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Mondo Update #42005 Sep 1 (Thu), 15:39
Again, slowly trying to catch up. Now moving on to April 05.

Started out the month by finally doing a Promy run. We tried both Mea and Dem. Here I am entering Mea. Here's my first ever look at a Memory Recepticle. At the time, the job that I had that fit promy-mea best was WAR/NIN, so I wound up standing very close to the MRs. We were actually quite successful on the way up and made it to the portal to the ENM fairly easily. Here we are at the portal. However, we were kind of stupid and did the ENM Envier instead of the actual promy boss. (Of course, it would actually be a while before I knew we screwed up...) We won, and got awesome drops... but I didn't know we did at the time and the loot was never divided up.

We then ascended Dem. Here we are resting on the 3rd or 4th level. Made it to the spire with only minor problems (we did have one death that we had to tractor for a raise). Once again, we stupidly fought the ENM instead of the boss. Got decent drops, but I was completely unaware of it.

I then spent some time farming NMs thanks to Raven's lovely guide. I killed me Doppleganger Gog which was pretty fun even though his drops are shite. I also got the Bomb King who was also fun but with shite drops.

Soon I was leveling WAR/NIN again, and found myself in several parties with my good LS-friend Clayton. The really cool thing about leveling with your friends is that you can fight "outside the box", meaning you can avoid the congested (and sometimes crappy) areas that everyone typically goes to. We wound up leveling in Sea Serpent Ghrotto and did so well that we were able to level up twice while Clayton actually was asleep (he fell asleep at the keyboard).

I actually had a static for promy going by this point but this run would be our last. We had a ranger and a summoner who felt they could spend their time doing something better so we didn't do any more together after this one. Even so, we still rocked on the way up. The really funny thing was, all we did was ENMs, but we all thought we were doing the promy missions. We sucked.

Rode the airship with Trix at some point and took my favorite shot of him. Pretty cool, no?

I then saw someone wearing the fancy white lace panties you get from deeper in the CoP areas. I'm sorry, but I think they are very gay... Not that there's anything wrong with that...

I soon wound up in one of the best parties I've ever had. Using no PLer we managed to fight multiple VT and IT Helm Beetles and get upwards of chain 6. We were even able to take on IT+++ Antica and chain them. It was one rocking party, and I went up 3 levels in a couple of hours.

I continued to farm NMs... Here's one from Delkfurt... but I forget what he was and don't care to look him up :-) Even teamed up with another monk to farm elementas there. The Light Elemental drops were nice.

Rounded out the month with Stinky meeting a Pedophile. Okay, maybe he wasn't... but come on! Santa hat, subligar and a white beard doesn't indicate a well person...

Mondo Update #52005 Sep 1 (Thu), 17:51
Continuing in my attempt to catch up. Now moving on to May 05.

Started out the month trying to get 5-1 for several people in the clan. I had already done it, as had Thirsty, but others needed it. We were also joined by Aleeesha, who, in the months to come would be the source of some conflict amongst our clan mates. Unfortunately, Aleeesha was only rank 2, she had never completed any missions past the first few and had no desire to. In fact, she had purchased her airship pass instead of questing for it (using suspect money). Needless to say, without her for nuking, we died. Honestly, we nearly made it anyway but both Ray and I caught paralysis and wasted our last TP for weaponskills.

After this, I took some time off to farm NMs some more. Once again, thanks to Raven's wonderful guide, I managed to get the Valkurm Emperor. I managed to get it right from underneath the gilsellers in the area (like Summerken).

Soon, Thirsty convinced me to to do the Dragoon quest, which was my last job to unlock. We prepared for it and were joined by my old friend Valsery who had just returned from a 6 month hiatus. It sure was good to have him back. We trounced the dragon easily, and soon Thirsty had a new friend, Delphyne.

Before long I was itching to start leveling with my new Emp Hairpin, so I found some nice parties. The hairpin actually made a pretty big difference in my damage output thanks to its DEX and my increase in criticals.

More NM farming including the semi-worthless Silk Caterpiller. Had already done the quest long ago, but wanted a screen of Mr. Silky.

Soon, Meretrix, Aleeesha and I went off killing slimes on Purgonorgo Isle. Our day was cut short when an ex-boyfriend of Aleeesha attempted to MPK us. (Little did we know at the time, but Aleeesha has a tendency to leave a string of bitter ex's in her wake. Meretrix would soon become one.)

I then set out to help Valsery (who had returned) and Drifter with their magecite missions. Running them through them was very easy considering my level at the time. We even made Beadeaux a clan event and completed it for several people.

Then I started my BCNM experiments. I first tried BCNM 50: Treasures and Tribulations. I did it several times. I tried with several folk and usually died. We tried all sorts of different strategies. Only once did I get an Astral Ring with Drifter. It was good though, and prompted me to write my BCNM Guide.

My next party was a real disaster. We were going after coffer keys and were wiped out. *Sigh*

So I went back to farming NMs and seeing places I used to not be able to survive in ;-) Went and fought NMs in Gusgen. Fought all of them.

Then I finally got a good coffer key party. Next I wound up in an awesome party with Thirsty as our puller. Thirsty really is an awesome RNG... I'm okay that he switched from MNK :-)

Got my coffer and needed to head to Fei'yin. So I found a nice little group and we headed out. By this point, I had never actually been to far into the northlands so I didn't know what to expect. The fortress was pretty evil looking and was filled with all manner of nasties. We get to where the Dark Spark spawns, and prepared for battle.

The Dark Spark battle was pretty straight forward. However, sometime during the fight one of us aggroed a Demon behind the gate. We warped out just as we saw a horde of them running at us :-)

Oh, and I got some nice cheesecake pics :-) And Stinkbreath met a Cactaur on his weekly trip to Raboa. Stinky even goofed around by running through Quicksand caves and to the crystal.

Mondo Update #62005 Sep 1 (Thu), 18:44
Still continuing to try to get up-to-date. Now on Jun 05.

The month was pretty slow in the game. Was ramping up for my wedding and honeymoon so my playtime was sparse.

Did manage to get several coffer key parties to Garliage, including one with Thirsty. Fought some pretty hideous things that Thirsty tried to perform rectal surgery on with an ax. Alas, everyone got a key except me. Always the bride's maid, never a bride.

We then helped out Kyler (or was it Xill?) for their AF gear. As you can see, this is before the RNG patch ;-)

Thirsty and I did quite a bit this month. We went for our G2 fights which went off without a hitch. Our Garliage coffer runs, on the other hand, were not so successful.

I, once again, went around to visit all the lesser-known NMs. Met up with Hundredscar Hajwaj and found a disturbing new trend in gil sellers. I also started my long quest to camp Cargo Crab Colin only to be denied the Nadrs (a nice sword for THF) for 23 kills. I apparently also went somewhere with Xilldon, but this picture is the only record I have of it and have no idea what we were doing in Gusgen.

I then headed out with a few people from the clan to do a Ballista. Impressive looking bunch, no? I will say that we have never won Jugner in a Ballista... even though we've had great success as a group in Meriphitaud and Passhow.

Mondo Update #72005 Sep 1 (Thu), 20:31
Woot! Ooodles of updates. Now on to Jul 05.

Did the honeymoon thang this month, so didn't do too much in the game until the latter half. I attempted some leveling event picked up an ill-fated static (urgh... don't get involved in statics, kids :-) But the real joy was doing some Garrisons with som clan-mates. Our first few were with people from several other LSes but we would have some clan event ones soon enough.

The less said about this shot the better. A certain member's girlfriend was actually becoming a bit of a chore in the LS. She was kicking people over reasons that only she understood (kicking people that were friends of others in the clan, even people who had been with the clan since its FPS days). She was getting into spats and arguments with people, but her connection with a central clan-member made it all very difficult. Some people even started calling her "Yoko". Anyway... the above picture was a very happy clan-member who later on had to return the dress.

Back to me (segway!) I did more Ballistas. Some successful, some not. Went on a AF armor spree, battling NMs with Ray, Trix, and Thirsty. Also, went on some intense coffer key runs including the alliance I took to Beadeaux. Ultimately, everyone got their keys and we had no deaths. Just some strange links from non-aggro, non-linking crawlers.

By this point I was sick and tired of not having certain maps. So I began runs to get missing maps. I started at Sea Serpent Ghrotto where I could solo the mobs that dropped the key and obtained my map. While there I met an NM I did not know about (shite drops).

There was a patch sometime this month that included a buttload of new NMs. So I went and hunted several of them.

The patch also brought a follow-up to last year's Summer Fest. This year was considerably different from last year. While it had some cooler prizes, the quest itself kind of blew. There were better decorations however. It, once again, involved goldfish scooping. Which kind of sucked. The ultimate end-prize was swimsuits that boosted clamming results.

We then went and fought more AF NMs for Trix.... and did several BCNM runs for BCNM 20: Charming Trio.

I did get my Nadrs from Cargo Crab Colin finally. Pretty freaking sweet, no?

Oh, and I should mention that, Mr. "I Hate Ninja" actually started leveling Ninja in July :-D

All in all it was one very good july.

Mondo Update #...7?2005 Sep 2 (Fri), 15:00
Well, one more update for the first part of August and I am up to date with all the screenshots I have placed in my screenies directory. As soon as I post more screens, I will continue this...

First of all, allow me to introduce my Scorpion Harness. Thanks to my numerous BCNM runs last month, I finally was able to afford it.

As a clan, we had a Garrison Event. Here we are preparing for the event. We had approximately 16 people. We even had some hot Mithra on Elvaan action. Giggidy giggidy! Alllll rrrrright!

Here we are in battle. The damned Scholars were always under foot. And the little buggers never rested. We did thump some good Goblin tail though.


Ultimately, it was a very good event, and the clan executed it superbly.

The Emptineth Cometh2005 Sep 6 (Tue), 15:05
August 2005 rounded out nicely with a string of very fun events. But, before I begin, here's Ray in his decked out MNK AF.

We started off with some AF runs. First, we went for Apollyon's PLD AF. The battle was long but ultimately not too hard since we had so many friends to help out. It pretty much was an NM smackdown. We did save the PLD NM for the last to make it even easier. Even with his 2 hour we beat him easily. After the fight, we rested and I took some good shots of everyone. Finally, Apollyon obtained his AF item and we were ready to go. On the way out, we had a server crash. Here I am poking my non-moving friends.

After Apollyon's AF, Ray and I stayed behind to camp some NMs. We were waiting for Xill and Malk to show up for their AF. When they did, we trounced their NM as well. Here we are after the battle. Before I left, I farmed up my Archer's Knives as I would be leveling RNG very soon.

"Turn your head and cough..."

We were planning a clan Promyvion Event so I had to level up Ranger. After a rather intense week of leveling, I hit 30 and was ready to go.

Our first run, was not so great. Sure, it started out good, we had a very impressive turn-out. We had enough for an Alliance. However, we had a pick-up SMN who had problems with some of our job choices including Natashab who was a RDM/BLM at the time.

Our ascent was thrilling. We farmed a bit while waiting for everyone to show. Finally we were off. Here we are after our first MR battle. For many people in our clan, this was their first MR battle. We managed to ascend with very little aggro and we stuck together.

Here is Meretrix healing outside another MR, which unfortunately turned out to be a fake. Malk was not pleased. Then, during our ascent, Xill DC'ed a few times... which was annoying... but we made it to the top anyway.

On the top level, Ray caught aggro while he was scouting, but we dispatched it without much problem. Here is Ray and I preparing for our long run to the spire. And here is the group just before the run.

Once in the spire, we rested and discussed which team would go first. After rolling, it was determined that Ray's team would go first and we would wait to raise them if needed... was needed.

When it was our turn, we didn't do much better. However, this was primarily due to our SMN who spent more time abusing people than doing his job. Alas... We showed him anyway, by taking the same set up and doing Dem for the server record.

Later on, I ran for Holla. Holla was a pick-up party, consisting of a purely cookie cutter party. The party seemed, on paper at least, to have the battle bested. We even did moderately well but ultimately failed. Turns out the cookie cutter parties are great for getting to the boss, but aren't so great for the boss. I can qualify this because I later on did Holla with a non-cookie cutter party, and we schooled it. It's really my opinion that people put entirely too much emphasis on these cookie cutter promy parties. A cookie cutter party has never lead a group I was in to success. Every single successful promy run I have had has been with a non-cookie cutter party.

Including this wacky one. An alliance of Japanese, American, and Spanish players. We couldn't communicate, we had an ecclectic mix of Monks, Dragoons, Dark Knights. We also had party leaders who wound up killing off the entire alliance during the ascent when we grabbed aggro from 5 to 6 IT++ mobs on the fourth floor.

However, all the WHMs and BLMs had reraise earrings, which meant we managed to get raised again. We still got aggroed and died again during the ascent (even had my favorite mistell ever). But once we got to the top, we beat Holla without incident. My team had a DRG, RNG, WAR/NIN, RDM/BLM, SMN, and WHM and we killed it with only the SMN and the WAR/NIN using their two hours. Plus, we beat it with only a Terroanima.

Genova and Streetglow2005 Sep 6 (Tue), 15:25
Forgot a screenshot: Genova and Streetglow ... Genova is my mule, of course, and Streetglow is Drifter's.

Garrison Explosion2005 Sep 23 (Fri), 16:29
We had another very successful Garrison run at ClanAM. This time we did Valkurm Dunes and Buburimu while they were under the control of Sand'Oria and Bastok respectively. Let's just say that they were considerably more difficult to do due to the size of the NPCs as opposed to the Windhurst ones :-)

We began gathering for the Valkurm Garrison at night and were pretty much ready to roll by morning. This time I was running late so Ray explained the strategy and I explained the pool scheme. Here is Martamay listening intensely. By high noon we were starting.

The Sand'Orian NPCs were everywhere. With so many tall Elvaans targetting the mobs was tricky. Before nightfall we were victorious having only lost one NPC the whole battle. We discussed strategies and swapped stories during the cool down between Garrisons.

Like last time, Raytien was our kiter. Our turn out was really quite impressive, which had the unfortunate side effect of giving us an obsene number of NPCs to watch. I really dont know how the healers did it :-)

After several battles in the dunes, we boarded the ship to cross to Buburimu. So many red dots! Aboard the ship, Valsery celebrated our victory. Look, Charlie and his Angels! As usual, Thersty and Kit clustered together through-out the evening. Dunno why, but I thought this shot was interesting.

In Buburimu we had similar successes. However, damn those NPCs are big. So many Galkas made focusing on the invading mobs even harder. But we were successful regardless.

The final Garrison results are here and the pool distribution was here.