First World Problems Of Spacious Houses

Ding 36 on my slinger.  Funny story – I was actually dead at the time, having overpulled.  My husband finished off the mob and bam, it’s spacious house time.

The Spacious Chua House Dilemma

Deciding which spacious house is quite difficult.  The cassian would have been the easiest to decorate because the walls are flat.  But chua pride prevailed and I now have a spacious chua house.

I have no idea what to do with it.  I keep trying to put a second level in the tiny gerbil balls off the side, only to say to myself “This is a spacious house, moron.  There is no need to try to cram things in every inch of available space.”

Apart from that, I have no idea what to do with all the space I have.  I obviously need a kitchen, a bathroom (TOILET!), bedroom, living room, eating area… and then what?  Library and science lab, sure, and I STILL HAVE SPACE!

I’m also not sure which of my rooms should be assigned to the gerbil balls.  You’d think that a gerbil ball would be a great self-contained science lab – but would it be weird to walk into the main room and see SCIENCE?  Shouldn’t an evil science lab be up in the attic or down in the basement (I don’t have a basement).  The gerbil ball rooms are super-important because they can be separately remodeled from the rest of the house, so I should use that power wisely and put things in gerbil balls that might be difficult to otherwise design with internal walls.

Should I use a gerbil ball for the bathroom?  Or would that make the bathroom even less private than it already is with the lack of ANY doors?  Wouldn’t the bedroom have to be on the same level as the bathroom for middle of the night chua tinkles (these are the things I think about)?  Maybe in a house that big, I’d need two bathrooms.  Another toilet, I guess.

Thehusband objected to my plan to put the bathroom above the kitchen.  Apparently that’s gross.  He has a point.  And that’s a point in favor of sequestering the bathroom in its own gerbil ball.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of ideas as to how other people decorate their chua houses.  I’ve only seen one large chua house while I was visiting public houses and, I regret to inform you, did not make good use of the remodel feature.  Some wallpaper should never be used, ever.  Especially not in a gerbil ball.

Dear readers, I need your help.  Do you know of any pictures/videos of decorated spacious chua houses?  Or do you have brilliant ideas of what to put in all those empty spaces, gerbil balls included.  (Hint: Do not want brothel, in case that was not completely obvious.)

I Love Lamp

The long story is not yet over.  Whilst leveling architect, I noticed that there are some recipes in the tree that I don’t have.  Apparently they can be bought with vouchers.  I checked the ones I didn’t have (of the levels that I’m actually crafting), and most of them were tacky aurin crap.  However, I could do a few more missions, grab the draken cauldron recipe (yuck), and then unlock a cassian lamp that thehusband is drooling over for his spacious cassian house.  It’s the least I can do after he slaved over the auction house to get our 6 plat so we could each have a spacious house.

I did the Illium work order missions.  It was annoying.  I triumphantly purchased the Drakken cauldron and… could not learn it, because it requires level 25.  Wait, what, the level requirement on my toilet was just a tooltip error but this shit is real.  FINE.

My architect medic was, at that point, level 23.5.  So seriously, one and a half levels, how hard can it be?  I’m slowly cursing my way through soloing the medic because, dammit, LAMP.  I’m at 24.4 now and it’s within reach – but I super-suck at Medic, and brave Sir Robin needs to bravely run away quite often.

And that’s the end.  No, really.

    Of Staircases

    We have 6 types of floors.  We have 6 types of walls. We have 6 pillar types as well.  There are at least 8 types of pillows (Lopp and otherwise).  I’ve seen 3 desks.  We have metal tipped boards in 4 different sizes.  Multiple types of beds exist.  I’m not sure how many, but I’m guessing at least 6.

    With all these options why the fuck do we have only one staircase option?  Think about it – the whole reason to have floor panels is to add a second floor, for which you might need (drumroll) stairs. There’s one lousy staircase.

    The only other “staircase” I know of is the squid platform, which has a spiral up to the top (see the picture on Living in Wildstar).  However (1) it has a squid on it! (2) it takes up a ton of real estate (3) it’s awkward to place and have it work with the next level of whatever you’re building and (4) did I mention the giant fucking squid (not easy to cover up on a rounded surface).

    If you want something that looks different, you need to build a custom staircase using boards or planks or whatever you have lying about.  I did this in my chua missile silo because wood is inappropriate for a chua fortress. I ended up using 30 metal planks on the inside and 50 on the outside (to get to the roof deck).  That’s a huge chunk of the item budget, especially on the outside of the house.

    3 of these at about 10 planks each.

    3 of these at about 10 planks each.

    Ignore the decor, or lack thereof, the boards mark out where the kitchen WILL be.

    Ignore the decor, or lack thereof, the boards mark out where the kitchen WILL be.

    Aaaand the last one.

    Aaaand the last one.

    The outside.

    The outside.

    And here's the outside.

    Don’t act like you’re not impressed.  (By the way, the other stairs in this shot are chua shelves.)

    By comparison, my space piglet uses 3 staircases on the inside (I could have used 2, but I wanted them narrower, so I stacked 3), and 4 up to the roof deck.

    Hard to see the staircase inside the space piggie.

    Hard to see the staircase inside the space piggie.

    Roof deck!

    Roof deck!

    Up we go!

    Up we go!

    wheeee

    wheeee

    From the top deck.  Also, building railings sucks.

    From the top deck. Also, building railings sucks.

    In addition to using a lot of item budget, building a custom staircase is time-consuming and annoying.  It also makes me have to do math, and for that reason I hate it.  Especially when I’m trying to figure out intervals of .4 when I’m already at a negative number value for X, Y, or Z.  Last night, I discovered the new addon Spiral Staircase Helper which is going to be my new best friend.  Haven’t had a chance to use it yet, but totally will in half a level when I get my spacious chua gerbil ball house.

    Incidentally, how the fuck do people get such great pictures of their houses?  My pictures turn out like crap even with a field of view modifier and zooming all the way out.

    In conclusion: Stairs.  Hand them over.  Or I’ll kill a bunch of Aurin.  Oh wait, I do that anyway.  I’ll kill even more Aurin.

      Future Patch Changes: The Good, The Bad, and The SKEECH!

      Skeech is my new favorite word, didn’t you know?

      Anyway, the “July updates” are up on the forums and they forecast some nice (and some not-so-nice) changes for the classes that I play (namely the chua classes).  There are also some juicy PTS patch notes.  Shall we begin?

      Spellslinger

      This is the class I’m playing most lately, and it’s near and dear to me.

      From the July update:

      Spell Surge will, once again, be castable while casting. (soon)

      Going forward, we are going to be looking into improving certain aspects of the Support spec.  (less soon)

      I’m pretty happy about this.  Then I saw the patch notes and started grinding my teeth

      Blah blah ability telegraph angle reduced, blah blah ability telegraph width reduced.

      What the everlovin fuck?  Look, right now I’m able to play the class by manually aiming without the aid of auto-face target or target lock.  Sigh.  At least they’re not gimping the angles of any healing spells (YET).

      Esper

      Moving on to Esper, one of the changes in the July update made it to the PTS:

      Spectral Form no longer Roots the Esper in place [but] the Absorption shield has been reduced to 250% assault and support power down from 300%

      I’m not all broken up about the stupid reduction of the bonuses of an ability that was previously unusable.  Yes, please, do whatever it takes to make the stupid thing useful.

      Here’s a gem from the July Update:

      Telekinetic Strike will become castable while moving.

      Yeah! I’m doing the happydance.  You would not believe the QQ coming out of this, though, as people accuse the devs of ruining the flavor of esper and instruct the players who like the change to L2P.

      There is no inherent problem in having some stationary abilities in this game.  They have a place in the world, because they reward people who plan ahead to a time when they can plant their feet and unload on a boss.  With the slinger, I have 2 stationary moves that I have to plan ahead to use, and I do end up using them with strategery.  However, Esper has it backwards.  You have to plant your feet for your stupid filler, and your unload moves are all mobile.  Would people be upset if they got rid of the TK strike mobility restriction but put a stationary cast time on that annoying bird?  I think I’d be ok with that reversal.

      Knowing that mobility changes are on the horizon, as well as some other tidbits from the July update, I have zero desire to play my Esper until those are implemented.  If I level now with the current system and it changes dramatically, I’ll just have to relearn How2P later.  No thanks.  Plus, I’m ok with things being easier.

      Medic

      I had pretty much given up on Medic-ing until they fixed some of the DPS things so I could level more easily solo.  Not a lot of help in the patch notes or the July update, but at least they’re recognizing the problems.

      In the patch notes:

      Atomize: Now has a 100% chance to build an Actuator, up from 50% [and] can now be cast while casting other spells[, but] Cooldown increased to 10 seconds, up from 8[,] Base damage reduced to 18.72 damage per level and 43.03% Assault Power, down from 26.89 and 61.77% [respectively, and] Minor tier bonus reduced to 4.63% Assault Power, down from 4.99%.

      Dual Shock: Can now be cast while casting other spells.

      Gamma Rays: Range increased to 20m, up from 17.5.

      Quantum Cascade: Increased the AE size of the second tick by 25%, and the size of the third tick by 50%.

      Mild buffs, I think.  Not huge game-changers, but every bit helps.  In the future we can look forward to:

      Gamma Rays:

      • Target count will be increased to 3 from 1.  “Each beam of GR will be able to hit 3 targets.”
      • The T4 will reduce GR’s cast time by .5 seconds each cast and will reset after every 3 casts (1.25 seconds, .75 seconds, .25 seconds)  ” A GCD reduction comes along with the cast time reduction of GR T4.”
      • The T8 will be updated so that having 1 or 2 beams miss or be deflected will still grant a chance to generate an Actuator

      Reboot AMP will be modified to trigger on targets below 30% Shield rather than with zero shield.

      Ok, those are nice too.  Not nice enough to make me take my medic out for a spin yet, but moving in the right direction.

      Engineer

      This is super obvious, but here’s the change in the July Update that I care about:

      Bot AI – In the short term we will continue to resolve bugs as they come up. For the long term we have developed a plan that should greatly improve pet behaviors.

      My husband has caught me yelling at my screen “I can’t take you two anywhere!” and “What have you idiots gotten into this time?”  They’re annoying like children: someone else’s children.

      Movement

      Ok, this cracks me up.  When I’m sprinting, and I try to cast an ability, the message comes up “you cannot be sprinting.”  Um, yeah, I AM sprinting, what you mean is “you cannot cast that while sprinting”.  Anyway, some of the hasty exit abilities can now be used while sprinting.

      Updated the following forward movement spells to be castable while sprinting: – Esper: Projected Spirit, Medic: Urgency, Spellslinger: Gate, Stalker: Pounce, Warrior: Bum Rush, Leap.

      You know, for when you need to pull a Sir Robin and bravely run away.

      Housing

      This is my favorite change of all time, in the patch notes

      Tier 2 and 3 Survivalists Thicket Plugs will now start growing Tier 3 trees.

      My architecture has basically been at a standstill for lack of t3 wood.  Woot woot.

      (I promise to talk about the Skeech next time.)

        Skeech Screenshot Skeech Skeech Lore SKEECH!

        As you may recall, I love skeech poetry.

        skeechpoetry

        I’ve recently come across more charming examples of the skeech culture.  I have no idea why I find these so hilarious.

        Skeech have feelings too!  I found the lament of the skeech queen.

        skeechlove

        And these marvelous creatures have treatises on science and theology…

        skeechscience

        I managed to also find a lovely cookbook.

        skeechcooking

        Wait a fucking minute here!  Chua chops?  I take it back, these guys are barbarians.  Then I discovered this in my inventory:

        chuacooking

        Does “chua cooking” mean cooking for chuas or the cooking of chuas?  I’d better fortify the chua household before the entire planet comes searching for a snack.

          Housing Realism On A Virtual Planet

          I want a big chua house.  But before I spend 3 plat on it (10 levels from now), I need to make sure I like how it looks.  So I set out to the public houses on my server to find the large chua house and compare to the other large house models.

          Oh. Snap.  These people have skills.  I was taking notes of things and then spent way too much time incorporating them into my house(s).  You can use pillars as stairs and railings! I had thought of planks but not pillars.  And how the hell do these people manage to divide a small space into an even smaller space with a wall and suddenly it looks bigger.  How is that even possible?  Do they have a Tardis?

          My decorating mistake is that I’m treating these houses like “real” houses that have to conform to “real” requirements.1  Touring some public houses this week brought home the idea that you can do some amazing things if you let go of what is possible, necessary, or desirable for a real house.

          Here are the premises I’ve been working with that are holding me back:

          Bathrooms.  Yep, you know this one.  Toilet mandatory as is a sink and a shower.  But, and this gets tricky, there are no DOORS for the bathroom.  And I refuse to imagine a “door” where there isn’t one.  I’m left with creating a series of strategically placed walls to afford some privacy.  Think airport bathroom.  It’s stupid, but I do NOT want to be coming up the stairs and have a toilet in my eyeline.

          Kitchens.  Come on, people, gotta have a kitchen.  So far, I have a stove.  Are there fridges?  Is that what a “chua containment unit” is?

          Obey Physics.  Yeah, no floating this or that.  There must be at least a half-assed plank holding something up rather than just air.

          No Jumping Required.  People do not routinely need to jump to access places in your real house.  Therefore everything in the virtual house or surrounding area must be accessible by simply walking.

          Safety.  You don’t just leave a stairwell without some sort of railing!  People could fall off!  Railings are a pain in the ass to build.   I tried to use a pre-fab fence and the following occurred.

          Me: Look!  I put railings on my platforms.  Safety!

          Friend: I’m not sure how safe barbed wire is.

          Me: My fences most certainly do not have (looks closer)… Ah shit.  Then people have really good incentive not to fall off.

          Outside And Inside Match.  What I mean by this is if I have a window on the inside, there better be a corresponding window on the outside.  A window to nowhere?  That’s crazy talk.  (So far I have zero windows due to this problem.)

          Those are my dumbass housing “rules”.  Do you have any conventions that you follow?

          1.  As you may recall, I spent quite a bit of time yapping about requiring a toilet in my virtual house.

            Having Too Much Fun To Find Time To Blog

            I guess that’s a good thing, right?

            I’ve been playing my spellslinger pretty intensely and finally caught up to thehusband’s warrior.  I got level 25 last night and got to finally use my hoverboard.  Also the tier 4 ability bonuses are kind of badass.  I talented the crap out of a couple of attacks. PEW PEW PEW.

            The unfortunate side-effect to quick leveling is that I neglected my settler path, and it has become rather obvious and embarrassing.  My medic, who is the same level, has the mailbox and the vendor because I leveled that one rather slowly and stopped to smell the settler depots.

            Also, the level requirements on decor items are a lie and you can totally place them regardless.  I now have my toilet.

            toilet

            This is a big deal, guys.  Now I just need 3 more for the other chuas.  And sinks.  And how the hell am I going to construct a bathtub or shower?

              Bugs, Annoyances, and a Toilet

              Note how the title includes an Oxford Comma.  Seriously, guys, use it.

              The Strain Ultradrop (drop what? your groceries?) doesn’t really affect me seeing that I’m still trying to level a new toon after being thoroughly disillusioned with medic.  Still, a few things happened.

              Addon Settings Vanished

              Oh  ha ha, very funny.  After I bother to spend literally hours setting up my UI, the settings bounce off on the first patch.  Fortunately, I discovered (this might help you) that the game had simply recreated my addon folder with a new name and that the old addon folder was still there.  Copy, paste, done.  Of course, another guildie was not so lucky and his settings were just plain wiped.

              Moving Furniture

              I love how you can go into advanced mode and move furniture that way with the drag-arrows.  It annoyed me that the colors of the arrows did not seem to match the colors of the directions in the advanced editor side panel but, whatever.  It looks like they changed the arrow color in the “ultradrop” but managed to screw up the arrows.  Now, up/down works fine but left/right and front/back are swapped.  I grab the appropriate arrow to drag the furniture North and it goes West instead.  It’s utterly ridiculous.  I hope it gets fixed soon because it’s SUPER annoying.

              Dirty Floors And Stairs

              This one really had me swearing.  If you recall, I had a problem with the exile floors producing clouds of dust so, at considerable expense, I replaced them all with staircase landings (which, conveniently, match my stairs).  Now the staircase landings AND the staircases themselves produce dust.  JUST WHY? It may very well be intentional.

              Sturdy Flowers

              Flowers were given more health so that it’s harder for bots, I guess.  I’m totally in favor of getting rid of bots, and I don’t mind the extra harvest time.  I do, however, feel like a dumbass queueing up my hard-hitting special abilities to vanquish the Vicious Serpentilly.

              Last, The Toilet

              My husband thinks I’m obsessed with having a toilet in my character’s house. The fact is that this is a highly advanced society with working indoor plumbing (especially the Dominion – those dirty exiles probably prefer crapping in the woods like bears).  Therefore any normal house, no matter how small, would have a functioning bathroom.  Even if you’re running a lounge, your patrons will need to pee. Or vomit if they drink too much.  Whatever.

              A guildie was kind enough to make a toilet for the swanky bathroom that I created.  Making a bathroom without a working door yet with complete privacy is pretty difficult, but I pulled it off.  I even bought a decorative curtain to make it like Nordstrom-bathroom fancy.

              The toilet requires level 48.  I just don’t even.  I can plunk down an asteroid in my yard but can’t have a basic working bathroom.

              Coming Soon

              I will get off my lazy butt at some point and take actual screenshots of the important things – namely my housing and my UI.  Probably after I have caught back up to Thehusband’s main in leveling.

                Leveling Alts In The Name Of Indecision

                After becoming dissatisfied with the medic class, I invested in leveling both my Esper and Spellslinger to 14 for, if nothing else, extra plots to harvest.  Money is money, right?

                First, I must say that I love engineer for DPS.  If engineer had a healing offspec instead of a tanking offspec, I’d be all over that.  But I can’t tank worth a crap, nor do I want to, and I know I’d eventually miss healing, even if it’s just off-healing.

                I started with the esper.  Things were going OK until they weren’t.  I just got to a point in this one cave that was the right level and could NOT progress because trash kept just killing me.  Respawn, respawn, respawn.  The journey from 12 to 14 involved a lot of swearing and by the time I finally hit 14, I logged off on my new housing plot in disgust.  The few healing spells I did have were pretty neat, but it’s hard to tell whilst soloing.  I hear that Esper picks up around level 20, so I will try again eventually and muscle through.  But not now.  Oh god, not now.

                Also, I had to turn the sound off.  The incessant screeching of that bird finishing move is so grating.  I got another finisher later, but I found it didn’t work particularly well, so I was back to ol’ squawky.

                Next up, I created a spellslinger.  I’ve always been a bit intimidated by spellpower as yet another aspect to micromanage, plus the telegraphs are tiny.  I was pleasantly surprised that, because I had spent a month in game playing various other toons, I was significantly better at aiming than in beta when I last played spellslinger.  And now that brainpower didn’t have to be completely focused on Learning How To Play, I could manage my spellpower without too much difficulty.

                So looks like I’ll be leveling my spellslinger and see how that goes.  Later on, I will talk about Swearing Whilst Setting Up One’s UI And Copying One’s Settings and Inept Building And Decorating On A Minuscule Budget - but those are posts for another day.

                  Indecision About A Main. Also, Dungeons Are Hard.

                  Oh hey there!  Sorry, been seriously absorbed in decorating.  But that’s not what I’m going to talk about today, because I don’t have screenies and my houses are not finished, by a long shot.

                  Today we’re going to talk about me flailing around to be sure that my pick of main, the medic, is the right choice.

                  I’ve been leveling with my main, and like the abilities reasonably well.  I’ve been using the DPS abilities for questing just because it’s quicker that way, but I’ve been mostly interested in the healing tree.

                  Last night, we did a dungeon.  Or whatever those things are called.  We already had a medic healer so I went DPS, which was fine since I don’t actually have support gear yet.

                  Dungeons are super tough. They are not messing around.  These are mechanics that you would see in raids in other games.

                  On the toughness of dungeons, I am not overly concerned.  I’ve been a raider forever, and if I suck at dungeons now, I won’t suck later with a little practice.  But, since things have been dialed up, I can’t just make do with the default UI as I slowly try out addons one by one.  I need a UI overhaul into raiding form and I need it yesterday.  The initial setup is pretty tedious, unit frames, raid frames, button positions, possibly a cooldown monitor… I probably will have to dedicate an evening to it (which is why I hadn’t done it yet).

                  To the main point of the dungeon last night and my not-so-shocking discovery: I do not like medic DPS.  I’m not sure what about it I find irksome, but it’s not something I want to be doing in dungeons.

                  Another discovery: We had a medic healer healing the group, and this was the first time I’d seen medic healing in action.  He did a great job despite us running around like ferrets.  Well, me running like a ferret.  Man, it’s hard when you’re trying to get into the good while staying out of the bad and the red and green are overlapping like a sadistic christmas tree. I’m looking at that healing and thinking: do I want to be doing healing this way?  Suddenly I’m not so sure.

                  So I’m going to take a step back and level my alts for a bit.  I don’t consider it wasting time because, hell, in most games it is an enormous grind to get from fresh-50 to raid-ready.  Before I attempt that enormous grind, I want to know that I will be doing it on the character that I’m absolutely sure I want to raid with.

                  Also: alts provide extra housing plugs, so getting to 14 is a priority.  Resources are resources, yo.

                  I now have 4 characters which are unsurprisingly the classes that Chua can play.  Because, seriously, chua.

                  My Engineer is level 15 and some lovely harvesting nodes.  In general, I like engineer DPS.  The initial bot has an interrupt on a 15 sec cooldown and that’s super-useful.  The bots are a chore though.  They’re always wandering off.  The Chua husband laughs because I keep saying to my screen, in my best mom voice, “I can’t take you two anywhere!”  Until I get more abilities, I think I’m stuck with them, especially my 15 sec interrupting bruiser bot.

                  My Esper is level 7.  This one is pink, so of course, the mini-chua always demands that I play THE PINK ONE.  I was fine in beta with the esper because I was used to standing still to cast.  Now I keep moving and interrupting myself.  The mobs have gotten in several potshots.  Not cool.  I must say, though, the Chua doing a blade dance twirl is adorable.  She’s got this huge open-mouth smile like WHEEE A RIDE!  People keep saying that Esper “picks up” at 20, so my goal is to get to 20 before making an evaluation.

                  I’m even giving Spellslinger another try.  Just got off the ship. Spellsurge is a huge pain to toggle but now that I’m revamping the UI, maybe I can find a mod to assist me in being less stupid with it.  In beta, the cones seemed impossibly narrow, but now that I’m more used to the combat system they don’t seem as impossible.

                  Either way, I’ll soon have all the toons to 14 and above and have 2 more houses to decorate! I mean two more plots to harvest like a serious person and not spend all my money on pillows and fluffy things.