Monday, August 31, 2009

Onyxia's Lair + Destruction Lock = FAIL

Last night, I urged 2 guildies to three man Onyxia. Unfortunately after the fight started I learned that Onyxia is immune to all fire spells. No immolate, no conflagerate, no incinerate. My rotation consisted of Curse of Agony, Corruption and Chaos Bolt whenever the CD was ready. Luckily the tank, TOC geared held aggro and finished it off.

Next run, convert to Affliction.

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Silent (DPS) Killer

There's just no winning! Looking at my workstation performance, I saw last night that I had maxed out my memory. I had 100% utilization on RAM. When I bought my PC, it came with Windows Vista 32-bit Media Center installed. I have a quad-core processor in there. Upgrading to Windows 7 64bit would definitely help. Getting off wireless networking couldn't hurt either.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Grubbing gold grubbers

Darn you skinners. I don't think it's fair you can charge me 25g for 20 rugged leather (that's 220% profit!!).. If only my rogue was higher level... I'd get you..

Ok, off to do a daily and get that back.. :)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Gear Quest -> What's The Next Stat?

For the last few months, I have been working hard to improve my lock's damage output. With the 3.2 patch, options for upgrading my gear has improved by leaps and bounds. Several high iLevel 200+ gear dropped from the new Trial of Champions and changes to badge gear making, Ulduar-level gear obtainable.

To fine tune my lock, I had been working from an older version of the Warlock DPS Spreadsheet. This spreadsheet is/was great because it
  1. idealized my dps into unrealistic values, making me stride to improve my spell rotation
  2. allowed me to visualize various buffs, spells and enchants would do to my dps
  3. provide me with a link to ideal gear upgrades based on the stats I should be still stacking.
For example:
The Next Stat:




Stat+ DPS+dmg
+1 shadow dmg3.360.54
+1 fire dmg2.910.46
+1 dmg6.271.00
+1 hit rating2.660.42
+1 crit rating3.170.51
+1 haste rating3.470.55
+1 Spirit3.100.49
+1 mp52.930.47
+1 intellect2.810.45
+1 Stamina0.310.05


This translated (for me), to increasing spell damage by 1 point, would increase my DPS by 6 points. Scanning the list, I prioritized from hit to spell damage, next crit and haste.

After the DPS Spreadsheet, I like to also refer to Loot-rank.com. This site, takes your current build and provides a detailed list of ALL upgrades to your equipment and suggests gems and enchants. The trick to this site, is that it (like Pawn), requires scales. It has default scales which are useful, but you may want to use the ranking from the spreadsheet also. Where this shines, is that the spreadsheet provides ALL upgrades. I am not a tailor, enchanter or jewelcrafter, so none of those specific upgrades are useful. I am not big into PVP, so pvp badge gear is out of the question. Loot-rank allows you to filter to content based on what you can and will do. My guild is still too small to run 25-man anything, so remove those.

So, my question is what do I upgrade next? I currently have 5 blue items equipped. Which item will give me my best bang for my buck? Cost-wise, I am 3 Heroic instances away from being able to purchase a Tier-8 token (head, chest). Comparing the DPS Spreadsheet score and the LootRank score, it looks like the chest (LR:7352) will provided the largest upgrade over the head (LR:6717).

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Soul Shard Changes

At Blizzcon, they've announced a groundbreaking warlock class change. That large bag of 28 soul shards in my inventory will soon become obsolete.

No longer will soul shards be inventory items, yipee.. Soon, I'll have 20+ free bag slots opening up! Dump that shard bag... Sorry to all those tailors, hope you didn't have to grind for that soul bag pattern... :D

No longer consumed out of combat. Based on the slides, it looks similar to the combo-points on rogue classes. These will provide 3 shard abilities per fight. Fire off one shard requiring spell and it will open up other spells that are improved by the first. Sort of like how Conflagrate requires Immolate being up. Did I hear you say PowerAuras? :)

I am eagerly looking forward to these changes..

Monday, August 24, 2009

Mountain Dew: Game Fuel Review


OK, I gave into the hype and picked up some Warcraft Game Fuel from the store the other day. Safeway only had Horde-Red available, which seemed appropriate, being an Orc Warlock.

First impression: Sweet.

Light soda with sweet taste and minimal flavor. I drank about half my glass before spiking it with a dose of lemonade.

Now I got a case of mediocre flavored soda.. :|

Venomhide Ravasuar Buff?

OK, follow my logic here.

I am working on getting my Ravasuar mount. This level-55 epic riding mount required me to build up a resistance to the Venomhide poison. I'd think that a bit of this poison will still be on me after riding this mount. If I've been riding the mount for several minutes, say 10-15 minutes, the poison should be on me pretty thick. So much so, that if I touch (fight) another beast, it should take a hit from the poison. Since most other beasts don't have the immunity that I have, they should be injured from it.

So, Blizzard, can riding my Venomhide Ravasuar mount to generate a poison buff??

:)

Cataclysm -> Last expansion for World of Warcraft?


Over the weekend, Blizzard posted information about their latest expansion, Cataclysm. This expansion looks wonderful. As usual, the expansion is going to include new playable classes (goblin=horde) and worgen=alliance), 2 new starting areas and new raid content. IMHO, it's about time for the Alliance to have a beast race and the horde to have a short character race!!

The most exciting new content comes in the trailer. It looks like Blizzard is looking to expand the use of "phased content" into the Old World. Like going through the Icecrown quest line, where you slowly see permanent changes to the terrain, users will likely see changes to the old world based on what they have done. I love this idea, for a couple of reasons:

  1. Revive the old world areas. Traveling across the Barrens is tiring (even with only 3 alts), traveling across a destroyed Barrens, that once was pristine could be interesting.
  2. Take load off Dalaran. On peek load times, doing anything in Dalaran is tiresome. On my wireless network at home, I sometimes see 3 frames per second. Ouch!
  3. Flying mounts! - Finally! Based on the lore, I've never understood why I could fly in Outlands and Northren, but not Kalimador.


My one question - Does destroying the old world, mean end of game for Warcraft? Sort of like a movie where they kill off all the main characters at the end of the 3rd movie (The Matrix series comes to mind), what happens when the old world is destroyed and in ruins? Will the phased content slowly rebuild it? Or will all need to take the space ships to the Dranei home world to get home? (hopefully not totally mucking up the Dranei lore).

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Guild - Music Video

I haven't watched any of "The Guild" vid-cast until a guildie pointed out their latest endeavor, the following music video.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Excellent HowTo for Trial of the Crusader

I've subscribed to this Hunter's feed on YouTube. He's got a bunch of great videos on how to complete the various Heroic Achievements.

The latest is a quick 10 minute video on how to complete the 25-man Trial of the Crusader. My last (and only) attempt at this raid didn't get us anywhere. We wiped 10-15 times on the first boss, then never made it past the second (worms).

Ravasaur - Day 8

Just finished day 8 of the ravasaur dailies. Don't need to be consecutive. The teeth don't have a despawn timer on them. Collect 20 and you are good.

I hear around now my dino should grow a little. Still looking forward to that.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Blizzard, a simple skill request

Enchanters can disenchant
Miners can smelt

Why can't Herbalist plant? I'd like to plant a frost lotus clipping and carry it around in my herbal bag. Water it regularly, and eventually I should get a small plant that I can pick from regularly.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Trial of Champions FTW

Last night, I ran TOC 3 times. First as the Heroic Daily (from a few nights ago), then twice on 'regular' mode. During these three runs, I managed to get 3 nice upgrades.

  1. Spectral Kris <- Greiving Spellblade. I am really excited about this. It has a really nice look and has a pawn score +100 over the spellblade. Just wish it wasn't a blue gem, I guess my green epic works. Also guess it's good because it will keep my meta gem activated.

  2. Handwraps of Surrendered Hope <- Hateful Gladiator's Felweave Handguards - Nice upgrade, has red gem, so epic spell power here.

  3. Mantle of Inconsolable Fear <- Runecaster's Mantle

The mantle is the scariest that I have seen. They are enormous, I now look like I am wearing linebacker shoulder pads. They are glowy with bright blue ribbons and little shiny grommets. Not sure this is a good image for an agent of shadow and fear.

I am fairly positive that a cloth item will drop each time the Black Knight is killed. Of the 4 runs, I've won 4 drops. (That's 100%!) Bringing my Wow Heroes score to 1925 (up from 1850). I plan on spamming my guild tonight and getting the enchants ASAP (+45 to score).

Update: Nope, not 100% drop rate on cloth items in TOC. Ran Heroic TOC for the daily last night and absolutely no Warlock friendly drops dropped.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Rare, Seldom-used, Warlock Minions

As I've mentioned when I raid, I mostly have my imp out. There are a few places that I like to run my other minions, the voidwalker has a nice health shield, the puppy is a caster hater, and the succy is great against melee classes in pvp.

Reading the following forum, I was reminded of two pets I never use.
  1. Doomguard - spawns when a npc dies from the Curse of Doom, it spawns this beast. I've seen it happens twice now in all the boss fights I've fought and when he spawned I missed it and he started whacking on our healer. The second time I was able to enslave him and he was under my control for 1 entire minute. Considering I typically use CoD starting boss fights, he's only good for trash mob cleanup.
  2. Infernal - use an infernal stone and spawns this monster. This one used to only be valid outside since it's spawned via meteor.


I am wondering when WOULD be a good time to use these pets. Both look like they'd do some decent damage. The Infernal looks to die after 1 minute, where the doomguard needs to be enslaved. I think I might go try some of the Argent Tourney dailies and spawn the Infernal in addition to the AOE.

Update: I found 2 uses for the Infernal. When farming the 15 Converted Heroes for the argent tourney and the last 2 phases of the Black Knight. The AOE impact aggro's all the mobs and he lives just long enough to complete these.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

New Onyxia's Lair



A guildie had been for weeks wanting to visit the Onyxia's Lair dungeon in old world. His thought was that we could 5-man this old-world 40-man raid. Looks like in the next few patches, that's not going to be so.

She has lurked in her lair and done battle with the many brave adventurers who travelled to that familiar location over the years. Now, in honor of the World of Warcraft 5-year anniversary, the dreaded brood mother Onyxia is being revamped to make a return to the forefront of Azeroth, as part of our big plans for the upcoming 3.2.2 content patch. Source


This will be interesting for a couple reasons, a new mount, a new pet and possibly a chance at some new gear. :) Plus, since I've never run this old raid, a chance to see this old world content.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I want!

As a casual warlock, I only see the insides of the raiding environments in short bursts ("lfm DPS!") or possibly as part of a 10-man raid (if really lucky). With the recent changes to the badge distribution, I am now eligible for Tier-8 gear (just for doing the 5-man heroics!.

That's why I really want this chest piece. With another Friday off coming really soon, I could have the 20 more badges required.

Check out this wish list for other warlock badge gear.

Get Your very own Ravasaur Mount for only 1 daily a day.

Saturday I started the new Horde quest line that nets you another fast land mount. Better yet, if you're not Exalted with the Trolls yet, a dinosaur/raptor mount.

(Note: I just re-started this quest chain on my level 72 Priest alt and found a few changes).

Big -8 dmg on raptor
to get splashed.
Part 1: Go to Un'goro crater and at the entrance of the valley is a troll who invites you to start the quest. You need to get infected with the Venomhide poison splashed with Venomhide blood 20 times. This means that you now have to be actively attacking the raptor, to get splashed. At level 80 (and 400 unarmed skill), you don't want to attack these beasts (like so many troubled alliance were doing), you want to tease them. As a note, I was able to go AFK and fend off 2 raptors (fists only) without dying. (Update: Since you have to actively fight the raptor, engaging multiple raptors will not get you splashed more, unless maybe you're using an AOE and I didn't see it happening. They just died quickly) You go bare fisted, and punch it, untarget it, then run around annoying the poor raptor. By just avoiding the beast, I was able to get infected 12-13 times.

Part 2: Find venomhide 4 eggs. Easy enough, mount up and run around looking for little piles of black rocks (ravasaur eggs). In each bunch is a light colored, venomhide raptor.

Part 3: Dailies. Use the COT port in Violet Citadel, then check with your baby raptor on what he wants each day. Gather dino meat (east ungoro crater), bug eggs(south ungoro crater), or searing roc feathers (east tanaris).

Complete the daily(x20), and you'll have another raptor mount.

My Shiny New Shoes

Last night, against my wife's best wishes, I ran a 5-man heroic Trial of the Champion and won a nice pair of clothy boots, Boots of the Crackling Flame.

Of this fight:
Phase 1: Fight 3 random groups of Argent Tourney Champions. Each Champion is accompanied by 3 valiants. You start the fight mounted, but if you get dismounted, revert to your regular weapon and fight like any boss fight.

Phase 2: Eadric the Pure and his helpers. He has 3 groups of 3, a priest (healer), a light-wielder (mage) and a monk. Kill his groupies first, in that order (priest, lightwielder and monk) Easy, just need to watch for his radiance cast which temporarily blinds you and turn around before hand. Also throws a hammer of radiance (like that Brewfest fight in BRD) that you can throw back for damage.

OR Argent Confessor Paletress is the harder of the two. She summons a ghost boss from other areas and then bubbles herself until the ghost boss leaves. Fairly easy as long as your tank picks up aggro on the ghost quickly. I got to see 3 different bosses due to slow heals and tank not knowing the fight.

Phase 3: Black Knight has 3 mini phases.

  • Body - easy tank and spank. One zombie.
  • Skeleton - raises 8 champions bodies into zombies. Our hunter put up an icy zone that slowed the zombies down. Zombies explode and deal damage. Found easiest to simply cast insta-cast spells on dark knight keep running from zombies. Zombies all explode at the end, try your best to stay away.
  • Ghost - Easy if done quick. Save your healing CDs for this round. Has a life-drain spell that hurts and causes increased spell damage.


20g in repairs for a new pair of (ilevel 219) boots. Worth it!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Patch 3.2 Fun!

Logged on this morning to 70% of my addons not working. XPerl is still popping up errors (target and pet bars), FuBar didn't even bother to load and Minimalist just complained a lot.

On the cool front, I did manage to pickup a bunch of the new items:

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Warlock Cooking..

Warlocks have minions. One minion, the imp, is on fire. I have my imp, Volham, out all the time due to my training. He provides a great crit buff when he crits.


Cooking needs a fire. It's very useful to have food buffs while in a raid.

I'd like to be able to cook over my imp. Summon imp, add a little salmon, some northern spices. Wah la! Firecracker Salmon!

:)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Fishing

After watching the Higher Learning run through, I watched this great short on some of the tricks on Dalaran fishing. Some other things to mention:

  • Fishing nets you rare recipes - especially in Shattrath, but also in Dalaran. I got the Rumsey's lager recipe from the Dal fishing daily. (Only need 2 more recipes for the "Chef" title).
  • Underbelly elixir can also turn you into a wasp, which allows you to fly around the underbelly. I always get dismounted before flying out into the world.
  • You can now fish at any level. I leveled from fishing at level 125 -> 300 by fishing the Dalarn fountain. You get a lot of junk at early levels, so have lots of bag space.
  • If you pull a gold coin out of the Dalaran fountain, then USE it, it has a buff increasing your chances of pulling another coin in the next 10 minutes.
  • Check into the addon called Fishing Buddy. It simplifies a bunch of recurring tasks about fishing.
    1. Select "Fishing Buddy" from Outfitter and it sets "Find Fish" in addition to my outfit.
    2. Have Rumseys Lager, it will drink on first cast attempt.
    3. Double-click to cast fish
    4. Track % fish caught for area.
    5. If failed catch (caught junk), it will apply lure to pole on next cast.

  • Lastly El's site (video author) is a great source for everything fishing in the game. I've relied upon it for fishing locations in Outlands, and how to do the quests in old world.

Pawn Add-on


A guildie suggested that I install Pawn. This addon can be configured to show you a score on your gear based on the various stats that you want to judge on.

As a Destruction warlock, I am highly interested in pieces with high amounts of hit, spell power, haste then crit. To simplify gear selection, I've set up scales. These scales weight each stat, generating a score.

My favorite scales:

Yesterday, I found a new way to look at scores. When you see a new item, for example it's linked to you, right-click that display. Pawn will popup a new display that compares line-by-line your equiped item to the new item. Wow! No longer need to open my character screen and look at the item score to compare!

Higher Learning Status

Half done. I have found and read 4 of the 8 books required for the Higher Learning achievement..

  1. Run into Violet Hold - Check on Daily

  2. Run into Dalaran Visitor's Center - Check book

  3. Pickup Fishing Daily

  4. Mount up, run to top of stairs at Violet Citadel, turn around, check if book at Threads of Fate - You can see a spot when the book is there.

  5. Run into Violet Citadel - check lower and upper books

  6. Do one more pass of the DVC, TOF and VC stops.


Of all the future books, I hope the TOF book drops next. I really hate running up that winding staircase.

With regards to Add-ons, I am finding not enough people on my server (at least when I am on) run "Dalaran University". This addon feeds off other users, so I never have anything except what I have found. The feeder addon "Higher Learning" doesn't carry over the values for me, so it isn't extrapolating when a book might appear for me. :( Maybe if I played more, it would show valid data.

Here a great video that goes reverse of my path. I like that going this way, the stairs into the Threads of Fate, point in the direction you are already traveling.

Soapbox: Lazy Form of Raiding

Over the summer, I spent 2 weeks with my family (parents, brother's family and my family) on the beach in Maui. It was absolutely awe...