Monthly Archives: October 2010

October in Review

The Site

This month we found out that only Bhagpuss and my mother actually look at the blog in anything other than an RSS reader… and judging from the FeedReader stats, that reader is Google Reader.

Okay, maybe a few other people look at it once in a while according to the poll.

Poll Results

I asked this question because I put something new in the sidebar, a list of posts other blogs that I found interesting.  I suppose it will just end up being a reminder list for me of posts to perhaps look at again.

And it c0nflicts a bit with my Twitter feed, since along with being an alternative feed for my posts, I do occasionally link other posts in there as well.  Sometimes the same post goes in both.  I’m confused.  I’m still working out what I really want out of Twitter and Google Reader sharing.

And speaking of Twitter, this month is the first time that Twitter has actually figured in any significant way in the traffic coming to the blog.  The top 5 sources of referral traffic this month:

  1. virginworlds.com
  2. blessingofkings.blogspot.com
  3. twitter.com
  4. keenandgraev.com
  5. ninveah.com

This does not include search engine traffic, that would put Google.com on top.

Twitter became significant because CCP_Fallout tweeted the results of the EVE Online Screen Shot Contest to the tweet fleet.  That brought a lot of people over to look.

One Year Ago

Last year at about this time Torchlight came out, giving a lot of people a Diablo-like injection of fun.  It didn’t have a lot of replay value for me.  Once I burned through the game once I was pretty much done, which made it unlike Diablo II, which I returned to a number of times.  But it was just $20 and gave us a taste of what Runic might be able to deliver going forward.

I was on a MUD history kick, with tales of exciting ways to die in Kobold Village, the Kobold Temple of the Unholy, getting lost in the Faerie Forest, and all the rooms in TorilMUD.

It was also the three year anniversary of the regular Saturday night instance group, and I presented a summary of what we had done.  I will probably revisit that theme for the fifth anniversary.

A couple of us scouted the then newly Free to Play Dungeons & Dragons Online as a possible next game for the instance group, but it didn’t stick.

I was able to buy the Adventurer’s Pack for LOTRO and get the Siege of Mirkwood expansion for free.  Not as good of a deal as monthly subscribers got I understand, but a decent deal.  Of course, LOTRO has changed a lot since then.

In World of Warcraft October last year say me finish off both the Brewfest and Hallow’s End meta achievements.  I was still left with one achievement for each holiday though.  Fun was had with pumpkins and the Headless Horseman.

The instance group returned to Utgarde Keep to take on Utgarde Pinnacle, at that time the last five-person dungeon in Northrend.  We were victorious and gained the Northrend Dungeonmaster achievement.  But otherwise we were deciding on where the group should go next.

New Linking Sites

I would like to thank the following site for linking here.

Please take a moment to visit them in return.

Most Viewed Posts in October

  1. EVE Online Screen Shot Contest Winners
  2. Fighting Blood Elf Porn
  3. A Quick Pass Through GDC 2010
  4. How I Got My 5,000 Turbine Points
  5. Pokemon Mew Download Event
  6. How To Find An Agent in EVE Online
  7. Play On: Guild Name Generator
  8. BlizzCon Costume & Dance Contest Notes
  9. One Month of LOTRO Free to Play
  10. LOTRO – Comparing VIP with Free
  11. WoW Account Hacked – This Just Keeps Happening
  12. The Path to My Next System

Most Common Search Terms in October

I’m not sure this needs to be a regular feature, but this month people got here via these search terms.

  1. zombrex
  2. elf porn
  3. thorin oakenshield
  4. turbine points
  5. blood elf porn
  6. onyxia
  7. zombrex pen
  8. the ancient gaming noob
  9. tagn
  10. wow account hacked
  11. mafia wars
  12. lego x wing

Search Terms of the Month

thorin keeper of ulduar costume
[huh?]

Hardware

The new machine is up and running.  I’ve moved over most of the key data from my old machine.  Probably the most annoying items are iTunes, which is throwing a fit about exporting and importing my playlists, and Eudora.  I was perfectly happy using Eudora 6.2 as my email client for the last five years or so.  It also doubles as my text editor and to do list holder.  However 6.2 is very unhappy under Windows 7, even when trying to run it under XP emulation mode.  Meanwhile, the new, open source version of the mail client, build on to of Thunderbird, looks a lot like old Eudora, but does not behave like it.  Most annoying.

And then there is the question of what to load up on the new machine.

So far, game-wise, I dragged over World of Warcraft.  I had just patched up to 4.0.1 and wasn’t going to do that again.

Then I did fresh installs of EVE Online, Lord of the Rings Online, and Civilization V.  The first two I thought would be good to refresh, since both have been on my old system for a long time.  And of course, I had no drag-over option with Civ V.  It does, however, run on my new system.  Go me.

Now what else should I install?

And what am I going to do with the old CPU?  Aside from gagging when taxed by certain games, it runs well.

EVE Online

The screen shot contest went off well.  I sent out all the prizes, though one person didn’t claim their PLEX and the contract expired.  I created a new contract.

I’ve gotten back into the game a little bit of late.  With a fresh install and a DX11 capable system, I wanted to fly around a bit.

I also started up the economic engine again, working the market place.  I’ve spent more than half of my saved ISK over the last 8 months.  It is time to refresh the coffers.

Meanwhile, I am posting three of the screen shot entries from the contest over at EVE Online Pictures every week.

Facebook

Facebook games finally hit the limit for me.  They can be amusing to start with, little economic sims that they all seem to be, but they don’t have much staying power.  That isn’t to say that there couldn’t be a great Facebook game for me, but I have yet to see one I really like over time.

Lord of the Rings Online

While the instance group, or the four of us who have been playing this summer and fall, have been in LOTRO regularly, the pace is slowing down.  I suspect that we’re in a rest mode before Cataclysm lands.

I will keep up with LOTRO I am sure.  At level 41, Silinus is my highest level LOTRO character ever, and there is still the draw of Moria.  But as a group I think we might be off for a while.

World of Warcraft

The instance group is still figuring out how we should approach Cataclysm, since we have a group of level 80s, a group in the mid-60s, and the option to roll up fresh.  The changes to classes, the new races, the upsetting and recreation of zones, and the ch0pping up of a couple of long, drawn out instances might mean we need to start fresh again.

Pokemon SoulSilver

Pokemon left to catch: 7

  • #303 Mawile
  • #461 Weavile
  • #464 Rhyperior
  • #466 Elecivire
  • #472 Gliscor
  • #474 Porygon-Z
  • #488 Cresselia

Willing to discuss trades over Nintendo WiFi for any of these.

You’ll know when I’m done.  There will be a post.

Coming Up

I know there are a lot of things going on, that the next month will be full of stuff, yet it is all slowly being overshadowed by Cataclysm.

For example, LEGO Universe went live recently.  I was interested in that.  Now I just cannot get my enthusiasm up for it.

Maybe I’ll just take November off.

Nah.

LOTRO Survey – Not for 64-bit

Turbine sent me an email asking me to take a survey.  They want to make the game better and all that.

Aragorn wants to know what you think!

The poll starts off in a common enough way.  They ask about what game systems you own, what gaming and news sites you read, what MMOs you’re aware of, and what MMOs you play.

Then, once you’ve gone through a couple of layers of that, the poll put up a confidentiality agreement.

They want to show you something new and cool.  You can’t tell anybody, but they want to know what you think.

You just have to download this plugin for your browser.

Only that plugin doesn’t work with 64-bit operating systems.

No special secret cool preview thingy for me I guess.

I have to wonder how this will skew their results?

I am going to guess that you’re more hardcore gamer is going to have gone for 64-bit to be able to access more RAM.

Anyway, the future path of LOTRO is apparently in the hands of those with 4GB or less of RAM in their system.

Bloodline Champions Closed Beta Invite

Did everybody get one of these closed beta invites to Bloodline Champions?

Welcome to the Closed Beta

Because it certainly seemed like everybody I asked got one.

Granted, everybody I asked had, in some way, given their email address to FunCom in the past.

Often the way was somewhat tenuous.

I mean, the email said this:

Funcom would like to thank you for your continued loyal support by giving you free access to the closed beta for Bloodline Champions, a player vs. player arena game that will truly put your gaming skills to the test. Easy to learn, challenging to master – Bloodline Champions is set to become one of the most important games within its genre.

But in my case, continued loyal support seems to be the fact that I signed up for the Clan of Conan newsletter about a year before Age of Conan shipped… and that’s it.  I never played the game.  Nor did I ever try out Anarchy Online.

Not what I would call loyal support.  I supposed I never clicked on the unsubscribe link for the newsletter, though that was mostly because it seemed to show up so sporadically.

And just in case you somehow didn’t get invite, each person who did also got two beta keys to hand out to friends.

Really, one of the most open closed beta I’ve seen.

Too bad the game doesn’t interest me in the least, important to its genre or not.

And what is its genre anyway?

Somebody Attacked Me! In Lord of Ultima!

Which I guess shouldn’t be a big shock.  After all, Lord of Ultima is supposed to be something of a PvP game in its browser based, real-time sort of way.

Only I’ve been playing Lord of Ultima since it launched an nobody has ever bothered with me before.

Of course, at the start, back in May or so, my own wee empire was probably too pathetic to both with.  There were lots of more interesting or dangerous or threatening opponents to be found.

And there is the fact that I’ve never bothered to build a castle.

In LoU you are protected from all attacks for the first week or so… I think it was 7 days, but that time expired so long ago that it is just a blur.

After that protected time elapses you are subject to one type of attack, being plundered, unless you build a castle.  A town with a castle in it is subject to siege and conquest.  However, you can also only launch sieges and conquests and the like if you have a castle.

Or so I understand.  I haven’t, as I said, actually built a castle.

A friend of mine, Xyd, who got me to play the game, built a castle rather early on in the life of the game and was subsequently punished for his arrogance with unending plunder and destruction.

He no longer plays.

Fearing a similar fate, I was determined (a pretty strong word for a game I play very casually) not to build a castle until I sufficient defenses.

And so I’ve never built a castle.

I’ve built quite a little empire though.  Big enough to be invited to one of the top alliances on my world, and to which I contribute about 420,000 points and the occasional shipment of resources or supporting troops.

Our alliance battles always seem to occur far away from where ever I am, so my support usual arrives just in time to be either completely redundant or help sift through the ashes of somebody’s 7-point castle.

(7 is the minimum number of points a town with a castle can be worth.  When it is at 7 points, you’ve pretty much won that battle having rendered the castle helpless.)

So I continued to found new towns and build them up, slowly (very slowly) learning how best to do that.

For example, it took me a long time to realize that the best response to natural resources in your town, wood, stone, or iron, is to destroy them.  Heck, it took me a long time to realize that you could destroy them, much less figure out why you would want to.

As it turns out, the production bonus for having a resource processing building next to a natural resource isn’t nearly as good as having a building that supplies extra labor next door.  So you cram together a grid of processing and supplementary buildings, destroying any nature that might get in the way.

Anyway, I got into the stride of this around 40 cities into my adventure.  Since there is a limit to the number of buildings you can have in a city (100) the great advantage of this compressed grid is that you get a lot more production from fewer buildings, you can have more buildings available for other things, like unit production or trade.

This is actually so effective that I have gone back and started restructuring some of my old, badly laid out cities.  Death to nature I guess.

LoU also offers up rewards for completing quests.  The quests encourage expansion.  So, for example, I have cities on more than 50 of the continents in my world.  (There are a lot of continents.  I have seen them numbered from 0 through 66 so far.)  I have so many far flung cities because there is a series of quests to have cities on 2, 3, 5, 10, 15, 20, 30, etc. continents.

And it was one of these far out of the way cities that was attack, again, much to my surprise.

I was surprised because I was beginning to doubt I could be plundered.  I had put up cities right next to castles of alliances at which we were at war and had never been bothered.

And then I got this report.

What? Attacked? Me?

45,787 armored knights swooped down on my little town and stole a bunch of my stuff.

The town was completely defenseless.  I had given up on bothering with troops.  But now I had somebody attacking me.

I knew what to do first.  I had enough resources building up to start building hideouts, which hide resources from plundering troops.

Shrifflle kept sending out plundering parties at regular intervals, but soon they began to return empty handed.

In the mean time I have been trying to gather some forces to send to my distant city to help oppose this ongoing plunder.  The place is a good days sail (real time) from my nearest full-grown cities.  In the mean time I have slowly been building up the city and its defenses, so once help arrives, it will have the maximum effect.

All of which has added a little spice to what has so far been, for me at least, a somewhat slow and limited game of SimCity.

Me and the Giants

I’m not much of a sports fan, a fact that tends to make me the odd male out at family gatherings and such.

But at one time, long ago, I spent a lot of time at Candlestick Park watching the San Francisco Giants.  Way back when their logo was something like this:

Thanks largely to my aunt and my grandmother, I went to a lot of Giants games in my youth.

It was a hard time to be a Giants fan.  Not that it is ever really easy.  But I got to see a lot of great players.  I saw Willy Mays get his 3,000th hit.  I saw Willie McCovey play his last professional game at home. (A double header, where he got a double that brought in the run to win the first game.  Then, in Giants style, they lost the second.)  I’ve been to two All Star games, including the last one that was held at Candlestick Park.

And over the years that I was a fan in good standing, a member of the Giants Boosters, and a regular attendee at games, I always wanted two things.

I wanted to see the Giants win the World Series and I wanted to see a cross-bay World Series between the Giants and the Oakland A’s.

I got to see the cross-bay series back in 1989.  But the Giants got stomped.

When the A’s are good, they are really good.  And when they’re bad, they’re really bad.  That year they were good.

Of course, the less said about the 2002 World Series the better.  So close.

Now however, for only the third time in my life, the Giants are actually in the World Series.  And they got into the playoffs on the last game too.

So now we’ll see, will my childhood desire to see my favorite team win the World Series finally come to pass.

They certainly looked good in the first game.  11 to 7 is a pretty strong win.

Oddly enough, the last Giants game I actually went to, they also won with 11 points.

Now they just need to win three more games.

Definitionally Yours

At last the recognition I undoubtedly deserve is finally coming my way.  I guess.

I’ve noticed that in the search engine referrals, a lot of people have been finding their way here via the search term “tagn” by itself.

My first reaction was to go Google “tagn” to see if I could figure out what they were, you know, really looking for.

Hey, I’m the first result when you Google “tagn” now it seems.

But in doing that, I noticed a couple of sites for looking up acronyms came up with “What does TAGN stand for?”

They give two results:

  • The Ancient Gaming Noob (online gaming blog)
  • Triaminoguanidine Nitrate (nitramine propellent)

Take that “The All Girl Network!”

That was the site that used to have the domain tagn.com.

Now some domain squatting company has it.  It can be all mine for a ridiculous amount of money.

Pass.

First anagrams, now acronyms.

Now if I can just get some traffic from Lovecraft fans searching on “Cthulu F’tagn.”

Gotta Catch ’em All, Dammit!

I am going to do it.

I am going to complete the National Pokedex in Pokemon SoulSilver.

That involves catching all of the catchable Pokemon.

Hence the famous tag line. (I almost wrote “catch phrase.”)

An Example of Pokemon Mania

There are a total of 493 Pokemon in the game.  However, 9 of them are only available through special events.  These 9 are not required for the National Pokedex.  You only need 484 for that.

Only 484.

I wrote about catching those Pokemon back when I was playing Pokemon Diamond.  It seemed impossible.  I capped out at around 380, or over 100 Pokemon short of the goal.

With Pokemon SoulSilver, I had a new opportunity, and a few advantages.

First, I had a my copy of Pokemon Diamond with nearly 380 caught Pokemon.

Really, that is part of the whole experience, having to transfer Pokemon that you cannot get in your current game over from your old Pokemon game.

And to help things along, I finished up Pokemon Pearl and Platinum, since both offer a couple of special Pokemon.

Then there is the fact that we have two Nintendo DS Lite units in our house, mine and my daughter’s, so I can easily transfer Pokemon back and forth between games.  Plus certain Pokemon only evolve when you trade them. (And to get that 484 number you have to get each Pokemon in all of its various stages of evolution.)

And then there is the fact that my daughter is/was playing Pokemon HeartGold this time around, which has some Pokemon in it that you cannot get in SoulSilver.

And even with all of this, I have been holding my Nintendo DS in my hand every time my wife and I have sat down to watch TV because I have to hatch a Pokemon egg or level a Pokemon up so it will evolve or check the Global Trade Station to see if anybody has accepted my current trade offer. (I have been breeding and trading Piplups fairly successfully.)

I spent a couple hours in Pokemon Diamond, in the underground, trying to dig up a fossil that could be turned into a specific Pokemon (a shieldon, if you must know) because I couldn’t find one for trade.

And after all of this, my Pokedex shows I have caught 479 Pokemon.  Of course, I have 7 of those special event Pokemon, so the number I need to hit is 491.

There is light at the end of the tunnel.  I have just 12 Pokemon left to go.

I need a the following 12:

  • #176 Togetic – Once my Togepi is at “high friendship” leveling it will evolve it into this
  • #303 Mawile – I have to check the game daily to see if this one is available
  • #454 Toxicroak – A matter of leveling up a Croagunk to 37, easy
  • #460 Abomasnow – Again, just need to level up my Snover to 40, in progress
  • #461 Weavile – Have to find a special item, have a Sneasel hold it, and level it up between 8pm and 4am local time… I’m not making this up
  • #464 Rhyperior – Have to my Rhydon hold a special item and trade it to another player, but have to find the item first
  • #466 Elecivire – Another special item hold and trade, but I have the item this time
  • #468 Togekiss – Need Togetic, first one on the list, to get this
  • #470 Leafeon – Need to evolve an Eevee in Pokemon Diamond then trade it over, easy
  • #472 Gliscor – Similar story to Weavile, need an item and a time frame
  • #474 Porygon-Z – A Porygon2 has to hold a special item then be traded, ala Rhyperior, with the same issue
  • #488 Cresselia – Have to go catch this in Pokemon Diamond, Pearl, or Platinum

And if I want to be a completionist and get all 493, I also need a Manaphy, which is only available at special download events.  And once I have that, I can breed it to obtain the final Pokemon, a Phione.

Aside from those last two, not an impossible task at this point.  And then I will be finished.

At least until the next version of Pokemon, Black & White, shows up in the US.  It is already available in Japan and is selling very well.

And when I get it, who knows how many Pokemon I’ll need to catch.  But it looks like the Pokemon are numbered up to 649 with the new games.

One More Hallow’s End Achievement To Go

Again, as with Brewfest, the completionist in me wants to finish off that one last Hallow’s End achievement.

Unfortunately, that last achievement for Hallow’s End is a bit of a pain.  This will be my third year on it and it is simple a matter of luck as to whether it gets done or not.

Two Masks Left

Right now though, rather like Gordon, I am feeling a bit of WoW malaise.  Cataclysm is a month away.  I’ve been on, read up on my specs, tried out the new skills on a few characters, but am generally in a holding pattern until Cataclysm hits and the instance group returns to Azeroth.

So I am not on enough, or interested in logging on enough, to go do a trick or treat every hour in hopes of getting those last two masks.  Blood Elf masks.  Damn Blood Elves.

I do get on to do the Headless Horseman once a day.  I was having a problem with WoW locking up during the Headless Horseman event.  Fortunately, Larisa was having the same issue, and a comment on her post pointed me to an addon that fixes a tool tip crash that seems to be afflicting WoW of late.

The addon basically suppresses tool tips and prints them out in your chat window instead.  A simple fix.

Not that my locking up seemed to slow down the demise of the Headless Horseman.  Even with a disconnected Ret Pally, three groups I was in killed him and I logged back on to find I had the daily quest done.

So I suspect that I won’t finish this achievement again, despite this being my third run through Hallow’s End.  We shall see.

Crafting Adventures in Middle-earth

(By “popular” request, a version of Thursday’s post without anagrams.  Messages both public and private seemed to indicate that perhaps not everybody finds anagrams as amusing as I do.)

Yes, it was again late in the eve of another Saturday and we were still hanging out in Ost Guruth, warming up with a little music while trying to avoid the gaze of the ever-disrobing Frideric the Elder.

And in the usual course of things I went over to The Fat Lue to see what new songs had been added since our last adventure.

I was quite happy to find a two part version of White Rabbit, a classic of the Jefferson Airplane.

We occupied ourselves with that for a bit, then tried a version of Hazy Shade of Winter.

Music in Ost Guruth

Though written by Paul Simon, I always associate the song with The Bangles. (I had a friend in college who took one course merely because there was a girl who looked like Susanna Hoffs in the class.)

We played for a bit while waiting for Enaldie to make her way up to Ost Guruth and for Earlthecat to log on. He was logged into Skype, but didn’t seem to be inclined to make an appearance in Middle-earth.

That was a shame, because we had some high adventure in mind. Adventure of the sort that Stargrace mentioned recently, of a sort where you end up heading some place you have no business being at your level. We would just have to do it sans Earlthecat.

So the line up for the night was:

  • Garfinkel – level 29 elf Minstrel
  • Sigwerd – level 30 human Champion
  • Enaldie – level 30 elf Rune Keeper

with a special guest appearance by one of my alts:

  • Nomu – level 28 dwarf Guardian

We were going to head out of the Lone Lands for a bit, as each of us had a crafting quest to go after.

Crafting in the game is surprisingly relevant and useful, at least on the group level (I do not have the patience to try to make money at it at the Auction House), but to really make the best stuff you have to stretch out beyond the crafting in your current level range and get access to the tier above you. That unlocks the ability to get critical successes when crafting in your own level range.

And that meant, for us, a pack of level 40 crafting quests to conquer in zones comfortably above out current levels.

On the danger side, we would be threading our way through areas where the mob ran from level 35-40. But on the plus side, in LOTRO at least, as a group mobs 8-10 levels above you are surmountable, as long as they are taken individually. Adds are death.

The first course was east from Ost Guruth in the Lone Lands and into the Trollshaws. Therein lay the goals for a level 40 cooking quest that both Garfinkel and Sigwerd needed as well as a level 40 metalsmith quest that Nomu needed to advance his armor crafting skill.

We decided to do the cooking quest first. The target, a boar (of course) of extraordinary magnitude, lay beyond the Ford of Bruinen in the Giant Valley that is off to one side of the High Moor.

Getting to the Ford of Bruinen was not a big problem. We stuck to the main road, diverting only to pick up the stable master route at Thorenhad.

However, as I’ve mentioned before, unlike in the books, crossing the Ford of Bruinen only puts you in more danger, not less. The path up the far side is patrolled by bears, lynx, and giant mosquito-like flying insects that look like they could drain a hobbit dry with a single prod of their… blood sucking… prod… thingy.

We had to dismount and fight our way up into the High Moor, one fuzzy creature at a time.

Once securely in the High Moor, we had to scout out the Giant Valley, for only therein lay the porcine pal with whom we had come to play. It was not too far off the main path. But danger lay in the Giant Valley.

First there were the giant signature level lizards, who were around level 40. Signature is somewhere between solo and elite. Possible to take on, but tougher than the standard mob. We worked our way carefully around them. Carefully and successfully. Did they reduce the aggro radius of mobs in the game when it went free to play? I seem to be skirting danger more successfully since that change.

And then there were the elite dragons. We gave them a very wide berth when possible, diminished aggro radius or not.

We were able to find our way, and soon the message went out, “Sighted Swine, Sank Same.”

Carving Up Porky

The pig was butchered, producing just enough meat to fulfill the quest needs of both Sigwerd and Garfinkel.

A boar has at least two flanks, right?

We then retraced our steps back out of the Giant Valley.

Already in the High Moor, we decided we should take the opportunity to visit Rivendell.  We could hardly pass up the chance to visit the home of Elrond and Glorfindel. Surely you recall Glorfindel, who faced the Balrog at the fall of Gondolin and who himself fell, but later returned after some time in the Halls of Mandos in Valinor. I mean, there can’t be two Glorfindels, right? He’s got to be the same one.

So through the rest of the High Moor we rode until we reached Rivendel. (Imladris, in the elven tongue.)

Behold, Rivendell!

There we stopped for a short time, looked around a bit, got our bearings, then headed to the stable master.

Does the same guy do all these maps?

Our first ever visit to Rivendell was short.  We had tasks still to accomplish. It was time to ride back to Thorenhad.

Through The Woods Again

Once there, I logged out Sigwerd and brought in Nomu.

The quest for Nomu involved wights up in Nan Tornaeth, in the north part of Trollshaws. To reach that, we had to take some narrow paths, so there was no sneaking around things. As with the path from the Ford of Bruinen to the High Moor, it was a creature by creature slog.

We reached the area of the wights and spotted one immediately. This level 38 shade put up a tough fight, and it was Enaldie’s huge damage output that saved the day. Nomu was able to hold aggro, but only just. But our victory was hollow. The item Nomu needed did not drop. The crafting quest drops are usually close to 100%, but not this one it seems. We would need another wight.

The next one we spotted was level 40. Given the tough fight the last one put up, we were a bit cautious. We made sure we had buffs going, then headed in.

The two levels, putting the wight 12 levels above Nomu, was telling. Nomu landed very few blows, and since a lot of his aggro management relies on connecting with his shield, the wheels started to come off the situation. Garfinkel tasted defeat and the wight was advancing on Enaldie who was putting out a veritable storm of magic while Nomu tried to get the attention of the wight.

Hardcore Wight

Two taunts in a row hit and the wight turned on Nomu. Meanwhile, Garfinkel revived and rejoined the fight. The wight was slain and the item for the quest was recovered.

That left only the quest of Enaldie, which was over in Trestlebridge. We decided that recalling to Bree was in order.

Nomu retired for the evening and Sigwerd came out again as we rode up to Trestlebridge.

There Enaldie found that her quest was rather simple. It was not the quest to access the next tier, which takes place up near Angmar, but just the quest for superior workbench access. We’ve seen that one before, where you gather some wood down in the river below Trestlebridge and then patch up the bridge. I did that quest with Terentia a while back.

So while Enaldie collected wood, Garfinkel and Sigwerd went back to music, playing a little Blues Brother.  Gimme Some Lovin’ didn’t sound quite right, but we were only playing two out of the three parts.

Which One Is Elwood?

Once Enaldie was done, we rode on to Esteldin, which is home to the crafting hall with superior workbenches. It is also one of the most convenient crafting halls in the game as it has a vault keeper and a mail box close to hand.

There, I closed up the night with a solo version of Margaritaville, which actually drew in a few role players.

Take Us Out Sigwerd!

And that was about it.  I didn’t even get to make fun of our pal Radagast.

Next week, iambic pentameter!

Oh, and maybe how the game looks on the new machine with DX11 and such.

We’ll see if Turbine has anything about which to brag.

BlizzCon Costume & Dance Contest Notes

We watched the contest segment on DirecTV tonight and I have to say that was really some of the worst camera work I’ve seen in a long time.

I realize that the whole thing seemed to be coming together in sort of an ad hoc fashion, but who in the control room was saying, “Yeah, from the knees down, that is the angle we want for the one close up on these costumes!”

They would have been better off nailing a camera down on a table, taping a mark on the stage and telling people to stand there and show their stuff while the video crew went out for a drink.

Okay, the camera work settled down… some… and managed to do okay after a while, but only once most of the costume contestants had already had their big moment blown.

I’m sure the guy who went out and asked his girlfriend to marry him in the middle of the costume contest got big points, though the women in the audience shouted at him until he went down on one knee and asked in what they felt was a proper fashion.

Too bad nobody queued the announcer up on this event.  The whole thing went off with barely a word.  But then the announcer for that segment seemed to be less than connected with the whole thing.

That is what they get for sending Jay Mohr off stage for a bit.  He holds the whole contest routine together.

Then the dance contest had the expected Worgen and Goblin dancers.

But no human female dance entrants in the dance contest?  What was up with that?

And a guy doing the dwarf female dance was one of the finalists again.  But not the same guy as last year, who won.  No he got beat out by a different guy this year.

The winner though was the guy who did the dwarf male dance.

There is a lesson in that for next year I’m sure… doing the dwarven dances will get you there.  Dwarves for the win.

Finally, the woman playing the violin in the band was smokin’ hot.  I’m glad the camera was on her a lot of the time.