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Gaea's Blog

QOTW Four: Suction Cups.

Salutations and greetings on this fair day, Bloggians. It seems it's that time again! A couple of you responded to my last post, in which I asked what sort of subject matter you're interested in hearing about, which I do very much appreciate. For those of you who missed it, it's here. I'd love to hear from a few more people as well. Those of you who answered, I will see what I can do! I may not be able to go very far into the reasoning behind things, but I will try.

It's been an interesting week in Pirate Land. Folks have been kind enough to not be irredeemable miscreants while I was on my shift, and there were some petitions about game mechanics which made me do research, and that makes me happy. I'll save some of the interesting tidbits I discovered for a later blog post, but so far the "how do I do this? Why is this doing this?" petitions are my favorites.

Oddly enough, I had this week's blog post all planned out, and then I actually had a spate of petitions asking about it. Yohoho Psychic Pirates are a little unnerving. The question of the week is "Where did you get your octopus? Is it true OMs get free familiars? Can I have it? Oh. In that case, can I buy it?" The answer, briefly, is that I created him myself using magic, yes, OMs get free familiars, and no, you can't have him, because octopi have suction cups all over their tentacles and he's stuck to my shoulder with all the force of a zillion little suckers.

Less briefly, I created him using a chat command. We've got quite a lot of chat commands, to the point where /help doesn't have room to list them all. I've gotten very good with ctrl-F and copy-pasting from my reference document! It is true that OMs can have familiars, aye, but I think I am/would be prouder of any I earned before becoming an OM. Somehow a chat command doesn't have the same panache and build up as a long tournament, or hours spent drawing, or sixteen revisions of a short story, or months of pillaging to save up the pieces of eight or months of collecting obscure items, or a Vegas which gave a sloop that extra oomph to get to port first in a race. Don't get me wrong - I'm very pleased with being able to use that chat command in the first place, because I like my job very much and was thrilled when I learned I'd been hired. It's just that familiar-wise, I admire any won by players much more.

What I, and many of the other OMs, use the familiars we have for is to create a bit more story and myth with the characters we've chosen. Castor's companion is his twin brother, Pollux. Hera's is Zeus, colored like the cuckoo Zeus once pretended to be in order to woo her. Mine is an octopus, chosen because octopi can change colors, just like nature does! I named him Karpoi; a reference to the four spirits of the seasons, often depicted in mosaics with Gaea (or, in some references, Ge. Still me.) I considered a lot of names, and one of the Karpoi almost became an OM until I realised that it would be cruel to ask people to spell Phthinoporon, and that I was incapable of pronouncing it aloud without sounding like Daffy Duck.

Next week on QOTW: Hello, Dolly!


Posted by Ghyslaine Rhodin

Is it too much to hope that "Dolly" refers to (blonde, well-tanned) alts? I already know you're an incurable brunette, but I'll keep trying. >.>

Also, if you were Phthinoporon I'll bet you'd get nicknamed Neosporin in a week.

June 04, 2008 at 05:34 AM PDT | permalink

Posted by Shannal, Midnight

Thanks for the blog post! :)

I agree that earning a familiar is really rewarding. However, getting a job as an OM would also be very rewarding. So, I guess in a way, you did earn your familiar.

June 04, 2008 at 04:38 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Shannal, Midnight

Thanks for the blog post! :)

I agree that earning a familiar is really rewarding. However, getting a job as an OM would also be very rewarding. So, I guess in a way, you did earn your familiar.

June 04, 2008 at 04:38 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Pleun

I agree. You very much earned that familiar. After all, you wrote an letter to apply for the job, which btw had to include an original idea on how to improve the game. And then you beat hundreds of other applicants with it, and made it through follow up interviews... You earned it just as much as when you had beaten people in some contest. Which kinda makes me wonder, how many people only apply for the OM job openings just because then can then magic up stuff like familiars for themselves?

Anyways, as for blog topics, any and all anecdotal stories about the silly things OMs run into is always fun to read. :D

June 05, 2008 at 01:03 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Gaea

Hee. Aye, I did earn it, but the reward I earned was permission to work, not the familiar ;-)

Oddly enough, upon learning that yes, I can make familiars out of nothing, nine out of ten pirates say wistfully, "man, I wish I was an OM".

June 06, 2008 at 12:51 AM PDT | permalink

Posted by Pleun

Of course that great job is the real prize, the familiar is like a pretty cherry on top. Not needed, but nice anyways. Part of the package, i'd say. :)

I'm surprised people don't know you can make familiars... Where do they think familiars come from otherwise? Cleaver's familiar shop on some secret OOO island? /me giggles

June 06, 2008 at 03:00 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Gaea

Actually, we have a breeding facility in San Francisco. You've heard of the wild parrots of Telegraph Hill? Those were some escapees.

June 06, 2008 at 05:17 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Pleun

No can't say i've heard of those, haven't even heard of telegraph hill. But then again, i'm dutch, so that's not that odd.

So how do you get them in the game then? Scanning? Teleporting?

June 06, 2008 at 07:30 PM PDT | permalink

Posted by Gaea

Suffice it to say that when we do it, you can hardly hear yourself think for the squawking.

June 06, 2008 at 07:50 PM PDT | permalink

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