Announcing… Scotchtober!

I’ll start right off by apologising to those who are reading this who are or have been struggling with an alcohol addiction. I’m not trying to be disrespectful. If alcohol-containing or -related posts are difficult for you to read, skip the ones with the Scotchtober tag — which won’t be until next month anyway. (Not counting this post, obviously.)


Dahakha challenged me — in jest, I’m sure — to post a daily pic of me having a tequila during Tequilatember. While that does appeal, October is my birthday month which sort of justifies me drinking a little more. And I prefer scotch, which goes well with October, so there we have it. Scotchtober.

If I do it, you’ll likely get grainy, hand-shaky shots of whiskey glasses, because I’m not happy with myself in photographs. (Sort of like Darth Vader wasn’t happy with the Light Side.)

It’s just silly enough to appeal to me, and a shot of Scotch every evening is supposed to be good for you, right? I’m utterly not afraid of this going down a dreadfully slippery slope paved with Glenlivet bottles because last New Year’s Eve was, how do I put it, my liver’s cry for mercy. And I listened. Being sick as a dog for 2 days worked wonders on my hearing.


I’ve never been a particularly heavy drinker, or a drinker at all outside social events. My problem is that the older I get, the less I can handle my liquor. And I most certainly did drink too much at NYE. Lesson, apparently, learned. Whenever I try to drink too much now my brain, liver, pancreas and toenails say NO! Probably a useful thing, that, given the damage my dad did to his own liver over a lifetime of functional alcoholism.

Yikes, we’re getting way too serious here again.

Meece update

There’s nothing new under the Corpse here today anyway. My brain is slowly being fried by sleeping in discrete packets of 2-3 hours at a time during the night to feed those voracious little bastards I was foolish enough to take on lovely baby mice we rescued. I’m an 8-hours a night kinda girl, especially these days (anxiety meds tend to have that effect, at least one me). Fortunately the spousal unit is ex-Navy and quite accustomed to getting up at WTF-o’clock and, more importantly, to waking my ungrateful and grumbling ass up when required.

The babbies are growing — it doesn’t seem that way to me, but I think I’ve gone all Jewish mother on them: they’re always too skinny, not clean enough, and they never call or write. Night 3 came and went and they’re all still with us, all getting darker and more furry (well, fuzzy at the moment), all wrigglier than anything that small has any right to be. They have distinct fingers and little claws, tiny little whiskers, and apparently the teeth are coming in too; they can’t bite yet but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before I become victim #1.

And that’s it. Go read someone else now! I wasn’t going to post at all today, dammit!

Blaugust Day 18 – ARK: Die Another Day

…and another, and another, and another.

(EDIT – ARK had the last laugh. Seems that the server settings sliders do *not* affect single-player games, judging by the GameUserSettings.ini file I just poked around in. Which explains why I wasn’t godlike… or even nooblike… Anyway, read on.)

Yesterday’s play session was the typical second session of any new game, and this applies to all games — computer-based, card games, board games — you get the picture. It’s also known as Your Beginner’s Luck Has Run Out, Byatch!

I went on and on about dying in yesterday’s post, but truth be told I did more almost-dying than real dying — hell, it was only 3 or 4 times in total over a few hours and most of those were newbie mistakes from gawking at the scenery too much and not seeing the dinosaur for the trees.

So when I fired up the game this afternoon, it was with confidence that I was going to get way more done than yesterday, since I was no longer such a noob.



It started out nicely enough, just to lull me into a false sense of security. I made it back to my original ‘house’ (well, foundations) and was admiring the gradual goldening of the beach as the sun came up behind the headland…

I think I found the perfect spot

…when I noticed the brontosaurus who had spent most of the previous day peacefully browsing by the water’s edge coming my way.

That’s nice, I thought to myself. Large peaceful herbivore, not too smart. I’ll have to shoo him away so he doesn’t squash my foundations.

And then he fell over, and I noticed he was kind of covered in gore. Yes, it’s really obvious! Maybe I was dazzled by the sunrise or something.

dino dinner
“Oh look,” I thought, “he’s sleeping! How cute.”

… And then I saw the dinosaur chewing on his ass. Literally.

Hmmm, I wondered. I sure hope that huge brontosaurus will be enough to keep the aggressive one sated for a while and— is it looking at me? Is it coming this way? IT’S COMING THIS WAY!!!!

You can guess that happened next. And the damned thing was only level 1. AND I had the settings skewed in my favour! (Or so I thought. After this afternoon I’m wondering if maybe I’m moving the sliders towards the DIE BYATCH! end of the scale.)

dead again

I respawned in a hurry because I’d just found out that you can loot your shit off your own corpse if you get there fast enough, and I’m lucky (so I think at the time) to respawn right on that same beach, which as I now know is not a given. The Dickosaurus is still hanging around, probably burping up an Ysharros rib or something…

Bad dino

…because, as it turns out, if you’re killed by a carnivore then you’re SOL — or (to be gross), soon to be SOD. You have been eaten by a grue.

(NOTE: Poop is a thing in this game, so get used to it. Dinosaur poop comes in small and medium that I’ve seen so far, but there’s also human poop (which I should never never NEVER have picked up, even if it was my own) and presumably other-entity-poop that I just haven’t yet come across. YHBW.)

Let’s cut to the chase and make the rest of this a bit more concise.

dodo love
Ysharros is such a noob she thinks the dodo loves her. It’s just a health icon.

Dino won’t leave and eats Ysh a few more times. Ysh, driven by death-rage, decides to make a new survivor – for no reason whatsoever other than to not only lose all her items but also lose all her levels, only to get a change of hair colour. Kids, don’t let /rage-quitting drive you!

Note to self: broken tree stumps do NOT happen by themselves

Okay then, I think proudly to myself, I figured something out! Avoid big dinos!

And then I ran into these little guys (and their even smaller brethren), who killed me. And killed me. And killed me. And I found the best use for selfie-cam, because it sure as hell isn’t to send pix to my besties on Whatsapp-ARK.

shitlist dino

I know their names now. The Shitlist has them forever. I may have to tame one just so I can kill it– okay that’s a lie, but I’ll think really bad thoughts about them!

By this time I’ve spawned somewhere way to the east of where I started, probably because I didn’t pay attention to the spawn-zone choice, and I’m probably lucky it didn’t respawn me on the north side of the island which is apparently where dinos go to play with tasty human treats. I get killed a few more times trying to work my way back west to see if Ysharros 1.0’s house foundations are still where she put them even though I made a new character, but I never make it that far because I keep dying and the dinos that kill me are getting smaller and smaller. They’re mocking me, I know it.

dilpho death

raptor death
x2 because I ran right into him AGAIN

…and so on.

Ysh, driven by death-weariness after something like 8 deaths — all of them to carnivores so screw you and your attempted corpse run, byatch! — decides to hit back in the only way she can.


Take that, dinosaurs!



(And takes to writing about herself in the third person)

Bwahahahaha! … Isn’t that kind of cheaty? Oh who cares, this is a solo game.

Yay! Supply crate! Noooooo! It’s Level 15+ to open. This game hates me.

I eventually made it all the way back to my starting beach because — well, I don’t know why since it wasn’t even the same world, but after you start working on your toes to count the number of times you’ve died your goals tend to become a little more basic.

Only to find $#*@$^# Spinosaur 2.0 waiting for Ysharros 2.0. Crouching, by the way, is surprisingly helpful for avoiding becoming dinner. Who’da thunk it? Dickosaur 2.0 got bored and went off to kill dodos on the other side of the river and I crept out of hiding.


I’ll be taming me one of those bad boys right after I’m done hiding. And finding food. And building a house. And putting down my boxes (oh yeah, that was my one piece of good luck – the newbie beach supply drop had 2 small boxes in it, woot storage… once I can figure out how to get into them once they’re dropped). And making some weapons, preferably nukes.

Actually, it was 18:51 in game when I had to log out and I’m currently just hoping I’ll make it through the next night. What if surviving nights 1 and 2 was sheer luck and my campfire attracts my hungry dinosaurs?

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

I have since discovered that I am not alone in being damn near corpse-camped by ARKian dinosaurs. Be warned, the language is colourful. This is the same person who made the very simple, easy-to-follow Dinosaur Taming!! video Aywren originally linked to.

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

* Assuming she’s right about the way the sliders work. This is up for debate.

Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Full House

I played a couple of hours of the Mirage Legacy family over the weekend, mostly to refamiliarise myself with them post-bugfix. The household is currently full with 6 adults / young adults and two infants, and is about to get even busier as those infants age up to children (whose primary need appears to be homework, or maybe I’m just too focused on getting As…).

I keep thinking it would all be a lot easier if I just kicked out a few family members, and I certainly could. Ratscrew and Slapjack are cadet branches of the family and aren’t really ‘needed’ in terms of the legacy. But I can’t. I love them all. Ratscrew is the upright, fitness-focused Space Ranger hero type who quietly mourns his deceased partner, and Slapjack is the happy-go-lucky, 40-year-old-virgin painter who is everyone’s favourite brother or uncle.

That they both bring in a crapton of money is just icing on the cake (the household’s bills are in the thousands now; the house is huge, there’s a second house on the lot for the cadets, and there’s lots of expensive furniture everywhere).

Actually, the person I like least is the next head of the family, poor self-centered, insane, bro-tending Baccarat. I’m pretty sure my Sims feel the same way – even his parents, who love him because they must. His wife seems to be the only one who sees any redeeming features in him, and indeed she’s the only one he isn’t mean to the second I take my eye off him in conversations. If I’m not directing his interactions, it takes him about 3 seconds to offend pretty much anyone he’s talking to. If only he’d been a harmless eccentric kind of insane, instead of the deluded, violin-playing dictator kind…

Anyway, it seems there will be more Sims 4 Mirage Legacy playing in my future. But I swear, the next generation will be entitled little shits who live entirely off their family’s money and want the house all to themselves.

Full House

Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Meet Samba de Lytte

The Mirage family is on hold until a) they fix the vanishing relationships issue, which I think they may have and/or b) I decide I can handle a legacy which only produces twins and triplets. In a classic case of be careful what you wish for, it seems the karma pixies heard me when I said I wanted to try running several characters at once in a Sims game, horrid creatures that they are.

So I created a new legacy — the de Lyttes — some weeks ago, but what with Thanksgiving here in the US and other life, work and reasons stuff they haven’t been played all that much — and what has occurred has been the rather tedious (and always similar) beginning stage where the founder has nothing much with which to fill up that 50 x 50 lot.

But all of a sudden things did start to happen in the last session, so I’ll go ahead and present the founder and a few pix.

Founder Samba de Lytte

The de Lytte legacy will use the following succession laws: Equality (any gender can inherit), Modern (natural or adopted kids can inherit), and Living Will (the child with the highest friendly relationship with the current pater- or materfamilias inherits). It’s probably one of the easiest sets to pick because it allows for a great deal of choice in terms of heirs — hell, if I were that way inclined I could deliberately play whoever I didn’t want as heir as being horrible to the current head of the family, just to make sure their relationship was anything but friendly. And I may indeed do that, but only if circumstances and personalities make it a viable role-playing choice. I picked that ruleset mostly so that if I do get saddled with a bunch of twins and triplets again, I have more options in terms of which of them inherits. It might make for some interesting mini-stories and rivalries, too. (For those who want an even more mano-a-mano rivalry model, the “Strength” heir law includes an actual scrap to determine who gets to be the next head of household.)

My house rule is that family members must be named after dances. I had a lot of fun with the Mirage family card game names (poor Ratscrew!), and the dance names offer a little more variety while being a little less off-the-wall.

Active Sims love random sit-ups!
Active Sims love random sit-ups!

As for Samba, she’s Active, a Foodie, and Ambitious, and her aspiration is Renaissance Sim. The first few stages of that aspiration are easy enough to complete but the last one requires 6 skills at level 8 (or something similar) and that’s not easy at all, even for someone like me who loves building Sim-skills. She may be young, but she already knows she’s going places, even if she doesn’t know exactly where those places are. She inherited the lot from her father, Tango de Lytte — he won it in a card game years ago but kept the property as an ace in the hole and never mentioned it to his daughter. Samba’s mother, Tarantella, died when Samba was very young, and Tango disappeared from one day to the next almost a decade ago. (It’s entirely possible he vanished with his best friend and partner in cons, Jimmy Cash…)

Eventually Tango was declared legally dead and Samba discovered she had inherited a rather valuable piece of property in the up-and-coming town of Willow Creek. Having spent several years dodging all the people to whom Tango owed money and favours (sometimes literally, hence the Active trait) and occasionally being helped out by some of Tango’s more savoury friends and acquaintances (hence the Foodie trait), Samba decided that a quiet life in an out of the way part of the country might be exactly what she needed. ‘Quiet’ being a relative term – she doesn’t know what she’ll be yet, but she knows that someday she’ll be famous and so rich she can bathe in Simoleons.

Whatever that career will be, it won’t be as a chef…


…which apparently had hygiene requirements Samba wasn’t prepared to follow… or as a writer, which clearly bored Samba to death.

Samba bored

What I know and Samba doesn’t is that she’s destined for a career among the stars, though not on the right side of the law – she’s going to end up an Astronaut/Smuggler branch. But that’s a story for another time, and I have some followers to send on missions in WoW.


Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – The Last Straw?

The arrival of Gen 4 might just have sounded the death-knell for any desire I have to play this legacy family.

Gen4 twinsStacey just had twins. So let’s recap:

Gen 2 – Single: Holdem | Twins: Slapjack & Ratscrew

Gen 3 – Triplets: Baccarat, Poker & Canasta

Gen 4 – Twins: Piquet and Gin-Rummy

Out of four birth events, only ONE has been a single birth and none of the parents ever had any kind of fertility treatment. And out of eight children, only 2 have been female.

I’ll be blunt: it was funny the first time, funnier the second, but now I’m simply not f-ing amused anymore. Add in the bugged relationships which mean that people who have lived together all their lives suddenly don’t even know each other anymore, not to mention the plants that have suddenly stopped evolving (just when one of my Sims gets a gardening-related aspiration), and it might be time to start a new legacy family.

In MMO circles we call that /ragequitting, and I might just do it.

Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – gen 4 on the way

Haven’t had much time to play Sims 4 lately, but the major event is that Stacey got pregnant. I was pondering whether she and/or Baccarat should get a job (mostly so their elders stop looking at them like they’re mooching, which they totally are) or whether they should just go ahead and start a family, 0r do both, when they decided to try for a baby. I honestly don’t recall picking the option, though I didn’t think it was something Sims do of their own accord so maybe I’m just senile.

At any rate they once again chose mum & dad’s bed — I REALLY don’t get this: they have exactly the same bed in a nice room upstairs! — and a quick pregnancy test afterward confirmed success.

Stacey seemed pretty stoked.

Gen 4 on the wayIn other news, I am drowning in games to play and not enough time to play them all. I just relaunched Dragon Age: Origins. Then there’s The Secret World. Then there’s the EQ2 expansion next Tuesday (for subbers) and the WoW expansion a couple of days after that. And DA3 on November 18th.

#firstworldwoes, right?


Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Move out, move in

Following the epic birthday party / wake event, I finally got Poker and Canasta moved out. They moved in with Heriberto Coronado, Canasta’s beau, and from now on I don’t need to worry about them anymore. I do keep running into them here and there, but that’s normal and welcome.

There were many tearful farewells and promises to call Mom every day…

Tearful farewells…and Holdem moped about for a week solid, alternating between crying over his empty nest and crying over the lady who died at the party (whose name I still can’t remember and likely never will).

Holdem sadMeanwhile, Stacey enjoyed her space-woohoo so much she refused to change out of her spacesuit for days, and then she talked Baccarat into eloping the second they went on a date away from the house (and Elise’s stern gaze). They celebrated Stacey moving in with the family by following the tradition of woohooing in his parents’ bed. I’m still not sure what makes it so attractive…

Baccarat elopes

Mom and dad bed

Slapjack found his young lady again (yay!) and asked her over to the house. Things went swimmingly up until the first kiss, and then he discovered she’s noncommittal, mostly because she suddenly decided she just wasn’t that into him. He hasn’t given up yet, but I can tell you from experience that noncommital Sims are a major pain in the backside when it comes to anything beyond flirting; might as well call it ‘hard to get’ and be done with it.

Slapjack kissHe took her to the gym on a date, which in hindsight might not have been the most romantic location but did allow me to witness a couple of fun things.

First, this guy, with the same expression I’d be wearing if the Grim Reaper were following me down the street.

Being followed

Second, it turned out that Mr. Reaper was simply heading to the gym himself. I guess that svelte figure doesn’t look after itself.

Death at gym

Finally, I fell to my usual curse of altoholism and decided to start a legacy where I try to be as uncontrolling as possible, which is not an easy goal for me. I therefore made Liberty von Frei, a feisty young lady who, as it turns out, bears a startling resemblance to the Joker. Or maybe it’s just me? That guy should be looking a lot more scared, though as of the end of the first quick play-session, Liberty is either bi, gay, or just a total narcissist (having got it on with 2 people and currently preferring the young lady who is also called ‘Liberty’). Not sure I’ll keep playing her, but it was entertaining.

VF_Harley Quinn VF_Joker



Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Four Birthdays and a Funeral

I’ll tell you one thing, life is never boring in the Mirage household.

After the last play session and post, I moved on to the Trips’ birthdays and decided to throw a relatively large bash, at which point I discovered that nobody in the family seems to know any women, or at least not any young ones. (Presumably they’re all busy mobbing Handsome Noble over in Oasis Springs…) The invite list was depressingly full of men and grandmothers, though Baccarat was at least able to invite Stacy Holden, the older woman he’s been hoping to get off with for weeks. There are no romantic interactions when one party is jailbait, sadly — though apparently it’s fine for siblings to get all nasty with each other, and it’s also ok if you’re in the same age bracket. (The incest thing may have been patched. It’s not something I’ve tested out.) Continue reading

Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Gardens and Cake

‘Tis the season to be blowing out candles, apparently. Just as appliances seem to go into cascade-kaput mode, so the Mirage family are all maturing at exactly the same time. Must be something in the water.

It started with Elise having a low-key birthday just with Holdem (though that was followed by some spaceship woohoo we won’t talk about). She just passed into adulthood, and I didn’t think there was a great deal there to mark. Besides, everyone else was asleep; Elise and Holdem both have jobs with late-night schedules, so they’re often mooching about in the quiet house by themselves, which suits loner-Elise just fine. Continue reading

Sims 4 Legacy Challenge – Playing The Field

One thing the Mirage boys have aplenty, it seems, is charm — even when they’re insane, apparently.

Baccarat set out for the park to meet some wimmin, and meet some he did… But because the game is doing weird things to my Sims’ relationships — mostly by resetting them to zero, even for people who have lived in the same house for years and chat with each other daily — he can’t even remember the name of the girl he liked best. Bummer.

Weighing options

Choice number two is apparently a bit older than Baccarat (which I cunningly deduced from the fact that she has three traits and so must be at least a young adult), but Bacs has always liked older women so, y’know, it’s cool. Plus she looks SO MUCH like Mom did at that age! Wait, is that weird?

just like elise