Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I can tell you why the end will never come

I was chatting with Melvin yesterday... he begins with:

"I have a Melvin story for your blog!"

... ok...

"I was doin quests in Icecrown, and I landed on the wrong ship... and got killed!"


... ok... um... but you're a pally... why not jump off and bubble before you land?

"Oh, you can do that?"

I had to explain to him that that wasn't quite a Melvin story. My gentle readers are connoisseurs of silly, and that was about just gettin stupid. See... we all get stupid. We don't all get Melvin.

There's this little horde quest up in borean tundra. At bogglesworth point, horde side, fizzcrank airstrip alliance side. Theres this vertical cave system with a buncha snobolds and magnataur in there. So, my first time through... its like 5 in the morning, and I'm 4 quests from done with the borean side of things. I get the quest.

"Blah blah, X is missing, blah blah, hes being held captive, go do something."

So I jump into the pit, see the boss, torch the boss, go back to base.

No complete. Dammit. Read quest again... "Find X"

Jump back in, find X. Talk to X, who's dead and floating. Get new quest, "held here by power of Y"

Great, go kill boss, go back to base. No complete.

Read quest again. "Y != boss"

Dammit... jump back into pit, look around, find a named snobold... kill him. Get complete. Read quest again... report back to X. Go to X.

"Thank you, I'm free! Take my body back to A (the original quest giver)."

Go back to base. No complete. Reread quest. "Loot my body below where I'm floating, and take back to A."

At this point I'm cursin up a storm. I jump back in, loot the body, fight my way out of the pit for the umpteenth time, get to base... turn in quest and I'm done. And wondering why, Horde side, we dont have to kill the damn boss at the bottom of the pit...

But this isn't Melvin. This is just bein stupid, at the end of a 12 hour gamin session. I explain this to Melvin.

"Well, what are you gonna write about in the blog then?"

I was thinking about telling them about your views on that mage fire talent hot streak. You know the one, after two crits, get a insta cast pyroblast...

"Oh yeah, great for pvp, terrible for raiding."

Do tell...

"Well, in pvp, if you get the chance to shoot someone in the back... this talent will proc. It's like it knows."

Um... isnt that cuz you pop combustion, so you're pretty much assured 2 crits in a row?

"Oh, yeah. Never thought of that."

But what about for raiding?

"Oh, all those instant pyroblasts make you run outta mana too fast. Better to just keep casting scorch and ignore the procs."

@Charles. Thanks for the advice. I'd read about that before... but lets face it... "ride yo 72 ass through terrain filled with level 80 elites, then try to kill yourself in the right place" is kinda a pain. However, you kinda inspired me to try it. And miracle of miracles... I got it done. Can't quite believe it myself.

As for the pvp side. I got a tip on that from another friend. Hit the wondervolt in Dal, then go to wintergrasp. Don't matter what level you are if your inna tank!

"How can you do it? Shoot innocent gnomes and dwarves?"

"Easy! Just don't lead em as much!"

AND! I was told (have yet to check out) that if you die in Wintergrasp, you can release to Dal. And so get the wondervolt again, and portal back in... I might try this tomorrow, last day for holiday...

Monday, December 29, 2008

Came the last night of sadness

Weird Christmas season. Crazy Derrek is back... I was trying to avoid him, but he snuck into my apartment building...

He had been living with his mother, in her assisted living joint. But she passed out on the bus last month, and never woke up.

So Derek is living with his sisters. And he HATES his sisters. And he's stopped bathing. He wants to stay with me for a while...

A friend of mine was disgnosed with a lymphoma. Kinda like BRK's friend is raising money for. It's not one of the auto fatal ones... its treatable with chemo therapy. The only problem...

She just got pregnant after trying for a few years.

Chemo started last friday.

So, the guild is getting a little bigger. Got an uber prot pally, another coupla healers. Unbound got her 25man raid pants, and is pretty much finished with gearing. (Just needs some shoulders... and maybe trinkets...)

I finally started leveling Majeure. Did UK as 70, and pulled 1300 dps. Which makes me wonder exactly how people pull less at 80. I realize that there's a huge freaking crit nerf, but still... I wonder if undergeared mages are better off usin frost builds till they get the gear for end game... rather than FFB, which seems terribly dependent upon crit...

Respecced Mabd as BM. Turns out MM/Surv runs outta mana during the first aimed shot cooldown. Sigh... lost 1200 RAP in the switch. But a kill commanded gorilla is an amazing thing. And I can't wait to try out the berserk rabid t rex...

Burnt out a lot on the achievements. You need flying for one of em, horde side (guy is on one of the icce crown airships, and you can't summon to him). I think that one broke me.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

And dreams that had never come true

I'm still a little boggled that someone rejected Megs assa healer. And she has a neat post up on pally healing talents...

I wish I could do something like that, but my access to WoW stuff at work is kinda limited. BTW, if you a fan of enhance shammydom, Windfury hassa neat little brief on the changes so far...

I'm beginning to love my holy pally brethren. They just complement resto shammies so nicely in raids. Between mana totems and wisdom blessings, single target and raid target healings... specially once the hated CoH and Wild Growth spells get the big ol' nerf hammer. Tho I'm not so sure how effective Wild Growth is, considering I've not run with a resto druid yet.

CoH is kinda just a rude little healing spell. If it was a class, it would be ret pally. Sure as hell makes Loatheb easy tho. Or does until the nerf comin...

As fer resto shammies.. apparently too many resto shammies saw what I saw... ignore healing wave, spam lesser healing wave, and chain heal/riptide as needed. So, blizz is gonna make lesser healing wave a bit less mana efficient, and make healing wave a bit more oomphy. (I might have to start using healing wave...)

But between Megs and Av, my guild holy pal (he's weird... he hates ret pallies as much as I do... and leveled to 80 as holy...) I'm getting a bit of a handle on the psychological differences between the specs...

I mean, resto shammies are a lot like druids... you DON'T want to get behind on your heals... if the tank drops below 35%, you gonna have problems getting him back up... OTOH, you have so much bonus healing flying around, group healing isn't a problem.

Holy pals tend to be a bit more confident... but my friend is quite a bit paranoid about his mana consumption. Like shammies, they depend on that mp5 crap in gearing, unlike the spirit hogging druids and priests... but unlike shammies, they don't have the mana regen bells and whistles...

Anyway, I highly recommend the Windfury post. Elemental is starting to look very viable with the upcoming changes. I was talking to Melvin, and he hated them, which is probably a good sign.

Fer god's sake... he chain casts scorch in raids. And keeps molten armor up during Loatheb. Sigh. Oh yeah... have a link... and tell me, is that not the most evil internet thing you've ever heard of?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

From the halls of montezuma to the shores of Tripoli...

So anytime someone asks me what my plus healing is... I can just link em the drake. Ima now inna leet group. Tho Megs, dearest... if you can heal arena to a title, heroic strat is nuttin (you run, damage comes from every direction, you heal). CoT Strat is no real test of yuir uberness...

Love the Corps. Not to suggest that my l33tness is anyway shape or form like theirs... but it kinda felt like it for a sec after I won the mount. I think I mentioned a while back that my friend Bruce came to visit for thanksgiving. And I gotta coupla stories on that. But for this one, well, Bruce is ex-navy. And thus, has a low opinion of the Corps. Since he was stationed on a vehicle landing craft, he spent a ton of time around em...

"So, you got this big floating hotel. With fresh food, cable tv, and air conditioning. And you leave it to walk through mud and get shot at... how smart is that?"

"Well, Bruce, you got me there... OTOH, Air Force, you sleep in your own bed at night, and theres tons of bars next door when you get off shift."

"Im talking REAL MILITARY, GODDAMIT!"

Bruce was also quite talkative, since they declassified some of his commendations... I might tell those stories later. (BTW... I never question Bruce's stories. He is the most frighteningly competent human being I have ever met.)

It started off kinda easy.. me and my tank chillin...

J: "I'm bored."
Me: "yeah."
J: "Wanna do something?"
Me: "Yeah, but where am I gonna get a dead mime and 7 gallons of smooth peanut butter this time of day?"
J: "... how about running timed strat?"

So, since I still need my pants outta there, it was settled... J posted LFG, asking for more with the caveat that "delusions of dps need not apply..."

Um.. later on we went to Naxx. Now, at this point, the guild has two tanks (the DK is now ready for prime time... and managed to suck up patchwerk's hateful bolts like a pro. Plus, that death grip is awesome for "you got adds" duty. Tho I must admit I was a little freaked the first time I got "You haz Aggro" message, only to see a mob fly by my face to the waiting DK)

However... we short decent dps. How short? Well... melvin got an invite to come.

Now, see... there was a little bit of a brain fart involved with this. There's this guy named Jae. Who, like most of us, has sacrificed his soul and life to the game and thus knows how to play. (The tragedy of Melvin is that he sacrificed his soul and life, and doesn't know how to play. Kinda like selling your soul for a 15% off coupon on purchase of $30 or more at Bed Bath and Beyond...)

Jae knows Melvin. Actually... I got Melvin into the game, Melvin got Magebert (his brother), and Magebert got Jae. Jae and Melvin hang out every time Melvin goes to visit his brother.

Jae is running a ret pally these days. And we were short a healer for Naxx, so Jae offered to respec holy. Again, Jae knows how to play, and has a 70+ priest. So he can heal. However, our well geared holy pal logged on, and suddenly we didnt need a healer. So, instead of bumping Melvin, the group decided to bump Jae. Cuz, you know we didn't need another healer, even tho he was still ret. I'm sorry if this is confusing, but again, Brain Fart.

Melvin lagged behind both tanks in dps for the night. (Tho he did get the safety dance achievement!) However...

Well, in the Untouchables, Sean Connery's character has a great line...

"Just like a whop, bringing a knife to a gun fight!"

Never bring Melvin to a dps fight. Specifically Loatheb. That was where the guild stopped for the night. If you dont know Loatheb... during the fight, dps gets +50% crit, and no threat. Even with this, Melvin couldnt break 1400dps. He was below 1k the rest of the night. Um... he's still wearing level 70 glad gear... he has less than 950 spellpower and less than 12% crit. And no mana pool. And he's a fire mage.

Now, Ima bit of a bastard, so I thought maybe, if you question my Melvin stories, you might be interested in what Jae has to say...

jae: "THEY TOOK MELVIN! INSTEAD OF ME! AND HE SUCKS!

me: "yeah, and a ret pally really would have been useful... divine storm and replenishment really help with Loatheb..."

jae: "He SUCKS! I do THREE TIMES his damage!"

me: "yeah, it was one of those weird things, tons of plate dps and tanks, but no real cloth.."

jae: "WTF?"

Jae is quite a bit miffed. However, I doubt Melvin is getting another invite chance. Sunday we went for part two, and dropped Loatheb and Patchwerk. And no one, but no one, wants Melvin in the group for Patchwerk. Yay guild! 7 bosses down!

Friday, December 12, 2008

A life from which they'd love to flee

Bettie Page, RIP.

Not that many people change the world with their hotness. Damn it all to hell.

Here's a brain teaser. Knock yourselves out. And yeah... that was back when education meant something.

Melvin was running regular HoL last night. Um, no, that's not the way to start this one.

One of our guild locks did vault, and came in second in dps. With less than 1.4k. I got into a conversation with the Guild Head of DPS, something along the lines of...

"I really, really, really have to respec elemental and show these fools what real damage is."

"Isn't that my job?"

"You ain't been on lately. I'm reduced to tellin Kry stories, you know the ones, and then the lazer turkey started shooting thunder out his furry arse... anyway, you know what I mean?"

"Yeah, all the time."

So... Melvin, who has been avoiding end game comment like it was a bill collector, ran HoL with a guild equip team. See... our current 10 man offtank issa DK. And tryin to get a DK to uncrittability is apparently quite the task, since they don't use shields. So we've been runnin him through tryin to get enough gear to make up the difference.

And here's another Blizzard droppin the ball thing. They never thought of this. See, bears, i.e. feral form druids, don't quite have the same uncrit problem because of talents. They don't really *need* the shield.

There is, OTOH, nuttin in the DK talent tree to help.

How bad is the problem? Blizz is introducin a rune fer the DK rune weapon thingamajiggy that has 25 defense skill on it.

Skill, not rating. Thats like 125 defense rating. (actually, I think closer to 123.) That's a whole hell of a lot, and would've been nice to have um, right now...

Anyway, Melvin's mage was with them. And he dueled THE ROCK!, our guild prot warrior tank. And lost. Badly. Over and over.

And then blamed it on the gear.

"He's all epic'd out!"

"Yeah, all the defense, which reduces spell damage by 0%. Oh, and the dodge, that reduces it another 0%. And then there's the block and parry! Oh the horror! I've run with him, on single targets he gets all the way up to 700dps. Man, rather run into a rabid pack of feral ret pallies that go toe to toe with that monster..."

It was a bad day for magedom when Melvin decided on that for his first class.

Meh.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I feel so untouched...

Yeah Ripper... water shield is definately insanely overpowered...

Once the elemental shammy fixes come in, I have serious concerns about shammy play balance.

Let's see... l33t dps, can heal themselves at will (and others) and never run outta mana when damage is flying around at random...

Sound like a good thing to have in raids?

Boomkin as well. Hrm, we'll see.

So, a little history. Back before patch 3.0 hit, things got a little dicey. The arena season was ending, and badly. (my fault.) I was running around setting up my chars for the expansion, and my mage for the great inscription run... and getting way too intense.

By which I mean, I told Dogs of War, I'm gettin really really obsessive about this inscription thing. I was posting screen shots of my herbage collection.

And well, one thing led to another, last nerves got jumped on, and I left Arms and Fury's casual guild. Which upset him a great deal, since he was counting on me to heal the rest of the crew through some end game stuff to help gear em out before the expansion. He kinda took it as a personal betrayal... and stopped talking to me for about a month and a half.

The other thing... my old guild got back together. The one I ran MC and Kara with for the first times. Melvin, Magebert, Jae, Dave and a buncha people I didn't know in real life, but spent a lotta time with online had come together again for the expansion. And I kinda wanted in.

Well, anyway.. one of the guild heads is an obsessive boomkin. Who posted on the guild forums about dps. See, we got nutjob warrior tank, who knows what the hell hes doin. We got 2 nutjob healers (me and a holy pal, poor bastard). And we got the boomkin. The rest are a bit more casual. So the boomkin laid out the law in the guild site. If you are dps... you are expected to reach about 2k dps. 1.6k at the start is the lowest acceptable. As he put it, and I couldn't agree more, it really isn't about gear. It's about knowing your class.

The next coupla weeks we're gonna be running the dps through heroics, helpin tune em for the raids. Why did I bring this up? Well, BRK had a post a bit back about uber dps. And the impending uber nerf to BM hunterdom. And I have to say... it aint just a broken class that gets you to 3k dps. It's knowing how to PLAY the broken class.

I'm just sayin.

So, rip, with the vicious amount of random wandering damage in nexx... hows frost (and ice barrier, and double ice block) lookin?

And last night, Unbound got the northrend heroic dungeon master achievement. But more on tricks of the trade, how to WTFPWN heroic old kingdom later.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The speed of sound

So... a groveling apology.

I did not mean to insult Arms and Fury. I meant to do a post on early quirks in tanking and theat for WotLK.

According to WoWInsider, quoting Ghostcrawler, most players (read casual) aint yet to 80.

Unbound is about at the end of the heroic grind. Tho I would like to thank GeeGolly for raining on my parade, and pointing out that the immense amount of time I'm gonna be spending in raids will be completely useless for gaining faction...

Damn.

Anyway. I've done all the Heroics at this point. And most of that has been with PUGs. And, considering that the first people to reach 80 should be slightly above the curve... it's been a mixed bag.

Look. Tanks and healers have better gear than anyone else. Cuz tanks and healers have less grief finding groups than anyone else. We haven't quite reached the point where dps is outgearing anyone. And... tanks are havin a little bit of a problem.

90% of it is that we got lazy and stupid after 3.0 hit. The tank could easily hold aggro as, in the words of A&F, every class found their AoE button.

Then we ran through normal dungeons in Wrath in gear that wouldn't be replaced until level 80. Is it any wonder the first dungeons were cake?

But then the wall. No one is running level 80's in normal mode. The jump to heroic was made with both feet, and no one is looking back. And, quite frankly... some people aren't ready.

PUG after PUG... no cc, no caution, dps jumps in even before the mobs get pulled. We're having to relearn game skills.

As an aside... here is why you should not depend upon your resto shammy to Hex... I have *zero* plus hit gear. My chance to fail is usually around 10-12 percent. It has a range of 20... you do NOT want me that close to a mob pull. That being said, I will try.

But while doin HoL, I got tasked with a hex, and while waiting for the hex target to get into range, one of the other mobs charged me and punted me back 20'. It was a long run.

Anyway... back to the post. I did not mean to insult Arms and Fury. I merely wished to point out how a tank of some reputation is struggling with the new world order. And wishing he could run 80's level dungeons in normal mode to get some of the gear he needs to excel in heroic 80's.

After Burning Crusade hit, the first people in end instances found something very disturbing. Healer aggro was out of freaking control. Tanks could not, for the life of them, keep stuff offa healers in early Kara. It took a coupla patches for Blizzard to return equilibrium.

This should be obvious... healer threat, tank threat, and dps threat scale differently. It is irrational to expect perfect balance even with as extensive testing as Blizzard did in the beta. We all know Wrath shipped with issues placed on the back burner. (Dual specs, trap mastery... etc, etc...)

I'm worried about tanks. My pally tanks are takin weird spikes in damage. Warriors seem, again, to be heads and shoulders above the rest. My one feral experience was a nightmare. And DK's... well, it seems they're really awesome offtanks, but can't mitigate damage long enough to main tank. Blizz has said they're looking into this.

And even with a warrior tank... I got dps pullin theat by attackin the wrong mob, I got tanks not marking clearly enough, and no one seems to understand what the word "back" in the sentence "pull them the hell back" means.

Sigh. Anyway, back to the original point of the post. I meant no offense to Arms and Fury, and am sorry he took it as such.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Heaven aint close in a place like this...

So... Melvin and Magebert just got their second chars to 80. Both ret pallies. Neither have really bothered with anything vaguely like end game. I think both are expecting to gear their chars by accumulating points via sub 1400 arena teams.

Melvin refuses to believe that Unbound can kill ret pallies. Unbound refuses to believe anyone with any sort of self respect would play a ret pally, and therefore euthenasia is the proper treatment for the poor dears. If only it didn't take 5 minutes. Note to Blizzard... for god's sake, make those bastards run outta mana already.

Resto siliness. I got three glyphs. Lesser healing wave (must have). Water mastery. And healing totem.

Now a quick rundown on why...

Lesser healing wave glyph increases effects of the spell on a target with earthshield by 20%. This makes my LHW as effective as HW, with a much faster cast time. I'm sorry... at this point, after having run all the heroics, a 2.5 cast time general heal is insanely slow. Dont even bother putting HW on your toolbar. True, after putting 13 points in various talents, HW will give you better Healz Per Seconds... but only after the third cast on the same target.

Healing totem glyph. +20%. Hmm... right now, thats about 270 every 2 seconds. I was doin end boss of heroic Old Kingdom... and well, you know the locusts? They do about 700 every tic. See the math. Love the math. Also awesome for Loken :)

And water mastery... +30% water shield mana regen. Thats, um... 30 mp5. How many gems would that require? 5, 6? Yeah, sign me up.

Here's my take on glyphs. The glyphs you use should at least be worth a talent point. As in... I would spend at least a talent point to get that. If it's worth two... grab it. Must have.

Glyphs I'm not quite ready to try...

Chain heal. Your chain heal heals one more target. Inna 5 man setting... not so useful. The odds of 4 of your party being close enough to get hit by chain healz is not good... later on, raid wise, maybe.

Healing wave. You get healed for 20% of whatever your healing wave healz for. um... some fights, this would be freaking awesome. Problem is... if I cast this, the tank will bloody die... Not sure I wanna take this risk, especially since as thing currently stand, the member of my party with the lowest health gets a 40% heal every time my LHW crits. And I have a talent that adds 60% to my healing crit for a limited time. (which I need to use more...)

Earthliving glyph. +5% chance to apply earthliving effect (normally 20%.) I have to admit, I was EXTREMELY suspicious of earthliving when I saw it. It's a relatively puny little hot... however... with talents, it has a 100% chance to apply to someone who's health is below 35%. AND it gets a spell coefficient. Currently, mine is about 3500 over 12 secs. Um... thats freaking sweet. Chain heal loves this... three diff chances to proc. It's always up on my tank, usually. And any druid will tell you... lottsa hots on tanks prevent... "accidents." Only prob... that 5% aint enough to justify the glyph slot. Unless I get the chain heal glyph... then maybe... 4 chances to proc?

So, at this point, I'm missing ONE FREAKING H Old Kingdom boss for the every heroic achievement. And there's gear I need outta Old Strat. Aside from that, I'm pretty much done with heroics. I got enough emblems... and Naxx runs will get me whatever else rep or emblems I need. I'm 15 from my tier 7 chest... but got the season 5 chest outta Vault, so that gear upgrade is less pressing. I could use that healing trinket... but truely, it isn't that much an upgrade.

So... can I preen? At this point, shammy healerz seem to be head and shoulders above all others... single person healz we can hang. And that's our weakest point. Group healing, even CoH priests can't come close. Poison/Disease cleansing? We haz it. A priest will get you dead on the venomancers during the last boss of Heroic AN. Druids? I can haz bloodlust, plz? And windfury? KK, thx, bai. Paladins? Holy pals are so useless now, blizzard refuses to put any of their gear in the end game.

It's weird. I'm mental enough to check the chief raiding guilds on my server to see how badly I outgear their resto shammies. And then there's the tank issue...

Is it just me, or have warriors achieved significant separation? All the druids seem to have gone boomkin. All the pallys ret. DK's havent been around long enough to tank, so it's hard to judge them. But I've been mostly seein prot warriors tanking, with a few prot pallies hangin on. My one run with feral was a disaster.

Then there's the threat issue. My favorite tank blogger has gone from "you can't pull aggro offa me if you try!" to "well, they just have to be more careful with threat..." and "you know, you generate a lot of threat asa healer!"

Of course this was during a fight where I blew by 2k heals per second. You should see what I do during Loken. Even if certain foul smelling dwarves think its ALL ABOUT THE DPS. I did the Loken fight with a hunter that got too far away from the chain healz, and died at the first AoE. With 2 dps, we killed that bastard. So, you deviant kitty sniffer... may I politely suggest Loken issa healing check? With decent dps, I've downed him in 45secs. Without decent healing, you don't make it past the first smash of the hammer... do Heroic AN with a priest, then get back to me. When you do, don't forget stone form.

Anyway, part of this is that Herk is still a bit undergeared. An undergeared tank is problematic... he needs better dps and healz to compensate, but has problems keeping aggro with them. Tanks should usually outgear everyone else... its kinda an imperative. My guild tank is very well geared... and a riot. In vent he won't shut up while tanking.

"I AM A ROCK! YOU SHALL NOT PASS!

"MESS WITH MY HEALER AND I GET MEAN!"

"TRY THAT ONE SHOT MY DPS CRAP WITH *THIS* TAUREN!"

Which leads to interesting questions about the scaling of tank threat... as dps gets its feet under it... will tanks be able to keep up? I'm beginning to see dps threat cap itself, even with great tanks. Considering how blizzard sprinkled raid buffs all over the classes... that proc in battle... tanking has become even more complicated. BANG! +15% melee haste, +10% ap, +15% crit... all hitting when dps is burning cooldowns... and suddenly threat can double, or so. And I think tanks are having problems keeping up with these spikes. Or will when the dps catches up gear wise.

And last.. really, no one liked the Twilight link last post? Damn... must haz feedbacks...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

To kick the last nail in...

*Edit* Here's something to read....

Who's this? Why, it's Benjamin Disraeli! The father of modern conservatism, at least the political side of it. What's he doin in our neck of the woods?

Well, back at the Congress of Berlin, circa 1878, Bismark said of Disraeli... "The old jew, ah, THAT is the man!"

In like vein... Ripper, that old troll... ah, THAT is the mage!

Anyway, Ripper has a neat little post up on some very sensible changes to mage talents to make spirit a useful stat for mages. Cuz, let's face it, when they made evoke a flat mana pool regen ability, rather than an enhanced (spirit based) mana regen ability, mages pretty much lost interest in it.

Here's my take... BURN WORLD, BURN!

Screw it. What the world needs now, is hate sweet hate.

Let us not forget the ultimate mage poem by Robert Frost...

Fire and Ice

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

Or, in the other interests of anarchy... what we need are more esoteric drops that allow for off the wall *functional* specs.

Look... Ima fire mage. I want crit, sweet crit. Gots to have it.

Ima frost mage. Screw crit, give me spell power and haste.

Ima arcane mage. I wanna be kidnapped and beat bloody by a dozen mimes wielding nerf bats...

No one set of items will satisfy all mages. Or all priests. Or all locks. But that's pretty much what we've been getting. A dozen freaking epic cloth bracers with the same damn stats, just a different name. Gemming to spec really doesn't help enough. Nor do enchants. I think blizz really dropped the ball on some of this. I mean, theres no reason for a faction to only have ONE freaking epic mail reward, and that be enhance. Or even one caster mail reward... I know blizz wants both dps and healers to use the same gear... but theres no reason not to offer three different caster mail items, with different stats emphasized. What does it cost them?

All I'm saying... is that first, blizzard is trying to do too many damn things as far as itemization, and failing miserably. I mean.... Unbound has almost as many epics in her enhance off set as she does for her resto set. Caster mail? None to be found...

Remember the original class sets? Remember mages all rollin on lock items cuz locks got sexy sta and int, and mage gear had all this crappy agil and spirit?

It hasn't gotten better. Blizzard gives us what they think we should want, even if, in the case of mages, not even an ice troll mage would want spirit.

We should have drops heavy on crit, on spell power... even a few hard core spirit. Instead of a managerie of stats on every item... let people specialize...
Myself, I'd like to take cause against Ripper's favorite punching bag, mana shield...

If you got enough spirit on an arcane mage... I'd love to see what mana shield could do with a 600mp5 mage build. Just freaking weird enough to be fun to play... like all those survival hunters runnin around back in the day with 80% dodge...

All I'm saying here is that the problem isn't that spirit is useless for mages. So is strength, and no one would call for talent changes to make strength a useful mage stat...

The problem is that the bulk of caster gear has spirit on it, whether you want it or not. And this is all blizzard's freaking fault. So.. two responses... first, the when blizzard gives you lemons, make lemonade. That would be ripper. Me, Ima more a "when blizzard gives you lemons, show up at their office with a chainsaw and a dead squirrel, screaming.. 'WHERE'S MY PIE!'" type of guy.

Anyway, Unbound broke 2k +healing/spell damage last night with shammy cast buffs. Ima really, really, really well geared right now.

If only I could get some damn rings and necklaces that didn't have freaking spirit on em...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

What's so civil about a civil war?

Time to level a second toon. I had been thinking about running Mabd, but to be honest... Mabd really needs to finish all her netherstorm quests (another 50 or so) back in Outland. And I really don't want to mess with outland right now.

Mabd has a 440 JC. And does her JC and cooking dailies each and every day. She's almost 71...

No... after Unbound healed for a frostfire mage inna heroic, I now know what I want Majeure to be when she's all growded up! Sick sick damage. I have to admit, I was a bit peeved at BRK for showin offa combined pet/hunter dps around 2400...

But then I saw my lovely lovely Lightninghoof Horde FROSTFIRE mage doin about 2100. And was happy again.

For the most part... healin has been easy. I've had two bad tankin experiences... both with a poor prot pally that was way undergeared for heroics. OTOH, I'm geared enough for anything. Theresa really interesting fight at the end of heroic halls of lightning that becomes insanely easy with a simple gear check. If eveyone has at least 14k life... and the healer has mad skillz... you can just sit tight, take the 12k hits from Loken, and down that fool in 45 seconds.

Moar on dps... ima seeing way too damn many dps in heroics that can't break 1200. And my problem with this prot pally... he's only got 21k health. No evasion (all defense gear). And he doesn't use retaliation aura, so he keeps losin aggro to dps. I'm not sayin that the ret aura is needed. I'm just sayin... when someone doin 1400dps is takin aggro from you... you aint tankin right.

Plus crap would come free and smack me. Bad tank = more healing =more healer threat. Ah, the hell with it.

So... s priests have been trashin the dps meters in my runs. Aside from frostfire boy (who had pretty crappy gear) the only dps I've seen over 2k has been 2 s priests anda really awesome death knight.

Shammies have been representing.. even while undergeared. I have to say... when the new elemental changes come, ele shammies might be a force to be reconned with. And, btw, ripper? Could ya be moar a whining little beatch? Yeah, blizzard has no damn clue how the "spirit on everything cloth" fetish screws mages. Still, takin a cheap shot at elemental shammies? For shame! I hope ret pallies think you have a "real purty smile."

Not only do elemental (and resto) shammies get jack sh*t from spirit... elemental shammies main mana regen depends on int. All this +mp5 gear is killing us. I think hunters too... I doan see BRK sporting much mp5 these days. As for Blizzard... I mean... really... if your gonna make a million different epic cloth wrist drops, do they all have to be the freaking same?

What does that mean for poor unbound? Well... the appeal of cloth and leather gear is very limited. And my rings and cloaks tend to have crappy spirit as well. I mean... I don't run outta mana. I do, but not in a way that spirit will help. If the group is takin massive damage, water shield will keep me full. If the group is taking limited damage, chain heal keeps it all good. And I can spam chain heal non stop for a bit more than a minute without water shield up.

One target healing? Between earth shield and lesser healing wave... I really dont have have problems. Did heroic stone halls.. fought the stone giant... you know, baby gruul? The first shatter killed all three dps, leavin just the prot pally and me. 8 min later... hes at full health, I'm at full mana, and the boss is dead. (The pally was killin me... how the hell can anyone do that little damage?)

Resto shammies are sick sick healz now. I think properly specced holy priests can keep up... but its close.

As for damage... the second the elemental changes go live, Ima respec elemental, and see what 27% crit and 1700 spell power will get me. If the lava burst changes are accurate, I'm expecting 8-10k auto crits.

Meanwhile, I'll run beloved Majeure up to 80... and Mabd gets shelved fer a small bit. Even tho end game, I think the MM/Surv hunter build will scale the best.

Oh yeah, ripper... didya see Meg's little tantrum?

"Oh, and Mages might be getting 50% reduction from DOTs with Mage Armor.. screw Mages."

Moar like 75% when you count 140 resist all, Megs my love. Gonna be weird when mages start running towards yuir lock in the BG, aint it?

Heh heh heh...

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Cuz I never hesitate to put a fool on his back...

So hit 80. Went resto.

There is an appalling lack of healers on my server. My services are in much demand.

And I demanded a lot.


You know its sad when you score Greed for yuir enhance offspec.

Some thoughts...

I've been asked for a level 80 elemental spec. This should explain my feelings. In short, elemental shammies are gettin 4 talent points back and a new penultimate talent. It's about freaking time. When that happens... I'll talk turkey.

That dual spec thing needs to hit soon. If blizzard thinks I can quest as resto, they on better drugs than Melvin is.

K. If you aren't level 80 yet... or if you are... here's the noobed friendly warning.

If you are not an inscriptionist, you will want shoulder enchants. They come from The Sons of Hodir. With one small caveat... it takes 27 days of rep grind to get exalted. They doan have a tabard. (Unbound is about exalted with Violet Eye right now :) )

That caveat... theres a spawn much like the infamous netherwing eggs that will give you rep. They very hard to find tho.

And the quest area is much smaller than netherwing ledge... which means, onna pvp server... the sooner you start, the less grief you go through. Cuz everyone, eventually, will need this faction. (Again minus the inscription people)

Monday, November 17, 2008

I never wondered where you went, I only wondered why...

4 bars from 77. And, for sake of my health, mental and otherwise, I tore myself from the game to go to work.

Here's Unbound chillin with her peeps. (I know, that one is gonna leave marks...)

One of my guildies hit 80 sunday. And was in Naxx last night. You can tell the crazies by how high they have their chars....

Oh, I'm second. Right ahead of the guy who uninstalled WoW twice to break the addiction. Even Melvin thinks I've lost my damn mind. (He hit 75 last night.) And this while wtfpwning the AH over Death Knight glyphs. I'm over 22k gold now, even after buyin my chars gigantique bags. And all the fundage blown buyin professions... and respeccs...

Not to mitigate my madness, but I did the Ampitheater of Anguish series... got a tell outta the blue from a warrior I'd done some stuff with... he asked me to heal as elemental for their group. (See, level fast enough, nice things happen...) Went great, and I got my new weapon... cept for one thing. There were *two* level 75 DK's in the party. Now really... that's hard core freaking crazy right there...

Here's the plan... hit 77 tonight, then level Mabd fer a bit while Unbound flies all over the map doin mining. Before the competition hits, and while prices are still high.

Why is Mabd back to MM/Surv? Big number addiction. The pet aint there to tank (unless I'm doin viper aspect...) The pet is there to snare. (Hyena) Gimma a snare... and I will murder the mob. 2k aimed shot crits...

Not sure about my ability to solo some of the elites when Mabd finally gets to leveling. But for damn sure Unbound can solo. First, she doesn't run out of mana. At all. Even chaincasting chain lighting... it doesn't happen. Once you get lava burst... flame shock, lava burst, heal, heal, heal, lava burst, etc... water shield gives 420ish mana every four seconds now (it seems they lengthened the cooldown) as well as +100 mp5.

Have respecced Unbound 5 times since start of expansion. Once to go resto and heal for some guildies, once to spec back, then a buncha times to move points...

If you play elemental... lava burst will rock your world. First, do yourself a favor and pick up the flame shock glyph. Flame shock now has a 40 yard range... and issa nice little pull mechanism. Throw down a earth bind, flame shock a mob, pullin three or so, then chain light/lava burst while kitin. Helps to have instant ghost wolf, btw...

A few notes on use and abuse of flame shock abuse. With the glyph, flame shock lasts 15 secs, and isn't consumed by Lava burst. Lava burst will auto crit on something with the flame shock debuff. And when I say, auto crit... I mean 4500ish, offa 1.5 sec cast spell with an 8 sec cooldown.

Strange things happen when shammies crit. Elemental shammies get a group buff that adds 5% crit for 15 secs, and their next two spells are at 40% less mana cost. With other talents, (notably on the third tier of enhance) this means shock spells cost about 30 mana. (No, that isn't a typo.)

So spell rotation... flame shock, lava burst, lightning, earth shock, lightning, lava burst, lightning, lighting, flame shock...

I like my DPS in instances now. Two pugs as elemental, led both, but circumstances were not quite random. (See... when you level fast enough, it really isnt a problem getting a pug as dps. Who are people looking for dps gonna pick for AN? The 72 hunter or the 76 shammy?)

Anyway, the flame shock debuff is about 100dps (with talents). With the glyph, it's 15 seconds... I leave the rest for my not so gentle readers.

So the question... I now have auto crit, and rely more heavily on a dot. Should I regear for +spell power, instead of all the damn crit I'm packing now? I'm gonna autocrit every 8 seconds.. so one lava burst, one shock, two lightning bolts (or just three light bolts)... I dunno. Will work on it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The next voice you hear will be your own...

Sorry again fer not postin... I've been, um, indisposed.

Runnin Unbound through northrend first. Doin this post durin a 50 min queue. Unbound is 72, and doin quite well as elemental.

I respecced Mabd as BM. That lasted all of 5 mins, now I'm back to a Surv/MM hybrid. The end plan is to go MM til Master Marksman, and Surv till Lightning Reflexes. Might just only go 4/5 in Master MM to pick up wyvern's sting in surv.

I mean... the buffs are just amazing with this. It picks up every +crit and +rap talent, as well as Aimed shot, scatter shot, wyvern, readiness... so yuir all ready fer pvp lovin.

Makin tons of goldage offa DK glyphs. Still know better than to blow it on a mammoth tho...

Fer those zombie fans... heresa Simon Pegg interview on what makes a zombie scary, and why they should never run. And if you doan know who Simon Pegg is, shame on you!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

And I wont turn around...

So... Maj kicked it old skool, ran all three CE instances saturday, and got her new flyin mount.

Ain't he pretty? I think I'll name him Chicken Biggie Little. Much better than a stinking gorilla or devilsaur...

Had about 1400-1500 sustained dps across all three instances as frost. Most of that was due to spamming blizzard on fights. But on boss and single targets... frostbolt spam was doin 1200ish. I blew away a surv hunter that the group had been bragging on. Nuttin better than spanking people who think they can hang. At the end of the run, our enhance shammy was reduced to joking... "Second in healing! Let's see yuir mage top that!"

Fingers of Frost is a SICK SICK dps boost. Between blizzard and frostbolt, I hada about a 50% crit rate (my base crit was about 23%, running with molten armor). Im surprised that blizzard wasn't critting more... I think that the last patch had a unannounced nerf on how fingers of frost affects targets in blizzard... my crit rate was quite a bit higher before the last patch.

Brain Freeze, as far as I'm concerned, is now nerfed to oblivion. It no longer procs on Blizzard... and I suspect it won't on Cone of Cold, either. It would seem to proc only onna frost bolt hit... and let's face it, the dps boost from an instant cast fireball vs another frostbolt (considering GCD) seems dubious at best. Time to move those three points somewhere else.

What was Unbound the Stalwart doin? Shoppin fer haberdashery in Old Hillsbrad. I also managed to heal heroic MgT with a very... strange... PUG. Two ret pals anda rogue from one of the server's better raiding guild. A pugged healer (Unbound), anda pugged tank, some poor pally they talked into respeccing prot for the run.

Very skilled tank, even if she only had 11k life. And very upset at the end of the run, since she had been promised any plate drops since "everyone else is in tier 6..." Only to find the retadins rollin against her.... and one of those bastards kept pullin aggro... and MOVING THE MOB OUTTA RANGE OF CHAIN HEALS.

Are ret pallies the new huntards? I thought locks would take this slot, but they've disappeared since the big patch....

Sorry about only havin one post last week. I've been ill. *pitieous cough* Still feel like crap. Still... release is next week, and I have tuesday off, while im taking a half day thursday, and all day friday off.

And Melvin? He's leveling a warrior.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I am the ballot in your box, the bullet in the gun...

Dearest Megs...

Ima sorry to disappoint you. But this is, and shall remain, a family site. Besides, Halloween is a time of reflection on our mortality. Why else dress children as monsters? For a holiday that exemplifies the hormone driven sexual excesses you seem interested in, wait for Thanksgiving.

Weird weekend... finally finished all the netherstorm quests on my shammy... so Unbound could go back to resto.

However, a strange thing happened on the way to the talent trainer...

A prot pally friend of mine asked me to help heal kara. His guild has *one* decent healer. (A holy pal that spams 1.5 sec heals...) So I, ah... healed Kara as enhance.

KK. Things to note so far about shammies. First, every GODDAMN shaman blogger I used to read gave up. So... anyone has links, I'd love to see whats up. Since Ripper does mages better than I ever could, and BRK (pronounced "dorf") AKA Big Red Monkeybutt, does hunters... I'm pretty much stuck with shammies. Not that I doan love shammies. Shammies are cool, and get to hang with all the awesome tanks. Still... things to note...

Enhance.

Spirit puppies are probably one of the best pvp talents in the game. They add crap to dps, but those healz are broken, and I expect them to be nerfed. That bein said, enhance in pvp is like playin a rogue without a stun, or a ret pally without a bubble. Orra warrior without charge or intercept. You gonna do nice damage, but the ranged classes will destroy you. And the melee classes will hurt a lot as well...

However... the enhance shammy has the best talent tree of all three builds. Doan get me wrong... I loves me some resto. But if you go resto or elemental, you HAVE to put points in enhance. Mostly cuz the first two tiers of elemental and resto suck donkey balls. Cept for elemental devastation, which only enhance shammies would take...

But there are two talents in the upper enhance tiers that murder anything even loosely associated with game balance. First, a 3 point talent that gives you 100% of INT as AP. Not to bad... similar to a really nice hunter talent in the marksman tree. HOWEVER... later on you get a 3 point talent that gives you 30% of AP as Spell Power.

So... 30% of int becomes spell/healing power. Arcane Intellect... 25ish spell power buff. Battle shout... 100. Totem of earth... 54. Bless of might.. 125.

Then you put earthliving on both dual wielded weapons... +300.

I got unbound's +healz up to +1700. AS ENHANCE. As resto... she's at +1100. All I did was spam lesser heal and chain. And I was gettin higher numbers than I do as resto spec. When I got healer aggro, I'd throw the puppies at something and heal back up. Saved a wipe that way once. Got low on mana, I'd shammy rage my mana back up. When things got tight, I'd wade in, storm strike, lava lash, and spam insta cast maelstrom chain healz.

I still went back to resto. First.. earth shield got much lovin. My es is now proccing for 1200, 1800 on crits. (Theresa bug here, but i gotta look into it more... my ES doan crit when its on other targets...)

Riptide is precious... its like bein a resto druid, only still bein able to like girls. But... the gap between resto healin and enhance healin is less than I'm comfortable with. And I keep havin dreams of a crazy enhance/elemental build that would scale like a motherlovin bastich. Unbound can get to +1500 spell power easily... in my spell gear, with the proper talents, I might be able to hit +1700.

Still... resto in BG's is like bein a god. I laugh at ret pally damage. No purge, no dispel, no HK.

Other news... looks like the inscription market is slowin down. So, here at the end... Im at about 17k gold, up from 6k before the patch of infinite wealth. Melvin says he wont be impressed till I'm over 30k.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Brown sugar!

We interrupt this blog for an announcement.

Guess what dropped?

You may now go back to yuir headless horseman mountless lives.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

For some reason I can't explain...

State of team Noobed.

Woke up at 4 this morning to get at some scourge invasion. Managed to get into a group in Wintersping, and score my shadow of doom kills fer Maj and Unbound, as well as tons of runes fer each.

Need to do this with Mabd...

Maj got her sinister squashling last night. Now, only Unbound is without holiday achievement goodness.

Maj blizzarding over a prot pally at the scourge sites was a thing of beauty. God I loves my frost.

Maj and Unbound still need one wand zap each.

Havin gearing issues with Unbound/Enhance. Her enhance set is mostly kara level junk, with two blues. Now the crap that drops offa scourge in the invasion isn't half bad... but it stacks haste at the expense of crit. And.. well... crit is now one of the most important stats fer enhance. Moar crit = moar spell crit = moar elemental devastation = moar white damage.

Meh. Man, that zombie event was awesome. Ima sad to see it go. Is it sick of me to wish that all the orphans in shat weren't considered critters? So the zombies could chew on em?

Yeah, probably. Didn't keep me from takin a screen of a swarm of orphans runnin from a wall of zombies.

Things I don't understand. People who think that Blizz ended the zombie event cuz of people complaining. Like melvin.

"No, the zombie plague ends today. They found a cure."

"Oh, enough people must have complained!"

Sunday, October 26, 2008

I'm just fallin from grace...

Majeure reconsiders her plans to become Warbabe of the Horde.

Um.. the zombie event has been a great deal of fun. If you've enjoyed as much as I... here's another book recommendation. Everyone I know who's read it has loved it. With the exception of Melvin, who has no taste.

Let's see... over 15k gold now. I should be set fer expansion.


Mage thoughts...

Fingers of frost was not what I thought it would be... its so much more... exploitable. You can get that double tap in quite easily, so you get three hits with bonus crit. And that damn insta cast fireball procs like a madman. I tend to miss most of em.

Shammy thoughts...

Yeah, I ran recount, and beat up onna dummy. Lava Lash with a flametongue offhand increases damage over double windfury by a noticable amount. Now I'm gettin into cooldown issues... between stormstrike, lava lash, shock and maelstrom lightning bolts, ima getting abilities pop before I can press the keys. Maybe a shot rotation macro would help...

Also... I found out why my white damage seemed so high... elemental devastation, the elemental tree talent that gives +9% melee crit with for 7 seconds following a spell crit, does not apply to windfury hits, stormstrike or lava lash. Just to regular melee hits. My regular melee crit rate after testing is about 33%. My special attacks are around 24%. That should tell you how often elemental devastation is up... 3 points well spent.

Hunter thoughts.

Never disengage when yuir fightin a frost mage on top of a mountain peak.

Friday, October 24, 2008

You should be dancing, yeah!

First... Amazon.com has a sale on select albums every weekend. Last week they had the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever. Um... be prepared for bizzare blog post titles ahead.

Second... can anyone give me a link to something that explains how to set up a RSS feed for a blogspot site? I've looked before, and couldn't find a damn thing. :(

Third. I respecced ice. Ripper, you little bastard, you never told me they made blizzard able to crit. OMFG. I aint goin back. Frozen heart forever! (I had a run where I got over 88% sustained crit rate on Blizzard...)

Fourth. Mabd got herself a gorilla. And NOW I understand what kill command is for...

Fifth. I really resent enhancement shammydom. Ima gonna finish up all my Outland quests this weekend, respec resto, and not look back.

Sixth... flametongue buff stacks with dual wield. Flametongue glyph stacks with dual wield. Considering how crappy the top of elemental is... this might mean something if blizz ever puts offhand spell weapons in the game.

Seventh. Thundering strikes now affect spell as well as melee crit chances. Itsa tier 2 enhance shammy talent. 5 points = +5% crit. I was able to get unbound's spell crit to 28% with double stacked flametongue. And her spell power over 900 with her crappy enhance gear... I really doan know what to make of this. But whatever build... you really wanna put some points in the first coupla tiers of enhance now.

Eighth. Melvin loves his fire mage, but is muttering about goin frost. Magebert went back to the POM/Pyro build. I doan know what to do about these two. Anyway... melvin claims that the chance for hot streak to proc is greatly enhanced when you get a chance to shoot an ally in the back. Take it for what it's worth.

Ninth. Melvin is deeply dissatisfied with his elemental shammy. Melvin doesn't bother with flametongue. And he put all 61 points into that crappy tree...

Tenth. "Melvin, have I told you how damn much gold Ima makin offa inscription?"
"YES. Every freaking time you talk to me!"

Over 12k gold now, my peeps. Now if i can just enroll all these zombies into my pyramid scheme.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Lookin fer my hot stuff...

I told Dammy that I was runnin enhance shammy figures, and he asked me fer a post. Plz note... my gear is pretty terrible. I really need to reenchant moongoose.... And two of the blue pvp set... the shame...

First... if you've been playin a shammy fer a while...

Take a good, damn long look at all yuir totems now.

Strength of earth now gives agil as well as str. While, with the recent nerf to str (now str = 1AP, instead of 2), you get exactly the same amount of +ap... you also get about 2-2.5% melee crit offa the agil (depending on if you specced the imp totem talent.)

Windfury totem now helps us. A LOT. +16% attack speed, +20% if you have imp totems. Normally, my melee damage is a lot closer to my windfury damage. Note, this screen shot is one of a few dozen I took after messing with diff totems, etc...

Flametongue totem... etc. Almost 200 +spell power.

Anyway... dammy, that 16.5% of damage offa lightning bolt... thats all maelstrom weapon. Note the count. On different iterations, I was throwin 4 bolts fer every 5 earth shocks I threw... so we're lookin at a maelstrom proc (5 stack) about every 7-9 seconds. This can be a light bolt... or it can be a healing wave. Either way... its all good. You aint goin down til you run outta mana.

Which comes to that other talent... static shields... other people have noted that this talent only seems to proc offa regular melee attacks.. not windfury or spells. And this... just isnt worth it. Not when you can pop up a water shield and be throwin a 3k heal at yourself every 9 secs. (Note that the RNG loves messin with Maelstrom... I had weird results pop up) You can see from the screenshot... about 5% (this test was without the LS glyph) damage isnt worth givin up the mana of water shield. And if your gettin beat on... keepin mana up for heals or light bolts would seem a better deal...

Spirit wolves... about 175 dps fer my char base. I don't know if they scale with AP or SP. However... they DO get totem benefits. Str of Earth and Windfury will boost DPS to about 225. I need to find a way to test their healing function.

Lava lash? I should play with it... but I really don't like the look. Plus, anything that makes an offhand attack will screw up windfury procs.

Imp stormstrike? While I like the decreased SS time (and note that the screen doesnt show WF procs offa SS... when doin rotation, try to time SS to land right after a melee attack that DIDNT proc WF... this will do wonders for damage...) the additional nature charges are now useless. You really can't apply more then 4 sources of nature damage to the target over 8 seconds unless they're beating on you and you have light shield up.

Static shields... if you need the dps boost, use the regular shield. You'll have to refresh it more often, but if you need the dps that badly, you aint worrying about mana. Otherwise, stick with water shield. Inna raid, static shields seems counter productive. The minor DPS increase interferes with effective mana regeneration. And in Pvp... well, assa enhance shammy, I really don't like yuir odds either way, so lets leave it at that.

Things I left outta this build... the group buff talent... I'll respec and take it, 10% more AP really boosts about 65% of my damage. Meh... moar messin around to do...

Now take it back...

Just a few screen shots...

What do I need to do to make revered with SMC? Storm the gates of hell? Check.




Yeah, allies... try to get this. Just you try...







First mammoth sighting!







K, yeah, I DID love a squirrel... but I was drunk, and looking for a ram.






Biggest change to the game so far... damn I love bein able to wolf on water...






What the path to the Headless Horseman looks like for alliance on a pvp server. And yeah, suckit. I died enough times just tryin to fish in Stormwind, you evil bastards.





Otherwise, you wouldn't believe me.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash

So, I went a little nuts. OK... a lot nuts. But I DID WARN PEOPLE. And no one listened, cuz no one ever listens.

One of the sadder jokes from my job at the store... every so often we'd have to close for some reason or another. And then we'd put a sign up on the locked doors... "CLOSED TIL"

I always made fun of whoever wrote the sign, sayin "Why make the sign? You'll just have to teach the bastards how to read..."

Anyway, the signs were there for insane herbage action following the introduction of glyphs. And, oh boy... first of all, glyphs are unlike any other crafting talent. The best glyphs aren't necessarily the glpyhs made with the highest level mats. Every damn ret paladin needs Glyph of Crusader Strike, and Glyph of Seal of Command. The first uses blindweed/sungrass level herbs, only the second uses outlands level herbage. Of the two, crusader strike is sellin much, much better. (30g each, and I could get more.. why 30g? Cuz there were none at the AH, and people started beggin to buy em at that price)

Blindweed and sungrass are sellin fer 50g a stack. So is kingsblood. I bought a lot of that fer 5g a stack just last week...

To this point, I've made 2k offa herbs and glyphs. And yes, glyphs are actually selling for more than the herbs required to make them. AND I have about 1k in auctions still up. As well asa ton of mats left to set up friends.

There are few things as addicting as checkin yuir auctions. Even when its only virtual money... its still pretty damn nice.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I was too weak to give in, too strong too lose...

Inscription at 250.

Downloaded the patch last night... was unable to get on the server.

Woke up, bright and early... got on, started leveling inscription.

World crashes...

Get back on, level some more...

World crashes...

Get back on....

Server goin down message...

Take a shower, get back on, start leveling again...

World crashes...

Get back on, put up 70 auctions of herbs and glyphs, world crashes, go to work...

Still doan know about mage... frost would seem the smart choice, but glyph of arcane missiles extends range another 5'

This would make them have a range of 41. And Arcane missiles witha range of 41 are just pure goodness.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

If words could make wishes come true

So, ah, have you read Harry Potter?

One thing I tend to dislike about book lists is that they pretty much tell me what I already know. I mean, yeah, I've read all these. The trick issa book list of books people would enjoy that not everyone has read. And, since Ima who I am, it can't just be a book list. So, here, in honor of patch day... stuff gamers would like.

BOOKS

The Compleat Traveller in Black.

Um... the finest of existential fantasty. If you like this, check out Shockwave Rider as well, Brunner's response to the 60's pop psychology hit Future Shock. Oh, a teaser? The main character has to grant the first wish you make in his presence. He has a choice as to whether to grant the second...

The Vampire Genevieve

Set in the warhammer universe. If ya like angsty vampires, this is the best thing yuil ever read. Recently rereleased... I lent my copy to Melvin, and he couldn't understand what was goin on. Higher praise I cannot give. The author is a pretty interesting figure in his own right, I've mentioned him before...

Ima not gonna mention C. S. Freidman or Guy Gavriel Kay. They get mentioned enough. But if you haven't ready anything by them, it would be worth doin so...

The Book of Jhereg

James Bond inna fantasy setting? I realized how sneaky good the author was on the third book, when the main character mentions how important the number 17 is. I check the book. 17 chapters. I check the first two... each of them has 17 chapters...

He wrote a book where the chapters each had three parts. A one line introduction, the lines together telling the story of the main character casting a spell. A few paragraphs about the main character's childhood. And then the story itself, which begins and ends with the casting of a spell, and the blood of a god.

Then there was the one where every chapter started with a line from a laundry list... the latest book is out in hardback... gonna be a long wait.

Illegal Aliens

They rereleased it! The funniest sci fi satire of all time! Um... Phil Foglio and Nick Pollatta. How to describe? Aliens make first contact with Earth.. AND ARE NOT PREPARED!

The Damned (series)

Allen Dean Foster... the flip side of illegal aliens. The universe is in the middle of a massive war between a race of psychers that can mind control, who want to bring all sentient life together in a effort to transcend sentience, and everyone else, who don't want to lose free will. The problem? No true sentient can bear the thought of violence. Only a handful can actually take up arms, even in the face of an ultimate threat.

Then they find humanity.

MOVIES

Night Watch

A russian vampire movie. And remember kiddies... russians doan really believe in happy endings.

Gruz 200

No link on this, its not out in the states yet. I've only managed to watch about 2/3 of it via other sources... um... it's another russian movie by a director that got pissed off at Putin's infatuation with the soviet past. The title refers to the material (zinc) that the russian army made coffins outta to ship home their dead. And its about a serial killer who is tormenting a girl in an attempt to prove to her that there is no god... just as socialism tells us... (and when I say torment... I mean... well, again, no happy endings...)

Three O'Clock High

Kinda a cult classic now. Bombed when it came out in the 80's due to the unintentional drug reference. (It's actually a reference to High Noon, with whom it share a plot...) Kid has to meet a bully fer a fight at the end of the school day. Funny funny funny.

My Man Godfrey

My favorite screwball comedy. Of all time. Produced at the height of the depression, a ditzy rich socialite goes on a scavenger hunt for "a forgotten man." Which, indeed, she ends up finding.

ANIME

Please Save My Earth

Its dated, it really has no ending.. but its one of the saddest things I've ever seen. About obsessive love and redemption.

Monday, October 13, 2008

We won, we won, then we shot that BB gun!

Ripper has a mage talent post up, with his usual introspection, thoughtfulness, and complete lack of poetic sense.

(How can a fire mage NOT take world in flames! Cmon, even if it did nothing, the name alone...)

I think 61 frost. I like arcane, but until I can get mage armor that makes a mage all but immune to locks (at level 71 it reduces magic effect duration by 50%...) Ima stayin frost and gankin warriors... especially with shattered barrier, which gives a free frost nova when yuir shield breaks. Both fire and frost look to make aoe grinding ecstasy again!

Hunters... BRK hassa nice brief on the talent trees up on wowinsider. My only issues... he really needed a short bit on the massive change to kill command, and what this means in the greater scheme of things. Blizz is tryin ferra synergy with kill command and certain hunter talents.

Kill Command
3% of base mana45 yd range
Instant cast1 min cooldown
Give the command to kill, increasing your pet's damage done from special attacks by 60%. Each special attack done by the pet reduces the damage bonus by 20%.

K... its no longer a free damn attack. This is bad fer the steady shot spammin macro thingy. However, special attacks, such as bite, claw, monstrous bite, or the gorilla thunder stomp, all become that much moar evil. 1 min cooldown. Ouch. If yuir not bm, you will NEVER use this. If you are, read on...

Focused FireRank 2
All damage caused by you is increased by 2% while your pet is active and the critical strike chance of your pet's special abilities is increased by 20% while Kill Command is active.

K.. pet does 60% moar damage. Pet gets 20% moar crit.

Cobra StrikesRank 3
You have a 60% chance when you critically hit with Arcane Shot, Steady Shot or Kill Shot to cause your pet's next 2 special attacks to critically hit.

Hmm... see, this just doesnt work too well with that 1 min cooldown. If it was less, maybe. However, if ya lookin fer burst damage, get the devilsaur to stack 3 of these...

Monstrous BiteRank 6
25 FocusMelee Range
Instant10 sec cooldown
Your devilsaur ferociously bites the enemy, causing 91 to 123 damage, and boosts its own damage by 3% for 12 seconds. This effect stacks 3 times.

Then get cobra strikes to proc, hit bestial wrath, kill command, and watch sparky go to town.

But, thats a ton of effort for a coupla quick crits. So, overall, the combo looks like failz. At least til that damn cooldown is removed. So, a thing to keep an eye on.

Which is why ima goin survival. First.. one of the most changed talents in the game is this one...

Master MarksmanRank 5
Increases your critical strike chance by 5%, and reduces the Mana cost of your Steady Shot by 25%.

It went from a flat +10% to rap to a thing of the gods. A shame its in the MM tree and I'll never see it.

But ima gonna have something in MM... a 18MM/43Surv build to start. I was playin with the numbers... Careful Aim and Hunter vs Wild will both raise my rap by about 250. Lightning Reflexes will give another 80 rap, and 2% of crit. So... about 2k rap, and 40% crit. Master Tactician should proc often enough for another 10%. No Escape and Survival Instincts give another 10% in the right situation. Thats 60%. Did I mention Lock and Load for two free arcane shots at a 60% crit onna frost trapped toon? What about one point in Expose Weakness to boost my RAP by about 150 when I start the crit pain train? Or Improved Arcane Shot for +15% damage?

Just remember a coupla points in Improved Stings to boost that already uber buffed Wyvern Sting damage. (only 1k damage at 70, but 2500 damage at 80!)

Screw that, I need a few moar of these... !!!!!. AND MAYBE CAPS. Remember, Lock and Load will proc offa serpent sting.

So yeah, survival. Gonna have to train uppa Hyena. And maybe finda mage with Torment the Weak to pair with.

So.. on to shammiedom. Enhance fer fun, and itsa fairly straitforward. Some notes on changes. Enhance Shammies can now crit spells. And hate strength and want agility. (And int!)

But probably the biggest thing for shammies is the general utility of the first three tiers of enhance.

First tier...

Ancestral KnowledgeRank 5
Increases your intellect by 10%.

Used to just be +5% mana. Now it boosts spell crit and AP (if ya got the talent later). 5 points well spent.

Next...

Improved ShieldsRank 3
Increases the damage done by your Lightning Shield orbs by 15%, increases the amount of mana gained from your Water Shield orbs by 15% and increases the amount of healing done by your Earth Shield orbs by 15%.

This really... looks nice. The lightning shield talentsmakes it a lot more useful for purposes of enhance dps. Any boost to ES healing issa must ferra resto build. And Elemental can make a lotta use outta this.

Also in this tier... Imp ghost wolf. And yeah, I know its silly, but its still uberfun fer all build...

Third tier...

Elemental WeaponsRank 3
Increases the damage caused by your Windfury Weapon effect by 40% increases the spell damage on your Flametongue Weapon by 30% and increases the bonus healing on your Earthliving Weapon by 30%.

30% moar spell power. At level 80, thats 62 or so, not too shabby. (Remember, wrath of air totem is GONE!) The windfury bonus is pure gold, dps wise. And earthliving.. thats just a free damn heal. Nuttin wrong with that.

And the piece de resistance!

Shamanistic Focus
Reduces the mana cost of your Shock spells by 45%.


Um... another subtle change that completely changes the talent.
It USED to be, a 60% reduction in the cost of yuir next shock after a melee crit. No more... so... elemental shammies speccing this far into enhance can really do worse than to take this. Resto shammies as well... no more downgrading frost or earth shocks fer control at no mana cost. Ifn yuir gonna pvp build, yuil be at least 11 in enhance by the end...

Time to drink till the patch comes up...

Friday, October 10, 2008

I was a liar, you were a cheat

Plans...

Moar herbage! Must haz moar herbz fer the patch!

Pick arcane or frost for the mage. Ripper could help a lot with a short guide to the new arcane tree... (hint hint)

Pick BM or Surv fer the hunter to plays with. Then level my new devilsaur after I pick BM.

Tells Arms&Fury Ima happy he's my friend. Then figure a way to fit my new insult in... (Was that yuir ass, or are they sellin rogaine to yetis now?)

Dread Thanksgivin. Bruce offered to pay for the hookers if I'd set it up (but to keep it under $500 each). I haven't the heart to explain the whole WotLK to him... leveling to 80 > hookers. I doan know if this says good things or bad things about my priorities...

Ignore Melvin. He and his bro are levelin new chars. Yep... Melvin's got himself a Pally! And his bro a rogue. This'll be the 5th 70 fer Melvin, and 6th 70 fer the Magebert.

Bitch moar about shammy changes. A 10/51 elemental/enhance build fer shammies is very doable... my current worries... unlike resto, I have no problems paring enhance down to 51 points.

Start gatherin moar +crit gear for my resto set. It's gonna be important.

I really need to get my shammy revered with both shatar and thrallmar. This might have to wait till Arms&Fury goes protect. Will he change his name? Probably not, hesa lazy. "The warrior formally know as Arms&Fury."

BTW... like Blizzard is really gonna solve itemization by making shammies rogues in mail. Yeah, yeah, agil gives us AP now, but +crit applies to our spells... +crit > agil... leading to "It's got +crit on it, that's a SHAMMY item!"

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I will talk to anyone...

Posts two days inna row! Aint you people lucky.

Damn I wish I could access wowhead or wowwiki at work :(

Anyway... Dammerung has brought his shammy to our server, and posted the glyphs hesa interested in.

So... I already did a bit about how the lesser healing wave glyph makes the healing wave spell obsolete.

BTW... this is the healing wave glyph. What does it do? Why... it turns healing wave into a gimped chain heal! JOY! Yep, doan even bother training this POS spell.

So... one weird thing about the glyphs is how useless they are for most classes. Mages... meh. The evocation glyph actually has me pretty excited. Its purely pvp, but a 60% heal for a non healing class is still a 60% heal.

And the armor glyphs are also nice. Well, molten armor and mage armor. Ice armor is still pretty useless. Unless you deep frost and you pvpin.

But the mage armor glyph can allow a properly specced mage 80% mana regen while casting.

Um... anyone else see this as broken?

K... screw mages. I'll let ripper talk about them. And the world doan need another hunter blog. Tho the hunter glyphs are kinda disappointing.

No, lets talk about the new shammy weapon buffs. We gettin three buffs fer the future. Old favorite, windfury. Flametongue, buffed to add +spellpower as well as fire damage onna melee hit. And earthliving weapon, a +healing (ima assuming this is also spellpower) as well assa 20% chance to proc a 450 or so smart heal on the party upon healing spell cast.

First... earthliving. I can haz moar random healz floatin around? I mean really.. the next talent change fer resto shammies will give 50% health regeneration to anyone standing in their shadows...

When the patch hits, ima have a ton of testin to do. But really... I wont be surprised if I getta random heal effect just by /lol.

Remember... thesa smart healz. So, if you gotta single target to healz... cahnce to proc extra healz on em is just sick. As well... thassa flat 20% chance to proc. So, spamming lesser healing wave instead of (inferior) healing wave gives ya a double chance to get that extra 450 (at level 70). Plz... can I haz moar bonuses to the monkey bot spam healz?

What could be better than that? Hows about the new flametongue? Gives 96 spell damage... and then there's this. 2% moar crit? Um... so Dammy. Looks like blizz is really pushin enhance shammies to go dual with windfury on main, and flametongue on offhand. 96 +spell and 2% moar spell crit aint too damn bad.. plus the +fire damage part of spell.

I know Unbound is gonna be tryin this.

Not to mention fer resto. 2% spell crit is huge. I mean... thats 2 talent points, right there. Not too damn many glyphs are worth 2 talent points. And witha new emphasis on crits via resto (remember, earthshield can and will crit...)

So... will I be usin earthlivin or flametongue? If I got the glyph... I'll have to go flametongue, cept in pve healin situations. And even then... I shouldn't be challenged.

My main problem right now is lookin atta level 70 resto pvp build come the patch. Gotta take elemental shields. (gives 15% moar es healin, and 15% moar water shield mana regen.)

That means prob 10 in enhance. (WTB insta ghost wolf!) Which means only 51 in resto... which means... no mana tide totem.

My mind is stilla boggled.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Into the ocean, end it all

So anyway.. fer my 'hoof homies. Go here, and check out what glyphs you want, come the patch.

Remember to look at the trainer part. If it say's "Northrend Only..." itsa expansion glyph.

You can equip 2 major glyphs. The minor glyphs are all discoveries, so I won't be able to make them for a while. Once you've picked them out, in game mail the request to Majeure.

*Edit... pick out as many as you want... I'll try to send a stack of 5 each so you can swap in and out. I'll need to make a ton to level, and I'd rather not waste the leveling on stuff that can't be used. Just be aware... yuir limited to equipping 2 majors till you hit level 80.

How bad was arena last week? I respecced Unbound to enhance for a bit. I still gotta read Herk the riot omnibus. (We far beyond mere acts at this point.)

And moar news on resto shammies come patch. I respecced back to resto, and moved a few points around. To the point, I ditched all my healing wave talents for other ones.

Here's why I have healing wave. First... in my resto gear, with +1900 healz... I crit for 7.5k ish. Reg heal is around 4.5-5k.

Lesser healing wave is 2.5k regular, 4k crit.

Mana wise, healing wave is moar efficient. But if I need a mana efficient heal, chain heal, even on one target, gets moar heal per buck. If other party members are takin damage, its not even close. Chain hits normal for about 3.5-4k on first target, and costs about 30% less mana.

Why? Cuz offa talent that increases chain heal by 20%. Everyone at this point should understand healing coefficents. Thats right... chain heal gets 71.43% vs healing wave's 85.71%. What happens with +20% to the heal? Chain heals coefficient goes to... 85.72%.

And that's just the first jump. Its not even funny if you start healin moar than one target.

Mana cost? Chain heal, 540 mana. Healing wave, 740 mana. Chain heal costs 72% of the mana. (talents change the mana cost, but not the ratio.)

So... when the bulk of the heal amount comes from the spell itself... healing wave is more efficient. Healing wave is about 2300, chain heal is about 900 (1100 with two points in talent). But the mechanic of the game changed completely with blizzard opening the gates to +healz lands, come burning crusade. Now... barely more than half of healing wave's healz come from the base amount. And as +healz power increases... chain heal becomes more and more efficient. As it stands, with +1900 healz, I get 69% the primary target healing for 72% of the mana. AND I get the chance to heal two moar targets.... and this isnt even counting raid buffs. Raid buffed, with another +300 healz or so... ima gettin moar than 72% of the healin of healin wave for 72% of the mana.

Blizz's answer? A 3 point talent, healing way, that applies a buff to a target gettin healing waved. It stacks 3 times, and each instance adds +6% healing from healing wave... The buff lasts 15 seconds. So... in order to be useful, I have to be spamming my most powerful healing spell every 15 seconds or less on the same target. And the other members of the party have to not be takin damage. And the constant damage has to require more than 3 heals.

You know any fights like this? Pure tank and spank?

K... so its useful once inna blue moon... I can see this. Which is why I had this talent until last night. True... only a tank is gonna be able to use healz that powerful... but thats the heart of instance runnin, right? Not to mention the most important part of this... given all 8 talent points, this provides a shammies best healz per second. (HPS)

The problem is... at +1900... I don't see fights where I have to worry about hps.

Then comes WotLK. And the mechanics change again. Earth shield becomes more powerful. And by extension, massively mana efficient. Crits add even moar in the way of smart healz. And Ima sorry... if I crit a healing wave onna tank... and 7.5k aint enough... itsa fubar. So... I can cast lesser healing wave... get the 4k crit... and the 40% bonus can go to the tank... ferra 5.5k heal. None of which will be wasted.

The only problem is that lesser healz have half the healing of a full healing wave. They have exactly half the healing coefficient. And they cost 61% of the mana. Fer almost exactly half the heal.

So ifn Ima blizzard... I'd do everything in my power to avoid makin lesser healing wave a more efficient way to heal a tank, right? Right?

Not so much.

New figures? 60% of the healz fer 61% of the mana. Itsa faster, a lot less likely to overheal, and much better for group healing. EXACTLY the same hps of healing wave with 5 points in reduced cast time. (But not with healing way, which costs another 3 talent points)

Not only will I not be speccing for healing wave... I won't even put it on my spell bar.

BTW... anyone with shammy experience in WotLK... do chain heal crits and earth shield crits effect that new ghost heal effect? Ima thinking yes to first and no to second...