Friday, April 30

Icarus Studios, Inc., Restructures Company

In an announcement made today, Chief Executive Officer of Icarus Studios, Inc., James Hettinger, announced a restructure of the company resources and staffing, effective immediately. The changes come on the heels of the six-month anniversary of Fallen Earth, a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game co-developed with FALLEN EARTH, LLC.

"While this is a challenging step for us," said Hettinger, "the steps were taken to maintain the growth, continued development and profitability of Fallen Earth."

As a result of today's reorganization and in an effort to maintain development, the combined companies will support core members of staff for ongoing customer service and continued development of Fallen Earth and company projects.

Team leads are continuing production and development on Fallen Earth Blood Sports Patch 1.4, scheduled for release on May 7. Community support and scheduled events, such as Slots Night (scheduled for tonight, April 30), will continue as announced.


Forum thread, mostly people talking about how this will affect the game they play in their leisure time. Very few seem to realise this means 80% of Icarus' employee's lost their livelihood today.

The rare wild traffic cone

Thursday, April 29

Thundering Thursday Threenshots

Just reinstating an old traditon....

Apparently +5 Stamina regen in Fallen Earth requires a +5 to cleavage.

The temptation of the Grand Canyon.
Keep wanting to just drive over the edge of that cliff.

The noob finally figured out how chat works,
then made the mistake of responding to the both of us

STFU! I'm crafting

Our blog is old enough to rate traditions....

Better late than never

Happy Birthday Phè

My Google Calendar reminder has failed me...

Wednesday, April 28

GW fifth anniversary brings GW2 news

Guild Wars Two Design Manifesto

…if you hate traditional MMORPGs, then you should really check out Guild Wars 2

Anet have started a GW2 blog to celebrate 5 years of GW. The first installment makes for some interesting reading, I've stuck a couple of quotes below to wet your appetite, go read the full blog here


We think of GW2 as the first MMO that actually has a cooperative PvE experience. When I’m out hunting and suddenly there’s a huge explosion over the next hill – the ground is shaking and smoke is pouring into the sky – I’m going to want to investigate, and most other players in the area will too. Or if the sky darkens on a sunny day, and I look up and see a dragon circling overhead preparing to attack, I know I’d better fight or flee, and everyone around me knows that too. With traditional MMOs you can choose to solo or you can find a good guild or party to play with. With GW2 there’s a third option too: you can just naturally play with all the people around you.

I personally spend a big chunk of my time in traditional MMOs soloing, but when I play GW2 I always find myself naturally working with everyone around me to accomplish world objectives, and before long we find ourselves saying, “Hey, there’s a bunch of us here; let’s see if we can take down the swamp boss together,” without ever having bothered to form a party.

Of course GW2 has great support for parties, but they just don’t feel as necessary as they do in other MMOs, because your interests are always aligned with all other nearby players anyway. When someone kills a monster, not just that player’s party but everyone who was seriously involved in the fight gets 100% of the XP and loot for the kill. When an event is happening in the world – when the bandits are terrorizing a village – everyone in the area has the same motivation, and when the event ends, everyone gets rewarded.


If a Stone Elemental throws a boulder at you, pick it up and throw it back. Or as an Elementalist, use that boulder to create a meteor storm. If you’re fighting an Oakheart with an axe and you manage to hack off a branch, pick up the branch and try using it as a weapon. If you meet a beekeeper outside town, buy a jar of bees from him and see what happens when you lob it at nearby enemies.

If the game is as dynamic as they make it sound it's going to be loads of fun.

Some new info appeared regarding the Professions on the official site, so far they have only unveiled the Elementalist on the new professions page.

Here are some skill animation videos for the Elementalist

Meteor Shower


Static Field

Water Trident

Churning Earth

With the exception of Static Field, these are all skill names that carry on from GW1, I'm hoping the voices can be muted..

Note in the Phoenix there seems to be a buff from getting in to the tail end of the skill, nice touch

Sunday, April 25


1) Upon acquiring the companion dog, Mutt, in Fallen Earth and immediately trying the rename option I quickly learned that dog names, like player names, have to be unique.
Dogmeat (from Fallout fame) was already taken. So is Benji (from Benji fame) but Gaspode (from Terry Pratchett's Discworld fame) wasn't, yay!

2) Level 16 mutants have social aggro. It's best to realize this before taking potshots at a group of 5, or atleast don't try to do so while at level 15 yourself.

3) Gasoline is crafted in batches of 5, not 1. Don't freak out if you decided to start with a modest batch of 5 cans for your first gasoline refining session.

4) There's really nothing wrong with Zip guns and Air rifles. Seriously, the main benefit of the "Magnum Rimfire Rifle" over the "Snipershot Air Rifle" or the "Sportman's Crossbow" is that the Rimfire atleast actually sounds like a gun when it goes off and that's really all the advantage it needs after a week of 'pfft' 'pfft'-ing.

5) When surrounded by Wild Dogs attacking you in the middle of the night, the one sitting on its haunches presenting you with a paw to shake is probably Gaspode. Try not to get confused and don't waste precious ammo/time on him.

6) The recipe book "Refine Fasteners" will allow you to craft "Scrap Fasteners" (yay!) however crafting a single fastener takes about 1.5 times the time it takes you to gather/harvest/scavenge/plunder enough kit to sell for the 35 whit chips a fastener costs. It's also doubtfull you'll ever make enough "Scrap Fasteners" to break even on the cost of purchasing the book. Hopefully higher grade fasteners will make up for this.

7) There's no such thing as too much ammo. However, there are such things as carry weight allowances. Carry a melee weapon as backup.

8) Travel distances/time really aren't the problem in this game, it's the way you can't go anywhere without going "Ooooh, I can probably harvest/scabenge that!" and dismounting. It doesn't matter how fast your ride is, it's the (dis)mount time that counts.

9) Watchtower is the most northernly town with an auction house in Zone 1. This makes trying to win a bidding war from Trailer Park rather inconvenient (see map of Zone 1)

10) Dammit! Someone else realized this game needs an Edith ("E") Johnson. Just hope he/she stayed true to character.

Tuesday, April 20

I wanna go home!

the reason for that, beyond general I hate my job and the sun is shining and my couch is comfy excuse is that when I left of Fallen Earth last night I ahd a huge que of new clothing items I was crafting.
At 10 mintues a piece (inside the Clothing lab) I would have had to stay up for another 90 mintues which was just too much.
I do love this feature about Fallen Earth. i get to look different frequently due to the craft every item in order to level up concept. Of course you ahve to wear everything you make at least for a little while.

So how did I end up with such a floodgate of clothing recipes all of a sudden?
Well, because I'm dumb.
Last Sudnay i finished my session with a bit of an unsatisfied feeling. I'd just made my very first "real" rifle. As opposed to copper pellet throwing Zip gun. This was an honest to god hunting rifle, firing HEAVY AMMO. Ok, one little cincher, my Science vendor only sells Light Ammo Recipes. So here iw as, at a enw tier of crafting and the opening Ballistics item is an awesome rifle which was heaven to shoot for the first five complementary rounds but with no means to make more rounds.

So Monday I began a journey Northwards to slightly higher level mobs and quests and in the mean while discovered that I could purchase Heavy ammo rounds by the case load (500 rounds) and that these last you about 2 hours if you hoard the ammo. Glancing forelornely through my Recipes i suddnely noticed that in my Zip Gun category was a manual I could write (some tradeskill items required) for advanced Zip Guns. Putting two and two together I quickly checked my Science recipes and lo! There was a research Medium Ammo manual I could write.
After purchasing some pen and paper from a local vendor I set to writing first a manual for Medium, then Heavy Armor. Bought the Recipe for making pens and cursed the lack of a paper recipe and went on a writing spree.

The result was I now have additional categories in Ballistics, Armorcrafting, Weaponry, Science and soon Nature tradeskills as well. Life in Fallen Earth is looking up. I gots plenty of mobs to kill and nodes to salvage for my new attire and kit. Phè's alt is due for some hand me downs as well I wager :-D
It also happens that i ended my session right next door to a camp of Night Wolf mercenaries, who drop a belt-buckle that counts as a scrap fastener for crafting, the most rare tradeskill resource in the lower tiers as far as I know. The additional vendor trash they drop is actually cost efficient to buying Heavy Ammo by the case load as well.

Just one hour more of this work to go and I can head home. I'll see about adding some outfit pics from Character select as well before publishing.

Edit: So here she is in her resplendant new S.W.A.T. scavenger gear:

Monday, April 19

Cautionary images from Fallen Earth

After Geekz0r's confession here that my review post on Fallen Earth made him want to hit the resubscribe button on Fallen Earth I thought it best to post a few cautionary pictures as well:

First, these are my settings. Note that every F*-ing slider is at max. Not every videocard will do that. To boot I have an ATI brand card, which the boys and girls at Icarus used to develop Fallen Earth on. Experiences may differ using different (brand) cards.
P.s. this screen supposedly has the Gamma slider. I can't spot it though.
Also interesting, WIndows' own screenshot taker has a much greater quality loss than FRAPS has as evidenced by the decay on the text in that image.

Epic battle for the Trash Bags just passed.
Ok, this I put in purely because I think the shot is funny. I went for the trashbags and discovered 'Thugs" have an above average aggro range. It was quite the pitched battle for two scrap fasteners.

This is how dark the caves can get. Notice the difference between flash-light area and the surroundings. Note: this is as dark as it gets though.

The dark sometimes hides gruesome scenes...
No matter how much the graphics get amped, it's still post apocalyptic downtown Nevada with all its gruesome brownishness. I hear Zones 2 and 4 have more colour though. Phè can confirm / dispute.

Also, they do patches on Monday.

Sunday, April 18

Apocalypse redux

I've been playing Fallen Earth for a week now and so far it's been a solidly fun experience.
Which is not to say the game doesn't have its flaws, but at least the clunky controls are slowly growing on me, especially after mapping the camera toggle key to a more convenient location.

This makes switching between melee and ranged combat a lot easier. Ranged really does need FPS mode for those all important head shots and for melee I at least prefer third party view. A view that's also a lot better at keeping track of where your party members are. I kept losing sight of them when in snipermode. The compass/map thingy usually isn't much help with that. Switching between 1st/3rd person perspective is very improtant, as is rapid switching between Aim and Mouse mode. In fact the game is a lot like Syncaine's favourite PvP game in some respects. Inventory management isn't quite as heinous as in that game though, and experience/levelling works a bit less like Morrowwind than that game.

The first time round when I tried the game during Beta, my L40 clone accidentally ended up outside the tutorial dam in the real game and was instantly lost and that was the end of my interest. (I did report the bug and it's no longer possible now)

The second time around I had real trouble with both the gathering and crafting systems. Mostly that it was anything but transparent for a beginner what he/she should do. I think it was trying fruitlessly to find leather skins for an afternoon, not knowing that the pile of reptile skins I had would work as well which sucked the fun out of it for me the last time. I also felt the game was just a little to drab and brown that time round. It's still drab and brown, but with the graphics updates it looks a lot better, and that's from someone just coming of a Mass Effect 2 gloriousness overdose. Like with CoX stills (screenshots) don't quite doe the graphics engine justice. Things need to move.

But back to crafting.
This time round I'm loving the crafting system with a vengeance. As reported before it's mostly a matter of finding the right ingredients for your recipes then waiting for the crafting countdown has expired and presto! You're done. The good thing about it is you can walk even run around while crafting, though you take a hit in the time it takes you to craft an item while away from proper facilities. This seems to range between 40 and 60% and may differ based upon the complexity of the item. Net result, I've hidden in dark nooks of mines to smelt some more copper bullets for my modified zip-gun because I'd run out. Yesterday afternoon for example, I was trying to find some Alpha DNA in an old mine where a cloning facility had gone haywire, spewing out ugly zombies rather than useful workforce clones like myself. The Mission required me to do several steps inside a room in order to shut down said facility, while under constant attack from the emerging zombies. Needless to say they can be very distracting and while the mission plots of Fallen Earth shine, their system of using inventory items on in-world mission targets needs work. I was there along with some other clone who'd gone in for the same reason and neither of us could find the fusebox to destroy. Eventually my ammo ran out and his blade hat already eaten his last repair kit so we aborted for the night. Actually, the Zombies overwhelmed us and we woke up in the cloning facility down the road.

Something else I noticed, most noticable with armorcrafting, is that the best way to keep your crafting skills at a useful level for your exploring is to essentially make nearly every item in your recipe list once. You get three times more XP for creating the first version of any given item than all consecutive ones. With armor crafting this means you get to look different about twice a day. Gathering the materials for the next, usually slightly better statted hacket, pants or shoes/boots keeps you busy and gaining experience. More or less the exact opposite of the darkening sackcloth till 70 approach of Age of Conan. Even when sometimes it's just a different colour texture thrown over the same dimensional mesh, it looks different and makes you look different from the orther clones, I mean drones, err players around you.

The same goes for melee weapons, ballistics, (both of which come in one-handed/dual wielding and two-handed varieties) and medicine, mutagenics, cosntruction e.t.c. In fact you can just do nothing but gather kit and craft it. Selling it can sometimes be a pain as the auction system is one area that could use more work. But you can play this game and have fun without ever picking up a quest or mission. Some are useful even for the hard-core self-sufficient crafter as some people will help you gain cheap access to recipes which can be quite expensive at times.

It's also quite possible to take the Questing/combat oriented route though. Each place has a sleuth of quest givers ranging from "kill 10 more of the bastards you had to fight through to get into town" which tend to be repeatable and quick pick me ups for a gatherer like me who'll be amongst said basterds to mine veins and search through trash. Each town or city has its own little main story line which you usually can follow as a quest-line and there's a couple of global organisations like the Franklins (the postmen) and the Bankers (vault managers) for whom you can do chores. These also serve as a good means of getting people to move around as inevitably they end up giving you a warning or some ledgers to bring to another town.

In short it's a good mix of pure snad-box and (old skool) quest driven gameplay.
I say old-skool because some of that clunkiness here and there which I mentioned harken back to nostalgic days of EverQuest, Anarchy Online and more recently Vanguard - Saga of Heroes more than the Third Gen games like WOW, WAR, AOC, CHO, STO and other acronymic titles.

Enough talking, there's surviving and dumpsterdiving to do.

Monday, April 12

Greetings from the Apocalypse

Just thought this had a real Postcard feel to it.

Friday, April 9

War in Kryta

Just in case you haven't been following what's been going on with Guild Wars. ArenaNet started by creating a few sparse hints, followed by some cryptic clues and now on to this, a 'blog' by Historian Murro. 

On Facebook you can choose your side, being a double agent it was only natural for me to join both.
Some great fan art: 
Meanwhile in the game a new Shining Blade camp has appeared and most recently many aggressive White Mantle have been spotted throughout Kryta.

There's a big story unfolding here, it's a 200 year gap from GW to GW2, some of that story we can start to live, most we will have to observe from the sidelines. 

A very thin line

The difference between an MMO, an FPS map, and a single player game is really disappearing in this upcoming game. I think this game will be a bit too console-y for my taste, but it is getting very close. I can see the majority of the PvP fans in Fallen Earth will move here. I think I will try it too as my sit-on-the-coach-and-use-my-xbox-for-a-change game. Now thinking that principle a bit further, I doubt I will make friends in the game. So it will mostly be PUGs? Basically 7 human controlled side kicks I never talk to since I will still refuse to use my voice in a game. Or will it just be a single player affair for me because of that?

Thursday, April 8


Last night I completed a play through of Mass Effect. I've been avidly playing Mass Effect 2 and decided to do a play through of the original because the choices your character makes in that game carry through into #2 and will ultimately affect the conclusion to the trilogy as well.

The first game feels really clunky during combat compared to the much smoother experience of ME2, but the storytelling and emotional investment in the characters are still top notch and overall still a very enjoyable experience.

And the ending is just plain awesome. You know how most (RPG) games will have this big boss fight at the end where every skill and ability you learned throughout the game is useless and your get frustrated by having to adopt completely different playstyle/strategy just to finish the bloody thing? Well Bioware tends to do things a little different.

First of all, you have the option of getting the Big Bad Baddy to put a pistol against his head and pull the trigger. Unprecedented awesomeness right there. After that some Awgner worthy cutscenes of a spacebattle that have George Lucas crying into his pillow wondering when he lost it (around the time you cooked up Phantom Menace George) and then they play with you a bit.

It gets better when your main character tells your party members to confirm Saren,(the Big Bad Baddy) is really dead. The following cutscene sets you up to expect the classic bending over the corpse to see if he's dead only to have the 'corpse' put your neck in a vice-like grip dramatic effect. Instead your team members show uncommon sense by stopping at three yards to put another round through his brains to make sure he's dead.
The fact that this enables the Even Bigger Bad Influence directing Saren to take over his body and transform into to be destroyed mutant boss takes nothing away from the whole awesomeness. The battle itself isn't easy (certainly not as easy as Mine-blind Marek in KoToR) but not too hard either. You end up with a very satisfied ending feeling.

I finished at 22:05 sharp. So what to do then? Switch on the TV. *Click* End battle for Naboo opening scene commences and Starwars theme music plays over the surround set *click* Hmmm, I haven't finished reading Shadow of the Apt yet.


I fully expect Mass Effect 3 to be a fitting end to the trilogy. Where your protagonist will have to bring together several factions currently in various states of cold to hot wars in order to fight the ultimate evil known as The Reapers. For some reason I kinda expect you find a new race of furry fuzzballs to help fight the final battle

Wednesday, April 7

Spellborn Free to Play

From the site...

Spellborn Goes Free to Play While in Redevelopment

It happens sometimes; a really good game will slip through the cracks. There are a lot of reasons why this happens and I know you will have opinions, but I�m not here to talk about that.

I feel like Spellborn was one of those games. A solid MMORPG with a twitch combat interface that meant that player skill actually mattered in PvP. Most of those who played it enjoyed it. And it did pretty well in the reviews online. It was originally a subscription based game with servers in EU and North America, and is now in redevelopment to be converted to a F2P. Acclaim still has servers running the original version and that is why I�m writing this.

We felt like people missed out. They didn�t get to see what Spellborn was really like. And we are going to fix that.

Today, as you read this, Spellborn as it currently exists is now free to play. Keep in mind that there will be no upgrades and no patches. It has become in effect, an Action RPG with superior Multiplayer. The only thing it will cost you to play is the time it takes to download.

So play it.

Now because it is frozen in time, we will be creating events for the players and we will help support any players that want to make their own events.
And if you have thoughts on how we might make this version more enjoyable as we wait for the New free to play version, we are glad to listen.

David Historian DeWald
Community Manager
Acclaim Games Inc.

I was a part of the closed beta for this game for quite a while and when I could play it, it was rather enjoyable (if you could get past some of the bugs, but heck, it was still in beta then). When I quit, it was in an enjoyable state (I think it was open beta at that point), and will be checking it out again...when I once again have internet access at the house.

The joys of a good clan

This post is going to have very little purpose. No great insights. I just wanted to share some of my Fallen Earth stories. About a week and a half ago our entire clan, Saints Incorparated, got thrown into a big and brilliant thought up role playing adventure. The whole purpose was just to have fun, and to create some reasons for us to team up a bit more. All events related to our mishaps had to be share by at least two or three clan mates. As a result I did quite some running up and down including a one hour ride into insta-kill territory. If you are really interested you can find the whole log here. But I'll just copy my own scriblings.

27 March 2157:

It was promising to be a great day. Two months after Mikayla had asked me to sign up with the Saints I finally got to meet several of them face to face. Of course I have been keeping contact via our radio system, but that is different. Since I was excited about the meeting I had not noticed the radio had stopped working. But that got cleared up rather quickly when I stepped into the Beauville's Tavern. About ten grim looking faces were discussing radio towers, lack of communication, and static noice. Only then I quietly tried out the radio and realized it was indeed dead. I am glad I am so observative.

It was clearly not the day for cheerful introductions. I greeted Ivan and Irina since I recognized their voices, but kept quiet for the rest. Marcus and a couple of the other Saints went off checking on the nearby tower, while the rest of us stood around in the bar a bit lost. I tried to make some smalltalk with the people around, but quickly decided to not make a fool of myself. So beer it was. But even the beer tasted more stale than usual.

After what felt like an eternity they returned, and a lively discussion broke out on what happened and what to do next. A lot of crazy ideas where thrown around, but in the end everybody knew what to do. I volunteered to try to find the spare parts that had gone missing during transport between Chemtown and New Flagstaff. So I left the tavern and went looking for the transport agency in town.

2 April 2157:

First a quick update of the past week. After we broke up at the Beauville Tavern last week I started asking around about the lost convoy. But didn't get much useful information. I went back to the tavern the next day where I found Marcus stressed out behind a table. He was somehow communicating with several people using old style one-way communication units. I told him I have found nothing yet, but that I will continue on. Near the bank I found a few more Saints but they were so purposefully busy they didn't even notice me. And that was the last time I saw anybody. My search for information let to nothing much. I tried a few more towns, but no luck. I felt pretty lost.

But then all of a sudden I heard a new voice over radio! It took me a few seconds to realize what that meant. The radio is working again! While I was idling around the others had managed to fix the radio. The strange voice turned out to be Jenny, a new recruit that didn't even know the radio had been down. She couldn't really explain to me what had happened the past days. I probably made a weird impression on her with all my questions and excitement.

A little bit later Ivy's voice came through as well. She asked me to help her fixing the radio tower near Sunshine. Of course I was a bit confused as to why since the signal seemed to work loud and clear. She explain that it is only a temporary fix, and that we need to get the dish down for a complete repair. Having finally something concrete to do I dropped what I was doing, and rushed towards the tower.

I had never actually been close to any of these towers. I had only seen them from a long distance. But here I was standing at its feet, and it is freaking huge! Ivy started pulling parts and pieces of a winch from the trunk. I grabbed the ropes and pulley. With all equipment in hand we got over the fence, and I started to get ready to scale one of the legs of the tower. Fortunately Ivy saw what I was up to and pointed out the ladder the steps to the left. Yep, being observent is not my strong suit.

To avoid making more daft mistakes I quickly grabbed hold of the ladder and started my ascent. It was a bit wobbly, and carrying ropes and pullies along doesn't make it easier, but I persevered and reached the landing where the dish was located. After shouting into the wind and make some gestures Ivy understood I had removed the dish from its fixture and tied it up with the rope. A couple of minutes later the dish and me were both down. We tied the dish securely on top of Ivy's car. We packed up the winch as well, but left the rope and pullies till we return.

I would have loved to see Ivy Labs and learned some more about communication technology, but I was worn out. Fortunately the radio is somewhat working again, so hopefully I can be there when we try to put the repaired dish back up again.

3 April 2157:

My plan for the day was to head over to Post 23 and learn a bit about the mutation skills the enforcers have specialized in. But just about every word that comes out of their mouths makes me want to punch them in the face. I managed to talk to a few people there, but after that I just had to run out of that place. That kind of messed up my day, so on a wimp I decided to head over to Kiabab Forest, and visit Ivy's lab. She had given me sort of the directions yesterday, so I had a good idea where to go.

Apart from a few raiders, road side camps and hungry wild life the trip was uneventful. It was further than I thought, but there was a nice breeze, and lots of trees, so it was a perfect day out. When I finally reached Ivy's lab I didn't find what I expected. Actually not sure what I expected, but not a completely bored looking Andrea at the doorstep.

Apparently Ivy had taken Andrea up to the lab yesterday to help with repairing the dish. Ivy had left at some point, and she was stuck there with a pile of books she was supposed to study. A beer at the bar in Banker's Hole sounded like a much better plan though. Andrea warned me not to, but I went inside the lab to leave a note for Ivy. On a nearby desk I found some papers and started to write
Chennie here. We m, and then I saw some gnastly animal rushing my way. I jumped out of the lab, and smashed the door behind me. It was high time to get that beer.

At the bunker bar we got our beers. (Did you know Andrea hates beer? So strange.) And we started to talk what we should do next. I told Andrea about my failed attempts to find the missing caravan with Sarah's spare relays. She suggested we should follow the route and see if we can find out what happened. We pulled out a map and at least till Blaine the caravan from Chemtown could have only taken one route. And their first stop must have been right where we were now. So we had a plan.

I went to talk to Nick, who seems to be the guy charge in town, and asked him if a caravan had passed through. He said a caravan had passed through two weeks ago. Happy with that information I walked back to Andrea and told her what I had learned. But then I started to wonder if two weeks would have been the right time. Sarah didn't really say when she had ordered the transfer. So we went back to Nick. He was in no mood at all anymore to talk to me, and literally kicked me off his porch. Andrea went up next to set him straight, and a few seconds later we had to run out of town.

The next stop was Diesel Town. There is a convinient Franklin Riders outpost annex petrol station right off the main road. Anybody passing through stops there. The lady behind the counter confirmed a caravan passed through two weeks ago. In fact several pased through. That was bad news, because how the hell do we know which one is which. Then I noticed the ledger on her desk and ask if I could see it. Quietly I managed to rip the page with the most recent caravans out of the ledger while Andrea made some small talk to keep them distracted.

Next stop would be Kristo's Rest. But somewhere along the way we got ambushed by some White Crow thugs. We managed to get away, but I got a bullit in my shoulder. Andrea fortunately had some vodka, painkillers and bandages and managed to patch me up. But it hurt like hell! At Kristo's I waited outside while Andrea went in for a talk. A minute later she comes running out waving a ledger. It was time to run again.

What happened after that is a bit fussy to me. The endless horse back riding, vodka and painkillers started all doing there work. I think we made it to Flagstaff, but not sure actually.

Tuesday, April 6

Travel times

One of the most heated debates at the moment on the Fallen Earth forums is need for instant travel options. The world as it is now is split in 3 sectors, each having content for their respective level range. Sector 1 for level 1 to 17. Sector 2 for level 18 to 32. Sector 3 for level 33 to 46 (soon 50). Crossing S1 on horseback takes about 15 minutes. Going from S1 to S3 takes more than an hour. I think it is great. It really helps to the sense of the enormous wasteland I live in. If I want to be cross sector I really have to plan for it, and I really enjoy the fact it greatly inconveniences me.

Now there are other folks who argue that travel is just boring and stupid. We need instant hubs from one town to the other. There are already lifenet regeneration pods everywhere, so we should be able to use that. According to them it is now impossible to have social interactions with your clan mates. If it takes half an hour to get to a mission it is not worth it. Also any kind of social gathering are impossible to do.

But I think that as soon as something like that is implemented the world collapses. If everything is instantly available there is no world anymore, just quest hubs. Now an S1 player can be sure he will run into only players his level. Those players are just as stuck in that location. Real common sense human contact is the result. Our clan has a weekly meeting in central S2. I have been there a few times now, and just love the idea we all took the effort to ride/drive that 10 to 30 minutes to get there and meet the others. It only adds to the whole feel of wastelands. I know it is just a bit of a ramble, but I just wanted to get it off my chest.