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About
Facts:
I'm a dude in my twenties.
I work for MS on the Xbox, writing programs to test it.
I have a cat and two dogs.
I am programming a MUD from scratch and an SSL implementation, for fun in my spare time.


Conjecture:
Nutella > Peanut Butter
Hard candy > chocolates
Sunny > rainy
Ruby > Python
Ancient Greek > Latin
Showers in the morning > those at night
over > under (re: toilet paper)
Subs > dubs
HTML+CSS > BBCode

Frontpaged
Groundhog Day: Wave After Wave, This Is My Ocean
Obscurity: Nobody has ever heard of Lemmings

Currently playi--who am I kidding? I'm just playing Dark Souls
FTL
Halo 4, at least ostensibly
Dark Cloud 2


Favorites:
Dark Souls
La-Mulana
Geometry Wars 2
Burnout Paradise
Rayman (original)
Tetris Attack
Windwaker
Metroid Prime series
Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3
Descent 1-3
Bayonetta
English Country Tune


Other places you might find me:
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Lately I have been part of a podcast
I watch a fair bit of anime.
I sometimes listen to music.


Games on hold:
3D Dot Game Heroes
Uncharted 2
Disgaea 2
Mario Galaxy 2
Monster Tale, Heny Hatsworth (haven't used the DS in a while)
Dead Space
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About a week more, and I still haven't given up on Demon's Souls. In fact, maybe we're starting to reach a mutual understanding. I follow a kind of sine wave of pain/joy that goes something like this:

- Grind a bit on areas I know about.
- Venture meekly into a new area.
- Start off well, making some good progress.
- Get caught off guard and die. (Pay attention, you fool!)
- Maybe die a second time (without touching my bloodstain) for some dumb ass reason because I thought "Oh yeah I can totally make it back to my body--hey, what's this do!?"
- Make it to the boss, but choose not to go in yet.
- Go through the level again, maybe without too many problems.
- Go fight the boss. Possibly die repeatedly.
- Eventually beat the boss.
- Scream at the top of my lungs like there's no tomorrow.
- Eat a lozenege to repair the damage.


It's not a bad process, really. A bit of give and take. Of course, if I'm ever feeling optimistic, I need only talk to anyone, and they'll be all, "Oh yeah? Well, wait until the next area, where fifteen foot tall rune-inscribed metallic ninja hyper-skeletons quadruple wield flaming katanas that shoot lightning. And also lasers", which puts the fear of god right back in me (where, the game purports, it belongs).



Last time I blogged, I was giddy from having beaten the first real boss in the game, the Tower Knight. I proceeded to the Stonefang Tunnel and then the Shrine of Storms. I have a few anecdotes I can share.

I guess there might be spoilers here? I don't talk about any plot, but I will talk about enemies and bosses I encounter. On the other hand, if you're playing without consulting any kind of spoilery help like the fantastic Demon's Souls wiki then you're psychotically good or patient.


Stonefang and "Surly Ed"

In the Stonefang Tunnel, you eventually make your way to an elevator that takes you underground, where works Blacksmith Ed. This guy is all manner of useful, since he can give you the special or higher level armor and weapon upgrades.

Unfortunately, Ed is ded now. I don't quite know how it happened. All I know is I came back after beating Flamelurker and he was gone without a trace. Some people on Atlus forms suggest that the area attack upon death of a Large Bearbug might have killed him through the floor since you pass through tunnels close underneath that room.

If that's really the case, then that is a colossal, cosmic joke on me. I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Not having "Surly Ed" around may prevent me from having the gear to get through some of the harder areas or bosses later. That's almost as game breaking as the time CT attacked Boldwin, turning the otherwise safe Nexus into a frothing cesspool of incessant hate.


Flames, the Lurker

Yeah, speaking of Flamelurker, I eventually managed to beat him! I Soul Arrowed him to death while dodging around. Well, actually, I had a little help...

I noticed someone had put themselves up for co-op right outside his gate, and I jumped at the chance to make use of him. The guy was basically a tank. He was in close for most of the fight, doing very little damage, but soaking up plenty of it. I decided on a whim to call him "Spongey" (sic), but then he died. Ah well, nevermind; he served the valuable purpose of distracting the boss, leaving me open to deal most of the damage.



The hardest part was near the end, where Flamelurker basically shoots himself up with speed. Keeping away from his ridiculous, constant area attacks, while casting and also juggling both health and mana items is tricky. I barely scraped by.


Coop is fun

Emboldened by my experience with co-op, I cooled down by putting myself up for coop several times. You get souls from fighting in the host's world, but no items.

On the other hand, one guy I joined dropped ninety-five Full Moon Grasses. That seems like kind of a lot, like he owns a farm or something. I gladly took them; never can have too many heals! Still not sure if he was expecting something in return. Sucker.

This one time we were invaded twice in a row by PvPers. There were a total of three of us. Had the aggressors known, I doubt they would have invaded. The other two allies ran off to a vantage point, and I encountered the enemy myself. Luckily he was both weak and sucked, so I was able to defeat him easily, earning me a high-five from the host. The second one was tougher and had better gear, but three versus one is really good odds. Falsenipple pointed out all kinds of tactical errors they made, when I told him about it.


Red Dragon, Blue Dragon, Miranda--I mean, Miralda

I beat the Red Dragon in Boletaria. It wasn't hard, since I used the cheap method of chipping away at his health from the top of one of the guard towers as he makes his bombing runs. I don't feel bad. He's a god damn dragon; of course I'm going to exploit any trick possible.

I was doing this to clear out the little "dragon roost" field off to the side of the castle, where some nice loot is lying about. Unfortunately, the pesky blue dragon was still there, swishing his tail around like owns the place. Well, he's a dragon; I guess he can own whatever he wants, huh? However, killing the red dragon raised the world tendency to Pure White, so upon re-entering it, the roost was empty!

Pure White tendency also unlocks a little area to the side of the beginning. In it is a set of really heavy armor, some other assorted loot, and OH MY GOD RUN FOR IT, IT'S EXECUTIONER MIRANDA--I MEAN MIRALDA, who charges you with a very dangerous looking hammer-axe!



So I freaked out, ran away, dodged, and Soul Arrowed her to death, earning me this sweet looking set of gear. Cumulatively it was too heavy to bother wearing, but I like the crazy hood too much to pass it up. Now I look like an awesome freak.



Oh yeah, the Armored Spider

Huh, I guess I beat the Armored Spider sometime before Flamelurker. I exploited him by clinging to the left side of the tunnel and Soul Arrowing him. Man, that really is the Swiss Army Knife of spells. Thanks, Occams, for strongly recommending it to me.

Tell you what, though, his massive fireball is fearsome. Run away as far as you possibly can if that happens. Its area of effect is farther than it appears.


The Dragon God. Woah.



Immediately after Flamelurker you can advance to fight the imposing-sounding Dragon God. Indeed, he's pretty big, but his fight is pathetically easy. It consists of clearing some rubble away that obstructs you from moving between hiding spots and devices that basically kill him for you. Yes, to defeat the Dragon God you are tasked with assuming the role of a construction worker. I cleared the rubble like a pro as I ran, using the shield bash attack of the super cool looking Adjudicator's Shield I found lying around on the ground. No joke. It was just lying there. Who does that??


Mr. Funny bird head gross body jabbers, A.K.A Adjudicator



Doesn't his name sound impressive? I do love a good name like that. He was actually a pushover. Maybe my Dragon Longsword +1 helped ("dragon" = fire damage). Plus he was already crippled from the start, what with having a giant blade protruding from his side. I even killed him with melee only! His sideways swinging cleaver attack is telegraphed really openly and can be rolled under.

I will explicitly thank falsenipple here, because his real-time coaching helped me greatly with getting a handle on the Shrine of Storms at the beginning. Though, he laughed at my stupid mistakes too, so... I guess screw that guy? Dude seriously has a near-photographic memory of the entire map. I was impressed.

That's it for my daring exploits so far. Really, to all but the most diehard fans, this was probably pretty boring, wasn't it? I'll try to do better next time. Maybe. See ya.



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