Tera NA Closed Beta 2 – Saturday

Today was a good day :)

Starting back out on my priest, Monkhouse, I hopped right back into the game without missing a beat…ok maybe a few, haha. I left the main city and started heading out to a zone (because at this point I had forgotten where I left off) so spawning my instant mount and riding off to the east, I headed for the closest zone I could see, because I wanted to get some questing and grinding going so that I could level as fast as possible. Upon entering the new zone, I ride onto a farm, and there is a guy walking with a shovel, looking to be tending to his fields, so I ride up to him and go as if to attack him. I am level 15 at this point, and start throwing down my skill combo thinking Im going to completely own this dude…until he hits me for a 1500 crit! My life total at this time is only 4500! I’m like, “Oh shoot!” and start high-tailing it in the opposite direction. Thinking I am getting away scott free because this guy is slower than me, he suddenly goes in the rage mode, turns read and quickly catches up, at this point Im scared and pissing my pants. I had yet to die in the game, and I wasn’t about to die here. So I start mashing my mount button furiously and luckly it spawns and I make it out alive.

So with that epic start, the rest of the day went well. I cruised through quests like a knife through warm butter and went from 15 to 19 in about an hour and a half. While I was questing I noticed some dudes off to my right attacking some giant spider thing with a skull by its name! So I quickly inspect the people attacking the spider, notice their levels are the same as mine, and they don’t seem to be getting one shot by this spider super mob thing, so I say, “What the heck.” and jump in spamming heals at the guy tanking the giant spider…Then a load of crap hit the fan. BOOM tank dies. BOOM another person drops. Then another. And I’m staring wide eyed at my screen  because the spider turns and starts bookin’it in my direction. Cussin’ (I kept it PG) and pissin’ my pants I frantically try to run away, but I get back handed by a giant, armor platted spider leg,throwing me back about 20 feet and smacks me down hard on the ground. Trying to get up I, mashing self heal like my life depended on it (and it did) a red circle appears under me. Now I have watched videos, and I know this isn’t good. As my guy takes his slow, good old time getting up I’m screaming at my screen, and ramming my arrow keys with my fingers trying to get out, and BOOOM! I explode and die…all this is about 4 sec.

So I’m dead. First official death on Tera, and yes I will highlight this on my stream. And later it will get it uploaded to YouTube (When I get a channel).  After resurrecting myself in the closest town, I immediately head back to the spot where the spider was. And you would think I learned my lesson, right? Not, I try this again 2 more times. Then I learn my lesson…after dieing…2 more times.

So after that I move on to questing and grinding again. As I did my quests I found a few bugs, including my armor flickering up and down on my shoulders, and a quest that wanted me to kill 10 mobs but kept counting until I killed 100 out of 10 mobs…yeah, it said 100/10 when I finished. Then later I ran across another mob that had some lag issues (probably has a wooden PC) and right in the middle of me attacking him, I stopped doing damage and he started doing the moon walk back and forth in the same spot. I quickly assumed it was me lagging until other mobs started smacking me across the face, and he kept right on doing the moon walk, and he continued to do so the entire time I was in the area.

I of course reported the bugs and continued on my journey. After hitting level 19, I decided to try another class. This time DPS. I also wanted to try a PvP server, so I log out and join one of the 2 PvP servers available, and I make myself a nice little Elin Warrior :) Blue hair, blue eyes, little ears and a squirrel tail! YEAH! I then hacked and slashed for the next couple hours smashing mobs and rippin’ up quests with my dual sword wielding, blue haired, squirrel girl. Don’t judge, who doesn’t think a chick with ears and a tail, wielding swords bigger than she, is awesome?! I didn’t get to try any PvP, just got to level 11, ported to the main city, and got back on my priest. I wanted to try the lvl 20 dungeon, and I only had today to play. I can do the PvP durring CB3.

So I get back on my priest, spend an hour getting level 20, then head over to the main city (sorry can’t remember the name and its too late, and Im too lazy, to check) While there I buy myself a pet for 64,00g O.o then get some new skills, and post some things on the auction house. At this point I am getting tired, its getting late, and I am about to call it quits. So I buy some healing skills, and figure on running Bastion next beta test weekend. But right as I am about to log out, fate calls my name. A dude just messages me out of the blue… Of all the healers probably on the server, he finds me and whispers me asking, “Hey, want to join up and do Bastion with us?” I’m like, well, I thought I had to be higher level. but he reassures me that I can do it at level 20, so I said, “What the heck, sure!”

After getting instructions on how to get to Bastion, I take the flight path to a near by city, and headed north toward one of my party members, until I came to a portal sitting in a out-crop in the woods. I’m kind of nervous at this point because I had never healed a party with this type of battle system before, but the people in my party were very encouraging and helpful. They totally did not mind it being my first time through, but I was still nervous. I healed for 3 years on World of Warcraft, but I knew this was going to be different. As I waited to go into the dungeon, I studied my healing skills, and arranged them the best I could. The rest of the party arrived shortly after, and we headed through the portal to the instance of Bastion. I would describe it as a cave with rooms of rough old ruins in it. Brown stone and dirt walls, dirt tunnels, and stone covered floors in the rooms. We started killing immediately upon entering. Everyone had quests but me, because I needed to be 22 to get them, but I didn’t care, I was there for the experience of the game! Starting out I fumbled around with my hot keys and was frantic and a little late on my heals, but I was keeping the party alive. I was basically spamming everything, and I noticed I had to use my mana regens about 3 times through each fight. After a while though, I adjusted my skills, moved them around, and figured out which ones healed the best, and cost the least amount of mana. If I had never played a healer class before, I might have struggled, but after healing 40 man raids on WoW, this was just a matter of learning. By the end, I had figured out that I really only needed to use one heal skill that cost next to no mana, and therefor never had to stop and replenish my mana during fights. This allowed me to eventually build up my confidence, and by the time we got to the final boss, I had it figured out and the dungeon was a breeze.  The boss was easy too; the fight consisted of the boss leaping around, charging through people, smashing the ground and all, but he really did not do much damage (maybe this was due to our tank doing his job) but all in all it was a super easy fight and the heals were smooth and effortless.  The dungeon was over quicker than I thought it would be and only lasted about 30 minutes. It was just long enough though to wet your feet and help you understand your role in a party.

So all in all, it was a good day. Reported a few bugs, completed lots of quests, and I learned a lot! It was definitely a blast. I still rate Tera a 5 out of 5, and I still like it better than World of Warcraft. We will have to see if it stands the test of time, but I plan on being here to stick it out! I am an end game player, so I’m in it till the end! Its late now…errr early you could say….and I have to get SOME sleep. So thanks for reading and join me on my stream! Have a good week!

Monkhouse
Stream: http://twitch.tv/m0nkhouse  

Thoughts on NA Closed Beta 1

Its been a while since I posted, but I am back, so lets take a look at my thoughts about the NA beta.

So I was so disapointed that I could not stream the start of the NA beta. I probably only got about 40 min in. Kn0w what my excuse is? My friends and I planned a lan party on that day about a month ago! Yeah, and I did not realized what weekend it was on. Believe me though, I would have rather of been streaming Tera… You might think, “Wow, get a life.” But you see, I have LAN parties with my friends all the time, and we can do that any time, but there is only one chance to participate in a brand new Beta and stream it before hundreds of viewers, all of which I missed out on. My goal would be to have a community of players following my stream and my blog as I adventure through Tera, so this was a big mile stone, and the start to all of that. But let me highlight at least.

So even though I did not get to stream a lot, I found myself Alt+tabbing to Tera in between the Heroes of Newerth games we were playing at the lan. It was an amazing experience in my opinion, the scenery was absolutely amazing first hand. Everything had detail, EVERYTHING. Trees had true branches with individual leaves that you could not find a beginning or end to. It was like looking at a real tree. The detail of the background objects, peoples armor, blades of grass, ALL of it, had endless amounts of detail. It is probably the best game, detail wise, I have ever experienced, and from a live MMO perspective, it was breath taking. I do not understand how they got such amazing detail out of an older game engine, and have it all render and run so smoothly. I have run other Beta tests, or demo games, and none of them have pulled off a beta so successfully. It was like playing the final release of the game for the first time. To think that they are going to be fine tuning the game and its gameplay for the next 2 months until release; It will be spectacular.

The Battle System

The battle system was impressive, though it seems too easy when you first start out, and kiting mobs is easy from levels 1-20. At level 5 I was grabbing like 5-7 mobs at once and dropping them all without even taking a hit. But as you level, mobs start dodging, they start spamming faster attacks, and the time in between their actions (The time they give you to react) substantially decreases. By noticing this change in the mobs level of skill, you can see how the game can quickly scale with your skill level and abilities. For instance, when mobs start charging, or throwing quick attacks around lvl 13, you learn an attack that has a dodge mechanism. This allows you to say, “Ok, I need to use this skill right when he throws out that fireball, that way I can get out of the way and not take damage.” At level 15 I found myself trying to kite 4 mobs around and AOE them down, but quickly realized that this was not possible because their attacks did more damage than in earlier levels, and they happened much faster, luckily a sorcerer came along and helped me out, and I was able to survive that round. (In fact I never died once during my beta run.)  The targeting and dodging style of the combat system was very entertaining compared to other MMOs I have played. It keeps you on your toes, and it makes you actually have to sit up in your seat and pay attention. I think the battle system will really draw a line between the bad players and the skillful players. I also believe you will see a vast spans of skill levels among players. It wont be like WoW (I played for 3 years) where a player just is slow at clicking skills and conserving mana, so he sucks, or a player is excellent at using his skills efficiently and moving around in boss fights, so he is a good player. In Tera, a good player will be actively moving about, efficiently using his skills, and will have to be effective at predicting boss fights on his own, because in Tera a boss might have predictable actions, but every fight against that boss will be different, so you have to be on your toes and aware that something unpredictable could happen. In WoW you just watched tank spot videos until you had the fight memorized, and it became almost muscle memory. I do not think that will happen in Tera.

Questing

The questing system was very smooth, but I found the early level quests to not be rewarding enough to bother with. Instead I found myself only following the breadcrumb story line quests all the way to level 15. These quests gave me enough experience points to level me up and not have to stop to grind, or do other quests.  Around level 13 though I found myself picking up normal quests to help me along to higher levels, because the bread crumb quests were starting to level up faster than I was. Each quest tells you a recommended level for that quest, and it seems that as long as you are able to keep completing the bread crumb quests and get to the areas required for them, then they will keep giving them to you, regardless of your level.

Was there anything I think should be different?

Well…I only got from level 15, so I cannot really say a whole lot about it now. I was thinking about though that maybe they could mix Tera up a bit with how FFXI handled leveling. Like they could have it so you could go to certain areas and you could party up with a few other players to do quests and take down higher level mobs. This allowed you to meet new players and really interact with other people earlier on in the game. The thing that FFXI lacked though was the ability to quest with those party members. It was more of a continuous moving from zone to zone LFGing and grinding mobs. I do not think I did a single leveling quest in FFXI, but I much enjoyed the party aspect at lower levels. So again, maybe in Tera, after level 11 (thats when you move away from the starting area) you can find a group in a certain zone, fight some mobs and quest together. Make it so that the quests pertain to the mobs you fight in that area, and the EXP from those mobs relevant to leveling quicker. That way you can’t solo quest in that area, and you wont grind without questing because it would slow your leveling down. At the same time I believe there should be other areas players could solo quest and grind in. That way if I only have time to jump on for 30 minutes, or maybe this is like my 10th time through the level cap, then I can just solo my quests and level on my own. But say I feel like interacting with people, and I want to party up a bit, get a little bit more EXP than I could through soloing, then I can join a group and do some quest grinding with 4 other people. Through handling the system this way, it gives you the best of both worlds and satisfies all parties; those that like to solo, those that do not get much time to play, and those that like socializing, partying, and being in groups.

Character customization

I was kind of disappointed in the customization options during character creation. I am guessing though, that because it was the beta, they did not load all the options yet. I am sure they will expand this in the furture, and there will be an almost unlimited amount of customization. I have watched the KR beta and seen lots of customization options on there.

Conclusion

The first Closed Beta, IMO, was a huge success. I loved the game and I am definitely hooked! I think this  will be the best MMO I have played yet. Yes you have to have a decent computer to play it, but it is worth getting a computer for! I would not want to play this game on low settings and miss out on its spectacular detail. You get a mount at lvl 11, and you experience you first boss fight at 11 as well. These are some perks that were nice in the beta, but they may change the level you get your mount in the final release. The mount is also instant, which allows you to quickly move from location to location. Also, I did a lot of gathering in the beta, but I did not see a lot of instruction on how to craft. I think there were a few quests that taught you, but I think they should have been part of the bread crumb quests, this way you cant miss them. I look forward to getting into some instances and partying during the 2nd closed beta, I am more of a social, party player myself. But all in all it was a great game, and I look forward to continuing my adventures in Tera, and sharing it all with my viewers and readers! I am sure it will be tons of fun, and I will meet lots of friends along the way!

Thanks for reading, and good luck adventurers!

- Monkhouse

twitch.tv/m0nkhouse

Add me on twitter: @m0nkhouse

Day 0! Game Day!

It is now game day and I am stuck in the prison of life and wages known as “Work”. As I accomplish my daily tasks of collecting iPad 2, syncing iBooks, syncing apps, updating endless amounts of iPads to iOS5, and continuously reinstalling and updating apps that keep crashing, I await my return to home, so that I may begin my long awaited journey in the world of Tera! No I don’t work for Apple, I just work at a school with an iPad 1:1 program, and every student here owns one and is constantly needing help with something! Right now I am syncing Bulfinch’s Mythology to, thank goodness, only 11 iPads. The day is still young and the onslaught of updating will shortly ensue.

But on-topic, THE NA TERA ONLINE BETA IS TODAY!!! Woo! I am so excited, thankfully I eased my concern before leaving for work, by confirming the game was not live yet. Servers still say offline, and my stream sits on the main server page. Not sure if it will show online until I re-launch the game though. Anyhow I am sure I will catch the buzz on the internet before the day is over, and I will be itching in my seat to get out of here and home! But quitting time is not till 3:00 PM EST, so I still have 6 hours to go! 6 hours! Seems like forever, but I know I can make it, especially with like 6 interning students to distract me for the last 3 blocks of the day.

If I don’t have any viewers waiting for me, I will just start building my first character, my Baraka Priest, probably go through all the character models and stuff first for each race and what not, just to get an idea for what they all look like. Then I will jump right in and start exploring my new world!

Ok ok, I need to finish these iPads and get back to work, add @Monkhouse to your twitter, and I will tweet when I am on my way home and about to get on! You can also find a link to my twitter on my stream page. See you guys later!

- Monkhouse

Stream: justin.tv/m0nkhouse

Beta only 1 day away!

Well, its the 9th of February, and I find my self dying to play this game. I am low on funds, and that left me out of luck for playing either the KR Beta or the EU beta (Even though EU was $5 ), but its ok, because I only have to wait 1 more day!

I am definitely not getting 50 followers on my Twitch channel by tomorrow, but whatever! I am going to have a blast with the game no matter how many people are watching me. And I already know that its fun even if you only have 5 people to talk to. I am sure I wont be the most popular channel on Twitch, but I will do my best to be the greatest host :) We will try out all the classes, try out all the races, run some quests, and go over all the skills we encounter. I will be sure to talk about how the game feels, how I like it, how it differs from other MMOs. It is going to be awesome! I have been anticipating this game since I first saw an add for it and watched the E3 video. All my friends were just like, “Oh another MMO that I can not run on my wooden PC” and I was like, screw that! So I saved up and invested $900 into a machine, custom built by me.  I was so disappointed by the FFXIV release and how it did not even launch on PS3, though I am glad it did not, because I probably would have wasted the worst $50 in my life, but Tera seemed to be the closest to what I expected FFXIV to be.

So its late, I forgot to post “2 Days till” but this will have to take its place, I have work in the AM, and its time for sleep! I will squirm through tomorrow, try to bury myself in a book rather than on the computer, so that I am fresh and ready to go on the 10th!

Have a good Thursday 9th of the month!

-Monkhouse
Stream: justin.tv/m0nkhouse 

3 Days till beta launch!

Wow 3 days seems so long, but I know its actually a very short time. I have been striving to get people to follow my stream, I have been watching other streams. I have been all over the place this week. My install of Tera Online finally finished this afternoon around 2 pm after 13-15 hours of downloading. I got to stream the WHOLE thing, haha, yep and I probably had more viewers at that time than I did any time since I started streaming! It was nice too, because I got a taste of what its like to actually share this experience with some other people. We just talked about Tera, what classes we would play, and things that are cool about it compared to other mmos. We also watched the beginning cut scene and played a few YouTube videos about Tera. Unfortunately to lack of my knowlege, I had the sound muted :( so its a quiet stream, and none of my viewers even told me! They just acted like they could hear the videos, haha.

Any way, it was a long day today, had blood work done this morning, and went to a meeting in the afternoon, then came home, streamed some terribly bad Heroes of Newerth games, raged and quit. And now here I sit typing this blog :]

So I currently have 16 followers on my channel, and almost 1000 views, and I am shooting for 50 followers within the next 3 days. We will see. It would just be more of an enjoyable experience if I could have lots of people to share the moment with!

Im tired, and I have work in 6 hours. So its time for me to hit the sack.

Thank you readers and viewers! See you on the 10th,

- Monkhouse

Stream:
justin.tv/m0nkhouse 

10:30 with 4 Days – Downloading Beta

So it is 4 days till beta launch and I am patching my game now. I started it probably 10 minutes ago and its at 10%. Starting download speed was 2MBps, but now its down to 250ish per second. Though you have to consider I am streaming at the same time that I am downloading! Haha, had to stream the download!

I am so thankful for the people who have already come to view my channel and share their time with me, its so nice to be able to talk to people, ask questions, answer questions and just have fun! I cannot wait till the beta, its is going to be such a blast spending that time with my viewers! The suspense of waiting is killing me.

So I just spent the last 2.5 hours not finishing this post because I was too busy talking to my viewers on my stream! How awesome is that? I had nothing up other than my Tera Launcher downloading the game, and I had an average of 7 viewers the whole time! about 90% of which followed my stream; even cooler! You may be thinking, “Only 7 viewers? and he is excited?” but you have to understand that I just started out at this point and its nice to see people are joining my stream and getting ready to follow me when the BETA launches. I wouldn’t want to stream if I couldn’t have viewer interaction. It is all about community and fun for me! When I played WoW and FFXI, if my friends were not playing, I would get board and quit, so I THRIVE on community.

We had a blast though in my stream. I met some really cool and nice people, and they had great questions and conversation pieces. We helped a guy out with his stream settings. It was just fun :) Did I mention it was fun?

Haha, so anyhow, its getting late and technically I could change this post to “3 Days till beta”   because I started typing it at 10:30, and its now 1:07 AM, but I am not going to, because I will be posting another blog once my Beta DL finishes.

Well good luck to you guys, and special thanks to my initial followers! Have a great week!

-Monkhouse

Stream:
twitch.tv/m0nkhouse 

4 Days and counting!

It is now the 6th, and I am going to say that its officially 4 days till Tera Beta, even though it was less than 12 hours ago since my last post.

So for today’s countdown I want to post a poll to see what people would like to play in Tera, or if you watch my stream, these polls will tell me what you want to see on my stream! Coming February first I will obviously be playing Baraka Priest, but that does not mean I won’t play other classes for my viewers!

First poll is going to be simple.

What class would you like to see?

Please leave comments as well to tell me what classes and races you would play. View my stream for LIVE polls that will allow you to decide what I do, and what class/race combinations I make.

Feel free to leave comments and discuss what classes/race you like, and why you like them!

Thanks for reading,

Monkhouse
justin.tv/m0nkhouse