Fun with Mods!

Hey, everyone!

First off, I know I haven’t posted anything new in about a month but I’ve been fairly busy with both work and voice over training. That being said, on to the topic of the title.

A few days ago, I discovered the joys of certain mods. By chance, I came across an article on PC Gamer‘s website about Star Wars mods in light of the release of The Force Awakens this past weekend. The article (as seen here) rattles off a list of several great mods to several games that add Star Wars resources to the base game, some replacing the base game entirely. The first thing I noticed was a mod for a 4X RTS game I currently own and have installed, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion by Stardock.

The first mod I downloaded is titled “Star Wars: Requiem” and poses a “what if” scenario when Star Wars and Sins of a Solar Empire are set in the same universe. It’s more of an add-on mod rather than an entire conversion, as with another popular mod called “Sins of a Galactic Empire.” I played an eight-hour 1v1 game against the Empire with my favorite base faction: the Trader Emergency Coalition (TEC) Rebels. The TEC Rebels’ Titan, the Ragnarov-class, is diminished by the Empire’s Executor-class Star Destroyer by a ratio of roughly three to one. I mean, the Super Star Destroyer is humongous on the star field and I’d have to give props to the development team behind the mod on bringing the SSD’s majestic size to life. Now if they only had the means to bring out the Eclipse-class Star Destroyer, which is even bigger than that…

The second mod I got for Sins of a Solar Empire is based on a complete overhaul of the game’s mechanics, titled “Sins of the Fallen.” I wasn’t particularly interested in that mod so I got the “baked” version of a mod pack called “Fall of Kobol,” which, as you’ve probably guessed, is based off of the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica series. There are four factions to play as in this mod: Colonial Defense Force, Colonial Separatists, Cylon Loyalists, and Cylon Separatists. Being BSG and all, the ship shields normally present in Sins of a Solar Empire have been disabled and instead the development team has implemented a “damage reduction” system to faithfully present the ships’ point defense systems as in the show (although not entirely shown in the particle effects, sadly). The models for the ships, Cylon Raiders, Vipers, and Raptors are all executed to near perfection, although the naming of the ships is relatively uncharacteristic for their respective classes (due largely in part to the random name generator).

I really enjoyed playing with both mods and you can find them both at the Mod Database (moddb.com). “Star Wars: Requiem” can be found here and “Fall of Kobol” can be found here. Slither on, my friends.

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Supernova: A MOBA with An Army

I haven’t posted anything in over a month, and yes, I only blame myself for that. I guess you could say that nothing was really coming to mind on what to write about. Recently, though, I have some awesome news.

I heard about a new sci-fi MOBA that’s currently under development and I decided to look further into it. The game is called Supernova, and it is being developed by Primal Game Studios with Bandai Namco as publisher. The game just launched their second closed beta on Monday this week, and I just got invited to play a couple days ago. So far, I’m enjoying it more than League of Legends by Riot Games. Truth be told, I haven’t had this much fun since I played Infinite Crisis by Turbine, Inc. (which, by the way, is still my top favorite MOBA and I miss playing it).

Imagine, if you will, a MOBA where you not only play as one of several characters (dubbed Commanders in the game), but you’re also assigned a lane to which your squad will spawn and advance. Each lane begins with two units of basic troops, but periodically you gain resources with which to upgrade and build your army. There are two factions to use, Cyborgs and Humans (I’m using the latter faction), each with their own unique units. Supply is capped at forty (40) to begin with, but your resource usage doesn’t stop there. As you level up with one or both factions, you can unlock more and more stuff to use in the game, such as more upgrade tiers for your army, better tech with which to equip your unit types, or even an automatic increase to your supply cap (goes up to forty-five [45] at level ten). Each game also gives you randomly generated resources that you can use to craft better equipment for your Commander’s loadout prior to locking in before each match. It’s a great blend of MOBA with RTS. Not only do you build your army in the lane, you can also adapt to your opponent’s army by selling off units and adjusting accordingly.

The recall feature is pretty cool, as well. When using the human faction, a personal dropship flies to an area that you mark and picks up your Commander before flying them back to base to heal. While in base or on the dropship, you can use attribute and proficiency points to upgrade your Commander, similar to items in other games like League of Legends, Heroes of Newerth, and Defense of the Ancients 2 (Dota 2). Each player also can use a deployment feature that works opposite to evacuation (sort of like a Homecoming Stone/Town Portal Scroll, or the Teleport Summoner Spell) except deployment is a global ability, provided that the area has been revealed first. Your dropship flies you to the area you mark anywhere on the map. I haven’t used the Cyborg faction yet, so I don’t know what that entails but from what I’ve seen, their version involves personal teleportation.

Supernova is a great MOBA-RTS that I recommend playing. Sign up for the beta here and I may see you on the battlefield. After I explore the game some more, be on the lookout for an official preview down the road. Slither on, readers.