Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Death by Goblin

Hit level 13 Red Mage last night before being ambushed by a pair of Goblin Butchers. Two Decent Challenges while I'm at 1/3 HP and still finishing off a Sapproling? Not a chance!

So this was my 6th death in total, and my 5th by Goblin ambush. Luckily Sargon was in the area.

Monday, July 27, 2009


I jumped on early this morning with the intent of rushing through 5 levels of RDM, but I had so much lag I barely made it through 2! I gave up after hitting level 12. I'm generally pretty lag free, so I'm not sure what the issue was.

I have a new profile pic, featuring my cute new hat (a gift from Sargon). I'll probably end up replacing the banner pretty soon as well. It looks pretty crummy.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Back to Red Mage

I hit WHM 22 this morning, so now it's time to go back and level RDM for awhile. This is my least favorite thing to do, but my hope is that I can get up to 15 pretty quickly. MY GOAL IS TO TAKE WHM TO 30, subbing RDM all the way, then get SMN at 30 and lvl that up as far as I can.

Here's my new armor for RDM. Wearing this seems really innapropraite, since I still consider myself a White Mage. I feel lime I'm doing cosplay.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Death, fashion and the legal drinking age!

First things first: I just hit 21. hooray, I'm old enough to drink! I was pretty close last week before I went on hiatus, and it only took a little bit of solo grinding, then a bit of partying with Sargon, to get me to 21, and then 1/5 of the may to 22.

Death: Of course, I died in the process. I've only died 5 times since I've started playing, and 4 of them have been in the exact same spot, right outside the outpost at Buburimu Penninsula. The first three times were all in a row, and all to the same two Goblins, who would come out of nowhere to beat me into the ground as soon as I started fighting or resting. This time it was a zombie. I was too busy chatting with Sargon to realize I was getting my behind kicked!

Fashion: Later, when a goblin started hanging around our camp area Sargon said "Goblins sure like you" (I revived me after my bout of goblin related deaths, so he knows the whole story). I replied "I think it's my hot pants". To which he replied "Maybe you should get some slacks".

Which is maybe a good idea. Except... the slacks are really ugly. So far I haven't found a single leg item that I like enough to replace the Hume Shorts that I started with. I know I'm handicapping myself by not keeping my leg armor current. But dammit, looks matter too! As soon as I find a descent looking skirt, shorts, leggings or whatever I'll totally change. In the mean time I'm staying away from anything that makes my butt look fat!

I have mangaed to put together a nice "around town" outfit. This is what I wear when I'm crafting, messing around at the auction house, or just exploring one of the cities.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


I haven't been able to play recently, but I was up early and decided I wanted to log in for an hour before work. But it looks like there was an update, and it will take at least an hour to download!


Thursday, July 16, 2009


I haven't been able to spend a lot of time playing recently. I'm back to work full time after my vacation, so my nights of staying up till 5am talking to every npc in Windurst are over (for now).

I guess the honeymoon is over? I've hit level 20 and my progress has slowed a little. Monsters are getting tougher, while finding a party isn't getting any easier. Combine that with my new work schedule and I think my progress is going to slow waaaaaaaay down.

Oh well.

I'm not quiting. I'll just have to play smarter.

Monday, July 13, 2009

To Jeuno!

Everyone kept asking me f I wanted an escort to Jeuno. I figured it would be super dangerous. But I made it there without once attracting any kind of monster attention. So hurray for me! You want to see the pictures, right?

Here I am at the giant bone thing that divides Meriphautaud Mountains.

And in front of the gates that connects Sauromugue Champaign to Jeuno.

And at the gate at port Jeuno.

And at one of the auction houses of upper Jeuno.

And chatting with Sargon.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Finally, level 20! I spent a few hours killing Sylvesteres and Mighty Rarabs near the outpost in Buburimu Peninsula. This went pretty well until I was killed twice in a row by the same Goblin Butcher! Both times he came out of nowhere while I was fighting something else and KO'd me before I knew what happened. Sargon was in the area the second time and brought me back around, then was kind enough to level sync with me to help me get revenge! I actually hit and passed 20 without even noticing!

Here's my new outfit, a Sand'o Tunic and Vagabond Hose. I'm a little disapointed in the Tunic, since it looks just like the Tunic I was wearing from level 8 to 12. I stuck with the Doublet from 12 until now, but I would really, really love to get a new outfit. The way my character looks is really important to me, and I'm tired of wearing the same old clothes!

Now that I've reached 20 I have all kinds of plans. First off is a trip to Jeuno to get my Chocobo liscense and explore. Then I'm heading back to Windurst to finish up some missions that were giving me some trouble. That should keep me busy for a few more levels!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Slow Ride

I was pretty excited to use my newly acquired Chocobo Tickets, and pretty disappointed to find out how short the ride was. Was able to get about two thirds of the way from Windurst to Tahrongi Canyon before my Chocobo disapeared. If I had known thatw as going to happen I would have just taken the outpost warp route I've been using recnetly. What a waste of time!

Still, riding was pretty cool. It didn't seem as fast as I thought it would, but I'd guess I was moving about twice as fast as normal? Plus, it looks cool!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Red Mage

I went ahead and leveled Red Mage up to 10. This will let me use it as my subjob until 20, and I guess after that I'll have to go back and do it some more. Leveling my subjob has so far been my LEAST favorite part of the game. Getting to wear some new armor and use a sword and some new spells was fun for about an hour. After that the process became a dull grind. I don't mind grinding for experience so much as a White Mage. I'm working to improve my main job, increase my level and explore the world. I get to see new places and fight new things. With the subjob I get none of this. I get to see the same places I explored 8 levels ago. I get to fight the same monsters I fought 8 levels ago. I don't get to improve the job I care about. Instead, I'm forced to improve a job I don't care about just to be effective.

I think that's the problem. I don't really want to play Red Mage. It just doesn't appeal to me. Same with Black Mage, and it seems like those are the only viable subjob options (that I have right now) for White Mage. I would totally be into leveling several other jobs, like Summoner, Dancer, Dark Knight and Corsair. Unfortunately, none of those options are available yet. I would actually like to take a stab at Thief, but I've been told that's a bad combination with White Mage.

I guess I'll just have to deal with it. I can get Red Mage up to 15, then hopefully switch over to Summoner right at 30. And then level Summoner a bunch... which is dull. Is there any method to leveling subjobs that keeps them from being a boring grind? Am I missing something obvious?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Around the world

I've seen so much! Sargon took me on a world tour last night, helping me gather the items for my subjob, guiding me through Valkrum Dunes and leading me. to each of the Crags so I could get my teleport crystal. This by itself would have been enough, but he also took the time to answer a whole lot of questions along the way.

I've selected Red Mage as my sub, and I currently have it at level 8. I plan to get it up to as soon as possible. I've read that Black Mage is actually a better option, but I really have no interest in leveling that job right now. My eventual goal is to unlock Summoner.

I also completed the quest that allows me to exit my house in any part of Windurst. What a huge time saver!

Friday, July 3, 2009

I'm a noob

Sargon asked if I had ever talked to the starter npc in Windurst. I thought he was talking about the Cardian I met early on, but he was actually referring to the Taru named Selele who hangs out at Widurst Woods gate. I thought I had spoke to her and that she didn't have anything interesting to say. Boy was I wrong!

I've been complaining that the game lacks instructionc, guides, tutorials and directions. Turns out that this npc could have told me everything I wanted to know! She walks you through the first 10 levels, suggestng when to go fight your first monsters, which monsters are too tough, when to check out the auction house, how to participate in Conquest, how to use crystals for synthesis and even when to head out to Tahrongi Canyon for the first time. I had figured most of this out on my own over timne, but seeing it all laid out for me really made me realize how difficult I had been making things for myself.

She also gave me a few thousand Gil and some useful items. I was totally broke after spending all my gil trying to level up clothcrafting, so this was hugely helpful!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Awesome: Here's a big thank you for Sargon. He knows why! I really, really appreciate it.

Crafting: I spent most of my time tonight turning yagudo necklaces into grass cloth. Fun! I was also able to answer several of my questions about clothcrafting, mostly by discovering that the weavers guild occupies two buildings, and that the one I missed is where all the information is!

Smack! I've switched over to club and shield, at least for now. I'm enjoying both the faster damage and better defense. Actually, that's a lie. I can't tell if the defense is helping at all!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


I got really excited when SE made the announcement about FFXIV at E3 a few weeks ago. I watched the trailer several times, spent the evening talking about it with my brother and most of that night digging around the internet for more info. This led me to the ZAM FFXIV forum, which at that moment was nothing more then links to the official FFXIV site and a whole lot of speculation. Reading the threads there got me even more excited about the game, and for awhile I was pretty convinced I wouldn't be able to wait a year until it's release. I was even considering sending a bunch of emails to SE begging to get in on the NA playtest.

The talk on the forum very quickly moved into the realm of asking how much the new game would be like FFXI, which quickly led to asking what parts of FFXI needed to be fixed, what could be learned from other games and what worked well and should be carried over. This is the point where it occured to me that playing FFXI could scratch my itch and hold me over until FFXIV. And that's pretty much how and why I started playing.

I've been keeping up with the FFXIV forum and I've noticed a few things that I find pretty... disturbing/amazing/insane. Granted, any forum is going to be populatedby people opinionated enough to post their opinions (myself included), but still...

- It seems like a huge amount of the forum population has a thriving, all consuming hatred for World of Warcraft. Not a passive indifference, or the dislike of someone who tried the game but decided it wasn't for them, but the kind of seething hatred usually reserved for the people who killed your family. This means that any conversation comparing FFXI to WoW, mentioning the merits of WoW or even making a casual reference to WoW quickly degenerates into nastiness and name calling.

This is too bad because it seems very, very likely that SE will make use of many of the ideas that have worked in WoW. This would include stuff like accessable solo and small group content, easy travel, seamless zones, easy party formation, quicker leveling, alternative ways to gain experience (like exploring and quests), more in game instructions and directions and... well, that's just the tip of the iceberg. This doesn't mean that FFXIV will be a clone of WoW ( despite what many, many people over at ZAM have been shouting). Rather, SE has the chance to learn from the success and mistakes of the current generation of MMO's. Like they did when they created FFXI.

- FFXI is not a flawless game. I'm new to it of course, but I have a little bit of previouss exprience with it, and I did some research before I started. I know that travel, waiting for parties and grinding for experience are all hidious time sinks. I know that soloing is very difficult (although apparently easier now then it used to be). There are other problems as well, but it seems to mee like these are the big ones. Time sinks are not fun. This is a universal rule of game design. I won't fault FFXI for being the way it is. It's an old game, part of a previous genration where time sinks were acceptable. I'm positive that SE recognizes these problems and will be addressing them in the new game. But...

It seems like there's a sizable number of people on the FFXIV forum that don't want these problems fixed. Conversations surrounding these issues have included such stunning responses as (and I'll be paraphrasing here since I did not have the forsight to bookmark specific threads):

1. Soloing shouldn't be an option, because this is an MMO and if you want to solo you should play FFXII.

2. Faster travel will ruin the game. I enjoy running everywhere. It makes the world seem larger. Better travel options would ruin that.

3. We can't get rid of the grind. If people want to play an easy mmo they should try WoW. Without the grind people would reach the level cap in a few months. Only noobs want an easy game. Hardcore players appreciate the grind.

4. Grinding should be the only way to gain experience. Nobody want to do quests where you just have to kill 10 of the same monsters. It's too easy and it gets boring fast.

5. Quests and in game instructions that help players find their way through the game make the game too easy. Noob's who can't just figure this stuff out on their own should go back to WoW.

It's kind of insane, isn't it? Clearly the game has problems, but so many of these players have been dealing with the problems for so long that they no longer see them as problems. Or they've developed a kind of badge of honor for having dealt with it so long. And if they had to deal with it, so does everyone else!

-There's some kind of crazy consensus that somehow SE is only interested in courting hardcore gamers, and has no interest in the enormous casual market that WoW and other games have managed to capture. The arguement is that because FFXI is clearly aimed at hardcore players, FFXIV will be as well. Except I'm pretty sure that's a false assumption. FFXI may have become a home for hardcore players, and it certainly comes from a generation where MMO's were much more about overcoming time sinks, but I doubt that SE ever inteded to drive away casual players in favore of hardcore ones.

While I can't imagine FFXIV will be accessable in the same ways as WoW is now, I find it hard to believe that SE won't be trying hard to entice new players with easier content, more intuitive controls, easier partying and leveling, much more social content, more charatcer customization options, more solo and small group content, more alternative play options, less draconian billing and registration options, faster and easier travel and easier access to end game content. The crazy thing is that none of these things are to be feared. All of them will lead to a better game experience!

Alright, I'll end by saying that there are lots of smart people over at the FFXIV as well, many of them making interesting and valid arguement. It's worth a read.



Clothcrafting: So I discovered the weavers guild in Windurst and started clothcrafting. I though this would be fun and a good use of my time because A) I can make a lot of stuff that I'll probably use, B) I had a small stash of cloth dropped from monsters I've killed, and C) someone told me that crafting can make me some good gil!

Well, I guess the good gil comes later? I burned though my small stash pretty quickly, and spent most of my money buying crafting supplies from the weavers guild and the AH, but I was only able to get my crafting skill up to 1! I guess it takes time. I was able to craft some Headgear, a Doublet, Gloves and a few other items. So it's not like it was a wasted effort. I guess I'm going to be in it for the long haul though.

I do have a few questions about clothcrafting though:

- Where are the in game instructions for crafting or synthesis? I can't seem to find any at all. I saw a few people crafting stuff around town and asked one of them about it, and she told me a little and recommended that I do a google search. Up until that point I hadn't even been aware that there was any kind of crafting in the game! It took me forever to figure out how to do it. I thought I was looking for some kind of crafting option in the menu, but instead I needed to "use" crystals out of my inventory.

-Where can I find recipes in game? I've actually found a nice list here, so I guess I don't really need in game recipes. But it seems like they must exsist? How else do people discover them? Is it just trial and error?

- Why are some (most? All?) shops closed during certain parts of the day? Is there a mechanical purpose for this, or is it just to enhance immersion in the game? If it's the later... I appreciate the thought, but that's really, really annoying! And it doesn't help immersion that much when the shopkeeper is still standing right there!

Return to Giddeus: I decided to hang out in Giddeus for awhile since I really needed to gather some yagudo necklaces to turn into Grass Cloth. I was also getting tired of Tahrongi Canyon, and I wanted to explore Giddeus a little more. I ended up dying right off the bat when I took a wrong turn in a tunnel and ran into two Decent Challenge Yagudo, and again when I was jumped by a Yagudo while resting. But it was pretty worthwhile. I made it about half way to level 17 in a pretty short time, and gathered some interesting items, as well as about a half dozen of the necklaces I was looking for. The area is pretty neat as well. I think I'll be returning there soon!