Welcome To The Team
One type of player we seem to get a lot of is the former WoW player. Each and every day, we run across dozens of people who just jumped over.
I guess they decided to move up to a big boy game.
Now, I don't expect them to be experts when they start out. It is an entirely new game to them and, though it does share some similarities, the differences are enough to make give anyone a hard time.
I don't expect that much.
One of the things I DO expect, however, is a rough understanding of the game.
This isn't 1952. We've got this whole network of interconnected computers called "the internet". Anyone who wanted to can look up what a game is about.
Just freaking Google it.
Within five minutes, you should have a good general understanding of what FFXI is all about, what it includes, and basically how to play.
Just five little minutes.
Is that too much to ask?
But no. Instead, we have morons making GM calls asking about how they get a flying mount or which way to Silvermoon City.
I swear someone asked me that.
Do you know where the flying mounts are? No where.
We ride our "mounts" on the ground like freaking normal people. We ride around and have to follow paths and not go over mountains and shit.
Because we're not F&%@IN' lazy, that's why.
If you're moving over to FFXI from WoW, you're goning to have to get used to a lot of new shit really, REALLY fast.
Have you ever gone into Burger King...
Okay, I know you haven't, but let's pretend for the sake of argument.
You're in Burger King. Your turn comes and you step up to the counter and loudly announce that you would like a Big Mac.
You'll be lucky if you get your ass out of the place before some greasy teenager with a hairnet starts throwing old apple pies at you.
And you'd deserve it.
You don't just log into a new game and act like it's the old one. That shit is just offensive. The difference between these kinds of games is all that makes them unique. You start eating away at it with your stupid "Oh, where do you get a flying mount?" garbage and you're going to hurt someone's feelings.
Actually, I'll end up hurting your feelings. I'll refer to you by the wrong name and then feed you to a dragon.
How do you like it?
Yeah. I thought so.
I get that we're a gaming community. I understand that.
I also understand that, as a community, we feel the need to come to the aid of any gamer who might be treated unfairly.
That's only right.
Thus, it was with great vigor that our many peoples came to the defense of a poor man deprived of his one love: Dungeons and Dragons.
Short version: Guy is in prison. Prison bans D&D. Internet esplodes.
Are we all up to speed?
Several video game news sites picked up on this story and ran with it. Oh, this poor, mistreated man having his beloved game taken away from him.
It was enough to spark an outrage.
Or, at least, several angry comments.
All caps, too. They mean business.
And, honestly, if you read some of the news stories, you start to feel bad for the guy. He's stuck in prison with nothing else to do and he wants to play a table top dice game. Sad, right?
Until you remember one funny point:
HE'S IN PRISON.
Jesus, people. What the hell is the matter with some of you? We're supposed to feel bad for this guy because they won't let him play D&D?
He killed people.
With a sledgehammer.
Suddenly, I don't really give a shit if he's allowed to play games or not. You pretty much give that up the day you decide to remodel someone's face with a sledgehammer.
We don't let the guy run around outside the building.
We don't let the guy order in pizza or hookers or anything.
Why the hell would we let him play D & MotherF&%@in' D?
Yeah, sure. He's a person and all that. He has basic human rights that are afforded to everyone no matter what they've done.
Things like air.
Among those rights, I don't see the words "Oh, and make sure he can play D&D anytime he wants."
We're under no obligation, legal or moral, to let this guy play games at his leisure.
This ain't Andy Freakin' Dufresne fighting against the corruption in Shawshank. He murdered someone in the face with a sledgehammer.
See, we afford those privileges to people who DON'T kill other people with sledgehammers.
Do you see the distinction? I know it's subtle, but it's an important one.
Wait... Can you even use two-handed hammers in D&D?
... I'm probably going to hell for that one.
Yeah, yeah. Where the hell have I been?
I've been working on something that I kind of wanted to keep under wraps, but I think you guys at least deserve an explanation as to why my update schedule has been absolutely retarded lately.
I'm writing a book.
Okay... I'm trying to write a book.
I'm probably going to get sick of it and throw it in a drawer somewhere the first time I see something shiny, but I'm still in that "everything seems so freaking brilliant" phase, so I want to get as much done as I can before that happens.
This is what happens when I get retarded about something.
Things will get back to normal soon. I swear.
Or I'll start taking Ritalin.
I'm Writing A Movie Script
This may or may not be safe for work, so be advised before clicking on the link. It's all very tame stuff, but it does involve some "adult film actresses" so you may want to wait until you get home.Don't say I didn't warn you.
Apparently, Game Daily somehow got themselves on the red carpet for the AVN awards. This is the awards show for the "adult film" industry.
I assume the awards themselves to be quite awkward to hold.
Anyway, the Game Daily reporters are asking these young ladies (and some guys probably) what their gaming habits are.
Watch the first video.
Seriously. Go watch it.
It features a young woman by the name of Jenna Haze who I am completely and utterly unfamiliar with. I have no knowledge whatsoever of her body of work or any videos she may have stared in.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
This girl is a serious gamer. She throws down with her gaming cred and then...
The reporter asks what video game character she would most like to make a "movie" about.
Can you guess what she says?
I'll five you a hint: It starts with F and rhymes with Final Fantasy.
Oh hell yeah.
Honestly, and I'm not joking around here at all, I will murder the person at SE corporate that send the cease and desist letter on this idea. I mean go ahead and send out C&D letter to homebrew developers, but this... This is art.
Shut up. It is.
Hot, sweaty art.
Anyone at all involved with the industry should get started on this today.
You need a handicam, a variety of costumes that are all readily available online, and security to hold back a tide of FF fanboys.
By that, I mean me.
That's really the one thing the FF series has been missing all of these years: porn. We've done the classic RPG, the strategy RPG, the spin-off, the MMORPG. We've done everything.
Seriously. How the hell could we leave that out?
The porn RPG.
No, I don't want to think about what is involved in leveling up.
And everyone should sub WHM for Viruna.
Am I the only one who thinks this is a freaking awesome idea?
From the look Susan is giving me right now, I assume yes.
I really need to tell her to stop reading these things.
Never Enough... Continued
Ironically, this is a continuation of my last post.
See what I did there? My last post was about how there's really no end to...
My genius is lost on you people.
My last post, you see, was an experiment. I wanted to leave the ending vague enough for people to wonder if the lack of a true ending was a good thing or a bad thing.
A few people actually e-mailed me to ask if I hated that about FFXI and MMORPGs in general. They suggested I was trying to bring attention to one of the worst parts of the MMO.
Not so much.
While some people can get a little... annoyed by the freedom and longevity offered by this kind of game, I revel in it.
I love FFXI. And I'm not just saying that like you would to some girl just to get into her pants.
In case wife is reading: Not that I've ever done that.
This is perhaps the single greatest game that I have ever played. Given the sheer volume of games I have played in my many years, that is truly saying something.
Why would I want that to end?
There's something else I love as well: eating. I love going to a nice restaurant and sitting down with an amazing meal, savoring every bite.
Now, some people eat a small portion and be done with it. Enough to meet basic nutritional requirment and then go on with the rest of their day.
I'd never stop.
The whole point is the enjoyment. If I'm honestly enjoying every minute of something, why would I ever wish for it to have an end?
When I read a good book (yes, I do read), I don't wish for it to be over so that I can read something else. Hell, when I notice the back cover getting ever closer, I start to get disappointed. I hate knowing that my enjoyment is soon coming to an end.
FFXI doesn't have to end. You push and grind and claw your way to the top of the mountain, turn and stare at the majesty of the world around you and at the slope you have just conquered.
And there's a new mountain right next door.
And another one right after that.
All the mountains a man could ever want to climb.
That might not sound like fun, but if you enjoy mountain climbing, then you're in heaven.
I love FFXI. I will play it to every end they can provide and then, when I somehow run out, I'll sit back and ask myself that universal question:
"What would that have been like as a Mithra?"
And I'll start all over again.
And I'll love every minute.
Suppose someone believed in reincarnation. Suppose they honestly believed that as soon as they died that they'd move on to a brand new life.
Does that mean they should pray for their current life to end all the sooner?
That doesn't make much sense, now does it?
I'm sure I could go get another game. I could run down to Gamestop and throw sixty dollars on the counter to take home Shiny New Game: Old Game 2.
I'd pick up a sword or a gun or whatever, spend 3 hours fighting monsters and find out that I saved the world again.
Yay... I guess.
Frankly, I like a little bit more substance. I want to look at my play time numbers and know that I lived a life in this world and that I enjoyed living it.
I don't play to be done.
I play to play.
How could that possibly be a bad thing?
I realized something interesting today.
It's never going to be enough.
Every minute that you're playing FFXI, there's always something you're striving for. You're always trying to get a better polearm or a better pair of shoes, a better spell or a better level. There's always something to work toward.
Even when you hit level 75, you have a ton of shit left to do. Hell, you have to level half a dozen subs to 37 just to keep from being gimped.
That's just to be normal.
If you want to be better, you have 19 other jobs to level to 75.
And then you have to get merits for all of them.
Lots of merits.
Merits for new abilities, new spells, new episodes of House, whatever.
But then you're done.
Oh, wait. You don't have all of your gear yet.
Every single one of your 20 jobs has situational gear, gear that you need for every possible event. I mean, Dragoons do two things:
1) hit things
2) hit things again
And yet, any Dragoon worth his salt has 4 or 5 sets of gear ready to go at any moment. You need soloing gear, weaponskill gear, regular tping gear, evening wear, and who knows what the hell else.
So, you've got hours upon hours upon hours of questing or farming or running events just to get awesome gear.
And every job has awesome gear.
Lots of it.
But that's it. Once you've got the jobs to 75, all 20 of them, and you have lots of awesome gear for your jobs, all 20 of them, then... Then you're done.
Wait... You did your crafting, right? You got your crafting to 100, right?
And leveled all of your sub crafts.
And your fishing.
You get a special fishing rod if you catch eleventy bajillion fish and bring them to this guy who has some weird fish-related emergency.
Then you get to go fish with your new fishing rod.
So, now, you're spending hours and hours farming for money and materials to craft AND spending hours and hours crafting and trying to resell the items you made.
Then, you're done.
Just as soon as you get your Relic weapons.
That take years to complete.
And every job has a relic.
All 20 of them.
Then... Then you're done.
... Until the next update.
I Am A F&%@ING Genius
I have officially, OFFICIALLY, come up with the greatest idea in the history of the freaking world.
Seriously. There are people coming by later with a certificate and everything. It's this really nice white color. That's bone. And the lettering is something called Sicilian Rail.
Now, you're probably asking yourself what this amazing, spectacular, incredible idea is.
I don't care if you used that many adjectives. I like adjectives and I will use them as I please.
Are you ready for this?
I don't think you're ready for this.
I give you...The [GM]Dave Center for MMORPG Addiction.
Huh? Huh? Isn't that the greatest f&%@ing idea you've ever heard?
Our center will be dedicated to helping people overcome MMORPG addiction and learning to game moderately and responsibly. People who are addicted to playing MMOs can commit themselves to a four week stay in which they will undergo intense treatment and testing to ensure they game in healthy ways.
Doesn't that sound awesome?
What do you mean "no"?
I'm going to assume you said "no" for theatrical purposes. If you did not say "no", please say it now so that we can continue.
What do you mean "no"? This is the greatest idea EVER.EVER.
See, the description I just gave is what you tell your spouse/parents/family/friends/dog/whatever.
In reality, you will spend four solid weeks playing the MMORPG of your choice with absolutely no distractions.
Just you and four straight weeks of as much gaming as you can stand without your eyes bleeding.
Or let them bleed.
Whatever. We'll pick up some Visine or something.
Your family/friends think you're off getting treatment for your "abnormal behavior", while you're actually playing your freaking ass off in a resort.
I mean center.
Hell, the other people at the center can help you play. Boom! Instant linkshell.
Four beautiful weeks of playing the game you love.
And then, and this is the best part, when your four weeks are over, we send you back with a very official looking report stating that you do not meet the clinical definition of addiction and that it is simply a controlled obsession.
Then, if they start up with that addiction shit again, you call the center and sign up for additional treatment.
So, to summarize:
-a full month of uninterrupted gaming
-getting to hang out and play with other serious gamers
-"official" proof that you aren't actually addicted and that everyone who said that is a moron
The only way I could make this idea any better is if we built the center next to a Cheerleader Nymphomania treatment facility.
I need to make some calls.
Is This Just Me?
Something funny happened today.
I was coming down from a mad gaming marathon. Honestly, I'm pretty sure I hadn't blinked in about four hours.
Things were pretty normal. I was just finishing up feeding some moron to Jormy for a very good reason (that'll teach him to misuse the word "whom"), when I decided to stretch.
That's when it hit me.
No, not an idea.
More correctly, my smell.
A wave of sweat slapped me in the face like I just asked a feminist to go make me a sandwich.
Now, this isn't a normal thing for me. I am quite carefully about properly maintaining my body and the hygiene thereof.
I have approximately 87 sets of gear for any one job along with several macro set ups for any specific event. I know how to keep shit running.
Still, as any gamer will attest, sometimes you just get caught up in an intense gaming run and you kind of lose track of things. You forget to eat, to work, to study. You even forget important errands.
It's no big deal. So Susan had to wait at the airport for four extra hours. She got home.
Unfortunately in the midst of your gaming revelry, it's really easy to meander away from your shower schedule. It just kind of gets away from you.
Usually, my wife is kind enough to point out these oversights. Usually, she's very clear on her feelings about that sort of thing.
Our couch is actually quite comfortable.
When it happened, I just chalked it up to one of those wacky consequences of being a gamer. I just automatically assumed that this happened to all of us.
I mean, I can't be the only one, right?
I'm going to go take another shower.
Secret F&%@ING Santa
Okay, this happened over the [GM]Dave Blackout of 2009, but I thought it was worth sharing.
Some of the guys at work decided to organize a secret Santa thing. You know, everyone draws a name and gets that person a relatively inexpensive gift so we all feel like friends and not just the random people I happen to sit next to for 8 hours a day.
Merry Christmas, random meat bag.
Still, it was a simple way for me to justify receiving an extra present, so what the hell, right?
I mean, we all kind of know how the freaking secret Santa system works. You spend 15 or 20 dollars on something they want and you get something you want in return. None of this retarded clothes or socks or underwear bullshit that various relatives try and pull.
Plus, we all work for a video game company. How hard is it to figure this shit out? You go to Gamestop and buy something between 15 and 20 dollars.
Or a gift card. Just buy a gift card.
It's not impersonal. It's efficient.
So, we're opening our little secret Santa gifts. Were kind of going around in a random order, but the general trend seems to be holding true. Pretty much everything is video game related and everyone is quite pleased.
Then I get to my gift.
Someone hands me a cylindrical gift. I immediately assume that some mistake has occurred until someone points out that my name is on it.
Oh, joy. My secret Santa has gone off script.
I open it and inside is a mug.
Like a coffee mug.
A coffee mug that says "You don't have to be crazy to work here... But it helps."
No, no. There had to be something else around here for me. I look inside the mug. I look in the wrapping paper. I look around the room.
Nope... This is it.
You know, they say it's the thought that counts.
Apparently, my secret Santa thought "Gee, how can I be the biggest prick in the history of the world? Hmmm...Oh, I know. Mug."
Who the F&%@ gives someone a mug for Christmas? Do I look like an 80 year old woman?
A mug is never, ever, ever considered an acceptable Christmas present.
See, there are two types of people: people who drink coffee and people who don't. People who drink coffee already have mugs and people who don't drink coffee don't need mugs.
It is an entirely useless gift. You might as well buy them a card that says "I don't know anything about you. F&%@ you."
I was searching for the words to express my feelings when I heard someone say "You're welcome."
No, it was not meant ironically.
I tried to look happy. I really, really did. I smiled and everything.
I don't know how the mug slipped out of my hand.
I really don't know how it hit him in the side of the head.
One of those freak things, I guess.
You know what wouldn't have hurt hitting him in the side of the head? A FREAKING GIFT CARD!
Honestly, who gives someone a mug?
Thius is why I hate people.
Okay... We're Good
Woot woot! Looks like everything is going to be okay!
The doctors came back and said they've cleared up the infection and he's doing MUCH better. They've gotten everything under control and he's expected to make a full recovery.
Give me about 24 hours to get back in gear and I'll start writing again. My wife was kind enough to point out that I, and I quote:
"... Are acting like a giant vagina. Man up and blog."
Yes, my wife called me a giant vagina.
Do you know how hard it is to find a great wife like that?
Not hard. I'll have an ad up on Craigslist later.
You can have her.
Thanks everyone who sent me messages seeing how everything was going. This has been a REALLY crappy way to finish off the holidays, but at least I know you guys actually give a damn.
To answer some of your questions:
Yes, it is H1N1. They did all of the tests and they came back positive. I have no idea what those tests involve, but the doctors are quite sure.
Yes, he also has H1N1-related pneumonia. That explains the breathing difficulties. The doctor called it "double pneumonia" which means that he has it in both lungs, but sounds like something a four year old would say.
No, we haven't actually gotten in to see him. He's in some sort of Umbrella Corporation locked down isolation ward. I collected several gems and keycards, but no access yet. We're basically just hanging around the hospital trying to keep his wife and ourselves from going crazy.
Yes, I did a LOT of drinking on New Year's Eve. This has been a very bad few days and has brought up thoughts of my own mortality. I dealt with this like any real man would, by pouring alcohol on the problems until they go away or are bottled up or whatever.
Anyway, just wanted to keep you guys updated and I figured this would be easier than answering each e-mail individually.
Also, I am lazy.
And a little hungry.