A Month in Gaming
This post should have been published two weeks ago but as ever, real life just keeps getting in the way. As expected, June proved to be a busy month, however, I managed to organise my leisure time pretty well, affording me an opportunity to not only play my two current MMOs but also experiment with some other games. At present my caring commitment keep me busy from about 10:30 AM to about 5:00 PM. I tend to get up round about 7:00 AM so if I promptly have a shower, dress and eat, I can usually create a two-hour window in the morning to either tackle admin and paperwork or undertake dailies in games such as The Lord of the Rings Online or Star Trek Online. I can also find several hours in the evening as Mrs Peril tends to go to bed earlier than I. Therefore practical time management has proven beneficial over the last four weeks.
At present I am continuing to level my High Elf Guardian in LOTRO and recently hit 112. I immediately went to Udûn and bought an armour set with the “Light of Eärendil” stats, as I had plenty of spare Motes of Enchantment in my barter wallet from my primary alt. This gear gave me a significant boost in all relevant stats, not that I’m struggling in Northern Ithilien. Still it’s good to be overpowered. I decided it was time to try and acquire several First Age Legendary Items but the economy is so “fubar” on Laurelin server, that hardly any were available on the auction house at a viable price. Thankfully, kin-mates helped me out so I am currently levelling three items, pending imbuement. I had to meticulously follow a guide to ensure I had the right stats and such like and didn’t mess the thing up. If ever there was an example of a game system that was utterly bloated, ill-conceived and impractical, then it LIs in LOTRO.
I also decided to take my Primary alt (a level cap Lore-master) through the new region. I had a brief look at the Anduin zone during the beta testing but I purposely didn’t explore every nook and cranny. Overall, it’s very aesthetically pleasing, being lush and verdant. Once again, the ambient music by composer Bill Champagne is both apt and atmospheric. It is pleasant to trade in the mountains of the previous update for such a spacious and temperate zone. As ever the stories are intriguing and well research from a lore perspective. The various gear drops that accompany the Epic Story provide a means to further fine tune one’s stats. I very much like playing LOTRO in this fashion. Immersing myself in the story and tweaking my numbers to see if it changes my performance.
After dutifully playing through the various featured Task Force Operations in Star Trek Online, I finally earned my coupon for a free ship from the C-Store. I chose the Presidio Command Battlecruiser, which is a robust and versatile ship. After adding Pulse Phasers Beam Arrays and the right selection of consoles, it has proven formidable. I hope this event is something that Cryptic do again in the future, although I’m sure it wouldn’t be financially viable to giveaway such items with a tangible real-world cost too often. As the yearly summer festival on Risa has started, I have assigned an alt to the resort to undertake the daily repeatable quest. On a whim, I also renamed my primary Captain. So Fleet Admiral Kramer (named after the well-known danger seeker, Rex Kramer) is now Fleet Admiral Carrasco (which sounds much more like a pirate).
During June, I played through the entirety of the classic single player game Mafia and dabbled with the popular RTS, Total War: Warhammer. Both were interesting experiences but not just for “gaming” reasons. Both titles incurred several logistical problems that I have blogged about previously. To summarise, old games often need a lot of patching and modding to run on contemporary operating systems. Complex strategy games really do need hand holding tutorials if you are not familiar with the genre. I also toyed with the idea of playing The Elder Scrolls Online again and buying the Digital Collector’s Edition of Elsweyr which also contains the last expansion, Sommerset, which I didn’t buy. However, I’m not sure if I can give this game the attention required to play it effectively, so I’ve put the notion on hold. Similarly, I deferred trying Neverwinter again for the same reason. The last time I played was during the Beta test. So again, as with last month, the plan for July is to just stick with my two main MMOs and see if there’s any extra time to dabble with something else. As ever I’ll let you all know next month.