This gives a whole new meaning to mug shot!
Or another title would be "You know you have too many alts when..." Whichever the more appropriate title is, the fact is, I have a lot of alts. Now, normally this isn't a problem nor would I make any excuses about it. It is just how I roll! (no pun intended)
With a game like Everquest 2 though this can be a problem. It is just that unlike most other games out there, Everquest 2 has certain types of quests that even if you far outleveled them they still have some worthwhile reward. For example, heritage quests that besides usually having a cool house item also gives status that can help to level your guild. Or tradeskill quests that can give a choice of advanced recipe. Even if the product of that recipe won't help your character anymore it might still help an out, a friend or just be something to sell in the market. Considering the amount of those quests in the game it is pretty easy to lose track of who did what or who has which recipe.
I found the solution to this by hearing a friend mentioning he used spreadsheets. So I decided to give it a try too and initially made a couple of spreadsheets: one for heritage quests, lore & legend quests and languages and another spreadsheet for tradeskill recipes, tradeskill quests, factions, etc. Later on I added one for raid trophies too.
To make things even easier for me to visualize I decided to color code it. Green for completed, yellow for quest started but not completed yet and red for those quests that I need to start yet.
This may seem a bit overkill (maybe it is!) but I found out this gave me a much better overview of what each of my characters has accomplished so far. This also makes it easier for me to plan. If I am in the mood to do some heritage quests I can just check my spreadsheet to see at where everyone is at. If I am feeling like dealing with tradeskills it is just a matter of checking another spreadsheet. It also helps if a friend decides to do a heritage quest since then I can just check it to see which character needs to do that quest too and join in the fun.
More recently I found myself needing also to keep track of things in a more granular, individual basis. Some sort of To-Do list that spreadsheets just wouldn't solve all that well. So it was time to get serious with my organization and get a To-Do program!
In my search I tested quite a few but they either had way more features and complexity than I wanted or they were too simplistic for my needs. Eventually I settled on Zim, a very simple, easy to use note taking program.
It does a pretty good job of allowing me to track little things that I need/want to accomplish with each character and make additional notes where needed. For instance, I may keep notes about at what level of items a character can transmute or have links to threads discussing certain aspects of the character's class. Anything that I feel important to that character but not general enough to put into a spreadsheet.
Best of all it is also cross-platform. So it means I can also use (and definitely will!) for other projects while switching between Linux and Windows. That means no more excuses for my lack of organization!
What about you? Do you try to keep organized about what your characters or you just do stuff as you go by?
Poor, poor Kahlef. Always so neglected. Well, not any more neglected than any of my other characters, granted. However I think the fact that he was in Crushbone, as opposed to Antonia Bayle which is my usual server, I always felt like he was neglected more. Kinda like my commitment to Crushbone and the friends I made in there was half-hearted. But no more! The lasts double XP weekend finally motivated me enough to get back to leveling him. The result of that is that since last Friday he has reached the current cap of level 95! 😀
That makes him my second adventuring level 95 character (yes, I know I have been slacking) which was a long way coming. There is still a lot of things I have to do though like getting more AAs, finish some zones, do a lot of organization stuff and so on and so forth. At least I can do all of that without feeling so guilty every time I log on him anymore.
A big thanks to Gracee, my guild leader on Crushbone, for all the help she provided to get Kahlef to 95. Without her aid it would have taken much longer to get here and with a lot more cursing too!
Nerdy Bookahs have been doing a series on housing in MMORPGs. They already did one for Lord of the Rings Online, Aion and Rift. Now there is one about housing in Everquest 2 as well, written by yours truly!
If you are interested in housing on MMOs or just never tried and are curious about it then I highly suggest to give all the posts a read. They are pretty good at introducing the different housing systems in each game and may help to decide which one has the best features for you. 🙂
Of course there are other games with housing in there too. Those are the only ones Paeroka had some personal experience with or someone else offered to write a guest post about it. In fact, if someone wants to write a guest post for Nerdy Bookahs about housing in a game that hasn't been covered I am pretty sure Paeroka would be very happy to accept it. Just head over their blog and check their contact page.
Many thanks to Paeroka for allowing me this opportunity and for all her patience throughout this. 🙂
So, if anyone has been wondering why the sudden stop to posts... Well, I blame it on Everquest 2 and my tiny guild on Antonia Bayle getting a Tier 2 guild hall. Which means a new place that required decoration. Anyone who knows me know that once I get into a decoration project I really get into it: all my free time is spent working on it and when I am not working on it I am thinking about it. That is just how much I love decorating in Everquest 2.
Now the problem happened because I thought it was going to be an easy project. I thought I knew exactly all the features I wanted, how everything would look. I thought I would finish it in two weeks tops then I could just go back to my regular posting, even showing off the new shiny hall and make a decoration for Frostfell (that would be equivalent of Christmas in Everquest 2). You would think that after decorating in Everquest 2 for such a long time I would know better than that. Long story short, the hall is yet to be finished. It is at best about 50% done. Even what I did was done with much cursing, whining about the shape of the hall and requiring some good breaks in between to avoid complete burn-out.
The good news though is I think I got almost all the hardest parts done. There are still some parts down the hall that I am trying to figure out how to build. After that it is mostly filling up space, thinking on how to make they look interesting, adding little details here and there and so on. My goal is to try making all that before February so I can also do add some temporary decoration for Erollisi Day (Everquest 2's version of Valentine's Day). We'll see how it goes.
In other news, I finally got Kahlef's epic and his enervated weapon. Many thanks to Rkulaa, Skarllet and Frep who helped to make this possible. I also decorated Kahlef's office in the Pirate's guildhall (it is another guild I am part of and not the one responsible for decorating the hall). Having an office in the guild hall was something that Skarllet, my guild leader in Pirates, allowed us to build. It was also another project that was bugging me since I was having trouble coming with the right materials for it. I am really relieved I finally got it done. The picture above was taken inside it. 🙂
Oh, and special thanks for Skarllet for being so kind, separating a space for all of us to build an office in the hall and being very supportive through it all. 🙂
That is it for now. Hopefully now things will be going back to normal on this blog too!
EDIT: Gracey, my guild leader at Crushbone, posted pictures of the hall in the official forums. All I did was to decorate Kahlef's office, everything else is her amazing work. You can find it here. If you prefer to visit it in person the hall is on the Crushbone server, Qeynos, Tier 2 under Pirates.
Last night my tiny guild, Deus Ex Arcana, just hit level 50! That means we finally got another 3 ammenities and the ability to buy a Tier 2 guild hall. For the ammenities we decided to get a mender, a druid ring NPC and a bell. With those I think we have pretty much all the must have basics, finally.
The T2 guild hall though we are leaving to buy next week. It is just that we group a lot during the weekends and having our current and functional T1 hall around should help a bit with those.
Special thanks for Serryna and Lovintar, not only they have always been a great help with the guild, they also stayed around grinding writs to level the guild despite being tired and stuffed with turkey. 🙂
Now to make plans for our T2!
Back on October 1st, SOE changed a few things for its player free to play tiers (the Free and Silver ones) to the point where it the Silver accounts aren't all that different from the Gold (paid subscription) anymore. And even though their account tier matrix does, for the most part, a good job on showing the differences between the different tiers there were still some limitations of a Silver Account I discovered only while playing. This won't so much a case of false advertisement as much as not much details given in that chart. It is probably buried somewhere in SOE's knowledge base somewhere but I don't know how many people will have the patience to look for that. So with that in mind here are some of the not-so-clear limitations that a Silver Account has:
Tears of Veeshan, Everquest 2's latest expansion was released last week. Since I was travelling I have only been able to check it out the in the last few days. I admit before the release I was a bit hesitant about it. Mostly due to the changes to gear stats and the promise that the questing would be less linear than the previous one, Chains of Eternity. That and we would have to do some work for Qho again! Well, after spending these last few days with it I am happy to say my worries weren't warranted. 🙂
This weekend I finally got Rakuno to level 95, the current level cap for adventurers in Everquest 2. In fact, this is the reason for the disruption in the blog updates here. On the other hand, my blog posting has always been irregular so I was probably the only one who noticed any disruption.
Anyway, since it's been over an year since I left EQ2 there was a lot of catching up to do. There were bags that needed upgrading, banks to clean out, tradeskills to level, new gear to buy, quests to do and so on. Even now that he reached level 95 there is still a bunch of things I need to do before I feel ready for the next expansion. He still needs to finish the questline in Cobalt Scar, get some heritage quests done and getting his transmuting to at least 400. The last is the more important for me because his bank is full of junk just waiting to be transmuting. I am also running out of bag space in his personal inventory because of that. What can I say? I just hate to throw away items that can be useful for transmuting!
His house has also been in a mess. When I returned to EQ2 that was the first thing I worked on due to my then very unstable connection. I got it to a very early stage only though as I was getting frustrated trying to implement my ideas and my connection got stable enough to do some adventuring. So that is where I went. I will probably go back to finishing the whole thing once the expansion hits and we can get all the new furniture. 🙂
For now, I will just slow down, try to catch up to my blog reading and mix a few other games here and there. 🙂
Some of my friends had decided to go back to Everquest 2. With that and the changes to their subscription matrix, I decided to check it again.
If all you want to decorate it is pretty much viable to do it now as a free player which is exactly what I intent to do. And well, even if I wanted to do anything else my connection has been so horrible as of late that it is practically the only thing I can do safely in there.
So, if you see a house post in the near future don't be surprised.