Thursday, January 29, 2009

In the Mood

Oddly enough, I haven't been in the mood to blog. I have a number of posts that I've started, but I just haven't been happy with them, or I haven't taken the time to finish them.

So, this is simply a post to let all my loyal fans (*snicker*) know that I'm not dead.

Monday, January 26, 2009

3.0.8 Broke Resting?

Just in case there is anyone out there that hasn't realized this, there's these special little place in World of Warcarft where you can "rest". You'll see little a little "zzz" up by your portrait, so you know that you're at one. In almost every questing area there's at least one of these rest areas. They are usually referred to as Inns. They are also generally buildings, but that's not always the case.

The "resting state" does a few small things for you. First of all, the longer you rest at an inn, the more rest xp you get. Rest xp awards you double the experience from killing monsters. And it is used up as you kill monsters. Resting also allows you to log out or exit the game without the annoying timer.

Well, it seems that 3.0.8 has made some of the Inns a little tempermental. I first noticed this late last week when my wife tried to log out in Zim'Torga. My level 80 mage could log out just fine, but my wife's 77 priest was not resting. I figured it was just something with her UI, but then it happened to me on my 70 shaman in Valiance Keep on my computer, so I'm pretty sure it's a bigger issue than just me.

Has anyone else had this happen to them since 3.0.8?

Now, whether or not she gained rest xp, I'm sure we will never know.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

One Hundred Pushups

I really don't have any type of fitness program going on right now. I play football with friends every other Saturday, and that's about the extent of things. I was reading Dammerung's post over at Two and a half Orcs, that linked to For those that don't want to click the links (or are too lazy), it's basically a plan to get you motivated so that in 6 weeks (results may vary), you can do 100 push-ups at once. I figured I'd try it out just for the heck of it. I'm weak, I know it. But my wife and I thought it would be fun to do together.

So, the night before last, we sat down to see how many push-ups we could do to see where we entered the plan. I pulled off enough where I should actually start at week 3 (23 push-ups), but my wife (who was doing the real ones, not the girly ones) came in at 19, so I'll do the first 2 weeks and keep on track with her.

(Oh, and man was I scared when she seemed to still be going strong at 15. I thought for sure there was going to be complete embarassment as she passed me up.)

So, we'll start next week, 3 days per week doing the push-ups and in 6 weeks, we should be able to do 100.

It's been years since I've really worked out at all. I'm glad my memory isn't good enough to remember back in High School when I'm sure I could do a heck of a lot more than that. But I invite all those reading to go check out the HundredPushUps web site. Maybe we can have some general motivation between bloggers (and readers) so we can all hit 100. Yep.. nothing to do with Wow here, but it's a good thing anyway. So, do your test today... we're starting push ups on Monday.


Of my 3 max level toons (pre Wrath), my shaman was by far the most neglected. The mage has always been my main, so I did a lot of research there. My priest, who leveled Shadow through 65 and then did some raiding at 70 as holy, got some attention, but there really wasn't all that much to figure out since I was usually the 3rd healer in Karazhan when we were far past needing 3. (Heck, there were times when I was the second healer but the other healer was so well geared he could have solo healed.)

My Shaman, however was the toon that I didn't care all that much about. I leveled him Enhancement through 60, and then changed to Elemental for the last 10 levels just to try something new. (Didn't have any gear for Elemental, but figured that with all the quest rewards in Outlands, I could gear up quickly.) Then after doing a few runs as Elemental at 70, I respec'ed him resto to help out a healing shortage and stop wasting all the mail healing drops I was seeing.

Fast forward to today, and Primogeniture has an abundance of mages, but limited in healers. And we have one raiding Shaman, and he's Enhancement. So, I started toying with the idea of leveling my Shaman to help with our Shaman/Healing shortage.

A little interlude here: What a pain Totems, Relics, Sigils, and Idols are. They're for one space, for one class, and it's usually THE item to get for that slot. Kinda annoying. Yep, that's why all the druid tanks I knew pre-Wrath would have to go in to Stratholme for the Idol of Brutality.

At any rate... at some point in the past, there was a change in totems. Or maybe it was always there and I never noticed it. But there has always been these 4 bag slots that were wasted by Shaman for their Air, Water, Earth, and Fire Totems. But in looking at THE totem I needed once I hit 80 (which is probably Totem of Forest Growth, btw), I noticed something else about almost all of the totems. Look at that linked totem again. See at the bottom? "Counts as an Air, Earth, Fire, and Water totem." Since when did that happen? And on my currently equipped Totem of the Thunderhead, it's there too. In fact, it's on every totem except for Totem of Rebirth and Totem of Flowing Water which I have never owned, and I'm guessing that those are probably just a misprint or something.

So, there you have it, folks. My "breaking news" for all you totem fans out there. I think I'm gonna go bury my head in shame, 'cause it's probably been like that for years now.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Figure Prints - Lottery Gone

Just after Blizzcon last year, I decided that it would be really neat to have a Figure Print of Leiandra, my mage that I've used since I first started playing Wow back in June of 2005. I signed up for the lottery, and just last month, I won. But with it being Christmas and all, I couldn't justify spending the $125 when there's so many other things that I want/need to buy. Plus, December was kind of an odd time in "Leiandra's Life" (the toon, not me), since she was going through gear changes as she was approaching 80. And I didn't really want to have to make guildies go back to old instances just so I could complete a set to look cool.

Besides, I figured I could always enter the lottery again, and win the spot a second time in the future.

Well, Blizzard's Official World of Warcraft site has just announced that Figure Prints' production has finally caught up with demand (or maybe it's yet another sign of our weak economy), and you can now order a Figure Print without the lottery system. It'll still take at least a month for you to get your character, but that's better than waiting to win their lottery, and then waiting the month. So, when I finally decide that I can part with the$130 or so to have an out of game version of Leiandra, I no longer have to wait for it.

Now... if I can just get her posed on the Griffon like I saw at Blizzcon.

Noth - The Loot Concealer

Ever get out of the habit of doing something, and then it kind of just stops entering your thought process? Yeah, not sure how it happened with the blog, but here I am writing again... back in the though process. At any rate...

This week, out guild headed in to Heroic Naxx to slay a few bad guys. To skip the details and get straight to the point, we killed Noth the Plaguebringer. For those that don't know the fight, he basically teleports up to his balcony every 90-180 seconds (90 the first time, 110 the second, and then 180 all subsequent times).

Well... again for brevity, he died up on the balcony. It's just a bit out of range to loot from down below. There's a couple boxes stacked below that somebody joked you could stand on top of and loot him, which didn't work.

So, we first opened a ticket. Then we checked maps to figure out how else we could get up there. We cleared all the way to the next boss, and then had to take this off the beaten path way to get up to the balcony. Once there, we didn't get the loot cursor on the mouse like you do when you can loot something, but we did get our loot. Had to waste a ton of time heading on over there though.

At any rate, this instance has basically been around for like 2 and a half years now. You'd think they would have fixed this bug feature by now. /sigh Oh well... at least we got our loot.

Monday, January 12, 2009

What Would You Do for Guildies?

In World of Warcraft (and most MMO's from what I've seen), there exists RL friends (real life) and online friends. Sure there are those online friends that can cross over to become RL friends, and those RL friends that can (finally) get online. And with some of these cross-overs, it's possible to have a friend be both. But I'm talking about the destinction between the two today; and there is a definite line of demarcation between RL friends and online friends.

(While it's not always true, I'm going to make a simplification and call the online friends "Guildies". I am perfectly aware that most people probably have friends that are outside of your guild. Furthermore, there's probably guildies that aren't your friends; in fact, those people probably drive you crazy to the point that you'd like to throw a RL fireball crit to their head, but I digressed.)

For the sake of definition, guildies are those that you met online. By the true sense of the word, you somehow got persuaded to join this motly guild and inherited some of the people/friends that come along with it. As a general rule, you've probably never seen these people, except for maybe their facebook or myspace pages. These people don't have any way to contact you outside of the game, except for maybe an official guild forums. You may know that these people have children, but only because they tell the guild to watch their language because of "little ears". Conversations occur regularly, but are limited to in-game whispers, guild chat, or Ventrillo/Team Speak. You probably spend time with these people, because you want to run an instance, and there's usually loot in it for you. It's even possible that you've done something nice for these guildies, such as running their alts through Dead Mines.

RL friends are people outside of online games. They're the people you know from school, work, your neighborhood, etc. You generally have no problem talking to these people on the phone, hanging out with them, etc. If they ask for help moving something, you're there. They might need a small loan, and that's not a problem either. Maybe you bought them lunch just for the heck of it. You may exchange Christmas or Birthday gifts. I'm sure you get them a wedding present as well. They're friends in every true sense of the word.

So, assuming you have guildies or online friends. How far do you stray into RL friend area with them? Have you met up with them? Have you helped any of them out financially? (That would include buying them lunch.) Would you be willing to recommend one of them for a job position? Do you have any of their phone numbers? E-mail addresses? Home addresses? Basically, what would you do for your guildies?

Personally, a lot of that demarcation line has blurred for me. The first guild I was in was created by me, my best friend, and his brother. Everyone that became part of that guild was known by somebody in the guild in RL. The connection was kind of long at times (my best friend's brother's wife's parents were in the guild (whom I knew in RL as well)), but it was a connection nonetheless.

When Primogeniture was started, it was best friend's cousin's friend's friend that first suggested the idea. We both live in Southern California, but never got around to meeting up, but I would have had no hang ups about meeting him in person. I've had current guildies over to my house for raid nights. Heck, if I didn't live so far away from the now, they'd probably still be coming over on Wednesday nights. I've helped a couple of them out financially. (They were small amounts, please no begging.)

So, what are your thoughts on how you treat online friends? How far would you go? lol.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Tanking In Wrath: The Next Generation

In case you haven't heard, there's a lot of Aoe type pulls in the instances in Wrath of the Lich King Attack of the Melee. Every tanking class has been given tools to be able to Aoe tank. From a druid's Swipe to a Warrior's Thunder Clap to a Pally's Consecration, and finally to Death and Decay (and others) from a Death Knight.

And your job in Wow is to take hits. You're supposed to get all the mobs to hate you the most (assuming you're the only tank) so that they don't kill your healer or dps'ers. I just highlighted 4 spells that will do that for each tanking class.

But a pug run I went on last night became entertaining when I tanked most of the mobs.

Before we started the run, the DK (only tank class in the group) kept asking who was going to tank, even after he had already confirmed that he was going to. I wasn't even the one Aoe'ing to have mobs go all over the place. It was the healer... throwing heals. (The nerve, huh?) The tank would sometimes tank all the mobs, but more often then not, he just plain forgot.

So, equipped with Ice Barrier and Power Word: Shield (from the healer), I tanked a good portion of the mobs. It actually made the instance go faster, hence why I did it.

So, I submit to you that there should be a class review, and mages should now be able to tank. Arcane's the new Pvp Spec. Fire (with some frost and using Frostfire) is the new Pve spec. So, Frost should be the new tanking spec for mages. Get rid of spell pushback, and we "shouldn't" have an issue with aggro. Arcane Explosion could be our Aoe tanking spell. (We might need a glyph to increase threat there.) And with all our magic abilities there's got to be a way that we can create some type of armor (Ice Armor on steroids?) to make it as if we were wearing plate. Maybe Ice Armor scales with Intelect or Spellpower or something.

Heck, don't even make us stellar tanks. Make us Off-tanks that could pick up a mob in a pinch after we popped our Improved Ice Armor. And I'm sure we have the intellect to think up some spell that will make people attack us and only us.

I know, I know... I can hear it already. "Yeah, but that would make them impossible to kill in Pvp." Right... because there aren't any other high dps classes that wear plate. Sure...

So, there you have it. Straight from my creation to this blog (to your eyes)... Mages will be the next tanks. Now... who's gonna heal us? Warlocks!!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Attack of the Melee

I think I'm going to unofficially rename the latest expansion. Henceforth (or at least until the end of this post), it shall now be known as Attack of the Melee. Let's look at the facts (or at least the QQ's from the forums).

Ret Paladins became gods with the 3.0 patch. Forget about the Hybrid vs. Pure class argument. Paladins just starting kicking everyone's butts. Oh, and did I mention that they're wearing plate as well? Yes, they got normalized, but they're still quite strong.

Death Knights obviously have a draw since they're the new class on the block. Some of the numbers that I've seen them put up in DPS mode is just amazing. And did anyone notice that they're wearing plate?

DPS Warriors have been strong for awhile, in my opinion. They've just continued to keep that strong spot. Again... they're wearing plate.

Enhancement Shammies... I'd really like to be able to comment on these guys. But since we don't have a single raiding Shammy anymore, I really couldn't tell you at all. I can tell you that my level 70 Enhancement Shammy killed a level 70 mob... all by himself. Yep, no lie.

Melee Hunters are SO overpowered that it's not even funny. Nerf Melee Hunters. Nerf them to the ground!!! (See? I told you it was QQ's from the forums. lol.)

Rogues have maintained their high, consistent DPS. Good for them.

Then on the other side of the fence... besides hunters that are getting the Nerf in 3.0.8, has there been anything exceptional or strong about any of the ranged classes/specs? Hmm.. maybe I should go pick up my dagger and start meleeing as well. So... welcome to Attack of the Melee, enjoy your ride.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Disgust for Sony because of Rock Band 2 for PS2

Nothing Wow related here. But I must vent. Excuse the wall of text, but I find the details important.

I've been a big fan of the Guitar Heroes games and then the Rock Band game. While Guitar Heroes was fun, some of the songs became too challenging and while I could still play them, it became more of a chore then rocking out to your favorite songs. Plus, some of the harder songs were just too heavy rock for me. Plus, you could only play 2 players for Guitar Heroes.

Last year (well, 2007) when I was given Rock Band for Christmas, it easily became my favorite game. It's the perfect double date especially since on Easy mode, most of the songs (even the super hard ones) were fairly easy to do. I have the PS2, and I have had it for quite some time now. I kept trying to convince the Mrs that we should buy a PS3 for the downloadable content (aka new songs), but even if I had her permission, I couldn't justify spending $450 or so for basically just one game.

This past Christmas, a buddy of mine bought me Rock Band 2. There was a whole fiasco with Amazon, but I won't go into that now. But I should have gotten it before Christmas, but I got it a few days after. (No big deal, right?) So, the first night, I played it and it froze up on a few songs. A quick reset, and no problem. I played it for a few nights, and then it stopped working altogether. I kept getting the "Disc Error" message from my PS2.

Exchanging the disc to Game Stop did nothing. Same errors. And all of my other discs (granted all old games) loaded fine.

So, I called the number on my PS2 for Sony. The nice (at first) lady first informed me that they were having a lot of problems with RB2 because of the Dual-Layer. She later went back and said that they were having "some" problems with the Dual-Layer. After getting all my personal information, she informed me that if I shipped back my PS2 (at my own cost (about $10)) and gave them $45, they'd send me a PS2 that would work with RB2 (refurbished, of course).

In my quick calculations, that's $55 that I'd have to wait at least a week for, and at this point, I couldn't even guarantee that it would work with RB2 except that they say it would. --OR-- for $59, I could go to Gamestop and get a refurbished PS2 that i could test out the game on before I left the store.

So, to make my point of view clear to the nice lady at Sony, I explained that I didn't really think it was fair that I was going to have to spend $55 to make my system work for a game that they authorized Harmonix to create for the PS2 regardless of model I have. She got very snippy and start accusing me of putting words into her mouth. I asked for her manager, but after 2 minutes on hold, I figured it wasn't going to make a difference anyway, and I hung up.

Off to the Internet to see if I can find answers. The majority of people said they took their PS2's apart, cleaned the lens, and then it worked fine. Being very familiar with computers and taking them apart, I figured I could do this. Having never taken apart a PS2, I was very careful. Did exactly what they said. Put it back together. And now my PS2 won't even power on at all.

So, my options seem to be either buy the refurbished PS2 from Gamestop, or bite the bullet and buy the refurbished PS3 from the same place. (The new ones aren't backwards compatible with the PS2.) I really only have myself to blame for breaking the PS2, but it infuriates me that Sony won't take action to fix their original problem that authorized games won't play on many systems. (They've consolidated all the PS2 issues into one post here, but yesterday I saw one that was 4 pages long.) They claim it's a misaligned laser, but there's way too many people that cleaned it to fix the problem.

Maybe I can raise the money by buying lol.

Monday, January 5, 2009

3.0.8 Enchanting Changes, Yeah! Wait... but...

If you follow the good folks over at MMO-Champion at all, you know that there's some changes coming to the Enchants that they've posted about. Overall, I think it's a great thing. Almost every WOTLK enchant has had the mats lowered, making it far more affordable and reasonable to enchant all of your gear. 30 to 40 dust on some of those enchants was just out of control if you ask me. So, yeah for easier gear enchants!

But this is really a fix for the community as a whole. They obviously looked at the profession and thought, "something's not right here", and fixed it. But what about the part of the motivation to hit 450? I've got buddies that are there, so there's even less motivation for me. I hit 400, I can do the ring enchants... now what? Drop a ton of mats to hit 450 for what?

I suppose there's the economy side of it. I can put all my enchants on the AH via vellums. And then I can make a ton of money on all those enchants that require 450 skill. Oh wait... there's none of those. So, still no motivation to hit 450 here. Oh well... I'm sure everything will be "fixed" in 3.1, right? Right? Who's with me? *crickets*