Thursday, March 19, 2015

Kammie's House Tidbits: December 2009

This shows several things, both in decorating ideas and my personal preferences for house decorating over this timeframe.
The third floor of my house designs at this point had turned into a sort of crafting station/guild gathering area. If the layout of this particular hodgepodge helps you, so be it.
The house decorating thing I wanted to point out is the icicles. It's a nice touch, viewed in the bottom right area of the house. In the bottom left you can see that I'd replaced the grass tiles in my design with random snow tiles, and put down snow statuettes from the holiday gift boxes. I didn't want a log house, but the reddish-brown oriental style walls accompanied by the charcoal blue roof tiling serves as an appropriate substitute, yes?

Friday, March 13, 2015

Carpeting Those Difficult Floors!

So you have your beautiful design. You've decorated it and decided that there are some areas that will just look better with some carpeting, or even a bear rug! But what's this? The flooring is showing through the add-on! No problem, let's just try putting down individual tile carpets from Ter Mur...
Alas! We have the same issue! At first I thought I might have just had some issues with my own client, so I closed and started up UO again. Then I ran outside the house several times. Nope. I put some carpet tiles outside on the reddish tiled porch, and everything was back to normal. How frustrating! The specific floor tile I had chosen was causing this issue.
I wasn't willing to change the flooring of my house design (it just went together so well, in my eyes!) so I decided to try and see if raising up the carpet (or bear rug) would fix my problem.

Now anyone who messes with add-ons or carpets knows that you can't use an interior decorating tool on the item. The game will tell you 'that isn't locked down' or other mumbo jumbo that basically means 'I don't wanna' (insert child's tantrum right here).
A good way around this is to use single tile gozas!
The important thing to remember when using gozas for this is if you are using a multi-tile addon, you need an amount of gozas equivalent to the number of tiles the add-on takes up. A plain red rug will need 9 gozas to get to work. A medium stone table will need two tiles. If you are doing individually tiled carpets from Laifem the Weaver, as I am here, then you can work with as little as one goza at a time.
Place down your gozas wherever you want your carpet or rug. Using an interior decorator tool, raise each goza up by one. Once all of your gozas are raised, place your carpet/add-on items and viola! flooring issue is fixed. All that's left is destroying the gozas under your design. In the step 2. section of this image you can see that the carpet covers up most of the gozas under the middle of the carpet. I can't quite target those pesky goza tiles with ease. A good way to fix this is recall away (the point is to cross a server line so your house is no longer stored on the client cache), then come back. The gozas will be on top of the carpet and you'll be able to easily destroy them without worrying about your lovely carpet you worked so hard to place down.
Here is the final look. You get lovely carpet and you don't even notice the change in height unless you really, really scrutinize your character while you walk over it. It may be a bit time consuming if you're impatient like me, but I decided that this would be easier than redoing the entire floor of my house and there was no way I was going to let the blank spaces hang out there.
Have you ever had to change a house design because something in your head didn't quite apply to the screen very well?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

UOD: March 10, 2015

I'm finally at a point with my greenhouse that I'm willing to share what I've done. It's still a work in progress and it'll take time for me to get the entire house to a point I'm satisfied with, but I'm happy enough right now that I'm willing to share it.
The room closest to the house sign will be the vendor shop. It'll mainly house plants and plant byproducts, with maybe one vendor selling miscellaneous goods. The room behind the counter will be my vendor storage and, for RP purposes, the 'office' of this house where my characters will do all her finances.
The room my character is in is one of the plant nurseries. I chose to set up the plants like this to force myself to limit how many plants I grow all at once. Also, it looks more practical. Right now I have 40 plants started. Even then, I think I may have planted too many given the amount of space I gave myself for putting the plants after they've matured.
Here's the 2nd floor of the nursery and some more green grass to put the matured plants on. The rest of the house is living space for my characters. The room at the top will be a bedroom. The room with the stairs will have the kitchen.
The room my character is in will be a miscellaneous crafting area. I'm sure you can figure out which room will be another bedroom. I'm not quite sure what I want to do with the porch. Maybe create a simple sitting area to enjoy the view?
When ransacking Atlantic's vendors for plant seeds, I was disappointed to find that I could not find as wide a variety as I initially thought I'd be able to. I was sure I would be able to start off with every plant, every color, every variety. Now I realize that was just wishful thinking on my part. Currently I'm growing plants that will not be cross-pollinated. I just need to build up a stock of seeds so I don't run out of a certain type while trying to cross and create new varieties of plants. I know a lot of older cross-pollination charts are outdated or useless, mainly when dealing with the cactus varieties of plants, so I'll keep an eye out on vendors for the cacti seeds.
Phew, looking at all this makes me realize that I've gotten quite a lot done in the past several days!

Friday, March 6, 2015

UOD: March 6, 2015

I'm not quite ready to show off the greenhouse yet, so instead here's a very old screenshot from TC, four and a half years ago. This was during my obsession with water and waterfalls. Nowadays I feel that they take up too much space in my design and I leave them out.
Side note: I did the series of quests that were added in as a way for Mesanna to give house spots in the Stygian Abyss. I ended up 'winning' on TC. I never claimed the house spot, though. Instead I just displayed my winning item (I don't even remember what it was you got  that signified you won) on the steps of this house spot proudly.
Now for some more memories!
Do you see how busy this place is? This is, yes, on TC during a cross-shard treasure hunt challenge. I remember they held two or three of these on Test Center before the monthly competition died off. Pity, because it was really fun to watch! Mesanna spawned a bunch of cream pies on the floor for us onlookers to use for our own shenanigans while we waited for the treasure hunt to complete.
This isn't my screenshot. I was feeling nostalgic the other day and Googled "Ultima Online 2002,"  the year I started playing. This was one of the first things that popped up and I couldn't help but laugh. This very much fits my first memories of UO - the absolute chaos that was West Brit Bank. While I wasn't personally a banksitter, I loved how alive the world felt whenever I stopped off here to do various things. WBB was actually my home bank even after AoS came out and continued to be my home until early 2009, when I'd returned after a short break due to computer issues.
The game has changed a lot since then, and if anybody wants population levels even remotely similar to these days they're forced to migrate to Atlantic. Even then it's not the same if your last memories of UO are of much higher population times.
I hope the recent announcement of a new expansion pack is good news. On one hand that should mean that the future of UO (ie: closing down the servers) isn't in jeopardy. On the other, the Stratics forums have some worries about how vague they were in their recent Dev video. My experience with any MMO forum is that the really big complainers will always be there to find the negative side of something, so I take these concerns with a grain of salt. I choose to see the positive side - that UO is going strong enough that there is still new content.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Kammie's House Tidbits: November 2009

As I go through old screenshots, I see little bits of house designs I wish I'd taken more screenshots of. This being one of them. There were two house designs before this that utilized the same wall style, but I only know that because I recognized it from very vague screenshots that did not have the actual house design intended as the subject of the screenie. The subject was more funny moments via text between me and some fellow guild members.
Here I want to partially illustrate the use of plants and decorations to help breakup the monotony of grass/flooring, as well as introduce the use of rocks to soften the edges of a river (look around the health bars and you'll get a vague idea of this).
While I've already randomly placed different grass tiles to make sure the ground doesn't look too repetitive (look around outside the house foundation for an illustration of this), that sometimes isn't enough to look good (in my opinion). While to some people the ground may look cluttered, I feel a better descriptor may be 'active.' There is a nice splattering of plants and different 'sparklies' (remember the poppy dust?). I also have some leftover spiderwebs and thanksgiving-type decorations, really showing how I was in this time transitioning from a Halloween look to a Thanksgiving look. This is the year that the Developers introduced turkeys, and my goodness those were fun to tackle!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

UOD: March 4, 2015

On Lake Austin, I've done very little to my Luna house. The outside has some plants while the inside has very limited decorations. The best thing of yet besides the outdoors deco is my little reading/hangout nook, and even that may not stay. I wish I had more of the 'full' bookcases, but I can't simply vendor search for more. Lake Austin is a dead place for vendors. It's a wonder I'm choosing to set up a plant shop here. The plants have all finally gotten back to healthy or vibrant, and I'm starting to look at my spreadsheet to see what I can plant for my next round. Four days until my first set of plants will be picked of all resources and seeds and set to decorative. Between now and then I should do several rounds of the Naturalist quest, just so I can grow some more of them. Even if I don't sell the plants, I always enjoy growing them.
I finished my customizing of my Atlantic houses, and I'm starting to gather/make the supplies I'll need for decorating each of the houses. Yesterday I spent a large chunk of my time searching for the customizable wall signs from Christmas 2011, to set up the six rooms I made in the apartment house. I gambled on a holiday ticket (the 2011 and 2012 holiday tickets have no indicator of what year they're from on mouse-over) for 700k and won. I proceeded to buy two more at 850k from two different vendors and then lost. I was able to pick up another sign for 300k, if I remember correctly. After that I gave up on buying holiday tickets, and I was unable to find another sign besides a 'rare' dyed charcoal one that was five million. This morning I hopped on and searched for more signs and found four for 100k each. I very happily bought them all up to complete my set of six to set up the outside of the rooms.
As for the actual information on the signs, the first row will always be the Apartment number. The second row will either say "Vacant" or the name of the tenant. The third row will show the monthly/weekly rates, and I'll still work on that. I just wanted to put some basic information in for the screenshot. I don't really plan to make money on this. I want my prices to be fair. This isn't the real world; I have no need to report constant income on any adventures I take. My regular gameplay tends to bring in gold anyway.
I want to show the bare greenhouse, but I'm afraid that looking at it bare will make me forget the plans I'd had for it and decide it isn't 'greenhouse-y' enough. I'll most likely spend today decorating the both of these houses and then check back in tomorrow on whether my greenhouse idea ended up being a success.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

UOD: March 3, 2015

One of the things I've always enjoyed on my UO adventures has been an inn or pub or even a McDonald's (or other restaurant setting). Here is one of those interesting adventures I set out on with several friends at the time. The stage itself is rather crude, made entirely by gozas as opposed to using half or quarter walls plus modified stairs plus gozas. We didn't care. Part of the fun in our adventure here was decorating the place. While a nice customized build can set a great foundation the decorations are what make it really shiny. Obviously we had no intent here for there to be any real value for the establishment. We just wanted some laughs for ourselves.
In non five-year-old news, I've decided to make my secondary house the inn and recustomize the main house to be my greenhouse. I know I will want a shop area, but it'll be very very small in comparison to the rest of the house. How I'm going to make the actual greenhouse area in a realistic manner is beyond me, but I know I want more than just a 'plant house.' I'll no doubt spend several hours working on this.

Monday, March 2, 2015

UO Diary: March 2, 2015

The plants are coming along... sort of. I FUBAR'd one day and a couple of plants are still suffering from me completely forgetting to tend to them. Oops.
I'm keeping an eye out for a good deal on some more garden beds, but I'm thinking at this point I'll just have to suck it up and shell out the $20 for 3 on the Origin store. It's almost time for me to start gathering the seeds. Right now the max any plant will have is 2.
One of my palms ended up mutating, so I'm getting 8 white small palms. If I recall correctly, white plants are very popular so that's a bonus for me. This is Lake Austin, however, so that does mean this whole venture is probably not going to be profitable. That's perfectly fine with me. I just want to grow plants.
I caught myself thinking this morning while tending these plants that I'd bitten off more than I could chew in terms of how many plants I'd grown. I had to laugh at myself after that, because I've done sooo many more plants than this in one go.
This is from January of 2009, over six years ago. First off ,that's crazy that this was six years ago. Second off, when all those bowls you see ended up maturing, I took over this entire keep with plants. Everywhere. On every walkable surface. When my Dad, who had lent me the keep, tried to visit here to get some stuff he'd had in storage, he had a laughing fit that left him gasping for air. "Bite off a bit more than you can chew?" I remember him commenting. It took well over an hour for me to care for every single plant here. I didn't care, though. It was fun!
I'm thinking about starting up some plants on Atlantic. The only issue this will present is I'll have to remember to tend plants on two shard every single day. Wish me luck :)