Sunday, March 29, 2015

Rest In Peace Zach

The Realms of Despair have been in a state of shock and grief following the tragic news of the death of one of the immortals of the game - Zach. The official statement from the administrators was:
(1033)  Kali         03/24/15     Zach
Recently we have learned that the Realms of Despair has lost one of its young bright stars.  The family of Zach has contacted the immortal staff, as well as some of his mortal friends who reached out, to let us know that Zach has passed away.  Zach has been a long and devoted player of the Realms. He recently joined the immortal ranks and inspired us with his enthusiasm and vigor for bringing positive changes to the game for his fellow players.  We are sad to have lost a vital player, but more importantly, we are
devastated to have lost a good friend and a good person.
As a tribute, we are promoting Zach to level 56, True Immortal, at which point we will move him to retired status.  As a lasting tribute, the pedagogic spirit in the Umbrageous Ruins will be renamed to the pedagogic spirit of Zach so that he may teach and train all those would follow his ways.  In this way his memory will live on.
I personally wasn't close to Zach though had interacted with him on a few occasions and had nothing bad to say about him. His loss has rippled throughout the realms touching players in different ways.

A week later and I am still in shock and confused about it.

I'll miss him and feel deeply for his family and friends.

Rest in peace Zach.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Arcane Awesomeness

Things have been going really well lately over in the Order of Arcanes. I've been happy about the amount of activity going on, new members joining and general atmosphere within the organisation. This was best highlighted by over the weekend where we all three of our leaders leading successful runs with a total of seven different members joining in on the action.

The first run was led by Ashetaka our number one to the Mountain of Lost Souls. The aim was to make some shades of light which are always in demand. It had been a long time since I had done that run myself. Despite a couple of minor hiccups along the way it went well. Using my barbarian I managed to get a couple of killing blows on some of the mobs along the way like this:
Your rending grip injures The bringer of Salvation!
The bringer of Salvation is DEAD!!
With the final blow, Salvation pulls back its mask revealing the face of a demon imp!
The bringer of Salvation says 'You have brought me the Salvation I sought.. '
The bringer of Salvation says 'Here is the Redemption you were looking for... May it bring you closer towards your own deliverance.'
From inside a gaping wound, Salvation pulls out a large object.
The bringer of Salvation gasps his last breath and blood spurts out of his mouth and ears.
The bringer of Salvation has no gold.
The corpse of The bringer of Salvation holds:
     (Glowing) the darkened robe of atonement
     (Humming) a small rune covered symbol named, 'Salvation'
     (Humming) a large rune covered symbol named, 'Redemption'
After this run I led a run to the Barren Wastes to make some leather leggings with a feathered trim. The first part of this involved killing the enormous winged beast. This part was easy enough though I learnt it is a lot easier with either 2 barbarians or 2 thieves instead of one of each. After this we did the giant serpent. Most of the run notes I see for this mob suggest using barbarians but I've found thieves work much better. With three thieves running in, circling and fleeing out when necessary we brought the serpent down with no problems. In the end the wanderer turned up and made the leggings:
You give a roll of feathery beige fabric to The wanderer.
The wanderer ruffles his fingers through the feathers of the roll of fabric, then bend the scaley hide back and forth, testing its pliability.
The wanderer thinks, 'Hmmmm.'
The wanderer says 'Shouldn't be too difficult.'

The wanderer takes a few unidentifiable tools from a small pouch and begins to work on the fabric and hide.

The wanderer tugs at the finished product, testing its durability.
The wanderer says 'Not bad, I'd think.  If you like feathers.'
The wanderer gives you leather leggings with a feathered trim.
Finaly Sarakin led a run to Salburg to kill the trees that pop parts to make the Ancient Breastplate of the Forest Wanderer.

These mobs aren't too hard to kill but they take a long time even with three people. In the end though we killed them without too much difficulty:
Your slash rips an old willow tree!
An old willow tree is DEAD!!
An old willow tree falls, cutting off a few of its whip-like branches.
An old willow tree catches its guts in its hands as they pour through its fatal
An old willow tree has no gold.
The corpse of An old willow tree holds:
     the curled branches of an old willow tree
I am far from the best run leader though I like to think of myself as competent at most of easy runs and a few of the harder ones. Between these three runs it reminded me of a few of my aims when leading a run:
  • Make everyone feel welcome and that they are contributing
  • Be extra prepared when leading. Have extra tank potions, ice girths, back up characters, etc.
  • Be patient and explain everything - don't assume people have done this run before or remember all the details.
  • Don't waste time. Once set get going and go so you don't get caught out with a repop hitting at a bad time.
  • Know what to do when things go wrong (which they will at some point)
What I am most excited about though with these three runs is the potential of where we are going as an organisation and as individual players. We are improving our teamwork, learning each others strengths and weaknesses, building up knowledge of different areas and mobs while gaining some nifty new equipment. If we can keep this up we'll be able to run bigger mobs for better equipment in these areas. Hopefully in the not too distant future we'll be able to go after Khiurn'hai in the Mountain of Lost Souls, get the wanderer to make us some facestompers and dense wooden bracers in the Barren Wastes and maybe even take on Zharruk'din  in the City of Salburg.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Random Roundup

Been busy working on a few different projects within the Realms of Despair since my last post. Here's what I've been doing:

Murg's Tulip Collecting
The deadline for Murg's tulip collection came and I managed to hand in nine different bouquets of tulips. For this gained 18 glory from Akael who said that I came 25th overall in the quest. I really enjoyed this quest and thought it was a cleverly designed quest for the following reasons:
  • It was open to everyone of all levels of experience. People with their first character at level 10 could attempt it at the same time as people with over 100 avatars. While those with more experience and resources had an advantage everyone could participate.
  • It was open to people of all locations. One thing that I can find frustrating is when quests are run at 4am my time. This quest could be done at any time of the day for anyone.
  • Increased in difficulty as the quest progressed. The first few tulips were fairly easy to find but then you needed to keep track of what combinations you had handed in and what spare tulips you had.
  • It encouraged teamwork. It was difficult to do well in this quest on your own. Trading tulips, tips on mobs that popped the rarer tulips and teaming up to kill the hardest mobs was required.
  • It got people out to places and mobs they don't normally go to. It's always a good thing to do this and the rarer tulips could be found mostly in more obscure areas.
To me this was one of the best quests I can remember. The only downside was it did encourage a little staking and spam killing of some mobs. Overall it was a great quest and I came away with enough glory to get me a damage roll chunk added to an item. It just means I will need to work harder to get in to the top 10.

The Deck Again...
I found the deck again. Here's the result:

The Deck of Many Things lies in wait for a brave soul.
The Deck of Many Things says 'If you can find a card within me, you might be lucky enough to draw something of value.
However, once you submit to chance, you put yourself at the mercy of the cards.
The Deck of Many Things winks suggestively.

>g key deck
You get the Key to the Deck of Many Things from the Deck of Many Things.
The Key to the Deck shudders menacingly.
You drop the Key to the Deck of Many Things.
Vl'aresch gives you one gold coin for your sacrifice of the Key to the Deck of Many Things.
Be Forewarned : You could lose all that you own.
Sashell has been given the chance to draw from the Deck of Many Things.

>g card deck
You get a card from the Deck of Many Things.
A mystical being appears and points at you. Your senses reel as you are flung through the void to another place.
The card twists and wriggles in your hands.
A great flash of light envelopes the room, blinding you momentarily.
When your vision returns, you see that the Deck of Many Things lies before you once more.
It is highly recommended that you examine the deck before drawing from it. When you are ready, simply take the card.

>g card deck
You get a card from The Deck of Many Things.
You see that you have drawn the Ten of Swords.
What this card bodes for your future, only an immortal of level 57 or above can discover for you.
>tell loril hi loril can you please help me out with the deck?
You tell Loril 'hi loril can you please help me out with the deck?'

You are using:
<used as light>      (Red Aura) Shifting black flames
<worn on finger>     (Red Aura) (Humming) Set's ring of Power
<worn on finger>     (Red Aura) (Humming) Set's ring of Power
<worn around neck>   (Red Aura) (Glowing) Cloak of Bloodlust
<worn around neck>   (Red Aura) (Glowing) Cloak of Bloodlust
<worn on body>       (Red Aura) (Humming) Golden Plate
<worn on head>       a fallohide's leather cap
<worn on legs>       a fallohide's leather breeches
<worn on feet>       (Glowing) demonscale Boots
<worn on hands>      (Red Aura) Sin
<worn on arms>       (Red Aura) a shadowy pair of dragonscale arm guards
<worn about body>    a fallohide's cloak
<worn about waist>   a fallohide's pipeweed pouch
<worn about waist>   a fallohide's waist sash
<worn around wrist>  (Glowing) a crystal dragon bracer
<worn around wrist>  (Glowing) a crystal dragon bracer
<wielded>            (Red Aura) (Glowing) darkness
<dual wielded>       (Red Aura) (Glowing) darkness
<worn on ears>       ears of the fox
<worn on eyes>       (Red Aura) (Glowing) Visage of Bloodlust
<worn around ankle>  a turqoise anklet
<worn around ankle>  a blue, glassy chain
(type 'garb' for a list of all wear locations)

Loril tells you 'Oh damn...'

Loril bounces in on a fluffy, white cloud named Nine.

The deck of many things is once again shuffled and dealt by the Gods.

You smile happily.

Players near you in The Deck of Many Things:
| Loril          (God)                   | Within a Small Circle of Mystical Stones
| Sashell        (Guild of Spirit)       | Within a Small Circle of Mystical Stones

You are carrying 8 items and have room for 12 more:
     a rat tail
     a small birch chest
     an icicle wand
     a journal
     (Glowing) the mystic lantern of the ages
     an ancient dagger
     the Art Gallery key
     a card

>eat card
You try to nibble on a card...

Loril says 'I sure hope it's quick! I was just prepping to leave.'
>give card loril
You give a card to Loril.

Loril apologizes for her rude behavior.

Loril drops a card.

Loril sacrifices a card to Adendra.
Whispering voices fill the room and a faint breeze blows from somewhere...
There can be no escape from the destructive power of the Ten of Swords.

A cold breeze from the winds of never washes through the void.

You hrm. Hrm.

Loril says 'crumb'

You watch Loril gaze thoughtfully into space while rubbing her chin.

>say bad?
You wonder 'bad?'

Loril says 'Not great. What I need, though, is to remember how.'

Loril says 'Sorry. This may take a min or 2.'
You nod solemnly.

Loril chuckles politely.

A cold breeze from the winds of never washes through the void.
>say builds the suspense...
You say 'builds the suspense...'

Loril says 'I always check for the deck in the morning. :P'

Loril laughs.

Loril seems to agree.
You nod solemnly.
You hrm. Hrm.

>say last time i got this card i got -5% resist magic to an item
You say 'last time i got this card i got -5% resist magic to an item'

Loril says 'Win some... lose some ... :)'

You nod solemnly.

>say a small loss is ok
You say 'a small loss is ok'

Loril forces you to 'save'.

Loril says 'Welp, that should do it! :('

You hrm. Hrm.

>say what happened?
You wonder 'what happened?'

Loril wonders 'Sorry for the wait. :( I can send you back to the deck or to the
[]. Which would you prefer?'

>say [] will do
You say '[] will do'

Loril says 'Ah, that's half the fun! Figuring it out! ;)'

Loril hugs you.

>say thanks for your time
You say 'thanks for your time'

Loril says 'Take care. :)'

Loril says 'Oh, you're so welcome. :)'

Loril says 'Thanks for your patience.'

>say you too - and thanks for something to blog about
You say 'you too - and thanks for something to blog about'

>wink lor
You wink suggestively at Loril.

Loril says 'ahhhhhhh'

Loril seems to get a laugh from something saying, "heh heh heh".

Loril says 'Be kind. I'm an avid reader. ;)'

Loril says 'Read: fan'

>thank lor
You thank Loril heartily.

Loril says 'OK. Trans in 3 ...'

>wave lor
You wave goodbye to Loril.

Loril has transferred you.
I should have known from before that the Ten of Swords was not a good card and just disconnected that character until after the next reboot, but Loril was very polite and friendly about it. Maybe next time I'll have better luck...

Druid Dressups
Last week I finished off levelling my first character for the year - a sea-elf druid. The druid is the only peaceful class I don't have at least one avatar of before this one. They are not my favourite class as I find them a "Jack of all Trades but Master of None" kind of class though they do have a few niche uses I wanted to test out like tanking at Belial. After sorting through storage characters, a quick killing of some basic mobs and a couple of items from the donations room in Arcanes I had my druid dressed as follows:
You are using:
<used as light>      the sigil of A'enari
<worn on finger>     a scorched band of glass
<worn on finger>     a scorched band of glass
<worn around neck>   (Magical) (Glowing) a golden torque
<worn around neck>   (Magical) (Glowing) a golden torque
<worn on body>       (Glowing) (Humming) a dragonscale breastplate
<worn on head>       the shade helm
<worn on legs>       (Magical) Leggings of Arcane Magicks
<worn on feet>       (Magical) moccasins
<worn on hands>      (Magical) (Glowing) Blessed gauntlets of the Templar
<worn on arms>       (Glowing) (Humming) a pair of dragonscale arm-guards
<worn as shield>     (Glowing) (Humming) shield of the Valkyrie
<worn about body>    (Glowing) (Humming) a Cloak of Light
<worn about waist>   a blackened, mangled belt
<worn around wrist>  a lion-crested bracer
<worn around wrist>  (Glowing) (Humming) a Bracer of Light
<wielded>            an icy metal flange mace
<held>               (Magical) the Ruling Sceptre
<worn on ears>       (Glowing) a sliver of glass
<worn on eyes>       the shades
<worn on back>       [nothing]
<worn over face>     [nothing]
<worn around ankle>  a blue, glassy chain
<worn around ankle>  a turqoise anklet
A very basic, cheap and easy to get setup for a new druid. I'm looking forward to dressing it up properly though I will need to make some gold so I can create some items like Ravager Plate & Shield plus an Edo Helm. And on the plus side I should have plenty of free time to run some stuff this weekend.