Other Worlds

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Last night marked my return to the Monday night raid thing in Final Fantasy XIV, that I had not been able to attend the last few weeks for one reason or another.  I know most of my blog coverage lately has been about Legion, but I still have a soft spot in my heart for lots of other games.  The intention was to pull together last night and do a lot of raidy bits, but I kinda ruined that.  I’ve written about the struggles to get Luna integrated with our household and the other two cats.  Things are still not going well, and I am not sure if they ever will at this point.  She simply hates other cats, and I cannot seem to get her from charging the other cats when she sees them.  This is a sort of behavior I have never seen in any of the other cats we have had throughout the years.  It has gotten so bad that the only real way we can stop her is by dousing her with a spray bottle.  Which seems to do NOTHING for the long term effect and only distracts her for the moment…  because seconds later she is charging once again.  So the only other option is to keep her shut up in my wife’s office…  which is a somewhat shitty life.  Now we are on that hard precipice of trying to decide what is best for her and what is best for our other two cats.  We have some options, but one of them is of course to return her to the organization we adopted her from.  I’ve never really felt as much as a failure as I do right now because we have tried so many things…  including the extremely expensive pheromone night light things.  In any case…  Tam really likes to just queue the group instead of doing a ready check, and there was a period of time where I was away from the screen dealing with cats.  The end result of too many of these premature queues unfortunately is that I locked the entire group out, at which point we dissolved instead of waiting thirty minutes for it to clear.  We did however at least get a single kill in before that happened, and knocked out some needed content for one of the guildies.

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The other game I have been occasionally poking my head into is Guild Wars 2.  I have a really fraught relationship with this game, but it has been something that I have patched up multiple times and attempted to play.  I say attempted, because no matter how many times I try there is just something that never quite clicks with me.  I made it to about 65 on my own recognizance… and then got boosted due to the daily login system the rest of the way to 80.  While I have tried a bunch of different classes… it feels like the one I still like the most is Warrior in spite of how lousy melee generally feels in this game.  During a recent sale I managed to pick up Heart of Thorns for $18… and I figured it was well worth giving it a try for that price.  With that came with a boost to 80, but I have not figured out what class I actually want to use it on.  During Pax South 2015 when they announced the expansion… I thought Revenant was going to be the class for me.  However the boost allows you a “try before you buy” sort of functionality… and in practice the class just doesn’t feel like anything I am interested in.  It is this strange amalgam between WoW Shaman, Deathknight, and Rogue and in a way that just doesn’t exactly feel like something I want to play.  During the boost it hands you a hammer and a pair of swords, but I am wondering if maybe one of the other weapon combos feels better since as warrior I only really like greatsword and hammer.   In any case I popped in last night for a bit and started actually trying to move my original story forward… I stalled out around 60 and just never tried to pick it back up.  Maybe the story will hook me into the game in a way that the gameplay never actually did.

Winter and Yeti

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Winter Arrives at Casa Belghast

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So something I am realizing yet again is how badly I need a schedule to function.  During the work week, I am on super tight time constraints.  I get up at 5:30, make coffee, pack my wife’s lunch, and then am usually upstairs sitting at my keyboard by just a little after 6.  Then I bang out a blog post, feed the animals… play with the ferrets because they are begging to be picked up… and then am out the door at around 7 am.  On the weekends however….  and on this holiday break…  I am completely all over the place with my blogging.  When I know there is no real time constraints…  I feel free to screw around in the morning.  I’ve been reading twitter and blogs for the last two hours…  and finally it is getting to the point where it is kinda embarrassing that it is 11:30 and I have yet to produce a blog post.  While I complain about stress, I am also apparently one of those people who thinks most clearly when the shit is hitting the fan…  or at least I am bumping up against a deadline.  It is like my creativity flows more freely when I know there is something riding on the line.  I know that at pretty much I can start writing and come up with a post…  and because of that… it means when there is no deadline I keep putting it off.  I am the king of procrastination…  and among the list of things that need to do today is book my hotel room for Pax South…  which is only a few weeks away.

As you can see in the above image, Winter has finally arrived in Casa del Belghast.  For most of the Christmas break so far it has been windy as hell, but still pretty warm.  On Saturday, it started raining, but between the showers… it was still nice and warm outside.  The thermostat started to turn down yesterday, and overnight the constant rain turned to ice, and eventually as of this morning snow.  The Monday morning commute was apparently hell, based on conversations with the folks holding down the fort.  This is one of those moments when I am damned happy that I still have essentially another week to go before I have to worry about it, and by then I am hoping that we have returned to the balmy conditions we have been in recently.  I am perfectly fine with not having a “real winter” here in Oklahoma, because our normal Ice Storms suck.  If we got fluffy and happy snow like the rest of the world seems to, I would be perfectly fine with winter.  Instead we get ice… and lots of it… that usually starts out as sleet and then eventually becomes glaze ice that freezes to anything it hits…  high means power lines.  Why the hell we have above ground powerlines still boggles me… because the ice can snap the aerials like very brittle twigs.  Thankfully from what it seems, this is going to be our major day of ice and snow… and then it will warm back up shortly after.

Mission Yeti: Accomplished

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I told Lodur last night, that he would have to hold down the fort without me… because I am officially out of the Team 360 No Mount business.  I’ve talked over the last few days of my Christmas gift that required a little work.  A really good friend of mine read my commentary about the struggle to get the holiday Yeti mount, and when she managed to get two of them…  pinged me that she had a gift for me.  The gotcha of course was that it was on a server that I have zero characters, so I rolled a level 1 druid and have been leveling like crazy over the last few days.  It took me roughly two days of marathoning Star Wars movies to go from 1 to 40 and last night I wrapped it up getting the final two thirds of a level in Feralas.  I stopped what I was doing as soon as I dinged and made my way to Orgrimmar to learn Journeyman Riding, and of course learn the mount.  From there I fiddled around and got to an interesting vantage point to take a few screenshots.  I am super happy to have the mount, but also really enjoyed the “Catte Durid” leveling process.  The only problem is… that this character is now stranded on a server that I am not sure if I will play much on.

I talked a bit about the general toxic environment I encountered while leveling the character, which does not give me warm fuzzies about staying there.  That said this is the only server that my friend really has characters on.  The frustrating part is that to move a character it is $25 each, which seems like a lot of money when you are looking at an army of alts.  Considering that at this point moving a character is a scripted process, and requires zero manual intervention…  the game as a whole would be a happier place if they just adopted the Rift system of server transfers.  In that game you can move one character per week for free, pending that character is in good standing and above the level of 15.  That means over time you can move servers with your characters, and sure you have to wait a week per… but it lets you get out of bad situations without being taxed into oblivion for doing it.  There are many times that players end up getting stuck on a server that they literally do not know anyone playing the game anymore.  So it seems like insult to the injury of losing their friends…. to ask them to cough up another $25 per character to move off of the bad environment.  Sure you can always group with Battle.net but there is something you miss by not having access to the friendly green spam of guild chat… and all the while I was leveling this druid… I felt the pangs of not having access to my friends.  At some point I will likely delete the druid I have on The Scryers and move this character to that server, but in the meantime it will serve as a sort of hiding out alt…  which is largely why I have not mentioned the server name yet.