Friday, October 29, 2010

Turning with the wind

Those who know me better can verify that I get excited pretty quickly on some idea. And my interest in that idea may dwindle as quickly as it is incited.

Yesterday I tweeted that I might take up on - or in fact propose - leading a guild raid in some earlier instances. I had a plan and I had the interest and I was very much pepped up with the whole thing. Until I checked our guild's current raid schedule. The ICC runs are already in a state in which the only one running is 25 man, three times a week. No tens in some time now and the odd raids -scheduled- are old world reputation and achievement runs. To which there are not many joining, but then again, in 80's gear they are all soloable.

So I got dishearted and decided to stick to the Loremaster stuff instead. If nothing changes, that will be my main interest for the time being.

This lead me to think about the raid leading and beginning it. It would be pretty hard for me to think about starting a PUG, barely knowing the encounters as a raider, let alone take on the leading. Sure, I have read the strategies and know the basics of the encounters, but knowing how different the actual encounters are from the videos or strategies to execute, I doubt severely that I could do it. Successfully.

The current state of the game is such that the LFD 5mans do not teach you anything about grouping, group or class dynamics or goup roles. Levelling content 5mans are - especially the LFD PUGs - just facerolled and most of the time the healer is actually more bound of DPS than healing: the self healing capabilities (and mitigation) of the tanking classes are showing already at low levels, rendering the healing to a couple of HoT's at best. DPS can go rampant and tank lose the aggro and still there is only a little risk of anything going wrong. Only a really messy add pull causes a wipe in there. I've healed a RFK with my lv32 Druid in which I did more dps as healer than an enhancement shaman. And we did the instance without a problem.

Anyhow, the Three rode again yesterday.

First of all, we tried a new composition by having my baby DK first as dps for Headless Horseman and a random heroic. I was a bit amazed that this poor little DK in his green, blue and lv200 purple gear could deliver more dps than Förgelös, who is in way higher gear alltogether. On Headless the difference was significant, but in Gundrak it was even bigger.

In Gundrak my main dps run was against the tanking DK in all purples. Granted, he was tanking and more active due to that, but still I managed to out dps him on each and every boss fight, and in the last boss quite nicely. We passed Eck, as usual, but as the rest of the group left, we decided to go and see if we could do it by ourselves.

I had a tanking spec done - blood one, naturally - but my gear is almost all dps. Just a slight improvement by two or three pieces, but nothing crucial. Dodge at 10%, Parry at 12% and no real understanding on tanking as a DK. My buttons were a mess and I really hadn't even considered what the skills really do.

Add to this, Bishopgeorge's connection had an uncanny trait to disconnect at the most inappropriate moments.

We wiped twice, first due to the fact that I just didn't have the whole grasp of my skills. Second because our healer all of a sudden disconnected. And third wipe came from these combined.

Fourth one. I used every skill to see how and what it helped. In went Army of the Dead, Dancing Rune Weapon, Icebound Fortitude (aye, keep it up all the time) and so on.

And down went Eck.

I realized it only later that we had downed him on HEROIC.

From there I switched to my prot warrior and off we went to Pit of Saron. Now this instance, with which we struggled for so long, seems like a walk in the park. Garfrost is a big lump of meat, Ick/Krick almost annoying fight and Scourgelord Tyrannus is just a blabbermouth. For some reason we always seem to be able to pull the mid-climb mobs on as and wipe: that's just sheer negligence and should be done with. The sad part of this run was that as we ran it for Förgelös so he could get new daggers, no such drops were seen. We had one irritated rogue among us for the rest of the evening.

And off the Halls of Reflection we went.

To be honest, Falric/Marwyn would have been a nice, concise and pushoverish fight, had our healer stayed online through it all. He disconnected around the last wave before Marwyn and we just couldn't push him over the edge. Our first try and he got away with 1/6 of his health.

Second try on Marwyn was pure joy: down he went and without a problem. Too bad the shield didn't drop, it would have made my evening. It's the only improvement I can get from 5 mans anymore, so it would be nice to see drop.

But we have a new brickwall in our way. The last part, the evasion from the Lich King with Jaina. We just do not have enough firepower as it currently is to down the mobs fast enough. Sure, we can do it up to the last wall, but then the lack comes apparent and Lich King collects more souls for Frostmourne.

Next week it will be more Pit of Saron and Halls of Reflection. Hopefully with better luck with gear upgrades, as that is all it seems to be about.

C out

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Whose quests are they really?

I tweeted today that I have made a terrible find, which isn't a surprise at all. All who have read this blog any longer than last few months know that I love stories and quests and have been very much disappointed with the heroic/raid kind of playing. Now I took my warrior, switched to Arms dps and started doing the Loremaster achievement in earnest.

And I'm loving the quests which I'm unfolding. Which I have not completed. Which I have neglected back then, or abandoned because I over-levelled them outrageously.

Granted, my main interest is to do the Old World quests before Cataclysm. I know, it's a bit time intensive goal, especially as I know already I'll be travelling due to work things for two weeks during the time. On the helpful side, I have already almost two thirds done of them, in Eastern Kingdom I just crossed 577/700 quests done as I was checking Wetlands for unfinished quests.

Before that I finished the Grizzly Hills achievement and found some nice quest chains which can easily go neglected if you are just levelling up. The Drakuru-chain is obvious, as it has an achievement in itself, but how many really stumbled upon - and completed - the Arugal chain? I do not have to finish it, but I want to, really.

While I was doing the Grizzly Hills quests I noticed something I don't think I have noticed before. The odd quests and small chains in the Old World emphasized this notion even more.

Whose quests is the player character actually doing?

As far as I can see, the quests are always important to the questgiver, and are of utmost important to them. I can't remember right from the top of my hat any quests or questlines where the player character was impelled to do the quests for personal involvement or which would have revolved around the player character in any real way.

The personal involvement of the player through her/his character's personal involvement is seriously missing in the quests, as far as I can tell.

Like in the business world, the reward of money or gear isn't enough a drive to make the quests enjoyable or rewarding to the player. (In some recent studies on salary being a reward in a job they found that after certain salary level the salary ceases to be the reward or reason to work for more.) If there is no personal involvement or enticement, the player is pretty much alienated from the questing and thus the quest-reward cycle feels like a grind, something you must do to get on with the game, to level up.

I'm a strong advocate for choice in quests and equal reward for making a choice that affects the position and demeanour of the character in the world around him. You make the choice and you face the consequences rather than you do the deed and the NPC enjoys the outcome.

What would be your solution to this lack of personal involvement in WoW quests?

Monday, October 25, 2010

The truth comes out of an infants mouth (YAWP)

Not exactly an infant, naturally, but a small kid. In this case my youngest son, 9 years, who got the luxury of playing his DK on Sunday while I was first having a nice jog and then a long walkie with one of the dogs.

His DK was lv60 when we got his UI set up and I left. When I returned half an hour later, he had gotten almost one level more, without problems in the quests and was already stating that the game feels easy. After another hour and a half the DK was lv62, my son had needed help with only two quests and he was convinced that the game was easier, his unholy DK was a brutal killing machine and the mobs in Hellfire Peninsula gave more exp than earlier.

Who am I to agree? The truth in this case came from the mouth of a young gamer who knows neigh English, plays a game which he shouldn't even touch and who has earlier - before patch 4.0.1. - been suffering from utter difficulties with the levelling process.

I also confess that I did the unthinkable and installed Carbonite once again. Only to rationalize my Loremaster project, that is. And I have to say I was very, very pleasantly surprised after I got it running on my machine. Gone is the heavy and straining memory usage, the addon works fluidly and the new additions are pretty nice, too. Partly with the help of it I finished the Grizzly Hills loremaster part in a breeze, and still had time to read the quests.

Next stop Zul'Drak and then it's all Old World till either I finish the Loremaster or Cataclysm hits. I have already made a decision that I will queue for randoms only as a dps on my warrior, as this gives me a bit time to do quests on the side. I did tank only one boss over the weekend, all the rest of the few randoms I was dps.

Like someone commented earlier in Twitter: Why bother with the gearing if I'm not raiding?

C out

Friday, October 22, 2010

Three again

The patch still haunts me. Sure Auctioneer got an upgrade, but for some reason it's not working on me, so I have to install it anew. Out with the bad air, in with the good.

So the Three Stooges rode again. First it was guiding Bishopgeorge, our resident evil healer, with his talents, gems, reforging and skills, so he could heal us. However, the action bars and their bindings seemed to cause more problems than anticipated, and the game client didn't help by freezing on him at awkward times.

However, after some half an hour or so we launched to our meeting with the Headless Horseman. I started repeating a phrase even before we went to the queue, that "do not touch the pumpkinhead, do not touch the pumpkinhead". Guess what? Both Förgelös and Bishopgeorge moused over the pumpkinhead, disconnecting almost simultanously and losing the first fight! Bishop had a faster boot, and could toss one heal before the flaming bastard unfortunate soul was released. So, we went for another.

Did I mention that Bishopgeorge should have checked his glyphs, too?

The second run. Random dps got frozen and I -the tank- too my chances: it worked for a change! Alas, the Headless Horseman was killed and everyone was rejoicing.

So Bishop checked his glyphs, made them work and off we went for a random.


Nice, I thought, as I ran to the first mobs at the entrance. Weird, I thought as I was doing over 3k dps on the mobs. "Is this really a heroic?", asked Bishop, because it was too easy to heal for him. "Yes, it is", I had to reply. 

Even more weird was our threesome consensus when the DK putting out some decent 2.5k dps died in before the first boss. "This can't be heroic!", claimed Förgelös. "Yes it is, I queued us on heroic", I said with confidence. 

And she died on the boss. And on the first hulking giant.

And then I noticed that the hunter in the group didn't rise above my 2.7k dps at all.

Turned out that the DK had just dinged or had had very, very poor luck in the gear draw. His gearscore was around 1k after the instance. The hunter wasn't much better, gearwise, but he was obviously a smartass and alt of a raider: Bishopgeorge died more than once, and after the second death -as he was running in- this hunter a) started a vote to kick Bishop, reason: slack, and b) asked "could we go faster, gogo" while we were waiting for the healer.

Sufficient to say, I took that as a sign he wanted to see the whole instance, lead the group to Amanita and proved that it was a heroic. At one point Bishop got a revelation, message from above or just woke up, as he noticed that he didn't have Fade bound in the action bars, and thus was like a plum ripe for picking for the mobs in rampage...

The rest of the instance was pretty uneventful and goes without a note that either of these extra members in our team didn't as much as thank us.

We had to contemplate the situation for a while after the run, because this was pretty unheard of: we, the ones who go to die where others run amok laughing, were actually boosting -not only one, but two!- newly geared players, and only our healer got killed! What the heck is going on in the game!

Then we cleared FoS and PoS only to learn that it is possible to wipe still even though we are super elite boosting machines, and that there is something wrong with the ghost flight as the ghost griffons fly at the speed of a snail. Going uphill. On fine gravel.

As usual, the time passed too fast on the route, and as we started to bang the doors of Halls of Reflection it was way past our bedtime. "Our playtime always comes to end when we come this far", went Förgelös, quite a bit annoyed for the fact that he hadn't had a single upgrade the whole evening. Which was true, in fact. 

So we decided next time spend our whole evening trying to best the Halls of Reflection. Only because Scourgelord Tyrannus is our puppy and we are so good in the boosting.

Because we can!

C out

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

It's not fun anymore

I did try my best to overcome my gripes with the current state of warrior tanking, but I just couldn't. Really.

For some reason the whole thing doesn't seem to work. Don't get me wrong, I like the talent change and the challenge it poses to all classes. Even though the talent system is so streamlined that you could call it a dumbed down version of the earlier one, there are less options to really gimp your toon down to unproductive leach. In fact, there are none at the moment: the PvE and PvP specs perform pretty nicely in the other function as well, thanks to overlapping talents.

But the game feels unresponsive.

Before the patch, when I pushed a button, the skill happened. WoW is very much renown for this, being very responsive in the combat, and thus very enjoyable to play. Yesterday I ran a couple of heroics and Headless Horsemans and it just didn't feel right. Even if I take the inability to hold aggro in a multi-mob situation off of the equation, the combat felt like it just wasn't following my commands.

In this I'm in the same boat with Baenhoof of the Tankatronic blog, where she says:
The one thing…the ONE thing that I cannot fucking stand about this patch is the goddamned ability queueing. I dont -want- to have to WAIT until a dev lands onto one mob before I can tab over to the next (tab is fucked up now, by the way) and slowly hit that one, too.
I like mashing keys. Its fun. Its part of the reason why the warrior is my main and not the paladin or the DK. The ability queueing feels sluggish and unresponsive and needs to be gotten rid of. It was part of the reason I enjoyed WoW over say, Aion- everything was more streamlined and tended to feel faster.
I’d really appreciate a choice to revert back to the old, quicker way of doing things- and from the look of the official forums, so would everyone else. 
She points out exactly what I mean: it feels sluggish, and I feel I don't have control over what is happening in the game.

Then again, if I'm to believe Spinks and Kadomi, I am not any good as a tank, either, as they state that nothing has really changed in the way the warrior should be played and haven't noticed anything changing in the playability of our class at all.

The other option is that my computer or addons are borking the game, but that doesn't hold when I'm very content with the other classes I'm playing (DK, Spriest and druid). They seem to be up there, performing nicely, so why the protection warrior feels so like he's sleepwalking?

I'm just no good at it, and where the other classes have gotten the fun back into their game, the warriors got the work part back. Like a moonkin in one of the heroics said: "your class got the raped in the patch, pal" after I voiced my concern over the well being of the rest of the group.

That is exactly how I feel. It's more a work than games.

It is not fun anymore.

C out

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Patch always breaks something

Addon breakdowns aside, why is it that a patch always breaks the fundamental game somehow? Is it because of that list of thousands of bugs in the code which still wait to be repaired? Or is it just fault in the testing procedures?

WoW is acclaimed for being the most polished MMO out there, a game which is said to be the benchmark of polish. Right, WotLK worked nicely for the last few months of the expansion. BC did the same and Vanilla, too. If you do not count the disparity of the class balance which just got a new blow by the latest, most fundamental changes to the talents and skills.

So the first question is, why is there such a long list of unrepaired bugs in the game?

Because... I don't know. New content needs A-team to work on. Daily maintenance and content patching requires the B-team to work at their best, with the glint in their eye to be included into the A-team. The C-team... There is no C-team to patch and fix the bugs which have bugged the players for so long time, some even from the launch.

And now we have some real bugs to bug the players. Mouse-over lockout. Instance entrance lockout. Instance bugs like the Anub'Arak bug in the 5-mans.

The first two however bug me the most. I login and queue for an instance for the meager 10 minutes, only to get my computer freeze to the instance load window. Total. Lock. Out. Kind of freeze. Login and find myself from where ever my hearthstone is set, with 5 minute cooldown on LFD. Wait for another 10 minutes, hoping it will go through this time.

Happened to me once yesterday, a couple of times over the weekend.

How about the Headless Horseman? Game freezes the moment I mouse-over the event activation pumpkinhead. Finally get logged in and... I have the stuff in my bag. Whoo-hoo. Only if I was the tank this would have been a disaster. So what is Blizzards word of advice in here? "Make the dps to activate the event, don't mouse over the pumpkin if you are a tank."


Now I have been playing with the tradeskill window replacements because Skillet isn't working anymore. Even though LilSparky, who's responsible for the addon currently, has stated that it will be updated in the future. However, knowing he's working on his own tradeskill window replacement (GnomeWorks), it may well be the end of Skillet as we know it. And still no other comes close to Skillet in functionality, light weight and simplified outlook.

What can I say. These both issues have one thing in common. Keep It Stupid Simple is the best way of doing it. Or at least do it so that it all seems incredibly simple to the end user.

C out
PS. Lil'Sparky's Workshop, the tradeskill window enhancement, is updated, but I can't make it work. I have only zero prices to all products in there, so if anyone could give me a hint what to do to make it work again it would be appreciated. I like my things simple, effective, easy and working, you see.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Weekend sidecracking (YAWP)

This weekend was fully dedicated to 4.0.1. changes. My main characters got their new talents, most of them -at least the main ones- got their glyphs, too, and two of them got their gear reforged. As far as I can tell, I didn't have to do anything on the gem side, as there was next to no changes in my needs for gemmed stats. Ok, my baby DK could use some hit rating to get it capped, but that's more a question of getting enough Justice points and reasonable gear to begin with: his weapon is still green and gear a mix of green-blue-purple.

I tanked once. Shocking experience. A blast -literally- through Utgarde Pinnacle, with several multi-mob pulls which people have gotten used to AoE through. Guess can the current protection warrior hold that kind of pulls easily anymore, especially when you consider the increase of DPS damage the clothies are enjoying?

Like I said, it was a shocking experience, but nothing much changed on my starter: Charge - Thundeclap - step back/side/more condensed spot - Shockwave - Cleave - Thunderclap and start cracking Shield Slams, Devastates and occasional Revenges into the mix. Oh, and with Incite talent, Heroic Strike whenever the rage gave chance. More or less with those we went and the result was a pretty enjoyable, though hectic, run. It felt like I had more to do and really had to work from time to time to keep the mage and warlock alive.

On my shadowpriest I got a nice surprise: after talents, glyphs and reforging, my raw dps on normal 80 dummy rose from 3.5k to 4.6k without a problem, and the effect from changing to elite dummy was mere 200 dps! After reforging my gear still has loads of extra hit in it, but this may well change when I get enough Justice Points to get myself a real DPS gear instead of this healer-dps mix I have gotten myself into. In the guild hc I ranked nicely to the second place in ICC25 geared people, so no problems (especially now that Event Horizon works!).

My baby DK feels awkward and I think the changes felt most in his performance. Still, I'm not at the bottom of the DPS and I could easily patch the misses of a pally tank in VH, saving our sad behinds time and again when he missed a mob or just took the wrong turn to the portal. With all that ICC level gear he should have known VH like the back of his hands... must have had a baaad day. 

But my pride and joy is my banker druid. At the tender level of 29 he was plunged into 4.0.1. and changed from balance to restoration. And I can undersign each, every and all comments stating that druid healing has become fun. Simple and fun from the low levels on (have to try that on my horde druid, who is balance by main). Though I have to agree with other bloggers who have stated that the LFD instances while levelling have been nerfed to the ground: only the bear tank in Scarlet Monastery caused me problems due to taking in so much burst damage from time to time, otherwise the tank classes self-healing capabilities are incredible. The warrior tanks (both protection and arms, even a fury tanked once!) I have had I have been able to nuke the mobs all along the way. Their self-heals just keep them popping from 50% to full without a thought. But it is fun to run around, keep HoT's on the tanks and tackle the other healing issues along the way.

The only one I had issues with is my baby mage on Horde side. At level 30 she doesn't get much talents and I just couldn't get hang of the fire spells and rotations on one run. I'm only wondering how the ones I ran Scarlet Monastery with my druid could pull the damage they did, but alas, I didn't pay attention to their specs or spells at all.

And yes. Copra is alive again. Boomkin is FUN! The new Eclipse mechanics make the class so much more fun to go than it was, and it is very, very rewarding to land those crits here and there.

All in all, weekend was a win. I even dabbled into the glyph market with very low level glyphs and scored some nice profits.

Now I have to go and play by the guidelines Spinks so generously put out. It's hard, but more fun now than it ever was. Even though it requires some change in mentality from all in a group.

Tanking, that is.

C out

Friday, October 15, 2010

While everyone is discussing the big things...

the small devils are at work.

I just received an reminder email from Blizzard/ about the 'new privacy options'. Which really makes me cry as I don't remember seeing one earlier.

We'd like to make sure you're aware of the new privacy options we've introduced to These options provide Real ID users with additional tools for customizing the service based on their preferences.
Real ID offers an optional, convenient way for keeping in touch with real-world friends you know and trust, whether they're playing World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, or one of our future games. The "Friends of Friends" and "Add Facebook Friends" features provide you with even more options to stay connected while you play:

Friends of Friends enables a player's Real ID friends to see the names of his or her other Real ID friends. This makes it easier for players to locate mutual real-world friends on and invite these friends to join their own Real ID friends list.
The Add Facebook Friends search tool displays the first and last names of a player's Facebook friends who are also on and allows the player to send these friends a Real ID friend request.

The purpose of these optional features is to help players merge and expand their social networks of trusted friends on by making it easier to add real-life friends to their in-game friends lists. You can easily opt in or out of any or all of them by managing your privacy settings.
 The way I read this piece of information is that the options are off by default and you have to go and opt in for them, though. It seems that they learned at least something about the touchy issue of gamer's privacy.

Anyhow. Nice job, Blizzard: as people are scurrying around with the changes of 4.0.1., they are not as prone to notice these small changes posed for their ingame privacy.

C out

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Someone always has an upper hand

Cataclysm hitting the game with all the changes to the guilds, talents, gear and stuff.

It's always like this. The friends and family beta, closed beta, less closed beta and PTR. And finally launch. The ones who get the upper hand in the next expansion are those who spend the better part of their day in reading the leaks, scrutinizing the news and blue posts and speculating on what will happen on the market.

Thinking of which, the same people who will anyhow consume the content fastest because they are running for the end game anyhow are the ones who are given the upper hand in the form of preliminary information which they can collect and put to use as plans for plunging through the content fastest.

Then again, there is always someone out there with the upper hand. Why the heck do that vocal minority have the right to spoil the fun from us who are not so keen on speeding through the levelling and willing to learn by trial the nooks and crannies of the new talents and builds? Why is it so that the whole concept of a MMO like WoW has turned into a battlefield between the players on who is faster, better and more vocal on how bad the others are?

Upper hand goes to those who devote more time to the game. Granted. But that shouldn't be taken off from the ones who do not spend as much time to the game, in the game or off the game.

The game should be equal field. Playground for all.


Monday, October 11, 2010

It finally dawned on me (yawp)

One raid, a couple of heroics and it came to me.

I'm next to no good as tank or dps and definitely not suitable for healing. I better stick to what I enjoy doing in the game, that being running the quests and reading the stories. I'm not up to raiding as it is, because I just don't master the classes I play well enough to contribute and so on.

Not really. It finally dawned on me how much gear really means in the final contribution to the group. In the last ICC25 I joined on my Arms dps spec I did pretty well. Or at least I thought I did, but then I saw the World of Logs numbers and started to weep. Lowest of the dps, just barely more than the tanks.

At the other end of the spectrum, I ran a couple of heroics and one normal on my baby dk, still partly in greens and just earned his first purple from the normal ToC5. The dps is inadequate, really, but still he's gear supports the role to a point that he's contributing, way more than my warrior to his.

The general difficulty of my warrior is the lack of gear in general. In the 25 man I am comparing to a group of full tier9 and above, where his gear is barely touching the tier9 level. The difference is immense: compare average gear level of 232 to 251 and you see it. Put that high end even higher and you are where my warrior is.

To conclude, that is the end. Patch 4.0.1 is bound to come soon, so no more of this end game sucks because its only gearing grind rhyme. It's going to be more on the omg the talents suck/rule/whatever from here to Cata.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Gear will be an issue


A new expansion, which will wipe the end game raiding instances from the map due to the fact that character progression skips the levels. Talents are wiped because of complete revamp of the talent system, which in turn will effect skills and builds.

And gear.

As in earlier expansions, the gear you get from normal quests is superior to the end game tier gear from the earlier expansion's raids. The precious Icecrown Citadel crafting recipes become a collectors item more than anything.

What bothers me really is the difference in content, especially the difficulty of the content to the two distinctly differently geared groups: the ones with Emblem gear and the ones with ICC epics. Emblem gear is the group who do the dailies and do not raid, thus lacking the cutting edge gear in general. Maybe a piece here, another there, but still lacking the majority of BiS'. The raiding group has been there, done that, gotten the epics and set is either full or one piece short.

Will the difficulty of Cataclysm be challenging enough for the better geared people, or will they just fast forward through it to the end game (and get bored before everyone else joins it)? Or will the difficulty be much higher for the less geared group, so that they really have to work for the end game in the end?

Or will it be as easy and simple as Northrend: you get so far exceptional gear in greens that the content itself becomes trivial.

That would be a disappointment.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Sidestepping again (YAWP)

First things first. Blizzard has decided to commemorate the attack on Pearl Harbour by releasing Cataclysm on it's 69th anniversary. I hope this is just coincidence and not a sign.

Anyhow, the weekend. I spent playing this and that, for example a great night of going through old Vanilla instance Molten Core, Blackwing Lair and Ahn'Qiraj, but the main thing for me was that I finally got my unguilded crafter DK to ding 80. And noticed how the problems started right on the bat.

You see, with the quest blues and greens, I was smacking top dps in all the instances up till I dinged. After that, I feel like a slacker, not being able to even compete with the big guys. Funny part is, that even though my dk sucks in delivering, he's been just getting encouraging comments from the people I've ran heroics with. Mind you, HEROICS. I gently skipped normal 5mans alltogether.

Had I been tanking, I would have been scorned, called names and kicked from the groups. Like happened to that one pally trying to be a tank in better gear, wiping the group in the Gundrak. I stayed, with gear score below 2.5k, where as he left with his score of 5+k. Go figure.

So thus far my experience with levelling - or gearing a toon through 5mans - has been such that a melee dps is the one most easiest left alone in the instances. Tanks are under the most scrutiny, high above healers which in turn are high above all dps.

I think I start doing IC5hc's with my tank as dps. I wouldn't need to talk to anyone, just hang around and deliver. No more stress nor waiting for the one less fortunate soul who decides to do something stupid for which the tank gets the blame in the end for not saving their sorry butts.

One other thing about this DK. The first instance I applied to as newly dinged lv80 was Coren Direbrew. Ques what happened? He got both mounts on the first try. My other toons do not have the mounts as of yet. Sucks to be me.

On the other hand, I have checked the new talent builds through and I think I've found builds for my tank and his dps as well as my spriest. Of course the cookie cutter talent builds will come in no time, but as far as I can see the 'new' talent system is much easier to handle and is less prone to gimping your toon completely with 'bad' choices. The PvP talents stand easily out of the trees and are in some cases more a question of choice rather than crucial things. The main talents are still there, with the characteristics.

Last but not least. Last night. Guild 5man achievement runs. With my spriest. Great big fun. For example, it took us at least 15 impales in Gundrak before we got the Share the Love achievement. Zombiefest was a blast and no one died. Pupunen still has a lot to fill for the Glory of Hero meta, but then again, so does Laiskajaakko, my warrior. Not to speak about that newbie dk.

So I have again sidestepped from my tank. Shame on me. Have to correct that soon, as the rest of the guild seems to be smacking LK weekly now. Kingslayers everywhere, except in my roster.

But hey, I still have almost 2 months to go!

Friday, October 1, 2010

A night at the IC5-mans

Ah, well, the brotherly love again. We decided to tackle the Forge of Souls and Pit of Saron and if there was time before the sandman insisted upon his appointment, we would try Halls of Reflection just a bit.

To be honest, we did splendidly. The initial start resulted the death of our dps and healing only because one particular tank had forgotten to set the difficulty to normal instead of the former LFD PUG heroic. This corrected, Forge of Souls was a bliss: fast, fun, furious and sadly non-rewarding experience. All drops were mail or caster weapons, so Förgelös, our resident dps, still hits like a teddybear with his lv70 daggers.

Pit of Saron proved to be as much a lackluster considering the loot. The same pattern repeated itself, only mail and caster stuff, nothing for the poor rogue. Tank and healer are already so above the gear level even on their secondary specs that the disenchanting department made a good work this evening.

Our only real miscommunication blunder happened after Krick/Ick. Whereas I, the tank magnifique, remained to examine the carcass of the downed opponent, the clever duo of healer and dps mounted their trusty mounts and dashed the road uphill, triggering the incoming mobs. Tank was effectively separated from the rest of the team...

I did what a good tank always do. I made sure that if I go down, everyone else goes down. I mounted my trusty ram and dashed through the mobs to the group, pulling ten obnoxious vrykuls behind with me to their feet. Needless to say that the fight was pretty short and one sided.

After that, the rest of the instance was pretty uneventful. Even our former 'scourge', Scourgelord Tyrannus, proved to be nothing more than a bag of big words and boring promises, and we cleared the instance without any 'real' wipes: the one with the vrykuls doesn't count.

All in all, our final conclusion was that our group has the worst tank ever, poor healer and darn amazing dps.

None of which is true, really.