[FFXIV] Tank jobs moving up and I’m a forgetful cuss

27 Apr
Level 40 Paladin!

Level 40 Paladin!

In this past weekend’s sessions of FFXIV, I got my tank jobs to 42 Paladin and 41 Warrior.  I exhausted the “easy to do” challenges (ie the ones for the things I’m doing anyway) rather quickly and since once you get past 40 they seem to give very large chunks of xp, the levels felt like they were coming fast and furious.  9 levels between the 2 jobs in a weekend seems pretty good, IMO.  I even was the tank for a FATE group in Coerthas for a while.  Against the mob swarm-style FATEs you don’t care, of course, but vs the boss-style ones, a tank is a good thing to have.  Especially vs Steropes the Cyclops in “The Eyes Have It” since he hits so very hard.  On the other hand, Gargamel in “Bellyful” his for so little that I could just toss a Stoneskin every 30 seconds or so and stay up at full health even without a healer.  Go figure, right?

Scylla's Robe and my "unweathered" Levaetin (no idea how that's actually spelled)

Scylla’s Robe and my “unweathered” Levaetin (no idea how that’s actually spelled)

Various FC members needed help with dungeons or wanted to do high-level or expert roulettes, so I joined several of those groups.  I tended to heal or tank the low-level groups, and used my Black Mage on the high level ones.  I even joined a run through Syrcus Tower and got several sands and oils that I could use to “unweather” some of my gear and get it to ilvl 110 from the base 100.  I also picked up the Scylla’s Gown of Casting.  TBH, I think the Tome chest piece has better stats plus it can be unweathered to become ilvl 110, but the stats are pretty comparable and I like how it looks better than the tome piece.  So unless I decide to use a glamour on it, I’m using the Scylla’s robe now, just ‘cuz!

iLvl 89!  Almost high enough to do "anything" on this job now.

iLvl 89! Almost high enough to do “anything” on this job now.

During an expert roulette I saw an ilvl 100 piece of bard gear drop.  I lost the greed roll to Belghast (who was tanking, of course!) but that jogged my memory that I’d picked up a lot of level 50 bard gear on high-level and expert runs back when I was focused solely on my Black Mage and was storing it on one of my retainers.  So off to the summoning bell I went and….. my Bard’s gear level jumped from 64 to 85 in 1 fell swoop!  And then I’d picked up enough soldiery tomes to but some items for the slots that I didn’t have a dropped item for and that took me up to ilvl 89 for the bard now.  Wish I’d remembered that before I hit 50 on it ;-)  So this is where I am calling myself a forgetful cuss….

How often do you see a raid waiting on dps to show up?

How often do you see a raid waiting on dps to show up?

As it was, after upgrading the gear I did a Main Scenario roulette for the tomes.  We had a noobie in the group, so it was a 240 tome run.  But the MT disconnected pretty early on, and our noobie who’d never been there before was the 2nd tank.  We pushed on since you really don’t need 2 tanks for the main scenario runs, but since our noobie didn’t know where to go or what to pull when, etc, it was less than smooth.  Eventually a 2nd tank who was well geared popped in just before the final fight, so that last fight ended up being the typical farm mode.

She logs out in some interesting places.  Once she was on top of a bookshelf in a settlement in La Noscea

My daughter logs out in some interesting places. Once she was on top of a bookshelf in a settlement in La Noscea

I even played my daughter’s character for her a little bit since she’s started asking for me to make some money on it so she can teleport around again.  And she’s been seeing the various hues of the horse mounts from the Expert Primal trials and really wants “a blue horse” and “a pink horse.”  She also wants a dragon pet (the Midgardsormr minion) and “a robot” (the Magitek Armor mount) so….. looks like daddy’s got some work to do there too.  Heck, I don’t even have any of the Ex-Primal mounts myself.  Still haven’t jumped into doing those yet — been having too much fun feeding my alt-itis beast!

Happy gaming out there!

Finally got the big haul on the mini-cactpot!

Finally got the big haul on the mini-cactpot!

Tanking Steropes

Tanking Steropes

Level 40 Paladin gear

Level 40 Paladin gear

Level 42 Paladin gear

Level 42 Paladin gear

Level 40 Warrior!

Level 40 Warrior!

I completed the post-Moogle series this weekend too.

I completed the post-Moogle series this weekend too.

Syrcus Tower is so damn pretty!

Syrcus Tower is so damn pretty!

Midgardsormr!

Midgardsormr!

A closeup of Scylla's Robe

A closeup of Scylla’s Robe

A closeup of Bogantyr's Longcoat of Ranging

A closeup of Bogantyr’s Longcoat of Ranging

 

[FFXIV] Bard to 50… back to tanking

20 Apr Level 50 again!
Level 50 again!

Level 50 again!

I got my Bard to 50 this weekend and while I haven’t really been doing much with my 50’s to gain tomes so I didn’t have a full set of ilvl 100 gear waiting for it, I still had enough for 3 pieces of jewelry and bought a cheap ilvl 70 bow off the market board, so the Bard ilvl is 64 at the moment.

Level 50 skill obtained

Level 50 skill obtained

I think I’m back in to my full swing of things that I normally do where a character hits the cap and an alt is immediately rolled.  Except of course, one rolls an alt in FFXIV simply by changing weapons.  But yeah, as soon as I hit 50 on the bard, I ran 1 instance of the Main Scenario roulette for some tomes, and then swapped over to Warrior and tanked a Brayflox to get it to 36 to match the Paladin.  And then ran Fates in Coerthas on the Paladin until I hit 37.  Becuz that’s how I roll. . . .

My daughter loves to park her "giant chicken" in stables, since "that's where they live"

My daughter loves to park her “giant chicken” in stables, since “that’s where they live”

My daughter’s been asking to play more again and also asking me to play her character to get it some money so she can teleport around again instead of having to run everywhere.  And of course she also sees people running around on their mounts that drop fro m the Extreme trials, as well as the Magietk Armor mount and she wants me to play it until I get those mounts for her too.  I’m still holding her off for now, but I’m sure she’ll wear me down soon.  Time will tell on that.

Happy gaming out there!

Level 47 chest piece from a drop in Aurum Vale

Level 47 chest piece from a drop in Aurum Vale

Level 50 class set for the Bard.  I can't say that I'm a fan.

Level 50 class set for the Bard. I can’t say that I’m a fan.

I liked this view of the Assault Ship in the Maine Scenario roulette, so.. screenie!

I liked this view of the Assault Ship in the Maine Scenario roulette, so.. screenie!

A coerthas sunrise, with the Observatory's telescope silhouetted against the sky

A Coerthas sunrise, with the Observatory’s telescope silhouetted against the sky

[FFXIV] Working the Bard up a bit

13 Apr
One kites a lot when solo as an archer.  Probably don't really need to, but I like to....

One kites a lot when solo as an archer. Probably don’t really need to, but I like to….

While working on the 2.55 story line in Coerthas, I’d occasionally run across a FATE group running around.  And I’d join in, but instead of doing as I had been in the past couple of week and using one of my tanking jobs, I used Bard instead so I could stand back and be a little more casual.  And it was fun enough that this past weekend I started working on it in earnest.  I started at level 34, which I’d gotten for the Quelling Strikes skill to use as a cross-class for my Black Mage, and began queueing for dungeons and running FATEs in Coerthas.  And before I knew it I’d blown past 40.  It slowed down a bit then, but about that time I started to get the challenge log completions for things like 10 fates, 5 dungeons, 3 dungeons with the duty finder, completing 5 different leves, 20 total leves, and so forth and boom… suddenly I was level 43.  Not bad for a weekend that also included a family dinner 25 miles away, 11 episodes of Daredevil on Netflix, 7 episodes of Resident Advisors on Hulu (and I’d never heard of Jamie Chung before, but … I hope to see more of her in future shows, and it looks like I need to watch Sin City 2.  Wowzers…. ), as well as time spent with my daughter doing puzzles and board games and such.  All told, I think I got those 7 levels in about 10 hours of play, is all.  Leveling really can be quite quick.

Back into raiding a little bit

Back into raiding a little bit

I also did a little bit as a Black Mage due to wanting the 140 tomes from doing a Main Scenario run, plus a guild group got 8 together to join a Labyrinth of Ancients run.  I also healed a few dungeons for guildies who had gotten to them in the story and didn’t want to pug, and even got to run 1 of them as a bard since a healer-main volunteered for that one.  Since these were newer players still working up their 1st classes/jobs, our tanks were… less than optimal, ( I tanked a boss in Haukke Manor on my bard — tank got aggro then lost it to me after about 3 seconds, then actually started to bounce it back and forth by the end of the fight, but it’d swap to her for 1 attack, then back to me for 3, then back to her for 1, then to me, etc, in spite of me stopping attacks for 10-15 seconds at a time) but the runs were still completely successful and we never had anyone die.  I’m glad that the lower level dungeons are so forgiving, ya know?

Happy gaming out there!

A nice smooth Brayflox run in a pug

A nice smooth Brayflox run in a pug

Self-portrait as a bard with my mishmash of found and GC armor

Self-portrait as a bard with my mishmash of found and GC armor

I don't remember why I took this one, but it is nice looking, so it's going up!

I don’t remember why I took this one, but it is nice looking, so it’s going up!  Probably that level 50 hunt bird…

Level 35 skill

Level 35 skill

Level 40 skill

Level 40 skill

Love the blizzard weather effect

Love the blizzard weather effect

LoA scenery

LoA scenery

LoA scenery

LoA scenery

LoA scenery

LoA scenery

 

[PoEt] [TSW] [FFXIV] A Nomadic Weekend

6 Apr The dragon's close-up
Rogue group early on -- PoEt really doesn't lend itself to screenies very well

Rogue group early on — PoEt really doesn’t lend itself to screenies very well

Well, only did 3 games, but that’s 2 more than normal . . .

For Pillars of Eternity, I wandered about a bit with my monk’s group, but it was really just dinking around looking for named bandits to capture,and it got old kinda quick, so I think I need to start pushing the story forward again, else I may get bored.  Which seems odd, since the game’s enough of a challenge to be intensely satisfying after every well-fought battle.

For TSW, a small part of my not wanting to log in much lately (a very distant 3rd to “skill wheel’s full” and “gear’s good enough for me so don’t care to do NM grind for better gear”) is that lately it’s been fairly laggy for me.  But I’d read somewhere that using DX9 instead of DX11 can fix a lot of that, so I logged in to swap from DX11 to DX9 and…… instant 20 fps jump, and London is completely lag-free again.  So I turned my settings up a bit from how low I had them before trying to alleviate some of that lagginess and went to Tokyo.  And it was very jumpy there.  If i stopped and let the area I was in load, then I was fine, but even trying a simple run across the zone from the Agartha Portal to the Pachinko Parlor there was a lot of stuttering that I’ve never had before, so…. looks like I need to turn some settings back down.

So far as I can tell, my ae-focused solo build has lost no efficacy in spite of the reduction in AE damage with the recent skill changes.  I assume it’s due to the fact that so much of its damage comes from procs from the passives, which appear to if anything to have had their damage increased a bit.  Slow The Advance has a lovely new graphical effect and a lingering dot that it didn’t used to have, so it’s a lot more fun to fire off at a swarm of mobs too.  Much cooler looking.  so, once I get the lag in Tokyo figured out, I’ll probably jump back in and finish up the issue 10 story and see how I feel about things after that.

Yes, it's really that big.  You spend most of the fight under its belly trying not to be stepped on.

Yes, it’s really that big. You spend most of the fight under its belly trying not to be stepped on.

For FFXIV, I did the seasonal event quest and it was every bit as fluffy as one would expect an Easter event to be.  I also worked through the story to the completion of what was added in the 2.55 patch this past week, as well as doing the Letter Carrier missions.  I did the LC missions as WHM to give myself something a little different, but I did the story missions as BLM.  One fight was kinda challenging, but since I have sleep and could simply sleep the hard-hitting mob and heal myself back to full in the 30 seconds it bought me, it didn’t end up being a big deal.  The new Trial was pretty fun.  I watched a video in advance that explained the basic mechanics, but it wasn’t a “here’s the whole fight” thing either, so it wasn’t a complete spoiler.  And watching a video and doing it in-game are 2 completely different things……  We failed pretty badly the 1st time, but that gave all of the newbies to the Trial a chance to see how it all worked, and we did it on the 2nd try in good order.

Thing about the story though — mild spoilers here, so you’re warned — is that according to the story I’m now persona non grata in Ul’dah, but there’s nothing in the game itself that reflects this — I can still walk freely in the city, use all the services, use the Immortal Flames area, etc.  so that’s a bit of an immersion breaker — everything that happens in Ul’dah is pretty dramatic, as well as the escape from the guards, and yet after the story’s told the game itself completely ignores it.  Such is life.  But, I’m also very looking forward to the new areas in the expansion now as a result of how the story is set up

Success!

Success!

I ran a couple of dungeons with FC mates to help them in their moving through the story, and I even remembered to hit up the Gold Saucer and check on the Jumbo Cactpot lottery.  It’d been a while since I’ve been in there, and one of these days I’ll let myself get lost in Triple Triad, but for now, the MGS is a nice side diversion, but I’m still more focused on being out in the world.  For a couple of FATEs in Coerthas and one of the FC dungeon runs I played with my Bard and found myself wanting to work on it some more again, so….. I’m going to try to at least do a low-level roulette per night this week as a bard and see what that does for me level-wise.  I seem to get about 1/2 a level on a roulette bonus run each day, plus several challenge log entries also give bonuses for doing 3 and 5 dungeons, plus handing out commendations and those 3 entries seem to be good for another level as well, so in theory just 1 dungeon a night could get me 4-5 levels per week without hardly trying so….. we’ll see.

Happy gaming out there!  And more screenies follow and might be a bit spoilerific for the next part of the story, so… don’t scroll down if you don’t want spoilers….

Easter quest giver

Easter quest giver

Spriggans are kinda fuzzy bunnies, so... makes sense to be a spriggan for Easter!

Spriggans are kinda fuzzy bunnies, so… makes sense to be a spriggan for Easter!

Doing the Easter-quest FATE

Doing the Easter-quest FATE

Drakes flying to attack Ishgard

Drakes flying to attack Ishgard

An anti-dragon cannon on the path to Ishagard

An anti-dragon cannon on the path to Ishagard

The bridge...

The bridge…

She casts the spell --

She casts the spell —

And tosses it high --

And tosses it high —

And down comes the bridge's ward!

And down comes the bridge’s ward!

Which means inbound dragons!

Which means inbound dragons!

One big dude there

One big dude there

The dragon's close-up

The dragon’s close-up

Fighting under him.  He's so big he just kind of ignores us, and calls adds to deal with us while he knocks down even more wards now that he got a foothold on the bridge

Fighting under him. He’s so big he just kind of ignores us, and calls adds to deal with us while he knocks down even more wards now that he got a foothold on the bridge

But we beat him, so the drakes flee!

But we beat him, so the drakes flee!

Self-portrait 1

Self-portrait 1

Self-portrait 2

Self-portrait 2

Self-portrait 3

Self-portrait 3

Don't mess with a monk!

Don’t mess with a monk!

Or a conjurer. . . .

Or a conjurer. . . .

No really... don't mess with the conjurer!

No really… don’t mess with the conjurer!

Lady Yugiri took her mask off

Lady Yugiri took her mask off

I still really like this airship-cart concept

I still really like this airship-cart concept

 

[PoEternity] New Characters

3 Apr Hanging Trees are quite gruesome.  Glad I've never seen one IRL . . .
My completed stronghold!

My completed stronghold!

I’ve played a bit more of Pillars of Eternity this week, but nothing like the marathon stint I did this past weekend.  With my level 8 group I’ve completed my stronghold and have checked out some of the bounties from the Warden’s cottage upgrade.  The fights weren’t bad, and were worth a ton of experience and I got some nice loot off the bounty that was a human (and his pals) rather than a monster.  Since I completed my dungeon improvement, I’ve also stumbled across named bandits (and their pals) to take out but to capture instead of kill.  Not that it does anything other than put them in your dungeon.  You can talk to them but they don’t have anything to say.  No idea what would happen if I let one go.  And I found that Kana the Chanter and his high Intellect score does completely amazing things with the Ring of Jolting Touch that I gave him since I’ve been using him as an offtank to my monk, and it’s a touch-range spell that I don’t have the wizard using since I’m keeping him in the back.  But with that ring, Kana does damage to multiple mobs and often 1-shots his initial target, with massive damage being done to other enemies around him since Jolting Touch jumps to nearby enemies too, though with reduced damage to the later mobs in the jump cycle.  It’s still a LOT of damage.  Almost makes me think I might want to have the wizard run up to cast it too…..

But anyway….. I’m knocking on the door of level 9 and still have a couple more bounties I can fill.  Plus I really need to head back in to the dungeon under my stronghold too.  I was able to clear a little of it at level 4 when I 1st got the stronghold, but then as I pressed further in I got to mobs that were way above my level, and lots of them, so I went back out and kinda forgot about the place.

I found this hidden in the tutorial start zone.  No use as a weapon -- it really is a Disappointer -- but at least it sells well.

I found this hidden in the tutorial start zone. No use as a weapon — it really is a Disappointer — but at least it sells well.

Now that I’ve figured out more about how the game works and what companions I will be finding (plus when and where) I’ve tried starting out new characters also.  And I tried my hand at “hiring adventurers” to fill slots in the party as well, and found that they’re not like the companions, nor temporary mercenaries — they’re actually you creating a brand new character, so you can round out/balance out your party any way you like with full control over the entire creation process.  When you “hire an adventurer” the level of adventurer you can hire appears to be limited to a level below your own, so you’ll probably want to do it early when that only puts them 1,000 xp behind.  And then there’s the downside that the bigger your party is, the more ways the xp gets split, so it slows down your leveling as well.  IMO, a party of 6 level 3’s is more powerful than a party of 4 level 4’s, though, so I’m not really seeing that as a downside, especially since there seems to be plenty of xp to go around.

Anyway, I’ve also found that you can pick up 2 companions in the starter city, not just the Wizard who’s outside the inn.  I’d talked to the Fighter with my monk, but he just said something and then End Dialogue was the only option, so I didn’t try talking to him again later.   Oops!  Now I know that after you rest the 1st time and then talk to the dead animancer in the hanging tree you can talk to him again and he’ll join you.  Having an actual tank in my monk’s party would have probably made the game a bit easier.  That said… 1st run-through I was playing on Easy level anyway, so it didn’t seem to gimp me, as I feel like I’m doing well with the monk’s group, even with only adding companions as I found them instead of hiring adventurers.  I have learned from reading up a bit more on the game that in the big city that circumstances have now locked me out of, I could have picked up a Paladin as a 2nd tank also.  Which probably would have been kinda nice, but again… I’m doing fine without.

Hanging Trees are quite gruesome.  Glad I've never seen one IRL . . .

Hanging Trees are quite gruesome. Glad I’ve never seen one IRL . . .

From a comment on my previous post and also additional reading about the game (can’t play at work, but I can read about it ;-) ) I’ve found that the recovery speed penalty that armor applies to your ability cooldowns, not to endurance recovery after combat, so you want your dps characters to be in lighter armor so that they can fire off more dps skills faster.  Assuming you have a well-balanced party with a tank or 2 that holds the mob’s “engagement” then your dps characters actually should be just fine with light or no armor, rather than putting everyone in the heaviest armor you can find.  Though in my monk’s group lacking a real tank (monk can take tank skills, but is really more of a dps/tank hybrid) the “everyone go heavy” is still working out ok for me too, so…. take that for what you will.

I’m digging the Rogue class.  I don’t normally like melee dps a whole lot, but with a fighter to hold aggro the sneak attacks the rogue does are a ton of damage, so mobs are simply melting away before the onslaught of my daggers.  I’m even considering letting the monk party languish while I work on a new group with the rogue instead.  Having a fighter, wizard, priest, and rogue by level 3 in the same group makes for a lovely balanced party (plus I could hire 2 adventurers to make it 6 if I wanted) that I don’t have with the monk’s group, so there’s less frustration in the early game this time around.  Time will tell, I suppose.

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