Monthly Archives: October 2012

I hope I will be able to wrap it up before Monday

I really don’t want to waste my time running Mabar all day long, even though the event is made ‘funner’ in a full raid group and quite intense when everything spawns at the same time. Nothing like seeing a forest of giant skellies and what can only be the equivalent of a WW II battle scene in regards to things exploding.

But truth be told I don’t really need anything out of it other then the wraps. Question is do I want to make several wraps – say one level 12 and one level 24 – so that if I TR my Monk I can just use those 2.

But what I don’t get is the arbitrary nature of all events and challenges. The pirate event have all items BTA and BTC when fully upgraded. Sounds good. With the winter event the items remain the same status as before when you add frost to them. Good, as it should be. In Mabar all items are BTC and you can’t just make level 24 – you first have to create them level by level constantly upgrading it. That’s different from everything else including Cannith Challenges.

Of course Eveningstar Challenges follows Mabars spastic nature with the exception of all materials being BTC when it’s not with Mabar.

It would be nice if it functions like this instead. All material unbound. Let people sell them as they see fit to anyone. Second, all level 20 items BTC. They’re considered Epic. Before then BTA. I mean pls – I don’t mind having a few cloaks between level 8-16 but I don’t want to make more crap to fill up the inventory with in the case I TR. Flexibility is good; I have no idea why Turbine have this arbitrary nature in place considering the level 8 wraps ain’t that special.

So please Turbine; make ALL material unbound and BTA where it makes sense. NOT bound. The time is spent anyways and the less arbitrary you make the grind the better. Second, no item UNDER 20 bound. It’s not like people will stick with playing level 12 forever. Having unbound named items also means flexibility and less inventory space taken up with redundant stuff. Grind okay; meaningless grind not okay.

And finally – it’s alright if level 20 stuff and above are bound on equip. Yes – bound on equip. That way I don’t have to trade around mats here and there; go through mules a billion times. Then whomever carrying the stuff can also create the Epic item and drop it in the bank. And whomever picks it up and equip it gets it.

It’s all common sense. It adds flexibility and not this switching between toons just to drop mats in the bank so someone else can run out into the event and make the wraps. And then switch over to the one I’m running with, do some more runs and then go to the bank etc. I like flexibility. I like not wasting time.

Less waste of time, less arbitrary, me happier – and spend real money.

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The flexibility of exactly what you want (almost)

Sure, we all want some kind of livestock animals that lay golden eggs – but short of that we have Cannith crafting. Like with my wiz; took him and my wife for another run yesterday – getting the most out of 31% XP boost. I kept noticing that a good portion of my spells failed (like when I need to drop a firewall and you get nada other than some irate critters about to punch a hole in your wooden head). So I checked and my ‘home made’ armor (power X) also comes with 5% spell failure. So today I redid my wiz gloves (BTA Concentration +13) into Lesser arcane dexterity gloves of Concentration +10. Add a lil’ Masterful Crafting and ML 11 turns into ML 9 – enough for my level 10 Wiz to use them and eliminate those pesky miss-fires.

Imagine what I would have to do in order to find a random item that fits the bill and add those two functions without moving around gear. Short answer – very very hard. And at the right level as well.

I can only hope that turbine will further improve the crafting system and to include some of the new things they’ve added. Not so you can make those wonderful named items – but to use some of the added features to your gear – to further increase the flexibility of choices when you can’t find that item that would fit the gear slot perfectly.

The life of the unwilling mule.

I have way to many mules and they carry way to much stuff. I must be the original horder of DDO. And it have come to the point that toons I started and will eventually cap is now carrying a bunch of stuff (a matter made worse with underdark since some of those items are just way to good to auction).

Which is why I’ve wasted good time and XP yesterday running things under level in order to unlock another inventory tab. My hope is that I can get that done shortly since I’m running low on space carrying all the stuff my wiz is uncapable of using.

On a side note my wife was first kind of disapointed over her Horc – cause her dwarven fighter with two axes ‘seemed’ better (never mind that she was also fighting skellies with a maul – not exactly rewarding at level 8). And besided, that maul sux.

But now when she does her cleaves and greater cleaves she’s slowly getting into the groove of liking her horc which comes across like a living tornado (she’s into doing a lot of jumping now adays which have me calling her a destructive monkey). Although I can’t really say I’m doing that badly either – my wiz respecced for force damage manages to hit fairly okay with his 1SP magic missiles and tops it up with fireballs that touches upper 200’s (not bad for a level 8).

The key is of course having good gear – such as the level 8 flame cloak (still want to upgrade it twice), rock boots and a Major Kinetic lore trinket along with a scepter with 54 force spell power.

That allows me to not only web, but to firewall, fireball, magic missile and scorch everything in my path. Except for the whole only 850 SP.

Ironically; other than my flame cloak, ring of master and rock boots – everything else is ‘home made’. Like Con +6 necklace, Int +6 Helmet, Concentration +13 gloves, greater evocation braces and a docent with power X. If I can only remember to get some large guild shards with SP for the bracers I can add even more SP to the bottom line. Which is not bad considering that at this stage on my first toon I was barebone using pre-underdark and guild ship random bad stuff.

Ma – look at me now.

To Guild the Goose

I was going to write about adding a couple of levels to my low level archmage, but I figured that’s pretty trivial stuff. The nice thing about Cannith crafting is of course the ability to start level 9 with Int +6 and Con +6 items as well as an assortment of greater focuses and such. Or why not a Major Kinetic lore trinket to boost those 1 SP Magic missiles.

But as I wrote; that’s kind of trivial and something experienced TRers go through every single day and most experienced players pull out of their bank while they level a new or old toon.

I will instead spend a few moments thinking about the current guild change.

I’ve always found the idea of renown decay kind of silly. Partly because it goes against the basics of any economic model through history. What is a guildship? Apparently it’s completely a method of ‘fame’ versus a method of ‘resources’. That someone out there only offer these ships to guilds because of ‘fame’ and not because they have the resources. Although you pay for everything with resources; if you’re not famous you can’t keep it.

I understand the function and the reasoning behind decay but it’s silly. It’s so arbitrary that I kind of laughed when our guild was stuck between 72-73 for over 6 months because a few people took a break around the release of Star Wars the Old republic and other new games hitting the market.

Leaving me and another guy being the only ones playing for most part. A few more are back so we now can play fairly often and have slowly climbed up a few more levels in 3-4 months period.

The only saving grace have been our small guild size; if we were a larger guild we would’ve been screwed.

And that’s the crux.

Notice how many different attempts Turbine have made to ‘fix’ the issue of decay. From guild size, to adjusting renown decay according to guild size or even ‘bonus’ renown based on guild size. And not the removal of guild size decay because of how this affect larger guilds dramatically.

Personally I’m in favor of removing all kind of silly things like decay from leaving a guild, decay completely and everything designed to punish a guild from losing members or increasing guild side with casual players.

Remove it. It’s arbitrary. Add instead a different thing like plat sinks. That in order for a guild to keep their boat they have to rent it (or rather pay a ‘port’ fee of sort) that is taken from all members of that guild on a daily basis. Make it small. Or that it cost so much per boat and that everyone in the guild puts plat in the ‘rental’ coffer. There it takes the cost for all the items on the boat and the port fee for the boat.

So all the cost is taken from a central point for all the stuff on the boat and the boat instead and you don’t ‘add more time’ to the stuff on the boat. It simply pulls plat from the central collection point. That makes it less tedious to constantly have to check if something is about to expire and figure out what expired and it acts like a plat sink for the boat.

Make leveling the guild slightly steeper, but without decay no worries about having to maintain decay during events. Personally it should always be about resources. Not about fame. If anyone can affort to pay for the stuff and the boat they can keep it.

Or to explain it differently; most wellknown rich people are old money. What was a wellknown famous dynasty in the past might not be known today BUT their resources and money is still influencing things and partly because being known is not the same things as have resources.

Renown decay is as silly as XP penalty in quests. We don’t need it. What we need is a common sense system that allows players to build their guild in their own pace without worrying about strategy like guild size or whether or not someone can play every waking hour.

And who cares if there would be more 100 level guilds out there? How’s that different from having 1000000 level 25 toons, geared to the hilt and with more money then Uncle Scrooge. I think we’re focusing on the wrong thing here and that being a level 100 guild as rare as it can be is not really what it is cracked up to be.

It only means that someone has the resources no one else has but ultimately it doesn’t change what anyone is playing and how.

This constant focus on e-peen measuring wastes a lot of opportunity for fun. Or as someone else put it he/she was not willing to buy renown pots if the effort would be wasted on decay.

And I agree. I refuse to buy something that’s wasted based on whether or not the rest of my guild plays at all. That’s throwing good money away better spent on something else.

With stunning results

This weekend my wife and I did some XP farming out in the The House of Rusted Blades to give me a chance to pull the right Seal and to get something like 6-8 runs done as quickly as possible.

So the first 3 times we did the optional Matriarc and the other times we did the end. And luck had it that my wife pulled the seal with stunning +10 (and gave it to me since I pleaded real nice and she didn’t have any use for it – note I didn’t tell her that she could have sold it for a mill easy) and although it have +2 insightful Con on it and not the strength as I wanted it, it sure will be very useful to my Monk.

Now I can finally use any type of wraps and stun like a champ and when I combine it with Adamantine Cloak of the Bear and the ML 24 Mabar wraps or even Ivy wraps, I’ll be doing all kinds of hurt.

The lessons of fatherhood

This story is simple; how to not listen to those who know – for no other reason then not wanting to.

So my son have played DDO on and off for years – mostly off being F2P and therefore have very little content to pick from. Sure, he added a pack or two now and then but not to the extent he could play from 1 to 20 without massive repeat of F2P content and the few packs he owned. So he played sporadically. Meanwhile his girlfriend, also into DDO plays now and then with the same issue; F2P.

My son finally gets a job and decides to go VIP for 10 bucks a month and as a nice gesture he offers to pay for his girl friend. He ask me about sorc; I tell him specifically about playing a caster. Now we’ve had discussions about stuff before and I’ve tried to instill him some basics, but it’s my son and as all good kids he doesn’t listen.

I’ve also offered him to join our guild – being a level 78 guild we have all the essential stuff – really important if you want to run things on Elite. Especially the different resists. But again his girlfriend have a small guild and it’s special to her. Not that he was invited into it on his sorc. I told him that he could be part of our guild and invite her onto our ship so both of them could get the buffs and she could still keep and build her guild. But no dice.

So suddenly he said that he doesn’t want to play his sorc anymore so I ask. Turns out it ‘dies all the time’ (note that they’re doing things on elite, have no resists other than whatever the sorc can add at level 5 (10 resist for 5 minutes). I gave him tons of money (half he must’ve given to his girlfriend) so he should have any problem buying wands as backup and such.

I check out his sorc to see what’s the problem.

1. No fortification item. I’ve told him how important that was, so I make him one – moderate fort. No concentration item and no lore. No conjuration or no evocation focus. And no web. He said he tried it but it didn’t work so he removed it (doing elite quests with +1 in Charisma item, no fort, no rests other then spell, no focus item basically spells doom).

2. He’s using his SP to heal his girlfriend who created a warforged barbarian instead of a fleshie (like Horc). And since the hireling cleric isn’t healing that good he’s wasting all his SP healing her, instead of buying tons of wands and wand heal her instead.

So I set him up with conjuration and evocation. Mod fort, concentration item. +3 Con and +3 Charisma item and a acid lore together with corrosion and combustion item. And I gave him a membership to our guild so he could get the good buffs.

But as a good teenager he doesn’t want too. True to nature it’s more important for him to be part of his girlfriends guild and he’s going to make something else.

So what I’ve learned is this; when he asks me again what to do I’ll tell him to figure it out. Because if he’s not going to learn the basics of what I’ve told him (like running stuff on hard instead of elite, get fort item, concentrate of a few good spells and specially in some. Tell your girlfriend to get on a fleshie barb instead until she knows how to run one and TR into a warforged later) then there’s no point for me to waste time giving him the basics.

Let him figure things out instead. You can sometimes lead people to the water but you can’t make them drink. If they want to make it exponentially harder for themselves and fail and get discouraged and give up then they will. If they want to be smart and play smart then I can help them out.

Meanwhile my wife is benefitting from the fact that I know most quest inside and out and that I have several toons that makes her life easier. It’s harder when I play my arti since arti’s are behind the power curve in 20+ quests. But it’s much easier when I play my fighter or Sorc since they make her life easier.

I had hopes that I could run with my son and his girlfriend but I have a feeling that they won’t. They might not even get to 20 (which you can do today playing everything on normal so easily) because he’ll keep redoing his character over and over without realizing that the fundamental reasons he’s failing is that he’s doing things on elite without the equipment and skill to do it.

Solutions

I like learnin’ stuff. I like pulling loot. I love new adventures, challenges and most of all – I like the shinies.

But more then anything I like solutions. When Turbine release a new type of ability/feature I always try to figure out how it fits my builds. Because ultimately we all want to improve everything and sharpen the advantage we have over the game.

So the other day my rant basically broke down into 2 type arguments – one in favor of the coming Wizard Orb (Epic Normal Glaciation version) OR use Twilight that is getting an improvement in the upcoming update.

Not to rehash that conversation; but basically with the Orb I don’t need to use greater stuff like evocation etc and with twilight my primary Savant element gets more potent (not to mention Major Evocation and Enchantment Focus).

But then I started thinking about the new challenge cloaks and I took another look. Like the Adamantine Cloak of the Dragon. Primarily spell focus Mastery +2. And until I manage to upgrade twilight (when I manage to pull that one) it also has spellcasting implement +18.

The best thing is that it would replace my sorcs level 16 Flame Cloak and wouldn’t be missed.

If it wasn’t for the many hours I need to waste my time running those challenges I would almost be excited right now.