Anjanath Down!

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We finally got everyone caught up in our group for Monster Hunter. I was able to take down the Anjanath late Friday night on my own, barely.  After my second faint my strategy was to use the last life to obseverve its attacks to be better prepared for the inevitable second attempt. But I had a really good few combos on him and once I saw him limping away  I had to try for the kill. By the end of the fight I was down to my last faint and mega potion. The following day the two others were able to get through the fight relatively quickly. Saturday night was spent with all three of us going through the story.

We ended up in the Coral Highlands and took down the Paolumu and were immediately taken to the Rotten Vale. I really like the Coral Highlands their very colorful and I like the layout of the map. On the flip side I’m not a fan of the Rotten Vale so far and neither was the rest of the group so we did some expeditions and optional quests in the Coral Highlands for the rest of the night. I think we killed the Tzitzi-Y-Ku 3 or 4 times because the fight was fun and easy. We decided to kill the Anjanath one more time to see if we could get some pieces of its armor. I had a really cool screen shot of the Great Jagras, Anjanath, and Tobi-Kadachi all in one area but the ps4 decided not to save it. Sadness.

Now that we’re all caught up I’ll probably only be playing the game when the group is on which I prefer. As much as I like Monster Hunter, it’s much more fun with of group of friends. So for now progress will be slow going as far as the stories concerned. I’ll probably boot it up a few days a week to farm parts from things we’ve already killed on my own. I really want the Paolumu set the skills and stats aren’t great but it’s pink and fluffy!




Almost Ready to Explore

Asp Explorer: Not Squishy
Asp Explorer: Not Squishy

One of the coolest features of Elite Dangerous is the scope of the map. A 1:1 scale of the Milky Way leaves a mind boggling amount of places to go. Every star I can see when I leave a station can be traveled to. That’s crazy. A

My first long term goal has been to purchase and outfit an exploration ship and make my way to out of the bubble of civilized space. After doing some research it looked like I would need around 18Mcr for the Asp Explorer and all the necessary modules. I started this month with 3Mcr so I wasn’t expecting to do this any time soon.

This all changed after last week’s Community Goal. After just selling the ore on the market last week I ended up with 10Mcr. Then there was the 15Mcr reward for being in the top 50% of contributors. That padded out my funds to 25Mcr and I set out to buy an AspX.

After splurging a little on outfitting my bankroll is down to 2.5Mcr again. Barely enough to afford the 1.5 Mcr rebuy of my shiny new ship. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, you never fly without a rebuy. So the Not Squishy is sitting in Lee city while I take the T-6, Trinkets and Baubles, out for some trading missions to pad my funds.

Once I’m back up to 5Mcr or so I plan to take a trip out to the Eagle Nebula. We have a gorgeous wall mural of it at work that I pass by every day. It’s 7000 light years form my home system. The Not Squishy can travel 33 light years per jump so that’s just shy of 235 jumps.

It’s definitely going to be an adventure!

Hitting the Wall

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The wall is something g every Hunter runs I to eventually. It’s that one monster who grinds you into the ground over and over, the monster where you see the dreaded “quest failed” screen more times than you can count, that one monster you just can’t quite finish off. In Monster Hunter Tri and MH3U it was the Lagiacrus. In Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate it was the Gore Magala. This time around it’s shaping up to be the Anjanath.

My usual co-op buddy, Jay, had hand surgery right after Monster Hunter World released. Now that he’s healed up I’ve been helping him catch up to me in the main story. We were having a grand ole’ time hacking our way through the beginning monsters with ease. We both fainted once to the Tobi-Kadachi but managed to hang on for the kill.

Then we got to the Anjanath. The monster that the handler has warned me of every time it shows up in another quest. Feeling confident in my monster hunting skills I brushed off the warnings and was expecting a slightly challenging fight. And then we failed 3 times.

I think the problem is our positioning. Normally we try to get behind a monster as much as possible and cut the tails for the extra carve. Being away from the head is also a good way not to get one shotted when you miss a dodge. But the Anjanath is really tall making it hard to hit the tail all of the time and his feet cause our weapons to bounce so the next largest accessable target is the head. And he gets real angry when you poke him in the head. He spits fire, he tries to eat me, and if all else fails he straight up headbutts you.

But you know what? It’s still fun when you lose. It’s a learning experience and by the second or third fight you start learning the tells of the monster and how to avoid attacks. By our third hunt we had him limping back to his neat to sleep and then he barbequed us. But we had him on the run!

This is the first monster I haven’t hunted solo before grouping up. I don’t know if I could down him on my own but I’m going to try before we play again on Saturday.

Community Mining Madness

20180205003354_1Since the begging of the year there hasn’t been a day when I didn’t log into Elite Dangerous.On paper the game doesn’t seem all that compelling. Most of it is spent waiting. Waiting to jump to a new system, waiting to get close enough to a station to dock, waiting for collector drones to collect things, but here I am still logging in. I’ve put in 65 hours and I’m still learning a lot and trying new activities.

Usually my time is spent running missions for the Euboa Life Solutions Corporation in my adopted home station, Lee City. I’ve been trying to increase my reputation with them so that’d they’d give me better paying missions. But lately they’ve been stingy on the missions lately.  Most of them are requests to kill corporate competitors but I’m not that interested in combat right now. I can kill things in a lot of games, there aren’t a whole lot of games where I can play solely as a trader, explorer, miner, scavenger, or passenger transporter and be rewarded for it.

So I took off in search of something else to do late last week. I saw that there was a community goal of delivering consumer technology and domestic appliances to a nearby system where a station was trying to build a family restaurant. I’d wanted to get into bulk trading commodities between systems and this was the perfect excuse to start.

Seeing as my current ship could only carry 32 tons of cargo I needed to upgrade to something a little bigger. Thankfully I had about 6 million credits built up from my time doing missions. I was able to buy and outfit a Type-6 Transporter (pictured above) that carries 100 tons of cargo. It’s not pretty and not as agile as my last ship but it sure is an upgrade.


Community goals are something I’ve been watching from afar for the past couple weeks.  Each CG run for a week or until they are completed. There are 8 tiers to the goals and as players turn in items to the station the tiers increase and so do the rewards when the event ends. Participating in the goal earns you a base reward of credits and depending on your level of contribution more credits are awarded.

The goals end on Thursdays and I started last weeks on a Wednesday. I managed to get into the Top 75% contributor bracket and ended up with about 4 million credits when the goal was over. This was on top of the 2 million I had made from selling the consumer tech and domestic appliances to the station. I made my money back from the new ship with a little extra for profit. Not bad for only 2 hours of hauling cargo.

This week the community goal centers around mining Osmium, Samarium, and Lithium Hydroxide. Judging by a few Reddit posts there hasn’t been a mining CG in quite a while.

I like how each goal has a little story behind why these materials are needed. Here’s this weeks:

The Alliance has announced plans to build an Orbis starport in the Synuefai EB-R c7-5 system, between the core systems and the Alliance’s outposts in the California Nebula.

Alliance official Torvan Dast issued the following statement:

“The remoteness of our California Nebula outposts makes reaching them a potentially dangerous proposition. This new starport will bridge the gap between the settlements and the galactic core, and lessen the risk to ships journeying to and from the California Nebula.”

The initiative is being overseen by the LP 128-32 Corporation, which has placed an open order for various raw materials for use in the construction. The organisation has also placed a kill order on all ships on it’s wanted list, to ensure that those contributing material to the campaign can do so safely.

I didn’t feel like going back to Lee City and the new goal was only a few jumps from the location of the last one. Lucky for me the T-6 can be outfitted for mining with just a few swapped modules and very little credit investment.


Mining is another activity in Elite that just sounds mindnumbingly boring. You fly into an asteroid field and start firing prospecting limpets into asteroids. When the limpet lands it will tell you the ore composition of the asteroid. If it has the ore your after you fire your mining lasers at it until its depleted while collector limpets scoop up the fragments of asteroid the lasers are shaving off. Once the asteroids depleted you rinse, lather, and repeat until you either have a full cargo hold or run out of limpets.

That’s how I spent my gaming time this weekend. Flying around resource sites looking for asteroids with a good amount of Osmium and Samarium. Sometimes I would find a whole cluster of asteroids and sometimes I would waste 10 prospector limpets looking for something worthwhile to mine. I died twice while I was out mining. Once to an NPC pirate who wanted my hard earned cargo that I unsuccessfully tried to out run. And again when I got a little too close to the rotating edge a very large asteroid that totaled my ship in three seconds flat.

So far I’ve delivered 108 tons of goods to Bulychev Hub, enough to put me in the Top 50% bracket for now. The goal is on tier 6 and the payout so far will be 7.5 million if I maintain my current bracket.  I’m not sure if I’ll put anymore time into it this week. I did enjoy my time mining but the T-6 isn’t very efficient with it’s small mining lasers. On average it took about an hour to fill up enough to justify going back to the station.

Back in the Hunting Groove

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I’ve been a Monster Hunter fan since impulse buying Monster Hunter Tri on the Wii. Since then my friend Jay and I have played every iteration of the game since on the 3DS. The 3DS as it turns out, is not my preferred way to play the series. Even with the XL version the screen felt too small and the controls we’re not ideal. So when I heard last year that Monster Hunter was coming to the PS4 and back to my TV I was estaic. And now that it finally released I can confidently say its almost everything I wanted it to be.

This has to be the most accessable Monster Hunter ever. I don’t have to go to a wiki to see what all these skills on my armor mean, what monster is weak against what, anf there is actually a list of combos to help you learn your weapon of choice.

Let me tell you though, there’s been a lot of changes since the good old Wii days. Tri took up the majority of my summer days that year. The multiplayer connection was so bad that I would only connect to my friends after hitting reconnect 10 or so times. Then once we all got connected we’d have o finish the quest as cast as possible or risk getting disconnected. I amt tell you how many times I’d be carving a monster after a 30 minute battle only to be disconnected and lose everything. Good times…

This led to a lot of my summer spent at Jay’s house in entirely different rooms yelling at each other to heal for hours on end only seeing each other when we broke for lunch. These days we live states a part so it’s a good thing the connection issues were solved in MH3U.

In fact I love everything about Monster Hunter World except the multiplayer. In the previous games there was a clear distinction between single player and multiplayer quests almost like there own separate campaigns. In fact you could play the previous games entirely in multiplayer and never touch the single player. MHW mixes them together and makes you play through the story to unlock the optional multiplayer quests. Which is kind of annoying when on release day you can’t go hunting monsters with your friends right off the bat. Last night I discovered that friends behind me in the story could still accept optional quests I posted for monsters they haven’t encountered yet. Which means only one of us really has to run through the majority of the story to get a decent amount of multiplayer quests. At least that’s how it seems right now. Maybe this will change later on.

I haven’t actually gotten all that far in the story. Yesterday I played the Pukei-Pukei for the first time and unlocked the desert area I think. The first few days were spent killing the Great Jagras over and over again to figure out which weapon spoke to me this time around. I usually main the long sword or switch axe but my two Monster Hunter buddies called those for our multiplayer hunts so I love decided to relearn my third favorite weapon, the gunlance and I’ve been enjoying it in single player so far. It’s slower and more defensive approach than the other weapons but it’s so satisfying when you get a long combo off and back step out of danger. As for my multiplayer weapon of choice I’ve settled on the hunting horn for two reasons. 1) Its fun to buff my friends and 2) it makes some pretty obnoxious noises.

This week I’m going to work on getting through more of the story. I’m excited to square off against the Barroth who has been one of my favorite fights over the years. I’ll have to see if he has any new tricks up his sleeve this time around.

Hopping on the Comic Book Bandwagon

Screenshot (7)I didn’t get a lot of gaming in this last week on account of I had family in town. So there’s not much to write about on that front. We did go see Spider-Man: Homecoming which was I think was the first Marvel Movie I’ve watched since Age of Ultron in 2015.

I like the Marvel Cinimatic Universe but I’ve fallen woefully behind. I think I’ve seen 2 Iron mans, 1 thor, and 0 Captain America movies. I’ve seen both Avengers though but missed Civil War. Luckily I knew what Civil War was about before going to see Spider-Man otherwise I would have been a little bit lost.

I can’t pass up a Spider-man movie not since the first one came out in 2002. Toby Maguire will forever be my favorite Peter Parker, if we just convientently forget about the third movie. But every time I go to see Spidey on the big screen I’m never disappointed.

I was never a comic book fan as a kid. I learned all about the big name super heroes through their respective cartoon runs from the 90s. Since I didn’t have cable these were the only cartoons I watched because they hit the network stations on saturday mornings complete with a healthy dose of power rangers.

In fact, it didn’t even occur to me that comic books were still being written until a few years ago. After seeing Guardians of th Galaxy in 2014 I looked into the whole comic book thing and was suprised to find that, yes, comic books never went away. So I plunged into a whole new realm of media consumtion. I read everything I could get my hands on from the library and even wrote a few reviews for a now defunct comic book site. They paid me in comics though!

I discoverd Comixology was basically the Steam of digital comics, complete with thousands of series and sales all the time. I read nothing but graphic novels and trade paper beacks that year and it was amazing. Then I sort of lost intrest and forgot about them as a whole until I saw Spider-Man.

It looks like Marvel’s big marketing machine actually worked on me. Not Only have I been trying to catch up on the MCU as of late but I’ve also fallen back in love with comics. So much that I’ve subscribed for a year to Marvel Unlimited, sort of like a netflix for marvel comics with thousands of backlogged digital issues all the way up until 6 months ago. The nice thing is all those series I started in 2014 I can actually finish without paying for each and every issue.

Right now I’m following a reading order for the Avengers series from 2004 all the way until 6 months ago. I wish DC had an unlimited service too but sadly they don’t. But the local library and surrounding libraries have so much to offer from both DC, Marvel and the indie publishers. It just sucks waiting for them to come in!

I know I’m a bandwagon comic book fan but I don’t care its so much fun to read in a different medium. There’s just some stories that are better told in comics and graphic novels than they would be in tv, film, or books. It’s also such a pretty medium with each artist bringing their own ascetic to each book they work on. I haven’t decided if I like the serialized nature of the books though. On the one hand cliff hangers build up suspense and anticipation for the next issue but on the other hand I really want to know what happens next right now and not a month from now.

EQ2: A Frog in the City


This week I left the Frostfang Sea and set sail for Qeynos. I had run out of quests I could reasonably do and the rest were 5 or 6 levels above me plus I was tired of looking at orcs. The leaper mount was quite handy in avoiding a bunch of level 19 mobs and getting me over to the docks to leave. I plan on returning once I’m level 18 just so I can finish the story up in that area.

Arriving in Qeynos was a little disorienting. It’s big and ,though you can’t tell it from the picture, there were a ton of NPCs. Some of them had little quest feathers so I ran over to them and was greeted with level 5-8 quests. These were quests I could do but there wasn’t much incentive.   I made my way to the capital district and found some quests a little closer to my level. Definatley nice to see quests names that weren’t in red.


After running around the city for a while I exited into the big open plane that is Antonica. This area offers a lot of quests and mobs that are around my level and not much in the way of scenery. There are a few structures and a couple of trees but it’s mostly big green open space. I was a bit surprised how much faster killing mobs goes when they’re the same level as you. This area feels a lot less dangerous than the Frostfang Sea and it also has more varied wildlife (aka no orcs).

Unlike the Frostfang Sea, Antonica doesn’t seem to offer streamlined questing. There are quests all over the place but they very in level, sometimes by a lot. A level 10 quest can be right next to a level 15 quest and a level 18 quest. It’s a bit confusing but once I picked up a bunch it seemed like no matter where I went there was a mob to kill or a thing to collect for a quest.

I’m drowning in quests in Antonica. Not only are there a ton of NPCs with quests but I was culling the deer population and they dropped a bunch of Far Seas Requisitions that have tasked me with killing certain mobs. Again these vary quite a lot in the level requirements. In the end it’s not better or worse just different. Also there seems to be less shiny collectibles around here.


My favorite quest out here so far was given to me by a poet down on his luck. After getting his poems back from some pesky gnolls he gave me a copy of his book to read. It started a quest where I have to visit each place he wrote a poem about. I’m enjoying this one because none of these places are labeled on the map and you have to figure out what they are based on this guys poem. I like that it forces me to be a little more observant of the world as I’m running around completing quests. I swear I ran by one of these locations 3 times and didn’t realize it was a literally a giant sword until I did this quest. There’s another quest from another book I found in the same vein that’s sending me on a tour of the area.

I think my curiosity is beginning to wear off a bit. I still enjoy playing but I’m finding myself log off sooner and sooner. Part of it is because it’s been a really busy week and part of it is that I’m just not as into it as I was at the start.  It’s hard to say if I’ll be staying with Fallen Gate or even EQ2 after this month. Who knows maybe once I have a little more free time in the coming weeks the game will really grab me again.