TSM Episode 102: World of Runescape

Top of the deeps, yo yo yo.
Lusipurr, Sunreaver Guardian Mage par excellance

Download: Produced 2013.06.02

After working out his travel arrangements for the upcoming wedding of Sabin and Paws, Lusipurr answers both a telephone call and a question from a reader. SiliconNooB and Imitanis help to determine that the best, current MMO is World of Warcraft.


  1. We should probably take a several-week break from even mentioning World of Warcraft on the podcast, given the amount of it in this (admittedly MMO-centric) episode.

  2. This cast all but solidified something I’d been saying to myself all year: There’s no reason not to simply go PC this generation.

  3. PC gaming came back to the fore because it *was* a more expensive, less supported, more complicated, more pirated alternative to the simple and easy utility of consoles. That was then. In the interim, PCs have become more and more ubiquitous and easier to use in their own right and consoles have become bogged down in large part because of their own popularity. Now we have a nice and friendly PC alternative that has been steadily trucking along, improving at nearly every turn. About the only advantage consoles have left against PCs is that any game that releases for a given console will run to spec on that machine. But even this is slipping away in the face of debacles like the PS3 version of Skyrim.

    It seems almost as if the precarious nature of the PC gaming scene is what spurred on its improvement… And when at the very height of their popularity, consoles have become bloated unwieldy devices straining under their own useless weight. It doesn’t seem too many things in this industry, companies included, can manage to stay very successful for long before greedily overreaching.

  4. Well spoken, Mel. You really should be on staff, I think. I imagine you’d have much to contribute.

  5. We’ve seen some very positive moves from Sony on the DRM front which could represent a move away from an intent to use DRM on the PS4. If that is the case, Sony could–at a stroke–claim the ‘win’ without hardly a fight.

    Beyond this generation, things like the Steam Box are going to become increasingly competitive in the home-gaming area. When consoles are already around $400, why not spend the extra $100 more to get something much more capable and which can already leverage all of the games that one has purchased on Steam?

  6. @Wolfe: *blushes adorably*

    @Lusi: I’m not sure who the Steambox is for, given its price. One THOUSAND dollars is prohibitive in the extreme and, as a PC gamer, it’s redundant. Even if the price was lower I think Steam would still have to work to get its image out to the console crowd who probably don’t know much about the service or Valve.

  7. Mel, that $1000 Steam-box was not THE Steam-box, but rather a box that has been approved by Valve (of which Gaben hopes to see many).

  8. Oh, jeez. That’s not confusing at all… So the Xi3 Piston is something that could conceivably coexist alongside an actual Steam box?

  9. Ah, and I meant to also bring up another topic touched upon in this show. Square’s decision to focus on ‘region specific titles’. As usual, you lot are the only ones to have interpreted their little PR statement with the obvious truth that the rest of us non-corporate entities have. I do -not want- to see a Square Enix who thinks I only care about Deus Ex (I don’t care at all to be honest), Tomb Raider (still not caring), or whatever other nonsense they lob at me (probably still won’t care). I can only hope that this generates enough of a backlash financially that will force their new president to reconsider his logic. Square didn’t win our hearts because they were selling us Hollywood-inspired interactive movies.

    Agni’s Philosophy was recently reported on EGM as being a potential -actual- title. Like a fool, I plunged into the comments section and found that both the staff, and all of the comment section lurkers felt that it was in line with the tone of Final Fantasy. That, more than anything horrifies me, because it implies that the ignorant masses will again sway the corporate lords to pander to them, and bring us closer to a toneless, muddy-grey gaming tomorrow.

  10. Agni’s philosophy looked brown and awful – and that’s before even touching on the fact that it seemed to be full of muslims with AK-47s… :/

  11. I’m guessing that the antagonists in Agni’s philosophy had to be either a) Islamist, or b) Russian; because that’s the only sort of villain that makes sense to a Call of Duty player!

  12. I made those exact same arguments in said comments section and was met with… well, what you’d expect from the average gamer today.

  13. I did not mind the discussion about WoW, though, while Blizzard does many things right, I would have to interject that Blizzard is not perfect and as a result, I feel the need to point out a particular sore point I have had with Blizzard as of late; their writing.

    The writing for their major properties as of late has been rather subpar. Some of the dialogue in Heart of the Swarm is cringe worthy, and while I’m not one of those people who thinks that Starcraft 1’s story perfection, it certainly didn’t try to pass of subfanfiction level writing.

    And don’t get me started on World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, where Chris Metzen had the gall to self-insert himself in the game and turn himself into Superman, Kal-El, or whatever the crap he wanted to try and portray himself as. There is also the grievence of the Alliance story in WoW, which has been shown to have been written as an afterthought and is so hideously disjointed and filled with pop culture references that it drove me away from the game because it was all about the Horde.

    Ugh. Sorry. Anyway, I loved the discussion about the XBone and the inherent problems Microsoft seems to be having keeping good news about their system.

  14. Iluya: I cannot help but think that your problems would be sorted by simply switching to Horde, where the writing really *is* exceptional. I think the average age (and, certainly, maturity level) of the Alliance is lower than the Horde, and so the writing the tends to be more, shall we say, light?

    I cannot speak for the SC2 campaign writing, though I would not expect it to be particularly good. (That said, I do recall WC2 and SC having decent, if not entirely memorable, writing.) The writing in D3 is pretty solid.

    There’s more Xbone woes on the horizon, so stay tuned!

    And, if you do decide to pick up WoW, you now know that you can depend upon a group of dedicated, helpful Horde players who are around to play with you. We got three new members today!

  15. Well, I speak from this perspective as someone who played Alliance primarily on WoW since March of ’06. The Horde simply does not appeal to me. I like my dwarves and gnomes, thank you very much and no metrosexual blood elves, braindead undead, or sweatshop smelly gobos would be able to change that. Even if the writers have shown either outright scorn, or completely apathy towards a faction that they have shown repeatedly as an afterthought so they can live out their neckbeard power fantasies as leather clad badasses on motorcycles, when in reality, they’re nothing but a bunch of fratboys that forgot that they were supposed to graduate almost twenty years ago!

    And I would contest that the maturity level of the Horde playebase as anything but, as I’ve seen, firsthand, the behavior of Horde players that have physically assaulted others for wearing Alliance shirts and have insulted me to my face because I dared admitted I play Alliance. So, you can see my reluctance.

    Again, I apologize Lusipurr for dragging such an absurd subject for far too long… and one that’s gotten me repeatedly banned from the WoW Story forums. >.>

  16. @Iliya: Long response time!

    Blood Elves are awesome and I will thank you to remember it. Undead are also very cool. The goblins (both the large Orc-sized variety and the small Gnome-sized sort) and cows are awful, of course. And Pandas are just a kind of fat Furbolg.

    As for the Horde players who roughed you up, I shall observe two things:
    1) The exception proves the rule. I’ve been playing since launch and, whilst I have run into assholes here and there (usually in random, cross-server groups for Heroics or Raids), by far and large my experiences with other Horde players have been extremely positive. This is quite different from my experiences with Alliance, which are similarly uniform, but in precisely the opposite direction. A few rotten Horde players does not signify that the Horde, as a whole, is composed of rotten players (and, vice versa, a few decent Alliance players, like yourself, do not provide evidence to override the overwhelmingly consistent experiences I’ve had over the last eight years).
    2) If you told me in person that you were playing Alliance, I would respond as I always do to the receipt of such news: a stern look of disapproval, a shake of the head, and a clicking of the tongue. I would probably not rough you up, but I could not guarantee that I might not kick you in the shins if I could get away with it.

    My wife and her siblings all played (and raided) Alliance when I met them back during the BC days. One by one, I showed them what it was like playing with the Horde instead. They are now all-Horde, all the time.

    For my part, my recent excursions with the Alliance, levelling to 90 as a Priest, has only reaffirmed my conclusions. The Alliance players–hundreds of whom I have met and whom I now know very well–are, for the most part, adolescent, immature, petty, malicious, and occasionally incredibly stupid. I’m looking forward to faction changing my Priest to Horde, though this will result in me having two (2) L.90 Horde Priests on the same server. But, at the same time, I have no urge to continue to play with a group of people who are almost uniformly repugnant to both taste and decency. Again, there are exceptions, but on the whole they are dreadful little buttsquirts.

  17. Even longer response!

    I am afraid I must disagree. Not even the male Blood Elves voiced by the amazing Cam Clarke, whom I still recognize as Max Sterling from the old Robotech dub back in the 80s, can change my mind. And the Undead remind me of Sylvanas, whose defenders argue and excuse her Lich King-like actions with such an unhealthy zeal, it makes me wonder if there is an undead mindcontrolling monster indoctrinating them like the Reapers from Mass Effect do.

    And I assure you, they did not, in anyway, ‘rough me up’. If they did, I would have sued their jobless little behinds out of their parents’ basement for assault. And this is, I am afraid, indicative of a larger problem within Blizzards’ attempts to show that they are unbiased. Not to mention that horrid ‘concert’ during the last Blizzcon where they invited that nigh-voiceless metal singer who was tossing homophobic epithets at the Alliance in the audience and which caused Morheim to apologize. Great PR, there.

    1)Anyway, I will agree with your ‘The exception proves the rule’ law. And that has painted my perception and not much has changed it.

    2) And doing so would only further prove my point of reasons why I would not roll Horde. And while I do appreciate the offer, I don’t have the funds to faction change any of my characters and I am currently not subscribed as some unexpected real life expenses prevented the purchase of a timecard. I apologize for not stating that sooner.

    I enjoy your rhetoric, Lusipurr, though, I am afraid I must disagree with you on this matter.

  18. @Iliya: Fair enough! And, I shall set aside one shin kick for you. Should we ever meet, you will now know why I have set myself the task of bruising your extemities!

    WoW is less for the lack of intelligent players like yourself. Here’s hoping that circumstances permit your return one day–whatever faction you are playing in. I have the good of the overall game in mind, here.

  19. FF Versus XIII is probably an awesome game. So it doesn’t bother me TOO much that they are turning that into FFXV but what I really want is a brand new game that we’ve heard nothing about. I guess I’ll have to wait until FFXVI.

    Yeah, Agni was cute but the world she was in and the characters in that world were the most unappealing I’ve seen in a Final Fantasy. They should make that game if they think it will be profitable but it has no place being involved with Final Fantasy.

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