Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: FC’s Revenge on the Diadem

It was little over a year ago when our Free Company first attempted a run of the Diadem. We went in on Easy mode just to check it out, and got our tails handed to us. Granted, we were trying to fight things there with only 6 people, only one being a healer, when it was meant for a full party. But I think that run discouraged some of us from trying it again… until last night.

Dungeon Blahs

I want to note that I’ve had a case of the dungeon blahs in FFXIV for quite a while. Even though gearing up only requires me to run an Expert 4 times a week, and the dungeons are both easy enough, I still feel my interest waning.

Aside from that, I’m on a terrible grind for Umbrite on my first Relic. I’ve been earning Sands through fishing for Blue Scrips, which is a RNG thing in itself. Sometimes I have a great fishing session, sometimes I barely reel in enough to re-purchase my bait. And every time I do earn a Sand, it just feels like I’m still miles away from finishing it.

Yesterday was a day when I logged in, fished a bit and just went Blah at the whole thing. But then, someone in the FC suggested, “Hey, we’re interested in trying the Diadem!” And that turns things around.

Into the Diadem

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I’m kinda sad that the Diadem didn’t catch on in FFXIV. I understand why it didn’t, but if it had been done the right way, it could have been some of the open-world content I would have enjoyed.

It’s the open-world stuff that FFXIV really suffers the lack of, and for players like me, who long to do stuff outside of a dungeon, it can be a bummer sometimes. FATEs are a nice try, and I enjoy doing them, but so few people run them in Heavensward areas. I know there is going to be a rework for the Diadem in the future, and I hope that it’ll be a change in the right direction for open-world end-game content.

But, anyhow, back to last night.

We got together a full party this time around, and decided to do a Normal mode run in the Diadem. Most of us had either not been there before, or only been there once (like me). So, my memory was pretty rusty on how it all worked.

It seems to me there have been several changes to how the Diadem works. I could be wrong, but I remember having to attune to more Aether-whatevers before our group could fly. Now it’s only two?

Having a full party with far better gear than a year ago, we went inside and really cleaned house! I even got to try mining there a little bit to see what I could find in the zone. I did discover some Steel Sky Pirate Spoils, which I was able to trade for a bunch of Brute Leech bait for my Sands fishing. So that was a win.

Boss Battle Win

We did trigger a boss fight while we were there, which happened to be the exact same creature that beat our party senseless the first time we played the Diadem last year. This time, we took him down without any trouble at all.

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REVENGE!

What a difference being geared up can make, I guess. It did feel nice to go back and defeat something that left us defeated last time. We also opened the map for several folks in the FC, completed objectives, earned a few spoils and had an overall interesting time.

After that, we decided to do a few treasure maps, and ran through the Aquapolis a few times. We didn’t get anything amazing, but I can always use the gil and the items to sell, that’s for sure.

Not to mention the neat little FC totem we made.

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Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Dragoon Scripture Tome Gear

I haven’t been writing a lot about FFXIV lately because I’ve pretty much been doing the same thing when I log in every day: running Experts for Tomes to gear my Dragoon. Last night, I got the final visual piece of the set (sans head), so there it is!

I only have the head and belt left to complete the Scripture gear, and will be so, so relieved once it’s done. I’m not a huge fan of the way the set looks, so I might find the motivation to glamour it.

I’m still plinking away at upgrading my Relic weapon at what feels like a glacial pace. Part of that is because I don’t go out of my way to run dungeons when I don’t have to, so securing Lore is a slow prospect for me. Part of it is that I’m earning my Sands through fishing, which is an RNG fest sometimes, and it’s difficult to find the time to actually sit down and fish most days. So, I’m sitting on about 5 Umbrite with no Sands.

Last night, I did manage to fish up 2 Sands worth and make a tiny sliver of progress… but seeing I really wish I could be using the Lore to gear up other jobs, it’s so painful to watch it sucked into this one weapon instead. I could have my healer and summoner geared by now if it wasn’t for Relic. :/

So, that’s more or less where I am in FFXIV. Slowly making progress and more or less in a holding pattern.

 

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs, Nintendo 3DS, Pokemon, Sims 4

November Goals in Review

It’s hard to believe that 2016 is slowly coming to a close. But before we jump feet-first into December, I wanted to take a look back at what I accomplished over November. My goals for this month were pretty loose — mostly focusing on playing other new games that just came out.

So how did I do?

Games to Explore 

  • Civ 6 ✓
  • Skyrim ✓
  • Pokemon Sun ✓
  • Sims 4 City Life Expansion ✓

On the new games front, I did pretty good! Steam says that I put 17.6 hours into Civ 6 and 9.3 hours into Skyrim. I really need to pick up Skyrim again because it’s been weeks since I’ve played, and this is pretty close to the point I left off with the game before. I don’t want it to be a replay.

I know that I got at least 20 hours into the new Sims 4 Expansion, and I still want to continue with the family I started. But Pokemon Sun really won the month considering it came out so late, and I’ve put in over 40 hours on the game already. Granted, most of that has been breeding and training Pokemon, but I’ve certainly had a fun time.

FFXIV

  • Level Scholar to 60 ✓
  • Gear up Dragoon ✓
  • Get PotD Kinna Bard Bow or Scholar Book
  • Work on Relic Weapon ✓
  • Do job quests ✓
  • Gain reputation with Sahagin

FFXIV has really been a case of autopilot for me right now. I log in mostly to do an Expert run and some Beast Tribe quests in hopes to cap Scripture Tomes for the week. I should have stored enough up to purchase the Dragoon pants for Zuri today, which is the last large-ticket item. From there, just the head, belt and feet are left. So, I’ve made good progress on gearing her up.

I have been working on Relic, but no where as much as I really should be. I’m just more annoyed with the Umbrite step than anything else.

I did finish leveling my Scholar/Summoner to 60. I went back and completed the Scholar job quests, but have not started to catch up on Summoner stuff. I’m concerned that my Summoner gear is so sub-par that it’ll be hard to do. So, I’ve been scrounging drops from Expert Roulette to try and make that a little better.

Sadly, I still haven’t seen Floor 100 of PotD, nor have I earned my upgrade for the first Kinna weapon. I also didn’t work on the rep gain with Sahagin at all. I know I could have had both done by now, but meh. Trading in Pokemon is more fun for me. 🙂

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Scholar Level 60 Complete!

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I’ve actually been taking it pretty easy in FFXIV lately. I’ve put more of my time into other games, such as Sims 4, Skyrim, Civ 6 and Animal Crossing. But when I do log in to FFXIV, I’ve been working on achieving my goals for this month.

One goal was to finish leveling Scholar/Summoner to 60. I noted in a previous post that I achieved that over the weekend! Woot! I’ve been leveling this job for so long… I mean, here’s a post from March of 2015 when I first unlocked the job! I started leveling in earnest as Vix and Xaa were leveling their DPS classes and Zeb was working on tanks.

Though I already have a level 60 White Mage, I just feel more comfortable healing as a Scholar. I’m not sure why, as it originally used to be the opposite – I liked the White Mage big heals. I guess having fairy for backup is just comforting when I need to stance dance.

The past couple of nights, I went back and finished up all the Scholar job quests that I’ve ignored down the line (it’s okay, I only ran levelling roulette and PotD, so I haven’t needed the skills). That final Scholar quest was a bit of a pain, but I did get it done!

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Leveling Conundrum

I’m of two minds when it comes to leveling more jobs in FFXIV. Part of me enjoys and craves that kind of progression much more than I do end game gear grinding. But another part of me is tired from the struggle of climbing job after job, especially between level 50-60. There’s still no “easy” way to do this solo as people don’t take to Heavensward FATES like they do in Dragonhead and North Thanaland. I guess there’s some beast tribe quests, but I use the Vath for my Scrpiture Tomes.

I’m also a bit weary because while I want to level Paladin and Ninja on Zuri, I’ve already done that on my alt, Tai. It’s hard to be motivated to re-level a job, even if that is the reality of the situation. I especially want to get some more tanking experience under my belt on Zuri since it was nice to have a level 60 Paladin that I could pull out in a pinch on Tai.

Here’s where my classes stand right now.

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I do have Monk at level 55, but I’m not very motivated to get that job done right now. I need to start using my Leveling Roulettes for Lore Tomes to keep moving with my Dragoon Relic. I’m also avoiding running any dungeons I don’t need to because I’m skirting burn out.

I guess all in all it sounds like I need to take a break with leveling until I can square away my Relic more. But I guess I can check out Dragonhead and see if there are any FATE parties to join for Paladin and Ninja from time to time.

I also have Summoner and Monk job quests to finish! Still too many things to do in this game!

 

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs, Nintendo 3DS

Weekend Gaming: FFXIV, 7D2D, Animal Crossing

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This weekend was a variety of gaming including everything from Animal Crossing to Skyrim. But I only have progression in a few games to talk about. So here goes my weekend!

FFXIV

As seen above, we got 3-4 different folks in the Free Company through the final boss battle of Heavensward. Yay for everyone! Thordan remains a really easy and fun fight with mostly flash and no fear. But, even so, it’s always brilliant to experience. And even better when you’re helping people reach the end of the expansion story. 🙂

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Things have been fantastic in our Free Company lately. We’ve been somewhat actively recruiting again, and have welcomed in a number of more mature players and older folks, which is exactly what we’ve been looking for. The new website and the more restricted application process (which I was afraid would be a turn-off) actually seem to be an encouragement to the right kind of personalities and the type of players we hope to attract.

We’re still hovering around 90 players on the roster (and that’s with me purging our roster of inactives pretty regularly), and last night was the most active concurrent members online I’ve seen in a while.

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In other news, I’ve finally reached level 60 on my Scholar (and Summoner)! It feels like I’ve been leveling this job forever! I’m so glad to finally consolidate my healing gear with my White Mage, and be able to equip the glowy book from PotD.

It’s a strange feeling not to have job leveling looming over me after it’s been in my life this long. I guess I have a level 55 Monk I could work on, and Zuri has plenty of jobs still hovering in the 30s. But I think it’s time for me to start using my leveling roulette for the Lore I need to push ahead on my Relic.

Speaking of Relic, I’ve spent some time fishing for Blue Scrips in order to earn the crystal sands I need to go with the Umbrites I’ve been stashing away. I still feel so far from getting this weapon complete, but I’m putting more focus into it now.

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The way I think my weapon progression is going: Relic for Dragoon, PotD Kinna weapons for Bard and Scholar. From there? Who knows. Still plenty to work on, though.

7D2D Fun

Syn and I decided to roll a new duo game of 7D2D Alpha 15 back before Halloween. This is the first time we’ve tried to play with less than 4 players, and we’ve actually been doing pretty great!

As always, we’ve found a run-down house that we’ve been building into a base and fortifying it against the hordes of the blood moon. Here, Syn is fixing up the front of the base after the Night 14 horde… so, so many zombies dead on the spikes.

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A number of things have changed in Alpha 15, so we’re still learning our way around them. Hordes, for example, now last all night long instead of puttering out after one large wave. I liked this change… though you better have a strong base and a lot of arrows on hand!

Also, I’ve been finding a number of new points of interest with this patch, such as this funeral parlor below. It felt really creepy breaking into this place to loot it…

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Animal Crossing

Thanks to the newest patch for Animal Crossing, I’ve been playing the game a little each day again. I’m mostly trying to pay off my debt to Nook because he mentioned a new storage expansion for housing which I’m really interested in. I need so much more space!

Aside from that, I had this cute little interaction with Kid Cat that I couldn’t help but share. I was walking by when I saw him sitting on the bench. Talking to him went like this:

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Too cute! Kid Cat looks so happy! 🙂

Posted in Gaming

Happy Halloween! October Goals in Review

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I hope everyone has a great Halloween!

I decided to consolidate my Halloween thread into my goals in review this time around. Hope you don’t mind. So here’s how it went this month!

Pokemon X

  • Earn the next gym badge(s) ✓

Not only did I make my goal, but I went on to complete the game this month. Part of that was due to getting hit by Hurricane Matthew, and losing power for a couple days. The 3DS battery life is pretty good considering.

FFXIV End Game Stuff

  • Gear up Dragoon ✓
  • Work on Dragoon Relic ✓
  • Gear up my Healers ✓
  • Earn Blue Scrip Botanist Offhand
  • Buy 1 Fokelore Book
  • Earn money to gear up Crafters ✓
  • Level Scholar (not priority) ✓

I had a number of wins and losses here. Just as suddenly as I had the inspiration to work on crafting and gathering in FFXIV, I lost it. So, I didn’t get any of the gathering goals done.

However, gearing up my Dragoon has been going well. With the exception of the week I went to Fan Fest, I’ve been consistently capping Scripture Tomes. Gearing up my Healers has been going more slowly because I’m having to use my Lore Tomes to buy Umbrite for my Relic. So I’ve only been able to snag dungeon drops for Healers.

I’m kinda pausing on Relic a bit because I know patch 3.45 is bringing the next step to the questline. I wasn’t sure if we’d see nerfs to the previous step or not, so I’ve been holding off until tomorrow before I move forward with it. 

I’m still nowhere near being done with this stage of relic, and the next stage is going to determine whether I see it through or not. I may just snag an upgraded PotD weapon if that’s not too hard to get. 

I am making progress on my Scholar as well, having reached level 59 this weekend. I feel like I’ve been leveling it forever, though, and I’ll be so happy to get it done. Next month’s goal, I guess. 

FFXIV General

  • Gain reputation with Sahagin
  • Clean up old quests (Job Quests)

Hah. Fail. 

I’ve been so lazy on my Job quests… I haven’t earned a single level 50+ skill for Scholar or Summoner still. But playing my Scholar at level 60 in PotD has inspired me to get those soon. I really do enjoy the playstyle! 

I’ve hardly touched beast tribe quests this month aside from the Vath for Scripture Tomes. I guess there’s always next month. 

Did you have goals this month? How did it go?

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Alexander Creator Cleared

ffxiv_10252016_215333This picture sums up my experience with A12… except I didn’t successfully dodge most of it.

First, I want to thank the kind folks in my FC who put up with me helped me through A11 and A12. I really do appreciate the help, and everyone played well… I know without them, I probably wouldn’t have gotten through. So don’t let my frustration with myself and the raid reflect on these good folks.

I finally cleared all of the Alexander (Normal) raid, which only reinforced the knowledge that I am not a raider at heart. Laugh if you want, but these fights get my panic reflexes going. This might be fun for some who enjoy this, but it’s not pleasant for me.

Anyhow. A11 has been a roadblock for me since the first week of 3.4. I can’t count the number of times I’ve tried and failed that fight. I haven’t actually played Alex in a while because it was discouraging that most everyone else had finished it… and I was still stuck on a fight that I didn’t particularly like. I was so tired of going forward and back and back and back…

Last night, the FC wanted to run a full clear of Alex, which was part of the problem, I think. I should never try to run all of these raids in a row as it shoots my stress level through the roof. But I did because it didn’t feel right to only hop in for things I needed and not help out with what others needed, too.

I also ran it on Dragoon for the first time, since my Dragoon just (barely) hit the ilvl to be able to run it. Both these things were semi-issues. I’m still shaking off the cobwebs with my Dragoon, which is much more intense to play than Bard, and still working on getting my gear up to par.

All the runs went super smooth, for which I’m grateful. We even skipped a phase on A11 because our damage output was pretty high. I had a few oh-crap moments in A11 as Dragoon, but for the most part, it felt like the boss was taunting me.

ffxiv_10012016_173117“See how easy I can be? How did you get stuck on me for a whole month? Huh? Huh?”

Yeah, shut up, Cruise Chaser.

Now A12… oh man. So, because I already made my FC helpers wait on me while I watched cutscenes between A11 and A12 (I’m only there for the story), I felt it would be crappy to make them wait longer while I watched a video on the mechanics.

Big. Mistake. 

I wasn’t 100% blind on the fight as I had Syn coaching me on the side, but let me say that I’m never going into a mechanically intensive battle like this without watching a video again.

I died. So. Many. Times.

And I felt so bad. I practically felt like I got a carry.

I could hardly keep my DPS rotation up because the whole thing was like Alexander was playing a glorified game of ping pong against the floor… with me as the ball.

alexpingpongI’m trying to laugh about it now, but it was a pretty rough fight for me.

I thought the mechanics were neat and that the fight was overall well designed, don’t get me wrong. But it would have been more fun if I wasn’t constantly dead due to one thing or another. Even my first run of A11 wasn’t this abysmal, and I didn’t watch a video when I went in there, either. But again, I was playing Bard, and that’s a lot more forgiving.

The high points of the run: I got the Alex boots for my Bard (already had them for Dragoon), and I actually got the Alexander minion drop, too.

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I was just so frustrated with A12, though, that I didn’t even have the energy to be excited about the minion. Though I do know that it’s a pretty rare drop.

The story and its conclusion were pretty interesting overall. I was glad that I saw the whole raid series to its end, just for the clear and the title (which I actually like).

For now, though, I’m putting Alexander to rest. I feel like I’ve finished it, and that’s enough. Maybe one day when ilvls are higher, I’ll work up the courage to try A12 again. But at this point, I really have no desire to go back, and not even the lure of i250 drops are that enticing. I’ll stick to my Expert Roulette (which I actually like this time around) and Palace of the Dead for Tomes and gearing.

ffxiv_10252016_224100Farewell, Alexander. I’m just glad that’s over with!

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: Glamour, Gear and Mounts!

ffxiv_10222016_204646Vix is making fun of my new hair style…

Glamour, gear and mounts. Well. That title pretty much sums up the most important end game aspects of FFXIV, doesn’t it?

I actually didn’t play a whole lot of FFXIV this weekend, to be honest. Saturday I spent most my time with Civ VI. Sunday I didn’t log in at all, and it was fine.

The time I did spend in game, however, was productive.

The Posse got together and finished up the in-progress run we had of the Palace of the Dead. This gave Xaa and I our 10th potshard that we needed to get the Avere mount!

ffxiv_10222016_204518The mount may be a little creepy, but it’s mine!

Vix also got the new long hair drop, Modern Aesthetics – Samsonian Locks,  from the PotD, which she gave to me! I was surprised she wasn’t interested in keeping it, but she knew I’ve wanted to try it on just to see what it looked like.

So Zuri got a new hairstyle this weekend. I really like the way it looks, but the issues it has with clipping through just about any armor that has a backpiece is a little sad.

I’ve also been working on capping my Scripture Tomes this week after having missed most of last week. This allowed me to replace my lowest ilvl piece on Zuri’s Dragoon – the gloves. Jumping from ilvl 200 to 260 is a nice leap. No pun intended.

ffxiv_10222016_010125New gear and hair!

Even though Zuri’s Dragoon has a bunch of lower ilvl greens from dungeons and such, her ilvl is now just one off of what her Bard was (i234) when I started to make this transition.

ffxiv_10222016_005624I’ve still got a long way to go, but I’m replacing this old stuff piece by piece.

I’ve also been practicing playing Dragoon again, since I’ve gotten pretty rusty with the job due to playing Bard entirely too much. It’s certainly a much more intense job to play than Bard is (for me), but I’m remembering why I enjoyed it.

There’s something very satisfying about holding the melee rotation down when everything is going well. I’ve even received some commendations on Expert Roulette runs lately, too!

We’re looking at the new incoming patch next week, which I hope will give me some relief with this whole Umbrite Anima weapon step. This is going so much slower than even the unidentifiable items step for me mostly because I’ve been using leveling roulette to actually level and because I don’t go out of my way to run stuff just for Lore Tomes. And I could really be using those Tomes for Healer gear upgrades.

I’m almost tempted just to work up a weapon through the upcoming floors of the PotD and call it a day. We’ll see what happens.

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXIV: All Saints’ Wake 2016

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To be honest, despite the expansion announcement and the FFXIV Fan Fest, things are kinda quiet and ramping down for me in game. Lately, I’ve just been logging in to take care of my Expert Roulette and slowly chip away at my Anima weapon progress. I’m leveling my Scholar on the side, and trying to gear up my healer when I can.

So, there’s really not a lot of exciting things to write about at the moment. I’ve actually come home with more inspiration for my own stories and artwork than gaming. And this is a good thing!

However, last night did start this year’s FFXIV Halloween event – All Saints’ Wake.

The rewards are alright – a vest cosmetic and some orchestrion music. But it’s hard to top last year where we got a full outfit and a flying mount.

The big change in the recipe is that the event activities require a Light Party of four people to complete. I thought that using Haukke Manor as a backdrop for the event was clever, and liked the overall idea behind it.

However, some of the mechanics, which require you to sneak past enemies to complete goals, can be a little frustrating and are not troll-proof at all. All it would take is one person out to ruin other people’s fun to bring this event down.

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Also, I wonder what will happen if you don’t jump on the event and finish it in the first few days. Will people be playing it after this weekend? If you’re late to the party, will you be able to complete it at all without begging help from FC members?

I have a few alts I want to take through the event, so I hope that there will be enough players to keep it rolling for a few days. But I do have my concerns.

Anyhow, I won’t spoil it by saying anything else. We’ll have to wait and see if requiring a Light Party for a holiday event goes over well.

Have you played it yet? What did you think? 

Posted in FFXIV, Gaming, IRL, MMORPGs

Crazy Hurricane Weekend (And Lots of Gaming)

hurricane-matthew-largeCreepy picture of Hurricane Matthew’s “Grinning Skull” as shown by several weather stations.  *shudder*

I’m just a little disoriented today because I spent about 32 hours without power this weekend, sometimes without water, due to the passage of Hurricane Mathew on Saturday. We had over 12 hours of rain and wind, and my power held out through most of that until near the end. But it seems half the state lost its power, so I’m in good company.

I’m out of work today because work has no power. There are few stores open, unless they are running on generators, and they’re either packed, or only allowing a few people in at a time. Roads are flooded out and tangles of trees and powerlines lay everywhere. Thankfully, the weather is cool and windy, so even without air conditioning, it is comfortable. I was just settling in for another night without power last night when it popped back on. So far, it’s held. But there’s still a lot of folks out there who don’t have power (including our malls, shopping areas and my work).

During those many hours of no net, TV and PC, I found ways to occupy myself. I actually broke out my GameBoy Advanced and original copy of Pokemon Blue from 1998 to play during the daytime when there was enough light to keep the screen lit (no backlight). This was because it ran on AA batteries, and I had plenty of those charged up.

At night, I played my 3DS, and actually beat the Pokemon League on Pokemon X! So now I’m the Champion or something. I’ll talk about that in another post, though.

So I feel a bit guilty that while much of my city is without power, I’m here blogging and raiding… and charging up everything I own right now.

FFXIV Achievements

Surprisingly, even being down in Internet and power for several days this week, I was able to cap Scripture Tomes in FFXIV. This means I bought my very first large piece of Shire armor for Zuri’s Dragoon.

On top of that, my FC cleared A9 and A10 (I’m still stuck on A11), and I got another pedal drop. So I was able to pick up the Alex feet. It’s slow going in gearing up the Dragoon, but the job is almost to an ilvl where I can start using it in the new content. That’s with some really crappy accessories, too. Hoping to get those replaced…

ffxiv_10102016_001936Zuri Dragoon! Kinda really mis-matched right now… but, ah well.

Friday before the storm rolled in, I was also able to get my Scholar to level 57 as well. Bit by bit, I’m also getting better healer gear for level 60. Though, it’s still mostly just the Void Ark set, so not very impressive. I’m just torn on using the Lore Tomes for gearing up my healer vs. for making progress on my Anima Relic. That Relic sucks all my Lore Tomes dry, and it’s a bummer as I’m starting to enjoy Scholar quite a bit and want to have a healer who is viable for content if needed.

For now, my little Scholar is just toting around Poetics gear mostly. It’s fine because I only use her for leveling, PotD and sometimes Crystal Tower.

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In other news, I will be flying out to Vegas on Wednesday for the FFXIV Fan Fest! I’m not sure how much I will be able to blog from there, since I’m not taking a laptop. But I’ll take a lot of pictures and have plenty to talk about when I get back, I’m sure!