20/08/2013

Bounty Hunted Out

I believe that we've got another day of Bounty Contract Week to go, but I'll probably pass on doing any more event content after finally achieving "Wanted: Dead or Alive" today (the achievement you get for both capturing and killing all of the henchmen and all the kingpins). I say "finally" as if the whole thing wasn't clearly designed to be done over several iterations of the event and at a much more casual pace, but being in a guild with some pretty hardcore players, I saw quite a few of them finish way before me and actually felt slow in comparison. I guess it's all relative. I could still continue to farm for reputation tokens to use during the weeks when the event will be inactive, but I'm not particularly bothered about that right now.

On the whole, it's been a pretty fun experience. I found that from login to logout, one mission took me about half an hour, though you could probably shave off a few more minutes if you had a very fast computer and used a lot of legacy travel options. This felt like a good chunk of time to me, and the rewards in terms of credits and experience (on lower level characters) weren't too bad. Mechanically the process remained fun, and it helped that Bioware was quick to drastically increase the spawn rate of shady characters when lack of available NPCs became a problem, as well as decrease the amount of successful interrogations you needed to complete each mission . That said, apart from that step of the quest, I found that competition for spawns wasn't much of a problem anyway. The pundits always blast MMOs with "old-fashioned" tagging mechanics for supposedly being anti-social, but people were always friendly and willing to help each other with kills even if there was no personal benefit to them. Sometimes they were too friendly, "saving you" by killing mobs that you were trying to capture alive... but for me it's the good intention that counts.

I also quite enjoyed how the fact that the event sent people to a variety of different planets made those worlds really come alive again. It's not that there aren't always characters around and levelling there anyway, but it just felt nice to see players of all levels mingling and assisting each other. I dare even say that all those bar brawls with shady characters added a certain amount of flair to cantina life.

The only thing I didn't like was suffering from bad luck with the random number generator, though I'm not even sure that this is something that's worth getting annoyed over anymore. I mean, this is something that I (and others) have criticised about pretty much every previous world event and yet Bioware always seem to find new ways of making it a pain in the rear. In this case the problem were the henchmen spawns that I mentioned in my previous post.

While the kingpins required a lot more effort to unlock, at least they were guaranteed spawns every time. Henchmen on the other hand you could spawn from day one, but it was random which one you would get a mission for. Guess for which type we achieved a hundred percent completion first? If you said kingpins, you'd be right. I maintain that I'm not an achievement hunter, but when Pet Tank and I had completed something like thirty-odd henchman missions without seeing one of the eight available ones spawn even once it kind of became annoying out of principle.

In the end we followed a guildie's advice and kept resetting the mission over and over again on one of the planets where said henchman was supposed to spawn (Hutta), even though it felt kind of stupid. We became scarily efficient at the resetting process as well, with me speedering back and forth between the quest pick-up at the spaceport and the table in the Hutt palace cantina, while Pet Tank did laps around the northern cantina to interrogate shady characters over and over again and then phoned in to all the conversations (credit for the shady character information fortunately seems to have an immense range, so I got it even while being nowhere near). It took us something like eight resets to finally get Udo Ensh to spawn for the last time.

I did feel accomplished after that, but also a bit burnt out. I'm definitely looking forward to just focusing on "normal" questing again during the next couple of days.

2 comments:

  1. Wow, well *I* certainly would feel burnt out after that! I didn't even make it past the first mini-boss, so I think you did pretty epic. ^^

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  2. There *is* a personal gain in helping other player to get his bounty because you can only start your encounter after the previous player defeats his mark.
    (If you're on PvP server and the previous player is of other faction, you could also kill him/her and start encounter for yourself... but only to have him/her to come back to do the same to you).

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