Sunday, May 11, 2014



What does Logan do during the average day in Bulgaria?

Not much - but I'm enjoying that.

To be more specific,

I wake up at some point during the day.  Usually it is late as I like to stay up late.  Sometimes it is pretty early as my medical condition has insomnia as one of the many side effects.  That and pain.  So whenever my insomnia and pain tell me it is time to get out of bed, I do.

I have a couple cups of coffee and some cigarettes to punish my body for waking me.

Then, I wander over to  a nearby grocery.  There, I get to talk to my new friend.  He use to work in the UK and his English is excellent.  He and his girlfriend co-own the grocery store.  There we smoke and talk about anything from recent Bulgarian politics to MMO's.  I think we'll be good friends.

After this is "Logan's fat ass exercise time".  This is  a futile attempt to burn some of the calories I've taken in.  I wander around, maybe snap some photos.

On the way home, grab food for my night meal at one of the restaurants and any other supplies I need at my friend's grocery store.

Shower and tell myself I am a sexy beast in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Play MMO's until I get hungry.

Eat food.  Continue to play MMO's until I become too tired or drunk to continue.

Maybe watch a movie.

Work on them pearly whites!

Either go to sleep or pass out, depending on the alcohol content.

Get up several times during the night to make sure nobody has stolen my toilet.  Curse old age every time.



Good Article on travel scams.  Also read through wiki travel of the country, city you are going to find out what current scams they are using on the unwary, unlucky and tediously stupid.

ELDER SCROLLS ONLINE (ESO) - my initial impressions

If you have no interest in MMORPG's (AKA MMO's), skip this section.

I've been playing MMO's since 1998.  That's sixteen years.  Holy crap, I've had conversations with people who are younger than that.

Many people won't play a game unless it looks pretty.  I'm playing on low settings, this still looks amazing.

After installing the game

Go here and get this addon.  There are easy to follow instructions there on how to do it.  I'm not even going to go into why to do it but apparently this is a legal addon, as well as the only one I seem to be able to get to work.  Once you start playing the game and figuring out what is going on, you will call my name 'blessed' for having you get it.  My thanks go to my old friend TJ for telling me to get it.  Also, go here and follow these instructions.  They remove the four or five 'splash screens' that only the game developers give a crap about.

Starting out

Not a huge learning curve.  You only have three factions.  Find out which one your friends are playing and join that.  If you pick unwisely, you can still have characters in the other two factions.  You get eight characters per server and they all share one bank account.  Note that there are two different servers, 'American' and 'European'.  Hence, if you really wanted, you can have sixteen total characters.

You heard that right - all of your characters are secret traitors to their factions.  Heck, you can even mail stuff to people in different factions.

Once you've got your faction, there are three races within each.  Pick the one that seems best for whatever class you're going to play.  Or don't - it's not a huge deal.  Some races are more fit for some of the classes but if you want to play a dark elf (who are good at magic) as a tank, you can without being crippled.

Once you get your faction and race, you choose your class.  With all of these things, simply hovering your cursor over it will give you the basic information.

For your first character, there is a bondage tutorial.  For your first character, I recommend it.  Because the people who made ESO like naughty prison movies, once again you start out in a cage.  This is something you are pretty much on your own with.  There may be other confused newbies around running into walls and getting violated with toilet brushes but overall, you're on your own.

As soon as possible within the tutorial, you'll want to go into your controls and game play options.  There is an autoloot box in there.  Clicking yes to that will make you a happy camper - trust me on this.

Once you've gotten out of that, you are in the real world with all the other PC's.

The tutorial is moderately interesting the first time but fortunately subsequent characters have the option of opting out of it.

Character development

When you level up, you get a statistic point.  Just one and you get to pick one of three different easy to figure out statistics to put it in.  Again, you can't really cripple your character by the wrong choice.  If you consistently pick the wrong stat, yes but until you learn about the game (say the first five or ten levels out of fifty) it is not going to kill you.

After putting a point into a statistic, the game will automatically open your skills screen.  This is where you get to read and ponder.

Within each character class are three different ways to play that class.  Find the one that suits you.  Put points into that stuff.  Note that unless you want to put lots and lots of your character's skill points into crafting, you will be stuck on the newbie stuff.  Personally, I love that.  It means that not everyone will be a crafter.  You can gather and sell resources but to get above the newbie level of crafting requires a lot of valuable character points.


The questing system is fairly standard.  You go to someone and they have stuff for you to do.  "You go fight the hordes of evil, I'll go home!"  Unlike many MMO's, these are much more story based.  Should you feel like reading (I usually don't) you find that you are going through various stories.  They don't seem to have "go fetch me a dozen wolf legs" type quests.

There is a huge drawback for the 'casual player' in the quests.  The quests you do change the world for your character.  If you are solo'ing, this is awesome.  Watch as your actions have an actual impact upon the world!  However, if you group with someone who has already done the quest, it might not work.  Those guys you need to kill?  Not there for him.  He can't see nor interact with them.  Of course you can still get with your buddies and go into 'public dungeons' and have a killing spree or just wander around the amazing world together.  For people who have 'significant others' or buddies they want to adventure with, my advice is for both to make a character who only adventures with that character - that way you are on the same proverbial page.

Fighting and looting

They did it right in this game.  In many MMO's, the person who did either the most damage or final blow to the character gets the loot.  This leads to 'assholeism' of the highest order.  In this game, if you kill something solo, you have about a one in two or one in three chance of getting some sort of loot.  If thirty people all unleash hell upon a hapless critter in the wild, they all still have the same loot chance.  This leads to people 'drive by assisting' you, leading to happy feelings toward other adventurers rather than extreme hatred.  Aside from the harvesting.

Also, very few experience points are to be gained by killing monsters - most comes from questing.  Hence, you never feel as though you are 'grinding'.

Fighting itself is a lot more interesting than standing there and pressing buttons.  There is some 'twitch' to it, but not a lot.  I think they did a good job balancing it to make it more interesting.


This is where it gets competitive.  There is a lot of shit lying around the world waiting for you to grab.  Some acts like the critters - everyone gets a go.  That includes all of the backpacks, sacks, dressers, bookcases (read as potential free skill point in some random skill), urns, barrels and so on.  Other stuff you get to compete for such as herbs, special chests, wood (Got Wood?), ore and so on.  Hunt for these well away from the roads.  The world is big enough that if you go off of the well beaten paths you can feel completely alone.

Getting back to the addon you will hopefully download, those are 'sky shards'.  Using three gives you a free skill point.  The addon simply adds the locations of them to your normal map.

Player vs player (PVP)

I'm not a huge fan of PVP so don't know much about it but here's what I have discovered.

I've not participated in any PVP but once I went with my buddy to the PVP lands.  They are huge.  There are a bunch of castles and forts to capture.  There are a bunch of sky shards to get.  Using points gained in PVP, players can buy siege weapons they keep in their backpack to pull out for use in war.  These help destroy walls and such but have an amazingly short range.

Everyone gets boosted to a very weak level fifty for PVP.  The people who are much stronger are the ones who have hit level fifty are stronger.  The ones who have kept adventuring after level fifty are even stronger.

Since my friend TJ knows a lot more about the PVP area, here's what he says:

"I for one need New things to explore and for some one like me who really enjoys adventuring and exploration ESO Is great. Full voice narration for all quests. Issues and bugs are replied to and worked on within 24 hours. Massive DAOC inspired PVP region thats so large it reminds me of what it must have felt like to be an early explorer in the medieval days. Massive rolling plains and mountains doted by small towns and castles. You may see no one for a hour or so while exploring then you may have a small army of mounted knights with a long tail of squires following behind suddenly ride up over the top of a hill near you causing your heart to skip a beat until you hopefully notice they are friendly and just heading off to siege an enemy fortification in some far off location. Yes there are quests and caves to be explored and found in the PVP area too."

Other activities

In addition to a robust crafting system, there is a ton of exploring to be done.  The world is cool enough to warrant it.  There seems to be a lot of little interesting things but I'm still new to the game.


They did them right.  Rather than your character joining a guild, your account does.  So much better.  You can join up to five guilds at once.  This is necessary because the only 'auction house' is the 'guild store'.  You can only sell up to thirty items at one time.  Hence, belonging to one 'adventuring guild' and four 'trading guilds' seems a good way to do it.  This probably also keeps down the number of annoying small guilds.  For a trading guild, it wouldn't make sense to join a small one - less bought and sold.

End game

After a week or two of intensive play I'm no where close to any sort of 'end game', hence know nothing about it.


If you liked any of the Elder Scrolls games or are a fan of MMO's, I'd recommend picking up this game.  It will cost between $40 and $60 (maybe less by the time you read this).  You get a free month of game play with that.  If you decide you like it, each month is $15 or less.


  1. I use minion to install addons in ESO. Have about 6 or 7 at the moment. Does a good job of keeping the addons up to date as well (I have it set to manually update so I can see if I want the changes) -

  2. Could you recommend any addons Pete?

  3. PS: Minion is an excellent, easy to use program strongly recommended. Again, Pete shows he is the master of gaming!

  4. Addons I'm currently using -
    Advanced Filters - Allows filtering of bank (personal & guild) which makes it easier to find stuff
    AI Research Grid - Shows which traits I've learned on my main & alts
    FatStacks - for stacking the guild bank
    HarvestMap - recording the various harvest nodes I find & then dispalying them on the compass bar.
    INS:JunkYard - automatically places items into trash. XCCan set up such that once you place an item into trash, every other same item will also be put into trash
    Item Saver - flag items with a red star to remind to keep be it for trait reseatch etc
    Khajiit Speak - rp mod. Changes your responses to those of a Khajiit when talking to NPCs if you are playing a Khajiit
    Lootdrop, continued - displays what you have looted on the screen. Useful if you have autoloot enabled.
    Multicraft - allows you to queue multiple of the same item at once, saves having to press r each time
    Recipe Book - displays all the recipes each char knows
    Sous Chef - flags prov mats as to whic rank they are (if you know the recipe) and flags recipes as to if you know them or not (eg looking at guild bank for ones you don't know)
    Wykkd's Framework - has sefveral functions such as timers for when to next feed horse, when trait learning runs out. Also places subtitles on screen and other things
    Wykkyd's Quest tracker - allows diplaying of mutple quests & various custom options relating to quests



{{2011}} London, GB | Rail N Sail | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Prague, Czech Republic | Budapest, Hungary | Sarajevo, Bosnia | Romania | Chisinau, Moldova | Ukraine: Odessa - Sevastopol | Crossed Black Sea by ship | Georgia: Batumi - Tbilisi - Telavi - Sighnaghi - Chabukiani | Turkey: Kars - Lost City of Ani - Goreme - Istanbul | Jordan: Amman - Wadi Rum | Israel | Egypt: Neweiba - Luxor - Karnak - Cairo | Thailand: Bangkok - Pattaya - Chaing Mai - Chaing Rei | Laos: Luang Prabang - Pakse | Cambodia: Phnom Penh | Vietnam: Vung Tau - Saigon aka Ho Chi Minh City

{{2012}} Cambodia: Kampot - Sihanoukville - Siem Reap - Angkor Wat | Thailand: Bangkok | India: Rishikesh - Ajmer - Pushkar - Bundi - Udaipur - Jodhpur - Jasalmer - Bikaner - Jaipur - Agra - Varanasi | Nepal: Kathmandu - Chitwan - Pokhara - Bhaktapur - (Rafting) - Dharan | India: Darjeeling - Calcutta Panaji | Thailand: Bangkok - again - Krabi Town | Malaysia, Malaka | Indonesia: Dumas - Bukittinggi - Kuta - Ubud - 'Full Throttle' - Gili Islands - Senggigi | Cambodia: Siem Reap | Thailand: Trat | Turkey: Istanbul | Georgia: Tbilisi

{{2013}} Latvia: Riga | Germany: Berlin | Spain: Malaga - Grenada | Morocco: Marrakech - Essauira - Casablanca - Chefchawen - Fes | Germany: Frankfurt | Logan's Home Invasion USA: Virginia - Michigan - Indiana - Illinois - Illinois - Colorado | Guatemala: Antigua - San Pedro | Honduras: Copan Ruinas - Utila | Nicaragua: Granada | Colombia: Cartagena | Ecuador: Otavalo - Quito - Banos - Samari (a spa outside of Banos) - Puyo - Mera

{{2014}} Peru: Lima - Nasca - Cusco | Dominican Republic | Ukraine: Odessa | Bulgaria: Varna - Plovdiv | Macedonia: Skopje - Bitola - Ohrid - Struga | Albania: Berat - Sarande | Greece: Athens | Italy: Naples - Pompeii - Salerno | Tunisia: Hammamet 1

{{2015}} Hammamet 2 | South Africa: Johnnesburg | Thailand: Hua Hin - Hat Yai | Malaysia: Georgetown | Thailand: Krabi Town | Indonesia:
Sabang Island | Bulgaria: Plovdiv | Romania: Ploiesti - Targu Mures | Poland: Warsaw | Czech Republic: Prague | Germany: Munich | Netherlands: Groningen | England: Slough | Thailand: Ayutthaya - Khon Kaen - Vang Vieng | Cambodia: Siem Reap

{{2016}} Thailand: Kanchanaburi - Chumphon | Malaysia: Ipoh - Kuala Lumpur - Kuching - Miri | Ukraine: Kiev | Romania: Targu Mures - Barsov | Morocco: Tetouan

{{2017}} Portugal: Faro | USA: Virginia - Michigan - Illinois - Colorado | England: Slough - Lancaster | Thailand: Bangkok | Cambodia: Siem Reap

{{2018}} Ukraine: Kiev - Chernihiv - Uzhhorod

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