It looks like much of my gaming mojo has returned, if not (yet) the posting to follow. I think, though, that the new (much) lower rate of posting had in itself started to be habit forming. So here’s a post to try break the cycle! And despite the title, Elite Dangerous isn’t the only thing I’ve been playing lately — but it has certainly been taking the lion’s share of the time until now.

The other game that is looking to threaten the supremacy of Elite Dangerous as my ‘most played’ in the upcoming days and weeks though is Vermintide 2. A fact that has taken me something by surprise. I last played VT2 when it came out, basically. It’s had a number of DLC and significant patch releases since then, including one that essentially dealt with my largest complaint about the game. Being that it was far too stingy with loot before. Which in turn though, was already a fair improvement over Vermintide 1’s loot-stingy ways.

Elite Dangerous

I resisted for a bit. I went on a mission binge — in particular delivery missions with trade occupying any remaining cargo space. Then I decided to skip the middle-man and just do the trading entirely on my own steam. Then I thought, ‘perhaps exploration is the path to riches’. There is literally a series of tools called, ‘Road to Riches’ for exploration. The idea being that you go and map out earth-like or terraformable worlds beyond the bubble of humanity and bring the data back.

There is a bonus for being the first ever to explore and map something out — but everyone can go and do their own mapping, and these planetary types can be worth a lot of credits.

But… Unfortunately; while all these means were ‘OK’ the undeniable truth was sitting there. Watching. Waiting. Waiting for me to recognise it.

That truth being: Despite the nerfs earlier in the year — mining is still many, many times over faster to accrue credits than any other option you might care to consider. On the plus side I suppose, mining in Elite Dangerous is a little more involved than what I was used to from the likes of EVE.

I mean sure, there is the surface laser means of mining things. And you can make some pretty good money by doing so. But you can also arm yourself with a pulse spectrum analysis scanner and prospector limpets to identify asteroids with with a core of precious minerals. And then insert explosives of varying charge-levels into the fissures. Get a few of those things going and let the whole thing explode (with rather satisfying sound effects, I might add).

Taking this path has sped my path to financial freedom within Elite significantly. I can now choose any number of paths and options to do just because I want to do them. And with that, it might be time to start unlocking the Engineers and the enhancements they can make to my ships. I love almost everything about my Python, but its jump range — after spending a fair amount of time in the Diamondback Explorer and then the Asp Explorer — is tiiiiny.

Must. Go. Further!

Vermintide 2

Wow. Things are different now, eh?

We’re up to patch 3.1. I would be hard pushed to say what exactly has changed since launch, except that the latest patch seemed to be quite a significant balance pass. On weapons and talents both.

In any case — apparently I had never fully finished the first campaign of Vermintide 2. I still had a couple of missions that were technically ‘locked’, even though I could’ve sworn I’d done them at some point. Except maybe the very last mission of the first campaign. I don’t recall ever seeing that one before.

But now I have! And it was quite grand! I’ve been playing on Veteran difficulty for the most part, working my way up to an appropriate gear level to try out Champion difficulty again. The addition of ranged weapons being able to friendly fire on Champion and above is just a little terrifying though. I know I’ve done Champion difficulty runs in the past, but I just don’t at all recall whether friendly fire was a feature of that difficulty mode back then or not.

I’m playing as Sienna — the Bright Mage (fire mage) — in particular in her Unchained ‘career’ (class). The Unchained Brightmage is fairly tanky, putting 50% of damage received into the ‘Overcharge’ mechanic, with the higher the Overcharge bar goes the more damage she increases with melee too, up to a whopping 60% dmg increase.

Of course, it isn’t all roses — if your Overcharge maxes out, you explode. Rather fatally so if you’re doing it outside of the more controlled explosion that is her ultimate. Sienna is level 24 now — just about 25, where I would unlock another talent option — and is still my highest level class.

I am contemplating levelling Bardin the Dwarf up next for something a little different. :)