Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Assassin's hideout podcast - ep.9

show notes:

- new stuff from TL (1.6)
- new RP stuff,
- new PVP items
- get this book now 

title of the post is a link to the podcast.

Monday, December 21, 2009

1.6 report part 1

This is my first report on ongoing project that is 1.6. Please keep in mind that what you will see here is a mere tip of an iceberg. I strongly encourage you to log onto TL and explore new content for yourself.
Without doubt THIS IS IT, the patch to fix all patches and I have nothing but praise for the lazy team of Funcom that took its sweet sweet time to roll out this bad boy on TL.

The Black Dragon Armor. Remember how we used to droll over this? It is yours for the taking!
Thumbs up for listeing to playerbase requests!

King Conan ain't talkative no more! On live I can still bug him about stuff..
One of the new arenas in Khemi

Spectators get this fancy debuff so they are not interupting the duels. I want that debuff on my assassin

This is how you pick your side: click the fire (red or blue)

New icon for quick dismount. Funky!
Can you recognize this room? You sure can't because this is your personal room that you can rent for mere 10s for you and your group in Khemi. One can only wonder what dark and godless RP is going to be brewed in those rooms. Hai! lets cyber!

Room in Khemi (RP)

You can buy food...


Nom, nom nom!

This is how you get to RP room

New pvp items

Resonator area effect

Old Tarantia is invaded by a race of benches

You can sit your ass off

This guy praises the best guild?

I guess...more benches

Choose your poison!

I would like a room please..

Holy shit! 10s for this dump? I can get luxury one in Khemi for that money!

Time to empty my keg so this place will seem like a less of a dump

Thats more like it

New area just outside of Old Tarantia

Looks like a raceing track. What is FC up to?

No room to rent in the Arms tavern but more place to sit..

Didn't this place use to have a fireplace?

This fine lady will buy your crafted gems. Remember how people used to freak out that guild renown system will flood the game with unwanted and unsellabe items? More NPC are coming

She will buy...everything you got!

New sleeping emote...sure I can use that..
New pvp vendor in border kingdoms (boredom kingdoms)

What you see if what you get now

The xp buff last trough death

More reports are coming! 

Sunday, December 20, 2009

My journey to Khitai (trip to Thailand)

This is my short summary of my trip to Thailand and how I was discovering lost Khitai empire in that land.

Before we go on
I will not even attempt at making this post rich in details on Khitai, I will rather give you my random thoughts. For a detailed analysis of lost Khitai go to The Cimmerian:

  1. Hyborian Age Gazetteer: Khitai, Part One, 
  2. Hyborian Age Gazetteer: Khitai, Part Two,
  3. Hyborian Age Gazetteer: Khitai, Part Three 
Although The Cimmerian mentions Thailand on several occasions ("Taking Howard’s lead in plucking moments and milieus from the annals of history and mythology, one could see a number of modern parallels: the many dynasties and kingdoms of ancient China, the Lao kingdom of Lan Xang, the Sukhothai and Lanna kingdoms of Thailand, and the rich mythology of those lands") it was really this article that sold me on the idea of going to Thailand instead of China ("The numerous references in the Conan stories are remarkably consistent, never failing to mention towers, minarets, impenetrable jungles, elephants, shaven-headed priests and silk robes. This suggests that Southeast Asia, rather than China or Tibet, was the site of Robert's "Khitai.")

The beginning 

My journey have began in truly epic fashion: some poor shmoo was forced to throw away his....BOW during pre-boarding screening. What the hell were you thinking? I couldn't get it out of my head: WHY anyone would bring a bow with him on a plane and second...why would he think that it was O.K for him to do so...

This picture makes me smile every time

Lotus seeds

Lotus seeds look a lot like hazelnuts and taste like them too. I have eaten quite a lot of these in futile hope that it would up my magic resistance considerably.... and it did! (probably not).

Assassin's lvl6 pvp armor

Then we see assassin going against Tempest of Set....and TOS's group unstealths and pwns sin.

That concludes random stuff and now we go into the Khitai:
"Then there were camels and yellow-skinned men who wore silk robes and spoke in a weird tongue. Strayed from the caravan road, they passed close by, and their leader saw me and recognized the scarlet crescent on my bosom. He took me up and gave me life."
"He was a magician from far Khitai, returning to his native kingdom after a journey to Stygia (REH's name for Egypt circa 10,000 B.C.--J.T.). He took me with him to purple-towered Paikang, its minarets rising amid the vine- festooned jungles of bamboo, and there I grew to womanhood under his teaching. Age had steeped him deep in black wisdom, not weakened his powers of evil. Many things he taught me--"
Silk in Thailand
Thailand is known for its silk. The silk industry boomed in the 1950s and 1960s with the help of Jim Thompson. Although silk indicates Asia as a whole, but in the time when REH was putting his stories together it should suggest Thailand.

Purple towers

This is something that I have spoken to my Thai guide about. The man said that it would not be acceptable in Thai culture to have a purple roof. The only colors of the roofs were green, red or blue and I have seen no exceptions both in ancient and modern buildings. It is either something REH made up or it suggests that Paikang is a place of magic and spirituality (such is the meaning of purple color)


I don't think I need to comment on this.


This was also something I have bugged my Thai guide about. Jungle used to cover most of  Thailand's land until in got cut down in XIX century. China doesn't have warm enough climate to have "jungles" in the traditional sense - more of a thick forest if anything.
So the jungle reference strongly suggests Thailand and its neighbors. I have only seen the very border of true jungle where to my surprise...I have found an open wi-fi hotspot...


The worship of Genesha is widely spread in Thailand. You can find the statues of this demi-god everywhere.
The Ultimate Guide to the World's Most Savage Barbarian implies that Yag-Kosha was what later on people called Genesha.There is no doubt that similarities are obvious.
In Buddhi Ganesha is considered to be the Lord of letters and learning and this is exacly what Yag-Kosha was:

Then came Yara, versed in dark knowledge handed down through the days of barbarism, since before Atlantis sank. First he sat at my feet and learned wisdom. But he was not satisfied with what I taught him, for it was white magic, and he wished evil lore, to enslave kings and glut a fiendish ambition. I would teach him none of the black secrets I had gained, through no wish of mine, through the eons.

Thailand is a great country to visit and I highly recommend checking it out.

edit: I am not going to fight with blogger's text formating, fuck it, I know its screwed.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

1.6 class BUFFAGE - but not SINS

I am totally cool with Sins not being revamped BECAUSE Funcom was giving us this bullcrap about how 1.5.x series are over and they REALLY need to focus on PVE/PVP content that 1.6 provides.
So yeah, they have their schedule ,let them do their thing...

but HEY, why not sneak in some BUFFAGE for other classes while we are at it?

Lets NOT change assassin's lethargy that deals 600 dmg and -6% melee debuff, but reworking blood crazed? No problem! Fixing fatality bug? I guess that is more pressing issue than light footed not doing shit or Blindside not getting any dmg upgrade regardless of points added. I got nothing against Barbs, Mitra bless them, but this is Funcom at its best: ninja nerfing assassins (recent Lotus Tainted bLood report says that immunity prevents healing) while getting other classes what they are asking for.

and to top it off: why the hell the devs and testers are so active in other boards BUT not here? its like we are free play lepers.

Anyway, where is the love?

* Blood Crazed is now called Blood Fury, and has been changed to be a clickable which consumes 5 stacks of Blood Rage for a small DPS boost. (Update : This did not make today's patch due to an error. Leaving note up as a preview for players)
* Back in the Fray has been slightly buffed.
* Changed tooltip for Reaver Stance so it accurately reflects maximum stack size.

* Crushing Onslaught will now apply two separate debuffs - one for the snare effect and another for the damage debuff. The snare effect will follow all normal rules for crowd control immunities. This is to support raid encounters where a boss needs to have only one of the immunities.

* Blood Hex will now do increased healing when in Frenzy Stance.
* Invulnerable Soul should reapply its buff effect after resurrecting from a PvP death.

* Traps have been given an overhaul, and should now behave more reliably.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Assassin Trailer

Looks like Sudden from assassin boards has made a tribiute to this very site with his assassin video:

Seems like the least I can do is expose you to it's coolness.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Assassin's hideout podcast - ep.8

show notes:
-Rise of the Godslayer xfire preview
- 1.6 is on TL

title of the post is a link to the podcast.

Friday, December 11, 2009

I have spoiled myself

I have finally upgraded my cheap ass computer into something that can "handle" AOC. With Q8300 procesor and Nvidia's GTX260 I can run the hight settings easly and let me tell ya: Age of Conan is a completly diffrent game. I am revisiting old locations and enjoying the views, but one thing in particular have cought my attention. I used to think that Tarantia Commons is a pice of shit...steaming pice of shit actually because it is brand new location. On my old computer the Commons's buildings were this gray, bland cubes with windows thrown in. Now I know why people are enjoying that place....its all about shadows! But the most important thing is: I can now enjoy pvp without freezes, lags and triping over my own feets trying to land a combo with sudden FPS drops to 7 FPS . No longer 2 pet necros ruin the whole game for me. I think I am ready for expansion....which is coming soonish?

Of course my current specc is nothing out of ordinary or exceptionally great, but I am just happy that the pain this game causes me (played 3 games yesterday agains 3 demos and pet necro) is sligtly less tormenting now: getting my ass whooped with 53 FPS is a lot better than getting burned while trying to overcome 2s freeze.

Expect few posts coming along today because I got tons of stuff to talk about with 1.6 on TL and ROGS xfire preview.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

[Guide] The best specc for PVP

Regardless of how many threads have been made on this topic people will always come for more with sole question in mind: what is the best specc for XXX? (mini/pvp/open world pvp/dueling).

Before we move on lets make two things clear:

in PVE (especially raiding) you can come up with "best specc" through math by crunching the numbers and changing the feats to achieve best possible DPS output. Since Assassin's role in pve is DPS, but having a specc that allows you to out-do any other specc in terms of DPS you have invented yourself a "best specc".

in PVP you simply can't point to the best specc because you will be subjected to so many variables that covering all of your bases is simply not possible. With great DPS you can melt to magic damage and with superb defences you can find yourself at the very bottom of "kill charts". There is no "holy grail" of pvp speccs -its more of a game of making less mistakes than others.

Most common mistake? Thinking that other know of some "uber secret" specc that unlocks true assassindom and makes any player instantly great.

However there are few guideliness that you might consider when putting together your desired pvp specc.

Feats that will gimp you
There are some broken,useless or underpowered feats that can gimp your overall performance. Check the list here.

Do not spread yourself thin
Except for very few feats true pvp performance comes from maxing out the feats that you are investing in. You really won't benefit from 13% weapon damage coming out of 1/5 Lunge - you want whole 70% boost for 5/5. Read more on this here.

Understand the key issues with each of the trees
Lotus and Corruption are not equal. People often post that corruption is not the best choice right now (as of 1.5.7 patch) and I firmly support that claim. Find out more on why Lotus is the better choice for pvp compared to corruption and why corruption ain't what it used to be for pvp.

Rule of thumb
I would not close on this post without giving out the recipe for delicious pvp specc:

max out on anticc + max out on damage buff + get all CC + whatever is left goes into defensive feats

step by step:

#1 max out on anticc - aniCC is the staple of any build. When CCed you can't do anything.

# 2 max out on damage buff - you are in pvp for the kills

# 3 get extra CC (Curse of Lotus)

# 4 dump the rest into defence - both corrupted body and arcane backlash fill up the specc

this is just an example specc that I have used to show you where the points should be spent first, I am in no way claiming it to be "teh one" for pvp

Play around with all the feats, but keep your priorities straight and avoid the bad feats.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Take care everyone - taking a real vacations

In preparation for upcoming Age of Conan expansion I am taking a break and going on vacations somewhere in Asia.
Remembering how great it was seeing Egypt last year and comparing everything to Stygia I am hyped out for this trip.
Since I am going to spent majority of time in capital city I will most likely have Wi-Fi to check on some aoc news, but for next 2 weeks - no blog posts. I hope you can manage without your "free enturtaiment" which I hope Assassin's hideout is.
Take care and keep pressuring FC into getting 1.6 on TL.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

[Guide] Broken or useless feats to avoid

With assassin's trees not revamped it is easy to pick feats that will ultimately gimp your survivality or damage output.
Here is a list of "oh-not-so-great" feats that all of you should not touch even with ten feet long assassin pole:

Accelerated - it lowers cooldown of slow death strikes, grim corruption, lethargy and impede life
reason: for 3/3 this feat does horrible job at lowering the cooldowns. It basically gives -1s for each point. It would be somewhat worthy if the feat cost was fixed at 1/1. You can do much worst than taking this feat, but then again - much better stuff lies deeper into the lotus tree.

Light footed: +25% resistance to snare
reason: it is either broken or the tooltip is missleading. You won't resist any snare that comes from melee character or a ranger. There are some unconfirmed rurmors (spreaded by me) that this feat will up you resistance but only to certain CC spells. The tests are inconclusive. Best to avoid.

Sabotage armor: destroys targets directional shielding
reason: slow hitting, very weak combo with long CD. Since directional shields stacking got nerfed in 1.5 series this combo is even more worthless than before. Best to avoid.

Soul prison: allows to capture soul shards at higher rate at the costs of your stamina
reason: not only this is 2/2 feat, but it also has 2m cooldown and costs you precious stamina. In other words: it does exactly same thing as Spirit of Night fall, but it is not passive and drains stamina. There are better feats to dump points into.

Relish in death: you capture soul shard when your team gains fataility buff
reason: this feat has awesome name and I am feeling sorry everytime I am skiping it. One soul shard for one fatality is just not a fair tradeoff.

Unholy soul: gives unholy invulvs.
reason: no one on earth would take this if it wasn't for the fact it is linked to soul strike. Waste of points unless you do nothing, but dueling necro, DT and corruption assassin exclusively and even then its a stretch for 3/3.

Soul strike: converts combo's damage into unholy damage
reason: if you also have burden to bear specced you will be gimping yourself by using Soul Strike because your target's armor rating will be lower than unholy invulvs. rating. (more damage dealt when your combo is not converted into unholy) Performs very poorly if you did not use Grim Corruption first, needs soul shard to be activated and most of all - its linked to unholy soul so you need to waste 3/3 first in order to get it.. Shame since it also has a cool name

Rapid striking: lowers Swift Strikes cooldown
reason: arguably worst-feat-ever! Swift Strikes on its own has very short CD so there is hardly a need for further upgrade.Also diffrent ranks of Swift Strikes doesn't share cooldowns. What does that mean? You can circle use 2 ranks of SS without any down time and save yourself 3 feat points.

Seeds of corruption: debuffs traget for healing, seeds explode when Grim Corruption is used
reason: the freak child of 1.5 era. Everything that could have been wrong with this feat.... is. The debuff it self is somewhat decent but its longevity and proc rate leave much to be desired. This hardly has any aplications in PVE so that leaves it purely for PVP. The damage that comes from the explosion is marginal at best and its only ticked off by GC. In typical pvp scenario assassin will want to open any fight with grim corruption for both the snare and the resistance debuff. That leaves your opponent with 20s (cooldown on grim corruption) of "safe time" when the seeds can't be exploded. As you know 20 s in pvp is an eternity during which all sort of things can happen including you dieing horrible horrible death. Want to save your GC for exploding seeds? Then you will have to face an unbuffed and snare-free opponent. With 3/3 feat cost this is not someting you want in your toolbox.