Train Stopping at TOTW

7 08 2010
Train Stopping at TOTW

Train Stopping at TOTW, click for full image

The final boss in both the Subway and the Temple of the Three Winds are designed to be a significant challenge to the capped levels allowed in those dungeons.  What is especially devious is how the players are set up to fail by the major jump from the next to the last boss to the last boss.  The progression of mob difficulty in both dungeons is mostly linear.  Players get lulled into expecting each next higher mob to be a few degrees harder.  The jump is a 2-3 levels for most of the progression, at the end however the jump is about 10 levels.

Babaemphee and Babaengy made another run to TOTW a few evenings ago.  They had to fight their way in through solid grays all the way to DOT.  They headed due north to the center wing and were glad to see the halls mostly clear.  They found the Curator waiting in his room and engaged him in a short brutal battle that he lost.  He did not drop any notum rings, however he did fill out Babaengy’s TOTW shoulder piece collection.  They headed next over to Nematet’s room and were taking down their second Windcaller when their neighborhood experienced a brown out, which caused their Net connection to go dead.

The only thing that really concerned them was that they had had the room to themselves and it looked like they would have a clean shot at Nematet, so they were concerned that the link death delay could allow some other team to take over the spot before they got logged back in.  When they did log back in a few minutes later (after all flash lights and candles were located) in RL4, they still had the room to themselves, which was a bit of a problem.  They had rezzed back right next to a Windcaller and got instant close vicinity aggro and so had a fight on their hands, without their pets.  After a few minutes, it was clear that their puny weapons were not enough to take this Windcaller down, at least not before several hours had passed.  Fortunately they still had their buffs intact so Babaengy was able to re-cast his bot which quickly put the Windcaller away.

In taking down all the Windcallers, they had to let rot a bunch of very nice Agent only armor. Babaengy really wished he was able to cast Beacon Warp, so he could warp AgentBaba in to collect this loot.  Babaengy is about 20 MC short of being able to cast it. It would require an outside Infuses buff, since Babaemphee herself is a couple of hundred IP points away from casting those.

The main gain of the evening was that Babaengy dinged level 60 after defeating the curator, and Babaemphee hit 60 after they felled Nematet.  They both decided to head back to Newland to allocate out this IP.  After doing so, Babaengy was just 7 points short in MC to cast his lvl 90 bot.  He did an extensive search of all of the Baba’s inventories via Inventory Assistant, for MC buffing items.  The closest thing he found was a Miy’s chest piece which would do the trick, but it required quite a bit more to equip than he could expect to get a wrangle from Tireen for.

After reviewing the Auno database, they decided they did not have any buffing items that would do the trick. The decided that the surest thing would be to go from QL75 to QL100 implants.

They were starting to tire a bit of the Temple, so a break was taken, and a few other of Baba’s alts were logged in to grab a level or two when they could complete daily missions.  Unfortunately about half the daily missions are impossible for the advertised levels.  The only way to complete them is with  twinked paid toons or by having higher level toons complete the tasks.

Once again, new content turns out to be a vehicle catered to end-gamers, in this case a convenient way for end-gamers  to level up their alts.  It is very suspicious how almost all of the new missions allow a higher level character to collect any required items and simply hand them over to the lowbie.  Curious how they went out of their way to keep those items from being no drop and prevent that kind of practise.

The impossibility for leveling toons comes in when the missions require having to kill or navigate through large numbers of mobs that are 10 to 20 levels above the toons current level.  My level 25 got a mission to kill level 55 mobs.  I am sure this has got to be discouraging for new players.

But to get back on topic, why do we dread the temple sometimes.  I guess it is no matter what your business is there, from camping or leveling for hours, or just a quick in and out to grab a single not-so-hard-to-get item, one has to spend 15 minutes killing grays on the way in, and another 15 doing the same on the way out. At least at Foreman’s after you completed a few quests, the guards stop aggroing you.  For toons like our pet classes, it means more down-time stopping to re-buff as needed before ever getting close to the objective.

The other thing we dread about TOTW is some of the other players there.  On almost every trip there one gets to see a new and different way for toons to misbehave.  On this last few trips trip several stand out.  First there were the jumpers.  There is a certain brand of noobe in AO that thinks that the space bar (jumping) is a drug, they cannot get enough of it, and somehow think that everyone else is bound to be amazed by their jumping skills.  When our team rezzed into the TOTW entrance they were greeted by a MA whose sole form of communication was to walk up, stand directly in your face and jump up and down endlessly.  No vicinity chat. Just jump, jump, jump, look at me jump!  It was almost enough to make us want to dust off our emote help screen and program a special emote macro for the next time one of these geniuses show up.  Later while in Nematets room, a distant cousin to the MA, one of million lvl 60 Exarch robbed Enforcers with a Carb Helmet, ran into the room, right up to our team, and started in with the jumping in place.  Yes we see you can jump, and no, we have no openings on our team for jumpers at this time, as soon as the day arrives that combat requires a jumper, you will get the call.  I guess they never heard of vicinity chat.

The next winner has to be Mr. My-Only-Skill is pulling trains, an otherwise unremarkable and forgettable level 37 soldier with a Carb Helmet and Exarch robe.  Mr. My-Only… had been waiting in the entrance area for someone/anyone to display his skill.  As soon he could see us starting to advance after buffing towards the inner door, he burst through it and ran at top speed down the hall into the dungeon.  About the time we had just killed the first pair of cultists and were starting in on the first one that stands in the middle of the hall, Mr. My-Only comes racing back with most of the cultists from the left wing on his train.  I imagine he actually had to stop and hit a few just to make sure they would join in.  Of course as he passed us on his way towards the entrance, he gaily gave us the jumping greeting several times.

On another recent visit just as we were approaching DOT’s central part of the big hall some people refer to as the crossroads, when from of the door to the west wing comes some twink battlerod enforcer, a twink MA with one of those hats that look like an upside down brass wok (official name: Original Mentors Straw Hat.)  There is something about TOTW MAs in upturned woks.  Babaoroody has regaled his alts with tales of upturned wok wearing MAs up to mischief at TOTW.  Now Baba and company make it a policy to not judge a book by it’s cover, but anytime they see one of these upturned wok wearing MAs, a red flag pops up which they try to not pre-judge the wok wearing toon by.

This pair seemed to have a couple of other accomplices in their team, who all executed the TOTW crossroads train escape of jumping the low wall on the north side of the eastern wing entrance and running around behind the entrance to hide.  Bursting forth from the door to the west wing came several Deathless Legionnaires, several Windcallers, a handful of cultists, and Lien.  Babaengy and Babaemphee were suddenly in a fight with the legionnaires which took them a minute or two to clear.  Fortunately Lien had wandered over towards the south wall of the hall and was minding his business.

Custer Did It Better

Since Babaengy and Babaemphee had been on their way to Lien, this was actually not a bad thing, at least, that is what they thought as Babaengy started buffing the bot with his two best combat buffs.  Babaengy gave his bot a wait command, so it would not run over to where Lien was. Babaengy wanted Lien to come to them, at which time he would give the bot an attack command.  About two microseconds after Babaengy and Babaemphee and her pets attacked and aggroed Lien, the Defender of Three spawned right on top of them.  There was some confusion, as Babaengy tried to switch the bot to DOT while Babaemphee continued with the already started attack on Lien.  Babaengy found his bot unresponsive suddenly. He would  target one of the bosses, and then issue a bot attack command, but the bot just stood still.  This went on long enough that Lien was able to knock Babaengy’s health down to 25%.  Babaengy then realized that Babaemphee had recently switched the heal pet to her self after a previous fight and they had forgotten to switch it back to Babaengy.  By the time Babaengy got his bot back under control and attacking Lien, and Babaemphee switched the heal pet to Babaengy, the poor heal pet could not keep up with the damage rate Lien was dealing on Babaengy.

In the past when they fight Lien, they usually have the bot attack first and build up aggro, so most of Liens damage goes there in addition to his AOE attacks that hurt everyone in the vicinity.

It was not much longer before Babaengy was back at reclaim, and soon after Babaemphee.   It was time for lunch in RL4, so Babaemphee and Babaengy logged off for a few hours.  When they logged back in a few hours later and returned to TOTW, they found it with far fewer toons roaming the halls.  None of the mischief makers from before were to be seen.  Perhaps some other victum successfully petitioned them, but that is highly unlikely given FUNCOMS usual performance with petitions.

They made a beeline for Lien, and after slogging through the Legionnaires on the way down, they took on Lien, this time on their terms, better coordinated and according to a strategy that works for them.  After pulling and taking care of all the surrounding Legionnaires, Babaengy buffed his bot, and then sent it to attack Lien.  After they bot had had enough time to land several high damage hits, Babaengy attacked and Babaemphee sent her attack pets in, while throwing a debuff on Lien.  Babaengy then unloaded his three TOTW damage rings on Lien to help bring his health bar down faster.  Babemphee, after landing her debuff, launched into throwing her single nukes on Lien.  The heal pet had no trouble keeping Babaengy’s health up.  Babaengy gave Babaemphee a first aid stim shot about half way through.  They simply ignored the little doll things that spawn, as they do little damage, and they go away once Lien dies.  After Lien went down, it was Babaemphee’s turn at his goodies, and she took away a Dark Memory and a Memory Loop!  After rebuffing, they fought their way back out of the temple and returned to Newland City for the day.

Friday night, Baba’s trader alt Tireen was enlisted to try and sell one of the Grid Armor I ID disks our teams have found, to further finance Babaengy and Babaemphee’s progress.  The credits were needed to bump up their store bought implants from 75ish to 100.  Sitting in the grid near the OA exit, it did not take long for Tireen to advertise the ID, find a buyer, dicker over price and agree to a deal.  They met at OA grid and the infusion of credits Tireen took away will help equip team pets next set of implants.

Both team pet toons were outfitted with store bought 100 imps.  It was necessary with both to purchase a couple of extra implants for treatment laddering.  It was nothing like the multi-step laddering real twinkers do, it was simply, put in a 75 treatment right hand, then put in a 100 eye treatment, take out the 75 hand and replace it with a 100 with treatment.  Next the 100 treatment eye could come out and a more useful 100 eye put in followed by the rest of the QL 100 store bought imps.

Notum Defender

Notum Defender, click for full image

The imps made it possible for Babaengy to equip a one more step higher bot (level 90) and allowed Babemphee to be able to use her Notum Defender.  The Notum Defender, to other players looks like a gimp weapon.  It is a gimp weapon, but MP’s at her level don’t rely on their weapons, but their pets.  The Notum Defender gives her 370 nano and a nice -3 nano cost reduction.  The modest 104 points to all AC’s helps with her overall defense.

The next day, they returned to TOTW, and made their way down to Lien with little incident.  They came across a couple of low level 30-40ish toons, and enforcer and some other toon we did not have time to identify.  They seemed to be unsure if they wanted to fight Legionnaires.  They pulled a few, while Babaengy and Babaemphee were fighting others, but eventually that pair left.  Later when team pets made it to the last Legionnaire before Lien’s room, they came across a toon sporting one of those spiffy Perennium Beamers.  Being too busy pulling and taking down the other Legionnaires around Lien, they did not identify the player but it could not have been a twink, as it was taking it forever to take down each Legionnaire it fought.  That player stood around to watch as Babaemphee and Babaengy prepared to take on Lien.  The fight went pretty much like the last battle with Lien.  This time, after Lien was down, it was Babaengy’s turn to loot, and he took away his second Dark Memory.  There was also a Urn which Babaemphee was allowed to take and several Howling Skulls, which they left for some other players loot.

After rebuffing, they again fought their way back up the ramp that goes down to Lien.  As the were going through the room right after the grotto area, a 33ish solo toon went running by and down towards Liens hall.  They proceeded and eventually stopped in the wading pool area near DOT to recast some of their pet damage buffs for the final set of outgoing hall fights.  This area is a good one to pause, rest, or anything in comparative safety.  It is far enough away from DOT and the three wing entrances, that if someone does pull a train out of them, it is easy to make a run to the exits or run behind one of the entrances to hide.

It was quite humorous to see the previous 33ish toon come running like crazy out of the west entrance at DOT’s crossroads, with several Legionnaires in tow.  He made a beeline for the exit hall at the other west end of the big hall, but stopped when he realized he would just pick up more cultist if he attempted to run through there. He was already starting to go into that slow death run, and we assume the Legionnaires finished him off.  Babaengy and Babaemphee then proceeded to fight their way out the east exit hall.  Some one must have just come in and taken the west wing, as all the cultists in the central exit hall were dead, making it easy for our pet team to stroll out the rest of the way.


Implanting Belts and Monsters

26 06 2010
Map with directional arrow, people, and monsters upgrades showing.

Map with directional arrow, people, and monsters upgrades showing.

Belts and map upgrades do not go O.E. (Over Equipped.)  With this fact in mind, new characters on Ruby-Ka can get the benefit of a 5 slot belt and most of the useful map upgrades without spending a great deal of IP points. This is done by implanting the skill points just long enough to equip the items.  Once the items are in, the implants can come out, so these temporary implants only need the bare minimum of clusters for the desired skill and another cluster if required to make the implant be based on a preferred ability (Agility in Baba’s alts).  The implant slots can then be filled with implants buffing other more important skills.

Babaengy and Babemphee as pet classes, have been putting the max amount of IP into their nano based skills which determine how high a pet they can cast, at the expense of being very stingy with IP points to map navigation.  They have also maxed computer lit at every chance.  At level 29 after a quick review of their stats, it became clear that they were within range to implant enough computer lit and map navigation to be able to equip five slot belts (259 for QL 103) and get the map upgrades for direction, people, monsters, and machines (130 Map nav).  They enlisted Babaente to build two sets of implants. One set of 3 to buff computer lit, and one set of 3 to buff map navigation.

Five slot belt equipped with 5 memory chips.

Five slot belt equipped with 5 memory chips.

Both Babaengy and Babaemphee are level 29 and have the same base computer lit stat at 190.  Their map navigation stats were, 62 and 66 respectively.  The computer lit implant set gave 71 IP points, and the map navigation set gave 75 IP.  Combined with expertise buffs of +20 in each skill and +12 to their basic skills the total should put them with enough points to equip the 5 slot belt and add the map upgrades.

Babaente, a level 75 NT was called on to purchase and assemble the implants as she has just about the right level to nano-programming skills to create QL65 implants.

Not wanting to spend all day camping for QL65 basic implants, Babaente constructed the implants in varying levels between 62 and 65 depending on what she could find in shops.
Since it was a Saturday morning and the 9th anniversary celebration was going on, the OA shops were crowded.  Babaente took the grid to Newland City and then two whompa hops later started shopping in a deserted shop in Hope.  After about a half hour, she had been able to get the required basic implants ranging from 62 to 65 in quality.  Only two implants required more than one cluster and that was solely to change the skill base to Agility, so credits were saved by only buying 8 clusters for the six implants.

Once the two sets were constructed, she handed them off to Babaengy in the Newland City shop.  He proceeded to don his med suite, buff up, and then tagged the surgery clinic.  First the computer lit imps were swapped in.  Once they were in he stripped his memory chips and then his belt.  The new QL 103 5 slot belt went in with no hang-ups and with several IP points to spare.  After scrounging another NCU memory from Babaemphee, he sported a five slot belt with 5 memories giving around 98 NCU (an increase of 18.)  Hopefully this will suffice until he levels up further and his computer lit gets within range to equip a six slot belt.

Babaemphee graduates to 3 pets.

Babaemphee graduates to 3 pets. Larger image available.

Done with the belt, the computer lit buffing implants came out, and a set of map navigation implants was inserted.  With well over 130 map nav, he bought the map upgrades and installed them immediately there in the shop. Next he removed those implants and put his original QL 50 implants back in the slots the map buffing imps had taken.  He then handed off the backpack with the computer lit and map buffing imps to Babaemphee.

Babaemphee tried to repeat the whole process but even though she started out with the same base computer lit as Babaengy, she came up short of meeting the 259 requirement.  She was showing 253.  It seems that she had more computer lit implanted already with her QL 50 implants, so that in swapping them out of the 60+ buffing implants she did not have as much of a net gain as Babaengy did.  She will just have to hit another level or two to make up the 6 points.  She did manage to get the map navigation buffing implants in, and did manage to install the same map upgrades as Babaengy.

The 9th Anniversary party was going on at the time, but none of Baba’s tele-presences felt like making it this year.  The Froobination of the generic composite nano buffs is the best Funcom birthday gift so far, so the other items like the headphones and the duck social clothes just did not interest Baba or his alts.

Creeping towards 150

17 09 2009

Baba showed up at PW dunes ready for some borg action, only to find a team leeching experience off an NT dominating the spawns. Before he left, he observed for a while, taking notes for Babaente our own NT. Standard practice seems to be to fly around in a yalm to gather up as many of the Borg as possible on the helipad. Once all all the Borg have been pulled from the dunes to the Helipad, then the NT ditches the yalm and starts the usual kiting procedure.

Area of 110-120 mobs in Eastern Foul Plains, click for larger view.

Area of 110-120 mobs in Eastern Foul Plains, click for larger view.

We have not had our NT Babaente out in a while. We have decided to concentrate on getting Baba to 150 and in the process also upgrade his implants. Hopefully once he hits 150, leveling will go faster, as he will be able to participate in the title 5 Froob RL2 Group. Its a loose group, not a organization/guild, but more of a series of organized raids.

With hitting Borg out of the question, with the NT dominating the PW Borgs, Baba decided to try hunting mobs in Eastern Foul Plains. He first tried the an area south east of a player city in the upper north west corner of the region, but this did not work out too well. The mobs there were running from 120 to 135 and they sent him to reclaim several times.

He moved further south east until he reached a patch of desert surrounded by verdant land. This turned out to be a perfect hunting ground. It held a good number of infectors and desert eremites in the 110s and they re-spawned fairly quickly.

Baba fights and kills his first Desert Eremite, click for larger view

Baba fights and kills his first Desert Eremite, click for larger view

Baba had been using his hot key to tab through the nearby hostile mobs and almost panicked when he saw the dreaded words ‘desert eremite’ appear. It was only after he got his breathing back under control that he realized that it was not deep red but, light orange. He had just done a save at a terminal, so he figured he had nothing to lose so even though he could not see the eremite, he went ahead and fired off a taunt at it. In a few seconds the eremite was towering over him while he cycled through his alpha attacks and specials.

During the fight he had time to inspect the eremite to see that it was QL 110. He only lost about 25% health before the thing went down and Baba got to take his first desert eremite trophy shot.

Babas first Desert Eremite Trophy Shot, click for larger view.

Baba's first Desert Eremite Trophy Shot, click for larger view.

He went on to spend about an hour at that spot and brought his exp bar about 2/3’s of the way to the top, however his bags were getting full and he decided to head back to civilization to fence his goodies. Back at Newland City, Tireen our trader logged on and proceeded to fence Baba’s most recent take.

The next evening when Baba returned to PW, he found it occupied again with a different NT and tag-along-team. With that avenue blocked he decided to go work on completing the first shoulder pad quest. He had started it more than a year ago, and had collected all the pieces except one, the scrap of notum. Baba spent two nights at the crash site dunes north west of Newland city bopping mechanical mobs looking for the drop, but despite felling over 200 mobs, he did not see a single scrap of notum. He did see several copies of pieces he already had, but over all the drop rate seemed to be one quest item for every 40 or so mobs.

Baba grabs a scrap of notum, completing the first of the Dodga pad quests, click for larger view.

Baba grabs a scrap of notum, completing the first of the Dodga pad quests, click for larger view.

The third night he was about to give up, when he decided to try the junk yard just east of Rome Blue in Galway. He had been avoiding it previously because it is often over crowded with other questers. It paid off because in about 20 minutes after about the 27th mob, the scrap of notum dropped. While he was there he observed another player and learned a nifty way to help out your alts. It was a fairly high level player, (140+) and they were clearly methodically killing the mech mobs and looking for quest pieces. However when they found one, they did not pick it up. They had an low level alt (that they were teamed with) in a yalm set to follow behind them at ground level. It smoothlyh followed them around and when he did find a quest piece, (he was obviously dual boxing), he would have the lowbie pick the item up. So

He then flew off to Wartorn Valley to restart the quest and then hand over the finished object made by combining all the pieces. He was rewarded with the first set of pads, but disappointed when they did not display when he equipped them. He tried taking off all his other armor, and even tried submitting a petition. After about an hour, with not reply, it was time for him to call it a night. Scratch one up again for Funcom’s lousy petition system.

So why you might ask is a level 140 enforcer even worrying about these pads? The do add a very healthy 75 max health and that’s always a good thing, especially if you are a froob like Baba, and are shut out of the really sweet buffing armor and pads that expansion players can choose from. He is is thinking of doing to do the second and third parts of the quest.

Baba has been working on designing his next set of implants. They should be around level 200 and he has most of the pieces narrowed down. He had found three slots to be a puzzle.

  • Leg – Faded cluster: Max Health or Heal Delta?
  • Waist – Bright cluster: Max Health or Body Development?
  • Chest – Shiny cluster: Max Health or Body development?

For the leg, he had no idea which would be better. He did some number crunching and what he found was that taken individually, Max Health looked like a better deal in each slot, however a design that buffs heal delta in all three slots could be another story.

Baba was all set to make these his choices when he stumbled accrose this post which lead him to this thread “Heal Delta and Stamina Tickrate for froobs“. Baba is intrigued with the idea of a high heal delta Enforcer and may decide to give that a try. The arguments seem to be that the high delta set up would be good for RK mobs and missions, while the high health build would work better for raiding where the super mobs hit for insane amounts of damage.

The next evening Baba returned to Perpetual Wastelands and found it deserted of other players. He only had about a third of his experience bar to fill, so it did not take long to take down the required number of Borg and ding 141.

Borgs and Backpacks

13 07 2009

Babaoroody headed out for Perpetual Wastelands from Newland City Sunday evening, determined to get back on the leveling train. His experience bar was sitting just past 50% towards a new level, so he was hoping to tick it over tonight.

He took his usual route there, which consisted of using the grid from Newland City to the Sentinels post in Mort. From there he flew due east in his Yalmaha, passing over sandworms, anuns and mantises.

He paused at the Mantise Dyna camp name Tranquility just inside Perpetual Wastelands, but although he is levels above the 105 Dyna, the enclosed nature of the ‘fort’ style camp and the fact it is packed with 70-100ish mantises, leaves him unwilling to try and find out if he can attack that Dyna without getting swarmed by the rest of the Mantises.

Bridge of Escape, the plateau is too small to out run a Dyna borg.

Bridge of Escape, the plateau is too small to out run a Dyna borg.

Baba did drop down at the next Dyna camp with two 105 and 110 type Borg Dynas.  The spot is called ‘Ruins’ on the map, and is in a small platueau surrounded by gorges, with two large suspension bridges for access.  He thought he had had approached so that he could just pull one of them, but when he got close enough to trigger aggro, they both came running.

Baba made the mistake of trying to stand toe to toe with these two, and before he knew it, he was down past 50% health.  As soon as Baba dropped one, Baba started running east and crossed the suspension bridge with the other Dyna in chase.  He needed to run long enough to use and cycle his First Aid stim at least twice.  Once he had done this to bring his health back up, Baba circled around and kite killed the remaining Dyna.  While the loot both dropped was nothing Baba could use, it was good shop food.

Borg Highway, levels 110-140 Borg, in North East Perpetual Wastelands.

Borg Highway, levels 110-140 Borg, in North East Perpetual Wastelands.

Baba headed a little farther east and when the road turns from going due east to heading North East, he could see Borgs every few hundred meters, guarding the area.

Baba got buffed up and started kiting Borg singly and in groups of two to three.  These Borg were for the most part in the 110 to 140 level range, and a fitting warm up for Baba.  Eventually he planned on hopping over the Borg mine and main base and work on the level 175+ Borgs in the dunes north of the Helipad.

His experience bar was gradually moving towards the top the farther up the road he progressed.  Just before he reached the area labeled ‘town’ on the map, he stopped to rebuff and then recharge his nano.

Taking a break from kiting, to watch an Alien raiding a player city nearby.

Taking a break from kiting, to watch an Alien raiding a player city nearby.

As he was sitting there, he spotted an Alien ship raiding a player city off to the south east.   By the time Baba had worked his way to the ‘town’, he was very close to getting a level.  There is now a Tower field just west of the town, which eliminates pulling Borg to that area for kiting.

Baba first proceeded around the outer perimeter of the base and pick off the Borg he found there.  He started making careful forays into the town, to pull single Borg out.  When he approached the center portion, he spotted a high level 200 Dyna, General Chira Sulanol, unmistakable in her shiny greenish aura.  Baba took note of her position, and retreated to the back side of the base, where he picked off the remaining Borg that were outside of the Base.

General Sulanol where she made short work of Baba in PW

General Sulanol where she made short work of Baba in PW

He was getting so close to leveling that he was starting to think about his return trip from this expedition, when things took a wrong turn.  He tried to stay around the North side of the base because General Sulanol had been spotted on the South central portion.

After pulling several Borg from the North West corner of the Base, he squeezed through an alley between two buildings to try and taunt a few Borg he could see in the North central part of the base.  They came running soon, but they were trailed by General Sulanol.  He guesses that the General had a habit of waking around the base more than the typical high ranking officers.  Baba did a 180 and ran a fast as he could, but her level 200 skills enabled her to up the distance quickly and she sent him back to reclaim in a few seconds.  Baba is not sure if this is a new Dyna, or if it had been trained from a spot located due east of the town on the other side of some hills. Several maps show a 200 level mob located there.

After rezzing to at the Newland City reclaim, (the one on the hill overlooking the city), he was a bit discouraged, but he also knew that when he returns to kite the Borgs his experience pool will speed up the leveling.  He was feeling good about his Borg Kiting skills, had he not gotten too close to Sulanol, he took hardly any damage while kiting this evening.

His many backpacks were mostly full, so he took some time to sort them out.  He had gained almost a half bag of various Miy’s armor, which he is sure Babaente and Tireen will thank him for eventually. After sorting out the Miy’s, the monster parts, 125+ implants and clusters, and interesting items, he handed off 8 bags to Babaente, our Nanotechnician, who in turn transferred the bags to Tireen, Baba’s trader alt.

Tireen took the bags to the Trader terminal in Newland City and was turning in the shop food there, when a fellow Trader, Sypherdias (level 93 male Omni Trader, member Good Old Days) took note of Tireen’s Solar Powered Backpack.  The trader offered Tireen a bag of 60 of the experience stims, which Tireen might sell for many credits.  Tireen had no idea what the going market rate was for these, and had no idea as to just how liquid such a resource might be.

The Solar Powered Backpack was a promotional gift handed out by NPCs during the 7th AO Anniversary weekend celebration.  It looks nifty, and works like a standard backpack in both capacity and function (it gives no buffs).  In the year or so since she acquired it from an NPC at the ICC Whompa center, she has perhaps seen one or two other players wearing one.  So while in a typical stroll down the streets of Borealis you will spot many copies of supposedly rare or hard to get back items, Tireen very rarely sees another Solar Powered Backpack.  Since traders as a profession seem to lack a trader specific back item, she feels her nifty backpack sets her apart.

It is the most unique possession Tireen has at the moment on Rubi-Ka.  She may not sport the best implants, armor or weapon, but she is proud to display her unusual backpack.   She ended up turning down the offer.  She knew how much she got out of wearing the unique backpack and she did not really want to use the experience stims to speed up leveling.  Beyond that, she did not savor trying to sell them.  Even though she is a trader, trying to hawk stuff on shopping chat channel is not her preferred way to pass the time.

So after she declined, and finished feeding shop food to the terminal, she traveled back to meet up with Babaente, to return Baba’s empty backpacks and his new credits (Baba’s 8 backpacks of mostly Borg loot, netted around 800,000 credits).

Solar Powered Backpack and the Refitted Backpack

Solar Powered Backpack and the Refitted Backpack

When she met up with Babaente, they posed for a picture framing both of their special backpacks.   Babaente’s backpack is the second type handed out by NPC’s during the 7th Anniversary celebration.  It is named a Refitted Backpack and it looks exactly like the Empowered Robust Backpack, which is one of the harder to get rare items since it must be made by combining two items which drop in Camelot Castle in Avalon.  The items are dropped by a mob called Administrator DeValos who spawns following the death of Tarasque. The two items are the Robust Backpack and an Infusion Device.  Combining the two items makes the Empowered Robust Backpack which provides 1000 in all ACs and +80 in all damage to the wearer.

Baba Beats Babyface

11 07 2009

Babaoroody came out this past Saturday afternoon to roll a few single missions from Newland City. His objective was simply to get back into the swing of things as we have been spending more time with our Nanotechnitian and Trader lately.  Before rolling the missions at the terminals across from the Bronto Burger stand in Newland City, he took some time to sort through all the loot/party favors he received recently from the 8th Anniversary AO celebrations.  He filed away most of the novelty and social items into his bank, and just kept the experience boosting items with him in a backpack so he can have them ready for use anytime he hooks up with a good team.

Mission spot at Milky Way Omni Base, click for full view

Mission spot at Milky Way Omni Base, click for full view

He rolled two missions, one in the very southernmost part of Stret East Bank, and the other in the middle of an Omni base in Milky Way.  The first mission involved a mix of snakes and cyborgs and went by in a flash.  Having gotten used to team missions, single person missions now seem like just a warm up exercise.  The second mission involved more cyborgs, humans, and several Babyface type mobs.  The incongruity of the foreboding look of this mob with the humorous baby talk type audio coming from this mob had Baba chuckling all through the mission.  Baba had been wiped a few times by very high level Babyfaces, so at first it was taken very cautiously, but after about the second one, it was clear these were lower levels and quite easy to knock over.

Flying from Harry’s at Lush Fields, over the inner waterway, Baba enjoyed turning on the AO music which always is a big enhancement to the experience of viewing Rubi-Ka’s lush landscapes.  The outdoors, open spaces music that plays when transversing long distances in AO is very soothing and really adds to the enjoyment of the moment.

Baba beats up on Babyface, click for better view

Baba beats up on Babyface, click for better view

Once Baba completed both missions he headed back to Newland to sort through his loot, starting a couple of bags for monster parts.  He had one interesting drop from the missions, a personal grid beacon which Baba plans on sending over to Tireen, or trader.  It will be a while before she levels up high enough to equip it, but it will be waiting for her. He’s glad he found it as it prompted him to look it up at and there he spotted ‘Walk the Grid’ which is better and which Tireen should be able to equip fairly soon.

His loot included several different cool sounding projectile type weapons, which unfortunately did not turn up on his handy loot only weapons list, so they most likely will be shopfood.

While sorting loot, he made a quick side trip to a backyard in order to buy 4 more backpacks, mainly to serve as bank storage items.

Baba also took some time to think about what his short term goals should be.  He reviewed his current equipment, including armor an implants, back item and weapon.  He definitely wants to step up from his Panther to a Pained Panther, and hopes to snag a team going to Crypt of Home for this.  Although it seems he is over the 110 level entrance cap, he can still get in with an Engineer warp.  Either that, or pony up a several million credits.

Armor wise, he seems to be doing ok, with Miy’s drops of Borgs.  In another 10-15 levels he may be in the range for a higher quality Alby back item.  Eventually, after maybe 20-30 more levels, he may in range to equip a Black Clan Tank Armor, a friend donated.  At this point, implants are his biggest question mark.  Getting implants over Ql 125 is much more involved than getting implants under QL 125 was.  Previously one can shop for store bought implant components when looking for under QL 125 implants.  Over 125 is another story. The highest basic implants stores carry are 125.  To get basic implants over 125 requires finding finished implants in missions and as drops from mobs and then having a tradeskiller strip them and then combine them with the appropriate clusters which are available in stores in Qualities over 125.  For Baba, the process of designing the desired implant set is a formidable undertaking.  Add to this the great effort required to collect the needed parts, and QL 125+ implants become a very daunting expedition.

There does not seem to be a good rule of thumb out there for determining of often one should upgrade implants.  It seems to be more of ‘do it as often as you can stand’ type thing, as the benefits have to be weighed against the costs in time and credits.  Baba does not have the credits to buy a set quite a few levels above his current level.  His best bet we think is to make do with his current ones and in another 10 or so levels start thinking about putting together a set from what he can find and getting it bumped up some.

Baba then decided to update his equipment configuration at  He swapped back in a Notum Ring of Three, that he had replaced for a while with a Ring of Haste.  The Ring of Haste is useful when kiting Borgs in Perpetual Wastelands as it gives 100 run speed, but for missions the Notum Ring is better for the added damage and extra ACs.  After making an up to date equipment configuration, he decided to look back through some of his equipment setups all the way back to day one.  We decided to dedicate a separate permanent page to Baba’s equipment configurations as they display a rather complete time-line of his progress.

Yalms and Map Upgrades

5 10 2008

The Original Electrocutium

After Baba’s alts Tireen and Babaente completed their first batch of team missions, it was discovered that Tireen seemed to be missing her token board.  We posted a question to forums to see if it was possible to get a replacement.  The answer is yes, the basic start up shop terminals in backyards sell them.  So Tireen ran back to Omni Trade and found a start up terminal and bought one.  When she went to install it, there was a Omni smelling salts in the neck slot.  When she went to move the salts to her social tab, guess what, there was the ‘missing token board’.  Apparently token boards do not function when worn in the social tab and neither does the smelling salts.

The pair, Tireen and Babaente and starting to get the dual logged team mission routine down.  Most of the time Tireen is set to follow Babaente around, while the NT does most of the work.  Auto-attack on Tireen is somewhat unpredictable.  Most of the time, if a mob attacks the NT, she does not react.  Occasionally she returns fire, when it is Babaente who is being attacked, but not often. Babaente has learned that sometime she can train Tireen into a room containing a mob, and hope the mob attacks Tireen first.  This gets Tireen pumping lead, at which point the NT can start throwing nukes.

Boss rooms require taking control of Tireen, having her teleport into the boss room first, drain the closest mob and start shooting.  Once she has started fighting on auto, one has to switch back to Babaente and teleport her into the boss room to join the fight.  The great thing about boss rooms is the teleport is a great panic escape.  If either or both get to low on health, they can teleport back to the previous room to recharge and heal.  It is not a complete panacea, as most boss mobs seem to take the interlude to heal up also, as when they return, the boss mob usually has regained most of their health. This can go on indefinitely, or until a few lucky crits tip the balance against the boss.

When this past Friday evening rolled around, we realized that both Tireen and Babaente were now within striking distance of equipping better belts, map upgrades, and Yalmahas, with the proper implants.  A full custom set was designed for the trader Tireen, and for Babaente an implant set made up of 3 custom and the rest premade implants.

Tireen set off to Omni Trade to shop of the components.  As is her wont, as she made the rounds, she also routinely checked the car terminals as she passed.  This paid off Friday evening when she came across a QL 34 Yalm for 4 million with a very low air nav requirement of 84.  With this purchase sitting in her bank, we redesigned 3 of her implants to give the needed air nav skill.

With shopping complete, the materials were handed off via mule to Babaoroody, who proceeded to build the QL 50 custom implants set for Tireen.  With the generic treatment boost, the surgery clinic 100 boost and a full med suit (+79) Tireen put in the temporary implants for map navigation.  With those in, she proceeded get the monster, pointer, and machines map upgrades. Once the map upgrades were in place, the map nav implants came out, and the full permanent custom implant set was plugged in, which gave her enough skill to equip her new Yalmaha.

It was Babaentes turn next.  Inspired by Tireen’s good fortune with finding the low QL Yalm, she set out to Old Athens to haunt the high end shops in search of her own low QL Yalm.  It took her about an hour and a half of checking around before she located a QL 36 Yamaha which she immediately purchased.  When she went to install her QL 75 implants, that Tireen had shopped and Babaente had built (the 3 custom ones), she came up 5 points short in Sense to equip 2/3 of them.  The ones she did get in did allow her to equip her Yalmaha.  The implants she could not yet install were needed to get her map upgrades. Since she was already using all the boosts and buffing methods for sense she could think of, it looked like she would have to ding a level to get the needed points.

She and Tireen started running team missions again, but now they both had yalms, so they could consider farther away missions. At first they thought they would go to the city of Home in Broken Shores to pull missions, but discovered they were both short the needed computer lit skills needed to use the Broken Shores grid exit.  So they decided to stick with pulling missions in and around Newland City for the time being.  On the first mission, Tireen ran from the mission terminal directly to the mission at the other end of the city.  Once she was inside, Babaente started running across the city, only to see a very strange sight.  There was Tireen running circles around Babaente in the middle of Newland City.  We brought up the window with Tireen, which showed her sitting calmly inside the mission, while Babaente’s window showed her running around in the city at the same time.

We wrote it off as one of those client glitches, that show up every once and a while, like those toons you seen perpetually running into walls in the Temple of the Three Winds.

During the first mission, Tireen dinged to 39.  This had the beneficial effect of upping the level of the mobs in the next team mission she pulled for them, so that Babaente started getting experience from more of the mobs.  After they completed their second and final mission for the evening, Babaente was close to getting her next level.

Some Rubi-Ka downtime

21 08 2008

Baba spent most of his time logged on during the past day or two, looking at his complete profile, (skill levels, implants, armor, etc.) with the intent of mapping out his next implant and armor upgrades. Baba’s at level 127 has implants ranging in QL from 126 to 157.

Baba's Armor setup at 127

Baba's armor set at 127, click for the rest.

After some initial calculations, Baba figures that in just a few more levels he should be with a comfortable froob striking distance of some QL 200 implants. This is based on only the most basic health buffs easily available to froobs, the surgery clinic for 100, a Doctors buff 80, his ring of presence 1, a med suit for 86. With one round of laddering treatment implants, at his current level would allow him to equip ql 194 implants, so once Baba adds 6 more points to his treatment skills it will be time start working on the upgrade.

On the armor side, Baba is still getting value out of a full set of QL111 carbonum. Surprisingly, even though he has found lots of Miy’s in the 110 to 200 range, there is very little that he can equip that would present an improvement over his 111 carb. He did switch to a ql130 Miy’s Melee helmet, some ql 127 Rhinoman gloves, and a Miy’s ql 145 ranged breastplate recently. He really doesn’t need the 2HandEdged boost any longer from the Rhinomen gloves, so he will definitely looking for another full set. At this moment he could easily equip some QL 140 carb with not extra buffs. With buffs he could equip up to around 160 and not be over equipped. He is going to wait until after he gets his next set of implants thought as they should up some of the needed skills enough to make a few levels higher difference in the carb.

Baba is pretty confident in contemplating pulling together the materials for the carb and thinks he knows what to expect in trying to find a tradeskiller to put it together. The implants are another story. He is saving all implants he finds over 129 and has a good cache of 150 to 200 ql pieces. He needs to review the information out there regarding stripping implants and bumping up their quality levels. From his initial review of what he has in stock, it may be a long time before he finds all the pieces he needs for a full set.

Tuesday evening, Baba made a Borg hunting expedition again to the dunes in northeast Perpetual Wastelands. The luck of the loot drop tables tonight seemed at first to be against him, as he was getting quite a few Borgs with no loot, or only filled with low quality shop food, and only one or two pieces of Miy’s armor. He did come across two Cyborg waist implants, one of which is very noteworthy as it gives 232 Heath! It is Atrox only, but conflicts with the need to get 2hedged skills from that slot. It could be something to keep in mind for after when IP gets capped, and he could spare the slot.

He had the dunes to himself, and had filled his experience bar to about 50% when he mis-judged a pull and could not fight his way out of 3 tough Borgs. When he returned after reclaim, he patiently worked his way accross the biggest dune a the far northwest corner, eventually clearing it completely of Borg and again filling his experience bar to 50%. After losing that much previously that evening, he decided to return to Newland City and hit the insurance terminal.