Monday, September 22, 2008

Iz is dead.

Or at least he is dying! ^.^ Apparently he is really sick. I wasn't around this weekend so I can't confirm, but when I left on Thursday he was already getting sick. :( Well, hopefully he will be feeling better today!

Well, as I said, I wasn't around much this weekend because I was out of town for work. I got back home just in time for Salvage. We did Zhayolm which I generally hate just because we are always tight on time. Not so this time, we could have easily killed both frogs instead of just the one we normally do when we are going for the boss. This might be because Qtipus has started doing runs with us, and well, Gungnir is pretty intense easily for clearing lower floors. And it's not like it's just Gungnir either, he is definitely one of the most stacked DRG I have ever seen. And he was a dedicated DRG all through the dark days of DRG and now that the field is reversed and DRG is one of the best DD's in the game Qtipus is one of the best of them. Anyway, the reason we needed to worry about the boss at all, is the same reason we had to worry about the boss for the last 100 times that we have done Zhayolm: poor Hiryo's Usukane 25 head piece. Well, worry no more! Wooooooooooooooooooooooooot! Now he just has to finish farming up his O Ingots and he will have his new head piece for his MNK!

In other news, I just started some of the new quests for Sandy and Bastok in the past. They are pretty neat CS's, and I don't really know why people are complaining about a lack of missions because these are kind of like the missions for the expansion because you can do them for all of the cities without having to switch and you have to do them to advance the mission story lines. They are worth the time and the cutscenes are pretty intense. They are worth checking out.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Upcoming projects.

Ok, not this week, but starting next week I am going to start working on some new projects. This will include quick reference guides to all the ZNM and new NM from the last two updates, as well as quick guides for Salvage too. They will include maps and what I believe to be simple enough directions to help everyone be able to do these events decently from the beginning.

Before then I will tell you that we have already gotten a full set of key items for both La Vaule and Beaudeux already, and we should be trying them out eventually. I don't know what I was doing because I forgot to take screenshots of a lot of the mobs in Beaudeux. This is what I did get. This guy is a WAR that basically only does Shell Bash and a TP move called Skull Smash which can do quite a bit of damage and should be stunned if you can do that. It uses Mighty Strikes. Next, Now this one is a PLD, and has rather interesting behavior. It uses a move called Shell Slam if I remember correctly, where it will turn its back to the tank and slam into them causing narrow conal AoE damage with an Amensia effect. It also will turn around and put its back to the tank pretty often and I believe has a related Reprisal effect. Whether the Reprisal effect is directly related to the turning around I can't be sure, but the Reprisal effect can not be dispelled from what we noticed. Also, it's Ore Lob is narrow conal AoE too, and any tank should be able to handle it but anyone behind them could get annihilated, like poor Blaize. :) Now Bres is weird. It is a Fomor MNK, but it only uses Kick Attacks. It can use Dragon Kick which can do a very large amount of damage, but I believe it can also kill you in more ways than just the damage. I was completely healed, and only got hit for about 200 then about 600 on a Dragon Kick, but still died. This was on my MNK. It will definitely require more testing. Finally, is the Goblin, Oilycheeks. I don't have a picture of him, but I do have a pic of his drops. This guy's trick is to drop Goblin Mines, which I believe are activated by movement, because when we stopped moving they didn't seem to go off as fast. The problem becomes if people move a lot then he will put out more Goblin Mines, causing more damage. I do think that the Goblin Mines will go off eventually, but he will only put out one set at a time. Outside of that, it isn't that difficult.

I want to mention Salvage really quickly, because we have been having some luck. Darkdawn has started coming to Salvage pretty regularly with us now, and last week they were very lucky to get both Ares Body 35 and Ares Head 35 in the same run. And to match that, we got those same exact drops last night. This time the Ares Head going to Izman, which is his third 35 piece but only his second Ares piece. Then shortly after, while we were joking that the only person left that could even use an Ares 35 Body was me, for my WAR or DRG, it dropped. LOL So, now that can go in the pile to wait for me to have 80 bazillion gil. LOL

So, more projects coming in the short term, but until then here is a picture of Pot. He is bad ass. :)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

On the cheap #4: Dragoon.

Ahh, Dragoon, my first job. Also, one of the jobs that I have been working on rebuilding for quite some time. Dragoon today is not your father's Dragoon. Today it is one of the best DD's in the game. Period. In any situation. Anyone that tells you different is a merciless twat with their head so far up their asses they can use their own eyeballs as glasses. I won't claim it is the best, because it does have limitations, just like all of the other DD jobs, but it is so much better than people expect. One of it's old limitations was the horrible gear selection it had, but today it has essentially been added to the "plate" class of armor about the time that Salvage came out, and it has access to just about every good set of DD gear outside of the original Haubergeon class of armors. It also has access to the second highest base damage class of weapons, and it's highest weapons even have nice additional bonuses on them. The thing though that really makes the difference is the Jumps. Two extra full TP giving attacks which can crit and DA and everything else a regular attack can do. It may not seem like much but when they are merited down they really can add to the TP build of a Dragoon.

The really hard part about picking gear for a Dragoon is trying to build a 6-hit set-up. This is a personal preface I need to make about 6-hit set-ups: Even if in general the goal is to get to a 6-hit set-up, there are some places where a 6-hit build is more important than others, luckily for Dragoon those places where it is more beneficial (XP, Einherjar, Dynamis, etc.) the WS of choice is likely to be Penta Thrust. For places where were is it less important, because of sub choice or need to make a specific skillchain, the WS of choice is likely to be Wheeling Thrust. The reason this difference matters so much is because of the additional TP you are going to gain from Penta Thrust, which is up to 4 additional TP, while Wheeling Thrust will give you none. Just so you know, pretty much all of the decision making about Dragoon is based on the idea that you are subbing SAM. It really is the best sub for Dragoon in my opinion. Ok, time for a little TP math. Base TP for all the best Polearms except for some HQ's is 13.3. The base Store TP for subbing SAM is 15. The normal universally good Store TP gear is a Rajas Ring and a Brutal Earring for a total of 6 Store TP that you are always going to have. In 6 hits that will get you to 96 TP just 4 TP short of your what you need. As noted before though, Penta-Thrust gives you 4 extra TP to round you out perfectly to 100TP. As you increase the amount of Store TP you require fewer hits to get to 100TP, and at +5 Store TP you get to 100TP with just the first hit of any weaponskill landing.

All that being said I would say that it is not something to worry about that much if you can get to a 100TP set up with some amount of hits on Penta Thrust. Some people worry about this more than others, but in the end it just isn't as important to a DRG as it is with some other jobs. DRG/SAM gets Meditate and two different Jumps that can have added TP with Barone gear. That is not to say that it isn't important, just that there can be ways to "cheat" to get to 100TP through a couple of different routes if you don't have the gear to get more Store TP or have better gear than the Store TP gear needed to get to a true 100TP set up. Try to get a 100TP set up on DRG, definitely, but in my opinion it is slightly less important as SAM, WAR or DRK. If you disgree, that is fine, and you can tell me, but in the end it isn't going to matter very much because you can't really do anything about it without the Askar or Aurum bodies and then you will we in a situation where you will always have a 6-hit set-up in decently optimal gear.

Anyway, lets get to the gear, but first the rules of the On the Cheap series.

1. You can't be dumb. Sorry, if you are dumb, I can't help you. If you are the kind of person that hears something and then sticks to it no matter what, just quit now. If you can't adapt to changes in the game, quit. If you refuse to do something because you don't think that should be the play style of the game, then just fucking die in a fire. Flexibility is key, the more we learn about things in the game, the more we improve the play style and the more things change.

2. You have to really be an end-game player. I am not expecting you to have every title in the game, and have done ever mission everywhere, but I do expect you to have done main story-line content. This should be a goal of an end-game player at the very least. Zilart should be finished up to at very least Sky, CoP should be finished up until the end, and Aht Urhgan up until the end. If you don't have these, or at least most of it and trying to get to the end, then you aren't an end-game player, you are just lazy or your are just making pretend.

3. You have to be able to do some end-game events. I am not demanding that you be in a full-time HNM LS or anything, but you should have access to a LS that does at least some of those end-game areas/events. If you don't then you really aren't an end-game player, you are just a player with a job at 75.

4. You have to be willing to spend at least a little bit of gil. Sure, this series is called "On the Cheap" but it is not called "On the Gimp" so you will need to spend some gil getting some of the gear that you need. I am not going to tell you to get all HQ gear unless it is cheap, and I will also indicate expensive items that you will need anyway, or cheap items that are good replacements. This is like the Frugal Gourmet for FFXI. Yes, I know, none of you got that reference. :(

So here we have TP gear for Dragoon:

Weapon: Some people like to pretend that there is some kind of huge difference between the Thalassocrat and the Mezraq when in reality the difference is so small as to be non-existent for the purposes of testing. In the end the Thalassocrat is the better choice by a very slim margin, but if you already have a Mezraq then there really is no reason to switch unless you can make money on the deal. I have a signed Mezraq that was given to me by friends way back when they were super expensive, and I am not going to get rid of it. Either way you go you will not end up badly at all.

Head. This is pretty easy, get a Walahra Turban to start. This should only be an issue if Dragoon is your first job to 75. The best but reasonably obtainable head piece is the Askar Zucchetto. It will take some time to get the Askar but it is a low impact item on time and effort compared to anything that is better. In the interest of inclusion and completeness, you can also use an Optical Hat but Dragoon isn't lacking for accuracy in general so it is not really that much of a demand as a Walahra Turban.

Neck. Ok, the options here are Chivalrous Chain and Spectacles. Normally, I suggest the Spectacles over the Chivalrous Chain, but the Chain's Store TP actually has an effect on the number of hits from Penta Thrust that have to land to get to 100TP. This is just a case of one stat outweighing the benefit of another stat.

Earring. Ahh, finally an area with a little variety. As always the first earring you should get is the Brutal Earring. It's the best universal earring for almost all melee jobs in the game. After that, there is no definitive earring like there is for many other jobs. The next best earring for Dragoon is the Assault Earring which mixes accuracy and attack into a nice little combo. Alternatively, an Ethereal Earring is also a good option but definitely not up to par with the other two. Finally, you can use the old reliable Coral Earring or the HQ of it, the Merman's Earring. They are both good attack, but lack any other benefit that the other earrings offer. As a side note, you might want to pick up a Dragoon's Earring from Chamrosh, which is a Colibri NM in the new ZNM system. There is no reason not to use it with Angon, and it will save you a little bit of gil. Maybe even have it swapped in after you do a WS, but I doubt its worth the effort.

Body. And here is where things get long and complicated. Ok, to start, lets do the sub-optimal choices, because Dragoon even today has relatively limited choices when it comes to body gear. Before I start I do want to mention that there are even more choices than these because they involve much more work than those that I am going to list here, and are in general beyond what I would think of as "On the Cheap". The best of the rest starts with the Homam Corazza which has a ton of accuracy and the Triple Attack bonus really puts it over the top. Since most Dragoons should be eating meat now, the Homam Corazza has a ton of accuracy to support the meat without having to worry about hit rate. The next step down is the Assault Jerkin which was the old reliable body piece for Dragoon's for a long time. It has a little bit of accuracy, but quite a bit of attack to increase damage. It's a decent piece and can carry you for a long time until you get something better. The next option down is the Barone Corazza though it lacks the accuracy and takes a cut in attack it is still a decent body piece because of the Regen and also the additional TP gain on Jumps, which can partially fill in for the lack of a 6-hit build too. After that, the last of the off options is the Scorpion Harness or the Pahluwan Khazagand with the Pahluwan body taking the slight lead with the boost to Crits and the slightly higher HP, but they both ultimately serve the same purpose by having +10 accuracy. The optimum body piece for DRG that is looking to be frugal is the Askar Korazin. It has the requisite Store TP for a "true" 6-hit build for DRG, it basically has the attack and STR of a Haubergeon and it has Double Attack which is always nice. Now, there are even better pieces than the Askar Korazin, but again they are beyond the scope of this guide, but I might think about adding the ZNM HNM drops after the next update, I need to do the fights first to know how difficult it is to get them.

Hands. The tip top of Dragoon hands are the Homam Manopolas followed closely by Dusk Gloves for the simple reason that Accuracy should generally be favored Attack by about 2 to 1. Dusk Gloves don't have enough attack to justify them over the Accuracy given by the Homam Manopolas. The Askar Manopolas have decent haste and some DEX which can help with accuracy a bit too. Not exactly as good as Homam but still very good. With the cheap cost of the Dusk Gloves now, I don't think there is a reason to be without them so there really isn't a need to go much further, but in this case I will mention the Aurum Gauntlets, because even though they do have negative accuracy, the other bonuses on the gloves are kind of nice. I doubt I would use them, but if you are hard up for money they could work too. There are a bunch of other hands that you could use including the Tarasque Mitts but with the availability of Dusk Gloves and other free alternatives I wouldn't spend more than the cost of the Tarasque Mitts on anything else.

Rings. The Rajas Ring is the "must have" as usual for any two-hander. You can't really beat it's stats, the Store TP is needed for any hope of a 6-hit build, and it is so good that it should be used universally on many different jobs. The next ring you should consider is the Ecphoria Ring because it can help you get to one less hit needed from Penta Thrust for a 6-hit build or will let you get to a 6-hit build using the new WS Drakesbane. The next best reasonable ring is the Ulthalam's Ring having good Accuracy and Attack. After those two rings, it is just more accuracy rings, starting with the cheapest (i.e. free), the Blood Ring then the Sniper's Ring or the Woodsman Ring will also suffice.

Back. If you have read any of the previous "On the Cheap" series, then you already know that the answer to this is the Amemet Mantle +1. Everything else is much more expensive and not worth the price difference.

Waist. The Swift Belt is worth the time and the effort. I wouldn't skimp on that for the waist slot, especially because the other options for this slot aren't anywhere as good. The alternatives are the Warwolf Belt which is decent all around, the Life Belt for more accuracy which you probably don't need, and the Potent Belt for a slightly more balanced piece, but if I didn't have a Swift Belt, I would probably pick up a Swordbelt +1 because I think it would generally boost my per swing damage the most overtime. If you can get your hands on a Wyrm Belt then that is the best waist piece you can use for TP build after the Swift Belt and it is also probably the best possible Jump waist piece.

Legs. Again the best is going to come from Omega, the Homam Cosciales should be the goal of pretty much all Dragoons and is pretty much the end-point for Dragoon legs in end-game. The problem is that after the Homam Cosciales there is no easy or cheap to obtain haste gear for the legs for Dragoon. There are several decent accuracy and DD legs varying from the very accurate Drachen Brais +1 and Askar Dirs to the more damage oriented Galliard Trousers and Pahluwan Seraweels. I should also mention the Barone Cosciales which can be used full-time if something better is not available for TP build, but they should definitely be kept for Jumps because the added TP bonus can be great for when you miss too much on a Penta Thrust and need to make up some TP to make sure you still keep your six hit build for that 100TP phase.

Feet. Finally, the end of the TP build for Dragoon and a slot with some decent options too. The best option, following the trend for Dragoon, are the Homam Gambieras. Great accuracy and the best haste in the slot available for a reasonable cost. Close to the Homam Gambieras but still a smidge behind them are the new Aurum Sabatons which have great stats but just a little less haste. After the Aurum Sabatons, the Dusk Ledelsens are next with equal haste, but lacking the bonus accuracy from the Aurum feet. The last couple of options lack the haste, and therefore are definitely a step down, but are still viable until something better comes along. The Amir Boots have good accuracy and attack, and the Barone Gambieras are decent damage dealing feet.

And there we finally have the potential TP build options for Dragoon. There are many more different options for Dragoon just because it doesn't have the old-school generally available good gear that many other jobs had. I would say that some of the basic good gear is harder to obtain than for Monk or Samurai but to balance that, the cost of much of this gear is minimal to non-existent. Also, you should consider what gear you are going to use for Jumps which should have it's own macro equipment swap, noting that the modifier for Jump is VIT, but High Jump has no adjustment. You don't have to have every piece swapped for you Jumps, but there are some pieces that are so good they should not be ignored. Now, onto WS equipment.

Head. This is a pretty easy for the most part. The Wyvern Helm is a good and cheap option for Dragoon weaponskills. A very good potential alternative would be the Askar Zucchetto with more accuracy traded for losing only 1 STR. In a pinch, the Optical Hat can be used for Penta Thrust if you need the accuracy or lack anything else.

Neck. For starters, the appropriate weaponskill gorget from Sea is probably going to serve you best, so find the one that you need for each weaponskill and get them made. At a minimum, Shadow Gorget for Penta Thrust and Flame Gorget. If you don't have those yet, then a Chivalrous Chain is the best way to fill the gap.

Earrings. Ok, first lets start with the Brutal Earring. It has the DA you are going to want for any of your WS's, and the Store TP you are probably going to need to get a 6-hit build, or at least close to it. After that the most frugal option to me is the Minuet Earring which is a great balance of WS mods and cost. An easily competitive alternative is the Fowling Earring, which has slightly less for WS mods and is more expensive, but the accuracy is permanent. I would avoid the Triumph Earring because I don't think the cost equates to the additional benefit of one more WS mod, but if you already have a Bushinomimi from another job, then that would be the perfect cheap alternative.

Body Well, outside of the Hecatomb Harness and the Drachen Mail +1 this list is going to look very much like the TP-build options, so lets start with those two options. The Hecatomb Harness is probably the best piece that fits the role of the On the Cheap series, it is not cheap, and it is still relatively tough to get, but it is so good that it is worth the effort. The STR and the Accuracy are pretty much unparalleled, and it will serve you well on several different jobs. The Drachen Mail +1 is more of a middle of the pack option but it is a WS only piece. The STR and Attack are nice but it does lack accuracy if you need it. It should also be mentioned that it can also be used for Jump because it has good offensive stats and VIT. Of the repeats from the TP-build section the Askar Korazin is the best, with the STR, Attack and Double Attack for the best damage output, and also the Store TP for critical extra TP on your WS to make sure that you can maintain a 6-hit build even with Wheeling Thrust. After these options, you are only left with Attack or Accuracy options. For the Attack options, the Assault Jerkin, then the Barone Corazza are both ok, but definitely not as good as the previous options. The Accuracy options can be useful for lower accuracy situations but with alternative Accuracy to be found in other slots, they are probably the last place you want to go for WS. That being said, the Homam Corazza is the best option for low-accuracy situations, followed by the Pahluwan Khazagand then finally the Scorpion Harness.

Hands. Hecatomb wins out again here, with the Hecatomb Mittens being the optimal choice. A good second choice are the Drachen Finger Gauntlets +1. Both of these items have the STR and DEX you are going to want for good WS damage. After these two hands, there are many different Attack or Accuracy hand pieces that you can go with, but they are far too numerous and also a far sight worse than both of these options. I do want to mention the Gigas bracelets here though (the Pallas's Bracelets and the Alkyoneus's Bracelets, for example) because I don't think you should use them. The reduction in DEX undercuts the higher STR for several reasons; the both are modifiers on most of the good DRG WS, the loss of DEX works to decrease your accuracy, and the loss of DEX will decrease your potential to crit. Now this wouldn't have mattered much before unless you liked to use Skewer, but with the addition of the Drakesbane WS, the ability to crit on a good WS is now available and this should be considered before pulling DEX out of your WS set.

Rings. The first ring you should have is the Rajas Ring. The STR and DEX can't be beat and you will need the Store TP for a 6-hit build in any case. The other ring should be dedicated to more STR for WS damage. The Flame Ring is the upper end of my frugal range, but I believe a worthy investment after you have other staples down. If you want to put off the Flame Ring then a Ruby Ring will be just fine while you work to finish up more important items.

Back. Amement Mantle +1, done.

Waist. Probably the best option here is the Warwolf Belt with all the WS mods that you want. You can also use a Potent Belt if you need more accuracy for Penta Thrust, but it is only a marginal increase in accuracy with a pretty large cut in WS mods.

Legs. The cheap and easy starting point here are the Barone Cosciales with a little bit of STR and some decent attack. Alternatively, with a little more STR and accuracy instead of attack are the Pahluwan Seraweels. Both are good, and I personally use the Pahluwan Seraweels but either are good for WS purposes. A step up from there in STR but without any addition bonuses are the Fourth Division Schoss. I have not tested these but 4 STR is pretty nice for essentially a free piece of gear. Finally, the best reasonable piece for the legs slot are the Aurum Cuisses. They have good STR and Accuracy and they can be used for Jump with the nice bonus to VIT too.

Feet. Finally, the last slot. Hecatomb Leggings, by far, are the way to go. Nothing is close for Dragoon in this slot. Lots of STR and DEX is exactly what you need. After the Hecatomb Leggings there is a big drop, but still some pretty good options. The next option are the Rutter Sabatons, which have good stats and are easily available from a pop NM in Molvopolis. The AH option are the Barone Gambieras which are just a slight step down from the Rutter Sabatons in STR. The problem with the Barone Gambieras is that the cost is kind of steep for something that has a better alternative, and I don't know if it is worth the cost. Almost equal are the Fourth Division Schuhs and the Askar Gambieras both of which have the 3 STR of the Rutters but no other good WS mods on them, but they are free so they might be a better option than the Barone Gambieras depending on your income. Finally, the cheap AH option are the Heroic Boots. Just to emphasize, these are the cheap AH option and should be treated as such. They only have 2 STR and nothing else of value, so keep that in mind and don't sit on these for very long.

And there you have it! Dragoon On the Cheap is finally done! This was a lot harder and longer than I expected it to be to put together, but I think I have covered pretty much all of the option that should be available to anyone that is trying to be the best they can without breaking the bank or being wasteful. I do want to mention that there needs to be some testing on Drakesbane which became available as I was finishing up this guide. It is a four-hit WS with a Crit hit TP modifier, which should make it the strongest WS that Dragoons have available. There is some new gear that is available in the update that could be good for Dragoon but I can't tell yet how difficult they are get so I didn't add them. I will revise this once the quality of the gear and the difficulty in obtaining it becomes more clear. Well, I hope you like this guide because Dragoon was my first job and still one I look at with great pride, even if I barely use it any more.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Were you distracted?

So, last night while everyone was running around looking for mythic weapon skills or fighting AV, our happy little band headed out to La Vaule to do some NM hunting. There are now 8 NM in the area that appear to be on about a 8 hour timer. They are all relatively difficult but we were able to beat them all with 8-9 people. I will give a run down on each, how we fought them and the moves they tended to use.

A quick note about all of the mobs we encountered in La Vaule, none of them appeared to use their two hour. All of them drop a box of some kind that is related to Campaign, and we got 3 other drops from them which I will detail below. We had no THF or /THF for any of the kills.

These are in no particular order.

First is Coinbiter Cjaknokk, it is a DRK but I didn't get any pics of it. It hits pretty hard compared to the rest of the NM's. It's special move (if I remember it right) is Shoulder Slam or Tackle, which is pretty high damage directional AoE. It was turned the wrong direction at one point and killed three mages who all had Stoneskin up. Outside of that, it uses regular DRK spells like Absorb-TP and Dread Spikes but that is about it. We did not get any special drops from this guy. Suggested fighting with tank in a corner to prevent others from getting hit with the Shoulder Slam move, but outside of that it was a pretty normal fight.

Second, Argios a Gigas RNG. It uses Catapult, Grand Slam and Power Attack, all of which start off very strong but appear to get weaker as it's HP is reduced. Grand Slam is probably the worst, but it is stunnable. We held it in it's spawn area after clearing the Morbol that is there, and killed it normally and pretty easily. At lower HP, it started using a move called something like Debilitating Hurl, which appeared to be a stronger version of Catapult with a different animation, but by the time it started using it, it wasn't doing much damage. Only got the box from it.

Third, All-Seeing Onyx Eye which is a Ahriman SCH. This mob will spam a directional line-of-sight Charm and should be tanked backwards, with any DD standing behind the mob. It will also use the full range of Helix spells. It's normal spells appear to have all SCH effects when cast, meaning they are AoE and they have a fast cast effect on them. They are not so strong to have wipe potential but they can put a hurt on your tank and melee when it uses fast cast AoE AM's which it did more and more as it's HP fell. It can also use Level 5 Petrify. It did not drop anything but it's box.

Fourth, Cogtooth Skagnogg is an Orcish Warmachine, presumably a RNG type. This mob probably had the weakest defense of all the mobs, but did the most AoE damage. It had several difference AoE ranged attacks, including Fountain and Blast Bomb, but also new moves like Sticky Grenade which gave Gravity, and Scatter Shot (I believe that was the name) which gave Blind and Silence effects. We ended up pulling it down into the river to loss any links when it was pulled and just kited it, which even with Bind and Gravity was not difficult with how slowly it moved. Also, it can be kited like Kaiser Behemoth in Limbus, where you get just far enough ahead of it then stop so it starts using a TP move, then run out of range. This allows for rather easy kiting. It dropped the Llwyd's Clogs as can be seen above along with it's box.

Fifth is Draketrader Zlodgodd, a DRG. We assume this is a DRG but it never used Call Wyvern or summoned a Wyvern. It was also the hardest mob that we fought last night. It is pretty normal, and used the normal Wings Orc TP moves, but the reason we assumed it was a DRG was because it could use Jump. When it used Jump it used it three times in a row, and as it's HP dropped it used the trio of Jumps more and more often. These Jumps did very high damage, and would drop a PLD/WAR to 300 HP very easily. You can run out of range of the Jumps, even if the first one hits you. When tanked with Shadows, no one was able to keep up shadows with how often it used the triple Jumps. We ended up pulling it to the zone to clear aggro, then kited it around the starting area. Generally, even if the first Jump lands on the kiter, it will stop to try to do the second Jump giving the kiter space and making it pretty easily kitable even if the kiter does need to have a good amount of curing. It didn't drop anything outside of it's box.

Sixth is Falsespinner Bhudbrodd which was either a MNK or a DNC. Technically, it swung with both arms making it a MNK, but the only notable TP moves that it really used were the "Dances". Battle Dance and Berserker Dance were easy to deal with, but it did use Fanatic Dance at 3% but was killed shortly thereafter so how bad it could have been if it had Charmed earlier is unknown. We might have just gotten lucky with that one. It never used any steps or anything else to indicate that it was a DNC so I am leaning toward MNK that they wanted to look like a DNC on this one. It also did not get anything but the box from this mob.

Seventh was Feeblescheme Bhogbigg which I assume is a SCH or BLM. I didn't get a direct shot of it, but I did get a shot of one of it's "grenades" which is the reason that lead me to believe that it was a SCH in the first place. Adelheid Sturm uses these in Campaign and she clearly is a SCH type. It did not use any Helix spells though, and it did use -ga spells, so probably something like BLM and SCH. The grenades were generally of the kind seen in Campaign, like Bind, Silence, Paralyze, etc. The grenades would randomly target someone then "blow up" causing an AoE of their effect. We just generally ignored these, but it also had a "Vial" which needed to be killed because it did not "blow up" but would continue to move around causing their effects to whoever was close to it. It either had very low HP or it dies like Chigoes do, dying instantly from a JA. Outside of that grenades and vials, the first is a pretty straight up BLM fight. It dropped the Catalyst. We have yet to be able to test this item.

Finally, the Gnole NM, Rugaroo which was a MNK mob. This fight was much less difficult than it was annoying. Rugaroo would use Call of the Moon five times in a row, making it very difficult to do damage to without a RNG. When it was not using Call of the Moon in this manner it did use Asuran Claws, and other normal Gnole TP moves. This was the second mob that we killed, and we didn't really think much of the difficulty of the fight. It dropped the Danzo Tekko in addition to the boxes.

Look forward to the new NM's in Castle O and Beadeaux in the next couple of days.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Emo = comments?

No wonder so many people post comments on Myrrial's blog. I don't often write emo posts, but I guess that if I want people to comment more often I should just threaten to slit my wrists every other day. :) Well, for my gil problem, I am working on it, and I have about enough to get about 2 and half more Orichalcum Ingots. Since I already have 5 O. ingots supplied by Izman, I only need 7 more, and hopefully after this weekend I will only need about 4 more.

Ok, enough of my gil woes, time to focus on something more positive. The other night Iz and I duoed a couple of the Avatars and we are going to try to do this more often. It's actually pretty fun, and the money reward is decent but the time it takes to run around to all the fights can get to be pretty long for 10k per fight.

I have some new projects that I am going to work on even though I have kind of stalled on my On the Cheap post for Dragoon. They should be coming down the pipe soon, and they are more segmented which means I should be able to get them out more often than the On the Cheap series.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

You never realize how poor you really are until you need gil.

Well, I need gil. I whole lot of gil. This is the first time I have really needed gil because there is something I need which doesn't have a cheaper equivalent that was at least close to the more expensive item in quality. But here I am, a guy that just accepted being poor as a matter of existence, staring down a huge bill for the next item that I need. For whatever reason, lack of time, lack of planning, lack of savings, I have a lack of income. The decrease in price for Limbus is going to help me at least a little bit, but 30k a week isn't going to make or break me. My latest farming has been going well, but the market for my consumables just isn't that great and I am still using it to level my leathercrafting. Iz and I are considering doing Avatar fights to make money which you can do once a day, but the time it takes to do the fights is pretty high and with Omoi's new work schedule I don't think we will be able to get them in every day which is the only way to make it seem like a reasonable investment. There are of course ENM's and KS30's that we can do, and I am going to set up a strict schedule for them not just for me but because Iz has been demanding them too, but it just seems so overwhelming. Why do I feel like I have hit a brick wall when it comes to gil? Well, I finally got my Hikazu Hara-ate, and besides my normal thanks to Iz, Omoi, Blaize and Darkdawn, I need to specifically thank Celestria because she simple just passed it to me. I need to explain a little bit more to fully understand the situation. Celestria runs her own Salvage LS that Omoi, Iz and I are in, and we have pulled in a couple of other Versus members from time to time to round out runs, while at the same time, the Versus group does runs too, and Celestria and Blaize come quite often with us, and we pull in a couple of people from her group from time to time too. So we end up doing a lot of our runs together, and even though the leaders of the runs still decide the runs, cell distribution and other details, we already know how to do the zone inside and out, all of the NM's, all of the mobs, all of the bosses, everything. We do have our own lotting lists for each group, but there are times when those prioritize aren't as important because we work together so often for the rewards. When the Usukane 35 body dropped, I did lot because I did have it as priority but I didn't say anything else about who could lot because I knew that Celestria also needed it. I sat there for a second, and before I could say anything because I still was too torn to tell Celestria that she couldn't lot just because priorities on this particular run favored my random luck, Celestria said "Oops, I passed! :)". And there you have a small snapshot of the personality of the best Salvage leader on Odin (if not across all servers). A friend of mine in another LS the other day mentioned that he heard that we were doing well in Salvage and that we were known for being a good Salvage group. I had to promptly tell him that this was not true, Celestria is by far the best Salvage leader, hell she is just an amazing leader in general. Celestria is far better at Salvage than anyone I know and she taught us almost all of the advanced knowledge that we have about Salvage. She really helped to elevate the quality of Versus runs.

So thanks to Celestria!

But here is the rub. I have been working to do Salvage because I wanted the Usukane gear, and I wanted my friends to get the gear that they wanted. I knew that the cost was inevitably going to be very high in terms of gil for buying the items to upgrade the gear, but I was going to cross that bridge when I came to it. It was a far off problem, because we still had a lot to learn and a lot to work for to get to that point. I got my Usukane head piece just a few weeks ago, and Iz just straight up gave me 5 O. Ingots to help to complete it, but in that time I have been farming, crafting and trying to buy at least one more O. Ingot and I haven't even been able to get enough gil to buy one more O. Ingot. I was absolutely elated when I got my Usukane body piece, but when I logged on the next day, I just felt completely overwhelmed. Now, I am not going to be Myrrial and complain about not having the gil for days on end, or slit my wrists or contemplate quitting or anything, but it is quite a daunting task that I have been completely ignoring because I thought it would be putting the cart before the horse. I like to approach things by completing what I believe to be the hardest part first because after that everything is easier, but I think I may have misjudged this one.