World of Warcraft

World of Warcraft, or WoW, is one of the most popular MMORPGs in the world right now. Actually, the game holds the title as the world’s most subscribed MMORPG with 5.5 million subscriptions at the end of 2015. The game was released in 2004 by Blizzard Entertainment and is part of the Warcraft franchise where we get to learn and explore the world of Azeroth.

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The Gameplay

As you can learn from the title, your character will explore a world with amazing landscapes where he or she will get to fulfill quests and fight various monsters. Even though the general presentation sounds dull, the game has the advantage of continuous gameplay. As you evolve, the character grows and learns new skills. However, each character can only have two primary professions that he /she can use to create resources. Besides these primary occupations, a character can also have hobbies or so called secondary professions.

The game creates an addictive world where anyone can find a something to do. Also, the fact that there is ongoing character development and that you can alternate individual tasks with group tasks, makes the game extremely attractive even years after release.

How to play

To play, all you have to do is select a realm (or what we call a server in the real world). Each realm is a version of the original game world and we have the following:

  • The Normal Realm that promotes PvE action. Here the character must defeat monsters and complete tasks to grow and achieve skills. There is also some PvP action, but it must be consensual.
  • The PvP Realm where you fight both monsters and other players for resources. Here you must keep your guard up as any player can attack at any given time.
  • RP – very similar with the Normal Realm, but here you roleplay in-characters
  • RP – PvP this is a combination of roleplay in-character and the player vs. player mode.

Expansions

Since the release, War of Warcraft received several expansions:

  • The Burning Crusade, released in 2007
  • Wrath of the Lich King released in 2008
  • Cataclysm released in 2010
  • Mists of Pandaria in 2012
  • Warlords of Draenor in 2014
  • And there is another extension called Legion that is expected to be released in August 2016.

In the end, if fighting monsters and exploring fantastic worlds are two of the actions that you love, then World of Warcraft is definitely a great game for you. You can start with a free account but, if you want the entire experience, you’ll have to pay a subscription.

Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn

Are you looking for the next MMORPG to keep you engaged and totally devoted to the action? Well, Final Fantasy XIV is the perfect candidate for this job! The game is developed by Square Enix, the Japanese company that also brought us game franchises like Dragon Quest and Kingdom Hearts. A Realm Reborn was released in the second half of 2013 and can be played on PCs, Mac computers, and the latest consoles from Sony (PlayStation 3 and 4).

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The basic elements

Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn is the better version of Final Fantasy XIV which was not that well-received by the public. So, to please users, Square Enix invested resources and time to create the land of Eorzea where your character is transported 5 years in the future. It’s a time of recovery after war and Eorzea is rebuilding itself, but with a new threat rising from the North: the Garlean Empire.

Just like most modern games, A Realm Reborn provides users with stunning graphics and mesmerizing landscapes. You also get to almost feel the weather as there will be fog and rains very realistically depicted. Even more, the music (created by Masayoshi Soken) is immersing and inspiring.

In conclusion, you got all the necessary elements of a great game: a great story, amazing graphics, and inspiring music.

The action

The activity is based on a tale as old as time: the fight of good vs. evil. The game offers you 50 levels filled with action, cinematics, and tasks that will help you learn skills and evolve as a character. The evolution is not straightforward as, to become all you can be, you have to reach certain levels in certain jobs. For instance, to become a Bard, your character must be level 30 as an Archer and level 15 as a Pugilist.

Also, you can change classes by simply changing weapons which comes in handy in various situations. The game allows for maximum versatility so you are not stuck in just one course of action.

The combat scenes are designed in the traditional MMO style but this shouldn’t be seen as a disappointment. You will get lots of excitement in dungeons scenes as here is the strong point of A Realm Reborn. First level dungeons will be simple but things start to get complicated with levels 30 to 35.

In conclusion, A Realm Reborn is a fantastic world that grows on you. The action leads you through challenging tasks and amazing graphics, creating a perfect fantastic world for every video game lover.

MMORPG Aion

When was the last time you went online to play a video game? Regardless of the fact that you are an avid player or just a casual one, Aion creates a fantastic environment for everyone. Developed by NCSOFT and released in May 2009 for Asia, the game became insanely popular very quickly.

The game is now available globally and can be played by anyone with a steady internet connection and a computer that supports advanced graphics. As you evolve in the game, you will find a fantastic world with complex situations and quests that will keep you on your toes. The game is so well-designed that it already has 5 expansions (will discuss them later).

The backstory

Every MMORPG must come with a great backstory and AION doesn’t disappoint. First of all, you’ll find both PvP (Player vs Player) and PvE (Player vs Environment) situations. Second of all, the graphics is quite advanced and offers a great experience to any player.

The backstory revolves around two factions: the Elyos and the Asmodian which are sworn enemies. The general quest is simple: save your world that is in danger of being shattered (your world is called Atreia). The danger is represented by various invaders, monsters, and so on.

Game Features

If the plot is not enough to convince you, let’s take a quick look over the main features:

  • You get to enjoy a wide range of solo adventures and group quests
  • There will be challenging dungeons where you have to prove your skills
  • Skills improve as you advance in the game, but only as a chain-reaction (you must solve certain scenes to gain new skills)
  • The world of Atreia is absolutely gorgeous
  • You will have flight scenes
  • Combat scenes are intense and filled with adrenaline
  • Story-driven content
  • You’ll have the possibility to take pets that will be helpful along the game
  • Advanced equipment customization

Expansions

We mentioned that the game already has 5 expansions, but let’s see what they actually are. Expansions are different versions of the same game that explore different worlds and implement different characters.  AION comes with the following extensions:

  1. Aion: Assault on Balaurea (September 7, 2010) – this version expands the game world and takes the fight against balaurs which invade their world, Balaurea. Your character will be upgraded and you’ll have access to different weapons, skills, and items.
  2. Aion: The Promised Lands(Ascension for North America) (October 19, 2011) – the fight against the Balaur continues and you will be revealed new sections in Balaurea.
  3. Aion 4.0: Dark Betrayal (June 26, 2013) – this expansions brings new classes and zones.
  4. Aion 4.8: Upheaval (June 17, 2015) – new zones, skills, and revamped user interfaces.
  5. Aion 5.0: Echoes of Eternity (July 13, 2016) – again, two new zones, and updated user interfaces.

As you can see, each expansion comes with improved graphics and skills. However, these are not the only things that evolve. Each expansion brings new combat situations, new territories to discover, and will challenge your skills at a more advanced level.

So, if you like MMORPGs and you’re looking for world to save, AION awaits you!

 

What are podcasts?

If you live in our new technological era and you’ve been online, then you know about podcasts. Even more, everyone is very excited by them! According to a study performed in 2014 by Edison Research, 39 million Americans are into podcasts every month. Of course, fan numbers increased since then, considering the fact that almost all podcasts are available for free.

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So, what exactly are podcasts?

Podcasts are a direct result of the new technological development and have been around for a while. So, a podcast is a downloadable/ streamable file that contains the recording of a discussion/show. Usually podcasts can be listened to so they come in MP3 format, but they can also be videos. In terms of content, everyone can find something interesting; people who make them cover every imaginable topic and then some more.

If you want a comparison, a podcast usually sounds like a radio show. The creator invites several guests and they discuss a certain topic. Some podcasts also allow interactive interactions with listeners like direct conversations, comments, etc. One of the most important features of a podcast is its serial characteristic – just like a radio show, the podcast can have daily/weekly/monthly series.

Who are the creators?

Celebrities, comedians, scientists, blogger, regular people, and the list could go on. Actually, everyone with a decent smartphone and an online connection can create their own podcast.

How to find podcasts?

While many radio celebrities or comedians launched their career with a podcast, not everyone has something interesting to say. So how do you find the best podcasts?

Well, podcasts are usually listened on-the-go (while driving or riding the bus). So, both Android and Apple devices have access to apps specially created to bring podcasts to you. Simply browse and try until you find interesting topics and people.