Monthly Archives: November 2012

Dishonored….Great game, even better developer

Dishonored was a good game, and has already started considering upcoming DLS as of today. This is going to a short blog post pertaining to a live question and answer event for Dishonored, the video game. The developers of the newest first person shooter (Dishonored) surprised a lot of fans by staging a Q and A event on Raptr. It turned out to be very popular and they are currently answering fan questions right now.
I might write blog posts in the future pertaining to Dishonored, and things I’ve learned and experienced while playing the game.
If you end up missing the live event, there’s a chain you can review the history of the Question and Answer log anytime at the same link below.
Dishonored

Dishonored – Live Event Details

The event can be reviewed Here.

If your interested in asking questions or watching the conversation, you can do so now. Don’t hesitate to make an account and ask your questions as well. The Dishonored developers don’t do these types of events very often.  My questions were pertaining to the mind set of the little girl at the end, and how the developers would react in her situation.  There were a lot of really good questions here, and I have  been continuously tracking the developer answers.  I wish more developers would participate to this degree.  I enjoy Raptr a great deal. I liked Playfire as well, but their trackers aren’t working at all. I’ll have fun there more once their trackers are totally up and running again.

Dishonored is a great game and I hope they carry on events like this in the future, as well as for other popular games.
More information about the game and the development team behind it can be found here and the games main website is here.
Feel free to share your experiences pertaining to this event, and other Dishonored related events in the comments below.

X-Com List of Tips

OK so here is another thread (kind of like i’m trying to do for dishonored) with a list of tips. I’ll start below with an initial list of tips, or questions that are asked a lot…and over time i’ll edit this same post with additional information. This will have spoilers to an extent.

1. If your playing the game for the first time, then play the tutorial. However, I recommend that you make it a learning run. I recommend that you play the tutorial until you understand the game well, and then start over. The tutorial can be very intrusive. Spoiler – It restricts access to most of the areas that you can start in. It forces some of your characters to die in the beginning, and it restricts what options your able to take for a partial portion of the game. I recommend doing one playthrough with the tutorial until it’s over, then starting a new fresh game with the tutorial disabled. It can be disabled by following these instructions: http://gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/87207/can-i-skip-the-tutorial

2. A new patch was just released that fixes quite a few bugs. Make sure you get it.

3. Always continue leveling up new squad mates as you play. Mix and match them with stronger units, as it rounds out more of your characters.

4. If you want a real thrilling experience, never reload. When i’m in the mood I create a no reload rule. I play the game and if someone dies, mission fails, anything I don’t reload. Not recommended for first play through or if your not willing to lose some men. Also very hard to do on harder difficulty settings.

5. Always try to capture enemies when your able. Also…until you are extremely skilled in combat and know everything about the mechanics and have full control over combat, then always give your arc throwers to your lower ranked characters. You run a very high risk when getting near enemies within stun range. Better to have a lower rank die, than a higher rank. BUT when you become very experienced in combat, especially when you earn an extra slot with support characters, then I generally carry health pack (X3) and the arc thrower with my support character. He does very good, and rarely takes damage because he has maxed out armor. Again…make sure you know the game very well before trying to equip a higher level character with an arc thrower. It takes one wrong move (or a failed stun) for them to end up bloody on the ground.

6. Always balance out your party. I normally have 1 sniper, 1 assault, 1 heavy, and 1 support. Then I add additional characters (leveling, additional squad mates, shiv, and other random stuff).

7.Be wary when stunning. Always have a backup character available to fire “before” going in for a stun. In the off chance that the stun fails, your stunner will generally be left out in the open. So it’s best to always have a backup shooter somewhere to take the enemy out in a situation where the stun doesn’t work. Then if your shooter misses, your screwed.

8. I picked up a few tips on the “civilian rescue” missions. I finally got that achievement for getting all excellence. The secret is…a good layout to start with (a great deal of luck pertaining to what enemies you face, their board placement, and where the civilians are). And….SPOILER – Ghost armor. I gave this to my “support” and he ran around the entire building grabbing civilians as he went. Another good tip (SPOILER) is to use the archangel armor to fly 1-2 characters on the roof when you know it’s somewhat safe, as several civilians are normally on the roof, and surrounding areas. Aliens (tend) to favor the roof last, so grabbing them early will help you get a better civilian count. Losing a few is fine, but just save as many as you can and cross your fingers. Note, killing all enemies ends the mission and any civilians left alive are automatically saved. 

9. I aborted a mission once, and my men where on mid-field. They were all instantly KIA (Killed in Action). I am “assuming” that you would need to remove them to the extraction point THEN return to HQ. But I have not personally tried this. So just be careful when aborting mid-mission. Especially if you have not saved the game that can be recovered.

10. I finally found a good source for the countries. The following threat lists out all of the countries that are used in game, and is set up to make them very easy to identify by site. I saw several questions in this forum pertaining to this, so I thought I would post it.
http://forums.2kgames.com/showthread.php?140326-XCOM-Nation-Recognition-Guide
I will edit this later and add a lot more as well.

Dishonored list of tips – Too short to be a full FAQ on Gamefaqs.


Enough to be helpful…but not enough to make an official FAQ out of. (Minor spoilers perhaps).

Tips for stealth games.

1. Tall Boys cannot be stealth-ed. Best to avoid them all together. There are a total (if my count is correct) 9 in the entire game. Only during one mission are you able to use a Pylon to eliminate them with stealth. Besides that, avoid them the entire game. They are not hard to avoid. Just be wary when your in areas where they walk. They generally path the same route MUCH more reliable as compared to normal guards.

2. Rats, Hounds, or any other animals don’t count towards lethal. So if you kill them you can still get a full non-lethal playthrough. NOTE, I am not 100% sure about hounds, but I am almost entirely sure. A lot of research online points to this, but I haven’t tested it out specifically. I did test this out on Rats though. I also do not think the acid spitters count either. So you can kill them, as they are not classified as humans and they are extremely.

3. Be careful with bodies. If you choke out someone, be very careful. It’s very easy to kill them. If you throw them the wrong way they die. So just set them down nicely. The game is a little glitchy in some areas so take great care of bodies. However… it’s also not advised to necessarily leave a lot of guards standing. As when your passing through areas several times (going back and forth between mission objectives, fulfilling optional quests, exploring) You don’t want to have to face the same guards every single time.

4. To my knowledge WEEPERS count. If they see you, you are detected, if you kill them then it’s counted lethal. So….avoid weepers just as you would guards. From my knowledge they are a little more stupid. They are easier to avoid and full. The only exception (spoilers) is in the sewers late in the game. If you watch them very carefully there are ways to avoid this, but to me..this is the most dangerous part when dealing with weepers because their are so many of them.

5. DO NOT be afraid to choke out civilians. More than once I had one scream because they saw me, alerting guards. I got in the habit of choking out every civilian. I don’t mean all of them. I more of mean the ones ON missions (SPOILER) like in the golden cat. Choking out all the “Working girls” (as close to a social acceptable word I can think of) is definitely a good idea. They are all over the place. If one sees you she will scream instantly. So it is a very good idea to choke them out as you go. Literally clear them out of each area as your going through, to make sure you wont’ accidentally run into one as you go back through the mission searching for stuff.

6. There is ALWAYS multiple paths to take. There are ALWAYS non-lethal ways to defeat every enemy, and take out every boss. The only exception being the tall boys. However…..My personal experience tells me that there might be a hidden way to take out Tallboys by stealth. With how much they added to the game, I really do think there is a non-lethal way to take out the tallboys. Every single bit of research online, and playing around in-game tells me otherwise…but i’m not giving up on finding a solution for this. I did find an easier way to avoid them. Get your possession up to level 2. Posses a tall boy and take them far away from their starting location, then while they are recovering, run back to your location. One thing I have not tried I doubt it works) is get behind them, and do a blink up but try the chokeout controls. That is worth a try…not sure if it’ll work or not. I’m guessing someone has tried that already.

Lethal Tips

1. Tall boys are VERY easy to kill by learning and practicing the technique I am about to outline.. There are several ways but this is what I do. I do one or the other. When I have enough mana, I do a “Bend Time”. Then switch to blink. Blink right on the center of the person standing on the Tall Boy, even from the front is fine. Time a stab at EXACTLY the right moment. If done right, you’ll grab them and stab them and kill them. It took me 2-3 tries…but once I got it right twice, I was able to master it. Upon mastering it, don’t worry about bend time. Just get as close to them as possible (with stealth) and then run out, blink up to them and stab them. Stand still for a few seconds to position blink, you might take a small bit of damage (if not careful) but you won’t waste much mana. Especially if you need to take out several of them. After taking out about 3 of them you’ll get the timing perfect. I got so fast that (Spoiler) when I was exiting the flood area, I was able to kill all 3 of them without bend time, out in the open (avoiding their attacks, and going from one to another (blink/stab) until they were all destroyed. I will add more tips/ideas to this original post as I receive them, or as people give me feedback in the comments. Again…this is too little for a full Gamefaqs walk through, but just enough for a forum post. I’ll add more tips to this by editing the original post when I think of them.

Skyrim Thoughts


Alright, so this is the new Elder Scrolls game.  I beat the crap out of the first 4 of them.  Daggerfall, Arena, Morrowind and Oblivion (and all expansions/DLC for each of them (as well as a ton of mods).  I also got heavily involved in the modding community for both Morrowind and Oblivion (and still dabble in it from time to time).  Overall, I really did not care much for the first two Elderscrolls games.  But when Morrowind came out, it was a whole different story.  Then Oblivion was even better, and now finally Skyrim…is the best in the series thus far.

There are a few things I love about the game, and a few things I dislike..but overall the game is a much better improvement over the two previous games.  First off…the music is perfect. I don’t generally like that type of music, but they did a good job of matching what was going on in the game at any given time, with the right sound tracks to go with it.  The graphics are much better than previous Elder Scrolls games, and the gameplay is much stronger (and has been revamped).  I won’t go into any more details on my overall thoughts, because this is a blog post, not a review.  But part of the post, I want to give out some of my tips and tricks for the game, and stuff that I found useful while playing through it.

Tips and Tricks

General Tips

  • Be very careful what perks you pick.  There are major limits on what you can and cannot get.  You can get a lot of them, but if your not careful you will find yourself at the end of the game being disappointed due to the lack of perks that you have to put into things.  I recommend saving perks until you are very familiar with the game, and are sure how you want to build your character.
  • Don’t go throughout the entire game limiting yourself (for example don’t try to avoid magic the entire game).  You would be missing out on a great experience. Try to vary your tactics in battle to try to find out what you like the most (character setup, build and everything).
  • Keep a GREAT DEAL of saves. I generally have about 200-300 saves on my X-Box 360 for it.  I keep a great deal of saves.  The thing is..if you mess up on one thing, as long as you have a trail of saves..you will never have to start over and generally would only need to go back 2-3 saves.  This is very important in this type of game.  Mostly, just always let the game auto-save when it does, and leave them alone.  Also, just try to make a new save every 1-2 times you save. No need to save over old ones.  You can easily get a few hundred saves without worrying about it…If you want, just make backups every 5 hours, but the more saves you have, the less you have to make up if you end up making a serious mistake in your game.

Money Making Tips

  • Buy a horse.  You can run while on a horse, even if your loaded down with too much weight..helps out a lot when you need to travel when your weighted down (more stuff you can sell at one time)
  • Work…you can basically pick up vegetables and fruits from different farms, and then sell them back to the farm owner (or sell whatever they have). Almost anytime you come across someone with a bunch of goods laying on their farm, you can take them and sell them to the farm owners for money. Same for Chopping wood..you can chop would and sell it to the woodsman for around 5g per piece of wood…spend a night or two straight chopping would, and don’t tell me your not rich.
  • Don’t throw away anything over a value of 3.

My Character Build

My first/main character is primarily a dual wielding, archer.  He uses supplemental magick from time to time as well.  40% of the time I am dual wielding with him, 40% of the time I am using archery, and the final 20% of the time I am using supplemental magick (generally one 1-hander, and magic in the other hand).  Currently I have a lunar sword in one hand, and a lunar axe in another…and the affects they show once you draw them, look very nice. They make a sizzling sound, especially if you draw them at night.    Currently I am using perks as needed.  I have a few in sneak, and a few in One Handed, and archery. I have the archery zoom perk, and a few perks in Enchanting/Blacksmithing.  I am staying away from Two handed perks, and block perks because (for this specific game) I do not intend to use any two handed weapons, or shields.  Even if I do, it will be lightly, and I won’t have any need for perks/skills in them either.  So generally this is a non-issue for me on this character.  Overall I am only using the magick as supplemental. So I do not have a major need to stack a ton of perks across all the magick schools..however, I am definitely going to be wracking a variety of points into Alchemy, Enchanting and the school that governs around Necromancy. I am still debating on which way I want to use the Necromantic arts, but most of the supplemental magick I end up using is going to be necromantic in nature.

Morrowind Tutorials (Part One) – Standard Installation Tutorial (For Mods)


I am a heavy Morrowind player, and I enjoy using a variety of mods. I have a general installation setup that I try to use every single time I play the game. I am going to give you a very detailed run down of the entire structure that I use.  I am going to assume you have the game of the year edition. I am going to walk you through installation, morrowind code patch usage, no-cd crack (legal purposes only), and finally setting up the editor and doing installing some of the “Must Have” mods.  This is going to be the first, of potentially a series of Morrowind blog posts.  I intend to go into some detail about a variety of the mods that I use, in several posts.  This one will just cover the basic Morrowind setup that I walk through every single time I play this game.  Generally when I walk away from the game awhile, and come back I follow these same steps for my installation every single time.

I have a variety of things I want to share. First off, I want to focus on just the basics.  This Blog Post is going to cover basic installation, and all of the setup for the utilities that I generally use for everything.  This covers pretty much the entire setup that I make sure I have every single time I play Morrowind.

Step One Game Installation

Install Morrowind (It’ll also prompt to install TES Construction Set and you need this for modding), Tribunal, and then Bloodmoon in that order.  If you DO NOT have the Game Of The Year Edition, then go to http://www.theelderscrolls.com and download the latest patch. If you do have the Game Of The Year Edition, then do not download it (it can corrupt your game). The GOTY Edition comes with that patch already included. Here is how you can test this out.  Open the launcher, and click Data Files. Make sure all files are checked, and then go back and click “Play”.  Then let it load to the title screen. This verifies 2 things. First off, if it throws any errors at this point, then something is wrong with your game. Perform the re-installation from scratch. If you get to the title screen with no errors, make sure it says version 1.6 something at the bottom left hand corner of the screen. If you get to the title screen and see that version number, and did not get any errors then to this point, you have a good solid install. If not, then you need the patch, as mentioned previously.

Note: Through a lot of trial and error, and a lot of community feedback, I have learned a valuable lesson. Always install Morrowind into the root C directory of your hard drive.  Normally, depending on your version of Windows, it installs into C:/Program Files/Bethesda/Morrowind or something to that affect. You want to navigate to the C:/ directory.  From there you’ll want to type the name of the game after that. So the final destination path should be “C:/Morrowind”.  After that any subsequent official utilities will install to that same directory.  This means that the TES Construction Set, Tribunal, and Bloodmoon will all Auto-Detect the install directory using the registry.    If you have a dual hard drive then it shouldn’t be a problem to install it in another hard drive. The reason they say to install it into the root is because their are a lot of permission issues with certain versions of windows. It’s just cleaner and easier to modify when installed in the root c drive.

Step Two: Vanilla Backup

This is very important. As of right now, your Morrowind folder is in it’s base unmodified state. You have not Modified any files, you have not done any patching to the EXE file, you have not installed any programs. This is your base virgin install for Morrowind. At this point you need to take the entire Morrowind folder and back it up somewhere.  If you ever need to restore, or do a “Fresh” install, then all you have to do is delete your Morrowind folder and restore your backup save.  This is a technique I have just recently learned (thanks to someone from the Bethesda official forums) but it is a good technique, and one that I intend to use regularly.  Also, if you get to a “Milestone” with mods eventually and want to make a backup (for example if you have downloaded a lot, debugged a lot, learned a lot, fixed load order issues, put in patches, and just literally spent 20-30 hours perfecting your install) then you can do the same type of backup. From that back up moment the game will be saved.  A great technique for preventing yourself great deals of stress later on down the road.  Also prevents you from having to do a fresh install…just delete the main Morrowind folder, and replace it with a backup you have made.

Step Three: EXE Patching

I normally start of by applying two EXE Patches.  These patches actually modify the core Morrowind EXE file with changes they cannot be accomplished otherwise.  The first patch is the Morrowind Code Patch, which I will explain shortly. The other is the No-CD Patch.  I apply No-CD Patches to any PC games I play. Note, that it is not illegal as long as you own a physical copy of the game. So… if you do not have a copy of the game, then do so at your own risk.  The reason I use them is to make it easier to switch between PC games since I play a lot of different games.  This also makes Modding a great deal easier, for various reasons.

So let’s first download and install the Morrowind Code Patch. This patch will modify the core .exe file for Morrowind with fixes and alterations that cannot be done by any other means.  I recently had to rewrite this section, because since the last time I played they released several new versions of the Morrowind Code Patch, each with new features that I had to research.  The patch can be downloaded here: http://morrowind.nexusmods.com/mods/19510 You have to register for an account (or login to an existing one) in order to be able to download the patch.  If you wish, read through the notes, readme, and comments as much as you would like to get a feel for what you are downloading.

The core purpose behind this patch is to fix a lot of core bugs in the game, as well as make some major adjustments that should have been done to begin with. Several of the options that “I” enable are done so, to make modding easier and more enjoyable.  Once the file is downloaded (You only need the main download, not anything optional), unzip it somewhere. Also note, if you have issues downloading it off one of the listed servers, then simply go back and try on another one. Some of them are down from time to time.  Somewhere in an empty folder or something.  Once unzipped, delete the original zip file. Then delete the Data Files folder, you really don’t need that for anything, it just takes up unnecessary space. All the Data Files folder is for, is to test out the various features of the EXE Patching. If you do not know much about what you are doing, then your wasting your time with it at this point anyway.

Once your done with that, copy/paste everything that is left into your Morrowind root installation folder.  Then double click on “Morrowind Code Patch.exe”.  Note, for this to work currently you have to have the Morrowind CD in the disk drive, or it can’t access/write over the original EXE file. It will just throw an error about no CD found.  At this point a screen will come up asking you what patches you want to apply. There are a lot here. If you want some outside of what I recommend be my guest, but do so at your own risk.  Below is a list of all the patches that I implemented using this code patch. If you want to implement ones that I have not listed, you are more than welcome.  I also list the reasons why I have enabled the ones that I enabled.

Graphics Changes

* Rain/Snow Collision – (In order for this to work, you need to open the Morrowind INI file and adjust the values that it describes in the patch description.  This isn’t very hard. Just open the Morrowind INI file, and change the values that it tells you to change.  Very simple).
* Bump/Reflect map local lighting – This is a small bug fix when dealing with modded items.

Game Mechanic Changes

* Toggle Sneak – I would rather it be toggle, than hold.
* Swift Casting – Believe me, it’s worth it.  You can read more about this here: http://forums.uesp.net/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=23060
* Pickpocket Overhaul – Major improvements over the original system.
* Alchemy Potion Weight Rebalance – Makes the balancing of the potion weight much more realistic, and fixes a bug in the Core Exe file pertaining to this.
* Item Recharging Rebalance – Makes recharging items…much more realistic, and fair.
* Soulgem Value Rebalance – Re-balances how much filled soul gems are worth. Much better than the original, and more realistic.
* Enchanting Increases Item Value – When you enchant items, it increases their value. Much more realistic.
* On Use ring Extra Slot – Allows you to have two rings that do constant affect, and still equip a third that has an on-use feature.  Keeps it from unequiping your constant affect rings all the time. Very useful. Bethesda should have done it this way to begin with.
* Fortify Maximum Health – Fixes a partially broken mechanic.
* Spellmaking Max Magnitude Increased – Extremely useful. Makes Enchanting so much more fun.
* Spellmaker/Enchant Multiple Affects – Very useful.
* Detect Life Spell Variant – Seems more realistic for it to work on everything.

Mod Related Features

* Improved Animation Support

Interface Changes

* Map Expansion (For Tamriel Rebuilt – This is just a map fixer.  They have a mod out that is gigantic, and this patch helps making playing with that mod a little easier. I will explain about this, and other mods in a future blog posts).
* Display More Accurate Item Weight
* Everything under the “Bug Fixes” at the bottom.

When your done selecting what you want, then click “Apply Chosen Patches” and now your done.  Close it down, and your .exe file has been properly modified. It also makes a backup file, which is useful if you want to roll back and experiment with some.  So keep that original in there as well. Note if you roll back (uninstall) back to the original, you’ll still need to install the NoCD Patch again after your done.

If you want the noCD Patch then go here” http://www.gameburnworld.com/dl/dl.php?file=MorrowindGameOfTheYearv1.6.1820NoCDPatchEng.zip Unzip it and delete the blk files, then move everything else to your Morrowind install folder, then run the exe file. It’ll patch, and your done.  Note, if you ever want to re-patch something different in the Morrowind Code Patch..then just restore the original backup it made, re-run the Morrowind Code Patch with your chosen patches, and then re-run the NoCD Patch. That’s it. Last I checked, this install of it has no viruses.  Be ware if you get it from anywhere else, or run some other No-CD Patch. Again, it’s illegal to use this if you don’t have a copy of the game.

Note, for this to work you also need to insert your Morrowind CD and copy the entire Video folder from the CD to the install directory.

The Morrowind.exe should now be patched (both with the Morrowind Code Patch changes, and the NoCD Crack.  Now take out the CD. Try a test run in the game. If you get to the title screen with no errors, and it shows MCP 2.0 at the bottom left hand corner, then your installation to this point, is solid and error free..

If you get errors at this stage, uninstall the entire game, remove the entire Morrowind folder, run a register cleaner and start all the way over from step one. That is going to be the only way to resolve the issue, because chances are something along the line messed up.  A fresh restart is the only way to guarantee first it was not human error, from there…not much I can tell you without knowing more about your specific situation. Should you need further assistance at this stage, then post in the comments and i’ll answer individual situations the best that I can.

Step Five: Recap and Backup


Make another backup right now at this point.

Alright, now let’s assume for a minute you did everything above, as instructed. Then you do something later and mess up the install completely. Bad mods, or whatever. So your mad thinking you have to redo everything. Well…not really. This is all you need to do.

Restore your last backup.  That’s it. Then your right back at THIS point in my explanation with no issues.  All mods gone (yes) but total fresh install without starting the ENTIRE thing over again.

Assume now you just want to redo the MCP (Morrowind Code Patch) with different options. Easy.

1. Delete Morrowind.exe
2. Rename Morrowind.Original.exe to Morrowind.exe.
3. Run the MCP again (and apply the patches of your choice).
4. Run the NoCD Patch again (TRASDs_Morrowind_Patch.exe) and that is it. Your done.

My main purpose of getting you to this point, is so you had a solid install and didn’t have to fresh install every time something goes wrong (and if you get serious about modding..then things WILL go wrong).

Step four: Last minute details, and some last minute utilities

Now we are moving onto some more advanced applications. It’s very important you read these following sections very carefully, and really know what you are doing. As these are a lot more difficult to implement then anything I have mentioned above.  If you just want to “play” now..and your not interested in mods, and you want to come back to this…the now is the time. You have a perfect install setup to either play the game as is, or have a chance to mod and install mods later if you decide to.  SO if you want to play some before installing mods, then now is the time. Go play your heart out, and come back here if/when you decide to download/install/configure mods, or mod yourself.

OK so let’s get started on downloading the third party utilities, one at a time in order of importance.  Again these are only needed if you are going to be downloading and using mods (especially semi-advanced ones) and/or creating mods yourself as well.

Wrye Mash

The first utility we are going to install is Wrye Mash. It’ll be the main utility used in managing mods. There are however a few dependencies as well.  There are two ways to go about installing this. The first is to install the original application Wrye Mash. This requires several dependencies and is fairly technical.  The second option is to download a self contained EXE install file, that combines the original app, along with the necessary third party dependencies.

The stand alone application can be found here: http://www.fliggerty.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=53&p=63053#p63053

The alternative details can be found here: http://wryemusings.com/Wrye%20Mash.html
However, I found this site to have a better explanation: http://morrowind.nexusmods.com/mods/27588
Specifically looking at the following comment:


FWIW, here’s how I installed this:

  1. Python
  2. wxPython
  3. comtypes

Those are the latest versions of the prerequisites. Then it was a matter of unpacking the zip in the right place, and changing the lnk to work with Python27 rather than Python25.

I use to do this, but since I have learnt a lot about modding….I find the stand alone has all the same functions and an additional tab that handles executable files as well,  also it does not have any new errors that weren’t already present in the original app…so you lose nothing from trying to use the executable, except ease of use, and a much cleaner install (instead of having to install python, pythonx, and the app) you just install the app and the rest is bundled in the executable.

First i’ll explain how to install the stand alone version.  Download it, run the installer and place it app inside the Morrowind install directory.  Then go open the app and specify the Morrowind install location.

In regards to doing it the hard way, i’ll just leave my original old explanation in tact below in quotes,


The first utility is Wrye Mash.  I use to install this the hard way.  I would go here: http://wryemusings.com/Wrye%20Mash.html download and install it.  I would also have to install Python and various libraries and frameworks for it. Essentially I had to install 2-3 applications and systems on my computer for me to use it.

It’s very simple. Installed Python and Python WX.  You can find the download links on the Wrye Mash website.  After those are installed just copy the entire MOPY folder (only) into your Morrowind installing directory.  That’s it, it’s installed.

Now picking up from there, whichever you choose..let’s talk about some issues it has with Mods. Once the app is installed, all mods that you are going to want to install, go into the “Morrowind/Installers” folder.  There are a few bugs associated with Wrye Mash when it comes to installers.

Essentially there are several ways to install Mods with Wrye Mash.  I personally, only use Zip files. I’ll take the mod, and “prepare” it, then i’ll zip it up and name it what I want the mod to be named inside Wrye Mash (useful if you want several versions of a mod to enable/disable as you please). Then i’ll load the zip file(s) in the installers folder that I explained above. What I mean by Prepare is…I’ll load any read me’s into a specific read me folder, among other things to make it a cleaner install, and help prevent files being all over the place on a specifically nasty installation. That also makes it easier to thoroughly remove mods that I am done with, or don’t need anymore. That’s it.  Any other”information” about Mods will be saved for another blog post. Just keep in mind that you download your mods, and the final result is to have the zip file in the installers folder. Alternatively, most mods come zipped. So if you want to make it easier, just install them straight after downloaded by throwing the zip files into the proper folder. This is a little risky and messier, but definitely will get you by with most mods.

If the mods have special characters in the file names, or if any of the files are read only then it’ll have a had time installing them.  These are situations that require you to break open the zip file and adjust what is needed to make it work. I’ll go into much more detail pertaining to installing mods in another blog post at some time in the future.

MLox

The next utility we want to get is MLox.  You can download the latest version from here: http://code.google.com/p/mlox/wiki/Mlox

This is pretty easy. Just download “mlox-exe-0.57.7z“.  Unzip it, and put the entire folder in the base Morrowind install. The folder will be “mlox”. Then download mlox-data_2012-10-21.7z and put that in the mlox folder as well. That’s it. We don’t need to run this program right now, it’s for later.  To make a longer story short…as modules are installed they will, by default, overwrite exising modules. So the last modules to load take precedence.  As you can see, this can cause issues.  So this program rewrites the “order” in which they are loaded (called Load Order) in a way that is most likely to have issues with overwriting.  It has a pre-defined list tha tis prepared by the community, and uses that to sort all installed mods into the most “compatible” load order possible. It doesn’t support every mod in existence, but most of the ones that would be considered important. This is something you’ll use later when you get several mods installed and are ready to play the game.  This will help keep your install cleaner, and easier to use.  Load order can also be managed with Wrye Mash but this program does it automatically…and much better by using the load text file.

TesTool

TesTool is the next utility you want to install.  It’s critical for modding.  It has several uses. First off, it allows you to merge mods. For example..if you have several mods that generally work together, you might want to load them into one file..makes it much cleaner to have less mods installed. Not recommended unless you know what your doing.

So just download the files here: http://planetelderscrolls.gamespy.com/View.php?view=utilities.detail&id=34 and unzip it into the Morrowind Install folder, and your done.  We’ll come back to using this later, as needed for mods.

BSA Reg

Useful to get now, but you won’t need it except on certain mods. It’s still good to have, in case you need it.  Just download the file from here: http://planetelderscrolls.gamespy.com/View.php?view=Utilities.Detail&id=29 and move it into the base Morrowind install location. That’s it. When your ready to run it, you’ll just run the EXE file.

Now, to give you a brief rundown.  Sometimes mods will have a lot of files that are required. In some situation, they will wrap these files into larger BSA files.  Most of the time they do this with things like skins, Meshes, and several other types of heavy files. Morrowind has a built in system that allows it to register what is called a BSA file (large collection of files).  So on these mods that come with these types of files, they’ll be installed into the mod folder. The game will read the mod but can’t find the files, as all BSA files that are needed have to be loaded into the ini file. What this BSA program does is scan your mod folder for any BSA and compares them to what is currently registered in the INI file.  If any are in the mod folder but aren’t registered, then it registers them. Likewise if it see’s a BSA registered that isn’t in the INI file then it removes them from registration (so Morrowind won’t throw errors on start up). It’s just a light weight and easy to use tool that makes a normally manual process, automatic and very easy to do.

Morrowind Script Extender

The next (and currently final) utility that I use is called the Morrowind Script Extender.  I get this for several reasons.  First off, it extends the scripting functionality of the original game.  This gives you access to some mods that you normally would not have access to. There are many very popular community mods that require additional scripting beyond what Morrowind allows.  So this script extender just extends the base game with several scripting options and gives players access to a wider array of community  mods.

The next and final utility that I always use is the Morrowind Script Extender.  As of this writing the current version is 0.9.4a.  It took me forever to hunt down the real version. The main links on Google bring you to the standard 0.9.4.  However when you download it you want to make sure the zip is called 0.9.4a because that is the newest release and has a very critical bug fix.

You can get the correct version here:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/mwse/files/Morrowind%20Script%20Extender/Morrowind%20Script%20Extender%200.9.4a/MWSE0.9.4a.zip/download

Download the file, unzip it, copy everything inside the “MWScriptExtender 0.9.4” folder into the Morrowind root directory. Once your done with that, right click on “MWSE Launcher.exe” and click “Send To” -> “Desktop”.  Then go to your Desktop and delete the original Morrowind shortcut, and rename the new one to this, “MWSE Launcher.exe”.

Now let’s test this.  Open that new launcher and click “Launch Morrowind”. It’ll launch the original Morrowind launcher, and then the game.  Which will allow the Script Extender to run in the background. That’s it. Just use that every time you want to play.

So that is it for the generic utilities that I normally download for playing the game.
Update

Step Five: Cleanup And Final Backup

Just note, to keep things cleaner I normally move all the read me files for these apps, and utilities all together in one folder within the Morrowind Install. Generally I call it something like ThirdPartyReadMes so I have them all in one place, then i’ll rename them roughly the same name as the utility/app so they are easy to find when I need them.

This is the most important step.  Right now, at this stage you have successfully gotten together everything you “need” to play morrowind.  Do a complete, and total backup of your entire morrowind folder. If you ever have to revert to your basic (no mod) version, you can just delete the Morrowind folder and paste in your backup.  This is the most recommended step. It will save you hundreds of hours when you get deep into Morrowind modding and gameplay.

Step Six: Optional

A totally optional step, but one I implement.  A long time ago I realized that as a laptop user (only) I had to improvise. I don’t use a desktop. I play all games on my Alienware Laptop (mx17). With that being said…I needed a better control scheme. So I did the following.

1. Went out and bought a Logitech RumblePad controller with a ton of buttons.
2. Went and bought, downloaded, and installed Pinnacle Game Profiler from this website: http://pinnaclegameprofiler.com/ Believe me…I tried every other profiler on the market.
3. Went here and downloaded the profile of my choosing from here: http://pinnaclegameprofiler.com/pc-controller-support/show-all-game-profiles#M

And then setup/configured everything to use a controller.  There is a lot to this and it can get complicated.  You have to buy the profiler, download it, install it, and work your way through their pretty complicated “unlock” process once you get the code.  If there are issues you have to email support and wait for them to sort it out. Then you have to buy the controller, set it all up to work with the profiler and configure the base profiles.  Then you have to find/download the right profile you want for this game (there are 5 on the website) and finding out which one fits best with your play style can take some time. I’m not going to go into any more detail here. If anyone has any issues and wants to ask me in the comments i’ll do what I can. If I find a high demand for additional details then i’ll go into more detail on this section when the time comes. For now, it should be pretty easy to figure out as you go, if you decide to take this route (it was definitely worth it for me).  You can also use a base XBox 360 controller as well, if you want to.  Takes a little more work configuring/setting it up…but it’s manageable.

Going Forward

I have a lot more to blog about pertaining to Morrowind. I’ll end up rewriting and adding to this specific blog post several times as I learn new stuff, and clean up the blog post.  I’ll also end up writing a few follow up blog posts about some of the best mods currently out there. I will be getting a great deal of them downloaded/installed from some of my favorites in the next couple of days, and will write a follow up blog post soon that’ll include a list of some of the best mods that I end up using EVERY time I play, without fail…as well as explanations as to why I use them.

Essentially this is the end of this post.  The only purpose was to walk you through a typical installation that I would do when I play the game. However, this is only half of what I do when I play the game.  The next blog post I create about Morrowind will be a detailed breakdown of all the mods that I use, why, how to install them (step by step guides) and how I make them work well together. I use a great deal of mods..some will be your style, others will not. However what you have now is a base install of Morrowind with everything you need to either play the game, or start grabbing virtually any mods that you want going forward.  

Fallout: New Vegas glitches

Overview

Fallout: New Vegas is a great game. I love everything about it.  However, I lost my game due to a glitch.  Which makes me want to write a blog post, so people would beware of some of the current issues with the game.  This is valid on 11/28/2010.  Hopefully they will create a patch for the game that will fix it.  All of these glitches specifically speak about the 360 version of the game.

Glitches

The glitches that I know about are listed below. Hopefully this’ll help someone avoid these.  In the section below this, I have offered advice on how to keep from losing your game to the glitches.

Missing Items

This is a critical bug.  Most of the storage areas in the game are unsafe.  I mean very unsafe. You will put stuff in them, come back later and it will be gone.  I think it has something to do with the game cache clearing. It does that to preserve memory.  The strange thing is, items that were originally in the crates are done two ways.  They are either preset, or random.  The preset ones end up showing the same items every time, until you pick them up. The random ones, are randomized until you pick them up. For the most part when you take everything out of any container, the container is then empty. The stuff inside of them does not respawn (as far as I know).  The other thing to remember is the only exception is vending machines.  They restock occasionally).

Everything above is standard functionality.  That is how the crates and storage devices in the game work.  The bug comes into play when you try to store something in a container.  Whether it’s a crate, refrigerator, or something else.  There are two types of storage.  Safe and Unsafe.  Safe storage is storage that you can put something in, and it won’t clear out.  Unsafe (most of them in the game) means that if you put something in them there is a strong chance that the game will clear them out at some point.  That is unfortunate.  You might store a bunch of valuable stuff in a location, come back later and the game emptied the memory. It’s gone forever.  Basically trying to list all unsafe storage in the game is impossible. It would take forever.  So what I am going to do is just offer one suggestion.  Unless you have 100% verification that something is safe, use it in only one area.

First let me describe the ones I know are unsafe, that I tested.  A lot of the stuff in the lucky 38 presidential suite is not safe. Especially workbench 1, and 2.  I haven’t had issues with the weapon caches, and clothes area or refrigerators, but I make no guarantees.

In the entire game, there is only 1 place that I 100% trust.  I trust the Mojave drop boxes as temporary storage. I have never had anything deleted from those. However, I don’t recommend leaving massive quantities of items in there forever.  I would only use it to send stuff to your main location. With that said.  If you go to Novac (which isn’t far from the starting area) pretty early in the game. Talk to the girl inside the room right outside it and buy a room. Go through the gate.  Right up the stairs to your left, first room on the left.  This room.  If you walk inside the room and look at the tv, look down. You’ll see a safe.  I am 100% sure that this safe is 100% safe. I am 100% sure that nothing will ever be deleted from this contained no matter how long you leave it in there. I am pretty sure the rest of the storage areas are safe, but I am not going to make that promise since I have not tested them.  The safe, I can promise is safe. You would never lose anything in that one. I can stake a life insurance policy on it.

OK, so here is what I do. Anytime I am ANYWHERE in the game, I always send stuff to Novac drop box when I am full. Then when I get around to it, I go to novac and put EVERYTHING I don’t want on me, and don’t want to sell.  The game stores it all.

With all that out of the way I have one more thing to say.  USE THE LUCKY 38 AT YOUR OWN RISK. I lost thousands of caps worth of misc items in those stupid work benches.  Just knowing that those are unsafe, makes me question the remaining areas.  I highly recommend avoiding this place.  If you do, use it at your own risk. Just know I haven’t had any issues with the refrigerator, weapon chest 1, or apparel chest 1.  Those 3 things I have not currently had any issues with.  There is one more heavy glitch down below, which is why I DO NOT RECOMMEND using the lucky 38. I lost my entire game (60 hour game) because of a glitch in the lucky 38, which I am going to explain later on.

Area Discongifuration

Simple bug. Sometimes you, or things, or enemies fall through the earth.  Sometimes you see the end lines of mountains. I have walked into a mountain before and gotten stuck. It’s annoying, but unavoidable. Certain areas seem to be worse for this than others. Many times I have shot an enemy and had them fall through the earth, that is mostly limited to smaller enemies like Rad Roaches. I have never had a human enemy fall through that I have seen. It also seems to happen mostly in high mountain areas.  I have fallen through the earth a few times.

Lucky 38 Hellhole

Please heed this advice very carefully. Stay away from the Lucky 38 as much as possible. Always double save outside of it.  I am going to explain why in a minute. Every time you go in, make sure you do a double save outside of it that is safe.  When you are in one of the vaults (I don’t remember which one, google it), makes sure you know about the glitch pertaining to the faction ID’s. I am not going to describe that here (yet) because I don’t know much about it. Apparently, if you kill turrets in one of the vaults, it makes Mister house’s robots attack you on site, and screws up the faction.  I don’t know much about this. Just beware, the issues I know about are listed below.

OK, first off…I have had the enemies attack me out of nowhere in here. This is tied to the vault glitch, and some other glitches.  Also there is another issue. Sometimes you get STUCK in areas of the lucky 38. I got stuck IN MY ROOM in the presidential suite. Victor would not talk to me, and I lost my ENTIRE 60 hour game. My only choice was to start my game over, or lose the option to choice the house as a factor option.   This is easily avoidable though. Always save twice outside the lucky 38. Exercise very careful caution while inside any area of the lucky 38, that you are trapped in. Anytime you are in any room other than the main casino area, be very careful. I am not sure what causes the glitch, but regardless it’ll stop you from playing the game.  If you have the extra backup, then it’s easily avoidable. Always make sure you do the extra save EVERY TIME you enter the lucky 38 for ANY reason. That could mean the difference between whether you lose your game or not.  The error is triggered by dialog. So if you encounter the glitch, talk to a character, and try to do the dialog again it’ll fix.  For example. If your in the presidential suite with an ally, you can talk to them and dismiss them, and it’ll fix the glitch. Then go and pick them up. However if it’s a situation where they wait outside for you (which happens when you talk to victor outside) then it’s impossible to get out of this glitch. I tried everything, and had to start over.

Freezing

On certain situations the loading screen freezes. I have heard about people losing their entire save because of this. Even after loading backup saves.  The only recommendation I can give, is save often and hope it doesn’t happen to you.  It is not currently known (to me) what causes this, or how to fix it. Just hope it doesn’t happen to you.

Quests tied together

This isn’t a glitch, but wanted to throw it out there. Some quests are tied together.  If your careful, most of the time both can be completed even if it seems you can only do one or the other. This is not always the case, but if your tricky you can work stuff out. SPOILER ALERT) outside the luxe, you will see a guy walking around.  He starts one quest, and then a second quest starts inside the Luxe.  If you do it wrong you mess up one quest, or the other.  I had it arranged so I could get the quest outside solved (talking him into going home) and then do the inside quest the way I wanted.  It took a few times to get it right, but I got it all situated like I wanted and finished both quests.  This happens in quite a few locations. Just work through the quests slowly, and you’ll be able to finish a lot more instead of having some of them end on you. Same with the ending faction quests. If you are careful you can do most of all the main faction quests until your force to pick a side at the end. Gives you more time to learn stuff about the factions, and really decide what you want to do in the end.

Conclusion

Great game. Lots of glitches. Some of them can cause you to lose your game if your not well educated in it.  Just make sure you know what to expect, and how to try and avoid them. Keep 3-4 saves, and you SHOULD be fine.

If any of you have any other glitches you have run into or, ways around them, or any other feedback, feel free to leave other comments.

F.E.A.R. Series, Thoughts.

I played, and beat the entire F.E.A.R. series. I played all games, all expansions, all spin offs, and all DLC throughout all of the games. I played them thoroughly, and got perfect games in each.  I have a lot of mixed emotions about the series as a whole, but was thoroughly disappointed when they released the final one. Below are a few of my key thoughts:SPOILERS Warning: If you have not played the F.E.A.R. games, and you intend to, then do not read this. It contains some very heavy spoilers.  Continue reading at your own risk.Below are some of my initial thoughts:

  • This is one of my favorite series (overall).
  • Alma is my favorite character in virtually any video game that I have played, just about.
  • I am extremely disappointed with the ending to F.E.A.R. 3.  They screwed up everything good about the series, at least to me, because of how much I liked that character.

F.E.A.R. 1 and it’s expansions.

Fear 1 was the first game in the series.   It was the introduction to Alma Wade, and the entire story surrounding her.  The series basically introduces a new character called “Point Man”.  You play as him throughout the story.  He has a special ability to heighten his reflexes and make himself go very fast (and making it feel as if time has slowed down around him).  At the beginning you are part of a team called F.E.A.R.  This stands for First Encounter Assault Recon.  As you play through the game you continuously see an 8 year old girl.  She appears in various places throughout the game.  But she always vanishes when you get close to her.  She is around 8 years old and wears a red dress. She also sometimes talks to you about various things as you play the game.

Also throughout the game you see a strange looking man named “Paxxon Fettel”.  He is the man protagonist of this first game.  Throughout the entire game the main goal of you and your team is to capture or kill him.  As you play through the game you eventually find out that you are the son of Alma…the 8 year old.  Then you find out she’s not really 8.  She is much older than that.  Over time you also realize that Fettel is your brother.  At the end of the game Alma’s Father releases her from the vault..I will explain all of this in another section pertaining to her.

Now for the expansions.  They were both created by a different company from the original game.  Neither one of the expansions were that good.  They were not horrible, but unless you are a die hard F.E.A.R. fan, then they can be avoided by the average gamer. There is nothing especially interesting in them.  Also, the world is set in a different realm…so basically those stories did not happen. The original makers ended up making those
story-lines obsolete and set them into a fantasy world.  So these are events that never really took place, but for me, they were fun to watch regardless.  They were released later as a set, and called “F.E.A.R. Files” if you
find that, then you effectively have both expansions for the first game…although the first one of the expansions is better out of the two.  Although, as I said, make sure you realize they are not considered part of the main F.E.A.R. storyline.

F.E.A.R. 2 and it’s expansions.

F.E.A.R. 2 was put back in the hands of the rightful owner.  I do not know what to say about this game.  I was stunned, amazed, engrossed and had one of the best gaming experiences in my life.  I was convinced at this point that the second one blew the living crap out of the first one. It was awesome in every way, and featured my favorite character (Alma) a great deal.  This was one of the best storylines, and best gaming experiences in the entire series.  The expansion was called Project Origin.  I had no complaints about this game either. It was shorter, sweet and to the point. In the expansion you take the role of a solider that was originally a member of the project origin..a race of soldiers that are collective controlled by one psychic commander.  At that time Paxton Fettel was in prison..he ended up taking control of one of the origin soldiers.  The soldier fights his way through all of his brothers, finally getting to the prison cell, and having his body taken as a host to be Paxton Fettel.

Overall the second one in the series was by far the best.  The main thing I liked, was it’s heavy focus on Alma and here entire story. The main character of the second one encounters her countless times, and even has a major scene with her at the end of the game, that changes the course of the storyline forever.

F.E.A.R. 3

In totally honesty, I thought this series was nowhere near as good as F.E.A.R. 2…and did not like a lot of things about the story line of this game.  Don’t get me wrong on some points…the gameplay is awesome. The way they did the shooting mechanics, cover mechanics, and the overall combat is great.  At it’s core the combat is a much better improvement over the previous F.E.A.R. games…what disappointed me was the story.  The presence of Alma in this game was very limited, next to none..at least until the end. I was not happy with the ending either.  Them taking out one of my favorite characters in the series was just disappointing.

When I first played it, I was angry and went browsing around online. One person’s theory online stood out to me..and perhaps this is true. The F.E.A.R. series at it’s core is about a group called “First Encounter Assault Recon”.  It has nothing (at it’s very nature) to do with Alma, or her entire storyline. Someone said online that if they decide to release future F.E.A.R. games..it would probably be different stories and things that F.E.A.R. has dealt with as a team, and may have different stories than Alma.  He did not think they originally intended for her to be the only storyline. They intended to have different games come out with them dealing with different circumstances…this may or may not be true, but it’s definitely something to think about.

Overall I enjoyed the game, but the ending left me much to be desired.

Teaser Trailer

When F.E.A.R. one was over, and that other company temporarily took over…they created the two sub series that were considered not part of Canon (the main storyline)…they also ended up releasing a teaser video, and a very good one.  When I first saw the video I was under the impression they were creating a movie. I spent hours looking online for details about the movie..and I could not find anything. I finally discovered how the video was created, and that it was just marketing material.  I loved the video nonetheless, and really let’s you see how some of her core powers work.

The video can be viewed above, or visited directly on Youtube.

I highly recommend watching the video, especially if you like the F.E.A.R. series.


Version History

9/7/2014:

– Fixed the formatting of some
– Rewrote some of it, to fall more in line with my overall thought processes now a days. I have changed a lot since I originally wrote this.
– Fixed video embed, and added link. It had broken some time in the past.

Release Date:

– Initial Version

Final Fantasy 12 – Larva Eater and Danjuro


Final Fantasy 12 is a great game. It has beautiful graphics, a nicely laid out story, wonderful characters, and a general atmosphere that makes it easy to get warped into the game.  Within my lifetime I have played a very large number of games.  Some of them I have beaten, others I have just played and quit in the middle of them.  Final Fantasy 12 is one of the games I enjoyed the most.  Every game that I play my main goal is perfectionism, which some refer to as a “Perfect Game”.  I will go into more detail about this in a future blog post.

The purpose of this specific post is to cover some information about one of the spawns in Final Fantasy 12 that goes by the name Larva Eater.  Not only is he a random rare spawn, but he also carries one of the games best daggers…the Danjuro.  Getting Larva Eater to appear in the first place is a task in and of itself..not to mention the fact of getting the Danjuro to drop which has a very low drop rate.

Larva Eater appears near the end of the game.  There is a lot of talk among forums, walk-throughs, and rumors about different ways to make him respawn faster than the general method.  Due to this controversy and conversation, there are many methods out there that were developed..and very near all of them work to some degree.

The Danjuro is a special dagger in FF12 that only drops off of this boss, and initially only has around a 3% chance of dropping without a chain.  I have been unable to confirm the exact drop rate percentage without a chain, but this is what I have generally heard across the board from all players.  There is a technique that allows the drop rate to increase to a higher percentage.  This is done via the chain system that the game has built in.  When you kill the same “type” of enemy more than once you begin building a chain.  The higher that chain increases the better the drop rates you will receive while defeating future incarnations of that same enemy type.

Throughout all of the techniques I have located, there were a few that I tried and a few that I left alone.  I have one special technique that is a combination of a few techniques that make getting him to spawn a lot easier than a lot of the other techniques that are discussed throughout the internet.

Before I go into detail about my technique..I wanted to cover some basic points about the other techniques that are discussed online.  I have listed them below with a little detail on how the general concept goes to get him to spawn.

Background Information

The first thing you need to know before you can accomplish any techniques is some basic information about the boss and his location.  He is located in the “Great Crystal” area near the end of the game. I am not going to into a lot of detail into how to find the great crystal because you can find that online readily available in google.  The area you need to focus on for ALL of these techniques is Waystone XIV, Leo Gate STONE (not gate), and Leo Gate.

With these areas in mind and a general understanding of the great crystal, a lot of these techniques will be fairly simple.

Original Method

The original method is pretty easy, and definitely works 100% of the time.  However it is extremely time consuming to get him to spawn.  Not only is it time consuming for him to spawn, but it’s also very time consuming to get the drop. Much more so than some of the modified techniques that were developed later on by general players.

Basically this is how this original technique goes.  Your suppose to kill a total of 255 enemies (I prefer to chain them to make sure that it registers).  At 255 he almost always appears AT 255 for the first time. Sometimes it takes a little longer.  If he is not there at 255 leave and fight a few more.  The “best” way to do this is by fighting Necrophobes in the Leo Gate Stone and Leo Gate areas.  After you fight and kill Larva Eater the first time then he is “unlocked”.  Afterwards you have to fight somewhere between 30-255 of them for him to re-spawn.  Generally I go back at 30, 50, 80, 120, 150, 180, 210, and 255.  Generally he’ll show up somewhere in the 100 and something range, but at times it takes just 30 or 50.

This technique is VERY time consuming.  I did this a long time.  However due to the low spawn rate I was never able to get a Danjuro from him..even after defeating him nearly 20 times.

Mom Bomb Technique

This technique follows the same pattern as above to unlock him. Once unlocked he is at chain 1.  So generally people who use this technique find the bomb enemies that are nearby.  They hit them and make them explode and kill each other (be careful they damage you as well).  When this happens after about 30-255 of those kills he can re-spawn and you keep your chain. This effectively increases drop rate.  This is a good technique.  It works. However it is still too time consuming for my tastes.

Gargoyle Technique

Gargoyles are the same type of enemy as Larva Eater. Which means if you chain them you are building the same chain that is shared with Larva Eater.  The Gargoyles are in the area near the ENTRANCE of the Great Crystal but it’s OUTSIDE of the Great Crystal itself. You can start fighting them to build the chain, and after yo have the chain you want you can head back towards the area with Larva Eater.  With this technique you can use the Mom Bomb technique.  There are some changes in this story so it’s up to you to figure out which one works.

Some say you have to clear the Leo Gate Stone area of Necrophobes in order for this to work. However you have to kill them without breaking your chain.  You can do so with Poison and Sleep on groups of them and kill them all like that.  While you are clearing them out some say to let the Necrophobes divide 5 times..it glitches the game into marking more kills as you zone in/out. Might save you some time while working with the Mom Bomb Method.

My Method

My method is a modified version of an existing method.  You can find the existing method here:
http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Larva_Eater
If you follow that carefully it works.  However, I have a modified version that made it even easier.  First off I headed to Leo Gate Stone and cleared out that entire area.  MAKE SURE you let at least 5 of them divide.  DO NOT leave that area while killing them and make sure your in Leo Gate Stone and not Leo Gate.  Once you clear them out..get ready to start zoning. Zone into Waystone XIV and see if he’s there. If not then start going in/out of Waystone XIV.  The good part is once you start zoning you can hold down the down key.  Meaning you can just hold it down or prop it on something. If you zone and he appears the fourth time you zone..and you zone 6 more times, he’ll still be there. You can use this to your advantage. Prop up your controller and let it go. Come back 5-10 minutes later and almost always he will show up by then.

It’ll be either he spawns, he spawns with Reavers, Reavers spawn alone, or nothing spawns.  If nothing spawns then keep zoning.  If the Reavers spawn alone you can either ignore them and keep zoning, or zone away two times (go through Leo Gate Stone and into Leo Gate and back again) then continue zoning. The Reavers appearing alone won’t hurt anything however.  If he appears with Reavers or alone then kill just him if possible (Larva Eater). Afterwards if you still need to fight him zone away two times (into Leo Gate) and head back and start zoning again.

There are a few things to keep in mind here. Once you have a chain with him DO NOT lose it. If there are Reavers you can try to vanish them if possible.  Also you may want to equip stuff that gives you double experience, I was able to get to level 99 during my first attempts of just killing Necrophobes to 255 over and over again until he spawned each time. I did that until all of my characters were level 99.

Another thing to remember..I am not sure if you HAVE to do the Necrophobe divisions. I am also not sure if you have to clear out the Leo Gate Stone area first.  Once their all dead in that area they never come back as long as you stick to the described method above.  At the very least this makes it easier while your performing your zoning, because none of them are in the way.  So I would recommend doing the Dividing no matter what just to be safe. I also recommend killing all in that zone because no matter what it will help a lot not to constantly get attacked by zoning. So whether these are required or not, they are recommended.

Theoretically (although I did not) you could combine this with the Gargoyle technique. You could start off by killing gargoyles up to a decent chain so you have a head start. Then you can go to the Leo Gate Stone and kill all there while letting them divide at least 5 times. It’s tricky to kill them all without accidentally breaking the chain. My recommendation is cast Sleep on them, and then Poison. If they actually die from poison it doesn’t break the chain. You can also experiment carefully with using some magic on them to start with to get them down some before finishing them off with poison. Try to keep them to sleep because if they all divide rapidly you can be stuck with 5-6 enemies and it can get very tricky.
never get him to drop it this way.

Conclusions

Those are the primary techniques.  I know the technique I tried was a modified version of other techniques but it was very effective. I chained him 30 times, and accidentally killed a Reaver, but he was still re-spawning very quickly so I ended up getting another 6 chain and broke it again accidentally.  Afterwards I got a 25 chain and finally got the Danjuro.

Technically you can take all of these techniques and play around with them into different methods and come up with one that best suits you.  Good luck on getting your Danjuro.

World of Warcraft (Making gold the right way)


Just for a little background, World of Warcraft is an insanely popular massive multiplayer online RPG.  I am not affiliated with them at all, or hold any copyrights to any of their material. This is just a fan posting.  Also I am not a WoW only fan. I have tried, like, and still play a variety of other Online Games as well
and don’t rate any as comparisons to wow.  I try each game individually and each online game (free or not) has their own things to bring to the market.  With that out of the way I am going to describe some simple techniques to getting a vast amount of gold in WoW.  I been playing the game for about 4-5 years and, since I have a tradesmen mentality) I have had a lot of luck saving of massive amounts of gold.  The techniques I have learned over the years are listed below.  Feel free to list your own ideas in the comments as well if you wish.

Centralized Alt

The first thing I have learned in WoW is that juggling many different characters with no real focal point can be time consuming, frustrating, and down-right annoying.  The first step I suggest towards become financially powerful in WoW is to centralize all your core characters.  This goes on to assume that you have all your characters on the same realm. The first step in this tactic for me is to use two different realms.  One realm for my Horde characters, and one realm for my Alliance characters.  I mostly play horde so I have all my horde characters on Earthen Realm.

For each one of your realms (one for horde one for alliance) leave 1 slot open for a central (generally level 1-2 character).  Create that character as whatever..give him whatever name you want.  When you first get on him send about 100g to the character.  Get a guild charter and create a guild (generally it’s really quick if you offer 10g per signature, but if your patient you can do it for a few g per signature). Once you have your guild kick everyone out.  This is going to be your focal point.  At this point go through ALL of your characters and send over every bit of gold you have on all of them that you don’t immediately need to buy something within the next 24 hours.  After you move it all over, go through and send over anything that isn’t desparate for your characters. Any Materials, weapons (BOE), sellable merchandise, or anything. Anything that is not directly needed with that character for something within the next 24 hours.  Send that all over to your character (which I will hereafter refer to as Bank Alt).

Once your done it’s time to start organizing.  You are going to need some money to invest into this process. First off buy all the slots in your characters general bank and load Netherweave bags (or something similar) into all the slots. Afterwards try to buy at least 3 (maybe 4) bank tabs for your guild bank.  This may seem like completely the opposite of what this blog post is for, but believe me the investment is infinitely worth it. IF you don’t have the money don’t worry about it, just starting saving up and working towards this as you go.  Once your entirely done then start splitting up your stuff. Antying that you think you might need to buy later for something you are using or saving up for load into different tabs.  General keep items load into one tab, and all materials or pieces of any kind you are trying to save load in another.  Keep them at the bottom two tabs. Load everything else up into your characters general bank (these are sale items). Then take ALL of your extra gold (whatever you have left from all of this and from all the character combined) and load it all into the guild bank you have.

At this point your stuff is centralized and the real process starts. The purpose of saving those items in the bank is to make sure you don’t sell them. Your guild bank stores items your going to keep and random mats.  Saving up mats means when you need them you don’t have to buy them (saving you money down the road, and/or time spent farming them.  SO if you get certain mats over stocked (30-40+) then start saving up the extra’s in your characters bank to sell later. No need in keeping more than 30-40 of each mat because 30-40 is enough for any practical use that you might be saving up for or that emergency enchant/gear/work you need it for later.

Now..the next step is to get together about 100g (or however much) and go through your general character bank for the first time. Get every single item you can and load them all up on the AH.  Everything.  Before you do this I recommend getting Auctioneer but it isn’t required. You can also use Blizzards system of loading up multiple items of the same type easily. I will explain about pricing in another section.  Go ahead and throw it all up there and clear out your entire bank.

Now it’s time to keep on track.  Go ahead and play the game a few days. Come back and when your ready check and get what has sold.  Using the money you get from sold items (not money you take out of your guild bank) go ahead and put up all the newer items that have gotten sent over from your other characters.  This is explained in a minute. When your done posting the next round of items take whatever money is left and throw it in the bank. When those sell, and you get more stuff repeat the process. This allows you to keep throwing merchandise into AH, paying for it with money you got from the previous load without touching your guild bank, and continuously filling more money into your guild bank every time you repeat the process.

Now in general. Everytime you are on a character and near a mailbox review your inventory. Any mats, materials, BOE gear that you have that you don’t actively need/want on that character at that time send to your bank alt. Every gold piece that you don’t actively need on your character within the next 24 hours send it over to your bank alt.  Then later on your bank alt take money that was sent and put it straight into guild bank, and split the items up into keep/sell and whatever your selling dump into your character bank.

Then when you repeat the process, each time you can clear your character bank you can load up items on the AH and empty it out.

Investments

Now I am going to discuss about Investments.  This is the general process of investing gold with the purpose of getting more gold back than you put in.  This can be either seeing something in AH that is a low price that you KNOW you can sell for more, or seeing what I call an emergency seller in trade. An emergency seller is someone who has something that (on that server) is worth a specific amount..but they are intentionally selling it considerably below that standard price in order to offload the item and get quick money (without having to wait for the Auction House).  This can be in the form of anything (materials, blue’s, gems, gear, anything).  These are the most important things to look out for.  This is very important. You want to make sure that whatever you invest in, leaves you at LEAST a 20 gold window for investment return.  You have to take into account Deposits, and if the sale fails on AH the first time you have to pay another deposit. I always factor in 3 times posting for deposits at 24 hours per posting into account when making an investment.  If your buying an item from someone worth 25g for 20g then generally it’s not worth taking the time to make the investment. If you have troubles selling the item you can either be stuck spending more than what you saved in deposits, or ending up having to sell the item for cheaper than what you paid for it just to get rid of it (or end up saving it up for later when you could have farmed it yourself).

I heavily recommend knowing what your buying, and the going price.  You would be surprised how often you can buy something for 300 that’s worth 500. Especially gems. A lot of gems people sell for half of their price.  This is true for any item. If you can check AH to see what the item is worth before making an investment. Although you have to be quick..really good investments tend to sell literally 5-10 seconds after they are posted in Trade or on AH. So keep an eye out for them because a few good investments could have you rolling in gold.

Never Buy Gold

Getting gold is great, but never buy it.  A lot of people get hacked right after buying and if Blizzard finds out you could lose your ENTIRE account permanently. Getting a few thousand gold quickly isn’t worth losing your entire account forever. Whether it’s tempting or not, never buy gold from any source..no matter how reliable they may seem.  If it was hard to make money in WoW I would understand, but it’s not. That’s the purpose of this post, to help you maximize your potential at making gold in game, without risking losing your account.

Buy Bulk

A lot of times if your making an investment into something specific..try to buy as large a quantity as possible with a specific notion that your getting a discount. I f someone is selling an item that is worth 20g and he’s selling it for 15g…and for example..say he has 20 of them. Offer to buy all of them at once for that discount, with the understanding that you get an additional 5g off the entire price.  So you would buy all 20 of them for the total price of 15X20 (minute 5g for buying bulk).  This same situation can be done on anything and save you a lot of money. Same thing goes if your to lazy to farm and your trying to buy those last few mats. IF you need a mat try to buy them/farm them in bulk so you have some saved up to save you time/money/energy if you need them again. Generally if you needed them once, you’ll need them again.

Sell Value

The value of items can vary greatly.  It depends on what the item is, the supply and demand for that item, what it’s uses are, how many people are trying to sell them, how many people are trying to buy them, sometimes the season comes into play, their availability, how easy they are to get, and the server all play a major part in the general price of an item. The server makes a big difference because of supply and demand.  One item might be 20g on one server, and 150 on another. I have seen this extreme example before.  So there is no hard and fast rule for it.  The best way is to monitor the item for awhile. You’ll always see a go pattern. If you check an item on AH and there are multiple ones…you’ll notice one starts at a base price (generally what the price was) and as each new person posts, the price get’s undercut more until after awhile it flatlines at a specific amount.  I generally sell BELOW that flatline.  Enough to pay for the item, cover the deposit and still make profit, while moving inventory fast (depending on what it is).  I use Auctioneer to quickly sell gear.  It auto-picks enough about the general vendor sell price + deposit. Then I just add a few gold on top of it and generally a piece of gear will sell within 1-2 times of posting it on AH. I always make a profit way above what the vendor would give me + enough to cover all deposits and my time even handling the item.

Farming/Soloing/Questing

Now were down to the nitty gritty.  Farming for a specific item will give you that item to save or sell. Running dungeons will get you a variety of items to sell + junk to sell to a vendor.  Then the question..especially when you get up in Northrend, can grant you a great deal of money just from turn ins.

In Conclusion

I hope some of these tips were helpful. If I think of any more I will add them here. If you want to share any of your own tips, feel free to throw them in the comments.

Mass Effect 1&2 – Asari Speculations


This blog post is about the video game series Mass Effect 1 and 2. There are a couple of different experiences that the Asari could have (in theory) that were never mentioned in the games that were currently created.  I want to discuss my thoughts about them here.

Asari Melding

When two people mate they have sex.  When Asari mate, they “Meld”.  Generally there are no sexual exchanges. It’s simply “Melding”.  They attune their nervous system with that of their partner.  Asari can theoretically Meld with any species of any Gender.  Asari can generally meld with their own race as well, but this is looked down upon in Asari culture.  When two Asari meld with each other, their kids are called Pureblood.  Generally they are outcast and made fun of.  However, when an Asari melds with another race, that generally make the kids turn out stronger.  They are made stronger with time, exactly how they become stronger has not yet been revealed by what I have studied in the game Codex entries and universe.  Basically they take the traits of the mother, and the father and become a lot strong overall than if they were pureblood.  This continues to make the Asari race as a whole stronger.  When someone is Pureblood they were not made stronger, so they are looked down upon for not furthering the Asari race.

The Process of Melding is kind of like a Psychic link. It allows the Asari to attune her nervous system to that of the partner, and become one with them for an instant. Sharing thoughts, emotions, feelings, and all deep convictions.

Melding with Geth

One thing the game never mentions is Asari being able to meld with Geth.  In theory it possible that the Asari would not be able to even if they tried.  Since the Geth have an artificial nervous system the Asari may not be able to meld with them.  I am unsure.

Ardat-Yakshi Melding

The Ardat-Yakshi is an Asari with a genetic defect.  They are sterile and cannot produce kids.  If they try to meld, they still can but the results are different.  They burn out the brain and nervous system and kill the host (most of the time).

Ardat-Yakshi/Ardat-Yakshi Melding

The strange question I have, is what happens if they meld with each other.  Two Ardat Yakshi.  I would theorize three possible results.  The first possibility, is they would burn out each others brains and nervous systems and both die.  The second possibility is the Ardat that was stronger would win over the melding, and would burn out the other one.  The third possibility, is the act of both Ardat’s genetic disorder would counteract itself, and prevent them from burning each other out. Perhaps even getting one of them pregnant and producing offspring without the genetic defect.  There is no basis for any of these ideas, I was just tossing out what seemed to be some relevant possibilities.