D plays DotA 2: Diretide

Hello readers,

I’m back after playing so much Diretide! Diretide is probably one of the most fun things ever. I’m so serious. One of my favorite parts about it is… I can pretty much random and incur no rage when I do kind of poorly! WOOO FOR BEING SO BAD!

For those of you that don’t know, and yet want to read a blog post about DotA 2, Diretide is a Halloween mode that is still available in DotA 2. The goal of the mode is twofold: 1. Get the most candy in the first 20 minutes, because you will win a free vanity item, and 2. Kill Roshan as quickly as you can. The best part about this mode, really, is how adorable Rosh is the whole time. Roshan is the boss creep that carries the Immortality item on him. In Diretide, Roshan is free from his pit and allowed to roam the map. After 10 minutes in game, Roshan will appear to collect treats from the players… and if you don’t give him what he wants he will kill you. I am 100% serious. He’s also dressed in super cute costumes!

Aww! Guys, he just wants candy!

There are three ways to collect candy: some jungle creeps will drop them, Roshan lane babies will drop them, and rob your enemy candy bucket. The third option is super viable, since it will give you almost a permanent lead if you can keep robbing and defend your own bucket well enough. For that reason, Anti-Mage, Furion, Queen of Pain, and other characters with global TPs or blinks are annoying as heck to deal with. Team fight characters are also extremely welcome, because most engagements will be mini to full on teamfights anyway. Characters like Sand King, Omniknight, Dazzle, and Clockwerk to name a few. Sadly, in this mode, the viable characters in the metagame are still all over the place.

If I had a dollar for every Anti-Mage or Furion I have seen in any game… I would probably have at least 50 dollars.

After the initial 10 minutes, Rosh appears for candy as mentioned previously. One thing my boyfriend and I have been doing is picking gangcentric characters and following Roshan. With enough stuns or damage, you too can help Roshan murder innocent people. Try Riki, Bounty Hunter, Spirit Breaker, and other fun characters for it. Its best done with at least 2 total people, because you might walk into entire enemy team. That’s not fun. =,(

After the candy phase is over, Roshan goes over to the team with the most candy and eats the bucket. This begins the third and last phase of the game — Kill Roshan. The competitive part isn’t to necessarily kill Roshan last, because both teams still get items for his death. The competitive part is beating the fastest Roshan kill, because you will get a Golden Baby Roshan. You want it and you know it.

Its so cute. You want it, don’t you? This is like TF 2 hats all over again! But with couriers.

Diretide is simply a Halloween event that seems to be going away on November 12 this month, but I hope they bring it back as a real game mode. Its fun, its fresh, and its low stress. Maybe they will make it creep sacrifices instead of candy, but I would still love to see this mode stick around.

 

D does a lot of stuff! Gaming/Reading

Hello readers,

I have been up to quite a lot of stuff lately. I’ve picked up two new games and finished a few books. To recap what you already know:

  • I purchased Pokemon and X-COM: ENEMY UNKNOWN
  • I finished reading A Storm of Swords, Warm BodiesNeverwhere, and At the End: A Post-Apocalyptic Novel
  • I am finally going to get to read books alongside my book club, Bad Wolf Bookclub at Tumblr — The Night Circus
  • I played actual PvP games in League of Legends and didn’t do so bad

POKEMON

With Pokemon White 2, I’ve beaten the 8th gym. I have to say, Pokemon has a great RPG plot going on. Its target audience aside, I am really enjoying the game. I traded up a bunch of my Pokemon from my Pokemon White game, so my main team consists of: Whimsicott, Galvantula, Braviary, Flygon, Krookodile, and Jellicent. I have quite a few Pokemon on reserve, such as Chandelure.

I love Chandelure, so stylish!

There was also a confrontation with Lord Dennis, as I call him, as well as other cameos. If the Pokemon trend continues, I hope the next generation has even more story elements added to the mix. Maybe even allow us to design our own character? Multiple story line trees? Elderscrolls: Pokemon Edition? I know I am wishing for a lot, but I hope that the writers for the game continue to flesh out the Pokemon world. Its completely possible to have deep subjects in children’s fiction, I know. Have you ever seen Avatar: The Last Airbender? Once I finally gave it a try, cause I was in the anime or bust group before, I came to love it. Such a full and rich world with real conflict. I can always wish!

X-COM: ENEMY UNKNOWN

I picked up X-COM last weekend too. Boy, is that game just SO MUCH fun. The micromanagement of research and equipment, the strategy of whom to take with me on a mission, the complete fear of losing any of my characters (whom are named after IRL loved ones), and, of course, missing a 99% shot while I am right in front of the alien — THAT’S X-COM, BABY! At first, I was totally worried about the remake, because the first thing we were shown was an FPS game. A complete betrayal, as Internet Personality Guy Spoony would say, but the Civilization guys got their hands on the game and worked to bring X-COM to 2012. X-COM was originally a game that came out in the early 1990’s. It was pretty much the best game ever made for the PC for that entire decade. Yeah, I played Doom, Duke Nukem, and other games, but X-COM was the only game that made me actually scared to make a single move.

The original X-COM had two core gameplay elements. The TBS and the spreadsheets.

I get tingly just thinking about it.

The player could see all of X-COM’s expenses right down to what you paid everyone monthly including scientists and engineers. The player could also see which countries were contributing to the X-COM project and which ones seemed to be waning in support. The original X-COM also utilized a system of time units and every thing you did during battle aside from a few small actions cost time units. Some of your soldiers could have a lot of time units or could be totally restricted. Stats seemed to be generated at random, but usually you wanted to make your team have the best of the best. You could also have a squad as big as 20some people, but you could also get majorly boned if the game loaded your Skyranger in a bad place. For example, as soon as the map loads, an alien throws a grenade STRAIGHT into your plane. This causes panic sometimes, but mostly your soldiers are likely to die, because there is not enough room for all of them to make it out alive.

The X-COM remake takes the essence of all that, but streamlines it in a way that is both easy to get into and challenging. Instead of Time Units, there are 2 actions per turn (where attacking first will end your turn, so be wise). Instead of hiring and firing scientists and engineers, you must earn these personnel or build more laboratories/workshops. They also made it extremely clear, at all times, how countries felt about your operation around the world. There was also a reduction in the amount of units you could take with you on any given mission. From 22 to 6 total. WOW! Yet, the game is pretty balanced for the casualcore and diehard fans of the series. Playing on Ironman in any mode is likely to cause balding. Ironman is a mode in which you CANNOT revert to previous saves. Once that team member dies or that country leaves X-COM — its for good. This adds a whole new level of difficulty and drama to the game.

I am having a buttload of fun playing X-COM and trying to 100% every mission I encounter (or at least get away with 15/18 civilians in Terror Missions). I haven’t bothered to do priority missions yet, since I am too busy building enough Titan Armor to accommodate EVERY soldier in my barracks, but so far the combat seems pretty legit. Also, a minimeme has been born from the frustration and nerdrage this game has induced.

BOOKS

I have been reading so many books lately. My head is bubbling from all the fictional knowledge. I feel like I know WAY too much about the geography and history of the Song of Ice and Fire series (alternatively known as the Game of Thrones series). I know where the Twins are located and why its an important, strategic location. I know about how Rhaegar made Lysanna the Queen of Beauty and Love (I believe that was the title) and how it may have been the trigger for starting Robert’s rebellion. I also have a few theories about Jon Snow’s origin, because I have a lot of doubts about him being Eddard’s child.

I have also finished a charming book called Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. The story takes place from the POV of a zombie guy. His name is R, because he honestly can’t remember his entire name. He is lucky, though, because most zombies don’t even have that much to go on. He’s an average guy, married with kids, gets hungry and sometimes eats folks, and enjoys a good laugh with his buddy M from time to time. One of the driving forces behind the story is the REASON zombies eat people. Its not much of a spoiler, but zombies eat the brains of the living in order to feel alive and thrive on the devoured’s memory. Zombies don’t really have memories of being alive. They don’t recall their 8 to 5’s or family, but they can relive ALIVE moments by eating the brain of a living person. This stirs R into a journey of understanding as he rescues a living girl whose boyfriend’s brain he’d just eaten. Its a completely heart-touching story that was a breeze to read! I finished it in a single day, because I simply couldn’t put it down. I won’t tell you more except to buy it or check it out! Its worth your time if you love zombies or strange stories.

Neverwhere is everything I expected it would be. It seems like it could be a graphic novel on the same level as The Sandman. Its about common man Richard Mayhew. He’s got no spine, but he is fine with what his life is like. He does everything his girlfriend asks of him. Richard’s life is changed forever as he stumbles onto a dying girl — that apparently everyone around him just wants to ignore. Doing her a favor causes everything to go haywire for Richard, so he has to embark on a reluctant journey in order for things to be normal and samey again. People often accuse Neil Gaiman (the author) of writing the same story over and over, but honestly, its just that his style conveys the story of normal vs weird so well. I can’t wait to bite into Stardust. 

At The End: A Post-Apocalyptic Novel was terrible. THE END.