be designed and I still don’t have a clue. The setting is actually the antithesis of what works for an MMO (i.e. the ship goes from planet to planet, exploring new worlds, cultures, and stories every week. Basically the crew eats up content even faster than MMO players). So far my best idea was to go with a reliable last-generation engine and a very basic art-style (something that allows the artists to pump things out quickly), and use the budget savings there to hire a TON of writers to pump out a continual stream of new quests.

    1. krellen says:

      I played it for a month. While there are a handful of quests with other solutions, the vast majority are solved by Shooting Things – either with your ship, or with your phasers.

      In that month, playing no more than I play City of Heroes, I hit Admiral. And once you hit Admiral, the only things left to do are PvP and the repetitive, randomly generated exploration/defence missions, which are all generally of the “Shooting Things” variety.

      I’d have to concur with Shamus that there’s really not a lot to talk about there.

      1. tremor3258 says:

        Perhaps its greatest sin is that they, well, used Champions Online levelling mechanics – a level honestly means very little. Every ten you get a new ship, you get it kitted and your bridge officers upgraded for the consoles… and I don’t really change my setup from that point until the next ten levels.

  11. Dys says:

    I wonder, have you dismissed the idea of doing Warhammer?

    From what I recall, the actual content is pretty good. Funny and varied and interesting. I’m sure it’s plenty ridiculous enough for a LP, particularly if you play ork or goblin. Or even elf in the ork lands. Actually now I think of it, a dark elf doing all the orky muck quests would be highly amusing. Also plenty of opportunity for fart jokes.

    In the course of wondering this I started wondering about the copyright issues involved in what you do. Fair use I suppose, but that can be vague at best. So, does the Escapist legal department advise you on this stuff, or what? Inquiring minds want to know.

    1. Conlaen says:

      Warhammer was also what came to my mind. I never played it past the trial, but not for lack of having fun with it. Sadly I had no friends that played it and that is still one of the things that makes me enjoy an MMO the most.

      But yeh, I think it has the exact right levels of absurdity, story and fun for a nice run of Let’s Play. Also, WAAARGH! (no seriously, there’s a /waaargh emote command :))

    2. Yep, I’d be interested in seeing WAR done in this style, simply because I don’t have the money or time to play it but am kinda interested to see what they did with it…

  12. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Why not do a single player game then?Gta,for example.

    Or,you could always make an episode or two of nethack,like someone suggested earlier.It be fun to have an introduction to a character be long,then have him die in under a minute.

  13. DaveMc says:

    One minor comment about the first Champions Online entry, which I just reread even though I’d read them all the first time you posted it: After having the Lulzy-voice versus Shamus-voice distinction so rigorously enforced throughout the LOTR series, there are some statements in this one that seem jarring. Things like all the discussion of the bio, or saying “NPC’s never react when I say things out loud to my computer” — surely Star on Chest isn’t actually saying those things, in character, but they’re not in little orangey boxes. A small point, but it did sort of jump out at me.

    EDIT: Initially typed “Shamu-voice” instead of “Shamus-voice”, above, but I didn’t mean to imply that you were using the voice of a famous killer whale.

  14. gebiv says:

    Thorium Brotherhood is a decent RP server. Mostly just because you don’t see too many xXXKillstealorzXXx style names. :)

    If you ever go there and roll a Horde toon, just look up Arteemis. I’m pretty sure I can hook you up with some bags at the very least.

    And I wish I’d known you were going to buy a new account… You could have gotten me a two-seater rocket if I’d have referred you.

  15. pnf says:

    Another option, if you want to do another MMO…go for one of the old ones (Ultima Online, Everquest, Asheron’s Call, maybe Anarchy Online if you’re in the mood for SF instead of fantasy). They’re all still running, and it’d be interesting to see a take on a pre-WoW MMO, because those were different beasts.

    1. I like the idea of Anarchy Online, considering the Froob (Free player) account isn’t that bad. (sure, your missing out on the expansions but…Its’ free)

      Just a shame that the new game engine isn’t ready yet, so it’s still the “older” looking graphics engine.

      There are so many ridiculous quests (typical MMO tropes, weird humor, etc.), and at least for the lower to mid levels it is quite solo friendly.

      And if you tire of the in-game music there is always GridStream to listen too.

      1. TSED says:

        If he ever decides to try out EverQuest, I am totally going to re-activate that account and hang out with him.

        Maaan, I miss those good old days. I get nostalgic for EQ everytime someone talks about MMO mechanics, because EVERYTHING ripped it off. (You know conning? EQ. You know /tells being purple? EQ. /gu in green? EQ. Raids? EQ. I could go on and on and on. Its fingers are basically in every single MMO mechanic to date. Admittedly, including the grind…)

  16. Samrobb says:

    I’m on Kirin Tor, Shamus – look up Aeven (dwarf pally), and I’d be happy to set you up with some bags and a handful of gold.

  17. Daimbert says:

    And, oddly enough, I just finished re-reading the entire Champions Online thing here over the past day or two. Huh.

  18. Hitch says:

    When are we going to get a Spoiler Warning or Shamus Plays for Dragon Age: Origins? I know you’ve talked about it some, and I enjoyed the game a lot, but that is a cast of characters that are sorely in need of more mocking abuse.

    1. Klay F. says:

      I think he said that games with an abundance of dialog are completely out of the question as far as future Spoiler Warnings go, and DA:O is stuff to the ears with dialog.

      I would foresee many angry people complaining about not being able to read the dialog because Josh is clicking through it all without reading it.

      1. Hitch says:

        True, I can see that. Although Mass Effect is pretty talky, too. I was thinking more of a Shamus Plays from the point of view of a typical player who zones out the info dumps and is left trying to piece the story together from what you actually do. Then occasionally wondering what these people are talking about as you wander from fight to fight.

        “Why are you in my camp? Didn’t you try to kill me?”

        “Wait, I’m supposed to get who to do what to who?”

  19. kmc says:

    Incidentally (I know, I know, I’m sure you tried all this; I can’t help but ask), have you gone to to create a account that you can then link a WoW account to? I seem to remember the process was fairly easy _before_ it was mandatory–it might be too much to hope for that the same is true once they have the power of “well, that’s how it has to be, and we’d love to help you but the newest designer line of money hats was just released and we’re going to be choosing the most fashionable ones to carry the rest of our money in for the foreseeable future.”

  20. Mike C says:

    I was hoping you’d do a Let’s Play series about WoW after Cataclysm comes out in a few months. The current (original) low-level quests are kinda boring, as they date back to 2004, but Blizzard has been improving quests with each expansion, and the level 70-80 quests in Lich King are pretty good. One of my favorites had me jumping from dragon to dragon, killing their riders as they all circle a mountain peak that I’m trying to get to the top of.

    Fortunately, the release of Cataclysm means revamped starting areas, and the original quests have been updated to current standards, which is where the Let’s Play series would fit in nicely. In particular, the Worgen and Goblin starting areas are entirely brand new, but it would also be interesting to see a series from one of the other original races. (I doubt the Draenei and Blood Elf areas will get much change, though.)

  21. Vladius says:

    You don’t have to do MMOs, do you?

    1. LintMan says:

      That was my thought – why does this have to be an MMO? You don’t really interact with other players at all in the series; what’s wrong with using a SP game? An open-ended one like Oblivion or Morrowind would probably work, wouldn’t it? Or even something you hated, like Fable 2 or The Witcher, might give you some good material.

  22. Ace Calhoon says:

    The bag situation in WoW is somewhat alleviated if you do your leveling in either of the newer starting areas (Draenei or Blood Elf). Those areas tend to give them out as quest rewards, and seem to have a somewhat higher drop rate on them.

    Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that the leveling portion of WoW is five years behind the state of the art, and about to be rebuilt.

  23. Gandaug says:

    I’m sorry to see that we’re not going to get a new Let’s Play soon. I am very pleased though to think you might have a little more time to do something besides work, Shamus. Though being familiar with your work ethic I’m thinking you’re already working double time on something else you haven’t told us about.

  24. Ben says:

    Surely one of your fans has a level 80 lying fallow. Or even better, a level 68-70 so you could see the new leveling content released as a part of wrath. No one offered an inactive account for you to use after you tweeted the other day? That would seem like the best way to see a lot of good quality content quickly.

    Alternatively, if you had a high level character before, just call Blizzard, as someone else already suggested, and they will get you fixed up quickly I’m sure.

  25. OEP says:

    Come to Lightbringer Alliance side and I can set you up with bags and what not. You can be part of the Fluffy Bunnies of Doom!

  26. Rainmaker, the gray says:

    “So, I punished their ineptitude and apathy by purchasing the game again. I'm hoping someday they will all be crushed to death under a mountain of All Our Money.”
    This gave me a good laugh…

  27. Anaris says:

    I suggest Age of Conan for another Shamus Plays in the future. There are enough silly things to make you cringe, but enough good stuff to keep you playing as well.

    1. I second that. Particularly since I’m re-reading through some of the Robert E. Howard Conan stories now…

  28. Falco Rusticula says:

    I recently started levelling a new WoW character. Storage space isn’t so bad, really -sure, you need to head back to town more regularly than normal to offloadd junk, but after a few trips off into the wilds you’ve got enough money to buy a couple of small bags. I guess it depends on whether you’re trying to level up fast and race through content, in which case you want to minimise return trips, or if you like hanging around and don’t mind levelling slowly.

    I guess their customer service also varies -I got an upgrade problem fixed pretty quickly after I emailed them, but I couldn’t get through on the phones.

  29. MelTorefas says:

    Roleplay! Horde! SHADOW COUNCIL!

    Roll some Horde characters on Shadow Council and me and my friends will provide you with whatever you need for your playthrough. XD

    1. David V.S. says:

      MelTorfas makes a nice offer!

      But Shamus should also know that, unless the rules have changed, on roleplay servers an account can have both Alliance and Horde characters.

  30. Sean Riley says:

    Y’know, Shamus, you could probably START an RP guild with the number of your readers who play WoW and role-play in some way, shape or form. And if you ever did start an official guild, hell, I’d be there.

    (P.S. If you decide to roll Horde on Wyrmrest Accord, I’m Tatrakta.)

  31. Vekni says:

    Come play on Dark Iron, home of the infamous Penny Arcade vs PVP Online Comics (former) fued! Don’t make me start a new character just to play with you and this bunch!

    And money is a problem? Gold comes pretty fast and furious these days, just farm up a stack of whatever low level herb/ore and go to town on the AH.

  32. SatansBestBuddy says:

    Bit disappointed, was looking forward to whatever you came up with (hoping for either Guild Wars or Age of Conan), but I’ll live.

    I would like to say, though, that flat out telling everybody that you’ve already wrote and posted the series months beforehand is a BAD idea.

    That’s like a cook at a restaurant coming up to your table and saying they’re out of fresh ingredients, so you’ll have to make due with three day old stuff; the quality of the meal is the same, but it still leaves a bad taste in your mouth because the cook came out and told you, before you even ordered your meal, that you were getting reheated leftovers.

    1. Syal says:

      Most restaurants don’t leave their ingredients where the customers can see them, with the “Date Prepared” label in plain view. Either he mentions it up front, or someone else mentions it in the comments (or both, as it turns out).

      EDIT: Although there was probably more appealing wording available. (“A Look Back,” as opposed to “A Repeat”.)

    2. asterismW says:

      So what, Shamus shouldn’t have said anything, and then fended off the hundreds of comments along the lines of “The game’s not like that!”? One reason he got that out of the way is because the game might be different than it was six months or so ago.

      Besides, prose is not like food; you can read and re-read something and still get the same (or more) enjoyment out of it. I don’t know how many times I’ve read certain books and still love them. In fact, I’m re-reading and re-loving the adventures of Star On Chest solely because Shamus has started reposting them.

  33. Andy_Panthro says:

    I vote for Ultima VII.

    You can play it completely in Exult, it runs well on modern systems, and there’s plenty of scope to make jokes.

    Alternatively, if you want something a bit different, you could either try Fallout (to contrast with your FO3 spoiler warning), or something like Albion or Megatraveller (both playable in dosbox).

  34. Jeff says:

    I was once wandering around as a Human Rogue, just to check out the alliance. A random paladin wanders around asking if there were any new players. I say I am, and she asks if I have bags. I reply no, and she hands me two of them big frostweave(?) bags. …so obviously I stuck with that character. :)

  35. Mandie says:

    Aww its too bad you aren’t playing WoW on a server I have a maxed toon on or i’d give you some stuff to help you out :) If you get a chance try Runetotem out on the ally side, its not RP though :(

  36. I’d suggest you give DDO another shot, Shamus, precisely BECAUSE of the a-la-carte issue you spoke about. Most of the area packs have a small semi-self-contained storyline that would probably make it EASIER to write a comic about them. There isn’t really a grand overarching storyline that you’d get stuck trying to make some sort of sense out of.

    Also, DDO just came out with a big crazy update that added a lot of wonky guild functionality and it’s just farkin’ nuts right now, a fun time to check out the game. If you’d be interested, I can probably get you into MY guild so you can actually have a look at some of that stuff without having to deal with a bunch of crazy people. (The guild I belong to, CLAW, is a very friendly 18+ guild that would be more than happy to see to it that you actually got to GROUP WITH PEOPLE who WEREN’T DUMBASSES, and this could make it a lot faster for you to get missions done and get your screenshots.)

    P.S. guest passes to areas are cheap and last long enough for you to do the quests and get a feel for the storyline, I’d be MORE than happy to provide you with these if you want to join the Thelanis server.

  37. Louis says:

    I certainly don’t have a problem with Shamus doing what he needs to manage his life (I could use some better life management skills myself, or a 28-hour day), but I must admit to some disappointment. Since I don’t watch Spoiler Warning, pretty much the only Shamux fix I can get are Stolen Pixels and Shamus Plays, and now one of those is taking a break. Still, I’ll have fun reliving the adventures of Star on Chest.

    1. Syal says:

      Well, hopefully this means he’ll be filling the slot with random articles he didn’t have time for before. Don’t give up just yet.

  38. Fawkes says:

    Though it’s a bit far from mainstream, Runes of Magic, one of the big free to Play MMOs may be worth a look. Going Elf gives you a whole crazy island to explore, which may make a good end point. But no matter which way you go the story is nearly comedy itself, but it takes itself seriously enough that you know it isn’t.

    It’d be somewhat unknown, and the gameplay isn’t anything super special; but as far as Free to Play goes it’s not bad, and it doesn’t *require* Cash Shop until high levels. (Unless you seriously want a Permanent Mount. But there are ways to get Temporary ones via other means.)

    Either way, I hope the rerun hiatus ensures the next Let’s Play is just as fun as the last two. Keep up the good work Shamus.

  39. Clint Olson says:

    For what it’s worth, Shamus, getting in contact with people from the guild on Kirin Tor is as easy as /joining rpgnet. Just ask around to see if there’s an officer there who can invite you.

    Also, send an in-game mail to Cranikus, my character on Kirin Tor. I’ll happily send you a few hundred gold and some bags to get you started.

  40. Sean Riley says:

    Y’know what, Shamus? I think you should totally try and create a Twenty Sided Guild. Either on Kirin Tor or elsewhere. You don’t have to lead it, but heck, I’d love to get in on that.

    Maybe we should just do it. Whatya think, Twentysiders?

  41. Cuthalion says:

    Edit: I’ve got it! Animal Crossing.


    No, I kid… I’m not sure you could really LP that.

    I’d say Morrowind or Oblivion would work. And the infamous Boatmurdered Dwarf Fortress LP was funny. As would be a very short roguelike.


    Chex Quest?

    …Adventure Quest?

    MapleStory? (Oh, the horror…)

  42. Funny, I read through all the Champions Online “Shamus Plays” just last month. Superior stuff; I really enjoyed it. Enjoy your sabbatical and when you find something that actually moves you, we’ll be here.

  43. John says:

    I would say World of Warcraft, especially as you are just starting to play it again.

    Also, it doesn’t have to be a multiplayer online game since you don’t adventure with any other people anyway.


  44. Another Scott says:

    It’s funny, I was just thinking about re-reading your Champions Online stuff. I guess this is a good way to do so both quicker and a little fresher. Yay, serendipity!

  45. Axle says:

    Shamus play: Champions On-line was great, so why won’t share it with rest of the world?

    As for the future: I just read in RPS that Final fantasy XIV is out soon and might be a nice option.

    In the mean time you can create a few short ones based on Zynga games or other facebook apps (I’m dead serious about this. Dead. Serious).

  46. TSED says:

    Uhhh, Shamus? You realise how much CO has changed in the months you haven’t played it?

    Because it’s WAAAAY different now. Sure, the writing is atrocious, but all of your complaints about the mechanics are outdated. There’s way more powers in the game, melee has been entirely overhauled (to the point where people are begging to nerf it, especially might, because it’s possibly overpowered), blah blah blah. I mean seriously, regeneration is the second worst defensive passive right now (PFF still holds that mantle, but force is next to be reworked). My might main MANHANDLES supervillains like a 10 year old sadistic boy manhandles ants with a chemistry set, tweezers, a magnifying glass, hairspray, a lighter, and no parental supervision.

    Not to mention the Serpent Lantern and Revelations content that’s been introduced (which has MUCH better writing. MUCH).

    I mean, sure, my one toon I left in Twenty Sided is incredibly lonely, but the game is pretty awesome. The population’s much lower than it was at launch (which isn’t surprising) but while re-using old content, you’d have to crop out MANY, MANY things.

  47. Josh R says:

    I’m going to suggest Guild Wars too… I binged it and completed most of it but if you do want a hand on there just contact Feel It Go and I’ll sort you out with whatever you need.

    EDIT: You’d probably have to tell me you were playing it as I very rarely go on it anymore, after dropping 300 hours in 50 days, my guild fell apart and I kinda gave up on the game.

  48. Old_Geek says:

    If you’re going to do a single player game, the obvious choice is Fallout 3. You just did a Spoiler Warning on it, so you wouldn’t need to replay the game. And you could even recycle a few of the jokes (we won’t tell, we promise!).

  49. Zee says:

    Hey Shamus!
    If no one has said it yet I want to give you a guild recommendation on Kirin Tor. Mellonea is where my friend is and he loves it. Great group of people that have been around since vanilla days. It’s a big guild but they are all friendly.

    I would invite you to my server, farstriders, but it’s a bit dead. If you compared the server list to the star wars planets, farstriders would be hoth. Still if you decide to roll there hit up natural order. We are not RP but we are very friendly.

  50. Irridium says:

    If you ever do a non-MMO, I suggest you do the original Fallout.

  51. paramnesia says:

    I’m not sure if it’s got enough material for a Let’s Play, and you just covered fantasy with LoTR, but Aion has invite a friend trial keys if you’d like to give it a look.

  52. HGME says:

    I’m just going to throw out some MMO names, hopefully one of these strikes your fancy

    Requiem it’s a M-rated, horror themed MMO. Also, It’s free.

    Since you’re a pretty big geek, you might find some fun in Star Wars Galaxies

    then there’s the perennial classics like Guild Wars and City of Heroes

    Fallen Earth might be good for some riffing if you’re into the whole post-apocalypse angle.

    I dunno, those are just some ideas.

  53. Hey Shamus,

    I think you’d like Staghelm. It’s “Normal” not PvP and the Horde guilds are really stronmg, my Horde alt is Aelasha and Ihave plenty of bags etc to help you out (also a bsmith so i can helo you with some gear depending on your class). We also have a small, but wealthy guild. So it would be a good fit.


  54. somecrazyfan says:

    I have started reading your LP of champions online (the old one) for the second time and it’s still funny as hell…eh, no matter, you never read our posts anyway.

  55. Eljacko says:

    Damn! I’d like to read your Star Trek fanfic Shamus! I’ll bet it’d be hilarious!

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