A Bad News Day - November 16th
The first priority this morning was to move some loot around, to clean out SirGalahad's inventory a bit, and Rage's and MistressDomina's. This meant a fair bit of trading back and forth with my Auzura merchant mage; Rage was also running a little low on quality stones, so went out with 25 hammers and did some quick mining, as she was carrying plenty of tool aids.
As CaptainScarlet had got his drake safely into level 47, it was time to trade that across, too, so Rage now has that drake, in exchange for the level 44 one she previously had. Its health was slightly low, after the Merac Run yesterday - but over lunch it levelled up to 45, which returned its red health bar to 100%.
Once the trading had been done, MistressDomina was able to form a solo party with CaptainScarlet and, while he headed for Maargadum Jail on Auzura-4, she teleported out to the Tomb of Theos. The Tomb was again set on 100% easy, so she went in, and headed, as usual, for the ancient grey mummies.
After the trading-around, MD had a few super skill pills, the non-platinum type that just give double experience, so she used one of these, without boosters, for an hour before lunch. During that time she went up just 0.74%, plus 31 skill points, while the whole session added 1.39% and 41 skill points, plus 1695 pet points. The 15% extra skill exp from her giant skill pill doesn't multiply the double skill exp, unfortunately, so while without the ssp MistressDomina gets 4400 skill exp plus 15%, or 5060, adding the ssp just adds another 4400, for 9460 skill exp per kill, or slightly less than one skill point.
After lunch, another ssp hour gave 0.72% plus 30 skill points, followed by, due to the dungeon time, 0.89% and, again, 30 skill points. The room did get a bit busy; the wizard RunAwaY had been there in the morning and returned for a while in the afternoon, with lots of pots and a lucky spell book, mobbing the mummies but being careful to leave me my spare, but when the royal knight Cosmin31 also started mobbing, things got complicated, and I did mention the possibility of giving his mob the "gift" of Chaos Nova. Still, he calmed down and started to leave enough for me, even saying I could take one of his when he absent-mindedly took them all.
After RunAwaY had left, a ranger called AggressiVe arrived; at first I thought she must be a friend of Cosmin31's, but this proved not to be the case, and they were soon both talking about taking videos, getting people banned, and so on. "Hope you know who I am, boy", AggressiVe said. And when the knight admitted that he didn't know, "Then never go on pvp again - better for you and your guild".
I took some time out once the second hour was over, before I decided that there was time to get up to a red ignition run before the early evening food break. I got to the run, but somehow, when I typed a warning in to AggressiVe that I was about to do an ignition run, it didn't end up in the text panel, which meant various windows opened, and a medium mana potion was used... that's hardly the first time that has happened, but whatever I'd done also made the game very, very laggy, running at no more than one frame per second - and it continued like that over the food break. Even reloading the game-in-progress by changing the screen resolution didn't improve things, so in the end I had to log out without making that run. Still, the afternoon's total had reached 1.67%, 61 skill points, and 2126 pet points.
Later in the forum shoutbox a player called mord asked about that very thing - and LadyBorderlinex said that it comes from hitting "B" when you aren't typing in as text. Apparently mord had it happen a couple of times in Mondshine's Chapel yesterday, which is worse than missing an ignition run I guess.
I logged back in with SirGalahad, who, thankfully, didn't have any lag problems, and took him out to Ebony Mine to lose his experience in level 23, stopping off to mine a few quality stones along the way. He lost his experience safely, and was able to have a short session in Prokion Temple. He ended up having continual first stage ignition, which was fun - but led me to go beyond the end of level 23, so that SirGalahad is now 3.69% into level 24. He has 153 skill points to spend - not a huge number, since dungeon time was running. It doesn't really matter if he does creep up a level or two, as long as he doesn't go past level 25.
Rage logged in for the "Storm the Castle" event on Auzura-6, and teleported down to Merac Castle. [GM]Darasuum was waiting at the start, and chatted with people. Rage actually got into a party with two other Twisted guildies, including Restorator, a cleric. Rage joined the people going in via the southern gate, and everything went smoothly enough. There was an invisible dragon in the inner courtyard, but to my dismay the Halloween pumpkin helm no longer worked to reveal it, so only people who had the item mall "shadow removal powder" active could see and battle it.
Rage ended up with 1 skill point booster, 2 large attack potions, 3 large defence potions, and 4 item drop boosters, so [GM]Darasuum was being more generous with the drops than usual...somehow she also picked up a drake egg, and a ring of power with a 75 long range physical hit rate increase, too...as a final present, Dara spawned a fluton just outside the inner courtyard's gate, and declared the event over.
My level 31 rogue Memree went along to the Katar equivalent, at 6:45 UK time. There was no sign of a GM outside this time; I took the conventional route in, and assisted with the anubis spear men and dark harpies, among others. There then came a choice to make - did I follow most of the people from that corner, who were heading out towards the southern gate and bridge, or should I go on to the inner courtyard? I decided to go on inwards, and it was just as well for me that I did, as [GM]Darasuum was already spawning the loot there. As one of the few people there from the start of the loot-gathering, Memree did rather well, with 2 item drop boosters, 3 skill point boosters, 5 large attack potions, and 9 large defence potions, along with 10 tool aids and a few of the small HP and mana recovery potions, but I imagine that latecomers to the inner courtyard were not very happy. The event was declared over after only ten minutes, half the time the more extensive Auzura version had been given.
Cariae was even quicker, lasting no more than eight minutes, with Barbarienne, at level 110, able to play a full part, except against the invisible dragon. [GM]Darasuum was more visible this time, as with Auzura, and the loot at the end was pretty good, with 2 large defence potions, 6 large attack potions, 5 skill point boosters, and 5 item drop boosters being Barb's share. Again, I'd gone for the less-used southern route in, and we'd soon got through and linked up again with the main force.
As Cariae had been so speedy, I was able to switch over to RedRyder, my level 39 ranger rogue on Sarissa, and teleport down to Merac Castle with time to spare, even though the event there started at 7:45. This one did take until just after eight, though mainly due to a little pause after the invisible dragon was down, before the then-anonymous GM gave the "Congratz... meet outside the castle!" message, to end the uncertain minutes when you don't know where the rewards will be spawned. The loot seemed pretty generous to me, as these things go, though the level 38 rogue with whom I was partied, shadowzoe, seemed to do better than me.
As the Hatzring event started at eight, I missed that one - not that I really have a character who'd be much use there. Tairen was scheduled for 8:45, to complete the run, so my rogue Memree, on level 39, went to Merac, and headed south down the main path, as she didn't have Merac Castle's location memorised. She took her time, and fought some elite frenzied berserkers, elite bloody outlaws, and all three kinds of gnoll along the way, picking up a few armour drops. Unlike my other functioning rogues, this particular Memree is actually an assassin rather than a ranger, although she still generally uses a crossbow.
[GM]AwesomeSauce was actually present "in person" when I arrived, looking a very smart rogue in a high-level armour set, and wearing a pumpkin helm. We weren't a very big group, so Awesome was prepared to make allowances for us, but I think in the end we did fight the whole set of monsters - we even had the Pandora Beasts, wafes, and dark bogles in the inner courtyard as well as the sphinx commanders, and an invisible dragon...judging from what was on the ground, I assume there were kamiras too, for the first people in. The loot was reasonably generous, and after that Awesome spawned some level 1 foxes, followed swiftly by a fluton; "Ooh, a big rocky fox", I commented...
"Thanks for coming out guys! You were super fast", the GM assured us. "Beast Hatz's time by a bit." Someone asked if it was over, and she told us "It's done! You beat them all."
At that stage I made my usual subtle cue, "What, no more kamiras... ^^" - and Awesome being awesome, she did spawn a few more of those, which went down incredibly quickly. "More than Tairen", she continued (presumably meaning Sarissa), "but they didn't work together like you all did." And commenting on the departed kamiras, "That was fast lol." I managed to pick up a crystal or experience (greater) at last, five tool aids, and a couple of hero's necklaces.
However, now we came to today's bad news. "Thanks for coming guys. This was my LAST event on LC!" My "eeeep - you are leaving us???" was one of many expressions of dismay. "I've been transferred to a different team", she explained. "Awww...you will be greatly missed :("
"I'll miss you guys too. Come visit me on Kitsu Saga." That was just followed by another "Thanks for coming guys! I'll see you all later!"
So, that was a rather sad end to the day - our favourite game master, who has always taken the trouble to chat with and interact with the players, and go further with extra spawnings and so on than anyone else, is gone. [GM]AwesomeSauce... strange name, great GM.
CaptainScarlet had continued his work on the drake through all the excitements, anyway, back on Auzura-4, and by the end of the evening had got it up to about a third of the way through level 45.
A Long Time in the Tomb - November 17th
The new week's patch notes announced the return of the Attendance System, though this time giving a boost to one's skill exp gain, rather than regular experience. So, this had been discussed and promised, it was good to see it actually arrive; the notes said an hour per day was necessary, but, after Cariae's Kaerella and Auzura's MistressSabina had been logged in over breakfast, it seemed that only half an hour, as before, was needed. 10% extra skill exp is certainly worth earning - especially if it stacks with other boosts!
"We are working on a formal list of bannable exploits in game that will be posted in the forums. It is advised that you stop using any exploits before this list is posted to avoid an account ban in the future," our product manager announced, which seems a good idea, to make the system more open. He also said that "We have finalized our next list of bugs to submit to the developers. Hold tight and that bug you've always hated may be next in line to get fixed!" Hopefully, there are some lists already with the developers, but it all helps.
The new week has also started something called a "Moon Cake Festival", requiring us to collect ingredients from monsters to make moon cakes. We can then take ten moon cakes, and attempt to make a "full moon cake", which will be bought by the domain merchant for "some serious gold"... however, unusually for an event, there are failure rates involved here, with a 30% chance that you lose your ingredients when attempting to make a moon cake, and a 50% chance of failure, and loss of cakes, when trying to make a full moon cake. The ingredients needed seem to be rather rare drops, too.
Aeria actually added horses and drakes to the in-game item mall apparently - but were soon getting complaints that these pets could not be equipped! Another Epic Fail, then. The items were quickly withdrawn from sale, with people who had already bought them having to send in a request via the Request Tracker system to get a refund. Since, despite being called "horses and drakes" rather than "ponies and hatchlings", these were it seems just level 1 pets being sold for 1 aeria point each, it all seems a rather strange idea. And just after nine in the morning, UK time, I noticed an in-game announcement that the servers were having to be brought down for an emergency maintenance, to fix a problem with the new Attendance system, so MistressSabina and Cariae's Kaerella hurriedly left.
Half an hour later, [GM]JediMike reported that "We should be live any second now", and soon we were told it was safe to return. Apparently, people who logged in for half an hour or more, logged out, and logged back in were treated as if they'd reached the second day of their attendance. Hopefully Mike was able to go off home to bed after that, since it was 1:30am for him.
Barbarienne and Rage signed in for their half hours, with Rage doing some stone mining; and then after coffee, MistressDomina and Auzura's Kaerella logged in, and, finding the Tomb of Theos still at 100% easy, headed for the ancient grey mummies.
I was interested to see how a combat party, with them both fighting, would compare with MD soloing there; MistressDomina started with a ssp hour, and did bring in 33 skill points, and 1.07% experience. Without the ssp and giant skill pill, Kaerella gained 15 skill points and 1.31%. They did continue up until the lunch break, so that in all MD went up by 1.40% and 38 skill points, plus 1328 pet points, while Kae earned 1.70% and 20 skill points, plus 1251 pet points.
During the afternoon, things continued much as before, though I didn't try using another super skill pill. For about an hour the assassin rogue bolster, level 104, joined our combat party, but she left, handily, just before Kaerella had a red ignition run. MistressDomina had a red run too, a little later, which accounted for about 8 skill points, since she was getting 11,000 skill exp per kill. Being two levels lower than the ancient grey mummies, Kaerella just got 9,900 per kill on her red run.
By the early evening food break, MistressDomina had earned 2.71%, 54 skill points, and 2616 pet points, while Kaerella had added 3.30%, 48 skill points, and 2652 pet points.
The evening session ended early, as it often does on a Wednesday - and was more of the same, basically. Both Kaerella and MistressDomina got up to another red ignition run, which, as well as extra speed, gives 150% extra skill exp while it lasts, although it doesn't stack with anything else. The evening session gave MD another 4.48%, 58 skill points, and 3085 pet points, while Kae got 5.48%, 52 skill points, and 3107 pet points. There was a mystery "turbo" event from six to eight, approximately, so from those figures it looks as if it was probably 50% extra experience and skill exp.
The room varied in how busy it was, again, with at one point five of us, though that didn't last long thankfully. I was lucky that things got quiet enough towards the end for there to be enough targets for an ignition run - it can be frustrating if one has the energy stored, but no mummies to use it on.
CaptainScarlet was able to take over while I was otherwise engaged, and started to move his horse through level 35 for a couple of hours or so; later on, SirGalahad was able to go out there to Maargadum Jail as well for a little over half an hour, and lured a spike canine behind the teleporter, to level his pet pale blue pony a little. It moved on into level 14, so won't be a cute little pony for much longer. And SirGalahad's time online meant that he became the seventh of my characters to start towards better a skill exp bonus from the new Attendance system...
A Time of Giants - November 18th
Today was set to be just a "play in the evening only" day, but I could at least get the Attendance side of things sorted out in the morning, and do some pet-levelling too. SirGalahad can combine those two things - so he accompanied RedRackham to Maargadum Jail before breakfast, after getting his thirteenth level of the Armour Increase buff.
SirGalahad lured a spike canine back to behind the teleporter, while RedRackham stood by in case any of the aggressive dire spike canines decided to get involved; then Red ran down to the fifth floor, and started sparring with the death mask lancer, over by the side wall.
After half an hour the Attendance messages came up: "Your attendance for today has been confirmed. You have attended 2 consecutive days. After passed the midnight, you have to re-login to be eligible as attendance day. You will earn 3% additional SP depends on the attendance days." Useful for SirGalahad, if he does some skill exp farming, though less useful for RedRackham.
SirGalahad logged out, and MistressSabina took her turn to earn her Attendance System bonus, buying a hammer and heading out to the mine in Juno to pass the time constructively. Kaerella on Cariae came next, and did a little shop-browsing. Barbarienne went out to do some mining when it was her turn; as usually happens when I've had a previous character also mining, things didn't work until, without stopping the mining animation, I had her sit down, and then stand up again, at which point her hammer started to lose its endurance figure, counting down from 7200 in the normal way.
Rage also had to sit down and stand up before the mining started properly, while RedRackham continued his pet-levelling work. Auzura's Kaerella then took her turn online, selling her most recent loot, and then buying a hammer and heading for the mine. RedRackham had to log out to allow MistressDomina her half hour, so CaptainScarlet headed for Maargadum Jail, and got back to working on his level 45 drake. Once MD was qualified for her attendance allowance, RedRackham was able to log back in - and so Red and Cap pet-levelled through the afternoon. By the time six o'clock was approaching, RedRackham's horse had just reached level 36.
My feeling is that sometimes the Tomb of Theos can get pretty busy in the evenings, as indeed Prokion Temple can, so it seemed like a good idea to let MistressSabina have a trip out to the giants in Dratan desert - particularly as we were scheduled to have a couple of hours of double skill exp, starting at six. o'clock, UK time.
I think it was about 40 minutes later when the increased skill exp started up; the GMs had attempted to start it on time, we were assured, but it just hadn't worked. It only acted like 50% of the basic skill exp per giant to me, or 25% on top of the amount I was getting with the Elizabeth's Enhancement buff on, but it was a help, I suppose. MistressSabina managed to level up, reaching 49; she had a few quests to do, including a delivery to the column of magic in Merac, fighting salamander ruins... and also fighting cerebrii, which was handy as they are in the same area as the sallies. The quest for the cerebrii, to collect some teeth, is a strange one, as it also requires a visit to the rough jaguars of the desert, in Dratan, to get some of their teeth too. Still, I knew roughly where the rough jaguars were, so rode out into the Dratan desert, and across to them.
After a few more trips to the giants, returning to town when MistressSabina's inventory was full, and indeed a few first-stage ignition runs there, by the end of the session MistressSabina had added 25.91%, 98 skill points, and 1217 pet points. Then it was time to check what skills she ought to be learning. I found that there were actually two active skills she should have learned by now still outstanding - Fallen Stat, a debuff which reduces your enemies' stats, and, more importantly, Haste 2. Fallen Stat cost 327 sp for the five available levels, taking off 50 stat points for 100 seconds, while the single available level of Haste 2 cost 250 sp,a buff which increases its target's casting speed by 55% for ten minutes. It's an improvement on the earlier mage skill Haste, which gave a 50% increase in casting speed, but only for five minutes...though the second and final level of Haste 2, when Sabina reaches 76, moves the speed increase on to 60%, and lasts twice as long again, for twenty minutes.
MistressSabina had managed to collect some moon cake ingredients - 5 egg yolks, 7 flour, and 3 lotus seeds. That was rather more than Kaerella and MistressDomina managed in the Tomb yesterday. Prices for those started off ridiculously high, I wonder how they are doing now?
CaptainScarlet had kept busy throughout the evening, so that he ended the day with his drake just past the three-quarters mark in level 45. RedRackham was able to join him in the Jail for the final hour, so that a first thousand or so pet points were gained in level 36 for his horse. At least with a horse we can stop when it reaches level 37, since a mount doesn't really need to go beyond that.
A Gathering of Mummies - November 19th
SirGalahad went out to Maargadum Jail before breakfast, mainly to get his attendance allowance confirmed, though I did let him stay for a whole hour, so that his pony managed to level up. When luring one spike canine he also attracted the attention of two dire spike canines, and he lost a lot of health before he was able to kill those - but when he'd lured the spike canine behind the teleporter, and equipped his shield instead of the +15 dual swords, his health gradually returned to 100%. On the older computer, Barbarienne did some mining to pass her half hour, followed by Auzura's Kaerella; then Cariae's Kaerella and Auzura's Rage took over. Kae used eight hammers, plus tool aids, to boost her supply of quality stones, while Rage just did a little regular mining to pass the time. Kaerella did get a disconnection during here time, though Rage stayed online safely.
The third day's Attendance raises the skill exp gain bonus from 3% to 4%, which is a step in the right direction, although a minor one. To complete the set of seven attendees, MistressSabina and MistressDomina logged in; Sabina did a little mining, and MistressDomina went out to check on the Condition of the Tomb of Theos - which was nicely on 100% easy once again. MistressDomina entered, initially in a solo party with Sabina, and then partied with Kaerella, my Auzura archer, once Sabina had finished her half hour.
So, MistressDomina and Kaerella spent the day in the Tomb of Theos with the ancient grey mummies, basically. Sometimes the room was just about their own, and sometimes the room was very crowded, with MistressDomina even having to share the corridor just leading into the room with a German knight, while Kaerella was one of four or five people in the main room. We were lucky with the timing of the first "red run" ignition for both of them, and Kaerella did okay on her second such run in the evening too, although by then the older computer was starting to get a bit cranky, freezing up for a second or two when viewing angle had to be changed. MD's second red run, though, wasn't much of an event as the place was crowded and she had to include the screaming zombie, and a few ancient screaming zombies, in her mix.
Kaerella did actually manage to complete a quest, by killing ten screaming zombies - or the same one ten times. The rogue and the knight who'd had a disagreement recently were both in the room at one stage, but the rogue left abruptly, which was probably just as well. I did get ks'd for a while by a level 27 archer, LightChaos, and tried to persuade her that she really ought to have been farming skill points in Prokion Temple. As I wasn't using pots, I didn't mind the ks-ing, though as often happens it went on to a request to join the party, which wasn't really on.
By the early evening food break MistressDomina had added 4.42% and 82 skill points, plus 4496 pet points, while Kaerella had gained 5.06% and 71 skill points (mainly because she arrived in the Tomb a little later), plus 4225 pet points. The evening session, helped along by a couple of hours of double experience gain, saw MD add another 6.05%, 59 skill points, and 3476 pet points, with Kae getting a further 7.25%, 58 skill points, and 3434 pet points.
The new day's "attendance allowance" was up from 3% to 4%, though it appears to have limitations as to what it will stack on - the 150% extra from kills made on the red ignition runs was unchanged, with MD still getting 11000 skill exp and Kae getting 9900. What was slightly strange was that, until MistressDomina had completed the thirty minutes of attendance, she didn't even get yesterday's 3%, just her normal amount per kill.
One level 90 assassin called ScOrPioN requested to join my Friends list, and then asked about joining Twisted; SacSalop was afk at that time, and when he did start making contributions to the guild chat, she had just logged out, but I did finally get her pointed in his direction. I didn't hear any more, though, so I don't know what went wrong there. There is talk of a Twisted attempt on one of the castle sieges tomorrow, though Saccy seemed unsure of its timing, thus far. if it's the 1:00am one on Sunday morning, I may have a prior engagement with a pillow... The forum shoutbox was rather quiet, though PkingArcher was there, an alternate account of Zhegao's, and when someone asked if a GM or GS was there, said "only a former gamesage", so he seems to have retired, which seems a shame. He didn't do the job for very long, but seemed pretty good at it, as far as I could tell.
Once MistressDomina and Kaerella had logged out, CaptainScarlet and RedRackham went down to the death mask soldier and death mask lancer, respectively, on the fifth floor of the Auzura-4 Jail. So, Cap had the opportunity to move his drake a little further through level 45, and Red moved his horse on a bit through level 36. We are promised some double pet experience tomorrow evening, so perhaps at least one of them will be able to take advantage of some of that.
Pets Make Progress - November 20th
The two Kaerellas, my archer on the Auzura server and my cleric on Cariae, started things off by logging in for their attendance half hour, which moves their skill exp bonus on from 4% to 5%, and were followed after breakfast by Barbarienne and MistressSabina, and then Rage and MistressDomina. My firm intention had been to send SirGalahad off to Prokion Temple after coffee to farm some skill points - but when MistressDomina killed a few foxes outside Randol, she got 2 experience and 1 skill exp, which showed that the GMs had absent-mindedly left the double experience from the second half of yesterday's happy hour running. I wonder if they ever remember to turn the lights off when they leave for the day?
So, after coffee, RedRackham went down to take over the pet-levelling chores, in Auzura-6's Maargadum Jail - and he provided the solo party for MistressSabina, who went out to the giants in the Dratan desert again. It wasn't a terribly long session, but Sabina gained 12.85%, 45 skill points (with 1962 skill exp per giant), and 734 pet points.
There was an even shorter session on Tairen-6 after lunch; my level 40 assassin-rogue Memree logged on there, and traded her recent loot across to MistressDomino, my merchant mage there, who then checked the stocks of weapons that Roy had available in the merchant mart - and found a level 45 crossbow, +15, being sold by coran for 250 million. So, after checking that there were no other similarly enhanced weapons available, the crossbow was purchased - though it will be of more use to my level 42 ranger-rogue there, xRAGEx.
Memree teamed up with SirGalahad, who went down to floor five of Maargadum Jail for a little pet-levelling work on his level 10 hatchling. Memree herself fought the two-headed canines at the back of the ground floor, and in the main canine room of floor two as well. However, it soon became obvious that the double experience was no longer running, so, after only adding a few percent, the Tairen outing came to a close.
SirGalahad on Tairen is not a red-named type, just a regular level 35 temple knight, so it was interesting to have him fight a death mask soldier for a while. The soldier's health did decline a little, as it was being hit for 46 damage at a time, but a reasonably long session would be possible there. He can always go a bit red, to decrease his attack power, if needed.
SirGalahad on Auzura-6 logged in, however, and RedRackham there took over the pet-levelling side. A trip out to Prokion Temple got SirGalahad's skill point total up to 364, including the ones previously earned - getting skills, back in Randol, left him with 37, but getting killed in Ebony Mine by the degraded golien commander 33 times got that down to 13.
The next trip to Prokion, which was almost entirely running on first level ignition, got the skill point total up to 195, which was what SirGalahad needed to get all three levels of advanced weaponsmith; he got up to 88.52% of his level while earning them, so another trip to Ebony Mine, and 30 more deaths, were needed, once all the skill points had been spent.
That just left SirGalahad needing 784 more skill points to get all possible special skills maximised - the three levels of expert weaponsmith, and the last two levels of expert armoursmith. Despite the dungeon time (and, though I didn't realise it then, the continuing double experience), I was just able to get the 153 skill points needed for the second level of expert armoursmith, although I did have to move to mummies and ghouls towards the end, with their better ratio of skill exp to experience. Once that level was learnt, it was time to die a few more times in Ebony Mine.
The evening's bonus was set to be double pet experience, so SirGalahad needed to log out, as, when he is fighting in Prokion Temple, he usually doesn't equip his pony, as it takes too much damage. Instead, I decided to give my level 94 rogue Rage (or RAGE, to be accurate) an outing... so she headed for the Tomb of Theos.
For a change, I didn't turn left for the ancient grey mummies, I turned right, for the anubis spear men and sphinx fighters. I was surprised to find the room deserted when I arrived, but it was only a few minutes after the end of the hour's dungeon time... and as time went by the place did fill up. Rage got recruited into a combat party by the level 96 temple knight Armorclaw; he opened it up to other people later, but the only other one in the room itself was the level 93 assassin Z3rOZx. Armorclaw tended to lure about six to ten sphinx fighters at a time, and not surprisingly ended up with rather low health sometimes, if I'd been along as my archer I'd have been doing a lot of healing. The assassin got pretty low on health a few times, but was able to feign death using their Death Motion skill, and recover.
A level 61 specialist sorcerer called Tankeren asked if he could "ks" me, so I let him do that, and he did reach 62 before he left. As I wasn't using any pots, potions or boosters, it just meant slightly quicker kills, and since I was the one picking up the loot, that was no problem. Rage only rarely lost any health; I did attack a few anubis spear men, but generally kept to the fighters. The first fifty of them completed a quest from Tomb Guard Atum, with the reward being 0.09% experience, which has to be less than earth-shattering.
The double experience was still running on Auzura, we noticed before long, unlike Tairen, so, helped along by the eight to nine o'clock dungeon time hour, Rage added 14.66%, plus 15 skill points and 6258 pet points - and picked up a few level 97 weapons, and so on.
RedRackham, thanks to the double pet experience, got his horse to level 37, so he logged out and CaptainScarlet logged in. Using a platinum pet experience potion, stacking nicely with the event to give 6 pet points at a time, Cap got his drake into level 46. When the double pet experience stayed on beyond the scheduled two hours, I risked another ppep, so that by the end of the evening quite substantial progress in level 46 had been made. When Rage logged out, RedRackham was able to return; he made the level 37 horse into a mount, and then took a blue pet flute to Lorraine and Jajan, to get a pale blue pony. He then headed for Jail on Auzura-4, and was soon sparring with the death mask soldier, working on his new pet.
A New Level - November 21st
CaptainScarlet hurried down to the fifth floor of Maargadum Jail on Auzura-4 at what would, if it hadn't been Sunday, have been breakfast time, but the double pet experience had been switched off on time, it seemed, after the second half of yesterday's event. Still, he stayed around for a couple of hours, while my various attendance bonus seekers took their turns at having half an hour each online... increasing the bonus skill exp they'll get from 5% to the maximum, 10%. Two or three characters did do a bit of mining - and tests from killing foxes showed that the double experience was still running, at least on Auzura and Cariae.
MistressDomina was the last one to claim her bonus, going straight to the Tomb of Theos when she had logged in. The place was still on maximum easy, so she was quickly joined by my Auzura level 101 archer Kaerella - and in they went, heading of course for the ancient grey mummies.
It wasn't a very long morning session, but it included most of the eleven to twelve o'clock dungeon time, which, added to the double experience, meant usually approaching 70 million experience per kill, if not more. By the time my duo retired into a corner of the room for the lunch break, MistressDomina had earned 2.43%, 20 skill points, and 1169 pet points, while Kaerella had got 2.96%, 18 skill points, and 1152 pet points.
MistressDomina and Kaerella continued through the afternoon, and MD got another 5.03%, 52 skill points, and 2553 pet points, with Kae adding 5.74%, 47 skill points, and 2589 pet points. MD's giant skill pill, giving its extra 15% skill exp, does help her to keep ahead on that score, although the morning session's difference wasn't as big as, for the first half hou,r she was without the 10% attendance bonus, while Kae had already earned it.
The room was a bit busy at times, but both Kaerella and MistressDomina were able to manage red ignition runs - MD's run just about finished the session. MD's guildie IIKurkereII was around for part of the time, but as she's a level 91 assassin currently she was just too low for our combat party. The level 103 rogue Yournext did join briefly, until I pointed out that, if she was using skill point boosters, then an one-the-spot party was not a good idea, as we'd share the skill exp from her kills. She would get a share of ours, but those shares wouldn't be boosted by the spb.
I had been thinking of letting MistressSabina fight a few giants in the evening, but in the end I stayed in the Tomb. MistressDomina was close to levelling up, for one thing. The older computer started to get a bit jerky as the evening progressed, but not annoyingly so, and the room never got too crowded, so MD and Kaerella continued their work there until it was time to log out for the Sunday Quiz. By then, MistressDomina had indeed reached level 104, adding another 6.36%, 61 skill points, and 3197 pet points. Kaerella was getting pretty close to halfway through level 101 by then, adding 7.60%, 52 skill points, and 3131 pet points.
Reaching level 104 means that the skill point farming is over for MistressDomina; she has passed her remaining skill point boosters over to Kaerella, and can now get back to levelling up. Level 104 also brings a new level of the Mana Flow passive skill, which for 1100 skill points and 40 million gold will increase her maximum health and mana slightly. There's a new level of Staff Mastery at level 106 to increase her attack, for 700 skill points and 60 million, and then at 108 another 700 sp, plus 80 million, will increase her rate of mana regeneration. And then at level 110, her new Fire Ball skill, which she hasn't yet used, gets its second level, increasing its power from 400% to 500%, for 1100 skill points and 110 million gold. Things are starting to get expensive, considering that MistressDomina will soon need new armour, too. That Fire Ball skill has a 60 second "cool down" before it can be used again, which makes it less than a world-beater...I think some high-level people are lobbying to have the cool down on skills like that reduced, as mages are not too effective at really high levels...
Anyway, Kaerella and MistressDomina attended the quiz on Auzura-2 as usual, and things ran smoothly; we don't even get the massive lag effects afterwards, logging characters in was no slower than usual. Which was useful, as I needed to move some loot around, to get recent stuff across to my merchant mage MistressDomino. Once that had been done, CaptainScarlet headed down to Maargadum Jail on Auzura-4 for an hour or so's work on his drake, getting it to roughly halfway through level 46, and MistressDomino went into merchant mode. The lotus seeds for making moon cakes sold pretty quickly, and most of the egg yolks too, but even at a lower price, the flour stayed around; it looks as if it is an easier ingredient to get than the others, and will be entirely useless once the current week ends. My merchant was also selling heaven stones, item drop boosters, chaos balls, and other stock items, so hopefully, the next time I check, MD's gold stocks will be a bit higher!
An Uneventful Evening - November 22nd
My Auzura merchant MistressDomino stayed in merchant mode overnight, and managed to sell quite a lot. The chaos balls had gone quickly, but the item drop boosters took longer; luckily all the moon cake flour had been sold by morning, plus all the pan flutes and drake eggs, and a few moonstones and heaven stones, so that the gold reserves went up by around 15%.
As I knew I'd not be able to do any active playing in the morning, MistressDomino stayed on for a while, with the older computer hosting the various characters who needed to put in half an hour online to confirm their continuing 10% extra skill exp from the attendance allowance system. The servers got a little flaky as ten o'clock approached, though; I was unable to log Kaerella in on Cariae, finally accepting the "timed out" option - which got me to "account already logged in". So MistressSabina logged in on Auzura... but with a few minutes of her half hour to go, she got disconnected, and when she logged back in, was back to needing another ten minutes online. MistressDomino got disconnected then too, so that ended her selling stint; once I'd restarted the game, Cariae's Kaerella was finally able to do her thirty minutes.
SirGalahad went to the spike canines in Maargadum Jail for his half hour, to do a little pet-levelling on his pale blue pony - and the little fellow reached level 16, becoming a full-sized horse, just as the half hour ended. SirGalahad stayed there after that, though, while MistressDomina did her thirty minutes, mainly mining. Then CaptainScarlet was able to log on, and he too went to Maargadum Jail, heading for the fifth floor to spar with his death mask lancer.
I was busy all afternoon downstairs, except for checking on the pet-levellers' progress, and SirGalahad managed to get his horse to level 18 before I logged him out. CaptainScarlet moved across to the older computer, then, with his drake past the two-thirds mark in level 46 - and SirGalahad logged on for a little sp farming in Prokion Temple.
As well as the double experience, dungeon time was running on his first trip, but he only needed 120 skill points for the first level of expert weaponsmith, and they were gained well within his level. Then the degraded golien commander had a visit from Gal, who died enough to get back to the start of level 24.
With dungeon time now off, it was easy to get the 179 skill points for the final level of expert armoursmith, so that just leaves him needing the last two levels of expert weaponsmith. He stopped off outside Ebony Mine to do some mining of his own, using thirty pickaxes and tool aids. CaptainScarlet moved across to Auzura-6, and Gal gave him most of the quality stones he'd mined - Cap was down to his last 110, with the drake three-quarters of the way through its level by then, so a gift of 890 stones got him up to the round thousand.
MistressSabina then logged in instead of SirGalahad, and went out to the giants. Her first trip brought her fifteen level 61 weapons, which got her inventory weight up from 62% to 138%, and sold to the npc merchant back in town for over 4 million gold. Another trip brought in another 3.3 million, and a few more minutes got MistressSabina ready for a second-level ignition run. So, she moved across to the sphinx fighters and sphinx "speer" men, buffed up, and tried them out, using Curse to slow them down, and Stone to freeze them in place. The only problem with Stone is that it removes and replaces other debuffs, so that, once it ends, the sphinx fighter was able to move at full speed. Oh, and it has just, allegedly, an 80% chance of success, though it seems lower! At least, if it fails to work, the Curse continues to slow the monster down.
Stone only lasts ten seconds for MistressSabina at present, although new levels of the skill when she reaches 56, 66, 80, and 88 each add a further five seconds to that, I see. I didn't stay long with the sphinx types; the place was pretty busy, for one thing, and, though Sabina put on 2% fairly quickly, and another 2% when she used the ignition run, the drops weren't very generous. So I'm not sure that Sabina will be leaving the giants for good yet...
The evening session gave MistressSabina 20.19% experience, 61 skill points, and 1050 pet points, so it wasn't the longest or most intensive session ever. It seemed strange not to have some sort of special event started; for a long time the website didn't show any events at all scheduled for this week, with the events calendar stopping at yesterday's Sunday Quiz, but finally things were added, with a "low-level" 46-90 "Mad Monster Spawn" today, and a high-level one tomorrow. While tomorrow's timings are the usual type, today's low-level get-together is for some reason scheduled for five hours later than usual, with Auzura, the first to go, not starting until eleven o'clock UK time - or midnight for most of Europe. I hope that they don't do that too often - as it is, it moves even the Auzura event too far into the night for me to report on it today, though I do hope to take MistressBlaze along, after this blog is published.
CaptainScarlet had continued his pet-levelling, giving Sabina her solo party; he did get ks'd a couple of times, but was soon back in action, as soon as the death mask lancer had respawned. He will have to log out to allow MistressDomina to loan her armour, accessories and weapon to MistressBlaze, but by then his drake will be comfortably past the 80% mark in level 46.
High-Level Monsters - November 23rd
Yesterday evening was almost completely without any event... I got MistressBlaze out to the usual location in time, which was 11:00pm in the UK, but all she could do was kill the local foxes and wolves. I went off, leaving MB at the location, and got as prepared for bed as I could... there wasn't even a gamesage in the Last Chaos forum shoutbox to pass a message to the game masters to remind them what they were supposed to be doing.
Finally, at 11:25, a GM message came up that the event would start in five minutes, and the Kiene Tower appeared, along with our night shadow GM, Darasuum. I was perhaps pushing it a bit by saying "Ah, Daranub, that explains it - hi boss", but he took it well, just responding "Sorry, busy at the office. But I did get here."
As the five minutes counted down, there weren't many people. "Honestly didn't expect a huge turn-out", Dara commented. "For Europe, this is a bit late, I hope we don't have things at this time regularly", I said, and he reassured me that "This is not gonna be the norm - if you notice on the calendar, high level MMS starts at the normal time."
The first wave or two were easy enough, but then things got a bit dangerous, with masses of endemic and boucu demons, plus skin walkers, mimic crods, and various ghostly Egeha types - one monster had the annoying skill of being able to remove all my buffs, including the mid-level attack boosting one, and horse buffs - and that combination of a strong magic attack and the slowing-down debuff did get MistressBlaze killed once, though, as one of the main tanks, she was lucky to get away with using only one resurrection scroll I guess.
At some point [GM]JediMike took over, presumably so that Darasuum could move on to the next server and catch up a little - and that was good news, as Mike is always generous with the drops, once we had finally worked our way through the massed ranks of monsters. I commented that I'd not seen a single kamira, but from someone's response, I think there must have been a spawning of them, just out of sight from where I was, so I missed out on some fun there, not to mention the odd tool aid, etc. Still, I got more than enough goodies from Mike's loot-spawning to cover the cost of the resurrection scroll used. MistressBlaze did actually level up, reaching 88, during the fighting.
This morning was to feature a shopping trip, to get stocked up a bit on groceries, but I got some of my characters through their "attendance allowance" half hours before I went out, and left a couple of them mining - Auzura's Kaerella did get disconnected during that, but only after she'd managed the half hour. SirGalahad completed the line-up over lunch, with CaptainScarlet also logging in; they both went to Maargadum Jail, and despite being ks'd once SirGalahad got his pale blue horse into level 19 - while by mid-afternoon CaptainScarlet's drake reached level 47.
There was time before the food break for SirGalahad to see some action in Prokion Temple, though; he got the 153 skill points needed for the second level of expert weaponsmith safely, learnt the skill, and went to Ebony Mine to lose his experience again. After the break he managed to get the 179 sp required for its final level, though the dungeon time meant that he had to be careful, and include plenty of mummies and a few ghouls in the mix, to get to 179 sp before he reached the top of the level. He ended up with 98.60% and 191 skill points, so that when he went to Ebony Mine again, he went in with 12 skill points - and still had 4 when he came out again.
That concludes SirGalahad's "learning special skills" stage, so that now he needs to think about getting as many skill points per level as possible - so no more fighting there while dungeon time, or double experience, is running.
The high-level Mad Monster Spawn on Auzura was, as promised, started at six o'clock, UK time, with [GM]Darasuum arriving right on time. It wasn't a long event, but Dara spawned generous amounts of loot after we'd disposed of the cave spirits, so that Rage while grabbed only 1 skill point booster, she did get 4 item drop boosters, 5 large attack potions, and 6 large defence potions, plus tool aids and countless small mana/HP recovery pots. When the boss wave appeared, I was able to be the main person to target a couple of the grand red dragons, and then, ignoring the cerebrii, got 3 crystals of experience (greater), 10 lucky scrolls, 10 moonstones, a couple of hero's necklaces, various potions, three medals of honour - and a rare accessory, an Origin of Land. It's not very valuable, but it's nice to be able to earn one like that.
It was strange, there seemed very few people fighting the bosses; I targeted a Sphinx Commander, but nobody else joined in - except an Anubis Archer, on the Commie's side! With Snare working successfully most of the time, I did manage to kill it, though my health dipped dangerously at that point, so I had to run from the archer for a few seconds. Luckily, finally, some other people fought it, and I was able to go back and help finish it off.
[GM]Darasuum then declared the event over, after less than twenty minutes - but a very busy twenty minutes. Rage then used the "pet village return" skill to get back to the centre of Randol - and found herself marooned there, as the place was flooded. That's a glitch that people do report sometimes, though I don't remember it happening to me before. I couldn't even move from the spawning area, as it was surrounded by water.
The Cariae event was late starting - only Barbarienne, my level 110 archer, and AnitaBlakex were there when it was supposed to begin. Luckily the gamesage georgerav showed up in the forum shoutbox eventually, and was able to pass a message on, so that soon the in-game announcement was made, calling [GM]Stratos a "newb". People were a bit slow in arriving, but before too long there were enough of us there , and the first round began. The four rounds were much the same as before, starting with barren eises, apes and dark bogles, moving on to bigger stuff, then the cave spirits, and finally the boss wave - it was all a bit overwhelming. Barb managed to tank three of the titan cave spirits, using up some of her big red candy canes from last Christmas - she managed to target three of the grand red dragons, but when picking up the loot, didn't realise a fluton was in the melee, and got a free trip back to town. After re-applying horse buffs and fast bow fixing, and using a new resurrection scroll, she teleported back, and continued the good fight.
Things lasted rather longer than on Auzura, so I did more fighting. The local great horn beasts and other aggressive low-level monsters are a bit of a pain, so while I was fighting an anubis archer I was glad that a passing titan killed the ones that were attacking me - and as he ran off, I saw that it was Stratos himself. Normally, he isn't generous with the loot, but, at the end, he spawned lots of the hands we know and love. As I'd been at the Auzura event, I was slightly more aware than most that there were multiple spawning spots, and so, after the first few places had been cleared, had a slightly further-away collection to myself for a few precious seconds. 10 item drop boosters, 11 large attack potions, 12 skill point boosters, and 13 large defence potions must be some kind of record for me, plus the tool aids etc, and from those three grand red dragons just about all their drops, though no rare accessory - 15 lucky scrolls, 15 moonstones, 3 crystals of experience (greater), and more.
[GM]Stratos had started off agreeing when AnitaBlakex had said it was "going to be a rough one with this few people". "Too hard for you guys? Geez", he'd said early on in the fighting. "Alright - playtime is over! I hope you all made out your wills." A little later it was "Ohhh so you guys think you're big shots, huh? No more Mr Nice Stratos..." "Pew Pew Pew - dead bodies all over. Players eaten alive by monsters!! Ohhhh nooooo..." And then, when we finally cleared out the last monster bosses, "You brave few have earned your reward... grats. I'm proud." And then we got the loot. And I see that Barbarienne gained 0.25% experience from all the fighting...
Memree, my level 40 assassin-rogue, went along to the Tairen MMS at 8:45, which seemed a low-key affair, and just had a disembodied, anonymous game master pushing the buttons. All he (or she) said, after the advance 10 and 5 minutes warnings, were "Prepare for MMS..." - "You can do it Tairen ..." - "Ready for one more wave..." and "Thanks to those who participated in High Level MMS!" Memree came within a whisker of getting killed twice, but managed to run, and live to keep fighting; once when on the first wave the death knights and baals were right on top of her, and once when an anubis archer took a shot at her, but luckily didn't follow up. There was no chance to get near the kamira drops, as even the cerebrii would have been too dangerous, but Rage picked up her share of the loot at the end. This GM wasn't very generous with the spawning, compared to Stratos, and she just got 2 item drop boosters, 2 large attack potions, 4 skill point boosters, and 5 large defence potions. She did get 5 magical defence minerals from a Pandora's Box on the way to the event, though.
SirGalahad was lucky, when I sorted through his loot, and did his five spins of the LacaRette wheel - he won 15 gold tokens. His five "gold run" spins brought in a platinum blessed iris, 10 purified rune ore twice, 10 devil rune ore, and a platinum pet experience potion; the two types of ore are used for upgrading high-level weapons and armour, I will have to check on the prices. And then MistressDomino, my Auzura merchant, went into merchant mode for a little while, to see if she could sell Gal's recently acquired moon cake ingredients. The event for those may well come to an end tomorrow.
CaptainScarlet had kept busy all evening with his pet-levelling; by the end of the evening, his drake had got a fifth of the way through level 47.
Gaining Experience - November 24th
MistressDomino wanted to try to sell her moon cake ingredients last night before she had to log out; her heaven stones, which had hardly sold at all overnight on her recent stint, all sold quickly, and then the ingredients did all sell, along with some green herbs I'd farmed - 1200 at 4,500 gold each came to 5.4 million. As it turned out, I needn't have bothered to sell the flour, lotus seeds and egg yolks, as the moon cake event wasn't ended by last night's maintenance patch; the "festival" continues into a second week.
The patch notes were again very minor. That list of bugs they mentioned last week has now been formally submitted to the developers, to discourage the rise in gold spammers Aeria is going to increase its efforts to ban gold buyers and sellers, and "There have been increasing reports from several Aeria games that lag has increased. We are doing everything we can do determine the source and get things back on track." As for any updates, well, "coming soon", they assure us.
Barbarienne and Cariae's Kaerella started the "attendance allowance" rota, followed by Auzura's Kae and Rage, who both did a little mining. MistressDomina and MistressSabina did some mining too, but then SirGalahad did some serious green herb farming, using two lots of 29 knight-type farming knives (as he only had 29 spare inventory spaces), and 58 tool aids. At 27 green herbs a time, that worked out at 1566 green herbs, so, including some of his existing stock, Gal was able to transfer 1600 across to MistressDomino, for her next selling session. As the last lot sold so quickly, I suppose we'll try for slightly more per leaf next time, though I do think the people asking 10,000 gold per leaf are pushing things a bit.
CaptainScarlet headed for Maargadum Jail for some pet-levelling, and supplied a solo party for SirGalahad to make a brief trip to Prokion Temple. The "dungeon time" hour began almost immediately, however, so I didn't stay long; Galahad needs to make at least 588 skill points to be able to learn the three level 25 skills, so he must earn more than that for any work during his current level to be worthwhile, as otherwise he'll end up earning sp for those skills during level 25, and dying in Ebony Mine to get back to the start of that level...
With the dungeon time, as well as the Elizabeth's Enhancement buff, SirGalahad was earning just 504 experience per ghoul (seven levels below him now), and 3630 skill exp, which is a pretty good ratio, though without dungeon time that ought to fall that experience per kill should fall significantly.
The Tomb of Theos was on 100% easy on Auzura, so MistressDomina and Kaerella were able to head in there a little before two o'clock, and take up their positions ready for dungeon time, from two to three, UK time. As MD isn't in sp-farming mode any longer, but ready to start levelling up again, my duo didn't turn left for the ancient grey mummies - they turned right, and headed for the anubis spear men, and their sphinx fighter companions. The main room was free, but I went on to the next corner of the corridor, and set things up there. When the dungeon time hour began, MD popped berserker, small crit and platinum adrenaline potions, plus a platinum blessed iris, and the first of 62 experience boosters... and during the hour managed to earn 29.58%, and 10 skill points. Once the hour was up, they moved across to the ancient grey mummies for an hour, so that in all during the afternoon MistressDomina added 30.42%, 27 skill points, and 2138 pet points, while Kaerella, who'd been targeting the sphinx fighters close to the corner while MD handled the spear men, got 2.92%, 25 skill points, and 1918 pet points.
The food break was taken a little early, so that I could be back in action for the next dungeon time hour, from five to six. This time the corridor corner was already taken, so MistressDomina and Kaerella set up in the main spear man room, on the far side. Again Kae handled the fighters, and MD concentrated on the anubis spear men.
Early in the hour there was a little bit of drama, when the mage xXDarkDreamXx ran into the room, and headed straight into a safe corner. What she hadn't counted on was two sphinx fighters she'd passed in the corridor following her, and attacking her while she stood motionless; Kaerella ran over to take them off her. The mage did return from afk-hood before the second one was killed. "Phew, you are back", Kae said. "Ya thanks - I have only lost 200 hp", she replied. She stayed around for a few minutes, mobbing sphinx fighters and sometimes an anubis spear man or two, but then left, and was soon replaced on the far side by the night shadow JekTheMagician, who was still in action when my duo left. That hour had gained MistressDomina 29.13% from the use of 60 experience boosters, along with 10 skill points and 1081 pet points, while Kaerella had gained 1.81%, 8 skill points, and 893 pet points.
At six o'clock the "Turbo" event was supposed to begin, but there didn't seem to be any immediate change to experience or skill exp. CaptainScarlet, at least, could head down to the death mask lancer for a little pet-levelling, and he provided a solo party for SirGalahad who, as an experiment, just killed the level 17 ghouls, ignoring the mummies entirely. With just the Elizabuff, and on the skill exp side the attendance bonus of 10%, each kill gave him just 336 experience and 3630 skill exp (so a basic figure of 168 and 1650), so he just added 2.09% while earning 56 skill points... a figure which, if kept up for rather a long time over the whole of level 24, would give about 2680 skill points.
It being Wednesday, an early exit from the game was necessary, so after SirGalahad's session, CaptainScarlet moved across to the newer computer. He mined 20 tool aids (and pick-axes) worth of quality stones, taking his stash to 1345 of them, and then headed back to the death mask lancer. I'd say that, by the end of the evening, his drake ought to be pretty close to halfway through level 47.
Extra Skill - November 25th
The usual characters were able to put in their thirty minutes or so each for the attendance allowance this morning, and then after coffee CaptainScarlet went off to do some pet-levelling on his drake, starting from halfway through level 47. He provided a party for SirGalahad, who was able to do a small amount of ghoul-fighting in Prokion Temple, but the dungeon time hour began, increasing his experience per kill, so before long he logged out.
I wasn't able to do anything complicated during the afternoon, as I was expecting a delivery, that didn't arrive... more on that tomorrow, I guess. Still, SirGalahad did manage to put in some more ghoul-slaying time in Prokion Temple, so that by the time he logged out, his total experience gain for the day was 7.25%, along with 180 skill points. CaptainScarlet kept on with the drake-levelling, despite being ks'd a couple of times - he got his drake past the 75% mark in the level by the end of the food break.
The evening's event was set to be double skill exp, so Kaerella checked on the Tomb of Theos's Condition on Cariae-4 and, finding it at 90% easy, invited Barbarienne to join her. They went in, and headed for the ancient grey mummies. There was a night shadow there who left fairly soon - and the level 102 cleric Carissima, who was, I discovered, our old companion there naOmi, on her other main character. She joined the combat party for an hour or so, but then left our party to team up with a couple of her guildies, the mage xXDarKxAngeLXx and the specialist sorcerer theApt. Luckily there still seemed to be enough ancient grey mummies to go around.
Zenderfly was online, and chatted on Barbarienne's guild channel; she did some drop farming in Strayana until her vaccine ran out. The double skill exp kept going until I logged out, which was useful; Kaerella went up 2.02% in level 100, and gained 3585 pet points, while Barbarienne earned 3.50% in level 110, with her faster kill rate. While she did equip her drake, for its attack and armour buffs and picking up loot, she didn't get any pet points, as the mummies are blue-named for her. Kae and Barb each got 83 skill points, which moves Barb a little further towards the total she'll need to get the level 112 passive skill, Rise Focus level six. It should add 44 to her hit rate, for 120 million gold and 1600 skill points. Barbarienne has just got to 40% of that number of sp; she does have sp invested in her special skills, which can be liberated for general use if I buy a reset card from the item mall, but I'd prefer to keep that for level 114...
So, that made for a quietly productive evening, even if it didn't give a whole lot to report about here.
Disconnections - November 26th
The usual characters played their half hours in the morning, from before breakfast to coffee time; some mining was included, and MistressDomina killed a fox, which gave 1 experience and 2 skill exp, revealing that yesterday evening's double skill experience was still running.
After coffee SirGalahad managed to fit in an hour in Prokion Temple, exclusively killing ghouls; as they are blue they don't drop any armour, weapons or gems, but they do still drop the personal dungeon tickets 2, torn books of life, LacaRette tokens, and moon cake ingredients. By the time the dungeon time hour began, he'd added 195 skill points, while gaining 6.33% experience. The "double" skill exp meant that as well as the basic 1650 skill exp, and the extra 1650 from the Elizabeth's Enhancement buff, and the 330 extra from the 10% attendance bonus, he was actually just getting another 495 skill exp, as that gets him to the maximum of 150% extra.
CaptainScarlet had been providing SirGalahad's solo party, while doing some more pet-levelling work on his level 47 drake; when SirGalahad logged out, I was able to log in his near-namesake on Cariae, XxGALAHADxX, who also headed for Maargadum Jail, to do a little pet-levelling over lunch on his level 36 drake, which was about two-thirds of the way through its level.
Unfortunately, both computers got a disconnection fairly early on in the break, so not much pet experience got added. After lunch, I logged Kaerella in over on Cariae-4, and she checked out the Condition of the Tomb of Theos there. It was on 70%, which seemed just about do-able, so Barbarienne joined her, and they went in. Before long, however, there was another disconnection, and for a few minutes I couldn't reconnect to Last Chaos at all - I'd have thought it was a general internet problem if I hadn't been successfully downloading a file at the time.
Kaerella and Barbarienne logged back in; Kae had gained 0.04% and 107 pet points, while Barb had gained 0.05%, before the disconnection, along with 2 skill points each. However, the Condition of the Tomb was now down to 60%, so I felt that progress there would just have been too slow, and a little dangerous. But, while I was checking the internet for a few things, someone had actually reset the Tomb, so that when I checked again, just before I'd have logged Barb out, the Tomb was back to 100% easy, so my duo went back in.
However, less than an hour later the same thing happened, with the "Connect Info Open FAILED!" message when trying to get the launcher to launch - and I couldn't reconnect to the forum shoutbox either. I was able to start another file downloading, so it wasn't my personal internet connection that was at fault. This time Kae had gained 0.62% and 629 pet points, while Barb was up by 0.57%, and they'd each got 14 skill points. I decided to try for a third time, but they only lasted ten minutes, adding 0.02% each and a single skill point, with 39 pet points for Kae's drake. It seemed a good time to get some work sorted out downstairs instead...
s mentioned yesterday, I was waiting for a delivery - a new computer monitor, in fact. I was keeping a careful watch, hardly a car would go past without me looking out the window, and as four o'clock approached I checked the online "tracking" page for it again - only to find that it said the item had been successfully delivered at 14:02! I could see no note of anything in the front porch, and was starting to seriously think about panicking, when I saw that the item had been signed for by "L/Safe: Porch", and, sure enough, against the far side of the porch, there was my package, which was, after all, only about six inches thick. With a huge sigh of relief I carried it in and unwrapped the monitor, though it can't really swing into action until late next week. I wonder why Amazon.co.uk would supply it with a continental-style two-pin power plug? Luckily I have plenty of spare power leads with the UK style three-pin plug on them.
During the food break I logged Barbarienne in for a while, and she managed to avoid being disconnected, so I decided to make one last try for a reasonably long session in Cariae-4's Tomb of Theos. The Condition was on 90% now, which is still pretty good, so Kaerella and Barbarienne went in, and ran to the ancient grey mummies again. Between them, getting in costs 630,000 gold, so this was their last chance for today, these things get expensive.
Luckily there were no more disconnections, so Barbarienne and Kaerella were able to spend all evening there. Tuffsen, alias Badfairy, got in touch, explaining that she was a bit ill at the moment and wasn't playing much...though she had started a new healer character, which would probably be her "phoenix". xShadowWarriorx, the night shadow and a guildie of hers, was in the room, so I passed across a message or two. He was in our party for a while, so we ran it as a combat party, until he had to go off to help another guildie in Lust Trum tower. Otherwise, the place was very quiet, with only an assassin-rogue arriving a few minutes before we logged off.
The shoutbox was reasonably busy; I was saying that the sooner the GMs appointed LichDemon and Aszune as gamesages the better, as we are so short of active ones now - only for LichDemon to tell us he had been rejected, which seems a remarkably short-sighted decision. The final word on things comes from [GM]JediMike, [GM]Yatou, who turned up in the shoutbox then, told us, and, well, he seems to be going rather slowly. On a day when Giovanna_X and irene_tas are not around, we can go for hours without anyone who can contact the GMs.
Another player rejected as a gamesage, mord, was around for a while; he is a computer expert, and told me the cure for the "b" problem, which I tested just before logging out. If hitting "b" while not in the chat box makes your game lag like crazy with a frame rate of around one per second, you just need to hit Esc, and then "b" again, and all is back to normal.
By the end of the session, Kaerella had gained another 3.39% and 4198 pet points, and Barbarienne had gone up by 3.32%. They had each earned a further 103 skill points, thanks to the continuing double skill exp. Of course the downside to an experience or skill exp event is that it reduces the drop rate; I think I only picked up one piece of armour during the whole evening.
CaptainScarlet did go back to the death mask lancer in Maargadum Jail for a little pet-levelling afterwards; the drake was around 85% of the way through level 47, when last seen. Another knight called xStrithx was already by the side wall, sparring with the death mask soldier to level his horse, so I had to move Cap further along the side beyond him, so that if he left or got a disconnection, the soldier wouldn't wander back to Cap and perhaps start attacking the drake.
Killing Giants - November 27th
My usual seven characters logged on to get their daily attendance allowance sorted out, before coffee, ending with SirGalahad doing a little pet-levelling with a spike canine in Maargadum Jail, behind the teleporter.
MistressDomina had killed a fox on her way to the mine, earlier, and it gave 2 experience and 1 skill exp, which revealed that today the GMs had absent-mindedly left double experience running. This meant that SirGalahad wasn't able to do any skill point farming on the ghouls in Prokion Temple, so instead I did a little checking up on what armours and weapons I had on various storage characters - and upgraded some armour pieces that MistressSabina will be able to wear relatively soon, as today there is a raffle with free entries for people who upgrade items. It's interesting how much larger the defence gain is from +10 to +11 on a piece; if for example a pair of mage boots give a basic 66 defence plus 39 at 8, they go up to 45 at 9, 52 at 10 - and then 72 at 11, followed by 82 at 12 and 93 at plus 13.
Checking, transferring, and upgrading took up most of the second half of the morning, really, if one includes looking through Roy's merchant mart. My main search was for a good level 53 weapon for MistressSabina, but there was nothing above +12 available, so she will have to stick with her level 45 one for a while yet, which is +15. At least a pair of level 55 +13 gloves were only half a level away, as armour can be worn, without penalty, five levels before its marked level, until one reaches the pre-sealed types a little higher.
For the afternoon, while CaptainScarlet kept busy pet-levelling, MistressSabina went out to the giants, to take advantage of the double experience. They seemed to drop a good number of the level 61 weapons, which helped build up Sabina's gold reserves, and by the end of the session, she had gone up by 16.77%, and earned 61 skill points. Her drake had added 949 pet points, too.
The evening belonged to MistressSabina too, with more giant-slaying. Kamira still stayed away, so things were relatively unexciting, with the high points being the various first-grade ignition runs. The double experience continued, even after the double pet experience, today's scheduled "event", was switched on. CaptainScarlet started to use the hour-long platinum pet experience potions he had, then. Sabina levelled up, and, as soon as I'd allocated her new stat points to intelligence - had a disconnection, along with Cap. Luckily she wasn't actually fighting, but it meant that a weapon that a giant had just dropped couldn't be picked up - and the giant must have respawned before Sabina faded away, as her drake was down to 10% health when she logged back in.
CaptainScarlet hurried back to his death mask lancer, so as not to lose more potion time than necessary - and MistressSabina hurried back to her giants too, but the weapon had vanished by then, and it was almost time to log out, anyway. She did at least stay long enough for her drake, also, to level up, reaching 44. During the evening, Sabina had added 30.17%, 140 skill points, and 4045 pet points.
Back in Randol, MistressSabina had a new passive skill to learn - the first five levels of Mental Preserve, for 573 skill points increasing her physical defence by 100, and increasing her attack speed, though, the way the game works, that entails decreasing her "offense speed" by 2, from 14 to 12. More defence and a faster attack certainly sound good to me.
CaptainScarlet continued a little longer, of course, with his pet-levelling, and, using the potions, actually got his drake past the two-thirds mark in level 48.
A special "tiered leveller" event had started running this weekend - which was a bit strange, as an attempt to redesign the website's item mall had led to it crashing out entirely, so that only the three "BOGO" offers are available from there, with the in-game mall's rather limited range of things the only other place to buy stuff. And the "tiered spender" page itself isn't working, with just a note that it is "temporarily down for maintenance". Apparently people who do spend enough aeria points will get their bonus packages eventually, though it sounds as if the poor GMs will have to send the packages out individually. Not very good planning, there.
Drake Levelling - November 28th
CaptainScarlet logged in on the older computer at breakfast time, and Cariae's Kaerella logged in on the newer one; Kae quickly checked on the experience/skill exp situation by killing a fox, and found that both of those were back to normal, but when CaptainScarlet reached his death mask lancer, he discovered that the double pet experience, at least, was still in action, so he popped a platinum pet experience potion and set to work. A second potion took his drake into level 49, but I didn't start a third, as I was planning to change characters within an hour - and that was just as well, as while I was having coffee he did get a disconnection, at the usual dc-vulnerable time of not long after 10:00am, UK time.
Cariae's Kaerella was followed by Barbarienne, then Auzura's Kaerella, Rage, and MistressDomina, with most of them doing a little mining to pass the time. After Cap's disconnection, Auzura's Kae went out to the Tomb of Theos to check its condition, with the idea that she and MD would go in for the eleven to twelve dungeon time "power hour" - but the Condition of the Tomb was down to 40%. MistressDomina reported that in guild chat, and MzTickle1 tried to contact the Tomb-owning guild to get it set, but they were, unfortunately, not at their keyboards. Barbarienne then checked the Cariae Tomb, as she and Cariae's Kaerella could have done some work there - but the Tomb over there was right down to 0%, maximum hard.
So, CaptainScarlet was able to return directly to Jail, this time on Auzura-6, and start another potion, while providing a solo party for MistressSabina, who headed out giant-wards. Cap got through another potion or two, including the lunch break, so his drake made good progress through level 49 - and SirGalahad also did a little pet-levelling over lunch, combined with claiming his attendance allowance, so that without any potions his pale blue horse went from level 19 to 21. He did get ks'd once, but I was checking fairly frequently, and was back in time to pick up the 343 gold that the spike canine had dropped, and then get a replacement canine into place.
MistressSabina killed some giants, and did indeed seem to be doing it more quickly, and losing less health than before, due to her new level and extra passive skill. She had picked up a new quest in Merac, though, so before the dungeon time hour had ended, she headed down into Maargadum Jail to kill some death mask soldiers. As Cap was there too, in the combat party, he gained 0.03% experience from that, and a rather small bit of skill experience. Getting the quest items didn't take Sabina long; back in the village, the Archbishop gave her 2.61% experience and 6 skill points, and referred her on to Healer Yabo in Randol, who gave her a further2.13% and 100k gold.
In all, MistressSabina gained 11.64%, 43 skill points, and 954 pet points from the morning session. Strangely, the double experience I'd seen not running on Cariae was still running on Auzura, so that Sabina still got 77,550 experience per giant. She also, with the Elizabeth's Enhancement buff running, got 2178 skill exp per kill, up from 2056 when she was a level further away from the giants. As ever, she only got that much once the thirty minutes "attendance" had been seen to, before that it was just 1980 skill exp.
The lunch break was a fairly long one, with SirGalahad and CaptainScarlet both in action; the two to three o'clock dungeon time hour was well under way by the time I checked the Tomb of Theos on Auzura-4 again, and found that it had now been reset to 100% easy. So, MistressDomina and my Auzura archer Kaerella went in, and headed for the ancient grey mummies.
The only problem was that, it being the weekend, the place was abnormally busy, so that my duo couldn't take up position in the main room, and ended up in the far corridor area, just short of the Tomb's central "swimming pool" room. Even there there were a couple of other people fighting, though they left after a while; Kae and MD both had to fight the occasional screaming zombie or infected grey mummy. By the end of a rather short afternoon session, MistressDomina had just added 0.89%, 20 skill points and 2294 pet points, while Kae had earned 1.16%, 17 skill points, and 2258 pet points, taking her drake safely into level 46.
CaptainScarlet got back into action on Auzura-6 after that, using a couple more platinum pet experience potions; he did get ks'd by a sorcerer once, but lost less than a minute, I'm sure. Another knight had been fighting a death mask soldier further along the side, but I think he had lured it from the far end, so that when he left it didn't walk back in my direction. RedRackham also logged in, with his level 4 pale blue pony; with the comparatively short levels, and the continuing double pet experience, the pony had just reached level 8 by the end of the down-time, with its sympathy rating at 92%. The knight xStrithx was there too, on Auzura-4, with the death mask soldier, so Red moved further along the side, with the lancer, to avoid problems.
While CaptainScarlet continued his work, after the food break MistressSabina logged back in, and found that the double experience was still working for her on the giants, at least on Auzura-6. So, she killed lots of giants, fitting in a number of first-level ignition runs; by the time she had to log out for the Sunday Quiz, Sabina had added another 18.65% in level 50, plus 103 skill points and 2472 pet points. There was one more ks-ing for Cap, but again it was only a minor break; using more pet potions, he'd by now got the drake into level 50, making it one of my highest-level pets.
I wasn't quite as early getting to the Sunday Quiz as usual, in the quiz room on Auzura-2, as Sabina was just coming up to qualifying for one last ignition run - but both MistressDomina and Kaerella got there with ten minutes to spare. Everything went smoothly enough; the questions were a little slow to appear, but the order had been tweaked a little so that we didn't all have to run from one side to the other too often. Once they'd got question 22 wrong and respawned outside, Kaerella traded her prizes and other recent loot to MD, and then MistressSabina did the same; then MistressDomina traded the loot to MistressDomino. MistressSabina got her next armour set from MistressFelicia, too, before CaptainScarlet logged back on and, after getting a platinum pet experience potion from MistressDomino, headed back to Jail.
RedRackham also headed to Maargadum Jail's fifth floor, though with xStrithx fighting the usual right-hand death mask soldier still, and CaptainScarlet fighting the usual death mask lancer, he had to go to the left-hand side and spar with a soldier from over there. Unfortunately, the GMs had by then noticed that yesterday's double pet experience event was still running, and it had been switched off, so progress was back to only just over a thousand pet points per hour. Still, that was enough to get Red's pony into level 9, and Cap's drake about 20% of the way into level 50.
MistressSabina had been able to clear out some accessories, when trading with MistressFelicia, so had enough room for the level 55/57 armour set. At level 50 she was able to put on the gloves at once; despite being a set higher than the previous gloves, and +13 rather than +8, the added physical defence just comes in at 60 - still, even an extra 5% helps.
Simon Says - November 29th
I managed to give Cariae's Kaerella and Barbarienne, and then Auzura's Rage, MistressDomina, MistressSabina, and Kaerella their half hours for the attendance allowance this morning, and was then able to log MistressDomina on in good time for a late morning "power hour". All foxes attacked only gave a single experience and skill exp, so there was no unexpected event running. MD's Twisted guildie Newt suggested that we ought to link up on Cariae, so we did that, with me as Barbarienne, and added each other to our Friends lists; her rogue over there is around level 77 I think.
Back on Auzura-4, there was still plenty of time for MistressDomina and Kaerella to get into the Tomb of Theos, and get to the anubis spear men, before the eleven to twelve hour began. Newt did say she'd come along to keep me company, which I thought would mean joining our combat party - but as we were along at the first corner after the main spear man room, she decided to stay in that room, which just had one night shadow fighting, and party with him.
Anyway, MistressDomina started her berserker, adrenaline, and small crit potions when the dungeon time hour began, followed swiftly by the platinum blessed iris, and during the hour used 58 experience boosters - which meant that she went up by 27.94% in the hour, and got 11 skill points; with a kill or two before and after the total for the morning was 27.96% and 12 skill points, plus 1198 pet points. Kaerella had kept the local population of sphinx fighters under control, killing the fifty needed for the repeatable quest within the first half hour; her experience gain, unboosted, was 2.03%, plus 9 skill points and 1045 pet points.
Kaerella logged out over lunch, so that a restarted game wouldn't be liable to little freezes the older computer specialises in after a few hours, while MistressDomina spent the time in the safety of the ancient grey mummies room. After lunch she returned to the same spear man spot as before, and was soon joined by Kaerella. Things went much as before, including an ignition run each - MistressDomina again got through 58 experience boosters, which this time gave her 27.46%, along with 10 skill points. About fifteen minutes into the hour, MistressDomina levelled up, to 105...which means I guess I am in the market for a pair of mage gloves of that level, if suitably upgraded. Once the dungeon time "power hour" was over, MD and Kae moved across to the ancient grey mummies for an hour, so that for the whole afternoon session MistressDomina added 28.54%, plus 23 skill points and 2524 pet points, while Kaerella gained 2.55%, 21 skill points, and just 1329 pet points for her drake SirFrancis, as for most of the second hour she just stood and watched while MD fought, which gave Kae a chance to equip her level 37 polar bear cub for a while - it gained 4.39% from MD's kills.
And then it was time for the early evening food break, which took a little while as it included catching up on the penultimate episode of this season's "Merlin" fantasy adventure. Still, I was back in time for this week's GM-hosted event - the only one we have scheduled, I think.
Auzura led off the evening's event rota, a game of "Simon Says" - so if the GM said "Simon says, run away from me", you did it, but if he then said "Now run back", you ignored him, as he hadn't said "Simon says". There weren't any penalties for getting an action wrong, it was just a bit of fun - and at the end [GM]Darasuum spawned the usual kind of loot. There were rather a lot of people to divide it up among, but Kaerella got 3 skill point boosters, 1 large attack potion, 1 large defence potion, 2 item drop boosters, and 4 tool aids. Katar was next - it was [GM]Darasuum again, but this time at the end he spawned a fluton, which killed a few unsuspecting people. Still, Kaerella was not that close to it, luckily - and got 2 skill point boosters, 4 item drop boosters, 6 large defence potions, 3 large attack potions, and 4 tool aids in the scrimmage at the end.
Cariae was next on the list, with Dara again, and no fluton - Kaerella there ended up with 4 more skill point boosters, along with 3 item drop boosters, 4 large defence potions, 5 large attack potions, and 6 tool aids, plus the usual small HP and mana recovery pots, which isn't bad going for a quarter of an hour's event I guess.
On Sarissa, Kaerella is only level 28; with five minutes to go before the start, I noticed that she didn't have a dragon hatchling to help pick up loot; luckily she did have a drake egg, so I galloped to Lorraine, and then went to Jajan in Dratan, and hurried back, arriving at the north gate with only a couple of minutes to spare. We did get a fluton again, towards the end, but [GM]Drasuum did make sure that we were almost all well away from its spawning point, so no deaths were recorded. Kae's booty here was no less than 7 item drop boosters, as I think the turn-out was a little lower, plus 4 skill point boosters, 2 large attack potions, 4 large defence potions, and 8 tool aids.
The fifth server was Hatzring, where Kaerella is a level lower, at 27. There wasn't a fluton, and for some reason the loot at the end seemed a bit less - all Kae managed to grab were a couple of large attack potions, a single item drop booster, 5 large defence potions, and 4 tool aids. Some people complained that they didn't get anything, or just a couple of the small MP recovery pots. Dara seemed to be getting the hang of the game slightly better, though, with a few more cunning Simon-less requests to catch people out.
On Tairen, we zoomed back up to level 29; [GM]Darasuum completed his mission, having done all six servers, and we had another enjoyable time. My cunning ploy of saying, just as the loot was spawned at the end "Simon says, let Kaerella pick up all the loot" didn't actually work, but I did do unusually well that time, managing to pick up no less than 9 item drop boosters, 7 skill point boosters, 6 large attack potions, 3 large defence potions, and 6 tool aids; since a "hand of the guard" gives one each of the item drop and skill point boosters, plus 2 of the rather less valuable tool aids, I was a bit lucky there.
There was just time after that for SirGalahad to make his first visit to Prokion Temple for a few days, and spend half an hour fighting the ghouls there. There was a fair bit of competition for them, but the archer LadyTempesst was carefully avoiding fighting them and only attacking the mummies, so we avoided any overlap. SirGalahad went up by 2.81% and 70 skill points during that rather short session.
All through the evening, CaptainScarlet had been hard at work fighting the death mask lancer in Maargadum Jail - he also provided SirGalahad with his solo party. I have no intention of taking his current drake beyond level 50, as soon as convenient it will be exchanged for another drake, perhaps Rage's or MistressSabina's, but it did at least reach a third of the way through its level before the evening was over.
Lagging in the Desert - November 30th
My usual seven characters managed to log in for their half hours of attendance before coffee, with a fair amount of mining done; after that, CaptainScarlet traded the level 50 drake across to Rage, in exchange for her level 47 one, and various bits of loot, including what Kaerella got from "Simon Says" last night, were traded across to my merchant mage.
Then it was time to check how the Tomb of Theos was set; it was lucky I was busy on Auzura, as Cariae suffered a crash as ten o'clock, UK time, approached, and it took a little while for people to get back in. Not only was the Last Chaos USA website item mall having problems, at breakfast time the website itself was mainly down, with "no server" messages appearing, including in the "news" section of the game launcher...the forum shoutbox survived, I could see gamesage Giovanna_X's valedictory message before she did her "vampiress vanish" for the night, but not much else.
Anyway, the Tomb was fine, so MistressDomina was joined by Kaerella, and they went in, heading for the anubis spear men, and that first corner after the main spear man room. MD managed a "power hour" during the eleven to twelve dungeon time, using 59 experience boosters and adding 27.94%, plus 10 skill points. Including the kills before then, MistressDomina earned 28.16%, 13 skill points, and 1298 pet points, while Kaerella added 2.15%, 11 skill points, and 1141 pet points.
Over the lunch break they retired to the ancient grey mummies room. When they got back into action, they did fight the mummies there for a few minutes, and then ran back to the anubis spear men in good time for the two to three o'clock dungeon time hour.
As an experiment, this time Kaerella didn't do much fighting during the hour, just getting rid of sphinx fighters that were a bit near, or in the way when MistressDomina might need to go for the nearby third spear man, as sometimes the two on the corner don't respawn quite fast enough for her. This meant that I could concentrate on MD a bit more, so that she used terra spear more often - the difference in the end wasn't very big, but she did manage to use 60 experience boosters during the hour, so that she gained 27.83% experience and, due to Kae's smaller contribution, just 5 skill points.
Once the hour was over they both headed for the ancient grey mummies, for an hour or so; for the first few minutes, only Kaerella played actively, but when someone left there was room for both of us. By the time the afternoon ended, MistressDomina had in all gained 28.94% and 30 skill points, plus 2258 pet points, and Kaerella had earned 2.24%, 26 skill points, and 1356 pet points. During the "power hour" she had generally had her pet polar bear equipped, and it added a few percent.
After the food break, CaptainScarlet headed for Maargadum Jail to do a little pet-levelling on his newly-acquired level 47 drake, while, in a solo party with him, MistressSabina went out to the giants, on Auzura-6. For some reason she was still getting extra experience from them, but at around twenty to eight I started to get bad lag problems. It came and went, but sometimes CaptainScarlet wouldn't actually hit the death mask soldier, so that a "20" damage figure would float up off him, for up to a minute... and trying to move items around in Sabina's inventory just didn't work, until about ten seconds later.
MistressSabina managed to mount up and do a "(pet) village return", and once she'd sold her loot, things seemed to settle down, and she went back out, but half an hour later the lag was back, and other people in the shoutbox were reporting it, on all the Auzura sub-servers. In fact, whatever it was affected the website and other Aeria games, apparently. Again I managed to get back to Dratan City safely, and waited a few minutes... finally CaptainScarlet was hitting his soldier properly again and, since I did have an ignition run ready, I decided to take Sabina back out.
Luckily, things had indeed settled down, and I was able to continue for the rest of the evening session with the giants - and MistressSabina did reach the midway point in level 50 right at the end. In all she went up by 18.77%, plus 103 skill points and 1232 pet points.
By then CaptainScarlet had got his new drake more than a third of the way through level 47. He logged out so that MistressDomino, my merchant mage on Auzura, could get MistressSabina's latest loot, including moon cake ingredients. If the moon cake event ends with maintenance tonight, this is my last chance to sell flour, egg yolk, and lotus seeds - the first two of those are common drops and by now worth very little, but it would be nice to manage to sell the lotus seeds before the servers go down for their weekly rest.