Lord of the Rings Online
In the past month, I’ve leveled to 63 on the Anor legendary server, earning the lovely account-wide Moria portrait.
I leveled to 128 with two characters on Landroval, and I capped my LI’s by grinding the Spring Festival.
My main problem now is the discovery that my virtues are at, on average, 50+ ranks out of 68. That’s several ranks to grind in each of my virtues. That’s insane.
Worse yet, the virtue bonuses are ramping up now at the top end, more like an exponential curve. This makes capping them actually relevant.
I’ve been grinding virtues now for a week or two, and this is going to take me a few more months. This grind has actually pushed me back into dual-boxing, so I can double the reward for my effort. This also means I’ll support LotRO more with my second account. That’s fine.
So I’ve given up trying to catch up and participate in the current LotRO endgame, unfortunately. In fact, I’ll just wait until everyone moves on, so Minas Morgul is less crowded than now.
Hearthstone’s annual spring rotation released a few weeks ago. I was only vaguely aware of this when I re-installed last night.
I was rewarded with ~7000 dust for my rotated and nerfed cards. This, combined with my stockpile of gold and dust from when I last played (August 2019), is enough to get me back in the game.
Better yet, there is a round of nerfs planned for next week, which will offer even more dust.
Blizzard revamped their ranked system (again), offering a bit more rewards within a much more confusing, murky system.
This was needed years ago, but Blizzard ignored me and others, of course. Last year’s ranked ‘revamp’ was a no-effort joke not even worth mentioning as a historical note.
Blizzard has also released a new hero, the Demon Hunter. They are planning a new game mode this year. The new ranked rewards are still not worth going for, compared to just completing quests, but next fall Blizzard is promising still more rewards, including achievements.
These are all things that Hearthstone has needed for years, and all partly reasons why I quit playing last year. (The main reason is that Hearthstone is just boring at this point.)
In any case, now is a very good time to re-install Hearthstone, get your free stuff, and maybe stick with it. This year should be much better, according to Blizzard’s teases.
Stock Market Commentary
My stock market picks a month ago were frankly insane. (In a good way.) I even added a small position in Blizzard after saying I wouldn’t, because I wanted even more video game exposure.
Unfortunately, I sold Blizzard (ATVI) and Akamai (AKAM) a week or two ago, both at a 10% gain, which was much, much too soon. They are both up at least another 10% since then.
I am shocked by the size of the rally we’ve had. 16 million Americans have filed for unemployment. Why are we soaring back close to the all-time highs? Is it the stimulus? The government flooding the landscape with money? Trumptards piling in just to own the libs?
This is a super complicated topic involving short squeeze, FOMO, MOMO, oil, and several other things. I’ve honestly tried to short the market twice in the last week, once for a small gain, once for a small loss. Bears just can’t get anything going in the last week or so.
Right now the prevailing sentiment is complete idiocy, insanity, and over-optimism (see: Donald Trump, and Red States). I strongly believe this is not going to end well.
I’ve made nice gains on buying Netflix, Amazon, Microsoft, and NVidia. I’m up 37% now on Amazon! I do think we will collapse again at some point, at least until companies are manufacturing hundreds of millions of reliable doses of vaccine.
I actually swapped Tencent for Microsoft since my last post, for various reasons relating to China, pink sheets, and less long-term worry.
What will I add on drops (market drops, not video game drops) in the coming months? I’ll continue to dollar cost average into MSFT, NVDA, and AKAM. I’m up only 12% in Silver. I want a lot more Silver. I want more like a 50% gain.
If I want more video game exposure, I’m looking at ESPO, the ESports ETF. It’s a 1% fee, but I mean, what single game company would I pick otherwise? EA, ATVI, or TTWO? Who knows, really, if I feel like NVidia and MSFT are not enough game exposure.
TAN (Solar ETF) is very tempting to dollar cost average into right now. The coming recession/depression, as well as low oil costs, will put a lot of hurt on development of solar infrastructure by governments and societies.
If you have a very long term horizon, I do like the solar ETF. It’s an elf stock for sure!
Valero (VLO) is tempting as well. It was a market leader for percent gain last Friday. It could potentially double from here in the next few years. If I see a great buyable chart formation, I’d probably rather go long VLO for a trade than go long the S&P.
Video Game Project
I’m still not feeling well, but I’m back to work anyway.
I’m halfway through the Dark Game epilogue, which is a LotRO-style storyline extension only for dark mode players, answering questions raised only for these players during the main story. This module has an elven fashion show, where I did some illustrations for fusion elf/succubus fashion designs.
The models are animated in a few frames to cross a show stage. The partly completed module with the fashion design is here. Pre-loads are not implemented yet, so you’ll get graphics pop-ins.
I’m also well along on a dedicated vocabulary study module, which also has a small optional storyline. Your goblin professor is questioning which teaching style is better: nice, good elven rewards for doing well, or goblin punishments for doing badly. Let’s run some tests on you to find out!
I’ll hope to have this up on the website for my next post. Unless I get worse and die of the virus.
The new dungeon designer, Shadoweaver, is very busy IRL, but may produce some dungeon content soon? Maybe? This is a total wild card, like rolling a d20. Who knows.
That’s all for now. Have fun, stay safe, and happy gaming.