Monday, March 30, 2009

"Just say no" exercise

I found myself doing things in game because it was an achievement and not because I necessarily wanted to do it. For instance PvP. As a healer I'm getting stomped out there even with a hefty amount of resilience. It's not fun, yet I do it anyway in attempts to reach some of the PvP achievements.

I've decided for the month of April to ask myself with each achievement I try "Am I having fun?". If I'm not I plan to stop and move on to something else. This means I imagine I'll do a few battlegrounds and quit pretty quickly vs. slogging through bg after bg. The first few are always fun because my mind manages to forget the beating I took a day before. But usually the pain comes rushing back within a match or two.

I'm not anywhere close to having all achievements like this guy but I am closing in to the point that achievements are starting to look like the carrot on the stick of a carrot on the stick. When the steady stream of artificial dings slow to a trickle.

Do you have 100 badges? Now get 250! Now get 500! Now get 1,000!

WoW is really good at fishing. The worms they provide are really fun, but how is it they manage to keep us on the line when we realize we have a hook in our mouth?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

New druid blog

To check later.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My love/hate relationship with WoW continues

Each raid we're inching closer to the Glory of the Raider and Heroic: Glory of the Raider achievements.

However I have to say it has truly been an uphill battle. And not because our guild can't do them, the majority of our guild simply doesn't care. No one goes out of their way to screw up an achievement. But when your heart isn't in it, you tend to have people that don't show up with their game faces on or don't show up at all.

I envy the raiders who killed Kel'Thuzad, Malygos and Sartharion and said "Hey we beat the game, screw you guys we're going home!" Because logging on each evening scrambling to get enough people to even attempt this stuff has been frustrating to say the least.

My plan is to approach Ulduar the same way they have. Kill some bosses, get some loot, the end. Don't give a frack about achievements. Don't spend time wiping a raid so we can beat a timer. Don't juggle people around so that so-and-so can get the one they missed. Just reach the lowest bar set for us and call it a win. Then maybe stress and irritation can be scratched out of my gaming vocabulary when they shouldn't be there in the first place.

Next day update: We are now at risk of losing 2 of our most consistent members because of our guild's lack of interest in doing these achievements. I can't say I blame them for wanting to leave.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Too hard and too easy

A few weeks ago our 25-man raid had a few wipes to Sartharion + 3 Drakes. This is the fight where you have to stay out of Shadow Fissures (a circle of pain on the ground), move between Lava Waves (walls of pain on your sides), avoid Fire elemental Adds (pain around your ankles) and Whelp Adds (pain around your head), just to name a few.

Needless to say we had a few people that had trouble with all that was going on. Eventually our raid leader gave a warning if they didn't shape up (quit dying to stuff) they'd be replaced. Eventually two people were close to the chopping block and as I recall at least one person was replaced.

Later on I found out the person replaced ended up quitting the game. And one of the other players decided to quit raiding. Neither of them gave what happened in the raid as the primary reason. But it seemed obvious to me.

Today on the official forums there was a thread made by someone who said their guild would quit the game if Ulduar turned out to be too easy. I wonder why they haven't quit already. If it was that easy I assume they were done with current content a long time ago.

We want the game to be all things. Too hard so winners can be set apart from the losers, and too easy to keep from having to split up friends and family.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Achievement Pet Peeve

If I hear my guild say one more time "We need this class to do this" I'm going to snap my keyboard in two. It would require Hulk strength, but one more mention that we *need* a priest or we *need* a death knight or we *need* ranged or we *need* melee, I'll turn green and my muscles will rip my tabard apart.

So far everything we've tried with the makeup we end up with has eventually worked. But usually its not without someone griping over vent that we need this type of tank or this type of dps or this type of healer.

Most guilds don't have the luxury of picking and choosing what classes to take to what encounter. And even more importantly, is it fair to all of your Class X when you decide Class X just won't fit the bill for your raid composition?

I get the "bring the player not the class" philosophy, because am I supposed to miss out on getting certain achievements simply because I'm not a Y or a Z?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

EQ2 install

I tried re-installing EQ2.

I have to admit I was tricked by the "Install and Launch the easy-to-use Station Launcher application". That part was painless, but when it came to downloading the actual game. W. T. H.

I don't know if I was doing it wrong or what Sony needs to do to improve the process, but jeeze do you want new/returning players or not?

Perhaps they don't want an impatient "WoW ADD" player like me?

Needless to say I gave up. And I have no desire to try LotRO again. So...I dunno what to try next.


I lost my blog roll when I changed the look of the blog. I'd like to get it back, I just haven't bothered.

Just when I find Resto4Life the blogger announces she's closing it, but I've found a few other druid blogs that are very helpful and I feel I owe a link to them on my own blog.

Raid Healing

Note: I didn't want to litter the previous post with my comments.

Wrath content for the most part has been easy. The few times it has been difficult I have heard grumblings about healers. This has got me concerned about Ulduar. Because Ulduar is supposed to ramp up the difficulty and I predict more gripes about what the healers are or aren't doing.

But as Ghostcrawler has said, this comes with the territory. If after 5 years you don't realize healer carry burdens not necessarily their own, then you must be a new raider from ebay or RAF.

It still doesn't make things easier to put up with. Because overall I like the guild I'm in and I don't want to look elsewhere. So its put up or shut up.

Ghostcrawler comments to raid healers

I made this list from recent comments made in a forum thread by Ghostcrawler WoW lead systems designer. Bold and italics are mine.

1) Do not run with bad players

2) [...] if they stand in the fire, overall you have to understand that when you are signing to up to be a healer you are signing up for the primary responsibility of keeping the raid alive.

3) [...] if the idiots stand in the fire, guild kick them. If you don’t have that power, then find a better guild. “Blaming the healer” is to some extent a social problem.

5) [...]if you don’t enjoy healing [...] I’m kind of at a loss for why you raid.

6) I was saying stand up for yourself a little bit. If you are wiping on challenging content, then you need to step it up a notch. If you feel abused by your raiding group, and can’t get that behavior turned around, then by all means, find some better friends.

7) [...] the responsibility of healing the raid is yours. The responsibility of doing things that let you do your job is that of the dps and the tanks. If the tank doesn’t blow her cooldowns and then blames her death on you, she is a bad tank.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More than one mmo?

When I think about how huge of a time sink WoW is, its hard for me to believe I'm going to ask this but who else plays more than one mmo?

At one point in time I've had more than one subscription going, but usually not trying to play them all at once.

But I have been wanting to try a new mmo, if not try an old one again. Not LotRO, but maybe EQ2? I need to search my blog to see why I quit.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Only raiding?

Just like anything, when you have a lull you start thinking about other things so here I am...

Our guild has cleared everything as far as 25-man raiding is concerned. We're thinking about going back and doing 10-man stuff and achievements. But the vibe I'm getting is we're pretty much done until Ulduar.

My continuous attempts to play less have caused me not to log on and pursue achievements on non-raid nights. With so many achievements I could always find an excuse to log on and do something. Instead I've been stopping myself. This weekend I only played about 3-4 hours, which is nothing compared to usual.

One thing I'm wondering about is, since I'm not logging on and getting gold as a side effect of doing quests or farming rep, will I end up not having enough gold to raid with?

Will I be able to sustain my character by just logging on for raid nights? And more importantly will I stay interested only interacting with my guild during raids?

Anyone else only raid when they play WoW?

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Viral blogging?

Is that the description of what happens when one blogger reads someone else's blog and posts about it then another blogger reads *that* blog and does the same?

Well whatever it's called, that's what I do quite often and I'm doing it today. From Forever a Noob to Tobold to me. And perhaps it went back farther than that, but I didn't check. Today's discussion is about dual-specs.

At Forever a Noob, the blogger, who has a rogue wants rogues and mages - and I assume hunters - to have the ability to tank and/or heal. What I find quite amusing about this is the last thing many dps would want is the ability to tank or heal. Heal themselves, oh sure! But to be asked to tank (lead) and instance, or stand back and heal noobs? Yeah, be careful what you ask for!

And I would wager, as easy as healing is, they would be horrible at it. Not because they can't handle it, but because I've heard time and time again players say healing is the most boring thing ever to them. I obviously don't mind it, but that's me.

I only know of a handful of players who are able to do a variety of roles well. And out of that group even fewer have the time or access to gear themselves up appropiately for all roles. Yeah dual specs don't give you access to a full set of gear for your second role - you have to do more raiding than the average raider. This is something I lamented literally years ago.

No offense to "skilled" dps, but there is a reason the majority of players are dpsers. You have less responsibility and you can many times get away with being mediocre. Have you grouped with a mediocre tank? Did you look forward to grouping with them again? And good healers getting blamed for a myriad of errors, how do you think a mediocre healer will fare?

So I say give them the specs they are begging for. Which tree branch gets cut is another can of worms.

I'm quickly reminded of death knights. A class fully capable of tanking, yet in my own guild we have 4 raiding death knights and I've only known one to ever tank anything.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Goodbye to Tabula Rasa

I have often said I enjoy playing Sci Fi MMORPGs more than fantasy. Maybe I should change that to I enjoy the idea of playing sci fi over fantasy.

Because the last day to play Tabula Rasa was today. And I don't even remember why I didn't bother trying it out. Based on my blog I was, no surprise here, playing WoW. More specifically looking forward to ZA.

I remember asking around about Sci Fi MMOs and hearing Earth and Beyond was a good one, but had just been shut down within months that I had been looking. I tried Anarchy Online and Star Wars: Galaxies. I was also happy to hear mention of a Star Trek Online MMO.

Yet here was Tabula Rasa and I didn't even give it a try. And now its gone.

When I go looking for a particular type of game and cannot find it, will it be my own fault?

10 v 25

Are you a 10-man raider only, 25-man raider only or do you raid both?

The reason why I ask is I thought I was both, until I heard 10-man Sartharion + 3 drakes is harder than 25. I realized the few 10-mans I was doing here and there wouldn't be enough to get OS10-3 (Sart103D?) ([10]S+3)? No wonder WoW appeals to mathletes.

I've yet to try 2 let alone 3 drakes as a 10-man. In fact every Sartharion 10 man I've done so far has been one step up from a pug, full alts and pulling in people from other guilds. Basically getting whatever we could done without putting forth much effort. I've done more Naxx 10-mans, but it also has been a mix of alts and whoever was bored that evening.

So I can't really say I'm a 10-man raider. I don't have a consistent group of 9 other players I raid with each week with a goal in mind like I do with 25. And although as a raider, you'd think I'd be working on what is considered the hardest encounter in the game so far, I'm not.

I've been tricked!

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"I don't *need* to play. I can quit anytime I want!"

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