Thursday, July 30, 2009
For those of you who are curious. I will be going to Castlefest. A yearly medieval festival with song and dance, looking forward to it ^_^
Better get packing!
Oh...in other news. Thanks to all you guys this blog has had over 10.000 hits. Started in March and it didn't go skyhigh immediately, but steadily more people joined, and hey still going strong and still here. So a big thank you to the readers ^_^
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
PVP vs PVE
Every time I read this sort of stuff I wonder if there's not a better way. I mean there must be a way to separate PVP balance from PVE balance. Because it seems to be impossible to balance all of it. And to be frank, balancing for PVP seems a lot harder anyway, since players will just sit there for hours on end and figure out how to fight against every other class. There's no way Blizzard can do this much testing internally. So the end result becomes that half the balancing are reactions to the testing done by players inside the game.
With the dual spec in, I wonder if players should be given compeltely separate PVP talent trees. This would not be your normal talent trees. It would be a completely new combination of talents specifically designed and only usable in PVP (or while PVP flagged).
You would switch to these talents in PVP situations (or on PVP servers this would be your main) and it would be balanced completely differently than the PVE talent trees. To go with what I know best. In the PVE talents you would for example be able to take casting time off penance, whereas in your PVP talents you're simply not given the option to take that talent.
When stepping into a raid, or not being flagged in any way you would work with the PVE talents that you can take.
It would of course still require the base talents to be the same, but by forcing the use of specifically balanced PVP trees and PVE trees Blizzard would be able to control so much better how to balance in these two hugely different situations.
I know they're trying to do this with resilience, but that's onviously not working.
And now they're trying to make resilience more important it gets even worse for the starting PVPer. Because these people don't have resilience to start with. Or at the start of a new expansion healers would just have to sit through a hundred games being one or two shot before they've managed to get the gear to stay alive a bit longer.
If you would have forced PVP talent trees (again, same trees, just different balancing) you could build in resilience talents. Or hell, the whole resilience thing would no longer be needed, since the player can only chose from talents that are balanced specifically for PVP.
I have no idea how this would work technically, but it seems possible. And it would be so nice to not see classes being nerfed because of PVP and then hurting in PVE, or the other way around.
What do you think?
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
No patch yet
I logged in this morning and the message that was up announced a 15 minute rolling restart. Looks like the patch isn't going to drop this week yet, but I had my bets on next week already anyway.
I do have to admit that I'm looking forward to the new kitten skins. My druid won herself some upgrades in Naxx10 yesterday (yay KT staff!) and she'll be such a pretty white kitten ^_^
No instances available
I also just read on WoW.com that Blizzard is working on the 'additional instances not available' problem. Yay!
There is nothing more annoying then bouncing of the instance portal for half an hour just wasting your time away. And while Icecrown has been very good to us, on our EU server we have been running into this message a lot.
Trading Card Mounts no longer BOP
And woot, as MMO Chamption was suspecting already, the trading card mounts indeed seem to go BOE!
I have always refused to buy trading card packs, especially since the only thing I want from them is the in game loot, and it felt too much like buying my rewards. And silly as I am I rather spend hours on end to actually earn them ;)
But now I might be able to spend my hard earned in game gold on a spectral tiger mount after all, woot!
Addiction therapists signing up to World of Warcraft
I still believe that if you feel you have a WoW addiction there is an underlying problem. If your life is balanced between normal work or school, family, friends, and gaming I cannot see this being an addiction.
Not until you decide that the game comes first in the above list you should start thinking about if you have your priorities set straight. And when it comes to that, you might also want to think about why your priorities are messed up. And I find it hard to imagine that most then come to the conclusion that it is the fault of the game...
I can sooner see this a problem of not being interested/happy enough with your work/school, or social life, and fulfilling this need for happiness with something else instead. If you had turned to play sports people would call it a healthy workout, because it's gaming people call it an addiciton. Odd how that works.
From the article: "...youngsters who are spending so much time playing these games that they have lost touch with the real world."If these youngsters exist, and if we're so worried about them. Shouldn't we think about what we're offering them in this real world of ours instead? And how youngsters are being raised?
Permit me to grab back to my mobile phone rant. We give young people (at the age of 5 or 6 often already) a mobile phone and teach them that commiting to appointments, and actually planning your life is not too important, because they can update it at any time.
Is it odd then that life just becomes a world of no commitment?
Is it odd that these people are eventually turning to a world where the rules are way less complicated than in the real world? Where they can count on the same encounter always being the same encounter?
I might be completely stabbing in the dark here, but might it be that the game simply offers more structure than real life, and that youngsters are really just trying to find a world with rules and borders?
Either way, this post has become a lot longer than I had planned, and I can go on ranting a bit about my visions on the world, but hey...in the end what counts is what we do with it.
If we call it an addiction it's an addiction.
After all if we would call a table a chair, it would live under that name.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Pug Raid Jiggy
This was already the third time that we set it up, and what started with a simple "lets at least get our FL emblems" went to working on keeper Freya.
I know, I know, maybe not so much of an achievement for some of you, but this was the third time that we organized this, and we got to Freya. In fact, we almost took her down.
It does sort of help that since last week we seem to sort of have a team up with another guild - Banefire of Icecrown. Next to this all we've been doing really is make sure to gear check, and I guess we've also been quite lucky in that we've managed to get people who use their brain.
My 10man is the most relaxed group I've ever raided with within my guild, but I have to say that if you're lucky enough to find a good pug group, raiding can be as enjoyable.
What amazes me most is that everybody is pretty laid back about the loot. Normally I lay down the loot rules straight at the beginning, and though I get some clarification questions sometimes, people are cool with the DBA (Don't be an Ass) rule.
In fact, these people are being so honest that I got a boe epic item sent back to me through in game mail, because this person won an upgrade for himself. He figured that it wouldn't be fair for him to get two items.
I sent it back to him with the message that these are free rolls, and as long as people didn't keep rolling on free roll items once they had won one, they were simply lucky for that weekend.
Within a pug group it's also a lot easier somehow to say to someone, "Sorry, not bringing you, since I don't believe that you're ready for this content". I've always found this one of the hardest tasks within the guild as a raidleader.
The thing is though that realistically all your raiders will have more fun if you bring 25 people who can handle the content you're tackling. And though you can bring 1 or 2 who are slightly undergeared, many more and the raid will be a lot less fun for everybody involved.
And yes, I strongly believe that having fun goes together with being succesful. For the simple reason that I cannot believe that there are people out there who find it fun to just wipe over and over for 4 hours.
What will happen in the end is that the people who need to carry a raid like this will find excuses not to be there, since they are tired of wiping on content they know they can beat. And the half that is not ready will feel bad because they are the cause of these wipes.
This somehow is always a bit of a touchy point within guilds. But if you really think about it, it shouldn't be. Especially since so far I already know of two examples now where performance improved massively after people had been spoken with.
It comes down to a couple of simple truths:
- being successful on content is fun, wiping is not
- to be successful on content you have to bring a group of people who can handle that content
- if people aren't ready for content they have two options:
- get ready for this content
- give up on this content and go for easier content
- the only way for people to know that they are not ready is analysis
In a perfect world, people will always analyze their own performance, and improve where they see it fall down. But since we're not living in a perfect world we have raid leaders or class leaders. These people have specifically been put in these positions to organize and monitor the raid.
It is our job to point out that people's performance is not up to what the raid and content needs.
Of course it's the raider's responsibility to do something with the feedback provided.
And though it's never fun to tell someone that they suck, or from the other side, hear that you suck. But if dealt with in the right way you have a large chance of having a happier, more satisfied raid member AND raid group afterward.
And while it's hard, and it really sucks having to single someone out, it sucks even more to have to disappoint 20 or so raiders, because you didn't want to address the other 4 or 5.
Radio in Vent
As a completely unrelated point...Banefire has been kind enough to provide the vent we've used for our pugtastic raid two weekends in a row now. One of them runs a radio service in this vent channel, and I have to say....it's absolutely brilliant.
Having some good background music immediately provides a good atmosphere, and when things go wrong a good song seems to make it easier to shrug it off again.
- Pugtastic raids Ulduar 25 on Icecrown USA at noon server Saturday and Sunday.
- If you want to join send a tell to Xphile or Shyraia.
- If you wonder if Ulduar is in Crystalsong Forest, don't even try to come, we won't bring you.
- If your gear/experience/performance is not ready for this content, we won't bring you.
- Yes, loot will drop, but if you're a loot whore, we won't bring you.
- Pugtastic works under DBA rules, and if you don't know what that means you haven't read this post properly, and are likely not able to understand instructions either, we won't bring you. (no worries, raid always starts with loot rules explanation).
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Best versus now..
I included the weapon since I still think it's one of the better looking weapons in the game, especially for a priest.
Looking through what we had does make me a little sad if I see what the tier 9 will look like.... I mean, so much less heroic...and what's up with the spikes on the shoulders?
Am I going to launch myself at the boss or something?
I guess it's cold in Northrend and that's why all the clothing makes the characters look sort of fat.
Friday, July 24, 2009
When did my character look the best?
I do remember that at a certain point I had a specific set with the gladiator hood that had the blue halo around it that I absolutely loved.
When I get home I'll go play with the WoW Modelviewer a bit, and I'll see if I can get some screenshots taken of what she looked like back then.
How about you, what do you feel looked best on your character?
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Ulduar 10 for Dummies: Kologarn
Another very handy thing is to check what people are watching for when they come to your blog. And I've noticed that quite a large number of people keep coming for the few Ulduar boss guides that I posted. So I figured lets finish those series, especially since my group finally finished the instance ourselves, with Yogg going down last weekend.
So far we've had:
- Flame Leviathan
- Ignis the Furnace Master
- XT002 Deconstructor
Kologarn is next in line, so here we go...
After XT002 you take the next teleporter and you clear some trash. To the left of the stairs is Iron Council, and to the right is nothing really. At least, not until you've killed Iron Council on hard mode. But, we'll get to them in another post.
Up the stairs is Kologarn. When you get to his room you can look at the floor. The first row of squares is safe to walk in, and if you do he comes up, looming above you. Don't get scared, he looks big, but on 10man he's a bit of a pushover...if you do it the right way.
- 2 tanks
- 2 or 3 healers
- 5 or 6 dps
Once Kologarn has come up you can target him, and you will see that you can target 3 different parts of him. His right arm, his body, and his left arm. Each of these parts have different abilities, but not all are equally important.
Spread out your ranged dps and healers along the first row of squares, from here they will be able to reach all that they need to reach.
Your first tank will tank the body. Someone always has to be in melee range because otherwise Kologarn will start casting petrifying breath. (yay, I got syndication to work!)
All of the dps will dps the right arm.
There are 2 reasons for this, first is the fact that with his right arm he periodically picks up someone and tries to squeeze that person to death. Once you've done enough damage to the arm he lets go of this person. And the second reason is that with every arm you kill, you drop Kologarn's health by 550K, which is quite substantial.
Once one of the arm dies 5 rock elementals spawn under the arm. These will have to be picked up by your second tank. These rock elementals apply stone nova, which means that you want your dps out of the way a bit. Melee can hit the right arm while standing in front of his body, and doesn't even have to turn when switching between arm and body.
It takes 30 seconds for the right arm to regrow during which the dps without aoe will be hitting the body, and those with aoe kill the rubble.
Once your tank is geared enough you will be able to do all this without tank switches, but until then you have to watch for crunch armor on the first tank, if it stacks too high you will want to tank switch so that the stack can fall off.
There are two other abilities that you need to watch for; eyebeam and shockwave.
Eyebeam is aimed at a ranged, and will follow that person. The best way to deal with it is step forward and run in between the ranged and the melee. After all you had all the ranged standing in the first row of squares so in between melee and ranged there are two rows of squares left to kite this eyebeam around.
Shockwave is simply something the healers will have to deal with.
With 2 healers, healer 1 heals the tanks, and healer 2 picks up the raid (bit of extra healing to the gripped people).
With 3 healers, healer 1 heals the tanks, healer 2 does raid, and healer 3 picks up the picked up targets and helps on raid and tanks wherever it;s most needed at that moment.
- do NOT run the eyebeam through your healers
- do NOT kill the left arm at the same time as the right arm, he will cast stone shout, and this will likely wipe the raid
- do NOT think you're clever and all stack up within melee range, since overhead smash has a 8 second spell lockout
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
After further discussion, we decided not to remove the rusted and ironbound proto-drake rewards for the normal and heroic Glory of the Ulduar Raider meta achievements when patch 3.2, Call of the Crusade, launches, and currently have no plans to remove them in the foreseeable future. However, we will continue to evaluate the situation and if a decision is made to remove these rewards at any point in the future, we'll provide a one month warning so players will have time to make some final attempts.Pssst...now go read my other post so I didn't spend the time writing it for nothing ;)
*dances off all happy*
WoW you're skilled!
These skills were mainly what they call soft skills. Skills that aren't needed for the specific tasks in a job, but just general skills that most employers will look for in an employee. In fact, part of the HRM task when it comes to recruitment often consists of figuring out if an applicant has the right soft skills to work within the department or within the company.
As I was reading this article I started thinking of how a lot of these skills are not so much different from the skills you need in WoW to be a successful player. I recognized that not only have a I broadened certain skill sets through WoW, I have also acquired new ones.
Some of these skills are vital when raiding, pvping, or even just when communicating with guild members or other people in the game. Others I apply mostly when I have to step into the raid leader, or banker role.
Skills inside WoW
Communications Skills (listening, verbal, written). By far, the one skill mentioned most often by employers is the ability to listen, write, and speak effectively. Successful communication is critical in business.How often do raids not go wrong because someone forgot to mention certain tactics or assignments? It is vital in any raid that you can communicate effectively, and maybe even more important, in a concise manner.
Having your raid leader spin off a 10 minute story about the abilities Yogg has is usually not the most effective way to tell 25 people what they need to watch for. No, you bullet point the abilities each needs to keep an eye on, and other than that you just have to start the fight and hope people will not have forgotten one of the bullet points.
Analytical/Research Skills. Deals with your ability to assess a situation, seek multiple perspectives, gather more information if necessary, and identify key issues that need to be addressed.These skills come in very handy when researching a fight. You will never remember everything that happens in a fight (unless you're Rain Man). So instead what you need to do is analyze the fight, assess the risks, and identify which spells you need to be on the lookout for.
The more you do this, the faster you will be able to oversee the situation, and know what to look for when you watch the next how to video on you tube.
Flexibility/Adaptability/Managing Multiple Priorities. Deals with your ability to manage multiple assignments and tasks, set priorities, and adapt to changing conditions and work assignments.Oooh, another very important one. Lets take a healer example for this one...
Top dps, tank, and silly stand in fire dps all take damage. Who do I heal first? I can tell you that a whole checklist of priorities is being walked through in my head at that moment, and that depending on the weight of those priorities someone will get the first, second, and third heal.
And honestly, the best players I've known are those who can react even if unexpected things happen. They adapt to the situation, and run with it, applying what they do know to the changed situation.
Interpersonal Abilities. The ability to relate to your co-workers, inspire others to participate, and mitigate conflict with co-workers is essential given the amount of time spent at work each day.This is maybe not so much a skill used specifically for raiding. It is however definitely one that is used every day just to communicate with others. And as a guild leader, raid leader, or class leader you better have developed these skills a bit, because motivating your team might be darn hard if you haven't.
WoW your CV
There have been many discussions on employers hiring (or not hiring) people who play WoW. There are recruiters out there who apparently even get specific instructions not to hire anybody who plays WoW. (apologies for the red letters, but I think I worded it pretty correctly) And then there are also companies who specifically look for people with gaming experience. (check out Blizz's job offerings for some a nice examples)
But either way it swings I would definitely stick use some of my WoW skills to brighten up my CV.
Lets say we take the following job add:
Expanding communications company with excellent benefits is seeking a Financial Analyst to join their team. In this Financial Analyst position, you will conduct financial modeling as well as measure, analyze and forecast performance in conjunction with operating plans. Additional duties include advising management on the allocation of resources to best accomplish objectives and preparing reports for management.(I took this add randomly of monster.com and took the address out, hope I don't get angry people here)
Success-driven Financial Analyst candidates with 5+ years of experience are ideal. Qualified applicants will have a Bachelors degree in Accounting or Finance. Advanced proficiency with Excel as well as excellent analytical, communication and presentation skills are required. If interested, please contact blarblar lets take the address out shall we.....
I have highlighted all the skills that you meet in WoW, and that you could use in your resume.
- Measure analyze and forecast performance
In game this would be reading combat logs. And not only reading them, but analyzing them until you know where performance dropped, and how you can improve. Know where your dps needs to step up, where your heroism was too early, where your healers dropped the ball. Analysis of what's going wrong is the first step in knowing how to make it go better. Not only in the game, but also in almost anything else.
- Advising management on the allocation of resources
Classleaders this is your call. You are the one advising the raidleaders who should heal which target, who tanks what, and how the dps is divided. Not only should you be aware of what your resources are, but you also have to apply them effectively to a situation.
- Advanced proficiency with Excel
If you're a high end raider I bet you've seen multiple dps, tps, and hps spread sheets going by. You've been following the calculations in them, hell, you might even have designed your own spreadsheets, calculating which stats you should keep an eye on, or which gear piece you should look for next.
- Excellent analytical, communication and presentation skills
This one has been mentioned before, but I did want to point out that in just a random add I found online they are outlined, right there.
I wouldn't, my time is for me to decide what to do with it.
A third faction?
MMO-champion datamined a whole series of masks.
Of these races I think I would want to play a Vrykul lady. They are so perfectly savage. Yeah, a vrykul enhancement shammie would be really nice.
Then again...Ogre warrior? Murloc priest? Worgen druid?
All very cool ideas.
Maybe a whole new faction is in the making, and these are the faces that we'll see in it. With the announced option to change your faction it wouldn't even be too surprising.
Thror was saying that these races would never be able to work together lorewise, and though I agree with him, Dranei sort of came out of nowhere as well.
Which race would you play if given the chance?
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
When real life hits
My dad wanted a new video card so I figured we (Thror and myself) would go there for diner after work, quickly exchange old video card with new video card, and then we'd still be home fairly on time.
It went a little differently.
My parents had their entire office hauled empty, and the computers were all unplugged. So cables everywhere, and Thror figured he could help...so yeah, in the end they now have two working computers again. All cables plugged into the right sockets, but it did get rather later than I expected.
So instead of posting my super duper subject (it's pretty darn good, I promise) today, I will save it for tomorrow and go unwind from work a little by smashing some NPCs in a dungeon or so for the bit of the evening I have left.
Update on PTR Patch 3.2.0. notes
- Update: 21/07/2009
- Shamans section updated: original name of Totem Bar 3 correctly listed as Call of Air
- Warriors section updated: Battle Shout, Commanding Shout, Devastate
- User Interface section updated: Quest Tracking feature removed
- Bug Fixes section updated: Sigil of Arthritic Binding note corrected
- Shamans section updated: original name of Totem Bar 3 correctly listed as Call of Air
Trading Card Mounts no longer Bind on Pickup in 3.2?
It would be so cool to actually be able to get that Spectral Tiger for in game gold. Though I don't even want to think about the amounts that people will be asking for them. >_<
[2 trade] "WTS Swift Spectral Tiger"80K, pst"
I'm currently at 91/100 mounts, and working on getting money together for the 92nd (Hodir fast mount). I even have a list worked out on how I will go about getting the last couple of mounts, but this would definitely open other options again.
What can I say, I like pretty mounts ^_^
A longer post coming up tonight, keep an eye out for it.
Monday, July 20, 2009
Nim says: Learn to WoW!
Hello again, little guy.
The servers are up again, your bank is full of green stuff. We wanted to get rid of this making a bit of money, but Snowy thought the servers had to be down once again.
So, we have to check things before we go there.
The question is: Need or no need?
So look at you, you are...a pretty blue robe, staff on your back, wand in hand. You have a manabar. Hmm, you are a mage...ah...oh...sorry, sorry...could you take that imp away from me? It's okay, you are an evil warlock.
*sigh* You're going to pay the bill for this burning hole in my pants!
Okay, before you decide what to put in the auction house, you have to look what you are able to wear and which weapons you can use.
As you see, you carry a wand and a staff. And you wear cloth.
So first step, we go to the weapon masters. You will find them asking a guard.
I will just sit here and enjoy my Dwarfern Brew for a while.
There you are*hic*
So, did the weapon master tell you what you will be able to use as weapons?
You will be able to carry staffs, wands, swords and daggers.
Your only armor will be cloth.
I know, this polearm looks nice, but it's not useful at all and way to heavy for someone like you. Oaoaoaoah, TAKE THAT IMP AWAY!
As you can see on every piece in your bank is a description when you go over it with your mouse - yes, it's the finger in your world.
It gives you informations like what kind of weapon it is, what damage it does what, other stats there are on it, and which level it is.
The "polearm" is red, meaning you are not able to carry this weapon ever in your warlock's life.
The staff there, look. "Staff" is green, you can carry it, BUT it says "Level 24" in red.
You will be able to use this staff once you reached level 24.
*hopes it will take a while*
Now take all the things which you will never carry in your life and let's sell them.
This building is the auction house. You can sell and buy nearly everything in here - If you have the money.
Talk first to the auction master, now there is a window with three tabs. This one is for searching, the second one is to deposit an auction and the last one is the one where you see the auctions you bid for.
As this is your beginning in a trader's world we keep it clear.
Search the items you want to sell. In the first tab you can type the name (or part of it) and then search for it. The easier way is to shift + left-click on the item and it posts the name in the search line.
Check the prices!
If there is any of the things you want to sell, make sure that you sell it at a rather similar price, maybe undercut (sell for lower) a bit to make sure people buy your things first.
If there aren't any of the kind of you things you want to sell, fine, you make the price. Useless to say that the price shouldn't be too high, because like that you won't sell anything.
A good idea is to find similar items and check what the prices for these are. If you're still not sure you can use a site like www.wowhead.com where they give some advice on auction hall prices.
Move on into the tab "Auctions" and drag your item here. You see two line there, one "Bid" and one "Buyout". You can either choose to put an auction only on bid or on both bases in here.We will sell this Polearm on both.
So type your "Bid" in the first line. Three gold? Okay, if you say so.
Then move to "Buyout". This one has to be higher than the "Bid", three gold and fifty silver is okay.
Selling things in the auction house gives you more money than giving things to the vendor, but it takes a while. So sit down, get a drink, go somewhere to do some quests, get more green stuff to sell.
But remember: not all things will always be sold, not all things CAN be sold in the auction house.
No, don't look at me like that...I see a million questions in your eyes.
Let me just sit here for a while and later on I will tell you about why your hunter-friend is able to carry the polearm and why you are not able to put the quest rewards in auction house.
I know for a lot of you this is nothing special, but it took us quite some blood, sweat and tears. Woot!
And yay, not only Yogg, but also FL+3, XT002 hard, Steelbreaker last, Hodir hard, Thorim hard, and Freya with a tree went down this weekend. I am sooo proud of my team, big shoutout to you guys ^_^
Friday, July 17, 2009
Don't let the bedbugs bite
Continue reading on your own responsibility.
Not WoW - related.
I woke up with the taste of vomit in my mouth, and tears in my eyes. This dream was the realest dream I've had in a long time. And of course it couldn't be a nice dream...nooo, it had to be a full blown nightmare.
I lay still for a bit after waking up, and realized that this sort of stuff is luckily only night mare for me, but some people have lived through this. Such horrible, uncalled for, pointless violence happens every day around the world.
I think I'll be really nice today to everybody around me....
Here in the Netherlands the ladybug represents being against this sort of nonsense.
After that dream it feels right to make this statement.
I am against pointless violence.
Slowly I drove the car into the mutual parking area. Slowly, because I didn't want my kids to be fully awake. Rats. Only a tiny spot left in the corner next to the pool. I maneuvered my car into the tight spot and, for what must be at least the hundredth time, I was happy to only have a small car.
I nudged my older one awake a little bit, "Sophie, we're home," I whispered.
With an adorable little sigh she crawled out of the car, her eyes still closed and full of sleep. The youngest one I picked up in my arms. She was so tired that she just kept sleeping. I nudged the doors closed, and with Sophie's hand in my one hand, and me carrying Lizzie in the other arm, we walked back to our apartment.
"Do you want a drink still?" I asked quietly as we opened the door. We snuck into the house , tiptoeing to not wake up my youngest daughter. Sophie only mumbled a little, and shook her head lightly while crawling up the stairs. With her four years she thought she was mature, but even mature four-year-olds get overwhelmed by sleep.
I followed, and put Lizzie down in her bed. She had half-woken up, but willingly let herself get undressed and tucked under the covers. Sophie had already taken her own clothes off, and had slipped into her care bear PJ's. She was growing so fast. I kissed her forehead and put the blanket close around her. "Mommy luvs ya," I nuzzled. She nuzzled back, and I turned my attention back to Elizabeth.
She too was close to being asleep, and I kissed my littlest one on the cheek. Her stubby little arms hugged me tight, "Nini mommy," she mumbled sleepily, magicking a gentle smile to my mouth. I checked on my right, and saw that the older one was fast asleep already.
I wandered back to my own bedroom, and sat down in front of the dressing mirror. Tonight was the first time in forever that I was going out, and I was looking forward to it. My girlfriends, from times when I was still saying that I never wanted kids, would all come over. As one big group we would then go into the city center, and dance the night away.
The babysitter would be here soon, and I was looking forward to my evening out. Pulling out the hairbrush I looked for my car keys, and I realized that I had been so busy with the girls that I had left the keys in my car, and my car unlocked.
I sighed, darn. I got up again, and checked the girls' bedroom. Fast asleep. I would only be 5 minutes to the parking area and back, they would be fine. I checked if I had my house keys, and shut the door firmly behind me.
Walking back to the parking area I heard voices and laughter. Bah, those youngsters must be out again. They had been warned several times by the police already, but they didn't seem too impressed by it. I hesitated, but then told myself that all I had to do was walk in, get my keys, lock the car, and walk out again.
I rounded the corner and saw them. Three blokes, and two gals. I guessed they were about 16 or 17. I quickly looked the other way again, and walked to where I had parked my car.
I stopped dead in my tracks. My car had been pushed on top of a smaller car, and quick assesment told me that I would never be able to get it off myself. Anger filled me, and with that surge of rage I turned around. I walked to the three young men standing, laughing. They were watching me, and the grin on their faces grew even bigger.
I stopped right in front of one of them.
"Can one of you please give me a hand to get my car off again?"
I had asked it with the firmest voice I could master.
He smirked, "Don't you like our parking, lady?"
I was fuming, "You get my car off there now."
His face hardened, "Or else?"
I took my phone from my pocket and started dialing the number of the police right in front of him. From the corner of my eyes I saw another three boys joining. This was enough to make my finger hesitate above the dial button.
Then I was grabbed from behind. And punched in the stomach. The air disappeared from my lungs, and I doubled up.
"You're not so smart, are ya?" scuffed the guy I had spoken to.
I tried getting away, but was held tightly. Another punch followed the first one, and I tasted bile vomit in my mouth. I was shoved away from the guy holding me, into the direction of the 3 who had joined. I landed unsoftly on the floor, and looked up, begging them with my eyes to do something.
The tallest one kicked me in the face, and I heard my nose crack. I tried to roll up like a ball to protect myself. Another kick, in my back this time. Oh god no, my children, they were alone!
I wrestled myself up, and tried to get to the exit, but was grabbed back. From a far distance I heard the shrill laugh of one of the girls.
"My babies!" I cried out as loud as I could, but my voice wasn't more than a croaked whisper. Blood was streaming out my nose, and I couldn't focus my vision anymore. I was pulled back, and shoved back and forth between the men, being punched with every shove. I couldn't open my eyes anymore now from all the beating my face had taken. All I could do was let it happen.
The taste of vomit on my lips was mixed with blood, and I threw up again. Only acid came. The pain already seemed to get less, and then the shoving ended.
I landed on the floor, and just lay there. Thinking about my little girls. They would be ok, the babysitter would be there soon, they would be ok.
I repeated that mantra as I was picked up. The arms were almost gentle, and I felt myself being carried off to somewhere. My girls would be ok, they would be ok. Then the arms left me, and for a moment I was just floating midair.
Then I hit the water. I wanted to swim, I thought about my girls and I wanted to swim. I know I moved my arms, I had to get out.
The world went black.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
When was the last time you hugged a tree?
I imagine all the iPhone and iPod addicts are going yay, but I have to say that I'm not the least excited by it, perhaps even the contrary.
Here in the Netherlands when we do our online banking you get a code on your phone that you have to fill in before your payment goes through. I just made one of those payments, and went to get my phone and charger out of my bag. It turned out that the charger still had the USA wall plug extension thingie on it from the last time that I charged it.
This was about 2 weeks ago.
Save to say that my phone was out of battery, and had probably been so for a while already. So yes, I'm one of those people who never picks up her phone when you try to reach her.
I have to say that this isn't even unintentionally. I just don't like mobile phones. In fact I blame them for a large part of the fact that people seem to get worse and worse in keeping appointments, or planning ahead on things.
When I was younger (I'm not even old, but still), and I would go out to meet someone somewhere we would plan a meeting spot. Not just 'I'll see you at the train station' nono, it would be more of the type 'I'll see you at the trainstation, under the big clock at three'. Nowadays people just go under the assumption that you can call when you can't find each other.
I'm also very old-fashioned in keeping appointments. Simply because I wasn't brought up with the sillyness of calling 10 minutes ahead of time that you cannot make it. That to me accounts of not only bad planning, but also inconsideration. Because the person calling off the meeting or appointment has not given you any time to arrange your time differently.
Nuhuh, not me. For me an appointment is an appointment. And sure you can cancel it. Three days ahead, or when you ended up in hospital. If I'm not sure I can make it to an appointment, I just don't agree to one.
The other thing that I have against phones is that I find them very anti-social. The only reason you need a phone is to speak to someone who is not in the immediate viccinity, right?
Then why do I so often see people playing with their phones in company of others?
I've once read that Japanese always have cameras in front of their face because they feel protected since the lense makes the world smaller to them (never been there, but I've been told that Japanese don't always have the most amount of space). But instead of with cameras we do it with phones. We use them as shields to protect us from being too social?
My not WoW time
Phones like iPhone are not only a phone. It's a mobile computer. A tiny computer, camera, radio, and phone in one go. Oh..and on top of that it functions as a flashlight as well I believe (heyas Cele ;p).
I work in IT, and once I add together the time spent behind the PC at work, then in WoW, I really don't want to be behind another (worse version) type of computer. Ihaveaverygoodoneathomethankyouverymuch.
Instead, when I finally do manage to pull myself away from the game, I actually try to stay away from computers. I often go do something in or around the house, or I go outside. I'm lucky enough to live in an area with quite a few trees, and a forest at walking distance. So I go enjoy nature.
I just stroll along and sniff the green scents. Often you come across other people doing the same, sometimes with dogs (I love puppies), or sometimes other people who are simply enjoying the fresh air and quiet of the forest.
No, I really don't need more computers to keep my attention at the game. I read about it, blog about it, and play it. I don't have to iPhone it as well on those rare moments that I don't do any of the above.
I mean seriously, when was the last time you went out into nature, without any piece of technology on you, and hugged a tree?
And if you're not a nature person, just go for a stroll around the city and sniff the...well exhaustion fumes I guess. Just go out and do something every now and then, I swear it won't disappoint.
Introducing the World of Warcraft Mobile Armory
Quote from: Blizzard (Source)
Ever wanted to check your raid schedule, look up a piece of PvP gear, or concoct a new talent spec while on the go? The new World of Warcraft Mobile Armory app for iPhone and iPod touch lets you access the official Armory database from anywhere you have a mobile connection, and features much of the same functionality as the Armory website (www.wowarmory.com), including:
The World of Warcraft Mobile Armory is available now as a free download from the App Store on iPhone and iPod touch or at www.itunes.com/appstore/.
- Search for and view any character, item, guild, or Arena team in World of Warcraft.
- Seamlessly import your own character, guild, and Arena team profiles.
- Access your in-game calendar of events.
- View achievement-point leaderboards.
- Plan out talent specs using the fully functional talent calculator.
For more information, visit www.wowarmory.com/iphone.xml.
Meh, with all the iphone apps coming out it feels as if should be feeling like the one idiot without an iphone. I don't have an iphone, I have a cheapo mobile phone that works perfectly when I'm in trouble, or when one really really needs to reach me. I don't want an iphone either. I have a computer.
Seriously though, we spent enough time at the screen inside WoW, do we really need to invest more time away from the screen into this game as well? seriously?
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Nim says: Learn to WoW!
And then I got talking with Nimayne about things on Twitter. I guess it sort of clicked, and we started talking tentatively about her writing something on SaW, and one thing led to another.
I told her about my dad and the beginner problems he had, and how he couldn't find the answers to his questions anywhere. And it does seem that most blogs are created and written by people who have more experience in the game. Even the Blizzard pages just don't tell you everything.
Nim figured that it would be a cool idea to help these newbie players with a good sense of humour, and in such a playful way that even the more seasoned players might enjoy the writing. (Though I would hope that what she writes about you sort of know by the time you're raiding Ulduar).
I just got her first post today, and it was witty, and written from a pretty cool perspective. I am really happy that I met Nim online...but hey, I won't keep her writing from you any longer. Let us know what you think. ;)
So, you are new here, I guess. A little character, I guess you are about level 6 to 10. This *points at the building in front of you* is one of the major cities. It might be Stormwind, Ironforge, Darnassus or the Exodar if you decided to play on the Alliance side. If not you stand right in front of Undercity, Orgrimmar, Thunderbluff or Silvermoon.
Your bags are full of stuff, they're packed with everything you've ever found on your way up here. Many things you will never need any more. Those things are grey. So we;re going to bring some order in your bags. Go to the next vendor, that's a person where you can sell all the pretty dusty grey stuff. Normally you'll find them in every building around you.
Have you done that? Fine, now you've got more space.
Next step, the white things in your bags, sometimes useful, sometimes not.
Look at this [Stoppable Force]. It's white, but that doesn't have to bother you. Give it to the vendor, he will give you a few silver for it.
Ah wait, this [Murloc's head] is not for sale. Remember that thief there 2 miles down the road? he wanted you to bring them this head. The vendor doesn't want it anyway. Not because it looks disgusting (well, in fact it does) but things you carry for the quests you've already done are unsellable. Keep those things in your bag.
Ah...there is something shiny green.
Now it's getting interesting. You have more than one possibility: you can give this to the vendor, too. You can also keep it if you need it in your bank. Yes, banks already exist! Or you bring them to the auction house, but more about that later.
There are two ways to find a bank, so we start with this. Over this bridge is a bunch of people, normally there somewhere is a bank.
Oh, you're are afraid of crowds? *sigh* Okay, then we take the other way. Every city has its guards, standing on nearly every corner. Ask them, they know everything about their city.
So you know where the bank is. Let's have a look.
There is the big space above.....woah, don't throw everything in there!
Put the armor and the weapons in there, only the green ones. The leather, the cloth, and the ore you found too. (something about how these are items that are used by people to make things?) Keep things like that until you need them or found out that you don't need them.
Your bags are slightly emptier now, we put the green stuff in the bank, the quest-items in your bags and the rest to the vendor.
Okay, but there are a few things left to do: you need food and *looks at you* if you have mana (thats the blue bar on your portrait) something to drink.
Food and drinks depend on your level, every 10 levels there's a new one, sold by your favourite innkeeper.
When you're level 8, give that level 1 bread to the birds or go back to the vendor, he will even give you money for it.
So let's go to the innkeeper. If you don't know where he is, ask the guard again.
But here in this city it's right around the corner. So you see, he sells a lot. There is the level 5 food and drink *points*, buy some of those and put it in your nearly empty bags. Eat and drink whenever you need it.
Now, back to the bank. It's full of green pieces of armor and weapons. You cannot even carry that much.So you have to get rid of it in some way.
One way is to bring is to the vendor, he will give you money immediately. The other way, if you have time, and you still have cash, we will bring it to the auction house. That's were you can sell and buy everything....okay, nearly everything.
But wait..oh hell...server shutdown in 5 minutes...maintenance.
You know what?
I tell you about this next time.
Buuuut, I have been working on a little project, well, not me alone, but that's all I will say for the moment.
Maybe there will be another post today, maybe not, but for the moment, I'm going to go unwind a little.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Dual Talent Specialization
And not only the game has been changed by dual specialization, also the social factor of the game has been altered since this feature is in. Grouping in any possible way you can think of has become more flexible, and a lot less of a strain on anybody wanting to organize something that requires grouping.
Don't have enough healers? Oh hey, Mr Shadow Priest, can you please come as holy for this run? Don't have enough tanks, oh hey Miss Ret pallie, can you stick a shield on?
And those are only two of the more common examples. If I look at encounters and the higher end raiding content, you can now bring a far more varied group of players to an instance, and though I do think that they're not entirely there yet, it has been a large step to 'Bring the player not the class'.
Veneretio had a blog today about dual specing as a tank specifically for raiding. But of course the whole dual spec also exists outside of raiding.
In this post I'm going to alter the questions slightly and approach them from the non raid specific perspective. You can be the alt, or the new player who doesn't know yet, or maybe even the more experienced player who really just hasn't settled on their second spec yet.
(I could personally fill 4 specs easily, disc PVP, disc PVE, holy PVE, and shadow, but hey Blizzard isn't there yet.)
Questions to ask yourself before Specing
1) What sort of content do you normally play in?
Certain roles and specs are fairly raid oriented, and other specs are more solo oriented, whereas there is still PVP to consider as well. And though the lines between these 3 have faded a little, if you want to be good at the content you enjoy it is a good idea to use your talent points accordingly.
2) Will you play mainly PVE or PVP?
PVE (Player versus Environment)? Go to question numbers 3 through 6.
PVP (player versus Player)? Go to question numbers 4 through 7.
3) Do you have any idea what you want your main role to be in the game?
There are 3 main roles in World of Warcraft. Tank, healer, and dps. Not every class can play multiple roles, and there are even less classes who have the option to change into all 3 roles just by changing their talent points.
If you play a class that can be played in different roles by changing the talents, and you haven't decided on which role you like most, I would suggest to start with dps. This is a role that can be carried easier in a 5 man instance, so if you do make a mistake it can often be caught by one of the other dps in the group. Whereas if your a tank or healer, and you make a mistake, groupmembers may start falling over dead.
(This is not to say that there isn't a difference between good dps and bad dps, so dps don't fall over me all together now. But you sort of have to admit that it's a lot easier in a dungeon to carry a mediocre dps than to carry a mediocre healer or tank.)
Playing in a dps role will give you an easier opportunity to observe the other roles a bit, and see what they are doing. To see if you would like what they are doing, and to see if you want to try it out.
At a certain point there really is no other choice then to just go ahead and spec into a different role to really get the feeling of it though.
4) Do you have any idea what you want your main spec to be?
If yes, easypeasy, go stick your points into your first spec tab. Wahoo, one spec done.
If you don't know the answer to this question yet I can advice to look up some different specs for your class, and just start trying them out. There are quite a few good places to go to for some class advice, but one place that a lot of people use is Elitist Jerks.
On their forums they have advice for all classes in the game, and often you can find a thread that discusses which talents are best within each talent tree.
5) Does it matter to you how easily you get a spot in a group?
As it currently stands there are far more dps in the game, than there are healers or tanks. So even if your main spec is dps, if you want an easy time to get into groups you want your off spec to be tanking or healing.
If you have a choice between all 3 different roles (paladins and druids only) find out which role is most asked for on your server and spec accordingly. I know on my realm it is far easier to find a tank than a healer, but I've also read about it happening the other way around.
6) Which type of PVP do you play?
Arena and battlegrounds can require two completely different specs. When I go into an arena on my priest I will spec a lot more into the survivability talents, whereas if I go into a battleground I can often get away with a bit more healer heavy spec.
Find out which specs are good for the type of PVP you want to play, and figure out which specs perform best for your class in this.
7) Which classes do you team up with in PVP?
Depending on the composition of your pvp team you might want to decide on a different spec than the standard for your class. If you have already 4 dps in your team, it might be really handy to play the healer. Even if the ideal spec for your class would perhaps be dps.
Another example is if you go into a 5 man arena where the other 4 players of your team are all already heavily specialized in interupting it might be sensible to put the balance on dps a bit more.
8) Does your guild need specific specs?
Sometimes you will find yourself in a guild that is really short on one spec or the other. If you look at high end raiding this doesn't even limit to spec, they are even looking for specific classes.
If you find yourself in a guild where there is always a shortage of tanks or healers, it's often a good idea to have at least one of your specs to be one of these two.
On the other side if you find yourself in a guild where they do a lot of PVP in their spare time (or even as the main focus), it's nice to have a PVP spec at hand so you can step in and give your guildies a hand.
9) Which spec do you enjoy most?
Even though you can optimize for just about every aspect of the game, in most cases this is really the only question you have to ask.
Not only does this often decide whether you are found, in PVE or PVP content, it also decides your role, and with that your main spec, and sometimes even your off spec. (wahee PVE disc/holy ftw).
Often playing the spec you enjoy most makes that you are better at it than at other specs. So while you can stick a dps in a healer spec for the situation you're in. And this person might even enjoy it for a change, in the end it is much easier to excel in something you really enjoy doing, instead of something you were forced into because of the situation.
9 Questions to ask yourself before Specing
This is completely logical of course since this is what his blog is about (I can advice any healer to read tanking blogs btw, since it really helps to know how your tanks think), but I felt that the topic could use a wider approach.
So later on today I will be asking the same questions, but will go deeper into their answers, and approach them from the various class roles, but also raid roles.
Until then I have some mindwandering to do, and think about how to best approach the answers to the questions he asked in his post. Go read it btw, great blog :)
Monday, July 13, 2009
The less obvious in Patch 3.2.
MountsEarlier today already I touched quickly on this. I had to laugh about the wording in the patch notes, since it felt as if the writer of the patch notes was unsure about this specific part of the patch himself.
The cast time for summoning any ground mount is now 1.5 seconds, down from 3 seconds.
As Chris said in his comment earlier, they did indeed decided at first to have 1.5 seconds for ground mounts and 3.0 seconds for flying mounts. Going through some forums it seems as if accidentally it might have been 1.5 seconds for all mounts in the beginning, which they even reverted to their original decision of two different casting speeds at first (since it was a bug). And now it seems they have in the end decided to have flying mounts on 1.5 seconds cast speed after all.
This is not a major massive change of course, but it will still make life a little bit more pleasant in the game. And it does feel like another small move towards the whole concept that Blizzard seems to follow now, that the game should hold as little annoyances as possible, and that gameplay should focus on the actual game and not on the holdups.
I read a blog about traveling in WoW this week (and ack I forgot where, if you read this let me know and I will link you in!), and how one of the reasons behind traveling time is the whole 'making the world feel bigger' thing.
I can totally understand this reasoning, but these sort of small tweaks just make me a little bit happier each time. Granted it will be slightly harder to catch someone in pvp if they're trying to mount to get away, but boy will it feel nice to wait less long every time we mount.
Item ComparisonsNormal item comparison has been in the game for as long as I can remember. While holding shift you mouse over an item, and next to the item you're mousing over, it will show the item you currently have equipped.
Holding the shift key while hovering over an item will now display the stat differences with the item currently equipped in the relevant slot.
New in Patch 3.2. is that they have added a stat list to the comparison box, and you can actually see how much you will be going up or down on certain stats if you would switch out this item.
Currently I'm using a mod to do this for me, called ratingbuster, but yay, yet another mod that I might be able to take out and just use the Blizzard functionality.
Item LevelAnother little thing that they have added, and that doesn't really go under item comparison, but does under item, is item level. You will be able to see which item level your gear is without mods from 3.2. onwards.
A new option has been added under Display in the Interface Options to show the item level on item tooltips.
Very handy since it still happens quite often now that you get a whole list of gear links before FL asking which item has the higher item level. And frankly, the moment vehicle combat started scaling with your gear, item levels should have been introduced simultaneously.
Vendor PricesAnd another little piece of addon that could potentially go. And actually I do hope that the mods that this is incorporated in will revisit their code and see if this is actually something that can take some of the weight off their addon.
Vendor prices will now be listed on items whether or not players are at a vendor.
One comment here though, I actually went to check out this new bit of information on the PTR quickly and I have to say that I don't like the words they used. Sell price is just not correct, it's vendor price. And this can possibly be confusing to newbie players.
Interuptable?I've been watching various spell casters, and no matter how long their cast was, or which spell they were casting I have no idea what I was supposed to see.
Casting bars under a target's portrait will now indicate whether or not the cast can be interrupted.
We tried this on targets with and without interupt abilties, but on neither character could we see any change. Maybe this is still not in?
That was it for today, might stick more up tomorrow, might not, we'll see.
As a random fact..they give all classes 4 stacks of drinks on the PTR so while Thrornir was going through his bags he almost fell over from my dots because bandages wouldn't stick and they didn't give him food. Silly Blizz, DKs don't use drinks...
Patch 3.2 - the small but handy changes.
I had missed this before. This literal quote comes from MMO-Champion. They quoted blizzard staff on patch 3.2 PTR build 10083. And I have to say, I luvs the wording. "It seems" as if they sort of forgot *giggle*...but wait, maybe they did?Quote from Blizzard staff
It seems that just like ground mounts, flying mounts also had their cast time reduced to 1.5 sec.
Maybe this was never meant to be changed? Hmm...I'll have to look into it some more.
Also have a couple of other handy things that are being introduced with this patch. More later on!
Saturday, July 11, 2009
10 ways to piss someone off
But I think if we're all honest with ourselves, we have all had our moments where we intentionally wanted to piss somebody off in game. And you can hardly pretend that it had a lot to do with science in these cases. I've done it myself, and I know you out there have done it too. Not too often, but there are those moments.
This professor type chose to go against generally accepted behaviour by PVPing in a zone that was considered a non PVP zone by the players, and it worked apparently. From what I understood it only took a very short time for people to be very, very pissed off at him.
Soooo...just for our own scientific research I'm going to give you 10 ways to tick people off, but of course I would like to hear your choice of method after ;)
- Random interval threat
There are many classes that can taunt nowadays, and even if you don't have a taunt button you can of course use this tactic. For those with taunt use it at moments that the tank can least use it, and as dps all you have to do is always attack the target that is not tanked, and go full out on it.
Bonuspoints if you make sure that you can wipe off thread on that innocent healer neatly standing out of the way trying to save all your sorry asses.
- AFKing yourself into loot
Join a group, go afk after the first pull, and show up magically juuust before the loot is rolled for. Of course this doesn't work if you do this once, I can guarantee you that if you do this for the entire instance, however, you have 4 very ticked off people in your group.
Bonuspoints if you just ninja the last pieces of loot and bubble hearth out. (wait did I say bubble? I meant hearth, hearth, dangit).
- One at a time
Take 500 infinite dust (anything other than dust works as well, but dust is a good example) and put them up in AH 1 by 1. Do this every day for a year, and the whole server knows your name. Just not in a good way. It's unfortunate to say, but we actually have one of these on our server, and just about everybody knows the name, and hates the person.
Bonuspoints if you've done this in previous games, and people still remember you from doing so in that game.
Find someone of the other faction and follow. Whenever this person tries to kill something, tag it first. When this person has a gathering skill, it makes it even easier. Just take whatever it is first. When they turn around just smile at them and wave or something.
Bonuspoints if you pick someone who doesn't have a bird while you do.
- Rock it DJ!
While raiding and in vent, turn up the music a little during the raidleader's explanation, and open up your vent button. Everybody has to hear that great song!
Bonuspoints if you manage to plan it every time just as the raidleader opens his or her mouth.
- A little self-promotion
Tell everybody how great you are. Spread the word in vent, raid, trade, say, general, who cares the whole world has to know that you're boss!
Bonuspoints if you publically compare yourself with others present.
- Link that chart!
After every pull link the dps chart. Boss? Link it! Trash pull? Link it! Hell, in the middle of the fight is really one of the most suitable moments because everybody is than at least paying attention to raid chat, right? Link it!
Bonuspoints if you're at the bottom of those charts.
- I can do it, really!
Accept an invite to a raid who specifically asked for people with knowledge of the fights, and then ask before the first pull for an explanation.
Bonuspoints if you're in greens and have never even raided.
Ask in trade for someone to link their trade skill. Then continue in whisper asking them to link several items. After about 10 minutes you tell them thanks and say that you might not need blacksmithing anyways on your priest.
Bonuspoints if you actually ask the crafter to meet you somewhere out of the way (Darnassus, shudder), and then not show up yourself. When they ask just reply that you found someone in Dalaran already.
- Mageportal Roulette
This is for mages only, but I do qualify it as highly annoying.
Open up portals to different cities all over the world, on top of each other. This works best if done at the end of a raid night when everybody is really tired and just wants to get to bed.
Bonuspoints if you don't even stick in the right portal.
Friday, July 10, 2009
I'm a crafter, howbout you?
I think this has set the tone for the rest of my moneymaking in WoW because ever since I haven't bought materials on the AH too often anymore. I levelled various other characters, and by the end of BC I had 5 70s whose trade skills could all work together and combined with Thror's characters we could create just about anything there was to create in the game.
When I switched to my priest she started out with herbalism as well, and I have to say that I honestly believe that this is one of the better trade skills while levelling. She had enchanting as her second trade skill, and I feel that this has been the best choice ever. Though, I do believe that being powerlevelled through instances, and getting all the greens did help in levelling my enchanting...a lot.
Eventually I switched her to alchemy for min/maxing, and the alchemist's stone back then was quite the enormous upgrade over herbalism, which had no perks at all back then (well, other than making money). And since I had levelled a druid it was only a logical choice to stick her in herbalism, being that you don't even have to switch out of bird-form to pick flowers.
Show me the money!
There are various blogs very good at telling people how to make money, so I'm not going to go to deep into this. But I do believe that I can safely say that most money making strategies are to buy base materials, craft stuff with them, and sell the end product. The tradeskills I have seen used most for this are inscription, jewelcrafting, and enchanting.
Here's the catch though. Most of these blogs say that making money is not about having fun. It's about getting the highest return on the lowest investment. And while technically I cannot agree with them more, I do want to remind people that you're not actually earning your real life bread with this. And I bet that most of you, myself included, started playing this game for one simple thing; fun.
So while you can make a lot of money in the AH grind, most people don't think this is particularly pleasurable, and instead are choosing to make slightly less money, but do it in a way that they enjoy.
(In between I am reading this out loud to Thror, and he says that he believes that Gevlon is deep down taking pleasure out of raiding the AH more than out of real raiding, I think I have to agree with him).
Some quick tips and tricks
- Pick a trade skill that goes well with your class. Leatherworking on a mage is not the most useful combination.
- If you do want to use your trade skill for some money making find out what others want from your tradeskill. Kaliope's WoW Crafting Blog, and the Crafter's Tome are both very handy tools in this.
- Do what you enjoy doing. This might sound odd, but believe me, there are only a few dark souls out there who really enjoy the AH grind. Most (like me) would just give up on it if they didn't enjoy what they were doing.
Well, I personally use crafting as a tool for what I enjoy most in the game, raiding. I'm still an alchemist/enchanter on my main, and those give me the extra perks of mad alchemist potions, cheap flasks (you need quite a few while wiping on progression content), mixology, and ring enchants. On top of this, enchanting enables me to pick up the items in our raids nobody wants, and shard them so we can enchant the rest of the raid members, or sell them to get what we need instead.
On my other toons I use crafting mainly so that I can be self sufficient. My druid was my first alt at 80 so that I could get herbing again for alchemy, and I enjoy doing so on her. It feels as if she's stalking a prey from high up, only to dive down when I see a yellow dot on the map.
So while crafting is not really a moneymaker for me, it is definitely a money saver. On top of this I have to admit that I secretly really enjoy the RP aspect of crafting. Even though I'm not an RPer in the game (well, not most of the time), I like the thought of being able to twiddle my hands and magically enhance my rings to turn into a better version.
How about you, are you a crafter or a buyer?
Buying or Crafting?
I said how I even went to grind for what I needed, and that I hardly ever went out to buy stuff in the AH. (I would be the worst goblin ever).
But it does open up an interesting train of thought..more later when I've had time to form these thoughts fully...and uhm, when I'm not at work.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
WoW for Free!
The whole article can be found here, but I was mainly interested in this part of it:
Tom Chilton: I certainly think it’s possible that we could do some kind of micro-transaction stuff. Whether or not World of Warcraft ever goes the direction of, I guess like Anarchy Online has gone the direction of going free-to-play with micro-transactions. Whether we ever shift to a free-to-play model is really too hard to say at this point. Anything I say now could easily five years from now end up seeming like, oh my gosh, that was an incredibly dumb thing to say, how naive!Of course I can now speculate on if Blizzard really has a timeline set out already for the game to be phased out (ack, scary thought! think positive, think positive, WoW will go on till I'm done...ah, better!).
But what did get me thinking is how our World of Warcraft could possibly look like today if it hadn't been pay to play all this time.
First of all I wonder if it would even still exist. There's only a few out there within this genre who are managing it, and none of them is even close to the size of player base that World of Warcraft has.
But lets say it would still be around...
I think we would be at least one expansion behind, and the game would look less pretty as well. Blizzard has some of the top-designers in the world on their payroll and these guys don't work for peanuts (though with how some of the new tier gear, looks I do wonder where those spikes on the shoulders keep coming from).
I was completely against pay to play before I started playing WoW. But having seen the game, and the fact that they keep bringing patch after patch of new content, I can see where the money is going, and it's worth it.
This game is brilliant to play, and brilliant to already just look at. I just cannot imagine anybody being able to get it set up like this and not charge a monthly fee.
The other thing that would be different is the type of players playing this game. And also the type of players being the top-geared players. Since skill would have far less to do with it, it would get people who have a large enough income, but no skill, easily in very nice gear....and possibly even gear that you just cannot get without real money.
Imagine /trade like this..and places like Amazon and Ebay would flow over with WoW stuff, well...more than they already do now then.
The content would be far more player driven as well. Since those who pay for the designer's wages do sort of have a pretty loud voice in what's getting done I can imagine.
I read the Greedy Goblin, and the way he bought himself into a guild, players would now be buying themselves into just about everything. I'm not sure if I like that thought, at all >_<
Would you play?
B-Rab commented on my earlier post, and I have to agree with him on the flappers. I would not gladly pay 50 or 60 bucks for my mount.
I don't agree with him on how fast Blizzard will phase out this game, however. Even though some people might seem to get tired with it, the game is more alive then ever (not counting China atm..).
And by the time we do actually get to be level 100, I'm sure Blizzard has found a way to make it much easier on new players to get there.
But how about you, would you play if you had to pay for...lets say each patch?
Free-to-play World of Warcraft is a possibility says Blizzard
In a recent interview, Tom Chilton of Blizzard stated that the “free-to-play” model is a definite possibility for the worlds biggest MMORPG. Currently the game is pay-to-play and has millions of subscribers.No comments yet, but the headline is interesting! Will pick it up this evening...after having read it carefully! ;)
My apologies for yesterday, I'm a noob sometimes. *blush*
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Heirloom Cold Weather Flying, OMG! Part 2
Zarhym on Just discovered: cold weather flying at 68! (Source)
Just to confirm, Tome of Cold Weather Flight is actually a new heirloom item planned to go into patch 3.2. At level 80 players can buy this heirloom item from the Cold Weather Flying Trainer in Dalaran for 1,000 gold and send it to an alt of the same realm, faction and account. The tome can be used to learn Cold Weather Flying at level 68, consuming the tome in the process.
Please note this feature is not yet in the newest version of the public test realm patch notes updated today. The item and its functionality are subject to change during the testing process.
My Initial Reaction
Reading this it really seems as if Blizzard is going to allow people to fly upon entering Northrend at level 68.
I can see how this is meant for alts mainly, but what is going to happen is that everybody and their mommy will be able to fly around Northrend, because getting a portal to Dalaran isn't the hardest thing to do, and getting a 1000G isn't either.
I felt cheated by Blizzard. I did all the hard work, and the slowpokes are getting it for nothing?! I was completely blar about it. Not only were they getting all the other mounts earlier, now they would also get this one early. Again more blar.
But as often happens, I let the news settle a little, and thought about it.
My experience is my own
I actually have to say that I'm pretty ok with this.
Yeah, I'm pretty ok with this. You know why?
Because it doesn't change my first experience if other people are getting an easier job. It doesn't make the fact that I got to experience it differently any less good, less pretty, or less valuable.
I have my memories in this game, like everybody who has been playing for a while I assume. And I can look back and actually see how the game is changing, evolving over time. And for those people who are trying to catch up (my dad has started playing only 3 months or so, for example) they will never experience what I have experienced.
I played through the story of Onyxia. I saw the epic battle. Anybody who started playing after Lick King arrived has no idea.
I came into Northrend being level 70 in Black Temple gear, I can tell you that quests and dungeons are a completely different experience if you come in as a newbie without money or gear at all. And then you're even expected to go into Northrend at level 68. This is hard, I know, I just recently did it on my EU server. Those mobs kicked my ass.
And I know what a glorious sight the Wyrmrest Temple was when I came riding from Star's Rest for the first time. It was an awesome view. The light was amazing, and here I was one with my mount just staring at that gorgeous building.
A bit less glorious perhaps, but I also know how to get to Dalaran from Valiance Keep on mount. Which was quite the adventure at that point still because that pass in between Crystal Song Forest and Dragonblight, was not the best place to be for my priestie at the time.
So no matter how much they are giving in to others so they can catch up, my experience doesn't get diminished by this, not one bit.
A possible future
Looked at more analytically, this change is actually very interesting. Bind on Account, but it gets used up. So if this technique is possible, surely they can also make Bind on Account, with Bind on Equip, right?
I can see myself gear up my alts by raiding on my main. Since I'm a healer, and we seem to always be short on supply in healers I often raid on my main while I really just don't need the gear anymore. So wouldn't it be pretty darn cool if instead of always disenchanting we could just send it to our alts and it would bind to them?
Thinking a little further ahead it does make me think about all the different kinds of trouble this sort of stuff could give in a PUG. It actually makes me giggle a little if I imagine the kind of situations you could get with this.
I mean think about it. You would roll main char, main spec first. Then main char, offspec. Then main spec for alts, offspec for alts...and how on earth will the pug raid leader check this stuff. Wow, this opens up all sorts of avenues.
And enchanting, hmm, enchanters would have more difficulty getting their shards together. So maybe as compensation we could loot enchanting materials off mobs instead? That thought is sorta cool actually...
But hey, getting ahead of things. This is one of the changes coming in the next patch, and I can see why they did it. I can think of a couple of ways on how it may work out, but in the end..it really just doesn't affect me too much. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.
Been poking at the look and feel of my blog today, and some had noticed that all of a sudden it only showed 1 post on the main page instead of the usual 5. I must have pressed the wrong button or so, but it should be fixed now.
Also, am working on a complete haulover on the layout, but that will be announced (well, and shown) when it's done.