Miysa Likesa Dis Armor

14 07 2010
Looking for mission entrance, North East Wartorn Valley, click for larger view.

Looking for mission entrance, North East Wartorn Valley, click for larger view

It was about their 40th team mission since Babaengy and Babaemphee began using mission slider settings said to favor collecting Miy’s armor when it finally paid off.  Although the settings (CHAOS FULL RIGHT) consistently provided missions with non-human, non casting mobs, and a several other breeds known to drop Miy’s (Aquans, Mantises, Cyborgs) this was the first mission to see any Miy’s drops.

This quality 47 mission yielded a total of 5 Miy’s pieces ranging from QL 35 to 54.  Babaengy was able to immediately equip a pair of QL35 ranged armor boots for some nice buffs to max health, strength, and duck explosives.

Babaemphee recently cast her first MP only weapon,  The Crotalus.

Babaemphee recently cast her first MP only weapon, The Crotalus. Click for larger view.

The problems is both an engineer and an MP do not generally raise strength, stamina or sense that much, which tend to be part of Miy’s requirements.  This means the only Miy’s they can equip is going to be levels below what they could equip of regular junk shop food armor like Cyber Armor and Sekuteck Armor.  It does show that, even using the optimum mission settings, Miy’s drops are somewhat rare (once out of 40 outings).  Babaoroody an Enforcer tells us that the most plentiful place for Miy’s is either PW Borgs, or Mort Borgs.  For example, clearing the main dunes area north east of the Main Borg base in PW is always sure to net 2-3 pieces (approx 40 Borg).

Alien city raid nearby a recent mission entrance.

Alien city raid nearby a recent mission entrance. Click for larger view.

It was on team missions over this past weekend that Babaengy and Babaemphee met their first individual and their first team wipes in mission Boss rooms.  Once they hit level 42, the difficulty settings they were using on the mission terminal was giving them QL 47 t QL 50 level Bosses.  Both team members are stuck at a plateau where it will take 3-4 more missions to level up enough to equip a stronger pet.

The result is that rather than having pets that are much stronger than the team Bosses, the match up is more equal, which means factors like small Boss rooms and strong Boss minions count for more.  There was a repeat of the situation where Babaengy takes the elevator in first, and gets pounced on by both the Boss and it’s minion.  By the time Babaemphee and her heal pet have zoned in, it is too late to heal up the health deficit Babaengy has suffered by then.

In the wipe scenario in that followed in the next mission, there was some difficulty in identifying if team members were fighting the same targets at the same time.  When all team damage dealers are not focused on a single target, they lose, as comparatively, they cannot stand toe to toe individually with these mobs that are higher in levels than they are.  It was actually a bit of a shock, for the last 20 or so missions have been relatively easy, with no team member ever dipping below 75% health.  It is clear now it is time to use different tactics when

Matchin armor sets in progress, MP is done, Engy needs Energized sleeves.

Matching armor sets in progress, MP is done, Engy needs Energized sleeves. Click for larger view.

Babaemphee is going to have to step up to the plate and be the first one in from now on.
Her first task will be to debuff if possible the Boss and it’s minion(s) and initiate her pets attack on the weakest mob, while starting the heal pet on herself.  Babaengy will then follow, sending the bot to attack, and then attacking himself on Babaemphee’s target.
It then becomes a game of alt-tab and first aid stiming where necessary.

When commanding such a team in combat, so many things are going on at once that it is not a time to be trying to devise strategy.  They need to have several plan B’s in place so they can quickly react to new and different threats.  There were also several times when the pets did not seem to respond.  In particular, they seem to have some problems with line of sight and sometimes getting stuck behind pillars.  Babaengy’s bot sometimes seems to be not paying attention and unresponsive.  Babaemphee found that the follow command seemed to be useful to get a pet to come out from behind a column.

Tag Teaming The Boss

Curiously both Babaengy and Babaemphee since reaching level 43 have started to see their Time and Space and MaterCreation skills capped.  This restricts them to a single point increase with each level and has put a crimp in their usual ‘equip a much better pet’ every few levels progress.

The big switch in strategy has been for Babaemphee to enter the Boss room elevator first, and to debuff the Boss and any minions first thing.  Babaengy follows and sets his pet to work on the Boss or minion depending on the situation.  If Babaemphee’s attack pets are holding agro, she puts her heal pet on her attack pet, while Babaengy and his bot take out any minions.  While mopping up minions, Babaengy takes care to health stim Babaemphee if needed.  Babaemphee has to be ready to switch her heal pet to whoever the main aggro switches to.  At this period, the pets seem to be able to hold aggro fairly well.

Stuck in a Spider Hole

Our pet team found itself trapped in a recent mission.  They normally would have never accepted the mission due to its location, but as the reward was an MP mission/loot only masteries nano, they choose to take the risk.  The mission was located in a cave at the same location as a level 65 Dyna-boss and a group of minions.   Getting in was fairly easy, run quickly past the mobs and Dyna into the cave and perhaps suffer a hit or two.  Getting out would be harder as there would be no convenient escape hatch nearby. The has completed the mission and has logged off sitting in the mission entrance.  They knew that when they logged back on, they would either still be there and have to run out, or worse they could materialize under the noses of the spiders, and be easy pickins while their clients spooled up. They enlisted trader Tireen (level 76) to fly over in her Yalm and train away the Dyna and a few other spiders.  She trained them over the hill to the Rhinoman village where it ought to take them a while to find their way back.

When our pair logged in separately, Babaengy first, who found himself still in the mission entrance.  He buffed up his defensive buffs and ran out.  He ran due east to the nearest player city.  Several spiders chased him, and at one point a human Omni hunter snared him, so that the spiders had a chance to beat up on him for a few moments.  Fortunately his AC buffs keep his damage low, and once the snare wore off, he was able to outrun the spiders, and make it to the player city whompa that took him to Newland City.  Babaemphee materialized next, but outside the mission.  She easily outran several spiders and got to the player city whompa without any further drama.





Bailing Out of Smuggler’s Den

27 05 2010
Baba's New Look

Baba's New Look

Before heading over to the mission office in Old Athens, Baba was sorting some current loot, and while adding a few Miy’s pieces to his bank, he spotted a Flawless Organic Armor Helmet that he could not remember ever trying on. He slipped it on to see how it would look in a social slot. He fancied the look of this helmet and  decided to make it a regular part of his ‘look’ for now.   He also decided to dust off the Black Clan Tank back piece that an org mate had given him a few years ago.  He had been finally getting close to being able to equip it, but then he found a good deal on a Veil of the Revoked, so he never equipped the Black Clan piece. Since he was using a plain bright red heavy tank armor in his social back slot, he thought he would try on the Black Clan there.  It has quite a bit more detail than the standard heavy tank armor and one detail that really stands out.  Prominent in the very center of the armor is a distinctive heart shape.   Baba decided he liked the difference the Organic Armor Helmet and the Black Clan Tank Armor made.

He was not as happy with how one of the new Daily Missions is shaping up.  He has been stuck with the same Kill 3 X at Smugglers Den mission every time he goes to the mission office. He gets the mission, tries, fails, cancels it, and then gets handed it again when he asks for a new mission.  The first week of the missions debut, and there seemed to plenty of freelancers showing up at this dungeon, looking for others to team with to complete these missions.  Now that the novelty is gone, and most everyone is familiar with this particularly odious mission, there seems to be far fewer if any individuals to be found roaming the Den.

Baba spent the last few evenings unsuccessfully trying to do the mission solo while looking for a team at the same time.  The second time he did manage to kill two of the first triads on the list, the Den Loot Controllers.  These he found at the entrances to the Smugglers section, however he dared not risk going deeper into the dungeon alone.

Somewhat like Steps of Madness, a solo enforcer cannot sneak around or avoid groups of mobs which he could handle individually, but not as a social group.  He tried but did not have the patience to sit around for twenty minutes for another Den Loot Controller to spawn.  After waiting some more and not seeing a single other player, he decided to bail.  Instead of going out the front entrance, he decided to make a run for the exit to Borealis that can be found at the west end of the Smuggler area.

Borealis Exit Point From Smuggler's Den

Borealis Exit Point From Smuggler's Den

He simply made a run for it, and would not have suffered much damage he had not run into the dead end that is at the end of the main hallway.  Even with having to double back a bit, by the time he exited out into Borealis, he had plenty of health left, so it is conceivable that it could be used as an emergency exit much like the ones found in Foreman’s.  If only Parrot Form was available as a Hacked Boosted Graft, then Baba could quickly get to the part of the dungeon that counts, and have plenty of time left on outside buffs.

After-wards he headed out to Perpetual Wastelands to grind out what experience he could by kiting Borgs.  After about an hour, he had gained about a half a level and decided to head back to Newland City to save and call it a night.





Inventory, Attack Rating, and HUD Tweaking

22 08 2009
Sunrise at PW Dunes, click for larger view.

Sunrise at PW Dunes, click for larger view.

Baba’s still working on level 138. Ever since he hit level 136, leveling for Baba at Perpetual Wastelands Borg spots has slowed way down. Where he used to get 90 to 100k for each Borg, it is has dropped down to around 60-70k now, so it is taking much longer to level there than it did before. As a result of having to fell more Borg per level, Baba is amassing quite a decent Miy’s armor collection.

He went to try and organize it some and turned to a program he has used for several years, the Anarchy Online Inventory System from halorn. Unfortunately it does not recognize Miy’s armor and only identifies the quality level, but not the type. As an alternative, Baba tried out the Anarchy Online Backpack Parser found here.

The AOBP is actually more convenient to use than the AOIS because it only requires you to move a bag from the bank to inventory to get the contents. The extra step of having to actually open each back pack is eliminated. When going through an entire bank, this saves a good deal of time. The program also offers quite a few options in terms of output formats, csv, txt, html, etc. What made Baba happy, is that it does recognize his Miy’s armor and another big plus is that it parses the backpack names which makes it easy to actually locate the items.

Baba relied on AOBP to help him come up with his current almost all Miy’s armor outfit. Using AOPB it was easy to copy the Miy’s entries over to a spreadsheet where he could further sort and organize it.

When he was done he had a list sorted by Miy’s type of his collection. He was able then to pick out and quickly locate the highest level Miy’s ranged pieces he had.

The reason he choose Ranged my surprise you. Why not the Tank, or Scary? Tank would be ideal but for one factor. It buffs 2 hand blunt skill, which is useless to Baba. The Ranged is almost identical except it buffs two useless skills to Baba rather than one, but, the equip requirements are Agility and Strength. With Ranged, Baba can equip higher quality levels than with the Tank that requires Stamina and Strength. Baba can equip QL 172 Ranged and QL 133 Tank, so for the time being, Ranged is the better choice since it yields higher buffs and AC protection.

Another detail Baba became aware of during this exercise was how items that buff your primary weapon skills, increase your attack rating. He had been wearing a pair of 130 Rhinoman leather gloves. When she switched them out for some 172 Ranged gloves, his attack rating went down a point. The Rhinoman leather gloves have buffs for 2 hand edged, Fast attack and Dimach which are supported by his current weapon, the Panther. This also highlights one other reason for using the Ranged or Tank Miy’s. They both buff strength and stamina, which have very strong trickle down to his weapon skills.

Since Ranged and Tank Miy’s buff 2 enforcer primary skills, strength and stamina, Baba realized that it would be in his best interest if he cast all his self buffs in order to be able to equip the highest level Miy’s he could. Once he did that he was able to get into pieces ranging from 184 to 168. See his latest set up here.

Baba has also been working on his always engaged HUD layout and made a few more tweaks recently. He moved several attack special rings out an open backpack to sit in his main inventory. The reason for doing this, is so they can be made into hot buttons on his hot key bars. He moved his health kit and nano recharge hot key buttons to a secondary hot bar. He then put the hot keys for the rings into the recently vacated primary hot bar slots. Now when kiting Borg or in any combat, he can use these rings without having to change hand positions or using the mouse. Baba has found, and others report in the forums that mouse control can lag at times, at least compared to hot key response.

Now Baba’s attack specials available to him on his primary hot bar include,

  • Flurry of Blows
  • Library of Foul Language
  • Ring of Eternal Night
  • Tattered Flame Ring
  • Bloodleech Ring
  • Weeping Flesh Ring
  • Memory Loss Ring

Baba uses Flurry as often as he can, but due to it’s cool down, it works out to about every other Borg.

He uses the Library of Foul Language only when everything else is on cool down, or when in teams and then it is used to get and keep aggro. Because of their cool down rates, Baba cycles between Eternal Night, Tattered Flame, Bloodleech, and Weeping Flesh, so that he can use at least one in every fight. He rarely uses the memory loss ring, keeping it around for team situations where it could be used to wipe a mobs hate list so Baba can then hit the mob and become it’s new number one on the hate list, and hopefully saving the squishy that the mob may have been attacking. None of these are knockout or even equivalent of an average hit from his current weapon, but they do help shorten the time it takes to bring a mob down.

Baba usually carries 6-7 loot bags currently, so when they fill up, it’s time to transfer the good to our Trader Tireen who fences them for top credit amounts. Recently while feeding loot to the Trader shop terminal in Newland City, another player noticed her Solar Powered Backpack and commented favorably on it. Baba now sees them listed on the shopping channel for 40 million credits. Then just a few nights later, while waiting for Babaente to show up, Tireen spotted a level 50 twink sporting the same back pack. This twink was an enforcer, so the Solar Powered backpack actually grows or shrinks according to the breed that is wearing it. When worn by an enforcer, it appears to be twice as big as Tireen’s.





The Miy’s Man

14 08 2009
The well dressed Fr00b decked out for Borgs in Perpetual Wastelands, click for larger view

The well dressed Borg Hunter in Perpetual Wastelands, click for larger view.

Earlier in the week Baba had made a trip out to Perpetual Wastelands Borg Dunes, only to find it occupied by several higher level toons.  There was a title 5 fixer kiting the Borg in mass out on the main dune.  Baba is not sure why high levels hunt Borg here, as it must not be very good experience.  The best guess is they are farming Miy’s armor for alts, however often these toons don’t bother to loot the corpses.

Baba went south west a little to the town area and started hunting the slightly lower level Borg in that region.  He netted quite a few nice Miy’s pieces which he will be saving for his alts.  He had not trouble with these Borg and could easily kite several at a time with not difficulty.  The trouble he ran into was in the area near where the main road bends westward to go to the bridge.

Target rich Perpetual Wastelands dunes, click for larger view

Target rich Perpetual Wastelands dunes, click for larger view

There is a cliff to the south and Baba had spotted a single Borg down at the base.  He hopped down there to take out the Borg only to find that there were about 5 Borg there and a couple of high level mantises.  He managed to run out of the ravine and up the hill towards the road.  In the process he lost the mantises and the Borg by themselves was manageable.

The next evening when he returned to the dunes area, there was another title 5 Fixer out on the main dune area.  Baba went to the area next to the Helipad, but after he had killed a few Borg, the Fixer rolled in and kitted away all the Borg.

Since about half of Baba’s bags were full from the night before, he choose to go back to Newland city to sort out his loot and sell it.  After he competed this (including meeting up with Tireen who fenced the items at the trader shop) he returned to the dunes to find the Fixer gone.

There was still a problem.  The fixer had left a tigntly packed group of Borg on the main dune.  Baba had never seen so many Borg in such a small area.  Baba tried to slowly approach to just aggro one, but he had to high tail it when the whole pack turned on him.  They stopped chasing him by the time he was just a few hundred yards from the canyon to the north.

At this this dispersed the Borg knot, and when he returned he was able to start kiting them in ones and twos.  He did this for about an hour and decided to log off after his anniversary experience boost wore off.

Ohtizz leveling near central outpost in Newland Dessert, click for larger view

Ohtizz leveling near central outpost in Newland Dessert, click for larger view

Ohtizz our adventurer put in a few hours this week.  He leveled up to 24 in the wilderness around the outpost in the center of Newland Dessert.  He experimented with several different sets of pistols and in the end decided to stick with the upgraded starter weapons for now.  The Electrocutiums did slightly better damage, but were painfully slow.

It is just psychologically unacceptable to get killed while waiting for you weapon to shoot.  Also the lack of any special, makes combat with them a single button push of boredom.  At least with the Surge pistols, if he pays attention, it pays off with additional damage from every Fling Shot.  After hitting 24 he headed back to the subway.

OHtizz almost outhealed Eumidess damage, but not quite, click for larger view

OHtizz almost outhealed Euenides's damage, but not quite, click for larger view

We found him at 24 to be somewhat less powerfull than our NT had been, but better than Baba as a baby enforcer had been.  His damage is about the same as Baba’s then, but his self healing gives him an edge over the enforcer at that level.  The NT definitely out damages both of them.  Our NT could easily solo Eumedies,  Virgil Aneid and Infectors.  Ohtizz had a run in with Eumenides  at the entrance to the stairwell to the deep subway.

It turned out to be a fairly long battle.  As long has his nano lasted, Ohtizz was able to out heal the damage of the mob.  Ohtizz’s damage was too weak, and was not enough to beat the mob before Ohtizz’s nano ran out.  Once his nano ran out, he could no longer use his first aid stims, and since his damage was slower than the the mobs, the mob beat him.  At the end both had just a sliver of health left.





Ohtizz in the Subway

7 08 2009
AgentBaba wades ashore from the crashed Shuttle. Click for a larger version.

AgentBaba wades ashore from the crashed Shuttle. Click for a larger version.

Over the past week things have gotten rather intense in RL4, with a major new site design getting started, so our Rubi-Ka involvement has been less than normal.

Our alts AgentBaba and Babaemphee are just about ready to leave Shuttleport Island having acquired upgraded newcomer’s armor, upgraded starter weapons, and their basic nanos, plus a few buffing rings each.

Once all the islands dynas were no longer a challenge to this duo, they  started hunting aliens. The small ones were quite easy, but the first really big one they took on introduced AgentBaba to her first taste of reclaim.

Babaemphee loots a nice alien sword.  Wish Froobs could use this stuff. Click for a larger view.

Babaemphee loots a nice alien sword. Wish Froobs could use this stuff. Click for a larger view.

Babaemphee did manage to finish off the beast and loot a nice looking alien sword. They managed to bring down another large alien and quite a few more smaller ones, netting several different types of alien weapons which apparently Froobs cannot use, even if they can carry them around and trade them.

We logged on to Baba the past night intending to head out to PW Borgs for some more leveling. Things did not work out that way however. We discovered that most of our bags were full and it really was time to hook up with our Trader Tireen and fence the goods. This meant some downtime sorting bags and Googling pieces of unfamiliar loot. Baba likes to use Auno.org mainly for it’s snappy performance and simple GUI.

This latest catch had quite a few weapons in it, mainly a bunch of guns of various types. These were sorted out to a bag in his bank for safe keeping and possible use on alts. There was also a good pile of monster parts that needed conversion to plasma. To give you an idea of the difference between breeds and professions, Baba an atrox enforcer has a hard time converting any plasma over QL 30 while Tireen a solitus trader can easily handle up QL 70. Baba put all the monster parts in several bags and then handed off the whole stack of bags to Babaente our NT.

Babaente, after Baba Logged off, then handed the bags off to Tireen, our trader who is on the same account as Baba, hence they will never meet directly. Tireen then proceeded to convert all the monster parts under QL 70 to plasma, and then headed over the the Newland City Miir shop to trade the loot. After fencing Baba’s loot and handing the credits over to Babaente, Tireen then took Babaente’s, bags of loot and fenced those at the Miir shop. By the time Tireen had completed this and returned the credits to Babaente, and Babaente then hooked up with Baba to give him his credits, a good chunk of the evening was used up.

Nightmares, an NT kiting at the PW Helipad. Click for larger view.

Nightmaress, an NT kiting at the PW Helipad. Click for larger view.

Baba went ahead traveled to Perpetual Wastelands, to get started. When he arrived, there was a rather high level Fixer kiting the Borg out on the main dunes section, so Baba thought to try the small hilly section near the helipad. There was a 150 or so NT there with another player kiting the Borg out from the Base. Baba decided to log off and hopefully when he returns on another night, he will find a clear play field.

With some time still left, we decided to wake up Ohtizz or lowbie Adventurer and level him some in the dungeon. He was around level 13 and we had recently bought him two QL 10 Original Electroqutiums which on paper, have slightly better stats than his enhanced starter pistols. While the Electrocutiums do about 10-15 more points damage, they have two downsides, 1) they use ammo, and 2) they have no specials.

Ohtizz dings 14 in the Subway. Click for larger view.

Ohtizz dings 14 in the Subway. Click for larger view.

Having outgrown most of the mobs in the south portion of the subway, Ohtizz started heading north toward the area where the strikers congregate. After polishing off a pair of Shades, he ran into a striker in the next hall, and just when it was down to about 10% health, the Electrocutiums ran out of ammo. At first there was great confusion and rending of hair, until it was figured out that both guns were empty. It could have been a dire situation. No ammo, a long distance with many no-so-gray mobs between him and the closest vendor, and even if he did somehow make it, he was out of credits too. He had used all his credits to buy around 7 backpacks for loot recently.

He switched back to his starter weapons from his backpack and started working on the strikers,androids, and robots in the striker area. He managed to level up to 14 and took some time to allocate out his new IP points. While doing this in the subway station area, some less than considerate lowbie trained a mugger to him. Ohtizz could not quite figure that one out. What was somebody who could not handle a mugger doing this deep in the subway to begin with he though? After dispatching the mugger and completing his IP allocations, he headed back to the architect/strikers area and started leveling again.

Baba had told him tales of how when Baba had been at level 14 and at the same location, Baba had gotten wiped because the striker/architects in that area are social, if you attack one, 3 or 4 will swarm onto you. Poor Baba had not yet learned how to use his health stims in combat, and was quickly overwhelmed. For Ohtizz, 4 striker/architects was no problem. Any time his health got down to 75% he would stop to do a Adventurer self heal, and sometimes follow that up with a health stim. Of course there was also a massive difference between their evades settings. Baba had been following advice that Enforcers don’t need evades and had put very little if any points into them at this stage, resulting him him always taking alot of damage, much more than his limited ability to use health stims could keep up with.

This is where players should start, standing on top of the downed shuttle. Click for larger View.

This is where players should start, standing on top of the downed shuttle. Click for larger View.

Where Baba always took a steady stream of damage, Ohtizz’s combat log reads the opposite with line after line of the Addy doing damage sprinkled with an occasional taking of damage. After shooting to pieces that whole end of the subway for the better part of an hour, Ohtizz found a Construction sleeve off one of the architects. It is of little use to him, so it was more of a curiosity to see it drop. Ohtizz also can report that the loot tables for the subway mobs seem to have been modified. Almost all the mobs seem to drop copious amounts of the Froob tee shirts now. He must have 15-20 by now, plus several Vagabond cloaks for future lowbies. Ohtizz stayed out of the main architects room, the one that leads up to the bridge section. He plans to enter there either with a team, or after he gets a few more levels under his belt.

Previously Ohtizz had used some down time to do some research on pistols. He ran into the AO grognard heaven when he did. AO has tons of garbage weapons that drop from mobs and are for sale in the vending machines. Almost all of them are useless, i.e. worse than the starter weapons while often have higher requirements. Ohtizz spent some time looking up weapons under QL 20 and apart from expansion items, found very little that he can hope to have access to at this point. The best he can hope for is to be able to buy something when he gets to level 70 and can make steady credits at Foreman’s. The kind of credits that will buy a halfway decent weapon. He had noticed the Electrocutiums in this search. However after using them briefly he decided to go back to and stay with his starter guns for a while. They don’t require ammo, and they do decent damage after the special (fling shot) is factored in. They will continue to be viable for a while as his firing rate speed increases as he levels.

Ohtizz In the Subway

Over the past week things have gotten rather intense in RL4, with a major new
site design getting started, so our Rubi-Ka involvement has been less than normal.
Our alts AgentBaba and Babaemphee are just about ready to leave Shuttleport Island having acquired upgraded newcomer’s armor, upgraded starter weapons, and their basic nanos, plus a few buffing rings each.  Once all the islands dynas no longer presented a challenge this duo, as a team started hunting aliens.  The small ones were quite easy, but the first really big one they took on introduced AgentBaba to her first taste of reclaim, although Babaemphee did manage to finish off the beast and loot a nice looking alien sword.  They managed to bring down another large alien and quite a few more smaller ones, netting several different types of alien weapons which apparently Froobs cannot use, even if they can carry them around and trade them.

We logged on to Baba the past night intending to head out to PW Borgs for some more leveling.  Things did not work out that way however.  We discovered that most of our bags were full and it really was time to hook up with our Trader Tireen and fence the goods.  This meant some downtime sorting bags and Googling pieces of unfamiliar loot.  Baba likes to use Auno.org mainly for it’s snappy performance and simple GUI.  This latest catch had quite a few weapons in it, mainly a bunch of guns of various types.  These were sorted out to a bag in his bank for safe keeping and possible use on alts.  There was also a good pile of monster parts that needed conversion to plasma.  To give you an idea of the difference between breeds and professions,  Baba an atrox enforcer has a hard time converting any plasma over QL 30 while Tireen a solitus trader can easily handle up QL 70.  Baba put all the monster parts in several bags and then handed off the whole stack of bags to Babaente our NT.

Babaente, after Baba Logged off, then handed the bags off to Tireen, our trader who is on the same account as Baba, hence they will never meet directly.  Tireen then proceeded to convert all the monster parts under QL 70 to plasma, and then headed over the the Newland City Miir shop to trade the loot.  After fencing Baba’s loot and handing the credits over to Babaente, Tireen then took Babaente’s, bags of loot and fenced those at the Miir shop.   By the time Tireen had completed this and returned the credits to Babaente, and Babaente then hooked up with Baba to give him his credits, a good chunk of the evening was used up.

Baba went ahead traveled to Perpetual Wastelands, to get started.  When he arrived, there was a rather high level Fixer kiting the Borg out on the main dunes section, so Baba thought to try the small hilly section near the helipad.  There was a 150 or so NT there with another player kiting the Borg out from the Base.  Baba decided to log off and hopefully when he returns on another night, he will find a clear play field.

With some time still left, we decided to wake up Ohtizz or lowbie Adventurer and level him some in the dungeon.  He was around level 13 and we had recently bought him two QL 10 Original Electroqutiums which on paper, have slightly better stats than his enhanced starter pistols.  While the Electrocutiums do about 10-15 more points damage, they have two downsides, 1) they use ammo, and 2) they have no specials.

Having outgrown most of the mobs in the south portion of the subway, Ohtizz started heading north toward the area where the strikers congregate.  After polishing off a pair of Shades, he ran into a striker in the next hall, and just when it was down to about 10% health, the Electrocutiums ran out of ammo.  At first there was great confusion and rending of hair, until it was figured out that both guns were empty.  It could have been a dire situation.  No ammo, a long distance with many no-so-gray mobs between him and the closest vendor, and even if he did somehow make it, he was out of credits too.  He had used all his credits to buy around 7 backpacks for loot recently.

He switched back to his starter weapons from his  backpack and started working on the strikers,androids, and robots in the striker area.  He managed to level up to 14 and took some time to allocate out his new IP points.  While doing this in the subway station area, some less than considerate lowbie trained a mugger to him.  Ohtizz could not quite figure that one out.  What was somebody who could not handle a mugger doing this deep in the subway to begin with he though?  After dispatching the mugger and completing his IP allocations, he headed back to the architect/strikers area and started leveling again.

Baba had told him tales of how when Baba had been at level 14 and at the same location, Baba had gotten wiped because the striker/architects in that area are social, if you attack one, 3 or 4 will swarm onto you.  Poor Baba had not yet learned how to use his health stims in combat, and was quickly overwhelmed.  For Ohtizz, 4 striker/architects was no problem.   Any time his health got down to 75% he would stop to do a Adventurer self heal, and sometimes follow that up with a health stim. Of course there was also a massive difference between their evades settings.  Baba had been following advice that Enforcers don’t need evades and had put very little if any points into them at this stage, resulting him him always taking alot of damage, much more than his limited ability to use health stims could keep up with.

Where Baba always took a steady stream of damage, Ohtizz’s combat log reads
the opposite with line after line of the Addy doing damage sprinkled with an occasional taking of damage.  After shooting to pieces that whole end of the subway for the better part of an hour, Ohtizz found a Construction sleeve off one of the architects.  It is of little use to him, so it was more of a curiosity to see it drop.  Ohtizz also can report that the loot tables for the subway mobs seem to have been modified.  Almost all the mobs seem to drop copious amounts of the Froob tee shirts now.  He must have 15-20 by now, plus several Vagabond cloaks for future lowbies.  Ohtizz stayed out of the main architects room, the one that leads up to the bridge section.  He plans to enter there either with a team, or after he gets a few more levels under his belt.

Previously Ohtizz had used some down time to do some research on pistols.  He ran into the AO grognard heaven when he did.  AO has tons of garbage weapons that drop from mobs and are for sale in the vending machines.  Almost all of them are useless, i.e. worse than the starter weapons while often have higher requirements.   Ohtizz spent some time looking up weapons under QL 20 and apart from expansion items, found very little that he can hope to have access to at this point.  The best he can hope for is to be able to buy something when he gets to level 70 and can make steady credits at Foreman’s. The kind of credits that will buy a halfway decent weapon.  He had noticed the Electrocutiums in this search.  However after using them briefly he decided to go back to and stay with his starter guns for a while.  They don’t require ammo, and they do decent damage after the special (fling shot) is factored in.   They will continue to be viable for a while as his firing rate speed increases as he levels.





Baba Breaks 136 at PW Dunes

29 07 2009
Start of Babas Tuesday Borg hunt, click for larger image.

Start of Baba's Tuesday Borg hunt, click for larger image.

Baba continued his hunting trip to Perpetual Wastelands for Borg that he started the day before. For the duration of this trip, he camped out there in the dunes, rather than commute back and forth from Newland City. When he approached the main dune area, he found it about 2/3 populated. This was the best he had found it recently. As far as PW Borg dunes is concerned, there is no shortage of players, as the Borg population is frequently culled by hunters like himself.

Baba is motivated to level up to 150 at which point he will be eligible to join in Froob Title 5 group activities. Soon Baba had cleaned out the main large dune and he had to head south to the small hilly section in the pinched area between the Helipad, the acid lake and the cliff wall. Getting to the point where his standard Borg kite attack is second nature, Baba focused on adding another special, the Library of Foul Language taunts. These not only taunt the enemy, but do a small amount of radiation damage as well. With a fairly quick cool down of 6 or so seconds, it can be repeated several times during each kite. A QL 140 Library does 35 radiation damage, so hitting a Borg four times in a kite, nets an additional 140 damage. No where near a crit, but Baba is not going to pass by anything that brings Borg down faster. Also just in the last few levels, the increases to his basic skills and speed stats, he has been able to start using Fast Attack and Brawl 2 to 3 times per Borg. For the longest time the cool downs for these were so long that Baba rarely got to use them more than once per fight.

Main Dune cleared, time to start south, click for larger view.

Main Dune cleared, time to start south, click for larger view.

With his loot bags full, Baba took to the skies in his Yalmaha, and headed due south to the nearest player city’s whompa. As he was passing over the mountain that sits between the Omni Mines and the main Borg base, he spotted a group of players standing around on the mountain top. He put his Yalmaha into hover and looked closer. There were about 5 players standing or sitting at the south east edge of the mountain top, looking down at the strip of road that runs between the Borg base and the Omni Mines. Down on the road he saw the 6th member of the team, an NT, that was kiting Borg.

It was one of those ‘why didn’t I think of that moments.’ If he had been up on the mountain top, safe and secure, he would have not gotten wiped like he did the last time he was on the ground here with a kiting team from his guild. He had been too close to the action, and sent back to reclaim when several Borg took an interest in him.

Baba dings 136 at PW Dunes, click for larger view

Baba dings 136 at PW Dunes, click for larger view

He proceeded on to Newland City, where he needed to sort through tonight’s loot take. Unlike the night before, when he had only gotten a handful of Miy’s armor pieces, tonight he had not only picked up many Miy’s pieces, but it also seemed to be “special guns” night in the loot table of his Borg. He sorted the guns out, but left them for identification at another time. He was more interested in cataloging his new Miy’s armor items, and since he had also just leveled, to look for pieces he could wear. It turned out that most of the Miy’s items dropped tonight were much higher than what he can equip now. He got several 200+ pieces, which he does not recall ever looting items that high before. He filled up a backpack with the new Miy’s pieces.

He placed that in his bank, and later after portioning out his level 136 IP points, he got out all his Miy’s armor bags and went through them looking for items he could now equip. This last level pushed up several of his stats enough that he could now equip a new Miy’s armor legs, arms and boots. The QL 111 carbonum armor arms that he removed were the last pieces of his former all carb armor set that he has worn since around level 90. Roughly 40 levels out of one set of Carb armor, goes to show what great armor the Carb is. It really is great for froob Enforcers as it buffs NCU and nano in addition to providing good AC protection. The Miy’s helps less with the NCU, but adds Health Points. At lower levels Enforcers are struggling with nano, but by the time they level up to where Baba is now, 130-140, nano is more plentiful as long as nano pool has been increased along the way consistently.

Babas New Miys armor that retired his QL 111 Carb, click for Auno.org equipment page.

Baba's New Miy's armor that retired his QL 111 Carb, click for Auno.org equipment page.

The new Miy’s pieces have both improved his stats and his AC protection. Comparing his previous armor set up with the new one, here are some of the highlights:

* Projectile AC +5%
* Melee AC +3%
* Energy AC +7%
* Chemical AC +18%
* Radiation AC +29%
* Cold AC +4%
* Poison AC +18%
* Fire AC +4%

The Radiation should help with some of the Borg guns that do radiation damage. Baba has also noticed some Borg doing poison damage, but he has never looked at the logs in detail to try and figure out the weapon used, he has just noticed poison damage showing up in the combat log window.

His abilities stay about the same, but, max health went up 19%. The only downside is he has 39 less max nano, although NCU remained unchanged.

While writing this, we relaxed to the “Open Plains” theme, which some of you will recognize as the AO in game music that plays while out in the wilderness areas like Wartorn valley.  It reminds me of one of Baba’s first encounters with the Wartorn Valley at level 29 or so.  With no Yalmaha yet, he had pulled a mission in the far upper right hand corner of the WV map.  It was night and he was way out in that desolate stretch of road on foot, just past the player cities on the other side of the mountain ridge that surrounds the plain where Old Athens sits when he first heard this music.  It was calming and yet did little to quell his fears of the many dark red mobs that he had to take detours around   It was a long night, but he did eventually make it back to Old Athens in one piece.

You can listen to this piece and the rest of the AO in game music at AO Stratics here, or download all the tracks at Soundspace, by clicking on Skydrive.  Both sites give some interesting background on the music, including a description of how it is dynamically generated in the game from numerous short clips.  That explains why it is never exactly the same.

Baba 136 at Borg Dunes

Baba continued his hunting trip to Perpetual Wastelands for Borg that he started the day before.  For the duration of this trip, he camped out there in the dunes, rather than commute back and forth from Newland City.  When he approached the main dune area, he found it about 2/3 populated.  This was the best he had found it recently.  As far as PW Borg dunes is concerned, there is no shortage of players, as the Borg population is frequently culled by hunters like himself.

Baba is motivated to level up to 150 at which point he will be eligible to join in Froob Title 5 group activities.  Soon Baba had cleaned out the main large dune and he had to head south to the small hilly section in the pinched area between the Helipad, the acid lake and the cliff wall.   Getting to the point where his standard Borg kite attack is second nature, Baba focused on adding another special, the Library of Foul Language taunts.  These not only taunt the enemy, but do a small amount of radiation damage as well.  With a fairly quick cool down of 6 or so seconds, it can be repeated several times during each kite.  A QL 140 Library does 35 radiation damage, so hitting a Borg four times in a kite, nets an additional 140 damage. No where near a crit, but Baba is not going to pass by anything that brings Borg down faster.  Also just in the last few levels, the increases to his basic skills and speed stats, he has been able to start using Fast Attack and Brawl 2 to 3 times per Borg.  For the longest time the cool downs for these were so long that Baba rarely got to use them more than once per fight.

With his loot bags full, Baba took to the skies in his Yalmaha, and headed due south to the nearest player city’s whompa.  As he was passing over the mountain that sits between the Omni Mines and the main Borg base, he spotted a group of players standing around on the mountain top.  He put his Yalmaha into hover and looked closer.  There were about 5 players standing or sitting at the south east edge of the mountain top, looking down at the strip of road that runs between the Borg base and the Omni Mines.  Down on the road he saw the 6th member of the team, an NT, that was kiting Borg.

It was one of those ‘why didn’t I think of that moments.’  If he had been up on the mountain top, safe and secure, he would have not gotten wiped like he did the last time he was on the ground here with a kiting team from his guild.  He had been too close to the action, and sent back to reclaim when several Borg took an interest in him.

He proceeded on to Newland City, where he needed to sort through tonight’s loot take.  Unlike the night before, when he had only gotten a handful of Miy’s armor pieces, tonight he had not only picked up many Miy’s pieces, but it also seemed to be “special guns” night in the loot table of his Borg.  He sorted the guns out, but left them for identification at another time.  He was more interested in cataloging his new Miy’s armor items, and since he had also just leveled, to look for pieces he could wear.  It turned out that most of the Miy’s items dropped tonight were much higher than what he can equip now.  He got several 200+ pieces, which he does not recall ever looting items that high before.  He filled up a backpack with the new Miy’s pieces.

He placed that in his bank, and later after portioning out his level 136 IP points, he got out all his Miy’s armor bags and went through them looking for items he could now equip.  This last level pushed up several of his stats enough that he could now equip a new Miy’s armor legs, arms and boots.  The QL 111 carbonum armor arms that he removed were the last pieces of his former all carb armor set that he has worn since around level 90.  Roughly 40 levels out of one set of Carb armor, goes to show what great armor the Carb is.  It really is great for froob Enforcers as it buffs NCU and nano in addition to providing good AC protection.  The Miy’s helps less with the NCU, but adds Health Points. At lower levels Enforcers are struggling with nano, but by the time they level up to where Baba is now, 130-140, nano is more plentiful as long as nano pool has been increased along the way consistently.

The new Miy’s pieces have both improved his stats and his AC protection.  Comparing his previous armor set up with the new one,  here are some of the highlights:

  • Projectile AC +5%
  • Melee AC +3%
  • Energy AC +7%
  • Chemical AC +18%
  • Radiation AC +29%
  • Cold AC +4%
  • Poison AC +18%
  • Fire AC +4%

The Radiation should help with some of the Borg guns that do radiation damage. Baba has also noticed some Borg doing poison damage, but he has never looked at the logs in detail to try and figure out the weapon used, he has just noticed poison damage showing up in the combat log window.

His abilities stay about the same, but, max health went up 19%.  The only downside is he has 39 less max nano, although NCU remained unchanged.

old
http://auno.org/ao/equip.php?saveid=139143

new
http://auno.org/ao/equip.php?saveid=140417

http://ao.stratics.com/content/ingame_music/music.php





Baba Becomes Virus Attack Vector

25 07 2009

Baba was influenced by two Virus attacks recently  The Alt virus bit once again sending us back to Shuttleport Island on the flimsyest of excuses.  This was followed by an attack by the Win32.Virut.ce virus on our office PC.

Meet AgentBaba and BabaEmphee, new toons a result of a re-occurring Alt bug. Click to view larger version.

Meet AgentBaba and BabaEmphee, new toons a result of a re-occurring Alt bug. Click to view larger version.

Sorry for no recent posts, we had the unfortunate experience of getting a nasty virus on our PC at work.  This had set us back in more ways than one, and demanded huge amounts of time to deal with.  Our centralized IT services installed a new Windows box for me about a week and a half ago.  Things went fine.  It was nice to have a faster and cleaner machine.  We were just getting settled in, with most of our applications installed and tweaked when the Win32.Virut.ce worm struck.  In just a few minutes it rendered the PC unusable.  It displays Winlogon in a permanent loop that cannot be exited.  It not only wasted my new machine, but thanks to a very bad practise that is NOT safe computing, we managed to transfer the virus to our old PC and ruined it as well.  The transmission vector was our thumb drive.  This virus infects any exe opened by Windows.  We had been using KeePass, a password safe on the thumb-drive and our mistake was to run the executable from the thumb drive instead of independent exes on each computers hard drive.

So, thumb drive is in the infected machine, and the KeePass exe gets infected when we utilize it off the thumb drive.  Then the new PC bombs out from the virus, so we move to the old PC, and in the course of the day, open KeePass from the thumb drive, and bingo, 2nd PC is infected.   Since the virus does not infect data files, we would have been ok, if we had only been using the thumb-drive for the reading the password database file.

AgentBaba and BabaEmphee in all their saturated colors of Shuttleport Island. Click for larger view.

AgentBaba and BabaEmphee in all the saturated colors of Shuttleport Island. Click for larger view.

Fortunately all is not lost.  We had most of our daily work related documents and notes mirrored on the Syncplicity web service.  We also found that the data files on both PCs are still intact, using a live CD of Dam Small Linux which we were able to boot each machine with, we could see that the file structure is still there, so one of our tasks is to transfer these to a safe place before the techs come to wipe the boxes and re-install Windows.

Before the virus struck we had spent the weekend back at Shuttleport Island creating two new alts AgentBaba and BabaEmphee.  We are infected so badly with the Alt virus that the slightest thing can send us back to nubi island to roll a new toon or two.  This time, we were reviewing our new Adventurer toon Ohtizz, who we had rolled in order to have an account to give the Funcom free 30 day offer a try.  We got cold feet when Funcom asked for our credit card number.   We would have gone through with the trial, if it had not been for that requirement.  We just do not turn over our credit card number unless we fully intend to incur whatever charges are involved.  We knew full well we would be cancelling at the end of the 30 days.  It feels like tempting fate to hand over your card number in this kind of situation.  Events have a way of arranging themselves such that somehow at the end of 30 days our cancellation does not go through and then we have to deal with the hassle of trying to get it cancelled.

So we breezed the agent Ohtizz through the island and up to level 13 on the mainland.  Outfitted him with a vagabonds coat, and realized we had forgotten to get him a range meter back on the island.  So that’s what sent us back to the island.  The need for a range meter.  We thought that if we had to go back there why not roll two more professions we had also always admired.  Next thing you know our agent and meta physicist are teaming Dyna’s like there is no tomorrow.

Our new agent and MP complete the armor quest. Click for larger view.

Our new agent and MP complete the armor quest. Click for larger view.

Impressions from 3 more professions follow.  Adventurers are EASY to play.  After going through the agony of being a AO newbi and doing it as an Enforcer, we can see that everyone should start out in AO as an Adventurer.  They truly are a bit of everything, but have no serious drawbacks like some professions.  Baba was really jealous of how the Addy can self heal putting to shame our Enforcers measly healing tool kit of first aid stims and eventually hacked boosted grafts for some very limited self healing in combat.  It was also interesting to see a profession where evades actually do something.  Our addy fighting mobs shows one mob hit landing for every 6 or 7 shots given by the addy.

Up next is the Agent.  One shot kills with aimed shot is a rush.  Having evades that work is a plus too.  The MP at least on the island is way overpowered compared to the others.  The starter MP gets a 1 hand blunt weapon that gives just as much damage as the starting Enforcers weapon plus the starting MP has the additional benefit of an attack pet contributing damage, practically doubling the total damage to the target mob.

In addition to farming parts and then trade skilling together a modest supply of range meters, we set out to get both new toons the sided newcomers armor.  We know from past experience to not try these quests until your toon is level 8 or above.  The mobs that have to be killed will be too much for toons below level 7 or 8.  So we ran most of the other island quests that give experience first, and actually ran several more than once.  The backpack and weapons upgrade quests can be repeated.  For the weapons upgrade, just buy the suitable weapon from Stacklund and use that when asked for a weapon to upgrade.

We did discover an early progression problem with the MP.  Every profession in AO has periods where their weapon, or combat nanos are getting progressively weaker in comparison to the mobs that must be over come to level.  The next better weapon or nano will have a level requirement that results in this situation where the toons offensive capability is getting weaker in relation to the mobs that have to be killed to level.  Our MP ran into this at around level 9.  Almost all the mobs on the island were gray to her, so killing them, would not help her level, yet the remaining mobs were way too strong for her attack pet, so she could not successfully level up off of them.  In her case the only way we could level her up so she could equip the next better attack pet was to repeat several quests just for the experience points.

Our simple suggestion to this problem, which seems to be prevalent across all classes and levels, would be adjust the damage done more aggressively upwards as one levels, due to increasing expertise.  We hold out no hope for these improvements, but it never hurts to dream.  Maybe someone, somewhere is coding the next best MMORPG as we speak, and this meme somehow makes it to them for consideration.

We actually did log both Baba, Babaente and Tireen, over the past weekend.  They spent their time disposing of Baba’s loot gained from hunting Perpetual Wasteland’s Cyborgs for his 134th level.  In addtion to sorting out Miys and other items to keep, There were several packs of monster parts which Tireen was able to convert to blood plasma for a much higher profit.    This took up the better part of an evening with Baba sorting, Babaente acting as mule, and Tireen fencing the items with a Omni trader terminal.