Friday, December 12, 2008

Fun and Frustration with Phasing

Today's post is actually partly a response to Kulat's comment yesterday on my blog. For those of you with short term memory loss, I was commenting on the very cool aspect of phasing out in Icecrown. It's really neat how Blizzard has worked this technology into the game, and it makes for a lot of possibilities of how they can progress story lines. Excellent for the solo player.

For the groups, however, it may or may not be the coolest thing. As Kulat was saying, he was asked to help with a group quest and he couldn't see the mob; his whole party got knocked off the cliff, but he didn't see the assailant.

When I first heard about phasing, and started playing the beta, I mistakedly thought that phasing only occurred when you had that "fog" around the edges of your screen, such as occurs in Borean Tundra in Riplash Strand. Heck, you can't even see the mobs there until you go into the fog. And it's also an easy way to run away from them, if you just run out of the fog since they disappear.

Fast forwarding a few months, I knew that Icecrown was phased like this, and when I went there in beta, there was none of the fog. But I still thought it was only to certain instances or areas.

Phasing struck again last night in Dragonblight. I have the achievement for quests for Dragonblight, so I'm mostly done (just 3 group quests left there, I think). All of the phasing that will take place probably has already. Although, I didn't realize there was any taking place. That's probably the seamless manner that Blizzard wants the world to appear to you. (Oh! Except up where the movie took place. I really wish there was a way to silence those people. I hate that when I fly by there.) At any rate, we were at Wintergarde Keep where my wife was going to do a few quests before we headed over to Grizzly Hills.

"Go ahead and set your hearthstone here," I said.

"Ok. Where's the inn keeper?"

"Right in front of us. She just walked by you. She's the one pacing."

"Nope, I don't see him," she responds.

So, I lean over to look at her screen, and sure enough... no inn keeper there. Nothing. Is it a loading issue? Lag? Nope, all the other NPC's are there and I can see my own toon on her screen. So, without realizing it, at some point, I quested the inn keeper back to Wintergarde Keep where I can now set me hearthstone if I so desire. My wife, on the other hand, apparently has a quest or two to do.


Elinor said...

I think the phasing stuff is cool enough that it is worth some of the pain with grouping.

It reminds me of the netherwing quest chain in BC. Where it was difficult to help with the zuluhead fight once you were friendly with the netherwing.

It would be nice to have a solution though. Like being able to switch back a phase or something to help someone else.

Drazmor said...

I'm interested to see phasing, but this is a problem for me, as I'll often get some help from a high lvl guildie in the vicinity.