Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Tales from the Duty Finder – BWAAAA!

I know that I generally use Tales from the Duty finder as a place to vent about unpleasant party members… but this will be an exception, because you meet plenty of good folks, too. Three of the Posse queued up for Leveling Roulette, and I being yet a noob tank, was nervous we were picking up a random as a DPS.

We popped Halatali, and got a Ninja as our fourth. She seemed friendly enough, and was even asking for some help with her Ninja on things like skill choice and attribute points. I told her what I could from what I know (not a whole lot), and the dungeon went pretty smooth despite my noob tanking.

So we get to the final boss and it’s so… so… so… hard as a tank who usually plays DPS to resist pounding the Limit Break button when that pops. Up until now, Xaa was handling Limit Breaks, so we had no idea that when the Ninja did it, she would rip out with this macro…

bwaaaa

I’m so glad she waited until the end of the fight to Limit Break because that tickled me so much I’m sure my tanking skill dropped even lower than normal.

For the rest of the night, I referred to Limit Breaks as BWAAAAAA!

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Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: 3.X Story and Scions (Spoilers)

So, as the patch has been out over a week, it’s finally time for me to talk about the 3.5 story. There will be spoilers… for pretty much all of 3.0 as I want to think out loud about story things in general.

Since Heavensward launched and we started to gather the Scions again, I got the feeling that the story team was making some choices in the main characters they would keep going forward. What do I mean by this? Continue reading “FFXIV: 3.X Story and Scions (Spoilers)”

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs, Uncategorized

FFXIV: Dun Scaith Week 2 & Stormblood Preorder

Pictured above – I got the Bard hat drop from Dun Scaith last night. It’s a pretty neat design, but I instantly glamoured to Amon’s Hat right after taking this shot. 😀

Week 2 Dun Scaith Impressions

We took a mostly-FC group in with us, including several who were brand new to the raid. Overall, people are starting to understand it better. That’s probably in thanks to the Dun Scaith guides that are finally out for it now.

What I wouldn’t have given for Mr. Happy’s guide a week ago!

While I haven’t actually watched the guide (I probably should), I’ve heard about some of the mechanics that were tripping me up, especially on Ferdiad and his Atomos.

I still say that it wasn’t super obvious that he was force-feeding one Atomos a certain color orb only for it to come out of the opposite Atomos, and that you had to respond accordingly. But now that I know what to look for, the biggest piece of that puzzle has been unraveled.

The raid still wiped on Scathach, but only because too many people ignored the add the first time. They learned from that mistake.

The raid also wiped on Diabolos the first time. The second time, we came very close to wiping, but a small handful of people were able to whittle him down at about 5%. This is how we earned the win last week, so overall, the final boss is still tripping up the raid as a whole.

I, myself, have not remained alive for the whole final fight yet. Either I stacked on someone when too few people were stacking (so we all died) or something like that happened. So I’ve not had the chance to actually practice through the final phase of earthshakers and stacks to feel like I have an understanding.

Dun Scaith vs. Weeping City

So my final thoughts on this raid is that it’s more difficult than Weeping City, but for different reasons that Weeping City is difficult. The mechanics come fast and hard. But once you get a group of people in there who know what to do and how to respond, this raid may end up being easier in the long run.

For example, we did a Weeping run right after Dun Scaith (yeah, looking for punishment), and there are still people who are dropping meteors on the party during Ozma. Some new folks coming through at this point seem to think its been out long enough that they don’t need no guide (to get a carry). I watched this happen with the randoms we picked up last night — they didn’t have a clue on how to handle mechanics, and it punished the rest of us hard.

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Now, I’m not one to yell at someone to watch a guide, but in this case, Weeping City places a lot of responsibility on individual players. You can still blow your party up with meteors and bombs!

To Newcomers: Please know the basic mechanics of Ozma if nothing else! You can’t just get through Weeping City without having to perform mechanics!

In contrast, there are a few times that Dun Scaith places this kind of punishment on the party for one person’s mistakes. Maybe a bit on the final boss with stacks and earthshakers… and maybe that’s why teams have so much trouble working through that section. But for the most part, if you screw something up, you die. You usually don’t take out the rest of the party with you.

I still think that Dun Scaith is challenging, but I wonder that if in the long run, I will like it more than Weeping City. One way or another, I’m gearing my Bard up with drops, and my Dragoon through Shire gear upgrades.

Stormblood Pre-order

So pre-orders opened up for Stormblood yesterday. I picked up the digital CE, mostly for the mount and the chicken blade. I’ve never been super partial to FFV, so the CE items were only so-so to me. But that’s mostly because I’ve not actually put time into playing FFV (despite owning it)… probably something I should do one day. I heard it had a fun job system.

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I was actually looking forward to the Red Mage pre-order minion, but they haven’t passed those out yet. It was a little confusing to go and redeem the pre-order code only to have it say “Code Pending.” At first, I thought this was the head-start code they were talking about, but reading over the email again, it seems like all pre-order items won’t be given out until sometime next month.

Overall, I’m trying to feel hyped for Stormblood. But, to be totally honest, I’m not that big on the whole Ala Mhigo conflict as a plot backdrop.

I could get into Ishgard because of the dragons, but Ala Mhigo doesn’t have a whole lot of meaning to me as a player yet. They may charm me somewhere down the line, though — FFXIV has a way of making me care about things I didn’t know I’d care about. So, I’m trying to stay open-minded.

The one thing I am hyped about is Red Mage, of course. It’s really the one thing I want out of this expansion, aside from re-worked Bard, and hopefully tweaks to the job system we keep hearing about. Swimming and diving sounds cool, but it’s no where near as exciting as flying mounts were for Heavensward.

One way or another, I plan on taking time off of work for the pre-order head start, mostly to level the job and get used to it.  In the meantime, I’m gearing up jobs, suffering through Relic, and working on leveling Paladin next.

Oh, yeah. And I also finished leveling my Squad last week. Wonder where they’re going to take this feature in the future!

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Posted in Black Desert Online, Blogging, Gaming, MMORPGs, Uncategorized

Black Desert Online Gaming Blog Banners

I didn’t realize a post about blog header banners would be of interest to so many folks! But because it was, I’m making a short follow-up on a few new banners I added this morning. Yesterday, I didn’t have my BDO screenshots on hand, but now that I do, I’ve whipped up a few more banners from that.

I couldn’t just choose one horse riding screen from the many, though. So I threw in two. I wish I had a good uncropped screen of my favorite dappled horse for this. I might have to hop in game and take some new shots. 🙂

The three new banners are below, all of my character Aywren in BDO:

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Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: New Year, Character Remake!

I have a pretty big announcement to make today. After playing my moon kitty, Zuri Nimat, as a main for over 3 years in FFXIV, I decided to remake my main character. Not only did she get a full physical change, but I’ve renamed her (Aywren Sojourner) and everything. It’s like having a brand new character while keeping all the leveling, items, pets, mounts and everything I’ve worked on all this time. I really like having the option to do that.

Don’t worry, I re-rolled Zuri because I’m too attached to her. I’m having thoughts about progressing her again as a RP/story character.

Why the Change?

So if I really loved Zuri’s character (and I do), why the change? Well, this all started back over Christmas holiday, when Red Mage was confirmed to be a DPS class.

Red Mage was my first job back when I played FFXI. I’m very much looking forward to the job in Stormblood. I’m hoping it won’t be too convoluted to play because these hybrid jobs are always my favorite. I want it to be fun. I want it to be my next new main job.

However, the traditional Red Mage gear (pictured below on the art of Yoshi-P)…

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…just doesn’t mesh so well in color with a blue kitty (IMHO). See here:

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Red doesn’t look terrible… but the blue fur/hair is meant to go with cooler colors. Yeah, I know that the gear won’t always look like artifact armor and can be dyed. But, it still planted a seed in my mind:

Maybe it’s time to give Zuri a makeover…

I started thinking about this. The more I thought, the more torn I became.

First world MMO cosmetic problems! 

I really love the way Zuri looks for the most part. Sometimes I regret giving her Smurf-Fur, but it’s part of who she is now. Changing that would be hard.

On the other hand, I really just felt like I needed to refresh things to help get me out of the slump I’ve been in. So, I decided over the holidays I’d pick up a fantasia and make some changes.

Over time, another thought began to creep in:

If I’m going to change Zuri’s looks, maybe I can consider changing her race. I mean, I may as well go all out if I’m going to use real money to change her cosmetically. 

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Afterall, there are a TON of catgirls in the game. Don’t get me wrong, I love my kitty. But at the same time, it would be nice to play a race that’s a bit more rare.

But after that thought began to settle, I argued:

Zuri wouldn’t be Zuri if she wasn’t a kitty! I couldn’t imagine her not-blue and not-kitty! 

Ugh! So, now what do I do?

Why not a name change, too? 

Wait, what?

I mean, it’s kinda odd that I use the name “Aywren Sojourner” everywhere else, and Zuri Nimat only here. Half the Free Company already calls me by my nickname, Wren. 

I guess that’s true.

A Little History

Here’s a little history: Zuri was a character I rolled up coming straight out of playing GW2. There, I had a Charr named Nipp Mousetrap who really got into the community back in the day, especially with RP folks on Tumblr. Part of the reason it worked well was that Nipp’s design was pretty unique — I made her to resemble my IRL cat, who is a flame point Siamese.

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Nipp Mousetrap from GW2

So when I picked up and moved to FFXIV, the idea was to design an aesthetically original looking character, like I had with Nipp. I originally wanted to get involved with the community the same way I had in GW2… it just never really worked out since I didn’t roll on the FFXIV RP server. I also found the FFXIV Tumblr community a bit harder to mesh with since the game had already been established for a good amount of time before ARR released.

What I ended up with was this Zuri:

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She was a bit too over the top back then. Over the years, I toned her down. But she was never made to be a character who represented me, or stood at the head of a Free Company, as my character does now.

Look and feel are important to me. Zuri represents a free spirit, and doesn’t reflect the qualities of a FC leader.

She’s a character I rolled to RP with, but never really figured out how to make that happen. You might notice that when I write about Zuri, I always address her by her name, rather than “I” or “my” or “me.” This is part of that – I don’t identify with her as a “me-MMO-character,” but rather as a character I rolled for other reasons.

So, making this change is part of setting things right in my  (strange) mind.

In With The New!

This weekend, I renamed my main character to Aywren Sojourner.

I changed her race to Elezen. This is because Elezen are fairly rare (I thought about FemRoe, but FemRoe just don’t match my personality), and because when I played Red Mage in FFXI, my character there was Elvaan. It just felt right.

It was also interesting to play a taller character after having been a short-as-can-be kitty. I’m almost as tall as Zeb now!

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Zeb and I

I also spent some time working on a new glamour for my Dragoon. After researching the market board, I decided I wanted one of the new ponchos. I had to settle for the Ramie version, since mats for the dyeable Cashmere version were too stupidly expensive. But, it’s okay. The color works well enough.

It’s been a while since I sat down and crafted something, so it felt good to be able to save some gil and make some glamour for myself. I totally didn’t expect the colors on the feathers to match the color of my hair. But there you have it.

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New Glamour!

The only content I’ve had time to run on my new character was a quick FC-grouped Syrcus Tower. I’ll have to say, it feels quite different to do it on a larger character. I know it’s all in my head, but the change in perspective is refreshing.

I was also a little nervous to run a raid using my “real” net name. I don’t know why. It’s not like anyone is going to recognize me from this little blog! But that thought was still there.

With Zuri, my character was disconnected from everything else. With Aywren, it more closely represents my online persona. That made me more aware of what I was doing.

As For Zuri…

I re-rolled Zuri on Midgardsormr and kept her pretty much the same as she used to be. I did change her tail type — she now has a multi-colored tail with a gold tip, like her hair highlights. I also lightened her skin color just a bit.

Then I sent her back to Gridania as a level 1 Conjurer, just as I have every time I rolled her. It’s always useful to start with a class that gives you Cure and Protect for cross-classing other jobs.

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Zuri’s New Beginning

I haven’t really decided which job I want to play with her this time around. It’s not really that important. I want Zuri’s journey to be a slow one of no stress and all creativity.

I’m still torn on which server to RP on. I’m keeping her on Midgardsormr for now as you can’t transfer a new character until after 3 days of making them. Balmung is the official RP server, and I feel a need to be in an RP environment, just for a change. But it’s such a large server, and none of my friends or FC are there… so it’s a toss up.

Also, Midgardsormr pride! 

I’m working on creating a new WordPress and Tumblr blog just for Zuri’s adventures. I’ll be sure to announce them once they’re ready!

Have you ever re-created one of your long-time MMO characters or made a big shift in your mains? How did it feel for you? Did you end up going back to what you had before?

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Starlight Celebration Arrives

Yesterday marked the beginning of FFXIV’s Starlight Celebration for 2016. The big rewards are the lovely, dyable Starlight Robes and the Starlight Celebration Orchestrion scroll.

Here’s a non-spoiler overview!

The quest itself is a sentimental story, much like you’d expect at Christmas, revolving around children, family and holidays. They give you the robes straight up front, so if all you want is the cosmetic, you don’t have to try too hard to get it.

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Tai is not amused.

It’s not a super long quest line – I’ve run it through on three characters already – and the interesting thing is that finishing it opens up a repeatable daily quest. The scenario changes depending on what you choose, but the rewards appear to be all RNG. If you’re curious about the rewards, folks are gathering information about it on Reddit.

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Strike a pose!

There’s also holiday decor for inside and outside of houses. Last year’s selection was a bit brighter, but hey… you get piles of snow that allow you to throw snowballs at each other!

In closing, have a creepy holiday paissa.

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“Have you been good this year?” *stares into your soul*