Picnics and Pirates


Neverending Isles

Well, we’re back at it, here in far away, long ago Greece, where I start the game after a long hiatus playing Anthem (don’t @ me). I am finishing up an ice cream sandwich IRL while waiting for things to load up and get immediately assassinated by some bounty hunters, because as it turns out, I am still standing over Podarkes dead bod. When I return from being unsynchronized, I pay for my bounty because I don’t want them hassling me. Now it’s time to get down to business and reacquaint myself to the controls. I still have a gazillion points on the map to explore!

What I remember is that I think I have finished with the Silver Islands, which have lost their sheen after I found out that they don’t let you die there, and I am on a quest to defeat a cult and find my mom so I can find out who my dad is. 

Let us now seek a new side quest so I don’t have to do any of that!

Here we go, I meet up with my pal, Barnabas and he’s giving me the update on Kyra! So they didn’t just fade off into the sunset without saying goodbye after all. I feel better about that since I put all that time in here. She is putting her traitorous dad to rest and is grateful I haven’t told her secret. (The secret of her dad being a murderous traitor thief.)

My Alexios’s opinion is that Podarkes should rot, but that the troops deserve a good story, especially Thaletas who is waiting up the stairs I am told. Barnabas bids me good night as he tells me to relax and party it up for a minute, and now I have a quest called a night to remember. 

I will never be done with the Silver Isles, also, I’m not hookin’ it up with Thaletas, game. You better not still be trying to make that happen!

First, I’m led to Kyra as she lights dad’s funeral pyre. She has complicated feelings about this whole situation, but I encourage her to stay strong and help her peeps so a new Podarkes doesn’t crop up. We head back to the party now.

The bear smuggler is there all touching up on Barnabas’s face. She calls him Barny which is a good nickname for him that I didn’t even think of, because I couldn’t remember his name for several days after I met him. I’m going to steal it. They have bonded over their opposite missing eyes. How nice. Apparently they are in love now. What the hell? I spent so long wandering around these dumb islands that my boat captain has acquired a girlfriend. I can invite her to join the crew, so why not. Everybody wins? Maybe we could use a smuggler.

Once we are done with that love story, I can now breath a sigh of relief, because Kyra and Thaletas are together for reals, and he is no longer awkwardly hitting on me. Yay! Also, he’s over here turning down Spartan generalship in order to settle  on the islands with Kyra. This is quite a thing for a dude who wanted to fight me to prove my Spartaness. Good for them, for now!

I decide to bow out quietly and leave the rebels to their islands without speechifying about it, despite Barny’s wishes. Of course, I can’t leave without Sokrates showing up to say goodbye and philosophizing at me. Until next time, Sokrates! 

But I see new quests…what? I am determined to finish these silver isles though, so I’m heading back across the way to Mykanos now.

Psych! Apparently you can create your own levels in assassin’s creed now, and these silver exclamation points are user created. It’s been so long since I’ve been here there are new game mechanics. Of course in the first one I pick just to see what they’re like, my “one true love”, Thaletas, wants me to assassin someone for him. Even random internet strangers want me to hook up with this dude! Sorry, video game gods, it’s not gonna happen!

I move back to that blasted pirate island with the dagger lady that I attempted earlier in the game and spend the entirety of my gaming night trying to beat it. I KNOW I’ve faced dual wielding rogues before and beat them. This pirate lady is two entire levels below me, so I don’t know why this is so difficult! Bah. One bonus to this location when I finally beat her, is that there is a cultist here! I wasn’t even looking for one! So we get to cross another of those dudes off the cult family tree.

Since we’re laying siege to pirate islands tonight, let’s go find another one. There is a huge one to the west of me, so that is where we head! First a quick stop off at this little nothing island called Lestris. There is a quest item here though. Let’s see if we can find out what quest it belongs to… Huh. Artifact fragments it looks like??? Maybe I should upgrade my spear instead of going to pirate island. 

Just kidding again! I travel all the way back to spear island to find out I need seven artifacts for the next section, but I only have four. Damn. Back to Pirate island I guess.

Yo-Ho-Ho

This place is literally called Pirate Island this time. I thought it might end up in another silver isles situation, but this one only has a couple of quests that don’t lead on an endless string of other quests. It is however, filled with bobcats jumping on my back. Which sucks, because I’m not about killing bobcats, but if they’re going to attack me…

Our first quest is for a little girl. She’s gathering clay for her friends and wants to make them some jewelry, so she asks Alexios if he will go find some pearls and shiny rocks. Sure thing! Helping the children of Greece free of charge are my favorite tasks.

I return to her shack on the hill expecting some more kids, but instead find three huge lumps of clay, and these are her friends. <Insert distressed smiley face here> I was not expecting this innocuous quest to turn tragic, but then again, I never do. Turns out her mother decided to go pirate to get some money and make a better life, but returned with a stab wound. Her last words to her daughter were to be good and make friends. The kid has literally made friends. Out of clay.

All my friends are clay.

I don’t really have the heart to tell this lonely child that her friends are clay lumps and she is delusional and needs to go out and meet real people. I choose to tell her that anybody can be a friend. My bestie is an eagle after all. She thinks that’s pretty cool. Maybe I can inspire all the young girls of Greece to become falconers? (I return a bit later and find her crying, because the rain has washed her friends away, but we cannot interact anymore. Did I do the wrong thing? )

Alexios, Blending right in

Second quest is some dude’s wife picking ceremony. The woman I talk to insists that she loves this man and he loves her. Apparently I get no choice but to think she is a gold digger. Is she? Who knows? An acolyte of Hecate approaches us and offers to make her a love potion. I and Alexios think this is a ridiculous farce, but agree to help anyway. I fetch some shrooms and some some wine and hand it over to the ‘witch’. All she needs now is a lock of the woman’s hair. 

A love potion that causes hair to fall out, but not at the root– The mysterious ways of Hecate, I guess.

I return the next night and our friend is bald! Turns out the witch was merely a rival for the rich dude’s affections, and she has tricked this woman into drinking a sort of poison. It was only supposed to give her a rash, not make all her hair fall out. As to the why of the situation, the witch thinks she deserves this dude because they’ve known each other since childhood, and was just playing the game. The other woman is distraught, obviously.

But the show must go on! — This whole prank has rubbed me the wrong way and the ‘witch’s maniacal laughter is really not helping much, but I don’t get many options in the way of a peaceful resolution. It’s either, So sorry about your luck, bald lady, or kill the witch! (My true choice would be to tell the bald woman to forget about the rich dude; he’s not worth it and then hightail it out of there.) I call the guards on the ‘witch’ and hope she’ll just get arrested or something. Naaah. With that choice I get an update to the quest for witch killing. Damn. 

I just stand aside and let the guards do it. 

the witch is way too pleased with her plan

And that’s everything of note on pirate island! A short and sweet one with surprisingly few pirates! Maybe tomorrow we’ll hunt some cultists so I can upgrade my spear!

I do find one short quest somewhere along the way, but I forget where it was. A woman instructs me to go to a cemetery to find out which God is the most powerful: Apollo (I think? Or was it Ares? Something with an A. I didn’t write this one down!) or Posiden. “A” god has lions which are pretty powerful, but Posiden has like…sharks and krakens. Choices, choices. While I’m figuring this out some dude comes up to me and is absolutely convince I’m going to kill him. Huh? I tell him all is cool, bro, but then he comes after me anyway, because Athena told him it must be.

I didn’t get this memo

Back to the old lady who gave me this dumb quest, and I tell her Athena is the most powerful, because she got this dude to commit suicide by mysthios without lions or sharks. The lady thinks this is all amusing and I don’t even remember if she got the answer she wanted, and I don’t even know if I got any drachmae for it, but there you have it! Moving swiftly onward–

Wading into the Deep End

Update: So it turns out that I didn’t find an artifact on that island, just a clue to find one, which is good, because I need three more to upgrade!  It has led me Achaia and now I can’t find the letter with the clue so… great. Am I even supposed to be here? I guess I’ll go search the coves and see what I can find!  

 I find many enemies that are at least ten levels above me, so–I definitely am not supposed to be here yet!  Also, I’m level 30, how long is this game??? Before I move on to easier targets, I find the sunken temple of Demeter and some Ares boots that I can sell later.  Maybe I’ll tackle the cultist in the arena? I have an actual quest for that, so maybe I’m not too weak for that one? It is in Pephka, and I get to reveal a whole new section of the map if I go there.  So, let’s go!

Ouch!

First, I stop off at an underwater cavern to get some loot and fight some sharks.  Turns out the quest item on that island was not the cultist letter, nor was it an artifact…it was some bricks.  Do I have a quest for bricks??? What? Forget it. I’m going to the arena and resisting the temptation to stop at every island along the way.  In keeping with the theme somehow…it is at a place called Pirate Point.

  Ahh, turns out this is all Barny’s doing.  He thought I should give this arena thing a try, because, obviously, I have nothing else to do.  I talk to a guy named Skoura. I guess I’m here to inspire the crowds to believe in heroes again. I’ll do it!

It’s Skoura!

 Well, I’ll do it up until the point where these other dudes are a higher level than me.  There is a guy at level 50. Damn. Hopefully the cultist makes himself known before then.  Is it Skoura??? I hope not, I kinda like the old dude. Also, I’m going to have to question this whole operation…

 Like, why does Alexios, a single human person (or Demi-god?), have to fight like 20 dudes before I get to my opponent???  He only has to fight me. How fair is that? (I’m just complaining, because I am not good at this, and also this sucks and is no fun, but I won’t rage-quit just yet.)  At least not until–yes, that did it–some upgraded gear did the trick. It is always my downfall.

 After I win my first bout, some dude named Maion approaches me and Skoura.  He’s all about the drachmae, so I don’t trust him.   Hmm. Maybe he’s the cultist? I just want to find him before I get too deep in this arena business. Is that too much to ask?  But there are only two out of five guys at my level or below.

Yeah, the one guy is going to be it for the arena for now.  Excuse me while I go grind, thank you very much.

A Tale of Two Brothers

Here’s a novel Idea–Let’s get on with the story.  Did I say I was going to investigate Alkibiades clue?  Let’s do that! Off to Korinth we go! There are lots of undiscovered locations here. *rubs hands together in anticipation*

First thing I find is a bandit camp, which I think is going to be a simple affair not worth mentioning, but instead there is a quest there.  I rescue some dude named Lykinos who has no idea why these bandits were shaking him down. I have to carry him to get him away. Let’s return him to his dad before I accidentally kill him trying to put him on the ground (I forgot which button puts people down!) and see what journey I have to go on now. 

Okay, dude is an Athenian poet.  When we get him home safe, and sound, it turns out that the bandit’s killed dad!  Sad. We find this out because Lykinos’s brother–some call him Tim–shows up to tell us. He’s all aggro about it, probably because Lykinos has been swanning around Athens writing poems instead of being there at home / fighting wars. Now I get to do favors for both of them.

Lykinos cannot believe this shit

Tim wants me to get some Athenian armor from a vendor, and this can’t possibly be as easy to do as it sounds.  Lykinos wants revenge. Even Alexios sounds weary with that idea, because he’s trying to convince Lykinos nobody wants any more bloodshed. He agrees, that’s why he’s hiring me. Gee, thanks, fella.

  I go to the merchant and it turns out that that dad sold his armor, or maybe this guy is trying to cheat me? Whatevs. Buy all the armor! I only spend money on upgrades (if I remember to) and paying off my own bounties anyway.

  Armor in hand, I head off to dispatch the bandits.  When I get to their camp, I find them besieged by a pack of wolves.  Maybe if I sneak hard enough, the wolves will do all the work for me???  All right, I am not that lucky or good at sneaking, but these dudes aren’t that difficult. I find a letter in the camp that says dear old dad owed these bandits a lot of money. Loan sharkin’ it up again, I see. I wonder if there’s a bigger badder shark behind these guys? 

Spoiler: There is not. I’m always overthinking these sidequest plots.

 What I do know is that I’m apparently staying for this funeral even after revealing the truth of dad’s shady business dealings.  Tim wants me to get oil for an offering, and Lykinos thinks I should get some wine. He seems confused about what the oil’s for though, and there’s a lot of tension between these bros. We shall see! I get both offerings and complete a location.

  When I return to my friends, they are having a brotherly blow up, like brothers do. After I give them a pep talk about being there for one another, because they’re all they’ve got left, it is time to go. Or is it?

Now Hug it Out!

 Because, are these bros vibing on Alexios, or is it just me?  Well, Lykinos wants to meet up with me later anyway. Winkity, wink?? Like, the last dude that wanted to see me after a quest was complete, I ended up with a bed of rose petals.  

  Aaahahah.  Lykinos wants to make me dinner.  I TOLD you. First I have to hunt down some deers, and when I meet him it’s on this picturesque overlook at sunset. Geez. Well, played, poet man. Dinner and a view–I think this hits the sweet spot right between a overly-sentimental bed of rose petals and goat orgy. I actually like this guy, so let’s do it! 

But first a chat about Lykinos being a lying liar who lies. See, turns out he didn’t come back just to visit the fam. Actually, he just failed at being an artist in the big city. He didn’t want to tell his family so as not to disappoint them, and he didn’t want to tell me, because he was trying to impress me. He doesn’t know what he’s going to do know, because he’s not exactly the fighting type. I tell him he should become a cook because this venison meal he’s made is A+++

Are You serious right now?

Alright! Heart to heart over; we fade to black and return the next morning with Alexios all by himself again.  Such is the life of a mercenary! It’s on to the next quest I suppose.

Horizon Zero Dawn


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A few screenshots from Horizon: Zero Dawn. I have only realized after a week there is a photo mode where you can adjust your screenshot in game before you save it… coool. 😀

The Tinies


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Left to right:

1. In retrospect, entering this underwater cavern on this toxic wasteland, probably wasn’t the greatest of ideas.

2. A laughing scorpiosaurus.  Pretty sure that’s not what I named it, since I never noticed it had a scorpion tail until right now.

3 & 4. Forget the megafauna… The tinies are the cutest!

5.  Everything in this system was very pink/purply.

6.  Trapped a sentinel in this building.  I didn’t think they could follow you inside, apparently I am wrong. XD

Deadly Vistas


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After a run of lush green planets… with grass and trees, I’ve come upon system after system of death planets that are trying to kill me. Though, they do have some weird, cool landscapes!

More Creatures for the File


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Nightlite Puppies, Scenic Vistas, a sad tiger with six legs, and this snail headed creature. I named this system after my mom, but most of the planets in it are toxic and barren. Sorry, mom!

Commander Shepard and the Infamous Space Fish


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Inquisitors!


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The Inquisitors! + my fave screenshot. I’m not quite sure when this was, I think when meeting the nug king?

Anyway top to bottom left to right: Default Name Trevelyan, Default name Lavellan, Axel Trevelyan, and I totally forget what I named this guy, I’m just trying to get all the rest of the trophies. XD

The first Lavellan is my canon game, he turned out to somehow have some serious duck-lips + a chipped tooth, I spent most of the game trying to fully capture this look that he somehow makes work. XD

The Happy Rams are at it Again!


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Some dual and mono horned Happy Rams I found on planet Graceonus! Look at these snapchat filter looking beasties. I befriended the herd and one of them led me to a precious stone!