WRUP. It stands for “what are you playing.” That’s it. Answer the question! [Follow this feature’s RSS feed]

WRUP: Happy holidays, have some glass eyes edition

Happy holidays, everyone! Here is your gift. It is a carefully made box full of glass eyes. I am giving you a box filled with fake eyes. They are not real, but they are made to look real, and I expect you to enjoy this gift. I want you to tell me how happy you are to receive it. I want you to display this prominently in your home.

If you are single, this should be one of the things that prospective dates see when they enter your home. If you are married, this is something that you have to place out prominently whether your spouse likes it or not. It was exceedingly expensive! And you cannot return or exchange it, it was all hand-crafted.

So happy holidays! Have a box full of eyes. Let us know what you’re up to in the comments of What Are You Playing, and enjoy the totally helpful gift that’s sure to start all sorts of conversations.

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WRUP: Totally accurate stuff about The Last Jedi maybe probably edition

In the latest installment of space shooty-bits, we find out that the eponymous Last Jedi is actually a dude named Ralph because Luke Skywalker quit. (We see that scene in a flashback. He walks into Ralph’s office and tells him that he can take the job and then perform anatomically unlikely acts upon himself.) Ralph tries to hire Rey as another Jedi, but Rey fails the written portion because she cannot identify the parallels between two different Robert Frost poems in 500 words and she keeps misspelling Kashyyk.

Not the wookiee homeworld; that’s Kashyyyk. This is a different planet that’s spelled Kashyyk. Totally different thing.

Elsewhere, Kylo Ren asks Finn to teach him how to dance because otherwise Mean Mister Snoke is going to tear down the rec center if Kylo Ren doesn’t win the big county dance-off with a $2,000 prize. Finn responds by piloting the Evangelion into the rec center, proclaiming no one gets to have it. Then Captain Kirk and Boba Fett get married and fly off on a pegasus. It’s the feel-good something of some time period or another. Let us know what you’re up to down in the comments of this week’s What Are You Playing, and don’t actually drop spoilers there because that’s being a jerk.

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WRUP: Great personalities of the American something-or-other no. 341 edition

William “Basketball” Cragen was born in 1784 following his mother’s prolonged and particularly unusual bout with pneumonia, which produced three children and at least one stirring anthem. Considered a “disease child” by his father, he was originally planned to be sold at market when he reached seven years of age, as this was the style in Virginia at the time. However, he evaded this sale by hiding under a passing wagon and refusing to come out even when offered a bit of cheese. Thus, Virginia quickly elected him as the governor-in-exile of Cuba (which it was assumed would be a state any time now).

As governor-in-exile, “Basketball” chiefly ruled on whether or not his father was a “stupid Manne of Poore Judge-ment and odious Sockkes,” which his advisors agreed was a wise course of action due to the continued failure of Cuba to recognize this young man as their proper governor. After three decades in office, he decided to start the first Cuban Alligator Punching Farm, which opened and closed on August 14th, 1821 (this was chosen due to August legally ending the year in Cuba based on a binding resolution he had passed in a dream two years prior). Following his death, he was buried in the stomachs of several alligators. If you’d like to nominate another personality of the American something-or-other, leave a comment to that effect in What Are You Playing.

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WRUP: Your honor, I motion for lizards edition

Mr. Lefebvre: Your honor, the defense motions for lizards.
The Court: Counsel, could you repeat?
Mr. Lefebvre: Your honor, the defense motions for lizards. Your honor, the defense motions for lizards. Your honor, the defense motions for lizards.
The Court: Approach.

Mr. Lefebvre: Given the nature of lizards as long, cuddly scale babies, the defense feels that it is important to motion for lizards.
The Court: Does the prosecution have any objection?
Mr. Lefebvre wearing a false moustache and imitating a Russian accent: I am afraid of spaghetti.
The Court: Motion passes. Lizards

Lizards flood into the courtroom from all possible points of entry.

Mr. Lefebvre wearing a false moustache and imitating a Russian accent: The prosecution motions for What Are You Playing.
Mr. Lefebvre: Objection!
The Court: Overruled; please state your weekend plans in the comments.

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WRUP: I’m cold and this place smells like farts edition

Ugh. Why are we here? This is dumb. I’m cold and this place smells like farts. When can we leave? Why did we have to come here in the first place? You never tell me anything. I have to pee, throw up, and watch four episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia in exactly that order. Your voice is awful. Stop pushing me. Where is my coat? Who took my coat? Who is that guy over there?

I don’t want to shake that guy’s hand. I want to lie down. I’m going to lie down and kick the ankles of anyone who comes near me for a quarter of an hour. Never mind, I want to put my face in a cake. When can we go? I want that cake now. It still smells like farts in here. Is this What Are You Playing? How did you get that car? Why is there a glowing portal here? I need new socks and shoes.

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WRUP: Enjoy the smooth flavor of Mrs. Patter’s Bacon-Fried Cookies edition

Guys, we could not be more excited to start getting in on the branded content game, and we’re starting with endorsing Mrs. Patter’s Bacon-Fried Cookies! But we promise you, this won’t really affect our content, which is refreshing and fried in the grease of simmering hog fat just like Mrs. Patter’s delicious cookies! Available in all sorts of wonderful flavors, like Strawberries & Bacon, Vanilla Custard & Bacon, Peanut Butter & Cheese, and of course, Blueberry & Broken Glass & Bacon That Doesn’t Taste Right!

We’ll still be bringing you all of the same great MMO content you’ve come to expect, it’ll just cover a wider spectrum. Like which flavor of Mrs. Patter’s cookies to enjoy with your favorite game, or why Mrs. Patter’s Meth & Bile cookies help you stay focused during intense play sessions, or which games have GMs most willing to call an ambulance because you are eating a kind of cookie the FDA has prohibited from sale in the United States. Let us know what you’re playing down in the comments of What Are You Playing, and the best response gets a free box of Mrs. Patter’s Bacon-Fried Cookies (Now With Less Asbestos, Probably)!

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WRUP: Helpful pointers about the inter-nets edition

Hello, one and all, and welcome to the inter-nets! The inter-nets, or as they are sometimes known the “world wide tubes,” are a fascinating place where you can meet people of many races, genders, religions, and sexual orientations while referring to them with deplorable slurs. Here are some useful tips about the inter-nets to make the most of your time here.

  • The inter-nets are a public place. Please be advised that other people can see what you are saying and respond to it. If you don’t want to discuss it, perhaps you should keep it to yourself.
  • The people you meet on the inter-nets are real people, with real feelings and wishes. Treat them the same way you would treat other people in the real world. Then, treat them better than that.
  • The inter-nets are the real world. If you are a nasty jerk to people on the inter-nets, that is who you are in the real world. If this is not the person you wish to be in the real world, do not act like it elsewhere.

We hope you enjoy your time within the inter-nets! As an associated diversion, please take part in this week’s installment of What Are You Playing, which can be found down below. Thank you, good night, and as always, keep surfing the computer waters!

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WRUP: Is this what I wanted edition

So, for a very long time, I was one of the people crying out for making some of the many racial variants in Azeroth playable. It just makes sense. Now, World of Warcraft has added them… or is going to add them. Some of them. Some of the ones I don’t even particularly want, and some of the ones I’ve wanted for a long while. (And at least one that I never thought I wanted.) They’ve got new class matrices, they have different customization, they have a whole lot of different traits.

Is this what I wanted? I don’t know. It’s not quite what I wanted. But it’s close enough to what I wanted, right? I think I’m getting what I want. This isn’t like Demon Hunters, which I never really wanted until they were right here. But it’s also a weird feeling where I’m pretty sure this is what I wanted, except not entirely sure. I don’t know. Muse about it in What Are You Playing comments, why not?

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WRUP: World of Warcraft: The We Just Want Eliot To Come Back Expansion edition

Well, here’s our World of Warcraft expansion leak. Apparently, it’s titled World Of Warcraft: The We Just Want Eliot To Come Back Expansion. I think they’re courting me. The expansion brings in all of the subraces I want, including Eredar, and it’s introducing Wardens as a hero class? Oh, and they’re apparently like a fusion between Shaman and Paladin. That’s nice. Also, we’re getting player housing, no new levels, and additional artifacts for each spec.

Plus, they’re adding dance studios and a better character creator. Oh, and better lady Worgen models. Level scaling through the world, all content scales down to duos, and totems are back! Also, something called “nightmare druids” and “mechanical warriors.” Sounds pretty good; I’m curious about the “customizable giant robots.” Anyhow, let us know what you’re playing down in the comments because this is What Are You Playing.

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WRUP: Of balls and pins thereof edition

Why are pinball machines so expensive? All right, that one’s obvious, they’re rather elaborate things with lots of moving parts all wired up to sturdy tables. They should be expensive. But it’s insanely frustrating that there’s no real way to get the proper feel of a pinball machine without spending a couple thousand dollars on a large, heavy table that plays one game.

And even “plays” feels a bit overly generous, because this isn’t, like, a similarly expensive arcade cabinet. A pinball machine is a matter of frantically mashing flippers and hoping for rain as various things happen with only moderate control. It’s incredibly frustrating and it’s pricey and I want one, because all of the digital solutions don’t have the tactile feel that is literally half of the fun of these things.

In summary, someone needs to make an MMO variant on pinball. Let us know why that’s stupid in this week’s installment of What Are You Playing.

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WRUP: Names I have used for MMO zones other than their proper names edition

Boregrimmar. Dorkshore. Strangle-me Vale. Dun Moron. Ironfudge. The Kvetchlands. Hillsbad Footfails. Poorgrimmar. Zangrymarsh. More Donuts. Fishguard. Palaran. Nar Shady. Lomsa Lemonsa. L.A. Nausea. Goopstaberg. Winderps. Valkurm Dooms. Fort Smellsba. Rolanberry the Headless Thompson Fields. Castle Ooze Troy. Snoregrimmar. Nar Shut Up.

Lizardtown. Camp Steaky-place. Tython, land of pythons. Ord Mantelpiece. Sith Seattle. Invincible Turtle River. The Lich King Summer Camp. The Boyz II Men Tree. Gay Planet. Shadowlord Fun Time Activity Zone. Kitty Jungle. Pirate Jungle. Crackton. The Alliance Lives in a Closet. Stormwind Red Light District. Cat Gas Park. Earth Space Duck. “Oops I Crapped My Pants” City.

And those are just the ones where my wife and I didn’t just add obscenities to the name for no reason, or referring to a zone in one game with the name of a zone from a completely different game. Let us know what you’re playing in the comments, this is What Are You Playing. Theoretically.

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WRUP: Pacing issues edition

The series is 52 episodes long, and it promises to be the world-shattering story of giant robots fueled by ghosts. The first nine episodes deal solely with the protagonist going through his daily routine and occasionally seeing ghosts. The next five episodes are about setting up the project to build ghost-powered robots. In the 15th episode, an enormous ghost lays waste to the protagonist’s home town and kills every single character that had been built up through now, making the previous episodes a complete waste of time.

Eight episodes are then spent hiding in the woods from the enormous ghost, followed by seven episodes journeying to a place where the ghost-powered robots had been assembled while meeting up with a handful of other characters. For no adequately explained reason, episodes 31-38 then feature a completely irrelevant deviation to a town holding a Japanese festival with the main character’s uncle. No one mentions those events at all as the cast spends another four episodes getting to the robot facility.

Once the team gets to the robot facility, four more episodes are spent arguing over who gets to pilot the biggest robot. The next episode is all about trying to power up the robot for its first launch. Episodes 47-52 finally involve using the ghost robots to fight evil ghosts while also discussing 10,000 years of history and cramming in so much exposition and lore that one episode features eight separate fight scenes with history narration in the background. The last episode ends on a cliffhanger. Let us know what you’re up to in What Are You Playing!

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Massively Overthinking: Epic Tavern-style player-generated content in MMORPGs

Ever played Epic Tavern? Massively OP reader Uli though it would make an interesting point of comparison for MMO content. “Epic Tavern is a single player game where you run a fantasy tavern frequented by heroes for a drink, food, bed for the night, and you can try to persuade those NPC heroes to go on a quest for you, sharing the spoils,” he explains.

“A comment I read suggested that would be great for MMO taverns: player running a tavern being able to give quests in the game to players frequenting the tavern. I know there are options for player run quests, but this would be different: pre-existing or otherwise player-made and engine-supported quests that are bestowed on player to match their group or skill level. And of course it would mean that visiting a tavern and meeting other players would finally have a point beyond mere chatting/RP. Ensuring people spent time in taverns to interact with would really help the socializing/third-space-in-virtual-rooms issue. But could it work in a MMO? Would that be abused for loot/rewards, biased quest assignment/withholding based on favors? Or what other problems could that cause?”

A lot of our writers and readers have experience with player-generated content, so I thought it would be fun to build on the ideas of Epic Tavern for Uli in this week’s Overthinking. Which MMOs have (or desperately need) great PGC, and when have you seen it go wrong? Could a formal, mechanical system for quest-giving like Epic Tavern’s work in an MMO, or is it something best left to the roleplayers?

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