Daily Archives: July 21, 2008

Ill deeds are doubled with extra XP

There was a double XP event in City of Heroes, so I spent much of the weekend dressed in spandex and fighting crime. And also playing City of Heroes, ahh! (I confounded your expectations there, and from thence the humour arose…)

Double XP is a good chance to zap through the early hero levels, which can otherwise involve quite a lot of running around, even with the temporary travel powers on offer from early Safeguard missions. I was strongly tempted to roll another Blaster, using the recently added Psionic/Mental powersets, but already having three Blasters I figured I should branch out a bit, and went with a Tanker. Costume choice, as usual, took a while, I settled on a shovel-wielding eight foot giant in formal evening wear (complete with top hat, monocle etc.) I decided his assignment was to infiltrate the street gangs of Paragon City, and thus gave him a disguise to blend in: a tiny eye mask. Even though it’s purely cosmetic, there’s just something utterly joyful about running around in teams of wildly disparate characters, chain-wrapped denizens of darkness next to orange-skirted cheerleaders with dragon wings, sombre funeral directors with zombie minions alongside a katana toting techno-samurai in neon armour.

As well as getting the new tanker up to level 14 for a travel power, I flitted around a bunch of other characters, doing a bit of Blasting and Scrapping, and also some nefarious villainy, continuing my plans to create human slaves in an insect nation. At level 24 my Arachnos Solider had a choice of becoming a Bane Spider (bonking people over the head with an energy-mace-thing) or Crab Spider (strapping on a multi-armed energy-beam-shooting backpack). No contest, really, hand over the extra arms! Hooking up at various points with some other ne’er-do-wells, much ne’er-do-welling ensued, not just knocking on doorways and running away but also sending packages with insufficient postage stamps, and on one occasion knocking a policeman’s helmet off. Oh, and a couple of occasions where we massacred countless innocents who’d done nothing but stand near a bank we decided to rob, but at least we didn’t download any knock-off films, so that’s OK. Melmoth had been playing a Dominator for a while, with a measured approach where more threatening foes would be detained or fixed in blocks of stone and their fellows picked off one by one, but switched to one of his assortment of Brutes for the weekend. Rendered nigh-invulnerable by assorted forcefields and auras over the top of already decent Brute defences, this caused ever such a slight shift to a somewhat more SMASH!-oriented approach, wherein the Brute steams into anything that moves to keep his Fury bar filled, and everyone else does their best to keep up with the Brute. SMASH!tastic!

Outside the City, I went back to Guitar Hero for a while, several of the Aerosmith songs are growing on me. Also caught up with some of the Guitar Hero: World Tour news coming out of E3, and it’s looking rather awesome, as I believe the correct vernacular to be (I’m extending my index and little fingers at the same time, if that has any bearing on it). Despite my other ravings over customisation, it’s not so much the “create a rocker” feature; the game could display a stick person (with optional hat) cavorting away in the background for all I’d notice, being fixated on the coloured notes scrolling their way up the screen. Not that it’ll stop me spending hours adjusting the exact tint of my nostril hair, should such options be available on the Wii. All fingers, toes and assorted other dactylates crossed that Wikipedia’s suggested EU release date of October 28th isn’t entirely made up (though as it’s not a Friday, I rather suspect it is) and we don’t have to wait for six months (or more) after the US release, as with certain other guitar-drum-and-vocal based rhythm games. I don’t care about global supply and demand issues, I just want to rock (once again, extended index and little fingers there).

Free books!

Found via Charlie Stross’ blog, Tor have launched a shiny new website, and to celebrate are giving away stuff! Books, pictures and… well, just books and pictures. But that’s enough, surely, especially when it’s a whole pile o’ books in a variety of handy formats (mostly HTML, PDF and Mobipocket). I haven’t tried any of those authors yet, so what better opportunity? The N810 is now loaded up with some extra holiday reading, which is always handy for keeping the weight of a suitcase down. The freebie bonanza is only on until July 27th, so make haste! Even if you miss that free loot it’s looking like a fine site with new stories and all sorts of other interesting posts.

World of Warcraft’s Preliminary Achievements List.

World of Warcraft’s achievements system will launch with more than 500 individual achievements covering every aspect of game-play, and our man on the inside at Blizzard has given us a few of the more common achievement titles and their respective achievements to be found when Wrath of the Lich King launches:

  • Glider: Have epic shoulders that are more than twice your characters height in width.
  • Opportunist: Steal at least five guild banks within a month.
  • Man Eater: Obtain a flying mount by cybering with male guild members.
  • True Man Eater: Obtain a flying mount by cybering with male guild members. (Female players only)
  • Mercenary: Join at least ten raiding guilds within a week with the same character.
  • Triumph of Hope over Experience: Join at least fifty PUGs.
  • Outraged: Use the phrase “slap in the face” in at least one hundred forum posts.
  • Overcompensator: Have an epic weapon that’s more than twice your character’s height in length.
  • Irony Champion: Shout three hundred times in the general channel for spammers to stop flooding the general channel.
  • Abasement: Maintain a seven-days-a-week raid schedule for at least four months.
  • Ridickeweluss: Attempt to use the word ‘ridiculous’ in a forum post and fail miserably.
  • Cavernous Cakehole: Type two thousand words in ALL CAPS.
  • Milliner: Possess at least 15 hats.
  • Drama Tank: Quit and rejoin the same guild at least five times.
  • All Dressed Up and Nowhere To Go: Join at least ten PUGs that stand outside of an instance for half an hour waiting for a tank or healer, then disband.
  • Nemesis of Originality: Create four characters with names that are rubbish variations on Legolas.
  • Validated: Link fifty items in guild chat in one play session.
  • Dust Collector: Spend two hundred hours posing outside the auction house or bank.
  • Lust Collector: Spend two hundred hours as a naked dancing female night elf outside the auction house or bank.
  • Wganker the G is Silent: Gank one hundred players that are at least half your character’s level.
  • The Cycle Continues: Get ganked fifty times in Stranglethorn Value by a level 70, then return at level 70 and gank at least fifty players.
  • Sun Tzu of the Battlegrounds: Shout eighty helpful commands in battlegrounds like “HEAL!” and “OMG U NOOBS!!!”
  • You Don’t Want To Do That: Instruct at least three classes that you have never played how to perform their role, and what their spec should be.
  • Horse’s Ass: Sit with your big, fat, show-off mount in such a way as to prevent other players from accessing an NPC for thirty hours.
  • Bedhopper: Co-habit with three different guild members in real life.
  • Guildhopper: Co-habit with three members of different guilds in real life.
  • Mormon: Co-habit with three different guild members simultaneously in real life.
  • The Greatest Person in the World Ever: Win at least one arbitrary race against a level one character whilst on your epic mount, or one duel against a level one character whilst wearing your complete set of Tier 7.
  • Practising for Real Life: Spend three days begging for gold in a capital city.
  • Always Doing Doughnuts: Never remain stationary for more than one second before jumping/running around in circles again.
  • Moustache: Loot twenty quest objectives/gathering nodes from under the nose of a person who’s just pulled a mob away from them.
  • Full House of Originality: Have characters named after an individual from Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Dragonlance, The Belgariad and the Chronicles of Narnia.
  • Blizzard’s Bitch: Achieve more than one hundred achievements the day Wrath of the Lich King is launched on all five of your level seventy characters.
  • Sarcastic Blogger: Make up at least twenty five vaguely insulting achievements.