Life is a painful journey but we can walk together

This is an editorial post unrelated to gaming, MMOs and all the silly things that also make me happy.

Last Friday night I got together with my oldest friend for dinner after a long stretch of radio silence. Silence not just from my side – ever since worklife has caught up with us after leaving university, the periods of not seeing each other have grown longer. I’ve come to accept this about adulthood; that we all get caught up in our private and professional lives, people moving away or getting married, changing jobs and struggling with all the daily tasks and responsibilities. We all do our best to stay in control but there are times when it’s hard to muster any more energy after the day is done. Before we know it, we start existing and stop living. That is especially true for those who are used to shoulder much more than just their share.

The overlaps of history between my friend and me are remarkable. Not only has life insisted on continuously bringing us together time and again ever since we were both 9 and 10 years old, as if our own winding paths could never part for long, I have also never known anyone to share that much of my own biography, so many experiences and constellations that made us who we are now. It’s this kinship that wipes whatever time away that may have passed between meetings. As long as we keep having these regular brushes, even per SMS or email, our friendship endures. That said, longer stretches of silence are usually a bad sign. That is certainly true for the extrovert types that we both are, who insist on functioning no matter what and have never learned to share their own pain, only share in the pain of others.

The moment she stepped into my new home, I felt it. She looked pale, she talked differently. She was like a tired shadow of her other version. I showed her around, I poured a drink wondering how best to catch up. And as usual, it didn’t take long – over the course of dinner I got to tell her what a rotten year lies behind me, how my partner finally started therapy for a complex case of childhood PTSD and how things are slowly improving for the both of us, step by step. I don’t hold back on these topics anymore; I’ve come to know too many wonderful people struggling with anxiety disorders or depression, to maintain any sort of shyness or tolerance for stigma around these discussions. Fuck stigma. Fuck the whole masquerade. Life is raw and deep and painful whenever it stops being easy.

I’m done wasting my time with false pretenses. When my partner decided to tell the world (as in all relevant environment such as friends and the workplace) that he had been suffering for over thirty years and that he was dealing with things now, in a serious manner by whatever help necessary, my heart ached with pride because he decided to stop hiding. When I think of how medication-based therapy enabled my mother to build a second life from scratch after the age of 55, when the alternative would have been death or hospitalisation most likely, there is only thankfulness in me and empathy. It’s such a huge step to get yourself help and turn your life around, no matter a more introvert or extrovert type of personality. Only you can do it and the pain tends to get worse before it gets better.

Opening up about these issues broke whatever fabric my old friend had wrapped around her pale exterior. She’s been going through her first ever rough patch that is in fact about herself. She’s a nervous wreck, she can’t sleep at night for all the noise in her head, she’s experienced several anxiety attacks at the new work place. Her body is acting up. After a life of achieving and caring and carrying, she’s finally stretched so thin that her entire system starts revolting. She’s being forced to focus on her own needs and she has no idea yet how to do this. Her first instincts are probably to write a list of priorities and weigh the pros and cons, so yeah she needs help…I was very glad to hear she’s already reached out about this to her GP.

It’s all so familiar. The moment my partner finally and earnestly got into therapy (which took three attempts), my energy levels completely rock bottomed. I got sick with serious infection several times in a row and my nerves deserted me even on trivial tasks. I have never felt as spent. That is the aftermath of overcoming hardship more often than not – it’s not sunshine and cheerfulness, it’s a deep well of exhaustion. Before you can move on, you have to breathe out and recuperate.

We’ll learn. Today I believe in baby steps, in cherishing lighthearted moments when they occur. I still look forward to things but I don’t plan so much anymore. I let things happen rather than making them – I am learning to chill. My friend is currently at the stage of debating whether she should tell her superior or not and if she can get a grip with “just a few GP sessions”. She worries about coming across as unprofessional when sharing too much about her life and well-being and I don’t blame her. But I also know that there are things you cannot hide from others. You can try of course but it won’t do you any good. When you reached the point where a condition or illness temporary or otherwise, manages your life, it is an impossible task to maintain the act. More importantly however, you are missing out; you’re missing out on reactions that will surprise and humble you. From the moment we open up about what is essentially our human condition, people around us will come out and connect. I have co-experienced this twice now and it’s stunning. Truth liberates, there is magic in being truthful about yourself. It also means you’re taking back ownership of your life by switching on the light in those dark corners. What we keep in the dark makes us sick. When we further isolate ourselves from others, we cut away all opportunity.

No matter where you are, in this moment there are people around you with the same struggles, keeping quiet about the same things. The minute you come forth, there’s a high chance of experiencing togetherness, empathy and support from unexpected places rather than rejection. And inadvertently, you will become someone else’s spring of hope, too. It’s as if everyone was just waiting for a chance to chime in. This is life and it’s happening to everybody! If you think you’re immune to it, I say give it time.

I am glad I was able to support my friend in her time of need. She’s already tough but now she’ll also learn to be human – and that is an experience worth having. Last night my partner and I came across Wil Wheaton’s contribution to the “UR OK” project on youtube and we were both deeply moved by his words that describe much of what we’ve been through. It’s not over, every day is another step on the journey. There will be days of pain and more growth and there will be days of joy and not feeling bad, until we realize that this journey is really just life. And we can all walk together.

Mobile Gaming 4 U (and me)

After much consideration (I am cheap), I finally became the owner of a shiny Samsung T800 Galaxy Tab (10.5) this last Tuesday. Aside of being able to watch clips and movies as well as read and chat with more ease thanks to a much larger screen, owning a tablet means mobile games! I partly got this tablet so I could return to the frantic fun that is Cook Serve Delicious (which you should totally own) but I am also set on discovering more casual games to take to Italy with me next month. Yes, that’s what I do while sunbathing at the Adriatic coast (don’t judge).

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In my head, mobile gaming has so much potential and yet, discovering games that are worth a dime feels like pearl diving at the bottom of a vast sea of humbug. That’s why I’ve spent this week sourcing my social media platforms for solid mobile titles inside the RPG/adventure/sim and casual silliness corner. So far, I ‘ve been able to secure the following games, along with the awesome CSD:

  • You must build a boat
  • Crossyroad
  • Monument Valley
  • Blek
  • Plague Inc.

As you can see, I don’t really care if the games cost me a dollar or not, as long as it’s worth the investment. In fact, paywalled content or a lot of ads and popups are a big no-go in my book. This is where I’m shouting out for more tips from y’all – it would be especially nice if there was a JRPG or two that I could sink my teeth into. I do know about mobile Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy & Co., what I’m looking for is something potentially new and fun that lands somewhere between Zelda and FF (no tactical RPGs plx!). I also really like games that look good or have nice music, so this is where I’m recommending Buddy&Me and TA: Red Riding Hood to those of you who are into that kind of thing.

So yeah, I need some help with this. More mobile tips & recommendations this way please! And happy weekend everybody!

(P.S. I am waiting on Fallout Shelter to come out on Android, in case that was your first thought!)

[FFXIV] Happy Heavensward Launch and the Evolution of Me

This fine Tuesday June 23rd, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn got its very own, first expansion, an event which begs for a moment of recollection. For such a long way this title has come: this ship that had almost sunk into the morass of disastrous MMO launches, somehow managed to do the nigh impossible and turn its course around, establish ARR as a brand new title with over 2mio subscribers to date, and release an expansion packed with new content. It may have been a rocky road, yet across the finish line shines a title rivaling all other fantasy-themed MMOs currently on the market. Chapeau really, to all the folks at SE who made this happen!

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Despite their ever fussy account-management, a thing that will surely never change, I somehow managed to get my early access for Heavensward running this past weekend and ding lvl 53 before official launch day. From what I’ve seen so far of the new zones and quests, I’m more than satisfied. The story picks up the pace from the Seventh Astral Era where it left off, the zones are beautiful if not slightly annoying in terms of navigation (apparently SE’s idea of making their audience desperate to fly), the new professions look interesting and the Au Ra aren’t nearly as dull as anticipated. In fact, I found myself surrendering to story pressure and swallow yet another bottle of Fantasia to transform myself, but more on that later. I also managed to get my chocobo off the ground for the first zone so far – a feat that doesn’t come free or easily in Heavensward for flight must be earned, again and again for each new zone. I should’ve known.

Isghard is as impressive a city as it’s cold and uninviting, which goes with the social, political context and icy weather. Naturally, I was delighted to hear the city music come in four different variations with some lovely day and night themes, just the way the other capitals got them. It will be a while before we see any Heavensward soundtrack release, I fear (but in the meantime, some of us will find ways to listen to it anyway).

Heavensward at a first glance, fulfills all the promises of novelty. What I am somewhat disappointed in is how SE never seem much interested in improving the existing. Gripes like the quest tracker not allowing you to uncheck old quests, or the fact that for some reason you may not use a companion pet together with a mount, persist and have not been addressed. I realize that there are technical restrictions sometimes; I still expect some effort towards improving the mediocre, whether the player base (grudgingly) goes along with it or not.

Me, Myself and I

I’ve never changed a main character as often or as drastically as I have in FFXIV, an MMO which is very liberal in its re-customization options. I started this journey few months ago as Sylberry Goldwink, a delightfully sunny Lalafel with odd eyes and a cheeky face –

I still love that character to bits, in fact I believe SE have done a fantastic job on the race design of their smallest citizens. I usually don’t gravitate towards shorties in MMOs but next to the Asura and Gibberlings, Lalafel are truly my favorite people.

Unfotunately for them, armor design on higher levels doesn’t agree so much with Lalafel proportions (maybe less so on females than males) which is why I decided to give a more mature and darker type of character a go after reaching lvl 50. Yes, yet another tall human female called Syl, with raven black hair and a sardonic smile –

Human black mage Syl feels like the most accurate ‘real me’-condensation in an MMO since ever, so I was really happy with the outcome. Furthermore, I gave the character some distinct Lulu-attributes (I don’t have purple eyes for one thing), that aloof sorceress from FFX that has been resting on my desk for over 10 years in figurine-form, hugging her Mog companion. I may also have a T-shirt.

Needless to say I adore this character, yet I’m not perfectly happy with the way SE have treated Hyur females. Their movement seems graceless, as if not enough time had been invested in studying the anatomic female form and how that would affect motion. Maybe it’s the same for male Hyur, I don’t know. Few armor sets aside such as the above one, I often found myself standing around in baggy garments, which gave my character an almost buffoonish look. Bleh.

Granted, these are smaller details; for the most part SE character design and animations are top notch and beat most of their competition, armor detail certainly does too. Still, the launch of a new expansion was a great opportunity to check out the Au Ra, with their strange horns which are more or less obtrusive depending on the face you go for. It is a tragedy that SE decided to bundle face and horn types together – a most curious decision that greatly reduces your choice in different looks. You might really dig one of those four faces on display but if it comes with the huge lobster-shaped horns, tough luck! Seriously, this needs fixing.

In the end, I managed to create a character that I really enjoy and that probably feels the most Japanese/manga of the lot, while also reminding me of my old Rift Kelari mage. I went with a painted face look in honor of Harle, beloved jester figure from Chrono Cross. I could do without the tail thing honestly, but I absolutely love the idea of my character being partly dragonkin now, given that Sylvara, my online name of many years, has been taken from a special character in the Dragonlance novels who is also a dragon. This meant a name change was long overdue too since Sylberry Goldwink has by now expired its date of appropriateness.

A smart business model

It seems weird to switch character race as often as I have in FFXIV and yet, it’s always fun creating new looks for yourself. Be it Sylberry the sunny and funloving Lalafel, the dark human femme fatale with the stern face or the mischevious Au Ra jester – all these characters are a facet of my own personality. Many MMO players probably roll alts for this exact reason, which isn’t something particularly beneficial in FFXIV. Relying heavily on their main character, players are more likely to pay for character re-customizations whenever new features are introduced. At the same time, there’s already a lot of customization and job freedom in the game by default, as well as the odd Fantasia freebie once or twice a year. That’s more than fair in my book, even if I already spent some extra cash on my looks in the Mog Station. What can I say, I do like me my MMO character creation!

NBI Screenshot Safari: Horizons

For the very last day of this May’s #NBI2015Safari, I decided to do the impossible and go with the “landscape” theme which proves quite the challenge for someone with too many screenshots on her hard disk. After spending an hour browsing all the prettier MMOs – Guild Wars 2, Tera, LOTRO and FFXIV, I decided to break with tradition and go with a non-MMO screenshot instead. I have spent around 50 hours of gametime on the Witcher 3 so far, to say that I’m loving it would be an understatement. Even if you’re not into the series however, you gotta admit the game comes with some stunning visuals. I will upload a full screenshot gallery at some point but for now, this one pick must suffice.

One of the most remarkable things about the Witcher’s world is its viewing distance even on medium settings; the way you can see cities and important landmarks from halfway across the map. Even more so than in Skyrim, this world feels never-ending and like a genuine, natural place. The sky above is beautiful and changes dynamically with daytime and weather. I intend to spend a great deal more time exploring this open world down to its last nook and cranny!

A beautiful view.

A beautiful view.

Today in P2W: Gamers are getting older and that’s okay!

Today I came across this passionately one-sided opinion piece over at Massively OP which makes a somewhat poor case against the ever-rising pay-to-win model for videogames (yeah, am still reading about MMOs and stuff!). I admit it was a disagreement between Isarii and Scree on twitter that made me aware of its existence, so like every curious MMO blogger I was drawn to the drama – and there is always drama when players discuss pay to win.

Now before I address the Massively article, I’ll say this: I am personally not a fan of P2W games. I don’t play any and they tend not to interest me in the slightest. I gave Candy Crush 15 minutes of my life once, out of obscene curiosity and recoiled in disgust after the first of many enforced time locks popped up. That being said, I am not afraid of P2W games either; while their market share may be growing, I don’t believe them to be an imminent threat to more traditional games or gamers since they do not cater to that target audience. We all know that gaming as a whole is getting bigger and the really significant growth of the last few years belongs to social or “casual” as well as mobile gaming. - Geeky and niche MMO gaming? Not so much. Still, we have little to complain about compared to our humble beginnings. So I guess what I’m saying is, I don’t fear P2W games any more than I fear that WoW has destroyed the MMO genre when really, WoW created its own market and if anything, helped other MMOs along (midterm copycat fails or not).

Of course one can take a moral approach and try analyze how (un-)ethical P2W models are. There may be merit in that discussion, although personally I am not prepared to have it (and my liberal stance on f2p is hardly news). Too often does it come down to players defending what they know versus what is new and still unfamiliar ground. Or worse, everyone starts sounding like a wanna-be psychologist and umm gaming addiction and save the children. There are some shades of grey, may-be, but essentially all videogame ventures and business models are looking to make the most money in the most effective way possible, triggers included. There have always been players at the shorter end of the stick of whatever business model. How exactly is this such a great “truth” we never heard of (in reference to the Massively article)? So while I understand some critics’ concerns and where they come from, I tend to agree with Scree on this one. The times they are a’changing and maybe we need to keep an open mind and try sound less like our at least proverbial grandparents.

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We’re getting older, oh noes!

My immediate reaction to the Massively piece was, passionate rant or not, that it’s incredibly condescending towards anyone within that “older gamer group with disposable income” who dares to play games differently and enjoy them differently. Jef Reheard even goes as far as saying that P2W players don’t actually play the games – no, they “pay their way through instead of playing it through”. This is also clearly not fun! That makes you wonder why the heck all these weirdos keep paying money for something that surely is objectively horrible but wait, there’s the answer to that as well: they are lab rats that act out of compulsion rather than umm, the righteous and sound enjoyment of the non-P2W advocate. Yep…that really is the gist of the article, I’m afraid. You got some jolly “no real gamersss”-disdain, mixed with the old “not fun”-trap and some pseudo-psychology spice to top it off and make this one unsavory cocktail to drink.

It’s no longer about the fun or the escapism of gaming; it’s about capturing a bite-sized piece of those bygone days when they had time to play, and of course it’s also about satisfying those psychological skinner box urges[…]

I snorted. And then I self-cringed too because I’ve had my share of “why achievements and instant gratification are destroying my MMO”-rants and malcontent on this here blog. I still hold to the journey is the reward (for_me). However in hindsight, and also really whilst writing, it’s apparent that dramatic rants were dramatic. I think us MMO explorer types can live alongside the achievers or killers just fine for the most part, heck some of us even like one another despite our different playstyles (<3)! And none of us have gone out of business.

But back to P2W: as a general rule, all panicky reasoning is bad reasoning. And sure, you might find P2W cheap or cheaty and that’s alright, but obviously there are many ways to find pleasure in games. I’ve played MMOs in the past just to dress up my characters and yes, buy exclusive clothes from an ingame store. Likewise, P2W-players do very much also play the games they invest in, duh – it’s not like they’re just paying money and then never spend any time on actual game play. They just play differently. Maybe they want to skip stuff they don’t consider fun (like grinding!), maybe their sessions are shorter. Either way, it seems reasonable there should be a market for such a customer. It also seems contradictory (and patronizing but let’s forget that) to say the model is dangerous for the weak of mind and spirit and then make a point out of how it’s a more mature and financially stable target audience that sinks money into P2W games like World of Tanks and ArchAge?

And gamers are OK with P2W in large part because they’re getting older and they’ve outgrown gaming. They have mortgages, multiple jobs, kids, and a dozen other excuses for circumventing game mechanics with real money.

Ah pardon moi! I did not realize gamers needed “legit excuses” for the way they play games at all. As far as I am concerned, an aging player base with more disposable incomes and diverse tastes in gaming is brilliant news for the videogame industry. We are entering uncharted waters still with the first generations of videogamers advancing through their middle age; this process is far from over. Games, genres, markets, business models: they are far from being fully explored or formed or finished. I’m not sorry for growing older or changing my spending ways – what a silly argument to even have.

myworldischanging

Many changes, handle it!

I’ll make it a simple summary: whatever rants declare (good old) gaming is dying or getting worse or going under for reason “XY” are wrought with fallacies. Cathartic at times maybe or endearing in their zeal, still wrong. Don’t trust them, don’t worry about it. The only truth is change. Games change. Audiences change. It all changes constantly. Sometimes you’ll like it better, sometimes you’ll like it worse. Most likely, it just means we’re getting more games and different games and more diverse, specialized markets and business models. We’ll see things come and go, over and over because such is the paradox of time (green is the new green!). And some games you really should avoid, ideally without preaching to others (too much).

Yesterday a still studying co-worker of mine showed me an interview he did with a 60-year old pharmacist who happens to train apprentices. The topic was “today’s youth” and communication, or something. It was basically an old fart talking about how young people cannot concentrate anymore, constantly use their mobile phones for wasteful activities and other weird things the old man (old because of his ways) clearly did not come close to grasp. He had zero understanding of this new generation he was supposed to teach, in fact he had no interest to learn about their world at all. It was a most tedious read for me, also because I have worked with young people and count myself among the digital age children. I fucking love the internet and over-sharing on twitter.

That’s why I am somewhat radically over the ever-fearful, judgmental whinging of fading generations, in all walks of life. I hope one day I’ll be a better old person (with a cool hat). There is a new world born every day and I am ready for the next adventure.

(…and I’ll still tag this post under ‘rants’ because :IRONY:)

NBI Screenshot Safari: FFXIV Selfie

As my The Witcher 3 download is approaching the finish line, I decided my second entry for Murf’s #NBI2015Safari shall be a recent FFXIV selfie. I started leveling Sylberry the Lalafell and adore her still, but halfway through the Crystal Tower raids I acquired Scylla’s outfit which looks decidedly better on a full-figure character with some degree of sex-appeal (cleavage is kinda silly on Lalafell). Since I finally also managed to acquire the shiny Bogatyr’s robes last night in Keeper of the Lake, it was time for another epic shot together with my favorite companion, Midgardsormr. I am incredibly happy with FFXIV’s gear looks and variety; everything is crafted in great detail down to every last button on my gloves or the ornamentation on my weapon’s hilt. I am dressed and ready for that expansion!

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(click to enlarge)

 

NBI Screenshot Safari: In the Lair of the Dragon

So Murf has a #NBI2015Safari going on, to which bloggers may or may not contribute one screenshot per week to a given topic. As the piles of boxes around my house are diminishing, I am finding my spirits for blogging and gaming return – and of course I like screenshots, even if the prospect of choosing just one shot per week from a backlog like mine can be very daunting. I realize, I am also somewhat late to the party joining at the end of week two, alas!

In the Lair of the Dragon

Today’s screenshot is dedicated to the ‘High Fantasy’ genre because nothing in the world says high fantasy to me like magic & dragons do. I was introduced to this venerable genre by the Dragonlance novels over 20 years ago and ever since, my heart’s been out dancing with the fairies (when I was young, I was a fool). And dragons, well there’s no more iconic and formidable creature to be found in the entire beastiary of folklore, mythology and fantasy. We are all fascinated by dragons.

A thing that isn’t frequently mentioned about FFXIV is its pretty off-the charts, high fantasy style mob and boss design. During my journey to max level, I’ve encountered some of the most amazing dragon and creature design that would make every D&D veteran’s heart pound a little faster. Be it dragons, chimeras, beholders or cyclops – FFXIV has a mature and very classic sense for epic creature design. The dragons look ancient, dark and sinewy. That makes FFXIV a game of stark contrasts, for there is much frivolity and silliness to be found for sure, yet its serious moments are serious.

The below screenshot shows my midlevel Black Mage battling Aiatar (based on Ajatar, the “Devil of the Woods” in Finnish folklore, a female spirit that manifests as a dragon), the last boss in Brayflox’s Runstop.

(click to enlarge)

There’s magic, a big ass scary dragon and me – it doesn’t get much more high fantasy than this in gaming!

Momentarily out of Action, Temporarily out of Gas

Life is busy. Between demanding work assignments, getting better after a heavy flu crisis and preparing for a big move at the end of April, I’ve been struggling to get much writing in these past weeks. It’s not even lack of time – it’s energy, feeling mentally drained or preoccupied to the point of preferring a session of casual, trivial FFXIV in the evening over anything else. Writing, blogging on this here blog, has never been a casual gig for me; I don’t do casual blogging nevermind the speed or quantity of my posts compared to others. Blogging about MMOs and social topics, finding the right words and engaging with my readers are matters of passion and dedication. They deserves nothing less.

While I’m not blogging so much right now, I’ve found some needed distraction lately catching up with TV series and the culinary arts (did you know we have a food blog?) and I am still enjoying my time in Eorzea immensely. I hit level 50 on my black mage several weeks ago and have been quite invested in the main storyline, the dungeons and raids and of course collecting shiny armor of which there is so so much in FFXIV, I don’t know where to start! Oh and chocobo dyeing…..which is the single most annoying and frustrating process I have ever encountered in an MMO. My bird, Dandelion, has gone from plum purple to razor blue and back so many times by now, I wish a curse on all the guides ever written on “how to” recolor your chocobo in FFXIV! Once when I was young and naive, I set out to achieve gloom purple but there is only so much disappointment one can take.

Sylberry, settling for plum purple…alas!

Anyway. I don’t do meta life-messages very often but this blog is part of a community that I have come to value a great deal and miss. This is to let all my friends and readers know that MMO Gypsy will resume business as usual as soon as normality has been restored in what we all call the “IRL”. I am still here – and I look forward to chatting, laughing and arguing with y’all again soon!

[FFXIV] A Heavensward Expansion!

So here I am barely on my way to level cap in A Realm Reborn and much like Belghast, I am super excited for its first so promisingly named expansion – Heavensward! As a newbie player trying to catch up and enjoy the original content, it can seem daunting to hear about expansions; what will happen to public events in the old zones for example or how do you find a party for the dungeons everybody’s gotten tired of? Luckily, in FFXIV there is no such thing as players “finishing” the world; new classes mean plenty of lowlevel characters everywhere and features such as the (scaling) daily dungeon roulette, make sure players of any level have folk to group up with. Social engineering is alive and well in Eorzea. My little black mage just hit lvl 38 today (with lvl 34 Arcanist and lvl 15 Archer to cross-class) and I fully intend to make the most of the storyline up to lvl 50. I also can’t wait to get my soon to be considered old class set!

All that said, zomg Heavensward! You could tell Yoshida was very pleased with himself at this Pax East 2015 and why shouldn’t he? FFXIV’s first expansion packs a punch and leaves its playerbase wanting for nothing. The new zones look absolutely amazing – my heart jumped at the sight of The Pillars in city state Ishgard, reminding me of Divinity’s Reach with its tudor style medieval buildings. I sincerely hope there will be new music for these locations as well!

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Then, there’s of course a level cap raise to 60 and three brand new jobs: Dark Knight, Astrologian and Machinist, bumping the number of total roles within FFXIV’s holy trinity by one each. The Au Ra are added to the roster of playable races. Also announced were new shiny class sets, flying mounts and those long awaited free company airships. Most importantly, there will be myriads of new quests, hunts and public events along with the continuation of the main storyline, which is something I am currently enjoying a great deal on my black mage. When I came back to this adventure a couple of weeks ago, I could already tell that FFXIV was gonna keep me busy until the end of the year. Now it feels like I’ll have enough to look forward to way into 2016!

Which hey, is an incredibly comfortable thought to me right now. I feel like I’ve finally found a world worth building a home in, one that I also want to introduce my friends to. Unlike so many virtual homes doomed to dwindle, Eorzea at least has a bright future. June 19th, you are officially marked on my calendar!

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Liebster Leser….errr Awards!

Liebster Leser, besten Dank dass Du wiedermal bei mir reinschaust….
Oh wait, that’s actually “Liebster Award” – I blame Sig for this one! While chain letters are the worst, community memes are kinda rad which is why instead of publishing that upcoming post on Valve’s zomg-Vive, I am going to respond to Sig’s questionnaire and challenge seven next bloggers to tackle my own list further below!

In case you’ve never run into Sig by the way, that’s probably because he hardly ever blogs (slacker!) but he’s a great presence on twitter and he has a beard! So thanks, Sig!

Liebster-Award

My Answers for Sig
1. Frogger, Dig Dug or Space Invaders? - Frogger!
2. If you were frozen in a block of ice, and miraculously were found alive after thawing out 10,000 years later, what is the first thing you would do? - Visit the next Arcade and jump into that full-VR metaverse suit of awesome!
3. Do you like slurpees? - No. I prefer eating calories over drinking them.
4. How many video games do you own that you’ve never played? – If you count that 107-games gameboy module, 50?
5. What is your favorite color? - Blue. And yellow.
6. If you bought me a beer, what kind would it be? - Tactical Nuclear Penguin.
7. Yo ho, yo ho! A pirates life for me! Fill in the blanks you scabrous dogs!
“We’re rascals, gypsies (duh), villans, and knaves,
Drink up, me hearties, yo ho.
We’re devils and black sheep, really sexy beasts,
Drink up, me hearties, yo ho.”
8. If someone has multiple personalities and threatens to commit suicide, is this considered a hostage situation? – Umm, wut?
9. What is your favorite kind of hot sauce? - Sriracha. Even glue tastes better.
10. Do you even lift? – Every day, one finger at a time!

 
Apparently Liebster has various rulesets, so you can really nominate as many or few people as you like. Without wanting to seem greedy, my nominations are:

And here’s my 10 questions for you guys and gals (no pressure…..no really, pressure):

1. If you could learn a new language over night, which would it be?
2. What is the first MMO you’d want to visit in full VR mode?
3. If you got to invite a dead person over for tea and biscuits, who would it be?
4. What kind of biscuits would you serve?
5. Who should go down first: House Lannister, House Frey or House Bolton?
6. Justice means:
– a) everyone gets what they work for
– b) everyone gets the same
– c) everyone gets what they need
7. If you could see one of your favorite games get a sequel, it would be….?
8. If a person were to split a pot of 1000$ between them and yourself on condition of you accepting their first offer, would you rather accept 100 bucks or both go empty?
9. Which ingame MMO place/location do you consider a home to return to?
10. Favorite midnight snack when nobody’s looking?

Happy weekend, everybody!