Category Archives: Community

Liebster Award x2

Liebster AwardAbout a month ago, I was already nominated for The Mystical Mesmer and almost forgot about it. However, I now received another nomination from Rakuno of Shards of Imagination. That’s 22 questions in total. Of course, I feel honored that they thought of me in their blog posts and I’m happy to participate now. :)

First, an introduction of the Liebster award: As the icon suggests, it’s a way to discover new blogs for the readers of your own blog, but this isn’t simply done by saying: Go read their stuff! If they accept the award, they agree to give 11 random facts about themselves, answer 11 questions that you give them and they will give out 11 questions to 5 people they nominate themselves. In other words, you can get to know them a little bit better this way.

11 random facts about me

  1. I’m a psychologist, and work in the field of special education needs.
  2. My first computer was a Commodore 64 and the seonc one had Windows 2000.
  3. I cannot choose a favourite colour, because there are so many great ones (though orange and green hues are on top right now. Red is great, too, but a rather boring colour at the same time, if you ask me).
  4. I used to be obsessed with rabbits when I was a kid. I had about 30 or 40 rabbit plushies – and yes, two real rabbits as well at some point.
  5. My favourite ice-cream flavour is “Straciatella”.
  6. I have one brother who is 5 years older than me.
  7. My brain tends to give me really bad nightmares whenever it finds something it can use to scare me which is why I tend to avoid watching horror movies.
  8. I find seafood disgusting (except for some kinds of fish).
  9. I’m afraid of heights, but bought two annual tickets for myself and bookahnerk for a ropes course in a forest nearby.
  10. I used to draw comic snails when I was a kid.
  11. If I’d been a boy, my parents would have named me “Matthias”. One of my younger cousins got that name then.

The 11 questions I got from The Mystical Mesmer

1. What are the three major elements of your ideal video game?

I’m not sure what exactly “elements” refers to. So, I’m just going to say what comes to my mind here. :p It definitely has to have open world PvP areas (without PvP being 100 % optional and not required for the game at all if you don’t want to PvP). Then it has to have housing. And it has to have interesting classes that are more than the standard ones warrior, mage, ranger etc.

2. Big city, suburb, or countryside?

Neither. Near the city centre in a medium-sized town (around 100k inhabitants). Basically, exactly where we are living now. :) Or Hamburg which is a city with 1.7 million inhabitants but it doesn’t feel this huge or even crowded with lots of green areas, a lake and more than 2400 bridges. :p

3. What’s the origin of your blogging name?

I chose “Paeroka” when I started writing about games. It just fit. Back when I’d written a story for Nanowrimo, one of the characters in that story was named “Paeroka”. I liked the sound of it, so I used it for my first character on Horde side in World of Warcraft. When I started blogging about games, I did not know which name I could use, so I chose my character’s name. So, I basically named myself after a character that is named after a character I created back in 2005.

4. Aeris lives and you’re hired to retell Final Fantasy 7. What role does she play?

I’m sorry. My knowledge of Final Fantasy ends right with that name “Final Fantasy”. No idea who Aeris is. I did try out the MMO once for an hour or two, but that’s really all I know about this IP. Oh, and chocobos.

5. What’s your favorite biome?

I can give you examples from games, because I always love the same kind of area.

6. Write a haiku love poem to this morning’s breakfast.

Three mugs of coffee
With a hot bagel to go
Not much time for food.

So this isn’t exactly a love poem. But my breakfast, even though it was yummy, was more a necessity, because I’d needed to take a painkiller and that thing also kills my stomach if I don’t eat something first. :p Still, coffee is a must. I should have maybe written a haiku on coffee.

7. What’s your preferred device for reading blogs?

My PC most of the time. It used to be my mobile phone on my way to work when I had a commute of 1.5 to 2 hours every day. But now that I don’t have that anymore, I prefer my PC with its large monitor and fast internet connection.

8. If you were to start up a video game company, what would you name it?

Erm… sorry, I’m totally unimaginative when it comes to naming things. I’d probably ask bookahnerk to think of something.

9. Which of the Seven Dwarves would you be and why?

I had to look them up now, I admit. ;) Probably “Grumpy” from that list. I do get grumpy fast when things don’t go my way.

10. What form of exercise do you find to be the most effective?

Jogging. I can’t do it at the moment because I’m still having issues with my skin and it starts itching like crazy when I start to sweat. So, for the time being, it’s my elliptical trainer. Probably not the most effective, but I can watch a TV series while exercising and that’s really motivating (and entertaining) for me… and everything that gets you to exercise and is fun is effective, right?

11. How long is a piece of string?

Huh? I don’t get that question. ;)

The 11 questions from Rakuno

1. Why did you decide to blog about your chosen topic (for instance, why MMOs or why your chosen game)?

I started blogging a long time ago. On Deadjournal, actually, and then Livejournal when I’d gotten an invite code from an acquaintance. Over there on Livejournal, somebody started a German community journal for World of Warcraft. I joined it, because I knew the person who had started the community and because bookahnerk had just started playing that game. I’d wanted to know more about his hobby and I also liked the world that the game is set in (from what bookahnerk had told me about it, at least). So, it wasn’t that I woke up one day knowing I want to blog about gaming. I kind of slowly shifted into it. I had written posts on that German WoW community after I had started playing myself and then wanted to have a blog on my own because it gives me more freedom. It took a bit longer until I decided to start a blog, though. I also like WordPress and Blogspot more than Livejournal as a platform to write about games which is why I came here, to WordPress. As for why gaming? Because I like gaming and I like writing. Additionally, I wanted to practice my English more and I needed something to write about.

2. What do you feel is the hardest part about blogging?

The constant self-doubt and inner critic. That voice inside of me saying: “Nobody wants to read that.” or “You should really rewrite this paragraph… no, better that whole post! It sounds like a little kid wrote that.”

3. What is your favorite part about blogging?

Having people approach me and start a conversation because of something that I wrote (either here in the blog or somewhere else). I also admit, it was awesome to have people approach us in real life to tell me and bookahnerk that they like our blog. That’s not our “favourite” part, but it’s at least a nice bonus.

4. How did you get into MMOs?

Bookahnerk. ;) Well, kind of. I’ve always loved fantasy worlds (in books mostly), enjoyed science fiction (Star Trek more than anything else) and I already played a text-based dungeon-crawling game that you play online with others. Then bookahnerk started playing World of Warcraft and he sometimes, slowly told me about that game (that was at the beginning of our relationship). It took a while until I asked him if I could try WoW. I was a bit anxious because I was just about to start preparing for an important exam and did not want to get sucked into this game. Two days after trying WoW, I got a call from him telling me the serial code of my own WoW copy. :D I also used it as an incentive after a full day of studying (same as with Rift and my final exams later).

5. Sandbox or Themepark? Why?

Sandbox with a bit of themepark. If the game is only sandbox with no direction, I can easily feel lost. But if it’s only themepark without giving me any freedom, it’s not good either. For example, Rift is a very themepark game in that it has quests, dungeons, raids, set classes which doesn’t give you much freedom in choosing which weapons to use, for example. But it does, at least, have housing which lets you freely build structures and so on. It’s definitely more than just placing a table here and a bed there. It’s still a themepark game, so some more freedom would be nice.

6. When you are starting on a new game what makes you choose a certain race/class?

Race is rather easy: The one I like the most visually. I usually do not create a human. For me, it’s the boring choice. Here we are, in a fantasy world where everything is possible – hey, let’s make a human because that’s what I am, too. ;) I tend to go with smaller races because they’re usually quirkier and funnier to watch. Also, dwarves. When a game has dwarves, I’m really happy. As for class, it used to be spellcasters as my first choice, usually one with a few tricks up their sleeve (frost mage or warlock in WoW, mesmer in GW2). But depending on the combat system, I actually prefer heavy-armored melee classes, mostly with a sword and a shield or dual-wielding weapons. I don’t like two-handed weapons unless it’s a staff. So this limits my choices down pretty well most of the time.

7. If you had unlimited resources and time what game would you make? This can be an original idea of yours or based on an existing IP.

I would make a game around the fantasy world I had started to create around the Nanowrimo stories I have written, with dwarves, boring humans who are always at war with each other and the nimari – a race that explaining would take too long here since I’d have to go into the whole background of how that world was created. :p It would definitely be a mix of themepark and sandbox MMO with housing, crafting (best items in the game would come from crafting only), PvE as well as PvP with the latter being optional (a bit like the RvR areas in Warhammer Online, I think). Sadly, I don’t think I ever will have unlimited resources, so I will just stick with writing the stories instead. ;)

8. What is your favorite book?

The Light Bearer by Donna Gillespie. During a particularly boring vacation with my parents, I had finished reading the three books I had brought with me within less than two days. It had been raining constantly, so we had basically been stuck in the house. We went shopping and I was looking for a book with lots of pages that would last longer than the ones I had brought, with a maybe interesting plot. I went for this one because it is about people from a Germanic tribe and Romans and it seemed like an interesting combination to read about. I couldn’t put it down until I was finished. I had to, my parents forced me to, but I really didn’t want to! I also got the original version (I had only read the German translation at first) from bookahnerk back when we had been “just friends”, but this very present first showed me that he is a very special person that I want and need in my life. So, this book isn’t only my favourite, it’s also connected with quite a bit of nostalgia by now.

9. What, in your opinion, is the best game of all time?

Hmm… A lot come to my mind for very different reasons. For example, Tetris, for being the game that connected me and my family back when we bought two gameboys. One just wasn’t enough for 4 people. ;) So we had two gameboys, two of us were playing Tetris, the other two were watching and cheering. World of Warcraft for getting MMORPGs out of their niche and into a broader market, maybe. For me personally, Cultures 1, because it brought me so many hours of entertainment. But best game of all time… probably not one of them. It always depends on what you interpret as “best” – best for what? :)

10. Someone challenged you to a duel at dawn. Since you are the one being challenged you are given the choice of weapons. What would be your choice? Keep in mind the challenger will be able to use the same weapons.

We’re talking about a gaming environment, right? Then a staff to go with my frost mage’s abilities. :p In reality: Nothing. I doubt there’s anything I could use as a weapon which would make me come out the winner.

11. The robot uprising happened at the same time of the zombie apocalypse. The robots see the zombies as a threat and the zombies react to the robots hostile actions instinctively. Who would win, the robots or the zombies and which one would be worse for the last surviving humans?

Another tough question. I find zombies annoying and overdone lately. So, I would vote for robots. On the other hand are robots scarier because they can probably hurt you more, seeing how they’re made of metal and with the latest technology, I assume. ;)

My 11 questions for the people I am going to nominate:

  1. What was your first gaming rig?
  2. Do you prefer games based on existing IPs (e.g., Star Wars, or that infamous probably never-to-be Harry Potter MMO) or new IPs?
  3. If you could resurrect any online game that is no longer (officially) available, which one would it be?
  4. Let’s imagine you’re put into a higher-up developer position of your favourite MMO with enough power to decide: Which one thing would you want to change about the game immediately?
  5. Is there a blog post you really would have wished you had written but haven’t (yet)?
  6. If you feel a writer’s block approaching, what do you do to overcome it?
  7. Blogging and gaming – how do you balance those two?
  8. What one advice would you give a new blogger?
  9. Other than gaming and blogging, what is your favourite pastime?
  10. How much time do you spend in the character creation screen for one character?
  11. If you could actually live in your favourite MMO, which place / town / area would you choose?

And now it’s probably time to actually nominate some people, right? I’m actually supposed to name 5, but eh, I was already nominated by two people. Jaedia, whom I would have liked to nominate as well, has just done this, too. All of this kind of narrows down my own choices. :p So, I will just say that I nominate a) the guys from Dragon Season (mostly TheValliant and Tilion, but all the other writers on there are welcome to join as well!) and bookahnerk – yes, from my own blog. So what? ;)

Trove Pirate Class Giveaway by Kiwi and EnemyEX

Trove_Pirate CaptainThis is what I love about online games: The community around them. In this case, Kiwi and EnemyEX are having a “launch party” for tomorrow’s “Fish’n’Ships” update in Trove.

Read the post by Kiwi in the Rift forums where she posted an explanation on what is given away and how it’ll work.

The short of it:

  • From now until the servers go live with the update, you can follow @kiwidream101 and retweet her tweet for a chance to win the new Pirate class
  • She is going to level the new Pirate Class to level 20 and you can join her doing so.
  • On the way to level 20, there will be more giveaway
  • You can watch EnemyEX’s stream as they will play Trove together tomorrow (and where you can win robo raptors)

There is more to win. If you want to know what and how, go read Kiwi’s post! :) Also, if you want to level a character as well, don’t forget that you can join them! Having a level 20 character in Trove also means that you will get a pretty black budgie in Rift. So here is your chance to tag along and have fun!

Foostival 2015 in Germany

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FoostivalSome of you may remember that I was not able to attend last year’s Foostival. I still helped out a bit with the organization, but not nearly as much as I would have liked to do. This year, bookahnerk and I did not only go there, I also helped organize a lot more.

But before I give you my written impressions of this year’s Foostival, let me reiterate what Foostival exactly is first. Foostival, as I wrote in the above linked entry last year, is a Guild Wars 2 focused event made by fans for the fans! Most of us are part of at least one fan site (in my case even two).

This year, the Foostival happened in four countries simultaneously (France, Belgium, Germany and the UK). In every country, it is organized solely by fans of the game. We were lucky that the European community managers joined us, but they did so not in an organizational position, but instead as our guests.

The purpose of the Foostival is to get to know each other. One the one hand, for us fansite writers to get to know the people who hang out on our fansites or community sites, and for our readers to get to know us, but most importantly: For players to get to know and meet other players. 

Since I was one of the organizers, I could not spend that much time talking to all those who attended the Foostival. But I still had a lot of fun. I got to meet the great guys from GuildNews again, I could watch the gw2community team organize a Tequatl run and I could see a lot of people enjoy themselves and smile – especially when it was time for our giveaways. :p

Unfortunately, this year the planned jumping puzzle that should have taken place in France and Germany simultaneously could not happen, because the French guys had problems with their PCs. By the time we decided that us Germans should do the jumping puzzle on our own, the time slot for the Tequatl run was almost there, so we switched to that one instead. I would say that this “dry spell” in between was rather unfortunate and especially disappointing for those who would have loved to do the jumping puzzle.

Altogether, I would say that this Foostival was a lot of fun and I’ve seen a lot of smiling people. In fact, even though I’d probably spent a lot of time checking my Skype messages that day, I did get to talk to a few participants and I hope to be able to do so much more at the next Foostival. I’ll just have to multitask a bit more. ;)

But you may wonder: What led to this day? What did we have to do before we even got here? Relatively easy answer: A lot of voice chat and Skype text message sessions, several emails, a lot of brainstorming and about a zillion Google Drive documents. :p

I really enjoy working together with others on a common goal, though. And while I generally prefer having this blog for myself where I can do whatever I want whenever I want without having to deal with deadlines or coordinating with others, doing exactly that for something like the Foostival is a lot of fun and a great opportunity to get to know others. I guess I can say I’ve also been lucky because the guys from GuildNews are not only down-to-earth but also easy to work with. We did not really have to tell each other to get any work done or force tasks on somebody because nobody did them otherwise. It just so happened that the work that had to be done got done by one person or another. At some point, I did what I do best and took over some of the organizational stuff in the background. The official website, the Facebook site and the Twitter account had to be fed with information for the German Foostival (in German, of course) and we had to make sure that everybody who applied for a spot at the Foostival got added to a list and, of course, some participants also had questions and I was happy to assist them and answer as well as I could. You can hardly find me in the front row holding a speech unless I absolutely have to. But I really enjoy keeping lists and sending emails to people. ;)

What’s difficult with something like the Foostival organization is that there is not one single person who is in charge and has “the last say”. I tried to do as much as possible without seeming like I wanted to be “the boss”, you know? But organizing this together also means that there shouldn’t be a boss who decides everything while everybody else follows. The point of the Foostival, and the reason why I really love this initiative is that all fansites work together to put something fun for everybody. It’s not about getting the most hits or views or followers for our own fansite. It’s all about the community. And I think I can say that we have been successful with our second Foostival and I can’t wait for the third to arrive. :D

Edited to add: If you want to organize Foostival in your own country, get in touch with us!

The following pictures were taken by Lord Walek, but he gave me permission to use them in our blog. :) If you want to see all pictures that were taken at the Foostival, go to the official gallery (which I will work on after publishing this very blog post here… so the link does not show pictures as of yet).

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Ein Hinweis: Im englischen Text findet ihr zwei Bildergallerien. Die wiederhole ich hier nicht noch einmal, sonst muss man zu viel scrollen. :)

Einige von euch erinnern sich vielleicht daran, dass wir letztes Jahr nicht beim Foostival dabei sein konnten. Immerhin konnte ich dennoch ein wenig bei der Organisation helfen, aber nicht annähernd so viel, wie ich gerne getan hätte. Dieses Jahr dagegen hatte ich mehr Zeit, konnt somit mehr mithelfen und bookahnerk und ich waren auch endlich vor Ort dabei!

Bevor ich jetzt aber über meine Eindrücke vom diesjährigen Foostival schreibe, möchte ich kurz noch für diejenigen, die das Foostival vielleicht nicht kennen, erklären, was das überhaupt ist. Im oben verlinkten Artikel vom letzten Jahr habe ich das ganze schon ausführlicher (allerdings nur auf Englisch) beschrieben. Daher jetzt kurz die längere Version auf Deutsch. Das Foostival wurde 2013 zum ersten Mal veranstaltet und zwar in Frankreich. Dort hatten sich Leute von den französischen Fanseiten zusammengetan, weil sie gemeinsam etwas organisieren wollten. “Von den Fans für die Fans” lautet das Motto des Foostivals. Im Jahr danach fragten die Franzosen in der Community herum, ob andere Länder sich nicht auch beteiligen möchten. Das Ganze war erstmal auf Europa beschränkt (keine Ahnung, ob Absicht oder Zufall). Ab 2014 waren wir in Deutschland dann also dabei! Dieses Jahr wurde es dann schon auf Belgien und Großbritannien erweitert (und somit fand das Foostival schon in 4 Ländern statt). Die größten Probleme gibt es tatsächlich meist, weil es sehr schwierig ist, eine Location zu finden, die bezahlbar ist und gleichzeitig PCs mit Internetverbindung zur Verfügung stellt, damit man auch spielen kann. In Großbritannien wurde das Foostival deshalb nur “offline” abgehalten ohne PCs. Fast alle Organisatoren gehören mindestens einer Fanseite an. In meinem Fall sind es ja sogar zwei.

Wie oben bereits geschrieben, wird das Foostival in jedem Land von den Fans selbst organisiert. Allerdings hatten wir glücklicherweise die europäischen Community Manager vor Ort. Ausnahmsweise aber mal als Gäste und nicht als Organisatoren.

Beim Foostival geht es vor allem darum, sich kennenzulernen. Auf der einen Seite ist das für diejenigen hinter den Fanseiten mal schön, die Leute zu treffen, die uns lesen, bei uns kommentieren bzw. sich in den jeweiligen Foren miteinander unterhalten.  Auf der anderen Seite ist es vielleicht für die Leser auch mal ganz schön, zu wissen, wer eigentlich hinter den Fanseiten steckt. Das Wichtigste ist aber immer, dass wir als Spieler andere Spieler treffen können.

Da ich bei der Organisation dabei war, hatte ich leider nicht so viel Zeit, mich mit den übrigen Teilnehmern zu unterhalten, wie ich es gerne getan hätte. Trotzdem hatte auch ich viel Spaß (und ich denke, dem Rest des Orga-Teams geht es da genauso). Ich konnte endlich mal wieder die großartigen Jungs von GuildNews sehen und ich konnte zusehen, wie das gw2community-Team den Tequatl-Kampf organisierte. Wo immer ich hinblickte, sah ich lächelnde Teilnehmer – vor allem bei der Verlosung des Loots. :p

Leider hat das “internationale” Jumping Puzzle dieses Jahr nicht geklappt. Im letzten Jahr konnten die Teilnehmer in Frankreich, in Deutschland und Rumänien (die sich allerdings nur für in-game Aktivitäten im Spiel getroffen hatten und sich nicht offline getroffen hatten). Jedenfalls gab es dieses Jahr Probleme bei den Franzosen, die mit ihren PCs nicht alle ins Spiel kamen. Irgendwann hatten wir uns dann entschieden, das Jumping Puzzle alleine zu machen. Leider war es dann aber auch schon Zeit für den Kampf gegen Tequatl, so dass wir das JP ausfallen ließen. Die Warterei war meiner Meinung nach schon sehr öde und dass wir es dann ausfallen ließen, war für einige bestimmt auch enttäuschend.

Insgesamt gesehen war das Foostival aber sehr schön und wir hatten trotzdem viel Spaß. Auch wenn ich an dem Tag wahrscheinlich viel zu viel Zeit damit verbracht habe, auf meinem Handy nach neuen Nachrichten von den Franzosen zu suchen, konnte ich mich trotzdem auch mit einigen Leuten unterhalten. Hoffentlich wird das nächstes Mal noch besser. Ich muss nur meine Multitasking-Fähigkeit stärker trainieren. ;)

Vielleicht fragt sich jetzt der ein oder andere aber auch: Was führte denn genau zu diesem Tag? Was muss eigentlich für so ein Foostival organisiert werden? Die relativ einfache Antwort ist: Es braucht sehr viele Voice Chats, Skype Nachrichten, E-Mails, viel Brainstorming und zig Google Drive-Dokumente. :p

An sich bevorzuge ich es, hier in meinem Blog alleine schalten und walten zu können, wie ich es mag, ohne irgendwelche Deadlines oder Leute, die mir sagen, worüber ich schreiben soll. Ich muss hier mit keinem koordinieren. Ab und zu “arbeite” ich aber auch sehr gerne mit anderen Leuten in der Community an einer gemeinsamen Sache (z.B. auch für “Pink Day in LA”). Man lernt einfach viele neue Menschen kennen und hat am Ende ein fertiges “Produkt” bzw. Event. Ich habe natürlich auch Glück, dass man z.B. mit GuildNews gut zusammenarbeiten kann. Es ist eben so, dass es beim Foostival nicht die eine Person gibt, die über allen anderen steht und sagt, was gemacht wird oder wer für welche Aufgaben verantwortlich ist. Wir organisieren alles gemeinsam und jeder sucht sich quasi selbst seine Aufgaben heraus. Man stimmt höchstens mal ab, ob man x oder y übernehmen kann oder soll. So bin ich auch nicht die Person, die vorne steht, sondern eher die, die im Hintergrund arbeitet. Ich habe mich vor allem um die offizielle Webseite gekümmert, um den Twitter-Account und Facebook, um die Anmeldungen, die reinkamen, die E-Mail-Kommunikation mit den Teilnehmern und dann auch die Anmeldung vor Ort. Ich führe gerne Listen, daher passte das auch ganz gut so. ;)

Wie gesagt, es gibt nicht den einen Boss. Das Foostival ist ein Gemeinschaftsprodukt und ich denke, darauf können wir dann auch stolz sein. Das Wichtige beim Foostival ist ja gerade, dass mehrere Seiten zusammenarbeiten und gerade deswegen mag ich diese Initiative auch so sehr. Alle Fanseiten arbeiten zusammen und am Ende haben wir alle Spaß. Ich denke, wir hatten auch mit dem zweiten Foostival wieder Erfolg und ich freue mich jetzt schon auf das dritte Foostival nächstes Jahr. :D

Die zweite Bildergallerie oben ist übrigens von Lord Walek, der mir erlaubt hat, seine Bilder hier im Blog zu verwenden. Wenn ihr alle Fotos sehen möchtet, die wir beim Foostival gemacht haben, besucht die Gallerie auf der offiziellen Webseite.

The winners of our anniversary giveaway

I’m not going to keep you waiting and will not bother you with a long blog post. Instead, I will get right to announcing who has won! We had 109 participants altogether. Congratulations to the lucky winners! Expect an email soonish. I may not get around to doing it tonight, but I’ll try to send out the codes etc. as fast as possible. The in-game GW2 package will be sent right to the player.

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Ich lasse euch nicht lange warten und werde auch kein ewig langes Blog-Posting voranstellen. Wir hatten insgesamt 109 Teilnehmer. An dieser Stelle also Gratulation an alle Gewinner! Ich werde versuchen, die E-Mails mit den Codes so schnell wie möglich rauszuschicken. Das werde ich wahrscheinlich nicht direkt heute schaffen. Das In-Game Päckchen in GW2 werde ich aber direkt an den Gewinner schicken.

The winners / Die Gewinner

Rift

  • Hellbug Mount: David
  • Storm Legion Imperial Editions: Caelis, Chris & Allen
  • Demon Helm: Jaedia, Bood, Tyrel Memmott, Elendil & NordKnight

GW2

  • Mini llama: Ravious, myrsine42, Melora, Joao Paulo & abandoned
  • GW2 t-shirt size L: Billiam & tryma
  • GW2 t-shirt size XL: Bradley
  • In-game items (in case you’re curious: 1 Mini Steam Hulk, 1 Aureus Dye, 1 Crimson Lion Sword Skin & 1 Phoenix Greatsword Skin): regiwolfe
  • Plush Charrlie: Tim Thorwarth

Trove

  • Costume mystery box: Jeremiah

Bookahneer’s Geekwatch: Now with more community!

Guild Wars 2 Bookahneer's GeekwatchWelcome to today’s Bookahneer’s Geekwatch! The place about miscellaneous interesting things about gaming.

I’ve always really liked the idea of Bookahneer’s Geekwatch and using this column to write about short news pieces that I wouldn’t be writing otherwise. However, lately it felt a bit obsolete as I posted gaming news for our three main games in other formats most of the time. I always liked the idea of having a look at other fansites and blogs, though, to see what they are up to. So I figured that we could use this column for both, bits of interesting gaming news as well as looking at other blogs and fansites.

Let’s start with the newest blog on my reading list that I only found because the owner left a comment here. – As a side note, for all those new to blogging: If you want to get noticed, interact with others! Comment on their blog posts and engage in conversations about their posts. This is how others will get to know you!

ShapestoneJournal

The Shapestone Journal is a blog dedicated only to Trove. The only one that’s focusing on the game as far as I know and the only other blog regularly writing about Trove other than ours. But I wouldn’t mention him here if the only reason was “he is the only blogger about Trove”. I also really enjoy his content! He summarizes the news we get from Trion’s live streams just as we do. But if you know me well enough, you know that I don’t see something like this as a competition. I quite like knowing that I can write about the news from the live stream, but I don’t have to, because the players can read the news elsewhere regardless. :p What you can also find there are guides. I’m going to recommend one post here now, it’s the guide to craft the Neon Nightsky wings. I’ve personally not looked into those too closely so far, because I have not yet been able to handle the wings properly. So, I don’t even need to think about crafting some special look. ;)

By the way, if you know of any other Trove blogs – or maybe you’re even the owner of such a blog –

dragonseasonThe second post I’m going to put on a pedestal here, so to say, is from Dragon Season. Yeah, you may wonder why I decide to feature a post from the very fan site that I am part of as well. ;) But this is special! Tilion has been away from the gaming world for some time and now that he is back, he is also back with new articles. I really liked this one where he looks at things we would love to see in Guild Wars 2‘s future.

4 years of Nerdy Bookahs!

On March 12, 2011, we started this very blog here. I did not think that we would still be around 4 years later. I also did not think that the content of the blog would stay this close to its original roots. :p

4 years ago, we started as “Nerdy Bookahs and their travel guide”. We knew we wanted to focus on Guild Wars 2, but that game had not been released yet. “and their travel guide” fit at that time because we were looking for a new MMO home, so to speak, and tried out various MMOs. Rift had just released back in March 2011 and I had bought it for myself as a motivator for studying for my exams. This worked very well, by the way. :)

March 12, 2011 in Rift

March 12, 2011 in Rift

My main motivation to start writing a blog about gaming had been simple: I wanted to practice my English. Living in Germany, this is not exactly easy to do as German is such a strong language that in everyday life, you do not meet a lot of English. Films and TV series are completely dubbed, by the way. Over the years, my motivation has changed. I play in international guilds, so practicing my English skills isn’t such a big issue anymore. But I love being part of gaming communities. I enjoy communicating with others, sharing such a geeky hobby and making new friends (Greece… it will happen… soon!). The only thing I would wish for was an automatic – and good! – translation of all my English blog posts, so we could more easily have them in German as well. ;)

Let’s look at a few statistics: Throughout the past 4 years, we have published 385 posts (386 with this one). We used 576 different tags for our posts. The tags used most often are: Guild Wars 2, Giveaway, Screenshots, Rift, ArenaNet and Bookahneer’s Geekwatch.

The 5 most often viewed posts of all time are

  1. Guild Wars 2: Region by level
  2. How to switch between the starter areas in Guild Wars 2
  3. Guild Wars 2: A FAQ for new players
  4. Rift vs. LotRO vs. World of Warcraft – a closer look at all three MMOs (all entries in one) (possibly also the longest post with 11668 words)
  5. Rift vs. LotRO vs. World of Warcraft – a closer look at all three MMOs (Part 3)
March 8, 2012 in Rift

March 8, 2012 in Rift

The top 6 most often used search terms that led people to our blog are

  1. eligium
  2. lotro vs wow
  3. guild wars 2 map
  4. anno online
  5. guild wars 2 races
  6. guild wars 2 asura

As you can clearly see from these lists: Guild Wars 2 is not the only topic we write about in this blog. But some of those are actually quite surprising, even to me. As I said, I tried out a lot of different MMOs – some of those because of “Project 10/10“, but also because I just enjoy trying out new games. I actually had no idea I had ever used “eligium” in my posts, but I did find one where I wrote about that game: Bookahneer’s Geekwatch (February 18, 2012): Hype, where art thou? – Scroll past my whining about Warhammer Online and WvW in Guild Wars 2 and you will find the small part about Eligium. Quite obviously, I didn’t like that game. Anno Online is quite fascinating as well. I’ve written exactly one post about this game sharing my first impressions.

March 7, 2013 in Guild Wars 2

March 7, 2013 in Guild Wars 2

I am also surprised how many players are still interested in the question “Lotro or WoW?”. Oddly enough, I had seen this search term leading to our blog before I had written the blog posts comparing all the existing and/or missing features of Lotro, Rift and World of Warcraft. It was this search term that gave me the idea to write those posts in the first place. The rest is obvious, I think. And of course, I had to include the asura in the list… they aren’t really a focus of our blog other than them being part of Guild Wars 2, but apparently, we still mention them quite often. For good reasons, naturally. They are superior to all the others, after all.

Of course, Guild Wars 2 has always been the major focus of this blog. There’s no doubt about that when looking at the statistics above. At some point, we also removed the “and their travel guide” part from our blog’s name, because we declared Guild Wars 2 our new MMO home and had no need to travel anymore. After Guild Wars 2 had released, I wasn’t even sure if it was still appropriate to write about other games. But I decided that since we had started this way, we will stay the way we are. Guild Wars 2 is a major focus, but it’s not the only game we write about.

And with this, other MMOs came, were tried out and were left by us again. With one exception, other than Guild Wars 2: Rift. I had quit it while it had the sub fee and only returned once or twice, but jumped back in the minute it went free to play. I have been enjoying my time in the game ever since (while also giving them money. Don’t you worry! I love the game enough to want to support them, after all). The newest addition to our regular “setup” is Trove. These three games couldn’t be any more different from each other if you ask me. Rift being the “classical MMO” with the trinity and an extensive housing feature, Guild Wars 2 with its focus on living story and action-oriented combat (but lacking when it comes to housing, for example) and Trove the voxel sandbox game with blocky graphics. Altogether, a perfect mix for me as one of those three games always offers me something I want from gaming at any given time. ;) So here is to many more years of blogging… hopefully!

***

And In case you’re wondering why I’m publishing this post several days early: Real life. I will very likely be very busy next week and figured I’d rather write and publish this post now rather than later. At the same time, I can already give you a little “spoiler” of what’s going to be posted on March 12. If you’ve been here longer for a year already, you may remember that on our anniversary, we tend to start a giveaway. This year will be a little different. We will have two giveaways! One for Guild Wars 2 and one for Rift. Both ArenaNet and TrionWorlds were kind enough to give us some codes to give away (how about mini llamas or a hellbug mount or demon helms? Does that sound good to you?). So, make sure to come back here on March 12 if you want to win something! :)

March 7, 2015 in The Repopulation

…and their travel guide… – March 7, 2015 in The Repopulation

Foostival 2015!

FoostivalI know I’m quite late with this. The British Foostival page has been online, announced and advertised for for quite some time already. Us Germans were a bit slower. But we’re finally ready to announce that yes, Foostival is coming to Germany again! Foostival 2015 will take place on March 21 in France, England, Germany and Belgium! Just like last year, the German Foostival will be in the rooms of the SAE institute in Hamburg.

But why am I telling you all this? Well, if you’re German, click here to read the German text as I’ll tell you more about our Foostival down there. If you’re not, but you still want to know what Foostival is (or if you’re close to London and want to participate yourself), read on here. :)

Foostival first took place in 2013. Back then, it was only held in France. Foostival is an offline community meeting made by fans for fans. Watch the next two videos to get a glimpse on what to expect from Foostival. In short: We don’t only want to sit in front of our computers, never knowing who the other people are. We want to actually meet others and get to know them!

After Foostival 2013, the French fansites reached out to other European fansites and in 2014 it took place in France and Germany. It was also organized in-game by Romanian fans. Sadly, bookahnerk and I could not go to the one in Germany as we were too busy with real life, but we helped a bit with the organization already.

 

This year – *knocks on wood* – it will be different. We fully intend to be there for the German Foostival 2015! And we’re in the middle of organizing everything together with GuildNews and gw2community.de. But that’s not the only change. This year, Foostival will also take place in Belgium and in London! They (Black Lion Chest and Healing over Time are the organizers over there) started already with the selling of tickets. They have a slightly different system where you immediately buy your ticket. Go to the English Foostival website to get more information. You will also be able to buy your tickets  there (just look for the link on the top).

quagganBut don’t be sad if you can’t go. There is a “Draw me a Quaggan” contest that you can enter. It’s quite easy to tell what you have to do for this one, right? In case it’s not that obvious: Draw a quaggan. There aren’t that many instructions. Just do some quaggan-related art and send it to list-eu@foostival.com (including your GW2 display name). The deadline for this is Monday March 16th, at 10:59PM GMT and the winner will be chosen at the Foostival! But please don’t ask me what you can win, as I don’t know this myself yet. It’s organized by the French fansites.

FoostivalFoostival 2015 wird dieses Jahr wieder wie letztes Jahr auch im SAE-Institut in Hamburg stattfinden.

Vorweg aber erst nochmal ein kurzer historischer Abriss über das Foostival: Foostival ist ein Offline-Community Meeting, welches von Fans (bzw. Fanseiten) für Fans von Guild Wars 2 durchgeführt wird. Es ist ja irgendwie auch das Schöne an Online-Spielen, dass man nicht nur alleine vor dem PC spielt, sondern sich irgendwann auch aufmachen und die ganzen Leute einmal treffen kann, die man sonst nur “virtuell” auf dem Bildschirm sieht.

Zum ersten Mal fand es 2013 in Frankreich statt.

Nach 2013 fragten die französischen Organisatoren bei anderen europäischen Fanseiten an, ob auch bei uns Interesse an der Organisation eines Foostivals bestünde. 2014 gab es das Foostival dann nicht nur in Frankreich, sondern auch bei uns in Deutschland. Rumänische Fans hatten das Foostival immerhin in-game organisiert. Leider konnten damals bookahnerk und ich nicht hier in Deutschland vor Ort sein. Das Real Life hatte uns zu fest im Griff. Bei der Organisation im Vorfeld hatten wir aber schon ein wenig helfen können.

 

Dieses Jahr (wir klopfen an dieser Stelle wie wild auf Holz) wird es aber anders sein! Dieses Jahr sind wir dabei! Momentan stecken wir mitten in der Organisation des Events mit GuildNews und gw2community.de. Daneben wird das Foostival dieses Jahr auch noch in Belgien und in London stattfinden. Die Organisatoren in London (Black Lion Chest und Healing over Time) haben mit dem Ticketverkauf bereits begonnen. Das aber nur am Rande, falls ihr dort eure Tickets kaufen wollt – das ist dann aber natürlich auch nur für das Foostival in London und nicht bei uns. ;)

Das Foostival findet in allen vier Ländern (Frankreich, Belgien, Großbritannien und Deutschland) zur gleichen Zeit statt, nämlich am 21. März 2015.

Bei uns kauft ihr aber nicht direkt euer Ticket, sondern ihr meldet euch (und eine weitere Person, wenn ihr nicht alleine kommen mögt) hier an und wenn sich zu viele anmelden sollten (die Räume bieten nur einer begrenzten Anzahl an Personen Platz), wird das Los entscheiden, wer teilnehmen darf und wer nicht. Natürlich müsst ihr aber auch nichts zahlen, wenn ihr gar nicht wisst, ob ihr teilnehmen dürft! Und ihr werdet eine E-Mail erhalten, die euch mitteilen wird, ob ihr einen Platz bekommen habt oder erst einmal auf der Warteliste steht.

Ein Video mit allen Erklärungen gibt es mittlerweile auch dank Durzan:

Bei Fragen könnt ihr jederzeit eine E-Mail an list-de@foostival.com schreiben. Wir helfen euch dort gerne weiter. :)

quagganAber auch wenn ihr nicht zum Foostival kommen könnt, könnt ihr trotzdem vielleicht auf eine andere Art dabei sein. Es gibt den Zeichne mir einen Quaggan-Wettbewerb! Schickt euer Kunstwerk, welches natürlich mindestens einen Quaggan beinhalten sollte, bis spätestens Montag, den 16. März 2015 22:59 GMT (also 23:59 in Deutschland), an list-eu@foostival.com. Die Teilnehmer des Foostivals werden dann den Gewinner bzw. die Gewinnerin bestimmen. Fragt mich aber bitte nicht, was ihr gewinnen könnt. Ich habe nämlich keine Ahnung. Das organisieren die französischen Fanseiten und das ist wohl erst mal noch eine Überraschung.