Monday, March 31, 2008

A game with added reality...

So arena...

Aerthson the druid (arms and fury), our friend Sugars the lock, and Mabd were doin 3v3. Itsa O.K. We'll do better as they get more gear, and we iron crap out. Ima STILL making bad target calls, but I think that has more to do with my getting acquainted with the insane amount of CC a MM hunter, SL/SL lock and Boomkin have. We kept running into warrior heavy teams, and crushing them. (Cept for one were I made the uber bad decision to dps the pally healer on a pally/2 warrior team... just let the lock eat him while the druid CC's the warriors...)

Aerth and Sug still need to get their anti-rogue tactics down. Locks doan have much chance, but a Boomkin SHOULD be able to lay waste to a rogue.

The best match was us against three locks. I love killin locks. Almost as much fun as clubbing baby seals...

The there were the scrubs... Unbound and Majeure got their points in a 5v5 with Melvin and crew. Still hanging around 1320 ish on that team. Ifn ya know my Melvin stories... the best game was us against 5 shammies... Majeure with bloodlust is truly a terror to behold... those friggin Frostbolts are just sick fast damage, and with the rest of the team, Maj was left alone. Played with Herk (Arms & Fury) most of the matches, and it was fun to see us both on same page... a shame Melvin isn't capable of that level of teamwork...

Btw, Melvin wants Majeure to respec POM/Pyro. So there would be three mages on the team with POM/Pyro, adding greatly to the firepower. I told him hesa idiot...

It's a lot like life, this play between the sheets

Ya know, it would be a hell of a lot easier if I just cut myself.

Instead... I pick up the phone when Melvin calls me.

"It's Sethek Halls time!"

Time to run an instance with Melvin's brand new, tankin bear druid.

Three 70's, Melvin, my poor unbound, and Magebert's ret pally. A 68 rogue, and a 68 boomkin healer.

And yes... you all know how it goes... Melvin can't tank muliple mobs worth a damn. The boomkin went down 6 times healing him. Melvin can't lead a party... he just sits and waits for crap to happen. He can't establish early aggro if someone else pulls... evidently the feral charge skill is too complicated....

Am I being to rough? He couldn't even hold aggro offa my searing totem. The boomkin would heal, get aggro, and I'd have to back stop and pull it offa him.

The piece de resistance... the f*cking idiot doesn't even have Imp Leader of the Pack. And yet he complains non-stop about how bad he is at pvp...

Two wipes, tons of deaths, we finish the instance, and Ima really not eager to go again with him... I tried to give the Boomkin some gold for the repair bill, but he was a good sport and refused...

Oh and Magebert gave new meaning to the ret part of ret pallydom. Melvin would pull with FF, and Magebert would get bored and charge the mobs before they got to Melvin... healer would have to help Magebert out, pulls his own aggro, and dies... then Magebert spends rest of fight off healing Melvin.

Later that night Melvin went to MrT. Magebert's holy priest healing, plus the Worst Warrior In Azeroth doin dps. Pugged a lock and mage.

4 hours later, they finish. Magebert had a 30g repair bill.. and Magebert is pretty much all tier 5. Itsa shame Arms&Fury put Herk out to pasture... where have all the good tanks gone?

Friday, March 28, 2008

Cold winds blow... the gods look down in anger at this poor child

I dreamt I turned into a wolf the other night. I hada kill an evil rabbit.

God I have bizzare dreams.

Herk is bein a little pain again. Ima jerk, I admit. I would never want to play a warrior, cuz I know herk, and I doubt I could play a warrior half as well as he does. Still, he's takin his own sweet time getting up the learning curve on that druid.

Melvin is a ton of laughs... He was freaking out over the pvp token turn in. He saw the quest... got his gold and rep... then lost it when it wouldn't let him get more gold. You know, like every other damn rep turn in quest in the game, you get gold the first time, and usually nuttin after that.

He's started tanking with the feral druid. Ima trying to get him using that mouseover lacerate macro... cuz he woan really need help on one mob, but more than one... hes gonna suck. Spamming demoralizing roar can only do so much...

And yeah, Euripedes... Mabd of the Shattered Sun sounds SWEET.

Monday, March 24, 2008

My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard...

Damn right!

Rules of life.

Rule the first. Other people's french fries always taste better.

Rule the second. The world is filled with people that take something like rule the first and garble it into garbage like "the grass is always greener on the other side..."

What the hell does that even mean? Everyone understands french fries. Green grass? A waste of katsup if you ask me. The whole point of eating someone's french fries is the look in their face. "I drink your milkshake!" Except who the hell wants to drink after someone else? I mean, one of the creepiest scenes in movie history is Sam Jackson in Pulp Fiction, eating the hamburger and drinking the "tasty beverage" of those kids. You KNEW he was gonna kill em after that. But you get the idea. French fries = good. Grass = weird. Milkshake = tasty, but kinda kinky ina queesy way.

Rule the third. When she says it's not you, it's me.... it's you. It couldn't be more you. When they say its not the money, its the principle... it's all about the benjamins. Grab your wallet and hang on. And when Blizz announces a buff fer your favorite class... grab your ankles.

So they gonna shrink shammy fury to 15 seconds? Oh lovely. The only chance in hell enhance shammies had in pvp was that 30 seconds of extreme damage mitigation. Our own little pain supression. For 30 seconds, we take damage like a.. well not a prot pally. But like a ret pally with a 2 hander. Now its only gonna be 15 seconds. Cuz enhance shammies are just that OP I suppose. I really doan understand all this...

So I finally PUG'd Old Hillsbrad with unbound. 70 shammy with crap gear, 70 lock, 70 mage, 66 prot warrior and 66 resto druid.

Why tell you guys? Cuz itsa Pug. What was Tolstoy's dictum? All happy families are alike, all dysfunctional families are unique.... each pug is it's own hell.

The warrior had no clue... unbound ended up as off tank keeping crap offa the damn healer. Ya know this warrior... great on one target, not a frikkin brain in his head otherwise. Group had me marking... so I mark a dog/rifleman pat. Sheep rifleman, beat on dog. Cept druid sleeps the dog, and the warrior tries to pull the rifleman. Sigh. Realizing that the rifleman wasn't gonna move... the warrior walks up and starts whaling on him. Rifleman runs back, pulling 5 more mobs into fight.

These are basics... if ya doan know how to pull, whatever the class... doan get into groups. LOS pulls are pretty freaking remedial. It got so bad, I started pulling myself... earth shock, and run the mob right over the damn warrior... and wait for the fool to figure it out.

The 70 lock was affliction. Ima beginning to suspect that affliction locks are another varient of ret pally. What the hell are they gonna do BUT dot everything up? Including the damn CC targets? Oh... and he SS'ed the Druid, not the shammy. Even after the druid TOLD him to SS the shammy.

The mage was decent... well... no he wasn't except by comparison. Deep arcane, stuck to fireballs. Level 70, without the level 65 water. Still, he kept the sheep up, and didn't pull aggro. And when we did last battle, he understood what I was talking about when I told him the two of us were on spell casters first.

Druid was ok... kept us alive, and I wouldnt mind grouping with him again. He was quite fond of me at the end, since I'd pull aggro offa him instead of waiting on tank to do it... and healed him a coupla times when he needed it.

Some tips... I really like the last fight in Old Hillsbrad. A mage or shammy really can solo those dragon casters... shammies especially, since between grounding totem and earth shock, the caster has no chance. Same with mages and CS. Throw in frost build and ice barrier... easy easy. With just two melee dragons on the tank, itsa lot easier for the healer and off dps.

Elemental and blood lust make for a hellova lot more fun in boss fights. I loved how the tank was completely useless after I popped blood lust... he couldn't keep up with anyone's aggro at that point, and had to start getting really... proactive, instead of just auto sundering his way through the match...

More shammy fun. Unbound is queen of the ogres... unfortunately... since she still has a butt load of quests in blades edge, including one that entails killing 30 ogres...

They wouldn't mind would they?

Of course not! Of course, if they were truly loyal to queen unbound, they'd line up and cut their own throats for her, instead of making her get all hot and sweaty smackin em down. Some quotes...

"Me killed by Queen Unbound! What an honor!"
"Queen Unbound... is there really... an ogrila?"
"You were a terrible queen... unbound..."

I killed that last ogre way too quickly.

Stupid ogres... If unbound is their queen, why do they attack her when shesa mining? It's her ore by divine right of ogre queens! Same thing with looting those beer barrels. I doan kill enough of em.

One cute thing... I was smacking one of my devoted followers into compliance when three allies decided to gank the lonly shammy...

So I run into a pack of ogres, while being chased by a pet... dead pet. And the allies got too close...
/heal shammy
/heal shammy

Lets see how long it takes em to realize how screwed they are... the warrior is tanking the original five... the hunter and priest keep on me, and I run them into three more... then I turn and smack down the priest. Feign death aint gonna help you hunter, the ogres are just gonna stand on you... warrior has no heals and goes down... and I just sit there on toppa the hunter laughing, and waiting for him to figure out ima onto his game.

I loves my ogres.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I never meant to cause you any sorrow

Been pushing the shammy honor thing. Some thoughts...

First, 2.4 is gonna change a lotta things. And yet, people aren't quite as insanely anxious about it as they were 2.3. Maybe that has more to do with the amount of hunters and hunter-sympathizers in our little circle... 2.3 was, more or less, the hunter deliverance patch.

Class changes seem a bit more minor this time around. I really look forward to the improvements in the mage utility spells. I use those way too much... and would like spell steal to be a bit more than an annoying novelty in pvp.

As far as shammy pvp changes... the only real one seems to be toughness, and that seems almost useless.

The big changes... being able to outfit yuir new 70 toon in high warlord gear right away seems a big one. Blizzard has a hard time keeping old content new... this change seems destined to make the 70 5 mans even more obsolete for those hoping for gear. As things stand, pve-ers are better served running bgs non stop for the season 1 glad gear than running 5 mans... will anyone run SH after 2.4? At least non heroic....

And does this mean that we have to run them all in heroic mode now? Dude... thats gonna suck big time for us puggers. I've seen more stone cold fools lately just doin these things in normal...

Sunwell should be interesting. I foresee a river of blood flowing on the pvp servers. I drink your elixer! I drink it up!

Anyway... logged in the other day... WSG was the BG daily.

Queue pops... jump in. Game just starting, 10 allies to 5 horde. Lovely.

Alliance premade. Precious.

Whom we beat 3-0. Priceless.

Thos I swear... one of those season 2 2h sword wielding warrior fools had my damn number. I think he killed me 10 times... ignoring the flag carrier to do so.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Chantilly lace and a pretty face...

So some of you may not understand the uberness of resistance.

Mabd has been grinding gold lately to get unbound her elite flying mount. Mostly this involves going to netherwing and doin dailys there. I made exalted over the weekend, and Mabd now rides a dragon. /yawn

Anyway, Mabd was in the mines when a group from the Ally guild symphony of blades was ganking. The horde got together and wiped em all out, but well, we were all doin individual quests, and the gankers reformed, etc. etc.

I managed to assassinate a couple when they split up, but they would jsut get back together and come after me. My worst moment was with the prot pally. I catch him drinking, smack him around, and finally get him to run into aggro. With little mana and 2 flayers on him, he was screwed, and I was looking forward to the 10% damage he'd suffer when the reavers finally killed him.

Then up comes a horde shammy that pulls the insta cast chain on the damn cockroach, pulling the reavers off. Weak shammy too, the reavers killed him. (I let them, cuz I was pissed. The pally managed to flee to safety... friggin prot... my shots were hitting for 300 :(


So the entire ganking gang comes after me. I see a train of red dots movin my way, and know its time to get the hell outta dodge. Jump to the tracks, drop a frost trap, aspec on and RUN. However, they hadda hunter anda pally (bof's the warrior) with em, and aspect as well... so i get outside, outta LOS, and pop the mount. Just as mount spawns, warrior intercept/stuns me.

Then intimidating shouts me.

And proceeds to whale on my stunned ass for 11 seconds. How much damage did this season 2 sporting warrior do?

30%. I was still intha green when I got away.

I fly up, laugh at him and watch all 5 of em pour out, mount up, and fly around me in useless rage.

Ima sorry... my hunter has 330 resil and 11k health. Resil keeps ya in the game far more than the stamina does... cuz those crits HURT. Its the same reason warriors stack defense... sta alone don't cut it. So ifya gonna go pvp... bring the resil. Really. It's that important.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Games without frontiers, war without tears

I prob should write about the weekend's futile attempts to get BG quests done. Suffice to say... there mabd was at LM. Scattershot the pally guarding the flag, place the frost trap, start capping...

Pally walks into the frost trap! 6 Seconds and the flag is mine!

And then a horde hunter decides that the pally is just too irresistable a target and breaks my trap.

Or arena....

Melvin: "I'll just attack whatever Majeure is targeting."
Everybody: "NO! Maj is in charge of cc the healing, you focus with the other mage..."

Match starts, I sheep the pally healer... Melvin POM Pyro's him.

But you know all these stories... they happen week after freaking week.

So, instead, a book recommendation. Be warned... sometimes it's impossible to find. It's written by Kim Newman under a psudonym, and if ya never heard of Kim, look him up. He's worth it. The Anno Dracula series is a lotta fun.

Monday, March 10, 2008

She ran until there's nothing left...

For the BRK.

"After several agonizingly long seconds, we made the turn and blasted toward the Mediterranean. 'You might want to pull it back,' Walter suggested. It was then that I noticed I still had the throttles full forward. The plane was flying a mile every 1.6 seconds, well above our Mach 3.2 limit. It was the fastest we would ever fly. I pulled the throttles to idle just south of Sicily, but we still overran the refueling tanker awaiting us over Gibraltar."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

I'm in the business of misery...

Arena was... weird... this last week.

Did 2v2 with Palmy, my priest pal. Now, week before last Palmy, who raids as shadow, asked that we try it with him as shadow spec...

We lost a lot, and fell below 1500.

So this week, back to disc, and went 6-4, losing three games to hunter/healer teams on the lordaron map. They ALL got away to drink after gibbing my pet. I gotta get better... anyway, we got em all outta mana, and then couldn't close the deal. Sigh.

Other game, rogue jumps palmy, I scatter shot him, I freeze trap him, and palmy neglects to heal himself and move. So when rogue pops outta trap, Palmy died. Sigh.

So... then we did 5v5 with Melvin and crew. At this point, it's almost like pounding nails into my head. I've been asking (bitching till their nuts fell off) that we start a new 5v5 team. At this point, we got about 14 toons that need arena points... one team is no longer cutting it.

Melvin is bad at math. It took this last week to convince him. So the current plan... Make a more or less competitive team with Melvin and Magebert's mages, my Majeure, Palmy's holy pal, and the rogue played by Palmy's roomate. And put the rest on the scrubs team.

We tried this lineup a bit, and it kinda works... mostly cuz Melvin and Magebert are epicced out... they still can't play, or focus fire worth a damn. It was hilarious... Palmy took over team leader, calling the common target over vent... Majeure's job was dps, and controlling anyone attacking Palmy. Melvin said... "hey, I can do that!"

Palmy told him... "um... no... Maj works better with me. You just dps."

Still its gonna suck as a 5 man, simply cuz of lack of l33t skills.

The nice thing. I've really earned Palmy's respect over last month of arena. I have high hopes for our 2v2, and we're gonna start a 3v3 with his priest, my mage, and his roommate's rogue. Unfortunately, the rogue... not so good. Excellent gear, but Bohdi (the roomate) plays the crappiest pvp warrior I've ever seen. And Ima getting upset with the rogue. Itsa bad sign when a priest can kite a rogue. And hesa not usin blind enough :(

Anyway.. the funny story. I getta call from Palmy on monday night. He got my number from Melvin. It turns out he wasn't able to do 5v5 or 3v3, was gonna have to rely on the 2v2 for points. Since we went 6-4 after a bad experience with his shadow spec, we were at 1514. Palmy needed exactly 300 points for a new piece of gear... so we need 2 more wins. Would I mind?

Of course not. We queue up, (13 min!) and wipe the floor with first team, rogue/priest. And I gotta tell you... Ima toasting rogues in Arena now. They go for Palmy, and I can usually spot em before they get to him...

Second team... Boomkin/Pally. WTF? Drains on pally, silence on boomkin to help palmy keep up with burst damage. Palmy mana burns, easy win. But right at the start of the match... Palmy loses his mind, and starts talking in vent with an exaggerated italian accent, reliving the exploits of the world's favorite video game character... mario!

"Oh no, the pally is coming to kill Mario! What is poor Mario to do?"
"What's with all the trees! Jump, Mario, jump!"

I was rolling... so we hit 1549, Palmy got his points, and we gonna slaughter em next week.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Look out... for the force without form...

Enhance shammy time!

Sorry, Fedaykin, took me a while to look up some enhance shammy blogs...

This guy is good. At least, hes in arena, and winning with enhance... which impresses the hell outta me...

Just to understand how bad enhance shammies are in arena... a quote from mr. nerf.

"According to Gangbank Armory, I'm the 3rd Enhancement Shaman in 3vs3 on my ladder (Cataclysme) with 1705, first for Alliance. Cataclysme is considered for French-speaking people as Cyclone for UK. It is just sad that I'm this high in this rating with just 1k7. It's showing clearly where Enhancement Shaman is in the food chain now. As this PTR will probably last at least 2-3 months, I can't wait to see the projects Blizzard have for Shamans."

3rd on the ladder and only 1705? Weep for enhance shammies... WEEP!

And another decent shammy blog, from the raiding enhance POV...

K... so over the weekend, herk talked me into doin the Ogrila attunement quests for my mage and shammy. Now, at this point, the enhance shammy might as well be wearing brightly colored poo... that's how bad her gear is. Meanwhile, Majeure, my love, is all epicced out, and floating around tier 5 in terms of pve readiness. When she ran BM and Arc, she beat the other dps by about 35%.

So why did I end up using the shammy to cull the inbred mountain gron population? Guys... it was just sick. We were four manning these things. Start on Grulloc. Herk's druid healing, our lock friend, anda decent pug warrior. First try, we all but wipe, herk blows his combat rez the first time the tank dropds, and at the end, only herk's druid is standing. And this is with Maj, threat capped, doin insane damage.

So we try again, with the shammy. And Grulloc folds like a plastic chair at a weight watcher's meeting. Shammy, fire elemental, totems... off heals... shammies just bring more. Bloodlust.. oh lord. Anyway... Magebert logged in, and came by to help out, so the quests were easy after that. But still..

I felt so humiliated for Majeure. WHY BLIZZARD? WHY?

I think its takin me a while to get the hang of frost dps in pvp. But by goddamn sure not in pve. Still, Unbound > Majeure in boss fights.

K, since electrons are cheap... basic, remedial information on Enhance shammies. And the reason shammies and hunters hate each other. BTW... Doom, if ya think ganking hunters in BG's is fun for a rogue, try it as an enhance shammy. We kill faster, and hava ranged snare. By the time they notice us, its too late...

Part the first... weapons. Prior to 70, most shammies use green weapons. Why? Cuz blizzard hates us. No, seriously. You get... the Maghar Fury Brand. A fist weapon. That's it for gear between 60-70 unless you run a crap load of MT for the OTHER slow fist weapon.

According to elitist jerks, and I have no reason to doubt them, for each 10% increase in weapon slowness, you get 3% more damage main hand, and 2% off hand. So... a 60dps 2.6 speed fist or axe beats out a 80dps 1.3 dagger.

Now this is based on two shammy abilities... first is windfury. The problem with windfury is that it has a 3 second cooldown. To maximize damage, best to put windfury on both main and off hand. However, the off hand procs will also trigger the cooldown, giving a sorta diminishing return. The faster the weapons, the more often your attacks will fall inside the windfury cooldown, nerfing your damage. Add to this stormstrike, which you should time to fall outside the WF procs...

For pvp, Ima experimenting with frost on the off hand for the snare. Its murder on locks :) But still, it reduces my damage, since WF really does insane damage, even on an offhand proc, as the wf attack power bonus isn't halved with the rest of the offhand damage...

The other reason slow weapons are the pwnsauce is stormstrike... which ISN'T normalized, like almost every attack in the game. You getta stormstrike every 10 seconds or so. Make it count by hitting em with the biggest, nastiest thing you can find. A 1.3 speed 60 dps weapon will do half the stormstrike damage that a 2.6 speed 60 dps weapon will.

K... for non weapons. Hunters suck. Blizzard decided to itemize mail with hunters first in mind, and enhance shammies last. At least hunters can rip off cat druid and rogue leather... enhance shammies gotta steal from bear form druids, and end up with +def items...

In short, Blizz decided its a lot easier to make items with +attack power and +crit than two sets of items, some with lotsa str and others with lotsa agility. The problem for shammies is that we want +agility over +crit. 25 agil equals a point of crit for shammies, whereas it takes 40 for a hunter or rogue. Compare this to 22 +crit for a percentage of crit for all phys damage classes... and asa shammy, you really want +agil over +crit. Since that way you get +dodge and +armor as well, both good for melee classes.

The other problem, is that we want +str. One point of str = 2 points of AP. However, any piece of mail with +str is automatically gonna get DE'd if an enhance shammy isnt around, since +str is useless for hunters. I mean, really really useless.

So what do enhance shammies want? +Str, +Agil. What do hunters want? +Agil, +Agil, +Agil (you get the idea) then +AP, +Crit. What will enhance shammies settle for? yeah... hunter gear. Which always has too much +crit and not enough +agil. Why? Cuz Agil double stacks for hunters with +crit and +ap. So a +ap, +crit, +agil mail item will always be more valuable to hunters than to shammies. But shammies can use it, wheras a +str mail item just makes hunters mad. So blizz makes items with a shammy in the back (very back) of the mind, in the process nerfing them enough that hunters can't get uber agility items for SV builds. And everyone gets mad...

The major problem... blizz has an equivalency scale for items.

1 str = 1 agil = 1 +crit = 2 ap

So do hunters...

40 agil = 40 ap + 1.00 crit %

40 +crit = 1.82 crit %

And then shammies...

20 str = 40 ap

20 agil = 0.80 crit %

20 +crit =0.91 crit %

And the three scales doan match... I doan really see a simple fix tho. But fun game... "You can have 100 points to spend on your mail chest... whatcha buy?"

Hunter = 100 agil (100 AP, 2.25 crit %)

Shammy = 75 str, 25 agil (150AP, 1.0 crit%)

I'll bitch about the futility of shammy crit later...