Monthly Archives: March 2016

Artistically Speaking

About a year and a half ago, I started doodling in the Abradadoodle style. It started out as simple, pencil-drawn attempts like this (these are a few of my favorites):

Doodle 2-4 Doodle 3-10 Doodle 4-1 Doodle 4-7 Doodle 4-10 Doodle 4-16 Doodle 4-17 Doodle 6-7 Doodle 7-4

After a week or so of doodling by hand, I decided to get a free drawing app for my KindleFire, Sketchbook Express. (I later “had” to upgrade to Sketchbook Pro because Autodesk stopped supporting all other versions.) When I first started using Sketchbook, my doodles looked about the same as by hand, just colorful. It didn’t take long for me to start adding layers and backgrounds, and basic textures. A few of my favorites:

Sketch17502437 Sketch175145543 Sketch164225846 Sketch175163151 Sketch186173511 12919155_955586984537861_1402622360_n Sketch186145229 Sketch182125014 Sketch20411453 Sketch1459298 12921174_955586991204527_1372564815_n 12899924_955587007871192_1323832789_n

Unfortunately, after school started again back in the fall, I stopped doodling as frequently as I used to. I’ll still do an occasional doodle, but not very often.

Saturday night, I decided I wanted a unique header for both of my Wizard101 blogs (regular/original wordpress blog and the Duelist Community Edition version of that blog). I did a little bit of research and stumbled across GIMP. I decided to download the program Sunday afternoon. I’ve probably been having a little TOO much fun with the program. 🙂

I started out with the header:

90832118-ca5b-44fd-a614-8eab1893ec70 14399cb6-574f-4b39-958a-97d8b46178f9 Doodle Header 1 Header Spells Header NPCs

I made several before deciding on the doodle one. (After all, those little Abracadoodles are the reason I started exploring art based on Wizard101.)

I found the program easy enough to use that I wanted to keep creating, so I put together extremely basic character graphics. They weren’t anything exciting, especially the lettering:

Jenna Pyromancer Kayla Thundersong Diviner Natalie Warlord 1 Suri WinterSong Ice

Between Google searches and YouTube, I learned a few other new techniques like icy text, flaming font and glowing letters:

Suri WinterSong Ice 2 Jenna Pyromancer 4 Natalie Warlord 5

Then last night I was browsing Central and came across a whole bunch of guides for making signatures, avatars, and wallpapers. I’ve made quite a few of those:

Emma Banner 1 Emma Banner 1-A Emma Banner 1-Cxcf Suri Wintersong JennaBanner 1-B Jenna Banner 1-A Suri and Jenna Banner Fallon Banner 1 Balance Avi Emma Avi

I think my favorite so far is the one of Jenna and Suri (Together we are Unstoppable). I also really like the second one of Emma and the profile Emma. I’m really enjoying making these graphics. They’re a lot of fun, and not very difficult to put together either! ^-^

~Emma

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Test Realm Reviews

Test Realm Status

Test realm launched at the perfect time for me: the start of my spring break! This means I can enjoy playing and testing without feeling guilty about putting off homework or doing homework and wishing I was testing. It also means I can blog more over the next two weeks! 🙂

Test realm launched yesterday, March 17, announcing the additions of Daily Assignments, three new Skeleton Key bosses, fishing in Zafaria, a Gear Vault, a few spell updates, and other, small, miscellaneous updates. (Click here to see the update notes.)

Daily Assignments

Daily Assignment.png

So far I really like the concept of Daily Assignments, especially the rewards. The assignments I have had so far have been super easy, especially considering the rewards listed. My guess is the quests will be more difficult the farther into the 15 days you are. Unfortunately, Test Realm is only scheduled to be open for 11 days, which means we won’t be able to test a full 15 day cycle.  As of right now, I’ve done the first daily assignment on 5 of 6 characters on Emma’s account.

The Quests

Day 1: Emma (level 110), Kayla (level 32), Fallon (level 26), and Alyssa (level 16) needed to defeat 1 Rotting Fodder in the Haunted Cave (off of Triton Avenue) but Jenna (level 79) needed to defeat 1 Sokkwi Protector in the Hall of Champions (in the Krokosphinx). Based on my other 4 characters and observations I made of others running the quest, I’m starting to wonder if Jenna’s Day 1 was a glitch. It might be that everyone starts with the Fodders, but I’m really not sure. I hope more of the quests are scaled for level…

Day 2: Emma had to go to Elik’s Edge–that was it. Just go there. No fighting or anything. A little disappointing for a level 110. Kayla, Fallon, and Alyssa all had to go to Elik’s Edge too. And, like Day 1, Jenna was the oddball. She had to defeat 1 Foul Reaper in The Crucible in DragonSpyre instead. I think either everyone else is glitching (particularly Emma) or Jenna is…It seems weird to me that everyone else had the same quest.

Day 3: Emma had to defeat 1 Walking Dead in the Village of Sorrow in MooShu (5 Arena Tickets). Jenna and Alyssa had to visit Unicorn Park (the small section of Unicorn Way where the Unicorn statue is) in Wizard City (5 Arena Tickets each). Kayla and Fallon both had to defeat 1 Nirini Warrior in the Palace of Fire in Krokotopia (5 Arena Tickets each).

Day 4: Emma finally had something scaled to her level! She had to go to Serpent Island in Ruined Alcazar in Khrysalis. No, she didn’t have to battle anything, but at least it was in a high level world! Jenna, Kayla, and Fallon had to defeat 1 Charmed Slave in the Royal Hall in Krokotopia. Alyssa had to defeat a Scarlet Screamer on Triton Avenue in Wizard City.

Day 5: Emma had to defeat 1 Burning Flame Wing in The Forum in DragonSpyre. Jenna had to visit Newgate Prison in Marleybone. Kayla, Fallon, and Alyssa had to defeat 1 Gobbler Muncher on Colossus Boulevard.

The Rewards

Daily Assignment 2.png

So far I have observed that the gold rewards on days 1, 2, 6, 7, and 11 have been scaled to level. For example, on Day 1, Emma (110) earned 600 gold, but Alyssa (16) earned 200.

The Crowns rewards is a wonderful addition! While 10, 15, and 25 isn’t much on it’s own, those Crowns earned during the 15 day cycle will add up fairy quickly. If you’re doing Daily Assignments on all 6 characters, every 15 days you can earn 300 Crowns. (That’s approximately 7,300 Crowns every year!) And if you do 10 Trivia quizzes, that’s an additional 100 Crowns. And if you want 10 videos, that’s another 100 Crowns. So if you do all three daily, you could earn up to 80,300 Crowns every single year–more if you have the patience to watch more than 10 videos!

I was so excited for Day 5 to get here! I’ve been so curious about the mystery chest prizes! Every item I got was a Crowns Item of some sort, though 4 of the 5 can be crafted. I suspect that Day 10 will be slightly more coveted/rare Crowns items and Day 15 will be expensive/rare/coveted Crowns items (such as permanent mounts, pets, packs, mastery amulets…). I’m super excited to find out!

I thought the “unveiling” of the prizes was a super cute and fun idea!

The Prizes

Day 5

I’m excited to continue testing Daily Assignments when Test Realm goes back online Monday!

Skeleton Key Bosses

Skelton Keys.png

I decided to try the key bosses today, so with 2 Wooden Keys, 1 Stone Key, and 8 Gold Keys in my backpack, I set off on 3 new adventures. So far, I’ve only fought Ra, but I’m excited to try the other two! (Although I’m a little intimidated by some of the things I’ve heard about Omen Stribog–Minion with 99,999 health! Same as Malistaire the Undying Shadow form 2!)

Ra

When I first entered the Krokotopia Library, it took me a minute to figure out where the Key Room was. Upon first glance, the room looked the same as always. I was expecting Zan’ne to have a quest or to see the Locked door or to see the float Skeleton Key sigil in the actual library so it took me entirely too long to notice the new doorway on the right.

Wood Key 1

Go through the doorway to enter this corridor where the Key sigil is located. I was surprised that there wasn’t anyone else around. I had been expecting to share my 2 keys with someone (and hopefully in turn get a few extra runs with their keys), but it’s not that big of a deal.

Picture 2016-03-23 15-56-53Picture 2016-03-23 16-01-19

The Battle

Ra Alone.png

Ra, Rank 4 Balance Boss, 3,750 Health

Ra with Minions

Minions: Sia the Perceiver, Rank 3 Life Elite, 1,150 Health; Hu the Commander, Rank 3 Fire Elite, 1,000 Health; Heka the Haruspect, Rank 3 Myth Elite, 1,100 Health

Cheats

Let’s Speed this Contest Up: At the start of Round 1, Ra cheat casts Power Play

Accuracy is Such a Fickle Thing: At the start of Rounds, 1, 2, 3,4, 5, 7,8, 9, 11, 13… Ra casts either a +10% Precision on you and your teammates, a +10% Precision on himself and his minions, a -45% Black Mantle on you and your teammates, OR a -45% Black Mantle on himself and his minions

Let’s Balance Things Out a Bit: A the ends of round 4, 12, 20, 28, etc, Ra casts Amplify on everyone (both his team and yours). At the ends of rounds 8, 16, 24, 32, etc, Ra casts Fortify on everyone.

Drops

Gold (494-595)
Unique Gear: Ra’s Rod of Integrity, Ra’s Integrity Cowl
Housing Items: Krokotopian Scarab, Ice Mummy
Seeds: Alligator Pear Tree, Honey Bee Plant

Ixcax Cursedwing

I spent half an hour searching both the inside and outside of the Black Sun Pyramid and I could NOT find the location of this boss. I’ll continue searching, but I may have to wait until Live Realm when it’s a popular location…

Zafaria Fishing

Zafaria Fishing.png

I spent a little time fishing in Zafaria the other day, specifically in the Elephant Graveyard. I generally enjoy fishing, but don’t do it often. I drained one energy elixir but decided I didn’t want to continue at the time. I might return to it later today or tomorrow…

So far, I’ve only caught 2 fish in the Elephant Graveyard. The new Sentinel and Gargoyles.

The new Sentinel, Pacuman, is super cute. I love all the puns that can be found in the Spiral! ^-^

PacumanPacuman 2

Gargoyle

I’m really excited for a second fishing spot for Gargoyles beside Darkmoor. You need 2 for the crafted deck, but it took me forever to catch the 2 I needed in Darkmoor. I caught 4 the other day in the Graveyard. It’ll make crafting Jenna and Suri’s decks a little easier. 🙂

Gear Vault

Gear Vault.png

I am SO excited for the addition of the Gear Vault! I have a TON of Crown and/or No Auction gear on Emma that I want to keep but they’re taking up most of my bank and backpack spaces. I’m so so so excited to move them into the vault for convenient storage!

And good news for those who don’t want to spend Crowns on the vault: the (current) recipe from Toshio is SUPER easy!

Gear Vault 2

Picture from Stars of the Spiral

Other (Major) Updates

Spells

Spell Update.png

I’m excited that Call of Khuluhu now attacks all targets at once even though my Death is no where NEAR 100. That spell took FOR-EV-ER. The animation lasted probably close to a minute. I’m SO GLAD it was shortened!

I’m not sure how I feel about Nature’s Wrath, Forest Lord, Orthrus, Power Nova, Frost Giant, Fire Dragon, Triton, Storm Lord, and Skeletal Dragon being trainable to wizards outside of those schools. Those were spells that the wizard of the correlating school had to do spell quests for, some of which may have been considered difficult. However, since they’re available to 100+, I don’t see them being very popular. From what I have gathered, very few wizards past 50ish use attacks from outside their own school…

Overall Opinion: A

I’m looking forward to the Spring Update. I’m especially excited for Daily Assignments and the Gear Vault! I’m looking forward to testing more next week!

~Emma

Member Benefit: Double Pet Rewards

I was really surprised Friday morning when I saw double pet is back again. We had double pet 3 or 4 weeks ago…As much as I love double pet, I was hoping for free tournaments or free respect (free training point buy back)–we haven’t had either of those since September! Even though I’m disappointed it’s the same benefit two months in a row, I’m taking FULL advantage of it!

So far, I have trained two pets to Mega: one from Ancient and one from Baby. I have two other pets I’ve trained to Ancient and one is well on it’s way to Epic. I’ve also trained several pets to Adult. Since I did a bit of training on Test Realm Friday before the servers closed for the weekend, I saved myself a little heartache (and snacks!) by not training a few pets that were supposed to be promising, but failed at Teen and Adult. Thanks to Test Realm, I only trained one true fail instead of three or four! (The failed pet was one I hatched this weekend, so he wasn’t available in Test.)

Picture 2016-03-19 22-57-13Picture 2016-03-19 22-57-35Picture 2016-03-19 22-58-16Picture 2016-03-19 22-58-21Picture 2016-03-19 22-58-33Picture 2016-03-19 22-59-47

Before now, I never thought I’d consider May Cast Unicorn a failed talent, but in the case of both Nala and Maddie, it is. I really want a pet with Fairy, Spell Defying,  Spell Proof, Pain Bringer and Pain Giver for Natalie to use in PvP. But Nala is definitely one of the best pets I’ve ever trained and will work really well until I get my dream, generic pet!

Charlie was originally deemed a fail when he got the fire damage talent at Epic (since I wanted the double resist, double damage, & fairy pet) but after talking to a friend for a bit about Charlie, I realized he still had the potential to make a great fire pet for Jenna! I was hoping he’d get the other fire talent in the pool, Fire Dealer, but I would be happy with Proof or Fairy instead. He got Fairy! Now I’m trying to hatch a new fire pet with Pain Giver, Pain Bringer, Fire Dealer, Fire Giver, and either Defy, Proof, Fairy, or Infallible. (The bottom pet was a failed attempt at that pet.)

I still have a day left to train. I’m planning on getting Maddie to Mega unless (he? she? it?) gets a selfish talent (read: cunning). I’ll also have time to try another fire pet hatch and make good progress on training. Fingers crossed that I don’t have any more “major-put-on-the-shelf-and-never-touch-again” fails (like Annie) for the rest of this month’s double pet!

~Emma