Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

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Finolia
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby Finolia » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:24 pm

Heya :)

Although you've just found a game I have to recommend Final Fantasy XIV. It's my favourite game ever :oops: :lol: .

The cons are probably that
...you have to subscribe to do everything and that
...it's (as far as I know!) only available in Japanese, English, German and French. If you go back to French though... :)

The pros in my opinion are
...since this March the free trial is not time-limited anymore,
...the level cap went up to 35 which means you can get access to the jobs and job classes (very specific, I know),
...which can all be done by one character by just equipping a different tool or weapon,
...there are a lot of quests with a lot of text,
...there are video sequences, partly accompanied by audio (which means listening practice as well :P) and
...the crafters and gatherers are 'classes' as well and a lot of their items are real life items which mans you'll learn real life plant names, minerals, leather types, ingredients etc.

Well...the languages are probably a k.o. for you but I thought I'd mention it anyway because I didn't only like the game itself but used it for learning French as well :)
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blaurebell
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Wed Aug 02, 2017 7:06 am

Thank you for the recommendation Finolia! Personally I never got into that universe much, but it certainly looks interesting. Maybe I'll have a closer look if I get bored with LotRO!
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:34 am

General

My health is totally annoying these days and I've had another day where I barely got anything done apart from playing a bit of Lord of the Rings Online in French. What frustrates me most is that I can't pinpoint what the problem is. I feel fine for a while and then from one day to the next it's all a big mess again. Maybe it's stress, maybe it's simply my current lifestyle of being inside too much, who knows! Stress is a likely explanation actually, since it's probably not a coincidence that we were booking a flat and tickets for the Paris trip and it totally made me feel even worse for a while, because it reminded me of all the things I should have done already. My husband is also stressed, so now I will have to figure out things that we can do in Paris and make sure it all goes without a hitch. In the end I sat down and did a bit of organisational work, sending messages back and forth with the people organising my next two exhibitions, paying university fees, that sort of thing. Little things that don't seem particularly productive, but still hang around in the back of my mind nagging me.

In any case, I think I may have to give in and simply ditch everything for a month or two. I just need a break until I feel I can work on my goals again without going nuts. Right now I feel like I can't do anything right. I feel like everything is one more chore, one more thing I'm not doing properly, one more thing that frustrates me and doesn't move forward quickly enough or at all for that matter. So, August is the month I traditionally take off from work anyway. I wasn't planning to do it this year, because I have so much stuff to do, but right now I think the best thing I can do for my sanity and health is to take a proper break from it all. So, the plan for August is to do nothing at all, or at least as little as humanly possible. Maybe I read science fiction books, play some pointless games, hang out on the beach and do all sorts of other thoroughly unproductive things. We'll see how that works out for language learning since I actually do an awful lot of my fun stuff in other languages. Usually I end up doing an awful lot of French when I don't make an effort to keep things balanced. We'll see!
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Wed Aug 02, 2017 6:36 pm

French

So, after 6h of gameplay it's time for a little update on the usefulness of Lord of the Rings Online for language learning. So far I'm really impressed with the game and it seems like there is lots of content available, and theoretically all for free. Like mostl Free to Play games, this actually has its restrictions and even though you could theoretically unlock all the additional game content and expansions with points earned on so-called "deeds" in the game, it turns the game into a bit of a grind if you do that. Some of the deeds that give you points for the store will involve killing 30 mobs for 5 points with an advanced deed of killing another 60 for 10 points. And there aren't enough deeds available with one character to amount enough points for a quest pack, so you would have to level several chars to have enough deeds available to earn enough points. That gets repetitive fast! With quest packs costing 700 points and being able to farm about 100 points per hour you might as well spend the money to save yourself some time, especially if you regularly earn more than 1$ an hour ;)

So how is the community? Well, best I just give you an example of how nice certain players can be: Today I was just doing a regular quest without planning to do the slasher deed of killing 30 mobs when a higher level player invited me into a fellowship. I accepted and was all eager to play with someone else, but since he was like 15 levels higher he could kill those mobs with one arrow. He was done with the 30mobs after I killed like 2 or 3. He left without saying a word, probably because he couldn't send me a message on his free account, but of course I shared his XP and got the deed points! Very nice! Also the world chat on the French server is pretty lively in comparison to the deafening silence I experienced on the Latin American WoW server. There are always people chatting away about where to find certain things, how to unlock certain free quests, how to do x, when the new expansion comes, etc. Sure, there is also the occasional trolling and reporting, but most of it is very friendly and helpful. I even got absorbed reading the chat a couple of times and forgot what I was doing in the game.

The storyline is actually a mature piece of writing with cut scenes, a story arc and different chapters. Sometimes stuff from cut scenes becomes relevant later or you follow the progression of one line of inquiry over several quests, which means that you actually start to care about it. Oh, you found the bag of the elf who has disappeared, his father thinks he's dead, but then you get the information that the dwarfs might have him and he's still alive etc. I now actually want to know what happens! In WoW there were similar quests that follow a story arc, but I was too busy finding the quests idiotic to actually care what happens with the story. So, basically more story, less grind so far. The style of the quest text is rather formal old-fashioned and wordy, which definitely adds to the feel of the game and it's really something where you can imagine yourself immersed in the world. So far I'm really impressed and I can imagine really exploring this world in detail. And what's really cool is the attention to detail. You can watch NPCs for a while and they won't be doing half actions to pretend that they are doing something. If there are NPC workers filling a wheelbarrow they will actually be filling that wheelbarrow and not just push it from A to B. So, enough attention to detail to actually get into it. And even the crafting professions seem sufficiently complex to get a kick out of it and actually produce useful gear, it's not just for completionists!

So, what don't I like so far? Well, the map is a real mess. It's difficult to find quest objectives sometimes, because there is simply too much stuff on the map even after I turned off all the different points of interests it shows me in the default configuration. I also ran into a rendering error in one sequence quest and had to restart the game because I couldn't see where I needed to go. This was a one time glitch though and I haven't had any other technical problems. Other than that, there is really nothing I could complain about, apart from my bad luck of arriving mid patch, which means that the server was down for 5h maintenance today and now it's been downloading patches for an hour already without end in sight. As far as I can tell this new patch is a major expansion pack though, so this actually tells you that this game is still very much alive even after 10 years!

As for the available content: The game has the free starter content for 3 starter areas - hobbits, humans, elves + dwarves. If I didn't get the count wrong there are also 8 quest packs on the pre-expansion story line and 6 expansion sets in total, the newest going right into Mordor. I haven't even done half the free content for one starter area and I've played for about 6h already. And let me reiterate, this is really a proper Free to Play game, so you can theoretically unlock all the content on points earned in the game if you have lots of time and patience for farming or want to go over the quest texts over and over to understand them better. And then there are of course also instances and battles that you can play with other players which would involve lots of active language usage.

So, if you're learning German or French and like Lord of the Rings, this game looks really great. I might even throw some money at it if my interests holds, because games like this are really great for language learning. A shame that it doesn't come in Spanish, but I think this is going to be great for my French.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby MamaPata » Wed Aug 02, 2017 6:36 pm

Take it gently and look after yourself!
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Corrections appreciated.

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blaurebell
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Thu Aug 03, 2017 8:35 am

So, my first day of officially doing nothing went like this: Some 2.5h of Lord of the Rings Online in French, some La venganza será terrible while walking into town and back, an episode of Transfert while sitting in the sun, 15min of speaking in Spanish with my doctor. Things got complicated while explaining my newest bout of bad health, so I had to switch to German at some point, but we fell back to Spanish for our regular conversation. I simply lack medical vocabulary and should probably watch House MD in Spanish at some point. Before bed I also read a bit of Gaétan Soucy's La petite fille qui amait trop les allumettes. My brother sent this one to me and so far I can't really say what it's like. I'm still getting used to the style.

So well, not doing any proper studying still means I get more than enough exposure!
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Fri Aug 04, 2017 7:54 am

Still feeling like death. I even had to drop doing an interview for this issue of our magazine, because it would have to be in this month and my health definitely requires catlike activity levels these days. I also can't travel to my next exhibition in Germany although it's the first exhibition in ages that's actually close enough to go there in person - I tend to have shows in the US a lot lately. The same exhibition also includes paintings by my brother and I haven't seen those in person yet either. It's all awfully frustrating! But well, I'll get through this, same as always. It's not as if it's the first bout of bad health or the first trip I had to cancel. There will also be better days again.

So, yesterday some 20min of Spanish speaking with the doctor, some La venganza será terrible on the way and while folding clothes, 3.5h of Lord of the Rings Online in French and reading La petite fille qui amait trop les allumettes before bed. That book is well weird so far and has me stumbling over vocabulary quite often. Challenging! But definitely interesting.

In non-language learning related things: We're watching a bunch of nice movies these days, which is a welcome change. I find it exceptionally hard to find movies that I haven't seen yet and that I actually enjoy. Not sure whether it's just my taste or whether there are really less good movies being produced these days. Occasionally my husband unearths some nice ones though. Of the ones we've seen lately I can definitely recommend Beginners (2010), melancholic but good, La tortue rouge (2016) - no dialogue Studio Ghibli, very beautiful - and 20th Century Women (2016) - LA punk teenage confusion nostalgia, very good sound track and a rather nice atmosphere. We had seen Beginners when it came out, but it's a movie worth re-watching.
4 x
: 20 / 100 Дэвид Эддингс - В поисках камня
: 14325 / 35000 LWT Known

: 17 / 55 FSI Spanish Basic
: 100 / 116 GdUdE B
: 8 / 72 Duolingo reverse Spanish -> German

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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby LesRonces » Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:24 am

blaurebell wrote:Still feeling like death. I even had to drop doing an interview for this issue of our magazine, because it would have to be in this month and my health definitely requires catlike activity levels these days. I also can't travel to my next exhibition in Germany although it's the first exhibition in ages that's actually close enough to go there in person - I tend to have shows in the US a lot lately. The same exhibition also includes paintings by my brother and I haven't seen those in person yet either. It's all awfully frustrating! But well, I'll get through this, same as always. It's not as if it's the first bout of bad health or the first trip I had to cancel. There will also be better days again.

So, yesterday some 20min of Spanish speaking with the doctor, some La venganza será terrible on the way and while folding clothes, 3.5h of Lord of the Rings Online in French and reading La petite fille qui amait trop les allumettes before bed. That book is well weird so far and has me stumbling over vocabulary quite often. Challenging! But definitely interesting.

In non-language learning related things: We're watching a bunch of nice movies these days, which is a welcome change. I find it exceptionally hard to find movies that I haven't seen yet and that I actually enjoy. Not sure whether it's just my taste or whether there are really less good movies being produced these days. Occasionally my husband unearths some nice ones though. Of the ones we've seen lately I can definitely recommend Beginners (2010), melancholic but good, La tortue rouge (2016) - no dialogue Studio Ghibli, very beautiful - and 20th Century Women (2016) - LA punk teenage confusion nostalgia, very good sound track and a rather nice atmosphere. We had seen Beginners when it came out, but it's a movie worth re-watching.

Whatever it is that you're afflicted with it sounds like it sucks. Chin up. :)
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blaurebell
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Sat Aug 05, 2017 8:13 am

LesRonces wrote:Whatever it is that you're afflicted with it sounds like it sucks. Chin up.


Thanks. Indeed, it sucks. But well, I do get long stretches of semi-bearable health, because I've figured out some things over the years. But then it's always this constant up and down that gets to me. I can't really predict what my health is going to be like in half a year.
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Re: Lilly's log - French, Russian, Spanish and Italian

Postby blaurebell » Sat Aug 05, 2017 12:37 pm

French

So, I've been playing a lot of Lord of the Rings online yesterday and I'm really enjoying it. The quests aren't as repetitive as in WoW and you get instance quests where you go with an NPC and try to achieve something that brings the main story forward. It's also lovely to suddenly end up in a place that you know from the books - yesterday I was at the Prancing Pony and spoke to Aragorn. That's pretty cool 8-)

Since my dad is a huge Tolkien fan I told him about the game and he might join me on the weekends in which case I'll be playing in English during those times. The rest of the time I'm playing in French, which is actually rather ironic as my dad pointed out. Apparently Tolkien hated French with a passion :lol: Well, what do I care, I love French and I think the French server is rather friendly and nice! Also, it's really completely in French, even the server commands are! In WoW if you want to know how long you've played a specific character you type /played even on a Spanish server. The same command works on the English LotRO server, but on the French server it's /joué! So, it's really a full translation. Also, most characters at least say one sentence in audio in LotRO and the cut scenes have audio too. WoW is much more silent apart from the absolutely stupid spoken "You have to select a target", when your target already died. That drove me nuts!

Yes, there is less variation for the story line in the free content for LotRO - beyond the starter zone you will end up in the same area no matter which race you play, so farming for points to buy more content could actually turn into a very repetitive thing if you know those starter zones well. But then, people do speed runs for fun and replay the first few levels of Sonic gazillions of times. When I was a kid I used to play a demo for Jazz Jackrabbit over and over and it only had 6 levels. I must have played it hundreds of times and that one also took me about 1.5h. So why not play the same LotRO sequence over and over when I have nothing better to do and then buy more ingame content? I've actually already earned an awful lot of points just by enjoying the story line without going out of my way to do the deeds with which you earn them. So far I've played for 15h and people cover the same thing in 2h on speed runs with a high damage class without reading the quest text. I usually start playing a game on a tank though precisely because it takes longer and makes me feel like I'm smelling the roses rather than speeding through everything. With my current character I definitely started most of the deeds on the way, so I can go back later to finish them when I'm at a higher level and it doesn't take me 30 sec to kill a single mob. I think I will play my current character until level 20 and then switch to a different class on another race, maybe a high damage one to get some fresh air. This way I'll play all the starter storylines of the different races and get to know all the different areas of the game.

I'm really happy that I found this game. I think it will help my French a lot and I'm really enjoying it. I always loved these kinds of games and used to play The Dark Eye DOS games when I was younger. Shitty graphics, but a really interesting RPG game. Those were really lovely games and I always got terribly lost and died a gazillion times because I accidentally wandered into an area with enemies far above my level. I actually used to boost my character stats to have a chance to survive (used to be called cheating, now it's called "pay to win" ;) ). My husband was even more hardcore and played Moria. That one doesn't even have graphics. You encounter a D ... and have to imagine a big bad dragon :lol: Basically LotRO is the game I always wanted to play when I was playing The Dark Eye games.

OK, this must be really boring to read when you're not a gamer, but I'm just so happy I found a good game to play for my French that will give me gazillions of hours of good fun content! Precisely what I need right now.
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: 20 / 100 Дэвид Эддингс - В поисках камня
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: 17 / 55 FSI Spanish Basic
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