World of Warcraft

Settling On A Routine

After a crazy week last week, I’m trying to settle down in my normal work routine. I don’t have that much IRL appointments coming up so I can start putting some more time into games again.
I am hitting a wall in the sense that first off I really need to unlearn the habit  of lying on bed after dinner. I often fall asleep for an hour or two, causing me to wake up groggy and deciding to either go to bed completely at a very early hour or it makes me awake for the rest of the night which causes me to have issues falling asleep later on. I also feel like I’m wasting my evenings doing this and I have so much to do in so many games that I don’t want to feel like I’m wasting even a minute of my time.

Yoshimitsu Zenith

Last weekend I’ve been mostly consumed with playing FFXIV. I pushed through my Ninja 2.0 relic quests and obtained the Yoshimitsu Zenith in about two hours of work. Immediatly after I picked up the White Mage quest for Thyrus, which I plan to complete today. It’s really not that much work to do and it gives me a sense of completion, so I’m happily ploughing away at the quests again. It also helps there’s an achievement for getting all the relics done, and seeing as I’m a completionist… It’s right up my alley.

Next to doing the old relics I’ve been doing some work on the new relics too. I’ve tried my best to do my beast tribe dailies every day, which makes me able to obtain a few more of the items I need today. I tend to skip FATE dailies though because either they aren’t up or people do them so fast I can’t even participate to get the item I need. The “spare” quests this leaves me with I’m using to level to the last rank I need with the Ixali… Which in turn benefits my crafter levelling. It’s a nice routine that I’m easily able to keep up after work. Doing all the beast tribe dailies takes me about 1-1.5 hours, it’s relaxing and rewarding and it doesn’t involve me having to wait in queues for god knows how long.

Valentione is Here!
Events Everywhere

It’s that time of year when most games turn their attention to Valentine’s day, and the Valentione Event has come around on Eorzea again aswell. I don’t remember previous years, but this year requires you to party up with someone to complete the quests, which is both fun and mildly frustrating. On Moogle I have a friend I can party up with to do the quests, on Cactuar however not so much… And I want to complete the event on both my characters. I could probably make a Party Finder party for it and complete it that way, but I’ll see what I do over the course of today or maybe the weekend.
I decided that the best times for me to do these events, or anything not daily related, on any of my games is during the days I have off. Then I don’t have to rush stuff and can focus on one thing at a time without feeling so tired. I hope to atleast finish the Valentione event on Moogle today, as I do like the rewards that are obtainable.

On another Isle in MMO land, Blizzard has released the Lunar event for Heroes of the Storm this year. It comes with being able to obtain a special ingame portrait and a 50% chance to spawn an Elder Monkey every game, that drops an envelope with 100 gold if you kill it. It’s a nice little way to get an extra 100 gold every day and I’m always a sucker for obtaining new portraits, so I’m definately partaking in the event this year.  Coinciding with the Lunar Festival, Blizzard has introduced a new hero: Li Ming the Wizard from Diablo 3. She came with an awesome skin/mount bundle… And I caved and bought it.

Li Ming the Star Princess

I tried her out a bit last night and my god is she fun to play. Her gameplay reminds me a bit of Lux in League of Legends. She has a talent that makes it so that one of her damaging spells “marks” people for extra damage. Like Lux’ passive. And would you look at the amazing skin? I literally get to play as Sailor moon. I love it so damn much and she’s so much fun to play that I see myself spending more time in Heroes of the Storm than I have been spending for a long time.

World of Warcraft will swing around with their usual Lunar and Valentine’s event. I don’t think they added anything or much new to these, so not going to discuss that in detail. What I do however want to bring up quickly is the recent Hearthstone changes that have been announced by Blizzard.
Personally I can see the pro’s and con’s of Standard Mode. For someone like me, who has been playing catch-up since last year, it’s nice to be able to “skip” the old adventures now. I don’t have any of the OP cards like Dr. Boom anyway so I really don’t care that much that they are leaving them out. On the other hand I can empathize with the people who feel like they are pulled out of their niche decks and that they will become impossible to play, even in Wild Mode. Assuming Blizzard will no longer balance the old cards with the new, it feels like a lot of people will have invalidated collections which they may have paid a lot of money for. And it sucks for them. I guess we’ll see how it works out when it actually goes live. For now I’m still truding through the Adventures, purely for completionist purposes.

Welcome To The Show!

Hello everyone and welcome to my brand new website!

I’ve spent quite some time fiddling around with my blog, and I’m not quite done yet… But I finally found the right plugin that would transfer over all the content from my Blogger blog. So there’s that. I’m still fiddling around with my theme and widgets. I’m superhappy I can finally use the Warcraft one, although it hasn’t been updated in ages… As the rest of the week passes I think I will add more stuff to my blog, especially to the sidebar. Keep an eye out for my social media buttons, I will be way more active on Twitter and Instagram aswell as getting active again on Anook and maybe Player.me.

The makings of a new Exarch!
The makings of a new Exarch!

Warrior Times
I’ve been poking my nose into WoW quite actively again for the last few weeks, mostly focussing on Sandrian, the Warrior. I’ve had a ton of quests still lying around, so I’m slowly working my way through them. I finished off the Garisson Campaign quests for Tanaan and am currently working my way through the original questline for that aswell. I helped Yrel become an Exarch this morning. I forgot about that little quest and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed doing it again. Blizzard has made some awesome lore bits and pieces in this expansion… Too bad it didn’t save the expansion as a whole.
For now the plans remain to finish off the quests I still have and start working towards completing achievements. I’m also almost on the final stage of my Legendary Ring, so it would be a shame not to push for that either.
All in all I seem to be able to play casually and still have some fun while doing so. My guild has ceased raiding after they killed Archimonde HC again on monday evening, people couldn’t be bothered to show up anymore, myself included. The only thing I would still like to do that is raiding related is to get the raiding achievements done. I hope I can find or make a PuG for this myself, but that’s something to worry about later.

Toes and FFXIV Woes
As I’m writing this my toe is actually healing quite well. I got to take the bandage off last night, and even though it was partly stuck which caused my wound to reopen a bit again… It’s been healing up nicely. I barely have pain at all anymore, except when I try to walk on it like I would do normally. It looks like when I just stay clear of putting pressure on my foot I’m mostly fine, so that’s what I’m doing. I have a “pajama vacation” and am just sitting around in my pajama’s and a bath robe, gaming all day. It’s a really nice break from work, although being sick means I won’t get paid for this week… Which does kind of suck.
In FFXIV I feel like I’ve been hitting a bit of a brick wall. I’ve been farming hard for my Dragoon Zeta yesterday afternoon and am now on 4/12 Mahatma’s completed. It’s not really a hard grind, it just requires some patience… Which I obviously don’t have. If I can focus enough I do about 2 Mahatma’s per hour, which means I have 4 hours of farming to go still. I really want to finish it off this week, and if I can just motivate myself to keep on running Garuda and Shiva HM I’m sure I’ll get it done in no time. It’s just the motivating part that’s hard… I’m not having an easy time just getting absorbed by the game anymore, like I used to, and although I have a huge list of things I want to achieve… Actually doing all of that has become much more of a chore than I thought it would be. I’m still determined to see it through though. I just need to get out of this little slump I’ve been finding myself in after I dinged my Ninja 60…

As far as my new website goes. If you have any feedback, please tell me! So far I’m happy with the theme since it’s quite clean. I just need to decide on a proper background picture to go with it… And most likely look at a new header picture.
This also means that my old Blogspot address will no longer get updated with posts! So if you have me in your RSS feed, change it to this website, or you will be left wondering why I won’t be updating my blog anymore.

Hunt(er)ing for Transmogs

I’m still playing World of Warcraft casually and have mostly put my focus into one Horde and one Alliance character for the moment. My Warrior (the Ally one) has been played for very long, has gathered many things and is just my veteran character overall. I have a lot of transmog sets on her, some more complete than others, and no problems switching them around. The Hunter however is a different story. Even though she is almost as old as Sandrian (the Warrior) she has much less in the way of cool sets to transmog. So today I decided to head out and get me some stuff to make my little Huntress look cool.
The first complete set I have gotten you can see above. It is kind of cheating since you can buy all this gear off of a vendor in Orgrimmar, but I’ve always been partial to the T11 hunter set. I like the bright green colours and, after leaving the vendor, I only needed the belt to drop from Cho’Gall in normal Bastion of Twilight. So I entered, wreaked some havoc, and got my belt to drop. First good transmog set: succes! Now I just need a bow to go with it…
Some of the other gear I’m chasing is the recolour of the Shaman T2 set. It drops in various Outland Heroic dungeons and I spent a good hour running them, hoping to see something drop. I managed to get the chestpiece from that set, but not much more. I did however get three items dropped from the Hunter T2 recolour, so there’s that.
All in all I’m happy to run my Murloc set until I can get my hands on the Shaman recolour. I will probably be farming those dungeons on a daily basis for that, but for now I don’t really mind.

All growns up!
I managed to finally ding my Ninja to 60 on FFXIV today, which means I can stripe the first thing off my huge gaming goal list for 2016. I had planned to do this earlier during my “holidays” but never really got round to commit myself to doing roulettes. So over the past weekend I just went full throttle and did all the roulettes plus Vanu Vanu dailies plus hunts. I also grinded some FATE’s for about an hour and a half to help a friend out for his crystal farm, which netted me a decent amount of experience aswell. Today after everything reset I finally managed to hit 60 and I’m very pleased with myself. I could immediatly equip a lot of level 60 gear that had been waiting for me and am now ilvl 164 on my Ninja. I’m being dragged down by the lack of proper rings, but that’s nothing a trip to Idyllshire can’t fix! I have enough Esoterics to buy atleast one ring and almost enough Law to buy the other. I should be able to run atleast expert roulette then and hopefully Void Ark so I can start gearing for real.
I also picked up the Anima relic quest again. Although this time I’m not really planning to farm FATEs for crystals, instead I am hoping to finish my Dragoon Zeta over the course of this week so I can hand that in and skip that grindy part… So I can go straight into the dungeons. Untill then I’m perfectly happy wielding the Law weapons… Since they look seriously awesome on a Ninja!

On what class I’m going to level next? Well for the moment I’m casually duo-leveling with a friend. He is a Dark Knight, I’m Astrologian. Sitting on level 35 at the moment, but not really planning to bring it up in a hurry. Instead I think I’ll focus on getting my Bard to 60 aswell. I miss being able to do some shooty from afar and Bard turned very interesting with Heavensward, so can’t wait to see what the level 60 gameplay looks like. For now though I need to head back into FFXIV and do my level 60 Ninja quest… I kind of forgot it existed!

New year, old friends
To end this blogpost I have been doing a little cleaning on my friends list for the New Year. I have so many people sitting on my Battle.net ID that I don’t actually talk to anymore… So I’ve started to weed through them and ended up deleting a few off my friends list. After that I jumped to FFXIV and did the same. I had so many people there who were either not playing anymore or that I don’t interact with anymore… It feels kind of nice, letting go of a lot of that stuff.
In line with this I’m also kind of done running after people to get their attention. I want 2016 to be a good year for me and I don’t want to spend my time wasting energy on people who can’t give the same back to me. I’ll probably come over as grumpy writing this, but it’s exhausting to always be the one that needs to engage in conversations or appointments. If you are truly my friend it would be no big deal to ask me how I’m doing for once. I might lose some people like this that I have known for a very long time, but honestly… I don’t want to be dragged down and feel like I’m not worth anything to people anymore.

Where Did My Time Go?

It’s a weird feeling for me. I am so used to doing nothing all day, and basically having way too much time on my hands, that actually getting cut down in time is harder for me than I thought. Especially on the weeks where I work 32 hours it feels like I just don’t have enough hours on the days I have off. Especially since I tend to plan a lot of activities in my free time, so getting rested is not really anything that is happening for me.
And unfortunately this is coming to bite me in the ass on the few days where I do try to rest and relax. I slept for about 9-9.5 hours last night and it has left me in a state of drowsiness and a nice headache on top of that. I guess I slept too long, or too deep, but it’s not really something I can influence since I actually slept all those hours. It wasn’t like I woke up after 7 hours, decided I could sleep in and rolled back over just to find myself waking up even more sleepy than I went to bed. So today I had a lot of things planned and didn’t do any of them, simply because my head was bothering me.

Maging it up
One of the few things I did manage to do today is obtain the staff transmog I wanted for my mage. I run around in Tier 6 (because I like purplez) and I needed a purplish/pinkish staff to go with it. I have always loved the look of Velen’s staff and decided to take the plunge and make my way to Shadowmoon Valley to complete the quest that awards that awesome looking staff. It’s the only way to get the model in the game next to killing Doom Lord Kazzak in Hellfire Peninsula. It took me about two hours to get there, the Cipher of Damnation and all it’s prequests are very exhaustive, but I’m super happy with the end result.
So I’m rocking item level 660 on my mage, with a Tier 6 transmog and that staff and life is good. Gold is flowing, and I’m having fun running content on a class that for once is not a hybrid.
On the Horde side of things I’m also leveling a Mage… But on my alt account. Sometimes I just really need to step away from the people I know. They are nice enough but I have times where I just want to do things for me and not want to be bothered and that’s when I retreat to my alt account. My mage on there (a very sexy Bloodelf) is now level 92 and I’m hoping to get her to 100 somewhere next week. This account is very much a fresh one when it comes to WoW and for once I would love to focus on only one character, so that Mage is the only one on there. I have to re-earn all my achievements, pets, mounts, toys and tabards but that’s something I’m very much enjoying. It feels fresh and new and challenging again, and way more fun than only hanging around in my Garrison on my main account.

FFXIV
I’m still leveling Ninja on Final Fantasy and she is close to hitting level 52. Due to me working I’ve not really had the time to run a lot of roulettes… But I am religiously doing the Vanu Vanu beast tribe dailies and the lowest level Hunts. Add that up everyday and levelling goes fast enough. I’m also slowly working my way through the Ninja relic weapon as a sidequest. I should put a bit more time in, but seeing as I’m still getting used to my schedule and how to divide my time it’s taken a bit of a backseat to playing World of Warcraft and Heroes of the Storm.

Speaking of the latter… I managed to obtain Cho’Gall via a friend. The champion is very interesting and fun to play with two people. Personally I think I’m better off playing Cho with that particular friend, mostly because I’m just better with map movements and lane movements in general. I know when to extend and when it’s overextending and I know how to be where I need to be. I’m not sure if this champion will see much competitive play. It takes very good coordination to work well and it technically takes a champion off the map. But he is definately a beast to play and very strong if built and played well. I hope I get to play some more… Assuming there are some people to play with!

Winter Is Coming

As the days are getting colder it’s getting more and more cozy to cuddle up in a blanket and stay inside all day. Even on my days off I rarely stick my nose out of the door and it’s been very relaxing. So much stuff has come my way that just sitting down with a big steaming mug filled with tea and watch a League of Legends stream is probably the best thing I could wish for right now. No stress, no action required by me. Just sitting back and relaxing.

Overwatch
I managed to get into the Overwatch stress test weekend this weekend and while I was initially all hyped up for it… I have to admit I barely played. I did a few games on Friday evening to get a look and feel of the game and test out some champions that I thought would be nice to play beforehand. So I played Mercy, Klinkhamer, Soldier 76 and Widowmaker and after that I more or less got bored.
The game itself is fast paced enough, I don’t think any match took me longer than 10 minutes. It’s really chaotic and you need to be aware of your surrounding at all times. I found out I do better in supporting roles (Klinkhamer and Mercy) than when I need to fight on the forefront… But I managed to get some decent kills in on Soldier 76.
All in all it seems to be a very noobfriendly FPS, something that I really needed.

The one thing this game is missing big time (in my opinon atleast) right now is some sort of personal tracking system. You see your stats at the end of every game, but in the main menu you can’t see any game history or some sort of tracking how you perform in the different roles. So the only thing you get to do is queue and play and rinse and repeat this for the entire duration. Ofcourse me having to soloqueue all the time doesn’t really help either, I like games the most when I can share them with friends. But since I’m the only one from my circle who seemed to have gotten in, it’s mostly been a very lonely experience for me.

On the other side I’ve been able to grind my Ninja to level 50 on Moogle. She’s actually almost level 51 already and so very fun to play. The only skills I haven’t really incorporated in my rotation yet are the ones I got today (Trick Attack and Kassatsu) but I’m sure I will learn eventually. It looks like my level 52 ability will be one that is very beneficial for Black Mages (or really anyone who overaggroes the tank) since I can reduce the enmity of a single party member with Smoke Bomb. This makes Ninja even more utility oriented than they already were seeing as they can also provide TP for one party member.
I already have an almost complete set of gear ready for when I ding 60. I just lack the rings, a chest and some pants. I guess I really should start doing some ex-roulette and void ark on my Dragoon so I can use all that to gear up my Ninja who I will probably be rerolling to. After that I will see. There are still so many classes not max level for me and I had planned to stick my nose into crafting this expansion, so I might just see that through.

On World of Warcraft I got my baby Mage to level 100 and geared her up with about two hours of Timewalking. She’s now sitting on ilvl 660 and I do better DPS than one of our raidmages… Who sits on ilvl 707. Yeah he’s that bad. I really enjoy playing my Mage and will probably do a bit more on her over the coming weeks. It feels nice to be on a character that can only DPS so I don’t have to switch roles, only speccs. It can be really exhausting to switch between Healer and DPS all the time and sometimes I wish I never rolled a hybrid to begin with. But what’s done is done and there’s no going back.

I’m also enjoying playing Hearthstone and watching movies on my tablet as part of my bedtime ritual. I watched Life of Pi last night before going to bed and absolutely loved the movie. It’s so colourful and the story is something that is completely up my alley. I don’t fancy these high action movies much and prefer movies with a strong story or a story that makes you think. This was one of such movies and combined with the gorgeous effects it was definately not two hours of my time wasted.
The next thing I really want to watch is the documentary about Christiano Ronaldo, I’m a huge football fan and I think he works so hard for his success. I’m really curious to get a glimpse into his life to see how he manages all of it.

Finding New Goals

Quitting raiding in World of Warcraft has been both liberating and a very emotional experience for me. Ever since I achieved max level on my very first toon in the Burning Crusade I have always been in a raiding group. I’ve never stepped down from an active raiding roster or guild and the only lulls in my raiding career have been because of inactive people which left me with no possibility to raid outside of pugging.

Now however our raiding group was very much active and more or less stable and just walking away from that has been odd. In a way it feels like I gave up on my goals for WoW (which was mostly killing heroic Archimonde before the next expansion comes out) and I’m struggling to cope with the sense of logging into a game without clear endgame stuff to work towards. Ofcourse raiding isn’t the be all and end all in World of Warcraft (or any MMO for that matter) and with the addition of patch 6.2.3 gearing up itself has been made significantly easier with the reintroduction of valor points. But for me it’s not about the gear. It’s about the goal that I had set when we started the expansion: to clear all endbosses on heroic with this group of raiders. And it’s weird to let that go, even though it is probably the best decision I have taken for myself in a very long time.

So now I feel like someone adrift, someone in search of new goals to work towards and new ways of enjoying a game where my entire career has been about raiding in one form or another. I think I might try to pug my way through heroic Archimonde at some point (I was a tiny bit too late with subscribing to FriendshipMoose unfortunately) and I’m sure I will see him dead somewhere before Legion hits. I’m also free to devote more time to some of my other characters that I personally enjoy way more to play, but that I never really got a chance to this expansion. So I’m levelling my mage and I’m planning to do some Timewalking on both my Hunter and my Warrior.
Next to that I’m also relocating my focus towards other games. I’m intent on getting better on Hearthstone.. Which essentially means playing more, unlocking all my adventure wings and keep on unlocking more cards.
There’s also the thing that I would love to get my hands on all the heroes in Heroes of the Storm, which mostly requires me to atleast work my way through all the quests I get and level my heroes to level 5 for the gold you get then. It’s a bit tedious at times, but I enjoy myself immensly when playing that game, even if I’m on the losing team. I just need to find someone who I can play Cho’Gall with so I can unlock that for myself aswell and then I’m even more happy.

The major thing I did, ever since patch 3.1 launched, is pick up FFXIV again with a fervor. I’ve been steadily working my way through the new Vanu Vanu beast tribe quests everyday (and am now rank five or six I believe) and am levelling my Ninja which is my new favourite class. Currently she is level 46, but I get some challenge log bonuses when I do my low level and guildhest roulette today so in theory I should be well over level 47 after I log off later tonight.
I haven’t really picked up doing ex-roulette again, mostly because I don’t enjoy my Dragoon as much anymore as I did, but I think I’ll try to make up for it over the coming few days because I want to start saving up gear for when my Ninja dings 60… And what better way to do that than with some Esoteric pieces?

All in all I’m trying very hard to adjust to a more casual approach of games where I find the fun in other things than endgame raiding. In FFXIV it seems to be working out well, I really want to level all my battle classes to max level and start on the new relic so that will keep me going for quite a while.
In World of Warcraft I’m sure I’ll find my way around somehow somewhere… But for now even logging that game just feels weird and I can only hope that will pass soon.

Having Snapped

For the past months I’ve not been in a good place on World of Warcraft. My current guild, which I’ve been in for about 4.5 years now, has become a place where I no longer really wish to hang out.
I came into this guild when it was in it’s dying breath (although I did not know that back then) and have always stuck by it, through good and mostly bad times.

Early on when I entered one of the last active officers left after a big fight that actually involved me. I won’t go into details but let’s just say couples in guilds are often toxic when one of them is in power and the other is abusing this power. After this, this was during Cataclysm, I stepped up in recruitment, raidleading and generally smoothing out the raidteam and making raids happen. After the raidleader also quit I was responsible for everyting fulltime and it was very draining on me… In the end I managed to get us to clear a lot of heroic Dragon Soul before Diablo 3, the Summer and patch fatigue shut down the guild untill Mists of Pandaria.

In Mists I managed to get a raidteam together for a few weeks after launch and then everything basically fell apart, at which point I decided to throw in the towel. I had to focus on my education and could not handle a fulltime involvement with a guild where I was the only one in charge left. The GM who promised me to be there decided he didn’t want to play Mists afterall, leaving me to fend for myself. I suffered major burnout then and didn’t really come back to the game untill Siege of Orgrimmar came out.

Around that time a lot of “old garde” people came back and I was interested in atleast killing Garrosh Hellscream before Warlords of Draenor would launch so I hopped into a few raids with them, got my kill and didn’t really care too much. As WoD was approaching I was helping out the “leader” then who, in all honesty, isn’t that good with the administration side of things. I helped him put together the raidroster, set up a poll for the raiddays and offered to fulfill the healer role I picked up at the end of Mists. This was not necessary and I decided to play Shadow Priest for the upcoming expansion.

Fast forward a few months and I end up levelling and gearing Shadow… Only to be asked to roll Holy. Less healers were showing up than they hoped and I was the only one who had the right class and experience as healer. Even though I was not feeling well mentally, and I didn’t really want to switch speccs, I said yes and we continued raiding in Highmaul. A few months later I broke. There was too much going on in my life to handle stress from raiding and dealing with our raidteam, which was filled with bad players. I snapped and stopped raiding for a while to focus on myself, instead of giving so much to others. In hindsight I heard my officer “friends” were trying to get rid of me then for not feeling well, something that hurt me beyond belief. I came back to raiding and just figured I’d focus on myself and getting enjoyment out of the game my own way. I asked to be demoted to Raider down from Officer because I did not feel comfortable in Officer chat anymore. I was in there with three guys who would just ignore anything I said or bitch at me. I didn’t and couldn’t deal with that well so I got the demote I wanted.

And now we are in the present. Raiding through Hellfire Citadel, which has not been a very smooth ride, and my frustrations with raiding and the group have been at an all time high. It’s become more and more apparent to me that it matters what position you hold in this guild. If you are buddies with our raidleader you can get away with everything without punishment, while the rest of us get scolded. Add to the fact that some “friends” who I have always treated well suddenly feel the need to treat me like shit and I just more or less snapped.

So today, with a lot of heartache, I have decided to stop raiding whatsoever. I need and want to focus on my own happiness right now and I don’t want to deal with such a big frustrating factor in my life. I feel betrayed, used and generally drained. After 4.5 years I’m more than done with this guild and the people in it. I hope for them that they get Archimonde Heroic down before the new expansion hits, but for me this is the end of my raiding career for now. I might log in casually just so I can get enough gold to buy a WoW token to keep my sub active. But I might just let it all run out and see.

Terror

I want to start this blogpost off with a few words from me personally about all that has happened in the past 24 hours or so.
First off, the attacks on Paris have made me sick to my core. It’s in times like these that you realize how close you actually are to a city like that (it takes me about 4 hours to travel from my house to the center of Paris by train, let that sink in) and how frighteningly close terrorism has actually come to a continent that is supposed to be safe to live on. The general feeling here is that these terrorists are trying to take away our feeling that we are safe in our own countries and it’s damn well working. Events like these only make me want to avoid the big cities in Europe like the plague, scared that something will happen.
So many innocent people’s lives have been taken by a few that by all means are no better than savage animals. They murdered… no butchered innocent people in one of the busiest places in Paris, people like you and me, that go about their daily lives and never get involved in politics or global scale things to begin with.
For me there was an added layer of terror in knowing that one of the people I love and care about most in this world not only lives right ontop of Paris, but could very well have been present in the Stade de France watching that friendly football match. I got very early confirmation that said person was actually unharmed and safe at home, but still. Everytime I see it slip by on the news I get cold and think of all the people who have not been this lucky and have lost a loved one last night.
Whenever you see on the news that there is trouble in the Middle East or Israel it doesn’t make that big of an impact for me because it’s so far away and I don’t actually know anyone there. But with all the recent happenings and knowing France (and Paris) have been the target of multiple attacks over the past year everything is suddenly much closer to home, up to the point that I’m actually dreading Monday since my friend will have to go back into Paris for work then… And I can only hope and pray he is safe and nothing will happen.

Gaming and Work
I’ve started my new job last week and am in the process of learning everything involved… Causing me to come home extremely tired and irritable. The only thing I want to do after dinner is head to bed and catch up on all the sleep I feel like I’ve been missing.
Because I’m forced to think about priorities it’s also becoming more and more apparent to me that I need to take a step back from World of Warcraft. The struggle there is becoming more and more intense for me and it’s pulling me under. People who I thought were nice turn out to be not so nice and I’ve lost respect for a lot of others… I don’t really know what to do with this. Mentally I’m just exhausted with that part of my life and the only thing I would want is to retreat from the raidteam and focus on the aspects of the game that still make me happy, instead of logging on frustrated and emotional because of everything that has been, and still is, going on.
It’s hurtful for me on a personal level because I feel like I have given my all for this guild over the past four or five years and I never got anything in return. My heart and soul went in there, I was officer/GM/raidleader for a while, I helped setup the new raidleader, handled things like roster balancing, raidrules, lootrules and everything that came with maintaining a raidteam. I assist our current raidleader with tactics and calling things out while still needing to be focused on keeping people alive on my Priest. It’s all a bit too much, especially when you get zero respect and acknowledgement for what you are doing, it just feels like a spit in the face.
Add to that the fact that I’m already exhausted when I come home after work now and you just get a very volatile mix that can explode any minute. My heart is bleeding over this situation and right now I’m not sure of anything anymore… Only that I no longer find any enjoyment in logging onto the game.

Instead I have been playing a lot of FFXIV again since patch 3.1 came out. I’ve been steadily leveling away on my Ninja, who will probably hit level 40 before the weekend is over and am doing the new beast tribe dailies on my Bard, who is halfway to level 52. I’m really enjoying the game again, especially now that a lot of the lagg issues have been resolved. I really think I will make this game my maingame again and will probably devote most of my time to getting my Ninja to level 60 and geared up, while also slowly plowing away on my other classes.

Next to Final Fantasy I’ve seen a ressurection in my Heroes of the Storm play. I’ve been playing atleast 3 games every day and have been enjoying myself immensely. I’ve picked up Johanna on my alt account and am currently wrecking face on Jaina on my main account. It’s so fun to play different roles and feel like you’re actually good at them. Whenever my team wins a game by good communication and gameplay I’m just super happy and feel like I’ve achieved much more than whenever I killed a new boss on World of Warcraft. I’m saving up for the next champion to buy and I’m very much leaning in the direction of Leoric, Butcher or Artanis. I’m sitting at 7k gold right now so it shouldn’t take too long to get that 10k gold together to buy either one of them. Especially since I picked up doing my quest with a fever. Sometimes I will do them on Quick Match on champions I’m comfortable on, sometimes I will choose to play vs AI because I either lack time or need to play a role I normally don’t play (warrior/specialist). Either way I make sure quests are getting done and gold is getting earned. I really want to own all the champions in the game, so I guess I still have some work ahead of me!

On The Wrong Side

This week I once again vented my frustrations on Twitter over living on the wrong side of the globe. It feels like Europe is being regarded as a second or third class continent when it comes to games and gaming merchandise.
I’d love to get my hands on some of the stuff from the Blizzard Gear store, however since they have removed the EU version of the store I have lost all interest. All products are bought from the US which means paying a shitload of import costs that are often more than the item I’d want to buy. It’s seriously ridiculous.
Not to mention that a lot of the toys and merchandise that is more or less easily available in the US as a whole through certain shops is almost impossible to get here. I’m in an extra dire situation since Amazon offers a lot of stuff that I would want… But we don’t have a Dutch version of it. Leaving me to import via England or Germany which brings troubles of it’s own. Sometimes I’m able to find merchandise via obscure game shops but mainstream toystores don’t really sell anything interesting. Hell even Funko! Pop figures are hard to come by here. I have one on order in my usual game store, but when it will arrive is a mystery.

It’s not just Blizzard that does this. It feels like all major gaming companies have their focus first on the US market… While the EU gaming market is atleast equally as big. Riot Games has tried to appeal to their EU customers by offering all their merch in Europe aswell as the US but they are one of the few and also hella expensive. I’m not gonna pay €25 for a figurine that’s the size of a mystery mini from Funko that costs €10.
It’s also not just the merchandise that seems to be US focused. Apart from Gamescom in Germany all the big gaming events take place in the US. Look at the various PAX get togethers, Blizzcon and a ton of other Con events that happen over there where there is no EU equivalent for. It’s frustrating and saddening for someone who would love to go to one of these things but will never be able to afford doing so. I feel like Europeans, and especially the Dutch since we have hardly any gaming related stuff going on, are just getting screwed over left and right. It’s making me grumpy and resentful towards the companies that I’m supposed to support. Ofcourse there are the IEM events that are held in Europe and you see a bit more things come to life with the growing Hearthstone, Heroes of the Storm and League of Legends scenes. But it still feels like we’re running behind. And that sucks.

Hallow’s End, Shade’s Eve and various other stuff.
In World of Warcraft the event for Halloween (Hallow’s end) has officially begun with some new stuff to get this year. I managed to find Pepe in his scarecrow costume and was promptly rewarded with an item to make him appear like that on my head. It’s seriously cute as hell. I’ve never looked into Pepe before, but I’m happy to have the little birdie tagging along for now.
As for the rewards for Hallow’s End this year… There are three new pets and two new toys to get. I’ve already obtained the item to spawn the pets, now I just need the toys. One of them can drop from a spectral spider that patrols your garrison after you use the appropriate decoration to summon it. The other one is a random drop of the skeleton mobs that you have to kill for your dailies. Neither toy has dropped for me yet, but I still have a while to get them.

At the same time the Halloween event for Wildstar is going on and I’m quite curious about this one. I’ve never seen any ingame event for Wildstar so I don’t know what to expect, but I guess I’ll find out over the coming weeks. I hope it may reward us with a new costume to use in the Holo Wardrobe or maybe a mini pet. That would be the coolest rewards anyway.
I haven’t seen any announcement for FFXIV and their Halloween event yet, but I’m sure they won’t stay behind.

Speaking of mini pets… I managed to acquire Terky the Murloc today. Apparently Blizzard has hidden his egg in Borean Tundra with the latest patch. As I went down there to gather it I was certainly not alone, the cave where you can find it was crowding with people. If you want to know how to get this pet, head on over to MMO-Champion, seeing as it is on the front page. For now I have another murloc friend atleast!

Communities, Dailies and Destiny

Every now and then I realize how friendly and heartwarming community on the internet can be sometimes. I have a bunch of friendly people on my Twitter that I follow and that are also part of the dedicated positive blogging community. Some of their blogs are featured on mine, mostly the ones I actually read the most and would recommend to anyone trying to find their way in the big world of gaming.
Ofcourse there are a lot of others that should get the same recognition and maybe I will get around to that at some point. Some people might not be in my sidebar but that doesn’t mean they don’t produce great content and I poke around on their blogs every so often. Alas I only have so much time in the world and I wish I could feature and follow every single one of them more often, but that would leave me with little to no time for myself or my own blog.

With this post I just want to take the opportunity for a shoutout to a very awesome community. You all know who you are. Keep doing what you’re doing!

Dailies
I’ve been steadily plowing away at doing dailies on my Priest to get my reputation up with the various Tanaan Jungle factions. Yesterday I managed to get Exalted with Hand of the Prophet and scored this adorable fel-tainted Boar. It’s the same theme as my fel-tainted Dreadhawk so I will have matching mounts for my Shadow specc and I love it.
The thing I don’t love is Blizzard once again forcing dailies upon us as the only means to get rep with factions. I remember back in Mists of Pandaria it would literally cost me one or two hours a day just to open up and then do all the dailies associated with all the different factions. It was mind numbing and, in my opinion, a horrible way to go about getting reputation. They have returned this practice for two of the factions in Tanaan Jungle and I will be more than happy once I can scrap that part off of my to-do list. The other side of the coin is that for all the other factions various grinds are necessary and I’m not really keen on doing that either. But the repetitive nature of the dailies, and the fact that they take about 45 miutes to get done, make them boring fast.
It’s unfortunately a system that has carried over into the few other MMO’s I’ve played so far. Beast-tribe dailies in FFXIV is probably the one that comes closest to the WoW system and, eventhough I worked through them, I didn’t like finishing them up at all. It was more to fill time and acquire mounts and pets that I did them but otherwise I would not have bothered to do them at all.
The same goes for me grinding out those reputations on WoW I guess. There’s not much else to do in the game so I try to set goals for myself. For now I can drop atleast a few dailies since that faction is done… And I should be done with Order of the Awakened in the next few days or so. This leaves me only with grinding rep with the Saberstalkers and then I will probably turn my attention to the Steamwheedle Preservation Society. They involve turning in various items from Nagrand, which ofcourse need to be farmed, but atleast they don’t rely on dailies…

King’s Fall
I’ve been poking about in Destiny aswell over the past few weeks and yesterday evening I finally managed to join a clan raid. They had a savepoint at Golgoroth and we managed to take that boss down in 2 tries. He dropped me new gloves and a legendary helm engram… Which turned into a very nice exotic helm. After that we had some tries on the Daughters of Oryx but didn’t get to kill them because our leader had to go. All in all it was a nice bit of raiding. The tactics on the bosses in this Destiny raid are not impossibly hard but they do require proper handling. There is no way to cheese your way through a fight and mistakes are punished… But it’s a serious amount of fun. I think Bungie did a great job with this raid and with the hardmode coming out next week I hope it will keep people busy for a while.
In the meantime I’ve been working on acquiring my Exotic Sword. Right now I’m on the part where I have to gather 10 specific materials, which are a rare drop from regular material nodes on the Moon for me, and kill 500 enemies with Solar abilities. I picked up the Solar sword for my Warlock because I figured I would never play Sunsinger so I wanted a sword in one of the elements that my abilities are not. It also seems that the Solar sword is quite rare and in my clan I think I’m the only one wielding it… Which could give me an advantage in raids.
Other than that I’m tieing up the loose ends of quests I still have in my quest log. I know where I can get a few more quests and gear upgrades and once I finish off my Sword I will probably turn my attention there. For now though I’m mostly content with shooting stuff in dailies and strikes and some general faffing about.