February 2022 Gaming Goals

Aha! We have arrived to the month I can never spell correctly on the first try. Like a lot of things on the blog lately, it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, so it’ll be a short one. I’ve noticed other bloggers adding books, TV, and other things to these sorts of monthly recap posts. While this one will be mostly gaming related, I like the idea and might try it out for myself next month.

January Recap

The last couple of months and really the whole of 2021 were a bit light on blogging. I’m usually one to start a project and get really into it for a few weeks before I quit. I’m still suprised this didn’t end up being on. Even so, I think I just needed a break from it last year. It wasn’t the lightest year of posts but it was close. It also didn’t help that I seemed to have replaced checking Feedly to scrolling on Reddit….

But, I have returned with a strong desire to write, as I always do. I’m excited to get back to it!

The tail end of January saw four whole posts, more than 10% of last years total posts! Keeping up with the XCOM 2 Blogger Succession game has helped keep me engaged at least a little bit more than I otherwise would have been.

Top 5 Games Played in January

  • Hero Siege
  • No Man’s Sky
  • Chimeraland
  • Monster Hunter Rise
  • Diablo 3

I got in to VR this month. I was thinking there would at least be one VR game in there but there’s not a single one. No Man’s Sky technically has VR but most of my play time has been outside of the VR mode. I have been putting off playing with it until I got myself a new router that could handle Air Link and wireless PC VR better. My total time between all my VR titles seems to be around 9 ish hours which would put “VR” as a whole in between No Man’s Sky and Chimeraland.

I started playing No Man’s Sky with the squad this month. We’ve only played it together one weekend this month but I did start up a separate save because I was eager to play more. That desire lasted for about a week and my brain has moved on to chasing other things.

Speaking of my brain, I’ve been looking for games where I can turn it off for a while which lead to Hero Siege making a triumphant return to my game rotation. The last time I picked it up was apparently April of 2020. I also remembered I owned Diablo 3 on PC so I was playing a bit of that as well.

Coming out of nowhere to take the third most played game is Chimeraland. I’ve only played a few sessions but I have a feeling I’ll be spending a lot more time with it in February

February Gaming Goals

Reach Level 100 in Hero Siege

Everytime I play Hero Siege something has drastically changed. Whether that be how the classes work, how loot works, or how the entire game works. There’s always something new added. Considering it’s almost 10 years old at this point, it’s kinda suprising. We’re in Season 14 now and I have my doubts about the new leveling and experience changes but I want to push through to the max level so I can see if the end game is any better.

Spend More Time with VR Game

I’m already starting to build a backlog and I’ve head the headset for less than a month. Like I said, I’ve been waiting to upgrade my router so I can take better advantage of the wireless capabilities of the Quest 2. This month’s budget allows for such an upgrade.

Some games I’m looking forward to playing in VR this month are Dead Effect 2 VR, Dagon, Star Wars Squadrons, and Elite Dangerous.

Play more Chimeraland

It’s a vague goal, I know, but I’ve only just begun my journey there. I don’t know what kind of goals I can have in the game. I do know that I’ve really enjoyed my 6 or so hours with it so far and I want to continue learning more about the game.

Write At Least 5 Posts

Let’s keep the momentum up! I feel confident I can publish at least 5 posts this month even though it’s a short one. One’s done already…

Chimeraland – Creating Weird and Wonderful Characters

Chimeraland is a game that wasn’t even on my radar until a few weeks ago. That’s when I started reading Bhagpuss’s recent posts about it. It sounded like there was a lot of fun to be had with the myriad of systems in the game and the huge world in which it takes place.

At first I thought the game was region locked. I was under the impression that this was a mobile only game. So when I went to try and download it on my android tablet I got an error that it wasn’t available in my country. A quick return to the game’s web page showed me I missed the big “Download on the PC” button . The mobile version appears to be only available in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines while the PC version had a global release. Which is just as well, I’d much rather play on PC.

It didn’t take long to download or update the game. I thought the launcher crashed at one point while it was trying to patch but, it turns out, I was just being impatient. Once the game launched I had no issues making an account and getting logged in.

There are currently 14 servers in Chimeraland to choose from. All but two of them were flagged as busy. The last two had a “recommended” tag on them. The first one I couldn’t register a character on because there wasn’t enough room so I went for the other recommended server. Then it was time to create my character.

There are 16 races to choose from in Chimeraland. Well, more like 12 since four of the races are different flavors of Human. I’m not sure why anyone would want to play a human when there are so many other weird and wild races to choose from. I mean just look at some of these!

The character creator has two different modes, free and precise. Free has you choose your race, age, and gender through a wheel interface. I found this pretty frustrating to use (maybe it’s better on mobile?) so I switched to precise which is your typical character creator.

I love a game with non standard race selections. When the opportunity arises I will go out of my way to pick something I’ve never had the chance to play before. So after looking through all the races I settled on the Octolow, a little, jacked, squid man. But as I started playing through the tutorial I realized that I had held back a bit and I could go weirder. I wanted to explore that a bit more. I deleted the squid man and went back to the character creator.

There are two things I learned from deleting my first character. You get one character per server and after deleting a character you can create a new one but have to wait 48 hours to delete the new one if you’re unhappy with it.

Back to character creator, I chose the one race that I knew I had never played before and might, possibly, never get the chance to play again. The Mudrake, the giant, only vaguely humanoid, fish woman. So started my hour long fight with the character creator to make this thing look good enough to play it.

Chimeraland has one of those character creators with a lot of sliders. I’m not a fan of these because they give the illusion of a lot of customization but in reality it’s really hard to make anything look good. You can have a million sliders for different parts of the face but when there’s only one face model it’s going to be either just slightly different or horrific nightmare fuel.

Case in point:

I’m not brave enough to use this as my character model

With a lot of finagling the sliders I was able to get the legs proportional to the body, and the body just small enough that it wasn’t clipping through the preview clothes. The real challenge was the tail which is a separate “accessory” and not part of the character model. No matter what I did it never quite looked like it was part of the Mudrake. More like it was glued on to the back. Also, the body, “hair”, and tail are different parts that don’t share colors so I had to match the colors on all three. These colors are on a slider and there’s no hex code or match button so I had to do it by sight.

Once I thought I had her looking pretty good I started the game. After I spawned I realized a glaring mistake: the head was too big. I looked like some sort of rubbery fish mascot and I just knew I couldn’t play looking at that, always thinking about it, having to stare at it…Unfortunately, I couldn’t play on the recommended server for 48 hours since this was my second character in 48 hours.

The in-game name generator ladies and gentleman

I chose a busy server and created a Cowdoo just so I could play the game this weekend. Sure, the Cowdoo isn’t as exotic as some of the other races, but I’ve never played a tiny, bipedal, cow in any game thus far so I’d call that a win.

I haven’t decided if I’ll keep playing on the busy server or re-create my Cowdoo on the recommended server when my timer is up. I’m really not sure if it’s jut recommended because it’s new or if there’s another reason for it. I did play for a few hours yesterday to get acquainted with the game but that’s a post for another time!

One more for the road!

XCOM 2 Blogger Succession Game – Mission 23: Operation Death Slayer

I’m back in the commander’s chair for the XCOM 2 succession game. It’s been a while, so my first concern was do I remember how to play?

If you’re unfamiliar with the blogger succession game or want to catch up you can find all the info over on Time To Loot.

I went back through everyone’s posts from this round to both refresh my memory and prepare for my upcoming turn. Since my last turn we’ve made some headway in the main missions but those ADVENT project pips are sill rising. We have started running in to a new enemy type as well: The Andromedon. These things look terrifying, spew acid all over the place, and have to be killed twice to boot.

Geoshpere

Magi started work on the Shadow Chamber Facility and the Advanced War Center on their last turn. Since, all of the engineers were busy with those projects there wasn’t any building to be done on the Avenger.

When I opened the Geosphere, a notification immediately popped up to check out a distress signal in New Brazil.Scanning there would net us  another scientist. I decided to test my luck and hope a mission didn’t appear before I was done. While scanning, our research on the ADVENT Data pad completed. I started researching beam cannons because, well, they sounded fun.

The scientist was successfully rescued just as the Shadow Chamber Facility was completed.


The Shadow Chamber also gave us some new objectives: Research the Blacksite Vial and Study the Codex. I chose to study the Blacksite Vial which put all of our other research on hold.

While that was cooking, I set off to see what I could do about those looming ADVENT Project pips. There were two options for us, New Australia or West Africa. I chose to make contact with West Africa because it cost 30 intel less than New Australia. Even with that, our intel is now running low. 

I was able to get 4 days in to the 5-6 day scan when the Blacksite Vial finished. We learn that the Blacksite Vial contains a refined human genetic soup. The working theory is civilians are taken from the gene clinics and processed into these vials to make new ADVENT soldiers. Everyone on board the Avenger is horrified at this discovery.

Operation Death Slayer

Objectives: Recover any valuable information or items, Extract all XCOM soldiers.

This is my first time playing a story mission. I was already a bit nervous to see that it was classified as a difficult mission and the big red boarder around it didn’t inspire confidence either. I figured I would need to assemble our best people for this one.

While we have a number of soldiers still recovering I was able to assemble a squad I felt comfortable with taking into this kind of mission.

– Seargeant Rocket ( Grenadier)
– Captain Silentdeath (Ranger)
– Major Magi (Sharpshooter)
– Lieutenant Volcano (Grenadier)
– Captain Rakuno (Grenadier)
– Corporal Sidorova (Ranger)


I wanted to take a specialist along on this one for some extra insurance. Two of our specialists were out with injuries and the only one left was a Squaddie. I figured a Corporal ranger would offer better utility than the squaddie so I settled on taking Sidorova.

I equipped almost everyone with a med pack. Sidorova got a Stim shirt since we were out of med packs by the time I got to her. 2 health regen a round isn’t too bad.

This was a reconnaissance and extraction mission to the ADVENT Forge. This is the place we suspect ADVENT is taking civilians and refining their genetics into the vials. 

After the team drops in, we can see the facility. There’s also a thick blanket of fog of war between our drop point and the building we’re trying to investigate. The map seems large but there is a straight shot up the road to the building. 

I decided to take the path of least resistance and walk the team up the road slowly. I also went with a defensive approach. Everyone moved up slowly ending their turn in cover and with overwatch activated. I sent Magi up to the high ground to see offer some cover fire and extra vision.

That’s when Magi spots the first group of enemies: An Archon and a Elite Trooper. I had Magi line up a Deadeye shot which almost takes out the Archon but not quite. The two enemies move forward triggering everyone’s overwatch. That engagement didn’t last long. The trooper dropped our only loot for this mission: an advanced auto loader and a PCS: Advanced Speed.

Continuing on with the slow defensive strategy, SilentDeath spots our next enemy: a Sectopod. Again, once it moves into range, everyone’s overwatch triggers and it’s wiped out in the first round. I definitely did not want to see what kind of damage that thing would inflict.

The team is almost at the facility but there’s a bridge we need to cross. The bridge set up is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it’s a choke point for the enemy if they try to cross. On the other, it’s a choke point for us. I’m working with 3 grenadiers and 2 rangers, not the best at long range fights. But that’s what we have Magi for. The team is able to get some pot shots on the ADVENT Mech and two troopers across the bridge and Magi is able to clean them up.

When we’re able to cross the bridge another cutscene plays. It turns out this isn’t a processing plant for humans. It’s a factory for making more ADVENT soldiers. I’m not sure if this is a better discovery but there’s a big chamber in the back of the building that looks like it might contain something important.

I set up the team to cover the front door in case anything comes out. I kept getting warnings that movement was detected behind the door but after 2 rounds nothing came out. So I had Rakuno blow the whole front wall down with a grenade. 

That sure got their attention and got me line of sight on the next group. One Archon and two sectoids. Again, the archon goes down almost imediately and Magi is able to hit another Deadeye shot on one of the Sectoids. The other Secotiod flees and we chase it in to the buidling.

Once we’re in, there’s no sign of the Sectoid. I split the team up in to two groups to take either hallway leading to the mission objective. No Sectoid in either of those so Volcano approaches the chamber to open it up on their next turn.

It turns out the sectoid, a muton, and another archon are on the roof. The problem with the enemies position on the roof is the is a big hole in it Rakuno made earlier. Once they move, they aren’t hidden and they’re not in cover. Magi drops the sectoid, a slew of overwatch shots kill the archon, and the muton jumps down into the room with the quest objective. Which also happens to be where the whole squad is posted up.

I sent SilentDeath to finish off the muton with a sword slash. I wasn’t aware that mutons had a melee counter attack which left SilentDeath with 1 health. I immediately had everyone burn the muton to the ground. 

Lesson learned, don’t melee attack the mutons.

With no more enemies in sight we get the chamber open and a suit falls out. This suit looks suspiciously like the one we found the commander wrapped up in at the beginning of the game. This is the valuable information or item we’ve been looking for and we need to take it to the evac point and get out.

Of course, we can’t just escape as there’s an enemy drop ship right next to our evac point. Volcano grabs the suit, everyone makes their way to the nearest exit, and we fight our way to the evac point before another drop ship can arrive.

Aftermath

There wasn’t much of a middle ground here for the soldiers. They were either gravely wounded or 100% healthy. This isn’t too bad of an outcome since our other main soldiers will be healed up and back in action soon.

Sidorova and Rakuno were both promoted. I chose  Shadowstrike for Sidorova and Salvo for Rakuno.

I feel pretty good about this turn. I got to experience a bit more of a challenging mission and moved the story along. I didn’t lose anyone, though I came close, and managed to keep half the squad in good shape. I think I’m getting the hang of this commander thing!

Next up is Unwise Owl!





Forays into VR

I always told myself I’d get in to VR when it had gone through a few generations and it was more affordable. It’s been something on the back of my mind for a few years but not something I was dieing for.

For one, my GTX 1060 is barely on the cusp for PC VR requirements. While I’d love to upgrade my graphics card, we all know how things have been going over the last few years. At this point I’m sure it will be cheaper to buy a new computer than upgrade my components. 

There also weren’t that many games I wanted to play. Ok, I was chomping at the bit to play Elite: Dangerous in VR a few years ago but my interest in Elite wasn’t what it was.

That is until I ended up being the one in our friend group without it after the holidays. Call it peer pressure, call it FOMO, I wanted to join in the fun with everyone else. So I went out and got a Quest 2. I know, I know, Facebook bad but they were going to suck the data out of me anyways right?

Now, the Quest 2 has a couple things going for it that sold me. One, it’s the cheapest headset out there. $300 is a whole lot easier to take a chance on than $600-$1000. Two, my friend who has been into VR for the longest time recommended it. Those two things together made it an easy choice. I’m surprised I was able to order it for same day pick up at the local Best Buy Especially a few days after the holidays. 

I brought it home and my wife asked me if it would be sitting on the shelf at the end of the month…so the real test was to see how long it would hold my interest.

The first few days were awesome. I felt like I had rediscovered gaming. Thanks to the Steam Winter Sale we were able to pick up a fair number of multiplayer games to try out. After 2 weeks the honeymoon phase was over but I’m still playing around with it.

My graphics card seems to be holding up well so far. I can run everything I’ve got so far with no noticeable frame drops or much tweaking of the graphics settings. It’s my router that needs and upgrade if I want to take advantage of the Quest 2’s wireless PC VR features. Right now, my 8 year old 2.4 ghz router is not cutting it. It works ok when I’m home alone but once someone uses the internet for anything games are unplayable.

Lucky for me, 10 foot USB A to USB C cables are not that expensive. Hooking up the headset with the wire made a night and day difference in performance and stability. It was like getting to experience it for the first time again. This set up lends itself well to games where you don’t need to physically move as much.

My go to games have been Walkabout Mini Golf, Google Earth VR (not a game but still fun), and Elite: Dangerous. Oh yes, Elite is just as good in VR as I thought it would be all those years ago. I can see myself writing about Elite much more in the future.

Unexpectedly, the game that has captured the heart of my core gaming group has been Premium Bowling VR. We’ve been playing it every weekend this month. Is it glorified Wii bowling? Yes. But it’s so much fun getting to hang out with my friends from different states and kind of feel like we’re doing an activity together.

VR is in the gaming mix now. I am looking forward to exploring it more and taking the time to find some good single player experiences as well.

I’m still trying to figure out a good way to take screenshots in VR.

No Welp’s Sky

I just had to be the weird, bird/lizard creature.

The squad and I found ourselves playing No Man’s Sky this weekend. I’ve owned this game for a while on PC and even longer on PS4 but this is the first time I’ve played it with other people. 

Previous attempts were made. Blades and I played the multiplayer once on PS4 when it first came out. I’ve owned the game on PC for a couple years now and the rest of the squad have acquired through Steam sales since then. 

Last weekend we decided to give it a go. I had a character that was an hour in and had done a bit the tutorial already. The rest of the squad were at various points in their own saves. CC had been playing  more than the rest of us and was out of the tutorial. Supertoast had a save that was in somewhat the same tutorial step as me. Blades had just purchased the game and was starting fresh.


Our session last weekend was all us figuring out how to play the game again. What controls do what, how do you scan, how do you access the menu, that sort of thing. No Man’s Sky is a console game that happens to have ended up on PC. This is apparent in the UI where there are  menus that are meant for a controller and end up being awkward on a mouse and keyboard. The quick access menus were a particular offender. Pressing x brings up the menu, you scroll through with q and e, or the scroll wheel, press x to open the sub menu, press x again to do the thing. It’s going to take some getting used to.


But as awkward as the on ground controls can be sometimes; the flight controls are even worse. I’ll admit, I’ve been spoiled by my many hours in Elite: Dangerous with my HOTAS setup. I cannot stand the keyboard and mouse flight controls in No Man’s Sky. I feels like flying a spaceship through sludge. Thankfully, this is fixed by plugging in a controller. 

As a side note, I’ve tried flying with my HOTAS set up in NMS and I can confidently say Elite has ruined that for me. It’s no where near as good.


This weekend’s adventures were more about getting everyone to the same point in the game. SuperToast and I were able to get caught up to each other since we were a mission or two out of sync. We’re both sitting on the mission to go to another star system. But we have to wait for Blades to get caught up to us.

I forgot how tedious the begging tutorial is. You start with nothing and have to make all your gear. Then once you do that you have to fix your ship, learn how to build a base, and a whole bunch of other stuff that prevents you from just playing the game. As far as I can tell, there’s not a great way to skip it but you can help another player through it by giving them the materials they need.

 Blades set out to work on the tutorial while the rest of us went our separate ways in our Star System. What I quickly realized last night was four people can play NMS together without actually doing anything together. It’s a different multiplayer experience than I’m used to where everyone needs to be on the same page and to get anything done you have to work together. Not so in No Man’s Sky it would seem.

At least this is true on this first starting planet. As we get farther in to the game I’m sure there will be more for chances for us to work together.

Ancient bones in their natural habitat

For my own little adventure, I set out to find as many natural burial sites as I could while we were playing. These contain ancient bones which sell for a pretty penny at the galactic trade terminal. The price range anywhere from 60k to 700k depending on how old they were and the rarity. I started out the night with very little money to my name and ended the night with just over 5 million credits.

I manged to buy a ship with 4 extra storage slots for 660k. All the other ships with massive upgrades and storage had equally massive price tags. And here I thought I could afford most things with my 5 mil. Apparently, I’m not even close.


Finishing Up fallen Earth’s Sector 1

Over the past few weeks, I’ve gotten into a nice rhythm with Fallen Earth. At first, I was playing it all of the time, but after a week and a half, I started to space my sessions out a bit more. I have this tendency to get really into a game and then abandon it a few weeks later. But I’ve done my best to stick with it and venture around. It’s not my main game but it is something I’m playing at least once a week. Having a friend along who is also playing has been helping me keep my interest.

My focus has shifted a bit from crafting all of the things to doing all of the quests. I was chasing the “You’re Dying’ quest around Sector 1 which serves as the main story quest to move the plot along. That is until I hit a spot where I could not reasonably survive so it was back to the towns to do quests and level up for me. My questing took me through Old Kingman, where bandits were holed up in an abandoned prison, it took me to Coppermine where bandits had holed up in a mine, it took me to Pass Chris where bandits probably were holed up in something. There’s a theme here in the Sector1 towns.

Watchtower also had a mine, also filled with bandits, but it was also being attacked by Sandworms. Lots and lots of sandworms. The main questline here had me looking around for the best way to get rid of the sandworms. We settled on sprinkling radioactive dust on them. Bad for the worms, probably also bad for the people of Watchtower.

Throughout my travels, I had acquired some better armor, a nice combat vest, a very protective blue, plaid shirt, and most recently a leather skirt that offered more protection than the pants I was wearing. I was also able to considerably upgrade my pistols. They can shoot actual bullets now instead of pellets.

The pistol path is rough for a character just starting out. I saw several people talking in global chat about how pistols were really for your second or even your third character. Not only do I have to craft two of every weapon upgrade but they eat through ammo like no other. But they look cool and do a decent clip of damage so I live the pistol lifestyle. I haven’t had too much of an ammo issue thus far the upgrades for the guns themselves are really what’s hard on my chips.

After Watchtower, I decided to take another crack at the “You’re Dying” quest. I ended up in an underground bunker filled with mutants. Apparently, these are sentient beings, not just grotesque cannon fodder. They trade, they talk, they even take people as slaves. But I was sent to mow them down, rescue some slaves, and take their stuff!

The Toro Bend facility is quite large and I died multiple times trying to complete various quests within it. There was a room where degraded clones kept spawning every few seconds. At one point I walked into the room and was chased around in a circle by 30 plus enemies until they backed me into a corner and sent me back to a respawn point.

Lucky for me, there were two other people in the place who also needed to complete the “You’re Dying” quest. Once we teamed up, everything was much easier to deal with. It’s like I’m playing a multiplayer game or something…

The next part of “You’re Dying” wants me to travel to Sector 2 and leave the barren desert behind. I’m approaching level 20 and I feel it’s the right time to leave. I’m constantly three to five levels higher than every enemy around me at any given time. I’m not sure if this is how the game was or if this is the result of the boosted XP from the Commander Aura everyone is getting. Either way, it doesn’t stop a couple level 15 mutants from chewing through my health bar.

I don’t remember much about Section 2 other than there are trees there and it looks a little better than Sector 1. I apparently made it all the way to Sector 3 before the shutdown but I don’t remember a difference between 2 and 3. I guess, I’ll see when I get there.

Road Tripping the Apocolypse

After going through most of the quests in Oilville I was level 13 and hardly gaining any experience from quests or mobs. It seems like after doing a few quests the experience drops off in a given area. I’m not sure if this is just how the game is or if it’s because of the boosted XP from Commander. While I’m striving to do a majority of quests in an area, when the quests are only giving 50-100xp it’s hard to justify after a while. So I set off to follow the story quests to see where they would lead me to. The hope was one of these storylines would drop me off in a town that was more appropriate for my level.

I had a few added to my journal as I leveled up. Two quests at level 5, one at level 7, and one at level 13. So far I’ve been following the “Build an ATV” quest around which led me to Oilville and then up to Old Kingman. But Old Kingman has a prison complex which Greg and I had a ton of fun doing the last time we played so I was waiting to quest through this area with him. So I picked up the “You’re Dying” questline which last saw me in Embry Crossroads siphoning DNA from all sorts of creatures to fix my own.

The next quest for “You’re Dying” took me up to Rest Stop which is right above Old Kingman. As it turns out, the town of Rest Stop is overrun by creatures called Festering Rotters. I was able to wade through the festering hordes and find only two people left in the whole place: a woman worried her husband hasn’t come back from rounding up sheep and another clone of Lifenet Technicahian Grahm. Grahm tells me that there’ a malfunctioning Lifenet facility in the mine just out of Rest Stop that’s spitting out bad worker clones. Once the clones degrade they become the festering rotters. Which explains why there were so, so, so, many all over the place. There’s also a sample of Alpha Clone DNA down there that will help fix my own DNA.

Shut off the Lifenet Pod and get the Alpha Clone DNA from a mine crawling with crazy clones. What could go wrong?

Not much actually. This quest was pretty smooth to get through. There were two long corridors, the closest branch lead to the quest room the other one lead to nowhere, I checked….In the quest room, I had to run around and find a keycard and a fuse box to turn on the freezers. Once the freezer was on and the Lifenet station was shut down I was able to grab the Alpha DNA and track back out of the cave to give the news to Grahm.

Grahm sends me on my way to get some more Alpha DNA samples to a town far to the north called Trumble. On my way up I made sure to hit every fast travel LifeNet station so I didn’t have to make the journey multiple times. Fallen Earth has a big map and the towns are few and far between with not much in the middle. This is great for giving it that barren wasteland post-apocalyptic feel but not so great for traversing the map. I even made a detour over to the Trailer Park life net station to the east so could hit it later.

Trumble is where the road trip ended. I found my limit of mobs I could fight at my current level and with my equipment. These guys were level 15 and no joke. I could handle one but as soon as another one aggroed on me it was lights out. It turns out Old Kingman was the town I needed to be in right now. So I fast traveled back and got working on crafting some new medium pistols. Hopefully, the adventures through Old Kingman will be just the right difficulty.

Out From Boneclaw

Before I get into today’s post I just wanted to give a little public service announcement to anyone who wants to start playing Fallen Earth. It seems that not all accounts are getting the Commander benefits that allow you to gain XP and ap faster, halve harvesting time, and, most importantly, lets you craft 30 items at once. I learned this the hard way when my first character could only craft 3 things. I’m not sure if it’s related but my first character was created on my old GamersFirst account. I created a new account and a new character and had Commander and all of the associated rewards.

Commander’s Aura is the green one.

You can check that your character has commander status in the buff bar (The green one in the picture above) and a star in the upper left corner of the character information as pictured below

Commander Star in the upper left corner

It seems to vary from person to person what each account is receiving. Some people have been getting dune buggy’s and ATVs without the commander status while others have been getting commander status without all the extras. Just double-check your account/character has Commander status because it will make things so much easier!

The next stop on the Fallen Earth adventure leads to the town of Embry Crossroads. Once I reached level 5, a quest popped into my journal to go talk to Grahm the Lifenet Technician in Embr. The Lifenet stations serve as teleports/fast travel for a small fee as well as respawn locations. They aren’t in every town but they’re close enough to the surrounding towns that it’s not too bad to get from place to place.

Grahm informed me that my DNA is degrading and he needs DNA samples to repair it. Apparently, while most of my character’s DNA is mammalian there are also bits of other DNA in there too. So I set out to kill more of the local wildlife and extract DNA from them. This particular quest has a 30 minute time so the samples don’t expire. It was more than enough time to get everything and return to Grahm.

The other quest that pushes you towards Embry Crossroads is the one to build an ATV. While I’ve upgraded my trusty horse, the ATV would, theoretically, let me get places faster. Though I seem to remember vehicles only going faster on roads while horses can off-road at a decent clip. I started this quest and ran a few errands for people around town to get some parts. There are only so many parts I can get in Embry so I’ll need to leave the town and travel some more before I can craft it. I’m not sure how necessary doing this quest is though. My account already has an ATV in the garage so I’m not sure if the quest ATV is any faster or has inventory slots. We’ll see once I craft it but right now it’s not a priority.

Most of the quests here focus on Blade Dancers yet again. This time, they’ve set up a base called the Junk Fortress and have been raiding the town for supplies. None of the NPC’s are happy about it. I made multiple trips to the Junk Fortress to take out specific people aka bosses, recover stolen medical supplies, and find a womans sister. The sister didn’t want to come back home and wanted to stay with the Blade Dancers. So my character was perfectly rational and my only decision was to shoot her…

There are some faction quests as well for the Bankers in Embry. They run the bank, bet you didn’t see that one coming. The quests reward reputation to the Banker faction. I’m not quite sure if I can do anything with it yet. There are some crafting-centered quests here too that will give some nice recipe books if you don’t have them already.

My personal favorite quest here was “Collection Call” where Ricky Vargas asks you to go around town and kill people who haven’t paid their debts. There’s no build-up to this, no reason you should do what this guy says, but this is the wasteland and when some random guy in a side alley says he’ll pay you 70 chips to kill 3 people, you just gotta do it.

After all of the questing and gathering I did here I was able to upgrade a couple pieces of clothing with Armor crafting. I was also able to make a new set of pistols. These are actual handguns that shoot bullets and not the pellet guns I’ve been using for the last 10 levels. They do offer a DPS boost but also take a new type of ammo. The ammo materials aren’t too hard to require so I was able to make two thousand rounds with the materials in my inventory.

November 2021 Gaming Goals

Wow it’s been a looooong time since I’ve done one of these. The last one was in March of this year which tracks. This year has been very light in the posts department. In fact, this will be the 33rd post this year which is way down from last year’s 88. I just didn’t make time for it, even though one of my goals was to do exactly that!

But I’m feeling the urge now to write and I’m hoping to keep it up. How many times have I said that over the years? It also helps that I’m super excited to write about Fallen Earth now that it’s back. This month is going to be pretty light on goals since I don’t see myself playing much else besides Fallen Earth.

November Gaming Goals

Reach Sector 2 in Fallen Earth: I’m not sure how long this is going to take to do. I don’t think it will take all month but with the way I’m playing currently it might. I’m still stopping to read and pick up all of the quests and I can’t stop myself from clicking on every, single, gathering node on my travels.

Work on some more Steel Path in Warframe: I played a lot of Warframe in the last few months here. New World, vacation, and now Fallen Earth caused me to lose the momentum I had with the game. While I don’t think I’ll be playing on my own anytime soon I am hoping to work on getting through more of the Steel Path mode with friends when they want to play.

Dipping the Feet Back in Fallen Earth

I spent my weekend running around the wasteland, shooting at coyotes and bandits, and stopping every few feet to pick up rocks. Yep, this is only the kind of experience Fallen Earth can give.

You can’t tell by looking at the blog but I was quite fond of Fallen Earth back when I was playing it in 2019. Apparently, I only felt the need to write one blog post at a time. The only other post was 8 months later right before the game shut down. But now it’s back and I plan on writing about it a lot more while I make my way through the Wasteland again.

Last time I played I just got out of the first sector, The Plateau, before I stopped playing. It looks like there are 9 areas in total so I didn’t really see that much of the game the first time around. But with everything being free in “Fallen Earth Classic” I intend to see it all. Or at least more of it than I did last time…it all depends on how long it keeps my interest I suppose.

One of the things I’m doing differently is taking on all of the quests in each town. Who knows how long the game will be around and if I’ll ever get to do them again. It will slow down the journey considerably I’m sure but it will also give me some time to collect a lot of materials while I run around doing quests. And since the game is about shooting things and crafting I think it’ll be just fine.

My starter town of choice was Boneclaw which is described as a combat-focused town. There are two other starting areas, Midway, which has a crafting focus, and Clinton Farm, which has a support focus. The last time played I think I started in Midway so I wanted something different and getting into some combat right away sounded fun at the time.

Boneclaw is a town of outcasts. The Slaughter Kings are at war with the Blade Dancers and they seem to be competing over territory here. Since the Slaughter Kings are the ones doling out the quests, my side in the conflict was chosen for me. With Boneclaw being a combat-focused town and all I was tasked with killing lots of things. Blade Dancers, giant ants, coyotes, giant scorpions, prairie chickens. If it breathes near Boneclaw, I’ve probably killed it.

I also wanted to make sure that my gathering trade skills were always leveled up at all times. Since Fallen Earth is all about scavenging around to build your items it’s important to be able to gather at every node you see. Geology was easy, there were a whole lot of copper veins right outside Boneclaw and I needed the copper anyway to make ammo for my pistols. Nature proved to be a little bit of a challenge to get going. Every so often I would run into a level 1 node but most were 15+. It turns out that skinning prairie chickens are a really good way to level it up early on. There’s plenty of prairie chickens and they only require 1 nature to skin!

Salvaging took the longest to level up. Almost everything out there was level 15 or higher. Every so often I would get lucky and find a level 1 node. It doesn’t help that the level 1 nodes don’t look any different visually from the level 45 nodes so finding them was a challenge. It took me until I was almost done with all of the quests in Boneclaw to level up.

After finishing everything up that I could it was on to Embry Crossroads to continue the story and find out why my clone is dying and why this time it will be for good.