Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Project Gorgon Daily Calendar

I made this calendar for events in Project Gorgon. Enjoy!

Project Gorgon: Feeling Directionless and Finding Direction

So here we are!  I'm max level in Spirit Fox and Animal Handling, and I'm as happy as can be! But . . . um . . . what do I do next? And what could I possibly write about that you could possibly find interesting? I don't know, and that's kind of a problem.

Lemme just ramble a bit . . .

I can't do it again. Not yet.
I don't really have the drive to level another battle skill to 80 . . . at least not yet. ProfessorCat (one of the best Project Gorgon players out there) doesn't have a problem with this like I do.  I respect the guy a ton.  He loves to level all the combat skills and it's helped him become extremely knowledgeable about the game. I saw on the forums that he had a pretty sexy combination for Necromancy and Animal Handling, and it made me kind of want to try and level necromancy a bit.

I tried. Honestly. I equipped the skill and started grinding the same mobs I'd been grinding to get spirit fox to 80, and . . . I just started to fall asleep at the wheel! 

I guess just fresh off of a grind to 80 I found the whole experience to be a little boring. It's going to take a while for me to forget the pains so I can attempt this again.

I'm afraid things are going to change? Maybe that's good?
The Spirit Fox is in its "alpha" phase so-to-speak. The developers said that things will be changing on the class in the near future, and there are some oversights: there's currently no "beast speech" for the class, there's no alchemy damage boost potion, there's no synergy levels, higher qualities of Bounceweed don't have movement benefits, some of the skills behave a little strangely . . . I'm sure things will change. 

The question is, will they change for the worse and make me want to level a different skill? Idk. There's nothing like a good round of nerfs to make you want to jump ship to something else.

NAH . . . I love my float-y spirit fox too much.

I have secretly commissioned an artist for some project gorgon inspired fan art that I can't wait to show everyone in the near future. *squeals with joy* 

What to do . . . What to do . . .
Unfortunately I have to keep a very good beat of Ice Fishing going thanks to my Bounceweed addiction. I never thought I'd need this many fishscales, dirt, and grass. I've been farming it like crazy trying to stay ahead of the Bounceweed addiction curve. only the lowest level of Bounceweed is currently giving the correct movement speed benefits (I mean, it may be this way for all animal classes, but this is my first I've actually leveled), so it's the one I have to concentrate on, that means farming lower level undead for dirt, ice fishing twice a day for fish scales, and grabbing haystacks or killing rhinos in FR for grass.  Bounceweed . . . I can't live without it.

What is this crazy design on the Ice fishing traps anyway? Looks bounceweed inspired . . .

I've taken to doing the Lakrea quests as a side activity.  Lakrea is an NPC in Rahu that gives some seriously crazy quests like . . . go stand in a sandstorm, make some yarn balls, bury canines, drink 20 bottles of water, etc, but those quests give these really great potions that give you exp in random skills. You can only take one of her "holistic wellness" quests once every hour, so . . . log on, quest, log off.

Whether to drink or to sell . . . that is the question!

Also, once every 24 hours, I can also farm those stupid glowy crystals I talked about before and then every few days, turn all my semi-real Hassium into superb ore. It brings in a nice flow of cash.  Farming . . . it's the lifeblood of the MMO player.

Then there's just regular, old NPC favor quests. I've got a ton in my backlog. last weekend I cleared out a whole set of old quests in Kur . . . only to discover more quests waiting for me.  It's something to do! not a bad thing at all.

Cavefish in trade for flowers?  I'll take it!

Unfortunately this is all kind of headed to the way of running a schedule in game, which I fear may lead to more . . .  dun dun dun . . . boredom. 

Hit the dungeons!
Weekends are a great time to hit the dungeons in P:G. Lots of people are on in the guild, lots of random people are running things like GK for money.  You load up on gear, sell it to all the random vendors, and start all over again.

7,615 + 474 + 7082 + 467 = 15,638 damage in my pocket gear . . . I CAN DO BETTER!

I did find that I can solo the entrance to the Labyrinth quite well . . . so there is that, but even Lab entrance tends to get busy.

Hopefully by the end of the month we'll have a brand new level 80 dungeon to explore! Then things will REALLY get crowded and interesting.

Drop the fox, hit the crafts?
I really don't want to drop my fox curse. I wouldn't mind being a fox forever in Project Gorgon!  The only bad thing?  No hands = no crafting. I mean, I can mine and garden and cook, but I can't harvest wood or make chairs or even sit in them.

I did really enjoyed giving one of our new guildies some pancakes the other day.  How often is it that a fox makes you pancakes?  

Thanks for that image, nutella!

In summary?
I really am feeling a bit directionless currently. I'm still playing, and I'm still happy with the game . . . just feeling a little bit like a leaf in the wind? Hopefully I can get my footing back soon. Any suggestions? Leave 'em in the comments.

Happy Dueling!

Monday, August 10, 2020

Promptapalooza: A Blue-Haired Fox Necromancer Mascot? Yes please!

I'm a bit behind on topics for Promptapalooza, but a great one happened the other day on Beyond Tannhauser Gate. "If you had a mascot to represent you, what would it be?" 

This topic is perfect, especially since my daughter has been playing a game with the family of "guess that product" based on the Japanese mascot.

Ready to play? Ok! 

After guessing what the picture is below, highlight the block of text underneath the picture to see how close you were. All of the following pictures were originally posted on the Mondo Mascots Twitter Account.

If you can read this, then you're doing it right.

1- Guess this!

Answer: Unofficial mascot of the Fukuoka Prefecture. It's a giant fish egg ghost.

2- Guess this!

Answer: Mascot for the historical theme park nikko edo wonderland.  It's a Nyan-mage with a samurai top knot.

3- Guess this!

Answer: This is the mascot for the Honshu-Shikoku Bridge. It's a bridge with a car driving on top of it.

How'd you do?  Three out of three? You at least got the last one, right?


As for me . . . I guess my mascot right now would be a blue-haired fox dressed up as a Wizard101 necromancer with two pets. One pet would be Lady Dexter the ninja-pig and the other would be a Necro rat pet! ;) And Lady Dexter would be holding a toy Reinhardt action figure in one of his hands. hehe.

If I could draw that for you, I would. (Kind of impressive how many "fox necromancer" or "kitsune necromancer" pictures you can find on a google search, btw.) You'll have to use your imagination.

Happy Dueling!

Max Fox -- Man, It Rocks!

Let me start by just saying I spent an unhealthy amount of time playing Project Gorgon yesterday. When I first started the level grind from 70 to 80, I was thinking I wouldn't get done until sometime later this week, but . . . you know how it is when you get a video game goal in your mind and then you just keep going for it and kind of go crazy?  No?  Good for you.

I managed to hit 80 Spirit Fox around 2 pm or so in the afternoon and then summoned my guild leader to come craft some max enchanted evasion leather for me. (Side note: I also managed to level The Friendly Ratsomancer, my necro rat, up to 80 shortly after hitting the 80 mark myself. Woot! 3rd pet up to 80!) 

Still needs a few more bond levels . . . but level 80 rat hype is real!

So I handed good ol' Prolak (he's my guild leader) stacks and stacks of astounding, amazing, and great leather, a good amount of vervadium, hours of harvested glowy yellow gems from Gaz, some spiderweb, some leather strips, a stack of Spirit Fox inscribed lapis gems, and finally a stack of fluorite for the Animal Handling secondary. It was everything I needed to have him craft me the uber gears. Well, minus cheesecloth . . . that was an oversight on my part, but Prolak is a pro and had some for me. 

Slowly but surely he made a purple quality of each helm, chest, legs, gloves, and boots. We also had enough materials left over to shoot for a yellow quality chest, so we went for it, but to no avail. But the thing about max-enchanted quality purples is that they are pretty much equal to a yellow-quality regular items, so I wasn't disappointed. Max-enchanted yellow-quality gear will come in time. 

I quickly ran out of dust trying to switch mods around, but managed to make a few adjustments to get closer to the gear that I'm hunting for. 

Just need to switch around maybe one skill here, and this'll be perfect.

I had the beginnings of my gear, I had my levels, and it was time to put that new damage output to the test. 


I ran back to the Fae Realm and attacked the same panthers that I had been farming all day, and it felt really good. I was melting them and steadily hitting in the 1-2k mark with each spirit fox darkness spell and crit-ing in the 3-4k mark.


Next I went over to Gazluk Keep and tried soloing the entrance mobs, which I did, but only when I could pull them one at a time. That also felt really good. Unfortunately I couldn't mess around much because I was down two pets with no first aid kits to bring them back to life.

Orcs must die! Hatee-Hatee-Hatee-Ho!

If you're wondering "is Fox any good?", here's my thoughts . . . So, playing Spirit Fox at max level with good gear didn't feel overpowered (like I wasn't hitting for 10-12k or anything crazy like some of these builds I've heard about), but it did feel "good." You know?  Is it good enough that you'd give up the use of your hands (I can't even milk cows in game for crying out loud)? I guess that's up to you to decide. As for me, I'll be staying Fox for a little while longer. Stay tuned. More thoughts to come!

So, there you have it.  I still have some modifications to make to my gear, but all in all, I'm happy with the damage I'm putting out! Even better, it's sounding like it's just in time for a new level 80 dungeon!

'atta boy Project Gorgon!

Happy Dueling!

Friday, August 7, 2020

Promptapalooza: Toxic Fandoms -- A Snow Plow of a Quote

Things are rolling along quite nicely for Promptapalooza. I'm going to skip back a couple of days and talk about a prompt that The Ancient Gaming Noob handled for the group. 

"What is a favorite Quote/s, and tell us why"

Lately I have Twitter set to open, not on the home screen, but on one particular message that went a bit viral back in 2019 and continues to circulate and resurface.

Up until this point I didn't know who Al Snow was.  You may not know either. Basically he's a professional wrestler that had a lot of 90's and early 2000's WWF fame and creator of the "snow plow" wrestling move.

Gotta respect a guy who can toss someone on their head and not severely injure them. Then again, he's also the guy that wrestled a mannequin head.

At the end of the day . . . Al Snow is a professional entertainer. He's had a lot of air time on TV and understands "fandoms" probably more than most. 

This particular quote from Al Snow explains toxic fandoms perfectly.  

". . . you have a bunch of people, fans, that now have access and are privy to information but have no actual experience. And since they have the information, they think they now have knowledge and an understanding of a business that they've never been in . . . what's the problem with that? It leads to assumptions, and it leads to conjecture, and it also leads to contempt . . ."

Al's pretty wise for a guy who's wrestled a mannequin head. 

I can't tell you how much assumption, conjecture, and contempt I've seen thrown at entertainment companies.  It's unfortunate, because those doing it are "fans" -- albeit loud and falsely opinionated fans.  It's also unfortunate when those in the "entertainment company bubble" cater to a contemptuous vocal minority at the cost of the majority, who just want to be entertained. 

Happy Dueling!

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Promptapalooza: What skill do you want to improve the most?

Hello dear readers!
1- I'm so grateful to Wilhelm Arcturus from The Ancient Gaming Noob blog for his post yesterday and link to my blog.
2- If you aren't familiar with the Promptapalooza going on this month, please head over to Belghast's blog The Aggronaut and catch up on the latest. 

Today's topic is all about "What skill do you want to improve on the most?" Hoooo boy!  I have a lot of things I want (and even need to improve on).

As an MMO and video game player, I literally have actual "skills" that I want to improve on, like the Spirit Fox skill in Project Gorgon. Also, you'd think that as a kid who pretty much started out with a pong game unit as a babysitter that my hand eye coordination would be more impressive than what it is, but since playing Overwatch every Tuesday and Wednesday for the past few years . . . I've been severely humbled.
There's a reason why I don't play hitscan heroes

As far as real world skills, two years ago I made the transition from Video Game Marketing to Video Game Design at KingsIsle. Since that time I've learned a lot about working in Unity. It's our bread and butter in the KingsIsle mobile development section, but I still feel like I've only scratched the surface of what I can learn and more importantly what I can create.

But since this is a blog, and we are in the throws of Promptapalooza, I have to say that what I really need to improve on is being a better host.  My blogroll used to be a hub of its own during the highlight of 2010 blogging. There were at one time about 50 or so blogs about Wizard101, and I hosted them all right here under the umbrella of The Friendly Necromancer.

Check out that header find from the wayback machine!

That list has dwindled down to about seven Wizard101 blogs, and to be honest, that's probably because of a few reasons. 1- Blogging isn't "it" anymore: Now it's more about YouTube channels and Twitch streams. 2- My blog has changed. I'm no longer as laser focused on Wizard101 and Pirate101. 3- Let's be honest, I kind of disappeared for a while.

It's not that I've lost interest in Wizard101 or Pirate101 . . . Part of that lack of focus is that I work at the company that makes those games now. I know what's coming up. I know why things happen at the pace they happen. In essence, I know too much! You can't theory craft when the writers are just down the hall to the right.

Long story short, to be a better host with my new blog focus, I'm updating the list of blogs that I link to in my blogroll. In fact, I've gone ahead and added every blog that's participating in this Promptapalooza, with an apology. I'm sorry it's taken so long for me to do this. Being a better host and a better part of the MMO blogosphere is definitely a skill I need to improve on.

If for some reason I've left your blog off the list, let me know in the comments, and I'll get you on there. Here's to a new day at The Friendly Necromancer! Also, if you also happen to blog on this topic today or on another day of Promptapalooza, please feel free to include a link to your blog post in the comments below.

Tomorrow's prompt will be handled by The Rambling Redshirt over on his blog Beyond Tannhauser Gate.

Happy Dueling!

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Promptapalooza: Out with the Mizithra

Today's Promptapalooza was sponsored by the letter E, also Everwake from Everwake's Internet Adventures. Today's specific prompt is "Everyone has specific rituals that they follow, tell us about one of yours"

I'm really loving reading Everwake's posts that have been happening for Promptapalooza. They've all been high quality, honest, and hilarious. Case in point:
My favorite ritual is staying up late on an autumnal night, collecting bits of salt, spice, and incense in a purpose-made basket, and walking a lush, green, forested path to an ancient monument that overlooks the neighboring valley. From there, I sacrifice a virgin and say a few words to satiate the RNG Gods so that we might have yet another bountiful raid for our tanks, who are squishier than a bag of bread.
Everwake goes on to make comparisons between Rituals and Routines and their influence on not only gaming, but life in general.  It's a great read, you best go check it out for yourself.

As for me, it's actually my birthday today, which kind of plays into this topic quite well.

For the past 20 years or so, every birthday we all go see an IMAX film and then go out to eat Italian.  It used to be that it wasn't just any Italian . . . it was always The Old Spaghetti Factory.

Unfortunately, ever since moving to Texas we've discovered that the closest Old Spaghetti Factory is in Kansas, so we had to make the ritual a bit more generic, and that sucks to be honest because that Mizithra cheese pasta at the Old Spaghetti Factory is the best ever comfort food for me.

That is a beautiful bowl of heaven right there...

We've tried other Italian restaurants here . . . everything from Bucci de Beppos to Macaroni Grill and back again. It's like I've been on a gondola ride of failure and nothing quite captures the ritual as well as ye' ol' Spaghetti Factory.

This year was even more generic thanks to the pandemic going on.  We watched a National Geographic Documentary on King Cobras in place of seeing an IMAX film and had Olive Garden to go.  It's fine though . . . better safe than sorry.

HA! I really hope this doesn't sound like I'm complaining. It was a perfectly fine birthday, and I even got Dreams for the PS4 from the family as a gift.  Oh man . . . it looks SO COOL! I can't wait to explore it's creativity.

I guess what I'm getting at more is "the ritual" since that's the topic at hand. Ever since moving here that essential piece of the ritual has been missing and every year that Italian dinner feels a bit disappointing in retrospect. I don't even know why this became such a "thing" for me to do on my birthday, but it is. It's not like I believe that I will have a magically perfect year once the ritual is complete or anything. It's just become my thing, which is weird.

Next year will be my 50th birthday.  Yes, I'm that old. Perhaps that year is the perfect year to start a new ritual, something entirely Austin, Texas and Gamer dad at the same time.  BBQ and Dungeons and Dragons?  Chi'lantro and Gloomhaven?

Those Kimchi Fries are pretty much the most amazing thing ever to be honest . . .

I've got a year to figure it out and really should have changed the ritual a long time ago.

Happy Dueling!

Monday, August 3, 2020

Ding 70 Spirit Fox: This is not a fake fur emergency!

Yes. This happened over the weekend. I hit the magical number of 70 Spirit Fox in Project Gorgon and stared down at the price tag of unlocking levels 70-80.

This is now the fourth time I've hit 70 in a combat skill in Project Gorgon. It's really a do or die time for a combat skill. Do I love it enough to keep going, or am I jumping ship for something else?  The price tag shock never gets any easier for me. Three Hundred and . . . Forty-Eight . . . THOUSAND councils?


It's a true moment of panic where you look at what you got and then make the decision to:

  1. Hold a clearance sale of all the junk you've been holding on to for a rainy day.
  2. Complete all the Fae Realm elite quests you possibly can
  3. Complete every daily there is
  4. Max out all the vendors in every zone
  5. Resist the urge to spend your money on any other skill, potion, or nice to have item.
With a small yet noticeable bead of sweat coming down my face on late Saturday night, I paid the bill to the big green fae panther NPC in the Fae Realm and unlocked levels 71-80. whew.

The gathering of money was probably the most notable thing that happened while leveling 60-70.  Other than that, it was leveling as usual.  I was leveling in the Wolf Caves, in the Fae Realm, and in Gazluk and Illmari per standard.

Oh! I was also simultaneously leveling that new necro rat pet of mine.  We were both a little gimpy at this point to be honest (and believe me, it was tempting not to break out my max-bonded and max-leveled fire rat pet), but we made it work . . . together.

He's now right there with me at level 70 and ready to make the ride to 80 as well.

Love you little necro rat buddy! Now hi ho Necro Rat, AWAY!

Now if I could only teach him tricks!

This time while leveling up to 80, I'll also be collecting all the ingredients I need to craft the perfect set of leather gear. With any luck, my Guild Master will soon have a perfect set of uber armor for me, and I can really see if the necro rat AH / Spirt Fox dark damage build is as fun as I'm hoping it will be.

I'll see you at level 80 and hopefully have a full report on all the ins and outs. Wish me luck, I'll need it for that max enchanted leather gear.

Happy Dueling!

Promptapalooza: The Underrated Donut Adventure

Today's promptapalooza "master prompt" comes from Contains Moderate Peril, and the topic at hand is "What type of content do you feel is severely underrated?"

Roger talks about three types of blog posts that have helped further along the post count and kept his and others readers entertained: recurring posts, personal posts, and multimedia posts. It has some really well thought out points!  You should check it out.  A particular line that struck me was this:
“you are your own brand” whether you like it or not, this becomes one of the reasons your readers relate to you. Therefore I think the occasional, well considered personal post can be invaluable in connecting with your audience.
I haven't ever really used my blog for posts that I've felt were probably more appropriate for Facebook or Twitter, but you know what . . . I probably should have.

For example, when we moved to Texas, I started a series of picture posts on Facebook surrounding the amazing amount of donut shops that the Greater Austin area has to offer.  My children and I would happily sing "SATURDAY MORNING DONUT ADVENTUREEEEEEEEEE!!!" in the car and rush off to some random donut shop.

Later that day I'd hop on Facebook and post a few pictures from the adventure and give a little mini-review.  To a few of my Facebook friends' wives I became known as "The donut guy" because of this. (I'm not sure if this is a good thing or not.)

Wow . . . these kids have really grown up since this picture was taken

We haven't been on a Saturday Donut Adventure in a couple years . . . now we have our favorites that we tend to gravitate to and don't venture out as much (especially since Covid hit). Why go anywhere else besides the infamous Round Rock Donuts as featured on Man v Food?

Perhaps I have been missing a bit of that personal flair on my blog.  You've come for the video game nonsense, but maybe you'll stay because I'm a big goof and a little sugary like a donut.

 Happy Dueling!

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Promptapalooza: A Multitude of Mixed Media Memories

Today's post comes from Mailvaltar and it's all about Media that's shaped his worldview. It's a fantastic post, and what I came to learn is that he and I share a lot of similarities being children of the 70's. (I've got 5 years on him, but still . . . radio playing in the house, getting a tape deck all your own, the influence of Star Wars, comic books, etc.)

I started thinking back to when I was a kid and immediately the movie that came to my mind was a story of an 8-year-old lost in the desert called Dirkie. I'll always remember watching that free matinee with my friends. It was a different time and we were all too young to be there by ourselves, but there we were . . . I couldn't have been much older than 8 myself. It's kind of amazing that parents used to just dump their kids off at the movies like that with little to no supervision.

This movie was devastating to me and played on all the right fears.  In essence, it's a plane crash resulting in a dangerous solitude in the Kalahari Desert with no one to help you but yourself . . . and the only companionship you have is a small dog who's even more needy than you are.

If you're up for a 1969 flick . . . here you go! LOL

Mailvaltar's post also reminded me of when I went to see Star Wars with my mom. We came late to the first viewing and just stayed in our seats for the second viewing . . . both of us were completely blown away. Over the next few releases, it kinda became our "thing" to go see these movies together.

There's another movie out there somewhere that will always be a mystery to me.  Following our bonding moment after Star Wars, my mom tried to take me to another "futuristic" movie that ended up being a little too violent for my mom's tastes, and we left the theater after just a few minutes into it.

I brought this story up to my mom later when I was in my 20's and video rentals were all the rage. Neither of us could remember the name of the movie, and for a while it turned into a crusade to see if we could find it . . . to no avail, but because of this I've seen a lot of weird post-apocalyptic 80's flicks that feature guys on motorbikes.  (This hidden mystery film may or may not be Warriors of the Wastelands aka The New Barbarians . . . but mom and I remember things a bit differently.)

Maybe someday I'll find it, and HEY . . . if you happen to know of any movies that fit the bill for the above description, leave it in the comments below!

Happy Dueling!

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Promptapalooza: Popular Media You Never Understood

Today's prompt for Promptapalooza comes from Dragonray at Azerothian Life.
What is some popular piece of content/media that seems to be universally loved that you have never been able to understand?
Dragonray goes with Game of Thrones. All I have to say to that is Amen.

I honestly only watched the first episode and immediately nope'd out after the first midget sex scene.  I'm actually happy to hear from him that it only got worse from there.

I'm also happy that the popularity of the show spawned a few other series trying to capture that Game of Thrones fantasy vibe. I enjoyed watching The Shannara Chronicles even though I hear it lacked the budget of the almighty GoT. (Season two wasn't as good as season one though . . . let's be honest)

Looks uncomfortable to sit on anyway


Now, I'm hoping that someone comes along and tells me that the Witcher, Witcher 2, and Witcher 3 are all bad games (and TV series) because I've missed the boat here. It's one of those games that everyone says is a must play, but I've just never gotten around to playing it.

It just looks so cool . . .

When the TV Series cropped up, my wife and her friend watched it, and I missed out, but they said it was really good despite neither of them playing the games.

Doing a quick search on it now though on the IMDb parents guide . . . yup . . . apparently there's lots of sex, and I think that really gets to the heart of the matter for me.

The series is rated M and I have three kids at home. I'll be honest, I've missed out on a ton of video games during the past 18 years because of this. I decided out of the gate that I wouldn't try to hide it and only play the M-rated games late at night when the kids were in bed.

If I hadn't decided this, I'd probably own every Mortal Kombat game there is. I guess that's my broken rule . . . I do own a copy of Mortal Kombat for the PS3. It's hidden in a back corner of the entertainment center. Shhhh.

So, there you go. While the video game world was playing The Witcher, I was playing Wizard101 and Pirate101. Personally, I think it's a fair trade.

Happy Dueling!