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What’s Your Favourite Type of Crafting?


I love crafting. It doesn’t matter what game I play, chances are I’m going to get involved. That doesn’t  mean I like every type of crafting though. One of my least favourite crafting methods is the one you find in World of Warcraft, where you click one button to combine, and wait around until everything in your inventory is used up. It feels very hands free, and it’s meant to be that way. The ‘hard’ part involves collecting the resources, usually through combat (if you’re going to collect it yourself) and adventuring.

My absolutely favourite way to craft, was in Vanguard. Crafting was its own sphere, and did not rely on adventuring at all. You could do work orders where you were given the supplies you needed and only had to purchase the vendor sold components, and this was the ideal way to level, saving your hard earned harvests for actual useful items. It was difficult, complicated, and you would take pride in your creations. Through the use of powders and dusts you could customize every piece a bunch of different ways, and of course you could make pieces more rare than others. One of the best things about this system for me personally was that it wasn’t timed, like it is in EQ2. In EQ2 I feel like I have to constantly sit at the craft bench and not step away to answer the phone or go get the door, because my craft will fail. It’s a timed mechanic, and while I enjoy the process of crafting, I dislike being so tied to the desk as I craft. Sometimes I need to step away.

Crafting in WildStar is complex, but I feel it leans too much on the side of RNG rather than skill. I don’t like having to compete with RNG, because I typically (always) lose. ArcheAge crafting matches that of World of Warcraft, where it’s just a finger click to combine items in your inventory, so long as you have the materials available. There is a bit of RNG as you have a chance to “auto upgrade” an item as you craft it, but the system isn’t complex by any means.

So what are your favourite methods of crafting? Would you prefer to buy from crafters and not create your own items? Players who choose to harvest and sell those goods to crafters can make a nice amount of money in a balanced game, spending the money they earn from selling craft components back on crafters for their finished goods. Of course if you’re like me you have to DO ALL THE THINGS and so you’re both a crafter and an adventurer.

Goodbye Vanguard, from a Guide


I have been thinking about how to word this post ever since they made the announcement that Vanguard would be shutting down and I still can’t seem to find the proper words. I played in beta and immediately fell in love. The open world was my first experience of the sort, and even though we constantly “chunked” across zone lines, it was still amazing to me. Yeah, there were bugs, but I never spent much time getting upset about them because I was busy having too much fun.

I was one of a small handful of guides for Vanguard for almost three years. Our job was to interact with players and run quests and events for them to partake in. Vanguard may have been a dying game but it had a fiercely loyal fan base of players who would log in and it made my day a lot more fun to see them interacting with one another.

Some of my favorite guide events to run included transforming all of the players into frogs and shooting them into the air. We had quests where we role played that we were zombies and were unable to talk, requiring players to some how cast a spell on us and “cure” us from our ailment. My favorite quest was a fortune telling one. Since I was a dark elf I would always tell a fortune about how the player was going to be meeting a beautiful stranger – and then proclaim the fortune telling device worked because low and behold, there I was, a beautiful stranger.

I stopped just before the announcement of its closure was made, and I have no regrets. I met some of the most wonderful people, explored some of the most beautiful zones I have ever seen, and my blood mage will probably always be one of my favorite characters to play. Finally a game that got healers right, where we could participate in DPS and keep a raid up. The crafting was top notch, complex but not too complex. I took pride in my creations. My house, which was there until the end.. I built by hand, brick by literal brick.

Goodbye Vanguard. You will be missed.

(Note: I had a post about Blaugust scheduled for today, but I’m moving it to tomorrow instead, so keep an eye out here for that).

My Favorite Vanguard Memories

ScreenShot_00223It wasn’t a surprise when I heard tonight that Vanguard would be closing its doors, but that doesn’t mean that I was any less surprised, and maybe even a bit hurt. Still, 7 years is nothing to sneeze at, most companies probably would have closed the door long ago. I wanted to share a few of my favorite Vanguard memories, I’ve been playing off and on since beta, and this game has been one of my favorite for MANY different reasons.

– I was a volunteer guide with the SOE program for approximately two years in Vanguard. I met amazing players through the program and was able to interact and RP with them in ways I always wished I could. This was one of my favorite things to do in game.

– Vanguard was the first game I ever played where I quite literally built my house from scratch, brick by brick. I still own the house.

– Vanguard was the first game I ever played that attempted a ‘seamless’ open world without instances. It didn’t exactly work out the way it was intended, but it was always beautiful.

– I ran a lot of events in game, including a scavenger hunt for my guild ‘Safe Haven’. I eventually joined the EQ2 branch of the guild because they were just that amazing.

As I sit here and think about everything I’ve done in game and browse through the thousands of screenshots I’ve taken I can’t help but get a bit teary eyed. I doubt any but those closest to me know just how much of myself I poured into this game and how much it has given back to me over the years, helping to keep me sane when the world around me was a disaster. I’m so very thankful and grateful that it was allowed to run for as long as it did and I will miss this game very much.

What Are We Playing? #MMORPG

ScreenShot_00361I would really like to request a do-over for this week (and even last weekend). Instead of dwelling on all of the negativity that is currently all over my gaming streams lately, I’m going to just do a brief post on what I’m playing these days.

FFXIV – Usually in the morning and daytime hours, I’ve been trying to level up a White Mage. My little falafel is great entertainment. I really like the animation the characters do when they jump. I suppose it’s a bit silly of me, but I can not help but squee as I run around. You can find me on Diabolos as Blesse Reveur.

Wurm Online – I recently purchased a new deed on the Pristine server, and have been working on trying to find iron somewhere on my deed. No luck yet but as with everything in Wurm, I am patient. I also started a house, and have a little garden going. I’m hoping that as soon as I find iron things can start moving forward, I can’t wait to show off some before and after pictures. I also still own a deed on Exodus, I’ve been creating a farm there to tend, and I found a chicken which I named Henry (get it, hen? chicken?) who has been eating most of my grain (hence the farm).

The Sims 3 – My legacy family relocated to Isla Paradiso, and I’m having a lot of fun with the change of location. Ginger is now a teenager, and even got a part time job as a receptionist at a spa. Bob is still alive, it appears that my sims live well beyond what I had banked on.

Guild Wars 2 – I’ve taken a break from it this week because I needed something lower key, more relaxing. Rushing all over to do Clockwork Chaos was causing me some stress in game. I DID manage to work my armorer to 400 skill, it was one of three crafts that I did not have at 400 yet. The two remaining are weaponsmith and leatherworker. Those are next on my list. I also logged in for the one year anniversary reward. I instantly leveled up an alt to 20 and thought it was a nice gesture.

Vanguard – Yep, still playing Vanguard and still one of my favorite games. I’ve been taking things slow and working on diplomacy, which is very relaxing. Also one of my favorite things about Vanguard (and probably one of the least explored by the general population). I’ve also been crafting, now that my mineralogist is 55 it’s time to level up the next class. I’m not sure which one yet, I’ve got one of everything (of course I do). Suggestions?

So those are the games I’m playing, more often than not. I’ve taken a little break from Civilization V, but am still enjoying the game quite a bit. I just don’t have enough hours in a day!

What game do you find yourself playing these days? Let me know in comments!

SOE Live and Vanguard #Vanguard

ScreenShot_00366SOE Live is only 9 days away and while a majority of people this year are eagerly awaiting news on EQNext (I am assuming) I am looking forward to what we may hear concerning Vanguard. Yep, that quiet little game that no one admits to playing but secretly deep down inside, still yearns for.

Vanguard has a few panels this year which is fantastic because I remember the years when Vanguard wasn’t even a blip on the radar. You can check out the SOE Live lineup for full details, but as far as Vanguard is concerned you’re looking at the following:

  • Friday August 2nd – Vanguard Live Quest: Employing Diplomacy in Old Targonor
  • Friday August 2nd – Vanguard Past, Present, and Future
  • Saturday August 3rd – Player panel: Vanguard – Recruiting and Retention (sadly this is also at the exact same time that a panel on EQNext is going on about classes, but I still hope they get a good showing)
  • Saturday August 3rd – Vanguard Create your own adventure

When you have a lot of games to promote in your three day faire I can only imagine just what a huge deal time management must be. If you’re like me, and play multiple SOE games, there’s no way you’re going to be able to catch it all. Hopefully the majority of the information will surface over twitter and youtube videos, and other social media so those who are unable to attend can still get great information about their favorite games.

Of course just because I’m eagerly awaiting news for Vanguard doesn’t mean that I’m not equally as excited about EQNext (or any of the other EQ franchise games for that matter). I’m just taking it slowly, and we’ll see where all of this goes.

What are you most looking forward to hearing about at SOE Live? Let me know in comments!

Keeping Up With The Gamers #MMORPG

If you’re one of those gamers who likes to taste a little bit of every game, this has probably been an expensive year for you. Whether you’re only interested in MMOs or if that extends to single player, it doesn’t much matter. There’s a lot of games out there and the costs can add up.

Right now I’m reading everyone’s excited squeals for Neverwinter, the ‘early’ release starts today – for people who decided to buy the $200 package. Needless to say, I simply can’t afford to spend that much on a game that I may or may not enjoy well into the future. At this moment I have been contemplating the $60 package, but I’m still not sure if it’s a game that I truly enjoy more than anything else I already have on my plate (that comes at a lower cost). So what is on my plate?

I did get my $60 out of Guild Wars 2, and even though I’m not actively playing that right this second I know it’s not going anywhere. I’ve dedicated more than $60 worth of hours to the game, and I’ve had a lot of fun. It will still be there when my interest leans that way again.

Wurm Online is $50 a year (until the price goes up in May). You rarely ever get MMOs for that price, and I’ve certainly got a lot of played time on my characters. I think my main is over 100 days played now. Plus you can play Wurm with in-game currency, which I do for my 2nd account. I just purchased a year of game time, wanting to get that settled before the price goes from $5 EU a month to $8 EU.

My EQ account is compensated, as are all of my SOE accounts. This makes them an easy go-to choice for many genres. I’m having a lot of fun in EQ, and I still dip into EQ2 and Vanguard. Me and SOE (the company, not the people) may have had some rocky times, but they’re a solid game choice for me and have been for many, many years.

Rift is active for 30 days. I haven’t poked in yet and I’m not really sure why. I just haven’t felt the urge, even after claiming the latest expansion and a handful of other goodies.

There are loads of other games on my desktop that I could technically pick up and play at any time, and haven’t felt an inkling to do so yet. There’s Wizard 101, Pirate 101, The Secret World, Star Trek Online (I have a life time subscription to that one), and of course EVE which I still have some unused PLEX for. These are just the MMO games. There’s a whole steam library of single player games that I haven’t beaten yet, and a few that have no ‘end’ like The Sims 3.

With such a selection it’s hard for me to justify spending even more money on a game that I know didn’t exactly call to me in the beta – but – so hard to resist because pretty much all of my friends are going to be playing it. I never want to be the one left out of all the fun. So for those who ARE going to be playing today – I look forward to living vicariously through your adventures!

As always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Adventures Through Telon #VGD #Vanguardsoh

ScreenShot_00364Level 40. My shaman switched from bird to bear, and it’s been going pretty well. I’m thinking once my partner in crime (Hampooj, level 40 death knight) reaches level 45 I may switch back over to my blood mage. The shaman is a fun class but it’s not really my *favorite* class, they have a combination of spell and melee and you can choose to buff particular aspects. They seem more of a ‘jack of all trades’ healer. My blood mage on the other hand is a pure spell caster (cloth wearing to boot) and also my highest level crafter. Thus I have a bit more attachment to her.

I started out adventuring in Qalia but the sand there is just so bright, it hurts my eyes. So we moved back to Thestra and off to the northern part of the map to deal with skeletons and undead. While I was struggling to find quests to complete from 35-39, 40 seems to be one of those magical levels where a lot of content opens up. It should (hopefully) bring me fairly close to 50 – although like I mentioned above by then I may switch back over to my blood mage. Then there’s also my disciple who has been sitting at 50 for quite some time now (I haven’t leveled anyone to the cap of 55).

I noticed the store has gotten a few more items in it as of late, but I’ve been pretty good about not spending all of my station cash. I’ve saved up quite a bit from the last triple station cash day, although I did purchase a mount for my level 50 character – I noticed there’s also one for level 40. I’m debating picking that up for my shaman, it’s just not really a colour that I enjoy and if I’m going to spend station cash on something I want to make sure it’s something I’ll use. The mount in question is a giant flying dragon / lizard type creature, and a shade of green that I don’t particularly care for. Still, flying around Telon is an amazing action all in its own. I really enjoy being able to explore out of reach areas that way.

As always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Vanguard Brings Good News to Members and Free to Play #VGD

Vanguard released some really awesome news this week in regards to their free to play model as well as their membership plan.

“We have decided to expand and improve on the free- to-play offering for Vanguard. That means everyone can play any race, any class, to any level for free. You can also own a house, create guilds, and do a bunch of other things.”

So if you were hampered by the free to play model before (although Vanguard has quite an open one compared to most games) there’s a little more incentive to get in game – and if you happen to love it as much as I do, there are some extra perks for becoming a member.

“With that said, there will be increased XP and faction gains, discounts on broker fees, the ability to purchase additional housing plots, and other exciting benefits. You can see all the membership benefits here.”

As Scopique said on G+ “Exactly! Membership should be something that people are COMPELLED to do, not something they should be SHAMED into doing.”

I think he brings up a really good point. Games spend a lot time telling you about all the things you CAN’T do without a subscription. Vanguard has taken a different approach and tells you about the things you do get as a free to play member, and about the things you get as a member. They don’t mention what you ‘can’t’ do (and there’s very little to that list). I think this is fantastic, and I really hope it works to get Vanguard in front of a larger audience.

2012: Game Year in Review (The Year of the Wurm) #WurmOnline

January: I fell in love with Wurm Online, and my readers dropped to the lowest I’ve ever seen them. Turns out that even though I adore playing this game, very few people like to read about it. Not a big deal, since I write for myself, but it was still an eye opener.

February: My nomadic gamer senses kicked in, and I played some Vanguard along with Wurm Online and Eve. SOE was going through their first phase of ProSiebenSat.1 talks, and it was messy. I took part in the awesome Kyklops killing on Deliverance, which just reinforced how much I love Wurm Online.

March: Guess what! Still playing (and posting about) Wurm Online! A little Vanguard in there too and some Rift when they had a free weekend going on (but it couldn’t pry me away from Wurm).

April: Completely Wurm filled – along with the awesome DAW (Developer Appreciation Week) hosted by Scarybooster. I contemplated trying out the epic servers, but never did.

May: Celebration opens in Wurm Online, and I drift to Diablo 3 and World of Warcraft. Both games much neglected shortly after.

June: Back to my nomadic self. I spend some time doing dungeons in Vanguard (Greystone), play some EQ2 and get an award for the housing hall of fame, and I even manage to start playing some Guild Wars in preparation for GW2. There’s even a little Glitch in there, along with (of course) Wurm.

July: Sims 3 eats up a chunk of the month, along with EVE, and World of Warcraft where I’m counting down to Pandaria. Guild Wars 2 beta is in full swing and I’m slowly becoming addicted.

August: An odd month for me. I dip my toes into The Secret World and enjoy the game quite a bit but find it too dark for my tastes. Most of the month is spent in GW2, GW1, Vanguard, and World of Warcraft. Me? Play too many games? No such thing.

September: The nostalgia bug bites me and I head back to EQ1 to see if the planes of power gods are up. I start a new character, and am still playing GW2 but the novelty is starting to wear off because I’m max level and don’t like to dungeon grind.

October: I pop into GW2 for the Halloween event, and was disappointed. I play a few hours of EQ2 during the weekend, and I join a guild in EQ1 (that doesn’t last long). SOE Live also takes place and there’s all sorts of news and announcements going on.

November: It’s NaNoWriMo month and my posts show. I get a little Sims 3 time in, get completely bored of WoW, try some EQ2, and then re-discover Wurm after leaving in the summer.

December: I barely write. There’s only 8 whole posts which is my lowest month since I started the site in 2006. A lot of stuff not gaming related went on, most of it not fit for this blog. So. Here’s to 2013, and a better year.

The Month of Gaming Stuff #EQ2 #EQ #VGD #TS3 #Riftgame

Not only is NaNoWriMo going on this month (which I have been failing at, horribly), I’ve opened registration for this years Gamers Secret Santa, Rift released Storm Legion, Sims 3 released Seasons, EQ2 released Chains of Eternity, EQ1 is releasing Rain of Fear, Vanguard is releasing City of Brass, Planetside 2 is releasing, and that doesn’t even begin to touch on the other console games that came out this month like Halo 4.

What a month to be a gamer, hmm?

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