Fresh starts

Tiefling Even

For the last few years, DDO friends have been asking me when I was going to TR Even. And my answer was usually along the lines of, “The past lives would be nice, but meh.”

It’s hard to jump on a TR train when you have a serious case of alt-itis (my main account has 24 toons on Thelanis alone). And I don’t play as much as I used to. And I didn’t want to screw her up. And I wanted to keep her at 30 because none of my other toons can handle reaper and legendary elite like she could.

And then we got tieflings. So when Mock said, “I’m going to TR. Who’s with me?” … yup. The temptation was too strong.Β  LOL

This is her fourth life, and she’s not done terribly. It is very strange not to have intim on her hotbar, and being a caster-y build, it’ll be a few more levels before I start finding out what she’s really capable of. But I’m liking the latest incarnation of Even so far. It doesn’t hurt that we’re running everything on reaper, which should help get me to REAPERLING PETS! It’s also cool that I managed to make her look like – well, like Even but with horns and tail and green lipstick.

I also rolled up a tiefling scoundrel named Zzula after an NPC in Kobold Kindergarten, but haven’t had a chance to play her much yet.

Speaking of Kobold Kindergarten, we stream live on the second and fourth Wednesday each month, at 10:30 pm Eastern. I’m definitely open to guest stars either as players or NPCs, so if you’re interested, send me an email – EvenNote (at) gmail (dot) com!

Aside from Kobold Kindergarten, my weekly Sunday night show on DDOStream, and The Sunless Citadel for D&D Night on DDOStream, I’m probably not going to be doing any streaming for a few weeks while I make a fresh start in real life as well. I’m moving to the greater Boston area next month! There has been much squeeing!Β  πŸ˜„

I’m in the process of getting my stuff sorted and packed, and being a bit ruthless in choosing what to keep and what to give away/donate/toss. And I’m making plans to get together with my friends, and spending as much time as possible with Fern and Charlotte, who will be staying with my mother after I move. It’s going to be *really* hard to leave them behind – really SUPER hard. But I’m going to be settling in and making adjustments, which would be hard on them. And who knows, maybe at some point down the road I’ll be able to bring them up with me… and in the meantime, there is a totally awesome kitty where I’m going, and I intend to spoil the heck out of her.Β  😻

Once I’m all moved and settled in, I’ll go over my streaming schedule and see what’s what. I think I’ll probably be able to resume it for the most part, but time will tell!

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Farewell to a friend

Destiny members, l-r, Shin, Even, Comic, and Slvr do the nekkid altar dance in Shroud.

There’s just no good way to say things sometimes, which is why I’m sitting here at 4 am typing through tears.

Earlier tonight, I found out that my friend and gaming buddy Tom McGill, aka Shindurza, passed away in a car accident last week.

Shin was one of the first people I met in DDO (“met” virtually – we neverΒ quite managed to meet up in person, although we got close a few times). This was back in the days of MyDDO; we both had MyDDO blogs and got to commenting on each other’s posts, which led to sending a few messages back and forth, and so on.

I wasn’t sure I really wanted to post a public blog… but I met Shin through blogging. I think it’s appropriate.

The DDO blogging community was, at least at that time, fairly tight-knit and supportive. There was a core group of us who read, liked, and commented each other’s posts. Eventually we had enough camaraderie to want to play together – of course, we were on different servers. Shin set up a guild on Cannith and named it Destiny; he issued an open invitation to everyone with a MyDDO blog (and a few non-bloggers who were prolific commenters) to join.

Shin, Comic Relief, and I were the original members. Various people came and went over the years. Cannith became my home away from home; we had guild night every Tuesday, and I logged on my monk, Tirae, fairly often.

Destiny is still going on Cannith. Comic and I are still there, though I rarely run over there any more; my DDO playing time has dropped, so I’m usually just on Thelanis now. Shin hadn’t played DDO in the past several months. He went through periodic burnouts with games; when we didn’t see him for a week, it wasn’t cause for concern. He’d been running LotRO with us and seemed to be enjoying that as his “main” game lately.

There is SO much I could say about Destiny and the history of my friendship with Shin, but right now I’d really just like to think of some specific memories.

Early members of Destiny. Shin is second from left, then my monk Tirae, then Comic; Slvr is on the far right. I THINK the far left is Mizzaroo and second from right is Belgarim/B.Ogre, but not 100% sure on those.

The time I got a call from him on a Friday night and answered only to hear a lot of shouting. I called him back and he seemed confused – “What’s going on?” Turned out he had pocket-dialed me from a high school football game and didn’t know it.

The time during an event when an employee of then-Turbine dropped a kobold on his head, except he was afk in Storm Horns. He called me later laughing hysterically because I’d left him a message to check his combat log when he got back, and he’d seen, “Larafay Do’rret killed kobold.” (Larafay is a hireling, for anyone who doesn’t know.)

The time I hadn’t logged into Sarlona in a couple of months, so my guild leadership had fallen into delinquent status, and he usurped me just because he could. It was all in fun, of course – he handed the guild back over when I logged in, although he gave me a good ribbing about it!

The time I convinced him and Comic to drag my then-level 5 ranger, Azida, through her very first Pit – on elite – and she pulled a Muck’s Doom, which she couldn’t use yet because it’s ML 6. More ribbing – “Geez, she finally gets the item she’s been wanting forever, and she complains because she can’t use it!” followed by Shin’s one-of-a-kind laugh.

When we started playing Neverwinter Online with a few other DDO folks, and one member of our group kept mansplaining everything to me and even answering for me when people talked to me. Shin’s DMs, always supportive and usually funny, kept me from cyberstrangling the guy.

All the times I’d look at the guild list and see Shin running something with all three of his accounts. I have to work at drumming up enough patience to log in ONE alt and drag them through stuff with my main. I cannot begin to fathom running three accounts simultaneously, but he did it all the time. All of his main account toons had names that started with Shin, and his secondary account toons started with Snake.

I’d just talked to Shin on kinship night the week before last and asked him about coming back to DDO from his hiatus. He told me he was concentrating on LotRO for the time being but would probably start playing DDO again this summer. I told him that, thanks to a generous guildie, there was an improved epic Otto’s box waiting for him in the guild chest.

I don’t know what we’re going to do with that box now. I guess Seki and Slvr and Comic and I will talk it over and decide what would be the best thing to do with it. We each already have one; maybe one of us has or will have another toon that could make good use of it, or maybe we’ll do some kind of pay-it-forward thing.

Shin, wherever you are – I really wish we’d gotten the chance to meet in person, maybe ride some coasters at Knoebel’s or Cedar Point, or just hang out. It feels really strange to know that I’m never going to log in to see you and your skellie standing on the ship again. I’ll miss your rants about lag and the one-up competition we had about whose internet service was worse (it’s still mineΒ  ;P). Thank you for all the times you let me talk your ear off, and all the times you kidded me back into a good mood.

Some people might find this offensive or disrespectful, but I think you wouldΒ totally appreciate it – I hope your affinity for playing pale masters leads you to world domination in the afterlife.

I will remember you, my friend.  ❀

Rebels with a cause

Shroud, Shroud
Don’t be left out
Buff up and get your DR breakers out
Come on, hit our LFM
Come on

Remember back when Shroud was really hard and you’d sit around waiting forever because you couldn’t get a hjealer?

I loved it back then, and I love it just as much now. I’ll run Shroud pretty much any time, any toon, with almost any party or no party at all.

So when BonnieBew told me she wanted to do another #SHROUDPALOOZA, I was in!

Doesn’t seem like it’s been four years since the last one. Heck, now we even have Legendary Shroud – which is awesome, but for reasons of inclusivity, we stuck with heroic.

Besides being great fun, #SHROUDPALOOZA is also for a great cause – we’re raising money for Extra Life, benefitting Children’s Miracle Network. For more information on #SHROUDPALOOZA, check out the website. To donate to Extra Life – and get entered for some great prizes, including a year of DDO VIP, visit this link:

#SHROUDPALOOZA 2018 kicked off this weekend on Thelanis, and it was awesome! We got four runs of Shroud done in our allotted three hours, so Harry got lots of hugs! I had a couple of old friends I hadn’t seen ingame for a while hit the LFMs, and met lots of great new people as well.

Next up is Sarlona on Oct. 20. I managed to get my very first non-Thelanis toon, Ironica, leveled up and flagged, so I’m really looking forward to that one! She’s barely level 15 and seriously undergeared, but that’s fine. #SHROUDPALOOZA is for everyone who’s kind and respectful, regardless of level (hence why we’re doing heroic rather than legendary Shroud).

She’ll probably die. A lot. And being only level 15, I doubt she’ll make much of a dent in the kill count. It’s all good, though, as long as she has fun!

So if you think you’d like to run #SHROUDPALOOZA with us but you’re worried about things like not having enough DPS or not knowing the raid well enough or stuff like that – don’t! Just hit the LFM and we’ll be glad to have you along! All you need to be is flagged and between levels 14-30 inclusive.

On the other hand, if you’re going to troll us for not running legendary, brag about how you can solo it, go on and on about your DPS, link all your raid gear to show how awesome you are, berate people for mistakes, etc. – I suggest you find another group, because you won’t enjoy ours, nor will we enjoy having you. It sucks that I even have to bring this up, especially since most DDO players are great people; it’s a shame there always seems to be that ONE conceited jerk.

Whether you run Shroud with us or not, there are other ways to participate as well! Donating is always welcome, of course. And you can watch live and chat with us on DDOStream.

AND… there’s an ART CONTEST! Just like actually running #SHROUDPALOOZA, we really don’t care how good you are (or aren’t), or what form your art takes – as long as it’s PG-13. πŸ˜‰

Draw a picture, write a poem, sing a song, do an interpretive dance of Harry being banished back to Shavarath, knit some Shards of Power, have your toddler fingerpaint a Prismatic Wall of Death – any kind of Shroud-related artwork at all! Some of the prizes up for grabs include VIP codes and DDO points, so get creative!

Thanks to everyone who ran with us, donated, watched the stream, and/or chatted with us during our Thelanis run! Hope to see you on Sarlona next! 😊

Bringing more than sexy back

What’s back? Lots of things!

For starters, this blog, which was in danger of going a full year without a new post. What can I say – real life happens! I’m going to try to post on at least a semi-regular basis. We’ll see… πŸ˜„

One thing I definitely need to blog about is Gen Con! This was my second year attending, and it was great! To the ones who gave me a good-natured hard time about not posting more on social media – hey, I was having fun, enjoying the company of some awesome people, and going to LOTS of events – I didn’t have time to keep whipping my phone out to update my Twitter feed! 😜

Also, OurDDO has returned! Between RSS feed aggregator scripts being, well, aggravating, and Photobucket deciding I couldn’t link images any more without ponying up a not insignificant amount of money, I was starting to think it wasn’t worth the trouble… but then I installed WordPress on my site and found a nifty plug-in that handles the feeds pretty easily.

I haven’t been able to get the carousel to work within WordPress, although I’m not giving up on it. And I need to get around to updating the blogroll and putting that on there.

But while stripped down, it’s fulfilling its purpose – bringing you EVERY post from EVERY* DDO-oriented blog, updated around the clock.

If you have a blog that’s at least partly about DDO and you want to be included, drop me a line at EvenNote (at) gmail (dot) com, and make sure to include your blog’s URL!

*Blogs that violate DDO’s Terms of Service or OurDDO’s guidelines are not included.

And… SHROUDPALOOZA IS COMING BACK!

Get flagged, get your friends flagged, get your alts flagged, because we’re bringin’ Shroudpalooza back!

The original Shroudpalooza happened a few years ago and was amazing good fun. If you’ve never heard of it – basically we just run heroic Shroud as many times as we can in three hours!

This year’s Shroudpalooza will be open to all levels (so XP is unlikely, but that’s not what it’s about). We’re starting on Thelanis on Oct. 6 and will do a different server every other week, wrapping up with Cannith on Jan. 12.

For more info, ask me, BonnieBew, or Tholgrin – we’re all on Twitter – or visit our brand-spankin’-new website at http://www.SHROUDPALOOZA.com! I’ll be posting more info here “soon*”β„’!

But wait, there’s more – D&D Night has returned to DDOStream, AND it’s soon to become a weekly event! We’ll be playing Sunday nights at 7 pm Eastern time on DDOStream. Come watch – you might get to see DDOCast Patrick’s barbarian toss my half-elf bard across a ravine! … at least I HOPE she makes it all the way across.

Streamin’ with Even is not back, because it never left. πŸ˜‰ The show is still Sundays at 11 pm Eastern on DDOStream. I’ll be posting an updated schedule for streaming on my own channel here in the near future.

It’s good to be back! πŸ˜„

A brief history of Flower Sniffin’

Way back when, in the days when Acanthia had (temporarily, as it turned out) taken over as my main, I was successor and roster keeper in a pretty darn ginormous guild.

It’s a great guild with a lot of great people, and I’m happy to run with them lo these years later. But it was a LOT of stress. And guild business took a serious bite out of my playing time.

So I rolled up a new toon and didn’t tell anyone in the guild about him. He was my way of staying incognito for those times when I just wanted to be able to play and not have to deal with other stuff. At the time, Slvr’d been in his little guild of one for a couple of years. He asked if I wanted to put Zak – the new toon – in his guild. I figured I might as well – ship buffs, y’know?

That was probably around five-ish years ago. I think Slvr’s little guild of one was like level 17 when I put Zak in there.

But oh, how we’ve grown. I ended up bringing all my other toons over. Then Shin and Comic joined (we were already in a guild with them on Cannith). And then Seki and Keava, followed by Mizz and Citi and, most recently, Mabel and Turnberry.

Ten whole people! Considering we don’t do any recruiting, that’s not half bad. Basically if someone’s run with us a bunch and we like them and they like us and they either have no guild or are in a guild they’re not overly attached to, we drag them in kicking and screaming.

Originally the guild was named after Slvr’s dorf main. Later he changed it to Flower Sniffers to reflect our playstyle and philosophy, adding the “of Destiny” because Destiny is our Cannith guild’s name.

We’ve been inching closer and closer to level 150 over the last few weeks. Back when we hit 100, I tried to get it on video but my computer spazzed out. I wasn’t about to make that mistake again. So I sent ’round an e-mail to everyone hoping we could get us all on this past week’s stream as we celebrated hitting 150, got our guild fame announcement on video for posterity, and then celebrated with a wonder pot party.

Keava, Citi, Mizz, and Turnberry couldn’t make it, but I did up an overlay with everyone’s main toon headshot (except Turnberry – I need to get his) so that the entire guild would be represented. Vic turned in a saga to start the stream (since she was my very first toon), and then I swapped to Zak – the first of my toons to join the guild – while Slvr turned in sagas until we hit that lovely 150 mark.

It took me several minutes to realize the color had changed on the guild tag above our heads. Sorry for the loud squeeing on the video – I got really excited when I saw that!

The promised wonder pot party in Chrono followed. At level 6, Zak was by far the gimpiest, and he died several times when our wonder pots spawned Shroud blades or bees. I don’t THINK he got killed by anything else… or did he? Guess I’ll have to watch the video to find out!

Thank you, Sniffers, for a great trip to 150! We may never make it to 200, but it’s been terrific so far! πŸ™‚

Many thanks to the Damsels of DDO, aka Lessah, Mythery, and Sahba Jade, for having me on this weekend! πŸ™‚

My original plan was to roll up a deep gnome iconic and zerg it to 20, since they were running their low-20s gnomes. Alas, real life intervened and left me with about two hours to roll up the toon and then level it. And then my computer crashed while I was leveling, and then Comcrap Comcrapped out for about 15 minutes.

I finally ended up with a 14 monk/1 wizard and thought I’d try Lords of Dust on hard. I mean, how bad could that be, right?

Yeah, pretty bad. I had wizard gear, so no handwraps, which meant I was fighting TRULY unarmed. I also had no plat to buy anything because I rarely play on Argo, so I ended up getting a Gold Seal cleric. She kept right up with me in the kill count, because with no weapons, my DPS was exceptionally sucky.

Made it to the fight with the named rakshasa, the room with the last altar, and managed to kill off the boss’s minions before things went south. The hire was out of mana, I was nearly out of hit points, so I just started running back hoping to make it to the shrine. But the rakshasa ran faster than I did and got me and the hire in about two seconds.

By then it was time for Thelanis guild night, but I did have just enough time before the show to log in a toon that had a bit of plat and check the AH for cheap handwraps. Lucked out and got a set of ML 12 vorpals for something like 1,500 plat. Major props to the Damsels for getting my gimpy level 15 wonk (mizard?) through In the Demon’s Den on hard plus the three main explorer areas in Reaver’s Refuge without a single death!

You can watch the stream video here, and listen to the following night’s podcast here.

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

Going a little Haywire

Last stream before Gen Con! Boo-yah!

We’d been kind of intending to run some more Crystal Cove for this week’s stream, but over the past few nights we’ve managed to get five of us through the first three quests in the Vault of Night chain. That left us with only Haywire Foundry to be flagged for the raids. And since we’ve run, like, A LOT of Cove over the past week or so, we decided to finish up VoN flagging instead.

Meren the gimpy Favored Soul was glad for a chance to use the Mace of Smiting she’s been toting around. It’s just been sitting there taking up inventory space but not getting much use – that changed what with all the various mechanical beings scattered throughout the Foundry. This helped her stay ahead of Arkyn the hire, the two arti dogs, and the inimitable Misadventure in the kill count, although the actual live people outkilled her by a wide margin.

The main problem she had in VoN 4 was at the end, with all the jumping when the countdown first starts. Meren’s jump skill is all of 5 (and that’s WITH a +2 jump tome). Slvr passed her a jump pot, which got her up to 22, but she still needed a couple of tries to get up the pipes and over the broken staircase.

On the ship, we had to put our Stone of Change next to some crates down in the cargo hold, because she can’t make the jump up to the Stone without hopping on the crates first. Why would you want to jump up on the Stone, you ask? Because it’s our dnace floor! Yes, we have an Otto’s Irresistible Dance Hall on the fourth lower deck, but back in the old days of airships, we started using the Stone for our dance parties. Besides, we have to share the Otto’s Hall with all the critters who wander over from the Wild Grove across the way.

Anyway, Meren did eventually make it up, by which time the other Sniffers had cleared out most of the iron defenders along the way. Thanks, guys! πŸ˜€

We finished not quite in time to get into Crystal Cove before the doors closed, so Gom suggested either Black & Blue or… the other quest from that update (too lazy to look it up). Black & Blue has a dragon, so that seemed like a pretty clear choice.

I think Meren only died once all night. Arkyn the hireling was another story. Once she rezzed him only to have him die again instantly when he ran right back into the lightning trap. Hirelings. Gotta love ’em. Not.

So yeah, I’m crazy excited for Gen Con. πŸ˜€

We’re leaving here Tuesday night, will drive until we’re tired and then get a room for the night. That’ll be at least a couple of hours, because finding a hotel anywhere near Williamsport now that the Little League World Series is starting will be nigh impossible. We should get to Indianapolis sometime Wednesday, and Gen Con starts in earnest Thursday. *bounce*

It’ll be quite the break from DDO – I doubt I’ll have time to get on tomorrow (Monday) night. We’re leaving Indy on Sunday, Aug. 20, but only driving until we’re tired and getting a room; I probably will get home sometime Monday the 21st. The Flower Sniffers are well into level 148 and have strict orders to NOT level to 150 until I get back, because I want to get our guild fame announcement on video and then go into Chrono and have a wonder pot party. And yes, that will TOTALLY be streamed on my personal Twitch channel. πŸ˜€

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

YARK!

Crystal Cove is back!

Normally I don’t particularly care much one way or the other about Cove, partly because I think I have all the Cove gear I need, and mostly because I totally suck at running it.

Really, I do. I’m a poor choice for scouting/clearing because of my penchant for getting lost, and an even poorer one for running torches because of the getting lost thing and also because I can never seem to get the hang of placing them. I either have them too close together and run out, or too far apart so the poor kobolds end up as lost as I am.

But it was Gom’s first night back on the stream after having the summer off for real life, and Slvr can solo Cove in his sleep, AND we not only got PuffGranny to join our Cove runs, we suckered her into – I mean, convinced her to become a Flower Sniffer too!

So Cove actually ended up being a lot of fun – plus, KOBOLDS! And most people who know me know that I NEVAR (shoutout to Citi) pass up an excuse to talk like a kobold.

Meren is still trying to figure out whether she wants to be a melee, casting, hjealing, or buffing Favored Soul. Also, she’s still wearing Korthos gear at level 9. Oops. So I just hung out in the center on guard duty for our first run, but then it occurred to me that that made for an exceptionally boring stream.

I got brave and took on scouting/clearing duties after that. I even parted with a few of my precioussss Bigby’s Hands to mark promising patches of oooh shiiiiiny crystals. Sooo pretty!

Chances are pretty good that we’ll run Cove for next week’s stream as well. But the week after that, I won’t be streaming because we’ll be on our way home from Gen Con! If I can get the Twitch app to work on either my cheap phone or crappy tablet, I may do some streaming from Indy on my own channel. We’ll see!

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

Taking the easy way out

Ever have one of those weekends where things keep going wrong but still turn out great?

That pretty much summed up this past weekend for me – all kinds of silly little things not going as they should, but still probably the best weekend I’ve had in the past few months.

So I was pretty darn tired when 11 pm Sunday rolled around and it was time to stream. Most of my brain cells* were screaming, “SLEEP!” But there were a few screaming, “RENOWN BOOST WEEKEND!”

I didn’t have anyone with sagas complete or even nearly complete, so I was tempted to go for sleep. But the Flower Sniffers are fast closing in on level 150, and that 30% renown boost was too good to pass up.

Ergo, I compromised, zerging through the heroic Pirates saga on level 30 Acanthia, who still had a renown pot going from the last guild renown weekend. Slvr brought his level 23 barb, we skipped Irestone, and in just about an hour we picked up a decent chunk of renown.

*I may be giving myself far too much credit by calling them “brain cells,” but that flows better than “miscellaneous cells that live inside my head.”

So here’s what went wrong this weekend (some for me, some for the person I was with, some for both of us):

  • Dead car battery
  • Lots and lots and LOTS of driving
  • Somewhat unexpected extra driving
  • Burnt-out taillight
  • Slow service and crappy food
  • Smelly hotel room with filthy tub/shower
  • Seriously major work emergency
  • Dead car battery, again
  • Weirdly heavy traffic
  • Road construction
  • Lost wallet
  • Were served food that contained something one of us can’t eat, after asking the waitress to make sure nothing like that would be in it

And yet… ’twas a really great weekend. I’m happy to report that the taillight was replaced easily, the wallet was found with all its contents intact, and we were able to swap out the unwanted food item for something acceptable.The driving is mostly over – at least for a few weeks. πŸ˜€ The work emergency is handled as much as is possible at this point. The dead battery turned out to be defective and has been replaced. And neither of us will ever stay at Red Roof Inn in South Williamsport again. LOL

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

Gag me with a mindflayer

It feels very strange to have so very much stuff going on in real life that Sunday’s stream was the first time I’d logged into DDO since LAST week’s broadcast.

So since I hadn’t been on in a week, I still hadn’t run Desire in the Dark, the capstone of the Update 36 quest arc. I figured, well, no guts, no glory, so I got Even, Slvr got his warlock, and we headed in on legendary elite.

If you haven’t run the quest yet, you might want to wait to read this, because serious spoiler alerts are incoming.

Lots of them.

Right after I type several lines of text.

And separate them with line feeds to give you time to get out now if you don’t want to be spoiled.

Wait.

That sounded wrong.

You know what I meant.

Last chance!

So anyway…

You know what was kinda sad? Probably the toughest time Even had was against the waves of dretches down in the water after talking to the mindflayer.

OH YEAH, THE MINDFLAYER.

HE’S TOTALLY GROSS.

I MEAN, SERIOUS EW GOING ON THERE.

The guy (he? she? they? Do mindflayers have gender?) KEEPS PUKING ON YOU.

YES, I *DO* NEED TO USE ALL CAPS FOR THIS.

BECAUSE MERE WORDS CANNOT CONVEY HOW UTTERLY DISGUSTING THIS THING IS. BUT I CAN EMPHASIZE THEM FOR, Y’KNOW, EMPHASIS.

Anyway.

The dialogue in this quest is flat-out FANTASTIC. (I did feel somewhat like the puking mindflayer when I saw the following message on a debuff: “You’re skin feels very oily since you touched that gold.”

As I’ve mentioned here before, I’m an editor by trade. “YOU’RE skin feels very oily?” MAKE IT STAAAAAAAHP! DDO, seriously. It should be “YOUR skin feels oily.” Unless you mean, “You are skin feels very oily,” which makes no sense and is also grammatically incorrect. Now I know why the mindflayer felt so ill.

Other than that, the NPC dialogue was nothing short of stellar. Even liked that a number of menus had paladin-specific options (now my other toons are wondering if their classes have specific options as well).

I also enjoyed all the dretches – even though they tried so VERY hard to kill me and not ONE of them said “glarb” (c’mon, DDO, with all the other great dialogue here, can’t you give the dretches some too?). And the succubi, ’cause I haven’t unlocked the art for them in my MM yet. AND THE PURPLE WORMS! Moar plz!

The mazes weren’t TOO terribly difficult, but then again I was following Slvr. Not sure how well I’d’ve fared on my own, especially since I didn’t have any Bigby’s with me. The dancing succubi, besides helping my count toward the art, were cool. Aside from the dretches, I thought most of the quest didn’t seem as difficult as I expected for legendary elite… even though I disregarded Slvr’s advice and looted a few innocuous-looking gold piles.

The end fight, though – that had some interesting moments.

Me: So this guy is apparently a huge sack of hit points, but unless he’s got tricks up his sleeve, he doesn’t look too terribly awful to fight on elite.

Slvr: HE DOES

And HE DID. Even though…

Me: He doesn’t even have sleeves! He’s wearing a tank top!

Slvr: Then his tricks are up his kilt.

Yeah. NOT going there. Regardless of where they were stashed, Graz’zt (the end boss) indeed had tricks. And Even did NOT like them, not one bit, because…

“You are afraid.”

WHAT?! Even’s a paladin! They’re immune to fear! But apparently NOT immune to being afraid. NPCs cheat! LOL

I actually liked having an end fight that was more than just whaling away on a huge stack of hit points, though. And without that little trick of his, Graz’zt would have been far too easy a fight for legendary elite. Even HE thought so – at the end, he said that the battle had been heroic, but not legendary. Dude.

The end chest yielded a Legendary Deep Demise with a +4 mythic boost for Even. I’m kinda torn on it (Slvr didn’t want it). Sere would love the +18 Int and the weapon boost, but right now I don’t have anyone who both uses daggers and needs illusion focus. Maybe Laegonn, once he TRs into a pale master and does a LOT of leveling up.

With only an hour of my usual two-ish hours used, I pondered what to do next… and then remembered that I hadn’t yet checked to see if my absolute favorite typos in the game had been fixed in the recent flurry of typo fixing. So it seemed the thing to do was to go run Tower of Despair and see if Horoth still called his Soliders of Shavarth.

I’m sorry to report that for some reason, it took us fooorrreeevvveeerrrrrrr to get through the whole raid. But I’m very happy to report that Horoth still has Soliders, and they’re still from Shavarth! Much as I usually hate typos, I’ve gotten kind of attached to this one.

I still have no idea what the Soliders are solider than, or what’s solider than a Solider, or what’s the Solidest. Nor do I know if there are Liquiders or Gassers… which totally sounded better in my head.

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

Two rangers and a rogue walk into Tethyamar…

… and the rogue says, “OW! I hit my head! All the doors here are made for dwarves!”

Indeed, the architecture in Update 36, aka Duel in the Underdark, definitely looks as though it were designed for dwarves, by dwarves, one especially low portcullis in particular.

Vic, being elven and somewhat taller than the average dorf, had to mind her head a few times… and being somewhat squishier than Even, should have minded her red bar a bit better as well. Two days earlier, Even and the Flower Sniffers had had a relatively smooth, painless trip through the four U36 flagging quests on LE. Our gimpier toons, though, had a few struggles on LH.

Melee DPS and/or crowd control and/or better hjealing than Garret and Erytheia might have helped. Two arcane archers and a ranged trapmonkey don’t give you a lot of variety when it comes to dealing damage.

But the Flower Sniffers have never been overly concerned with how much time they spend as soulstones. Mostly we just wanted to have fun with the new quests and maybe pick up some cool new loot.

Yay for us, we did both! I’m really enjoying the new quests. Great storyline, nice variety of mobs (it’s not just dwarves and Drow), and some really cool touches. One of my favorite little extras is the appearance of the undead in your focus orb. Some of them have mushrooms sprouting from their skulls; others appear to have weapons buried in their backs (presumably how they died?).

Vic was wielding the Legendary Heavy Boltslinger Even pulled in Friday’s run. She also, much to her delight, ended up with the Mantle of the Dwarven Commander (which dropped for Slvr, but he passed it to her). And I think we’ve all now pulled at least one Stonework Beam – hope they’re still dropping that thickly when Seki starts playing more regularly in a few weeks, because that’d be great for him! Too bad they’re BtA or I’d just send him mine; I don’t have anyone who uses q-staves. You’d think with 19 toons there’d be ONE who’d want it!

There are a couple of things that could stand tweaking or more. The DM chatter in Tethyamar is a little excessive. It’s “brethren,” not “bretheren.” And there’s that one optional where the door sometimes doesn’t open after you complete it, leaving you trapped unless you have DDoor (or do what we did and complete it after you’ve finished the rest of the quest).

Oh, and there’s a totally idiotic gate/lever combo. The lever to open the gate is… BEHIND the gate. You can get to the lever with a little hand-eye coordination by jumping around the gate (as Vic does in the video), or with Cannith boots from the opposite side. But you needn’t bother, because even if you go through all that, the gate opens to – wait for it – a blank wall.

I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how my other toons fare in U36. We’ll be running the capstone for the stream this Sunday. I may have spots open, so if you want in, be flagged and on Thelanis!

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚

Is there a dragon version of Just for Men?

Something's off with Micahrastir...

You know those “What’s wrong with this picture?” things you see around the Internet from time to time?

Here’s a DDO one for you. Can you spot what’s wrong with the above image?

I’ll give you a pretty humongous hint: Read the DM text carefully. Then take a good long look at the dragon.

I KNOW, RIGHT?!

When did Micahrastir go grey? C’mon, it says, “The great RED dragon, Micahrastir!” He’s always been red! At least, every time I’ve visited him, which is a fair number of times ’cause a) I love Underdark, and b) I once spent a lot of time farming his chests to see if I could get a red scale. (Never did, don’t know of anyone who ever has, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible.)

I sifted through some old screenshots and found this one from when Reera made her first trip to Underdark, back in November of last year:

Something's off with Micahrastir...

Yep, he’s pretty darn red, and that was less than eight months ago. One must wonder just what’s happened in that short time to turn a fiery red dragon into a boring lump of blah.

Causes I considered before rejecting:

  • He got too frustrated trying to find a definition for “covfefe”
  • He’s stuck on level 59 of Crunch Time, the new Simon’s Cat game (that one took me about three dozen tries)
  • He accidentally turned his saturation all the way down

And then it occurred to me that there’s something in particular that’s got a lot of DDO players worried right now, AND up until now, we haven’t known what class Micahrastir plays…

Dude. It’s OK. The upcoming warlock nerf is a little scary, but c’mon, it shouldn’t be enough to turn you grey overnight. Buck up there.

ERMAGERD ERNDERDERK

Update 36 is coming “soon*”β„’. Considering that U36 is titled “Duel for the Underdark,” and that the most adorable gnomificer, like, EVER has recently leveled to 20 and finished a King’s Forest S/R/E run, it seemed only right to take Trici, the aforementioned gnomificer, on a tour of that vast realm, where darkness pervades and danger lurks at every unseen corner.

Armed with her trusty arti dog, Minni, and decked out in possibly the most boring-looking armor in all of DDO (Arcane Armor – great armor, terrible appearance), Trici and Slvr managed to get that whole vast realm explored in less than two hours, despite getting blown off Micahrastir’s perch within three seconds of getting up there.

Minni and Albus the hireling were parked there and set on attack, but the dragon eventually got the best of them, even though they were dressed far more fashionably than Trici – Minni’s got a somewhat outdated but unabashedly bright hot pink docent, while Albus has fun turquoise trim on his armor*… which reminded me that I forgot to enter the DDO fashion show. Sigh. Must stop procrastinating – I’ll work on that next week sometime.

Trici had a blast blasting away mindflayers, draegloths, and purple worms (all of which would make great cosmetic pets – just sayin’). And for a change, I had hardly any connection issues at all!

Somehow we got on the subject of player housing. Probably it was a subconscious thing, wondering where we were going to put all the pretty armors. Might also have come from a recent conversation with a friend about playing Minecraft (which I’ve never played, but would like to check out), which got me to thinking about the stuff I used to build when I played Second Life, and so on.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking that one way DDO could implement player housing would be to have small “personal” airships available for TP. No buffs or anything like that, although maybe some purchasable, upgradable storage. And decorations! The petrified dire bear in Nessaleesa’s Garden would be cool. And the Standing Stone monolith from LotRO. And the fictional stuff in this comic by DDO player Nirelle! (Does she still play? Is she still in Inferus Sus on Thelanis?) I know I’d be happy to shell out my DDO points for a beholder rug, Black Abbot coat rack, soulstone chandelier, bouncy dragon, and… Harry plushie, either virtual or literal.

So c’mon, SSG, shut up and take my money. LOL

*I didn’t notice that the title screen on the video was a closeup of Albus’ spiffy turquoise-accented armor – the part covering his, uh, torso “and such” – until after I’d already written that part. πŸ˜€

Streamin’ with Even is live on Thelanis every Sunday night at 11 pm Eastern time on the official DDOstream! The show is also hosted on my own Twitch channel, but if you’re watching live and want to chat, DDOStream is the place to be. Videos are archived on my YouTube channel and/or on DDOStream’s YouTube. Feel free to send me a tell if you’d like to join! Thanks for reading and/or watching! πŸ™‚