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All about news and updates of the (MMO)RPG games I play and general news that I deem important enough

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Warden stances
30 October 2012
With the upcoming implementation of the stances in GambitHelper 2,, I had to make a full list of what gambit does what with what stance. Aside from it being an awful job to make that list (open skills/gambits and mouse-over them when changing stances), the warden class also became more clear for me.

I knew that each stance had it's own use, but I never really paid much attention to them, and sticked with the determination stance (tanking). This stance gives me the best morale and power regeneration, as well as a lot of extra defensive attributes. But looking now at the other two stances, I think I have done them no good in the past.

The recklessness stance is a pure damage-dealing stance with a focus on critting. Needless to say, using this stance with a spear is somewhat useless since the spear is a pretty much a low-critting weapon. Instead, I think the recklessness stance is best used with a dagger, only to trigger the critical hits

Then the assailment stance. I thought this was the worse stance there was. It only gives some power regeneration, and lowers your defensive capabilities. Yeah, for solo it's indeed a bad stance, but now with the list I made this stance is clearly one to be used in fellowships. Most gambits lower threat of the warden (one even does the same for the whole fellowship) and half of the gambits trigger a 20 second fellowship buff, adding a couple of extra % to certain types of damage.

To recap it all:
  the determination stance is the one to be used when you solo, as well as in fellowships where you take the role of tank.
  the recklessness stance is one you can use solo (I would not advice it) and works well in parties as DPS machine.
  the assailment stance is the one to be used in fellowships only where you have a good tank, and you take the buffing role on you (most likely to be used when you're lacking a minstrel).

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GambitHelper 2 - big changes coming
23 October 2012
It's been a while since I last posted here about GambitHelper 2.  And that's no surprise, because the last time I worked on the plugin, I made all changes I could make. But with the release of the Riders of Rohan expansion for Lord of the Rings online, there have been some additions to the LUA script language where it comes to the warden class.

One of the most important changes is the detection of the stance the warden is in (determination, recklessness or assailment), which really impact on how the gambits work. Where in the past I could not detect the stance, I had to use the 'most commonly used' stance for the warden to show the effect of the gambit. Though the determination and recklessness stance do not differ that much, the assailment stance is vastly different.
Now with the detection of the stances, I can finally comply to the requests of the GambitHelper 2 users who'd like to see the right gambit effect for the stances used!

With the stance detection, it would mean that I have to make even more resource graphical files. Right now with only one stance supported (determination), the whole resource directory is already 483Kb in size, all small .TGA pictures. Adding the 2 other stances in the same manner would mean that the size of the plugin would grow exponentially to close to 1.5Mb. Though it's not much, all those small files will eat up lots of slackspace and thus the actual size would be more.

To work around this problem, I'm thinking to ditch the 'big icon' .TGA files, but keep the use of 'big icons'. To do so, I have to be creative and I have already an idea on how to do that. I can also cut the actual gambit .TGA file in two parts, where the first part is a .TGA file that shows the actual gambit, and the second part will be the description.

But the main part will be to figure out how each gambit will work in each stance. The 2 newly added gambits with Riders of Rohan are well documented, but I doubt if the older used gambits are fully documented somewhere in the LotRo lorebook...

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Small break...
18 June 2012
Since last weekend I've decided to take a small break from Lord of the Rings online. Though I still think it's a great MMORPG, and that the Snowbourn server population is just AWESOME, I did overplay it a bit too much last few months since my return.


Yeah, indeed... When I returned, (back then Cea on the Withywindle server) was only level 32 or so. Ever since I've been playing and leveling a lot and right now I'm very close to level 63 (only a few % left actually). Doing so, I for once was able to 'fully complete' the Mines of Moria expansion (one that I used to hate, but the revamp made it a lot more bearable for me) and have started to explore the woods of Lothlorien.

Aside from the leveling and exploration, I've also been grinding my @ss off for deeds and status, which probably kinda gave me the 'overplayed' feeling. I mean, killing 450 monsters only to get a +1 on one virtue is no fun. Not to mention, killing monsters below your level, hoping they'd drop reputation items ain't a lot of fun either (does make good money though ).

For the coming week (or weeks), I'll focus on EverQuest II and when I'm ready to return to Lord of the Rings online again, I'll be playing both along side.

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1st bug fund in coming Rohan expansion
06 June 2012
Just my luck. I've started on that 'special content' for the Riders of Rohan expansion (could do only part of it since the rest comes after release in September), and I'm stuck with one quest already...
In the above movie, the food-trough doesn't switch to 'end of quest'. It stays at 'start of quest' modes and it's not possible to click it and end the quest as it should.

I'm no GM-caller when it comes to quests, but after I canceled the quest and restarted it again, I really had to call a GM for help. He didn't understand the problem at first (yeah, it's quite new...), but after a bit he caught my problem and helped me out by telling me to stand on the food-trough and hit the DELETE-key, and then press the U-key. This indeed tit help, but it's a lousy way  to end a quest. The GM then advised me to make it a bug-report (and I did).

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Riders of Rohan announced
05 June 2012
FInally, a new expansion of Lord of the Rings online has been announced: Riders of Rohan. This expansion will bring the Epic journey closer to Mordor, and the conclusion of the fellowship's tale. But more importantly, this new expansion will (most likely) bring us the City of Light and Helmsdeep (can't wait for that skirmish to happen).

As with all previous expansions, this one has to be bought as well, and though the 'standard edition' is already a bit expensive ($40 for a 'Free2Play' game), the legendary one is the one that Turbine hopes to sell the most...
 photo lotroRidersofRohanannounce_zps3105c2c8.jpeg
Just look at all the goodies the players will get when they purchase the Legendary edition. Like the (long promised) 6th bag for all characters, an extra horse (Rohirim of course) as well as a Rohirim cosmetic set (don't get why the cloaks are level 75+ though...), but most importantly, some extra content. Though there's no word yet on the content, I can't wait to hit level 75 and be able to see it. I hope this extra content will be something like the extra quests the pre-order of Mines of Moria gave.

Of course, I have already pre-purchased this expansion and am about to logon to see what all the goodies will be like. Tomorrow I'll post some screenshots of the goodies I think

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Time to leave Moria behind
02 June 2012
This morning I finally made it to finish the Epic story, Volume II, book 5. Part of doing this was to play 3 skirmishes forcibly (or no passing  of the current chapter). Where the first 2 (Battle of the Deep-way and Battle of the Way of Smiths) went really good, the third one (Battle of the Twenty-first Hall) was a real pain. Somehow that NPC that I had to protect kept dieing on me, eventhough I managed to keep aggro of the monsters (a cave-troll in perticular) kept kitting hard on him in AoE In the end, I had to change skirmish soldier (uhm... make a new one since I only had a Sage soldier) and play the skirmish on level 55 while being 61 alread.

After I finally completed that last skirmish and went back to Bosi, I was told to go to Haldir, who is actually outside Moria.
 photo lotroclient2012052621331412_zps56681fe4.jpeg photo lotroclient2012052621471701_zps7e91a423.jpeg

So, now it's time to finally leave Moria behind, but I'm sure I still have to get back in Moria. After all, the deed for the Epic story included Book 6 as well. But at least I'm very close to leaving Moria as it is and move into Lothlorien...

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Turtle raid
28 May 2012
I've heard a lot of people talking about that turtle raid, and I guess back then it was one of the 'main events' in the end-game of Lord of the Rings online, and yesterday evening was finally my turn to participate in this 'epic' raid...

Well, that was a big letdown. Okay, the raid is not scaling in level and with about 5 level 75 players running around things will be easier than in the past. But it's not only the easyness that gave me the letdown feeling. Graphically I think it was a bummer as well. I mean, just look at that big ugly turtle. It's exactly the same as a small turtle, only blown up a 100 times. And the room he's in? Nothing more than just an empty place. I'm even wondering how he got there in the first place...

Now the bad thing... I need 4 to 6 marks that this raid gives per weapon I need (and I need 2 at least), and he gives only 1 per run (in cool down as well). So I have to run at least an other 7 times in this letdown

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Gambit Helper 2 - big icons testing
27 May 2012
Almost immediately after I took over the development of Gambit Helper, I had the request if it was possible to scale the icons for the OSD, because some players had difficulties recognizing them on 1920x1080 monitors. Though scaling is not an easy option in the LUA language used for Lord of the Rings online, I did have an idea on how to work around the problem.

This morning I finally made a start on the scaling of the icons for Gambit Helper. Well, scaling... I've added a 2nd set of icons that's 40% bigger than the ones already used, and it indeed does look better on my 1920x1080 resolution
 photo lotroclient2012-05-2722-05-41-61_zps67299b40.jpg photo lotroclient2012052722055167_zps7df0b790.jpeg

Though it does look to work, I will test it fully the coming 2 to 3 days, and when all seems well, I think I also need to redo the gambit textures itself. All I did for now is use the old textures and add some extra transparent parts on them just to make it look good. But the textures itself are still the old, small ones used before.
The only problem that'll come now will be the size (width) of the textures. At the moment they are around 190 wide, and when adding a larger fond and larger gambit icons to them, I'm afraid that they'll grow in size a lot And though I am for a bigger OSD, there will be some limitation

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Bugs REALLY do come with a new spring...
26 May 2012
Without any upfront announcement, Turbine started the spring festival on Thursday. And since this is the 5th year the festival is running, all should go smooth one would say. GUESS AGAIN

The first bug came already fast to my attention. The Festival Token (also used during the Anniversary festival) was not bound to character or account. Instead you can trade it freely. Then the next bug I found while running through the Hedge Maze.
 photo lotroclient2012052507472003_zps2f95d49e.jpeg
As you can see, I'm using my Forced March skill with success (+25% running speed), while in the past ALL speed buffs were negated and we'd have a speed impairing debuff instead. The only time when the Forced March was removed (temporarily though) was when I did the Inn League quest in the Hedge Maze. This quest gives a speed debuff of 50% at a certain moment (you're drunk like hell ) and wears off in 2m30s or when you exit the maze.

Also in the /globallff channel I head that the boxes you can get from the trader in Bree (you exchange 18 flowers which you can obtain from the Festival Token) are not bound at all either.

So I decided to make this an in-game petition, and quite fast a GM sent me a /tell. Below is the capture of the (extremely) short conversation.
 photo lotroclient2012052508182336GM_zps01f1783e.jpeg
...yeah right... Make it a bug-report. By the time the dev's see it the event is over.

This is not a negative thought, but actual experience with Turbine dev's and handling bug-tickets (or any out-of-game support ticket for that matter). It takes them 2 weeks to even notice it, and then they have to dive into it and make fixes and... Well, it'll take at least a month before they've fixed it...
And why bother to make an out-of-game support ticket when all servers were scheduled for a HOT-FIX reboot. Okay, the reboot took place, they claim to have made a hot-fix, but it's not the bugs I've described above (I actually have no clue what they did fix...)

And last but not least... The GM saying goodbye to me "Have a great night" - WTF??? It was like 8.30am for me and I made the ticket from a European server. I had to copy/paste that to /globallff and all players found it rather hilarious and sad at the same time.

Sooo... We have a bugged event and no dev's working on it. Make the best use of it then I'd say

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20 May 2012
I really don't give a damn about the Monster-play part of Lord of the Rings online. But yesterday I thought to give it a go anyway and made a Warleader. I thought this class would be fun as monster, and it kinda is. It is a tanking class with (for now) pretty limited healing.
 photo lotroclient2012052008363528_zps185f2149.jpeg
But being a tanking class also gives opportunities. In the PvE part of the monster-play, I don't really die, unless I get 3 or more monsters (read: monsters OR free people NPC's) on me. Too bad, whenever a player freep comes along, it's a no-go and I'll be dead quickly. Somehow, monster-play is so imbalanced that in solo PvMP, the monster ALWAYS looses

Then there is the 5-year anniversary rewards (4 for me). Looking at the picture above I see I did forget to change the character portrait, which is really cool for monster-play. Where the freeps get leaves, the creeps get teeth around their portrait...
 photo lotroclient2012052008572004_zps880ae138.jpeg
I also had 2 tokens (probably from the anniversary event), and I could get myself a new 'skin'. I had the option between 2 skins, and I piked the White Hand uruk-hai skin. I think it looks pretty cool on me

For now I will mostly play in the mornings with my creep to level him up a bit without being ganked in PvMP (see my complaint above). When I've ranked up a bit more (think 4 or so), I'll play raids in monster-play as well. Think that'll be some fun to experience.

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