Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Good drops, bad drops.

Two of the messiest Byakko's we have done yesterday. I mean we were running through tanks like they were water. It was a little frustrating. Actually more than a little frustrating, but at least they put out. Two sets of Haidate, two Divine logs, Shura legs, E. legs, and more. The Haidate went to Jess and Solidsnake, both people have literally been trying to get them for years. So to both of them a huge congratulations, and now we only have two more to get then we can move onto the next tier of people that need them. I can't wait for them to get it either. Yesterday was just a messy day in Sky, people dying to aggro on the way to Byakko. Byakko Claw Cycloning melee behind the tank during SATA, tanks going down fast from triples and Claw Cyclones. It was a mess, but for some reason, a mess made for good drops and I am not complaining. Now we need another two Despots so we can do some more Byakko's and not go on one of those horrible streaks of like 10 in a row with no Haidate.

After Sky we did another Arrapago run with some new people. As normal it was MNK, MNK, DRG, THF, then our mages were RDM, WHM, BRD. We got insane cell drops, before we were off of the first floor everyone, including the mages, had weapons and magic. Everyone had abilities by the time we were off the fourth floor. HP cells were a little weak but we still got enough for all of our melee by the time we fought the Archaic Chariot. We added in the Big Bhoot to our list of NM's that we killed. I thought it was going to be a lot harder than it was. I don't know if it was hard to silence or if it just got off a lucky Blizzaga, but that was basically the only really bad thing it was able to do. Perdition and the other Blizzaga that it tried were stunned with stun WS, and outside of that it was just a slightly stronger Bhoot with more HP. Of course there were no drops, its almost like there aren't really any drops in this zone at all. Anyway, we are going to start integrating Bhaflau Remnants into our Salvage schedule. It's a pretty easy zone and relatively easy to get some of the 35's and kill the boss. I think we will be able to spawn at least the second floor rampart and farm it for NM's and then clear the 4 floor gears to try to disable the boss then do the boss. It may be a bit ambitious for our first run at it but I think we can handle it. Besides practice makes perfect. We will use the same strategy we use for the Archaic Chariot, two MNK/NIN, DRG and THF for Angon and Feint, then mostly mages after that. I don't think we will necessarily take down the LBC this time but I think we will learn how to handle it well, and maybe next time get the win.

As I mentioned, I got my Peacock Charm the other day, and now I am moving even closer to getting my MNK to the absolute best it can be. The only major problem now is getting the Black Belt items that I need. I anticipate this taking a while still be at least I am actively moving towards it. Once I have my Black Belt my MNK will be pretty much finished outside of merits. After that is all capped out, I am going to shift back to my SAM and finish up the merits on that. Speaking of which, I think I am going to finally make a decision on what jobs to support consistently and which are going to be back burner jobs. To make things easier, I am going to go with NIN, SAM and MNK as my constantly available and ready to go jobs. I am going to store most of my WAR, DRG and RNG gears and just use them for the specific times that I need them. I hate doing this because I feel like I am cheating on my other jobs by deciding this but honestly its hard to merit for 3 jobs let alone 6. And yes, I will still be leveling WHM and then RDM but I have been very busy lately, so I will do it when I have time.

As an interesting note I got to try out one of the Level 10 Assaults because a friend asked me to come and help out. We failed but we could have easily won if we had one stun for Fulmination, but we didn't so we lost. Its really fun, and I can't wait to try it again.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What about Dragoon?

So, I went to an event as my Dragoon the other day. I am kind of shocked at the power of Dragoon now. It's not like I didn't notice the improvement to the two-handers when it happened, believe me my SAM definitely had a massive improvement to damage, but there is a notable difference in the quality of the WS now. Skewer I thought would have been better than it is now, but my only experiments have been on Hakutaku with no food. Even without Accuracy gear, as there is so little good Accuracy gear available for DRG, I am having no real Accuracy problems, so that is not really an issue. Skewer is now a three hit WS with a Critical Hit modifier, which you would expect to be a very good weaponskill, but honestly it is not as strong as I thought it would be. Pentathrust on the other hand is very good now, because hitting all 5 hits is not anywhere as hard as it used to be. Now, this was just a test on a mob with very high defense, and not on XP mobs. So maybe Skewer is better, but just for now I would use Pentathrust for the most part. Now that two-handers have been improved, it actually leaves DRG with a much larger array of good WS's than many other jobs. Pentathrust has more hits for more damage, Skewer has the Critical Hit modifier, and Wheeling Thrust is a good WS for high defense mobs and can make light.

So, lolDRG is gone now, and essentially most DD's are about equal with skill and equipment being a much larger factor in dividing people than job was before.

So, I have been gone on weekends and I have been trying to get to sleep earlier and I have discovered that this really cuts into my game time. This new expansion really needs to hurry up. There is so little real information out about it, and I think this is good, but the problem is that we usually have information about the next update to fill the time between updates and we have gotten next to nothing so it feels like the information is really dragging behind. Only about 20 days to the expansion and we have only gotten 1 new job, 1 new unexpected zone, no information about new equipment. There are tons of hints about things, ideas, mentions, but nothing concrete. Its driving me batty.

We are going to do two Byakko's today, and if the last run was any indication I will be asked to log off while we fight them. ; ; Anyway, one of the last things that I need from Sky drops from Byakko, Neptunal Hands. They used to be really cheap when the RMT were farming Angel Skins all the time but now they are getting rather expensive. I should have the gil to pick them up, but I just used most of our reserves to pick up a Peacock Charm, which I really like. It makes it so that at almost any camp I can just eat meat on my MNK, massively increasing my DoT. I would like to see some more Haidate drop today, as we are really due for some more to drop. That string where we went like 0/10 was just annoying. Everyone should have Haidate by now, and we still have old time members that still need it. Ah well, its Sky then Salvage tonight. I know that I still want to focus on Arrapago, but the horrible drop rate is just so annoying. I think we might try a Bhaflau tonight, pop some of the Ramparts and see if we can't get a 35 piece from there for a different route.

Well, I will have screenshots of that tomorrow. Until that time, have a good day.

Monday, October 29, 2007

What? (Incredulity, not Inquiry)

Pick up XP parties are a crap shoot. Its the nature of the game. Sometimes you get a rare party with decent people that are paying attention and good players, and sometimes those people are funny and nice to talk to and then sometimes when you get that group together, you get a "tank" that wont go to the Mamool Ja staging point to xp. Now of course there are better camps, like Nyzul Island, but they did not want to go there, they want to go to Caedarva Mire... because the xp was better. I was confounded, but in a rare instance of forthright indignation Omoi laid out the case for going to Mamool Ja staging point, for their lack of understanding of how to xp and for their general lack of sense. The guy just stopped responding after a while, and when it was decided that we would head there, he decided to find a replacement, so we just kicked him and found another more sane and rational replacement. The party was great, made decent XP and I didn't die even when we had a lot of mobs up or taking a Fang Rush to the face. LOL I love eating Carbonara for XP parties for this reason, I took an 1100+ and 1200+ Fang Rush and still had over 1/3 of my HP left. MNK is the best. :)

Anyway, I was away again this weekend, and since I reported on the new pics of the mobs on Thursday, I don't have a lot to go over that is new. There is that speculation about Rikishi/Wrestler as a new tank job, but I think that is a bit of spiral from one comment made by Elmer about one comment made by the people in Famitsu magazine. It went something like this, Elmer comments that the things the reporters say in Famitsu is usually true because they get stuff from SE directly. The Famitsu people say that "rumors" have been going around about a new job, Rikishi/Wrestler/Whatever, and Elmer comments that Viking could be similar to the description in from the histories he has been translating and comments that Viking was a job from a previous game that had the "Provoke" ability, so it might be a tank. All of this doesn't mean anything in particular, or it could mean everything. Honestly, there were no pictures to indicate why they made the comment in Famitsu, but then why make it at all? And it was made in the context of the game, not just a statement of a commentator or reviewer. Meaning that they were saying that "adventurers" were hearing rumors of the job that may have existed back in time.

I am going to lunch, thats probably it for today, but I may post more.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Stealing is fun, kids!

I am out of town on Friday, but I saw these juicy bits and had to post them for you tonight. These were stolen from Alla obviously.
Campaign battle in Ronfaure:
Another:
Sarutabaruta:
Slug mob:
Wolfman mob:
Ladybug mob:

Also, this information is stolen from an Elmer translation on BG.
-Rumors of a new tank-job 力士 Rikishi (Wrestler, Strongman) are circulating amongst adventurers.
Elmers comment on the note:

(They are not my opinions or guesses, but in some cases not 100% facts. The Lightning Brigade likes to have little conversations and speculate like players. However, the stuff they hint at is usually true because they work with info given by Square Enix)

Also from Elmer:
About the Wrestler thing, I'd guess it could refer to the Vikings from the North that battled against Gigas before they transferred to the mainland for the Shadow Lord's army. Viking was in Final Fantasy III, but its main ability, Provoke, was already given to Warrior. Still, it's a tank job through-and-through and has some basis story-wise, since they were a legendary tribe to the North whose strength rivaled the mighty Gigas. They're only briefly mentioned in the Life In Vana'diel book, but recently Square Enix has been taking more and more from it.


Thats the quite update, hopefully more Monday.

With my eyes closed.

Before anything else, just a few mentions of things that appeared in the last couple of days about the expansion. First, in Famitsu (the JP equivalent of some combination of Game Informer, IGN.com and The Escapist, only better) there was an article about the new Conquest/Besieged-type thing in the expansion. It is to be called Campaign, or Champagne, or Campagnie or something like that, anyway, it appears to be like Besieged but more complicated and maybe more consistant. Instead of one huge battle in one zone, there appear to be smaller bases or outposts that will have to be defended and then, depending on how the battle goes, it can be extended into beastman bases and outposts. Sounds very interesting, and something I am going to look forward to. Also, there was a mention on Play.com, that was quickly removed, that mentioned that people will now be able to enter the Mog Houses. Interesting, very interesting. I don't know it if was accidentally leaked by Play.com because the Play.com advertisement also mentioned Campaign but that was also removed. Either way, neither of these items have been mentioned in any of SE's NA media releases, so we will have to wait and see.

Leveling WHM is interesting, I was thinking about saying that it was easy, but I don't necessarily think that is true. If I am fulling paying attention, then yes the job is very easy. If someone needs a cure, they get it. If someone gets a status effect you remove it. On this I would like to say that there is some benefit to being a melee before being a mage in that I tend to know what TP moves have additional effects. This allows me to anticipate status effects and have the spells ready almost as soon as the effect lands. The only problem with this is that I find it hard to pay full attention on WHM, and this is because I just don't find it as engaging as a melee job, especially one at 75. This may sound weird because a mage probably has more things they need to cover and they need to manage MP, etc, but for me on a melee job especially in a burn party or when tanking, you constantly have your eyes moving around; checking shadows, watching TP, checking on JA's, equipment switching, etc. On WHM, I have a rather strict routine; Dia, maybe Slow and Paralyze, then heal. Thats about it. Now, of course all of this is coming from a newly level 28 WHM, so of course it is noobish, but I only see that this routine will be added to rather than made more complicated. When I start leveling RDM into the higher levels of course I will start adding in Haste and Refresh to the cycle, but those are things that I can learn on the way. Ultimately I hope that they will make me more engaged because I am not one to pay much attention to the chat log, and its impossible to change the notice when an effect wears off of a player. So that is something that I will need to learn how to do. That will also require proper setting of my chat filters, which I have never needed to change before because I have been exclusively a melee for my entire time in the game. I am both looking forward to this and dreading it at the same time. I have the attention span of a Tsetse fly so maintaining a simple cycle of spells and buffs is actually more difficult for me than keeping a constant track of multiple inputs.

So basically, WHM is not hard at all to play well, but is actually quite difficult to play excellently. I have actually started my last couple of parties on WHM using my controller then quickly moved over to using the keyboard. Its quite weird for me to use the keyboard but I find it much easier to do with it. I don't have to move or look around a lot, and generally the keystrokes feel quicker if I use the keyboard, although at times it feels like if I use the macro combinations too quickly then the macro doesn't go off, which is weird. Maybe I am not hitting them together, but it sure feels like I am.

Anyway, enough with all that mage talk. At least in the second jungle and I am getting XP decently quickly. Some all of this WHM leveling will be behind me and I can start on RDM.

Now, for the little bits from yesterday. Here is another strange crystal in sky. Red AND blue this time.

And here are my counter merits. I still need nine more merits to max them out, but then I will be able to start stacking up on my Tier 2 merits. Ultimately, I am going to need 33 more merits to complete MNK, and I think I am going to work on that pretty hard in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Failure in Success.

I even uploaded the pictures today, but then I forgot to publish the freaking post. It really wasn't much that you are missing. Just another weird looking crystal in Sky and my new Counter merits. Up to three now. I had a really good XP party last night after Salvage. Izman, Samuraisoldier, Glacian, Achikasama, Omoi and I. Got a good two merits in about an hour and a half, moving closer to fully meriting my MNK. I am going to talk about Salvage again for a minute, but this is a better problem than we have been having before. Last night, the run went so well that it almost went too well. I think there were a lot of places that we could have spent time differently, and now that I think that the Archaic Chariot is a forgone conclusion, we will now be focusing on some of the NM's that we have been skipping. The only problem that I am having is that I have runs planned out with the amount of time we used to be able to do things in, and now that we have changed things up a bit things are loosening up and we have more time. So in the future we are going to add in more NM's. I still wish I could find a few more people that would be willing to do this more often. It just seems with Salvage the more you do it the more you are rewarded. Going two times a week isn't going to cut it. It's a percentages game.

Had a busy day and didn't feel like writing a whole lot. So this is what you get today.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ill.

Yuck, woke up this morning in pain. It sucked. Oh well, I was late and I didn't have any pictures from last night, just a Kings Limbus run and then Assaults, also helped with a XYZ fight, then went to bed.

The Limbus run was great, very easy. I still don't understand why SE hasn't introduced an alternative to Kings. I very much want to do those fights, but camping against other people is just annoying, and even more so when there are lots of bots. I have no doubts that Versus would do Kings if they were instanced. Really, the age of world/contested mobs is over. It is uninteresting, it is too easily abused, and it is not rewarding if you consider the time invested and the low drop rate. I used to think this was ok, not because I didn't want the gear for myself, but because I thought the idea of hard to get items was a good idea. There is some benefit in not having all gear easily obtainable to everyone. But honestly there is no challenge in Kings, it just about the claim, that is all. Salvage is a good example of real challenge, mixed with low drop rates, mixed with "processing" to get a good item. What I mean by processing is that it is something like abjurations, in that you have to get certain items to mixed with the NM drop to get the complete item. This is good for everyone, crafters, NM campers, etc. I still think that Salvage needs some kind of intermediate rewards, but outside of that Salvage to me is the best thing in the game right now.

Assault is actually a lot better than most people give it credit for, and honestly I think that is because most people are too lazy to do it. I started my entire LS doing Assaults because its actually much easier to do it that way. We let everyone come if they want to but there is no requirement. Generally I try to get in at least 1-2 rank up missions for everyone, which means that some people do missions they have already done, but they still get points. I have heard people that large groups suck for Assault because you don't get a lot of points, but honestly I think Assault is much faster and much less risky with more people. Last night was a great example of an Assault night, we did three Rank 8 missions, got a bunch of points for other people and everything went swimmingly. Game-wise Assault has two different reward levels, gear from AP and also the potential drops from the ??? items. You also need to do it to do Salvage, so it is critical to many aspects of ToAU content.

Limbus was a very good example of content done well also, and I just hope that SE follows the same pattern for future content in the next expansion. :)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Elfie is your huckleberry.

The day of unsucking has finally come. Today we have pictures, a good theme, a topic of conversation, and an update from SE. Ok, lets start with things that I have missed by not uploading pictures. Omoi has been the big winner, getting both Wyrm Mail and Homam Gambieras for her DRG. We actually had to delay the Omega run because Omoi tried to sneak by without lotting on anything, and normally our rules say if you miss your chance to put your hand up to lot then you can't lot, but no one was going to take Omoi's crap on this one and we stopped and made her at least pick one item to lot on, she picked the feet and thankfully they dropped. :) This left a rather scary scenario in which Hellz and Omoi are becoming more and more alike in their gear selection... That's going to give me nightmares for some time, thats for sure. Now, Pb has been doing some Nyzul Isle for a little while and he also got some nice gear from it, the Golliard Clogs to be specific, which I believe are supposed to be very nice RDM feet. Even more impressive is the fact that Aable got a Velocious Belt from King Arthro which is the best haste belt outside of a Black Belt, which he also has, so congrats to Aable.
In more recent accomplishments, I did get my WHM to 26, which, for me at least, is very impressive. A little diatribe/rant here for a moment, and maybe a bit of a lesson for those that are new to the game, or even those that have recent purchased accounts (and yes, I obviously had one of those in my party the other night), don't waste other people's time. I have been playing this game for a long time new, but I do not presume to know more than everyone else, nor do I presume that other people can do things differently than I can do with equal efficacy. That is something that can be debated between people with more experience and larger ego's than mine. What I can not stand is the delay that many people have and how they do not respect the time of other people, standing around and debating the merits of a 24-25 to go to Yhoator Jungle over Yuhtunga just seems like an infinite waste of time. Not pulling when your WHM has 200 MP instead of 300. Standing around and doing nothing for no reason at all. These are the things that will kill me, many, many little mental deaths. It will not be an asteroid that ends the human race, nor global warming, nor any other catastrophe. It will be the delay and ho-humming of the small minds that will slowly burn the world into a cinder. So, for the love of god, just pull. We can work out the details later.

Salvage has been a bit rough lately, but I consulted a friend Blaize because his group has been decently successful in getting some Salvage items as to his strategy for Arrapago and honestly it was pretty much dead on to what we did in our first couple of runs. Man, I tend to over think things, so we went back to basics. MNK, MNK, DRG, THF, WHM, RDM, BRD. It went swimmingly, best run that we have had yet. The only NM that we didn't get in Arrapago was the first Treasure Hunter, because it is a pain in the ass. Well, we also didn't get the two on the sixth floor, but honestly it was our first run where we actually got to the 6th floor. No drops still, of course, but if we can do runs like this all the time then it is just an inevitability. Here was the real kicker about this run, it was just plain easier. We took the first floor more slowly and limited down what we needed but didn't move on until we had them, that left us very well equipped for all of the NM, and at no point did I really feel rushed. We even cleared a lot of the fifth floor so that we could try to get a Max MP cell for Ninjafox. Our Archaic Chariot fights have, in the past, taken a long time and have strained our MP resources, this time it took 2-3 minutes and we were never in trouble even when my shadows were down while I was trying to pop my Fanatics Drink and starting Hundred Fists LOL. It was a complete turn around from our previous runs, and the funny thing was that I think the Chariot used maybe four TP moves total the whole time. Two MNKs on this thing is just a joke and everyone was on their game. Last night wasn't just progress, it was a reinvigoration in this little group that does Salvage.

Now for the daily silliness before I get into some of the deeper subjects I want to talk about. First is when blue turns red. I thought that was just weird, obviously just a glitch but the coloration was interesting and worthy of a screenshot. Second was Elfaria throwing down, and Samuarisoldier taking up the challenge. I am afraid we may never see poor Sam again. ;_;

Ok, the first of the last two things. How LS's operate, how they are created, sustain themselves and how they collapse. As I have discovered there are two kinds of LS's and these types are determined by the leadership of the LS. One kind is led by one person that is starting the LS to just get the gear that they want, and when they get the gear the reason for the existence of the LS is called into question. At this point one of two things will happen, either the LS will collapse or it will be taken over by another person that is there to get the gear they want or it is taken over by the other kind of leader, which leads us to the other kind of LS. The other kind of LS has a leader that just basically runs the LS for other people. They don't honestly have a need for gear that other people need, they just enjoy helping their friends get gear more than they like getting their own gear. I should note that this does not make them necessarily good people, there are bad people that can like seeing their friends gets gear, and there could be good people that want to use an LS to just get gear for themselves. This is not about the judgment of character, this is about how LS's operate. Now the first kind of LS, the one that is run by people that just want to get their own gear and are gathering people to get it are inherently unstable. They do not have a sound basis for extending into perpetuity, instead they move from one leadership to crisis to the next as the leader that gets their gear either loses interest in their LS or they move on to another LS where they can get even more gear or just settle down and be part of someone else's LS. The second kind of LS is much more stable because the leadership does not have constant turn over and doesn't have the risk of collapsing because someone loses interest after they get their gear. Most big and old-school LS's are of this nature now, even if they were not in the past, at least on my server. I have seen LS's come and go, but this is generally true of the successful LS's.

The final item for today is the new info from SE about Dancer. This isn't the same format that they have used for the last expansion but rather in the format of their "history" pieces. I actually like this and it fits well into the theme of the expansion. So here is SE's information:

Maiden of the Battlefield

'Tis the beatin' of the heart what lays the foundation. Ye embrace it with yer whole body, and then e'er so gently start tappin' out the steps. Yer blood gets t'bubblin' an' ye can hear it percolatin' about in there. An' then ye might stick a twirlin' turn and send it rushin' t'all yer extremities. Shimmies straight up the spine and sends a shudder clean through ye, it does. After that, then she's mine an' no mistakin'. Haven't the faintest where I be or how I got there, I just am. An' everyone around fuels me, each of 'em offerin' up their own music--a symphony o' souls. An' that's yer rhythm. Ye cannot help but dance.

[Dancer Laila Brilioth, following a seminal performance on Jeuno's Artisan Bridge in the year 884]

And so it was that in former times that dancers became truly sought after as battleworthy allies. Word soon spread of their inspiring ability to allay the troubled hearts of soldiers made uneasy by the trials and tribulations of the frontline, and of their prowess as heroines in their own right, staking their lives on the field of battle alongside the bravest of warriors. In this manner they came to garner immense favor and respect from all ranks in the great armies of Altana--such was the station of the dancer.
Their supple frames adorned in magnificent garments, dancing in plain view on the battlefield, boldly defying downpour after downpour of beastman arrow, the dancers bestowed countless of Altana's legions with both courage and resolve, earning them the title "maidens of the battlefield." Juxtaposed to this was their infamy among their enemies as "maidens of death," feared for their mastery of an unknown and foreign art.
The origins of the esoteric tradition known as the Kriegstanz are revealed below.

Revelry in Totentanz

Come now, and dance with these bones!
Spin and turn, in life and in death!
Pauper, sage, even the nobleman knows,
They are all, in the end, of life bereft!
Savor now, doomed fool, and make merry this night!
Come now, and dance with these bones!
Sing and croon, in life and in death!
Old hag, young beauty, even the sweet child knows,
In time, a bleached skull, is all will be left!
Savor now, doomed fool, and make merry this night!

[a verse from the ancient "Bastokan Song of the Damned"]


This verse rose to prominence in dark days as the republic was ravaged by the Bastokan Blight.
On top of the already horrific and growing number of victims, unsubstantiated rumors and utter despair spread rampant through all quarters of the city. It was in this climate of social turmoil that the Bastokan Song of the Damned was taken up by the masses. Using magic to animate the remains of the deceased, throngs of the hopeless and grieving would choke the streets in processions of living and dead, booming in chorus as they danced the Totentanz in a form of morbid catharsis.

Despite the government's initial efforts to quarantine those infected by the blight, the frenzied nightly gatherings were at first reluctantly tolerated. This changed however, as the growing popularity of the Totentanz carried it to the frontlines of battle, where the crazed enthusiasm generated by the now ritualistic dancing led no small number of soldiers to neglect their posts. This being an unacceptable state of affairs in wartime, a series of prohibitions was promptly issued with unforeseen results...
An air of insurgency and rebellion swept the people, as dancing crowds began to take to the streets even with the sun still high in the sky. President Wilhelm was left with no recourse but to declare a state of emergency and mobilize the republic's main garrison of Galkan troops against the citizenry to suppress the escalating chaos. It is indeed a sad page in Bastokan history.

It so happened that in those days, mountainfolk from the hinterlands of the Gustaberg region would sometimes travel to Bastok to peddle medicinal herbs. The quelling of the near-maniacal outbreaks of saturnalia would find its form in the native dancers of these tribes. With no hesitation despite the apparent dangers of contagion to themselves, they would roam the city streets and visit barracks, displaying the aggressive yet graceful steps of their people's traditional dance, the Kriegstanz, with a timeless elegance. The majestic rhythms pounded out by these confident women and their motions, full of life, captivated observers instantaneously. And it was not long before the morose Totentanz rituals faded away as quickly as they had come. Some years later, the significant role the dancers played in the defeat of the deadly epidemic which claimed so many Bastokan lives was commemorated by the president in a now famous speech: "Though none can deny the scientific strides made by our great alchemists in curing this foul plague, praise is due also to those fearless masters of dance who came to us in our most dire hour. For it was their impassioned artistry that delivered us from the tyranny of this most lethal of epidemics, and the terror which had fast gripped our very hearts." And so it was that the dancers came to be credited with ending the Bastokan Blight.

In wake of its success and popularity during the blight, the Kriegstanz became a well-established school of dance, the study of which was such a grueling task that finding successors to carry on the tradition became quite a chore in its own right. It is not without some hint of irony that the second coming of the dancers would require a tragedy on the scale of the Crystal War--with the very fate of Bastok in the balance--to bring it about.

Knowing Kriegstanz

One would be remiss to relegate the arts of
dance and combat to separate fields. A
masterful dance can be the most lethal of
weapons; a skillful fight, the most elegant
of dances. Alas, there does exist one point
of departure between the two. Whereas
martial beauty is a byproduct of precise
execution, the techniques of dance are a
thing of beauty in and of themselves. The
whole corpus of the Kriegstanz, though no
doubt applicable to combat,primarily, and
perpetually, seeks beauty.

[an excerpt from the dogmatic "Kriegstanzian Musings," composed by Annika Brilioth]


From that point on the Kriegstanz continued to evolve even further, incorporating unique steps developed in varying regions into new types of dance, yielding the Schwerttanz and Gauklertanz, among others. Dancing was found to not only encourage and instill morale in the practitioner's companions, but the most instinctual of dancers were found to be able to achieve an almost trancelike state, imbuing themselves with transcendental powers that could weaken their enemies with the sublime suggestiveness of their movements.

Held in high regard as both first-class entertainers and as accomplished martial artists, the dancers are driven by an insatiable passion for their art. Entirely devoid of timidity on both the stage and the battlefield, dance requires the most absolute resolve. Only one who has honed these traits and devoted their very life to the beauty and perfection of the art itself is worthy of being deemed "Dancer."


Thats it for today, enjoy and I will see you tomorrow. :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Two variations on a theme.

Ok, I had more good pictures for the blog today, but I have of course forgotten to upload them, it freaking sucks, because Omoi would be featured again for getting Homam Feet for her DRG, and Pb for getting Homam Head for his THF. I think it was our quickest Omega ever, putting us just over 10 minutes total after zoning in. We still need to work on positioning, especially because Omega can shift around a bit at the beginning of the fight. But, ultimately we kicked ass last night. We slightly shifted our strategy in that we had the tanks (Both NIN/DRK) dump all the hate-get JA's as soon as they engaged and let the BLM's knock it down to 80% and its first form shift as fast as possible, once there we had more melee DD's to take it down. It was amazingly fast and even with a little mis-positioning we still wrecked it incredibly fast.

Now, I have like 10 minutes before I leave for the day, going out of town again. This also clinches a week of really crappy blog entries. Sorry about that. I did even have a nice topic for this entry about how end-game LS's tend to work, and how ones manage to survive. I think I will come back to that on Monday. :)

Please forgive this week of suck, I promise more next week.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Oops, I did it again.

GUH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I freaking forgot to upload my pictures, and at least today I had something to show for everyone. I finally got around to gearing up my WHM, and getting some XP on it. 5k in about what 2 hours? I mean, it was a joke. There was one other semi-competent person in the party and we were joking about how one of the people in the party had to have bought their account because they talked a bug game but didn't even know how to make a WS macro and had a call in almost every macro. At least that was enjoyable, LOL. I have found that I generally like using the keyboard macros for WHM because its always basically the same spells over and over and you have to do very little repositioning. The controller is just fine, but I like the fact that you can do a keyboard macro over basically anything, and I don't think the controller can do that, even though its quicker for me to use the controller for most other things like timing shadows. Anyway, my WHM is almost 26 now, and I can't wait for it to be done. When I am a melee or a tank, or a puller I get to dictate the pace at which the party moves, and I get to determine how fast the XP rolls in. As WHM, I don't get to determine anything at all, and I get idiots telling me that they can't pull when I am still at 2/3 of my MP.

Omoikitte would have a nice picture here of a new suit of Wyrm Mail but since I didn't upload them... >.< She has been waiting for them for a while, and apparently the Beaucidine run went very well with lots of AF dropping. Besides Omoi's Wyrm Mail, Glacian also got a suit of Koga Chainmail for his NIN. I have had limited time to go to Dynamis lately but I have wanted to go more. Its actually pretty crazy, I have been working on going to bed at a reasonable time, which cuts down on my play time a little bit, and I have to travel for work again, which is frustrating and incredibly tiring. I much prefer the summer, when I have no travel, nothing really to take up my time and nothing to get in my way.

I have meetings today, so this will be short today. I think we are doing Omega again tonight, I don't know if I will be tanking even, I might get to come as a DD. After Omega tonight, on Monday we are doing Ultima which we haven't been able to do since our horrible Home Point/DC run with almost no tanks for like 90% of the fight. LOL I think this one will go much more smoothly. :)

And finally, it has been a week and here are the votes for the mage jobs and the results of which job I am going to level next!

WHM - 1
BRD - 2
RDM - 6
BLM - 2

And RDM it is! I knew that pretty much on Monday when it had pulled pretty far ahead of the other jobs. I am looking forward to it, just got to get this WHM out of the way. At least it will be easy to get to 75, LOL. As for the cultural references that no one got (and no, Omoi, sleeping with the fishes isn't one of them, that was too easy), first was "blah, blah that you can take to the blah, blahologist" which was from an early episode of Scrubs. Second, was "off in the nether ether of the net. It's vast and infinite, you know, the net that is..." which was a reference to the line in Ghost in the Shell, which said "The net is vast and infinite" which always seemed quite redundant to me. LOL Finally, there was "Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc" which was the title of the second West Wing episode. :)

And there you have it, more leveling WHM tonight, and when it is finally 37 starting on RDM in earnest. At some point I am going to have to level BLM as a sub, but I am not looking forward to that, and its not going to delay me on my way to leveling RDM.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Hoo-hum.

Another day, another sky run. LOL Got another Shining Cloth off of Suzaku yesterday, this would have meant a lot more in days gone by, but its just surprising that it happens for us so often and some people have never even seen it. I don't even really have any pictures from the last couple of days because nothing really important has happened. I have gone to bed early *gasp* and that has been nice for me, but not for blog content. I would have something to talk about if SE was saying anything at all about the expansion. I mean literally since the TGS there has been absolutely nothing out of SE, and nothing for me to talk about. It seems if I can remember correctly that we got at least something more from SE about the second new job by this time, and also that the SE event for the new expansion was much earlier than it this time. You know, writing a blog is a combination of information, experience and randomness, but lately there has been very little new information, and with meriting so much lately I haven't been doing much to write about my experiences. So, that leaves me with letting people vote on my first mage job and telling everyone how great it is to merit in Mamook. So thats is why you have been getting so much randomness as of late, because their isn't a whole lot to talk about.

I may or may not start leveling WHM again tonight, I think I will be I wanted to do that last night but I felt more compelled to sleep last night over leveling WHM. I will have to do BLM too, which I am not looking forward to at all, and at least DRK is done. Its basically a forgone conclusion at this point I will be leveling RDM next, unless there is a flood of votes for another job in the polling comments. The thing about RDM is that there really isn't a whole lot of drool-worthy gear for it, and I don't have anything waiting for me at end-game. Not only that but like I am not going to give up my Rajas Ring or anything else that might be useful for RDM in exchange for anything I use already on my melee jobs. So I think I am just going to focus on MP and enfeebling gear, really. I think I will use this as a burn job, which thankfully should be very easy to level. Everyone says that I will look good as a RDM, but I think Elvaan look pretty silly in the gear that is generally available especially the Elvaan RSE which RDM tend to where a lot, but I think looking horrible. Bah.

I can't really decide what I want to do in the game right now, so I think I am just going to go with the flow really. It's the first time I have felt like this in a while because I am a generally very self-motivated person, but I think that until the expansion comes out I will be taking it easy and trying to de-stress for a while, because once the expansion comes out I am going to focus on leveling new jobs and dealing with the new content. I am not going to fall behind on Assault or Salvage like I did when ToAU came out. If they have an Assault-style system, I am definitely going to do that from day one. Its only about a month away at this point, and I am so looking forward to it. I will be home for a while today, and I am not doing Dynamis today so I will have some free time to get some stuff done and I am well rested so I will be able to stay up late and maybe get that WHM closer to 37. Speaking of that, I have decided that I am going to get WHM and BLM to 37 before I start leveling RDM... well at least WHM. I don't want to be leveling two jobs at once, because that just sucks. The jobs share equipment in general so it shouldn't be too much of a problem, but its just annoying to stop leveling one job just to level another sub for it. Kinda breaks the rhythm of leveling.

Well, tomorrow, you should have pictures of me running around in a robe and slops... /sigh... how the might have fallen.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Increasingly Obvious.

Since last Thursday the voices of masses have rung out in true democratic fashion. Or at least in some ways democratic, some ways its more like a banana republic with communist strongmen muscling their way and trying to overwhelm the electorate with foreign capital investment and guns for drugs three way secret deals. I will not state who is "winning" right now, but if you read the comments from that entry it will be pretty obvious what job is winning. It still scares me that I will be leveling a job that legitimatly uses MP, I don't know what I will do with all that MP honestly. Its a pretty big responsibility, all that MP. Will I waste it on useless spikes and en-spells? Can I be relied on for saving it up for those moments when it is most needed? Probably not... I am just going to go /NIN and melee my way to 75... >.>

I have been away all weekend, and only got to hope on before Assaults last night... but apparently this is a good thing for everyone in Versus... and they don't want me to come back... o.o; No, what really happened is that I was away, and during that time we did two Byakko's and they both dropped Haidate. That means with like the last 8-9 Byakko's not dropping Haidate with me there, and then 2 dropping Haidate when I was not there, then I might be the problem with the drops. ; ; Why does Byakko hate me? I am a cat lover... I even have a cat. Why would that cat hate me above everyone else? Anyway, that clears 2 more people out of the group that needed to get Byakko's Haidate, Elfaria and Samuraisoldier, both very deserving members of the LS. Elf has been waiting for the Haidate for a long time now, and Sam can use the Haidate on both of the his 75 jobs, and also comes to Sky mostly as NIN so its of great use for him. So now apparently, I am to be BANISHED on Byakko days. ; ; That was my favorite fight to tank outside of Kirin... Guh, I am turning into Jess with all the ellipses.

Well, depending on the time I have available, I am going to put some time into leveling WHM this week, then BLM, so that I will have them to at least sub level. I wish I could do that before the poll is complete but I wont have time to move through that many levels in 3 days, but I am at least going to start. WHM is already the closest to 37, and BLM is already leveled to be the sub for that, but BLM is something I should have at 37 if I am going to level a mage job so that will have to come eventually anyway.

I forgot to download pictures from last night, but honestly they wouldn't have mattered much, although I have completed all the level 8 Assaults now. Marids in the Mist was pretty easy as long as you were able to time the darts correctly. Just need to use them below 50% health and right after they use their TP move. Now that I have completed all of Tier 8 I just have to complete 11 more Assaults to be able to have them all cleared and be able to get my Captain rank. I am still saving Lebros Supplies for last because that is just a crazy one from what I have heard, but I have never even tried it. I am looking forward to the Rank 10 missions because they look like a substantial step up in difficulty from the other Rank missions. The Rank 9 missions don't look too difficult really and we should be clear of them in a week or two. We are going to have to wait for a couple of people to get to Rank 10 before we try to do those because of the increase in difficulty, and also because the number of people that do those missions doesn't effect the total number of AP you get from the run.

Thats pretty much it for today, tonight is Sky then Salvage. Hopefully something will drop, and with the new party set up we might have a chance. :)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Like a fox...

Yeah, maybe I went off the deep end a little yesterday. It happens sometimes, what is a man in my position to do? Use it to complete my weeks worth of animal related titles and then try to forget it ever happened outside of the epic and wonderful mage selection process. Shall we recap what we have so far? There are 4 votes with zero bonus votes so far, one each for each job, WHM, BRD, RDM, BLM. To which I can say to all those that voted, Thanks for nothing guys, I could have NOT decided what mage job I wanted to play all by myself. The votes included well thought out and logical explanations, or in the case of Izman, notions of self-preservation. So as of today, I am left with the same situation I was in yesterday, well, except for the threat of face punching if I level Dancer. If I had to pick today, I would eliminate BLM. The other three I could handle and RDM and BRD would probably be the easiest to level because of demand, but WHM has always appealed to me in the abstract.

They are taking my computer, back in a bit. So, apparently, I didn't have the computer I was supposed to have so they got me a whole new one. Freaking sweet. Wasn't expect that. How often when working with the government do they give you more than what you ask for? Let me tell you, not often. Anyway...

I have put some serious thought into this Peacock Charm thing, and I think I am beginning to like the idea. Honestly, with MNK, there really is nothing besides attack, haste and accuracy. You want to hit for as much as you can as often as you can. Its kind of like NIN but with much less emphasis place on damage modifiers for the WS because the modifiers on Asuran Fists is like 10% STR and 10% VIT. These limitation make it better to focus on areas that will allow me to land more hits and increase the attack on them because that will universally increase my damage. I am very close to being able to use meat exclusively on my MNK, with Lurkers being my only major fear at this point. If I were to get a Peacock Charm that is another +5 Accuracy for WS and TP build, and I wouldn't be losing much for my MNK in the process. So, a bit of farming is in order I think, I am about a third of the way there if I count money on mules and stuff like that, but it would leave me with no extra gil and that would probably be a bad idea. Farming takes away from XP time though and that is never good. Almost two more merits last night, and they are going into Counter level 2. It's nice to finally have an endgame job that I want to put more merits into. With NIN its basically done merit wise, the others could use some work still but I don't use them enough to justify spending the time I am now to finish them off like I am with my MNK.

Too much MNK talk, its so freaking repetitive lately. LOL Even I can see that. Its just that I haven't been doing a lot outside of events and XPing. I really can't wait for the expansion, as I have gotten into a bit of a rut right now. It's weird for the first time having or at least having access to everything I want or need, and only focusing on small tweaks. Salvage is my next major hurdle, and I wish I could do it every day, although lately I have been getting way too high strung about it. LOL It is really fun though, but it can rapidly get frustrating because I like having set plans for how things work and you really need to be more adaptable there. I am probably going to ban myself from vent during Salvage, so I can't yell at anyone. :)

I am going out of town this weekend, so don't expect much on Monday. Doesn't look like SE is really in the mood to give us much more information about the expansion until just before it is released. I can't really tell why but the lack of information at present is just fueling the fire. LOL

Have a good weekend.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sleeping with the fishes and deciding my fate!

I am really stretching it with this animal thing... the linkage is tenuous at best. An attempt at humor perhaps, and not a good one. But, at least I have something more than the repetitive blah, blah that you can take to the blah, blahologist. If you get that reference then your vote counts for double when I tally the results for the poll that I am going to talk about later in this post that will determine the future of my FFXI and perhaps even the planet Earth! Intrigued? At least interested? Ok, fine, but I am still going to make you read the rest of the post first. And your sarcasm is not appreciated! *Hmmph* Yes, at this point I am inanely rambling on about nothing, with only a half-thought by me into the logical progression of this post or even logic at all. Lets just have you try to write interesting and inventive material for this blog every day for the rest of your life, ok? How do you think that would feel? Ok, so maybe a monkey with a bottle of Tequila can write more and more interesting material, but I am thinking if you had a monkey or a bottle of Tequila, let alone both, you would not be here right now reading this would you? Would you? Digging the italics today. Its emphasis without caps. Caps is too much anger for me, I am afraid of caps... they have squinty eyes... Italics are just right. So... having fun? No, I have not gotten into the Nyquil again, but I must say writing entries with a bottle of Nyquil is a laugh riot for me. :) I got to work early today. Thats pretty much impossible for me, so you get extra blog time, and I get to make you read all this yammer. I am probably losing your attention at this point, so in an attempt to reel you back into my web of treachery here is something FFXI related. Borin died last night, but *gasp* he wasn't the first or even the one that died the most often! But I do believe that Izman killed Borin by sheer force of will, you know I was going to screenshot Borin's comment to Izman after Iz cheered Borin eating a 1K+ Fang Rush, but it lacked the internal text log context to really be screenshottable, so I will just requote here, "Izman? I thought you loved me?" and that my friends, is why Borin wins so hard. Borin is the embodiment of wonderful bitter sarcasm, with a light flare of hating Omoi. Oh, fack, double fack, triple GOD DAMN FUCK! I don't have the picture... I actually HAD A PICTURE for the title of this post to make sense. It was awesome, fucking awesome, FUCKING AWESOME I TELL YOU! Izman, dead in Mamook, in a stream, underwater... you guessed it, WITH THE FUCKING FISHES. And now its gone, off in the nether ether of the net. It's vast and infinite, you know, the net that is... another reference that if you name in the comments will net you a double vote in the poll that I will present later in this very post. And yes, I know I admonished the use of caps because of their untrustworthiness and their unkempt hair, but I tell you, Izman was sleeping with them... the fishes... he was. ; ;

Did any of that have a point? No. Did you understand it? No. Are you going to keep reading this post? YES! (Evil, evil caps) And that is because of the amazing teaser that I tossed into the first line of today's post. But we are not there yet boys and girls, first, my day, or should I say night because I didn't get home until super late so I was only able to get in two more merits worth of XP. And that only netted me one increase in a stat, but at least it did serve some purpose. BAM! Counter rate increases by 1! Quick question for you life long MNK's out there, but does this increase the base counter rate for counterattack too? I love MNK, it punches so hard. The only major problem I have is that when I use meat I feel like my accuracy is just a touch below what I believe is optimal. For the first time since I started playing this game I am seriously considering a Peacock Charm. The utility is just higher with MNK that it is for my other jobs because either accuracy is not a concern (SAM, DRG, RNG), my set up demands sushi and I accept that (NIN) or my gear is just not favorable for a meat build (WAR) but now with MNK I feel it could be useful. I don't think I have the money to afford it right now, but hopefully Omoi would be interest in going halfsies with me on it. But when she normally goes mage to everything and I go DD, it is basically like asking of Omoi will pay for half of it to get me a present. LOL I know this is all going to backfire on me in amazing fashion when she asks me to go halfsies on a Manteel... orz. Well, if I DO get a Peacock Charm (more like when not if, just need to shift some more stuff to sell over to Ringzero and I will eventually be able to get it myself even if Omoi is feeling stingy [oh yeah, making friends with that comment, LOL]) it will even further improve my MNK and allow me to eat meat more often. These are just a few more tweaks for my MNK because honestly, I think my MNK is the best equipped job I have or at least on par with my NIN. This may be caused by the fact that MNK has next to no options for gear at endgame and outside of a Black Belt I have pretty much the rest of the bases covered.

Now, here is some lens flare, because lens flare is cool. Finally, as a show of my complete benevolence I will grant ye, oh reader of mien blog, the ability to choose my destiny. Ok, seriously, I still have no mage job leveled, and its time to start, so you get to pick my next job to 75! It has to be a mage job and it has to be one of these mage jobs: WHM, RDM, BLM, BRD. SMN is out, because the gear sucks and I am not gonna camp Shakigami Weapon, if I want to be a WHM I will just be a WHM. All votes MUST be submitted as a comment to THIS POST, don't send me an IM about it. I mean send me IM's all you want but not about your vote. If you get either of the references I mentioned earlier then you get to have your vote counted twice. I will post the results here a week from today. The fine print: Once the expansion comes out all bets are off, and if I want to be a hot dancer then I will be a hot dancer! Doesn't mean I wont finish the job, just means it might get back burnered, but you know I hate having jobs that aren't completed so I will still finish it. Gear limitation will not effect the forward movement of the job so its not like I am going to be all complainy about not having the gear to move forward. I will try to get at least an average of one level per day even if I don't get them on their respective days. Any questions just post them in the comments. All rules are mine and you better respect them, because without respect what do we have baby? What do we have? Latin jargon: Ipso facto, Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc, etc. etc. There was another one of those references that will net you a double vote. Good night, and good luck.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sloth

Not a lot to report really, there isn't a whole lot new going on in the game. We had a colossally bad Arrapogo Remnants run yesterday. I think I am over thinking it too much and I am just going to go back to what we were doing when we did it well the last couple of times. I have a better understanding of where cells drop which should improve our efficiency over all. The real problem we had last night was that we only got 1 Incus cell to drop on the entire first floor and no Humilus. In fact, I believe on the first floor we got a total of five drops, which is just unbelievable. Anyway, going back to what was working before, that should help a whole lot.

I don't have a whole lot today, a normal sky run, got another Despot, but it doesn't matter much if we don't get Diorite to go with it. We generally have a couple of people that could come as THF to sky but generally do not because they have other more useful jobs. As of late, we have had incredibly bad luck with drops in Sky, including 0/10~ on Byakko's Haidate, and only 1 W. legs for a long time on Kirin. If you need a Shining Cloth or a D. Body, we are the place to be.

Blah, what a boring day. I got to XP in Mamook again, and as we were wrapping up, of course someone came into the area and started pulling our mobs... in Mamook, and the other pit was open. I just don't get it. But I did get two more merits for 5 total and that let me cap out Kick Attacks. Next to start on Counter merits, then Penance and Invigorate.

I don't know what else to say, everything else has been done. I have zippy inspiration lately. Just totally drained. Oh well. This sucks, maybe more later today, but don't count on it.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Owls

Animal theme week here at the blog. I tried out the western pit in Mamook last night, and it is different from the eastern pit because there are definitely less mobs there, but there are two benefits. 1. There is only one Lurker in that pit. 2. If you do it correctly and you kill off the mobs in the right order you can cycle through that area pretty faster and you don't have to worry about mobs repopping on you. Sometimes you need to pull the two Spinners in the cave you come in through but doing this bought us just enough time to respawn enough mobs to keep the chain going. In general, you very much need a some kind of buffer and definitely need a dispel or the Wyverns can get pretty nasty. With this camp, I don't care how much XP I make per hour, because XPing here is just really fun. A term was coined last night, that this is indeed SeXP... and yes, that makes me a dork, whatever. These camps make XPing so much more fun that I honesly don't think I will ever lead a party to another area for XP. No one has any respect for Bird's camps, Bhaflau is just a mess AND no one respects camps, Mire is OK if you can push out all the lower level parties, but you just end up feeling like a dick. Mamook has two things in its favor. 1. It only supports two level 75 parties because of the longer respawn times, the two pits. 2. You have to go by True Sight mobs to get there and its not just a pop outside of the Runic Portal, it actually takes time and effort. You can't scout the camp outside of /sea Mamook, and since its such a pain people will actually ask about it, even JP's. :) These camps hearken back to the salad days of Lufaise Meadows and Bibiki Bay, except even better. And they have owls. Anyway, got two more merits, and only need two more to get my last Kick Attack merit.

We did Limbus last night, a split run, with my run finishing up an Ultima set. The only problem with boss runs is that they only take 18 and we have more than that, but since everyone gets to lot its not so bad. Both runs were a success, but the AF drops were crappy. Don't know exactly when we are going to do that Ultima or the Omega we have either, for that matter. We then had Assaults, in which one group wasn't that successful, but my group got two new rank 8 missions done. Both were relatively easy, Egg Conservation and Operation: Snake Eyes. Snake Eyes was interesting as it was more quest like, but it was actually pretty easy. Egg Conservation was a bit silly. That just leaves Marids in the Mist for the last level 8 mission I need to do, but I wont be here on Friday to get it, and maybe not on Monday either. I think Omoi is going to lead that one. Also, everyone did a bunch of ranking up yesterday. Jess to Rank 10, Achi and Sholo were able to start rank 9 I believe, but I might be wrong on that, they may need one more new assault, and Marids would do nicely, Izman got Rank 7 and King got to Rank 4. I think thats everyone that Ranked up recently, but I might be wrong. Also Achi and EP both got their Yigit Gomleks on the same day! That makes EP 2/5 so far and I know that he is getting pretty close on the rest of the Yigit pieces. In final silliness, I think this is my best roll ever, I totally owned Omoi! LOL

Monday, October 08, 2007

Froggy

Nodropnix. Thats the name of the game.

Well let me start by saying that I know the blogging has been slow and not that great lately, but just know that work is busy right now, and that is cutting into my time a lot right now. Like I can barely get a sentence completed without a distraction. Now there are two or three things that I really want to talk about today. The first is a new area I like to XP in, Mamook. Now, you can say, duh, people have been XPing in Mamook for a long time and its not as good as other camps. But there is a reason why I think it is so good, and that is that it is not boring. It's not your normal, BRD pull, we kill, repeat ad nauseum. The last couple of weeks has seen a lot of people finishing up their SAM leveling from the last update so many camps have been taken. So that means searching for alternative camps, and Mamook is a good one. The reason that I love it so much is that you basically follow a route through the area killing absolutely everything (except the NM that is almost always up, Darting Kachaal Ja). You run upstairs, you run downstairs, Mamool, Wyverns, Puks, Crabs, its just neat to do it and its actually more like an adventure than monotonous XP. And its really a challenge because there is a large variety of accuracy and attack requirements. I have done it well with 4 DD's, COR and a RDM, and done it OK with 3 DD's, BRD, WHM, RDM. Honestly, this camp is isn't very MP intensive like some other camps, just need to be ready to cure bomb from a Fang Rush from all the Wyverns. Also, you shouldn't have a BRD pull much, just prep mobs. The mobs here hit pretty hard so a BRD pulling tends to get eating. The best thing to do is have a DD "pull" meaning just run up to the next mob and fight or voke it and have the BRD or RDM just sleep the links. You aren't going to get super high chains, mostly because there are two Mamool Ja Lurkers that are in the area and they love to reek havoc with chains, but if people are smart you can usually get through them if you are careful.

Anyway, that camp is great, but don't use it. I like it, and I want it for myself. Thanks. :) Did another couple of Kirin's yesterday.

Lunch post, I am hungry. And I am back.

So lets see, Kirin and my new Kirin straight tanking gear. I have been XPing my MNK a lot so I have a ton of ISP again, which means I can pick up a few nice things for myself, like the Lieutenant's Sash. Now, this might not look that great, but its only replacing a Warwolf Belt, and with all the SATA I get during Kirin, enmity isn't as great as some more HP and a bit of damage reduction for magic and breath attacks, which is pretty much exclusively what I was dealing with on Kirin. That leaves me with this set-up for straight tanking Kirin. It did seem like it was a little bit better than normal yesterday, and our first Kirin went super fast except for when it Stonega'ed then Astral Flowed, which killed quite a few people and slowed us down. Jess got a D. Body and Akanea got an Osode. ^.^/

Salvage also went decently last night, we did Zhaylom remnants to test out the new spawn condition for the 5th floor Poroggo Madame. Things went relatively easy except for a little confusion on the distribution of the stats cells, but it was out first time doing Zhaylom and nothing too bad happened. We did get the Poroggo Madame to spawn but we had very limited time to kill it so everyone just two-houred and we ripped it to shreds. The first Frog Chorus was stunned with Weapon Bash, but at 9% it managed to get on off and we got frogged, outside of Devious, who got smashed to bits by a bunch of nasty froggies. But it had a nice DoT on it, and when we were uncharmed we popped up and finished the last 9%, Borin in very much Borin-style Mijin Gakure for the last bit of damage but we got no drops. >.< Ah well, more Salvage without drops, its the name of the game I guess. LOL

In other news, I finally finished my Rank 10 quest, it was actually very easy, and during BCG I never once lost a match. The CS's were nice and all but a little anticlimactic, and now I just have to finish up all of the other Assaults that are left to get Captain. Speaking of which, EP managed to get his Yigit Gages which is sweet for him! I know that he still needs a couple of other pieces to complete the set but we are working on those for him and more gear for everyone in our Assaults. Finally, I needed to get my Beadeaux Key for my MNK AF Body and Elfie came along to help me after I helped him with him BST AF fight, and along the way I spotted this little NM, up and just hanging out. LOL But all I got was a silly Duel Rapier. >.< Then with a little bit of farming Elfie and I got a key and quickly found the coffer. So I am now only two pieces away from finally having all of my MNK AF gear but I will probably have my MNK merits done before I finish those two quests... at least I have my Garliage Citadel Coffer key. :)

Friday, October 05, 2007

Fake expansion news.

Ok, here is some fake expansion news that I would like to see happen but have no reason to believe will happen. Some of this is derived from my thoughts, some of it is gleaned from other people, some of it from FFXI history and some of it is just what I think would be cool, so join the wild ride.

Four new jobs:
1. Dancer - Dancer will be a more offensive oriented support class as some have suggested. This will included some form of MP, HP and TP draining ability that will act like a DoT Drain, Aspir and Absorb-TP. Additionally, I believe that some of the dances will also include defense reductions on mobs, and perhaps other reductions to evasion, magic defense, etc. To make things interest I think they should have the Dances learned from quests you would have to do every level or couple of levels. This would be different than spells and other ways to get abilities for other jobs. The quests could start relatively easy, moving through to very difficult ones for the later levels.

2. Time Mage - They would get Time related magics from the current available magics, but also new tiers of magic along with completely new spells. I think that new tiers of magic might also be added to other jobs to help balance out the effect of this. Now, there is something to Comet here, as traditionally Time Mage has used Comet and Atomos has been able to use Comet. Does this mean that Time Mage will get Comet? Who knows, but it would be a nice new spell. Also, I think they will get some spells that are equivalent to the current teleports that WHM get but to areas in the past. So Time Mage will be the past version of WHM, or something. LOL

3. Medic/Chemist/Engineer - I still think an item based job could work very well, except for instead of how items are used now, they would be more like how Ninjutsu works, in that they would get stack to 99 and those stacks are again stackable to 12. This will probably be the utility job of the expansion, with some healing, some DD, some buffing and some debuffing all thrown in with a little club skill just because no one really uses that for DDing.

4. I have no idea, what the fourth job is but I am going to bet that we get 4 jobs. SE's been a little too unspecific about how many new jobs there will be and for some reason I am feeling four this time instead of three. What it will be I have no idea.

I have two other ideas that I think would make the expansion really good. The first is the new Assault zones; I think that they need to be easily accessible like the current Assaults, they need to be longer like an hour or up to Salvage length, and they should be pressing but a little less difficult than Salvage. They should also be much more in depth than the current Assault zones, the rewards should be very similar to the way Assault is done now, but with better tiered rewards rather than better over all points rewards, so like reverse of how things are now. This will encourage people to advance through the missions rather than spam one mission over and over.

The second area is going to be that neat vortex kind of area that is going to be like Sea and Sky. I would guess we will get a tiered NM system much like Sea with a better reward system like Sky. I REALLY like the look of this area, it looks fantastic, and I really hope that it isn't just given away from the start and something you have to achieve.

Ah well, work is still beating on me, so not much today, but at least its not a rehash.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Back to the front.

Randomness to start. First, I screwed up the name of that blog post about Dancer, the name was actually "You will be a hot dancer" but you still wont know where it is from. Second, Jess has a new blog and it is good. You really should check it out, the link is now listed on the right side of the blog with the other blogs I have linked. Third, this post will luckily be longer than the last couple, I have a little bit of time today to go over a couple of neat things.

First, I love MNK. I might have mentioned this before. ^.^ I got to merit in two pretty good parties yesterday before Dynamis, I got a nice healthy 20k buffer for MNK and then got 3 more merits, which are going to go into Kick Attack first, because that will have the most direct and immediate effect. I should have but them in there last night but I was busy running around. Yesterday was my kind of triumphant return to Dynamis. I have to admit that I am relatively lucky when it comes to Dynamis. I haven't waited very long for any piece besides DRG which I gave up on long ago because the utility of the items is pretty low. We had a Dynamis-Jeuno last night and sadly I was third on the list for lotting on the incredibly good Melee Gloves, but like I said I am pretty lucky when it comes to Dynamis and after a pair of the Gloves dropped very early in the run, a second pair dropped around the middle point then while that first pair was still in the treasure pool, a third set dropped and they were mine! A fourth pair even dropped which I believe ended up going free lot. In addition, Omoi, who does not have my kind of luck in Dynamis managed to borrow some of my luck and final got her Wyrm Finger Gauntlets to drop! So after Dynamis we managed to get together and take a picture for posterity.
These new hands are going to be my TP build hands and I will switch to Ochiudo's Kote for WS. Speaking further on my MNK, after Dynamis Thaz, Omoi and I went to finish my AF... yes, I know not having my AF at 75 makes me a bad person as Thaz already told me. LOL First thing I needed to do was finish up replacing my NIN AF hands which I had to reopen when I re-quested my NIN feet. So a quick hunt in Ifrit's Cauldron and then a quick trip to Castle Zvahl to kill Dark Spark and I was ready to start on my MNK AF coffers. It was already getting quite late so we only managed to get the old gauntlets from the Crawler's Nest before I needed to go to bed. Thanks to Kitty and Omoi for helping me with the coffer, and depending on when I get home tonight hopefully I will be able to finish my AF up tonight!

Finally, here is a picture of Achikasama, she is silly.
It feels very much like there is a currently a calm before the storm of the new expansion. I have to say that so far the new jobs (Dancer and almost definitely Time Mage) are far more interesting to me than the jobs from the last expansion. I hope we get some more information soon as its only about a month and a half before expansion is released. It seems this time that SE is holding their cards closer to their chest than they did last time. Ah well, the waiting continues.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

What is wrong?

Didn't have a good day. Sky was fine, but wanted to finish MNK before the next Salvage run, so that it can help with tanking and clearing out the first floor of Arrapago. So, got a party together and managed to start xping relatively quickly and did well until Fanya, our BRD and pretty cool new member of Versus, DC'ed :( So we waited a while, then invited a random COR, around this time, a great group of people came and started camping right on top of us. It wasn't even like we were at a highly contested camp, as we were in Bhaflau Thickets at the entrance to the Jade Sepulcher. Anyway, it didn't matter much because out RDM DC'ed so we had to get a replacement, then we were able to start again for a while, never actually being able to get much more than chain 7 or 8 because the other party was just slowly pulling one or two mobs, not enough to get decent XP but enough to screw up our XP. Now, its not like we came and camped on them and I am complaining about them because they should know when to move on, we were there first and they just decided to come along and camp on top of us. Oh well, I managed to get to 75 on MNK now I get to focus on merits for MNK which is a lot easier than many of my other jobs for meriting. I will be meriting Kick Attack and Counter rate, for tier one, and then Penance and Invigorate for tier two. I thought about getting Mantra for Salvage when people don't have HP cells but I don't know how useful it will be. Now that I have MNK that is capable of doing Salvage, I think we will split the group to farm more mobs quickly.

I have to leave work early today so I need to finish this up quickly. Since I finally got 75 and got access to the sweet fruits of end-game gear, I get to post my final TP and WS set ups. By final I mean the gear I have available now, and I am always willing to listen to what people have to suggest about gear, and I am not sure about some of the selections I have and I know there are better selections also, like Peacock Charm over Chivalrous Chain. Also, things like whether to TP build in Raja's Ring or in a Sniper's Ring. I did decide on thing, I am going to go with Rasetsu Sune-ate for WS for now. The reason being that I just got 20k Assault Points in Periqia and the other 20k Assault Point item is something I am looking at for a future job... dum, dum dum... what am I going to level next? Hmmm? Mwhahahaha. Anyway...

MNK TP Build:
Main: Destroyers
Ammo: Tiphia Sting
Head: Walahra Turban
Neck: Chivalrous Chain
Ear 1: Merman's Earring
Ear 2: Brutal Earring
Body: Shura Togi
Hands: Ochiudo's Kote
Ring 1: Ulthalam's Ring
Ring 2: Raja's Ring
Back: Amemet Mantle +1
Waist: Brown Belt
Legs: Byakko's Haidate
Feet: Dune Boots (Maybe occasionally Fuma Sune-ate)

MNK WS Build:
Main: Destroyers
Ammo: Tiphia Sting
Head: Optical Hat
Neck: Chivalrous Chain (Soil Gorget?)
Ear 1: Merman's Earring
Ear 2: Coral Earring
Body: Shura Togi
Hands: Ochiudo's Kote
Ring 1: Ulthalam's Ring
Ring 2: Sniper's Ring
Back: Amemet Mantle +1
Waist: Life Belt
Legs: Shura Haidate
Feet: Rasetsu Sune-ate

And thats it, I am very pleased. :) Dynamis tonight, them more XP I think, if Omoi can help me out. :)