Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Post-update thoughts

First off, my character is now named "Amoklauf" as "Amok" was taken on Valefor. Not entirely surprised about that, but it is moderately annoying that I have to be extra careful about sending stuff to my main from mules.

Trial of the Magians is probably the change that interests me most. Many useful stats and additional effects can be added to rival and surpass many of the previous in-game options. Swords can be made to have -5% physical damage taken. This puts it in the same category of use as Hauteclaire but with significantly less DoT. For daggers I was especially interested in the Evasion+10 daggers of which you could make two of to dual wield. Perhaps more interesting is the "Lowers Accuracy" additional effect weapon.

Evasion tanking is under-used IMO because of the trouble it takes to make it work and the simpler alternatives. Other melee jobs subbing NIN only need their support to slow the mob's attacks down and Haste them. They rely on their main job's abilities for hate, damage and additional damage reduction. Since slow and elegy land on most things it isn't necessary to evasion tank. However, if you're going to fight something with minimal support evasion tanking becomes incredibly effective... but I digress.

The full damage upgrade routes are all NM kills based trials from what I've seen. The results are weapons which come close to or surpass the base damage of un-augmented relic weapons like a 38-DMG dagger or a 105-DMG scythe. Last night and this morning I scanned Inner Horutoro Ruins for the NM hunters and in both cases I found a full alliance. Needless to say, I would have to wait my turn to get into the group for the kills, which could take a long time. Time I don't really have or want to spend on such a monotonous activity. Perhaps when I've leveld DRK the number of people killing the NM's will have declined and I will upgrade an Ultimatum.

What are now referred to as Voidwalker NM's (VNM's) bring the stat +6 rings to the table combined with some other situationally useful gear. They also play a part in the Magian Trials as some of the drops or kills are needed to complete certain trials. It's quite unique how they are popped. You /heal in a zone and either the mob pops or you get directions to where the mob pops and /heal again. It works in tiers and the 3rd tier HNM's appear to require at least 1 party to kill. The super-cool looking black dragon 4th tier requires a full alliance at this point. I'm sure people will understand the fight better and take it down with fewer and fewer people, but I doubt it will ever become doable with a single party of 75's considering the damage people have been reporting. For a force-popped ZNM inspired system, that is quite a let-down. I was hoping to low-man this type of system. Who knows, I may be proven wrong soon enough. Being pessimistic about these things often leads to pleasant surprises.

Synergy recipes has some very nice magic-skill torques added. Time to get my crucible? Also, I'm hoping the teleport earrings to Kazham and Bastok become common. I'm not in Bastok often, but when I have to be there it's a long journey.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Server Merges

Today the version update will take place that merges my current server Kujata with Valefor. Of course it's not really a balanced merger, but an exodus from one world to another. Kujata will disappear and all characters will be copied (presumably in the same way as server transfers are done) to the destination server. Besides the seemingly unfair way that character names are dealt with and the sentimental value of having your world "destroyed", there are a lot of "serious" consequences to consider.

Economies will experience a shake up. It might be very unnoticable if new arrivals all consider auction history prices, but what about Bazaar prices? Undercutting may become rampant and turn it all into a buyer's market if players become paranoid or scared of losing their income. This will certainly effect crafters. Notoriously secretive and manipulative of supply and demand. These players will keep a close eye on the new competition and might make attempts at monopolizing certain items and their prices this again lowering prices. As a buyer I'm looking forward to this increase in supply and likely reduction in prices.

Considering the AH history there will soon be a chance for me to finish my HQ dartksteel set as well as getting my hands on some cheaper HQ Arhat gear. As a Chocobo Digger I'm glad there is always a market for raw materials. However, it's the only craft with such direct competition between participants. There's little more enfuriating than not being able to find any full "money" zones. Especially if your playtimes are very specific and limited. This will certainly happen more often, which is something I dread.

Endgame leaves me a bit cold, since I don't camp HNM's or do Dynamis. Limbus might see some fighting over zones, but our EU playtimes might help in that case. Competition over zones and pops really annoy players and is the source of "drama" and frustration. Why these things are so ubiquitous in a modern game is beyond me. I'm a supporter of endgame shells selling drops, since it's the only way for some people to get certain items and a good way to get LS members a "salary" for their time invested in events that don't otherwise benefit them. Certain items will become more attainable due to more mercenary Linkshells.

I don't believe people looking for EXP parties will see a great improvement. There are only so many camps available, meaning the growth in the number of parties is limited. In addition to that there is a strong trend away from pick-up parties over to LS parties. Since I believe that will only increase, the chances of getting a party are going to stay pretty much the same.

Campaign may finally see some more frequent stronghold ownage. Kujata hasn't had access to Splitting Heirs in a while, leading to pretty silly prices for Cuchulain's Mantle. Crapaud Earrings are much harder to find than Novio's Earrings.

All in all, I see more positives than negatives. I'm looking forward to the new people and the (albeit small) chance at new LS members.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Homam Cosciales

I still can't believe it's finally happened, but there's no denying it: I have joined the Homam pants club (for men). I don't think people realized how much this actually means to me. THF was my first job and a job I still feel I've accomplished the most with. When I started building a haste set after Swift belt dropped for me, the thing I've wanted the most in the game was a set of haste pants. I've tried (but not really) to get people to raid Ashu Talif for Barbarossa's Zerehs, but in the end nothing came of it. Sure, when I got RDM to 75 I wanted D.Chapeau and Crimson Cuisses, but in the back of my mind was always Homam Cosciales.

The fight itself was pretty non-spectacular as Omega's usually are. Kingcem (PLD) died though, that was a little exciting. Interesting was that only one BLM was on pod duty. Without me adding a bliz3 to the mix things could have gotten rough. The one time I got a resist, it actually didn't, so I may be exaggerating. Double legs is loads of win.

You just gotta belieeeeeeeve!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Requiem of Sin solo pt.3

I gave it another go today. This is actually my third attempt, but I'm not going to talk about the second one. All I'll say is that I rushed over there to make it on time forgetting some gear and food. Then I start off on the wrong macro page after using CS losing some of my starting MP. I wipe pretty early on. This attempt was much more controlled and made sure not to make those mistakes again. Even so, I still managed to forget eating food. That took a considerable amount of punch out of my nukes. I couldn't even break 700 like I did on my first attempt. I think I may have missed something else as well, because I don't think the INT from Cream Puffs could have made that huge difference I was seeing.

I take down X but I see the other two waking up out of the corner of my eye. I try to convert before they reach me, but Z uses jump for nearly 500 damage to take me down.

I raise and make macros for the Wyvern phase. I didn't have them yet because I was being pessimistic as usual. I buff up and go into the final stretch. ES Sleepga then Gravity then nuke with all I got. Shikaree's wake up while I'm still nuking, but they're slow and I managed to kill the Wyvern on time. Didn't expect Water3 to do such awful damage. I want to buy a Vulcan's Staff and use Fire3 the next time around even though these 4 nukes were enough.

After this I take a beating from the Shikarees while kiting because I obviously am still inexperienced at it. It was mostly pathing. I thought I'd be able to make large circles, but this lead to being WS'd on while in full kite! I only managed to take Y down to 90% before dying. Knowing I couldn't hope to kite them weakened and not having enough time to unweaken, I decide to give up for now.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

MMM Voucher 06 is a pain

Let me preface by saying that being 0 for 2 is completely my own fault. It doesn't make it less frustrating, though. It probably makes it worse. I informed myself really well (I thought) and I was convinced after the first try that I would beat it the second time around. This morning I proved myself wrong by making some very unnecessary mistakes.

It started beautifully. I take a stroll over the bridge to find the shortcut which lead to the lower map. At this point I'm thinking "Great, now I don't have to walk down the stairs". I walk for about a minute and find the first papetrie (of a total 3 needed to win the maze). I ignore all forcers and glowing points since I don't want to waste any time. Before having even seen a mob on the lower map I find the second papetrie. This must have been about 5 minutes in at the most. Next I try the farthest tunnel but there's a doll patrolling the 3 way junction. Being of high spirits I decide to not wait, but to use an ITEM! I decide I want to save my bug costume for later I use the box costume right behind the doll and wait for it to run past me. If you're familiar with Voucher 06 you might be face-palming right now. Dolls aren't fooled by the box, so Death#1. I run past it in the direction I wanted to go in the first place. Apparently your temp items don't drop where you die, they drop at the place you get hit. So I had to track back. I cast RR first and go pick up the items. I don't recall exactly what happened but I think I got detected the second time because I simply took too long. I had to pick up two items and run out of range before the doll turned and I just wasnt' fast enough. So I die again. Still no huge deal. THEN! I decide to cast RR again but this time get magic aggro for being a doofus and I head for the hills. I managed to outrun the doll, thankfully or else that 3rd death would have ended the entire run, since I had no RR. I took the shortcut back up. I know that doesn't reset aggro from what I read on wiki. So I cast Deoderize and wait a while. I go back down and guess who runs up to greet me? I die a third time. Head back to pick up my loot and go back up the shortcut again to hand them in. The last paptrie had to be somewhere on the upper map. I get slowed down on the way there and had to use bugs to get past. I had no more Eau de Moblin or another bug costume, so I knew it was pretty hopeless coming back. I find the third paptrie with 50 seconds left. Maybe in full dash without any stops I could have made it back while weighed down, but unfortunately I was out of items. I still tried to find some but timed out. If only the copied tabula didn't have Trial by Budget on it (cuts your total time down by 4 minutes).

The magic aggro was the point where it all went irreversibly wrong. Having to run down that long tunnel in order to survive. Coming back and dying anyway. Running all the way back to the dropped treasure and then back AGAIN to hand them ate up most of my time in the maze. I suppose I have to be more willing to suffer these defeats or give up doing things solo entirely. To that end I will take deep breaths and try again tomorrow.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Moon Charioteer

Long-Armed Chariot defeated at our hands. Double Phobos' Gauntlets dropped... It died with about 10 minutes left and we started with a little bit less than 40 minutes left. I'm estimating a fight duration of 30-35 minutes. I'm just happy we got the win before switching zones, which we will do next Saturday. I really should post screenshots, this blog seems lacking without those.

The fight was pretty smooth. Only one death, which was from DoT on the DRG. Our BLM did a lot of damage towards the end pulling hate at some point. It certainly helped the kill speed, which makes me wonder how people do this in a timely fashion with damage from 2 DD tanks alone. I spend most of the fight out of range again. Getting bound, paralyzed and taking damage didn't seem like a good idea considering our previous MP issues. While kiting I noticed I couldn't reliably outrun Brainjack. If it's already too far when you start running then it's no problem. If you become its next target while you're next to it, you're going to get jacked. Also, if you're engaged, unless you blink out the animation, putting away your weapons stops you long enough for it to catch up and charm you. It's all a learning experience. I wonder how long before we start seeing completed pieces, since we left SSR with only these two 25 Ares' hands to show for it. Never even bothered to try Citadel Chelonian due to the difficulty of the pull and the 'need' to have a successful run. Don't want people to get demotivated and quit, which is what tends to happen after several failed runs in a row.

Friday, March 5, 2010

A group new to Salvage

I think this topic has been covered many times on all popular FFXI forums. Our group has done 4 or 5 runs so far. We've decided to focus on one area until we get the hang of it. The area we picked was Silver Sea Remnants. Cell-wise it's supposed to be very friendly. At the moment we can do the Hammerblow room pretty smoothly. It took a while before we got a routine down that worked. Reworking the cell distribution order also seemed to play a part in that improvement.

Now it's time to kill that Brainjacking Long-Armed Chariot. Our previous run was our first real shot at it. The time before that we had very little time left since our killspeed is still pretty low and we didn't take the right path to skip certain floors. So on our first real go at the Megaboss we got it down to 30% before a tank went down. It was pretty MP intensive it seems. I'm not sure if it was fully enfeebled or if the tanks were making mistakes. I was too busy lining up to SA and TA in between its abilities. The times when I was kiting I noticed it missed me a lot. I could probably evasion tank it if I had to. Once Kingcem gets Monk to 75 and decently geared, I'm sure we'll do better in killspeed. However, since he's currently on NIN, I doubt he'll be better at tanking. So if we run out of MP halfway, something's really wrong. Too bad I can't put my finger on it just by replaying the fight in my head. I've suggested everyone bring a weak weapon to make it easier on people kiting charmed players.

A lot relies on simple routine and small details that get ironed out as people get mroe experienced. Just have to keep trying, I guess.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Requiem of Sin preparations pt.2

Last Friday evening after two Dea pops (pulling that thing is a pain) I dashed off mumbling something about having to be somewhere. It was Iceday already and I was worried I'd need more preparation time. In the end I didn't really need the time, since I had made all my specific macro's earlier that day.
My regular macro's weren't sufficient because, as I mentioned in my previous post, I needed more MP than I normally had access to. I decided to wear more MP boosting gear for my first nuke so I could fit 6 of them in one pool before converting. I also lined them out in the order I was going to need them so it would be easier on my fingers.

The actual attempt didn't go very well though several valuable pieces of information came out of it. Before I say what those were, let me give you a run down of what happened. I was worried that without mobs on radar I wouldn't be able to walk into the right range for casting the initial Sleepga and I'd waste precious seconds of my Chainspell time. That wasn't an issue at all because I guaged the distance just right AND Chainspell duration is more than long enough (1 minute) because sleep lasts SO short. It was 30 seconds when I look at the video, but it felt like less. After sleepga, I bind the rabbit, still wearing a bunch of MP gear, which made me worried about resists. No problem though. Nuke1 no resist! About 680 damage. Sleepga as I see X casting utsu. Nuke2, with all my proper nuking gear, 1/2 resist! Fawk! Nuke 3-6 I do really good damage. I nuked for max 724 which is more than I thought I could pull off. As X is left with a sliver of at 100 to 200 HP I run out of MP. Not paying very good attention to anything due to nerves, I convert late and all mobs in this BC are already on top of me and kill me. Failed run, but I wasn't mad. I was expecting to kill X, but I got some valuable info.

  1. Don't forget phalanx. I totally forgot about putting it up before entering. Could have meant the difference between killing and not killing X.
  2. Put a Drain or Bliz2 macro in there for killing X in case of another 1/2 resist. Bio2 is probably not a good idea, since if the rabbit walks back with X before she dies, it'll be in range for the next ES Sleepga.
  3. CS nukes CAN be interrupted by melee hits. Don't walk between nukes, it doesn't help and probably costs time.
  4. Practice the macro order in your head and count the number of nukes. I lost a good 2-3 seconds looking for my first nuke macro. I had a 3rd nuke macro for nukes 3-6 which put in my Uggalepih Pendant. Not sure if 3 nukes with an extra +8 MAB would have killed X, but who knows.
Goals for the next attempt: Kill X, get Wyvern down either before or after CS phase.