Keerella's Blog - stardate February 2009 (2)
Unbloggishly, here we read from the top down - so the month continues here at the top!
Back to the Temple -  February 15th

There were as usual a good number of items to swap between characters, but after that SirDarth was able to take his horse out to the Treant area.  My mount-to-be had reached level 31 yesterday, and today, in the late afternoon, reached level 32 - I only realised that when I noticed that I was having to "feed" the horse in multiples of six rather than five percent.  By the end of the evening, he was safely 40% of the way into the new level, so reaching level 33 tomorrow evening seems a realistic target.

MrChuckNorris, still frozen on level 10, went out to Velpist Temple before lunch, and managed to get enough skill points to finish off the level 5 skills - looking at the lists, it does look as if titans do need a lot of sp for the early-level skills, particularly the passive ones to increase health, attack speed, etc.  There were a few ready-plussed drops there, as usual, and a Heaven Stone.

MistressDomina went out to Prokion Temple; she's level 23, so a room full of Orc Soldiers was what she needed.  She has a few of the double-skill exp "super skill pills", so I tried one of those, plus a power potion and a berserker potion, for an hour, but her progress didn't compare very well with Kaerella's, despite the help, for most of the time, of the appropriate Blessed Reward - 319 skill points.  She continued on afterwards for a while, and got up to a total of 432, so has been able to start getting the special skills sorted out.

For the evening session, it was Kae's turn, and she found her favourite upstairs room free.  While she has plenty of power, berserker, critical, and adrenalin pots, she is a bit short of the platinum super skill pills (after finishing her small supply of the non-platinum ones), so, since they don't stack with the Blessed Rewards, it seemed like a good idea just to keep the pssps for later, and just settle for the 50% Blessed Reward bonus - plus, there was a chance that there might be an improvement to the skill exp from a "Sunday teatime" later.

So, the first hour just used a power potion and a berserker one, and brought in 339 skill points; for the second hour, as the second pot I used an adrenalin, getting 280 sp - and for the third hour I used a critical, or "large crit".  That hour brought in 408 sp, and as a second pot the crit is probably the best choice, but you can't compare the figures directly, as the time when the +50% Blessed Reward was active varies - and at some point in that third hour, for no particular reason and without any announcement, a 50% boost to skill exp got switched on.

There wasn't enough time left before the Quiz for another complete hour, so I continued without the main pots, so that I did have to use Self Heal occasionally and not kill quite as quickly.  By the time I finally left Prokion Temple, Kae had added a total of 1149 skill points, bringing her total saved for future use up just over the 2000 mark.  It means that she is the biggest contributor of guild points in CONFLICT, other than Ikinos, and she ought to overtake him before long, as sp-farming at level 27 in Prokion Temple does donate rather more experience than doing it at a lower level.

As for MistressDomina's sp farming, well, it looks as if that had better wait until Kae has finished her time in Prokion and started to level up, so that MD can convert Kae's armour and weapon into their mage equivalents, and move up to level 27 herself. A +13 weapon ought to kill rather more quickly than a +6 one, for sure

The Quiz went well.  There seemed to be a number of guild people clicked onto Kaerella to follow her, not just MistressDomino.  Luckily, the questions were the ones we all know and love, there weren't any love-oriented ones or anything new to faze us, and everyone got to the end safely, with the usual booty to show for it.  I cunningly placed myself right in the middle of the central carpet after question 21, so that whichever way they put question 22 I'd get respawned in Randol - but they never asked the usual 22nd question for some reason, so people had to either log out or use a recall scroll.

So, Kae logged out, and SirDarth was able to go back to the pet levelling for a while.  MistressDomino, meanwhile, attempted to sell her newly-acquired Heaven Stones in Auzura-1 for half an hour, but without any luck, the quiz must have produced more than the market needed.  The moonstones, and a few moonstone boxes she had, sold though, so that was something.

Keeping Busy -  February 16th

I think all my main characters on Auzura had an outing today.  The moving-around of loot drops in the morning took ages, and included moving the regular selling items, like Tool Aids, Moonstone Boxes, Pan Flutes, Drake Eggs, and Large Attack & Defence Potions, across from MistressDomina to MistressDomino, since the former character does need to have a fair amount of space in her inventory if she's going to go out adventuring.

MrChuckNorris had a fairly undistinguished trip out to Velpist Temple, but got a few skill points, though he'll need plenty more before his level ten skills are maximised, and we can think of getting him moved on to level 20 or so as Kaerella's apprentice.

I downloaded one of the "Valentines: Special Surprise" packages to Kaerella, and opened its 15 Skill Boxes - it also includes 20 Tower Boxes, 20 Recovery Boxes, 15 Experience Boxes, 10 Upgrade Boxes, and 15 Chaos Balls, but I reckon I've already had more than my money's worth, as along with a training skill pill, two packs of 5 skill point boosters, and two effort scrolls I got five super skill pills and five platinum super skill pills - if you ever buy them singly they are 199 and 399 aeria points each respectively, but the whole package was 699 ap, and on a "buy one get one free" offer at the time I bought it yesterday.

So, Kaerella was able to head out to Prokion Temple, and take control of her favourite upstairs back room; using a super skill pill, a power potion and a crit potion, 649 skill points were added in the first hour.  If that had been all Orc Axemen, and all with the 50% extra skill exp from the Blessed Rewards, that would have come from 472 kills, but as the Orc Sergeants there give slightly less skill exp, and the Blessed Reward in question isn't active all the time, the total kill figure is probably more like 600, or ten a minute.

A second hour gave another 625 skill points, and there was time to continue a little longer there after the pots ran out, remembering to use Self Heal occasionally, so that Kae's total store of sp went up 1318 to 3333 in all, which must be approaching a quarter of her target.

MistressDomina had her own session later with the Orc Soldiers, but at level 23 and with just the +6 weapon she is much slower, and her whole session added 184 skill points.  She does have a few skill pills, but it just isn't worth using them yet. Still, getting those points does mean that she now has her current mage skills maximised, and the first level of advanced mining, but she is really just marking time until Kae has finished using the 30/32 armour set and level 29 weapon.

Well, MistressDomina's hatchling has reached level 14 now, and Kaerella's horse has gone up to level 19.  SirDarth of course has had a busy time with the Treants since late morning.  There was one strange moment when the Treant trio he was fighting just vanished while I was watching, one moment Darth was fighting, the next moment they just weren't there.  I took the opportunity to restart the game, to keep the computer from getting laggy with it, and soon had things continuing.

Darth will actually continue while I'm posting this blog, so while at the moment he has used 144 quality stones, plus a few imperfect and flawed ones, thus far today, the total will be higher.  The horse is comfortably into level 33 now - more than halfway through the level in fact, so hopefully level 34 will be reached tomorrow, though it looks as if I won't be able to set him up as early as usual as a shopping expedition is going to take up most of the morning for me.

Game Master Moose did announce, a little after 8:00pm Uk time, that he was setting the pet experience gain to an extra 50%; one must take his word for it, as it's not something that is easy to check, but maybe the counter is clicking up a bit faster than usual, which is nice.  Less exciting than yesterday evening; one thing I didn't mention was that after the Quiz there was an "upgrade event", with a better chance that using Heaven Stones would actually work in upgrading your weapon or armour.  I didn't take advantage of it myself, but Elvastar did - he rather wishes he hadn't, as he broke both the weapons, and thus wasted all the Heaven Stones he'd got from the Quiz.

This evening Elva told us that in future he won't be online on Last Chaos on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, which is a bit of a shame, I always like to have him online to chat to.  It should mean that his broadband allowance lasts out for the whole month, which is something!  In his absence, I'm the Norcaine guild master - he appointed MistressDomina, but, as he is online rather more at the moment, I've transferred the position to SirDarth.

On the pet front, the plan at the moment is to take SirDarth's current horse to level 37, and then exchange him for Kaerella's horse, which may be about level 22 by then.  Kae will then have her mount, and  probably start to train up a hatchling, while Darth can work on his second horse, which when fully trained will probably get passed across to MistressDomina.  I don't know it Darth will get a third horse to train, or whether it will be his turn to farm for skill points - once he has got his skill points sorted out, the idea would be for him to move along to around level 32, and maybe do a little more pet training on Gnolls or Gnoll Lancers down in Merac.  If Darth is ten levels higher, then the training will use rather less quality stones - the further above its owner's level that a pet gets, the hungrier he is!

Further Progress -  February 17th

MistressDomino did some good selling overnight, and a little more while I was out shopping in the morning as well; Kaerella did some mining while I was out, too.  I just had time to set SirDarth up for pet levelling before lunch, and that was about it.

After lunch, it was time for another of Kaerella's usual Prokion Temple upstairs sessions, with super skill pills, power potions, and large crit potions.  Hour one managed 650 skill points, and hour two added 619 - as I did continue a little beyond that, again, the afternoon's total was 1339, which meant 70 sp from around 20 minutes, which shows how much slower things are without using the Item Mall kind of pots.

I'd cheated a little and, instead of sorting out Kae's previous day's loot, just gone across to SirDarth and passed it all on to him - so a bigger sorting-out will be needed tomorrow morning!  Darth did get the horse up to level 34 before too long, and that meant that instead of six starvation points every five minutes, it's now seven.  Still, his time up on the peak of the hills was pretty productive, and the horse got halfway through the new level by mid-evening.

MistressDomina went back to Velpist Temple in Juno, rather than Prokion Temple in Dratan, in the hope of finding some ready-plussed drops - and succeeded.  She had only just reached the doorway into the "Sealed Book of Life" room when a Heaven Stone dropped, and before too long a couple of +4 items had dropped, titan gloves and a knight's shield.  It seems that gloves are the most likely ready-plussed drop in Velpist Temple, at least in the rooms I end up in.

There was a sudden and previously unannounced "upgrade event" towards the end of an hour-long "buy one get one free" offer on the rune of protection II package, but I don't really have anything that needs to be upgraded past +6 at present.

Well, there was a little bit of minor character work, and MistressDomina did some browsing of the merchants in Auzura-1, but that was about it - though I can report that, with a little assistance from DarkPulse101 as Kae wasn't around at the time, Ikinos did get the CONFLICT guild up to level nine this evening.  Iki has been donating some experience too, to get the needed guild points - at his level he can donate a lot quickly, and is well ahead of Kae now on that front.

It is rather restful not being the guild master, I find - though for a couple of days a week now it looks as if I am going to be the Norcaine GM on Auzura, with Elva offline.  I see that Norcaine's main experience/guild point person at present is the level 25 knight BasheR, known over on Cariae as Sheele - it's good to see him active.  He has donated more than twice as many points as MistressDomina, who, at level 23, really needs to wait for Kae to finish her sp-farming, and then move up to level 27, and inherit the better armour and weapon, and hopefully some left-over skill boosting pills.

By the end of the day, SirDarth's horse was approaching 64% of the way through level 34, and despite the later start had got through more quality stones than yesterday... I'd say he still has enough stones for a couple more days, but may need a restock to get the horse all the way to level 37.  Luckily, tool aids seem pretty plentiful drops at present, I noticed that Kae in particular is carrying rather a lot of them, despite MistressDomino's efforts to sell as many as she can.  Darth could have continued a little longer, but at about ten past ten got disconnected, so that seemed a reasonable stopping point.

The 6k Mark -  February 18th

Well, there isn't all that much to report today.  As expected, the day began with some energetic moving-around of items between characters, in particular to clear out Kaerella's inventory, since she does tend to pick up quite a lot if she massacres an afternoon's worth of orcs, so needs plenty of space.  There was no massive new patch for the new week, just the Item Mall changes; this week's packages seem to have a "National Treasure" theme, and that's not a motion picture I am familiar with.  The "Pandora boxes" are still out there - at least I encountered a level 50 Pandora monster in Dratan, close to Shuraine at his oasis, which someone had unleashed.

After things had been moved around, SirDarth was able to head on out to the Treants, and it wasn't too long before his horse reached the dizzy heights of level 35 - only two more levels to go!  Progress is pretty slow, the current level needs 12,248 pet points in all, so it starts to become tempting to spend 399 ap on the "N Treasures: Man's Best Friend" pack, which includes two platinum pet experience potions, as well as a pet name tag, red and gold colouring pills, and 250 each of the perfect stones and green herbs.  Triple pet experience for a couple of hours would be good!  I don't know why they say "you save 200 ap", by my calculations the main items would cost 1095 ap if bought separately.

Kaerella opened another 15 skill boxes, and, while the results weren't quite as impressive as last time, she still got two more ssps and 4 more pssps, along with the unimpressive training spells (3), five-packs of skill boosters (4), and effort scrolls (2).  I must watch out for cheap skill boxes being sold by people in merchant mode.  There is a fairly cheap package of various boxes available from the item mall this week, but, while it does include the upgrade boxes, which are usually considered the most valuable as they can contain runes of protection, lucky smelting stones, and extreme stones, it doesn't include any skill boxes.

So, Kaerella headed for Auzura-3's Prokion Temple as usual this afternoon, and apart from a visit from a knight called Allinus, I had my favourite room to myself... he didn't say anything when I said that the room was really only big enough for one player, especially when I was using some expensive pots, but he left relatively soon, so he must have got the message.

The first hour there added 641 skill points, while the second hour gave 626 - basically it's just a matter of what gaps there are between one of the +50% skill exp Blessed Rewards running out and a new one being picked up.  Most of the time they overlap, as Kae is killing so quickly, but there can be gaps. 

There was about twenty minutes left after the second set of pots ran out, and I did use one of the ten minute effort scrolls - they do say "150%", but they don't give 50% extra, or 150% extra, like the ssps they give double skill exp.  Still, without the crit and power potions, it wasn't really quite like an extra ten minutes of "power hour", and in the twenty minutes or so I just added an extra 70 skill points.  Still, that was enough to get my total reserve of sp up over the 6,000 mark, so we must be almost halfway there, as far as my freeze is concerned - I'll still use the Orc Axemen and Orc Sergeants once I'm unfrozen, to level up a bit, and that will add a bit more skill exp, naturally.

That was the main productive slog of the day, though MistressDomina did go out to Prokion Temple for a fairly short session; I explored deeper into the ground floor, which does in fact link up with the upper floor around the sides as well as via the central stairs.  It's interesting that there are some "mirror image" rooms, but they don't have the same types of monsters in them - for example, I did reach a duplicate of my favourite upstairs room, but it wouldn't be as useful for farming, as this version included some lower-level orcs which were green-named for me.

MistressDomina did head for Velpist Temple for a while too, and was rewarded with a level 31 +3 shirt, but this was one of my early log-out Wednesdays, so the session was not a long one.

SirDarth was able to continue the pet-levelling until the normal log-out time, though; a little after ten in the evening, UK time, I saw that another knight called Matter, of the "IIIIFEARLESSIIII" guild, was doing a bit of pet levelling on my four treants too.  Judging by his armour he wasn't high enough level to battle treants directly, and was relying on them continuing to attack me -  when I looked later, he was lying dead on the grass, one of them must have turned its attention to him.

By the end of the day the horse was just reaching 75% of the way through the level, so we are only two days away from the end of this particular levelling sequence.  Most of the mounts around so far on Auzura must only be level 31 types, it's a shame that the higher-level ones don't have special saddles or something...

Taking a Break - February 19th

The morning started with the usual routine of recent days.  Newly-acquired loot on other chararcters was moved over to Kaerella, and then she passed it, and the items she herself had picked up, on to the appropriate mules, though for some reason my knight armour-carrier has reached his maximum already, so that armour and weapons from level 29 up are currently being carried by SirDarth himself.  With the prevalent drops in Prokion Temple, that means rather a lot of pairs of boots; I have sold a few, but others may end up being useful for making smelting stones to upgrade armour.

After that, SirDarth hurried out to the Treants for some further pet-training, with the horse's level 36 starting to get relatively close, while Kaerella, who had passed some stones across to Darth (including her entire stock of quality stones, 285, which was the same number that he had left), went out to do a little mining.

At about 11:30, UK time, I was downstairs listening to the radio, while SirDarth and Kaerella were at work, when a bleeping began - which I soon discovered came from the burglar alarm.  Once I found the folder with the appropriate code details to key in, I discovered that the cause of its excitement was that the phone line was cut off.  And, checking upstairs, both Last Chaos windows had the "disconnected" pop-up, front and centre.

A check to the TalkTalk call centre (using a friend's mobile phone) assured me, automatically, that there was a general problem with the network around here, and that engineers were even then working on it, and were confident of restoring the service within four hours, hopefully sooner.  So, rather more real-world work got done during the day today than had been originally planned...

It was indeed about four hours later that my link to the outside world(s) returned - there was no drama, no more beeping, or, thankfully, any need to reset the modem etc, I just, after moving a few files about, clicked on the tab for the Last Chaos forums, idly thinking that when the last "shout" was timed would confirm when the line had gone down...only to see the shouts were coming in live!

So, SirDarth beamed out to the Treants again, and it wasn't all that long before his horse reached level 36.  He has lost a third of his levelling time today, I guess, but, as the horse is now over 40% of the way through the level, he ought to reach the target level, 37, tomorrow.

BasheR, at level 25, pet-levels on Bandits in Merac, and they don't lose health at all, he assures me, so that is something Darth should investigate.  Though he might well need to plus up his armour a bit, BasheR's is +3 apparently, while almost all of Darth's is just +1.

There wasn't time for Kaerella to put in an hour before my food break, so instead MrChuckNorris, my level 10 titan, headed for Velpist Temple and its Wandering Zombies, and picked up a few useful plussed low-level items, as well as getting his skill points total up to 120, which then all got quickly spent back in town.  His pet pony reached level 2, which is a start.

After the break, it was Kae's turn for some action.  Unfortunately it was a busier time in Prokion Temple, so that my favourite room was occupied.  I did consider a different sub-server, though Auzura-3 is convenient as it means I can solo party with SirDarth easily, but after checking out a lot of rooms which were either unsuitable (too small, or not the right level of orcs), I found that the fairly small room with the four statues, not far from the top of the stairs, was vacant, and well-populated with Orc Axemen and Sergeants.  It is a rather easily accessible place, so there was the risk that someone else would come in and want to share it, but I decided to pop the usual three pills and potions, and see how an hour there would go.

I didn't have any interlopers, and generally an orc or two would respawn just about in time, but the skill point total for the hour was only 602, which is a bit low, so I decided not to continue there.  I headed deeper in, to my favourite room, and luckily it was now empty, so I settled in there.  The "ssp" (for double skill exp) I'd just finished was my last one, so this time I used a "pssp" (for triple skill exp, but not stacking with the 50% from a Blessed Reward), and got 777 skill points, which works out as a slight improvement in the kill rate by my calculations. 

My inventory was getting full, so I had to quickly use a scroll to return to Dratan City, and put some stuff into storage before returning and starting a third hour, and this time I again got 777 sp.  I decided against going into overtime for a fourth hour, though I did stick around long enough to add a few more skill points, so that when I logged out, Kae had reached the 8250 mark.  And her horse is almost halfway through level 21, too, now.

Looking at the "Wet paint" Last Chaos Wiki, it looks as if Kae, if she is to become an archer, will at present need 15,576 skill points, including her level 30 skill and the "master" levels of armoursmithing and weaponsmithing.  She ought to get some sp along the way, even if she doesn't actively "farm" sp, so I think we can safely say that she is more than halfway through her Prokion Temple stint now.

Ikinos asked me to log in over on Cariae to kick his character, Astarael, from Norcaine there; Renez wants him to join his rogue for a while in a more pk-oriented guild there, though I don't know how Ikinos will find the time to do much over there.  As usual when I check in, nobody in Norcaine was online there, which seems a bit of a shame.

The Great Leap Forward - February 20th

SirDarth took our level 36 horse out to the Butchers in Merac straight away in the morning, and continued with him there until about four o'clock, when the horse finally reached level 37.  After that, it was a matter of trading him across to Kae in exchange for her level 21 horse - and she also passed over a brand new dragon hatchling.

But, we get ahead of ourselves.  MrChuckNorris did have time for a session in Velpist Temple in the late morning, and got a few ready-plussed items and about 60 skill points, which converted into a few new levels of level 10 skills.  And then Kaerella, as she has the mining skills maximised, was the one to mine a selection of quality, imperfect and flawed stones over the lunch break.

To cut a long story relatively short, Kaerella went to our favourite upstairs Prokion Temple room after lunch, and fitted in the usual two hours, using a pssp each time, plus a crit potion and a power potion.  The first hour managed 794 skill points, and the second hour added 768.  After that, as Darth had finished the pet levelling, there was time for some exchanging of items between characters before the food break.

Afterwards, instead of playing around with minor characters. or indeed MistresDomina, I decided to take Kaerella back to Prokion Temple.  SirDarth had managed to get that brand-new drake hatchling up its first two levels, so Kae picked that up on the way, and Darth switched to levelling his new horse, which managed to get into level 23 before the end of the evening.

Luckily the usual room was still vacant, so Kae continued where she'd left off, managing 803 skill points - followed by 723, and then, for the day's fifth "power hour", 737...a wide variation.  Not having the attack and defence buffs from a relatively high-level pet probably explains the lower than average figures for hours four and five, while having for the first time the attack and defence "horse buffs" right at the start for five minutes or so would go some way to explaining hour three's higher figure.  And of course the Blessed Rewards for healing, defence and extra attack power come and go unpredictably.

In all, including a few minutes without the extra potions, Kae added 3,903 skill points today, taking her over the 12,000 spare sp mark, so not very more hours of sp farming will be needed - I hope!

Elvastar was around very little today, though he did take back the guild master position in Norcaine for Ratel from SirDarth, who'd been acting as "caretaker" GM; Ikinos wasn't around much as CONFLICT guild master either, come to that.  Well, it was Friday night, after all!  RIOT, Renez's rogue, put in a brief appearance, asking who it was he wasn't supposed to kill (SemperFidelis and Norcaine guild members, I assured him), while on the Norcaine side I was discussing with BasheR what strategies we should adopt to actually level up without dying too often. once our experience gain is unfrozen.  After all, resurrection scrolls are expensive...

A new "upgrade love" event has been called for this weekend, so Kae was careful to register for it in the appropriate forum thread when it was unlocked at 4:00pm, UK time.  I'm assuming that it won't be the old-style "wait around for hours to be teleported to a GM" thing, but, like the "buy one get one free" offers these days, will just involve a Chaos Smelting Stone magically appearing in my Item Mall records section.  It's nice that they are doing a freebie like that, anyway.  It was strange, though, the forum posting said "If you buy the 'N. T: Chaos Combo' package from the Item Mall within the sign up period(s), you'll get a package sent to you that contains 3 ROP I, and 3 ROP II for FREE!" - but there was no online announcement to that effect when the time came, so I played it safe and didn't invest.

Anyway, a productive day - Kaerella has her level 37 mount at last, and very nearly enough skill points to get unfrozen and start levelling.  So, soon it will be MistressDomina's turn to start skill exp farming in earnest, if she is going to become a high-level character eventually.

In the Deep Freeze - February 21st

SirDarth went out pet-levelling bright and early again, to the level 28 Butchers in Merac, and moved the horse along a bit; shortly after he reached level 25, though, a Norcaine guildie called Stavanic came along with a brand-new straight-from-Jajan pony and asked me to get him up a few levels, so that sidetracked me for a little while.  He had spoken about taking him to around level ten, but decided to claim him back in mid-evening at level five.

Kaerella did head for Prokion Temple after coffee, with a view to doing a "power hour", but the back room was already in use.  It was only the knight Allinus, and he wasn't using a pssp - since he'd had no scruples about barging in on me I could have joined in, but it wouldn't have been the ideal circumstances for me to start a pssp etc.  So I just killed a few Orc Axemen in the corridors, enough for 40 skill points, and logged out.

Instead, MistressDomina had an hour or so at Prokion Temple; at level 23 the back room isn't for her, she just fought the Orc Soldiers.  Without boosters, 127 skill points wasn't a bad score, and it allowed her, when she was back in Randol, to get the final two levels of Advanced Mining, and the first of the three levels of Advanced Herbalism.  So, she still has a fair way to go, banking skill points in the special skills, before she starts sp-farming in earnest.

After lunch the back room was free, so Kaerella settled in there; the first hour again was pretty good, with 831 skill points coming in - the second hour was less exciting at 739 sp, partly because SirDarth lost his connection and so there was no "solo party boost" for a few minutes, and partly because I did have to do a bit of chatting, mainly on Darth's computer, which slowed things down.  After continuing for a little while after the pots ran out, Kae's total sp gain for the day reached 1651, for a total of 13806 skill points unused, which seemed to me enough to be going on with.

Unfortunately, I later found out that Ikinos has managed to get himself a temporary ban, probably around ten days, for "hacking" - a groundless accusation made maliciously apparently, I have no idea why the GMs saw fit to ban him without any evidence.  So unless Kae leaves CONFLICT and moves into Norcaine, with MistressDomina making the reverse journey when Icky is back, Kae is stuck for the next week or so, no levelling for her...only Ikinos, the guild master, can freeze or unfreeze the experience gain of the guild members.

GMJediMike had one of his special lunch hours today, from 1:00 to 2:00 PST, 9:00pm to 10:00pm UK time - double drop rate, and for the second half, double chance of upgrading with heaven stones.  I did have a +6 weapon I wanted to get to +10, so found a package of five runes of protection I, and 5 heaven stones, and went to the guild hall - things were a bit vague as to the exact starting time, a CONFLICT guildie was pretty quick off the mark and didn't do too well, breaking a +7 level 71 shirt, but, well, I got to +9 at least.  The second stone I used was a failure which decreased the plus to six again, but the others worked okay.  It was lucky I used the runes, or that failure would probably have broken the weapon altogether.

Still, MistressDomino was able to grab a few minutes and sell some heaven stones at a million each in Auzura-1 - nine out of ten sold, so that was a nice bonus, as that is a bit of a high price.  I saw others trying for 1.25 or even 1.5 million, but hey, I'm not that greedy...

It was a busy time, as there was finally a "BOGO" offer (buy one, get one free) on the "National Treasures: Man's Best Friend" 399 ap package - two pet experience potions, a pet name tag, 250 green herbs, 250 perfect stones, and red and yellow pet colouring pills.  So I bought a package on the Barbarienne account, and transferred it across to SirDarth, where all the items reached his inventory safely. 

A few minutes later, just after ten, there was a mass disconnection - and when Darth logged back in, the new items had vanished from his inventory.  The package wasn't still in Barbarienne's records section when I checked either, I'll have to see if the second package arrives there safely, and then put in an official complaint, sigh.  The aeria points had still gone from her total balance.

Not a perfect day, then.  Oh well, who knows what tomorrow will bring?

The Return of the Jedi - February 22nd

SirDarth started with the Butchers quite early in the morning, for a Sunday, and did some useful work levelling the horse, before it was time to move items around again, redistributing the loot.  Since Kaerella had been picking up lots of level 29 weapons, mainly for sorcerers, it seemed a good idea to "plus up" Darth's armour a bit after that.  While level 26 and 27 smelting stones would have been quite good enough, the fact that one gets two stones per weapon made using the level 29 ones a more economical option.  And, with about a 50% success rate, I did get all his armour, including his Royal Shield, to +3.

So, with his armour thus improved, and with a level 26 horse adding an armour buff, it seemed like a good idea to try out the level 34 Berserkers, even though they are a full twelve levels ahead of SirDarth.  My initial impression wasn't too good, as the monster's first few blows did put a significant dent in Darth's health bar, but things soon settled down, and I can report that for him a Berserker lasts, well, as long as he does.

That is rather convenient, especially at this sort of level of pet.  Much higher, and the starvation bar will go down pretty quickly, so that relatively frequent visits to the computer will be needed to stop the poor horse starving anyway - while a lower level pet might not contribute enough towards the defence figure, which with a level 25 horse and +3 armour was 798.  Later I used a few lucky smelting stones to get the armour to +4 so that I should be able to level a "younger" pet on Berserkers, but hey, the Butchers last the best part of an hour each, so it is no great problem if I have to start a pet with them.  A level 27 horse, and +4 armour (though still a +3 shield), moved the defence figure on to 826.

One problem Darth had did involve him dying while I wasn't looking, however, so he has lost the tiny amount of experience on level 22 he had, and probably two or three skill points.  It was a wandering level 50 Pandora Beast that did the deed... when I returned from respawning in town I did consider trying to get my revenge, but decided that that was a bit over-ambitious.  Argoth, Elva's level 32 War Master type titan, did make the trip out and kill it, reporting that "56k gold was worth the effort."

Luckily the horse hadn't been killed, and reached level 27 soon afterwards.  By the end of the evening he was a little over a third of the way through that level.

MistressDomina took a trip out to Prokion Temple in the afternoon, and managed to amass 221 skill points from the Orc Soldiers and Orc Fighters, enough to finish her herb-gathering skills.  For part of the time she was in her usual corridor-type area, and then later she was in one of the round rooms on the way to the staircases, along with a sorcerer and a titan.

For the evening session, Kaerella went off to Prokion herself, with a view to having perhaps one last "power hour" in her favourite upstairs back room.  It was, however, in use, but Kae was invited to join the party, and agreed; the existing two members were both members of the Jedi guild, a level 31 titan called KillerInstinct and a level 22 rogue called Swift. 

So, we fought for a reasonably long session there, with occasional times when KillerInstinct returned to town to get skills, or at least check how many skill points he needed to maximise that all-important level 30 skill, or Swift had to go afk a bit.  The "Sunday teatime" bonus today was 50% extra experience, which was no good for poor frozen Kae of course, but did help Swift to zoom up to level 25, and get new skills herself.

There is a huge difference between fighting in that room with a crit potion and a power potion, and fighting there without such extras - it must have been well over an hour, but Kae only added 133 skill points.  It did make a change to be responsible, as a healer, for actually doing some healing - keeping a level 22 rogue alive with level 29 Orc Sergeants around wasn't easy, but there were no disasters.

The second, "free" "Man's Best Friend" package did arrive in the appropriate Records section, I can report, so I am liable to have red and/or golden horses to ride around on, and Kae's drake-in-training, still a hatchling at the moment, will probably get to be named SirFrancis, like his Cariae counterpart.  A "contact us" request has been sent to Aeria to attempt to reclaim the first package, which went missing from SirDarth's inventory; so far I've had a copy of my request relayed by email, but no official response with a Request Tracker number.  Well it is Sunday...

I went back on a different character to that Prokion back room, and Swift and KillerInstinct had returned.  This time I didn't party up, but we shared the room, which without using special potions was again big enough for all three of us.  I think Swift may still be a bit underpowered, without the new armour she will soon be able to wear, she did have to retreat occasionally.  And then, at just about the same time as yesterday (9:00pm UK time), there was a mass disconnection...

Well, that didn't steal anything from my inventory that I am aware of, and my pet pony wasn't nibbled on at all, so it was no big deal; like most people I just waited around for the Quiz at half past.  There is always the worry that new questions will have been added, but luckily the questions were still our old familiar favourites, which we learned over the first few weeks they were asked.  The only drama I had was when MistressDomina got unhitched from following Kaerella automatically, so that some dual running-about had to be done before I got things set up again.

Almost everyone got through safely I think, the only casualty was Norcaine guild member Stavanic, who was rather annoyed to lose out, to a lag issue I think, and was vowing to complain.  To make his day worse he was a bit too eager to make use of the "200% upgrade event" which was promised to start at ten, after borrowing a couple of heaven stones off me,  I advised him to wait for the official announcement, but he went ahead at about 10:01, and his sword went down instead of up.  The first announcement we got didn't come until about ten past:  "Upgrade is currently 150%", followed by "We are working on the payout, so don't worry you will get a chance for 200%!"  That's the thing with these events, you do need to hold back, and wait until you are absolutely sure that the conditions are right. It wasn't until half past that "175% Upgrade" was announced, and I assume that 200% was only reached for the last few minutes of the hour.

Beastly Happenings - February 23rd

Ikinos did actually get to the Quiz last night, with a newly-created account and character, a level six knight called Ikigotbanned, so at least he didn't miss out on his recommended weekly allowance of heaven stones.  The "upgrade probability event" did reach 200% after about 45 minutes, before going down again, and I think it continued a little way into a second hour, finishing with a bit more 200%.

SirDarth had rather mixed fortunes in Merac today, fighting the Berserkers.  Occasionally a Pandora's Box would appear close by; one produced a level 50 Pandora Beast, so some speedy running away was called for, another yielded the less-than-generous prize of ten small healing potions, and a third conjured up a level 30 Pandora's Beast, which dropped only a small amount of cash, no more than an ordinary level 30 monster would, when slain.

It's unfortunate that the released level 50 type Beasts do seem to wander around after being released; I came back to find that SirDarth had been killed again by one such, and this time the horse was dead too, so that cost 148,176 gold for the "unsealing".  Still, otherwise the pet-levelling made reasonable progress; the horse reached level 28 not long before its temporary demise, and got to level 29 just on seven o'clock in the evening, almost exactly the time that Kaerella's hatchling reached level 10.  By the end of the evening we ought to reach halfway through level 29, I think.

A little later, there was more drama, with another wandering Pandora's Beast - luckily I noticed what was happening fairly quickly.  It was also probably lucky that it attacked the horse first rather than SirDarth, as horses do lose their health rather more gradually.  A little running and a quick unequipping of the horse avoided further trouble, with the horse just down 18 in health.

I have been a bit vague about "minor characters" here, so must now admit that I do have a rogue, who has now reached level 27, and spent the afternoon, Kaerella-style, in that back room upstairs in Prokion Temple.  She too was using a level 29 +13 weapon, a crossbow instead of a healer-type longbow, and she didn't use skills, not having an equivalent to Kae's "Fast Bow Fixing" to speed up her attack rate.  A pssp, a power potion, and a crit potion means we can compare the rate of skill point gain pretty directly, and while Kae did well to reach 650 sp per hour generally, my rogue got 938 sp in her first hour, and 878 in her second one. 

The room had actually been in use when she first arrived, so she did some fighting in nearby corridors, getting 20 sp and a heaven stone, before returning and finding it free.  The Jedi rogue Swift turned up right at the end of the second hour - there had been a couple of interruptions from healers, but nothing too serious, the second one, Azuer, said she needed the "Cracked Axe" quest items, so I dropped five for her and she went away happy.  I continued for a few minutes after the pots ran out, and KillerInstinct arrived too, so I left the Orcs there in good hands. 

My total skill point gain from the afternoon was 1901 - almost enough to get all the special skills, I need another 72 sp I think for the final kind of processing.  After that, well, my rogue can start stocking up on unused skill points.  Assuming that she goes ranger (crossbow) rather than assassin (daggers), she'll need less than 13,000 sp for the currently available level 30 to level 100 skills.

After the usual food break, Kaerella headed for Prokion Temple.  Swift was still in the back room, along with the knight Allinus, so Kae ended up just with the Axemen and Sergeants close to the central stairs.  They were quite enough, as the only object of the visit was to get Kae's skill point total above the 14k mark, which adding 133 sp easily accomplished.

Then it was the turn of MrChuckNorris to go out into Juno's rolling countryside.  The Pandora's Box he opened contained 50,000 gold, which was a useful boost for him.  He had a narrow escape in a different way though, he completed the final set of "get one each of stones, herbs and energy" quests for Lorraine, but luckily I realised in time that any of the three 650 experience quest rewards would be enough to move him from 98.12% of the way through level ten to the start of level eleven, which would have stopped him from entering the Guardian system before his experience is unfrozen.

After the Sasquatch-bashing, MrChuck headed for Velpist Temple and its Wandering Zombies, and ended up with 172 skill points to spend, as well as a +4 level 13 rogue crossbow, to replace the old +3 one I gave to silentrogue a few days ago.  I headed for the Master Titan (skills trainer), only to find that I was 3 points short of the 86 sp needed for the top level of Move Mastery, which not unnaturally increases a titan's movement speed.  So a quick dash out to the nearest clump of Sasquatches was needed, to get the missing points. 

After that, I find that MrChuck just needs 42 more skill points to "max out" all the level five and ten skills by getting the fifth level of the personal dungeon skill Nitro Bomber.  The level fifteen skills will need another 456 though, passive skills to increase attack and defence and the rather useful buff Battle Roar, which increases the target's physical attack by 20 for fifteen minutes.

The evening ended with someone spawning the level 42 spider boss Baal just outside the north gate of Auzura-3's Randol, an imposing sight when you're level 10.  Quite a few low-level people got a bit over-ambitious, and died, before someone of an appropriate level came along and killed it.  The "Summon Baal" book costs 199 aeria points to buy, I hope whoever did it got their money's worth!

They Grow Up So Fast... - February 24th

I had to go out in the morning, so it was lunchtime before SirDarth went out to battle the Berserkers.  Before too long however the horse reached level 30, which is a good step forward, and returned his health to 100 after the 18 that got nibbled off him yesterday.  He gets through five starvation points, or one quality stone, every five minutes now, so it would take an hour and forty minutes to go from 100% down to zero.

The Pandora Beasts seemed a bit less active today.  Darth did open one Pandora Box, on the feeling that if he didn't some passer-by would, and while it didn't drop any treasure, it was only a level 30 Beast that it spawned, which Darth was able to kill pretty easily.

After lunch it was my rogue's turn to head for Prokion Temple again, after doing a little mining.  The back room was free, so the trio of platinum super skill pill, crit potion, and power potion were started - and the first hour brought in 899 skill points.  The second hour added another 882, and staying around a little while longer got the day's total up to 1878.  That knight Allinus showed up a couple of times, but didn't stay very long on either occasion, presumably realising that there weren't enough orcs around for two while I was using pots.

Back in Randol, my rogue was able to get the last level of Quality Stone processing to complete her "special" skills, which left her with her first 1806 skill points towards the total she needs to amass in Prokion Temple for future skills.  It looks as if I'll need to buy some more pssps though, either in the Item Mall or from other players.  We must see what special packages the new week brings...

After the food break, MistressDomina, who still needs a lot of the special skills, took a turn in Prokion Temple battling the Orc Soldiers, which are her level, but didn't stay very long there - and then went off to kill some Drakes for a change, getting enough Green Orbs for a minor quest along the way.  One thing that did happen during her time with the Orc Soldiers was that her hatchling reached level 16, and has now become a larger, sleeker drake - my rogue's pony also reached level 16 today, as it happens, and turned into a larger, rather elegant horse.  So that's today's Blog title explained, heheh.

A special "Mardi Gras" event was promised at the Auzura-3 Juno arena and, sure enough, GMRaccooonPD turned up at a little after eight, UK time, and handed out firecrackers - then there were some enjoyable "conga" type races around town in a group, firing off firecrackers as we went.  At the arena itself she spawned a few waves of the level 100 Screaming Zombies, which MD wasn't really up to handling - a few respawns in the middle of town, and runs back, ensued.  Things did rather peter out in the end, but it was fun while it lasted.

As the drop rate had been doubled for an hour, MrChuckNorris headed out to Velpist Temple again, and after two level 16 rogue Traveler Shirts without any enhancement at all, finally got a +4 one.  The drops didn't seem that spectacular, though.  At least he got the skill points needed for that last level of the personal dungeon skill, so now he is all maxxed out at level ten.  Except for all those special skills, of course!

SirDarth had continued fighting his Berserker all through the evening, and hopefully will continue a little while longer after I post this.  He has certainly got his horse a good way through level 30, I don't know if he'll be able to stay on long enough to get to level 31 tonight, though.

Levelling - February 25th

The new Last Chaos week doesn't seem to have brought any changes, just new packages in the item mall - and, thankfully, the package of take-a-chance type boxes this week, "Mardi Gras: Chance!", does include 20 skill experience boxes, as well as 20 experience boxes, 15 tower boxes, 15 upgrade boxes, and 10 recovery boxes.  I resolved to wait for a "BOGO" offer, and didn't have all that long to wait, until mid-evening in fact.  This time it was a "buy two get two free" offer, which seemed reasonable, as quite a few of the boxes do contain very useful items, so I spent my 1398 aeria points, and moved the packages over to my rogue.

I opened all 40 of the skill experience boxes from the paid-for packages, and got 4 of the not very useful training skill pills, 10 of the ten-minute effort scrolls, 7 of the five-packs of skill exp boosters - and 7 platinum super skill pills (in theory worth 399 ap each if bought from the Item Mall separately), plus no less than 12 of the (non-platinum) super skill pills.  So let's hope that Auzura retains its "recommended" status a while longer, as the Blessed Reward enhancing skill exp stacks with the ssp...

SirDarth went out to the Berserkers first thing in the morning; he did manage to get his horse to level 31 at the very end of last night's session, and had got him just over halfway through the new level today when Stavanic asked if his pony could be levelled up some more.  This youngster started today at level 6, which meant that the armour buff he gave was too low to allow Darth to fight the Berserkers without losing health, so instead I had to return to the Butchers, which, not being as high-level, don't hit as hard, though Darth's attacks do kill them after a while.

When the pony had reached level 10 I returned to town, and my rogue transferred 400 more quality stones over to combat horse starvation, and seven lucky smelting stones, which meant that I could upgrade Darth's armour from +4 to +5, and his shield from +3 to +5, adding 33 to the all-important Defence stat.  The four extra levels of the "Armour Increase (horse)" got the buff up to 100, so that in all with a level 10 pony SirDarth's Defence is now 749, and that, I found, was enough to fight Berserkers with. So it looks as if the pony will get an overnight session, as a full 100 points of food keeps starvation at bay for 8 hours and 20 minutes, which ought to be just long enough.

Stavanic did log on early in the evening (UK time), just after Darth had gone back out, to ask how the levelling was going, and was happy to know we'd reached level 10.  He hadn't expected to be back home that early, but his wrestling class had left him with a possible concussion, so he had been sent home, and was going to be taken off to the local hospital for a check-up, as a precaution.  I do hope everything goes well...

MrChuckNorris, my titan, had had a session in Velpist Temple in the late morning, adding 131 skill points, and getting as usual a few ready-plussed low-level armour pieces from the Wandering Zombies.  After that it was his turn to try the "Streia Temple" personal dungeon at level ten, and he did get through it safely - I hadn't expected him to beat the level 30 Balrog, but he managed it, winning himself 3,000 gold and a moonstone.

In the afternoon my rogue did make the trip to Prokion Temple, but the back room was taken, which meant that she just fought assorted Orc Axemen for a while here and there, so she's still under the 2k sp mark.  Maybe I should try Auzura-4 next time, though that won't be tomorrow, as I will be busy during the day.

MrChuck has now been "unfrozen", and taken Kaerella as his Guardian.  He celebrated with a return to Velpist Temple, and went straight from level 10 all the way to level 15 in one session, starting with the Wandering Zombies and moving on to the upstairs room there I've used quite a few times in the past, which is well off for level 12 Ancient Zombies and level 14 Berserk Zombies - though its level 21 Skeleton Soldiers have to be avoided generally, as they do hit rather hard if you're level 14 or below.

So, it was a productive session, followed by two more trips through the personal dungeon, and my titan added another 110 skill points.  Using 240 sp got him all five levels of the buff Battle Roar, and the first four levels of each of the two passive skills, Weapon Mastery (attack) and Harden Skin (defence)... the catch is that the fifth levels of those two will cost a further 108 sp each, but hopefully his next session or two will bring enough points for at least one of those.  Now that he is in the Guardian program, the clock is ticking, he has to reach level 20 within 10 days, or he doesn't get the "event weapon", and Kae won't get the ten Reputation points.

There was another disconnection this evening, not long after nine, UK time, again.  Which reminds me, I finally got a response to my complaint about losing the pet "Man's Best Friend" package, after sending it for the third time - three responses, in fact, within ten minutes of each other.  So I've sent off the details they ask for, almost all of which of course were in the original message, and must now wait to see what happens. But today's disconnection gave SirDarth the opportunity to move over to the newer computer a little earlier than usual, and he got another two levels of "Armour Increase (horse)"  (well, they actually call it "Amor", but close enough, right?) as well while he was in town, taking the Defence stat to 759.  And so he settled in for the night...

Prokion and Velpist - February 26th

SirDarth pet-trained through the night, though when I checked in the (very) early morning he had lost his Berserker - he hadn't killed it, or there'd have been a message about experience and skill exp gained, either it just wandered away or, more likely, some passing pest killed it.  Still, by the time that Stavanic came along just before lunch, his pony had become a horse and was level 17, so he was pretty happy with that.

After that SirDarth was able to go back to levelling our own horse, which reached level 32 before too long - now he loses six starvation points per five minutes. so he certainly gets through the quality stones a lot faster than Stavanic's pet did.

Kaerella was doing some mining, and then some herb farming, and then some energy gathering, while I was busy downstairs, so nothing very worthy of mention happened until the evening.

So, it was a short day as far as actual playing went - I need to sort out the various loot between the appropriate characters, and just sell the items that I've got too many of.  Prokion Temple seems to specialise in boots, last time my rogue had a long session there she ended up with all six types of level 32 footwear, and at least one level 37 type too.  Some level 29 weapons drop there, the rogue crossbow is a pretty frequent bit of loot, but I don't remember seeing the rogue daggers, for example, there at all.

Anyway, my rogue headed out for the Auzura-4 Prokion Temple, only to find it just as busy as the Auzura-3 version.  My favourite back room was in use every time I checked, but the smaller statue room was free, so I used that, and popped a super skill pill, a power potion and a crit potion, and set to work.  The "ssp", as previously mentioned, only doubles the skill exp gain, but it does stack with the appropriate Blessed Reward, so as long as one happens to pick up that Reward and keep it active most of the time, one gets something approaching 2.5 times the basic skill exp.

The first hour therefore didn't give as many sp as I'd have got with the "pssp", but 691 seemed a good total to me, a number that Kaerella would have been happy to get with the more expensive skill pill.  I went on for a second hour, and managed to get 712 more skill points.  After that I checked out the back room again, but it was still busy, so I just finished the current Blessed Reward skill exp bonus, and, with a total sp gain for the session of 1428 sp, logged off.

There was time to give my titan MrChuckNorris another session in that Velpist Temple upstairs room, fighting its Ancient Zombies, Berserk Zombies, and Skeleton Soldiers.  He was lucky enough to get a useful drop early on, a level 21 +3 titan shirt, which he was able to start wearing as soon as he reached level 16.  He continued there until his pony levelled up, and he reached level 18, so he's well on schedule to successfully finish his apprenticeship.

Back in town, he was able to get the fifth level of the Weapon Mastery skill, as he'd got just enough skill points for it from the session.  He opened the level 14 and level 18 treasure chests that Lorraine provides, both of which supplied the cash option, and got the new quests that were available, though I'm not sure that he's going to bother to collect Horn Beast Eyes or Treant Fruits, though the character of mine that holds that sort of item in his inventory, a level 2 knight called CALM, might at least have the Treant Fruits he needs.

One quest though was a nice simple one, just walk a few yards and speak to a different character - and that had a reward, level 17 +1 boots.  Normally such rewards are pretty much useless, as they offer items one grade below the best that could be worn, but as Mr Chuck hasn't really bothered much with armour, except for drops, level 17 +1 boots were rather an improvement over the level 1 starter boots he'd been wearing up to now.  The level 21 shirt replaced the level 6 one that one is automatically given at the end of the tutorial dungeon, come to that.

So, tomorrow's priority will be to try to get my rogue to Prokion Temple early enough to get that back room for an hour or two, while if Mr Chuck gets a chance to play, what he needs to do is make the run out to Prokion Temple and get the location on his memory scroll.  A session with the level 17 Ghouls and the level 19 Mummies might well get him all the way to level 20, though, after getting the final level 15 skill, there are unlikely to be many skill points left over for the new level 20 skills, which are an attack, a personal buff, and a passive skill to increase one's hit rate, which I see need 456 sp between them.

And throughout it all SirDarth kept going, so that by the time he logs out for the night his horse should be more than two-thirds of the way through level 32, which can't be bad.  As the horse only takes 1 hour and 23 minutes now to starve completely, there's no chance of Darth doing another overnight session!

Out to Prokion - February 27th

Getting the loot sorted out between the various characters seemed to take ages this morning, but eventually it was finished, and SirDarth was able to go off and bash a Berserker in Merac, and level his horse.  It was lunchtime when the horse reached level 33; there had been minor excitement earlier when the Grand Red Dragon was sighted; the rogue Kojak was probably the reason it arrived, as she was killing the local Bandits and Berserkers fairly rapidly.  Neither of us was able to interest anyone in coming to kill it; I did log on briefly as Kaerella in case anyone in the Conflict guild was up and about, but nobody responded there, so we left the dragon alone, and eventually it went on its way.

Once I was able to start playing properly, it was MrChuckNorris who got loaded; the moving-about of loot had included moving some armour items over to him (as well as three Treant Fruits), so he was now relatively well equipped, including a +4 level 17 hammer to replace the +4 level 13 sword he'd used for so long.

The first thing to do was for him to make the run out to Prokion Temple, and, using a potion of haste, that was accomplished without incident.  Going along one of the midway corridors, I went around and found a selection of Ghouls and Mummies, and set to work - and it wasn't a huge amount of time before I went up from level 18 to level 20, and got my special titan "event weapon", a sword with the charming name of "Spirit Murderer".

I continued up until lunchtime.  Stavanic had logged on by then, and came to join me in Prokion Temple; I think that, as he lives in the USA, he must get up early and play a little before breakfast.  He joined the party - I told him that it was nearly my lunchtime, and he very kindly volunteered to keep on fighting in the party, while Mr Chuck stood nearby close to a wall, so I gained some lovely free experience and skill exp from that.  He was complaining gently afterwards that I'd had all the good drops, and asked for at least a couple of the Tool Aids I'd been awarded, so I handed over five.

He had to leave soon afterwards, but I continued for a little while, and reached level 23, so that later I was able to ask Ratel to freeze my experience gain, as well as unfreezing Stavanic's.  As the 50% extra skill exp gain had been left on from the early-morning Asia/Pacific Happy Hour, I'd got over 500 skill points by then, so I was able to maximise all the titan level twenty skills except for one fifth level.

But it was time for my rogue to have her own outing to Prokion Temple, and this time my favourite back room was free, so I set to work, and got 772 skill points in the first hour, followed by 764 in the second hour.  I stayed around afterwards long enough to get her total of unused skill points to the 5000 mark, so she's doing well.  KillerInstinct did turn up about twenty minutes before the end of my second hour, but when I explained that I was on pots and needed the whole room, he quickly understood and left.

While the 50% extra "Happy Hour" skill exp did stack with the Blessed Rewards bonus, so that, while he had a Blessed Reward active Mr Chuck was getting double skill exp, unfortunately they didn't both stack with a super skill pill's 100% extra, so the Blessed Reward didn't count while my rogue was on the ssp.  Still, a reliable 150% extra was useful, for the two hours, and the other types of Blessed Reward, especially the one that increases one's attack, must have helped.

Since Mr Chuck still needed about 17 skill points for the last 108 sp level of the Cannon Spike attack skill, I took him out to the Treants for a while.  A Pandora Box out there dropped five moonstones, which was nice - SirDarth, meanwhile, got one that dropped 50,000 gold, also useful.  Mr Chuck moved along to the Great Horn Beasts, as he has a quest which needs some Horn Beast Eyes.  He didn't get any of those, but another Pandora Box showed up, which disgorged ten small healing potions.

Once his pony had reached level 9, and he'd got the 108 skill points he needed, he went back to town.  He also managed to get the "Spirit Murderer" sword to +3 in only three attempts, which was very good.  Anything above +3 will need, for a start, three Lucky Smelting Stones, so I'll need to download some of those soon.

After the European "Happy Hour", unfortunately, they remembered to switch off the 50% extra skill exp. We will keep our fingers crossed that they leave it on later tonight after the US version of the "HH", which has been known to happen.

Well, Kaerella hasn't done very much lately, since her experience gain is still frozen until Ikinos can log back into the game, so it seemed a good idea to take her out to, of course, Prokion Temple, after completing a couple of quests in Juno, which meant that, like Mr Chuck before her, she fought quite a few Treants and Great Horn Beasts.  It was great to be able to "mount up" and ride out there quickly, though Kae's mount does get hungry quickly. The back room in Prokion Temple was actually free, and I was sorely tempted to start a power potion and a crit one, for an hour of full-rate killing, but I don't have unlimited supplies of those potions, so I decided against it. 

As it happened I did stay there for a little over an hour, and got her skill point total up by 170, so that she now has 14.2k of sp.  I did get a heaven stone, which always makes a trip seem worthwhile - and stayed there long enough to get her hatchling up to level eleven.

Kaerella's career as a Guardian got a boost from Mr Chuck reaching level twenty so quickly - and now Elvastar's mage Athema has signed up.  I had assumed that that character of Elva's was a rogue, as on Cariae, but he had decided to make the change.  I was able to lend her a few bits of low-level armour, and a +4 weapon, which she may find useful

Since Kae spent most of her time levelling up her original pony, the hatchling is a little low-level and its buffs thus not as good as they might be - so, now that he can at least provide enough of a defence buff to get SirDarth's total defence up over 800, it seemed like a good idea to lend him to Darth for an overnight session, and get him a bit of a boost, assuming nobody comes along and kills his Berserker.  So, the plan is for SirDarth to switch from his horse to Kae's hatchling last thing tonight, and work on through.  It looks as if the horse will have got more than 90% of the way through level 33 by then...

A Varied Day - February 28th

Actually, SirDarth's horse did just reach level 34 last night before I switched over to Kaerella's drake, which means we are now on to seven units of food per five minutes, or total starvation in 71 minutes.  The night passed uneventfully, and by breakfast time the level 11 hatchling had turned into a level 16 drake.

I think it was just as well that Kae had managed to get that eleventh level, as to begin with last night Darth's health bar did tend to fluctuate a little, so he did need all of that armour buff.  As Darth had been carrying the hatchling for an hour or two, but still with the horse equipped, the hatchling's degree of sympathy had probably dropped by a few percentage points, which would have reduced the defence buff a little initially.

MistressDomino had done a fine job overnight in Auzura-1, selling item drop boosters, large attack and defence potions, moonstones, heaven stones, pan flutes, drake eggs, tool aids, and a few accessories - the only item she didn't sell out of was moonstone boxes, and she sold about half her stock of those.  As the Orcs in that back room are quite generous with their drops, and I'd not had an overnight selling session for a while, there was a good amount of things to sell, so now it's a matter of being on the lookout for a good weapon, and armour set or two, and maybe a good accessory like a Stone of Shadow if it's not too expensive.

Kaerella did some mining in the late morning, using twenty hammers and tool aids to get 540 quality stones.  She then went to Darth, who was busy levelling the horse again, and passed him 500 of those, and got her drake back.  Then over lunch she did a bit of random mining to boost her supplies of assorted stones slightly - after all, when she rides around on her mount, he is currently ten levels above her, so uses six food points every five minutes.

In the afternoon, my rogue headed for Prokion Temple, and found the back room free, so settled in there.  I only had one visitor during the two hours, a sorcerer called DI3HARD who reluctantly ("I guess") agreed that, with me on pots, there wasn't room for two people there.  Yesterday's 50% extra skill exp wasn't continuing, as it sometimes does, but the Blessed Reward was active for most of the time, so I added 730 and 726 skill points, and stayed on afterwards long enough to get to the 6.5k mark.  My horse reached level 19, so when I got back to Randol I made sure to update the attack buff.  I thought I'd made plenty of room in my inventory before going out, but I ended up with only two spaces, and 11% overweight.

In the evening my titan MrChuckNorris headed for his part of Prokion Temple and the Orc Soldiers, and got 242 skill points - his pony reached level ten, so it won't be too long before he qualifies for one of SirDarth's overnight pet-training sessions.   After that MistressDomina had a similar session, though in a different room, and I'm sure that it took her rather longer to get her 195 skill points, even though her armour and weapon are slightly more upgraded than Mr Chuck's current items.

Elva's mage Athema was in the solo party for a while, and gained quite a few levels, reaching level 18 by the time she logged off for an early night.  BasheR won't be on tomorrow, and thus will miss the Quiz in the evening, which he isn't too happy about, but of course Elvastar will be there, and as usual we'll be hoping for no crashes, mass disconnections, or new questions we don't know the answers to.  The Halloween event ended on a Tuesday, turkeys are called Tom, that sort of thing we now know...

MrChuckNorris hung around Randol for a while, as he had made a couple of Item Mall purchases that actually qualified for entry into the day's Raffle, and was mistaken for a game master by XxsorcxX, but I had to tell him that I was no relation to [Chuck-Norris], a special event character recently introduced and presumably played by a GM.  XxsorcxX had had an account stolen, and wanted it banned, so I could only advise a trip to the forum and its shoutbox, and indeed its "contact us" system.  Not that I seem to be getting anywhere with my complaint about the vanishing pet pack, but still...

As usual the drawing of the raffle took ages, and Mr Chuck headed out to the Great Horn Beasts to pass the time, gaining 15 more skill points as well as a Horn Beast Eye and a Horn Beast Hide needed for a couple of quests - they do seem to be rare drops now. SirDarth was still active with his Berserker; it was between seven and eight o'clock UK time when the horse reached level 35, and by the end of the evening we were around 30% of the way into the penultimate level.