Too Much of a Good Thing

WildStar64 2015-08-26 06-09-41-33

Viva Proactivity

Yesterday I suffered from a bit of a dilemma and could have used the assistance of Hermione and her time turner.  Sometimes the stars align just perfectly, and a sequence of patches hit at precisely the same time.  This happened once again yesterday with the Final Fantasy 3.0.7 patch and Diablo 3 2.3.0 patch.  This also conflicts with the fact that lately I have been trying to make Tuesday my Wildstar night, as it is the raid night of my guild and I am sure to see lots of people on as a result.  In truth at some point I would like to get into a rhythm of Tues/Thurs being Wildstar nights much the same way as they were previously World of Warcraft nights.  As a result I game hopped a bit. First up I poked my head into Final Fantasy XIV but did not really stay very long.  At first glance I didn’t really see the people that I needed to pull together a full guild group expert, so instead of hanging out and waiting I moved on to the next thing.  I could have easily relied on the Duty Finder, but since my passions were already deeply split last night I figured I would not really press my luck.

I will be raiding tonight so I figured that I would get plenty of time to explore the changes, which mostly for me included the addition of a TP bar in the party interface.  This could be a huge thing if it means that Bards, Machinists and Ninjas start proactively feeding their tank TP when they are starting to get low.  I know when I play ninja I always find it hard to time when is the best use of Goad.  Traditionally I try my best to time it so that I use it at the mid point in a fight, figuring by then especially if the tank is a warrior they will be struggling a bit.  As a Bard I rarely if ever played Army’s Paeon unless specifically asked by a tank because there was no real viable way of knowing when best to time it.  Mage’s Ballad on the other hand… I could time easily when I saw that both healers were starting to hurt for mana.  As silly as it sounds I think the addition of the TP bar to the party interface is going to drastically change the way the game feels for tanks at least.

Whitevale is Huge

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They keep threatening to hug me.

Last night I continued to chew away on Whitevale in Wildstar.  I managed to ding 25 which technically would have been a historic level for me…  if not for the kitty hoverboard and the snarflex.  Those have given me a nice mount to use since the moment I started playing this character, and have honestly spoiled me more than a little bit.  I am hoping that there will be similarly purchasable mounts from the in game store when the free to play conversion happens.  That would honestly be the number one thing stopping me from alting in this game, is the thought that I will not have my stable of mounts to carry over with me.  While I started upstairs last night, I ultimately crashed on the sofa working my way through the various quests in zone.  I keep hearing that all of the zones after Whitevale get significantly better but this zone serves to be this endless and impassible white wasteland.  I’ve remarked before that ultimately on my Chua Engineer it was the zone that stopped me in my tracks and kept me from progressing forward and I am remembering why now.

I am not entirely certain what it is about the zones design but something just feels bad about it.  If you were to ask me what my favorite biome is… and I think I have answered this question as part of the Liebsters…  I would probably say snowy zones.  If I think back to all of my favorite zones in games, most of them are places like Iron Pine Peaks in Rift.  The problem here is it feels like a white desert more than a snowy climate.  Maybe it is the fact that the entire zone has a purplish/bluish overtone but there is just something off with the lighting.  It has this feeling of vastness that makes me feel like I am making absolutely no progress.  That said I have put a big dent in the zone and have whittled down the available quest hubs to only a few left.  If I actually devote some time I think I can push through it in a few more hours.  I am anxiously looking forward to putting it behind me and never returning again.

Insomnia and Demons

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Big demon spider thing, going down!

 

I had every intent of just saying that last night was a Wildstar night and being done with it.  I had patched up Diablo 3 earlier in the evening but had not actually popped in to check it out.  When I wife decided it was bed time around 9 pm I attempted to lay down with her.  Problem being my body intervened and decided that even though I was sleepy… I was not sleepy enough to actually sleep.  I have this nasty habit of catching a second wind just as soon as my head hits the pillow.  I waited around a bit, attempted to watch some television and lull myself to sleep…  but that didn’t actually work.  Instead I finally got up and decided to mindlessly kill demons until sleep claimed me.  Now that Season 3 is over the pressure is mostly off, and my Crusader is just another normal character that I will eventually get to maximum level.  Since it was a Seasonal character, I feel somehow obligated to continue the storyline that I started and I pushed through the never ending series of staircases to get to Azmodan.  On Hard difficulty the game is still exceptionally easy, which is fine because I didn’t really want to think much last night.

The real question I guess is that in two days the fourth season starts.  Will I finish the Crusader first or start a new character for the season?  Honestly I am leaning towards making another Crusader for Season 4 because I really love some of the abilities.  The other option is to make another warrior, because while I like my monk… I don’t think I like its game-play enough to run up another one.  Crusader seems to hit all of the finer points I love about classes and gives me a highly tanky and defensive character with some ability to damage lots of things at the same time.  I might end up making a female crusader just to keep from feeling like I have a duplicate character in my stable.  The problem there is I am notoriously unmotivated to play female characters in games.  I tend to project myself on every character that I play, and for whatever reason I struggle to get the same “this is me doing this thing” experience when I am playing a female character.  Diablo on the other hand… there really isn’t much “you” in the characters that you create.  You are playing a stock character and dressing them up in cool armor, but other than that there really is little “personal touch” to them.

Week in Gaming 8/23/2015

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Stealing Ideas

This morning I am absolutely stealing an idea from Grace who happened to post something today called “What I’m Playing”.  Sunday is traditionally a rough day for me as far as posting goes.  One of two things has happened, either I have stayed up way late on Saturday night to finish editing and posting the AggroChat podcast, or I am rushing around Sunday morning to finish it.  This ends up making the morning feel like a big hassle either way, as my body thinks I just went through this epic struggle to get our podcast posted.  My brain is telling me… isn’t that enough?  Do I really have to make a blog post too?  At which point I tell my brain to shut the hell up and stop being so whiny, and btw give me a topic to write about while you are at it.  So now I am latching onto this week in review post idea like a life raft and just going with that.

Final Fantasy XIV

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A subtitle for this week could easily be called “failing to accomplish goals” because there is a lot of that going around.  Monday night we made solid attempts on Ravana Extreme, and Wednesday we didn’t quite have the people to pull anything together.  Other than that I have honestly been pretty scarce in game.  I get like this after finishing a grind to accomplish one of my goals, and for awhile now I had been grinding in so many different ways to gear both the Warrior and the Dragoon.  I had all intention of capping Esoterics this week, but as of last night I just have seventy five.  I could spend my day grinding to play catch up…  but I highly doubt that is going to happen.  Hopefully we can return to our normally scheduled Final Fantasy XIV play schedule next week.

Wildstar

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I am still very much playing Wildstar, but similarly to Final Fantasy XIV I didn’t really spend much time actually playing it this week.  I made a minor dent on Whitevale on Tuesday, but I spent more time talking about Wildstar with friends this week than actually playing it.  I am not really sure what was up this week but I was overly tired pretty much every day.  We had one horrible night where the storms woke me up and I never could get back to sleep fully, and I think this lack of sleep pretty much pushed the rest of the week out of whack.  Each night I felt like I lacked the mental fortitude to concentrate on an MMO, so ultimately just ended up playing something else.  I want to continue my climb on the Warrior because I am finding the game more enjoyable than I did at launch, and am actually really looking forward to the free to play drop.

Dragon Age Inquisition

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I spent an awful lot of time playing this game over the week, but my overarching goal was less about actually playing and more about figuring out how to play it from my laptop.  I maybe obsess about stupid shit sometimes.  As you can see from the screenshot I finally left the Hinterlands!  I am actually enjoying the game quite a bit now, but for whatever reason I am not finding it nearly as “sticky” as the previous Dragon Age games.   In Origin and even in 2 I had these moments where every fiber of my being just wanted to see what happened next.  It was like turning the pages of a really good novel, and this game doesn’t have that same feel.  It very much feels like I am playing levels in a video game and I find I care less about the story than I have in previous games.  That is not to say the game is not enjoyable, because I am absolutely having fun… but it is just a different sort of fun.

Diablo III

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I apparently worked the Hellgate London out of my system, but instead it has given me a desire to play Diablo III.  For most of the week this has been my go to game, as it has just the right amount of friction for my mental state.  I don’t have to think about it much, I can just push buttons and kill things…  and that works.  In the continued theme of setting myself up for failure, I apparently decided that creating a Season 3 character from scratch was apparently a brilliant idea.  Now in order to get any of the Seasonal rewards I need to get a character to 70…  before 5 pm PST tonight.  This is not a thing that is going to happen since I am just now sitting at 27 as the above screenshot shows the ding.  The positive is… I am actually really enjoying playing the Crusader.  I figure when Season 4 starts I will make another seasonal character and see what I can make it to with a full three months or so of playtime available.

Hatoful Boyfriend

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I curse everyone involved for introducing this game into my life.  It is so damned crazy, but I can’t seem to stop myself from playing it.  At this point I have now seen six different endings for the game.  From what I can tell I have yet to actually scratch the surface, but at least I feel like i have a lot to talk about for the upcoming show.  I imagine that I will play it some more and go for a few more endings.  The ending that I have not seen is the supposed “bad ending”, which I guess means you have to play the game without much thought taking random birds to do things.  At this point I have taken the approach of setting my sights on a specific bird during each play session.  I have a few more left to do that with, so that is probably going to be my focus in the sessions between now and the aggrochat show.

Heavensward Mega Episode

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For awhile now the AggroChat crew has deliberately put off talking about the events of Final Fantasy XIV Heavensward in an attempt to allow folks to catch up on the content.  However this week the gloves are coming off and we are dipping into a full spoiler episode where we hash out the events that have occured since the 2.55 patch show.  We trace the steps of our characters from setting foot into Ishgard to the final conflict of the expansion, with as much details as we can think about in between.  This is a roughly two hour long show because of the truly large amount of content to go over.  We considered chopping this into two halves, but figured we would release it uncut.  We talk about our favorite characters, our most emotional moments and what we are looking forward to with future content patches.

[AggroChat] [Direct Download] [iTunes] [Stitcher]

Ravana Attempts

Unbreaking Google+

Last night I had a message from a long time friend of mine, asking me why I was no longer posting my daily posts on Google+ to which I kinda gave a head tilt and went “huh”?  I had certainly seen my posts making their way to G+ anytime I checked my messages over there.  Then I took a closer look and saw that they all said “shared only with you” which kinda defeats the purpose of syndicating posts in the first place.  It turns out that nothing I have posted since July 28th has made it to G+ which is more than mildly frustrating.   I un-linked my account from Jetpack Publicize and relinked it a few times, but I never saw the prompt that I once saw asking me to select what type of sharing level for my posts.  So I took to the search engine to try and figure out what was happening.  Sure enough it seems like Google did something to change its policies with what level of access external apps have access to your account.  You apparently need to go into Settings > Manage Apps & Activities and then find the WordPress app or whatever else you are using for syndication.  This will allow you to edit the permissions for how it will be sharing to your feed, and like I said before apparently the new default is “Only You”.

After posting about this last night it seems that this pretty much happened for everyone universally.  I thought I would take a quick moment and at least explain how to fix it.  As far as syndicating my posts… I tend to take the approach of broadcast what I write pretty much everywhere.  Each of the social networks kinda has its own vibe and while I greatly prefer using Twitter, there are folks that read my content that equally greatly prefer G+ or Facebook or even Tumblr.  My goal has always been to deliver my content as in as painless of a manner as possible for folks to read.  I personally am not a huge fan of Facebook, and in fact I went through the crazy process of deleting my personal account once upon a time because it annoyed me.  However when I started blogging I signed up for an account just for the purpose of reblogging my content because I know there are people who do prefer to use Facebook.  Granted it might get annoying as shit if you follow me on multiple platforms to constantly see duplicate postings, but I guess that is a chance I am willing to take because I don’t want anyone to feel excluded or left out of the process.  Maybe this is strange but my daily posting thing… feels like all of us are taking a journey together and I don’t want to leave anyone behind.

Ravana Attempts

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As is always the case last night was we gathered up the Monday team and did some eight player content in Final Fantasy XIV.  We started the evening by burning through all four parts of Alexander Normal for the folks who are not running it and capping out early like I am.  At this point my Warrior is sitting at level 190 and I have everything I can get out of Alexander other than the chest piece.  So as of today I will be largely running the place to help out the gear on my Dragoon.  At some point I hope to get the chest piece but largely for cosmetic reasons because the Alexander gear set looks amazing.  Last week we managed to burn down Bismarck Extreme and now both the Monday and Wednesday teams are keyed for the next primal encounter.  As such instead of beating the sky whale again we decided to make attempts on Ravana Extreme.  Now going into this place we had heard horror stories about how rough the encounter was and how it was another Titan Extreme where you had to move exactly at the right time and keep repeating a pattern.  Honestly I didn’t see that at all.  Instead I saw an encounter with a repeatable pattern but significantly more wiggle room  to adjust as we went.

We made some serious progress last night, and I think more than  likely we will be able to defeat him next week.  Each attempt we kept creeping closer to the goal, and essentially what is going to be the make or break moment is dealing with the Final Liberation phase.  If we can learn that particular dance we will have the encounter, and it honestly did not feel like we were too terribly far off from that process last night.  Granted at this point we are significantly better geared than the first groups that attempted the fight, but my hope is that we can get in and start farming this guy so that folks can get the really awesome weapons.  In truth I hope that we can farm both primals because there are absolutely weapons that come from both of them that I would like to see.  We had the two handed sword drop from Bismarck last Monday and it looked amazing.  It is the stupid things like getting glamour items that motivate me, and at some point I want to organize 2.0 extreme primal farming runs so that we can start to get folks their ponies.  As it stands we only have a couple of ponies in the guild, and I think my Leviathan pony was the first.  We need to figure out a method because really I would like to make sure everyone gets at least ONE primal pony before other people roll on it.  Granted eventually it would be awesome to have people get a full set, but I would be happy with having everyone with just one as a starter.

Entering Whitevale

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This morning I am having one of those mornings when I am easily distracted.  The cats are tearing through the house chasing each other like they have gone mad.  There is a dog barking and it sounds like it is coming from my back yard… even though it is really across the green belt.  I keep flipping over to twitter, and having to force myself to put my fingers back on my keyboard and type in my WordPress window.  Largely since this is Blaugust I wanted to include this little tidbit because it absolutely happens to me too.  There are days when you cannot keep your train of thought, and I have learned to just go with it.  Start writing the things that seem most natural and eventually somehow you will get back on track.  Last night was one of those nights for me as well, and I flipped back and forth between games quite a bit as the evening wore on.  Before the raid I spent time over in Wildstar with the purpose of trying to “finish Galeras”, which is a bit of a daunting task because there are a silly number of quests in that zone and many of them you will never actually find unless you go wandering around aimlessly.  Bit by bit however I explored the regions of the map that had yet to be explored and I am now relatively confident that I have at least gotten most of the quests out of the way.

That now means the moment I have been dreading is upon me…  and I had to take the flight out to Whitevale.  I guess in part the reason why I have been avoiding doing this is that Whitevale ultimately was the zone that broke me when I played the game at launch.  I am not sure entirely what it is about the place, but it felt like moving slowly through molasses.  I think in part it was due to the fact that Dominion side there simply were never that many players in the zone, meaning that I could never get a group to do any of the group objectives, and the mob density meant that it was super hard to move anywhere without having to fight a dozen mobs.  The zone also seemed to have a higher concentration of the challenger and superior difficulty mobs than the other zones.  It seemed like I could not move anywhere without seeing one of those horrible flashing red shielded mob types that I had to try and chew through in vain.  As a result I have honestly been scared of getting to this zone because it was my fear that once again it would break me.  I have actually been enjoying the content so far, and finding playing the game refreshing.  So hopefully maybe I can make my way through Whitevale because supposedly everything on the other side of it… is significantly better.