Thursday, May 31, 2012

We Brake for Shinies

Beatriza, dark elf defiler, pausing to gather a Shiny for her Collections.

Anyone who playes EQ2 knows about Shinies - enticing, sparkly little beacons of ... Shininess! For those of you who are not familiar with them, Shinies can be gathered - you will receive a Collection item, such as .

Collections are yet another fun feature of EQ2. As shown above, Shinies are found on the ground. Once you have gathered all the items of a Collection, you turn the Collection in for a reward - often a decent piece of armour, sometimes house items.


(This image is an in-game screenshot from within EverQuest II.
Copyright is held by Sony Online Entertainment and is used here under Fair Use. Commercial use of this image is forbidden. Thank you, EQ2 wiki

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

June City Festival - New Halas EQ2

Norrathian Express Box, New Halas Branch  is the reward for the Halas Postage Collection. This item is for your home, and it is a working mailbox. I love them. It is nice to be able to read one's mail in the privacy of one's own home. You collect purple Shinies around the festival area until you have a completed collection.

The items are of this collection are:
  • Halas letterhead
  • Halas stamp
  • Halas envelope
  • Halas notepaper
  • Halas postmark
  • Halas sealing wax
All the New Halas City Festival items are pictured very nicely on This is an excellent website, which features all the housing items. There are other great sites for this, too, which I'll mention in other posts, as well as putting up a link list of EQ2 housing info sites, one of these days soon.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Towel Day minus 3 and counting ...

picture of Douglad Adams from Wikimedia Commons, by Michael Hughes

Yikes! I guess I am not enough of a Douglas Adams fan to remember that since May 25, 2001, every May 25th is Towel Day! Wear your towel proudly!

from wikipedia:
Towel Day is celebrated every year on 25 May as a tribute by fans of the author Douglas Adams. On this day, fans carry a towel with them to demonstrate their appreciation for the books and the author, as referred to in Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The commemoration was first held in 2001, two weeks after Adams' death on 11 May 2001.
The origin of this tribute comes from D. Clyde Williamson in his post at "Binary Freedom", a short-lived open source forum:
Towel Day: A Tribute to Douglas Adams
Monday 14 May 2001 06:00am PDT
Douglas Adams will be missed by his fans worldwide. So that all his fans everywhere can pay tribute to this genius, I propose that two weeks after his passing (25 May 2001) be marked as "Towel Day". All Douglas Adams fans are encouraged to carry a towel with them for the day.
So long Douglas, and thanks for all the fish!
Following is the passage from The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy that was Williamson's inspiration:
 "A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-bogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can't see it, it can't see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.
More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitchhiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have "lost." What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with.
Hence a phrase that has passed into hitchhiking slang, as in "Hey, you sass that hoopy Ford Prefect? There's a frood who really knows where his towel is." (Sass: know, be aware of, meet, have sex with; hoopy: really together guy; frood: really amazingly together guy.)"

Towel Day countdown and headquarters
Chris Campbell and his friends registered the website to promote the day, reminding people to bring their towels. Towel Day was an immediate success among fans and many people sent in pictures of themselves with their towels.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Wending my way back to EQ2

I've not been playing EQ2 much, hadn't touched my old subscription accounts in two years. Now that EQ2 has gone free to play, well, it has been for a while now, I thought I'd take a look. I'd been playing Lord of the Rings Online, I love my friends there, and I love crafting and outfits. It is great to have housing, and in LoTRO I had my first virtual house - a cottage, really. I remember it well. The thing is, LotRO housing is quite limited. I grew frustrated at the housing item placement system, it is a "hook" system, whereby you can only place certain types of items in certain places. When you have never had housing, it is Heaven ... but once you've experienced open placement housing, you'll forever be disappointed by the hook system.

My gaming system is down, has been for a while, so it has limited my game time greatly. I also deal with certain physical conditions, which at times keep me from gaming at all. I was experiencing terrible lag ingame, due to having to play on a system with lesser capabilites, so getting into LotRO, crawling and jumping and lagging into things, on top of not feeling well, I almost stopped getting into the game. I would get into the game, look at my lovely home, and sigh at my full bags, full house chests and full bank, as well as all my alts being full to the gills. I'd chat with a few friends and then log off. I'd force myself through the festivals, though. -grin- Thus my overflowing bags.

So ... all this chatter leads to the fact that I tried EQ2 free to play, to see if I could still have housing, and what that housing involved. Since I knew no one in EQ2, it was easier to play, since I could come and go as I wanted, and as my health permitted. As with any game, free to play is not ultimately free to play, but hey, it gets a lot of people into a game who might not otherwise try it. It is essential to upgrade to a Silver account, which is a one time $5 fee. The next step up is Gold, which is $14.99 a month if you pay monthly, with discounts if you pay for 3 months or more at a time - pretty standard fee.

Even without a Silver upgrade, you can own a starter home. It is two rooms, and quite sufficient for satisfying my decorating and collecting penchants. I started crafting basic furniture - and then I found out about City Festivals and Moonlight Enchantments! Both occur once a month, and both have plentiful housing items that can be gotten through bartered tokens which are obtained through the events' quests. If you happen to hit a holiday or festival period, there is often a crafting component to it, where festival themed recipes are offered. These contain many housing item recipes. What more could I ask for?

I was able to do Moonlight Enchantments in May, and I look forward to the next City Festival in June ... and I am going to get my little carpenter busy furnishing my homes, as well as getting my tailor working on some lovely rugs and pretty outfits. City Festival Guide Moonlight Enchantments Guide

Merry gaming, wherever your bliss leads you!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Mounts Spring Festival 2012 LotRO

I popped up to Hegstacer's Farm to see the new Spring 2012 mounts. I don't know if I will have the time to get them, but they certainly are pretty!

Spring Festival 2012|Lord of the Rings Online

Lord of the Rings Online Spring Festival is now live in Middle Earth, from May 24 – June 11, 2012.

Don't miss the great Spring Festival Guide from Casual Stroll to Mordor.

I got ingame for a short while this afternoon, and I must say that I am very impressed with what I saw. The festival is occurring much later than it used to, it used to start in late March, but this year LotRO really enhanced the Anniversary event, not only in content, but it also ran for almost a month. The Anniversary event then displaced the Spring Festival, timewise, but from what I have seen of the Spring Festival, the wait was worth it!

When I first played LotRO, it was during the open beta, and the Spring Festival was in full force - flowers, flowers everywhere! That was my first impression of the game - flower gathering and merriment! The last two years, flower gathering was not a part of Spring festivities, which was disheartening ... where was the spirit of Lord of the Rings without the quest for flowers? Now flower gathering is back, and I am very happy. I ran through the West Bree fields gathering as many violets as I could.

So, I got my nostalgia hit, yay!

I only did one other quest, as that was all I had time for. This quest is new this year - and I received it by spotting a poster nailed to one of the beams that holds up one of the Breetown entry gates, just inside Breetown. That was the first nice touch. It did seem that it was going to be a quest like any other, kill 10 or gather 10 fill in the blank ... but the story line wove around in quite a delightful and unexpected manner, taking me through some new sights. I am not going to say anymore about it, I don't want to spoil it for others. I hope you pursue this quest ... it does have something to do with tiny turtles ... and with that, I'll say no more.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

EQ2 Marketplace - Amazing Rebate Sale

Oh, I have to get there this weekend! For this great Marketplace sale, and for a little bit of double XP!

From the EQ II Community News:
From Friday, May 25, 2012 at 12:01 pm (noon) Pacific* through Monday, May 28, 2012 at 11:59 pm Pacific you'll get an instant rebate for half your Station Cash back when you purchase almost anything** in the EverQuest II Marketplace! Everyone likes having more to spend, and now's the time to grab that item you've had your eye on. As soon as you do, you'll find 50% of the cost of the item (clearly displayed to you in game) immediately refunded to you… maybe you should look at another item on your wish list!
Jump in game and explore the Marketplace. Whether it's an Experience Potion or the latest Heritage Armor, it's now twice the deal it used to be!

** Recurring subscriptions are not eligible for the 50% rebate.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Priestess' Home, Gorowyn, eq2

Entrance to Priestess home -

Situated in the city of Gorowyn, this two room starter home can be transformed into quite an elegant space. Here I used elements from a few of the City Festivals, as well as some of the Claimed items (rewards from eq2 to its players, found by typing /claim), in addition to a number of Moonlight Enchantment items, which can be better seen in some of the later images.

Here you see a grand staircase which leads to an upper area, featured by a crafted pool in the foreground. The staircase was created by using Neriak City Festival furniture collection items -  in this case the counters, which were reduced in size to make the steps. The columns, the violet flamed lanterns and the blue flaming chandeliers in some of the images are also from Neriak.

View of the Contemplation Garden from the Entry Hall.

City Festivals items from Kelethin and Neriak, with the large crystal cluster, a barter item from Moonlight Enchantments.

Contemplation Garden. This room is still being worked on. This project was undertaken initially when there was no repeatable quest for Moonlight Enchantments - thus the need for grassy and paved areas, the addition of more plant life, and most probably the removal of the torches, which will be replaced with plant life.

Looking from the Contemplation Garden back out onto the Entry Hall. I hope you enjoyed your visit!

Half Elf's Cottage, Fae Inspired, Qeynos Home, eq2

This quaint little room is in the Baubbleshire, one of the basic two room starter homes.

The rug and crates are quest rewards from some of the early Kelethin quests. The barrels and wash basin on the left are purchased from a housing merchant, found in any city. The plants and the acorn chairs are either from one of the monthly City Festivals, or from a Moonlight Enchantments vendor. On the left you can see a room divider, which can be crafted very early in crafting. These are great to use for decorating, especially in a two room starter home because you can easily divide the rooms up into smaller rooms, where you can create a theme in each area. On the other side of this divider are an office and a meditation space.

Goddess Shrine, Qeynos Home, eq2

Using items from the Moonlight Enchantments rewards - the tree and the grassy patches, and many items from the yearly Valentine's themed event, Erollisi Day, I created this Goddess shrine in a starter Qeynos home. Some of the Erollisi items are bartered for, some are crafted, while some are won according to how well one did in finding essences in a timed event, Hearts 'a Flutter. This home is in the Baubbleshire, has two rooms and costs a mere 5 silver a week to upkeep.

Fungus Among Us

Merriment to be had! Finding an extremely rare house item that drops from the Spicebracket Fungus that is harvested for a quest in the Enchanted Brownie Grotto in Darklight Woods during the monthly Moonlight Enchantments event in Everquest 2.

I had no idea that one might actually get a real live Spicebracket Fungus of their very own to take home, but there it is, in the picture below. Shown on the right is one of Maybelle's bags with the rare Treasured Fungus in it. It took almost 200 fungus gathers for it to show up, and I wasn't even looking for it. Imagine my delight!

The quest description, Strong Brew Root Beer, states:

Note: Harvesting the fungus has a slight chance of yielding a house item version of the fungus instead of the component.