Update before appointments

My dad
  • Back pain worsened a little: needed to take Tramadol 3 times a day + paracetamol 2 times day
  • Each night when he woke up to go to toilet at about 2-3am, he needed to take Oxnynorm (the "breakthrough") because his leg started to be painful
  • He went for private physiotherapy that helped with his back pain and discomfort in his neck, which he found helpful. This physiotherapist seems pretty good because he did view the MRI scan and also disallowed my dad to use certain machine (after seeing some patients using it, dad though it would be good for him) because not suitable for cancer patients. However, the hospice nurse advised against it because of "brittle bone". Not sure whether it's specific to cancer patients or all old folks
At the moment, the plan is to wait until the next appointment (soon) with the oncologist and palliative care unit specialist to report the above.

My mum
  • Able to converse "normally" over the phone i.e. coherent, voluminous.
  • Taste bud gearing towards "normal" i.e. there are now food that are "very nice" and "not nice", instead of "ok lah" for all
  • Tried to forgo clonazepam ("sleeping tablet) one night but cave in when she couldn't sleep at midnight.
I advised my mum to follow the doctor's prescription. Because of a remark made by the geriatric psychiatrist previously, I highly suspect he will next prescribe clonazepam to be taken as and when needed.

Atlas Reactor: Asana revisited

It's been a long time since I talked about my Asana build. There have been changes since then. If I recall correctly, her hp was decreased, her primary ability's healing mod was decreased from 5 to 4, and there was a buff to that ability's damage (so do other frontline freelancers).

Then later, for a long time, I used this build:
(for details on abilities, please refer to this wikia)

(1) Whirling Blade - Leech Blade (3 loadout points)
(2) Rebounding Charge - Vault (3 loadpoint points)
(3) Stand and Fight! - Walk and Fight! (2 loadout points)
(4) Retribution - (unequipped)
(5) Guardian - Savior (2 loadout points)

Vault is great because it makes it hard for enemies to predict where you'll end up at. Hitting two targets is a bonus.

Walk and Fight! makes this ability (the only non-ulti range ability) more consistent since it can then be used once every 3 turns.

Leech Blade is for sustain while Guardian is great for escape, to help with kills or to help shield team mates.

Recently, I tried Archangel mod (3 loadout points) on the ultimate ability. An AR friend, highaf, commented that the normal 20 shield was simply not enough to mitigate substantial damage done to your team mates (and often to yourself too). Of course the huge drawback is that you lose out on the global range of Savior. I have yet to conclude whether it's a good change or not because I've used it fewer than 10 times. I guess that you'll have to be mindful of your position relative to your team mates, especially those in need of help, when you're close to having your ultimate i.e. you should start making your way towards them.

However, since this mod requires one more loadout point and I must have Vault and Walk and Fight! mods, I chose Swordmaster mod for Whirling Blade ability. Because Asana has substantially less hp than other frontline freelancers, you'll have to be extra vigilant of your hp and your positioning relative to your support and/or health powerups.

Here's a recent gameplay of Asana using the Archangel and Swordmaster mods:

Atlas Reactor: Su-Ren revisited

There were some changes to my build since I last blogged about Su-Ren:

(1) Martial Master - Zen State (3 loadout points)

I still highly recommend this mod. Watch the first video below (specifically turn 6) for yet another moment of "healing mod ftw!".

(2) Serenity - Gaia's Blessing (3 loadout points)

(3) Shifting Winds - Protector (1 loadout point)

These two mods together give lots of healing and can save a team mate who is being focused on by the enemies. Watch the second video for the clutch healing on turn 15.

Yes, there were times when the second dash was wasted but I think I'm better now at positioning and so such occurrence is minimised.

(4) Spirit Bend - Chi Overflow (1 loadout point)

(5) Karmic Justice - Gaia's Chosen (2 loadout points)

Reasons given in previous post remain valid for the choice of these two mods.

Where is cold water?

Spotted this at e@Curve, on a ceiling:

Cold water

Sooooo there's cold water right on that spot?

Atlas Reactor: Magnus

I used to play poorly with this freelancer. For the past months or so, I observed players who used him well and I noticed one glaring difference: they used Deal Breaker quite often.

Quick background for context: the first freelancer I leveled to 20 is Grey. Believe or not that the tipping point where I improved my performance as Grey was to follow a simple advice (can't remember who gave it): support my tank.

I was thinking could it be also that simple for Magnus? That I just need to use Deal Breaker as often as possible. It's a powerful ability because of the crowd control feature, especially if the target is already rooted by Horns Up the previous turn i.e. 2 consecutive turns of movement denial.

So I used Deal Breaker as often as possible, even if I could hit more enemies if I use Power Drive instead. Amazingly, it worked lol: I did much better. Alright, alright, there's probably another reason: a buff to his shield (from 10 to 20) in the second part of Horns Up i.e. if he doesn't dash.

Here's my current build:
(refer to this wikia for details on abilities and mods)

(1) Power Drive - Force Capacitor (2 loadout points)

Haste is great for melee lancers.

(2) Extinction Event - Nowhere to Run (3 loadout points)

I used to take Protection Racket, which is a greedy mod actually. Worked well if enemies grouped fairly close together.

However, Nowhere to Run should be more consistent, with the extra range of 3. I use it if I can't hit anyone or as a form of trap on enemies who are likely to dash that turn.

(3) Horns Up - Fake Out (3 loadout points)

In my opinion, this is too good to pass up. It allows me to freely use Horns Up as a form of getting the first shield because I'll get it back quicker if I choose not to dash (and benefit from the second shield).

Trample is tempting but again, it's a greedy mod and not as consistent as Fake Out.

(4) Deal Breaker - (unequipped)

The last 2 loadout points are distributed to this and ultimate abilities. Currently, I unequip mod for Deal Breaker in favour of mod for the ultimate.

Potentially, I can unequip Boss Around and pick Concussion for this ability, which looks great because that's additional crowd control. Imagine root from Horns Up, knock back from Deal Breaker, and then slow from Concussion mod. Hmmm I may try this.

(5) Boss Around - Sonic Boom (2 loadout points)

I used to play with Lower Morale mod because I reasoned that since this ultimate ability pulls enemies towards Magnus, it would be good to have them weakened next turn. Doesn't guarantee my survival but it should help. It's still a good mod but I just want to try something different: kill them and don't need to worry about enemies next turn? Lol. Or at least injure them severely so that either they feel or die next turn. Yes, I can die too but I'll take a trade.

Here are some recent gameplays:

Curry Mee @ Family Mixed Rice

Ban and I usually have chap fan for lunch at Family Mixed Rice Restaurant everyday except for Sunday (close on Sunday). Quite spacious, friendly lady boss, generally cheaper than and, most definitely, cleaner than the next door Restoran Tropikiri.

Since its previous owners, there has always been a noodle stall there. Then the current boss got someone to operate another stall, selling delicious steamed chicken rice. Unfortunately, he moved away. The stall was empty for quite a long time until she got one of her assistants to sell curry mee.

I don't know who is the mastermind behind the recipe: it's delicious!

Family Mixed Rice Restaurant curry mee

It has a good variety of ingredients: chicken, tau hu pok, brinjal, long bean and beansprout. I had to add about a third to half of the given sambal paste to get the right spiciness and taste suitable for me. Oh, the lady boss said that if I didn't like the meat offered (curry chicken this time; second time was sliced chicken meat), I could choose any other meat from the chap fan dish selection. Not sure whether this offer is valid for all customers or just regular ones like me.

It's RM6, which could be a little expensive than other noodle, I'm not sure. Does curry mee command premium of, say, RM0.50? In any case, it's worth it.


Since the last appointment, my mum's condition improved significantly. During the next 2 weeks, there were only 3 occasions when she couldn't sleep throughout the nights but most importantly, it didn't lead to anxiety and urge to hurt herself. She didn't feel restless, hear voices or feel distressed. She also talked more. She believed that the anti-depressant sertraline was the medicine that helped her.

On the next appointment, we were fortunate that the geriatric psychiatrist was the one who attended to my mum. He said that the effect of sertraline was much better than he expected, especially since it was on low dosage. He suspected that mum's case could be one of those rare cases where one hears voices when depressed.

He asked a few questions as well as tested the stiffness of mum's arms. He said that her right arm was stiff while her left arm was slightly stiff. He suggested that since mum wasn't under distressed at the moment, she could try to half the morning dosage of olanzapine i.e. 5mg to 2.5mg to decrease the stiffness. However, if her condition worsens, put back up the dosage to 5mg.

All other medicine stay the same as before. One lucky thing was that Pg GH had supply of olanzanpine! Yay! I was shocked that it was of the original brand i.e. Zyaprexa. Perhaps they should consider getting the cheaper ones and so could have larger supply.

Next appointment is in one month's time.