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the adventures of reine du fromage de blight

this is my blog of the mostest awesome mmo currently available! go to for more information!

Author: velveeta

the autumn party hosted by nia, written as my egotistically character

Posted by velveeta Saturday October 31 2009 at 5:33PM
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huzzah, huzzah and yet again, huzzah to nia and her guild, chronicles of the twisted!


we are most pleased to announce the successful social event of the season! it is unfortunate that nia was unable to attend, but her spirit rang thru the gathering loud and proud!


it was necessary for us to change into our costume for the party! we chose to don our stylish ghoulie pants, which matched exceptionally well with our kion dress shirt and boots, topped off by our loved troll mask:



it was our pleasure to assist visitors from other worlds to attune to bristugo, on the way to the twisted's guild property in ambato:



the group then moved to the guild lands:



we all gathered to the port pad to begin. as host, aniscia gathered - in addition to ourself - illusionist, lovwyrm, grodec, sigismund, flameus, aejax, awdz, and ista together:



the guild lands were decorated in fitting fashion, and the costumes were impressive as well:



from then on, we all had great loads of fun, having constant snoball fights:



shooting off fireworx:



and stuffing ourselves with celebration cake and rare desserts, the effects of which quickly became apparent, as we all began to give off a suitably eerie glow:



excellent conversation and foot races between the ambato/manta bridges provided the needed exercise after all that great food. our dear guest, awdz, proved quite handily that zombies are much faster than we think.


alas, all good things must end, and so it was with our party. eventually, the guests bade goodbye with much praise for nia's accomplishment and for the great guild she belongs to, chronicles of the twisted. so pleased are we, that we are in negiotations with nia and the guild to host a winter party to celebrate our godgiven year end festival.


the crowns wishes to thank, once again but not often enough, nia and the cott for planning and hosting this event. it reflects well not only on the guild, but on our beloved realm, that we can host visitors in such a grand manner.

and, of course, we thank our honored guests and our beloved blighties in attendance. your company brought just the right comfortable glow!


we most heartily look forward to the next party, and promise to have gifts and prizes to contribute!

new stuff in game

Posted by velveeta Saturday October 24 2009 at 5:35PM
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Developer's Preview:
Dalimond Peninsula



Welcome to the Dalimond Peninsula Preview, the upcoming Winter 2009 Content Release for Istaria: Chronicles of the Gifted. Unlike our previous Dralnok's Doom Content Update that was focused on tier 6 and high-level players, this update will be focused on those who are still learning the game and will be focused entirely upon tier 2 (levels 21 to 40). This update contains three key components we wanted to preview for you.

First, and probably the biggest, is the revamp of the landscape of the Dalimond Peninsula. No longer will you wander from Bristugo to Heart without seeing more than two trees and without seeing any monsters. Now, as you follow the roads you will encounter new sights, sounds, and many a monster!

The entire landscape of the peninsula has been revamped with some extreme changes (Look north and west of South March!) and others less extreme, but still surprising (west of Bristugo and south of King's Cross). Off the roads you will find new locations, tombs or ruins, undead outposts, lairs, and much more. Even the older areas have been touched, including the Dead Pool, the Chiconis Battlefield and the Observatory Outpost, and completely new adventure centers have been added.

Second, quests. This update contains more quests than the Dralnok's Doom Update (almost 200 in all!) including five distinct storylines (each with five or more quests) that introduce new enemies to the Peninsula, as well as bringing back old ones and tying them together into storylines that we hope you will enjoy.

In addition to the core storylines for the peninsula, there are also four school/race specific storylines - one for Healing schools, for Mage schools, for Warrior schools, and one for Dragons. These storylines are meant to replace the old quests that were given out by trainers every 10 levels and give an expanding story that ties directly into the world and complements the core storylines for the Update.

As players make their way overland they'll find that there are many new settlements that have been built across the landscape. While some of these are populated by friendly neighbors who will often have a quest or need help from one of the Gifted to build their homes, not all the new settlers are friendly. In particular, the skulks that have invaded the forests, erecting tents to form small villages, have proven a real menace to anyone traveling from Sable Shores to Bristugo and beyond. These skulks hide among the giant oaks which grow in the forests and will attack the unwary travelers and crafters who are out gathering wood to build their homes.

Finally, mini dungeons. With this Content Update there will be two mini-dungeons as we are calling them. These are small (compared to Dralnok's Doom) but we hope will still provide a fun experience for players. Both dungeons will contain sights never-before-seen in Istaria including an entirely new monster race that we previewed for you briefly back in July (

Well, that's it for this first preview of the forthcoming Dalimond Peninsula Content Update. We're excited about this update and know it's going to make a big difference for Tier 2 players, as well as anyone else passing through the area. We hope you enjoyed the preview and thank you for playing Istaria: Chronicles of the Gifted.


Happy Gaming!

Virtrium Team


Developer's Desk: Fall

Once again the days grow long, nights grow cold... and the season of Festivals approaches in Istaria. Having seen some recent messages left for me, I know that the time of year has not gone unnoticed by many of the Gifted in Istaria. In fact, after seeing questions such as "Is there a fall festival this year", that made me realize that it has been quite some time since anyone has heard from the Office of Contest Management. So long, in fact, that I began to investigate. So before I talk about the future, a bit of a story and some old business.

When last we heard from the Office of Contest Management, they were wrapping up the Home and Hearth Winter contest, yes, way back in January. At that time our contest manager, Faresha Headly, had gathered submissions a writing and art contest, had completed judging, and even introduced many of the items designed by the winners to the world of Istaria. It is only recently that it was pointed out to me that Faresha seemed to have promptly then disappeared, never having released the wonderful stories told as part of the writing contest. Being the diligent investigator I am, I delegated the task of finding what happened to Faresha and the stories to a young hatchling interning in the office. It took some time, but soon Revo Suolaez returned with his report. Unfortunately he didn't return with Faresha, and the manuscripts he returned with were a bit worse for wear, but that's another story that would take days to tell. The Middle Cliffside version is that Faresha was found on the island of New Korelia deep in a cave, with a printing press and large supply of parchment. Revo's report stated that Faresha had intended to reprint the stories authored by our wonderful Gifted Istarians and release those stories herself, hoping to make a mith (as in mithril) from the sale of these stories. Needless to say, Revo quickly put those plans to an end. Our sincere apologies are owed to the authors of those stories, and we intend to release them quite soon, and for free of course, to all Istarians so that they too many enjoy these tales. In the future, I will personally be overseeing all contests, including working to ensure that proper credit is given and that the stories become available soon after the completion of the contest.

And so, without further storytelling on my part... What will be happening with this fall and the winter festivals?

We have decided that it would be improper to allow the miscreant Faresha to spoil the happiness and fun that such year end festivals bring. However, with the current state of both the Empire and the calendar, holding two festivals between now and the end of the year is not feasible. Therefore, after speaking to those involved in the planning and creation of such festivals, it has been decided that we will move forth with a single year's end celebration, so for this year we won't be holding a "fall" festival and a few months later a "winter" festival.

As is tradition in Istaria, we will once again hold a contest where we accept submissions for stories, banners, lair murals and specialized clothing. Details on this year's contest can be found below. In light of having just one celebration to end the year, we will not limit this year's submissions to any particular "theme", though as submissions come in we may decide to have specific categories for those considered to be "winners" of the contest.

In addition, the Empire will once again open the Festival Crypt and release the spooky spiders and the like. But I would also like to hear from you. What are your favorite memories of festivals past? What do you look forward to each fall/winter as the leaves begin to turn in Istaria? If there is something which you enjoy and want to see brought back, please take a moment to share your thoughts on our forums ( Something you mention may spark a new idea that can become tradition, but I also don't want to miss something which may be possible to bring back. No promises, of course, but I can only suggest to the Officers of Seasonal Festivals that which either I remember or am reminded of.

Now this year's seasonal festival isn't all that's coming in the later part of this year. Departing from the "story telling" point of view now, I wanted to share with you a Developer's Preview detailing what is coming for the next major Content Update. This information is being released to various press agencies in the real world, in addition to being posted on our forums, Facebook and Myspace sites. Feel free to repost or link it and share what's coming to Istaria later this fall. Reposting a snippet of the Developer's Preview with a link to the original article, and a bit of a note from you, can count as one of your blogs for this month in our Spread the Word program! Then not only will you be helping share what's happening in Istaria, but you'll be one step closer to a free plot!

I'm looking forward to seeing the creativity of our player-base in action once again. And as I said "in-character" above, the stories from the 2008 Home and Heart contest will be released at the end of this year's Home and Heart contest as well.

Year End Festival Contest:
We are excited to announce a new contest to run prior to this year's end-of-year event. Many of you were here in previous years for various contests that we've held and so these rules will be familiar to you. This year rather than holding multiple contests over the last few months of the year, we're combining the contest into one for a fall/winter season, and plan to hold another in the spring/summer.

As in years past, we are looking for works of art in many forms.

This year's contest is actually in multiple parts.

Chronicles of Istaria: Hearth and Home - A short story contest
Chronicles of Istaria: Songs and Poems - A poetry and song writing contest
Artists of Istaria: Clothing - Design a new pair of shorts or a mask around a year-end theme
Artists of Istaria: Banners and Murals - A design a special banner or dragon mural

Short stories must be original works of fiction set in Istaria around a holiday tradition or event. Lore wise, most races of Istaria view the end of the year as a celebration of the "scarier" side of life, with themes of death, the undying and the mystical unknown being the focus of celebrations as summer ends and fall beings, and winter as a time of new beginnings, though they all celebrate it in different ways. Writers are encouraged to reflect any of these themes in their stories.

Songs and poems should also center around one of these themes. The song or poem may be written to follow the tune of an existing song or melody, but please reference the song and artist when submitting your work.

We have provided templates for shorts, masks dragon murals and plot banners to encourage players to design new items as well.

We'd like to encourage anyone with an interest - regardless of experience and skill set - to submit an entry for this contest.

For a complete set of rules, including where to download the templates, please visit our website at:

From all of us at Virtrium, developers of Istaria, we wish you a safe and happy holiday season.

Replacement Contest Manager Even More Extraordinaire


Posted by velveeta Saturday October 24 2009 at 5:32PM
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the main way to travel swiftly in istaria is by teleportals. the major towns and settlements have at least a port in, most have a port out (even if it only goes to the main port hub, bristugo).
most of the mjor towns are known as racial towns, meaning that the races have a 'home': kion for saris, sslanis for sslik, chiconis or dralk for draggys (depending on faction), kirasanct for fiends, etc. (
until last tuesday, the bristugo and the racial towns were 'free' to attune to. by that, i mean you automatically had the ability to select them to port to from a valid outgoing port. some of the minor ports, like most of the trandalar ports, require a quest to be fulfilled to gain the access to the port. this is called attunement.
most towns and settlements also have a shrine. characters can right clik on the shrine and 'bind' to that particular town - for instance, all my alts and snake have bound to bristugo, which turned out to be a great big boon!
on tuesday, the gods decreed that bristugo, chiconis, and dalimond, as well as the dalimond pennisula ports for the lesser towns, required attunement to access them. as bristugo is a main port hub (it has port access to almost all of the settlement, pennisula, and town ports, see below:

the upright circles are the outgoing ports, the platform in the middle is the incoming pad), many peeps bind to shrines elsewhere, like their personal shrines on their plots and port to brist to get around.

well on tuesday, they made brist unavailable until you attune. this left a lot of peeps stranded on faraway plots and islands without a way to get to brist and therefore to most other places. this has not, of course, made us players happy.
leading consensus is, the gods should have automatically given existing players attunement to the ports, at least the hub and major towns that we had access to on monday.......

however, given the past we have had with this game, most of us elder players have learned the futility of protesting too much. virtrium is the best owner to have control of istaria in many a year, and we all have hopes that these little minuses will lead to newer and fresher blood.

anyhoo, the reality is that i have to reattune to the places i once roamed with impunity. being bound to brist, it was easy enough to do that attunement. all that remained was a run around the world, attuning to the new places.

the closest town to brist to attune to is dalimond, home of the humans:

(i am the white dot in the lower left center, under the bristugo tag. you can't see the roads or paths very well, but there is one between brist and dali. a little further and up a bit from the blighted area in the lower right corner is the town of chiconis.)

so off i run to dalimond, to see the man with the attunement plan. he is next to a statue of a winged creature (the gods redesigned the dali pennisula as part of the tier 2 revamp and added/deleted things and terrain, so the statues infesting dali are new to me).
like most mmo's, npcs with quests to give have a indicator - for istaria, thats a grey bubble with a ! in it:


rightcliking on npcs brings up a menu of ways you can interact with the npc (greet, trade, etc) (like this, using the chiconis attunement guy for example:


choosing the greet option, you will get a dialogue text and link screen. some npcs have more than one quest to give, like the npc for sable shores attunement:


and these are always good for something to do when you are done crafting.....

so, i approach the councilman, rightclik and get the blahblah woofwoof:


i clik the link for the attunement quest, and get the following (notice the game update in the lower right corner text box):


i repeated the process for chiconis and sable shores. i still have like 5 or 6 more pennisula ports to attune to, but i am only really concerned with the main ports for now. i will leave the rest for when i am bored!


on another front, i recieved my plot slot for posting this blog, but the plot i want is owned!! fortunately, the owner is not a full time resident of blight and is only using the plot to design a plot for another player. i am promised that i will be able to buy it when the current owner is done, as they have no interest in having a plot on blight shard. so yippee!! soon i will be able to do a series on designing and building a plot!

helping out again!

Posted by velveeta Saturday October 24 2009 at 5:26PM
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dascede, all grown up and flying now, but still a relatively low level for some of the quests - tonight it was another trip to the western deadlands to find some skelly bone splinters.
the deadlands, as the name might indicate, are the homes (there are 2 major deadlands, with lesser ones scattered around the continent) for the baddies in istaria.

i met the big dasc in the closest port to the wd:


as a hatchie, she was barely bigger than me!! adult draggies are awesome, but the ancients are the real giants!

as you can see from the map, the wd is only a short north run from dryart, the closest port town:

the wd is the black area at the top left of the map. if you look to the center left, you will see the blighted area in the kion area (the black ringed red area - its a volcano. has all sorts of nasty golems and blights hanging around it. undead patrol the roads leading to it. i still love to stop by and throw some love taps on lt. tarn - the nasty undead officer who patrols a long stretch of road from kion to the areas with all the crafting resources....) as well.

this is what the general theme of the deadlands seems to be. lots of green lightning, twisted black and ebil trees, horrid mushrooms and scorched black hills that hide legions of nasties:

when you group, you can use the map as well as the direction arrow to find your partiers. on this map, i am the white dot and dasc is the green dot:

trying to find a single critter type in the deadlands is not easy. many different types of nastie and they love to gang up on poor adventurers just standing around, so its a good idea to find a safe spot and scout the terrain:

of course, you can never go hunting without something dying. this is what it looks like just before i do:

well after all that, we still didn't get dasc her splinter yet. we need one or two more hunters with us, if we are gonna run into the mobs we did tonight. but it will happen!!

major changes to the game were released tuesday, and not all are so popular......
will explore the most disappointing one at a later date - attunement to major and racial town ports.......very not kewl!

other peeps views of horizons

Posted by velveeta Saturday October 24 2009 at 5:17PM
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for a niche game, horizons has a lot of lovers! peeps much more creative than me have come up with a load of kewl vids, filmed in game and out, serious and funny. they are the best way to learn more about the game!
here is a list of playlists from youtube, check em out when you get a chance! :


peeps can try the game for free for as long as they wish, by creating a demo account. you only get one human character (no making another biped race or a draggy) but you can play that character as long as you want. try it out and/or tell your gaming friends to give it a chance!!

kaa the shade

Posted by velveeta Saturday October 24 2009 at 5:14PM
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so, as a character in istaria, dragons go thru 3 'life cycles'. you start life as a hatchie. after reaching a certain level in both adventuring and crafting (unlike bipeds, draggys do not have 'schools' they can pick and choose from - for instance, velveeta has several 100 level [the max] adventure and crafting schools - and are limited to a max overall rating of 100, whereas peds can reach 200, 250, or even higher overall rating (vel is currently 150 overall, for instance), draggys seek to become adult, then ancient.

the level is different for every player. some, like me, take pride in the ability to be able to handle the adult rites of passage (as the set of quests that must be done to advance to each life stage is called) alone by waiting til they are high level to begin (personally, i am trying to wait til i hit 100 in crafting so can make the 100/100 hatchie club); others choose to take help and start the rites as soon as they reach a reasonable level.

once a hatchie completes the rites of adulthood, they gain the ability to fly and, depending on faction, either a lightning or a flame breath weapon, as in:
Will give the following
Path of the Lunus - +40 Flame Resistance, +20 Tooth and Claw.
Stat gains for aging: +200 Health, +50 strength, +45 Armor, +75 Fly Speed
completion of the rite also gives the adult the quest for khutit form, which is a 'shapechange' ability to switch betwee normal draggy form and the 'biped' form (which to me always looks like a sslik [the race of my bro's character, snake eyes]).

so anyway, on my shard, i helped a hatchie do one of the adult quests. the prospective hatchie must kill a named mob called kaa the shade. kaa is found at the bottom of a spiral canyon in the heart of the enemy's territory. of course,over the years, elder players have discovered the safe place for a hatchie to hang out while some higher level (perferably adult draggys who can fly and pull kaa from the center of the spiral to the safe place) characters pull kaa thru the hoard of baddies that inhabit the spiral with kaa.

after a couple days of tracking down the needed help (dascede, the hatchie doing the rop, was at the minimum level to begin the rites), we finally got to the safe place - as a non flyer, i put vel into cleric school (instead of my fave, warrior) to provide healing and resurrections as needed and waited with the young ones until the adults pulled kaa to us:


once the adults, firetalker and fermi, had pulled kaa to the area beneath us (we are on a bluff overlooking the entrance to the spiral), the group jumped off the bluff (horizons doesn't have fall damage, so characters can jump off towers and mountains without taking harm, and hatchies can practice flying by 'gliding' off the tops.... here is a group of us on the top of granitefall mountain and gliding into the heart of chiconis, one of the draggy cities:


unfortunately, in the excitement, i was unable to take screenies of the battle between dascede and kaa. i am happy to report that altho asc did die once, we were able to rez her in time to complete the battle and finish the quest as needed:


(kaa is the whitish lump lying on the ground in the middle of the screenie - the higher levels never recall until the younguns have left, of course. if you look closely at the list of names on the right side of the screenie, you will see the current advent school, the level of that school, and the overall character rating in paraentheses [for instance, velveeta is currently in the cleric {clr} school at max level, rating 150])

i am happy to report that dascede is now an adult and is undergoing her khutit form quest at this time. this is good experience for when i finally get mourningwood to the rop stage!


i will, hopefully, begin to build up a more complete screenie file so i can have more visual info to put in these reports. i plan on writing something about each of my online sessions. that should hopefully get me more experience in explaining the sheer awesomeness that horizons has to offer!

see you soon with more tales from the land of horizons!

a new purpose

Posted by velveeta Monday October 19 2009 at 10:13PM
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as you know, i have an online game that i enjoy. it is called Istaria: Chronicles of the Gifted ( and it has the distinction of being the only mmo (i believe, anyway) that currently allows you to play a dragon character.
i believe i previously posted some stories i wrote about my characters in the game (go here to read vel's and mw's stories:, so i will spare you a repost of them, but here are a couple screenies:

velveeta the cheese queen of blight showing off her party wear:

mourningwood the ungifted:

and this is my bro's character, snake eyes, but he doesn't play much anymore:


we love the game so much, we had our likenessess created and placed on the game store ( where you can buy us on tees, notebooks, or even coasters! lol

so also in game, your gifted subscription allows you to own a plot of land (or a lair for draggys) which you can build on. plots are very useful!
unfortunately, istaria has always been a niche game and the past few years have been very rough. the game changed hands several times and most of the owners were not kind. but that is all in the past now, and the new owners ( are very committed to the good of the game.
one of the new developments is called the 'spread the word' program. players post blogs and such about the game and have a chance to earn another plot spot without paying for another sub. this is an awesome idea to me and i am much looking forward to both putting out the name of my favest game and getting the chance to earn the sahweet plot next to my current one. its on shepherd's mountain, right off the middle cliffside port pad and its huge and beautiful and i plan on putting up the crafting workstations that someone took down when they bought icing's old plot. i put in and filled a score of silos because those workstations were there......

anyhoo, i plan on making this a regular thing. hopefully forcing myself to find something to talk about on a regular basis will also help kikstart this writing thing that everyone sez i should give a whirl.

any discipline is good discipline, eh?