Some winners probably shouldn’t be named

I decided to wait to post today’s blog until after the Merry Men contest ended. Zimidar had been leading in Merry Men caught at 2 pm CST and then jewdog passed him to take the lead.

I might add that jewdog has managed to choose a player name only slightly less offensive to many players than niggadog who, fortunately for us, has shown enough wisdom not to use that name.

The winner of the Merry Man event is, well, I’ll let the screenshot speak for him.

The Merry Men event was much less frustrating this time around. As best I can tell players were able to collect bother rewards without mojo. Carol had everybody but one Will Scarlett by Saturday and she doesn’t play that often anymore.

I should correct myself for misidentifying King Richard as King John in my special update last week. It would have been Prince John. This doesn’t change the fact that King Richard wasn’t a merry man either; he was being held for ransom in the middle east at the time. He only showed up in Sherwood Forest as a surprise ending in the Kevin Costner version of Robin Hood (we presume to teach Costner how to speak English).

I’m also including the final three choices for book cover for the Grimoire eBook edition for readers to see. Carol’s already told me which one to use. Even though I have every right to choose one of the others, anyone who’s married will know the decision’s already been made.

This may seem like a lot of work for a book cover that will end up being 120×180 pixels in iBooks, but I will include it as a cover page illustration as well.

Carol’s choice is the leather book cover design. The photographer is Billy Alexander and the unedited photo can be seen on StockXchang.

This was the original cover design based on screenshots from my kingdom. I like the comic book feel, but most of it would be lost when reduced to iBooks format.

This was an earlier version of the book cover design. In many ways it’s cleaner, but I no longer have a say in the matter.

Carol and I are doing the final proofreading and I am winnowing out the screenshots that will actually appear in the book. Then it goes to BookBaby to submit to Apple.


Merry Men under attack

One week later and yet another event is underway. Or perhaps it could be called a mini-event since it’s several days shorter and you have nine fewer creatures to catch (although these are people, not creatures). The sheriff of Nottingham is plotting against Robin Hood and his merry men (and, apparently, their new ally King John). In order to foil his plot you have to capture each of them at least twice.

As usual, the event requires two levels of mastery. In the first level you simply have to capture one each of the merry men and their new friend King John. In the mastery level you must capture:

  • Will Scarlett and Little John 3x
  • Friar Tuck and Maid Marian 2x
  • King John and the highly elusive Robin Hood

I was a little pissed because I found Robin and Maid Marion wandering in my kingdom as soon as I launched. I spent 20m to capture them both because of their rarity only to discover the captures didn’t count until after I placed the carriage in my kingdom. I’ll know better next event.

The lure this time is the carriage carrying the King’s taxes. This lure is a little cooler than past lures. When it’s finished collecting you can see the carriage filled with gold.

The carriage is much more elaborate than past lures. When it’s trip is complete gold spills out of every opening.

The rewards aren’t quite as lucrative. The vineyard pays off less than half the total coins of the last events grand prize, but still returns 270hcp (four fourth best overall). Of course, the event is slightly less challenging as well.

Robin Hood is the toughest to catch. I only saw him twice in 150 uses of the carriage (that’s right, I spent 300m) to get the numbers.

Robin Hood is by far the most difficult to catch. After I placed the carriage I only saw him twice in more than 150 characters who appeared. I realized the best strategy this round would be to try to capture every character with the weak bow until Robin Hood showed up. This time it paid off. In the first round I captured every one with the weak bow, except, of course, for Robin. In the second round I captured all but one Friar and Maid Marion before he appeared.

I even got far enough down my list to actually send a merry person (Marion) to Carol.

Had I not been trying to run the numbers for readers, I suspect I could have avoided paying more than thirty or forty mojo for the entire event.

I even ended up in the top four players for catches. It won’t last of course. I would rather one of you guys win the grand prize so from here on out I’ll only be looking for the merry men (and John) that readers send me.

Good luck. I think both the camp and vineyard are within your grasp.