Thursday, 31 July 2008

No posts till sunday

too tired to do anything. Have to work alot tomorrow and saturday, so no posting till sunday.

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Yay! M:tG again (also with some WoW)!

So, first a bit of WoW and then some M:tG. I've finally seen Archimonde, I have 45 badges to go (as I write I'm also getting ready for a ZA run... which will last till maintenance starts) till a sweet healing mace. I have been instructed to cast more than 1000 (that is a thousand) chain heals next raid, I'd better get an achievement for it :P. I'm just hoping that my CL isn't going crazy because of me already.

So on to Magic: the Gathering. I've ordered in 61,50 euros worth of cards via the internet for a tournament next week. nothing big, nothing grand, just a Gateway tournament. Gateway is for beginning players, by the way. I know the rules very well and as such I am the referee for my Magic-group, but I'm not a terribly good player. But there are two things that bother me:

1: Will I get my deck set up properly before next tuesday? Will it work properly? My best spells cost 5 mana, which also is the highest mana cost in my deck.

2: Will I have to play against "the Infidel"? We have an unwritten rule at both our Magic-group and the gaming store where we play, which is that you respect each other, play nice and don't ruin each other's fun. "The Infidel" broke that rule, hard. I was playing against him and he played a Drove of Elves. He immeadiatly claimed that it would be an immense 8/8 creature, due to his Forests (Drove of Elves gets +1/+1 for each green pernament). Problem is that the basic lands are colorless. I knew that, because the developers actually stated that Swamps are colorless (they were talking about Drove of Elves and it's cycle), so I knew that Forests were colorless aswell. So I said to him that Forests were colorless.

He actually got angry. He didn't believe me and went to the front of the shop, where the referee/shopkeeper was and after he came back, he claimed to be right. I still think he asked if Forests are permanents insteas of asking if they are green, or even didn't ask anything at all. He still claimed he was right, so I went to look it up on the shopkeep's laptop, since he was busy. I remember reading it in the explaining of Shadowmoor's mechanics (which was the new set at the time), so I went there to look it up. I returned and wanted to show him, but he said that it was alright and everything. I also got told by my friends (we were with a group of 6 or 7) that he had been yelling that I don't know the rules, etc., when he got told by everyone, even the ones that I didn't know that he should stop and that I do know the rules and that he was wrong. Since then I don't like the guy, for trying to cheat me and then being snide about it when it fails.

But, you might think that I don't want to play against him. Infact, I do want to. My new deck works in a way that he might not even know that you can win that way. My new deck is designed to take out your deck before you even draw the cards. By using cards like Traumatize (can you guess the bulk of the 60 euro order now?), Memory Sluice (usually 8-12cards if done correctly), Drowner Initiate (2 cards on each blue spell) and Scalpelexis (which can go on and on aslong as there are 2 identically named cards. 2 mountains are the same...), aided by counterspells and bounce spells. My friends fear the deck, even if they win. Playing against it is totally unpredictable, because it depends on what I pull and play. On the other hand, bouncing and counterspelling correctly is an art aswell. But... it isn't finished yet, as the rest of my cards still need to arrive. I just want to beat him like this, because I'm certain he will whine about it.

Even a friend of the little brother of a friend can use a lesson once in a while. Maybe it'll teach him to play nice.

Monday, 28 July 2008

Good News, Mediocre News and Bad News.

The good news: all my friends are returning from their holidays, which means that I actually have something to do other than my job and WoW.
The Bad news is that I have to return GTA4, which gives the mediocre news: I can't finish the achievement guide, so I'll post what I have and then update, with the friend's help.

Zee link ist heer! (the link is here)

The Meta Knights (+UI screenshots)

So, me and my little brother are embarking on an adventure which is bound to go wrong. We are going to do Arena in the 2v2 bracket. My little brother gets stressed easily and I get annoyed easily then people don't do what they're told. Which makes a nice combination. We will have to work together for this, but we have one advantage, our voice chat has no lag, since we'll be using the RL one. We have our computers in the same room for now.
Anyways, the unveiling of our team name:
The Meta Knights
I can hear you think, there is only one Meta Knight, isn't there? The Meta Knights are actually Meta Knight's elite team, which also gets wiped out easily by Kirby. There are 4 types, Axe, Javelin, Mace and Trident Knight (all to the right), more often called Meta Axe, Meta Javelin and so on. The other idea was "Better than a Prius", but that would mean that we needed only Hybrids. Now we can take w/e we need. but why the name? Well, I'm a big fan of the Kirby games, my favorite character in SSB:Brawl is Meta Knight and I even have a Kirby UI in WoW. Which I promised to post for a while now, but I'm not statisfied with the bottom panel. Using eePanels2, cyCircled, Bongos and Grid, I managed to make an UI that I like. It looks even better on my Paladin, so that's another plus.

EDIT: We also played 2 matches already. Problem is that my little brother has the crappiest computer ever. The first match was between us and a hunter rogue combo. Needless to say, I got stunlocked and died before my bro got his cyclone on the rogue. The second match was better, we survived against a rogue and a druid, but we died because I couldn't heal my bro. I had the rogue targeted to Frost Shock him, but needed to heal. I use Auto Self Cast, which is useful in PvE and solo, but not in PvP. We lost alot of rating already, but we're learning. Too bad I only have Enhancement PvP gear and that my brother only has one feral and one healing piece.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Karazhan, my fave PuG... Not.

Okay, it's Saturday, a full week of playing is behind me. I've finally seen Mount Hyjal and even got some loot to bring home (and a pug'ed warrior friend of mine got some aswell). And I've been playing with my Pally, together with my little brother on his Mage, which actually was fun to do. Lots and lots of AoE damage... Well, most from him ofcourse, but still.

But I've also went on a PuG Karazhan run. I didn't want to go, but a guildie asked if I could come, sonce they needed a healer. It took about 30 minutes before they managed to find the second tank. The main tank was someone that was looking for a guild in the trade channel earlier, with a very subtle and modest "3/5 T5 tank looking for guild, was in ". The rest were random people, with the exeption of a Balance Druid from my guild and I also knew some of them from before I took my break (just vaguely).

So we wait in the gatehouse of KZ and almost immeadiatly the MT says: "a shaman with [Light's Justice] thats a new one". Nice. I know what kind of person is this. Someone like me, who sometimes feels that he is a bit better than the rest, but with the snide comments. I don't like the kind with snide comments. The last time I left a guild over that, because that priest was mean to everyone on a daily basis. I replied that if he thought that I am a noob, that he should think again. "nope, u noob, i pro" was the answer.

So with the tone set, we started on the Attumen trash, which was going really slow. DPS was lacking. Attumen died, but we managed to wipe on Moroes trash. Meanwhile, the MT was complaing all the time about some music that was playing. Some vague and strange Swedish song, which cracked up the other 7 members. Me and a hunter didn't have a clue as to what they were on about. After dying again on Maiden trash, because the t5 tank can't keep aggro, the guildie left. Apparently he was sick and he had just thrown up in the toilet, so he had to go. I'm still not sure if he was fed up with the group, with the oh so annoying MT who couldn't stop about the musics, or that he was actually sick.

The other healer was offline. And stayed offline after Moroes. So they got a replacement, who was another shaman. The first thing he asked was: "who do I heal". Karazhan is a mere 10 man. Which means that you don't need to use designated healing. It isn't a 40 man raid like Molten Core (good times <3), but that you need to think for yourself. He couldn't appreciate that I assumed that his brain worked and that he should decide who, what and when he should heal. Especially since he had some Zul'Aman epics.

So after I got ressed, I found out why the annoying MT didn't turn his sound off or closed his browser. Apparently he was on some Teamspeak server, what was obviously more important than the KZ run. Random, non raiding, chatter on VoIP is the number one priority ofcourse. Finally, after whining for the entire raid, he turned his sound off. I had to work the next day and I couldn't take it anymore. I mean, a t5 (well, the equivalent of it on some places) Shaman wiping on Moroes trash? Last time I wiped there was when KZ actually was a raid, not the 10-man instance it has become now, just like UBRS became a mere PuG. Instead of just ripping the wireless adapter from the side of my laptop, cutting the internet off, I went honest. I told them that I needed to leave at 11 o'clock, because I needed to work.

The raid wasn't led by the sharpest tool in the shed. There is a certain group in KZ, in Maiden's hallway, which consists of 2 Sentries. Easy. On the opposite side there are 4 demons. Usually, we take both groups out. Can you feel it coming? They only took the sentries out and we were supposed to run past. Okay, hug the wall... carefully... don't aggro... sneak behind the lion statue... Damn. I'm stuck. Let's jump past. Still stuck. trying more, trying more, oh shi- overshot. Cue me jumping right into the aggro range, wiping the raid.

In my defense, I'm not a professional walljumper, nor am I usually in a raid with people that use the least obvious, most likely to pull aggro routes. When I do a guild run, we clear both groups and move on, withing the same timeframe as the noob group. everyone was blaming me, claiming that I'm the total idiot for pulling the group etc. etc. Well excuse me that I actually do know how to do the instance how it was intended to and that I don't use shortcuts. I had it with the group and it was 22:45 so I thought, let's leave. I've had it.

So I stated that I left and the entire raid was as if they saw water burn. Especially the MT. I said that I was going to leave at 23:00, and seeing as the raid consisted of not the quickest people, I couldn't do much in those 15 mins. So I just left, didn't feel like taking more bitching from them.

I'm not pugging Kara again.

A cardboard terrace

I work at a supermarket, it's a job, I make money with it, so meh. So I often see things that you wouldn't see everyday, both in costumers and what we sell. Often I wonder, who the h3ll made this up? I've seen all sorts of strange things, like the homebrand of our store's coffee on sale one week and the really expensive one the next. It makes me wonder, do you even sell something that week? I mean, I've seen people taking enough to last them atleast a month. But the one thing that puzzles me the most are the cardboard boxes.

Some people think that it's just a box and in many cases it is. But from some companies, they send us the craziest boxes. Paturain has one of those boxes. Instead of a normal box, it's made of flimsy cardboard. And it tells you to pull this flappy up and then these 2 to the sides an- Damn. All of the stuff lies everywhere. That happens once. Then you've learned to just rip through the box, instead of following the instructions.

Magister's Terrace is one of those boxes. Each boss is a smaller version of an earlier/endgame boss, like Curator or Warlord Kalitresh. And as such, they have similar tactics. The tactics can be seen as the instructions. You wipe once on them and then you realise that you can also nuke everything just as easily, like ripping through a cardboard box. Which makes me wonder, is this how Blizzard designed it?

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Big post tomorrow

Too tired to do anything right now and I still have to go to work. So, blog post up tomorrow... About Hyjal and MgT and cardboard boxes.

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Something seems wrong.

ALL of the fonts in my browser are fucked up and appear very tiny.... WTH?

OMG, it's a theorycraft post!

Yeah, it's a theorycraft post. Someone said to me that it's better to use a lower rank of Healing Wave than a Lesser Healing Wave. So basically, I'm going to find out if that's true, and at which ranks it would apply. These are my initial findings and it's not 100% accurate yet. It needs testing in practice. Armed with DrDamage and no gear equipped, I noted all of the Healing per Mana stats of LHW, HW and Chain Heal. Note that I still have this talent build(any flaws in it are blamed to me being rusty and cba to respec everytime I make a small error). CH is only there for completeness of the table.
Rank: Lesser Healing Wave Healing Wave Chain Heal
1 2,1 2 3,5
2 2,3 2 3,6
3 2,4 2,2 3,8
4 2,5 2,3 3,9
5 2,7 2,5 4,1
6 2,8 2,7
7 3 2,9
8
3
9
3,1
10
3,3
11
3,4
12
3,7


The higest rank of HW has a HpM of 3,7, where the highest of LHW has a HpM of 3. Please note that the HpM is noted without wearing gear. Also, you can get a higher HpM on all spells if specced for it. I accidentally put points in cheaper totems, but cba to pay alot of money for that 3% less mana cost. Coincidentally, rank 8 of Healing Wave also has a HpM of 3. Let's compare the spells in detail.


HW12 LHW7 HW8
Mana cost 720 440 440
Casting time* 2,5 1,5 2,5
learned on level 70 66 48
Avg total** 2650 1304 1304


This, I didn't think I'd find: Lesser Healing Wave 7 and Healing Wave 8 only has one difference between them: the casting time. Okay, there are a few talented differences, which I'll go over in the next paragraph. But the 1 second casting time means alot to me. When healing, I often find that the 2,5 second casting time is really long, especially compared to the quicker priest and pally heals, but that's not what this is about. It's hard already to keep someone up with only Healing Waves, if taking really heavy damage, especially if you have other people to keep up aswell, but you'll have assistance most of the time, since that's almost only in raids or instances gone bad.

But the long casting time also has an advantage to it, or rather, the fact that it's Healing Wave and not one of it's lesser brethren. It's the way of the Healing Wave, called Healing Way. Which is the bonus! If you heal with a lesser rank, you still apply the buff, meaning that your big heals will heal more if they land within the buff's duration. So in a way, Healing Wave is more efficient, if you can cope with the longer casting time. Which you use is based on preference. But, everyone's HW gets bigger from Healing Way.

Ofcourse, LHW scales differently. With gear, my HW had a higher HpM.

*With Improved Healing Wave talent maxed out.
**According to DrDamage, without gear.

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Zzzzz...

Finally time to write something, I've been in instance after instance since my last post. First Black Temple on Monday, which was my first BT raid ever. Slain Naj'entus and Supremus, even without knowing too much detail of either fight. Naj'entus dropped a sweet healing helm for me, but since I just started again, my raid points weren't high enough to win it over another shaman. Meh, my Watcher's Cowl is shiny anyway. Quincey did feel the need to point out the fact that I use pre-kara blues in BT though. Once we were done at about midnight, we started a Zul'Aman raid, which ended at 4 in the morning. My first Malacrass kill aswell, but no new gear, only plate drops. Luckily I didn't have to work the next day.

Since I wasn't geared for healing and got most of my gear just a few days ago, people asking me questions such as why I don't have a 2nd healing trinket was inevitable. The person asking me that question in ZA was very puzzled when I told him that I only had one because I was Enhancement, heavily. Like Netherbane and Claw of the Phoenix heavy. The guild master came to my aid, explaining the situation, being that I was t5 geared, but that I loved the guild too much. So much that I would even go Resto to play with them again. Luckily everyone knows that healing is just temporarely, until an Enhancement position opens up. Don't get me wrong, I do dedicate myself to the healing bit now.

On tuesday, I woke up after barely 4 hours of sleep and immeadiatly I got asked if I could work. When you expect a day off and anticipate on that, you're not amused with such a question. they wanted me to work from half 1 till 6. Not that they like to make such calls, but one of the cashier's was sick and they needed a replacement (I work in a supermarket). In the end, I agreed on working from 3 to 6. And then BT part 2. We killed Shade of Akama, again a first for me, but not for the guild. And then Teron Gorefiend. I had no idea whatsoever to expect. I was told there was a minigame, but I couldn't find it and I only got one try on it while we were getting ready and buffed up. Thank DAVE that I wasn't chosen by Teron to play with constructs. We didn't get him down.

After BT, we continued on the ZA run of monday, since we only had Zul'jin left. Which was also a first. I got some nice boots and had another first kill for me. Again, it got late, we ended at 2 in the morning. I'm living on energy drink since sunday.

I was supposed to work today, but I was given today off by my boss, because I wouldn't have a single day off this week otherwise. Which gave me time to work on my Kirby UI, made with eePanels2. It's still not what I want, I wanted to make a classic looking SNES-styled UI, but I can't find any good screenshots and I can't be assed to take the illegal way. I''ll post screens later.

You can blame my sleep depriviation for the lack of concistency. Having to pay attention will 4 in the morning, getting up relatively early and living on energy drink doesn't do my focus any good. Maybe Karazhan tonight. Hoping that it doesn't take till 2 to clear it (mental note: don't allow the raid leader to consume alcohol).

Monday, 21 July 2008

I give up

I've been talking about a guild that has some *ahem* minor issues with the way their guild works, or rather, the guild sans officers has that problem. Well, some of the officers don't like the way it goes and I've seen applications from that guild to Phoenix Legion already. Now that the top Horde guild, Obsidia is dead and with rumors of the one guild that I hate leaving aswell, it's getting awfully quiet here. so basically, I tried to help the problematic guild, because it has my little brother in it and they are nice people, of which I have even had some in my own guild a few years back.

Anyway, I contacted the highest ranking officer of their guild, who's also the Guild Master's girlfriend. Initially, I just wanted to lead raids for them, so they can get raids going well for once. I can lead KZ, Gruul and Maggy for them on my main and I can do even higher on my little brother's character, due to my own raiding. As I talked to her, se seemed happy that I could help them out, but she needed to discuss it with the guild leader first. As I closed the conversation, I said that their lootsystem wasn't exactly the best.

So she asked me, that if I had a better solution, I should post it on their forums or just send a mail. They can't figure it out, but they didn't want a DKP system and that the "system" that they have now is the one that they agreed on. I said that the people that like their system are the people that want free epics. The reply was that they fixed that and that only the Tier 4 sets were for free (how the fuck can you fix something that doesn't exist?). Again, she stressed that she doesn't want DKP.

DKP can be a very cumbersome system, I remember that it took 6 hours for 2 officers in PL to process one 40-man raid. So if you are lazy, get another type, a simplified version or something.
I asked if I was correct when I say that they don't want any type of system that works on raid attendance. And I was correct. The only thing that can salvage their dreams of actually getting somewhere is structure. They don't want that, so I wished them good luck with the downfall of their guild. Litterally.

"We are a casual raid guild and if we implement a system like that then we become hardcore and we don't want that and now people can sign when they like." Okay. Grow a brain. Or take a look around the guild. I said that I could get into an argument about how wrong they are, but that I didn't feel like doing so. "Not that they else get no loot if they don't raid often." - .- No, the regulars wanting loot so they can actually get the guild somewhere have to be neglected then. Greenies are the future. Apparently. I replied saying that the people that do raid don't get anyhing either.

"We don't have it wrong and the people that don't like it this way will leave to another guild and this has been discussed over and over again on the forums etc. etc." Then she went on that the people that raid often do get people that are well geared to do the more difficult ones and that DKP wouldn't be fair in their guild structure. At this point I didn't feel like talking to a hysterical nut anymore. It's like trying to discuss wether god exists with a christian. I said that I'd talk it over with the actual guild leader. The reply was that the talk would be even shorter and that he didn't want DKP either.

I asked wether she could follow links from ingame. After being asked why I said that I posted something about their lootsystem on this blog. I got a rather harsh reply stating that she didn't read blogs and she pointed out that anyone that didn't want the discussed rules that they should leave. Do you want your members to leave?

Me: This talk is over, good luck with your guild. I'm only trying to help.
Her: This is meant to be a game, nobody gets paid to raid and DKP is a system that turns the game into work.
Me: Have a nice day.
Her: Our gouls are to play relaxed, our goals aren't those of a raiding guild. I know that you are trying to help, but our goals are different. And as such, is our lootsystem. That cannot be discussed.
Me: Indeed. Something that doesn't exist (the system) cannot be discussed.
Her: We have a system that works for us. And it has been discussed with all of the members.
Me: This talk ends here. I have someone nearby that would like to say alot about this issue and I wish you good luck with your guild. I give up.(this is me trying to remain polite)
Her: That's why you aren't in our guild, in your guild rules do work. Oh, and same to your guild.

Grow. A. Goddamn. Brain. If you are a casual guild, why do people need to apply? If you are a casual guild, why is ther drama about raids? why do officers get upset when people leave? If it's about fun, why do you systemmatically leave out people from raids? When this guild dies, I tried to help and I prediect that it won't last long. I know that there are alot of members that are going to leave. My little brother for one will be applying to Phoenix Legion. One of their mages will do so as well, they lost a warlock already. One officer wants to leave. It's beginning. I'll open up the crypt of dead Eonar guilds. I'll save you a spot between Virus and Method. Both bad guilds.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

A phoenix for a Phoenix (Legionaire)

Our guild finds Al'ar pretty. Not that strange, since it's a phoenix and we are Phoenix Legion. First we were drooling over [Sunfury Bow of the Phoenix], then the phoenix mount from Kael'thas and now, we can have our own phoenix as a vanity pet since patch 2.4. And I have mine since today!

It's hawt and shiny... And I was lucky that I got it. But now I have a dilemma: Will I have my Phoenix or my Wolpertinger out?

Just My Luck

After a failed Zul'Aman attempt, which didn't get off to any start at all, due to the lack of a tank, plans were being made for a Karazhan run. Since I still needed to do my dailies, I asked if I could be Enhancement for that instead of Resto. That was no problem, so to KZ I went that night. After a record-breaking amount of items recieved (Shard of the Virtous, Pauldrons of the Solace-Giver, Boots of the Incorrupt, Cyclone Gloves, Emberspur Talisman, Cord of Nature's Sustenance and Light's Justice (imo, Light's Justice is a bit better, but hey, Ii'm not an expert theorycrafter.)) in a raid that lasted till almost 2 o'clock in the night, we actually still tried to get a Zul'Aman group together. At 2 in the morning/evening/twilight zone. Needless to say, we lacked a tank.

The next day, as I was doing my dailies, someone in my guild needed a healer for Heroic Old Hillsbrad. I could go, just needed to respec and I can use the badges. In theory, we had a good group consisting of a Shaman (me), a Mage (the guildie), two Hunters and a Tanking Druid. Lots of crowdcontrol, so it shouldn't be a problem. It went reasonably well until we actuall reached Thrall. We started the escort and started fighting the first group of mobs, just outside of the inner keep where Thrall was imprisoned.

One mob got sheeped, two mobs got freezed and the rest was tanked. I kept spam-healing with Healing Wave to keep the tank up, until I saw my own health go down. I generated enough healing aggro to pull a mob off the tank, even with the Healing Grace talent. I died. Once the dust had settled, I used my ankh to get up. We tried again. Exactly the same result, just with us running in again. And we tried again, this time we did it! Only I had to use my ankh mid-fight to keep the tank up. After the combat, I was out of mana and needed to drink. As I was drinking, the tank started on the next group and I saw his health go down fast.

I got up with about 90% mana and tried to heal him. Alas, Nature's Swiftness was on it's 3 minute cooldown and he died as I tried to get a heal in. Wipe. After running back to Thrall, the next 2 tries went like the first 2. One to add to the list is: Reincarnation is on a 60 minute cooldown, 40 minutes if specced for it, if it wasn't there already. One of the hunters had to go, so we replaced him with a hunter from our guild. After 2 more identical wipes, the other hunter and the tank called it aswell. We managed to replace the hunter with a shadow priest from our guild, but we didn't manage to get a tank.

After a lucky KZ run, I must have used up my luck for this week.
Going to try to do my dailies as Resto now, I've been respeccing so much lately that the cost went from 15g to 45g in the last few days. I need a good twohander, trying to hurt things with a 1h and a shield doesn't work that well. I'll trade the actual shield for one that heals well and leaves me a free hand to use. In other news, We have Super Smash Brothers: Melee now, more on that later.

Friday, 18 July 2008

Transform and... Roll Out?

Finally got to play with my Shaman again and after owning poor helpless mobs with my shiny purple Enhancement gear and skills, I got asked if I wanted to heal normal Steamvaults. Sure, seeing as I was back in the guild as Resto anyway. After going to Org for a quick respec (Oh, dear Enhancement Spec, I shall miss thee) and speccing 61 points in Resto, I got summoned to Coilfang Reservoir. Although I'm still a bit rusty, despite the fact that I got over 10 months of raids as healer on my name, no one but me died (first boss hurricane :( ) and they thought I was awesome.

Okay, Apparently I haven't lost it. Which is a nice thing. The thing I hate about having to heal is that my Healing gear isn't made of pure win. It's kind of made out of magical cardboard and ducktape. And it looks that way. My main hand looks ugly, not to mention the cowl. Just watch, the before and after:
I've transformed, but... Do I even want to roll in this? Meh, Heroic Shattered Halls now, hopefully one step closer to my Champion of the Naaru title.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Bittersweet

Yay! I'm back in raiding business again, but alas, as Resto. Meh, I'll make the best of it and have tons of fun with my guild, Phoenix Legion.

Why I play WoW

Again, a Blog Azeroth topic, this time a recent one, with the subject being: "why do we play WoW?".
Personally, I like raiding, I like the actual game, but it's not what attracts me or keeps me into WoW. I couldn't care less about PvP aswell. What I like about WoW are the friends I have made in it.

I have been on the Eonar (EU) server since 3 days after it was made. I had my own guild there, which is a good way to get to know people, but most of my friends are met through the guilds I had after it. Friends are what keep and kept me playing, the fun you have with them is what I like about it.
Okay, shiny loots are nice to get, instances are fun to see, PvP premades with friends can be fun, but it all doesn't beat the Ventrilo chats during raids, the many lol's from it. And this is why I, especially in the void between TBC and WotLK, want to play again, to help my guild through a rough patch. Last time around, the void almost killed the guild.

Mooby, Frigga and Tari, if you read this: Get back to Eonar ASAP!... I miss you.

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

On loot

Okay! Time for an actual post again. First a situational sketch and then the topic at hand. A friend of mine isn't happy with his guild anymore. That isn't something new in the world of WoW, but the thing that makes this slightly more unique is the fact that he isn't a regular member. He joined his guild way back when he was still leveling and as such, being the most knowledgable of his class at that time, he became a Class Leader, a rank that says officer of this class. Bear in mind that Class Leaders are the ones to talk to if you need info about the class and the guild, but that they should be able to help you with everything else aswell.

But since a few months, they abandoned the CL system, retaining the rank (which wasn't called CL, but had a quirky name), not only stripping him of his status, but also of all the things he could do for the guild. He used to be a raidleader and most of the guild found him a better leader than the actual guild leader. Nowadays, he only gets to lead raids if the other raidleaders are away, which isn't often. He is being put off into the newbie groups of the guild, which are many, due to the constant amount of leaving and joining members, they fail to keep alot of people. This leaves him with gear that doesn't upgrade and because of that he can't get on the higher raids. Kind of like a glass ceiling. They use the worst type of loot distribution, being whomever needs it, gets it, who needs most gets it. Which means that a full greenie decked player will get loot instead of him. And with a constant influx of such players...

But there is another problem: He is unhappy about the guild, just when another guild starts a recruiting spree, leeching off alot of members. He isn't exactly a fan of that guild, like me, but it can still look like he left because he wanted a better guild. He doesn't want a better guild in terms of progress, but in terms of the guild itself. He is sick of being screwed over. But, alas, guilds want to see gear, which he doesn't have due to aforementioned problem. More and more core members of his guild are leaving, because the guild leader is on holiday, with only founding members in charge that aren't able to lead. But I digress.

I actually want to talk about their version of the loot system.
The main problem of the guild is that it:
  • Has no leaders.
  • The people that CAN lead were nerfed.
  • Has no structure.
The guild uses their forums to make their raids. Not the nice PHP Raid things, like most guilds use, but a mere forum thread in which you can state that you would like to come. It's crude and it works, but it's far from perfect. Same with their way of dividing loot. I'll demonstrate their way:

We have 2 players: 1 new one and one experienced one. After a boss kill, an item drops as usual. Lets say that both players are Enhancement Shamans, making it easier for me to show you.

They slay Al'ar. Highly unlikely for their guild, as they haven't cleared ZA yet, but still. The [Talon of the Phoenix] drops. A normal guild would use systems that reward players that actually raid. You earn points when you raid and you spend them to get loot. But not here.
The experienced player has Reflex Blades (which I wouldn't use personally) and the new one has some Razor Scythes.

Most of the time, they only look at the color/rarity of the item. In that case, the new player would get the shiny loot, only to stop raiding afterwards for example, or to respec or anything. He just gets free loot.
They also only look at the item slot in question. If the new player would be hit capped already and the experienced isn't, the new one would get the item anyway. If the new player has full epix exept for the main hand weapon and the experienced only had blues, I wouldn't find it a fair and balanced deal.

Ofcourse, there are some advantages to this system: It's easy to use, no hassle and anyone can do it. But it's unfair, it is based on one person's (biased) opinion and can kill small guilds like the first paragraphs show. Not directly, but it contributes. Also, it can't be used to make people shape up (50 DKP minus! :P).

Then we have DKP or Dragon Kill Points. I didn't know, but apparently it has something to do with raiding in Everquest. /shrug It's an system that awards you for being there and for making progress. Everytime you kill a boss, you get points, which you can use to bid, or alternatively is used as a number. The higest number wins, but gets the item's value subtracted of it.
the downside is that the system can be in so many forms. I've only experienced the "Zero Sum DKP" system.

In simple: All the DKP scores added up are equal to 0. When ever someone gets an item, the DKP spent is divided along the other players. Fair, but heavy in the math, it really takes ages, it's hard to keep tabs on, just terrible. Ofcourse, this can be simplified, which led Phoenix Legion, which used Zero Sum, to Raid Points. It's simple:

You have a point cap. If you only do KZ for example, it's 60. When you buy an item, you lose half the maximum amount of points. As you do more and bigger instances, the cap increases. you get points for signing, attending, killing, making first kills. You lose points for not attending after signing and as a penalty.

Especially the last one is as easy as making a Google Spreadsheet and keeping it up to date. But, that guild leader didn't want it. Apparently it was defined a long time ago. A few quotes from their forum:

By one of their officers:
The concerns were in regard to people who aren't even geared enough for kara receiving epic items that more experienced players need also. The curent loot system rules state that the loot is is to be distributed to the people that have the most need for it, therefor the the people that are the least geared. Obviously these people are either new to the guild or new to raiding so they haven't contributed as much to the guild's overall progress as others. On the other hand the more experienced players who have raided a lot, and therefor contributed significantly to the guild's progress are already epic geared either from kara runs, crafted items or badge loot. So when an item drops and both of these people want it the one that is most likely to get it is the one that is undergeared. So basically the people that are epic geared have less chances of receiving an item than the people that are undergeared.
From the Guild Leader himself:
Without going into reasons for or against DKP, here's a far simpler question.

Who's going to keep track of it and decide what's worth what? I surely am not, I guarantee you that, I have enough to organise for something that's a game. It's not a full-time job.

So apparently, they know themselves that they use a terribly crappy system, but they cba to shape up their guild. It's a sinking ship. Ofcourse the forum thread on their forums is way longer than these 2 quotes, but to keep my friend's cover, I won't be posting names and as such a link to their forums. And the main reason is that they don't know the word "paragraph" in a sensible way, just like "capitalization" and "grammar". Not to mention "punctuation". Anyway: what do you think, how can you divide loot fairly?

Front and first page of Teamwork

Behold the front cover of my comic. And now the first page (click to enlarge):
Things to adress in the second page and further:
  • Why didn't the guildie want to group with our protagonists?
  • Why is Frank so smart one moment and so stupid the second?
  • What will they be doing in their new job?
  • And less half-assing, just wanted to get this page done so I could start at the fun bit.

I have absolutely nothing to do.

Apparently, because of a mathematical error from my brother's part, I won't be able to play WoW till Friday atleast. So now I'm kinda doing nothing, exept for making the comic, which will be funny and reasonably well done, I promise. So for today, enjoy this ancient, but still funny tune:

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

I am going to make a comic

Indeed. I am going to make a comic using Photoshop, Garry's Mod and one other program. All I have at the moment is a poorly done concept image setting the setting. behold:
Ofcourse, the actual end product will look way better, just did this picture quickly to post it quickly. The comic will be a crossover between TF2 and WoW. This is all the teasing I have for you, the story and such will remain secret till I post the first section of the comic. By the way, can you guess the third program used?

Been cleaning

I had my desktop cluttered with images for the blog, documents for school, .exe's installing software like Firefox 3.0 which has been on my computer since it went live, etc. etc. Alot of rubbish. So I have been cleaning, removing or moving all that I don't use. The result:
Yeah, it's a custom wallpaper made by me.

Monday, 14 July 2008

25 Things you might want to know about Shamans

Another Blog Azeroth shared topic, just because I have nothing for today but work. Once I get home I won't have the energy to write something consistent and I don't have any inspiration now.
So basically, this post says: What the **** do you need to know about shamans? The things that Shamans know, but many new players don't. With my extensive WoW experience, I've had alot of people now knowing things about Shamans.

  1. Shamans are not omnipotent. Shamans are a hybrid class, meaning that they can fill multiple roles. As a class, not on a single character. We can heal or deal damage, but a healer can't be expected to be a viable DPS due to the spec, even when geared properly. And ofcourse, the other way around. I had a Molten Core co-op raid once with the number 3 Horde raid guild on Eonar at the time (we were number 2). Some regular members started the idea and so they leaded the raid. We had one Enhancement Shaman from our guild and they picked her of all players to heal the main tank. It took a wipe and 6 yelling Shamans before they noticed.
  2. Once upon a time, we didn't have a spell to recall our totems.
  3. Shamans are a class that needs their mana. Once, when I still healed, I did Slave Pens on level 63 with another shaman in the party. He asked if I was Enhancement, because I had more than 6k mana. He also wondered to heal. It all fell into place when 4 people told him that I was the healer. Also, an OOM Shaman can't do much (unless it's an Enhancement Shaman with Shamanistic Rage).
  4. Shamans are mostly a support class, like a Balance or Feral Druid. We give huge bonuses like 5% additional crit chance from a totem (which will be raid wide in WotLK, afaik) or +10% AP to the group as Enhancement. Not to mention the STR totems, the AGI totem, WF totem, Mana Regen totem (preferably Mana Tide totem).
  5. Our Elemental totems are panic buttons, but are useful for big solo encounters too. If we drop an Earth Elemental, heal it for maximum effect. It can still die. It can hold aggro well, but it needs heals. Any spec can drop this. The Fire one doesn't need healing, it won't pull aggro, but it'll help DPS.
  6. WE CANNOT BUFF YOU OTHER THAN WITH OUR TALENTED AURA'S OR OUR TOTEMS. DO NOT GET ANGRY WHEN WE REFUSE TO ANSWER YOUR MARK OF THE WILD OR ARCANE INTELLEST WITH A BUFF OF OUR OWN. I actually had a hunter that thought that I didn't want to buff him because I didn't like him. I just can't!
  7. Even Shamans need love, we aren't Warlocks.
  8. We cannot ressurect you in combat.
  9. Enhancement Shamans love Feral Druids. Put them together in a Melee Group.
  10. Elemental Shamans love Balance Druids. Put them together in a Caster Group.
  11. Reincarnation has a 30 minute cooldown. Mana Tide has a 5 minute cooldown. The Elemental Totems have 20 minute cooldowns, not shared. Bloodlust is on a 10 minute cooldown. Heroism (bah, Alliance :P) is on 10 minutes aswell. Nature's Swiftness is on a 3-min CD.
  12. If you want to use my Stormstrike Buff as an Elemental Shaman or Balance Druid, tell me so I can stop using Earth Shock. Don't get angry if you didn't tell me that you want to use it and fail to do so due to my ES-ing. Shamans can do ALOT, but we can't read minds. Only Priests can.
  13. Shamans can heal 5-man Heroics. It just takes alot of skill. Please keep in mind that we only have one instant heal as Resto and that it's technically cheating as we use Nature's Swiftness. All other heals are long and huge.
  14. Shamans are squishy.
  15. Enhancement Shamans hate using their Windfury Totem. They want the AGI totem. We have no use whatsoever from our Windfury Totem. The actual buff is superior to it. This is why we love Rogues that want their poisons instead of WF and Druids.
  16. There are bad Shamans and very good Shamans. Unfortunatly, there is more chaff than there is wheat.
  17. Enhancement Shamans want a 2.6 speed weapon in both hands if they Dual-Wield.
  18. Enhancement Shamans need more +hit rating if they dual-wield.
  19. Resto Shamans share one thing with all other Healers: They can only heal well. Angry mobs eat them for breakfast if they're not careful. Help them if you see them struggle. With that said: Resto has good survivability, but so do mobs against their inferior DPS. I leveled 60-70 on Resto.
  20. We have about 26 different totems, divided under Earth, Water, Fire and Air. We only use about 10 to 15 at best, depending on spec and playstyle. Ofcourse PvP is more creative than PvE with this. Seriously, who uses Sentry Totems?
  21. A stereotype Shaman is supposed to use Totemsall the time. I only do so in groups.
  22. Shamans have simple DPS spell rotations... Stormstrike, Earth Shock, Earth Shock, Stormstrike, Earth Shock, Earth Shock, Windfury Proc, Stormstrike, ES, ES, SS, ES, ES...
  23. Shamans use Totems, like Paladins use Librams and Druids use Idols. And like how Casters use wands... but without the ability to hurt and be useful for certain spells instead of stat bonuses. In short: We use our ranged slot differently. This way it seems like we have way more totems.
  24. Shamans are not overpowered. We are Swiss army knives... With too many options.
  25. Shamans are infact evil. Just like the Killer Bunny from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The ability to heal is just a facade.
Now you should be able to encounter Shamans in the wild. Or will you? *insert maniacal laughter*

Are we there yet?

I have been so bored today. Why? Haven't got my Shammy to play yet, that's why. So I spent the day doing stuf that don't seem as appealing to me. Watching television, playing a bit on my Xbox, but mostly watching Discovery. Too bad, because today was a day off, as opposed to the 8 hours of work I need to do tomorrow, meaning that I have no time for WoW.

I find that if you set your mind on something, you want that and nothing else. I could have done so many things today, varying from things for my blog to even cleaning my room. Instead I watched my little brother playing WoW and watching television all day. His mage is level 36 now, only thanks to the fact that I told him to spec frost, not because it is efficient or something, but because it can be challenging and each type of mob requires a different tactic.

But instead of making this day of my vacation "count", by actually progressing with something, I spent it watching television. The point of all of this is that I am not paying, my brother does. He only pays because he wants a character to boost his own with. I get a half year of free play. Well, 3 months, since we do 50-50. He was supposed to get his paycheck today, but this morning, there was no money yet. So actually, I spent the day telling him to watch his bank account every hour, similar to kids on a backseat asking if we are there yet. I must be addicted.

Are we there yet?
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Can I play yet?

EDIT: I've done something useful and finished part 3 of the Team Fortress 2 Pyro Achievement guide. The last part will take ages.

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Obunaji @ Zandvoort

This weekend was the DTM (Deutsche Tourwagen Masters) weekend over at Zandvoort, as all fans know. For the ones that aren't as familiar with the concept: It's Audi vs. Mercedes racing using 1 of their models. Audi uses the A4 and I don't care about Mercedes. I was all exited, since I love Audi (well, their sportscars) and last year was a blast. It started well: As we entered the circuit grounds, we got some nice swag. A red Audi cap and an Audi Sports t-shirt. and I even managed to get it signed at an autograph session by Oliver Jarvin. Didn't know who he was, he just seemed the nicer one.


The races were fun, they started the day with Formula 3 racing (fun to watch in RL, ghastly to play in GRID) and then the actual DTM began. Ralf schumacher started in last place and Christian Albers somewhere in the middle. Didn't matter for him, as he crashed his car in the 2nd lap. Maybe he thought that he would get a shiny new 2008 A4 instead of the 2006 one if he totaled it. Nice race, even though half of the Audi's fell out, it was an Audi-party with Audi on all the podium places.

Meh, I had a nice day. Just need to hang that new poster somewhere... WoW posts coming again tomorrow.

Saturday, 12 July 2008

It's kinda like, well, leading a pack of stray cats

I was playing GTA4 (almost finished it, just having too much fun goofing around) whilst my little brother was raiding on his druid next to me. As raidleader. After setting up vent on my PC, on which he played WoW, he began with the Karazhan raid. Apparently noone heard him over vent and noone listened via the chat. Awful to see a raidleader raid in silence. It went "well", they killed Attumen, Moroes and Maiden, only to grind to a halt at Opera.

Why? Their group consisted of 2 Resto Druids, 1 tanking pally, 1 healing pally, 1 dps warrior, 1 tanking warrior, 2 hunters, a rogue and a mage. And they got The Wizard of Oz as their boss. Without fear, only one mage for the frost and fire debuffs, they were doomed to fail. After a few good wipes, they traded in the mage for a lock, upon the mage's own request. After wiping again, they finally nailed it. But by this time, my little brother was down because he wasn't leading, he was just following the madness of unstructured fights and ninja pulls. I asked if I should take over.
Sadly, this raiding party is more structured than the one I was in.

So after Opera I found myself in a position in which I had only been once before and we didn't kill Attumen that day, since it was the first KZ raid ever for us. After a ready check asking if people could hear me on Vent, which 8/10 people voted yes on, I started. Once we got to the big sentry's near curator, the main tank suddenly said that he was red and that he had to repair. no biggie, exept for the fact that I told everyone to repair. So we went to repair. Or actually, me and one tank went downstairs to clear the blacksmith that can repair.

The first raidwarning was issued that they should come to Attumen's place to help. No response. The second was accompanied by an angry raidleader talking down the microphone. A gentle /rw Get to Attumen. Now! only got me a few extra people. Meanwhile, 2 of the idiots HSed to repair and needed to get a summon. Unluckily, our Warlock was dead at that time. With one one side a tank that was waiting to begin and a 9-year old hunter that was getting angry because he had to wait for his summon, I went to look at my mic again. Since people weren't listening.

I took the outbound slider and set it to +10 and yelled down my mic that I'm the one they should listen to as the raidleader. The first response was a "im deaf". Tactic worked. I got their attention. After rallying them to Attumen, we cleared the blacksmith with a tank breathing down my neck yelling that he needed to split in 30 mins. 30 mins to kill Curator.

I'm not used to being a raidleader, trying to lead the pack of stray cats and looting and keeping tabs on the health of the raid as a healer, so I gave the masterlooting to a reliable person (or, atleast, so I have been told by my brother). Luckily it went well now, exept for a mishap while going to the bathroom, resulting in my death (that of the druid, not the real me >.<) and the tank which actually is a 9-year old boy. Pull. Pull. Hurry. Hurry. Come on! More sounds weren't coming from him.

Nice that the tank is eager, but he wanted to plunge in another group while the pally healer was still OOM. "I'm going to pull!", he said. "No, you're not, you are waiting for the pally.", was my response. After firmly stating that he must wait over Vent he finally stopped being a little bitch and listened. Until he accidentally ninja-pulled the Curator because he wouldn't go back when I told him to. After finally killing Curator, with a few near-deaths because the adds weren't picked up properly upon evocation, I was done. I could go blog it.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

My WoW top 10

After browsing through the Shared Topics section over at Blog Azeroth, I found a nice and relatively recent topic being The Top 10 WoW Memories. Although I'm a bit late to jump on the bandwagon, i'm still doing so. I've been playing WoW for over 2 years now, so there is a lot of material to sift through.

10: Hitting level 60. After goofing around for a long while, trying to level and unlocking content along the way. Hitting 60 meant for me that I could begin the end-game, back in the days. I still like MC and such, atleast when done with the right people.

9: Ditching Restoration and picking up Enhancement. After raiding for 10 months as a healer, with it's highs and lows, just after a big low, I decided that I went DPS. After all: "Healing wins the game, DPS wins the fame." After not being able to do any PvE without assistance (well, normal mobs are doable, just long grinds and such were terrible), being able to take down everything that I couldn't before, being able to do something in PvP was liberating.

8: Hitting level 70! I managed to do 60-70 as Resto, soloing most of the quests along the way. Even though I wasn't the fastest leveler (I came in 5th of my guild, if I recall correctly) I was still in time for a GMOTD congratulation. Level 70 was even better than 60. It was new, big! All the content was meant for 70 and I loved it!

7: Joining Phoenix Legion. Casual and hardcore at the same time. Feared by the NPC-alliance. And an awesome group of nice people. Used to be the number 2 guild in pre-TBC. Just under Sanctus, which doesn't exist anymore and just above Discordia (also very nice people, although raiding co-op with them is not for me), which is also extinct. Just about the longest existing guild on Eonar, Horde side.

6: Finally downing Prince Malchezaar after he lucked out on us everytime. Since then, he was on farm. We were so damn unlucky on the infernals.

5: Having sung "The Ultimate Showdown" via TeamSpeak. Even though it's the most embarresing thing I've done. I'm happy I don't have to hear it myself.

4: The fact that number 5 is still known throughout the guild. I now use it as a threat.

3: This is a sensitive one, not for me or my guild, but... For the person in question. Even now (it happened in Molten Core) we still laugh about it. He was a warrior and joined us for MC. Once we got to the first boss, Lucifron, we buffed up and started the fight. Halfway into the fight we notice imps in the battle! IMPS! the yare supposed to be in the tunnels. Once we were all dead, the question was: What happened? The warrior pulled the imps during the fight, because "he needed the rep". For the record: Hydraxian Waterlords have no rep items, just a quest to unlock Ragnaros, but you only need 10 of those people. In short, it's useless.

As we were busy getting rezzed, buffing up, we got imp aggro again! He pulled the mobs again. Later he needed to repair, just as we dropped a repair bot, he had hearthstoned to Org to repair. He still claims that a friend was playing that night. Later he became the Warrior CL of the paid transfer zerg guild that was created about that time, which didn't last long due to drama and more drama (people claimed that it was good. It wasn't, it could just zerg with transferred T3 characters.). Later in Outland, I encountered him and asked him jokingly if he has any imps with him. I was put on his ignore list after he yelled at me that it was his friend. TBH, if it was his friend, he could laugh about it. Apparently not.

2: Being reunited with my friends after the big disband. Especially because that was a low point in my WoW time, it was a big morale booster. Also for the guild, after the guild was rebuilt, we went through the content faster than before.

1: Slaying Ragnaros! Such a milestone and I was happy to be there on the first kill.

Ugh.

My little brother is going Resto so he can get a better guild, but you need proper gear to get one. So he specced his druid to Mooncloth Tailoring, as opposed to the Spellcloth he used as Balance. After making himself a nice belt, he saw that he needed a new helm. He came up with the idea to get the S2 helm.

"Yeah, it's just 12.5k honor and some marks, and I already have the marks. So he set off to grind it (on my PC, as his PC isn't built for anything but PvE, 1 fps... seriously.). He went to check out the helm in Org before he had the points, he was in the queue and he just wanted to drool. I notice that it costs 14,5k, but meh, he'll find out soon enough.

I was playing GTA4 online and played some GRID online, until he said that he had enough honor. He went to Org and there he found out that he needed 2k more. If I wanted to do so for him, was the question. I suck at playing Druid, because I don't know the class at 70, but still, he's my brother and I can use that as leverage to get my grinding done later.

A few AV's and one EOTS later (for the mark hand-in quest), he finally got his helm. After I checked his druid out in his healing gear, I noticed something: He has no healing shoulders. Luckily he isn't in a hurry to leave his current guild, as the Guild Leader is on a holiday and he isn't one of those stealth /gquit-ters, so he'll wait till he is back. Plenty of time for him to make some shoulders.

But it reminded me that I have some things to do on my shaman:
  • Finally get my epic flying mount
  • Get me a Netherdrake
  • Complete the SSO quests and get me a nice title and tabard.
  • Complete the Champion of the Naaru quests
  • Find out what to do for the Hand of A'dal title and get that aswell.
Grinding isn't my hobby.

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

GoW2 Multiplayer



I loved Gears of War. GoW2 is going to be the game that I'll be playing over XBL with my friends. Okay, it's still a mere 5v5 warzone instead of the 10v10/12v12 ones that I'd like to see, but with all the new stuff, it's going to be great. Especially the fact that weapons have stopping power is what appeals to me.

I often got defeated because people roll and run to me with a shotgun, instead of using tactics. In GoW2, you just spam them with gunfire, stopping them in their tracks. I can't wait!

EDIT: Bah, why doesn't it work? :S

Priviliged to Witness

I was a guildleader once. It was long ago, when Outland didn't exist, ZG,AQ and Naxx weren't there yet. PvP was still fun. It was a good time.

I used to play a Tauren Hunter on Thunderhorn (EU) as mentioned before in posts, who went by the same name as my Shaman. It was named Cryo~n, not Cry~on. It was level 43 until I lost it in a tragic hacking about a year ago. It was the first character that I had, not counting the failiures I had leveled to level 5 and then got bored. I leveled it till about level 35 and then I discovered the battlegrounds. WSG specifically. WSG was my favorite form of PvP at that time and I didn't level anymore, I just went to WSG. There I met a Warrior. We PvP'ed together until we actually got the status of celebrity in our 30-29 bracket. This was before battlegroups so it's not that hard.

One day, me and him decided to make a guild. We called it the "Honored Warlords of Battlegrounds" or HWoBG for short. After recruiting in our WSG matches, we got quite a number of players, most of them casual, but we had fun. I lead the guild as the second in command, but with the warrior gone most of the time, I was the one really leading it. Everyone knew that. As the guild grew, more officers were positioned below me. We started to do raids on Darkshore as if they were instances. Great fun, I was in the top 1000 PvP'ers at level 35, at about place 600.

Until that dark day. And this is where this blog post's title kicks in. Priviliged to Witness is a song by Scooter, a German techno/trance group and about my favorite artist. Everytime I hear this song, I remember this day or, what happened afterwards actually.

One of my officers wanted to talk to me, but didn't want to do so by whispering, but in a party. I joined and there were the other officers too. And the warrior that "led" the guild. They were singing praises, about how good my guild leading was, that I was a nice guy and so on. Only to soften the blow. They said: "We're going to another server and you can't come. Oh yeah, we're taking half the guild." I still know the names of those characters. Still with this knife in my back, the warrior suggested that we move to another server too. We went to the same server, but instead of going Horde, we went Alliance.

Meet Cryona (how original), my level 16 Night Elf Rogue, who was also deleted and unable to be recovered in the same hacking. The hacking is a different story and as such, another post. We set up a new guild there, named the "Honored Elite Knights" (again, he chose the name >.<). This didn;t get off the ground so well, as the warrior got aggro from his parents, because he played too much. I can't play alliance, too boring. So the guild died.

I took a long break from WoW. Only to contact the same warrior again to make a guild on Eonar. The server that I call my home now.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Pre-Kara Kitties: Rejoice!

WoWThinkTank has made a nice gear guide for kitty druids. Although I'm a Shaman myself, it's nice to see.
Link:
ThinkTank: [Druid]Cat Karazhan Gear Guide

Pathfinding

I saw this one in my RSS-reader this morning and I laughed alot at the subscript, being "WoW is more true to life than you realize." I've played a Hunter in the past and it's so true >.<
Even though TPS isn't MacHall (well, it actually is, since it's made by the same people, but meh), it's still funny.

But pathfinding is apparent in many games, like in GTA4 for example, when all the enemies follow the same path to you, making them easy to snipe, or the way companions were done in Morrowind (meh, you're better off alone).

When I was a Hunter, me and my party went to Stromguarde, when it was still elite territory. We jumped down the castle to save us time. I only forgot to dismiss my pet first, who came running to us via the castle interior, bringing along all of the enemies on it's path. Epic fail. Atleast I now usually remember to dismiss my pets.

Monday, 7 July 2008

Perpetually F'ed


I keep being reminded why my old guild, Phoenix Legion is so awesome. I played (a bit) with my little brother's Druid in their Magtheridon raid (he had to leave, he is a paperboy, so he had to get up early) and gawd... Their guild is perpetually f'ed up.

It's supposed to be a raiding guild. For the non-WoW people: Raiding is hanging out with 9-39 other players depending on the level that they raid in which they need to work together to complete an encounter. This is usually a scary dungeon with big bosses that drop "phat lewts". Sounds awesome, but in reality it's alot of waiting, people yelling at eachother, people passing around the blame etc. etc. (Unless you have a good guild, in which you have a team.... like Phoenix Legion)

Their raid started while I was playing GRID, having fun, but if the person next to you isn't invisible, so I screenchecked him once in a while and he filled in the blanks. It started off great: Not enough people for their encounter. Some guilds would do one that requires less players, but instead they called in reinforcements from outside the guild. All day, I've been very annoyed by one of their guildies, who's constantly being an ass, claiming that the top tier encounters are easy, that all other guilds are bad (he claimed that PL only had noobcakes... I let it go.) etc. etc. But... He is the one that gets help. From the guild that screwed me personally once too often. This is the one guild for which I have a perpetual hatred.

To give you a better picture of the player: He plays a Rogue, a melee damage dealing class. Ok, nice, alot of good players are Rogues, but... He has no lockpicking at all. Lockpicking allows you to open doors to shorten some instances, to open chests for more loot, etc. Ok, fine too. One of the most fun people I have ever played with was a Rogue without lockpicking. Let's move on to the fact that this is an alternate character or alt. Meaning that this is the char he plays when not on his main character. His main is a Shaman. Being the owner of a level 70 Shaman, which has over 2 years of raiding experience, I'd know how to play it. Apparently now, as his main does not have the best talents that he can get in his specialisation. He is Elemental, so he should get Totem of Wrath. He doesn't have it.

So they begin with Gruul's Lair, a low-tier 25-man encounter. On the first boss, the Druid set item dropped, which went to another Druid, while my brother wanted it. Badly. After killing the second (and last, for that encounter) boss, another one drops, which my brother wants too. But it goes to the same one. The policy is there that you get one drop per raid and only more if players don't need the gear.

This isn't exactly the first time that he gets screwed over. He gets spots in raids, only to be removed from them a few hours before, so "better people" can make progress. This is a vicious circle, because his gear won't improve this way. Foolishly enough, he doesn't use his rank to get his way. He used to be the Druid Class Leader, until the CL system was abandoned and now he is a regular officer.

So, I'm still playing GRID, almost getting my ass handed to me because I'm not really paying attention (and playing online) and getting sick of the moaning to my left. I tell my brother that he should talk to the guild leader, who is in charge of the loot distribution and the raid rosters. Basically, after the convo the conclusion was that he just could go F himself. Not litterally, but all solutions like a fair point based system to divide loot (like all good guilds do), because now the gear is divided based upon one person's opinion, were shot down with a simple "We've discussed this on the forums."

Gruul's done, so they move about 1.5 steps up the ladder in the 25-man region, to Serpentshrine Cavern. The Rogue/Shaman mentioned earlier starts shouting tactics etc. via the raid chat, begins to tell people what to do, begins to tell the officers what to do and so on. And everybody seems fine with it. Strange. Afaik, you have a RAID LEADER for a reason... to lead a raid. You can't have 25 people trying to lead a raid.

After wiping alot of times, which seemed more of a kamikaze into a brick wall, only to ressurect and try to smash the impervious brick wall again, they took a step down. To Magtheridon it is. After more wiping than in the average bathroom, with the last one being a "royal screw-up", which in fact was a wipe for all but the few that can work together, they finally give up.

I was the one playing for the last few tries on the last encounter and... Well, the raid leader's a total... *insert something bad* He just barks orders, litterally, he just screams them down his microphone and out of your speakers, nobody can do anything right in his opinion and so on. As they gave up, the annoying Rogue/Shaman said in General chat: "Hey Phoenix Legion, I guess you're wiping". PL was raiding there too. The only one left was the Guild Leader, who was the Raid Leader aswell. He replied: "We're already done, I'm the only one left. We've been done for 20 mins now." They started later and finished earlier. Not because they have better gear, but because they don't screw over their guildmates and work like a team.

Trying to get back into WoW

I'm going to get back into WoW soon, but alas, when I quitted WoW, I forgot to remove the subscription. So when my subscription ended, they placed a new 6-month one. Now it has a charge back, meaning that it's locked until I pay the subscription. That's 66 euro's. My little brother was going to pay for me, since he could get my Shaman on his account after the game time ended, but 66 euro's is a tad much. I'm going to have to pay half of it.

But here is the catch: I want to buy me a reasonable television for my Xbox. I now have a Pal-50 15-inch CRT TV, playing perpetually on widescreen when playing the Xbox (it actually looks better than with no widescreen), whilst it isn't one. I want a shiny, big and flat one, but that'll cost me.

That, and my gaming addictions, varying from cheap (a pack of M:tG cards once in a while) to expensive ( the newest games), will leave me broke.

Saturday, 5 July 2008

Achieving: TF2, Pyro Edition... Part III

Okay, the third part of the guide, explaining how I got me my Axtinguisher. The first 2 parts are easy, you got a choice which achievements you want to get first. As you progress however, the choices become more limited. There can only be so much grind-able achievements in one pack.

Pilot Light - Ignite a rocket-jumping soldier while he is mid-air.
As usual, there are 2 ways to do this one. The easy one, using a friend, which is obvious or the hard(er) one. Find an enemy soldier and depending on his skill level, there are many ways to get it. Either ambush the soldier on places where he uses rocket jump alot. Think of the sniper balconies in 2fort or something. Or, if he is a total nubcake, he will try to use it in close range. Before you ask, I've seen it happen before. I have seen a pyro just spamming his flamethrower at a soldier, who fired his rocket at the ground accidentally, earning the pyro his achievement. But I used a friend.

Dance Dance Immolation - Kill 3 enemies while they are taunting.
Har har. If only puns made achievements easier, but then they wouldn't be achievements anymore. It seems that all achievement titles are meant to be witty and punny. With the exeption of Forza2 ofcourse. But let's get to the point. On one side, it's easy to get. On the other, it takes a while. I managed to kill 2, mostly medics and pyro's who were trying to get their achievement. You can't really hunt for this one, you just have to be lucky. I had a friend helping me with the axestreak achievements and he taunted, filling the last kill.

Hot Shot - Kill a soldier with a reflected critical rocket.
Reflected CRITICAL rocket. That is all I can say. Just joking. Have fun, play some tennis using your flamethrower or get a friend to help. Not much to say so enjoy this video:

TF2 Rocket Tennis from Imran Maq on Vimeo.

Hot Potato - Reflect 100 projectiles with your compressed air blast.
I haven't got this one (yet), because once I got my Backburner, I couldn't be assed to use the normal one. However, I am on about 75/100 returns. How? Play rocket tennis or play CP maps with a demoman in the other team. Then treat control points like a busy road. Look left. Look right. Look out for dangers. Use your compressed air blast to remove them. If it's a Fiat Panda or a sticky bomb, you should be able to send it flying, netting you about 4-5 points for the achievement.

Milestone 1 - Achieve 10 of the achievements in the Pyro pack.
Funnily enough, the achievement counts! How to get it is found in part one of this guide.


Milestone 2 - Achieve 16 of the achievements in the Pyro pack.
Same as with Milestone 1, but then part two.


Now you should have your mean looking axe. The last part will be the remaining 16 achievements with tips and tricks, containing the hardest or most boring achievements. I suggest you bring a friend.

Achieving: TF2, Pyro Edition... Part II

On to part deux. this time we're going for the Backburner. I've explained what it does here, so we'll get right to the achievements.

BarbeQueQ - Cause a dominated player to leave the server.
Dominate someone and then just wait. And wait. And wait, until he leaves the server. Even if he took revenge, this still works. It just takes a while... Zzzzz...

Hot on your Heels - Kill 50 enemies with your flamethrower, from behind.
A simple one aswell, it just takes time. Ambush and flank your opponents. Often, your enemy tries to flee, that's a free score for this achievement aswell.

Baptism By Fire - Force 10 burning enemies to jump into water.
Play Well or 2Fort for this one, since you need water. Set your enemy ablaze and then watch him cool off in the water. Rinse (har har) and repeat.

Burn Ward - Ignite 3 medics that are ready to deploy an Uber-charge.
Step 1: Find medics.
Step 2: Just burn them whenever you see them. Kamikaze if needed.
Step 3: ?????
Step 4: Profit!

Weenie Roast - Have 2 enemy Scouts on fire at the same time.
The hard part is getting 2 Scouts in your vicinity. After you manage that, by luck or by having friends, singe them both.


OMGWTFBBQ - Kill an enemy with a taunt.
The only taunt that can cause damage is the Haduoken taunt. It has almost no range, but is an instant kill. Try to find an enemy that is AFK, a Sniper that's zoomed in or a friend to help.

Well, that's it for Part 2. Enjoy your Backburner. Part 3 will be even shorter, since the Milestone achievements count too.

Overcompensating with Mojo

Remember Mojo the Frog, that you could get for free once? I posted about it when it was new.
A new glitch with it has been found. May be old news, but I just found out via WoW Insider. Even though I don't play WoW anymore, I'm still up to date.

Achieving: Penny Arcade's ORPOD Ep. 1

Penny Arcade is one of the few regularly updating webcomics that is actually funny too. ORPOD, or On The Rain-Slick Precipice Of Darkness, is a Paper Mario/Super Mario -ish Role Playing Game. That said, it simply means that it's a turn-based RPG, with interactive combat. You can block attacks and special attacks are powered by pressing buttons, instead of simply selecting attack.
But, I am getting off-topic here. This is an Achievement Guide, not a review of the game.
You can get all of the achievements in one playthrough, if you have the patience to keep loading if you fail.

Stray Cat - 5G - Earn a support character.
Most likely the easiest achievement, all you need to do is meet T. Kemper, the support kitty. He is the first of three support characters. Meow.


Nine Lives - 15G - Kill an enemy using T. Kemper's basic attack.
Unlockable as soon as you get your special attack, use your special on one of the starter robots, but miss ONE of the targets. this should bring it down to 1 HP. Then unleash the kitty. Only do this with T. Kemper ready, as you apply a bleed effect with the rake's special. This should unlock it, unless you have T. Kemper crit ofcourse.


Pacifist - 15G - Only use counterattacks, health items, or distraction items to win one battle.
Another easy achievement. In the first area, in the beginning, there are robots that do not deal alot of damage. Don't attack them, but only block instead. This can be done even in the first fight. As you progress in the game, the enemies become tougher and the achievement harder to get.

All Together Now - 5G - Do a Team-Up attack involving all three party members.
This one can be done as soon as Tycho's special unlocks. Don't expect the animation to be fancy though. Keep blocking untill the entire party has it's special ready, Tycho will be the last to have it ready and Gabriel the first.

Fight 'Em With Items - 20G -Find and use every item in the game at least once.
Simple, use all of the items. There are 3 items in each of these catagories: Healing, Damage, Buffs and Debuffs in that order. And there are 2 distraction items. One for robots, one for mimes. However, make sure that you have enough of each for the last boss.

Level Awesome - 20G - Get all party members to Level 15.
No tips here, just fight every foe you can find.



Steel Devils - 15G - Find and destroy all the robots in the game.
Look out for thing like milkbottles, suitcases and even seagulls. In the map, you can see if you still have parts to collect. Sweep the area's systemmatically, one panel at the time.

Immortal - 20G - Play and win the game without allowing a character to die during combat.
Save ALOT. And, if you haven't mastered blocking, prepare to load ALOT. Especially the "Now I'm a Fencer"attack from the mimes and the fat hobo's attacks are hard to block. Especially the latter deals ALOT of damage... to the entire party. Also, heal! Exept for the last boss, if you want the Silent, But Deadly achievement.

Silent, But Deadly - 30G - Fight, and destroy the final Boss without using any healing items.
Okay, keep your support characters ready, items fully stocked, be skilled in blocking and use only your special attacks. No healing though... Oh, and have your weapons fully upgraded.

Clean Sweep - 30G - Kill all enemies.
Another self-explainatory one. Defeat every enemy in the game, this includes all of the robots and the bosses. This one unlocks after the final boss, so before you go fight him, check all of the area's for hostiles.

Pack Rat - 15G - Find and collect all of the hidden collectibles scattered around the game.
Gotta catch them all!.. Oh wait, wrong game. You need to collect 12 concept arts and 5 albums. Here is where they are, Area, panel, w/e you need to inspect:

  • Desperation Street - Cul-De-Sac - In your neighbour's mailbox.
  • Desperation Street - Cul-De-Sac - Mailbox on the opposite side of the road of the house where T. Kemper is sitting.
  • Desperation Street - The Orange Tree - Mailbox in front of 1121 Desperation St.
  • Desperation Street - Cul-De-Sac - Mailbox at the house where you meet T.Kemper.
  • Anne-Claire’s Room - The photo above the window.
  • Anne-Claire’s Room - The lamp next on the nightstand.
  • Anne-Claire’s Room - Behind Anne-Claire on the shelf.
  • Hobo Alley - Cheswick & Grove - The wanted poster on Witch-B-Gone.
  • Hobo Alley - West Chesnut Park - Rubbish Pile, easily regocnizable because during the Animated Trash mission, that's the only place where you will find three bins at once.
  • Hobo Alley - Grove Bend - Poster on the pub’s window.
  • Hobo Alley - The Sh*thole - Picture next to the entrance.
  • Hobo Alley - The Sh*thole - Meat Grinder in the robot room.
  • Pelican Bay - Tollbooth - At the big icecreams hanging next to the red token minigame.
  • Pelican Bay - Midway - Behind the Mimes at the far end of the area where you get the green tokens on a door.
  • Pelican Bay - Promenade - At the huge anchor.
  • Pelican Bay - Unlocks when you entertain Madam Zodora Fortune Teller.
  • And the last one is unlocked on defeating the Final Boss.
Yeah, it took me a while.

A Winner Is You - 10G - Complete Episode 1.
I assume this achievement needs no explaination. This one is unlocked at the same time you unlock Clean Sweep, Silent,But Deadly and Immortal... Meaning after the final boss. I hope you enjoyed the game.

(Please note that I say robot instead of the robot's real name due to obscenity. It might offend someone)