December in Review

The Site

Welcome to the 100th month in review as well as my 377th, and final, post of 2014!  At least I am consistent in getting these posted on the last day of every month.

I actually changed the theme for the site… again… but this time I have actually stuck with it for a while… mostly because nobody has screamed bloody murder yet, like when I went to that dark theme.  There are still things I do not like about it (like the fact that it feels it can break/hyphenate words at the end of a line when it damn well pleases… it isn’t me doing that, I swear), but it has some advantages over the old theme, including being on WordPress.com’s actively supported list.  That should mean that new features should not break this theme the way the old theme used to get hosed now and again.

And, speaking of new features, WordPress.com has decided that, in addition to their brain dead “new and improved” post editing interface they need a new stats page as well.  I am not happy with it.

To be charitable, it does allow at least one more way to view traffic data.  But otherwise it is a muddle, a confused attempt redo something that already worked pretty well.  And worst of all, it isn’t hooked up right.  While it seems to know that the blog has been around since 2006, it shows now traffic until 2009.

The first few years don't count

The first few years don’t count… also, 2014 stats with 10 hours left in the year

There also does not appear to be a way to see total stats for the life of the blog, and those nice tables that I include at the end of every anniversary post (see the 8 year post for an example) are missing completely.

I am at a loss to see what WordPress.com is thinking, that somehow people are going to be happy with less functionality.  But that might just be me.  Anyway, I hope they don’t kill off the “classic” stats and dashboard in favor of this new bilge.

WordPress.com has their own year in review report for this blog (and my other blog).

One Year Ago

It was the final shut down for Warhammer Online.

It was also the end of the road for World of Darkness at CCP, which shut down the project and laid off much of the staff.

CCP did give me a copy of the EVE Online Second Decade Collector’s Edition.

Actually in EVE, I was looking at flying a dreadnought, looking at my hull tanking certificate, and actually went on a couple of ops, blowing things up in NS2L-4 and BW-WJ2.

Shroud of the Avatar was an actual thing.  You could log in and see stuff.  Granted, a year later it is still in alpha and has a long way to go, but at least progress is being made I guess.

Turbine threw their hat in the ring with their own insta-level scheme for Lord of the Rings Online.  It got you all the way to the doors of Moria.  I was not impressed.

Blizzard put a cash shop in World of Warcraft.  But don’t call those microtransactions, because they are not.

The instance group in World of Warcraft ventured under the sea and into the Mount Hyjal region, then ran through the Throne of Tides and Blackrock Caverns instances.  Meanwhile, I had an alt finish up The Burning Crusade for me.  And then there was my character a level cap, swamped with options including Timeless Isle.

I reviewed my goals and tried to sum up 2013.

I did some book reviews of a sort, looking at The Kindly Ones, The Circle, and some space operas.

Finally, we were very sad at our house last year when our cat Fred died.  We still miss him dearly.

Five Years Ago

Let’s see… a random reader wrote in to tell me that the social aspects of MMOs are insignificant.  I don’t think he understood what he was talking about.

People seemed to be getting worked up as to how you define content in an MMO.  Can you compare sandbox and amusement park content fairly?  Taking some of this to its logical extreme, I demonstrated something that trumped all MMO content.

Also getting people worked up was the catch in the whole free to play model, brought up by changes to the store in Battlefield Heroes.  That actually got responses all over the place.

The US release date for Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver was announced.

People were warming up for Star Trek Online.  There was a confusing array of pre-order options.  But it was missing some items I really wanted. (I think the awful early movie uniforms eventually appeared recently in the C-Store.)

In WoW we were busy wrapping up the holiday achievements, including wrapping up Pilgrim’s Bounty.

We were also playing with this new Dungeon Finder thing that showed up with WoW patch 3.3.  Automated cross-server instance group matching with random strangers?  It will never work.

The instance group, in its horde RP-PvP server form was hitting Gnomeregan and Shadowfang Keep, both of which seemed… much easier.

And I was officially epic… proven by the achievement.  Of course by that time, somebody already had all the possible WoW achievements.  Too epic to be believed.

Meanwhile, this horrible image was keeping me up at nights.  You just cannot unsee things once you have seen them.

Finally, there was an actual podcast interview with Erik “WoW isn’t easy enough” Estavillo.  He was a surprisingly good sport about being the subject of mockery.

New Linking Sites

The following blogs have linked this site in their blogrolls, for which they have my thanks.

Please take a moment to visit them in return.

Most Viewed Posts in December

  1. The Mighty Insta-90 Question – Which Class to Boost?
  2. Three Science Fiction Series Starters
  3. Preparing for Pokemon Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby
  4. This is EVE and EVE is Different
  5. Blizzard Isn’t Giving You a Free Copy of Warlords of Draenor
  6. Tech 3 Destroyers and Other Tidbits from EVE Vegas Keynote
  7. Does PLEX Work Anywhere Besides EVE Online?
  8. Considering Star Wars Galaxies Emulation? Better Grab a Disk!
  9. The Insta-90 Choice is… Death Knight
  10. Level 85 in EverQuest… Now What?
  11. Rhea Ushers in a New Era of Clones, Wormholes, and Graphics to EVE Online
  12. Reviewing my Predictions for 2014

Search Terms of the Month

money talk porno
[Enough money and porno will talk any way you want baby]

eq best plat farming location paladin
[Is plat still a thing of value in EQ? When I got that insta-85, I got 15K plat.]

when will wod price go down
[January is my guess.]

pokemon named by noob
[How about a Skitty I named “Kargath?”]

i skipped the starting quests in everquest, how do i go back
[I’ve been trying to go back for years. It is a futile quest.]

EVE Online

After wrapping up our deployment to Querious, I have been on a mild break from New Eden.  Deployments are bursts of high activity and lots of hours playing, so the pattern for me has been to take a break in-between, and doubly so during the holidays when things can be a bit busy.  However, a new year will bring a new deployment and new things to shoot.

EverQuest II

A burst of 10 year anniversary nostalgia hit and for a couple weeks in December EverQuest II was my main game.  I now have a level 74 berserker (previous high was a 62 swashbuckler) and am into the 2007 game content of the Rise of Kunark expansion.  It is a fine solo experience, with a mercenary to heal and a main that can tank.

Pokemon

While I am enjoying the latest outing, Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, I have been playing through at a rather slow pace.  A month in and I am only at the 5th gym battle.  But I have also been playing through in a very systematic way, trying to check every side path and talk to every person I meet along the way.  Since the end game doesn’t do much for me, making the most of the story is my current plan.

World of Warcraft

After a burst of activity with the launch of the Warlords of Draenor expansion, where my first character hit level 100 and I started two more into the expansion, I got hit with a bit of garrison fatigue and took a bit of a break as I headed of to a vacation in EQII.  I have been back and playing more in the last week, but I fear I won’t get into a Molten Core group before the anniversary content is withdrawn.  I hit item level 614 last night.  Still have to get one more point and then actually find a group at a time when most people are done with the raid.

Coming Up

Holy crap, it is going to be 2015.  I spent so much of my life measuring the distance to the year 2000, which was going to be a big deal right (and not just some arbitrary number on a timeline) that I still have trouble grasping that the whole thing happened 15 years ago.

In EVE Online there will the Proteus expansion dropping soon.  Proteus stole fire from the gods, so that is a pretty big name to live up to. [Or maybe that was some other Greek deity.]

The final day of the Steam holiday sale is coming.  Will there be something to tempting to resist on the last day?

I am warming back up to my garrison in WoW, but I need more followers.  I am going to have to work on that in 2015.

Then there is the question of how long my vacation in EQII will last.  My basic goal of getting into the Rise of Kunark expansion was met.

And, finally, I have a goal to get some sort of forward looking predictions post for tomorrow.  Only I haven’t really started yet.  I have one written down.  Time to think outrageous thoughts.

3 thoughts on “December in Review

  1. bhagpuss

    “Is plat still a thing of value in EQ? When I got that insta-85, I got 15K plat”

    I’m not logged in to check prices in The Bazaar right now but my feeling is that might by you a pair of boots. Not very good ones. Kinda worn and out at the toe.

    Like

  2. Jester

    Prometheus stole fire from the gods. Proteus was one of the 15 or so Greek sea gods. I guess if you can’t walk five miles without hitting an ocean, it’s a pretty big deal for your belief system. ;-)

    Like

  3. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    One Greek deity or another.

    Proteus had something about his aspect that he could change forms depending upon where he was, something I only vaguely recall because the main character in Kurt Vonnegut’s Player Piano was named Paul Proteus and it was an allusion to the god because he could fit in with different groups… became a different person… depending on where he was. Something I wrote a report about more than 30 years ago at this point.

    I wonder if the changeability enters into the expansion.

    Like

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