Saturday, February 23, 2008

Tabula Rasa - Warps and Logos Puzzles

When Tabula launched I ran a feature on titled Tabula Rasa: Saying Goodbye to Planetside. In the featured I compared Tabula Rasa to the only game even remotely in the same genre, and at the same time covered many of the basic mechanics for how the game worked. Well, now I'm going to go back over one of the mechanics of Tabula Rasa that holds a lot of potential for future gameplay, the logos puzzles. In the Gamenikki feature I rattled off several of the future possibilities of how logos usage could be integrated into the game and went over a couple of the puzzles already in the game. At the same time I'm also going to go over the usage of warp points in order to get around the maps.

So lets catch up with Zed Blogtest. Seem's Zed has found a bright blue door in Daghda's Urn. This is a logos locked door. The 5 circles around the door hold the symbol of logos the player will need to have in order to pass.

As Zed approaches the door he finds that the lock is turning red. Zed does not have the logos he needs in order to enter. Zed will need to leave and find the missing logos before he can enter.

Zed's now at the waypoint teleporter for Daghda's Urn. Lets go over the basics of using a waypoint.

When Zed steps into one of the minor waypoints he is presented with a map showing all of the unlocked waypoints in the zone.

Currently the only other waypoint Zed has been through is found in Alia Das.

The waypoints can also be used to switch between servers. The right hand column shows that there are currently 4 Wilderness servers available. Zed is going to head to Wilderness-3.

Here Zed has chosen to go to Alia Das in Wilderness 3. A click to teleport...

And the players find themselves at a loading screen.

And now Zed is in Alia Das, Wilderness 3.

Since Zed has to go hunt some more logos we'll leave him alone for a bit and talk a bit more about instance switching.

Why would you switch server instances anyways? Well, the primary reason is due to lag. A less populated server is quick to play on. Another reason is to take back or defend control points, which will be addressed in another walkthrough. When hunting special spawn monsters or bosses, it's also a good idea to head to a lower populated instance where the spawns are more likely to be present.

So what's Zed been up to? Well, hes' now outside of Ranja Gorge checking out his list of gained logos. He thinks he has all of the logos now to open up that door in Daghda's Urn.

A quick check to his map verifies that he has the Ranja Gorge Waypoint.

And of course the Daghda's Urn waypoint hasn't disappeared.

As Zed enters the Ranja Gorge waypoint the map shows all of the available waypoints.

Word of advice, some waypoints are one way warps only, such as those found in Control-Points. You can use them to leave, but you can't use them to enter.

This time the door lock cons white and Zed can enter the Logos Chamber.

One of the factors to keep in mind about the logos is that they sometimes form word puzzles. For example, to enter this chamber you need to have the logos mind...

The logos power...

Which gets you here.

There's another logos puzzle in the game that Zed is going to go have a look at, but he needs to get over to Palisades first, which means a long walk. Zed's first stop is by Twin Pillars to pick up the dropship waypoint there.

The dropship Zed is looking at is designed for inter-continental travel. Zed can use it to switch between the Wilderness, Divide, and Palisades zones.

Zed has managed to make it to Foreas Base in Divide and takes a moment to grab the dropship waypoint there.

As Zed enters the dropship pad he is presented with a similar map to a local waypoint map. However this map shows all of the dropship zones that have been picked up.

Back behind the Foreas Base dropship pad players will find the Foreas Base Wormhole.

After a harrowing trip through eastern Divide Zed has arrived at the relative safety of Cumbria Research Facility, where he finds that not all dropship pads call down a dropship he can use.

Ah here we go. Can you translate this obelisk? I can. I'll also note that one of those white dots around me is a named boar.

Word of advice: When players get to the obelisk translation puzzle in Palisades it is tempting to ask for the meaning of the puzzle over the chat channels. This is actually one of the worst things that can be done. As I covered over in feature there is a steady progression of the logos puzzles to teach players how to hunt for the logos, and how the logos are used as the in-game language. Once the player collects all of the logos in the Palisades Zone the meaning of the obelisk will become clear. At the same time players might get a basic understanding of where the logos puzzles could go in the future.

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