BDO Guardian (First try, anyway)


The character customization in Black Desert is the best part of the game, according to my son. I happen to like the rest of the game, but it is hard to argue with his point. This is my first attempt at customization of the new Guardian class. I am going to play around with it again tonight. (If you like this customization, I saved it as “Guardienne.”)

Post 101: This Week

This is post #101 for The MMOist. I guess I have written more than I thought! I will try to make the next 100 even better.

Today is my birthday. I am 49 years old. I have been playing MMORPGs since I was 27 years old. I’ve lived long enough for my online gaming self to be an adult. (And my online gaming self is not so far away from 30 if you count MUDs and multiplayer BBS door games.)

Wednesday is the day that pre-creation starts for the Guardian class in Black Desert Online in preparation for the release on the 22nd. I am already hyped for the new class, and this will turn the hype up to 11 for me. I know that’s the point of the event and I am a lemming for falling for it, but I was the same way with the release of the Lahn, the Archer, and the Shai. I can’t wait!


In between, I will likely be playing Villagers and Heroes. I think I tried it once a long time ago, but I don’t remember it being good. I decided to check it out since it shares an award with Project Gorgon for Massively OP’s 2019 Indie Game of the Year and it is surprisingly… well, good.

I also plan to show a variety of MMOs to my husband to see if he’s interested in any of them. I think I’ve almost got him reeled in. Now I just have to hook my mom, and my nefarious plot to spread MMO gaming will be complete.


Black Desert Online continued to dominate my gaming (in any genre) in 2019. I played a little bit of a lot of games otherwise, most notably Riders of Icarus, which was my main game for a couple of months. In the final weeks of the year, I took up Destiny 2, which is really fun, despite how very bad I am at shooters. I also finally got around to purchasing Elsweyr expansion for The Elder Scrolls Online.

I want to try some new things, both in gaming and blogging, in 2020.

First, I want to give The Elder Scrolls Online a fair shake. I have had some fun playing it, but I seem to jump in during those periods when my real life doesn’t actually leave a lot of time for gaming. That’s a shame because I can see that there’s a really solid game there. I want to give it its due. And I am a pretty hot dude in that game.


I want to get back to bringing all my BDO characters up to level 50+. That doesn’t actually take too long, but lately, I have had a hard time finding play sessions long enough to make progress on that goal. I do have a bunch of characters that have hit the target, but there are a bunch lagging behind. That can happen when you have 15 characters in a game. I am all excited about the new Guardian class, which will make it 16.


But my main goal for MMO gaming in 2020 is to be more social, both in-game and in the communities that surround the games and the genre. I might even invite other people to join my BDO guild.

I wasn’t gonna, but then I did.


I wasn’t going to buy anything from the Steam Winter Sale, but then I did. First I purchased a few cheap titles for family members, and next thing you know, I was checking out a cart full of stuff for myself. My consolation is that everything I bought was at a deep discount and was all stuff I have had wishlisted forever.  None of it was MMORPG related, but there are titles in there I am very excited for anyway. Farming Simulator 19, here I come!

I did install some MMORPGs while on Christmas vacation though. I discovered that Luna Online, which I was pretty sure had sunsetted, is on Steam as Luna Online: Reborn I have some fond but very vague memories of that game, so I installed it. I think I saw one other player when I jumped on to try it out, but I am not going to assume the game is completely empty. It is still cute and grindy, just like the good old days.

Yep. Back to Newbville, population: me. 


I also installed Conqueror’s Blade, which has been on my “when I get around to it” list since it came out. I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet. I will come back with my thoughts on it when I do.

I am still on a Skyrim kick. I started over to play an unmodded playthrough in order to check off more achievements on Steam. I am not sure why I care, except that I have a good number of them already and want to complete the set.

I wrote a retrospective of the games I have played and written about for Massively OP. I was also one of the folks at the end of the year roundtable episode of the podcast. I can’t bring myself to listen to it because I feel weird about hearing my voice. (I am going to have to get over that if I ever want to do some podcasting of my own, and I have been thinking about that possibility for some time.)

I also started a new blog project that’s related to tracking my progress toward self-improvement over the next decade, but that’s not even remotely gaming related. I am cutting back on social media to make time for writing, so expect to see more of me all over the place.


Astellia Free Trial Weekends

If you’ve been on the fence about buying Astellia, here’s a bit of good news: Beginning this Friday (12/20/19) through Sunday, January 5, 2020, Astellia will be having three free trial weekends. To take advantage of this, go to their site, create an account, and enter the code HAPPYHOLIDAYWEEKENDS .

(The space between the code and the period is to make it easier for my fellow copy-&-paste people.)

Brad McQuaid has passed away

I tried to come up with a better title, but I couldn’t think of one. We’ve lost Brad McQuaid. Visionary Realms made the announcement on Facebook and Twitter.

Here’s a link to the Massively OP article, if you want to go over there and commiserate with other people in the comments.

Brad McQuaid made worlds that people lived in and loved. Those worlds changed lives. He was a true believer in what MMORPGs can be. And his interactions with the community showed him to be a good human being. I hope Pantheon ends up being everything he would have wanted to be.

My heart goes out to his family. I am so sorry for their loss.

Why is finding a guild so hard?!

I have been in some good guilds, back in EverQuest, then World of Warcraft, then Jade Dynasty. At some point, though, I started playing irregular hours, and fewer hours total. That sort of thing happens when you have a lot of adulting to do.


Maybe I am just really bad at meeting people these days. I just have the worst time finding guilds to join in games where I don’t know anyone else playing. (That’s pretty much all of them all of the time. Even when I know people playing, we end up playing at different times or on different servers or different factions.)

I do sometimes find guilds by answering recruitment messages in general chat. Sometimes I have good luck with that, but mostly I struggle to find a good fit. I like a chatty, social guild where people get together and do things together. I am just not going to be a hardcore player at this point in my life, and I can’t guarantee that I will play regularly or predictably. I just want to make some friends. I would probably play more regularly if I had a fun guild with casual chat to look forward to.

I am shy and socially awkward in real life. I carry those traits with me into games. I feel like I need a guild to adopt me as their pet in the games I play. You know, take me in, coax me out from under the bed, reassure me that everything is ok, maybe toss me some catnip. There should be an app for that. They could call it “Guilder.”


Sad Bean and the Week That Was

I only worked 1 day and 2.5 hours last week. I was in a deep funk. I don’t know exactly what set me off, but it was rough. I spent a couple of those days mostly sleeping. Needless to say, not much got done, and certainly not a lot of gaming.

I did play some Trove and some Skyrim over the weekend. I am preparing to write an article about the former and I was just clearing some side quests in the latter.

I did some AFK fishing in BDO, but I was literally not anywhere near the computer, so I don’t know if that counts.

I am trying to decide what to do about ArcheAge Unchained. They still aren’t selling character slot expansions. It isn’t a huge deal, since I have only played my Warborn, but I am thinking about deleting and rerolling a Dwarf on another server. I’d rather buy another slot for server hopping, but that’s not an option. Yet.

So that’s where I am at. More thoughts to follow.