Happy Wars or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love the Shield
So, here we are. My old love hate relationship comes back, to once again, teach me the true nature of the grind and all that is foretold over many nights of constantly climbing over the enemies that block our path to our destination. The almighty tower
. How must I declare my need for all your shining weapons, your armor, and shield? How can I, or even us, overthrow our enemies to the point where they can no longer move forward?
I'd like to think that Free To Play games on the Xbox 360 are likely to get better providing this trend does develop further down the line. Already, at the time of writing this, we can look to Spartacus: Legends
, World of Tanks
, Ascend: Hand of Kul
and World Series of Poker (WSOP)
. What once was mainly home to PC gaming is now moving onto consoles, and even tablet devices.
One thing that I feel made Happy Wars great, is that you never
have to spend real money on anything. It's likely you will bump into players who have premium equipment, and then you'll get that lingering thought that you'll have to keep on buying tickets, and hoping you'll end up with something great in return. Not at all. The treasure map is a really great addition, but although you can only get one premium item each month, and
because it is random, you might not be happy with the outcome. Luck is a factor.
Which brings me to the Special Challenge prize selection. What you earn is here is not based on the outcome of your victory. I won with MVP multiple times, and after earning my chest, I won a wonderful 500 Happy Stars. Disappointing, but I moved on and kept telling myself that "I will get that damn Pirate Sword"
I won that sword five times. It's Level 14 now, and that's all I'm ever getting it to.
There are still problems though, the servers, while a lot more stable than its release predicament, do occasionally drop you from the game. Yes, sometimes I did lose my connection. However, even when it was stable, I would lose my sync to others in the lobby which altogether would abort the game no matter what.
One thing that really stood out for me in the list of problems is how often the auto-save kicks in. Pretty much it'll happen after any kind of in-game action, but going back to what I explained about the disconnections, it still saves after
this. That's right, I lose all the progress I had made in that match, but you know what? Let's auto-save anyway.
On top of that, sometimes it would just hang on the "Saving" for over a minute, and that's when you know something has gone wrong.
Here's some quick trivia for you. The save data isn't on your hard drive. It's saving to whatever servers Toylogic have in place. Epic did the same thing for Gears of War 3
, but they also allowed you to save to your HDD or a USB device. So, you're connected and ready to go on your daily run for more XP and loot. However, something isn't right. You're stuck on the menu screen, staring at the characters on screen... (those lifeless dolls
), and then before you figure it out...
I don't even want to think how much added time there was between the save problems, the long matchmaking times, lost match progress, menu transitions etc. It's a long way to reach Rank 50, but that time only reflects on the actual games you played and finished
. There's no clarification for anything outside of that. The quest system is still basic, providing next to no information for most of the tasks you need to complete. If Toylogic can implement a Treasure Map, new items, new game types (and even new characters) over this period of time since the game's release... why not more information within the Quest area? That data is lying somewhere within your standard XML script, allowing us to see just a number
of some kind will make it a lot less frustrating.
After all that's said and done, it's yet another path that we push through, tired and regretting what we started. The good news is that, eventually, you will reach the end, and you will feel damn good that you did.