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Monday, September 14, 2015

Of Twitch and Sunday Night Games

Hey all! I hope you had a fantastic weekend! I decided to really give *personal* Twitch streaming a go over the weekend (as opposed to the KI Live Twitch stream) and hosted a couple of play sessions on Friday and Saturday.

If you'd like to see the entire broadcasts, I've marked them both as highlights:

First Wildstar stream
First Pirate101 stream

Out of the two, the Pirate101 stream was probably the most fun and definitely the longest. We streamed on Saturday for about four hours. My boys were dancing around and having fun (and even I got into the dancing), and the people in the chat room really made it a great experience for them.


If you don't have four hours to watch the entire Pirate101 stream rebroadcast, I did snag a few highlights from the stream:

Monkey Trust Hugs
The Markiplier Story / Ron Perlman hype
Kyle Skystaff Takes Over the Stream

It was a lot of fun to play with everyone, and Vanessa showed the patience of a saint. ;)

It may not seem like much to the outside observer, but this was pretty huge for me. It took a lot of talking to myself to JUST DO IT! I guess I just finally accepted that my house is a recipe for a trainwreck Twitch Stream . . . and that's ok! Hopefully I'll get a chance to practice more and really get "my style" down.

It sounds like I need to get NightBot for my channel.



The crew decided to get back into DC Universe Online for a bit, so I resubbed for the month and got a few upgrades in the new content. A few things have changed with how loot is distributed, and it seems better--you get a choice between a couple of drops now after big bosses.

I thought about streaming the Sunday Night game and then I realized that my dear friends can sometimes have quite the mouth on them, and I want to keep my Twitch stream appropriate for younger audiences . . . so that's out!

Blighted Redeemer and myself decided to try one the easiest of the new duos, and then the rest of the group played a bit in a four person instance while I sat out. I took advantage of this time to clean out my inventory, try out the new daily solo content, and get reacquainted with the controls. (I also PvP'd Spode between their instances to the tune of 5-0 *flex* and took him down a notch despite my lack of CR. That's always a good time!)

Then I tried the new Zamaron duo because I had hit 113 CR. It was tough, but myself and a random 121 CR stranger managed to finish up the instance and take home the loot. I ended up CR 116 for the night, and just like the guys were saying: it looks like grinding that Zamaron Duo a few times is really the way to go if you want to bring your CR up.

So . . . Looks like we're back in DCUO for a bit on Sunday Nights!


Hope you all have a great week and thanks to those who came to my streams to cheer me on! We'll do it again some other time.

Happy Dueling

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Wildstar Weekend and a Final Fantasy 13 bug

So, as I predicted, once my kids saw me playing Wildstar, they'd be all over it.  The big surprise though?  My daughter REALLY digs it . . . the art style especially.  Here's her:

Combat is a little challenging in this game. It involves a lot of swirling around the target and keeping them in a telegraphed field from your character, which can be interesting also given mob density. It's a lot of button mashing, strafing, and dodging while keeping track of where everything else is around you. It's not the easiest system to master, but it can also be a lot of fun. :)

The hilarious moment from yesterday, was when my daughter was certain there was a giant boss mob she needed to defeat for a quest. I was watching her play while she struggled with the controls, and she finally managed to down it with the help of a higher level player (after being defeated several times--obviously tuned for a small group), but it still didn't complete the quest. I made her click on the quest, which brings up a quest arrow pointing you to the right location. She was determined that it was the right boss, but nope . . . wrong boss. LOL!

I'm just happy to see her enjoy playing a video game again.


So, as you can tell, I didn't get a lot of playtime on Wildstar because everyone in the family was taking turns, but I did manage to make it to level 14 and check out player housing. WOW! I really, really love some of the features of their player housing. It looks like a fun system to play with.  More on that some other day.


Side note, I managed to get to Chapter 7 in my new quest to finish Final Fantasy 13. Unfortunately my game started acting really buggy and would actually crash my PS3. Egads. I blew out the dust from the unit, did a system update, and said several nice words to it while petting it softly (I'm sure this helps), but the PS3 refused to cooperate.

I'm going to roll back a few save files and try it again. I don't know . . . part of me thinks maybe I have a corrupted save file, but I have no idea why that would make the game act the way it was acting.  Worth a shot I suppose. I did a search on the net, and apparently, this is a bug many people have run into. It's weird though since before I was all the way up to chapter 12/13 area. *shrug* I WILL FIND A WAY! EVEN IF IT REQUIRES BUYING THE PC VERSION!


I hope you all had a great Labor Day weekend! Let me know what's up in the comments below.

Happy Dueling!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Weekend Catching up with Friendly!

WHOA . . . weeks like this shouldn't even HAPPEN. I was busy from start to finish and I've still got a long laundry list of things to do, say, think about, and FIX!  My word where does that time go?

So let me catch you all up on all things Friendly Necromancer . . .


1- Blaugust Conqueror!

That's right, I came, I wrote, and I won (along with a lot of other great bloggers as you can see here in the Blaugust Results). Happy I could join in and rock it.

Also, to my surprise, I won a free game from Bel's collection . . . I opted for  . . . Terreria! I've now got that downloaded and on my list of games to play and write about in the future.


2- Wizard101 turned Seven. Wait a second . . . seven years? SEVEN!  Can't believe this game has been such a major part of my life for so long! Make sure you get your free gifts and take advantage of those amazing member benefits! My word the double seeds are coming out of my ears!

I also hope you all had a chance to join us on KI Live the other day. PARTY TIME! Believe it or not this was also our 1-year anniversary of the show.

. . . the things I do for you guys . . .


3- WILDSTAR!  Yes!  Wildstar!  So if you haven't heard, Wildstar is going free to play very soon, and you can pick up the boxed copies of Wildstar at select GameStops for $10.

But, Friendly, why would I pay for a boxed copy of Wildstar when it's going free to play?  Aha!  Because you get cool stuff from buying the boxed copy before and when it goes free to play.

. . . plus, I just have wanted to play this game forever and never had time.  I finally bit the bullet and jumped for the game, so I can get a jump start on the free-to-play madness that's already begun.

So you may hear me talk a bit more about this game in the future . . . for now . . . Robotom Digilover, the dominion aligned Settler Engineer Robot and his two mini-robot sidekicks are kicking butt and taking names in Ellevar.  Level 10 and growing.

I'm super psyched about it. I might even stream some play. :)


4- Final Fantasy 13.

OK, a few days ago I promised you all a story about why I was once again playing Final Fantasy 13.  Grab some popcorn.

At one time this was the new thing and my children were much younger and . . . more dangerously curious than they are now.  My son really wanted to play the game, but I felt he was too young to do so, and I was worried he'd save over my game.  I started putting away the CD and hiding it from him so he couldn't find it, and I played all the way up to what I thought was probably the very last fight or close to it. 

I kept dying and dying in this fight and decided that I probably just needed to go back through some old content or nearby mobs and level up a bit before trying it again.

That was my plan at least until my son, with a burning desire to play the game, went into the back end files of the PS3 and thought maybe he could directly play the game from messing around with these. Long story short, he somehow deleted my save files, and I was out. I was super irritated and obviously I explained to him that . . . made daddy less than happy.

So much so apparently he still remembers this encounter to this day. He's a super sweetheart of a kid with a really good soul (he's my high-functioning autistic super hero). Out of nowhere the other day he asked me to bring back this game and finish it . . . that he was still sorry he deleted the save files.

It's a huge time commitment, but I can't pass this one up to get it all straight and help him gain a new memory.

The only bummer is that I can't take screenshots from my PS3 of Final Fantasy 13, so . . . if I share pictures and things from this . . . egads . . . I might actually have to take pictures of the TV?

Ugh . . . if anyone has a good inexpensive suggestion for capturing PS3 screenshots, let me know.


5- I finished mowing my lawn today.


And there you go . . . A quick catch up on what i'm doing, and thank you for sticking with me.

Happy dueling!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Naxxramas Haxxramas . . . Gimme a K, Gimme a T

Last night my wife turned to me and just said . . . "Yay, Blaugust is over." ;) (Did I drive her crazy with my obsessive compulsive need to post and think about blogging?) Strangely, I still feel the need to post something. Oh habits!

Just wanted to do a quick catch up on Hearthstone.

I finished Naxxramas!

And that means I now have a few more beautiful cards in my inventory.  Check 'em out:

I gotz me a lich and a couple o' zombies! Oh, it was a hard fought battle, but . . . with patience . . . I finally got that K to the T.

I still have the class challenges to finish (and of course the heroic mode *shudder*), but I've already begun using my "Friendly Necromancer" build in hearthstone.  Um, it needs work.  The problem with thematic decks is that they usually lack a few basic cards that really rock. It's more "fun" than it is "functional." eh?  Although it did net me a number of wins in the tail end of the season so I could hit rank 20 for my card back in ranked play.

I'll post more about my build in the next few days as I firm up my deck.

Happy Dueling!

Monday, August 31, 2015

#Blaugust Day 31 -- Blaugust wrap up and thoughts

Well well well . . . looks like it's the 31st of Blaugust and I survived! Hurray!

I'm going to use this opportunity to take a look back at the month and reflect a bit while predicting the future.  Here's a quick summation of what happened on the Friendly Necromancer during Blaugust:

  • Changed the focus of my blog and removed myself from the list of official Wizard101 fansites.
  • Modified my blog look (which is still a work in progress)
  • Made actual progression on Angus, who was blocked forever in Celestia.
  • Talked about and played Hearthstone, Guildwars 2, Wizard101, Pirate101, Lord of the Rings Online, Badland, Little Big Planet, Heroes of the Storm, DC Universe Online, Dungeons and Dragons Online, Everquest, and World of Warcraft.
  • Talked about a couple of ideas like daily quests and gear swapping
  • Made a couple of discussion point posts

Hopefully it's been a lot of fun to read along and catch up with me. Personally I had a lot of fun in Blaugust discovering other blogs who were also participating.


Shoutout to Mama Needs Mana, who came here and posted a couple of times. I really like her writing style and it's good to know there's someone just as awful at MOBAs as me.

Shoutout to Jaedia from Dragons & Whimsy, who also stopped by to say hello on Day 1.

Shoutout to Jaromai from Why I game, who dropped by to talk a bit about Gear Swapping in GW2. Good luck with the raids in GW2!

Shoutout to Maeka Gaming, who mentioned me a couple of times in her awesome online paper.

As always, shoutout to the awesome Wizard101 and Pirate101 communities that offer their support each and every day: Adventures of the Spiral, Mercs, Petnome, Edward Lifegem, Chrissy, Central, flash33, Paige, Ditto, Stars of the Spiral, Leala . . . all y'all that I failed to mention . . . thank you for the retweets, comments and general support. It's hugely appreciated.

Shoutout to Team Spode!

Shoutout to all those who make these games! Good times are had every single day thanks to the hardwork and magic you pull out of your dev hats everyday.  Thank you.

. . . and last but not least, thank you to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut who hosted the event. The list of bloggers participating was astounding and herding those cats is a lot of work. Thanks so much!

(Shoutout to any I might have missed LOL -- feel free to berate me in the comments)


So, what this exercise has taught me is that August is a strange month. It starts out with oodles of time and then whittles away to nothing toward the end, which makes it harder and harder to complete this goal successful. I could keep a daily blog again, but to do so it has to become a higher priority in my life and something I think about every day. Will I keep a daily blog now?  Um, most likely I will *NOT* be posting everyday, but I think I will be posting with increased frequency now. (especially when compared to very dry years like 2013 and 2014.)

Hopefully I can continue to grow and change this blog and gain a few new readers along the way and make a few new friends while keeping my old friends informed of the goings on of The Friendly Necromancer.

I've got a few loose ends to tie up from this month of blogging like . . . will I build a viable Friendly Necromancer deck in Hearthstone? Will I ever actually play Heroes of the Storm? Can I make more top memorable locations posts for the Original Guild Wars, LOTRO, etc.?

Looks like I can't stop posting just yet! ;) (Besides, I haven't even told you guys about me playing Final Fantasy 13 again -- it's a good story.)

Thanks for reading.

Happy Dueling!


This post is part of the Blaughust challenge -- Thanks to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut for hosting. 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

#Blaugust Day 30 -- My Top Memorable Locations in #P101

It's the weekend, and I found some time to journey a bit in a game that is near and dear to my heart, Pirate101. I had a blast doing it too, and it made me want to get back in and level up my third pirate to 65! (Definitely a goal!)  The new fast combat changes are great, and it's a great game no matter how you slice it.

Again, these are memorable locations that first came to my mind when I sat down and typed out which zones game to mind. I only ran into one snag, and that was I wrote down "the spider fight in Cool Ranch" when I was making my list. I was referring to the Spider portion of Dusty Arroyo Cave, which . . . well . . . that difficult fight has been removed. All that's left now are rumors. ;) I realize a lot of people were defeated on that particular fight, but I liked the challenge.  It's still a great instance that looks very cool, but I went ahead and chose an alternate.

With that said, here we go!


The beach on Skull Island proper.

I've always liked this spot. It's a nice non-combat zone that's big and empty and peaceful. It's a great place to gather big groups, it's picturesque and reminds me of a spot I'd like to visit in the real world. 

(Hidden secret: there once was a developer-only version of this zone that had every vendor from the Spiral plunked down around in it for testing purposes.  It's a perfect spot for this because it's so big and wide-open.)

I'm glad they put the transportaler across the beach here. It's a pleasure to run through every time you're on your way to somewhere. I couldn't think of a nicer entry / exit point.


The Tower of Moo Manchu in The Paths of Penance

There's only one word for this place when looking at it from outside, running around in Paths of Penance: Ominous.

There's only one word from running around on the inside of this place: Ouchy. You're pretty much guaranteed a few knocked out companions, and it's sent me packing a number of times. (Side note, I still need to get my glowy eyes from here)

What is there to say about the Tower of Moo Manchu, it's the most epic dungeon in Pirate101 currently, and something you won't forget quickly.


Stupendor-X in the Valley of the Titans.

I don't think I even need to bring up the old "un-nerfed" state of this fight for it to be a legendary occurrence in Pirate101.  It's possibly the coolest thing in the game.

I actually have some original concept art of this fella hanging above my computer at work. I'm sure I'd be able to meet a Pirate101 player 20 years from now, and we'd still have a great back and forth about this fight.


The Traveling Medicine Show in Cool Ranch.

It's a small little island that has an allure all its own, and of course it is the stage for the boxing match of the century!

Ahh Tyson, don't you know you shouldn't bring boxing gloves to a voodoo fight? (It's all about the details here too *waves* to Boochbeard and Gandry in the crowd.)

We had a housing item scavenger hunt in Pirate101, and this place suddenly became the most popular stop in Cool Ranch for farming. ;)


Valley (and temple) of the Gold Monkey.

Deep in the heart of the jungle, Gortez rules his mighty domain!

The famous conquistador for Monquista, turned native! Why? Because the throwing of the banana was unseemly?

YES, the Mighty Gortez! Here we have another fight that had its difficulty toned down a bit. That said . . . it's still a solid fight when you're level appropriate, and a lot of fun to revisit. Farming for his hat and to unlock him in the Crown Shop is reason enough to visit this instance at least 25 times. (I'm still pretty far away from unlocking him)


Sacrifice Cave in the Dark Jungle.

There's something about the way this place glows with luminescent light that I just love.

The fight inside is an interesting one as well! Put out the fires to save the cooking conquistador and then take out the high chief, but when he gets low on life he sacrifices his minions to heal himself . . . it's pretty fun. Not terribly difficult, but still interesting.

I looked at my badge list last night when I visited here to see how close I was to unlocking Eep from the Crown Shop.  Unlike Gortez . . . I was close on this one!  18 of 25 battles!  So I decided to go all the way on this one, farmed him the remaining seven times and bought him up in the Crown Shop.  Tada! You're coming to work for me, Eep!

(I also had a nice conversation with Virtuous Anne Radcliff from the Pirate101 Messageboards while I was at it! Bonus!)


Airedale Pier in Marleybone.

It's a pretty disturbing spot actually . . .

Not so much for the grand Ferris wheel and the Popcicle shop, but for the war torn town that was directly a part of our actions.  There's some great writing by Blind Mew and the team here -- really good stuff.


Khotan, home to General Tso . . . and his chicken.

This to me is one of the last great fights of Pirate101's vanilla game that hasn't been altered too much. It's still incredibly difficult, and one that players will probably bang their heads on quite often. In fact, it got a mention on the 50 million player graphic as being the toughest fight boss in the game.

Definitely beautiful though despite it being so deadly.


Off of the Port Regal Skyway in Skull Island . . . the fortress known as Fort Elena!

There's nothing quite like a prison break!

. . . and the characters you meet inside the prison are pretty awesome too! Napoleguin, Count Brastillo de Brass, Mustang Sally, Phule . . . I also just love fighting Corporal Klegg. It's a longer dungeon that's a lot of fun.


The Old Chum

"The Old Chum?" you ask?  But of course!!!

Surely you remember this from your past?! You venture here for a short stop while doing Bonnie Anne's first promotion quest, but that's not why I remember it.

hehe. I spent a lot of time videoing it for a Marketing project that never surfaced. ;) I'll just leave it at that.


And there you have it!  My top (er, first) ten memorable locations of Pirate101.

Got a different first ten?  Scribble them down and post them in the comments! I'd love to hear from you, and hope you've got some fun zones for me.

Happy Dueling!


This post is part of the Blaughust challenge -- Thanks to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut for hosting. 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

#Blaugust Day 29 -- Discussion Point: Why do we play the games we play?

I had a thought cross my head the other day about why I play certain games, and why I don't play others. Why I'm totally willing to watch a streamer play a type of game I typically won't play? I don't know. It's a little strange. 

In general I avoid FPS games because I'm like Jim from the Office when it comes to them.

So why do we play the games we play?



Friendly's Top 22 Answers are on the board:

- Duh, it looks like fun
- Graphics look amazing 
- I heard it's super challenging!
- Bro, all my friends / office mates are playing that game.
- Bro, EVERYBODY is playing that game right now.
- No school like the old school / Nostalgia
- I'm broke and this game is the best for the money
- I just want to be a SUPER SAIYAN / Wish fulfillment
- I'm looking for new people to chill with / Community or Social needs
- I'm searching for something deeper *cue gong*
- Read a good review about it
- Saw an advertisement
- Recommended by a friend
- Totally random purchase -- cover art looked good.
- It was a present
- I played the Arcade version
- It came with the Console / Device
- I love the company that makes it
- I'm fascinated with all things in the fantasy / horror / whatever genre
- Watched a YouTuber / Streamer play it
- I played the 10 prequels to the series



;)  I'm just brainstorming things up there really . . . and I guess there are reasons you START playing a game, but those aren't the same reasons that KEEP you playing a game. i.e., I may start playing a game because I saw an advertisement for it, but what kept me playing the game was that I found something deeper there.

In general, I don't think I hunt out games to play because I'm looking for a new experience, but sometimes a game looks so compelling to me that I just have to play it, like Journey.

I also don't know if anyone ever blatantly thinks "I want to fly, so I'm going to play a superhero game." So I'm sure a few of those items on that list are debatable.

So what do you think. Do you have any other ideas about what gets you playing a game and keeps you playing? Tell me why you play the games you do: what brought you to your game and what keeps you there for just a little bit longer than you anticipated?

Happy Dueling!


This post is part of the Blaughust challenge -- Thanks to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut for hosting.