Monday, October 27, 2008

Now THAT's an Achievement

The game that D has loved so well for so long has finally recognized his heart's desire in the form of "Achievements." Several of these are right up his alley, promoting thorough exploration of every inch of every zone, and true appreciation of all the wildlife therein.




How to get it?

Lots and lots of exploration, and I quick '/love' macro, and this achievement will be yours! If you're doing the "full exploration" achievement as well, you'll have no problems. Understand, however, that at least 3 of these critters have only been spotted on Northrend thus far, so you may have to wait another couple of weeks to really finish it.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pure Evil, Part 2 - from GameFAQs

whizeguyPosted 10/13/2008 5:55:02 PMmessage detail

Something along these lines had to have gone down at the Mythic HQs:
Mythic Guy Tom: Hey Barry, follow me, I wanna show you what I just got in.
(Tom leads Barry to a huge storage room)
Tom: Check it out bro.
Mythic Guy Barry: Whoa, what the heck is it?
Tom: It's a server, one of the first ever built, a hold-over from the Cold War.
Barry: Wow, it must be slow as all hell and really unreliable.
Tom: It Sure is Barry, and barely even works too.
(Tom grabs a nearby fire extinguisher and puts out a small fire that has started in the ancient server)
Barry: Whew that was close.
Tom: Meh, happens 3 or 4...dozen times a day.
(Sparks begin shooting from the server, Tom grabs a wrench and proceeds to beat the server until the sparks stop)
Barry: Jeeze, Tom, so what are you gonna use this server for?
Tom: I was thinking in-game mail.
Barry: Sounds good to me.
Tom: Hey, I have a box of puppies in my office, you wanna light them on fire and toss them off the overpass and see if we can cause some wrecks?
Barry: Boy do I!!! Afterward we can go to the oldfolks home push people out of wheelchairs!!!
Tom: You read my mind Barry, you read my mind.

http://www.gamefaqs.com/boards/genmessage.php?board=520538&topic=45950685

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Out of the Frying Pan and into the WAR-fire


So, I've been meaning to post this for over a week, now. None of my WoW toons have seen any love whatsoever since I installed Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning two weeks ago.


http://dwarfpriest.com/2008/10/07/patch-302-priest-survival-guide/: This is going to be what brings me back to WoW, at least to try it out. It just seems so damn cool, like a complete overhaul of the game I've loved for 2 years. Hell, it may turn out to BE a completely different game, you think? I think it's possible.


So, WAR v WOW. Yeah, I know, but anyone who's played them both is going to be comparing them. You just can't help it.


Cute Factor: WOW, hands-down. There is no dancing in WAR. No hugging, or blowing kisses, or any of that happy crap. If you see a half-naked Dark Elf hanging out, rather temptingly targeting you, don't fall for it! She's not checking your "gear," my friend, she's just waiting for her friend to engage you from behind so that she can unload on your carebear-nightelf-druid ass.


Questing: WAR has the definite edge here. Some guy wants you to go gather lion flanks? Cool. He's circled the area on your map where they can be found. And get this - EVERY freaking lion has a flank. You don't even have to loot the lion - just whack it with something sharp and the flank will detach from the beast and jump into your backpack. It's unsettling, yeah, a little bit. But oh so very efficient. WAR also has a thing called PQs, or Public Quests. They're 3-stage open-air "events," not instanced, that anyone can join in and help out with. Loot distribution at the end of these is based on the player's percentage of contribution plus a random roll of chance. And even if you don't win a loot bag, every bit of contribution is filling up an "Influence" bar that eventually provides 3 stages of rewards; for instance, a potion, a pair of bracers, and perhaps a sweet new staff.


Grouping: WAR, no doubt about it. Say you're on a quest for drops from Archers and some other player comes running up with the same quest. In WoW you'd be cursing that guy's name right about now, having to share your mobs and take twice as long to get your required 30 cufflinks or whatever. In WAR, however, you just invite him. That Archer will drop cufflinks for everyone, no problem. And if you're the new guy running up to a crowd of people working where you need to be - still no problem. You can add yourself to their group without having to wait for their leader to stop and do the invite-thingy. LFG is officially DEAD.


/dance on LFG's grave.


Gear Smexiness: My main is only 16, so I can't really comment on how cool the gear eventually gets in WAR - but I CAN say that if you're all decked out in purple and a sweet new pair of boots drop in DAY GLO ORANGE - you can simply dye them to match for 2 silver. Whatabargain, mirite?


PvP: Known in WAR as RvR; I hated pvp in WoW. You guys know that. I HATED it. Guess what? I think it totally rocks in WAR. I love the scenarios, which are like WoW's BGs. I love the fact that I can roll on a "Core" server and go about my merry way unmolested... but then I can simply cross that red line on the map and be ass-deep in some hawt Empire-killing action. D was especially sceptical of this, until last night. We jumped over into New Emskrank to knock out a couple of quests in the RvR zone, and he had an absolute BALL. We especially enjoyed setting up Marshmallow's Pink Horror minion to fire-bomb the Order players perched on the roof of a nearby house while she - Marsh, that is - controlled him from safe under the eaves. D's Zealot was doing the D-thing, that being hopping around waving his skull at people and spamming heals on any Destruction players in reach.


In the interest of unbiased reporting, I should probably mention that WAR, being brand-spanking-new, has a few bugs to be worked out. I once got stuck in a casting animation and had to run through an entire Scenario all hunched over like Igor. D had several "black-screen-crashes" until we underclocked his graphics card, and they're still trying to get the /ignore-report-gold-spammer thingy working right.


So - yeah, I'm hoping that WotLK brings me back, I've loved WoW for so long, and it's loved me back so very well. But for now, dear friends, if you've fallen to the siren call of WAR... Hit me up on the Destruction side of the Bretonnia Server. Hazanevyl the Dark Elf Sorceress, Zoey the Chaos Zealot, or Marshmallow the Chaos Magus.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Keep Yer Ban-Hammer Off'n My Books, Ya Punks

Kirk of Priestly Endeavors issued a challenge to several bloggers concerning Banned Book Week (9/27 - 10/4). I wasn't personally called out but I see no reason for that to stop me.

Of the 100 books from the list of those most challenged between 1990 - 2000, I have indeed read, perused, or out-right studied the following - and I'm not ashamed to admit it.


7. Harry Potter (Series) by J.K. Rowling
8. Forever by Judy Blume
10. Alice (Series) by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
13. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
16. Goosebumps (Series) by R.L. Stine
18. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
22. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
23. Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
32. Blubber by Judy Blume
41. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
43. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
46. Deenie by Judy Blume
53. Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice)
55. Cujo by Stephen King
62. Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
70. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
73. Curses, Hexes and Spells by Daniel Cohen
77. Carrie by Stephen King
78. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
83. The Dead Zone by Stephen King
90. Little Black Sambo by Helen Bannerman
96. How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell
97. View from the Cherry Tree by Willo Davis Roberts
98. The Headless Cupid by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

First of all - check out all the Stephen King on this list! That's my effort to distract you from all the Judy Blume. Hey - I was once a teenaged girl. Hard to believe, but it's true. So anyway - that's 25 of the 100 titles down... now I just have to pick one to read next week! And you know what? Because this is AMERICA I believe I'll just saunter into the local library and check it out. If, that is, I can get the neighborhood 10-year-olds to return it.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Prin Re-Specs Holy; Stubs Toe; Dies

So I haven't had much to say in the Shadow Priest area this week. See, D got it in his head that if I respecced holy, I'd be able to heal a heroic. *snort* Turns out, no, I can't. No, I didn't really try, but even specced holy and in my tragically underwhelming healy gear, Be Imba had me at under 100 for PvE. I couldn't get my +heals over 1k, and yeah, while I could have dropped some gold on enchanting her stuff, I didn't want to pull an Obama, you know?*

Now here I am, running around Sunwell Plateau, attempting dailies. I'm still not Exalted there on Prin, you see. Okay, the coast. I pull a Myrmidon, he badly wounds me. A Siren spawns right on top of me and I'm dead.

Moving on to the demons. Oh, awesome, someone has just killed the big guy. I run over there to plant my flag in its back, and apparently stabbed myself in the foot with it because I'm suddenly at like, 20% health. I'm not even in combat!

I resolve to L2Smite. Geez this feels so alien to me...

Bombing run? Oh, yeah! I can't possibly get hurt doing this. HA. You forgot about the Reservists at the landing dock, didn't you? Yeah, I did. /sigh

Bloodberry bush! Aha! GAH! Since when do these things have THORNS!?

Donate gold to the cause? Sure, why not? It's not like I'm going to have a 400g repair bill, or anything. Anchorite Ayuri's Rough Cuticle hits Principessa for 7,000 critical. Principessa dies.

I'm totally going to go re-spec back to Shadow. I don't know how you holier-than-me people get anything done in this game. *grumble*





*PLEASE do not take this comment as an open invitation to get all political here. I'm just trying to be topical, I'm not trying to ruin my rep as the founding member of the Apathetic party.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

New and Improved Felhunter - now with more face-munching!

So I noticed this article on WoW Insider last night. The puppy has long been one of Sister Malarea's favorite minions; I actually like him more than anyone but the Felguard! Mal leveled as Affliction and I always said I'd never spec any other way... until the Beta came along, and I decided to try out Metamorphasis. I had so much fun with the Felguard that I respecced Mal on the live servers to Demonology, as well.

Since then, I've enjoyed the superior tanking, and increased dps... but I'm growing bored with tossing out Shadowbolt after Shadowbolt and ignoring all my dots. I'm also missing instant-cast Corruption.

The intended synergy between the new & improved Felhunter and a deep Affliction spec is tantalizing... as I type this, I'm waiting on the newest Beta patch to install so that I can re-spec Mal back to her Affliction roots. Oh - and since Hawli has dinged 70, I'm deleting her off the test realm and attempting to re-copy her over. BRK has got me itching to try some of the new exotic pets.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

CHILLY!!

So there has been much talk of penguins in WoW, especially now that we're gearing up to head to Northrend for yet another world-saving, right?

All news pointed to the Beta servers being down this morning, which put a real cramp in my day since that's how I'd previously decided to soothe myself during normal server down-time. Bummer, eh? Well, there was a patch to install, which I did, and then I thought, why not just SEE if I can't log in? And I could! I hopped onto Tehrawreyes, my DK, for a little herbing.
Hmmm... new mail - from Master Handler Sylvester. Wonder what it could be...



Is he not just the cutest thing you've ever seen!?




In other news, hitting level 75 Herbalism appears to have earned me a new HoT spell... tasty.


Monday, September 8, 2008

The Fourth Level 70 - Hawli Has Arrived

All the hard work, grinding, engineering, raptor-killing, etc., pays off.



Oh - and while transporting into Area 52, there was a tiny little malfunction... thankfully, it only lasted an hour. /eyeroll


Thursday, September 4, 2008

Sister Despairity - Take Heed!

http://automagica.blogspot.com/2008/08/frost-specs-zupa-style.html

You are totally going to be working on the above method by Zupa this week. Hawli is only 1/2 a level from 70; it's time for you to come into your own.

/hug

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

August Poll Results

Okay, it appears that a lot of people are looking forward to playing their priests once WotLK releases - second only to Death Knights.

Why?

Too Sexy For My Horns



So... Prin finally managed to score the Viking Horns of Vicious Death, Doom, and Chaos!! Or whatever they're called...

Sister Mal has been rocking these for a long time, now, and has pretty much scorned all other headgear as being just not sexy enough to replace it.

How to get these bad boys? Well, pull up a chair, my darlings, and I'll spin you a yarn of Ogres and Murkbloods, of the Crypts and those freaking wandering Ancestors (who knew they'd be elites?).

Here's the quest that awards the horns: http://www.wowhead.com/?quest=10212. If you don't happen to be sporting a Shadow Priest, or other caster, you'll notice that there are some really awesome pieces for other classes, too. You'll also notice that the reward comes at quest #14 in what seems to be a long - yet do-able - chain, right? Hold on to your knickers, there, this quest chain doesn't even OPEN unless you've completed the three - yes, THREE - prerequisite chains first. Greatmother Geyah takes a hint from Linda Evangelista and refuses to wake up for less than $10k. Or a &*^%load of quests.

Anyway - how to get started.

Introduction to the Mag'Har

Start with taking The Assassin from Nazgrel in Hellfire Penninsula. This quest line will introduce you to the small group of Mag'Har in that zone, and eventually lead you to Thrall in Orgrimmar to spread the news of his peoples' survival.

Mess Up Some Ogres

How? Talk to Jorin Deadeye by the bonfire in Garadar to get The Impotent Leader quest. Three full sets of Ogres later you're sent to find the Blademaster for another full chain of quests.

Get Out Your &%^$-Stirring Stick

And by that, I mean you're going to hook up with Lantresor to cause a little trouble between the Kil'sorrow and the Warmaul Ogres. Once you've set both groups up for each other, take Lantresor's message back to Garrosh. Garrosh, however, is still being a whiny little girl and it appears that he's going to need a big smack back into reality. Hmmm...

If I Were a Mag'har Captive, Where Would I Be...?

Well, you might be Teddy Roosevelt, but you're not. You're in the Murkblood camp - or rather, he is - and he requires some escorting out. By you. Yes, you. Take some friends if you must, but you don't have to escort very far and this one wasn't as teeth-gnashingly frustrating as most escort quests. Once you've got him back to the road, he drops a cheerful bit of news on you and vamps.

Those happy-go-lucky Orcs in Nagrand offer a whole slew of Murkblood quests, might as well grab them up and do them all at once, since you gotta be there anyway. Mirite?

And Why Are We Taking Quests From a Night Elf, Again?

At some point, Matron Celestine will send you out to locate Altruis the Sufferer. You just know this guy is gonna be a barrel of laughs with a name like that... and oddly enough, he does chuckle a bit every time you turn in to him. Anyway, Altruis is concerned with the two demon camps nearby. Now, this chain you WILL want a couple of friends for, since it's just frothing with elites. A drunk engineer in Shattrah helps out a bit, for an errand of his own, and shaBAM! we're in business now!

Tell Us A Story, Greatmother

Garrosh sends you into the Inn to speak with Greatmother. If you've been following the lore this far, you're really going to dig this chain. Greatmother Geyah decides to train you to be the next Miss Cleo, and explains how she's going to teach you to communicate with the ancestors. After much hither-ing and yon-ing, you're given the task to defeat Exarch Maladaar in Auchindoun. No problem, right? Well, no, not really, but he IS the final boss in Auchenai Crypts so you ARE going to have to put together an instance party for this part. In all the excitement after Maladaar falls you just might miss the Sha'tar D'Ore decending from the ceiling to complete your quest for you. Don't - what a pain to have to do it over again, right?

The item D'Ore asks you to pick up is right there in the same room as Mr. Boss Man, a glowing purple crystal-thingy. Grab it. It's time for some elite action back in Nagrand. I found the best place to nab ancestors was on the little rise just south of the Consortium camp, leading down into Oshu'Gun. Although the quest advises 3 people in a group, you can easily 2-man it with just about any party composition. And since they are susceptible to fear, I even solo'd it on my 'lock.

Okay, then - the hard part's finally over. Yes, finally. I didn't say this was an easily obtainable bit of gear, now, did I? In the interest of not ruining any of the story - and you have been paying attention to the story, right? - Let's just say that once you're completely done, and back in Garadar, and you hear the drums... wait over by the eastern entrance to the town. Don't leave Garadar until the show is completely over, trust me on this one.

By FAR one of the coolest quest chains ever, this quest also introduces you to D's & my favorite NPC in the entire game: Floon. It is suggested - nay, imperative - that you call out his name in a high falsetto tone repeatedly while on that leg of chain. FLOOOOOOOOOOOONNNN!! There is no more fun to be had in WoW than this.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Battlegrounding for Peace



You do it your way, I'll do it mine.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thanks, Pugnacious!

http://pugnaciouspriest.wordpress.com/2008/04/22/how-to-make-a-quick-and-dirty-guild-website-banner/

I just found this post by Pugnacious Priest on how to make a website banner. I've been using simple photo-editing and Powerpoint, myself, doesn't this look like it's tons easier? Yah, stay tuned for the new Melted Faces banner, coming your way.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Ultimate Class Balancing: by D

So when the Beta key was graciously extended our way, D graced my account with it. Amazingly sweet, huh? In turn, I've tried to keep him up-to-date on the changes that Wrath is bringing. He was a bit rocked by the "Spell Power" combination of +damage & +healing, but Blizzard's treatment of downranking spells just sent him over the edge.

Downranking: used by casters and healers. Casters may use a low-level rank of a spell for its primary effect, saving a great deal of mana. Ex: PvP Mage casts Arcane Explosion to draw a Rogue out of stealth. Healers may use lower-level ranks of healing spells, combined with a high +Heal stat, to achieve the same amount of healing for considerably less mana.

Did I ever mention that D had a Resto Shaman? Who raided pre-BC? You can imagine what this piece of information did to him.

D: That's it - I've solved it. There will be no more "unintended strategies" used. All stats will be combined into one - called 'Leetness.'

(This is where I started to giggle.)

D: And all classes will have only one spell - called 'Leetness.' "I'm going to cast 'Leetness' on the mob." "Oh, your health is low - I'll grant you some 'Leetness.' " "Wait - everyone 'Leet' up for this next pull."

(I'm now laughing uncontrollably.)

D: No more bitching about class balance. No more "That's Druid gear," or "look, a Priest ring." We'll just sit here and wait for Blizzard to tell us the only approved way to play, and not try to be creative.

All I know is that they had better come up with some way to improve mana efficiency, regeneration, and pool-size - or I'm going to be consoling one VERY perturbed Resto Shammy.




Friday, August 15, 2008

LF Priest Alt - PST!!

I took some inspiration from WoW Insider blogger Natalie Mootz for today's post; on Blood Pact, Natalie give some wonderful advice on transitioning from one's main class to playing a Warlock. One of our best friends and guildies recently started a Priest from a career of Rogues, and although she's going for more of an "lolsmite" spec, it's still been interesting to watch the transformation.

So - are you thinking of starting a Priest? Long considered the "pure healer" class, Priests are really coming into their own as mighty damage dealers. First, some pros and cons of the class.

Pros

Cons

  • CC abilities are situational
  • Cloth armor = squishy
  • VE & VT generate extra threat over dps
  • Must keep 2 sets of gear for effective cross-spec utility
  • Cannot self-rez
  • Holy / Discipline specs are sub-par in dps, leading to slower leveling and grinding

If your main is a Tank:

You're used to either charging your target or pulling back to you with a ranged weapon / spell and then staying in it's face. As a priest, you'll learn that what you really need is distance - mobs that invade your interpersonal space are dangerous for you. And unless you're a Paladin, you'll need to learn how Mana is different from Rage and / or Energy. While Rage is used as it is generated, Mana needs to be rationed out. It doesn't regenerate as quickly as Energy does, either.

If your main is Melee DPS:

You're used to using your weapons or abilities "up close and personal," and again, maintaining your distance will be your biggest challenge. Learn to use the strafe (see my article HERE). Many melee dps classes also prefer to position themselves behind their targets whenever possible, and this just isn't going to happen for you while soloing.

If your main is Caster DPS:

You probably won't have much problem with the Priest class if you've already played a Mage. Warlocks will need to get used to not having minions upon which to call and a completely different mana regeneration / conservation strategy. Stacking Spirit and MP5 as a Priest will help make up for the lack of Life Tap and Dark Pact abilities. Whereas my Warlock carries only health pots, my Priest carries a couple of health pots and two stacks of mana pots. For us, Mana = Health - for everyone. You'll need to get used to watching your tank and melee party members; if you can Fear Ward, Cure Disease, or Dispel Magic, DO SO. Yes, even if you're not the party healer.

If your main is a Healer:

You should have no problems transitioning to a Priest. The ability to heal oneself, dps while solo, and manage your mana will all be familiar tools to you. We are, however, the most fragile of the healing classes and can't rely on Mail / Plate armor or a quick Shapeshift into Bear Form if we get into trouble.

If your main is a Hunter:

Hunters don't fit perfectly in either melee or caster dps categories, and are most closely related to the Warlock in play style. If your main is a Hunter then you're familiar with mana and its conservation. You're not going to have the uber-high dps, ability to multiple- or chain-pull, or a pet to take the heat for you. Your Fade ability does just that in comparison to a Hunter's Feign Death. At this point, you're probably asking yourself why you'd ever want to leave your Hunter in the first damn place, especially for a Priest, of all things. And honestly - I'm not sure, either.

Oh - yeah, now I remember. For a spot in groups! When was the last time you saw "LF1M for Old Durn and g2g - need Hunter!"? Yeah, never. When was the last time you saw a guild recruitment ad, "Needs Hunters! Priest recruitment currently closed" Again - not f'n likely.

Seriously - once that pet gets feared and the Hunter gets MC'd into his own trap you'll see the draw to the perfect Good & Evil Twin class. It will become crystal clear.

cat
more cat pictures

Friday, August 8, 2008

April May Be the Cruelest Month...

But August is the busiest. My daughter flies in tonight for a long weekend visit - doesn't have to leave until Tuesday. Wednesday I have an outing planned with my MIL & AIL (Aunt-in-law), and week-from-today Friday is my birthday!

The week after THAT we're leaving for Oregon, for the big annual guild-meet-up. All of this is just basically to say - posting will be erratic at best.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

You Can't Chat When You're Dead... and other nuggets of wisdom

I've tried to love my Mage. And then I tried to just LIKE her. It's more difficult than one might think. I've tried to rationalize, that I was spoiled by playing a warlock and a rogue, both of which are super-high damage with much less squishiness.

I've tried to justify my dissatisfaction by citing my preferred "Rambo" playstyle and utter lack of peripheral vision.

In the end, I think it all just boils down to one little fact. Despairity spends far more time as a Ghost than any other toon I've played.

It's really hard to like a Ghost.


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Twisted Nether Blogcast - Episode 11

http://www.twistednether.net/2008/08/05/episode-11-pt-diddy/

Featuring a lead-in blurb by our fave Shadow Priestess, Principessa.

Special guest is Part-Time Druid. Loads and loads of Beta news, of special interest to Hunters. Get your Twist on, y'all.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

I'm in Utgarde Keep, Y'all!

So Malarea was putzing around in the Beta this morning when she decided to see about putting together a group for UK. No one in guild was jumping, so she took it to /General - and got a full group in about 20 seconds.

I already had one quest for the dungeon in my log, to kill Prince Keleseth. Just inside the portal, an undead Blood Elf named "Dark Ranger Marrah" offered a second one: go get Ingvar the Plunderer's head. No problem, we're on it.

The first boss, Prince Keleseth, engaged immediately following the clearing of the trash in his room. He will intermittently "Frost Tomb" random members of your party, which looks a lot like a mage's Ice Block. We were doing fine - until he decided to start zapping our tank. We wiped. That's when party member BW noticed that the Frost Tomb was targetable... hmmm...

DPS'ers Uh, Ut, Vana, and I set up macros to /target Frost Tomb and hot-barred them. The boss formerly known as "Prince" went down like a sack o'taters. BOOM!

Boss #2 is actually a duet - Dalronn the Controller & Skarvald the Constructor. We burned Dalronn down first and then started in on Skarvald. Dalronn's ghost came back and started fighting back, we ignored him and took out the 2nd boss with no problems. Mal also learned that Metamorphasis is AMAZING when her Seed of Corruption aggro's an entire group to her.


Ingvar the Plunder is the 3rd and final boss in this instance. Another basic tank-and-spank, although Ingvar would occasionally "roar." Being ranged dps, I'm not sure what that roar accomplished. I for one wasn't all that intimidated. The only notable thing about this encounter was that following Ingvar's death he got a spirit-rez and came back again - same amount of hit points, and no real difference to the 2nd phase of the battle.


Total loot: A fist weapon for the warrior, Leather caster pants that got disenchanted, and Malarea scored a new helm: Reinforced Velvet Helm. Add that to the new bracers and ring she got as quest rewards and it was a lovely haul for our favorite warlock.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Morale? Is That Some Kind of Mushroom?

So - Wrath is on the way. Progression is slowing down, guilds are having a hard time recruiting (or just keeping raiders, in some cases) - what's a GM to do about morale?

How about "game within a game?" It's worked for so many pre-school teachers, right?

~~ Bring in the Clowns: Have your guild tailor make up some crazy outfits. The Haliscan Pantaloons and jacket, for instance. Or perhaps Green Winter Clothes. Set a time for everyone to log in on their alts and pass them out. Once everyone is dressed up - go raid Ironforge!


~~ Wowpperware Party: (to outfit lowbies) Pass out Hot Cider and Delicious Chocolate Cake. Have your guild crafters take orders for gear from guildies - make sure to offer with- and without-mats prices. ("With" should probably be free, these ARE your guildies, after all.)

~~ Broke as a Joke: Invade a new server. Challenge your guildies to achieve certain goals within so many days of play; i.e. the most money, the highest crafting level, a flight path at the furthest point from his / her starting zone, etc.

~~ Big Brothers / Big Sisters of Azeroth: Have each player adopt a lowbie for a day. Instance runs, help with group quests, providing mats for his / her crafting profession, etc. Load up on some ale and take your lowbie fishing for the evening.

Silly? Cheesy? Of course - that's why it's fun!

I totally need to run BGs with BRK...

If only we weren't of different factions, /sigh. MY non-strategies never work like that.

http://www.bigredkitty.net/2008/07/31/dear-brk/

/salute

L2DK, noob

So, I'm finally starting to figure out this whole "Death Knight" play style thing. It's a little crazy. See, I've played classes that had Rage or Energy bars. You want to use that up as quickly as it regenerates, and it regenerates fast. I've played classes that had Mana bars - you want to ration out your mana, and usually need to drink to fill it back up.


The Death Knight has neither. Instead, they have a Runic Power bar and 6 Runes; 2 each of Blood, Frost, and Unholy. Abilities require the use of either Runes, Runic Power, or - neither? Yeah, some abilities require neither. Runes slowly replenish themselves as used. Runic Power is generated by using abilities.

For instance, my DK has all 6 Runes available and no RP generated. I use my Plague Strike ability (instant melee ability, it also applies a dot), consuming 1 each Blood and Unholy runes and generating 10 RP. If I use my Blood Strike ability (instant melee, but real damage relies on the target being diseased) I consume 1 Blood rune and generate only 1 RP. White damage melee attacks do not appear to generate any RP.

Conversely, some abilities USE the Runic Power, instead of generating it. Blood Boil, for instance. Now, you can see from some of the skills, spells, and abilities linked that DK dps is an intricate choreography, combing Rune-using, Runic Power-generating, diseasing, and the abilities that base their damage on diseases already on the mob. And this is just the dps! There are also all those diseasing / summoning-ghouls-thingies in the Unholy tree, and then there's the whole slew of "tanking" abilities.

Here are my concerns:

A) Although Blizz does a great job of introducing newborn DK's into the world, the 3 talent trees offer so many spec-specific abilities. Level out of the starting zone as Unholy, and then you have no clue how to play while specced Blood.


B) I've thought from the beginning that the best way to learn a class is to level it from 1 - it's much more difficult to be handed a whole pile of skills and try to figure out how they work. DK skills play off of each other in large part which, while uber-cool, complicates matters further.

C) I've got my safety goggles (and helmet - just in case) all polished up for when they roll out the math behind Runic Power generation. Anticipating this, my friends, gets my geek on.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Why Stereotypes Exist: The Huntard


I just had a horrific Slave Pens pug attempt. I say "attempt" because we only got to the first boss. The newest addition to my ignore list is a Hunter I'll call, um, "Reilys."

  • Moaned, "NOOOO" as soon as my hunter, Hawli, joined the party. The other party members asked him what was up, and he said, (sic) "there not the only 1s want there epix." I said, "it's regular SP, where's the epics?"

  • Then he agreed to remain in the group so long as he "gets the c-bow its all i want from here." I smiled, and gently reminded him that I would be rolling on hunter loot, as well.

  • Walked into the instance with pet on Aggressive from recent PvP play. Said pet aggroed the first group while we were discussing marks.

  • As soon as he heard "marks" being mentioned, he announced, "im not trapping."

  • We finally killed the first boss after our good friend Reilys backed in to another group, and the Vest of Living Lightning dropped.

  • Everyone passed, since we had 2 hunters, warrior, rogue, and a druid (healing). Everyone, that is, except Reilys.

  • We insisted that he pass for disenchanting - and he greeded it, claiming that his current epic chest gear was not "socketed or restoers (sic) mana."

I completely flipped out on him, the rogue and I both called for his immediate /kick, but the warrior logged instead. Giving group-leader status to moi. I polished up the ol' boot and SHA-BAM! Out he went. Then we disbanded and all hearthed out, greatly aggrieved and disheartened. Or maybe that was just me.

It just makes me insane the way some players create a class reputation that the rest of us are forced to combat. So, here's to you, Mr. Moron Hunter in Shaman gear. You've earned it.


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Free WotLK Respec and Other Goodies

DAY ONE: It appears that talents have undergone an overhaul in the Beta - so - each of my demo toons logged in completely untalented again. What an awesome chance to play with different specs, right?

Hawli Hunter played with tamed and releasing several different pets this morning just to see what kind of new skills and abilities were available to them. Our crocolisk, Giggles, has an ability called "Bad Attitude," it appears to be an AoE-tanking ability. Too cool for school, huh? The duskbat, Detroit, had a "Sonic Boom" kinda stun. Chaos, the dragonhawk, breathed fire. Finally, she dropped by the barber shop in UC for a new 'do.


Next I jumped on Tehrawreyes, our shiny new Death Knight. Tehr had been leveling as Unholy and having an absolute BALL blowing up corpses and summoning Ghouls to do her dark bidding. Today she respecced to full Blood, and hopefully we'll get to see how that works pretty soon. It appears to be more of party-dps spec, although it does have some self-healing abilities. And without even having to go to group therapy!

After respeccing I zep'd her to Northrend in order to pick up the Herbalism and Inscription professions. She's now on a quest for mass quantities of Peacebloom and Silverleaf. I predict that upon the expansion release you won't be able to swing a cat in Tirisfal Glades without smacking 18 Death Knights farming Peacebloom. I have now officially grown weary of my Deathcharger's pained, screeching whinny from all the herb-farming. Don't worry, though - I took it out on a random level 7 undead mob, and I'm feeling much better now.

Next I'll be going to Malarea. First on her list: turning herself into a demon! Yes, D has long suspected it, and now it's true - I am at heart, evil. She's also going to be making the long trek to find Dalaran, lovely purple-domed city that was, for some uber-fun exploration.

DAY TWO: Well - the server was crashing every 30 seconds, but I did manage to set her hearthstone, find the Inscription supplier, and discover the city portals before logging.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Wrath of the Lich King Patch?

So, it's Tuesday... servers are down... I chuckled to myself a bit, gloating, knowing that I have this Beta key and I'll be able to putz around in Northrend while everyone else is waiting for 11am PST.

Lo and behold - yes, lo - upon double-clicking that icon, a patch begins to download. A 235mb patch. GAH!!

Well, it's moving rather quickly, actually, and while I'm not completely sure I'll be able to get right in once it's done, it doesn't appear to be the tragedy I originally suspected. I wonder if I can find patch notes somewhere for it...

*Wanders off mumbling incoherently*

OH! Before I forget - make sure you're listening to the Twisted Nether blogcasts!! I sent them several MP3s for use in future shows, I'm hoping at least one of them gets some air-time. ; )

Get out there and starting Twisting your Nethers!

Monday, July 28, 2008

What's in a Main?

"Who's your main?" I get that question a lot. And truth be told - I'm finding it harder and harder to answer. My very first toon was my mage - and I had no clue what I was doing. I tried to level as Fire, since it was supposed to be the highest damage, and I gimped her with too much Stam and not nearly enough Int. The result was that I quickly grew frustrated with her fragility and horrific drinking problem and I abandoned her with a quickness.


Then I started playing with D, whose first and main was a Shaman. Of course I had to try it out, right? Sigh - she got to 18, 2 levels shy of her Ghost Wolf, and became my bank alt.


Finally I decided to go ahead and try the class I wanted from the very beginning. Everyone told me that Warlocks were complicated, difficult to master. I didn't care - after all, it's not as if I could have been a WORSE player. Malarea was born into the world, and lo, the ground did tremble with that thunder. We had an absolute BLAST learning all the nuances of her class, understanding what we were capable of, testing ourselves extensively, and pushing our limits. /wipe tear, we had us a time, Malarea and me.


I never thought I'd love anyone as much as I loved my Warlock. And then - my good friend B has an amazing Rogue on the Alliance side, on a different server. When she came over to play with D & I in the Horde, she created another Rogue and I watched it grow into a force with which to be reckoned. It looked like fun, sneaking around, pickpocketing, sapping mobs. I decided to give it a go.


Rigatoni leveled to 70 like skating on butter. I totally dug the life less squishy, to be sure, and Rigs had a bunch of cool and fun tricks: lockpicking, stealth, pickpocketing, sapping, and I leveled her Leatherworking skill to 375 for the BoP epics. Ran several BGs with her for Gladiator's Quickblade, and my guildies & RL-friends gave her an epic off-hand sword enchanted with Mongoose for a wedding present when D & I got hitched.

Around this time, I notice Principessa languishing in the low 50's. I created her as a soloing Shadow Priest so that we'd have a potential healer in the group back when D created his Hunter. His first non-healing toon dictated that I needed a healing toon. Well, D's Druid was coming up in the ranks, and wanting to learn the Feral side of life, so we teamed up: the Druid and Prin. Working as a team, we just FLEW to 70.

I can't remember the timing on this, but at one point just about everyone in the guild started pallies. Everyone except me, that is. I think I'd enjoy tanking, but I sure didn't want to level as Prot. And I already had one toon likely to be roped into healing, I didn't need a second. So - I started a Hunter instead. Hawli and and D's pally leveled together quite a bit. Once he hit 40, however, D grew bored with it and we unleashed Hawli to level ahead on her own. Which was incredibly easy, by the way. She's now in the low 60's and on her way to end-game, as well.

So - what's my point? I guess it's just that I don't think I HAVE a main. If I were to join one of those raiding guilds that insist you designated a main for raiding, I don't think I could do it. Each of them is a blast to play, and they all have their strengths for specific instances or zones. Who in the world would want to limit themselves to just one class, let alone just one toon? Not me. Looking back, I probably should have named them all some misspelled variation of "Sybil." I love me some MPD, y'all.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Alt-ernative Lifestyles... I Has Them



Lots of them, actually. Mostly Horde, as previously confessed, but I'm growing a stable of Alliance toons on a different server.

Draece is my Hunter. She was the first to see all of the Draenei starting area. Colbi, the Nelf Druid, was actually created years ago when D and I were first hanging out. She was there to stalk him -I mean, chat with him - while he played with his other friends.

Tytchen is a Human Rogue, and oddly under-whelming compared to her Belf sister Rigatoni. Of course that may just be because it's been so long since I didn't have poisons on my swords.

And finally, starting yesterday, I have a little baby Shaman: Emnyte. Everything I'm reading is telling me to go Enhancement, and I'm cool with that, but I'd LOVE to have any and all play-style tips, sneaky Shammy secrets, advice for dealing with multi-pulls, etc. Bring 'em on!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

In Which Prin Convinces D to Go Heroic

cat
more cat pictures

We've run the Imba reports (thanks, Misery, for the link!) We've spent hours pouring over Druid blogs and picked up some valuable advice. We've upgraded gems and re-distributed the over-capped Defense / Resilience. We've practiced on dozens of quests, lower-leveled 5-mans, and even the Nagrand Circle of Blood event. We're ready.

By "we," of course, I mean D's feral Druid. I know that he can tank a beginning heroic. I KNOW it. All we need is 3 other people, one of them a healer, who understand that it's a learning process.

But see - there's the problem. Prin's a decent 5-man healer, if pressed to be, but everything I've read says, "don't try to heal a heroic while Shadow-specced." And if I'm not the healer, then some stranger will be putting his repair bill into D's hands - and that's a lot of pressure for my bear. So - any words of advice out there from experienced bear tanks?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Maroon Is the Color of Your Energy



I suppose there are worse things... but it's never fun looking like a tool, like an idiot, like - as Bugs would say - a maroon. There are some simple ways to avoid it, you know.

  • Chat channels. Know what channels are available to you, learn to use them correctly. Trade requests and ads go in - you guessed it - Trade Chat. General Zone-specific comments go in General. (See how this works?) Anything that's only of interest to you and one other person should be in "tells."
  • If you are from Babylon (one of those people who likes to babble on, and on, and on) please head over to the Barrens. It's expected there.
  • Learn how to tip. As an enchanter and jewelcrafter, sometimes I feel like an Olive Garden server on prom night. Kids simply do not know the meaning of "gratuity." Here's the reasoning: even if you're supplying the mats for your crafted piece, your crafter put a lot - no, a LOT, of time, effort, and money into leveling the skill to get that point. They've also put effort, time, and money into acquiring those patterns. A good rule of thumb is 10% of what the mats would have cost. If you don't think this is fair - then AH your mats and purchase the completed item from the AH. Or level the skill yourself.
  • If you're being invited to a dungeon, whether PuG or a trial run with a recruiting guild, do yourself a favor and check your gear, provisions, consumables, etc - BEFORE you accept that summon. Nothing twists my knickers like having to wait for the hunter to go out for more arrows, having the shaman try to bum water off of me, or realizing that I, myself, have an Argent Dawn commision and my fishing pole equipped... in Shadow Labryinth. >.<
  • Loot Roolz - make sure you know them BEFORE the run starts. Your guild probably also has specific rules, whether you're in a guild run or just representing your guild in a PuG. Be courteous. Better to be "that awesome mage who passed on the epic gloves" than to be that d-bag mage who ninja'd my epic staff (may he burn - slowly).
  • Basic class-specific skills: learn to ASK POLITELY for lockpicking, ports, summons, food & water, buffs, etc. No one owes you anything. Being willing to hand out your own class-specific goodies (buffs, healthstones, etc.,) makes it far more likely that karma will treat you well when you're in need.
  • No begging. I can't stress this one enough. Absolutely ZERO begging. Now that having been said, there IS a difference between, "Crap - I'm one piece of silk short for my item - anyone have a spare?" and *random player opens trade with you and yells, 'GOLD PLX'*.
  • If you don't know - say, "You know, I really don't know." Don't try to bluff your way through a strategy or pull that you're unfamiliar with. Don't try to convince your party that you know everything there is to know about each of the classes. Better to be quiet, and thought a fool - than to open your mouth and remove all doubt, no?

Use your best judgment, keep in mind that this IS a game, and follow the Golden Rule. It's not that hard, people.

For My Druid Friends

This made me laugh soooo hard.




Thanks for sharing on Blog Azeroth, Tigerfeet!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Horde to the Core


I'm for the Horde. You all know that. I love the lore, the races, the stories that are woven throughout the Forsaken, Troll / Orc, and Blood Elf starting areas. I know that both factions must have their share of annoying trade-channel-spammers, 12-year-old VChat mouth breathers, and general tools, but the people I play with are all intelligent and fun adults.

That having been said - I've been just frothing at the mouth to experience the Draenei starting area. Perhaps it's because I agree with D on this one - Horde should've gotten the Draenei, Alliance should've gotten the Belfs. Oh - and both classes should have been able to be Druids. I'd love to try a Druid but the cow thing just isn't working for me.

One of our best friends / guildies is an Alliance alum from another server, and back last summer I made a little Draenei priest over there - I named her Nahtanelf. Of course, if I ever get back to leveling her, it'll be as Shadow... but I'm really thinking about pugging through some instances with her healing. I'm sure it'll be a trip, and kind of nice to see how the "other half" lives, right?

So the other day, D and I made a couple of Alliance toons.

/shame

He wanted to see the human starting area again, so that's what we made. Since he went Priest, I could take either tank or dps... hmm... for humans, that's Warlock or Rogue for me, since I'm really no one's idea of a tank. That's far too much power and control to put into my chubby little hands. That's got a lot to do with why I don't heal much, either... it's not that I CAN'T - it's just that I'm an asshole. I know healers who get all emotional if a minion or pet goes down - I use that as a warning to the owner. See? See how your little kitty just bit it? Back off on your dps, jack, or you're next. Kthxbai.

Where were we? Oh, yeah, humans in Elwynn. So - that made me think about how I'd already broken the seal, and there was a whole new starting area out there, and a do have that similarity / affinity for the Draenei female... So, I figured, wth? I made one. A Hunter, since I'm having so much fun on my Belf Hunter, Hawli. I've got her to level 24, leveling BM, mining, and jewelcrafting. I'm looking forward to having my first elek and I've just been tramping all over the world. For the undecided or easily seduced out there: the Draenei starting area was GORGEOUS. Wow did I love the red tones of Bloodmyst. Maybe I'll see you there.

Monday, July 14, 2008

/Sigh No Excuse!!

So, today's Crocolisk Day in Azeroth. The daily fishing quest that has a chance to reward you with your own Chuck, Snarly, Muckbreath, or Toothy. That means that each of my 70's is going to have to log in and do the fishing daily. Malarea reeled in the quest item on the 2nd cast, but received only Fishhooks and gold as a reward. Principessa spent a few more minutes trying, but that's okay since she really needs to level fishing. Unfortunately, she was logged out in Orgrimmar last night, so it'll be an hour before she can hearth back and turn it in.

Then Rigatoni came on, and began to fly out to Old Man Barlo to pick up the quest. The following chat message caught her eye, since she's always up for making a quick coin with her rogueishness. Just to get an idea of what she was dealing with, she shift-clicked the player to discover...



Wait a minute - that's a rogue. Why the hell does a rogue need another rogue to pick the locks on her boxes? I'm stunned.

I go ahead and whisper her that I'm in Shatt, and happy to help her out. She responds that she's in the UC putting up some auctions, but she'll pst me when she gets back to Shatt. I have time to port to Org, catch my crocolisk, hearth back and turn it in (only gold and fishhooks again) and I'm just settling down to wait when she whispers me, "nvm, i got a guildie to do it for me - thx for the offer, tho! : )"

I'm almost livid enough to NOT white-out her name in the above screenshot.

Here's what I can't decide - which is more d-bagish? A) A non-lockpicking level 70 Rogue, or B) People who ask for help in /Trade, offer tips for the service, ask you to wait for them, and then ultimately go another route after they've taken you up on your offer? It's breach of verbal contract, in my book, and if this were RL, lady, I'd totally sue.

And I'd ask to be compensated for my pain and suffering.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Ask Prin 7/11/08

"Dear Prin - When should I be using my Shadowfiend? Is he really worth the trouble?" ~Confused and Petless

Covered in today's blog post, but for the record:
- As soon as you're down ~3k mana, and as often as the CD allows - except when threat management is a problem. Healers and dps'ers alike benefit from this ability - Use it!!

"Dear Prin - What makes you think you know enough to answer other people's questions and solve their problems?" ~Unexplainably Combative Person

Well - I'm a mom, for one thing. That's basically one of the definitions. Besides, it's not like I'm offering to read minds or cure cancer - I'm not even trying to give Shadow Priest-specific raiding advice.

"Dear Prin - I think my husband is having an affair in RL - what should I do?" ~Worried in RL

Ask yourself, is he acting suspiciously? Repeatedly coming home late, unwilling to explain where he was, hiding the credit card bills, wearing his boxers inside-out? If not, why don't you trust him? Maybe it's your own insecurity, eh?

If you're convinced but have no proof, try letting him catch you staring at him with a pondering look on your face, as if you're right on the verge of calling him out - but holding back. If you're right, this will totally kill him and he'll decide you're on to him, then will either admit it or start picking unrelated fights to justify his behavior. If you're wrong, however, beware - he may think it means YOU have a dirty little secret.

If all else fails, it's time to ask yourself the most important question. No, not "is this giving me more time to raid?" It's, "am I willing to call him out, and live with the answer either way - or leave?" Until you can say yes to that, best to just keep your eyes open.

So - thanks for the questions, all. Keep 'em coming. Related note - if you wish to be identified, please say so - simply neglecting to opt out isn't enough for me to give your screenname. : )

Shadowfiend - Your Best Friend (For 15 Seconds)


A question was posed to me for the "Ask Prin" column concerning the Shadowfiend. I thought it was interesting enough that it needed its own post, but worry not - Prin will be posting soon with the answers to all your life's problems.

So the question was, "how do I know when to use the Shadowfiend? Is it really worth it?" Not only will we be talking about that, we'll also explore some tricks for getting the most bang for your 15-second buck.

Let's look at the Shadowfiend's specifics:


  • Uses 6% of your base mana, 5-minute cooldown, instant cast.

  • Fiend automatically begins to attack your current target when summoned, although you can switch targets mid-fight by selecting a new target and using the Ctrl-T command.

  • Has a 1.5 second attack speed - he'll hit ~10x during his lifespan.

  • Attacks are shadow-melee.

  • Caster gains mana for each of the Shadowfiend's attacks.
So let's see just exactly how much damage the little guy does, and how much mana he returns. For the record, Prin has the following attributes: 7751 hp, 8805 mana, 480 Bonus Shadow Damage (unbuffed).

Test Mob #1 - Lvl 70 Shadow Serpent. SF did 878 damage over the course of his summon, returning 2192 mana to Prin via "Mana Leech." I also made sure to dump ~4k mana before the fight, so that all of the mana returned by SF would be captured on Recount.

Test Mob #2 - This time I'm buffed with Superior Wizard Oil and Poached Bluefish, Bonus Shadow Damage is now 545. Lvl 69 Scorchshell Pincer. SF did 1516 damage over the course of his summon, returning 3790 mana back to Prin.

Quick Math Alert - put on your safety goggles.
Additional 13.54% +damage to the caster resulted in ~73% more damage done and mana returned by the SF. Whoa.

Test Mob #3 - I forgot to reset Recount, data is skewed. Dammit. Resetting Recount.

Test Mob #4 - Okay, now I've added Adept's Elixir to the mix, for up to an additional 24 +damage (569 total). Lvl 69 Shadow Serpent. Disappointing results - on this fight the SF did only 1237 damage to the mob, returning 3092 mana. That's less than with the lower +damage... (Still got your goggles on? Okay, there is still an apparent correlation between damage done by SF and mana returned - it looks like 1.5 mana per 1 damage, that figure holds for all three working attempts thus far.)

Test Mob #5 - Still have the 3 +damage buffs on, total Bonus Shadow Damage is 569. We're going after another Scorchshell Pincer. 1247 damage done by our SF, with 3115 mana returned. Just like Test Mob #4, the 18.5% more +damage over TM#1 is only giving us ~41% more damage and mana returned by the SF. Mana returned continues to be 1.5 per damage.

Test Mob #6 - Lvl 68 Scorchshell Pincer, same Bonus Shadow Damage of 569. SF did 1275 damage and returned 3188 mana. ~45% more damage and mana over TM#1, mana returned still at 1.5 per damage.

Time to mix things up a bit. I did a little browsing over at ShadowPriest.com and came up with an awesome idea! (Thanks to Nenormalen of the Silvermoon EU server.) If you've been doing the Cooking Quest dailies, you likely have the recipe for a little treat known as Kibler's Bits. Well, apparently the SF's AP is based on the caster's Shadow damage and the fiend's own Strength attribute. Let's see what feeding our cute lil' guy a Kibler's does for us:

Test Mob #7 - Lvl 68 Scorchshell Pincer again, same Bonus Shadow Damage of 569. The pet treat increases our SF's strength by 20. SF did 1609 damage and returned 3583 mana. So this time he did quite a bit more damage (83% over TM#1) but returned less than the 1.5 mana per damage we've been used to (1.23 on this attempt).

In summary, I'd have to say that all this requires far more testing by someone more knowledgeable about the mechanics. We can safely say that upping caster damage and the Shadowfiend's strength stat definitely pads both the additional damage done and the mana returned by a significant amount.

Of course, our original question concerned when to use our faithful, shadowy minion. To keep it short and sweet - as soon as you're down ~3k mana, and as often as the cooldown allows. Keeping this guy waiting in the wings for an emergency is a huge hit to your dps and costs you more downtime as well. In long boss fights you may very well have the opportunity to call him forth twice; with a mana pot between, that's an awesome strategy for keeping you in the fight and supplying dps.

Concerns - first and foremost is threat. Think of your 'Fiend as your teenage son... whatever trouble he causes is going to ultimately be your problem. He's up there wailing on the bad guy and returning mana - that's additional threat that's going to be laid at your doorstep. Please don't summon him before your tank has sufficient aggro! That makes tanks cranky, and Crankytank is less likely to want to go out of his way to save your precious, purple-y hide. And while you can justify VE- & VT-generated threat as benefiting the entire group, SF-returned-mana is only going to you, Princess.

Have you learned to love your own personal Shadowfiend minion yet? If not, why not take him out for some play-time today? Go farm for the Firefly or something. Learn to love him, or at least, use him to do your dark bidding. If nothing else, maybe you can get him to take out the trash, or something.

**Edit - I removed the macro I had here in order to work on it a bit more. If anyone out there has one that will summon the SF, use Kibler's Bits, and announce in /y, /s, or /e - let me know! The best I came up with required a double-click, and that made for duplicate "announcing."


Thursday, July 10, 2008

What luck! It's CHUCK!!

I finally scored one of these on the daily fishing quest. You may remember a while back D got Muckbreath? Well, yesterday morning he snagged Snarly, as well, only this time on the druid. I was soooo jealous. So jealous that I took all three of my 70's on the fishing quest, and the 3rd toon to turn it in scored CHUCK!! Go me.


Armageddon Craft

In a world... fraught with danger, war, and humans who don't always have skulls...

Time is ticking down.

Only five hours remain of the life we know.

One shadow priest has a chance - to end it all - on HER TERMS.

*cue explosion montage*

So Matticus of the awesome Priest blog posed this question to Phaelia once in an interview: You have five hours until WoW is no more - how do you spend it? I restrained myself mightily from poring over the other bloggers' responses on Blog Azeroth - I know me well enough to know that I'd spend an hour going, "oh, that!" "no - wait - that!" and this post would never get written. So - that having been said - apologies to anyone whose thoughts I may have inadvertently swiped.

What would I do... hmmm... As much as it may pain me to admit, a great many of my in-game actions are tempered by a thorough pre-act run through the gauntlet of "how pissed would D be if he knew I did THAT?" No matter how much I may try to justify a small or petty act, a smart-assy comment - this exercise really brings it into perspective. Now, that's not to say that I make D responsible for being my conscience - oh, no. His personality is simply the archtype I use to view my intentions from another standpoint.

So - first things first - we throw that right the hell out the window. Raid on Goldshire!! Hells-ya. Primary targets? Quest-givers and trainers. I'd make the following macros and spam them on every player: /point, /laugh, /pat - and then I'd kill them. I would respond to every post in Trade and General chat with the eloquent, yet concise, "ur mom."

I'd farm mats to craft epics - and then put them up in the AH for several thousand gold. I figure there must be people out there whose last wishes must include dropping their entire savings on an epic piece for an alt, right?

I'd send out ransom notes via in-game mail to my guildies for each of my non-combats pets... "Mail me all of your gold NOW or the [Mechanical Squirrel] gets it." And I know these people... no WAY could they stand idly by and watch me sacrifice innocent non-combat pets.

I'd empty all of my Ignore lists, on all toons. Yes, all of them. Even that fellow warlock I got into the Banishing war with back in Blade's Edge.* I'd whisper each of them like a long-lost cousin, "hey there! Remember me? Sure you do." /hug

And then when they responded? /ignore

That reminds me... I'd take my warlock up to the Elemental Plateau and just banish the mobs. I'd also take her to Goldshire and summon Infernals. I'd take Prin to the zeps and promise to teach newbies an important lesson concerning dueling - and I'd promise not to cast any harmful spells on them. No, Mind Control is not technically a harmful spell.

I'd take my hunter and tame a pet to represent my ex... and then I'd let it die, over and over again. Wait - that was out loud, wasn't it? *blush*

You know, you hear a lot about how WoW has negative effects on the lives of its players. Reading back over this post - I'm inclined to believe that Blizzard keeps it up and running to save us from ourselves. They're philanthropists, really.


*See, I was fighting one fire elemental, and another one aggro'd to me. I dotted it - but then another warlock in the area banished it before the dot ticked, and effectively stole my target. So I waited until he had a mob tagged - and I banished it. He reciprocated in turn, I repaid in kind, words were exchanged, including heated opinions concerning heritage and lifestyle practices - and then D intervened and essentially sent us to our rooms. Sigh - good times.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ask Prin - New Feature

So - things are slowing down a bit, with Prin and 2 of her sisters at end-game. I thought to myself, what do I really have to share? Insight, wisdom, tact, and and expertise in personal relations?

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAchokecough

No, not really, but when has that ever stopped me?

Got an annoying guildy? Lowbie hanger-on driving you nuts with questions? Constant begging for help from the RL friend you got hooked on WoW (and omfg WHY did you give him your main's server)? Prin can help. Leave questions here in the form of comments, or email to tjsonntag AT gmail DOT com, and Prin will pick some (if not all, depending on volume) to respond to on Friday.

/annlanders

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Twisted Nether Blogcast - Episode 6

This episode featured special guest Auzara from the blog Chick GM. Some awesome thoughts on guild leadership, especially for the testosteroneless among us. I know I learned a lot - check them out at Twisted Nether. I downloaded the mp3 and listened to the show while painting the downstairs foyer ceiling this afternoon. In case you haven't noticed, the side bar over there to your right now has a link to the TN Wiki.

Of note is the revelation that this year's Brewfest mounts will be faction-specific. Yup, you got it - no more rams for the Horde. We get kodos. Yay. >.> Yeah, I'm pumped. *eyeroll*

You know what? I don't necessarily want a ram, either. Prin got exalted with Orgrimmar just for the epic wolf mount, and other than that, there's really only one mount I'd be excited for: the Darnassas cat mounts. Yeah, I know, that's borderline blasphemous. But I can't help it. Hawli's got the Frostsaber pet from Winterspring, and oh wouldn't Prin be gorgeous riding on that delicately-purple-striped cat? Yeah, baby, you know it.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

June Poll Results

The ballots have been cast, and overwhelmingly, Inner Focus is the off-spec talent we go for. I'm totally with you, I have it myself. Wand Specialization and Mental Agility tied for second place with 5 votes each. Now I'm confused...

You're using your wand? Are you still leveling?

Awesome Hunter Blog!

Y'all know I play a hunter... well, I've been searching and reading lots (and lots and lots) of WoW-related blogs, I stumbled across Death from a Distance this morning.


Yeah, I lol'd IRL.


Monday, June 30, 2008

Status - Deer-in-Headlights

Didja ever have a project, a task, that was so huge, so daunting, that you were literally just frozen by it? Unable to move in any direction, even knowing that ANY move would be progress?

Right now, D is aheming loudly, gesturing wildly to our only-partially-remodeled home.

Yeah, that's kinda how I feel about WoW right now. I'm working 5 toons, remember. Just for my own use I thought I'd run through a sort of To-Do list, by character, to help me get focused.

Despairity, 58 UD Frost Mage: Her gear is okay, ready for Outlands, but I really wanted those two extra levels on her before she digs in to Hellfire Penninsula. I did manage to get her cooking up over 280, and it needs to be maxed so that she's not having to come back to Azeroth for cooking. On this one, I should probably head to Winterspring and grind bears for the meat and XP.

Malarea, 70 UD Aff Warlock: Mal is great. She is maxed on fishing, cooking, tailoring, and getting oh so close on Enchanting. She wants that Ahune staff, though, so I really need to be running her through Heroic Slave Pens. Also, with the new 28-slot herb bag coming, I need to be farming the primals and crafting Primal Mooncloth every 4 days.

Rigatoni, 70 BE Rogue: Rigs wants for nothing right about now. Bless her little soul, she's so undemanding. /hugs

Principessa, 70 BE Shadow Priest: Prin's fishing skill sucks, she can only do the Orgrimmar daily. Also, she's lagging behind in SSO rep and only needs 5 more points to max Jewelcrafting. There's also that whole "dropping mining to power-level tailoring" thing - I gotta decide if I'm really gonna do it - and if so, I need to be mass farming ores and cloth in prepartion.

Hawli, 59 BE Hunter: Hawli's got needs, oh lordy lordy. She NEEDS 48 more AV tokens for the Frostwolf mount, she NEEDS 11 more Mining skill points before Outlands, she NEEDS 27 more Engineering skill points to hit 300, as well.

So - now to prioritze... I'll get back to you.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A Change in Strategy, Profession-wise

Up til now, Prin has been rocking a Mining / Jewelcrafting profession. Decent money, for the most part, since even beginning-level ores and smelted bars are selling well. Not to mention accepting tips for cutting raw green- & blue-quality gems. Since the beginning she's followed D's gathering / crafting formula for leveling professions without going broke. What's that? Oh, dude, it's so easy - 50% of the gathered materials used to level the crafting profession, 50% sent directly to the bank alt for placement in the AH.



There you go, don't say I never did anything for ya. : )



So she's hit 70, she's got the epic flyer, and she's hurting for gear in a big way. There really isn't anything she needs to be spending money on, as I'm trying to make do with the patterns available for rep. Okay - that's not completely true. You should see me whenever something like this pops up: [2. Trade] WTS [Design: Bright Living Ruby] pst



I'm like - immediately /w the seller, tell him I'm omw with some gold, log out where ever I am, doing whatever I'm doing, jump on Prin, /w the seller again, race half-way across Azeroth because this living wonder decided to take a little side-trip to Desolace while he was waiting for me (his alt needed the 150 Cookbook), and drop the equivalent of 2-3 days worth of dailies on a recipe that will probably net me some gold in the way of tips, definitely if I manage to prospect some Living Rubies.



I'm thinking of dropping the mining to power-level tailoring, strictly for the Frozen Shadoweave set.



I can hear you out there, you know, groaning, "omfg you mean u haven't already?!?11"



No - I haven't. Why? Well, I'm not maxed on JC yet, for one - I'm stuck at 368. Hawli's coming right along and will be in Outlands in just 2 more levels* so I'm going to have another supplier soon. But then I'm afraid Hawli's engineering will suffer if she's feeding two crafting professions. Not to mention that the expansion is coming. So, even though Malarea has the set and I know first-hand how tear-jerkingly delicious it is, I ALSO remember leveling tailoring to GET to it. Oy, vey. (When did I become Jewish? O.o See what the very thought does to me?)


But I digress... the point of this post is that I'm trying to psych myself up to abandon a perfectly good maxed-out Mining skill in favor of the "splinter under the fingernail" pain of power-leveling Shadoweave Tailoring. My one consolation is that Mal's Shadoweave cooldown will also be of use, but I shudder when I think of all the primal-grinding I put into it.



/shudder



See? *spots random player queueing up for Kara* Hey, you - can I go on follow on you, for say, 3-4 hours? Let me know if something drops I should roll on. Thanks.





*I think a hunter will be much easier to start in Outlands than the Priest - even a shadow priest. Wish me luck with this.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I'll be staying right here, thanks.

I'm totally pumped for the expansion. D and I are of slightly different minds concerning original WoW and BC. He's a dyed-in-the-wool fan of the old world, the old instances, more difficult quests, no sparkly objectives with flashing neon lights exclaiming "Click HERE, Noob!" and the sense of accomplishment all of the above brings.

I'm a big fan of being 70. There, I said it. I like leveling, I love instancing and questing, but there's a lot to be said for BC instance design over Azeroth instance design. Yes, Stratholme is eerie. Yes, Maraudon is amazing, and Dire Maul is a blast, and Shadowfang Keep remains my absolute favorite old-world dungeon. But as I was complaining last night, there ought to be a limit to the number of toons one must drag through Jaedenar.

So what's my deal? I like doing Kara. I don't necessarily want to do it for 6 freaking hours. I like doing heroics, if I can find a Pug who knows what they're doing. (BIG if.) I enjoyed experiencing Magister's Terrace, but it took me four groups to finally get all the way to the end boss. (Thank you, mage, for passing the epic gloves to me! /hugs)

I'm thinking a nice shiny new Death Knight and a new group of zones might be just the ticket. I certainly have no interest in Age of Conan, at least not immediately. One of our best friends and guildy "took one for the team" and test-drove it. Her most lasting impression? Twelve-year-old mouth-breathers exclaiming, "ZOMG, bewbies!" So, yeah, WoW is going to be able to keep its claws in me awhile longer, I believe.

Extended Maintenance takes the Supreme out of my Chicken Soft Taco Supreme



I raced home from my doctor's appointment, Taco Bell take-out in hand, eager to jump into some Quel Danas dailies, or perhaps work on my neglected Consortium rep... (I simply MUST reach honored).

To my dismay, it appears that my realm will be down for at least another hour. And when Blizzard says "another hour," they really mean, "soon."

Ah well, an opportunity to jump over to Zangarmarsh and work on my long-neglected ICFtB toons: Mahmi and Lachenrohl. If anyone cares to join me because your main server is down, too, by all means! Chat me up. This is a good time to do it, anyway, with the upcoming event.

Visit http://www.wowinsider.com/category/it-came-from-the-blog/ for details. Hope to see some of you there!

Patch 2.4.3 - Unofficial


Haris Pilton is on the cover of Yahoo!'s Entertainment News today. Seems that the mainstream media has been attracted to even the most random of Paris Hilton references; that of an almost-namesake NPC in World of Warcraft. How sad is that? Did nothing blow up today or what?

http://videogames.yahoo.com/feature/virtual-paris-hilton-sells-bags-in-world-of-warcraft/1221824

No matter. Patch 2.4.3 is coming, and that right early. Other than 1200g bags and useless jewelry, what else is in store?

Mounts at level 30, and apprentice training for only 35g. Am I bummed or hyped about that? Neither. I don't have any toons left below 50, and don't expect any more prior to WotLK, either. D, however, DOES have a new little mage coming up in the ranks, and it'll be good to see him get another boost in leveling speed.

We're getting one new non-combat pet (oh boy) and some graphical fixes to the movement of others. There's nothing new out there for Priests except for a small change to Mind Vision and something about healing (tldr, lol).

Warlocks are getting a combined curse for the four magic trees available to mages and 'locks combed: Curse of Elements will apply to Frost, Fire, Shadow, and Arcane magical damage. Woot! You AND the lock are getting good news here, since a mage in the group almost ALWAYS meant only the +Frost and +Fire curse. Our own Malarea can't wait to try this new change out...

I'm also pumped to see some of the profession changes & fixes, like having green gems drop from mining nodes again, and losing the cooldown for regular Mooncloth. One of my guild's upcoming warlocks went without the Robe of Winter's Night, simply because he wasn't in the level range long enough for me to make the damn cloth. Oh yeah, and also because I wasn't planning ahead and underestimated his leveling speed.

The best news, to me, anyway, is the Herb Bag pattern to be available from Sporeggar at Exalted status. I'll be farming rep for Malarea, my tailor, and presumably making bags for all the herbalists currently in the guild - I know of at least 3, right off hand.

Lots of other minor fixes and changes are in store, and I guess the best thing I can say about 2.4.3 is that, so far, at least, I haven't seen anything distressing. Check it out for yourself at WoW Insider, and tell me what YOU'RE looking forward to.

Enquiring minds want to know.