Pages

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Crypto-Questing 2



Welcome to another fine Cryptogram.  Answer up on December 10.  Best of luck.

To get started, write out the alphabet on a piece of paper and look for recurring letters in the quest text below, then make educated guesses as to what the words might be.  The words will soon form intriguing sentences.



EHTL ZISLYJ GHL SKKBI’Z DBZZBOF ZHOZ GHTOK XJI LIDSBOZ HG SDASYJ UJISXAIE YATXYJBOF JBZ MLHXJIL’Z WHTLOSA. XJI ASZX YLEVXBY IOXLBIZ ZIID XH LIPISA XJSX SDASYJ JISLK GIAA PHBYIZ YHDBOF GLHD XJI ZHTXJILO LISYJIZ HG XJI MSLLHU-KHUOZ.
 

Friday, December 2, 2016

Dear Corpse, Thanks!

I finally got two mounts from my datapad generously given to me by The Corpse while she was in game.  It was night time so the pictures aren't so glorious, but creature pets and mounts in Galaxies are all part of the happy life you can lead in the Galaxy.


Elsinor Dustbunnie on her Cupa at last.  A merchant who sells Swoops and Speeder bikes doesn't want to be seen about town on a flaming swoop.  Instead she can trot in on her sweet mount named after herself.  It occurs to me Elsinor does not have an equivalent character in the live game.  Noone had her particular skill set.




My Architect on her Dewback named CookieeMonster.  My live game Architect meant to be a chef, so she had her Dewback named CookieeMonster to sort of RP the profession.   While leveling up the Artisan tree, she made a few pieces of furniture and put them in her house.  That was it, no more chef, Architect forever.  She loved her CookieeMonster, and she cried when she was taken away in the NGE. 

Dewbacks are a royal pain to fight in the wild because they group up on you and just pound on you.  As a mount, look at that SMILE!  They are the happiest creatures, and they bound merrily rather than running or walking.

Better pictures as we go along, and in daylight so you can see these sweeties.  I'm so happy to get them out of my datapad.

Fo' Grizzle My Shizzle

I've gotten waylayed by holidays, Darkmoon Faire and a certain other game and my World of Warcraft rotation has slowed way down.

I'm currently working in the Grizzly Hills area of Northrend with my level 79 Assassination Rogue.  Three boxes to level 80!  I have never completed the quests in this area, or (cringe/cone of shame) all of Northrend.


A goal for 2017 will be to get Loremaster for all areas of the game.  That is why I'm going to let this character get the achievement for Grizzly Hills and every other area of Northrend.  Who better to complete everything than a sneaky sneaky rogue?


As you can see, it's going to take her a few turns/levels to complete this area, let alone Northrend generally.  Since I'm already working 9 characters towards 110, I don't need these other characters to rush through content I've done so many times.  I'm going to stop and enjoy the scenery, get my trade skills to level, and go fishing as often as needed to live the fine life.  And become the Loremaster I should have been long ago.



Note: My Bartle Explorer self has done much better with the Exploration of Northrend:


Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Cryptogram Answer From The Secret World

Last Week's Cryptogram is from The Secret World.   The Quest is from Dawning of An Endless Night, Tier 7  (I'm not so far along :)


Quest Text:




Whatever it was Joe Slater was talking about, a man called Beaumont seems to have it in his possession.  He stilled the song and moved the mysterious item to a safer place, but he can’t use it yet.  He called it a key, but he has yet to locate the lock, and he cursed the Illuminati and their labyrinths.

UZBKRNRE HK UBX VTR XDBKRE UBX KBDJHCQ BSTYK, B LBC IBDDRW SRBYLTCK XRRLX KT ZBNR HK HC ZHX ATXXRXXHTC. ZR XKHDDRW KZR XTCQ BCW LTNRW KZR LGXKREHTYX HKRL KT B XBMRE ADBIR, SYK ZR IBC’K YXR HK GRK. ZR IBDDRW HK B JRG, SYK ZR ZBX GRK KT DTIBKR KZR DTIJ, BCW ZR IYEXRW KZR HDDYLHCBKH BCW KZRHE DBSGEHCKZX.


It's all clear, right?  I have three more ready and thought I'd put them up every other week since they're so long.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Crypto-Questing

Inventory Full had a really great post on quests in EQ2 and GW2  A Quest By Any Other Name.  This got me thinking that I really love questing, and that some games have really excellent quest writing and some are just sort of put out by the Quest-A-Matic Machine.

If I were a serious, analytical person (which I ought to be, but dang, it just isn't me) I could write a nice post about, at the very least---my favorite quests or something. But no. I'm a buffoon from Buffoonville.

Instead, as I was working on a post on my other blog, making the first line of a book into a Cryptogram, something I used to do regularly, I thought BOINK!  I can make Cryptograms from quest text in games I play.

Not only do you, the unsuspecting reader, get to try to solve the Cryptogram, but you get to try to guess what game the quest is from.  OMG.  Laff riot!

I'm a bit stressed, and this is the sort of thing that happens when I'm under duress.  Not pretty.  I'm only drinking ice water, fyi.

Let's do this!



To get started, write out the alphabet on a piece of paper and look for recurring letters in the quest text below, then make educated guesses as to what the words might be.  The words will soon form intriguing sentences.

The Answer will be posted Tuesday November 22.


UZBKRNRE HK UBX VTR XDBKRE UBX KBDJHCQ BSTYK, B LBC IBDDRW SRBYLTCK XRRLX KT ZBNR HK HC ZHX ATXXRXXHTC. ZR XKHDDRW KZR XTCQ BCW LTNRW KZR LGXKREHTYX HKRL KT B XBMRE ADBIR, SYK ZR IBC’K YXR HK GRK. ZR IBDDRW HK B JRG, SYK ZR ZBX GRK KT DTIBKR KZR DTIJ, BCW ZR IYEXRW KZR HDDYLHCBKH BCW KZRHE DBSGEHCKZX. 

Monday, November 7, 2016

I Like Her But I Need To Kill Her

I am excited to be playing the Skyrim Special Edition.  My original game plays merely ok on my PC, but except for some odd lag, it plays much more smoothly with this Remaster.

I am really loving my Elder Scrolls Online character, so I thought I'd try a Breton Mage in Skyrim as well.  I have used a little magic in other Elder Scrolls games, but never have played an entirely magic user.  Having a Claymore at hand resolves fights so efficiently.  Run up on NPC, whack, whack, they're dead, particularly those weak magic users.

The good news is, the Mage is fun to play, though I haven't quite got enough confidence in her skills and my use of them yet.  Getting better with each encounter.

The bad news is, though she looked sort of ok on the character creation screen, my Mage is a crone like horror story.  I just can't play this scary thing.


I play third person view always, and thought she might be doable in a cowl, but no, now she looks like she'd kill you in your sleep.  Even more.


Luckily I'm not far along at all, I'm just working the Whiterun area.  Not much time will be lost starting over, but much will be gained by her well deserved demise.

Friday, October 21, 2016

World Of Altcraft

Ah, World of Warcraft with your twelve characters per server, how do I love thee?  Enough so that  I decided to rotate all my characters on both my main servers.  Those little characters waiting in the wings now only have to wait a week or so between adventures.

I have characters spread from the Broken Isles to Northrend to one lowbie at Chillwind camp.  This has made the game so much more fun than I can say.  There's no repetitive grinding character after character through the same zones and quests.  No two characters following each other on the list are in the same place.  The two servers have a different flavor, so that makes things interesting too.

During a level, everyone works on quests, exploration, resource gathering, fishing ,cooking, first aid, archaeology, plus Class Quests for the 100+ characters.  Each character's turn goes so fast.

I find that normally I forget quite how to play classes that haven't been played in awhile, but now, they come fairly quickly and I'm right back in there.

I spent some time with Timewalking Dungeons last week.  I must whine that I kept getting the Arcatraz over and over with different characters, and every group had trouble with the dungeon.  So painful.  I finally just stopped queuing for the Timewalks partially because I couldn't stand one more run through that annoying place.    Most groups also had trouble in The Slave Pens right at the entrance to the last ramp to the last boss.  Argh people, quit pulling the whole room.

I haven't been running dungeons for quite awhile, and I could not tell if some of my own problems were because of Class changes or perhaps I've lost my Dungeon-y Edge.  I'm getting back in there.  No more Weenie Woman.

That said, I do see dungeons as a measure of how well I'm playing my characters.  Though I normally just ignore class changes and adapt to whatever the new style of play is, I think Legion has brought the most severe changes I can recall.  Some classes are so easy now, and others are a real struggle.

Stand Outs for Awesome Class Play

Feral Cat
Arms Warrior
Assassination Rogue
Destruction Warlock
Demon Hunter

Please Pick My Dead Body Off the Floor Classes

Frost Death Knight
Discipline Priest
Elemental Shaman

Ok

Monk
Beast Master Hunter
Frost Mage
Retribution Paladin
Shadow Priest

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Elder Scrolls Online: One Tamriel

I've been waiting for the October update to One Tamriel so I could create a new character in an area I haven't spent time in.  All my time in ESO so far had been in the Aldmeri Dominion covering the Summerset Isles, Valenwood and Elsweyr.

Now I have a Breton Templar in Stros M'Kai, an island off of Hammerfell (which I haven't seen yet).    I wanted to try a magic user.   She looks a bit like someone from my high school days, but I'm trying not to hold it against her.




See how different she looks in a pirate disguise:



I'm having fun working in an area where I don't know the storylines at all.  Everyone is completely dishonest, here.  I think I've only met one honest person, and he wanted me to bring him someone's head.   Yet, I feel bad that in trying to complete a quest line I chose to lie and say I hadn't seen a particular thief at all.  The impulse is always tell the truth!

...A wretched hive of scum and villainy if there ever was one....

This time around I'm reading beginners tips for the game, and trying to take it slow and build the character right so she doesn't get stuck at level 11.  In a cave.   With a boss and adds.   Dead.

Once again I have to comment how much this feels like playing a traditional Elder Scrolls game.  The world, the music, the quest system, picking flowers (la la la).   And yet, it has what you always wished the "real games" would have, other people adventuring along with you (acting as "meatshields").

I've yet to do dungeons or any of the group content, but my Breton is a Healer, so I really want to use her skills with other people, and make the world a better place.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Rift: An Intrepid Adventure

I sent my level 48 Mage into an Intrepid Adventure called Hammerknell Fortress.  It is a somehow re-worked raid that can be joined by anyone levels 10-65 via the Instant Adventure interface.

I've never raided, and at first I thought it was pretty easy.  Then this big guy popped up:


He didn't do much damage to me at my distance and though water kept splashing through, it didn't do any damage or move you around like a wave would.  He was mostly impressive for his size.

Then as we went along some smaller mobs were radiating damage even after they were dead.  Eek.  A Boss called Matron Zamira did me in (and everyone else) a fair few times.  I had to bow out for repairs.  She just cast wave after wave of damage you couldn't seem to avoid from anywhere in the room.

 
Most interesting.

I was unable to loot most mobs, I didn't see any reason for it, but I love my loot.   I'll have to figure out what was going on there.

I may not be ready for raids elsewhere, but I'm sure going to try this one again.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

An Engaging World

As I was writing that last Rift post, I jotted down several things that have led me to return to Rift over and over. 

I used to have a huge "this is what I require in an MMO" list that was based on everything that I'd lost when SWG went under.  Having played so many different games since then, my list is smaller, but I think for me these are the qualities I'm looking for:

Characters you like to play.  This is a combination of how they look, how well their name fits them, how successfully you are able to fight, and what abilities the class has.



An engaging world.  We're all explorers here, folks, and traveling through any world for the first time should be a pleasure and a grand adventure.  Cities and landscapes should be distinctive.  You should be seeing something you will never see anywhere else.



An interesting and useful crafting system.  There should be a treasure hunt feel to finding resources, you should be able to make decorative things for your character and their homes, and armor, potions, scrolls, jewelry, enhancements of all kind that make the game more fun to play through something you've created.



A variety of ways to level up.  Different paths through the world, extra xp from resource gathering, dungeons, public quest systems, crafting, the more ways you can make the route to the top fun, the better.


Music plays an important part in setting the mood for a world or making combat more exciting.  It should never be unnoticeable or set you on edge.  It should welcome you in whenever the game loads and become part of your memory of adventuring in imaginary lands.