Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Marking the holiday week....

Tomorrow will be Halloween here in the Philippines, and people are already making plans for scary costumes and massive overdoses of consumables-of-choice, be it candies, booze, or anything else under the moon. And it's also getting on to the double-holiday of All Saints' Day/All Souls' Day which is when we pay our respects to our deceased loved ones.

So here are a few appropriate screenies for the occasion, starring my Cervantes main team.

[No points for guessing where these shots were taken; if you want to win a prize for knowing the scenery, head on over to Rococo's blog - he's giving away either a Lv96 chip or 3 random Lv92/96 weapons!]

[And for more fan fun - watch out for Casa Reclusion and their upcoming Granado Espada machinima presentation for Halloween, Circlo, coming your way on 31 October....]

Paying respect to the fallen....

Sisters are a great comfort when thoughts become too much....

Trick or treat! [Lv60 and up Uniques and Elites, preferably - or we use all the Spinelles and Ambers we have!]

Be safe this holiday week, everyone.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Colony Wars update: Republicans sweep Cervantes

This week's Colony Wars results:


As you can see from this week's map: in Cervantes server, at least, the entire New World of Granado Espada has now come under the banner of the Republicans. Congratulations to Illuminati and Fenrir factions for pulling off this feat!


While doing the Tiburon's Scarecrows quest around 2pm Singapore time, ASA faction member Esteveste started asking the server if anyone wanted their colony at Pradera de Ceniza. I was surprised and questioned him further via PM.

According to him, ASA faction only had 4 members left at the time of his broadcasts, because the Republican factions were making war on them on nearly every map [ASA was Royalist]. This had the effect of making the members of the faction leave - for other factions perhaps.

That colony wound up going to Vradical for a short while, before Illuminati included it in its long list of possessions.


It was a relatively quiet Colony Wars session this week, with the following factions declaring war:

Fenrir v WrathOfGod - truced near the end of the session
ReBirth v Illuminati - truced, then re-declared war, then truced again
Fenrir v Vradical
Fukkatsu v Illuminati
Illuminati v GrandLodge - truced
Fenrir v Fukkatsu
SkywingzPteLtd v Fenrir


News from ReBirth faction:


As you can see from the status change on the left side of the screenshot, this is pretty much the moment when ReBirth lost its one and only colony in El Tejado Verde. This happened about 20 minutes into the Colony Wars session. Only a few members were able to log in for this Sunday, hence the extremely quick loss of colony buffs.

In fact, at the time of the screenshot I was the one and only defender at the colony. A level 62 family stands no chance against an onslaught of veterans, and I looked like the guy who brought a knife to a gunfight - to put it bluntly, I was overwhelmed in about five seconds.

Afterwards we tried to help Vradical, WrathOfGod, Galaxy and GrandLodge factions hit, at various times, the colonies at Pradera de Ceniza, Rion Prairie, Ferruccio Junction, and back to El Tejado Verde, in various attempts to take colonies back from the Illuminati-Fenrir domination.

The failed attempt at Rion Prairie.

Nice buffs on those flying wizards, though.

One of several attempts to retake El Tejado Verde.

Yes, various factions managed to notch the colony's life, but many of the attempts came too late into the session for any of us to have a hope of actually breaking it.


No doubt about it - this week Cervantes faction comes under the complete sway of the Republicans. Next Sunday should be interesting, as the many Royalist and neutral factions have the coming week to discuss strategy and tactics before launching fresh attempts to take their own colonies.

Just in time for All Hallows' Eve!


'Cause this is Thriller, Thriller Night
There ain't no second chance against the thing with forty eyes
You know it's Thriller, Thriller Night
You're fighting for your life inside of killer Thriller tonight!
- Michael Jackson, "Thriller"

*wicked witch laughter*

NineMoons hosts a bloggers' meet and goes to New Worlds 5!

[I always knew there was more than one reason why I wore that Granado Espada shirt... ^^]

[Lots of pictures in this one - apologies to those on dial-up, please be patient!]

the first Granado Espada bloggers' meet
present: NineMoons [me], DeSanggria, Welling, Fiksdotter, Darrick and Nate of Casa Reclusion, and Mena. We were also later joined by Rosso [my partner], who took many pictures.

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-01
Clockwise from left: Josh/Fiksdotter, me/NineMoons, Marvin/Mena, Nate, Darrick, Anne/DeSanggria, and Rob/Welling.

We were able to discuss a lot of interesting topics, such as the difference between the economies in PK and in non-PK servers; the dynamics of the factions we each belonged to; the actions of the Filipino players in each server represented [in this case, Cervantes, Caravaggio and Carracci]; and even a few secrets about AFK leveling and spot-choosing.

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-02
From left to right: Nate Reclusion, Darrick Reclusion, DeSanggria, Welling.

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-03
From left to right: Fiksdotter, NineMoons, Mena.

On the other hand, I also talked about some ways in order to optimize blogs, such as extensive use of linking to show community and solidarity, as well as providing extra information and acknowledging sources; the use of ranking services such as Technorati; and the use of feed services such as FeedBurner and FeedBlitz, among others.

We also discussed the concept of blog ethics, and the use of our blogs as a platform not only for our love of the game but also to discuss real-life issues that affect us. This included Fiksdotter's elaboration on this entry, and a conversation on what we can do about it.

I must give props to DeSanggria for this comment: most of the people who came to the blog meet had previously already been blogspotted by RCM Hrin. In addition, all of the current members of the Vespanola Times Colony Wars reporters' group were present: the Reclusion brothers, DeSanggria, and me.

Before the meeting broke up, we took a few photos, with poses. Here's mine:

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-04
From left to right: Darrick Reclusion, Nate Reclusion, Welling, DeSanggria, NineMoons, Mena, Fiksdotter.

[Given we were meeting in a McDonald's branch - no comment on my pose in this one! XD]

We're going to try and organize a second blog meeting very soon - preferably around the time of the Christmas holidays. Many thanks to IP e-Games GE Product Manager Ivee Feria and to pCM Veya for the goodie bags ^^

other entries about the bloggers' meet:
DeSanggria: GE PH bloggers meet for the first time
Fiksdotter: GE Bloggers: the Gathering
Mena: 1st Granado Espada Bloggers Meeting


NineMoons drops in on New Worlds 5

New Worlds 5 is the country's sci-fi, fantasy, and general fandoms convention. This year it was held at the Glorietta central atrium, which unfortunately was still suffering in the wake of the still-unexplained explosion from last week. Nevertheless, the valiant fans were still there to show their fandoms off, and because I was wearing one of my GE shirts, I fit in just fine~!

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-05
From left to right,
Lucido, then NineMoons.

One of the first persons I ran into was none other than Lucido a.k.a. Ligaya. She's kitted out as Sang'gre Danaya from Encantadia in the pic above, but she also brought her Brunie Etienne costume and a River Tam [from Firefly/Serenity] outfit as well.

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-06
From left to right, NineMoons, then Crowe.

Here's Tanya Obedoza a.k.a. the Crowe family, dressed as Kaylee from Firefly/Serenity. A famous face in the local cosplay community, and the mom of the very cute Akira, who was dressed up as Catherine the Summoner at the 15 September GE launch.

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-07

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-08
A really GE moment, in which my friend Ranulf [of the Highlander fan group] and I fenced with foam weapons. I wish I could say I did Adelina Esperanza proud in this one ^^

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-09
That is a real person dressed up as Star Wars android C-3PO, and I just couldn't resist having a picture taken with him!

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-10
And that's Rosso with the golden dude. ♥ to them both, but particularly to Rosso ^^

Just before we left to watch Stardust I asked Rosso to take one more pic. This one is of me with Hiro Nakamura, geek, time-traveler and swordsman from Heroes:

copyright NineMoons/Rosso-11

Granado Espada represent! ^^


To view all the pictures, please click on this Photobucket album link.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Picspam: the view from Oktoberfest, early evening

Last night I was able to drop in at the Oktoberfest closing party at Metrowalk in Ortigas, though I couldn't stay long because I took ill about three hours in. [Hopefully it was just something I ate...] I left at around 8pm, but before that I managed to take a few pictures of new friends and good ones.

The Granado Espada freeplay at the Gamefrog PC/Internet shop was temporarily sidelined by the maintenance needed to patch in the Tiburon's Scarecrows quest event, so we took the first few pics:

copyright NM-01
"I raided the New World at the Granado Espada Raid Party 2007!", featuring a female Scout, Grace Bernelli, and pirate Adelina Esperanza.

copyright NM-02
"I turned the New World upside-down at the Granado Espada Raid Party 2007!", featuring a male scout, Diego/Yeganeh, and Grace Bernelli.

[Gee, they sure love Grace at IAH XD She's been on a lot of the posters!]

Two new GE posters, both with the theme of "Granado Espada Raid Party 2007". Wish I had them both, though I prefer the first one.

Then here's a group pic of some of the early bird GE players who showed up:

copyright NM-03

From left to right: NineMoons [me], Fiksdotter, pCM Veya, Welling, DeSanggria, and Conteza [Norwin].

copyright NM-04

copyright NM-05

copyright NM-06

These three photos show Lobishomen [the girl] and MirageEros [the guy] from Carebears faction in Vivaldi server. She's the faction leader, while he's one of her deputies.

A good amount of fun was had by all, and, I hope, a lot of beer. [Apparently the promo had been buy beer, get 1 hour of GE freeplay.


For other photos from last night, please click on the link for my Photobucket album.


Will also be posting about the bloggers meet afterwards, so please watch out for that too, hopefully later tonight.


Quick quest note: a list of Tiburon's Scarecrows locations and coordinates can be found at Ihave0life. The final 6 locations are still marked as unconfirmed, but I think they're valid, because last night people were confirming them in Cervantes server via /broad.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Corrections to this post:

A special Halloween-themed quest! - RCM Hrin calls this one a "special event type of quest issued by an RNPC". She says this quest marks the first time that kGE, jGE, and sGE have an event together. Normally those former two have their events first. This quest event will run from 25 October to 8 November.

Correction: It appears that the quest has not yet been implemented, nor has an RNPC been designated as quest giver. Stay tuned for updates.

UPDATE 26 October: Details and implementation notes on the quest, called Tiburon's Scarecrows, can be found in this post by RCM Hrin.

Forgotten Territory passes for all! - This comes after the recent server disruptions. The passes will become available via the Leonardo Expreso NPCs after maintenance. It's a gift and a form of goodwill from the folks at IAH.

Correction: IAH will begin distributing the passes after midnight tonight [Singapore time, or GMT+8]. Please be advised accordingly.

Picspam from this morning: fun with ReBirth

[A few images, so if you're on dial-up you'll want to wait a little for the fun to load....]

I logged in early this morning for a couple of hours before today's maintenance [and if you're not yet excited about what they're loading, check this entry out], and within half an hour was joined on Cervantes by ReBirth faction's vice-leader estrellante and leader LuckyStar.

Here's the three of us meeting in Auch channel 1:


LuckyStar was actually just pulling our legs with his triple-Auch Infantry team; he had a couple of better teams to show us later on. [I'm guessing he showed us the members of his main team at some point or another.]

After a few minutes, I followed the two to our colony at El Tejado Verde for a bit of a photoshoot, and here's what came out:


This and the following picture should prove to you how rich my faction heads are: that's a lot of Catherines!


After this we managed to survive a Spotlight 3 and a Trinity 3 mission, just the three of us. I brought the lone scout to the Spotlight 3 and managed to keep her and everyone else alive for a while, until Aurana expired within a minute of mission complete. We fared better in the Trinity 3 as estrellante brought another scout to the party, making sure to share the healing duties [though I did most of the buffing].


I also spent an hour or so in Caravaggio and managed to join AdeptasFraternas faction thanks to DeSanggria.

I'll try to spend an hour or two in Caravaggio server
from now on, every time I play. I'm trying out a new team there, which I've never tried before: support scout, dagger scout, and lightning elementalist.


Waiting excitedly on the end of maintenance and the Oktoberfest party tomorrow night... ^^

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Holiday-themed quests, freebies, a Granado Espada weekend in the Philippines, and Colony Wars correspondents!

Reasons why you should log in to Granado Espada on Thursday, as soon as weekly maintenance is finished:

A special Halloween-themed quest! - RCM Hrin calls this one a "special event type of quest issued by an RNPC". She says this quest marks the first time that kGE, jGE, and sGE have an event together. Normally those former two have their events first. This quest event will run from 25 October to 8 November.

[Hmm, we should all work together to write guides for this one!]

Forgotten Territory passes for all! - This comes after the recent server disruptions. The passes will become available via the Leonardo Expreso NPCs after maintenance. It's a gift and a form of goodwill from the folks at IAH.


If you live in Metro Manila in the Philippines, better mark October 26 and 27 on your calendars for lots of Granado Espada fun!

On October 26, Granado Espada and the game shop Gamefrog join the final party of Oktoberfest! You have to be over 18 for this event as it's a party sponsored by the country's biggest beer brand.

The entrance fee is Php100, but if you bring a scratched or unscratched Granado Espada G-Points/game time card, you need only pay Php50 to get in!

Also, bloggers who post about this event are in the running for a special prize from pCM Veya - so bring your cameras and notebooks to this event!

October 27, in turn, will have TWO Granado Espada events on the slate. Game shop Station 168 in BF Homes, Paranaque, is celebrating its second anniversary all day Saturday, and there will be a "Sudden Attack" event with prize money!

[Event details from pCM Veya's blog.]

And DeSanggria and I will be hosting the first GE bloggers' meeting from 1-4 in the afternoon in Ortigas - we're hoping you can drop by and join us there!

[Bloggers' meet details and RSVP here.]


Finally, here's a call to the intrepid adventurers, explorers and Colony Wars participants in all the servers! Join the Colony Wars correspondents team - the ladies and gentlemen of the Vespanola Times's frontline reporters' group, who bring weekly updates on each server's Colony Wars sessions to the public. Currently this group is composed of me, DeSanggria, and the boys of Casa Reclusion, representing Cervantes, Caravaggio, and Carracci respectively.

We need correspondents for Pachelbel and Vivaldi servers really soon - so if you think you've got what it takes, sign up for the war correspondents team!

[Official details from the main site.]

Sights from today's leveling session

I had no real plans laid for when I logged in today. I thought that since I was Level 61 I might try exploring all the 6x-lower 7x maps that were available to my family, and see where they could best survive while optimizing their EXP gains.

The last time I'd logged in was last Sunday for Colony Wars, so I went back there and got a quick screenshot at ReBirth faction's colony.


No idea how much longer we'll have El Tejado Verde in our possession, and I thought I'd better take pics while I could. We're all going to try our best to defend it come Sunday....

Then I took a quick walk through Rion Prairie; I'd had the vague idea of peeking around inside the Rion Corridor. When I got to the dungeon entrance, though, I ran into a familiar family:


Thoraine hadn't been answering my PMs, so I assumed he was AFK. I was just a little bit tempted to mess with him a little, but I figured his Bernelli was most likely capable of toasting my backside, so I left him to it. ^^

Eventually I took a look around Bonavista River, Vegas Javier, and Crater of Joaquin; and I even managed a few kills in the first level of the Prison de Joaquin [which means starting the new Grace Bernelli/Pioneering Office quest]. I might attempt to stay in that dungeon for now, so long as the spawn rate continues at the same kind and LOW level it had when I ventured in.


Today is 24 October - United Nations Day and World Development Information Day.

I wonder if there was ever an occasion for the countries of the Old World of Orpesia to band together against an enemy that threatened all of them? I kind of hope not. The UN was founded to make sure that the destruction of the World Wars would not happen again. [More information on the UN at Wikipedia.]

Think of all the international members of the Granado Espada community and send them all best wishes today ^^

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

NineMoons and DeSanggria present: the first Granado Espada bloggers' meet

What: GE PH Bloggers' Meeting
With this meeting, we hope to organize the Granado Espada-oriented bloggers into an informal group, and to teach them a little bit about optimizing their blogs for fun and other potential benefits.

We are hoping that this meeting will only be the first of several. We're going to do everything we can so that even those bloggers who are not based in Metro Manila can eventually become a part of these meetings.

When: October 27 @ 1PM -- this coming Saturday
A Saturday afternoon allows many of us to be able to go, and to take time out from work and school to hang out and make new friends. We picked the time because some people stay up late on Friday nights [playing Granado Espada, we hope! XD]

Where: McDonald's El Pueblo, Ortigas (behind The Podium, in front of Banco de Oro building, and just behind St. Francis' Square/SM Megamall Building A)
To get there if you're in Metro Manila [applies for both North and South], take a bus that says "Ortigas Ibabaw" or "Ortigas Ilalim". Get down at the MRT Ortigas station. Enter SM Megamall's Building A and exit at the back, near the A side of the under-construction Megastrip. Cross the street and proceed past St. Francis Square and the Banco de Oro building to El Pueblo.

Or take the MRT and get down at the Ortigas station. Pass through SM Megamall's Building A. Take the exit fronting St. Francis Square and proceed past the Banco de Oro building to El Pueblo.

Those coming from, specifically, the QC area can
take an FX from several terminals including the MRT stations at SM North and Quezon Avenue. Ask the driver to let you off at El Pueblo, or get down at the McDonald's before the Banco de Oro building.

  • Get to know each blogger
  • Tips on how to improve blogging experience
  • GE online and offline concerns
We hope that you can join us for an afternoon of Granado Espada bonding and useful blog information. If you're interested, please comment to this post or email me at hisuifox AT gmail DOT com.

See you all soon ^^

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Colony Wars update: this week's battles

[Lots of pictures in this one!]

Here's the map of Granado Espada at the end of this week's Colony Wars session. Congratulations to Illuminati, Fenrir, ASA, Galaxy, WrathOfGod, and ReBirth faction for acquiring / defending colonies!

Things were tense in the server as the clock ticked down to 8pm Singapore time. Illuminati and Fenrir factions were dominating the map at the time; I would hazard a guess that both were pretty much waiting for the entire server to declare war on them.

A notable addition to this week's session was Galaxy faction. It was their first shot at Colony Wars, and they managed to capture the colony at Ferruccio Junction - and were able to hold it until the very end of the session.

Galaxy was one of the new factions to join in the Colony Wars; the others included HappyTreeFriends, rEbOrN, and DCArebirth™.

Here's a roundup of the factions that declared war on each other, in roughly chronological order. [Note that this list may be incomplete - I got DC'ed for a few minutes halfway through, and may have missed a declaration. If I have, please feel free to correct me.]

ASA vs Illuminati
ReBirth vs Illuminati [declared truce, then re-declared war]
WrathOfGod vs Illuminati
NightOfTheKnight vs Illuminati
Vradical vs Illuminati
ReBirth vs NightOfTheKnight
Fenrir vs ASA
Galaxy vs Illuminati
Fenrir vs WrathOfGod
NightOfTheKnight vs Fenrir
DCArebirth™ vs Fenrir
Fenrir vs Vradical
HappyTreeFriends vs ASA
DCArebirth™ vs Illuminati
rEbOrN vs Orb
rEbOrN vs WrathOfGod
Illuminati vs Fukkatsu
Fenrir vs Galaxy

Truces for these factions, unless otherwise noted, were either declared at the end of the session or have not been declared.


Now for a slightly more in-depth report:

As you might remember from a previous post, I had joined the neutralist ReBirth faction a week ago, and was assured that they were determined to participate in the Colony Wars.

One of the strategies being bandied about before the session began was that centered on the colony at Porto Bello Deserted Quay, which belonged to ASA at the time [and is now in Fenrir's possession]. A truce was made at some point, though, which negated that plan.

At war time, faction leader LuckyStar instructed the members of the faction to go for the colony at El Tejado Verde:


We were foiled there several times by the Illuminati sentries, however, and after regrouping, received orders to assist Vradical and WrathOfGod factions in taking over the Jezebel Glen colony instead:


We were collectively defeated in several attempts once again, as can be seen from the spiders, Valkyries and other defenses in the screenshot.

Next, Vradical sent word that they had managed to take the colony at Rion Prairie, and asked ReBirth to help defend:


The idyllic state of events in the screenshot did not last long, however, and Illuminati members, led by their faction leader BaoBao [that's his fighter being targeted below], swept back in to reclaim their property:


After some more downtime, we finally got the summons from LuckyStar to return to El Tejado Verde. Little did the rest of us know that our leader had been attempting to capture the colony on his own - and on our way there, he managed the feat!

Many of us converged on the colony for the last ten minutes, all the while praying that we'd be able to hold out. Illuminati had made peace at some point during the session, which helped our chances immensely; but the dreaded re-declaration of war came in within the last ten minutes, and sure enough, Illuminati member Tryste attempted a final crack at the colony that had previously been theirs.


Luckily for us, Tryste ran out of time, and that's how ReBirth faction managed to snap up one of the colonies. ^^

Next week's session will undoubtedly involve a defense of our lone colony. We'll all have to come up with means to that end.


On a personal note, I notched my first Colony Wars kill: the RoyceBernard family of NightOfTheKnight faction. I ran into him on the Coimbra Nimrod Bridge, on the way to Jezebel Glen, and managed to take him out.

[Really sorry about that! Happy to oblige if you want a rematch!]

Saturday, October 20, 2007

On the changing tides of factions in Cervantes server

And by now perhaps you know that Dominion faction has formally disbanded as well.

That brings to three the number of original Cervantes factions that have dissolved due to various reasons: Yakisoba, then CARNAGE, and now Dominion.

In their place stand new contenders such as the currently-leading Illuminati, Fenrir, ASA, and many others.

The political tides of the server have once again shifted. With the upcoming implementation of the elections for the Republican President and Royalist Duke/Duchess, not to mention the ensuing fight for the Chancellorship of Granado Espada, expect the factions to continue in this ongoing state of flux for some time, or at least until the first rounds of voting are announced.

Over the next few weeks I'll be doing my best to put together a better coverage of the Colony Wars sessions as they take place in Cervantes server. I'll be putting on more pictures and commentary, and to this end have resolved to actually become active - one of the major reasons why I joined ReBirth faction.

Tomorrow will be something to look forward to, I'm quite sure of that.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Granado Espada game cards TV commercial, PH edition

[from pCM Veya's blog]

There's a new gamers' show in town...

Newsflash for us in the Philippines: the new cable TV channel "Makisig Network", on channel 82 [76 if you're on SkyCable], has started airing. DeSanggria alerted me that their show Pinoy Gamers was on at around 10pm last night.

EDIT: DeSanggria has videos!!!

Unfortunately, I don't have cable, so I must ask you guys to tell me all about it. Please? *bats eyelashes*

Today's maintenance day and I'm looking forward to reading blogs and getting up-to-date with the community during the hiatus... :)


Hey, local Granado Espada bloggers! Come join us at an informal get-together on 27 October, 1pm at the McDonald's outlet in El Pueblo, Ortigas! We'd love to meet you and get together to talk about all things bright, shiny, and GE ^^

Comment if you'd like to join us!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

New faction, new stance, new armor, new PATCH?!

I was able to join a new faction today. Thanks to my friend estrellante [the inspiration for the post on summoner names], vice-leader of ReBirth faction, for letting me join. I'm looking forward to meeting everyone online, especially faction leader LuckyStar, and of course to Sunday's Colony Wars session!

[Psst, DeSanggria! My faction's at war with yours XD!]

This is the first time I'm joining Colony Wars and so with that goal in mind, I've been training my Cervantes main team very hard over the past few days. Early this morning, some of my efforts finally paid off:

Right there in the middle is my Tuon with her Sunset Stripe leathers, Excalibur sword, and Templar Guard shield.

And there's my Chimal on the left, finally using her Levitation stance! The rest of the week might be a bit like "flight school" to her as I train her for the stance..... ^^

Aurana's within striking distance of Level 60 as well. As I maxed out her support skills a long time ago, she should be able to do well on Sunday and onwards....

And here's some startling news from RCM Hrin. In this blog post, she talks about the November choices for the My Bellem's Box - and smack in the middle of it talks about Version 2.4 of Granado Espada, which we might very well be playing by the time the Christmas holidays come around!

I wonder if this is the Tierra del Muertos patch? We'll see in about two months' time.

And now, back to training....

Fulfilling a request from Casa Reclusion: "Circlo" fan video teaser

This is an interesting story, and I'm looking forward to the full video reveal.

For more of Darrick Reclusion's videos, please visit his Youtube user profile.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Game! articles: Announcing The NineMoons Interviews!

Right, so hopefully everyone remembers that aside from the features I write for the print edition of local online game periodical Game! Magazine, I also keep a monthly column on its website, called Letters from Granado Espada? [Check out the column archives!]

I've uploaded my October column to the online site, and it takes a new form for the time being. I'll be featuring the Philippines Granado Espada bloggers, basically talking about how they love the New World so much they're blogging about it.

The NineMoons Interviews: Close-up on local Granado Espada bloggers

One look at that page and you know who my first victim was [XD!]: none other than DeSanggria!

And hey, if you're interested, check out the last paragraph of the article:

I’ve got several other local GE bloggers in mind for the next interviews. If you’re a GE blogger or know a GE blogger whom you’d like to see featured in this space, please drop me a line at hisuifox AT gmail DOT com. You can also send me your feedback and comments there.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Colony Wars update: now with more detail!


The results of this week's Colony Wars session.

The War Declarations began about half an hour before the actual session started; and Illuminati faction received the brunt of the early declarations, as they were the faction with the most colonies at that point. Dominion and Vradical factions joined the fray early, as well, with Dominion being among Illuminati's opponents and Vradical going after Dominion.

Fukkatsu faction declared war on Illuminati before the Colony Wars session, made peace with them a few minutes in, and then declared war on them again after 9pm [Singapore time].

Factions such as ReBirth and GrandLodge declared their bellicose intentions for the first time with this session.

Here's a roundup of the factions that declared war on each other during this week's session. The star (*) indicates a truce during the session.

WrathOfGod vs Illuminati
Fukkatsu vs Illuminati *
Dominion vs Illuminati
Vradical vs Dominion
Fenrir vs Vradical
BARNEYandFRIENDS vs Dominion
ReBirth vs ASA
GrandLodge vs Dominion *
ASA vs WrathOfGod *
Fenrir vs WrathOfGod
Eriador vs Dominion *
Eriador vs ASA *
GrandLodge vs ASA *
Fukkatsu vs Fenrir
Illuminati vs Fukkatsu

Congratulations to the following factions who acquired / defended colonies: Illuminati, Fenrir, ASA!

As you can see, Illuminati faction - formed by breakaway Dominion members - has come to dominate the map of Granado Espada, displacing their original faction.

Also, despite the many factions who battled it out during the Colony Wars session, only three are marked on the map as colony owners.


Next week begins a new time in Colony Wars reporting - stay tuned for details!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Here's your chance to win up to 30 million vis - legit!

Anybody remember this interview, in which I got to chat with OneManArmy faction leader/sole member [at that time] Mardias?

Well, he's got something new cooked up for all Granado Espada players out there: the first Granado Espada Lottery!

Check out the rules here.

As you can see in the entry, the current prize pool stands at 30 million vis, and he's trying to make 100 million by the weekend!

So what are you waiting for? Comment up and take your big chance!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

More Granado Espada-related recipes

How about something to munch on during the maintenance?

In this post, here are some recipes for the three cakes that play a minor role in the series of quests to obtain Lorch Furuholnen's character card: tiramisu, [layered] cheesecake, and Sachertorte.

In-game descriptions:

Tiramisu: A cake with two pieces of sponge layers soaked in espresso syrup and dusted with cocoa powder. Cheese and chocolate sauce oozes between the two layers.

Layered Cheesecake: A cheese cake that looks delicious. Its rich cheese flavor is tempting.

Sachertorte: A chocolate cake topped with maple syrup. Too sweet.

You can obtain these cakes from Lorch after successfully completing his "Road to Independence I" quest. They also serve as the trigger for the following quest, "A Secret Admirer", which involves Isabella the Cake Girl.

In the spirit of these two entries from Panfilo de Narvaez's cookbook [Pure White Food a.k.a. pasta alla carbonara; Percha Inzella a.k.a. pulpo gallego], let's take a brief look at these three cakes' history, and of course, their recipes!



Tiramisu is an Italian dessert typically made from sponge finger biscuits
[or "lady finger" biscuits], espresso, mascarpone cheese, eggs, cream, sugar, Marsala wine, cocoa, and rum. According to some folk etymologies, the name of the dessert can mean either "pick-me-up" or "make me happy", because of its stimulant ingredients: caffeine [the cocoa and coffee], and alcohol [the Marsala and rum].

The cheese sauce/filling mentioned in the game may refer to the custard-type filling, which is called zabaglione. Actual tiramisu doesn't have a chocolate sauce; cocoa is instead sprinkled over the dessert in many versions.

A recipe for tiramisu



A cheesecake is a sweet, cheese-based dessert, with a crust and a filling usually composed of eggs, cream, and a soft cheese such as cream cheese. It can also be made with other cheeses such as ricotta, havarti, and quark cheese. Vanilla and chocolate can be added for flavor, and different fruits, such as strawberries and blueberries, can be used for topping. There are baked and "no-bake" versions.

There are clearly many variations on this dessert, but the one mentioned in-game
comes very close to New York-style cheesecake, because it doesn't mention any other fillings, toppings or flavorings.

A recipe for New York-style cheesecake

A recipe for almost-no-bake cheesecake



Sachertorte is one of the most famous culinary specialties from the city of Vienna. Traditionally, it consists of two layers of dense, not-overly-sweet chocolate cake, with a thin layer of apricot jam filling in the middle, and covered by dark chocolate icing with shreds of chocolate on the top and sides. In Vienna, it's traditionally served with unsweetened whipped cream. The recipe for the "original" Sachertorte is kept secret by its place of origin, the Hotel Sacher.

The in-game version of this cake mentions maple syrup, a flavoring which is actually not part of the real Sachertorte.

A recipe for almost-authentic Sachertorte


Hungry yet? ^^

It's interesting to note that of these three sweet foods, only Sachertorte is really a cake - tiramisu is a dessert, and cheesecake is actually a pie.


Acknowledgments: Real-world information on the cakes comes from Wikipedia, while the recipes are from Epicurious.com.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Picspam: on the way to Level 60

I've just made Level 58 and am grinding like mad to make it to Level 60 by the 21st of October.

On the way, I've been completing some of the Lorch quests [I took that meddling trio of kids at Level 58, yeah I kinda suck at NPC fights], wandering at random through the Torsche Mansion Grand Library, and trying to make some vis on the side.

Here's an update to the previous fashions and fantazzies post:


I bought Chimal a Mutation Wizard costume, and I think the grays look better on her than the violets of the Original Wizard costume did.

[Of course I'm ditching the costume and Irolina hat at Level 64 so I can enjoy her pretty French Maid Uniform and Head Band ^^]

And that's still Aurana in an Original Scout costume, and Tuon in a School Uniform Fighter costume. Will update them both as well as the levels come on - I got some good armors and costumes for them come Level 60 and up.


While continuing with one of the Lorch quests at Torsche Mansion [Savage Garden / Reception Hall / Grand Library] today, this unusual pair ran up, asking all players in the vicinity to respond pronto:


That's GM Carine right there, with one kick-ass female wizard flying up top, and the familiar angel-type GM avatar on the ground.

You might just be able to make out the 2x musketeer / scout team next to me in this screenshot. That one did not respond to the GM, at least not on the public message channel.


A slightly better-looking pic, with the GM's name clearly visible. The message over the avatar's head was supposed to read scouting for bots!, but both of us were surprised to see the "utin" part of the first word censored out.

[Some kind of weird cuss word or something? Enlighten me, please.]

Having proved to their satisfaction
that I was a legitimate player, the GM family left to continue their patrol.

Nearly gave me a heart attack when they showed up, but an amusing story all the same.

And yeah, props to GM Carine for doing the patrolling thing at 3 AM-ish Singapore time - constant vigilance against bots FTW....


Also, more blog modifications of the pretty-up type:

What do you think of the new background? I changed it from stars to lace early this evening. Let me know if it looks okay to you.... ^^

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Notice anything different?

Over the past few days, I've been experimenting not only inside the game of Granado Espada [stance dancing, for the most part], but also with some of the screenshots that I've taken of my main team recently.

So here's the result of toying around in Photoshop a little: that new header image. For the first time, it's not a text-based header; this image features [from left to right] Chimal, Tuon, and Aurana NineMoons. I didn't want to do much in terms of effects and/or text since the image is a fairly cool one [taken from the fooling around on my birthday photoshoot], so all I did was place the name of the blog, and my family name, on the header.

Here in the Philippines, that pretty script font has been getting a lot of exposure; people have been using it left, right and center, and I thought I'd join that bandwagon for once. It's called Scriptina, and I downloaded it free from somewhere. I think it suits my girls.

What do you think of the header redesign?


Also, here's where I announce that I have temporarily left Æphemeral faction on Cervantes. Something has come up that requires me to be able to join new factions for the time being - something to do with Colony Wars. At present, the something also involves my good friends DeSanggria and the Casa Reclusion brothers.

Watch out for more details on that "something" - just as soon as RCM Hrin allows me to reveal them, that is. ^^

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Shocking Colony Wars session!

If stranger things than this week's Colony Wars session have happened in the New World of Granado Espada, tell me about them!

I was able to log into the game about 45 minutes before the end of the session; a preliminary glance at the world map made me want to double-check: WTF was I still in Cervantes?

There were new faction names all over the place!

Here is the world map as it looks at the close of this week's CW session:


Congratulations to Illuminati, Dominion, Fenrir, ASA, and WrathOfGod factions for acquiring / defending their colonies!

[I told you there were new factions!]


A quick primer on where some of the new factions came from, with thanks to DeSanggria, Thoraine and Sheeps for help:

[Any errors here are mine alone. Please comment below for corrections ^^]

ASA Faction -> formed from members of CARNAGE and Anonymous factions

Fenrir Faction -> formed from members of CARNAGE and Vradical factions

Illuminati Faction -> formed from breakaway members of Dominion faction

These three factions are all represented on the map above as Colony owners. In addition, one more new faction was in the thick of the fighting, but is not on the map as of present:

Fukkatsu Faction -> formed from the merger of RepKnights, XeNaTioN and GEnesis factions

With these new forces in place, I can't help but wonder at how the political and factional landscape of the game will soon be changing.....

Till next week - happy hunting ^^

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Quick updates!

While grinding to make Level 57 early this morning, guess who showed up in town [literally!]:


Yup, that IS Tsubaki right there, still bearing the Yakisoba faction tag. He was briefly in-game to advise the community that he is currently addicted to Team Fortress 2 [clicky the Wikipedia link to know more], and that he was also forming his own Yakisoba faction in that game.

Well, more power to him ^^


And, the main reason why I've been so gung-ho to get to Level 57: trying to get Catherine, of course!

I did the Victor mission in four tries; kept getting killed by lag. My team of High-Guard fighter and Psychokinesis wizard was able to fend off both the mobs and the mini-boss, and with the able assistance of the full-support scout, managed to make it into the Grand Library of Torsche Mansion.

It took me about a couple of hours of running around the map to complete the quest chain that led to Dr. Torsche himself. Anyone who wants a refresher course in obtaining Catherine can look at this excellent guide at Granadoespada.cc. Major props to Chelsie for this extremely helpful guide, which helped me finish the preliminary quests rather quickly.

Finally we got to the part just before the reconstruction of Catherine; and when it came time to decide what type I was going to get, I seriously dithered between the Summoner and the Strength Catherine for several minutes.

...Well, I can always try to buy the Summoner Catherine card from someone in-game. I made the Strength Catherine, and here she is, along with two of her sisters:


From left to right, that's my elementalist Ravashi, my scout Aurana, and my Str Catherine Kiria.

[I had rather self-centeredly thought that I'd come up with that Japanese-sounding name, but after seeing a Takarazuka actress named "Kiria" I'm just left wondering how I managed to hear that name before.]

Currently, though, I'm pushing to have my main team hit Level 60 - and that goes double for my wizard Chimal. I really want her to fly! ^^

Happy hunting~!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

An MMORPG glossary, Part Two

Continuing from the previous entry.

Again, I've culled the glossary from the relevant Wikipedia page, with relevant edits and comments added.


MMORPG Glossary, Part Two

Nerf - The act of intentionally weakening a skill, ability, feature, or class in the interest of game balance, usually carried out by the game's designers ("they're going to nerf mages in the next patch").
Noob / N00b - Shortened and "l33t" forms of the common internet term "newbie," which was first shortened as "newb," simply referring to someone inexperienced at a game and displaying their lack of knowledge. This has further been corrupted to "nub," all but losing its original meaning. In some circles, "newbie" or "newb" describes a genuinely inexperienced player, whereas "n00b" refers to a player who acts ignorantly despite being experienced.
NPC - Non-player character, a character that is controlled by the game. It can also be used to identify when one is selling an item to an NPC, such as "I'm going to NPC the X item."
Nuke - Another term for direct damage spells, often used as a verb to indicate the act of repeatedly casting such a spell on a specific target or to use all your "powerhouse" spells on one target ("nuke the healer!").
Nuker - noun Any combat-oriented class that specializes in inflicting high DPS from a distance. Elementalists specialize in this type of combat.

Patch - When used as a noun, a new set of files that must sometimes be downloaded and installed by each player. These files usually contain updates and bug fixes to the game, and sometimes contain new features, new quests, new content, or any other addition, deletion, or alteration of the game that the designers have decided to "push out." All players must have the latest patch installed to continue playing. When used as the verb, the act of acquiring and applying the patch. Patches are usually numbered sequentially. ("Did you get the 2.82 patch?" "I haven't patched yet.")
Patch Notes - A text-file that accompanies a patch, explaining what the patch contains. Patch notes are often studied and discussed voraciously. Patch notes for test servers are sometimes called "test notes."
1. Player character, a character in the online world who is controlled by another human player.
2. Price check, when a player wants to know the going price for an item or service
1. Player killer, a player who kills another in PvP. PK can often refer to a player who aggressively kills others without being provoked.
2. To kill another player in PvP. Often used in a negative manner, such as a level 50 killing a level 30. The term PK is rarely used for an even, fair fight.
PM - short for Private Message as in "PM me". See also PST.
Pot - short for potion.
Pokemon Mission - a mission in which all MOBs must be defeated (Gotta beat 'em all).
Powerleveling also PL
1. A method of leveling a character faster (i.e. accumulating experience points quicker) than would be possible by playing the game normally. For example, a low level character could have a high level character following them around and healing or otherwise helping them, allowing the low level player to kill opponents much faster than they could otherwise. Businesses that offer 'powerlevellng' are usually against the Terms of Service for a particular game, and those that use the services of such businesses are often ridiculed for 'buying their class', rather than learning how to play properly through direct experience.
2. 'Powerlevel' or 'PL', to implement this method
PUG - short for "Pick-Up Group". A party of players that have joined together ad hoc and have never met before, often to cooperate on a particular quest or mission. PUGs can also form within guilds, usually started with the words, "Hey guys, who wants to help me with..."
Pull - A term to describe attacking a mob so that it comes to a designated area to be engaged, usually while trying to avoid drawing a whole group.
PvE - Player vs Environment, describes player interaction with the environment, usually involving combating NPCs. Also known as PvM, Player versus Monster
PvP - Player versus Player, occurs when two players engage in combat or describes a system that allows this.

1. Built-in goals or objectives that are issued to the player by NPCs, and which, when completed, often yield specific rewards, such as equipment, money, experience, or faction.
2. The act of actively and specifically finishing quests ("I can't raid, I'm busy questing!")

Raid - Some games allow multiple groups to combine their efforts to solve difficult quests or venture into difficult instances; this is called a raid. Some games impose limits on what can be done as a group and what can be done as a raid in order to prevent the game from becoming too simple.
Raid Boss - A very powerful NPC that requires a raid group to complete.
Rez - Abbreviated form of resurrect, the act of bringing a dead player back to life at the location of his or her death. Many variations on the abbreviation exists, like "Ress", "Res", "Rezz". Example: "Rez me please".

S> - Selling. The speaker is announcing their desire to sell a given object. Ex. "S> Orc Helm" indicates that the speaker wishes to sell an Orc Helm and is inviting other players to make an offer for it. If the speaker is willing to sell or to trade for another item, the term S/T> may be used instead.
1. A term that describes someone constantly casting a spell or using an ability in order to accomplish a goal (like healing the main tank or killing a mob.)
2. To say a word or phrase over and over again to emphasize a point or annoy people. As such, it is a very rude act, and can possibly lead to being banned from the game if done in excess.
Spawn - The moment when a particular mob appears or reappears in game. Usually this is random and is only created to repopulated the zone. This term is not often used to refer to triggered events, where the players did a certain task, such as talking to a specific person or clicking a specific item, and created a monster to fight in the process.
Spawn Camp - The act of waiting near or at a location where a mob or player will appear in game with the intention of killing them immediately ("I'm spawn camping anyone who is coming though this portal."). In PvP, this is generally considered poor show as the arriving player may be dead before they even have control of their character. Many games use artificial means to prevent spawn camping by either making the player invulnerable for a short time after spawning or by placing mob spawn points in inaccessible areas.
Squishy also squishie - noun A character who wears cloth armor and/or has very low health; ex. "Be ready to heal the squishies, they go down fast." Most often refers to wizards and elementalists, and to a certain extent musketeers.

T> - Trade. Used when one wishes to trade with another player.
1. A player who intentionally aims to keep all of the mob's aggro, and by doing so, protecting other party members who can heal the tank or damage the mob more effectively. A tank should generally have high hit points and armor class. Also, any combat-oriented class that primarily uses toe-to-toe melee rather than ranged combat or some form of subtle melee (that is, a rogue or assassin is a melee character who is not a tank, whereas warriors, paladins, and other such classes are).
2. The act of being the main target of a mob. Can be used to describe both intentional and unintentional aggro; eg. 'We need a well equipped warrior to tank the dragon' or 'Make sure you have good aggro or the healers will end up tanking the dragon and we will wipe '.
1. A line of charging mobs. Often brought to a zone-line; "Train to zone!!"
2. To lead a train of mobs in an uncontrollable fashion
3. The act of purchasing or learning new skills or abilities (cf. training); in some games, also may be the act of improving skills or abilities by visiting a specific NPC and often by paying in-game currency.
1. Clearing train - a train where a player or group of players have deliberately started a train of enemies to divert them away from another player or group of players. The following groups of players can then run through the area without risk of attracting the attention of the computer enemies.
2. Hostile train - a train where a player or group of players have started a train for the sole purpose of running the train into another group of players with the hopes that the train will engulf the other players and kill them. This practice is often frowned upon in the MMORPG world and is considered bad form, though it can be useful to dislodge dogged pursuit.
Treadmill - pejorative term for the repetitive grinding many games require to reach the highest levels ("I'm close to hitting the 45 treadmill")

1. A spell or ability that allows a player to return to their home or bind point (see "Hearth").
2. A player or NPC suddenly disappearing from one place and reappearing in another, often from lag. The term bamf is occasionally used instead.
Wipe - noun When a party or group of player characters are all killed by enemies (wiped out).
WTB - Want to buy, when a player wants to buy a specific item from another player.
WTS - Want to sell, when a player wants to sell a specific item to another player.
WTT - Want to trade, when a player wants to trade a specific item for another one.

XD - an emoticon representing a mischievous grin.

An MMORPG glossary, Part One

A change of pace after this bloodthirsty-type entry....

I've culled most of this glossary from the corresponding Wikipedia page on MMORPG terms and acronyms. I've kept only those terms which are relevant or applicable to Granado Espada, and inserted comments as necessary.

I hope you have fun with this one!

Part Two is here.


MMORPG Glossary, Part One

Admin - An administrator/staff of an online game; helps players with game-related problems and resolves any in-game issues such as bugs or hacking
AFK - Away From Keyboard
1. - noun Leaving the computer for some reason while in game.
2. - verb To go AFK
Aggro - derived from aggression/aggressive
1. the extent to which enemy mobs are focused on a player. Sometimes this is done intentionally, as in the case of a tank, other times it is unintentional and undesirable, as in the case of a group's healer or caster gaining aggro.
2. when a mob is aggro, it will attack non-cloaked players within a certain radius. Depending on the MMORPG being played, the cloaking can vary and be based on sight, sound, smell or a combination of these three.
3. To aggro a mob is to draw attention by breaking its aggro range or by using an ability that either intentionally or unintentionally provokes it.
Aggro Range (sometimes Radius) - The invisible area around a monster that, when entered, causes the enemy and anything else within the Aggro Range to attack. The radius tends to increase as the monsters become higher level than the player, and vice versa. For example, if the monster's level is trivial compared to the player, they might need to walk very close to the monster for it to attack.
AoE/AE - Area of effect (or "area effect"), a spell or item that deals damage in a given targeted area, as opposed to items or spells that deal damage to a single enemy. AoE items or spells can also heal instead of doing damage.
ATK/AT - Attack, usually in reference to the damage dealing capacity.

B> - "Buying"; the speaker is announcing their willingness to buy the listed item. For example, "B> epic sword" means that the speaker wishes to buy an epic sword, and is inviting other players to offer to sell theirs. If the speaker is willing to buy or to trade for the item, the term B/T> may be used.
Bio - The act of taking care of basic biological functions. A common reason for going AFK.
Bolt - A type of damage skill that causes a projectile to fly towards an enemy character and impact him, causing damage. Usually associated with magic spells as opposed to missile weapons like a bow. Also used as a verb, to mean the act of casting such a spell ("bolt the mage").
Bot - a player character controlled by a 3rd party program, against the rules in most MMORPGs.
1. An effect that improves a character's stats temporarily. These stats could be increased health, strength, defense, speed, or other effects.
2. Using a buff on a character.
3. Enhancing an aspect of the game (see also nerf)

1. An area chosen by a player or group of players in which they will engage mobs. The chosen area is usually safe from undesired mob interference. Usually the only person to leave the camp is the puller.
2. To stay in one area to engage mobs. Also used in some games when an enemy player hangs around a slain opponent, waiting for the player to respawn (or resurrect) so they can kill the player again.
Caster - Short for "spellcaster." Used to describe any player/NPC who uses magic, usually at long range or in the form of AoE attacks. In Granado Espada, normally applies to wizards, elementalists, and to a limited extent support-type scouts.
1. Short for "crowd control," a general set of ability types that involve limiting the actions of others. Such abilities include immobilizing a character, slowing the character's movement, taking control of the character, making the character run away, and others. More specifically it connotes abilities that force a given enemy to disengage, and are often broken if the players attack the mob, but generally have long durations if not broken or dispelled.
2. To use crowd control abilities. Example usage: "CC the add!"
3. To change channel, usually because the current channel is crowded.
CD - Cooldown. The time between when a skill is used and when it may be used again. Usually, skills producing powerful and important effects have longer cooldown periods than others.
Crit - Critical strike/hit. A hit that multiplies the damage of a typical strike.

1. Disconnect, when a player is disconnected from the game.
2. To get disconnected. It is often used with an apostrophe, as seen in "I got dc'ed."
1. A buff which has a negative affect.
2. Using a debuff on a character.
DPS - "damage per second"
1. A standard way to calculate the rate of damage dealt to others. For example, 100 damage over 4 seconds is 25 DPS.
2. Describing a character class that is known for its high damage per second. Example usage: "We need to bring some more DPS classes for this encounter."
1. A monster leaving behind equipment when slain. "The princess drops a nice shield."
2. The equipment itself that is left behind when a monster is slain. "I got a sweet drop last night off the ogre chieftain."
Drop rate - Term referring to the frequency at which a monster will drop a given piece of loot.

Emote - An action that allows the players to act out feelings, moods, etc. As an example, a typical emote could be that a player wishes to laugh, or to show that he or she is bored, etc. Known as Pose in Granado Espada.
End-game - also "Endgame" and "End game", refers to the parts of an MMORPG designed for the highest level players.
1. A specific flaw in the game mechanics, system architecture, or world geography to give oneself an advantage over other players, access otherwise hidden or unavailable content, or bypass intended elements of the game design or NPC AI. At all stages of an MMORPG's development and release, making use of exploits for personal gain rather than reporting them to the designers (through whatever channels are provided) is subject to punitive action (usually resulting in the offending player(s') account(s') being banned.
2. To deliberately use such a flaw for personal gain.
EXP - Experience Points or just Experience (sometimes XP), EXP is used as a physical word for the experience the character gains after finishing a quest or killing a monster or another player (see Player versus Player, or PvP) and when the character gains enough EXP it will Level Up, generally becoming stronger and gaining more health points (see HP) Mana points/ Magic points (see MP) and the ability to use more items, weapons, spells, and armor.

Farm - To repetitively gather resources in an area. to get a rarely-dropped piece of loot, lots of a common drops, or just money. Named because you end up killing all of the available mobs, and then waiting for them to respawn, like a farmer growing crops and harvesting them. May also see "China-Farmer," which refers to the perception that many professional farmers (people who farm in-game items/exp for real-world money) are employees working in China. This perception is valid, as many professional farming companies employ labor from third-world countries in Eastern Europe and from China. It is common for players to facetiously tell a perceived China-Famer "Ni Hao," in order to prove that they are as they seem.
FedEx Quest - Also called "Fetch Quests", as the name implies, a FedEx quest requires a player to act as a 'courier', taking an item from point A to point B (and often point C). FedEx quests are often decried as simplistic and lacking any real challenge.

GL - Sometimes stands for "Good Luck".
GM - Game Master, a person employed by the developer of the game as a customer service representative (CSR), typically offering in-game tech support and policing.
Grind - To repetitively kill mobs in an area, usually for experience, although also used as a term to repetitively kill mobs for money or specific items.

Instance - An instance dungeon is a part of the world (normally a dungeon) of which a private copy is made and reserved for a player or group of players, as opposed to a non-instanced dungeon or location where the player(s) can meet other players of their own or the opposing side, with the related consequences. Instancing has become more prevalent in MMORPGs over the last five years.

Kite - To prevent an NPC from successfully attacking by continually running around while the monster chases the player.
KOS - Short for "Kill on Sight", a description of a mob that attacks players without provocation. Example: "I can't enter that town because the guards are KOS to me." Guilds may also declare members of certain opposing guilds as KOS, meaning that they are to be killed immediately if they are encountered, regardless of the situation or etiquette. Example: "Remember, anyone in Tenebris is KOS."
KS - Short for "Kill stealing", when a player engages and kills a NPC that was being fought by another player, possibly receiving loot rights and experience. Intentional KSing is severely frowned upon in most games.

Lag - When the game client freezes up or moves slowly, either due to large amounts of content being loaded from disk and into memory or from large amounts of data being sent from the game server to the client. Typically exhibits itself as a momentary freeze in the game client, after which the game will quickly act to catch up with the current game state, either by moving players around to where they are now or having them seem to run around at increased speeds.
Lawndart - Uncommon antonym of Nerf, meaning to increase the power level of some game element for game balance reasons. Usually done when something is gimped or has been nerfed excessively.
Level / lvl
1. A way to measure the power of a player, see experience points. Usually considered small milestones that may add stat bonuses, etc.
2. The act of gaining a level

1. A preset arrangement of commands set to a hot key or combination (such as Alt 5, or Ctrl 9) used to make the process of doing said commands easier, or quicker to use. Often used since multiple actions can be used with one keystroke.
2. A character who utilities macro keystrokes to carry out simple repetitive tasks for the acquisition of wealth or skillpoints or the player who owns such character(s). Normally players will use multiple such entities simultaneously. Often, the product (in-game currency, items of value or characters) of such activity is sold for RL currency resulting in a upset to gameplay balance and for this reason is disapproved of by MMORPG operators.
Mana - The pool of magic points used by a player when casting spells or using other magic abilities. This term is used even in games that officially call magic points other names such as power.
Meat Shield - A longer, more intentionally humorous term for a Tank.
1. Combat at close range, e.g. with swords or clubs, as opposed to ranged combat with arrows or spells.
2. Player classes using melee attacks as their primary form of damage (e.g. rogues and warriors in most games)
MOB - A mob is a single NPC, usually one that is meant to be killed for experience or loot, though strictly speaking any computer controlled creature is a MOB. MOB is usually (but not always) interchangeable with Monster (see below). Short form of mobile object.
Mob training - gathering more than one monster and killing them with an AoE spell. Compared to killing one monster with the same spell / one by one, it provides more exp per hour.
Monster - A general name used for any type of NPC (see NPC, below) which the players kill to gain experience, loot and items. Also known as MOBs (see MOB, above).
MP - Magic Points/ Mana Points. A common abbreviation for Mana Points.


Watch out for the next part, coming up shortly ^^

*cue mad, diabolical laughter*...?

I guess we'll file this one under "There's a first time for everything!"

While attempting to make Level 57 today in Dr. Torsche's Mansion, Reception Hall, in Cervantes server, I turned a corner and found a team with the glowing red Baron signs over their heads. I can't remember what the family name was, but it involved the Filipino word "maharot" [adjective meaning "flirty"/"lusty"], and several crosses, like so ††.

[Please comment on the post or in the chatbox with your family name so I can properly recognize you ^^]

Being the occasional scaredy-cat that I am, I promptly turned my girls right around and prepared to run the heck away from them, in case I got targeted.

And then the other player said, "^^" - and when I took a look at the dead bodies littering the corridor, I realized that they were all bots! The Baron family was killing the bots!

So I gave them a compliment - though not without inadvertently firing at them because I pressed the space bar in their vicinity - and when they had moved into another section of the map, I decided to try it out myself, as there were a LOT of bots in that map at that time.

Imagine my surprise when, after targeting one family for Forced Attack, an entire squad of double musk/scout families also got targeted! There's something new, I suppose, that we have to watch out for: bots squadding up. *facepalm*

Anyway, I managed to finish off one family, though my wizard died in the process [and lost 1% of her EXP as a result]. I went back to Barracks, and happily clicked on Los Toldos for the very first time.

Here's a pic of the NineMoons main team as new arrivals in the forbidding Baron den:


After a little exploring, I managed to pick up the Tomb Stone back costume, and guess who I gave it to....


There's my scout Aurana with that forbidding burden of hers!

Another shot, this time after working the Baron status off, and upon return to Auch:


Remember, bots = double plus ungood = Baron Points fodder! Death to all bots!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

What to name a summoner?

This entry is a response to, and is inspired by, a world broadcast early this morning by player estrellante on Cervantes server.

The broadcast asked: What's a good name for Catherine the Summoner?

Well, following the in-game trend of naming RNPCs with some derivative, diminutive, or other form of their previously given names, let's look first at the derivatives, diminutives, and other-language forms of the name Catherine.

According to Wikipedia, the earliest known form of the name is Katherine. This is an originally Greek name, and it had several meanings:

- "each of the two", "singly"
- from the name of the Greek underworld goddess Hecate
- possibly "injurious treatment"

The Romans then began to spell the name as Katharina/Katharine, with a meaning of "pure". This meaning is now the most associated with the name.

Funny how Catherine the Summoner is often described as a clean slate. And what's a related word to clean? Why, pure, of course.

Both Katharina and Katharine are now being used in current times as names; their French version is Catherine.

Other forms of
the name include:
Czech - Kateřina
Russian - Yekaterina
Irish/English - Caitlin
Danish/Norwegian/German/English - Karen and derivatives
Irish/English - Kathleen and derivatives
German/Swedish/Hungarian/Croatian/Serbian/Slovene/Lithuanian - Katarina and derivatives
English/German/Swedish/Dutch - Katrina and derivatives
English - Kaylee [shiny!]

[from behindthename.com]

When I saw estrellante's server broadcast, though, the first name that popped into my mind pretty much marked me off as a geek: I PM'ed her [thanks to Arcleaumont] with the suggestion Yunalesca.

The first associated thing for some people when they hear the word "summoner" are the Square-Enix games Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2, in which one of the main roles is played by Summoner Yuna.

According to the game, Yuna was named by her father, High Summoner Braska, after the first High Summoner, Lady Yunalesca. In addition, the name Yuna is of Okinawan origin and means "night".

Other summoners in Final Fantasy X and X-2 are:
Female - Summoner Dona,
Lady Ginnem, High Summoner Yunalesca, Summoner Lenne
Male - Summoner Isaaru, Father Zuke, High Summoner Braska, Yu Yevon

Other summoners in the Final Fantasy games are:
Rydia of Final Fantasy IV
Garnet Til Alexandros XVII/Dagger/Sarah and Eiko Carol of Final Fantasy IX

There, I hope I've given you some suggestions on what to name your treasured summoner-doll, once you've obtained her that is. ^^