Niami DenMother had a guilty pleasure.
Contrary to popular belief, however, it wasn't food.
She was a halfling, after all, so while there was much pleasure to be had in food, there was no guilt. She was proud of her pie-thighs, thankyouverymuch!
No, her guilty pleasure was ... blowing things up once a year. Just a few clockworks, mind you, as a bit of stress relief. It was much cheaper than therapy, or the medic's bills from using the RPoD (Rolling Pin of Doom) or a clue-by-four on someone's skull!
So, when word came that this year's Tinkerfest festivities were beginning, she scampered quickly to the base of the wall leading to Gnomeland Security. Sure enough, Mad Mattie was back again, and (thankfully) hadn't learned her lesson after last year's brouhaha. There were self-replicating malfunctioning clockworks loaded with fireworks practically everywhere.
Mum spent a happy couple hours "helping" trim down the population of the amok clockworks before she felt ready to tackle the rest of the event. In a much calmer frame of mind, she climbed up the wall to see what else Tinkerfest had to offer this year.
She'd just huffed and puffed her way to the top when a fast-speaking gnome accosted her, babbling in Gnomish. "I saw that! You were attacking clockworks! This is a celebration of gears and gizmos. You are nothing but a malevolent machine murderer!"
Niami was so taken aback by the accusation, that she simply stared, bemused, for a moment before she responded. "Me?! Nae, I was helping..."
Before she could get another word in edgewise, he was shouting at her again. "Helping, eh? I foresaw this flimsy facade. You detonated defenseless, dysfunctional clockworks!"
"Ye mean th' erratic clockworks? O' course I did!" The calmness from spending so much time letting off steam was quickly seeping away, and she drew a deep breath, preparing to explain to the demented gnome just why she'd been destroying them.
He didn't give her the chance. Just like a gnome, once they had the conversational bit in their teeth, trying to get a word in edgewise was often a losing battle.
She still wasn't sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing that his words were filled with less technobabble, and more creative alliteration, than she heard from most gnomes.
"Ah, an admission of guilt. Well, I, the great Blantsworth Coggington III, am prepared to present a probable solution to your undeniable, inescapable guilt."
"Och, puir lad", Mum thought to herself. "Wi' a name like that, no wonder he's a bit grumpy."
Crossing her arms across her ample torso, and idly blowing an errant strand of red hair out of her face, she continued, a bit more calmly, "I do nae really feel any guilt, but go on, laddybuck. Get it off yuir chest an' be done wi' it."
Blantsworth plowed on, "I have devised a diagram for a device that could give these poor, downtrodden clockworks the right that every being deserves: free thought!"
"Addled in th' head", just like many gnomes she'd met, was Mum's next mental rumination, and she decided to humor him ... slightly. She spoke aloud in the dramatic pause, since it was clear he wanted some response. "What does that have tae do wi' me?"
Finally, he got to the meat of the matter, "Take my brilliant blueprints to a work bench and begin crafting clockwork cognition devices. When you have created several, you will use my cleverly-designed clockwork incapacitator on the erratic clockworks. Once they're incapacitated, insert the cognition instruments into their innards."
It sounded more like blueprints for disaster, frankly. She considered trying to attempt the voice of reason, even though she knew, deep-down, it would do no good when a frustrated inventor had the bit between his teeth (or his eyes fixated upon the cogs, as it were!).
Then she decided she was grumpy enough that she'd just go with the flow. Maybe she'd get to blow a few more things up in the name of twisted science.
Her blue eyes glinted as she responded, "Creating an' installing new clockwork brains sounds dangerous an' somewhat disturbing. I'll do it!"
He ignored her reservations, and focused only on her assent, "Naturally. Now, no need to dillydally; my time, unlike yours, is a precious commodity."
A small part of her was regretting the momentary weakness that prompted her to agree to this mad scheme, but she tried to focus on the important part. The gnome with the overly-inflated feelings of self-worth was likely nowhere near as good a tinkerer as he thought he was, so there was likely a greater chance than usual of explosions.
Focusing on that happy thought, she studied the blueprints for the tinkered clockwork brain, and quickly zipped through the crafting.
She found a likely erratic tinkerfest clockwork, and quickly incapacitated it. Then she inserted the tinkered brain, as instructed.
It began to speak, "Finally! I can taste the sweet air of cognizance! Hello, world! Hello, ground! Hello, sky! Hello, strange, eruptive feeling!"
Mum blinked. Could it be that the darn thing actually worked properly on the first attempt?!
She had her answer a moment later as the clockwork continued, "I... I feel... funny..." Mum jumped back out of range just in time, as this comment was quickly followed by the expected explosion.
She tried with a fresh clockwork, disabling and installing quickly.
The resulting conversation went something like this:
"Are you my mother?"
"Nae, but ye can call me Mum if ye wish."
"I'm hungry, Mommy!"
"I can find ye some grease or summat, jus' gi' me a moment."
This was becoming a losing argument ... "Fine, Mom, if ye insist"
"Look at what I can do!"
So distracted had she been by the odd conversation, such as it was, that she forgot to jump back in time, and got her apron singed by the resulting "BOOM!"
"Och! That one was promising. Almost."
The next one quickly worked itself into a tizzy without any outside input, and Mum stepped back to a safe distance right away.
"I'm alive! I'm really alive!"
"But what kind of life will I lead?"
"Assuredly it will be one spent as an outcast, ostracized for my differences and forced to live on the fringe of society."
"Well, I won't take this sitting down! I must stand up for my right to live!"
"Just because I don't have a beating heart doesn't mean I don't deserve the same rights given to all other sapient beings!"
"Join me, my mechanical brothers and sisters! Join me in an uprising!"
"We must revolt! We mu-"
Ah, blessed silence, and Blantsworth was 0 for 3 on true successes.
"Wi' gnomes, th' fourth time's sometimes th' charm. Let's see if this one behaves any better". Carefully, she added the brain to another clockwork and stepped back to get safely out of range ... just in case.
"Ah, you must be the individual who installed my incredibly ingenious intellect."
Mum blinked a couple times before nodding wordlessly.
"Lead me to Blantsworth. I beseech you!"
Well, at least the clockwork had some manners, so she led it up the rock wall to where Blantsworth was waiting.
He was waiting, alliteration and all, "Have you come to inform me of the current cognizance of the close-by clockworks, Niami?"
"Aye, mos' certainly, laddybuck. I installed th' brains intae several clockworks, but most o' them malfunctioned explosively. This one, howe'er, has been incessantly following me around an' asking frae ye. It's a little weird, tae tell ye th' truth."
She could practically feel the satisfaction roll off him in waves, as he, barely, resisted snapping his suspenders in glee, "Ah, then this is certainly a success! I now have a mechanical mate with a marvelous mind... based on my own!"
"Wait. Ye're saying that those clockwork brains were based on yuir own twisted brain?" She left the "That explains why so many exploded" unsaid. After all, she'd not been paid for this little jaunt yet, and she'd expended some of her own resources in the construction of the brains.
She'd said too much as it was, though, and he huffed, "Twisted?! Well, I was going to compensate you for your cooperation, but your crudity has convinced me that you clearly don't care..."
Scrambling mentally, she responded, "Nae, I said "unassisted!" Because ye... ye don't need any assistance wi' yuir... genius..?" Ego massage. Ego massage. Mus' remember tae soothe th' gnomish ego, which is larger than he is...
Thankfully, it worked, as Blantsworth, mollified, continued. "Ah, Niami, it's true! I have been instilled with an immense intelligence! Thank you for taking notice. I was going to toss this tiny tinkered toy, but I'd hazard to say there's no harm in handing it over to you."
She quickly got gifted with a tiny pet prototype of his cognitive clockwork contraption, as well as a rather rusty-looking gnomish tool. Perhaps she could find a way to spruce it up a bit ....
Absently, she thanked him, already considering waving the tool around near some nearby tinkerers in hopes that they'd know what to do with the grubby gizmo. Her mind was distracted enough that she didn't even roll her eyes at Blantsworth's parting comment.
"Now I must converse with my clockwork clone. Ciao!"
Right. Whatever. Bet he called it "Mini Me" or something similar.
Maybe she could convince the prototype to explode in new and creative ways ...
Before I get on to the nuts and bolts (and cogs and sprockets) of the house item goodness that is Tinkerfest, I want to remind folks that many of the quests will require that you speak the gnomish language. You can find linguists selling the Gnomish Language Primer in many cities. (Many folks seem to prefer to just go to the docks of Gorowyn and find the linguist there, rather than chasing them down in other cities.) If you are unsure if you know the language, you can always type /lang in-game to get a list of your known languages.
Welcome to the third annual Tinkerfest, a celebration of gnomish things that go "click, whirr, ping" and, most importantly, "BOOM!". Keep your eyes peeled around large congregations of gnomes* for purple shinies, as well as shiny tinkerfest cogs that can be used for both crafting and as event currency. (*Large congregations of gnomes can be found at: Gnomeland Security, Baubleshire, Temple Street, Gorowyn, Kelethin, Neriak, Moors of Ykesha, Bonemire, & Solusek's Eye.)
This event will run from July 29, 2011 through August 9, 2011. After the event ends, it will be gone for another year. You will still be able to craft, if you have not only the shiny tinkerfest cogs, but remembered to buy and scribe the various tinkerfest recipe books.
What recipe books would those be? The various Tinkerfest Blueprints books will be found on the special Tinkerfest vendor in Gnomeland Security in the Steamfont Mountains. This year there are two new books, so let me cover them, first.
Also, note that any item with "(active)" in the item name is animated.
|Flanged Rhodium Widget, Highly Fortified Control Room Door, Empowered Mana Battery
|Tinkered Distillery Column, Tinkered Distillery Furnace, Tinkered Distillery Pipes
|Tinkered Propellorator, Extensible Ceiling Light
|Tinkered Recharging Station
|(Back right/left, middle right/left, front right/left)
Rusty Riveted Plating/Rusty Floor Plating
Riveted Floor Plating/Corrugated Floor Panels
Rhodium Floor Plating/Illuminated Port Plate
|Tinkered Fan Blades (active)
|Powered Carbonite Cloak, Powered Ruthenium Cloak|
|Tinkered Illuminated Polearm||Tinkered Ratchet Wrench|
|Tinkered Sonic Drill||Tinkerer's Thaumic Powered Backpack|
Note: The two powered cloaks have animated moving parts, are tradeable, and give a +25 tinkering bonus; the three tinkered weapons are upgrades to the "rusty" quest rewards you get from Tinkerfest quests. are are appearance items; the backpack is 36-slot LORE. (The cloaks and pack require a cog-bought tinkerer's mechanized framework - make sure to buy the frameworks before the event ends if you want to make any of these during the year!)
In addition, the following two recipe books will be making a return appearance:
(Click on images to see recipe and size comparison image)
|Green Clockwork Lamppost
||Green Mechanized Lamppost
||Ornate Gold Gear
||Plain Tinkered Chest
|Red Clockwork Lamppost
||Red Mechanized Lamppost
||Rusty Tinkerer's Lantern
|Tinkered Carbonite Divider
||Tinkered Gold Divider
|Elaborate Tinkerer's Chest
||Tinkerer's Fancy Chair||Tinkerer's Lantern
||Tinkerer's Long Bench
|Tinkerer's Mechanokinetic Sconce
||Tinkerer's Mining Lantern
||Tinkerer's Mining Sconce
|Tinkerer's Ornate Chair
||Tinkerer's Piezoelectric Sconce
||Tinkerer's Round Table
||Tinkerer's Short Bench
(Click on images to see recipe and size comparison image)
|Compact Mana Battery
|Corrugated Floor Plating
|Dual Charge Station
||Impacted Floor Plating
||Large Power Orb
||Large Tinkered Lamppost
|Small Tinkered Lamppost
||Sturdy Control Room Door
||Tinkered Airship Propeller
||Tinkered Laboratory Counter
|Tinkered Lighting Mechanism
|overworked double gear (default size, on T3 guildhall wall) |
In addition to these house items, there is the tinkerer's mechanized framework used in the master's recipes, the first three volumes of the tinkerfest blueprints, the master tinkerer's companion (fluff pet) blueprint, and two mounts - the energized tinkerfest hovercog (green), and the illuminated tinkerfest hovercog (red)