GW2: Rainment of the Lich

Ah, the power of nostalgia.

So much luv.

Way back in Guild Wars 1 history, when the Hall of Monuments came out and I finally resolved to make a proper semi-optimized go at it, it became quite obvious that my initial ranger/monk super-casual dabbling main was going to have a hard time struggling through much of Eye of the North (to say nothing of hard mode attempts at the main chapter stories.)

The class I settled on for my new main – which was going to have to go through ALL the chapters AGAIN, before progress with the Hall of Monuments could be attempted – was the much talked-about imbagon.

Well, okay, paragon, but I was planning on dragging a bunch of stupid NPC heroes through a lengthy gauntlet of HoM tasks and between the choice of tanking for them on a warrior or some such and party wiping if things went wrong, or making the whole damn party tanks instead by basically rolling one’s face on the number keys… that was a pretty big argument in favor of a simple, spammy, idiot-proof playstyle.

Problem is, I really -hated- the characteristic silhouette of the Paragon.

The whole guardian angel thing was already fairly sappy, there was this entire love affair with the color white, and all Paragon armor basically looked like a cross between a kilt and a toga.

Picture from the Guild Wars wiki.

Picture from the Guild Wars wiki.

Not kidding you, go look at the paragon armor gallery if you want.

Yeah, some of it has armor plating, and some of it has spikes, but by and large, you were going to be looking like you were there to run a Greek marathon or something.

The Paragon weapon being a spear didn’t exactly help.

Now you looked like a javelin-thrower at the ancient Olympics.

Picking up the Rainment of the Lich for 10 bucks in Guild Wars 1 was the best not-quite-microtransaction I ever spent.

nonwhiteparagon

A paragon that isn’t white! Shock! Horror!

As for that particular shade of dye, I’m not quite sure how I arrived at it either.

I knew I wanted to be a unique color, not just a simple blue or red dye or whatever from a dye vendor, nor a simple compound color mix of two primary dyes.

There was some pink dye lying around from one of those Pink Day in LA celebrations… I grabbed some other dye out of my stash to mix with it randomly until an interesting contrast was obtained.

The rest is history. I went through many many HoM points looking like a vaguely demonic phantom and enjoyed it a lot more than I would’ve looking at paragon armor.

Knowing a Rainment of the Lich was coming in GW2 was one of those no-brainer must buys.

During the slow time after the sales, I’d already been converting gold into gems until I hit 700 in preparation for it.

lich1

Whee.

Like all outfits, it has 4 channels of dye to play around with.

lich2

I know what I’m wearing for Guild Wars Halloween.

Ok, Had It With Twitter, Again

I am recently reminded why I never bothered with Twitter or other social media avenues for a very long time.

For Bragtoberfest, I decided to pay a bit more attention to my essentially placeholder account, since some planning and meetups and call out notifications were taking place on Twitter.

Besides a sudden (and rather scary) following of people who just upped and followed me, because that’s what you do in Twitter, I guess, like blogs, except I don’t have to know who’s paying attention to what I say in blogs, it’s just there for anyone who wants to stay and read…

(Assuming they have the patience to get through all that verbiage, which I think neatly whittles out the people I want to associate with from the ones I don’t.)

…which leads to a dilemma of “Do I follow this person back in return?”

It’s not that I don’t like any of you, even if I decided not to follow you or otherwise, but it’s more about how much spam and reading overload am I inflicting on myself?

The answer, as it turns out, is too damn much.

It’s too much of a “push” technology for me.

I may like you, but I really don’t want to hear about everything else you might be reading or doing or deciding that I might be interested in such-and-such topic as well.

I have my own reading list. It’s called Feedly. It caters to my own very customised set of tastes. You probably don’t want to hear about every last RSS feed I have on it, you’re probably just here for the games and MMOs topics.

I’m not going to be so crass as to suddenly stop following a whole spate of people in the hope of blissful silence once more, but I’ve decided the best way is to simply stop paying attention to and checking my Twitter account.

(I’ll make a small exception during the time period of the Bragtoberfest TF2 meetup and other such planned events, but I’m discovering that Twittering daily or more times than that is like asking to be placed on a spam list. Self-inflicted owwie.)

Hermits gotta be hermits. Noise is not conducive to hermitting.

But to be polite, in case someone is trying to contact me and wonders why I’m not responding, it’s cos I’ve stopped checking.

Feel free to poke me here on this blog or over other avenues to “hey, go check it for some purpose or other” and I’ll gladly do so, but I can’t do this “Hi, I’m here to see what spam my friends (or celebrities) have decided to send me this day/hour/second” thing anymore.

Bragtoberfest: Tower Defence Quickies

The refreshing thing about Bragtoberfest has been the opportunity to play a broader spectrum of games than the habitual rut I’ve fallen into – where I cycle between dailies in GW2, dailies in Path of Exile and then spend the rest of the night in Minecraft with no real idea of what to do next but jetpack around like a bee and dip a toe into the next branch of things-to-do, only to discover that it’s a lot more complex than one bargained for.

The impromptu bonus has been a sudden resurgence of interest in Tower Defence games.

I LOVE Tower Defence.

I don’t know why, but the genre has a great appeal to me. There’s something very strategically attractive about planning out a beautiful sequence of traps or a gauntlet of a corridor of death, and then watching the unthinking hordes wander through and die to it.

I wouldn’t say I’m very good at it though.

I tend to the simplest, whatever works strategies, and I rarely come back and revisit the level for more efficiency and better and higher scores.

That is, until Orcs Must Die, where the difficulty kept ramping up to the point that I was left without recourse and had to go read strategy guides for a while and had my eyes opened to what other people were doing, helluva lot more efficiently and effectively.

That brought me past some harder levels a few years ago, but I kind of lost steam with it again.

The other day, since I spied Izlain trying his hand at it, and wanting to get past it so I can play the sequel with multiplayer too, I cranked it up to try and refresh my memory as to how it all worked.

I got a bit too intimidated to take on the next level right away, so I scrolled back and looked for an easier level where I’d done poorly before.

I found two:

orcs_chaos

Chaos Chamber was a bit tricky at first, but I rather surprised myself by seeing a potentially workable strategy and racing between portals to set it up. (Picked up a SG1 achievement for traveling through portals 20 times unknowingly too.)

I jumped from two skulls to five skulls earned. Oh yeah.

orcs_lunch

Then there was Lunch Break. My score was the shabbiest of all my Steam friends at first, and again I managed to suddenly see a pathing route that could effectively channel all the orcs into one chokepoint – which I then turned into a lethal doorway of death.

No clue about the missing skull though. Why wasn’t it good enough for that one last skull? Gaaah, apparently there’s room to get better still.

My time was limited, so I couldn’t play much more than that for the night, but it was good rewarding fun for that 30-60 minutes.

As for Defence Grid, Doone’s first challenge is Ancient Research.

So I cranked that game up, having left it fallow for a good two years or more.

My initial strategy went all guns, all upgraded everywhere.

Ended up the same 55k or so score that I’d been sitting on for ages. Not enough to beat Doone’s.

Time to think more efficiently and use less towers for more bang for buck.

defencegrid

Woot.

It’s probably still not the best that can be achieved, but I’m reluctant to refine it any further unless pushed by someone scoring higher. :P