Friday, September 12, 2014

Hibbli - Bad Ending





Hibbli presents an alternate ending to Knight Elayne's quest at The Old Chapel! This time with a bad ending *spoiler*. And by "bad" we mean rough and rapey as hell. It's 64 pics of hard and brutal fantasy adventure at www.mongo-bongo-art.com. All that for only $10! And of course all sales go directly to the artist! (NOTE - Elayne does get knocked around a bit in this one, so if that's a turn-off, makes you squeamish, or contradicts your moral code then please consider yourself warned.)




So in other news, GamerGate is still buzzing along. So if you aren't familiar with this controversy and can't be bothered to click the link, then I'll give a brief rundown. So about a month ago some douchey milktoast dishrag excuse for a man posted a bloggy rant about a breakup with his girlfriend. And if half the stuff he posted is true (remember never trust what people write on the internet) then she is by all intents and purposes a truly evil human being. Still nothing new there, that shit happens all the time, right? But what makes this relevant is that his ex-GF was a major SJW. (If you aren't familiar with the acronym, SJW stands for "social justice warrior", a pejorative used to describe people who vigorously push a progressive agenda, especially in relation to the video game industry.) Not only that, she was also a game designer, and she cheated on the schmuck with a video game journalist (among various other guys - seriously read the ranty blog - it's hilarious, in a sad way). Which made it of interest to folks that really do not like SJWs... like 4chan. And once those loveably vile trolls got a hold of this, it morphed into "damning proof" of a "conspiracy" in videogame journalism. Sad part is, it did kinda look like they were right.

Thus, an angry movement was born. And videogame journalists handled it in the best way possible - by calling people names. In lockstep numerous articles went up on videogame sites declaring gamers (ie. their customers) as "misogynist trolls", "useless entitled shits", and various other endearing terms. It's like they all went to the MongoBongo Academy of Diplomacy and Charm. Needless to say, that didn't go over very well and just kinda threw fuel on the fire. Unfortunately, despite being vile and disgusting, the 4chan trolls also tend to be rather intelligent. And instead of raging like they were supposed to, they decided to donate to charity. Inorite WTF? Blatantly insincere and an obvious intended solely to thumb people's eye, they still managed to raise like $20K for two progressive groups (the pic above includes a girl gamer they created for contributing so much to a Kickstarter). On top of all this, people are still shouting harassment, dreaming up more conspiracies, claiming death threats, denouncing "the enemy", whining oppression, and generally just being massive attention whores. And to journalists' discredit they are being fairly terrible in covering the whole thing.

I can't really do it justice. There is just so much silliness involved. I suggest you poke around yourself for articles and info if it interests you.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Zafo - Tera On-line: Dungeons






New set from Zafo! Featuring a pair of Castanic demon-girls exploring a dungeon. And when one of them stumbles upon a caged beastie... well that's when hentai-logic(tm) takes over. It's 46 pics of grindy Korean MMO fun at mongo-bongo-art.com.




And a brief mention of a show I recently found. As some of you may know, I have a soft spot for sword & cannon pirate stuff. Was a fan of the Pirates of the Caribbean before it was even a movie franchise *hipster glasses*. Anyway, while I was totally NOT checking out the Outlander show, which I absolutely did not read the book before, cuz that would be gay and shit cuz it's a chick show and stuff. Right. So while I was NOT doing that, I ran into Black Sails. A show about pirates that involves even more unrealistically beautiful people with perfect teeth than PotC did. And with even more of the inane bullshit of "we're fighting for individuality and self-expression", rather than just being opportunistic thieves they actually were. And plays fast and loose with historical fact, while also including a sort of pre-story for Treasure Island (not surprisingly I'm also a fan of NC Wyeth, Pyle, and the Brandywine tradition). And also tries way way waaaayyy too hard to be a "Yaarrrr!" Game of Thrones.

And y'know what, despite all that... I still like it. Cuz it's piratey. I'm probably biased, but it's a fun show. It does take a couple episodes to get it's feet under it. I mean the first few are just a montage of different uses of the word "fuck". Fuck this, fuck that, fuck you, let's fuck. You get the picture. But bear with it. The plot plays out pretty well. And while the characters are a bit stereotypical, they're still enjoyable (though Miss "look how hard I'm trying not to be Elizabeth Swann by acting exactly like her" does in the words of Barbossa "strain credulity, at that"). But it's still definitely worth checking out! At least in my not so humble opinion.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Wildstar - Where Did It All Go Wrong?



TL;DR - Probably at the very beginning.

So yeah. Wildstar. Didn't quite live up to the hype. Is the game dead? Not yet, but reckon it soon will be. 'Course I said the same thing about SWTOR and it's still in the top 5 MMOs or something like that. So as always, take my opinions with a grain of salt. And I can only really speak to what I've experienced and seen, so this isn't by any means THE definitive ruling on the game. Regardless, it ain't doing well. Folks ain't happy. Hemorrhaging players like a gushing chest wound. Lack of new real content in releases. And shit still broken since Beta.

So as I said in previous mentions of the game, it's basically a WoW Clone with a nifty combat system. Which from everything the devs had said, it's pretty much exactly what they were aiming for. Recreate the glory days of "vanilla WoW" (or so I hear, never actually played WoW). So good job I guess. Mission accomplished, and all that. But I think that's kinda the core problem. What worked for games 10 years ago doesn't necessarily work these days. People have been there and done that over and over and over again with every other MMO that shamelessly copied WoW. Shit is old and tired. It's the same mindless theme-park grind. But in Wildstar they made it HARDCORE!

So "Hardcore". I was always under the impression that meant "difficult". Requires skill and dedication, and all that. And Wildstar absolutely has areas where that shines. Other areas... not so much. In alot of places it seems they just translated "hardcore" as "tedious". And by "alot of places" I mean every part of the game other than Dungeons and Raids. Attunement, dailies, even crafting are all incredibly mind-numbingly tedious. Cuz that makes it require dedication, right? Hardcore brah! Maybe for some. I think the best description I saw was "they put so much effort into making it Hardcore, that they forgot to make it fun". Which pretty much describes everything outside of your first few runs of Adventures, Dungeons, and Raids. But you had to do these things over and over again ad naseum to acquire gear, or perfect the fights for Silver medals. At which point they stop being fun and become a tedious grind.

This was particularly problematic for Dungeons. Because the fights there are very very very well-tuned. If you lose a single player in any of the boss fights, the group will probably wipe. Everyone has to bring their A-game. Hardcore! Unfortunately there is nothing in the game that really prepares you for Dungeons other than... running dungeons. So learning requires dying. Alot. And since one person's failure leads to everyone else dying, there is quite a bit of pressure involved. Which not surprisingly leads to a rather toxic game environment. You don't want to group up with people that are going to get you killed. They cost you gold, and they prevent you from succeeding. You don't PUG because you can't trust them not to suck, and you need voice comms anyway to coordinate. And even in your own guild/group you are constantly cutting people out that don't measure up. You only want to group with people as good, or better than you. Because anything less will prevent you from succeeding. Because it's Hardcore. Bro.

So what does one do while not running Dungeons or Raids? While waiting for other guildies to log on, or heaven forbid being a bad that nobody wants to group with? Well.... not much. Once you hit 50, raiding is all there really is to the game. There is nothing else of real consequence. Crafting is rather pointless once you get into Dungeons/Raids, cuz crafted gear is the bare minimum of what you need to get thru that content. Dailies are just the same exact quests every day in a recycled starter zone map (seriously, same exact map), over and over again for 30+ days to build up Rep. And on the off-chance you are creative, even housing is pointless since nobody else sees your creativity but you. PvP is still horribly broken and imbalanced. And there is a massive amount of low-level areas and zones that are utterly pointless for a level 50 to return to. So if you aren't raiding, there ain't really much else to do.

So how did it get this way? Well apparently it was the way the game was designed. Carbine Studios somehow managed to ignore a decade of MMO development, disregarded all the lessons the industry learned over the years, and designed a 2004 game complete with all the errors, limitations, and design flaws. Despite people telling them of things that needed to be fixed back since closed Beta. But that's not terribly surprising if one looks into company reviews from Carbine employees. Apparently their studio is a dysfunctional cesspool of hatred, backstabbing, and sabotage. Course the only people who ever post company reviews are disgruntled employees with an axe to grind, so take it with a grain of salt. But obviously there were some glaring problems in development, so it's not hard to imagine a kernel of truth there.

In the end it looks like the game killed itself. They are trying to patch the holes in the ship, but it's already mostly underwater. There's some fixes and balance changes, easing the attunement process, replacing the CEO (who stepped down for *cough* personal reasons), hiring a new marketing team last month, consolidating servers to fix population problems, and various other shit. But it's probably too little too late. Which is too bad. Cuz there really was some great stuff to the game. Combat system was brilliant. Awesome world setting. Fun challenging dungeons (the first few times at least). But that sort of stuff doesn't save a game that's flawed at it's very core. It's a level-based themepark MMO that caters to a niche raiding culture that fosters a toxic atmosphere. I just don't see that working anymore.

Oh and some quick background on what I was playing. DPS Stalker with full Purple Adventure gear, hitting 2400 AP. Got as far as Bronze in Vet STL and KV before quitting.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Spider-man: Green Goblin - Part 1





The first part of a Green Goblin set. Gwen Stacy gets a ride home in the back of Norman Osborn's limo. It's 40 pics of Goblin formula fun available only at www.mongo-bongo-art.com. And the set download is free for members for the next month(or so)!

So went with the Willem Dafoe version of Norman Osborne. Cuz he did a kickass job of it, trying to do the hair from the comic version would just look weird. Seriously what kind of hair style is that? Does hair even do that? Whatever. Dafoe was better and easier anyway. And tried to channel in a bit of Bobby Peru as well. Cuz he freaked me the fuck out in that role. Also the set is kinda in time for the release of the Amazing Spider-man 2 DVD. Ok, not really. And wasn't intended either, was just a happy coincidence. Wasn't even a very good movie (think I reviewed it last Spidey set). Don't waste your money on the DVD.

And speaking of wasting money, people are still signing up for subscription memberships. Why?!! I suppose it would make sense if they were doing it to make use of the discount before it's ended... but they aren't. So it's just weird. Really don't understand it. But whatever, their money. Also this is the first of the last two free member downloads (did that even make sense?), so only ONE more free set left. Which coincidentally enough, will be part two of Green Goblin. Will probably also be around the same size (35-40 pics). After that it's gonna be smaller sets (20-30 pics) unfortunately. On the plus side, they should get finished a bit sooner.


Credits:

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Bad News and the Good(-ish) News



Right, so the bad news first. For the past couple years I've been using a company called Zombaio for my websites subscription services. They handle the passwords, security, and (relevant in this case) the money collection. And for a good long time they were absolutely fantastic... until they weren't. Few months ago payments started to slow down. (Guess where this is going yet?) They explained it as changing banks for payouts and they'd get back on track (yeah, yeah, hindsight is 20/20). And they have to change to a monthly payment schedule instead of weekly (yeah, I know). So old weekly payments are slowly trickling in until we get to last week. We're approaching September, and still haven't gotten the payout for the month of June. Yeaahhhh.... Don't know about you, but getting paid 2-3 months late (if at all) is not exactly kosher. And it's not just me. Tons of other Zombaio clients are also experiencing the same problem. (How do you spell "ponzi scheme"?) So obviously this shit is not going to work anymore.

Unfortunate solution is that I'm going to have to change the subscription model. I'm basically phasing it out. The next two sets are going to be free for members, and then that's it. No more freebies. Also, around the same time the member super discount on sets is going to be removed. Everyone is going to be buying sets at the same price. Basically the only thing that membership will get you at that point is access to the galleries. So subscription membership will no longer be the ideal choice and best deal. Why not just ditch it altogether? Because cutting off all ties with Zombaio means the odds of me getting any of my money is severely reduced. In any case, it sucks. But it is what it is. Can't exactly work for free, and that's pretty much what I've been doing for the past 3 months. Fortunately, I am rather frugal so I can whether this crisis fairly easily.

So now the good-ish news. Or at least the slightly less bad news. The prices for sets will be reduced. With new price probably somewhere around $7-8. Need to try and figure out what will work best. Reckon former members will buy 2 out of 3 or 4 sets a month, which minus processing costs should put me around the same income level as before. Maybe. Hopefully. Who knows. Anyway, price change is fantastic if were never a member before. Not so great if you were a member, or if you bought a whole bunch of sets before at the old price. Again, sucks, but it is what it is.

Needless to say I'm not particularly happy about this. So as upset as some of you might be, it's a mere candle against the firestorm of rage and hatred that I'm feeling right now. And please, save your legal advice. I know you mean well, but that's not really going to help just yet. Right now it's just minimizing loss, regrouping, and finding a way to continue to provide you the semi-consensual hentai-esque 3d monster pr0n that you love, while still putting food on the table. Cheers.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Zen - Demon Doll House






New Zen3DX set! Jessica continues to be plagued by the evil demon that stalks her. This time, with her slutty stripper sister Ellie, she is dragged into the demon world. Where both are thoroughly used and violated by their new masters. It's a 92 page story of seductively erotic horror (with an additional 85 clean pics with no text) at mongo-bongo-art.com. So check it out now!




Also, Vaesark has a new site all of his own! Featuring a brand new Resident Evil Jill set. With the slutty little hottie taking insertion from increasingly huge beasties. Even (get this) a zombie elephant! Win! So cruise on by, check it out, and give him some support!