Saturday, May 31, 2014

Enjoying Agrarian Skies

After watching a number of Lets Plays and hearing a friend's personal experience, I decided to give Agrarian Skies a go. I have to say it's a pretty enjoyable experience!

I've never really been a fan of skyblock-style maps, but Agrarian Skies is far from your average skyblock. For starters, it's packed with a bunch of mods (which is sort of expected considering it's on the FTB launcher, but not always typical in terms of skyblock maps) giving you a lot of options for expansion.

What's great is that you don't have to know everything about all the mods to get going because of the ingenious quest system added to the pack. You start off with a handy quest book that provides you with the knowledge to dive right in and complete tasks, teaching you how to go about obtaining materials and using new items. It's a cool addition to any modded survival, and I hope this feature gets used for other modpacks in the future!

"Home Sweet Home"
While Agrarian Skies guides you through all the steps to progress, it doesn't hand everything to you on a silver platter. It doesn't even start you off with the materials for a cobble generator. You actually begin even humbler, using saplings as compost to make dirt and crafting a sieve to begin processing some of that dirt into other materials. It actually takes some time to get to where you can make a traditional cobble generator.

If that sounds slow and grindy, then I've explained things correctly. Agrarian Skies is all about progression - from simple beginnings and fighting for survival to automation and beyond - and Jadedcat and crew have done a wonderful job balancing that journey. I have few complaints with vanilla Minecraft, but I find it severely lacking in terms of progression. Agrarian Skies turns that right around, challenging you to get to the next step but providing the necessary information to reach it.

I'm finding Agrarian Skies to be quite satisfying, and the quest system makes me want to continue towards bigger and better things each time I play. I highly suggest checking it out for yourself - it's available directly from the Feed The Beast Launcher, so it's as simple as hitting a button to get started.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Giant Walking Robots

The future of Minecraft technology!
In the more recent updates to Minecraft, slime blocks are all the rage. These last few weeks we've seen item transport systems, trampolines, enderpearl catapults, airplanes, submarines and other game-changing inventions created (or improved upon) using these cool new blocks.

However, it seemed that the fanfare over slime blocks was just about finished. All the practical applications have seemingly been explored and the Minecraft community in general began focusing on the latest ModJam competition.

Then Cubehamster posted this:
Giant walking robots now exist in vanilla Minecraft. While this particular build does little more than move, remember that it's just a prototype. As designs improve, we may see some pretty crazy things soon. Prepare to welcome your new robot overlords!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Doomsayer New Meta

With the change to Unleash the Hounds, the Hearthstone meta has shifted considerably. Priests and shamans are seeing more play again, and everyone is trying to fit Gadgetzan Auctioneer into their deck to be the next "miracle" class.

During these shifts, good players comb over their decklists looking for ways to capitalize on the changes. Sometimes entirely new deck ideas or combos will surface, thus influencing the meta even further. For example, gamer and youtuber extraordinaire Wowhobbs recently discovered a surprising new use for Doomsayer.

Will this affect the meta? Probably not, but it sure is funny!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Gaara v. Daniel at Dreamhack Bucharest

Gaara recently took the top spot at Dreamhack Bucharest 2014, netting him $4000 and hopefully some well-deserved respect as a Hearthstone player and deckbuilder. If his Twitch views are any indication, he's flown under the radar up until now, but I'm thinking this victory should cause many to take notice.

For those interested, here's the final best-of-five match between Gaara and Daniel. You can also find many more matches from DHB on that channel, which are worth a watch if you have the time.