Google Stadia review roundup - is the input delay bad? - Dexerto
Gaming

Google Stadia review roundup – is the input delay bad?

Published: 18/Nov/2019 23:03 Updated: 24/Nov/2019 12:26

by Eli Becht

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Google Stadia releases to the public on November 19, and reviews have started to drop for the new hardware. Here’s what people are saying.

It’s hard enough to launch a new game, but launching a whole new platform is another beast altogether, but that’s just what Google has done with Stadia.

Google promises Stadia will be a way to stream your favorite games without being tethered to a PC or console, but early returns have been mixed at best.

The launch lineup was quite small, featuring just 22 titles, even after last-second additions, and the input lag has been extremely hit or miss according to reviewers.

According to the Washington Post’s Gene Park, Stadia was unplayable at times and posted a gif showcasing how bad the input delay can be.

Forbes’ Paul Tassi shared a similar sentiment, experiencing lag that would lead to deaths across every game tested, and even some audio sync issues that made it all around an unenjoyable experience.

I would get periodic stuttering issues with massive resolution and frame drops,” he said. “Not all the time, but enough to be noticed frequently and disrupt gameplay, which is what everyone feared may happen with this kind of tech.”

With that said, it doesn’t sound like everyone shared the same experience as Digital Foundry’s Richard Leadbetter ran a series of lag tests and found results similar to how games perform on the Xbox One X. There was still a delay, but it wasn’t nearly on the same level as the previous two reviewers said.

Stadia seems to be hit-or-miss for players.

Venture Beat’s Jeff Grubb reported no significant issues with shooting in Destiny 2 and said the only thing that felt a bit off was playing online matches in Mortal Kombat 11.

Waypoint’s Patrick Klepek also said Destiny 2 felt fine, but explained something that feels fine to him might not be the same for everyone else.

At the end of the day, it sounds like Stadia won’t be for everyone, and your mileage with the platform will undoubtedly vary.

World of Warcraft

Best class for each Covenant in WoW Shadowlands

Published: 3/Dec/2020 13:09

by Ava Thompson-Powell

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When you reach level 60 in WoW Shadowlands, you’ll be invited to pledge your allegiance to one of the four zones. With this pledge comes access to a whole slew of benefits. From mounts and armor, all the way through to special, unique abilities, the decision is not one to take lightly.

Of course, World of Warcraft is an RPG, and there’s fun in creating the character that fits your personal fantasy. When choosing a Covenant for the first time, try not to rely so much on a particular class’ meta. Go with something you’ll enjoy – something that speaks to you.

In Shadowlands, upon leveling one character to 60, future alts are given a boost. So, it’s easy to have different characters for each of the four available options. Any alts you’ve created to hit level 50 have the option to skip the main campaign.

From here, you’re able to enter them straight into a Covenant and proceed with the leveling process through the end-game content. But which ones work best, thematically?

Skills, skills for all

WoW's Soulshape ability, showing a Vulpin form
Activision-Blizzard
The Night Fae signature skill turns you into a celestial animal.

One feature you’ll want to consider when picking a Covenant is the signature abilities. These are abilities that everybody receives, regardless of class. Each Covenant has two abilities that you’ll be utilizing for play. As you level through the campaign and move into each zone, you’ll have the chance to test these abilities. When coming to the choice of which Covenant to stand with, you’ll also have the option to test them out again on combat dummies.

We’ve detailed each Covenant’s signature abilities below:

Kyrian

  • Summon Steward: Call your steward to bring you a Phial of Serenity that can be consumed to restore 20% of your health and remove all Curse, Disease, Poison, and Bleed Effects. Your Steward additionally offers access to a selection of useful amenities for 4 min. Instant cast, 5 min cooldown.

Necrolord

  • Fleshcraft: Form a shield of flesh and bone over 4 sec that prevents damage equal to 20% of your maximum health. Channeling near a corpse claims their essence to grow the shield, up to 50% of your maximum health. This is most effective against powerful enemies.10 yd range, 4-sec channel, 2 min cooldown.

Nightfae

  • Soulshape: Turn into a Vulpin, teleporting 15 yds forward and increasing your movement speed by 50%. You may reactivate Soulshape every few sec to teleport again. Lasts 12-sec, or indefinitely while in a rest area. Instant cast, 1.5 min cooldown.

Venthyr

  • Door of Shadows: Wend through the shadows, appearing at the targeted location.35 yd range, 1.5-sec cast, 1 Charge, 1 min recharge

Class-specific skills really come into play with areas like Mythic+ dungeons and PvP, so it’s something you’ll need to carefully consider if you’re looking to go with the meta. If you’re a casual player, pick what sounds the most fun, or speaks to your character fantasy.

Onwards into the fray

Revendreth Door of Shadows teleporting skill showcase
Activision-Blizzard
Venthyr’s Door of Shadows is a great class for a Warlock, Undead character, or Rogue.

People have their own opinions about what classes work with each Covenant, and for many, it comes down to stats and skills. Here, we’ve instead listed what we personally believe works best for each Covenant thematically, also considering that class’s particular ability.

Kyrian – Human Paladin

WoW Human Paladin in the customization screen
Activision-Blizzard
The Human Paladin is a great choice for the Kyrian Covenant.

Reminiscent of Ancient Greek mythology with gigantic, winged beings and beautiful locales, these righteous crusaders are an ideal choice here.

The Tome of Divinity in WoW’s lore states that “in all things, Paladins must reflect the Light, which supplements our strength. To strive to be divine for one of our kind does not mean we strive for godhood–we strive to be good in all actions.” The lore gels incredibly well with the Kyrian ethos, which sees angelic, winged beings vow to protect and guide souls as they pass into the Shadowlands from their realm.

As protectors and guides, the Kyrian class ability for Paladins makes it a perfect choice, sending out replications of your own skills to other players and targets:

  • Divine Toll: Instantly cast Holy Shock, Avenger’s Shield, or Judgment on up to 5 targets within 30 yds (based on your current specialization).

Necrolord – Orc Warrior

Orc warrior in the WoW customization screen
Activision-Blizzard
The heroic Orc is a sound choice for a Maldraxxus Covenant member.

The battle-hardened and often misunderstood Orcs of Orgrimmar (and Mag’har Orcs, too!) are fantastic choices for the Necrolord Covenant.

Maldraxxus’ Covenant consists of war-like heroes and villains that forge undead hordes to defend the Shadowlands against potential outside threats. An army of sorts, this warlike band is an ideal choice for the honorable Orcs. Valuing the art of battle, along with the pride, and honor that comes with it, pairing an Orc with a warrior when aligning with Necrolord will serve you well.

As glorious, battle-hardened heroes that relish the art of war, the class-specific skill is:

  • Conqueror’s Banner: Plant the Conqueror’s Banner in the ground, granting 20% maximum health and 10% critical strike chance to you and 2 allies within 15 yds of the banner for 20 sec. Rage and killing enemies grants you Glory. Glory increases your critical strike damage by 1% per stack, up to 30%, for 30 sec.

Night Fae – Night Elves

Night Elf Druid in the WoW character customization screen
Activision-Blizzard
Thematically, and from a lore standpoint, Night Elves are a perfect coupling for Night Fae.

Night Elves are an obvious choice for the Night Fae of Ardenweald. Both are heavily rooted in nature, spirits, and the soul of the land.

The overseers of Ardenweald bring those that pass into the Shadowlands who have a deep rooting in the protection of the earth. The Night Fae oversee that passing over and eventual rebirth into the plane.

As a druid, this is a perfect fit alongside Night Elves. Druids and Night Elves’ connection to the Emerald Dream, along with their healing abilities and shapeshifting work hand in hand.

Depending on your specialization, the Druid ability skill sees the player connect and invoke the Night Fae:

  • Convoke the Spirits: Call upon the Night Fae for an eruption of energy, channeling a rapid flurry of 12 Druid spells and abilities over 4 sec.

Venthyr – Blood Elf Rogue

Blood Elf standing on the landing character creation screen in Shadowlands
Activision-Blizzard
As Blood Elves, an obvious link towards Venthyr is apparent.

With Blood Elves’ prior addiction to arcane magics that were sated through drinking from the Sunwell, there’s an obvious connection to the beings of Venthyr. Tall, vampiric, and gothic, the creatures there sate themselves with red anima energy, drawing it out of those lost souls who live there as a form of penance.

The elven race of the Horde is often seen as stuck up, beautiful and a stark contrast to many of the other Horde races. Beings that roam around Revendreth have a similar air and grace to them, what with their carrying of parasols and hosting of elaborate, lavish parties.

The Rogue skill for Venthyr is also a no-brainer when pairing it up against the signature ability that allows the player to slip into the shadows and teleport away from their current location:

  • Flagellation: Lash the target 3 times, dealing (6% of Attack power) Shadow damage and adding a stack of Flagellation for each lash. The target remains tormented for 20 sec, receiving an additional lash for each combo point you spend. Reactivating Flagellation cleanses their torment, increasing your Haste by 0.5% per stack, up to a maximum of 15% Haste for 20 sec.

After all is said and done, it comes down to the personal preference of whether you’re looking to go with a character fantasy, or if you’re trying to focus on the current meta. These, though, are our recommendations in what works alongside one another.