Monday, June 23, 2014

Blue Dress On : GW2, Everquest

This is the year of comfortably stuck. Good intentions come and go. The mouse pointer wavers and having wavered moves on. To Guild Wars 2. Always there.

What is it about this tar baby? Every time you think you've pulled free, there you are, stuck again. The ever-revolving, wide-open door brings people round and back and round again. Old names, forgotten names, familiar names, every one a guest at the greatest permanent floating zerg party of them all.

It's summer. The sun is high, the day is long, the crowds are thinned. Where the Megaserver packed maps now there's room to move. Maybe not at The Maw. Or Karka Queen. Yesterday I learned the callout for Seigerazer dropped from ten to five a patch or so back. A portent or merely recognition of functional change?

Next week the story machine rolls out once more, shined up, repainted, refitted and repurposed. All aboard for skylarks. Wave goodbye to those good intentions.

I love the smell of Undead in the morning

But meanwhile I've been playing me some Everquest. That leg-up to 85 thing worked. Not exactly as intended. Ditto All Access. Somehow finding time for more than one EQ franchise title never happens. They jostle each other out. EQ2 gave way to Landmark (still so an EQ franchise, play it as they may), Landmark to Everquest. This coming, fatal month should, will, belong to cousin Vanguard.

In the elder game, though, level 85 turned 86 turned 87. Steady progress. Concentration. I'd love to get to 90. I will get to 90. One hundred seems an awful high climb though. Might rest a while, looking up.

I bought the White Wolf Befallen scenario. Then nothing else would do but go there. I may have mentioned this. It's been an instructional experience. Let no-one tell you Everquest is easy now. Easier, yes. Dress age-appropriately for the millennium, though, and no hired cleric is going to heal you through a bad full-room pull. Voice of experience talking.

You're not going in there dressed like that?

Four or five forays into the tainted dark, waking up once more on the floor outside the bank in The Bazaar, my enchanter takes the hint. Raw silk in the bag. Out come the coins. We peruse the stocklists. Simple Defiant never goes out of style, does it? Prices haven't changed much, either. New wardrobe. Gimme.

Gussied up like it was 2007, back we go. Fear me and my deep hit point well. Actually, don't bother. You can't. Check these resists, babe! No more ending a fight flat-lined on mana, ducking to mem ITU, animation clacking at that grey skeleton suddenly spotting an opening. No more sitting on the bonedust flags. Is this Breeze on? Now that blue line barely drops, those casts channel through (oh that good AC...). Clear this room, on to the next.

Boondin Babbinsport conned red. Allakhazam warns he likes to hide behind a chunk of rock. That's how he caught me last time: tashing one of his skeletal pals, agroing the entire room. Didn't even see he was there, then, far less check his color rating.

Bring it, musty! I'll take you all on!

This time we take a good look before the pull. Imagine a lone enchanter sizing up a red con, solo, underground, back in the day. Although, some enchanters I knew... Anyway, I wouldn't have done it, then. I was always a careful, cautious soloist. Not for me the "charm one red and set it on another" white-knuckle ride. Lull, lull, single pull. Lull, single pull. Single pull. Mez any resisters, back off, mem blur, start again. Gate always at the ready. That's my style.

Was.Those days are over (unless you don't want them to be - see under Raw Silk). We pull the room. We tank the room. We kill the room. Hectic, fun, not without risk even now. That blue line can drop still, it seems, and the red, but evil gnomes drop faster.

At 25, Babbinsport skulks at the top of the Befallen food chain. Close thereabouts, anyway, not counting add-ins and extras that drifted in over the years. My enchanter entered Befallen at eighteen, came out twenty. Very much fun was had, although whether she found it as much fun as I did, who can say. I wasn't the one being hit repeatedly about the head and body with rusty weaponry after all.

I'm not sure it needs to do anything.

Beatings aside, the scenery was wonderful. It takes a few minutes to attune to 20th Century graphics but Norrath was, is and always will be strikingly beautiful. Even down an evil hole in the sand. And those spell effects! Spectacular isn't a big enough word. Superspectaculacular!!! That might get there. Makes you want to level up just to see more of that.

So, on we go. I wonder if one of my druids fancies a little run out? Been a long time since I enjoyed a really good root-DoT.


  1. Beautiful post, even with me having never played the original EQ.

  2. Nothing like a good holiday to put a gentleman in a poetic, philosophical mood. Like all the best prose, I have no idea what any of it means (yet...).

  3. Always loved that zone. We were thinking of playing again soon. Always miss EQ.

    Have you seen that zone in eq2? Was cool to see a version of it made it to the other game. Was before mercs when I last went. Back then it was challenge as a solo cleric, but fun!

  4. Saw the title and just knew I had to ruin someone's EQ post with a wow reference...

  5. @ Rowan Thanks !

    @ Electrolux Ah yes, the clear mountain air! That must be it...

    @ Kaozz Yes, EQ2 Befallen was one of the instances we did in a rare guild group a while back, plus we duoed it a few times too. Enjoyed it a lot but I can't remember seeing much similarity between that and the 500 year earlier version.

    @ Raziel Hahah! That's great, especially the Gnome Chorus.


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