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I've decided to try my hand at reviewing some of the games I've been playing recently in the hopes that it will persuade or dissuade you from buying it yourself. I'll start things off with the game I'm currently obsessed with, Darkest Dungeon.
Title: Darkest Dungeon
Developer: Red Hook Studios
Release Date: 1/19/2016
Genre: Roguelike, Role-playing Game, Dungeon Crawler, Turn-based Strategy
"Ruin has come to our family..." -Narrator
The story of Darkest Dungeon is vague and mysterious, allowing the player to fill in the gaps left out by the fantastic voice acting done by the narrator, who is your ancestor. Your ancestor has recently passed away after committing suicide, but not before sending you a letter beckoning you to return to your families house to help right the wrongs he has caused. Obsessed with stories and fables about a treasure below the manor, your ancestor push aside his sinful lifestyle and began to investigate. Spending his fortune on laborers who helped excavate beneath the manor for what seemed to be an eternity, they finally came upon the fabled treasure; a massive, stone doorway which dates back to before any settlers would have been here. Upon blasting open the door horrible beasts, demonic fiends, and eldritch abominations rushed out and killed all of the workers. Your ancestor was the only one to escape; running back to the surface laughing all the way. The manor and the surrounding area were now overrun by these horrors. Angered by your ancestors actions, the townsfolk armed themselves in order to kill your ancestor. But, before they could reach him he had already taken his own life ... and the letter was already on it's way. Now, it is up to you to journey to your families land, drive back these monsters, and venture into the darkest dungeon.
" So, steel yourself, and remember, there can be no bravery without madness. The old road will take you to hell, but, in that gaping abyss, we will find our redemption."-Narrator
Darkest Dungeon does a fantastic job at presenting an easy to understand game that is difficult to master. After the introduction finishes playing, you are greeted with this message:
Darkest Dungeon is about making the best of a bad situation. Quests will fail or be abandoned. Heroes will die, and when they die they are dead for good.
I cannot stress enough the importance of this message. There are hundreds of negative reviews on the Steam page for this game from people who are mad because a quest was too difficult or because their hero(es) were killed. That just tells me that the game is doing its job. And besides the vague bits and pieces of story line that your ancestor gives you throughout the game, your heroes don't have a story; they don't develop through cut scenes or become more interesting and memorable after a key boss fight. You become attached to these characters throughout the journey you take with them and you create the memorable moments which develop your character. So when one or more of your characters die, it fucking sucks and hits you hard. That to me is the greatest strength Darkest Dungeon has to offer.
Now that that is out of the way, let me explain how the game works. The central hub of the game is the Hamlet, which contains several buildings that will help you throughout the game.
- Stage Coach: This is where you can hire heroes. Free of charge.
- Tavern: If your heroes are feeling stressed out, here they can grab a drink, play some cards, or indulge in pleasures of the flesh in order to unwind.
- Abbey: If your heroes need to relax through religious means, here they can pray to a higher power, calm their mind through meditate, or have sin beaten right out of them.
- Guild: Heroes can learn or improve their attacks and abilities here.
- Blacksmith: Heroes can upgrade their weapons and armor here.
- Sanitarium: If your hero has a terrible disease or a quirk, the "doctors" will do their best to help.
- Survivalist: Longer quests require certain skills that can only be taught here.
- Nomad Wagon: Trinkets and baubles can be purchased here.
- Graveyard: Pay respect for your fallen comrades here.
- Ancestors Memoirs: "In time, you will know the tragic extent of my failings..."
Throughout your quests, you'll be rewarded heirlooms which can be traded in to upgrade buildings. The Stage Coach, for instance, can be upgraded so that more heroes are available for recruitment each week and you can also increase the size of your roster. While the Tavern and Abbey can be upgraded to reduce the cost, increase the effectiveness, and open up more slots for heroes to destress in over the week.
"Fan the flames! Mold the metal! We are raising an army!"-Narrator
Once you have some heroes and are ready for a quest, it's important to place your characters in the right spot. You'll notice that you can only bring four heroes at a time with you on a quest and that they can be arranged from position one (the front) to position four (the back). This will effect the types of attacks and abilities you can use as well as the targets you are able to hit.
Let's look at the Vestal's healing ability, Divine Grace:
The circles under Rank show what position your Vestal needs to be in for her to use the attack or ability. The circles under Target show what targets are effected when she uses the attack or ability. So she can only use Divine Grace when in position three or four and it effects one of her allies (including herself) in any position.
Let's look at attacks now. And we'll start with the Crusaders main attack, Smite:
The Rank tells us that he can only use this attack while in position one or two. And the target of his attack, red circles, would be either the target in position one or two of the enemy party. You'll also see that this attack does regular, 100%, damage to the target with 85 accuracy. So it's not a guaranteed hit, especially against a target with a high dodge, but it can do some serious damage.
Now let's look at the Leper's special attack, Intimidate:
Just like the Crusader, the Leper can only use this attack while in position one or two. However, you'll notice that the red circles for the target are connected; that means this attack will hit both targets in position one and two of the enemy party. You'll also notice that this attack doesn't do very much damage; that's because it has the benefit of a high accuracy and an 80% chance to give a -20% damage and -5 accuracy debuff to the targets.
Now that you understand how attacking works, let me explain death and sanity. When your hero reaches zero health, they aren't dead just yet. Instead, they are on Death's Door and gain a nasty little debuff that lowers all of their stats. While on death's door, there is a chance that the next hit they take will kill them out right; this includes any damage over time effects on that hero like bleed and blight. To get off of death's door, your hero needs to simply be healed; even if they are only healed for one. Once off of death's door, that hero will have a less painful debuff called Mortality that will last until the end of the quest.
You may have noticed that under your heroes health bar there is another tracking bar; this is your characters Stress. Stress plays a major part in Darkest Dungeon and is arguably more important to pay attention to than health. As you're questing, your heroes will slowly get stressed out and gain stress. Interacting with certain objects as you quest may also increase your stress. In combat, enemies may have attacks that deal little to no damage but large amounts of stress. Once your heroes stress reaches 100, their resolve is tested; this can be negative (75% chance) or positive (25% chance). If it's negative, your hero gains an Affliction; such as Abusive (will verbally abuse other heroes increasing their stress), Masochistic (will deal damage to themselves), or Selfish (will pass their turn or refuse to be healed). If it's positive, your hero gains a Virtue; such as Powerful (deals more damage and a chance to increase the parties damage), Stalwart (reduces all stress by half and a chance to heal stress from the party), or Focused (increase to accuracy and critical strike chance and a chance to increase the parties accuracy and critical strike chance). Heroes are maintain this affliction or virtue until the quest is over. Also, heroes don't stop gaining stress once they hit 100. A heroes stress level can go all the way up to 200; at which point the hero suffers a heart attack and drops to zero health immediately. If a hero already on death's door and reaches 200 stress, they die immediately.
"Great heroes can be found even here, in the mud and rain."-Narrator
So who are these heroes that I keep going on about? There are currently fifteen heroes in the game. You're allowed a maximum of 28 heroes in your roster, but you can have multiples of each hero; something I would recommend, since each hero has different positive and negative quirks which impact what they are capable of doing. Here is a brief list of the heroes:
Abomination: "Tortured and reclusive... this man is more dangerous than he seems..."
- Able to shapeshift into a large beast that is capable of hitting hard and tanking hits. The Abomination can also whip enemies with his shackles, vomit acidic blight onto foes, and self heal when he is not in his beast mode. NOTE: Religious heroes will NOT join a party with an Abomination on it.
Antiquarian: "She searches where others will not go... and sees what others will not see."
- The latest class in the game, the Antiquarian is NOT a fighter; she has the lowest attack score in the game. However, she has an incredibly high dodge and all of her abilities are supportive for herself as well as the party. There's also the added bonus that having an Antiquarian in your party will greatly increase how much gold you make on a quest.
Arbalest: "Shoot, bandage and pillage: the dancing steps of war."
- She can hit back row targets better than any other hero in the game. She has a few support abilities as well, the best being Battlefield Bandage which not only heals an ally, but increases the effectiveness of heals on that ally for a short time.
Bounty Hunter: "The thrill of the hunt... The promise of payment..."
- The Bounty Hunter gets the job done! Enemy to far away to hit? He'll throw a grappling hook at them and pull them forward. Enemy hitting too hard? Don't worry, he's got two different types of stun that still deal damage. Is an enemy marked for death? Huge attack boost!
Crusader: "A mighty sword-hand anchored by a holy purpose. A zealous warrior."
- A true champion of the light, the Crusader will destroy all that is unholy with his holy sword. Able to both deal and take large amounts of damage, the Crusader can also do some back-up healing and stress healing.
Grave Robber: "To those with the keen eye, gold gleams like a dagger's point."
- Throwing knives, poison darts, and a pick axe. These are but a few of the tools utilized by the Grave Robber. Probably one of the oddest heroes game play wise; she serves a purpose in almost any position on your team.
Hellion: "Barbaric rage and unrelenting savagery make for a powerful ally."
- A front-line fighter with a specialty in causing bleed damage. The Hellion has some devastatingly powerful attacks, with the minor downside of gaining a debuff that lowers her damage for a short time. But if you need something to bleed out, the Hellion is the perfect choice.
Highwayman: "Elusive, evasive, persistent. Righteous traits for a rogue."
- The Highwayman can deal with both close and distant targets. He is an offensive hero with great dodge, that is capable of being both a melee fighter and a ranged expert. Probably one of the most versatile classes in the game.
Hound Master: "A lawman and his faithful beast. A bond forged by battle and bloodshed."
- The Hound Master can command his loyal companion to attack all four targets and make them bleed a little or a single target and make them bleed a lot. He can also mark a target and lower their protection (armor), reduce the parties stress, guard an ally, or wack an enemy over the head with his blackjack to stun them.
Jester: "He will be laughing still... at the end."
- The Jester can dodge incoming attacks with ease, change his position around the battlefield, and give a show stopping finale which is sure to make his foes drop dead. The Jester is also a strong supporting class with one of the best stress healing abilities in the game.
Leper: "This man understands that adversity and existence are one and the same."
- Capable of healing large amounts of damage while taking a beating, the Leper is a fantastic front-line fighter. His Withstand ability gives him physical damage prevention, his Solemnity ability is a self heal that increases his resistance to status effects, and his Revenge ability throws caution to the wind allowing him to hit like a truck.
Man-at-Arms: "The raw strength of youth may be spent, but his eyes hold the secrets of a hundred campaigns."
- A front-line defender that focuses on keeping the team alive and counter attacking enemies that dare step forward. Capable of increasing your parties damage, accuracy, critical, and dodge while also protecting the team, the Man-at-Arms is an amazing tank that doubles as a utility class.
Occultist: "To fight the abyss, one must know it..."
- Well studied in the dark arts, the Occultist serves as a support class with some nasty debuffs or by summoning some eldritch horror to attack the back row. The Occultist also has a "worth the risk" healing ability; with a slight chance to cause your ally to bleed, the Occultist can heal 0 to 12 damage from that ally.
Plague Doctor: "What better laboratory than the blood-soaked battlefield?"
- While the Plague Doctor may not deal a lot of damage right away, her true power is in the damage she deals over time. Capable of both bleeding and blighting your enemies, the Plague Doctor is an extremely powerful back-line fighter capable of hitting any enemy. She also comes with a small heal that cures any bleed and blight on the target as-well-as herself.
Vestal: "A sister of battle. Pious and unrelenting."
- The most effective healing class in the game, the Vestal is capable of healing a single target for a large amount or your entire party for a medium amount. She can also fight, if need be. Her strongest offensive moves are Dazzling Light, with a high chance to stun, and Judgement, which deals a moderate amount of damage to any enemy target while also healing the Vestal for a bit.
"These nightmarish creatures can be felled! They can be beaten!"-Narrator
When I first started playing this game, I was a bit nervous. I knew how difficult the game could be and how quickly a single battle could go all wrong. Over time, I learned to take it slow and work my way up to the harder challenges when I felt ready for them. And when I finally decided to fight my first boss, it was so rewarding and worth the wait. The narrator kept repeating after each fight: "Remind yourself that overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer." But I would press on. Then, I decided to take on a really difficult quest that I wasn't fully prepared for and in less then 10 seconds, my party of level five heroes that I have had since I started were killed. I've never been so frustrated at anything in my life. I turned off my computer and tried to go to sleep. I was angry and upset about what had happened, but I then remembered what the game first told me: Heroes will die. So I continued to press forward and play the game, so that I can train a new party of heroes to go on that failed quest and hopefully avenge my fallen heroes!
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Now for part two of our tour, the outside. Because there is a lot of the outside to show, I won't go into too much detail. Despite that, there will see be a buttload to show, so HEREWEGO.
As before we'll start north, and go clockwise.
This is Markov town. There's a lot here, so I won't say too much, but I will say you should look out for the night club, tree houses, farmlands and all-you-can-eat buffet, among other things.
Next to Markov town is are the church, monument, graveyard, and beach. What religion is practiced within the church? Who knows? I can tell though they might maybe be fond of the color blue.
This is the graveyard close up. If you have time, take a look around and pay your respects to those who have come bef-
...there be foul game afoot...
Okay, now that's just rude.
Anyway, MOVING ON.
South of the graveyard is the pilgrim house. Just your average historic house in the middle of nowhere made with way too many logs sticking out at the sides.
South of the pilgrim house is what I like to call "The Urban Area," because I'm just that great at naming things. It's a nice little town next to a beach with many different houses to explore. While some residents keep their basements for personal use, other turn them into swimming pools or restaurants. Overall, it's a cute looking place and I'm sure the residents are nice people wh-
MOVING RIGHT ALONG....
And here is a nice picture of misfit national park. It's a relaxing place, with quite a few things to look at. I think an interesting detail is that Kilkerko, when making this location, used stone buttons as decorations. You know, to mimic the look of pebbles and the like. It would be weird though if just ONE of those buttons was connected to something...but they're not. Not at all. Nope, no sirree. Never.
To the west of Misfit National Park, we have the Lost Canyon. Here once lived a mysterious people, who carved their homes out of the clay in this god-forsaken hole. However, one day, they disappeared without a trace. Where did they come from? Where did they go? Where did they come from cotton-eyed Joe? Sorry not sorry.
Here we have the tranquil Lake Joan La Chris. Another quiet location, but this place almost seems like it's actively trying to KEEP quiet...as if it has something to hide...as if it has several things to hide... The historic Trent house certainly seems like it's hiding something within it's walls. It's been abandoned for years, who knows what someone could find?
Behind Lake Joan La Chris is the Dead Valley of the Wind. The air feels hostile here, and the barren landscape doesn't help. Anything living here must have left long ago, if there ever was anything...but maybe something was left behind? Probably not.
Above Lake Joan La Chris is Cloud Town. It's a sky settlement made up of rainbows and magic and rainbows and magic and absolutely nothing is amiss and it's full of magic and candy and did I ever mention magic? No I don't think I did. It's positively MAGICAL.
South of Lake Joan La Chris is Commlink's Botanical Garden. When I see it, the two words that pop into my head are "Botanical" and "Garden."
This is the building which houses the Altars fire and water. The outside is nice enough, but the INSIDE...
...the INSIDE has a lot more to show.
And here is the shipyard, with two of the ships made by Commlink. Honestly, this one picture doesn't do the shipyard much justice. If you get the chance, I would recommend looking around the dockyard buildings AND the insides of the ships themselves.
North of the dock is Markov's Tower of the Four Swords. It's a good spot to take some elevators to the top and take a look around at the surrounding area. There also may be a story behind the structure as well.
Quiet and unassuming, Zuty's grove sits behind Markov's Tower. It's a good place for the introvert to unwind, due to its location being out of the way. There's also a cave underneath if you're so inclined to explore it. However, you may not be the only one who's ever been in there...
And we end our tour on top of the hub building. Here, a jungle has sprouted up on top of the remains of the structures left behind by the last civilization that made use of the building. They're long gone, but there's lots to look at.
At the very least, don't forget to check out the treehouses. They were one of the final details added to the hub.
So anyway, that's the tour! I hope once you get the chance that you can finally take a look around and experience it for yourself. After all, a lot of other people and I worked hard to make this project the best that it could be. When we switch to it, you should definitely check it out!
Oh yeah, one more thing. In my last post, Rogue said that she didn't like my texture pack.
WELL WHAT ABOUT THIS TEXTURE PACK, YOU LIKE THIS ONE? WELL? WELL DO YOU?
Sorry I couldn't resist.
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Recent EntriesLatest Entry
So this is the next big build I'm thinking about doing for the new hub! I have a few more screenshots, but to sum it all up, it contains four swords each with their own design and there are numerous floors to it as well. I still have to add content into the build to make it not as empty as it currently is. Here is a link to a screenshot of the outside of the build: http://imgur.com/wb981tB
Media Center of Super Awesome Epicness
You most likely have seen me before. I am currently, well if you are reading this after the 3rd of May 2015 "was", hosting the Epic Emoticon Contest. I am ESR from ESR.tv.
**note: ESR.tv is not a website or a TV station, K? Yes, fake. Simply my "calling card" I suppose.
The reason for this blog is to have something for members to check out at least once a week, Ceteris paribus, all things be same/normal from week to week on my end. Also, I would like to do this to practice my artwork cause it needs a lot of work, but that is neither here nor there for you all.
To start, I think I will be making something based on the life lived on Misfit Minecraft/Community. What that will mean to you is:
- I will first go over my OOCC, which is "Out of Character Characters", MediaDance and Robo Martin who will be "hosting" the comic strip/page/book/etc.
- Then I will introduce the stars of the comic strip/page/book/etc, which will be select members of Misfits, with their permission of course.
- I might then give you a visual of the settings that the comic strip/page/book/etc because this may get confusing otherwise.
So, I hope to have something new posted every Friday evening for Saturday morning religiously, and I look forward to doing this, but the beginning will be slow because I will have to get all the perms from the members I want to host, create the art of each character that will be in the comic s/p/b/etc, and simply get everything set for the actual comic s/p/b/etc in order.
I will most likely be updating this blog post because it is really for the purpose of disclosure. So, if I need to add anything to this post, I will add it after this with a date-stamp somewhere in/on/round the update.
- I will first go over my OOCC, which is "Out of Character Characters", MediaDance and Robo Martin who will be "hosting" the comic strip/page/book/etc.
Misfit MineCraft Q1 Economic Report
This is our first of many future quarterly economic reports about the health of the Misfit Minecraft economy.
- How much is actually in-game?
- Why does it matter?
- Why the slump at the end of the graph?
- Average Growth
- What does this mean?
[*]Who has the money?
As of March 3-31-15 there is 26.45 million dollars in the misfit economy. Of that an average of 17.7 million is in active circulation within thirty days. This isn’t how much money is exchanging hands, but it does show that roughly 10 million dollars are on player accounts who don’t currently log in once a month. This money is still in the economy but it gives us a better idea of how much money our regular players have access to. Our seven day stats show a similar average of 14.3 million dollars that players who logged in within 7 days have access to. Which means our wealthiest players are also those who log in regularly…who’d of thunk it?
Why does this matter?
It shows that our members, who are most active, have access to over half the money in the economy. These members are actively participating in the economy we know this because they are accruing wealth and are dedicated to Misfit MineCraft because they log in at least once a week, and that’s great news! Our active players are staying and growing their wealth to facilitate the purchase of goods for projects. The money in active circulation is growing but just slightly which is great news for the economy. It also explains why the price of goods has not changed drastically in the past few months.
Why the slump at the end of the graph?
We believe that two members failed to log in that week, one caused the slump in the seven day, and the other has not logged in for over a month which caused a slump in the thirty day graph.
Economic growth varies each week and can be quite erratic as shown by our stats above. But there are some interesting events behind the scenes here. When the stats were taken for 12-29-14 we were in our Holiday Event which saw millions of dollars enter the economy through prizes found in the winter world and crate bombs given out to players. Keep in mind the event was a long one and both 12-29-14 and 1-5-15 show the total increase in money for this event.
Typically we average an increase of 400-500k a week in growth. The only week we saw negative growth was a week where several portals were purchased by players causing a 600k reduction of money in the economy. Whenever the number is lower there has always been a major purchase from a player such as shops, portals, misfit player enhancements (fly in residence, backpack, etc). When the numbers are high it typically correlates with a crate bomb or major event within the server.
Who has the money?
What does this mean?
Average gain in wealth by group:
- Top 5 - Had a 1.15% increase in wealth
- Top 10 – Had a 1.16% Increase in wealth
- Top 25 – Had a 1.50% Increase in wealth (missing 21-25 in chart, adjusted for estimated numbers)
- Top 50 – Had a 1.91% Decrease in wealth (the first record didn’t include top 50 players so I used record 2 to start calculations)
So everyone is making money, except when you look at the top 50 players, why? Simply put we have inflation. New players are building wealth but not getting onto the top 50 list. As more money flows into the economy it dilutes the money currently in circulation which is called inflation, and makes it appear that the top 50 players had a decrease in wealth. When in reality they just didn’t make enough money to offset the flow of new money. Players who buy things from the in-game store will cause them to drop down the list which makes the wealth in the Top 50 to plunge overall. I pulled the data for players 25-50 and found there was a decrease of 260k dollars which caused a slight drop in the top 50 growth in wealth.
Our global inflation rate is roughly 8% a month which is rather high. This causes players to work harder for their money, but there is good news. First since our weekly growth is somewhat steady as more money enters the economy the inflation rate will decrease. Secondly the money held by active players (logged in within 30 days) has just slightly increased meaning that the money in the active economy has been largely unaffected by inflation. Fun fact: The US economy inflation rate was roughly 3% a month in 2012.
Unfortunately there isn’t much good news in this department. AutoChests are growing in numbers but just barely. These chests are a commodity as they cost $1,000 to place and can be used to create self-sorting storage systems. Once these storage systems are built those players have no need to build another and stop buying chests. Most new members are not aware of the benefits of such a system because they are not fully invested in the server until they have been here for a few months. Once these members play regularly they start to build their own storage systems with this mod and their use and creation goes up (this will be seen in our next QER).
- The active population has control of most of the money in circulation, which is good and that growth is relatively stable.
- Active player economy is strong and stable.
- Total economy is growing roughly 500k a week or 8% inflation.
- Events are when the economy sees the most growth.
- Buy AutoChests because they’re amazing.
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Museum Score: 9
Builder's Description: The Stay Puft Marshmallow man lumbering through Times Square.
Builder's Inspiration: Who you gonna call?
Additional Notes: The Ikea/Midol building was constructed completely from stained materials. The marshmallow man is constructed of snow blocks, with a wool sailor suit, of course. There is one hidden room in the entire build.
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