Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Outlook (Raid) Calendar?

Hi Blizzard,

I think your group calendar feature could use a little work. See, I use Outlook at work. In this software you can send out "meeting" requests. "Meet me at Blackwing Descent summoning stone at 10PM". When I respond to a request, I can opt to send a note back. I'd love to be able tell my guild that I'll be home, but I don't plan to log on if my guild doesn't have 9 other players for the raid. Give me 100 characters, have it show on the raid invite screen when you float over my name.

Sure, I could just login, or mail my raid leader, or my co-worker who is also in the guild, but that's not the point. 



Thursday, March 24, 2011

I don't understand. Why mastery is so bad?

Back when Cataclysm was first announced, Blizzard talked up the Mastery stat.  The Mastery stat will be the stat everyone will want. The stat to homogenize gear so that casters and melee will want it. It will be the stat to rule them all

Unfortunately, now that it's implemented, critics agree, Mastery is one of the most useless stats for warlocks, destruction, affliction and even demonology. In all forms, it adds DPS to your game, but not as much as other stats, I guess? According to the data on EJ:

179.28 mastery provides a 1.35% increase to all fire damage we do. As 90%+ of our damage comes from fire spells, mastery is not a bad stat, however, the increase per point is low enough that we will not prioritize mastery over crit or haste until much higher gear levels.

Will Blizzard change this? They evidently didn't like that warlocks preferred the infernal vs the doomguard (in certain situations) so buffed Mr. Doom. I can imagine that this will eventually be 'fixed'. Otherwise, the loss of "Spell Power" to gain a more generic "Mastery" stat seems pointless. 
  • At what point will we change our entire prioritization from Int/Hit/Haste priorities to one that favors mastery?
  • Is there any class that stacks mastery to no end?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Needs More Undead

Sure, goblins and worgen are the two new classes in Cataclysm, but the lore they've given us is worgen vs undead; not goblin.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Loot Monkey

Last night, on a whim, I ran over to Eastern Plague Lands and tried running through Stratholme. Two purposes, play around with my Felguard and Demo spells, second get my Argent Dawn rep, so following a half-remembered forum post, I went in and started killing.

0 rep earned

2 hours later, bags laden with a dozen or so, soulbound level 50 epics!, I never found the book I was looking for. Half expecting to find a glowy, twinkly book sitting on the ground by the second-to-last boss. All in all, I never got a point of rep. A few things I forgot:

  1. There are prequests. The quests are well detailed in this comment. I plan to try again later this week. Doing these quests would have gotten me to Revered. Since, I am already there, so I was hoping to skip them.
  2. My Argent Dawn commission. It was in my bank. Oddly, looking at the commission entry on Wowhead, this has been removed from the game.  Supposedly if you had done the prequests, you should be able to pick up a replacement. If you're new to the zone, you may never see this trinket.
  3. Next time, I'll empty my bags. Each boss dropped 2-3 blue items. 13 possible bosses. On top, there are a number of pickup items (got a journeyman backpack and a BOE pattern) plus quest pickups, cloth and random trash.  I ended up not picking up everything, and had to do a ton of bag management to finish. No, I couldn't mount my wooly mammoth to repair or sell.

The dungeon is very easy at level 85. I ran around with my AOE spamming, killing everything. I had to do this to avoid having Thasak killing everything before me. I changed my style, because I think he may have actually killed one of the quest targets. Now, if I could only get a loot monkey. Hmm...

Blizzard! I need a pet monkey to loot corpses for me!!

Toss me that loot, monkey!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Looking Forward to Patch 4.1

As a casual player, I can often only get on to play a few days a week. Sure, I will typically play for a few hours each night (10pm to ??) but not everyday. This means I may get only 3x70 valor points each week. Considering warlock tier gear is going to cost me 6000 valor points. Without any raiding (or considering we have only downed the BH boss), this is going to take me easily 28 weeks.

In 4.1, that will all change. You will still get valor points for doing 7 random heroics a week, just you will be able to do them all on the same day. Imagine that. Raid buffed, you can pull 5 members in for 'another' random dungeon afterwards. Or if you finish early enough, do a second dungeon immediately afterwards.

I can imagine a few social changes that will come from this:
  1. People will run more chained heroics. I know at this point, I am fairly well geared (average i351), so I am not looking for gear upgrades dungeons and definitely can't find gear to purchase with Justice points. (maybe BOA?). Unfortunately after I finish my first Heroic for the night, there is no incentive to run a second heroic for the day. Instead I either do my random battle ground, daily quests or just log off for the night.
  2. Shorter queue time. With more people running second, third or even fourth heroics in a single night, I can imagine that the queue time will drop from my average of 30 minutes, to hopefully half!
  3. AH flooded with heroic drops. Could be a negative for people hoping to flip highly sought after i359 epic drops, but the market will increase on enchants, gems and other related improvements.

To speed up gearing up, the new 4.1 heroic dungeons will have double-bonus valor. 
The first seven random Rise of the Zandalari Heroics you run for the week will award 140 VP each.
 With it's own queue and even a few new mount drops, I imagine these heroics will be swamped with people queuing up as well.

So to reach your max of 980 valor via dungeons, you can run 7 Zandalari dungeons or 7 Cataclysm dungeons and 3.5 Zandalari dungeons. Roughly 7 to 10 dungeons equates (for me) around 7 to 10 hours of game play. Instead of 28 weeks (6000/210), I can hope to see my three pieces of tier gear in 7 weeks (6000/980).

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Knock off 2 Deepholm Achievements Quickly

Last night, I ran my Therazane dailies in Deepholm, I decided to clear to two fairly easy achievements, Fungal Frenzy and My Very Own Broodmother.

Fungal Frenzy is fairly straight forward. While destroying the mushroom babies for Fungal Fury, you get a buff for each type of mushroom you destroy. The trick is just finding each of the 4 and picking them quickly. Typical Blizzard fashion, you will never (very seldom) find all 4 next to each other.

  • Don't get in water, the buffs wash off.
  • Scope them out before hand.
  • Pick the trapcap last. 
  • If you pick a shuffletruffle first, you get a nice run speed buff. I suggest mounting up between shrooms.

 Taken at 72, 32

Shrinkshroom is the hardest to find. It is a white with brown stripe mushroom. They like to spawn next to the large pink pillars. I found a total of 2 during my looking.

Shuffletruffle is very common. Light blue mushroom that spawns near the blue rock outcroppings. Speed buff.

Poolshroom is a red mushroom, near pools. Damage buff.

Trapcap is a purple mushroom (aka boomshroom) that sits on the mountain side. It explodes when picked, no buff.

My Very Own Broodmother
This achievement should be a DPS race. Kill the broodmother in 90 second or less, as of 4.0.6, it's not (may change). Here's how I did it:

  1. Stand by the summoning crystal and wait for someone else to start the fight. 
  2. (yep you guessed it), let them call the npc to start the fight. Wait about 5 seconds.
  3. Gong the crystal, jump and start the fight. 
  4. Once killed, drop down normally and you should have a few seconds to spare. Assuming you and the others kill her quickly. Turn in back at the NPC again. 
According to the Wowhead comments, I could have also:

Do the quest and complete it and let the timer run out. Hit the rock again and turn in the quest. It gives you the achievement.
or even
hit the rock when you hop off before turning the quest in. It currently causes the timer for the achievement to reset.
 These were both easy achievements, considering you don't need random numbers (repeat quest 10 times) to complete them. The longest time I spent was looking for the shrinkshroom.

Good luck!

Monday, March 14, 2011

OMG! Epic Rainbows!

At my child's Elementary school, they are getting all rev'd up for St. Patricks day. For them, this means 4-leaf clovers, leprechauns and rainbows with pots of gold at the end. My youngest is looking for us to set up a leprechaun trap in the house, so we can capture one and he can share his gold with his class.(IDTS, it's all MINE!!) Guess we'll have to see what we catch..

This 'holiday', Blizzard is not going to disappoint. In patch 4.03 (aka Cataclysm), they included a new series of quests in Felwood. This series of quests (see comment), starts with you bagging Impsey (try not to kill him, I suggest a swift wack with your weapon), and then ends with you blinding imps with a crystal refraction. The quest chain took me a total of about 15 minutes, include flight time from Orgrimmar. Best of all, when you're done, you get your very own Rainbow Generator. Sure it doesn't do any damage at 85 (30 damage on a critter with 42 health), but oh, what a disgrace to be killed with a rainbow in a battleground! /giggle I can't wait!! (send me your pics! I'll post them as a gallery.)

Results for treasure found at end of rainbow will vary.
If this trinket didn't have a 10-minute cooldown, I think it would be a friendly way to complete the Critter Killer achievement. Blinding them with rainbows, sounds so much friendlier than flames. Sadly, it doesn't even do enough damage.

While doing some research on this topic, everyone keeps referencing this video:

With Cataclysm, we get:

Now you can go for the gold with our own double rainbow. Found inside the Battle for Gilneas battleground, near the Waterworks. Stand here and do the /gasp emote for an achievement.

I look forward to seeing a triple rainbow generated here at the base of these falls.

deleting game to get rid of background music on site

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Elk likes it..

Last night after a fail raid. (Magmaw 10, OOT 0), one of my trusted warlock guildies (playing the role of healer last night) said, "Hey Elk, ever consider running a Demonology build? You get some massive AOE damage." Had I? Actually never. 4 and a half years, and I've never, ever ran a demo build. So, after the excitement of 80k dps AOE's I thought "Now is the time".

After clearing those 31 points out of my incomplete Affliction build, I pull up my guildie's Armory page and grab her Demo build. OK, some new spells, new priorities. Hand of Guldan? Fly up to the training dummies, summon my Felguard, "Thoosas" and try out a sample rotation. Shuffle my buttons a bit and try again. OK, rebuild my buttons to match closer to my Destro buttons (fel flame and soulburn on B4 and B5, etc.). Once, I get it where I think it should, queue for a PVP run, cuz battlegrounds are my spell rotation, talent build and gear testing ground.

For once, I get an instant queue, Nice! Twin Peaks. Twin Peaks, in case you haven't run it before, is a mini Warsong Gulch. You both have flags, and need to run the opposing team sto your own base. When your flag is in the stand, you can 'capture' the opposing team's flag. 3 captures to win. This is a rather fun bg. The river in the center, creates both a barricade and squeeze point if you cross at the bridge (dpsing swimmers is like shooting fish in a barrel).

Once I got past the different spell rotation (what does this yellow wings aura mean?), I found the differences between the specs fun.
  • Demonology is quite a bit more survivable. With the shared damage with the felguard, you can take quite a bit. If that doesn't mitigate it, every 30 seconds 3 minutes, you can go demon form and rampage the countryside (for 30 seconds).
  • Second, I hardly ever ran out of mana. Only during a 3-minute long duel with a dwarf something-or-other, did I find myself out of mana. (Thanks healer, that was awesome). Destro, I would have had to tap at least 2-3 times to do the same fight.
  • AOE while on the run. I ran up beside the flag carrier, turned on the immolate aura and kept casting my dots. I was also able to fire up the Hellfire and do even larger damage area.

Monday, when we take on Magmaw again, I'll have my demon form, and my felguard's spinny-ftw-y attack. Goodbye lava parasites, full win for OOT. (and maybe an epic dagger for Elk)!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Uldum NEEDS More Dailies

At the moment, I am working towards my Exalted reputation with the Ramkahen. After finishing the quests in this zone, I was still a long way from Exalted. Picked up the Tabard and started wearing it for all my heroic dailies. Each evening that I log in, I do my 2 Ramkahen dailes before anything else. Still a full 10 days later, and I am still working on the stretch from Revered to Exalted. Ugh.

On the other hand, I finished off the Deepholm quests late last week. I've ran the dailes 3 times, and was able to pull down a massive 4500 rep. Just running dailies alone, I believe I should become Exalted about the same time as with Ramkahen.

This is why I believe those Ramkahen need more dailies. With only 2 dailies currently active, I can only get ~500 reputation each day that I run. With some of the options available in this zone, the lack of fun dailies, is not because of a lack of great quests. Personally this zone is ripe with great 'vehicle' type quests. Some of my personal favorites, include:

  • Tailgunner! -Ride along with Harrison Jones as the tail gunner in is airplane. Shoot down Schnotz attackers as they chase you.
  • Under the Choking Sands - Rescue sinking Ramkahen as they are sucked into quick sand.
  • The Defense of Nahom - Act as the 'General' of this army defending a temple with archers and grunts.
  • Gnomebliteration - Everyone's favorite, destroy 1000 infected gnomes with a giant ball of flames.
Blizzard, please add more dailes in the 4.1 patch. Please add more dailes before I reach Exalted and quit checking in.. You did some great work on these quests in Uldum, I'd love an excuse to do them again, and again and again...

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Chef's Delight

I love cooking. Before I started playing WoW, some 4+ years ago, the concept of a game that allowed you to create things was absolutely foreign and strange. You can make things, then sell them to other players for money?? WoW! Yes, coming from a long FPS background, you only go that nice gravity gun after you killed the mini-boss who had it. Of course, then it dropped from everyone, but, that's a different life.

Now, as I've been leveling fishing, (that 'profession' I never thought I'd max out), I've picked up a ton of fish. When completed  I cooked them up and threw them all on the AH (getting 10g for the one of the strength recipes).

Looking at the caster recipes, I am wondering what is everyone's favorites. Here's a quick list of the Cataclysm recipes I see will grant an Int, Hit, Haste or "highest stat" well fed buff.

Based on my experience, I personally like the Pickled Guppy. +Intellect is an easy call on a buff that would be useful. The fish are fairly easy to catch while running around in Twilight Highlands. Just follow the river from the Horde port. My guild is still about 1500 items from the Broiled Dragon Feast, so I am thinking we should pick up some BBQs for the (first) raid next week.

What is your favorite recipe? Why do you use it? When do you use it?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Birthday Flash

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

From Blizz Fan Art
I love reading to my kids
and now they love reading, like daddy did.
Cat in the Hat is outrageous,
and Green Eggs is stoo-pendous.
That Cat was insane,
but sure glad wasn't a gobl-ane.

Taming MOAR Pets

WFH means Work Warcraft From Home Monday was a work from home kind of day, so I worked on a little project of my own. I saw this on Twit...