Parliament of Rooks has existed as a guild in several games over the years. We go where the excitement takes us. Many members have similar MMO backgrounds. Most are old school players having broke their teeth in Ultima Online. My first MMO was Everquest back in 2000. I was a mage named McFisticuffs.
There are just so many MMOs, past, present, and future, this site cannot be dedicated to them all. However, this webpage goes into detail the many MMOs Parliament of Rooks has participated in.
Shadowbane is where Parliament of Rooks started. On July 14, 2003 our gaming guild and online community began, and it was in this game we were most active/powerful for the longest amount of time. Soon we found our camaraderie transcended games altogether as the community remained even though our presence in games didn't always do the same.
Shadowbane is where we found our love of PvP: city sieging, group skirmishes, and stealth hit and runs. We also learned what it meant to run an empire as this game allowed us to build and maintain cities where NPC's made the gear and we had to find resources to get them to make better equipment. Shadowbane is 100% skill based with equipment coming in second. Character templates varied far and wide and what path you chose with your character determined how you'd play it. Skills, attributes, and powers were all chosen by the player making this game one of the best for me because I was in control and had to rely on carefully distributing the points alotted to me, rather than rely on a mob dropping "uber leet shit".
Most of us Rooks will agree, there hasn't been a game yet that rivals Shadowbane's PvP experience, even though there are many that have definitely surpassed the game's coding (the game was riddled with bugs) and graphical qualities.
If, however, Shadowbane were remade with improvments to its coding (immense server lag is not good in 200 vs. 200 battles), updated graphics, content quests, and new aspects such as sea battles it could easily be the best game ever.
For a more detailed background on our participation in this game here is a link to the our old Shadowbane webpages: http://personified.net/parliament/parliament-sb/about.html
Being a comic book fan, I was drawn to this game because it offered the chance to be a hero (City of Villains was not yet released). There was no PvP content at the time Parliament of Rooks played this game, but it was still fun for us seeing all the different characters people created. This is the stand out feature of this game. The immense creation system allowed us to easily lose hours just tweaking the look of a character. Serious or funny, all the avatars created were fairly original.
Our time spent in this game was brief as it served as a hold over when we tired of Shadowbane, and World of Warcraft hadn't yet been released. Many members soon grew bored of this game because the quest grinding was slow as molasses, most villains from level to level looked the same and just hit harder, and while the power-ups were nice to augment our characters there was no PvP.
No matter what, City of Heroes will stand out as a fun game even if there were 15,000,000 Wolverine clones running around, and Connor you were one of them. I have the pictures to prove it.
And yes, the pink hero in the above picture is mine. His name is Tinky, and he is a Fire Tanker. He is marvelous.
World of Warcraft was probably one of the most anticipated games of all time. Being a fan of the RTS games I was eager to play this game and thrilled that Blizzard was releasing it for the Mac (much like Shadowbane was). I first heard about the game in 2001 and like a puppy waiting at the door for his owner to come home and greet him, I kept my eyes on many websites looking for any news on the game.
The Parliament made our presence known in World of Warcraft in both the Beta and Gold releases. We established our guild and made a go at the game for a good year before realizing that WoW just wasn't for us. While the PVE was decent, the PVP was lacking. We wanted player-ran cities and sieging. We didn't care for the obvious focus on gear and gear grinding over character building/customization, and in the early days getting members of various races together for the low levels was very difficult. This is not to say we didn't enjoy ourselves in the game, but it just wasn't for us.
While I may sound very critical, we Rooks had did have fun in WoW, even if it was for a brief time. For a look at our World of Warcraft web pages click on the following link: http://personified.net/parliament/parliament-wow/about.html
An Update: I played WoW again in 2008, shortly after the release of Wrath of the Lich King, through the summer of 2009. Level and skill progression had vastly improved in terms of getting raw components and speed. Gold accumulation had also improved as quest rewards and farming were fairly lucrative. However, the game was still a gear game and things got repetitive fast. PvP is still not anywhere near filled of risk as Shadowbane's PvP. I found a good raiding guild that was fun to be in, and I even got a few Rooks to come join me.
In 2010 I came back for the Cataclysm. I had fun, got several toons to 85, rejoined my friends whom I played with previously, and raided and pvp'd extensively. The game is better in that it is easier to do most everything--this is good for those casual players such as myself who can't really dedicate the time we once could. I'll probably come back for the next expansion, but soon I'll be on break again.
Guild Wars had the interesting idea of no subscription fee. Just pay for the expansions and you're good to go. Plus there was an integrated PvP system from the get go. As WoW was becoming couldnt' hold our interest as a guild, Guild Wars became our next online destination. Unfortunately this was also a period when many members' real lives, including mine, was taking many away from the keyboard for an extended time.
Suffice it to say, a lack of active members and in game factors (honestly it's been so long I can't remember what they all were) led us to leave Guild Wars, except for a few such as Afen, rather quickly.
From mid 2005 until late 2007 I was not an MMO participant. Life took priority and our guild didn't really exist in a game, but we held strong as a community. When I was able to rejoin my friends online and game again in Shadowbane, the game we always went back to, I came across Age of Conan. I had heard rumblings of this game a while back but had forgotten about it. In the fall of 2007 I heard about the game again and researched it: Epic quests, great graphics, gore-filled fatalities, player cities and battle keeps, massive PvP, a world filled with great lore, and a storyline that was top-notch. Age of Conan was what the Parliament of Rooks had always wanted in an MMO.
Come early spring of 2008 I was full on wanting to play this game, and even went and bought the collected short stories by Robert E. Howard. I already had the movies. The guild geared up to get ready to play the game. We began recruiting on the forums, and once the game was released we raced to form the guild and start our city, which is currently Tier 1 on Deathwhisper Server.
Unfortunately, due to bugs, a community of people who wouldn't give something time thus resulting in a population decline, the release of Warhammer Online, and people heading back to WoW, our presense in Age of Conan was hard won. We had a promising guild of new and old recruits, and we played on Cimmeria Server, an RP-PVP server having moved from Deathwhisper due to a severe population drop off. Our time in AoC was longer than most players' but it just couldn't keep our attention, and that old factor called real life kept playing its hand.
I have faith in the developers' abilities to constantly and consistently make improvements in this revolutionary MMO, and I still keep myself updated on the game. The expansion, Rise of the Godslayer, looks great and I may give it a go some day.
If you've read all of this, it might seem our guild is fickle, that we simply enter into a game, give it a go, and leave rather quickly . This isn't the case. As time moves, new games come into the foray that offer promises not found in the current game we play. However, we don't move every time a new MMO is released. We try and stay until either no one wants to play, or the environment is so dead there is no one else to play with. There is also the burn-out factor where a game just simply gets old for whatever reason. It's hard to recruit new members and retain both them and the old guard. I'm sure anyone who has ever participated in a guild realizes this. I think this is what makes MMOs and guilds unique: It is a social community that mostly relies on the game being played to survive. If the game fails the guild might also. This is not true of every guild and it certainly isn't of the parliament, for which I am supremely grateful.
There are many Parliament of Rooks members who stay in contact with each other regardless of what game is or isn't being played. I count myself lucky because of this, and I also count my guild a success because of this.
What does the future hold for Parliament of Rooks? Who knows. MMOs are always being made and when something comes along that catches our eye, you might see us there. If you have a story to tell, and a need for like-minded company, come and join us. Speak and be judged, the Parliament awaits.
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