Looter Shooters are weird

I’ve probably written more than once that I don’t actually like the concept of a Looter Shooter, and that I enjoy Borderlands more despite of the fact than because of it. OK, the case can be made that with a plethora of different weapons I might more easily find my favourite… but then again, back when I played Quake I also found my favourites easily even if there were just 5 of them, I just don’t like the slow progression in single player of only getting a new one every few levels.

Anyway. Azuriel wrote about Necromunda: Hired Gun and there’s this one sentence (ok, two sentences):

As mentioned previously, this is also a looter-shooter. You will acquire a lot of incrementally more powerful guns that you can customize with various mods and relics.

And it clicked and I had an epiphany. “incrementally more powerful” and “customize”. I don’t object to incremental upgrades at all, but the modding is annoying busywork for me. I prefer to make the most of what the game gives me, hopefully playtested and balanced a bit. I don’t actually want to find the one gamebreaking combo and I also don’t want to use the 70% effective weapon. Why would I willingly take a break from the (hopefully) enjoyable gameplay of running and shooting (and looting is fine as well) to fiddle with mods? Ugh.

So hear me out, here’s my idea. You have a classic looter shooter but I have a “Destroy this looted item” button and I get a bit of currency/spare parts that I can simply use with one click to improve my current weapon. No mods, no fiddling, just make the number go up. Bonus points for a Path of Exile-inspired loot filter that will auto-consume all grey and green loot and just keep the blue and purple ones for inspection. Now THAT would solve half my problems with looter shooters. The automatic juicing wouldn’t even have to be optimal, and it wouldn’t have to be the exclusive mode.. it’s just the lazy bastard way of playing such a game.

Does this exist already and I have missed it?

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #7.

Previews and Alphas and excitement

Everyone who is mildly interested in WoW might have noticed that the Alpha has started, talent trees are being released, new Alpha builds are released, and so on.

On the one hand I’m following the topic with a low amount of interest, but for example last night I looked at the Warrior Talent Tree and my interest instantly vanished. So many talents, I don’t feel knowledgeable enough to spec out a good build – but then again history has shown that not all talents that sound good are indeed good and ones that sound bad aren’t secretly good. Maybe I simply can’t muster up the hype for any of this anymore. If I read about this, I want to play it, but I don’t like playing Alphas or Betas either. Maybe I should simply stay away from the topic?

That said, I’m moderately looking forward to the new expansion – but I wouldn’t say I’m excited or even hyped. Maybe I’m old and boring but I guess I’ll just take a cookie cutter spec and then change the 2-3 things that annoy me, more of a top-down iterative approach over a bottom-up creative one.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #6.

EVE and another war

A month (and a few days) have passed since I came back to EVE after a break that lasted around 9 months if you count undocking and still 5ish months if you count an active subscription.

And.. wow… I guess not a week had gone by until we learned that Fraternity (one of the three biggest alliances) had somehow declared war, or to be more exact they wanted to expand their borders and gobble up the region we and some other folks are living in, and our leadership declared that we don’t want to be surrounded and also we’d be sticking with our bluetral neighbors because that’s why we went independent, and not cozy up to a big bloc. And so they decided to come to Pure Blind first and not Deklein or Fade, which were supposed to be their original targets.

The funny thing is that Fraternity is very huge in China and their numbers in EUTZ and USTZ are kinda bad, so they hired a bunch of mercenaries to fight for them. No, we don’t really understand it either and we’re actively playing this game. Anyway, BRAVE has 8600 pilots, V0lta+Bl0b have around 3000, and the Greater Trash Coalition.. I simply don’t know, maybe another 2500 – and Fraternity has over 24000. Oh, and then now also the remaining people in TEST decided to join FRT and deploy/move here. At least PanFam (Pandemic Legion, Pandemic Horde, Northern Coalition) doesn’t seem to be very close to WinterCo (FRT etc.) anymore…

There was a big fight on July 9th where we fought back and since then it doesn’t really feel like we’re being invaded, which is good. Let’s hope we can hold out longer.

Anyway, that wasn’t actually what I wanted to write, that thing is that I noticed that for the amount I’ve been playing I look very inactive on zkill – so I decided to fix that and my first milestone is 1k kills on my main and I managed to get just over 100 on my main and around 30 on my alt – which at least brings me to nearly 550 combined. I don’t think I can keep up with the amount of fleets in August, but I’m trying my best. One problem is that we did quite a few special ops that lasted for 1-2h but gave no kill, so while I know the kills are just an easily gamed metric, it’s some sort of metric. (Killed 130, lost 15, not terrible).

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #5.

Season 4 M+ – First impressions

I hadn’t actually planned to do much last night, just weekly login of all toons, grab the quests, maybe have a go at the new old world boss with supposedly higher iLevel loot… when I got messages on discord to log my main and then being told I shouldn’t log through all toons so quickly when they want to message me 😛

Anyway, my +12 Streets keys was waved away and they really wanted to do that +16 Mechagon Workshop. Wasn’t fun, so we switched to +15. Still wasn’t exactly fun and took a lot of dying and trying out things, but we made it through with a lot of overtime, but that’s one 304 item in the vault secured. I had warned them that I only ever did the instance once, overleveled, but it’s not like I was the only one bumbling. Took like 80 minutes, but it wasn’t wasted time… but I think I should stick to a lot lower besides one weekly +15 for the gear, for now, at least until I know the fights. Also I guess we were criminally undergeared at our 273 to 278. And I think they only took me with them (it’s the +20 crew) because 3 of the big pumpers are on vacation, but I’m not complaining.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #4.

Shadowlands goals, part 2

I’m not sure it was exactly a good idea, but I did manage to finish off 2 more WoW chars to 60 last night, even if it took until 1:30 my time. I hadn’t originally planned to take advantage of the 50% XP buff (and I’ll only find out if it’s really gone when I will login later today), but with my main goals reached it sounded like a fun challenge. Goblin Warrior (my third) and Void Elf Rogue (my fourth) are now at 60 and it’s a nice round number of 30 toons. In a totally random twist of fate I now have two of each class at 60, and then 3 Hunters, Death Knights, Paladins, Warriors, and 4 Rogues. I’ve never been a huge fan of Paladins and especially not DKs, but it kinda happened, mostly because of different servers and the sale on transfers coming much too late. Then again I kinda covered most of favorite classes this way, the only outliers being Shaman, Warlock, and Druid. Is it weird to have 6 favorite classes out of 12? Maybe.

Sounds like it’s time for a ranking, shall we?

Rogue/Warrior > Shaman > Hunter = Paladin =~ Warlock > Druid = Demon Hunter = Death Knight > Mage > Monk > Priest

I guess Retri/Prot Paladins have always been ok since TBC/WotLK, I only hated them in Vanilla. Warlock and Druid are classes I really like, but I feel I’m not as good without extensive effort, so they’re a little more tedious. DK and DH are not great, but solid most of the time. Frost Mages are either fun to play or meh, depending on the expansion. And I don’t think I’ll ever warm up to Monk or Priest (WotLK Disc was cool tho). Rogues would be perfect if they weren’t sometimes so squishy/not able to solo elites anymore. Also can’t tank, so I guess that’s why I’ve gone more towards Warrior for many years. I’m not sure I ever want to main a Hunter but I always enjoy playing them. Maybe stuck with Warrior for now…

Kinda funny how the one number (Level 60, yay!) is meaningful to the point that I level so many toons and the other – more important – number (iLevel, boo!) I don’t care at all. Never in the mood to grind out gear, especially not on alts. Catch up is fine, but actually putting in time and effort? Nah.

Also managed to sneak in a last M+ after the (short) raid and could upgrade my MH to 272 with 1000 of my 1035 Valor. Will be a win either way – either I will now have a 272 MH until a good one drops, or it will drop just because I upgrade. But the Valor would be converted to gold anyway, so nothing lost. Kinda shitty that I lose all my Valor on the Shaman, but she’s just not reached a high enough rating to upgrade stuff above 255.

Season 4 is starting today, and we’re only gonna raid on Sundays. Despite hardly missing a raid the last 3 tiers this expansion and the summer still going I’m probably not gonna try to schedule other stuff around the raid, but with it only being one day, me still not being keen on a lot of events with tons of people… and my friends basically never going out on a Sunday… I’ll probably still be able to attend most nights. Kinda glad it’s only one night as I’m not overly enthusiastic about repeating the content.

I have a low key plan/desire to heal more and also tank a little this season, but on the other hand I’m in a bit of a WoW lull right now. The Jailer AOTC kill wasn’t the grand finale I’d hoped for, with all the nerfs and then the “we gotta go fast” and then also not being able to rekill him (for lack of an ID) for our tank who missed the kill. Interestingly the tank itself seems to care the least for the missed achievement, but some of us still feel bad about it.

This was supposed to be a very short “yay, 30th Level 60 and made it just in time for S4” post, but sometimes you write a few words and your lunch break is over…

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #3.

Shadowlands goals

During the run of WoW’s 9.2 patch cycle (let’s call it the Zereth Mortis season) I ran quite a few chars through this daily zone. I mean, I also did a lot of other things, raids and M+, and so on – but for some reason I wanted to see this campaign done on all classes, and get my 265 Belt Legendary as a reward. Also the world boss dropped some items (better for Cloth and Plate, worse for Leather, worst for Mail) and with the Sandworn Relics you could buy low-level Tier pieces (or to be more exact, 246 items that could be converted to Tier pieces of the same level). Some hotfix patch just before Season 4 made them Bind-to-Account, so on Friday I could finish the last pieces.

  • One character per class (and faction) to Level 60 – long ago
  • One character per class to Renown 80 – done
  • One character per class completing the ZM campaign and get a Legendary – done
  • One character per class with the 4-set tier bonus – done
  • One character per class unlocking all 6 levels of the cypher – done **
  • One character per class at item level 252 or above – meh, only managed 8 of them

Yeah I know it’s kinda stupid, but I somehow enjoy some mindless grinds, often only 20 minutes after work for a very quick tour. I’d say I’m basically done with the alts for this expansion. We’ll see how Season 4 actually is and how many toons I want to actively play (it’s summer now after all), but I guess it won’t be that many.

  • Raiding: Warrior, unless we do alt runs, then maybe Shaman
  • M+: Warrior and probably Shaman, maybe tanking as Blood DK or Demon Hunter
  • collecting gear: not sure, no plans really.

I’m at 28 Level 60 chars and we have an XP buff running, so maybe getting to a nice round 30 would be an idea.

Maybe I’ll use the Sandworn Relics I have left to finish a few transmog sets, but unfortunately the LFR level ones are all some meh tone of mostly greens. The normal versions look so much better. I think I got all the reputations to Exalted on my main, but there are a few of the covenant special things I haven’t spent a lot of time with, although I’m 2/3 towards Exalted with the Stitchmasters, but I mostly ignored Revendreth and Bastion in that regard. I think I did all quest lines and I definitely unlocked all Heritage Armors that are ingame. I should have all professions at max level once as well.

**: ninja edit: 30 minutes after publishing this scheduled article I actually managed #12. Talk about timing.

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #2.

Blaugust 2022

Yeah, yeah, I’ve made up my mind – I’ve signed up for Blaugust 2022 on Saturday (with roughly 40h spare this time). My official goal will be 5 posts in August, with 15 being a stretch goal (and there’s no reward, only more posts).

Belghast has the details post, as usual.

In the last few years I’ve managed to summarize all the participants’ RSS/Atom feeds into an OPML file, here’s a first version that I did not have time to doublecheck, it will be updated: blaugust2022.opml

Overall I have nothing big planned, just a few bits about WoW and maybe some EVE. Happy Blaugust, everyone!

This is Blaugust 2022 – post #1.

Raiding Sepulcher – week 22

As I wrote before, this turned out to be a very close call. August 2nd (a Tuesday) is probably the last day for EU people to get AOTC, and we’re not sure if we’ll get a raid together this Sunday or on that Tuesday, but… we did it!

Last night at 21:40, so 20 minutes before the scheduled raid end, we had a really good try with less deaths at the start and actually killed him just after the 9 minute mark. AOTC number two done, I’m so relieved. We’ll try to grab another ID and do a rekill on Sunday for one of our tanks, who missed this night, probably one of 2-3 nights this whole tier :/

Not completely happy with my damage (46 Green parse, 35 adjusted for iLevel, 97% active), but didn’t die and 7th place out of 11 in a single target fight.

Wipe counter for Sepulcher of the First Ones Heroic:

  • Jailer 61
  • Rygelon 57
  • Lords of Dread 25
  • Halondrus 36
  • Anduin 24
  • Pantheon 13
  • Lihuvim 15
  • Xy’mox 18
  • Dausegne 3
  • Skolex 7
  • Vigilant Guardian 0
AOTC: Sepulcher
The mount for AOTC: Sepulcher

Soon: Blaugust 2022

Belghast has started to sound the horn for Blaugust 2022 already and looking at the Discord spirits are high and people are eager to go.

I’m currently not very enthusiastic about the whole blogging thing, as you can in the monthly view – this is just the fourth post this month, but there’s been a summer lull in some years, a winter lull in others. Never been a consistent blogger and likely never will be.

There are good reasons and bad reasons, but in the end I’m not in the mood to write a lot currently. I still need to wrap up a WoW project or two, these should provide a post each, and other than that I’ve been playing a lot of EVE Online, and for some reason I don’t enjoy writing about it as much as about other games, so I don’t do it. Still need to get back into GW2, but meh.

But I’ve also come around and signed up on the last day at least twice, and maybe I should go for the Bronze Award participation trophy again… we’ll see.

Raiding Sepulcher – weeks 20-21

Rygelon didn’t turn out to be a big problem after the nerf, so he fell on like the 5th pull on that Sunday raid, since then we’ve been working on the Jailer, but some raid nights had to be called off for tanks missing, and even more people missing. I think we’re down to 38% – when the adds come, but not very consistently. I guess we have 2 raid nights left, if they happen – then it’s over, AotC or not. Not happy.