Saturday, March 26, 2011

No Money? No Problem!

So, it's Spring Break for me, and I am out of cash.  No money for World of Warcraft.  So, it was time to dust off a free game I had installed, update it, and get a second impression.

I think it was summer that I downloaded Runes of Magic.  It is a very pretty game, and my husband tells me it reeks of WoW.  Sure, there are buttons and chat screens and mini maps and character info bars all neatly where WoW puts them, but I don't see much similarity past that.

I started an Elf Mage named Eromee.  I didn't go back to whoever I had started before, because I wanted a fresh opinion of the game.  Character customization was fun, not too hard to mess with, but had the potential to get really sticky, depending on how picky you are about your character's looks. Here is the finished gal, all done up in her around level 20 gear.

Eromee on her Rent-A-Nag, with her pet Spore Guard giving advice.
Every level up to 20, you have a little bag that you can open that gives you mana and health potions and some other useful stuffs.  At 20, I got a one day rental on this wonderful horse.  Otherwise, with no real world money to use, you're wearing out your shoe leather.  If you complete the tutorial at the beginning, you get a rental on a brown horse, and I think that you get that anyhow, but might as well for the extra experience boost!  See that purty robe she's wearing?  She made it herself out of some wood planks and some leaf bundles.  And that freaky looking toadstool guy behind her?  That's her pet.  Got any great suggestions for a name for him (I'm assuming it's male, because he is shirtless and pantsless and isn't hiding behind a leaf or looking embarassed...shameless toadstool boy!)? 

I'm getting ahead of myself.  The elf starting area is an island of its own, and I was pretty nearly 15 when I left it.  I heard rumors of an experience boost this past weekend, so don't expect the same bang for your time invested.  I did finish EVERY quest they had out there, though, and left with some decent clothes and a sexy staff.  Pants and Robes on my own, all the rest were quest rewards and drops.  I took their zeppelin, which somehow managed to look elven and steampunk at the same time, to Varanas, the main city that I seem tied to right now.  Oh, before I left the Elven area, I made sure that if I could craft it, I ran out of items to craft with the resources I gathered there.  This kept me from having to craft or gather for a long long time after leaving the homeland.

After hitting Varanas, there were a few errand quests to do that take you all over town, though none of them seemed to help me find some of the things I needed when I hit gathering and crafting caps.  The quest log is helpful, in that if you click on an NPC name in it, it will path you to them.  Just be careful as you run to stop and gather or kill things, and then restart your hell bent run for that NPC, or you'll die on the way.

Death. There's something I should mention.  When you die (I'm not sure what the beginning level of this is at, if you play you'll find out soon enough) you lose experience and training points, and your experience and training point gain per kill and quest turn in go down to help pay off that debt.  You should always go back and find your grave stone to get some of that debt refunded to you.  It's not such a horrible debt, at least yet, that I haven't been able to repay it within a few minutes.  Still it is a tiny setback you should know about.

Skills you gain as you level, and you use your training points to strengthen your abilities.  I'm sure I am doing it all wrong, so if I become concerned about the right build, I will write down how they are supposed to be leveled.  Right now, I figure I should keep my ordinary skills at max, and probably only max out the skills I like in the mage specific category.  Why?  Because if I grab that second class, I want the ordinary skills maxed and ready, because I won't have all the fancy fun ones available to me if I change primary classes.  Right now, I am only a mage.  I'm pretty sure being a rogue or a warrior type would be a bad choice, as their skills aren't even remotely similar.  Until I figure out, I'll be a one trick gal, and that is fine by me.

The cash shop is full of fun goodies that so far I haven't needed. Helpful things would be a permanent mount (though you can rent them by the day from a stable keeper) and some extra storage space. Daily quests are available from day one that grant you Phirius Coins, which have their own separate tab in the cash shop, and you can buy mount rentals and other maybe things you might want, like transport and home runes, items to reset point and class choices, experience and talent point boosters, housing items (yes, I have a house!  more on that later), and items to upgrade your armor.  Personally, after I get a few housing items and I am set on transport runes, I'm saving up for the one and only costume item in the Phirius Coin section, a pair of Heavenly Black Wings. Why?  Why not?! 

The next category in the shop is rubies.  Rubies are given when you purchase items in the item shop(at least I think this is how it works).   In here you can find backpack expansions, upgrades, and a slightly larger amount of costumes to choose from.  No mounts here, but I figure that either I should cough up the 10 bucks for a regular horse, or just pay for one when I want one, which is pretty cheap, I think. Besides, if I hoard enough gold, I can probably find just about anything I want from the cash shop in the auction house.

Down on Grandpa's Farm There Is A Little White Hen.

I let this sit half written in my browser since Thursday night at 2 am.  I have been so busy figuring out how my Spore Guard pet works, and feeding him, and being an absolute noob trying to follow a higher level person through the Forsaken Abbey dungeon (Oh, what fun is that? I totally forgot to finish a quest in there, too :( ), and dying to bad things I should not have died to, and reading every little thing my pet says, that I totally forgot it was here. Yeah, and I was busy caring for a newborn for my slutty Medieval Sim. Really.  If you believe that, then I have a farm to sell you, full of chickens that might lay a golden egg for you, and cows and goats that refuse to be milked.  More on that later.  It's, again, waaaaay past my bedtime.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Are you there, Shawndra? It's me, Kingdom of Loathing.

These are state of the art graphics!

I thought this e-mail was so clever, and I still love the game, so I thought I'd share it with you.  Go on out and give Kingdom of Loathing a whirl. You can play it on just about anything, really, the graphics are easy on the video card and I really don't remember any music or sound effects that require a top of the line sound card. Matter of fact, if you have an old monochrome monitor hooked up to a computer that is capable of browsing the interwebs, it would be nearly the same as playing from your top of the line gaming laptop.

One of several classes you can choose from.

Dear shawndra,

Okay, I'm not good at this kind of thing, but I feel like I have to give it a try. So, here goes:

I was hanging out the other night, listening to some old mp3s, and I was just overcome with memories of when we used to hang out all the time. Remember? You were an intrepid, fearless adventurer, and I was the free-to-play, fun-and-funny online role-playing game that won your heart. Do you still remember those good times? I can't stop thinking about them.

I mean, I know things got kind of messed up at the end, and believe me, I'm sorry. If I could take any of that back, I totally would. And I know people grow and change, and you're not the same person you were then, but hey -- I've changed, too! I thought and thought about how to win you back. I figured I'd make you a mix CD, but I couldn't decide what "our song" was. So I just concentrated on becoming a better game for you, and here's what I came up with:

Remember how much fun you used to have with your clan? Alternately, remember how you never joined a clan because you didn't see the point? Either way, clans now have clan dungeons, group zones where your whole clan can work together. Crawl through sewers to Hobopolis, a vast underground vagrant vacation vista! Slide into the slime tube, and stir-fry sassy slimes!

I know I wasn't the prettiest game when we were together, so I had some work done. Almost every interface got an interface-lift. You can even manage most of your inventory via chat commands! I also came up with a way for you to automate some of the things you don't love about the game, so you can spend more time with the parts you do love.

Not only that, but there are way more animated .gifs than there were before. Don't worry; I haven't lost that low-fi edginess you love, but I'm a lot easier to play with now.

You can also have a custom title now, just in case you didn't feel like I appreciated what made you unique as an individual.

I should also say
Haiku Dungeon's been revamped.
See what I did there?

Maybe you quit because you got sick of always adventuring above the water. I admit that seems unlikely, but I fixed that, too -- there are a bunch of underwater zones with new food, equipment, mechanics, and challenges.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg, trust me. I'm still the silly, clever, deceptively-complex game you fell in love with, only with about 95% more awesome.

So, I'm just sayin', if you can find it in your heart to give me another chance, I won't disappoint you.

If you don't drop by, I promise I won't bother you again. I just really felt like we deserved one more try.


The Kingdom of Loathing.

Not the Wrong Side of the Tracks.

Sunday, March 6, 2011


I'll explain later. This is up at a friend's request.