Thursday, April 06, 2017

Appreciating the Developers: DAW 2017

I found out from reading Ravalation that this week is Developer Appreciation Week! So being a gamer myself, I figured I'd join in on thanking the hard work of the developers that work so diligently on the games that I enjoy.  Also a thank you to Ravanel for putting out the word!

Since I play more than one game and enjoy more than one genre of games, I will put shout outs to several different ones.  After all I would hate for any of them to feel left out and currently with how my week ended up going (it could honestly be much worse than it is), putting myself into a thankful mood will be beneficial.  Thus the more I can find to be thankful for the better.

Guild Wars 2


Karashai enjoying a glide from the top of the lighthouse in Lion's Arch.

I started playing GW2 at launch thanks to a friend buying me the game.  I almost quit shortly after because my PC just wasn't up to snuff for running the game smoothly.  Then my dear, wonderful husband bought me a new PC and I was able to finally enjoy how pretty the landscapes really are. Then after taking a six month break from the game I've been back and started my obsession with exploring Tyria on every character!

With that in mind I am thankful to the devs for making such a beautiful virtual world to explore.  Even after having many world map completions under my belt, I still find nooks and crannies that I've never seen before.

I'm also very thankful for the charr race.  Finally a cat race that is more beast like rather than cutesy, anime, cat-girl.  They have turned into my favorite race to play ever since I made Karashai.  Here I must thank my husband since he was the one who told me to make a charr because I would like it (he had actually just started playing the game at the time).  You know what? He was right!

I also love gliding.  I am so thankful that it was added to the game with Heart of Thorns and also to be able to be used in central Tyria.  It makes running around the maps so much more amusing.  I still find myself jumping off things just to glide.

One other thing I am very appreciative of, is that there isn't a gear treadmill in the game.  When they released HoT one of the things they made sure to announce was that they would not make us regear.  They did release some more stat combinations but Karashai is still in the same ascended and legendary gear that I crafted for her almost two years ago.

Lord of the Rings Online

Must learn to turn off floaty names before taking a screenshot.

My husband and I got interested in playing LOTRO just before the release of the Mines of Moria expansion because the MMO that we had played for years was getting stale with lack of content updates.  We went all out with buying into LOTRO by buying into the life time membership and I am so glad we did.  The membership has been a great boon since the game went free to play and even before that we were able to come and go from the game as we saw fit.  In all honestly it is one of the things the keeps me coming back too.

Like GW2, I love the landscapes in LOTRO.  They are truly eye catching in many areas and for such an old game it has aged really well.  I am thankful that the devs seem to realize that the landscapes mean a lot to the players and have made changes to help make them prettier.

The horses...I have to mention the horses (if you've read any of my other posts you probably aren't surprised by this).  I am very appreciative that they made them easier to obtain at lower levels now.  When I first started playing you had to be level 35 to be able to earn the riding trait and now you can buy the trait out of the store at level 5 or you can wait until level 20 to earn the trait.  I love the variety of horses to choose from.  Unfortunately there are so many now that I know I'll never try collecting them all! And the addition of warsteeds is great since they can walk, trot, and canter.  Plus they have cosmetics that you can equip on them.  Once I get my beorning to Rohan (eventually), I am so playing dress up the horse.

Over all I am thankful that the team seems very committed to seeing the epic story through to completion.  I wish them luck and inspiration as they continue to take the players towards Mount Doom.

Tyto Ecology


Pile of sleeping fox! This was shared for Screenshot Saturday by the devs.

This is a game that I picked up on Steam late last August and want to spend more time with but I just haven't as of yet with everything else pressing in around me.  

I love the devs of Tyto Ecology because they are continually trying to improve and balance things so that your biodomes simulate as close to real as possible.  Since I bought the game they have had several updates and added more animals.  They even have added at least one new biodome since I started playing.  The devs definitely come across as wanting to continue development on it even as they work on their MMO, Tyto Online.  For that I'm very thankful indeed.



My wolf, Keisha, pining for ice cream.

Another game that I bought on Steam last year that is older but been updated by a fair amount so it looks better and works on newer machines.  In this simulation game you create a wolf and get to learn about their ecology as you go through each map.  They are working on a new map right now also to further expand learning of how these magnificent creatures live.

So you can say that I'm thankful for the devs being able to continue support for this game and even make new content! They also are committed to squashing as many bugs as they possible can which is very nice for the player.  So thank you to the team for your dedication.

Stardew Valley



My most recent purchase from Steam was this little gem developed by one guy, ConcernedApe.  He did an amazing job giving the game many little secrets to find.  I like how he blended rpg elements with simulation elements, my two favorite genres! Best off all he has continued to support the game after its' release and climb to fame.  Huge thanks to him for creating a relaxing game that is easy to sink many hours into.

Cities: Skylines


A look down a pedestrian walk way.

I waffled back and forth a bit about whether or not to include this one but in the end I obviously decided to.  Cities: Skylines is the first city simulator in a long time that is actually fun to play and for that I am thankful to Colossal Order for all of their hard work.  They've continued to support the game with a mix of free updates and paid for DLC (they call them expansions but for me they don't hold enough content for that title). Thus thank you devs for continuing to add things to the game and not having any issues with all of the mods in the Steam Workshop.  Actually they often come off as supportive of the modders.



Kairosoft's Pocket Stables

This is the  name of a Japanese game company that makes different themed simulation games that you can play on your smart phone or tablet.  I have bought several of their games and have enjoyed each one even when the mechanics are similar, however, the newer ones tend to add in some more depth.  I am grateful that they continue to make these little games and I hope they create more in the same vein of the ones that I have bought and enjoy.

Horse Haven World Adventures


My tier 4 Shetland pony, Rosey.

I mentioned this game in my March 2017 Month Review post and it is available for free on Google Play.  Even though they don't get everything correct when it comes to horses, they do a fair job and I am thankful for that.  I am also glad and appreciative that they are continuing to add more horse breeds and ranches.  They even added in fantasy horses which made me happy since I now own a handful of unicorns.

Idle Heroes


Go team!

Another mobile game (which I also mentioned in March 2017  Month Review) that is available on Google Play but really has nothing to do with horses.  It's more of an idle rpg type of game and while it is free to play, I don't feel like I HAVE to spend money in order to enjoy the game.  I am thankful for that since it allows me to make the decision if I want to spend anything depending on my enjoyment.  My husband also plays Idle Heroes and I am glad that we can help each other a little bit with a few things because of that.

For any developer or developer team that I did not mention specifically but played your game and enjoyed it, THANK YOU! I know you guys do this for a living but I know many of you do it out of love for playing games and want to make something that people will enjoy.  So again, Thank you, I am very appreciate of all the long hours that you put into your project for other's enjoyment.


  1. Funnily Charr was the one race I could never bear playing in GW2. All the stinking pollution outside, it's painful for me to see.

    The fact I see such great praise of LOTRO's devs again makes me wanna try that game...

    1. I don't care for the pollution either. sylvari would probably fit my mentality better but looks wise I love my charr.

      Give it a go! LOTRO may be old but it still is a solid game.

  2. Cool that you participated in DAW! I love that you included so many different games. Many I don't know of. Kairosoft looks super cute! WolfQuest seems very creative. Perhaps I'll buy it for Conrad some time, as he is a fan of wolves.

    OK, here comes some GW2 nitpicking.
    "One other thing I am very appreciative of, is that there isn't a gear treadmill in the game."
    I will have to disagree on this one, for the gear treadmill in GW2 feels huge to me. E.g. if you run fractals, you get a DoT called Agony. You need Agony resistance on your gear or you simply can't survive the higher tier fractals. So you need to do a lot of low tier fractals to get agony resistance, so you can go into the higher tier fractals. Rinse and repeat. I did enjoy a fractal every now and then with friends, but not as much to grind as much as was needed to proceed. So that's part of why I burned out on GW2 (the other thing being that I had explored everything).

    And then there's ascended equipment, of course. I do agree that it's nice that the grind wasn't made any worse with HoT. That would've been bad.

    Of course, if you decide not to do fractals and just explore/do quests and events you can ignore the gear treadmill in its entirety. But that rings true for any MMO I know of (including SWTOR and LOTRO).

    1. Also, YAY for LOTRO lifetime memberships! So glad I invested in that, too, back in the day. :)

    2. Yeah, there is the fractals thing... They have made it easier to get agony than it used to be in GW2. What makes me not want to run the higher level fractals is the buffs to the mobs and thus makes you feel debuffed. Not in my interest.

      I personally view the gear treadmill as, new content must regear. DDO was rampant with that and helped drive me to quit playing.

      Kairosoft definitely has some fun games. I have picked up two more in the last couple of weeks. I may do a review on them at some point. :)

      WolfQuest is multiplayer too. So it's something you and Conrad could play together!