Gaming

Legion: A Look Back

Now that we’re less than 10 days away from BfA launch I figured it would be a nice time to take a look back at Legion as expansion and highlight some of it’s highs and lows for me personally. I’d like to talk about my favourite, and least favourite, storylines. Which expansion mount looks the most amazing (hint, it’s a Class one!) and what I found most disappointing overall. So without further ado, here is my Legion in a nutshell!

Shadow Raven mount and end of the Rogue campaign.

Most awesome class campaign: Rogue
Yup. Kind of a shocker isn’t it? I’ve not played Rogue seriously since Wrath of the Lich King and as class it was the last one to see max level and probably my least favourite up untill that point. But holy hell Blizzard did such a masterful job with the storyline here. I have to admit that the class hall itself was a bit of a letdown (I didn’t particularly enjoy any of the Class Halls overall) but the story. Oh the story. And all the iconic characters. I loved the whole thing surrounding Matthias Shaw. I loved staging a pirate type coup. And I especially loved the Class Mount involving me assassinating targets in Horde (or Alliance, depending on the side you play) capitals. It was all very well done and 100% Rogue.

Least awesome class campaign: Death Knight
There. I said it. I know it will probably not sit well with many people because I’ve read nothing but praise about the Death Knight storyline but honestly I hated it from start to finish. Maybe because I was around in Wrath where the whole thing about being a Death Knight was being free of the Lich King and not following in his footsteps. Well here comes Legion and you are basically his puppet again. I hated killing and reanimating things. I hated having to bully my way to information and I sure as hell avoided any unnecessary killings when I could. I feel like Death Knights are set back by this story line and it probably is trying to make a point about how the Lich King is still evil. I just wish I had the choice to not go along with it.

Best looking Mount of the expansion: Shaman Class Mount!
Shaman takes the cake, I mean hello. You’re actually riding an elemental. Can’t really top that can you?

Liquid fire mount best mount

Most disappointing Mount of the expansion: The Riddle Worm/Paladin Class Mount.
This is actually a nice tie. I see people riding around on the Riddle Worms and honestly it’s just ugly. I don’t want to ride a gigantic eel out of water, if it was a water mount I guess I would have taken a bit more liking to it. But just seeing them soar the skies is a sore sight for me. I rate the Paladin Class Mount here because really, it’s just another horse. I would’ve loved to have something a bit more exotic than that. They are pretty horses in their respective four colour variations, but still rather disappointing.

Most creative encounter: Elisande, the Nighthold 
I’m guessing this one comes with a bit of nostalgia goggles because the Nighthold was the last serious raid I did with my guild in the expansion. I really liked the Elisande fight, even though for us it wasn’t a very steep learning curve. The fact that she resets herself while adding mechanics was a delight and I really loved dealing with all of the stuff that was going on there. Killing the right adds, dodging the spheres, it was an amazing fight overall and especially enjoyable on a high mobile class like Warrior.

Most disappointing encounter: Varimathras, Antorus the Broken Throne
This one is most likely caused by the fact that I’ve only done it on LFR but man, this fight is dull. All the mechanics can be neglected and it’s just a straight up tank and spank, making it uneventful to say the least and straight up boring on almost anything but a healer class. Please don’t make fights like these anymore Blizzard.

My biggest enjoyment and biggest frustration all in one!

Best content overall: Mage Towers
This should come as no surprise really. I’ve tackled all 36 Mage Towers, and the Holy Priest and Shadow Priest ones twice, and I can honestly say it’s some of the most fun I’ve had in an MMO in a very long time. Even though some of the Healer ones almost made me break my keyboard, as did Subtlety Rogue on a 1% wipe, I’ve never felt more proud of myself than when I got all of these done. It feels like it’s a testament to my perseverence but also to my adaptability and skill in this game in general. I may not be a Mythic raider but I know how to play everything and I enjoy playing everything.

Stuff I hoped would go away with BFA: AP Grind
The AP grind. Oh the AP grind. It was horrible. Before the whole catch up mechanics it grinded my gears so much. Alting was a nightmare because of this and even playing more than one specc was made so much less enjoyable because of the damned AP grind. I know it’s coming back in BfA in a bit more friendly form but in my opinion Blizzard should have done away with it alltogether.

What Blizzard needs to do more in future expansions: Storytelling like the Class Hall campaigns
I think one of the most outstanding things in Legion were the Class Hall campaigns. Even though some may have had better stories than others (I’m looking at you specifically Monk and beer related content) they all felt unique and fitting to the class in one way or another. I felt engaged in the stories for every class I did and, as cherry on top, it was excellent solo content with a splash of grouping up. It was well executed and really helped built the rest of the expansion with that base. I really hope that Blizzard will do something similar in BfA with tailor made content that you can do solo and gives fun and engaging storylines.

My beloved, and hated, Alchemy station

Most torn opinion: Professions
Ahh Professions. For some reason I get the feeling that Blizzard looked at FFXIV for this. We suddenly had a ton of profession quests in Legion. And even though I enjoyed doing them it also felt like a chore to do on every new alt I made. I’m not overly thrilled on the whole 1-2-3 star recipe thing either, especially for the gathering professions Mining, Herbalism and Skinning. I can honestly say I’ve Mined a LOT on my Warrior this expansion yet I’ve not obtained all three star skills and it’s pissing me off. I like that they added more depth to the professions and I can see why they did the “expansion split” with the pre-patch but I’m not a fan of the star system and the quests get really repetitive when you do them more than once. I guess I’ll have to see what BfA brings on this front.

So there you have it. I could go on and on for a very long time about all the things I liked and disliked about Legion but overall I enjoyed the expansion more than I thought I would, especially without a raiding guild. I can only hope BfA shapes up to be as good and hopefully even better.

What are your opinions on Legion?

Blaugust Is Here and Darnassus Is Not


I have waited to write this post untill after I did the next leg of the War of the Thorns quest (SPOILERS AHEAD). I found it fitting to take one last screenshot on my Warrior in her home before it would burn. I knew it was coming and I knew it would be heartbreaking from the Alliance point of view and it most definitely was. I have to admit that at the end when you collapse after trying to rescue citizens and are directed back to Stormwind while the Night Elf Priestesses stayed behind had me tearing up. It’s such a sad event and I’m particularly mad at Blizzard at the way they chose to write this. Sylvanas burning the tree in a hissy fit? Really? Even though I know I should wait to see how this plays out I find it very disturbing that Blizzard pulled off this particular move and am beyond disappointed at the writing team right now. I can’t even bring myself to do the Horde side of things because I’m just so… so mad and emotional. I don’t want to aid her in burning the World Tree. I don’t want to have to do anything with Sylvanas at all at this point. Hell even my decision to go Horde for BfA has been heavily affected by this whole scenario. Even though all my friends play Horde I just can’t bring myself to go over to that side right now. It just feels wrong and evil and I want nothing to do with it. There is a reason my main character is a Night Elf and I will do her proud by keeping on playing one into BfA and crush as many Horde as I can. I also know that Blizzard is playing with our emotions like this so we really get into the faction conflict. Well for me it has worked. Nobody touches my tree!

August 1st will always be the day that the Night Elves lost their home now, but it’s also the first day of Blaugust! With a very lively Discord and lots of participants this year I’d love to see how everything turns out. We have game bloggers from all directions of the earth and from all sorts of games. I personally will probably be writing a lot about World of Warcraft the coming weeks, the BfA launch comes at a great time for me, and I want to dedicate a small series of posts to Octopath Traveler which has smoothly worked it’s way into my top 3 favourite single player games of all times. For a full list of participants I’d like to direct you all to this post by Belghast who is once again doing a fantastic job in managing all of this. It’s also his 20th wedding anniversary so drop by and congratulate him!

I really had a long awesome post in the works for the start of Blaugust but my day went a bit different than I thought it would. I ended up with a bit of a headache after being slightly overheated at a barbecue and I honestly can’t formulate sentences very well right now. So my awesome post will be postponed untill tomorrow. I will recap what I loved and didn’t love about Legion and what the status of my goals set untill launch are! So goodnight for now and I will see you guys tomorrow!

World of Warcraft: Battle of the Thorns Tinfoil Hat

Today I want to talk about the Battle for Azeroth prepatch, the currently live War of the Thorns, my perceived ending of it and build a case why I think Malfurion Stormrage may indeed die and why the Alliance burn down their own tree. SPOILER WARNING!!! I will be talking about the prepatch quests and the “Before the Storm” novel by Christie Golden, aswell as reference some of the comics that Blizzard released aswell. If you still want to read the book or if you do not want to be spoiled, turn away now.

If you follow me on Twitter you may have seen that I’ve recently posted a bit of a thread where I explain that the Alliance may actually burn down Teldrassil themselves and why Sylvanas may not be as evil as Blizzard is portraying her to be. I want to dedicate this blogpost to that theory, why I came to that theory and what I think may happen in the BfA expansion. So without further ado, my very first tinfoil hat post!

Legion ending
We start my theory where Legion ends. Sargeras has driven his gigantic evil sword into the heart of Azeroth. Even though we beat the corrupted Titan, we suffered an extreme blow to Azeroth herself. In the wake of this event Azerite is discovered and we are sent to Silithus to investigate on both sides. We speak with Khadgar and Magni who tells us that Azeroth is suffering. In the narrative it seems that Sylvanas (and mostly Gallywix) were the first to discover Azerite. Gallywix tells Sylvanas of this amazing stuff coming up around the sword and he sends his goblins to start mining it (how he knows it’s mineable will become clear in a few mins of reading time!). On the Alliance part of the fence Anduin is informed of Azerite aswell and the fact that the Horde has already begun with digging it up. So it makes sense for Alliance players to scramble to Silithus to stop the Horde effort.
This is basically where the ingame story ends for Legion. We have this huge sword that has exposed Azerite and Alliance and Horde will be fighting over this precious material.

Comics and Before the Storm
After we have restored peace to the galaxy a chain of events is set in motion. Sylvanas retakes Windrunner Spire with her sisters and they all realise they can never be a family again. This comic also shows that Sylvanas went into the meeting with more evil intentions, she had assassins ready to kill her sisters, and that the Void seems to be aware of an aspect of Sylvanas that no one else seems to notice, referring to her as a champion of “Death”. We also see Jaina again and see the struggles of Magni Bronzebeard as he deals with Azeroths’ pain.
The “Before the Storm” novel starts around where Sylvanas and Anduin both get a touch of Azerite in their hands. We see their reactions ingame but in the novel it’s a bit more detailed. Azerite seems to boost your brain and give you amazing and terrible ideas. On Anduins side it is exactly like how it plays out in the ingame cinematic. On Sylvanas’ side though, it seems a bit different. Gallywix doesn’t actually hand her the Azerite but shows her the tip of his staff, that’s made from it. He also reveals that Deathwing probably wasn’t the reason for the Goblin home island volcano to blow up but the fact that the Goblins had been digging too deep and probably hit an Azerite vein.
Sylvanas orders Gallywix to find people to make weapons for her, which he does, while Anduin decides he wants to visit all the people that helped defeat the Legion and plans to make a tour to all capitals. He also for the first time enters the Netherlight temple, the Priest Class Hall, and sees that Priests of all races have no issues working together including Humans and Forsaken. He also learns that Calia Menethil is still alive, Arthas’ sister.
I don’t really want to go into details too much when it comes to this book but I do want to talk about the two major plotlines. The first is the Azerite race and how the Horde and Alliance deal with it. Basically it comes down to Anduin wanting the Cenarion Circle, Earthen Ring and Priests to go to Silithus and try to heal the wound at the behest of Magni Bronzebeard. Sylvanas however sees an opportunity to make powerful weapons so she can finally execute her master plan: Ravage Stormwind.
The second plotline is Anduin still hoping for some sort of peace. After seeing the priests of the Netherlight Temple working together in harmony he sets up a plan for Forsaken and Humans to meet eachother. On the Forsaken side of things a governing body, formed in the absense of Sylvanas, is all too eager to accept this invitation and after deliberations by both faction leaders (Sylvanas and Anduin) the meeting takes place and, as to be expected, goes horribly wrong. Sylvanas kills her own people that are trying to defect and kills Calia Menethil. Anduin manages to stop an all out war starting right there and then but doesn’t prevent Sylvanas from realizing that she’s not universally loved among her people and this probably angers her more than anything up untill that point. For Sylvanas this meeting was a moment of humiliation and defeat, defeat brought by a boy and a girl who was supposed to be dead.

Fast forward: War of the Thorns
So that leaves us with the prepatch. We have powered down Sargeras’ sword as champions by giving up our artifacts and Sylvanas has come up with a plan to take Teldrassil. She explains her motivations to the player ingame, Teldrassil is the biggest harbor for the Alliance in Kalimdor and by capturing it she effectively cuts off Stormwind from obtaining Azerite. It is a great tactical move which is fueled in part by her desire to take revenge on Anduin after humiliating her. She is not planning to destroy it, she does not want to kill all the Night Elves except for one: Malfurion Stormrage. And even that is a tactical kill. She wants to defeat the Night Elves greatest champion in the hopes that they will break and she has a very easy time capturing Teldrassil. What follows are a series of quests that get their own twist depending on whether you play Alliance or Horde. The narrative is largely the same though, with the Horde having some knowledge that the Alliance do not.
Playing from the Alliance perspective you are surprised with the attack by the Horde and scramble to save whatever is left of Ashenvale outposts and Darkshore. You fight the Horde eventually and come to a stalemate at Wellspring River after which you tactically retreat and wait for reinforcements. From the Alliance PoV the Horde is the aggressor in every single way and you are scrambling to stop them.
Playing from the Horde perspective you start your war campaign by taking all the Night Elf outposts in Ashenvale and then regroup at Zoram Strand after it’s clear that the Alliance is making a stand in Darkshore. Sylvanas however orders Saurfang to find an alternate route through Felwood and take a big chunk of the army with him. She takes the rest of the army and invades Darkshore and comes at a standstill at Wellspring River.
This is where the current story ends. Playing from both perspectives you can see how Blizzard wants to influence the Horde vs Alliance narrative. As Horde you only kill the guards in Astranaar. As Alliance you come there to find all civilians dead. As Horde you find Alliance already mining away at Azerite in the Master’s Glaive. As Alliance you arrive to find the Horde doing the same. It’s interesting and it’s really pushing the “Us vs Them” narrative in a smart way.

So what happens next?
From all the information we have I can conclude a few things. Next to seeming a tactical move, Sylvanas started this war to show who’s boss. After realizing she doesn’t have universal control over her own people, let alone the entirety of the Horde, she needed to do something drastic to prove she’s someone they should respect and be afraid of. The Alliance are actually caught unawares by this move, even though Anduin could have known Sylvanas would be up to something after their disastrous meeting in the Arathi Highlands.
With the next batch of quests coming out next week I’d like to make a prediction as to how this will all turn out:

Saurfang will be succesful finding an alternate way to Darkshore via Felwood and will have the Alliance in a two tailed grip. Sylvanas will come from the south and Saurfang will come from the north. Alliance reinforcements will arrive but it will effectively be too late as the Horde will have captured Darkshore in it’s entirety. As last desperation move the Alliance retreats to Teldrassil, beckoning the Horde to follow. Malfurion will engage/distract Sylvanas and Saurfang as her army descends on Teldrassil. Sylvanas kills (or mortally wounds) Malfurion and makes her way to Teldrassil just in time to see how it is set ablaze with the Horde army trapped. The majority of the Night Elves escapes as the Horde army perishes in the fire. Sylvanas escapes back to the Undercity, taking Saurfang with her as she needs to recover from this loss.
Anduin, outraged and struck with grief over the loss of Malfurion then orders the Siege of Undercity and that will be the starting point of BfA.

So yeah. That’s my version of how things will turn out. I know that it’s a lot of buildup to basically only a paragraph of predictions but honestly we don’t have THAT much material to work with here. I am eager to see how the story will turn out and if I am right in my predictions. I guess we know in about 14 days!

It’s Warm: Have Some Screenshots pt 2

Okay so technically as I’m writing this our country has finally broken out of the heatwave. Thunder and mostly rain have passed leaving a desirable 21-22 degrees outside temperature behind, instead of the 36 it was yesterday. So right now I’m sitting next to my window feeling the cool breeze on my back and waiting for the indoor temperature to drop to more comfortable levels aswell. I started out on 31 degrees as I got home yesterday evening, which lasted untill somewhere in the early mornings. I’m now down to 27.7 and hoping it will drop even further. So technically it’s still warm (inside) so here comes part 2 of all the Mage Tower weapons!

Paladin

Priest

Rogue

Shaman

Warlock

And last, but not least! Warrior

So there. Now you’ve seen all 36 Mage Tower weapons in two posts. Personally my favourites are the Druid forms (cat and bear), Prot Paladin/Prot Warrior and Havoc Demon Hunter.

Which one do you like best?

It’s Warm: Have Some Screenshots pt 1

I wanted to do a massive tinfoil hat post on the War of the Thorns in WoW but I’m melting and my brain doesn’t really function well in this heat, so I’m going to throw a collection of Mage Tower Challenge Appearance Screenshots at you instead!

Demon Hunter

Death Knight

Druid

Hunter

Mage

Monk

That was part one! I know the Windwalker Monk appearance is my login screen but in my excitement I forgot to take a screenshot at the moment supreme haha. Part two will probably follow tomorrow.

BfA prep: What do I still want?

So the battle for Azeroth is upon us in less than three weeks and I can slowly feel the hype building up towards a new expansion. With the Burning of Teldrassil event coming this Wednesday (I’m in Europe so we get it a day later) the real catalyst for the whole Horde versus Alliance War will start ingame. I have to say that due to reading “Before the Storm” I know that another major event happened before this one but I won’t spoil. It just made things a lot more interesting on the Horde/Forsaken part of the deal.

Going into Battle for Azeroth I have decided to reroll to the Horde side of things. Most of my friends are currently playing over there and I really like having people to play with so it was only a natural choice to go to the Red side for this expac. My main will be my Paladin Fiorentin and I am planning to tank on her.

Red shield prot paladin

Doesn’t she look badass? I’m quite happy with my decision and going protection means short queues and probably early Mythic + spots. I’m not really aiming to raid in BfA but if I can get into a PuG here or there I’m quite content. I do however want to try and push Mythic + a bit more for myself. I never quite got higher than M+13/14 or so and I do want to atleast get the +15 done, even if it’s only to unlock an extra artifact colour.
Speaking of those, I am immensly sad to see them go. It’s why I devoted almost all my gaming time into getting the Mage Towers done so I can have ALL the Artifact variations unlocked and ready for transmog. In the picture however I’m rocking the red version of the Hidden artifact appearance for Protection Paladin, mostly because it fits my transmog well.

Anyway, now that you all know what I’m going to main in BfA I also want to talk about what I want to do in the time leading up to release.

1 Class mounts! I still need class mounts on the following classes:

  • Shaman
  • Rogue
  • Mage
  • Warlock
  • Demon Hunter
  • Death Knight

I’m not sure if I can get all of them before BfA launch but I’m trying to tackle as much as I can during the evenings. I’m probably going to start with Rogue since I’m about to finish that Class campaign and this ties into it nicely.

2 Professions/Profession Quests. This mostly concerns my Paladin but I want to get her Legion Herbalism and Alchemy to 100/100 and clear out all the remaining profession quests that I have. I may look at some other characters aswell but for now it’s just the Paladin.

3 Emissary WQ’s and Honor grinding. I’m planning to do my daily Emissary quests still on Paladin and Warrior. Mostly because on Sandrian I have chances of getting the extra caches and on my Paladin I just want the extra rep and materials that can drop from these. Next to that I want to do as many Honor Worldquests as I can to up my Honor level. I’m currently sitting on 17 and the next reward is level 20. Because I know I won’t have the time to do it all every day I’m planning to tie them in with my Emissaries on Paladin/Warrior and then tackle more during the weekends on my other characters.

4 The Chromie scenario. I’ve never paid much attention to this one but it seems like a nice filler. I’m probably going to do this on my Warrior given that I’ve already started on her and I’d like to see where this takes me.

5 Level an Allied Race. Even though I’ve already given myself plenty to do the coming few weeks I’d like to chill down a bit and start leveling an Allied race. For now I have my eyes set on a Nightborne Warlock, seeing as I only have one Warlock now and she’s Alliance. It would be cool if I could get a few levels going but nothing too fancy. I know the level grind is rather slow these days so I’m not setting as goal to reach 110 before BfA hits.

There are a ton of other odds and ends that I can still do, but these are my main goals and guidance as we head into BfA. I hope things will go smoothly and faster than I think they will and I can just breeze through all of this. The only real returning grind is the WQ one since I’m quite far into my Profession Quests on my Paladin and the Class mounts should be doable quickly aswell. All in all I think I set some decent goals for myself that shouldn’t be too hard to obtain. I hope to go into BfA with a nice sum of gold (I should be up to about 100k on Alliance side) and well prepared enough to get a few levels in on launch day.

Norway, Blaugust and BfA prep

It has been kind of all over the blogosphere but Blaugust is returning and I will participate. We have a lot of mentors, participants and people who are totally new to blogging so I’m sure it will be a nice event! All made possible by the awesome Belghast who is hosting the event and who is also keeping tabs on who is actually participating. We’ve even set up a Discord and I have to say it’s a merry band of people (old and new!) already. I’m really looking forward to reading new blogs and to update my feedly with more people to follow over the coming weeks.

Today happens to be the final day of my small vacation week. Even though I’ve been absolutely melting the entire day (and having to clean in this extremely warm weather!) I’m happy to go back to work tomorrow where the airconditioning is cool and the people are I actually like engaging with. The last 7 days however I didn’t spend melting away in my room behind my computer, but discovering Southern Norway and all the beautiful nature it has. And because they say a picture is worth a thousand words, here are some of mine to give an impressio of my trip!

Forests Lake Red panda Houses Town view Harbor view

I’ve had an amazing week with lots of outdoor activities and yet come back more relaxed than I’ve been in forever. We have taken a lot of walks in town buto also went out to walk/hike in nature. We visited the zoo and went on a boat trip to see the many islands that form the Norwegian archipelago. All in all it was an amazing holiday. No bad weather. Nice people. Good food. Beautiful nature and lots of fun. The only real downside that it lasted only a week!

During my time in Norway I’ve also spend a good chunk of the evenings playing Octopath Traveler. Because really after being out and about during the day you don’t really have the energy to do much at night. I anticipated this and brought my Switch with me. This served as an Octopath machine but also allowed us to play some Kirby: Star Allies together, which was a blast.

I’ve come back rested, with a little less money and a lot of good memories and also a shitton of motivation to work on myself, my blog and my education in IT land, but these are topics for other posts.

And now in Gamerworld…
The final topic I want to address in this rather short blogpost is my BfA prep. I’ve completely missed the prepatch launch due to being abroad, but judging the amount of bugs that came along with it I’m sure I didn’t miss that much.
I’ve logged in all my characters this morning to get my Honor level up and decide the talents for atleast one viable specc to play on each of them. I have a post in the pipelines about my Mage Tower adventure and why I failed to get “Field Medic” and another post on how I plan to spend the weeks leading up to BfA launch. So stay tuned!

Mage Tower Madness

Draenei Hunter with MM challenge bow

I’ve had a post about my Mage Tower shenanigans coming down the pipe for a very long time. For those of you who have been following me on Twitter this whole blogpost shouldn’t really come as a surprise but I want to get it out anyway.

Somewhere earlier this year I had this grand idea to start chasing the Mage Tower challenges. With patch 7.3.5 gearing up had become really easy and with every Mage Tower I tackled I found the next (same) one on a new class to be easier and easier. Where I’ve taken between 20 and 30 tries to down some of my earlier ones I can now proudly say that I have oneshot multiple ones over the last few weeks, including the cheese that is Affliction lock.

I’m not really sure what attracted me in doing all the Mage Towers. Maybe it was the idea that the skins would become permanently unavailable or it was the idea that these were solo challenges that I could undertake by myself without having other people involved. They felt like a “true” test of skill to me, moreso than any raid or dungeon has been.

As of right now I’m down to my last three Towers: Outlaw, Assassination and Subtlety Rogue. I’m in luck because the Command Center is up, effectively buffing my Agatha attempts even more than I can already do. I also don’t predict any problems with the Assassination challenge but I do hope I can luck my way through the Subtlety one.

All in all it’s been a rather long strange trip. The Artifact boost came at a perfect time and even though I had my doubts that I would complete this journey I’m very proud to be able to call myself a member of the “club 36” at the end of the day.

 

June 2018 Goals

Druid class hall flight form

I’ve had a rather active month in May. I started working fulltime in my new position. I’ve jumped back on the FF wagon since the new patch dropped. I’ve been chasing Mage Tower challenges (and am currently sitting on 10/36 done) and my most recent unlock in World of Warcraft has been the new flight form for my Night Elf Druid. You get this instead of a Class Hall mount and I have to say it looks really good!

Looking ahead at June I find my game time to be rather limited. I work 40 hour weeks now so I only have time to game after dinner really, cutting my evenings short to about four hours. I also want to make it a bi-daily habit to go onto our crosstrainer (respectively weekends, Tuesdays and Thursdays) effectively cutting short my gaming time even further since following a workout I would obviously need a shower. There’s a few single player games I’ve picked up that I want to finish, I’ve been rewatching Grey’s Anatomy from the start and I’m reading my way through the Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb. All in all I’ve started a lot of projects over the past month and I want to use June to complete some of them, be it game related or not.

Gaming Goals June 2018

World of Warcraft

  • Get Rogue to level 110 and finish the first leg of the Class Hall Campaign
  • Do Mage Tower challenges on as many class/specs as I can. The ones I really want: Guardian/Feral Druid, Elemental Shaman, Holy Priest.
  • Unlock more Class Hall mounts.

WoW looks to be basically continuing what I’m already doing. I’m still focusing on completing as many Mage Tower stuff as possible but seeing how Legion is only about 2 months away things are starting to look a bit dire. I’m hoping Blizzard decides to permanently enable the Mage Tower at some point but I doubt it. So I’m trying to double down on gearing up my alts and getting stuff done. Luckily getting to about 920 ilvl isn’t that hard anymore and most challenges are doable at that gearlevel even without optmized gear. I also want to finish up leveling the last class I need to 110 and inbetween unlock a few more Class Hall mounts.

Final Fantasy XIV

  • Get my Machinist to 70 and start leveling something else
  • Get my Weaver to 70 and start leveling another crafter
  • Play on my Au’Ra and progress through Heavensward story

I’m trying to keep my FFXIV goals light. Right now I’m just doing dailies and ex roulette for cap and that’s it. My Machinist is sitting on level 68 now though and I think I should be hitting 70 sometime next week if I continue on doing what I’m doing. The same goes for my Weaver. She’s dinged 64 today thanks to the Namazu quests and I’m hoping to push her to 70 this month. Then I will need to start working on another crafter, I’m probably going to go with Carpenter since that one is level 37 and I want to get it to Heavensward so I can take advantage of the Moogle quests.
You also may have seen me mention my Au’Ra on Twitter. My Moogle FC unfortunately has disbanded and moved, in large part, to Cerberus. Not wanting to transfer my Miqo I instead opted to bring over my Au’Ra. She’s still in the start of the Heavensward Story so my goal for now is to slowly push through that as Monk.

Other games

  • Progress in Mario+Rabbids
  • Progress in Monster Hunter Stories

Seeing as most of my attention is going into my MMO’s I don’t have that much time for other games. However Mario+Rabbids seems to have me hooked for now and I’ve already made it to world 2-6 in the mainstory. This is also what I want to focus on moving forward this month. I hope to be able to make it through atleast the rest of World 2 and hopefully a good chunk of World 3 aswell. I’m really enjoying the game and can’t wait how it turns out.
Monster Hunter Stories is one of those games that you really need to bite into for a longer time to understand the concept and to just get through the story. I’ve made my N3DS my Monster Hunter machine for now (save games are stored on the console rather than the card) and I’m planning to play this on the train and during any form of transportation/inbetween time. It’s a nice bright game and I do want to see how it plays out.

Real life and non game related goals

  • Finish the second book of the Farseer Trilogy
  • Clean out and rearrange some cabinets
  • Use the crosstrainer more

I’ve alluded to these goals at the start of my post but I want to start working on my health a bit more, so I want to use the crosstrainer we have on the attic on a more regular basis. Weekend mornings seem to be ideal for this and I want to take atleast two nights a week on the thing aswell. I may expand my routine later on with some strength exercises but for now some extra cardio to build stamina and start losing weight is the way to go.
Another thing I want to be doing over the course of the year is continue cleaning out our attic and more importantly start picking out things of mine that can go. I’ve been told that my apartment will be done sooner than expected (June 2019 instead of September 2019) and it’s time I start making lists of things I still need and things I already have and things that I want to get rid of. I don’t want to end up like my dad with a house full of stuff so I need to think long and hard about what I want to take with me and what not. As bonus perk this helps my dad aswell with getting rid of things from the attic, thus creating more new space.

Finally I’ve kind of found my reading vibe again and I want to continue that. I’m over halfway done in the second book of the Farseer Trilogy and I want to atleast finish it and hopefully start on the third. I’ve unexpectedly fell in love with the series and I know there’s more trilogies ahead for me to buy, which has me quite excited. However I have a bunch of other books that I still need/want to read first so I’m probably going to hold off on more books in the saga untill I’ve read all the other ones I still have.

All in all I’ve tried to keep my goals realistic. With me class hopping on WoW (and focusing on one class at a time) I can do most of the daily stuff there in less than an hour. The same goes for my Final Fantasy XIV dailies. That leaves me with 1-2 hours a night to spend on whatever else I want. I can read, I can play more of WoW/FF if I feel like it. I can choose not to game at all and just relax with my tablet and a show. I just hope that when July starts I’ve made a lot of progress in all the things I want because then I’ll have even less time to game due to vacation and more business at work. For now though it’s time I logged off and started cleaning my room. The dust seems to be everywhere!

No Mother’s Day

Monster Hunter Stories

A ton of people around me are celebrating Mother’s Day here in Europe and I see a lot of things on my Twitter timeline from both EU and NA people but I’m not joining in with the holiday. I have no mother or grandmothers to wish a happy Mother’s Day to anymore and thus for me it’s a regular Sunday with no social obligations and lots of time to clean and game. Because it’s like this I’d like to talk a bit about a game I’ve started playing last week: Monster Hunter Stories.

Let’s start off with a bit of background. I have never really been interested in the Monster Hunter franchise. I was aware it existed and I was aware it has quite a hardcore community of people who completely adore the games and have spent hundreds to thousands of hours playing them. I’ve downloaded a demo on my 3Ds of either Generations or 4 Ultimate at some point and it didn’t really capture my interest. Then Monster Hunter World came out on the PS4 and I downloaded the demo again and again I decided the game was not for me. The whole “kill consecutively bigger Monsters” theme didn’t really hook me in and seeing the grind that came with it I just bounced hard and didn’t look back.
Now how comes Monster Hunter Stories into play? I am a big fan of traditional RPGs and the games that I have sinked by far the most hours into besides MMO’s have been Pokémon games. I like collecting things and I like simple turn based combat. Monster Hunter Stories plays into both of these tropes very well. Next to having a story you are also collecting Monster Eggs to build your team and the combat is rather simple turn based with some gimmicks. Next to that the game is cute and chibi like aswell as very colourful, some other things that really attract me and the interest was born.

I’m not going to build in Spoiler tags for this post, or any follow up ones on my progress, mostly because the game has been out since last year and everything is on the internet anyway. I just want to share my experience playing so far, how I like the game and if it might pull me into the franchise further.
So you start out the game going into the forest looking for Monster Eggs with two friends Lilia and Cheval. Lilia finds a nest full of eggs where one has a different colour and lo and behold the egg hatches and the little Rathalos (lovingly called Ratha) imprints on you as hero. At this point you have not seen the face of your character yet and with good reason, you are prompted into a character creation screen then where you can pick your gender and appearance which will then appear in subsequent cutscenes. After creating your character you get back to town where the people are apparently mad at you and your friends for sneaking into the forest without permission. After getting scolded but then forgiven by the village elder a mysterious shadow Monster attacks the village killing Cheval’s mother. Your Rathalos manages to chase the Shadow away but gets thrown into a ravine in the process, disappearing from your life.

The game cuts back to your character one year after these catastrophic events. You are now going to do an exam to become a “rider” which is a character that rides and battles with Monsters, or Monsties as they’re called here. During your initiation ritual you befriend a Felyne called Navirou and together with him and your first official Monstie that you hatch you’re basically set on the start of your story. In the meantime Cheval has undergone a serious character change and Lilia has decided that she doesn’t want to become a rider prompting her to seek another goal in life.

This is kind of where I am now. There is a mainstory to follow and at this point you have unlocked vendors, a buff shrine, your house,  sidequests and downloadable content. There are lot of staple Monster Hunter tropes in the game. When you battle Monsters in the wild they will drop items based on how well you do the fight and these items are needed to upgrade gear or cook or sell on the markets. You’re encouraged to explore around a lot so you find more Monster Eggs and other things. There is a ton of sidecontent and a big world to explore. The only real downside is that for some reason Capcom has decided to tie save games to your system instead of to the game cart. Which means that if I switch systems I will lose my save game and have to start over again.
From what I’ve seen so far though this game may not be as massive as other Monster Hunter games but it’s still a game that you can easily sink many hours into trying to 100% it. There’s a ton of downloadable, FREE, content for when you are done with all that the game has to offer and then there’s online battle stuff that I’ve not even touched yet.

All in all it looks like a game I could really lose myself in. I like that it is on my 3DS which means I’m more inclined to pick it up for short bursts on the train or when lying in bed, which is what I’ve been doing with most of my non MMO gametime anyway. I’ll let you guys know how I get on!