Monday, November 30, 2009

All change and something new.

Yes, I know. I have changed guilds, again. But the reasoning is good, you see? Well, I was going to stay in Clan Werre as the people there are really really nice. But now, most of the euro players have left and the decision has been made by the leaders to raid four hours later, so I wouldn’t have been able to attend any raids.

Now raiding is what I enjoy, but I am not obsessed with it. I would however like the opportunity to raid occasionally when I want to, but with the raid times as they are now in CW that is an impossibility. So a move was required with no hope of raiding in guild and the fact most peeps were not about or online when I was. A shame, but it happens. Thank you Clan Werre for your hospitality! If you are a US time zone player and enjoy a family guild with a bit of raiding, then CW would be a nice home. Great bunch.

So. Where to? Well, I decided I would try to join Tapiolan Sankarit. My wife has her toons there and always seems to have a blast and a good laugh with her guildies. She always speaks highly of them. I had met a few of TS guildies briefly in groups, never to talk to in depth but just as passing acquaintances for an hour or so and they were always super nice/helpful folks. So I thought I would chuck me eggs in to that basket with my wife. I have only been in a day or so with just Adurj at the moment, but as I thought, everyone has been more than welcoming. The guild is predominantly Euro time based also which is exactly what I need so there seems to be loads of peeps online when I log in. All in all, very happy with my decision so far and looking forward to lots of guildy groups / fun.

Requiem: Momento Mori

This weekend I did something that I have not done for a very very long time. I got my hands on a new MMO. Req uiem: Momento Mori is an adult themed Horror MMO and is free to play! The graphics look like a cross between Guild Wars and Hellraiser and all in all are pretty sweet (Gore central & scantily clad ladies and men). The game play that I have experienced so far seems ok too. The movement/interaction keys are mapped the same as I have my EQ2 key setup, so I found that strangely comforting and very easy. I am quite excited about starting playing in earnest. However, I have hit a problem. I play the game for about 3 to 5 minutes and it just stops. I get a windows error message that tells me absolutely nothing and the application just shuts. I have no idea what is going on with it, but I am keen to sort out the problem as the game seems certainly good enough to want to explore some more.

As soon as I have got Requiem: Momento Mori to work and I get a better look at the game, I’ll let you know what it’s like. Until then,

Be well.

Friday, November 27, 2009

A workable raid force..?

With the recent troubles our guild has been experiencing in attaining a good raid attendance and the amount of top end raiders that have gone /afk until the expansion release in February or sought more consistent raiding climes, I have been thinking about how I am going to feed my inner raider.

Having researched my options I am now down to three.

• Move servers to Splitpaw or Runnyeye and join a raid guild on euro time server

• Stay at Clan Werre and hope that the raid attendance picks up

• Stay at Clan Werre and formulate a raiding alliance (of sorts)

What I mean by the last point (which is currently most favourable to me), is not just forming a simple raid alliance with another guild, but to specifically advertise for any players of a certain standard that play mainly on AB server during Euro play times. Kind of what Leonardo is doing with the ‘For the People’ raids, but with a dedicated raid force each time and not pick ups.

If I could get enough interest from people willing to attend three raids a week at euro times, regardless of what guilds they are in and without a requirement for them to leave their guild, I feel it could be a fairly successful venture.

The logistics would be easy. To create a guildportal website for the raid force and simply direct those who wish to join to sign up on their for the raid force and raid events. They wouldn’t have to leave their current guild but would be able to view the calendar on the raid force website and sign up. The raids would only be viewable by those in the force. The difference being from the PuRs that Leo and others run is that the force would be a set dedicated one. If formed properly we wouldn’t have to advertise for pick ups as our chosen members of the raid would be attending all or most of the raids.

So where would I advertise such a thing? Well, EQ2 flames would be a good start and obviously in channels with a link to the guildportal website ( I hate spammage so that should be kept to a minimum). Aside from that word of mouth I guess.

I’m still mulling it over, but I must say I really am quite keen on the idea. Just need to make sure I feel committed enough to the hard work it would entail. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes. think of a name..

Be well.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

AA, the Power Levellers PITA

I am starting to rue the day when I decided to be impatient and power level Adurj. I knew it would happen, yet I still in my eagerness and knowledge that with my limited play time it would take an eternity to reach top tier, I went ahead and sped him up from mid 40’s (where he had sat for a long time) to level 80. I was extremely pleased at the time. The timing was perfect, Clan Werre were just starting raiding WoE 3 times a week and obtaining myth updates also. So within 3 weeks I was fully T3 and had my myth. Well. I had all of my T3 pieces. I just had to get the shards.

But now I have done all that I am finding myself on an uphill battle to gain AA for the beloved Battle Cry. With the new expansion looming in February, I really need to make sure I hit 200 AA by then, or all of the collection quests I am storing up will not be serving their purpose in giving me a good start in to T9.

So, at the moment I am questing like crazy, trying to hit new zones I haven’t been in with Adurj before and jumping on any lower level group whenever I can. I have also been making good use of the Chronomancer fella and doing some named runs through low level instances. Still a long way to go as Adurj is sitting at 159 AA now. Whenever I get time I am also hitting all of the zones trying to farm shineys for expansion go live.

Having said all that, it does get kinda boring quick. Unless the quest is a particularly juicy one with a good story, I’m finding it monotonous. Which is why last night when my old buddy Sjlverwolf asked me to join a Secret Keepers WoE raid, I jumped at the chance. Not because I really need anything from WoE (although I am still after 4 pieces of my alternate dps set from there), but because I knew the break and dose of fun would brighten up the dredge. I was right! Not a bad run at all. Was a much slower pace than what I am used to, the dps was way short of the Clan Werre raids there, and we didn’t get Aiden down. However, that was to be expected because mixed with the experienced SK members there seemed to be a fair amount of first time WoE’ers there. In fact probably about half. So not too bad an achievement at all and to top it off I had a really great time. Thanks to Secret Keepers for having me along. I think we are heading back to bash Aiden about tonight, so that should be fun again.

Aside from that my evening will hold questing and hopefully the completion of my deity quests for Anashti Sul. To give you some idea how much I have been bored and messing about while doing my AA catch up quest sessions, prior to joining the WoE raid last night I made a pact with myself to not use any form of transport assistance aside from what I had myself if I could help it at all (so no druid/wiz portals, no bells or carpets etc) Obviously a couple of times I had to use the SS carpet, as there is no other way of getting there (I don't have Call of Ro). But I was pretty strict with my pact. I even refused to use horses and griffons. I actually really enjoyed it. With my graphics set up high it was a great pleasure running all the way from EFP to Antonica and the many other trips I made last night all over Norrath. It was a nice break and a fantastic way to enjoy the beautiful scenery the devs have created for us.

Having said all that, it did kind of take me a couple of hours to finish just one of my deity quests that sent me quite literally everywhere...well it seemed like it  All in all, great fun.

Be well

Monday, November 23, 2009

“Philosophers are only men in [T3] armour after all.”

Adurj is now the proud owner of a full set of T3 armour. Having picked up the last few shards I needed (I have had the patterns for a while), I finally got my last piece on Sunday night. He won’t be wearing the full set of T3 though (despite the base damage buff), as he has T4 bracers. I have definitely noticed the difference already. Not so much to Adurjs parse, which has got slightly better but to his survivability, especially in TSO. All that critical mitigation must be working wonders!

So, what’s next then? I will obviously trying to raid some to get more pieces of T4, but in the interim I think it’s going to be catching up on the other important stuff that kinda took a back seat in the rush for myth and T3. Most importantly is Adurjs AA. Currently sitting at 157 is nowhere near good enough, and I need to be up in the late 170’s with AAs to get what I need. Yes of course, Battle Cry.

I guess it’s time to go back through my journal and make use of the Chronomancer to get as much AA as I possibly can. I also need to hit all the old dungeons to make sure I have all the nameds and disco AA. Other quests I can continue with to help are HQs and my lore and legends. I have a huge amount outstanding ever since they changed it so you don’t have to use the LnL books but can get the quest from the items dropped by that particular creature type itself. So there are those to consider. I have always been one of those people in EQ2 who never seems to empty their journal. I only have room for 3 more quests currently. So clearing up all that old trash will be a welcome subtraction also. I have a few collection quests ready for hand in also, but I am waiting for the next expansion to complete those.

I said before power levelling a toon is not always the answer, and I must admit even though Adurj (alongside Velnaar [coercer]) is my best equipped toon, but he is lacking in so many other areas. There are standard what I call ‘run of the mill staple quests’, such as [To Speak as a Dragon] or the Claymore timeline, that I feel most toons should have completed. Yet Adurj has hardly done any of them. He needs to do deity quests also [Anashti Sul] and at some point I would like to get his tinkering levelled. He also needs to start the TSO timeline!

A huge amount to do now I no longer have to concentrate on shards and WoE! I’m actually quite looking forward to it though. I love exploring old content again and the nostalgic feeling as I complete a quest line that I last completed years ago. It will also be interesting to see what has changed back in the lower levels, if anything. It should be fun.

So, what did the weekend bring for Adurj Le`Bard? Over the weekend I joined a fair amount of shard runs so I could get my last few pieces of T3. I mainly hit PuGs as there didn’t seem to be a huge amount of guildies online when I was, although I did manage a guild DF run. On Saturday night we hit WoE with a WoEfully undermanned force, yet still managed to get down the first 3 nameds with ease. We stopped at Digg as we simply didn’t have the dps to carry us through the fight. On Sunday I did a few more shard runs and we were supposed to have a guild raid to Kor’sha, but as has been the case recently, sadly not enough turned up. Everyone was gracious about it, but I kinda wish it wasn’t like that. With the raid leader putting in as much work as they do, and in this case about five guild members needing Myth updates from there, I would have thought many would be lining up to help. Especially those who had help getting their updates from the same people. But alas, no. One must never forget RL commitments and the fact this is only a game. Even so, it’s nice to help out your friends and guildies.

Oh, and for those who recognise the post title but can't place it, it is a Charles Dickens quote [obviously minus the T3 bit :P].

Be well.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Kawasaki Connection.

So here she is! This is my baby. Kawasaki ZX9R.

Poor thing is needing a bit of love and attention at the moment though. I travel about 50 miles on her a day, to and from work. It’s a tough life, perfect black top, flowing bends along the coast road with stunning scenery looking out over the med. Unfortunately though, as much fun as that is, I have put 25,000 miles on her in the last two years and she’s getting a bit tired. Needing new tyres, new bearings for rear wheel and steering head, service of the back brake, new pads in the front, new fluid in the forks, a major service of the engine and few other niggly little things. Damn costly if I am to take it to a garage. But, think I am going to spend the time on her myself apart from the tyres. It will cost a lot less and I’m sure I’ll get quite a bit more satisfaction out of working on her.

Now I just have to convince the wife that shopping this weekend will not include me as I’m going to be playing with my toy.

Be well.

MMO Melancholy

I seem to be going through one of those stages where I have a loss of direction in game. I think it’s a culmination of various different things. The obvious one is the recent upheaval moving away from Acolytes of Valor, a guild I had been in for many years and was also a co-leader for just under 2 years. Leaving all those friends behind was a tough call, especially when despite my best efforts, play time and other commitments meant I was unable to group with them as much as I would have liked. The inevitable lack of communication has ensued and I have pretty much now lost contact with most of them, even though it’s only been a couple of months since I left. This was originally tempered by the fact that I was now in an active guild and it seemed most nights we were doing some raid or other and as such, I never got the chance to get bored.

Now Clan Werres raid force has dissipated for various reasons (all of them valid and pretty much unavoidable), there is again a hole. The last few days I have logged in, all the guild members have been as friendly as ever and left me wanting for nothing..but for some reason I have been. With the raid plan we had, I felt I was still progressing in game and not stagnating. I felt I was getting somewhere and had a goal when I logged in. Now, although all my guild are so very very nice, I don’t know them all that well and this has meant I naturally haven’t got involved with the things they are up to. Although I do get on with them, it doesn’t change the fact that they have been there for years and all have their groups they hang around in regularly. Nothing wrong with that at all, in my eyes that’s the way it should be. Find a group you hang around with a lot and have some fun!

Problem for me is that I am not part of any group that I can get together with regularly, especially since all my RL mates who used to play (apart from the wifey) have now quit. My wife is enormously popular on the server (coz she’s lovely and a complete flirt! Boy players seem to lap that up for some reason, lol) and is never wanting for any groups or anything to do having a huge friend base. I hardly get to play with her due to the demand on her iccul healer, and the fact she deems me as not l33t enough to join her gang of hardcore players. So, I am kinda feeling out in the cold at the moment in game.

When I log in I don’t get any tells and any content I want to see I have to PuG it instead of getting together with me mates for the fun. Don’t get me wrong. I have been in as many fun PuGs as I have been in crappy PuGs, so it’s not all too bad there. But it’s not the same... It’s strange. I have made a huge amount of friends over the years in EQ2, but strangely apart from a couple that I know are busy all the time, there is none I would regularly pester to let me tag along.

So. What to do? Well, I’m not going to quit the game because I enjoy playing too much to do that. So what options do I have?

• Move server – If I want to raid regular, it’s either PuRs or move server to Euro time.

• Forge a new group of friends –good idea, but most players already have their cliques.

• Force my friends to start playing again-just too complicated with their wife aggro etc to manage.

• Try to find a guild that still raids regularly Euro Time on AB. Pretty much the JET alliance and not sure I wanna. Tap San would be cool, but my wife is there and I don’t wanna cramp her style.

• Head back to AoV-not too bad an idea, but I hate the feeling of going backwards not forwards.

• Stay at Clan Werre-see if I can get involved some more.

• Concentrate on my own guild again-Revenants are only level 23 and I could just head there to cultivate my own guilds level instead of it being a holding cell for my alts.

• Start my own regular PuRs and get known on the server for EuroTime PuR raids.

• Just chillax and see what happens, wait for the new expansion.

Not sure which one I am going to follow yet. Although, knowing what I am like and how lazy I can be in game, I probably will do the last one.

I still enjoy the game and look forward to logging in, but not with the same excitement since my loss of direction. I guess I’ll just wait and see for the time being, weigh up my options and follow me heart. Hmmm

Be well.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nothing lasts forever...

Wow. What developments in my guild recently! You may recall in a previous post I mentioned that our guild was hitting a bit of raid fatigue. Things have progressed a somewhat since then...we no longer have a raid force. Sadly, several of the core raid force who were initially involved in forming it (one of whom kinda helped me decide to join the guild when I bumped into him in Sanctum of Scaleborn..lovely chap) had given themselves a time limit on getting a full and dedicated raid force together. That time ran out, and our raid force was sporadic at best. I must say I actually agree with their decision. For months now several of my guild have been struggling tirelessly to organise and motivate members to attend raids. Things went quite well for a while, until everyone got in to T3 armour and their myths. Strangely enough, raid attendance then started to dry up. Apart from mine that is! Yes, I am a good boy and attended every single raid, not missing one since I joined the guild.

But that’s how it went. Our raid force went from two / three solid groups to about four members who always attended. The raid leaders and main raid members who were all intrinsically involved in the running of our setup have been through the ringer. I know how much hard work and effort they all put in, trying to please everyone, researching in their spare time and having been part of no less than three raid setups in the process of trying to get one to work (Pheonix Unity>then started Vindheir> then merged with Clan Werre), one can totally understand how it can get a little demoralising that just when you think things are going well, members stop turning up and you have to start gathering more in to the fold.

It’s not the first time I have seen this happen in EQ2. In fact I have seen it happen to every raid or casual raid guild I have been in, eventually. Things may go well for a while (especially in the totally dedicated raid guilds), but eventually, someone key always drops out and if that person is followed by a few more..well, it’s inevitable is what I am getting at.

Both our previous raid leaders did a fantastic job in my eyes. Under difficult circumstances they never stopped trying to gain enthusiasm for the raids and guild and always seemed to make the night fun. Personally that’s one of the reasons that although I understand why people stopped turning up (even though I don’t agree with it), that I am more than a little confused. OK, so you have full T3 and your myth, but there is much more lootz to obtain, many more mobs to get down as a team, feeling part of something that achieves and most importantly, the fun. We always had fun. I personally can’t understand why it stopped being fun for some just because they had obtained their kit. For me it was about getting together with new friends and enjoying each others company and also the occasional crushing of a tough mob. I’m gonna miss it, but more importantly, I’m gonna miss the people.

I have only been in the guild for about 2 months and I was just getting to know some of those people behind the characters well, and I really liked them. But now, some of them are gone and I guess I kinda regret not having got to know them better. I know mostly their alts are staying in guild, but I also know what that’s like. Most of my alts are still in Acolytes of Valor, but I rarely play them as TSO (I feel) kind of forces those with limited play time to concentrate on just a couple of toons max if you want to achieve anything. So although I still have ties in AoV, I very sadly rarely visit as I just don’t have the time. I hope it doesn’t happen like that for those new friends who have moved on, but I am kinda guessin’ it will be. Circumstances seem to make it happen that way.

Things move on. It is the way of things. That’s one of the big problems with MMOs though. Your closest allies, you will probably stay in touch with for a long time. But, those who you like but didn’t really get to know too well, will probably fade in to the distance and that’s that. I often think about the many players I have got to know over my time in MMOs and I still wonder what happened to them and how they are getting on. Strange thing is, in ‘RL’, if I met someone I got along with that well, we would remain in touch. But with MMOs, it doesn’t seem to happen that way. Kinda sad really.

So, to those raid leaders who have had a tough time out there, thanks for all your hard work and dedication you put into your play time to make other peoples play time more enjoyable. A seriously selfless act, respect to you guys. To those friends I started to get to know and really liked, I wish you well on lifes path, I’ll miss not having the opportunity to get to know you better. To those who will surely follow now our raid force has gone, stay in touch! If you need Adurjy goodness, you know where to find me.

A toast to lost friendships and dedicated hard workers.


Be Well.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Out with the new, and in with the old...

Had fun this weekend, both in and out of game. It’s nice on the weekends being able to spend time with my daughters and wife instead of working all the time! Usually in the week, by the time I get in the house my one year old is asleep in bed, the wife is already logged on to EQ2 and my seven year old won’t speak to me because my name is not Hannah Montana. Nice to know where their priorities lie *grin*.

In between family and gaming this weekend, I have been catching up with The Office: An American Workplace series three. I just love this comedy. Probably one of my strong faves. I’ve seen quite a few from most of the series (apart from the current series 6), but decided a couple of weeks back to run through them one by one. Fantastically funny. Although I absolutely loved the English Office and am a huge fan of the Gervais, I honestly think the US version is better. The comedy sits better with me. The UK one although very very very funny, seems starker than the US one. Mebbe that’s because I have actually been to Slough. Not hard to understand the depression! Whatever the reason, on the whole the US version makes me laugh more and cringe about the same amount at Michaels inability to interact with other humans in a suitable manner.

Gaming wise I have been catching up on a bit of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, for a bit of nostalgia. I just love that game so much. It was my first introduction to the GTA series. Of course I had heard of the series before and even seen them being played, but Vice City was the first one I actually tried on the PS2. Being an 80’s child, there is nothing I like better than jacking up the tunes in my Ferrari Testerossa (white of course!!), popping on my electric blue suit with rolled up sleeves and before I know it I’m Miami Vice. Yes. I know. I am 37 years old. Go away :P.

GTA: Vice City

My buddies have been trying to convince me to buy Call of Duty: Modern Warfare this week. I was chatting to them on STEAM the other day and not a bad word was said about the game. I reckon I might give it a go, but my problem is play time. I play GTA: Vice City because it’s a game I can pick up and put back down in under 15 minutes. I just know if I bought CoD:MW I would spend a huge amount of time on it and my EQ2 time would suffer terribly. And we can’t have that! So, mebbe. I might. Who knows, Chrimbo is getting close and someone may deem it a must buy for me.

EQ2 was a lot of fun too this weekend. Started off on Friday night with a bit of assisting guildies with their epic updates in Chelsith / JW-Skyfire and ended up in the daily double grabbing a few more shards. Saturday was WoE night and I got my last pattern I need for full T3. Now I just need the shards so I can get them all kitted. My wife thinks I am mad. I am currently wearing T2 at the moment, with T4 bracers. I have decided to not upgrade my armour to T3 until I have all the shards to fully equip all of my T3 in one go. That way, I should notice a real difference in how Adurj plays. I need 48 shards for my full T3 and I currently have 26. Won’t take me long at all to get the remaining 22 I need, so personally I don’t see the problem with waiting. Think I’ll get a lot more pleasure doing it that way.

The other thing Adurj needs desperately is AA. Currently sitting on 154, it’s just not good enough for the level he is at and the content he is getting involved in. My problem stems around two things. One, the fact that Adurj was power levelled on and off up to about 40th, then in a huge rush from 45 to 80. So AAs suffered there. And thank goodness they upped the rate with which your skills update, or I think I still would be on 250 slashing ;) Secondly, my play time. Because I don’t get much time online and when I do I am usually busy grafting for shards (not long now!), I just don’t have the time to mentor down and go grab some AA. I will when I have my full T3 armour later this week. But until then, it’s shards all the way.

Mayong has stolen me Dads slippers!

Last night saw us head to various raid zones for Myth updates for guildies. MMiS was first and I have mentioned this in a previous blog (on Revenants site) but every time I go there I cannot get over the fact that his boots look like my Dads slippers. I mean an exact replica. The gold piping, the medium blue colour, the pattern. I know it’s sad. I know I perhaps should be concentrating on debuffs, songs, dps. But I can’t help myself. For me, the Mistmoore fight is all about the slippers! We then headed to Thugga and had a very silly wipe almost immediately. Seems we had a few who forgot to walk and crouch and obviously when fighting the skellies they feared and ran into other mobs. In fact I think they must have had a tourist map and gone visiting all the areas of special ‘pull’ interest coz the amount of mobs that came along to visit was crazy. All good fun though. I love a good wipe story.

After Thugga it was a very quick run through PR for the guild coffers. Having recently moved to a T3 guildhouse, Clan Werre needs more cash! So we have decided to run PR once a week for funds. Last night I think we made 117pp from dropped cash.

Next raid is on Wednesday night so I will be spending the next few nights shard hunting like a madman possessed. Not sure I’ll make all 22 in two nights, but I reckon I can get about sixteen quite easily. We’ll see. I’m in no rush. Wonder if this week will be less nostalgic? Had just over the weekend, old raid instances, old GTA, and old Office episodes. Mayhap I’ll actually try something new soon.

Be well.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Raid Fatigue?

Our raid force has taken a bit of a beating recently. Not by nasty Gynok or any other horrid T8 raid mob, but by real life and game fatigue. With the expansion usually due around the 15th November the ‘game fatigue’ period usually isn’t as bad as this year because players are out exploring new content. But with the next expansion not due until February, there are a few months where boredom may well be settling in for quite a few people. That’s what has happened with us and attendance to raid has dropped quite dramatically.

There is also the line of thinking we have encountered that has a disinterest in hitting T8 content, knowing that it will be obsolete in 3/4 months time. It has been said to me “Why spend hours sloggin through mobs when all the stuff you get will be useless soon?” Might seem like a fair point. IF...all you want from raiding is phat lootz.

For me it is not that though. Personally I have recently got back into raiding and I am enjoying the aspect of conquering content whilst having a laugh with 23 other people. The loot is nice, don’t get me wrong. But it is certainly not the main reason I raid.

I guess we’ll either see more or less turning up over the next 3 months. There is not much we can do about that and we will have to weather the storm. Come March/April next year none of that will matter as we will more than likely see a lot more guildies online and the frenzy for level 90 and updated kit will be rife.

Aside from that, I was rather pleased the other day when Adurj collected his Mythical Lamentation of the Intrepid after our raid killed Xygoz. I know it is old content and not particularly difficult, and I have 2 other toons with their myths, but this was a special deal for me as Adurj is my nominated main toon. With TSO making so difficult to keep more than one toon fully kitted if your time online is limited, I felt deciding to keep one toon as my main instead of my normal army of alts was a tough one, but ultimately needed. My time is just too little online to grab all the kit for my other toons. Heirloom doesn’t help me too much either on that score as my main played toons are all on different accounts so I could originally box. So, Adurj my main now has his myth. I love the Dirge myth as it makes one of our most useful skills no longer just for group, but for the whole raid. Cacophony of Blades raidwide is so so useful. With another dirge in our raids we now have about 40 seconds of Chimes and the change to our melee dps’ers has definitely been noticed.

I don’t have a lot planned for this weekend on EQ. We’ll quickly run through Ward of Elements, and I know we have a VP run for those without myths on Sunday, so that will be fun. Aside from that it is shards all the way as I now have all my T3 patterns, but only 12 shards left. I plan on not using any of my T3 stuff until I have enough shards to upgrade all of my armour at once. Hopefully that way I will notice more of a difference.

Aside from that it’s family time and I am sure a few walks along the beach, a few visits to the park and very possibly a visit to Toys R Us will be the order of play for the weekend. As long as I get to spend time with the wifey and my kids, I’m happy.

Be Well.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This is my current read. McMafia by Misha Glenny. An intrepid look at the dark underbelly of organised crime. I have only just started reading this last night but so far so good. I like the honesty of the book so far. The style Glenny uses makes the stories intimately interesting, yet never letting you forget that the information has been obtained through careful journalism and research. I like that balance. Some of the fantastical things in the book could be a Hollywood story but as the reader you are never allowed to wander off on to that path, with Glenny reminding you of the interesting yet stark reality of it all.

So far, so good. I’ll let you know what I think when I have had a chance to read more but it’s shaping up quite nicely. Those who know me will be aware that the content this book is directly linked to my work so the chances of me finding it uninteresting are slim, but I’ll let you know..

Be Well.

A little history..

I have been playing MMOs for the last 10 years. First up was Everquest and at the time as a tabletop role-player this game was like mana from heaven. Being able to actually carry out tasks and play my toon in a virtual world seemed so much better than having to describe to the GM what you were doing. I quit Everquest shortly after the Velious expansion release for various reasons, but mainly because my friends had also fallen by the wayside. So a couple of years gap, where I tired DAoC, AC, and WoW but none of those seemed to tickle my fancy like EQ had.

So along comes EQ2 and in late 2004 I really didn’t realise what I was getting myself into! When I played EQ, I played conservatively. I would only spend a certain amount of my spare time on the game. But with EQ2, what started off as a light indulgence became a full on hobby that saps most of my spare time. Having children changed that quite a bit, but even so any spare time when the kids had been put to bed is dedicated to EQ2.

So that’s where I’m at. A player of EQ2 since launch, recovering alt-a-holic and trying to concentrate on just two (ok maybe three) toons from my four accounts. My main is an 80 Dirge, my secondary toons are an 80 Bruiser and 80 Coercer, all on the Antonia Bayle server. But at the moment I am trying to concentrate 80 % of my online time to my Dirge. Especially since TSO, it seems so much easier progressing mainly one toon instead of 7 level 80s. For some reason the TSO expansion with all the shard nonsense seems to make it more difficult to keep several level 80s at top tier. So, it’s Adurj Le’Bard all the way!

My time online at the moment is mainly spent getting to know the members of the guild I have recently joined on Antonia Bayle server, ‘Clan Werre’. Everyone there seems very nice and as of yet I have encountered no unpleasantness at all, which can only be a good sign. I recently moved guilds, having previously been a leader for two years of the huge guild Acolytes of Valor. It was a tough decision to leave there. I had and still have so many excellent friends from AoV and I knew when I left I would have less time to play with friends that I have been playing online with for some time. But it was a necessary move. Unfortunately I hit a wall where I was starting to have the unthinkable happen. I was getting bored with game content. It’s happened a few times before but then another expansion comes out and all is hunky dory. However, this next expansion isn’t until Feb 2010 and I just knew if I didn’t find any other interest in the game I would be quitting. Hence the move. I decided to try something fresh away from the strain of co-leading a large guild and decided I would try to get back into a bit of role-playing.

I had heard some good things about Clan Werre and knew that they have a fair few active role-players and most importantly, they are predominately a Euro time guild. So I took the plunge and left to try and regain an interest in the game. Things didn’t quite seem to turn out how I had planned. Once the move had gone ahead and I was settling in it became apparent that although there are roleplayers in CW, they are not as active as I had first thought. However, one part of the guild was very active and that was the raid party. Now raiding is something I have done before. Having been in a raid guild in tier 7 I hadn’t raided seriously since that time. Seeing as I was looking to renew my interest in EQ2, I decided to try my hand at raiding again in the absence of a lot of role-play. What a great decision! I am having so much fun being part of a raid force again. I had forgotten how it feels to be part of a force working as a team to achieve some truly difficult goals. I must say, I am totally enjoying myself.

My one regret is not having enough time though to spend as much of it with my old guild mates and my good friend and previous co-leader Sjlverwolf, as I would like to. I have to console myself though that I still get to occasionally chat with him and my other old friends in game. Obviously it is nowhere near as much as I used to though. Part of the problem is that in having a family, my time online is limited, so when I log in (especially on my Dirge or Coercer) I am usually swamped with messages to group or indeed, I have logged in specifically to raid. So my time to be free online to spend with me old mates is virtually nonexistent. It is a huge shame. But I have to remind myself that if I had not made the change, I probably wouldn’t be playing EQ2 at all now and I would have most likely quit. I plan on making an effort to stay in touch with my friends. I’m usually pretty slack at that kind of thing, but it’s about time I stopped being lazy and made the effort.

So, that’s where I am at with Everquest2. New guild, one main toon and full time raider again. It’s all a bit of a departure from my normal play style, but I’m having fun and can’t wait to join 23 of my fellow guildies to spank some tough content.

Be Well.

Monday, November 9, 2009

VR46: 9 times World Champion.

Well deserved congratulations to Valentino Rossi #46 for winning the 2009 MotoGP World Championship. Bringing his total World Championship tally over all categories to a very impressive nine titles. With unrivalled statistics through his astonishing career, Vale has shown yet again he is quite simply the best road racer we have ever seen.

VR46: Congratulazioni !!

Who's afraid of the big bad Blog?

I guess this is an introductory thing. Where you get to know me and hopefully if you leave a comment, I get to know you just a lil' bit.

So. I have decided to start chronicling few bits from my life, mainly concentrating on gaming, my love of motorbikes, MotoGP and a smidgen of real life stuff.

I am not a first time blogger! I do have another blog 'Revenants' on wordpress, but it was so long ago that I maintained the content on there, that I decided it was time to start a fresh.

Gaming wise, I am on STEAM as part of the [FSB] clan (Funk Soul Brothers), as FatToni. Mainly taking part in Left 4 Dead fun..and yes, L4D2 is high on my priority list.
My 'main' gaming commitment lies with Everquest2, where amongst others I play my main toon, Adurj Le'Bard (80 Dirge).

So, here we go. I hope you enjoy me bloggin'.