Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

May Gaming Goals in Review

Another month done with? That’s pretty crazy. Where is this year going?

Next month is the release of Stormblood. Due to that, I think I’m going to take some time off from setting goals. I’ll be too far into exploring and learning about the new expansion to want to put hard-fast goals down. The only thing I really would like to accomplish is playing Red Mage and leveling that if I find I enjoy it.

So, no goals in June!

But what happened in May? I think I did pretty well!

Final Fantasy XIV

  • Level Black Mage to 50 ✓
  • Level Zemi’s Ninja ✓
  • Buy Fokelore Books ✓
  • Buy Master Crafting Books ✓

I did get my Black Mage to 50 this month, but I haven’t worked on leveling the job beyond. That’s probably alright seeing that leveling from 50-60 is going to get easier in a few weeks anyhow.

I also unlocked Zemi’s Ninja and leveled it to 32 last night, which is the equivalent of where I left off on Warrior. I’d like to keep working on this character to have him close to ready for Samurai, but I don’t know how much motivation I really have for it.

I did buy two Fokelore books for my Botanist, leaving just one more left. I hope in Stormblood, they don’t put something like Fokelore books in because this was just a pain.

And, whenever I had some extra crafting scrips, I picked up Master Crafting IV books. I don’t have all of them yet, but I have the important ones. I still need to go back and get Master Crafting II books, but I’ve been lazy about it. Maybe after Stormblood releases. 😀

And, that’s about it for this month. I actually took a bit of time away from the game, but still managed to hit most of my important goals. Looking forward to all the changes in June!

Posted in IRL, Kitty Korner

Kitty Korner: Unexpected Kitten #2

I’m not sure if this is the year of the cat or something, but I seem to be attracting way more strays that I have a right to. So here is unexpected kitten story #2.

I was pulling out of work to go and grab some lunch when I saw out of the corner of my eye a tiny marmalade stripe kitten along the road. It was acting peculiar — this is a very busy two lane road, and it was walking TOWARDS the flow of traffic, crying at the cars as if it was looking for something.

Now, there were bushes and a ditch behind it, but on the other side of a narrow strip of land is an interstate full of cars rushing 80 mph or so. So, between the busy road in front of work and that interstate, I was sure this kitten wouldn’t survive long if it was walking towards the cars.

I quickly pulled around and parked. Then I ran across the street to the bushes to try and see if it would come to me. It was scared, but it didn’t bolt on sight like a feral would, so I tried to approach it. I got within a foot of it before it ran into the bushes.

I grabbed lunch, but the kitten was on my mind. I didn’t know if it had run far away, or if it was still there in the ditch. I felt bad that I had blown my shot at catching it.

It hardly looked a month old, and it was alone. I saw no other siblings or mother cat around.

I told my boss about the kitten, since she had been part of kitten rescues around the work campus in the past. We agreed to keep watching for it, and if it showed up again, we’d call out the humane society to come out and trap it.

I looked for it on and off all day and didn’t see it again. Not until I was pulling out to go home from work.

Again, there was the kitten, walking towards the road (which was even more busy at rush hour) and crying at the cars. I did a quick swerve back into the parking lot, ran back across the road, and tried a second time.

The kitten hid again under a bush, but kept crying at me. So I meowed back (I probably speak terrible cat) in a tone I’ve heard mother cats use before. Surprisingly, the kitten stayed still enough for me to grab it. It pitched a fit, but I scruffed it and didn’t let go.

I had no idea if I had a feral who was going to go wild on me the moment I unscruffed. But I took that chance and ran him back across the street to my car.

The two of us had a moment of reckoning there in the driver seat. The kitten stared straight up into my face, in a way that an animal does when it knows people, and when I let it go, it started to cling to me rather than bite.

I calmed it down, then took it inside work since I had no way to transport it anywhere. My co-workers instantly gathered around, and in short time, he (confirmed he) began to purr. We got him some milk, a box for transport, and I brought him home.

Turns out he’s a super social kitten, and very, very sweet. He’s also a lovely kitten, but so young that his eyes are still blue. I’m trying to give him a safe calm place away from my other two jealous kitties. He’s eating and doing alright.

But as lovely and sweet as he is (and he is super, super social), I know I can’t keep a third cat. I’m hoping to home him with a co-worker or their family, but for now, I’m going to get him into the vet as soon as I can.

Posted in Gaming, Mobile Gaming, Virtual Pets

Magikarp Jump

So I’ve been itching for a pet raising/breeding game lately. And while the new Magikarp Jump mobile app is not really that, it still seems to scratch that itch. Bonus points that it’s simple, cute, and doesn’t take a lot of my time up.

I’d been hearing about this around the net, and decided to download it yesterday. The idea is that there’s… well… here…

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So you come to Hoppy Town, where Mayor Karp wants to regain morale by winning the league. Not the Pokemon League. But the Magikarp jumping league.

See, about the only thing you can train Magikarp to do well is jump higher. So this is a game about doing just that, and then taking your trained Magikarp to the league to challenge other NPC trainers to see who jumps the highest.

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The Pond and Food

Your Magikarp gets their own little pond where food slowly rains down. You tap the food to feed them.

Each type of food increases their JP (Jump Points) by a different amount. You can buy different types of food as your trainer ranks up, and you can actually rank up the individual food types by coins that you earn through playing the game.

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You can also buy decorations and themes for your pond. Decorations can have different bonus effects, such as bonus experience for your Magikarp, or your own trainer levels.

Leveling System

I’ve been talking about leveling, but how does that work?

You have two types of leveling going on: your Trainer rank and your Magikarp’s level.

You gain more Trainer ranks as you win battles and successfully retire your Magikarps. Each time your Trainer rank rises, the max level your next generation of Magikarp can be raises.

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For example, at the start of the game, your first Magikarp is capped at level 11. Once he reaches that point, he must challenge the league and make it as far as he can. Once he can no longer beat the next opponent, he retires to a nice life in a retirement pond.

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Then, you’re allowed to fish up a new generation of Magikarp. However, since you’ve likely gained a few Trainer levels between now and then, your new Magikarp now maxes out at something like level 13 instead of level 11. And it keeps going up in that sort of cycle.

Training

Aside from food, another way to increase JP is to train your Magikarp. Here’s where the timed mobile app elements of the game comes in. You have a max number of training points (right now I have 3), which replenish over time.

Sometimes an event will give you a point back. When you gain a Trainer rank,  you get your training points back. And you can use items to get the points back.

So, if you’re impatient, yeah,  you can use real money to buy fake money to buy items to replenish your training points. But I honestly don’t see a reason to need to.

Patterns

Magikarp can come in a variety of colors and patterns. This is another one of the collectability features of this game. You even have a Dex to record the patterns you’ve found so far.

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I know that Shiny Magikarp exist as I’ve seen it mentioned online.

Overall

Overall, this is a cute little Pokemon pet game you can play whenever you have a little bit of time to waste. While there are in-app purchases, I don’t see it as being super tempting to me, and it’s not so in-your-face as to turn me off.

I left out a few details here and there so that if you decide to try the game, there would still be a lot of surprises to experience!

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Dragon Ninja

I’m trying to get back into the swing of things after several days of being down with the cold. But during that time, I did make progress on one of my goals for this month – leveling Zemi and unlocking Ninja for him.

You might remember that I started Zemi as a Warrior, but then I decided I didn’t want to go through the MSQ as a tank (even though I probably could just fine). So I asked everyone to vote for what job he should take instead, and the result was Ninja.

The thing is, I left off on the MSQ at about level 27. So I had a ways to go before I could pick that up as a leveling tool again. I’ve been bumming leveling roulettes and PotD runs from FC folks, and had finally gotten his Rogue up to the upper 20s again.

Then, I remembered that dreaded sub-job leveling, which I think is going to be going away with Stormblood. So, I spent most of one of my sick days getting Zemi through the embarrassing pre-teen levels of Pugilist.

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…not one of Zemi’s finer moments….

But that’s all over with now because I got back on the MSQ train and unlocked Ninja for him! Woo!

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The plan is to take Ninja to 50 where I can hopefully pick up Samurai once Stormblood comes out. We’ll see how that goes. I’m not going to stress over it, though, because this is mostly a side project. I just think Zemi would look awesome in Samuari AF!

But for now, he’s moving along as Ninja.

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Much better!

Posted in Art, FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Commissioned Character Artwork!

I don’t often commission artwork, but I do like to support fellow creators and artists, especially when they’re such kind a friend and FC-mate as Bean Baguette.

I was stoked at the opportunity to have her draw my FFXIV character. I requested her wearing the birthday gift I got from my FC – the Eastern Garb. Not only did Bean do that, but she drew some of the other gifts – the Doman Magpie and a pose inspired by the Eastern Dance.

I’m all ready for Stormblood! Woo!

What’s even more incredible is that I was able to watch her stream the art as it came to life yesterday. Just magical. You can check out that stream here!

Thank you so much, Bean!!

Posted in Gaming, Nintendo Switch, Zelda Breath of the Wild

Nintendo Switch Weekend: Zelda BotW & Minecraft

So I spent a good chunk of my weekend playing my Nintendo Switch, and I had every intention to blog about it yesterday. But that was before I came down with this cold/flu business, and before the Stormblood hype took my attention away.

I juggled between Zelda and Minecraft most the weekend, and overall had a pretty awesome time with them both.

Minecraft

Most of what I did in Minecraft this weekend was to take the little village I discovered and start building protection around it. Seen here, it has a nice snowy mountain backdrop and everything.

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I built my own house as part of the town, and tried my hand at actually building something more than a box for once. It’s not fantastic, but functional for now.

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As I started putting a fence around the village and placing torches, I found a hill I decided I wanted to level so I could use the land as pasture or more building space.

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As I started pulling it down, I discovered there was a tiny underground cave with a pool there. I thought that was kinda neat, so I kept the water and turned it into a village swimming pool area. Here’s what it looked like after I got it cleared and fixed up.

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Me being me, I also captured a bunch of horses, including this mother and son pair. Once the son grew up, I tamed him, too!

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I’ve got most of the fencing and lighting complete, and have been testing it at night to see where danger might come from. I’ll be building more houses to hopefully expand the population soon!

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Zelda: Breath of the Wild

I’d wanted to chronicle my adventurers of Zelda, but lost momentum with that back when a power surge took out my Switch’s dock and power supply. I did get this repaired, and actually was able to replace the power supply of all the gadgets I owned, except for my TV (RIP). I ended up replacing my TV with a nice monitor, so all is well.

However, with the Switch out of commission, I didn’t make my goal of defeating my second Divine Beast in Zelda in April. Over the weekend, however, I rectified that!

Warning: Spoilers!

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I went in thinking that Rudania would be as difficult or harder that Ruta. I was really surprised when I breezed through it, including the boss fight. Unlike Ruta, I only got stuck on one of the doors, and it was due to a technicality.

So I beat up the boss there and gained a new protection skill for Link!

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Following that, I cleared a handful of Shrines, and found a new fairy for gear upgrades!

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I then tackled clearing some of the towers, including one up in the north that I’d been puzzling over for a while. This unlocked a bunch of the map I didn’t have before, and I felt pretty darn accomplished. I still have a lot more to go, though.

I headed off to the south west where the land turned dry and desert. Though I’d faced Death Mountain, which required fire resistance, this area required heat resistance instead. It’s still very neat and atmospheric.

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I got my first glimpse of the next Divine Beast on my list. This looks like it’ll be a doozy with sandstorms and lightning.

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And then, I run into Gerudo Town, which doesn’t allow Link to enter because he’s a guy. Of course, the answer to this was pretty simple.

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Anyhow, I got in to talk to the chief there, and they gave me a quest to recover a stolen artifact to prove I’m really a legendary hero. And…. that’s pretty much where I left off.

Honestly, my quest log in BotW is getting quite long with unfinished quests to the point I’m getting antsy and feeling a bit behind in that area. I know it’s not important and that you can play the game at your own pace, but I don’t like a messy quest log. So I might have to clean that up before I keep moving forward.

Disgaea Disappointment

One last thing about the Switch. Disgaea 5 came out today, and though I pre-order a copy from Amazon a week ago, my copy didn’t come. It seems Amazon had oversold their pre-order stock or something, and they don’t know when they’ll be getting any more in.

Seeing that between the Prime discount and some Amazon trade-in credit I got the game for an extremely discounted price, I’m going to try and wait it out on this. I’ve got plenty enough to keep my attention with Zelda and Minecraft, especially after hearing just how deep down the rabbit hole Disgaea can take you.

If you want to know more, check this out:

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Stormblood Battle System Changes from Live Letter XXXVI

Have you ever gone to write a post about something and realize that the topic is just so massive that there’s no easy way to break it down? That’s how I feel about digesting all the battle system changes the FFXVI team shared in the newest Live Letter.

I wanted to write something more in-depth about it, but honestly, I’m sick with a cold that started last night, and not feeling completely up to par with tackling what would be something huge even if I was feeling well. I’ll say that overall, I feel positive about what I’m seeing.

If you want the Live Letter in its entirety, here you go. Just know that it’s almost 4 and a half hours long.

https://player.twitch.tv/?video=v146267937&autoplay=falseWatch live video from finalfantasyxiv on www.twitch.tv

It might be easier to jump to the information consolidated on this Reddit Megathread.

So, here’s some takeaways my cold-muddled mind has from all this:

  • I’m happy about the job-based skill changes.
  • I’m good with all the attribute changes.
  • I like consolidating skills into one button that changes in function depending on your level of content (ex. Stone, Stone II, Stone III, Stone IV).
  • I’m not sure how I feel about the new job gauges. I understand what they’re trying to do with them, but some of them feel overly complicated (like Black Mage). I won’t know until I actually play the jobs, though.
  • Dragoon is one of the jobs that I’m iffy about the gauge thing.
  • I do like that the job gauges seem to make the classes more varied.
  • Red Mage still has me interested, and the gauge thing seems not too overly complex for that job.
  • I’m more impressed by Samurai than I expected to be. It looks fun.
  • I’m SO HAPPY about the changes to Bard and Machnist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NO MORE BOWMAGE! That was all I ever wanted from them in Heavensward.
  • I was also interested by the song job gauge the Bard was using, though I don’t understand what it all means.
  • This is going to make choosing a main job hard. 
  • I’m interested and positive about changes to Healers. I really disliked stance dancing into Cleric Stance to do damage. It was a level of stress that drove me away from the Healer role… I may revisit White Mage now.
  • I’m happy about the buffs Paladins are getting since it remains my tank of choice.
  • I’m okay with the level and story jumping potions.
  • I’m sad I can’t get a leveling potion for Red Mage, because that’s the only job I’d have a use for that on (would love to play Stormblood story through on Red Mage, but doesn’t look like that’s happening).
  • Though I don’t play Summoner, I’m happy they get a Bahamut summon. 🙂

I’m sure there are other things, but that’s all I can muster for right now.

Posted in Gaming, Nintendo Switch, Uncategorized

Disgaea 5 Demo (Noob Vision)

I’ve known about the Disgaea series since the first game released years and years ago, but never played any of it. I even own one on Steam, and was told I needed to play it. It was just not on my radar, not even Disgaea 5, which is releasing on the Nintendo Switch next week.

So, I’m coming into the series as a noob that’s only distantly heard (good) things about Disgaea. I knew it was humorous. I judged that it was probably wild and over-the-top in an anime type way. And while I enjoy good anime, I’ve kinda lost tolerance for crazy eye-roll anime as I’ve gotten older.

I don’t remember what convinced me to try out the Disgaea 5 Demo that came out on the Switch this week, but I’m glad I did.

Note #1: I did not expect to like this game.

Note #2: I ended up really liking what I played of the demo.

Again, this is from someone who knows nothing about the series, and was wondering why conversations on the Reddit about Disgaea all ended in “dood.” I quickly found out (and fell in love with prinnies).

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So, yeah. The game has a zany, take-me-as-I-am feel to the humor that isn’t too overwhelming partly because it seems to be poking fun at itself… or at least, at annoying anime tropes. For example, I’d like to dump Seraphina and her “Ohohohoho!” laugh… but I get the feeling she’s like that specifically because the game wants to point out how annoying this anime character type is.

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All these years, I’ve also stereotyped Killia when I saw him on the covers of these games, imagining him as the annoying, powerful, emo guy who doesn’t care about anyone and sulks through the whole story. And that turned out to be… really not true so far.

He has a bit of that aloof tough-guy act, but at the same time, he goes out of his way to help Seraphina learn how to fight for herself, even if she’s forcing him into the situation.

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He has a logical and mellow approach to most things, which reminds me of one of my own characters (Tai). I think that this helps to off-set a lot of the other more eccentric characters and situations and make the game palpable for me.

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I can sense a deep strategy game underneath all this. I was amused by the combo and throw system, and interested in developing my hired troops. Though some of my pre-made Prinny troops had some… interesting names.

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As someone who knows nothing about how the game worked, the first few battle scenarios did a lot to help teach me some of the systems. I like how the game kept the tutorials in character the whole time, too. This is how you do a game tutorial.

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I have a feeling that I’ve only scratched the surface of the battle systems since I stopped playing the game as soon as I felt like I was sold on it. Good thing that I did, since the demo save doesn’t carry over into the real game when it releases next week. I quickly deleted the demo so that I wouldn’t be tempted to spoil anymore for myself.

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Trading In Smash

I did pre-order this game. While it was fairly expensive from Amazon, I got a nice 20% off the pre-order as a Prime member. I also have started to trade in some of my pre-owned Wii U games I know that I’ll probably never play again, so I had some extra cash from that on my Amazon account.

The game I traded was Super Smash Bros for the Wii U. Gasp and horror, I know. How dare I trade in Smash?

The truth is, my sister and I both tried to play this game together a few years back… and neither of us liked it all that much. The new Smash games are just all over the place. We both felt there was too much going on and it became overwhelming quickly. Plus the bulky Wii U controller really didn’t work well for a battle game for me.

We loved the original Smash and even Brawl, but this new Smash was just not that fun for us.

I picked it up as a Lightning Deal on Amazon around Black Friday, so I only payed about $34 for it originally. But it was still one of those games I had a lot of buyer regret about since I just couldn’t get into it.

Thankfully, I could trade it in to Amazon for $20… so while I did lose some money on the purchase, I felt it was better to trade it towards a game I knew I’d play rather than see it gather dust here to never be touched again. I haven’t sold a physical copy of a game in a very, very long time as I usually keep them for my collection, but this just bugged me, so I pulled the trigger.

Fare well Smash!

Oh, and for the record, trading a game into Amazon was super painless. They even pay the shipping and immediately credit your account for the trade in.