Every now and then I get a bit of madness in my head and all I want is to just be left alone. I want to be able to log a game, play it and not have to deal with any social interaction at all. I don’t feel like talking to anyone then and I get very grumpy when people try and talk to me.
Right now I’m having a few of those “Loner” days where I just want to be able to log a game (preferably WoW or FFXIV), do my thing and not have to worry about people. Be it friends, guildies or random strangers… I just don’t want anything to do with you.
I’m not really sure where these moods come from. Usually I’m a very social person, outgoing and slightly annoyed when I have no one to talk to in my games. But I guess sometimes it just gets to be a bit too much and I just want to retreat in my own little world, playing my own games.
The thing is that in MMO’s you’re never really alone and people will bother you, whether you like it or not… And I’m not sure how to deal with that. In groups for dungeons I tend to just stay quiet and go about my business, be that healing, tanking or DPSing. When you have friends online however and they start talking to you… It’s not easy to tell them that you just need some time for yourself.
I think it’s one of the reasons I’ve been avoiding logging FFXIV for the past weeks. Seeing as we want to start up the raiding group to run Alexander and whatnot I feel pressured to play. And once I feel pressured I lose all interest in playing. Which is a real shame because I love FFXIV to death. I just really don’t feel like socializing too much right now. Even raiding in WoW has become a task for me seeing as I’m one of the people calling out stuff on TS…
I just feel a bit socially exhausted I guess.
Blogging, blogging, blogging
Tied in to being socially exhausted I’m also in a bit of an awkward spot with my blog. I get ideas to blog at stupid times (like when I’m going to bed) and then try to put them off untill the morning… Only to completely forget about them again. I have too many things to write about… And not enough. It feels a bit weird. Maybe it’s mostly because a part of me still thinks that no one is interested in what I’m writing here anyway. Which shouldn’t be an issue because I started this blog for myself, to be able to write down my opinion about things, rant about silly stuff and be excited for upcoming games. And yet I want to be able to “deliver” to my audience. It’s a strange conundrum and one I’m seriously struggling with.
Add the fact that Blaugust may have exhausted me a bit… I just really don’t want to go back to only posting a few times a month.
Right, now that we have cleared up the fact that this post contains Spoilers… I want to share my some of my screenshots from the Rising Event.
I wish I worked at the 18th floor…
What the hell?
And we end with Fireworks!
Celebrating A Realm Reborn
I think this is the seasonal event I enjoyed the most in FFXIV so far. After doing the mandatory “go talk to X dude” quests you get transported to the 18th floor. Aka the floor the developers work on the game in the real world. It’s really nice to see them all thanking you and celebrating you as player of their game. (WTF at the guy riding the horse backwards though). It almost made me a little emotional.
Huge respect to Yoshida and the rest of the FFXIV team for making this game as awesome as it is and I hope to spend a lot of time in it yet.
I’m trying to find a new rythm that works for me blogging wise. I’ve figured out that when I postpone my blogging to after dinner I’m often either too tired to blog or I’m being taken up by some sort of game that will last untill I go to bed… Prompting me to forget to blog again.
So today I’ve decided to take the 30 minute window I have untill dinner is ready to blog instead. Seeing as I type fast and I usually know what I want to blog about in advance this should give me plenty of time to put out a post AND make sense.
First off I want to start with evaluating August as a gaming month for me. I have set some goals and I have attained a few of them:
Get rank 20 in Hearthstone. I did this one on two accounts actually. It’s a quick and easy goal and I have to admit that it only took me one evening to do this.
Unlock first wing of Naxxramas in Hearthstone. I have defeated all the bosses by now and unlocked some really nice cards. The only thing left open is the Druid Class Challenge which I have some issues with figuring out.
Finish the Garrison campaign on my Priest (Sarelly) in WoW. I basically took one evening to just grind out all the quests that were still up in Tanaan. So an easy goal to attain.
Level my Draenor Hunter (Aylanna) to level 30. Again, I just put a nice relaxing evening of levelling in and was level 30 before I knew it. I think I’m actually sitting on level 35 right now, without putting in a lot of effort.
Finish World 1 in New Super Mario Bros. 2 for my 3DS. Did this one while travelling to a friend. It’s fun to play on the road and I was done with the world before I knew it!
The goals I didn’t attain:
All my FFXIV goals. I have barely played FFXIV the past month. I will probably set some new goals for this game, but not as many as in August.
My GW2 goals. The moment I got a job I completely stopped playing Guild Wars 2. There’s just not enough hours in the day. I might pick this up when my schedule has a bit more room again.
Mickey’s Castle of Illusion Act 2. Same story as GW2. Didn’t look at it at all!
Level to 30 on Destiny. I haven’t actually touched my PS4 at all in the past few weeks. I feel so sad! But time is money and all that stuff. Just didn’t really have the time or energy to work on Destiny on top of everything else really.
I really want to prioritize this project in September. I want to finish up my 100 games on Valla (I’m somewhere around 15 at the moment) and pick up a new champion to master. It will probably be Kharazim, but I’m not 100% sure. For now I will probably make friday night my Heroes night since I have other obligations during the other evenings of the week. Other than that I foresee my schedule getting a bit more room the coming few weeks so I will have a bit more time to play Heroes overall.
Another thing I want to try to do is read more blogs. I’ve really only got 3 on my Feedly at the moment and click on a few posts here and there that interest me, but I would like to get more involved into the blog-o-sphere. There are a fantastic bunch of people involved there and I would really like to be a part of it more than I have been so far. So I will probably be more active on Anook, Twitter and Player.me
As for now I’m wiping my to-do list clean and starting over for September. On which I will post more tomorrow.
The grand finale. It’s been a race, it’s been a marathon, but the last day of August (and thus Blaugust) is here.
It has been a hell of a crazy month for me. I landed my first real fulltime job (that will probably end this friday), I’ve had a really busy social life and I’ve had to re-evaluate myself and some of the goals I set while under pressure of time.
I have realized that my heart still belongs to World of Warcraft, even though I might critique and say goodbye to the game every now and then. I have started a crazy Heroes of the Storm project, that I do want to see through! I’ve gotten better at Hearthstone and have enjoyed playing some Super Mario Bros. on my 3DS again. I have evolved from a hardcore “I want to do it all” player to a more casual one with gaming taking up a much smaller role in my life for the time being. And surprisingly enough I’m more than fine with that.
Looking back to the start of the month, I might have set a bit too ambitious gaming goals for myself. I’ve barely been able to keep up with most of them and I’ve really only done the WoW and Hearthstone ones and I’m cool with that. I will re-evaluate my goals for September in my next post, probably being a lot less ambitious, and strive to complete as much as those as I can. Some will be a repeat performance (like getting rank 20 on Hearthstone), others will be new… But I won’t spoil just yet.
Next to my own gaming and blog adventures I have discovered a lot of new blogs and new people. It’s been a blast reading all of you. Even if I couldn’t actually read ALL of you. You are all amazing people and keep on doing what you’re doing!
I am a bit sad that I didn’t make blogging all 31 days of August. I missed out on exactly seven days. However the reasons that I have been unable to blog all bring smiles to my face and thus it was worth it. Daily blogging might not really be my thing, but I have enjoyed blogging regularly and, by some of the really kind and positive comments I have gotten throughout the month, I think you readers have enjoyed my blog aswell.
I like to keep going strong and blog regularly after the Blaugust madness is over. I really don’t want to fall back to only one or two posts a month, I have way too much to say for that.
For now though. Goodbye Blaugust!
I’m writing this post feeling super tired. There was a really big dance festival near where I live yesterday and I went there with a good friend of mine and we literally danced the day and night away. I think I’ve been on my feet for about 9 hours, counting the walk to and from the trainstation aswell. I haven’t been this tired in ages and I haven’t felt this great in ages.
The atmosphere was fantastic, the people were great and the music was good enough to keep you on your feet constantly. Which isn’t that hard seeing as there were about 6 stages to choose from. We were really lucky with the weather aswell, it was nice and sunny, not too hot and not too cold. No wind. Barely any clouds. There was beer, there was good food. All in all it was just a great day.
The funny thing is, after everything was over and done and I was laying in bed, the only thing I really wanted was to go home and spend some time behind my PC. Check out the new Diablo 3 season, play some Hearthstone and/or Heroes or just chat with some of my online friends, which I haven’t talked too that much since getting my job. I really needed a day to wind down and just relax with some of my comfortable games. After writing my previous post, and the kind comments I’ve gotten on it, I realized that I’m still able to do all that I want and I should just stress less about everything. It’s not horrible if I miss out on an evening of games because I’m tired. It’s not horrible if I do other stuff. Gaming doesn’t define me, but it’s still my favourite pastime.
Seeing as I’m out of the house/on the road more often I’ve been playing a lot more mobile games. I’ve had the Simpsons Tapped Out installed on my phone since forever and ofcourse there is Hearthstone which I can play on the go. But I also installed Fallout Shelter (and am sucking horribly at it) and the Final Fantasy portal app which comes with a Triple Triad game for free! It has really helped me get better at Triple Triad and I hope I can use those skills to finally get into it in FFXIV.
Speaking of FFXIV. I have utterly failed at all the gaming goals I’ve set there. My WHM is level 46, my DRG doesn’t even have enough esoterics yet to buy her chestpiece and I’ve barely touched the game at all. I guess I’m just a bit turned off by the time that it consumes when the only thing you want to do is run one or two dungeons. I really need to figure out how to do this without me getting so annoyed with the game that I want to quit permanently, because for that I like the game way too much.
For now though I’m going to get a good night’s sleep and get to work bright and fresh in the morning. So that I can zombie my way through heroic Hellfire Citadel in the evening.
Today after a very long time I did an Arena run on Hearthstone again. I picked up a Paladin deck and, with the help of Heartharena.com, managed to put together a fairly decent aggro deck.
I haven’t dabbled in Arena for a very long time. I’m still struggling to learn all the classes in Hearthstone (Paladin being one of few decks I have no experience with) and I’m still not very good at knowing what to do on what turn and when. I have a tendency to either go face too much or clear minions too much leaving me usually with an empty hand or an empty board. This results into many losses on my side.
It’s one of the reasons I choose to focus on Priest and Druid since those are the two decks I’ve been playing the most and feel the most comfortable on. I really wouldn’t know what a good draft is for any other deck, but this week I had no choice since all three champions were ones I wasn’t comfortable on. So I consulted a friend, picked Paladin and went through a pretty long draft phase while tabbing back and forth to Heartharena to see which cards I should pick up. I did that all on Wednesday evening after the raid so I could focus on actually playing the Arena tonight.
The same friend who helped me discover Heartharena has also guided me through this particular Arena run. He is a good player, albeit a little inexperienced with Paladin, and he has been helping me out here and there. With his guidance (and me making misplays here and there) I managed to get this deck to a 4-3 arena run, which is about a 200% improvement over anything I ever did on my own. I got a nice TGT card pack and 75 gold as rewards and overall I feel a bit more confident in playing Arena as a whole.
With my friend guiding me I’ve gained a bit more knowledge on when to trade, when to play certain cards, when to go for face and that brainfarts are seriously bad.
All in all I’m pretty happy with the result though and I think I might want to try my next Arena run on my own. With enough practice I should be able to get a good result eventually right?
Ongoing game issues
Being almost fulltime (and fullitme next week) at work has shown me how utter impossible it is to keep up with two MMO’s and a bunch of other games without some planning. Monday and Wednesday are my WoW nights since I raid then. Tuesday and Thursday should be my FF nights since I plan to coil then. This leaves me with only Friday, Saturday and Sunday for the rest of my games. Which is actually really sucky. It feels like my days and evenings fly by and I can’t get enough time into games for it to be really satisfying. It doesn’t really help that I go to bed at 23.00 every night, but I really can’t stay up longer or I’ll be a zombie at work.
It’s messing with me and making me slightly cranky. I used to have all the time and freedom in the world to do what I wanted and that is gone now. I guess I really need to start planning my nights better or give up on raiding in one of my MMO’s. And I really don’t want to do the second…
Ugh, I had so hoped to not fail the Blaugust challenge. I was really looking forward to blogging everyday. But due to circumstance I managed to miss two days in a row. Bah!
Friday as I came home from work I was just completely exhausted. I crawled into bed after dinner with League of Legends on and basically watched that while half asleep… Before finally falling asleep at 22.00
Saturday has just been a blur for me. I had to pick up supplies for my best friend’s babyshower in the morning and headed off to Amsterdam after that to see a friend who has hit a rough patch. I ended up staying there till about twelve, drinking beer at the Irish pub close to where she lives and generally having a good time. I wasn’t really home until 1.00 AM and immediatly crawled into bed then aswell.
And today there was the babyshower and no real time for me to sit down and do anything untill I got home an hour before dinner.
So there you have the reasons I didn’t really have the time to write anything at all this weekend. I’ve been superbusy and as consequence supertired aswell. But I finally managed to sit down now and discuss the things I’ve been doing.
Gaming Goals Progress
I managed to unlock the first wing of Naxxramas in Hearthstone today. Apparently I had won a 100 matches on my account across all types of games and that awards you with 300 gold. Which pushed me right over the 700 you need to open up a wing. So I did and ventured in to battle Anub’Rekhan, the first boss. Seeing as I’ve chosen to focus on two decks only (Druid and Priest) I picked my priest and prayed my healing spells would carry me through. Luckily I found it an easy boss to defeat, so I’m staring at the Grand Widow now.
Atleast I can scratch that goal off my to-do list!
As for the rest of the goals. I’ve barely logged any games this week. I’ve been absolutely shattered whenever I got home after work. So I’ve mostly sat around watching streams and series and not gaming at all. Which means that no I didn’t get my Esoterics cap on Final Fantasy again and that my WHM is still poking about at level 45. I should really be playing now, but there is…
League of Legends Playoffs
My favourite game to watch: League of Legends. I basically root for two teams. One in EU (Elements) and one in NA (Counter Logic Gaming). Elements unfortunately had a bad season and didn’t make it into playoffs, but CLG did and played their semifinals last night. It was a 3-0 and I could cheer for my team and had a great time watching it. The finals should be next week, and you can bet I’ll be watching again. I really hope they win, it would be the first big prize they would get and I really think the team deserves it this year.
Anyway, I hope I can get back to posting everyday again this week. I hope work will leave me less exhausted and with more time to play than it does now. I really want to get my WHM to 50, so I’ll probably make that a big aim this week, aswell as getting my Esoterics Chest on my Dragoon. But we will see.
The last day before I start work, and definately don’t have as much time for games as I normally have, I decided to play some FFXIV. And with some I mean a lot. And with a lot I mean I’ve spent about 5-6 hours just playing FFXIV today alone. Why? Because I had to catch up on the weekly Esoterics and Alexander grind! I’ve been neglecting that for weeks now and even this time I won’t make the cap. I’m about 100 esoterics off but well, it can’t be helped. Seeing as I’ve been a bit unlucky with winning drops in Alex turn 2 today I’ve spent quite some time of my life looking at this screen.
Luckily for me I managed to win the Pedal (boots item) after four or five runs or so, saving me the headache of having to run it over and over and over again. I was luckier in Alex turn 1 and 3, where I won the items I wanted immediatly thus giving me atleast the boots this week and, if I’m lucky tonight in turn 4, the gloves. That would also give me a bit of an item level boost (I’m currently sitting on 183) and would leave me almost done with Alexander Raid Finder. I can only get the accessories, legs and chest from here on and seeing as I’m planning to buy the Esoterics Chest next reset it leaves me with very little incentive to return to this lovely place. That is untill my group starts running Savage Mode.
After my friend had to run for a while I decided to do my low level roulette on my White Mage. So I ended up doing a lot of healing… And a little bit of dancing.
As expected levelling via the guildhest and low level roulettes is fast enough. I was getting a level a day from them up untill hitting 41. Right now I’m sitting about 20% off level 43 which is fine. I’m saving up all my hunting log entries for when I’m 49 so that they are not only easier to kill but it will also speed up getting that last big hump to 50.
I’m still undecided as to what I’m going to do after that. A part of me wants to level my WHM up to level 60 so I can sit back and relax while running dungeons. Another part of me wants to get every other class/job to 50 first. Which is quite a task. Seeing as I won’t nearly have as much time to play the coming weeks as compared to now I think it’s better to just stick to WHM for the time being. This allows me to switch up some of the max level content aswell, instead of constantly sitting on my Dragoon, who is just grinding Esoterics for the time being.
As for now I’m waiting for my friend to return to do Ex-roulette and hope and pray that my first day of work tomorrow won’t be too exhausting… Or I won’t be gaming at all!
So today I managed to stripe two goals of my August gaming to-do list! I finally finished off the last few Garrison campaign quests on my Priest and I levelled my newbie Hunter on Draenor to level 30.
I think the Garrison Campaign was one of the few lore bits that Blizzard did right this expansion. I loved being sent on new quests after I had dinged max level and how the story unfolded after I worked my way through all the zones. Luckily apparently Alliance got the better end of that trade as our Garrison campaign had a bit more depth to it than the Horde one did, but overall the experience and idea of it was good. I managed to complete the latest quests, the ones that came with 6.2, today and it showed some interesting stuff. Mostly how some of the bosses of the Hellfire Citadel raid came to be there. I liked the bit of extra lore and was also saddened that Blizzard didn’t do more of this throughout the expansion. Let’s hope they will make up for it with Legion ™.
So I had been levelling up my baby hunter Aylanna mostly on quests and had arrived in Arathi Highlands at level 25. Of all the zones left devastated by the Cataclysm, Arathi has been one of the few that has remained relatively untouched. It’s still green hills and farmland, crowded with Raptors and Spiders.
Running around here makes me think of the Scottish landscapes from Highlander.
The ruins of Stromgarde are also still left standing. It’s one of those quest hubs that you keep being sent back to. And again. And again… And again. I guess it’s one of the few things that are annoying to me when it comes to Warcraft questing. Just give me the follow up quests as I complete them, instead of making me run back and forth all the time!
Even the layout inside of Stromgarde hasn’t changed. One part is being occupied by the Syndicate. One part by Ogres and the last part by the Alliance, trying to hold on to one of the last remaining Human Castles in the North.
Ofcourse there has been a little adjustment to the zone. They have added a small Forsaken camp next to the wall separating the Highlands from Hillsbrad Foothills. But other than that Blizzard didn’t deem it necessary to fiddle around with this zone too much, for which I’m glad. Seeing as they did their best to completely destroy Hillsbrad and make it a Forsaken/Horde zone. (Really Blizzard, did you have to destroy Southshore like that?). I was a bit sad that the zone itself didn’t last that long for me. Due to having Heirlooms leveling just goes so fast. It makes you miss out on some interesting quests. Maybe I’ll go back to it when I’m max level, just to see what more is out there in the zone.
And ofcourse the little emo-themed Forsaken camp can’t be missing!
As I expected I’m having a hard time motivating myself to do my ex-roulette every day. On the other hand leveling my White Mage is going faster than I thought. Doing guildhest and low level roulette alone, coupled with some Hunting Logs, I’m now sitting well into level 40, which means I only have 10 levels to go for that goal! For now it seems doing my roulettes gives me a level a day, so if that keeps up I will be 50 in ten days. Yay for me! I will get to do more crossing on my to-do list AND I will have the healer of preference at the point I wanted it before the xpac came out. The only thing I need to decide then is if I want to keep on leveling that to 60 or aspire to bring all my classes up to 50 first. That would mean leveling my Warrior, Monk and Ninja… And the three new jobs: Dark Knight, Astrologian and Machinist. For now I’m leaning towards leveling my White Mage to 60 and use it as queue booster. But maybe I will change my mind. We shall see in the future!
After reinstalling Mickey’s Castle of Illusion on Steam I was happy to find out that Steam actually saved my progress in the cloud! Which means I didn’t have to work my way through the first world again and could immediatly dive into the second world (or act as it’s called in game).
Act 2-1: Angry toys everywhere!
It was a blast from the past. I have actually played my way through Mickey and Donald on my old Sega (which also included toy like levels) and Mickey Mania, but never got Castle of Illusion. I’m so happy I picked up the remastered version during the Steam Summer Sale this year! It’s taking me all the way back to when I first got my Sega Mega Drive when I was about 6 years old. Back then they had the better graphics compared to Nintendo and I remember a childhood filled with playing Sonic and Disney games. A feeling that this particular game brings back.
I love how they only remastered the sound and graphics and left the gameplay itself be. It’s still damn hard at some points, just how I remember the old platformers.
This is one of those games of my gaming-to-do list that I’m happily tackling, because honestly it’s just too much fun. I’ll keep you updated as I progress through the game, but to give a little more info (and a feel of what I’m doing in there) I have added the official launch trailer below. If you like what you see, go get it via Steam!
One of the goals I have set for myself is to get my Esoterics cap on FFXIV every week. This means having to do ex-roulette every day. Which, honestly, I kind of hate. There are only two dungeons available for this roulette currently, Neverreap and Fractal Continuum, and I’m not a fan of either. Fractal takes a bit longer and has more trash. Neverreap has the most godawful endboss that I’ve seen in a dungeon so far. It’s safe to say I’m not really looking forward to doing this. Add in the horrible DPS queue times and you get a grumpy Sandy.
Next to this I’m rather frustrated with how my FFXIV raiding group has turned out. Ofcourse it’s summer and holidays are in the way. But still, we aren’t doing anything as group and grinding most content solo is boring as hell. It feels like a venture doomed to fail, especially since we have one more DPS spot to fill. Queue tremendous sigh.
I also wish I could show off more of the stuff I do from FF. But since I play on the PS4 it’s actually kind of a hassle to get decent screenshots. I wish I could just somehow connect and copy/paste stuff but I’m being forced to use a USB stick, not the most elegant way. I’ll try to add a bit more pictures, but don’t pin me on it!
The WoW Thing
By now most people have seen (Activision)Blizzard’s announcement about their financial Q2 and the tumble that the WoW subs took. Sitting on 5,6M currently it’s a number that we haven’t seen since Vanilla! All of which is due to the horrible lack of content that Blizzard provided with their latest expansion.
Queue some big names leaving in the past year or two aswell (Ghostcrawler and now Bashiok) and I wonder what is left of the old Blizzard core. Yes I do realize that those two had completely different roles within the organisation, but they were people that were out there in the community.
Everyone has had their opinions on WoW lately. I remember writing a post a few weeks ago that for me it was just done. I had my reasons. Cataclysm was the last really active expansion for me. I was an officer by the end of the xpac and the sole person keeping our tiny guild going, it drained me and the moment raiding didn’t happen in MoP I decided to take my leave of the game entirely. I did not like the setting of Mists of Pandaria, was not enamoured with the Panda’s as a playable race (I only made it to max level on a lvl 90 boosted Panda Monk) and the Daily grind for rep was… Horrible.
I came back every three to six months or so and started raiding again casually at the end of it, ready to come back fully for Warlords of Draenor which looked to be promising..
For the first few months it actually was. The leveling was much better in design than it had been since Wrath of the Lich King, there was enough content to keep you going for a while, the raids proved to be challenging enough. The only downsides for me were the horrible Garrison chores and the utter lack of decent PvP. Realizing that if I wanted to make gold or be self sufficient in any way would mean I had to run Garrisons on multiple characters was a nightmare and a huge turnoff in the end.
When patch 6.1 hit I was majorly disappointed. Instead of delivering more promising content we were stuck with a SELFIE camera, Twitter integration and a Garrison music box. Out of the three I think I’ve used the music box the most. I think I can count the amount of WoW selfies taken on one hand. Next to some newly added pets that was all the content we were going to get. And it sucked.
Queue 6.2 after barely logging in for a few weeks (we had killed Blackhand and had all done our Legendary quests) and again a huge disappointment. You got a second mission table, this time for ships, and an island that was even worse in design than the Timeless Isle. I hated doing the dailies the moment they appeared and haven’t touched a single one of them solo. The few times I did do them were with a gaming buddy, but we both quickly grew wary of them. What grinded my gears even more is that Blizzard locked the Legendary profession behind your little ships table. A whole world of frustration that I can’t even begin to describe right now. Let’s just say I’ve lost enough epic ships to more or less want to shove the whole idea through the throat of the devs who came up with it.
So yeah. Blizzard dropping sub numbers like no tomorrow has come as no surprise to me. Ask my guildies, but I’ve been complaining about the lack of content since January. And Blizzard has done nothing about it. If they want to keep their game going steady, or want to get people to come back to the game they really need to do something special with the next expansion. Pump out way better and way more content. Listen to your playerbase. Communicate with them again. Otherwise I predict the giant that was once World of Warcraft to plummet down to f2p status. And I’m not sure if the game will survive that.