Friday, August 19, 2011

Played Lately: Middle of August Edition

Austin: Things have been slow on the blog because I spent last week in Austin, Texas. It was my first time there, and I really enjoyed myself. Great food, great nightlife, but hot as the dickens. During the summer months something like a million bats hang out under a bridge near the hotel I was staying in. They all fly out in a giant cloud near dusk. It's an impressive sight (I didn't film that, but it was filmed from nearly the exact spot I watched them). Since I've been back, mainly I've been catching up on busywork in my job. However I have managed to get some gaming in.

SWG: since it's only going to be around for a few more months, I decided to stick my head into Star Wars Galaxies and give it one final try. Yeeboe the Rodian Jedi has been played the most. He also has the most pinp looking landspeeder of my 'toons so far:

My only goal in this last run at SWG is to get a character, any character, off of Tatooine. I'm enjoying it a bit more this time around than my last attempt, I suspect largely because I was prepared ahead of time for the clunky UI. Following the game's single quest line I've made it to 20 so far. I did have one quest in my chain assign me to take down level 19-20 mobs when I was only level 13, but an evening of mission terminal runs (procedurally generated kill quests for very high XP) got me high enough to taken them down.

LoTRO: I've also been putting some time into Lord of the Rings Online. My two goals there are to max out weaponsmithing on a low level alt, and to get my champion through all of the book quests before Isenguard launches.

DDO: Finally, I've taken up Dungeons and Dragons Online again. My extremely small guild has finally earned it's first airship:

It looks kind of like a rooster...

Even the lowest level guild airship comes with some nice perks. There is a shared storage chest that allows anyone in the guild to trade items. So far we are using it mainly to give crafting mats to the one character that's taken it up. There are also slots for NPCs that can be purchased with either platinum (in game currency) or Turbine points. An NPC lasts for about a week once you purchase them. Each NPC casts a unique buff for free on any guildy that talks to them. The buffs last an hour and stack with every magic item and spell buff in the game. The nicer NPCs are available for Turbine points at lower guild levels than it takes to buy them with platinum, however even our very low level guild is only paying TP for one of our three NPCs at this point. We are currently using NPCs that give a small buff to skills and offense, a buff to defense, and a buff to all incoming healing.

As the guild levels better airships will become available that let us slot more guild amenities, and NPCs with better buffs. All in all it's one of the more rewarding and interesting guild leveling systems I've seen.


  1. I plan on playing as much Galaxies as I can take before the game ends. I find SWG to be kind of boring and still think it's a bad game but I hope to do all the stuff I haven't done yet in game to avoid that regret feeling.

  2. Never been to Texas, would love to visit there one day. And I can't believe all those are bats. Shudder.

    This summer has been sort of a long funk for me. Usually I'd be tempted to hop around other games to revisit them again, but this year I'm not even feeling that for some reason.

  3. @Jaybdub: If I can even get one guy to the next planet, I'll have seen a lot more of the game than I ever did in the past. SWG still is a game with a lot of potential, I think it is sort of a shame they are shuttering it.

    @Mmogamerchick: The summer has seemed a bit slow. However, there are a ton of big releases just around the corner, both new games and expansions to games I play. I expect things to pick up soon, maybe too much so.

  4. I wish I'd known you were gonna be in Austin. I live nearby.

    @MMOGC The bats are fascinating. People gather pretty much every evening in August to watch them come out from under the Congress Bridge. I've only seen it once. They go a long way toward keeping the bug population down. That's why they're encouraged to stay.

  5. @Rowan: I'll try to do better to advertise my movements in the future :-) And yeah, the bats are a stunning sight.