Drama, Drama, Drama.

In keeping with my current trend of ranty posts (current meaning within the last month and trend meaning 2 posts), I'd like to talk about loot whores, guild drama, and ragers today.


Nerd Rage - When a nerd video gamer gets extremely angry and starts yelling after losing or experiencing the tiniest disturbances.
Drama - A way of relating to the world in which a person consistently overreacts to or greatly exaggerates the importance of benign events. Common warning signs/ risk factors of drama or a dramatic person are:
  • Having one supposedly serious problem after another.
  • Constantly telling other people about one's problems.
  • Extreme emotionality or frequently shifting, intense emotions.
  • A pattern of irrational behavior and reactions to everyday problems.
Loot Whore - A player in an MMO game or any game for that matter, that consistently wants any and every item that has even the most miniscule value to him or her.

Yes, I did use Urban Dictionary for all of those.


Last week, we were doing our normal 10 man Firelands run. The group always makes very smooth progress, especially with the raid wide nerfs, so we blasted through Shannox and Beth'tilac. Old Smoulderbutt dropped a pair of BoE plate boots for us, Arachnaflame Treads. With critical strike rating and haste on them, they were pretty clearly dps boots.

Our policy on BoE drops, since the beginning of the guild and especially since the beginning of patch 4.2, has been if a player IN THE RAID needs the BoE for their MAIN SPEC, they can have it. However, BoE items were not to be given to players for their offspecs or alts. This has pretty much been a given, although we never had an official loot rules list posted anywhere.

Stupid us.

Our warrior tank rolled on the boots for his dps offspec, which he rarely used. In fact, there was only one fight he would dps on and that was Majordomo. So we didn't let him have the boots, opting instead to use them to help gear up other people's mains for the second 10 man we've been trying to get off the ground.

At first, it didn't seem like anything was wrong. We killed Baleroc without incident and made our way over to Rhyolith, wiping heroically on the stupid gauntlet trash like usual. (Don't ask me how we still manage to do that, but it usually happens.) As we made our familiar death run back into the instance, our warrior tank queued his mic.

He gave us a good, 45-second long speech about how he should receive those boots and it wasn't fair that he was here every week but never got any gear and he shouldn't have to work to gear up other characters for a second raid. Then he left the raid, logged off of mumble, and logged out of the game, leaving us in a stunned silence.

5 minutes later, he logged back into the game, made a similar speech in guild chat (talk about airing your dirty laundry), and quit the guild. He then proceeded to log onto his alts...and quit the guild.

Well, then. We were stuck at Rhyolith with no second tank, nobody online qualified to take his spot, and only 3 bosses down when we normally clear 6 in a night. Over a piece of gear. We had had problems with this tank's attitude before, but nothing of this magnitude.


Funnily enough, after about an hour of hard thinking (which required oiling some cogs in some heads, lemme tell you) and juggling of specs, we still managed to get our 6 farm bosses down that night. Unfortunately, the next night we were unable to go back in and work on Ragnaros as not only were we missing a tank, one of our healers wasn't able to make it, nor our mage. We almost could have made it work, but decided it wasn't work the hassle and we wanted our full, main group to work on the big baddie behind the two Magmaws.

Tonight is the first night we'll be trying out a new recruit to the guild, another warrior tank named Church. Coincidentally, his first name in real life is the same name as the tank that ragequit last week. Hopefully, everything goes as planned - we do have a healer who will be late tonight, and one of my fellow officers (Severin) may or may not have game time tonight.

But as Severin often (like, ridiculously frequently) says, "It is what it is."

And we'll keep raiding, keep pushing, and keep killing.

Rawr and stuff.


Gamer: The New Spoiled Brat

A lot of stuff has been revealed by Blizzard these past few days. We've seen tier 13 sets, rogue legendary dagger lore, maps and new models for NPCs inside the 5-mans and Dragon Soul raid, etc etc etc. I personally follow MMO-Champion, but I know lots of WoW fansites and information sites are posting this stuff as fast as they can. We've got nice PTR videos and previews of some of the new mounts coming in 4.3. Obviously some people love the new mounts, dungeons, and gear sets, and some people hate it. That's fine.

What's not fine is every single video I watched previewing mounts and Void Storage had things like this in the comments:

"Blizzard's seriously run out of ideas when they're letting us have major lore characters as mounts. I just hope when they make Deathwing a purchasable mount from the Blizzard store, he at least can carry 2 people."

"Ya know Blizz this would have been cool two years ago."

"Cool, another re-skin."

"I don't mind a cost associated with it but 100g per item better be a PH price cause that is retarted if you are going to use transmog very often"

Really guys? Really? I'm appalled. We're practically being showered with things we've asked for, and all you can do is bitch about how it's not good enough.

We wanted to be able to change the way our gear looked, we got Transmografication AND Void Storage to hold all our crap. "It's too expensive."

We wanted more mounts. "They're too plain, or they're reskins, or they're just not good enough."

Want want want bitch bitch bitch. There's a reason for you to hate everything and to blame the Blizzard employees for it.

The world we play in, the one we TAKE FOR GRANTED, that world is the carefully constructed child of hundreds, probably thousands, of artists, writers, 3D animators, musicians, composers, software engineers, producers, designers, and so many more. They work HARD on this stuff, and you look at it and say, "You didn't try. You're lazy. This isn't good enough." Do you even know what kind of work has to go into something as expansive as World of Warcraft? Can you fathom the kind of debates they must have when trying to please 11 MILLION players? The poor CMs on the forums and GMs in the game that must get screamed at by players who feel they've been wronged?

You know, I've never come across a GM in the game that brushed me off, or made me feel like I was wasting their time. Even when I had stupid questions, or made silly requests (GM hug!), they were endlessly patient, endlessly cheerful, and endlessly helpful. If they weren't sure on something, they let me know and apologized. How often must they get cussed out by players who are frustrated or having a bad day and expect a GM to pull out their God Mode and fix it for them? Heck, I'm embarrassed every time my DBM auto-responds because to me it sounds rude. But they don't care - I even had one /cheer at me because I defeated whatever boss I was working on. And that's awesome. Every GM I've talked to made ME feel important.

The GMs do what they are PAID to do - to provide excellent customer service. To make the customer feel important. I'm sure there are bad apples here and there, but I've never actually HEARD of a GM that was rude. There's plenty of people that will say they're useless, but I'm almost positive these are the people making insane demands.

I'm not saying I agree with everything Blizzard does. I hate the Firelands nerfs. I hate my tier 13 set. I think it's ugly as all hell and I'm insanely jealous of the other classes, especially mage, priest, and warlock. The clothy sets look amazing this tier. I hate rep grinds, and questing through Northrend, and how ugly tier 9 was and the stupid ToC arena raid, and the tiny amount of background draenei have, and gnomes. I really really hate gnomes. There's tons of random things about the game that irritate me. But there's so much that I love, and that's what I focus on.

They're trying to crank out so much content to keep all of their players happy, from the solo player, to the achievement whore, to the casual raider and the hardcore, there really is something for everyone. I mean, they even made it so you can see your equipped ilevel along with your overall ilevel! Those lazy bastards!

So instead of dwelling on everything you OMGHATE about this patch or this game, can't you get excited about the things you DO like? And if there's nothing you like, why are you still playing? Why do you even CARE?

Image of item level courtesy of Matticus, from World of Matticus, Plus Heal, Conquest of Nerzhul and other stuff that I don't keep track of. He is awesome, though.


Enhancement Shaman on Ascendant Council (BoT): Tips/Tricks

Note: This is not a complete guide to the boss fight, if you'd like a real guide please visit Tankspot.com or other such sites. This is merely tips and tricks an enhancement shaman can use to help keep their raid alive and maximize total raid uptime.

Phase One: Ignacious and Feludius

The usual strategy is to have melee dps on Ignacious and ranged on Feludius. However, in my guild I usually dps Feludius because I have the best interrupt in the game. This reduces a lot of random outgoing damage from Feludius's Hydrolance, which helps keep people alive and save healer mana. Good awareness will help you here, as Feludius also casts Glaciate which will kill you if you don't run out. You'll need to keep a good eye on both bosses health and slow or stop dps accordingly. Also, don't forget about Aegis of Flame and the interrupt that needs to go out. Usually I don't switch to Ignacious unless my dps is really needed to burn down the shield, but my guild does 25 mans and 10 mans may be different.

Phase Two: Arion and Terrastra

For this phase, you'll want to dps Terrastra unless Arion is way ahead in health. Remember, when Terrastra has Hardened Skin, they'll absorb a lot of damage until the shield is broken, in which they'll take a big hit. If Terrastra is already a bit low and has the buff on him, slow or stop your dps and possibly work on Arion. If you can interrupt the Harden Skin cast, do it. It's a pretty quick cast so be ready for it. There's really nothing too special you can do here as an enhancement shaman. If you see your group is a little low or healers struggling, use a 5 stack of maelstrom on chain heal. Usually there's a lot of movement in this phase, so Healing Rain is not necessarily a good choice unless you have everyone stacking up.

Phase 3: Elementium Monstrosity

During this phase you can help your healers out a lot. There's going to be a lot of damage going out, so as things progress start using maelstrom stacks on chain heal. Again, with all the movement Healing Rain isn't a good option. Another tip is to wait to blow Heroism until the Monstrosity is down to at least 20%. Blowing it right away is okay, but waiting that 5 or so percent really helps the healers. They're able to get more healing out with the haste buff when the damage gets a lot higher.

If you have any questions, leave a comment and I'll answer the best I can!


We're Just a Couple of Misfits

This is a BlogAzeroth Shared Topic by Kamalia from Kamalia et alia.

Do your alts know each other?

I have a confession.

I'm a secret role player.

My main toon and high level alts are all on a PvP server. There's absolutely no RP there. There's only raiding and PvP and farming and grinding and all that fun stuff and there's nobody pretending to be their own characters. I have a few random lower level alts on different PvP servers.

And then there's Earthen Ring. Earthen Ring is my dirty little secret.

I first rolled a night elf priest named Dainz on Earthen Ring back in Burning Crusade as a joke. My server was down and to kill time I thought I would go poke fun at all the RPers. I know, I'm a jerk.

I quested quickly and made my way to level 10 to get out of the starter area. After that came the death run through Wetlands to Ironforge. Taking the tram to Stormwind, I put all my clothes in my bags and proceeded to run around naked, dancing and emoting with anyone I saw RPing. Most of them ignored me, some came out of character long enough to whisper me to go away. I found it all very hilarious until one of them actually included me in their role play.

As soon as that happened, I unconsciously started coming up with a background story for my little naked priest. She was an outcast. She had been tortured. She was well meaning but totally bonkers. Little tidbits and random things that kept building every time I revisited that server.

I now have a death knight (named Gneisha, surprise surprise) over there specifically for role playing.

Yes, her guild is Demon for Hire. I had a huge fit of giggles when I made it.

Ever since then, I tend to make up little bits of backstory and personality quirks for my characters. In my head, Gneisha is an outgoing, vivacious little vixen. Yes, a vixen. She's sexy and she knows it! On the other hand, my druid Ðainz is somewhat shy, very soft-spoken and kind. The paladin, Shreya, is brave and a bit reckless, but very just.

As for if they know each other...

I'd say Gneisha and Ðainz know each other, considering the amount of mail that goes between the two. Shreya doesn't know them, but has heard of them, and they've heard of her. Gneisha is the most prestigious of the three, having raided the most and possessing the best gear. Ðainz has been slowly getting into the raiding scene, while Shreya still isn't sure what she wants to do (i.e. she's hit level 85 and has both prot and holy gear, but neither sets are good enough for heroics). Giving my characters a bit of personality makes them a lot more interesting to play.

I've actually used Earthen Ring and its RPers as a testing ground for stories I write. The very first character I RP'ed with, the naked priest, has actually become a main character in my current endeavor, although she remains clothed. The inspiration I can get from just walking around watching other people RP or interacting with them is really cool, and I've decided if I actually do end up finishing this story and getting it published (miraculously) I'm going to dedicate it to the entire Earthen Ring server.


8 Raiding Rules You Need to Know (As Melee)

As a melee class, there are a few special rules we need to follow to be the most helpful to the raid. If you follow these (and believe me, they're pretty easy), you should die less and everyone will love you. Except that one guy. But he's a douche...


Don't stand in fire.
I know, I know. We can beat this one to death, but nevertheless it's still one of the most important rules of raiding. You may be tempted to stand in it for "just a second" to get that last hit on a boss before you move, but don't. Your healers will hate you. You might die. And you just look like an idiot. Just. Don't. Do. It.

Wait for the tank. (dpsing before boss is in position)
Tanks have to establish some aggro, and with Cataclysm it takes a little longer than it did back in WotLK. This is especially true if they need to move a boss into position, such as Cho'gall or Atramedes. Dpsing early may cause you to pull aggro and die very early on in the fight, which basically makes you completely worthless. Either you'll do no dps (because you're dead) or they'll need to waste a battle rez on you that should be saved for tanks and healers. It's very annoying to your tank, who has to work harder to gain aggro, and your healers, who will have to use healing cooldowns on you if you happen to live. Just wait for the go ahead from your tank or raid leader, and you will live longer and do more dps in the long run.

Don't break CC.
This is very annoying. If there's any sort of CC near you, you should be using NO AoE spells. Broken CC can easily wipe a raid. The only type of CC you won't break is banish, and even then you should pretend and practice not AoEing.

Expertise/Hit Caps.
Look up your class and find out exactly how much hit and expertise rating you need to be capped. You will do more dps, your CC abilities won't miss, and overall it's just better to be capped.

Generally, you want to be behind the boss. Bosses can't block or parry from behind, only dodge, so as long as you're expertise and hit capped, you shouldn't miss on your special attacks. However, on some bosses, dpsing from behind isn't an option, such as the two dragons in Bastion of Twilight. When dpsing Theralion, the usual strategy is to have all melee dps stack on the tank. This means you must dps from the front, and you will be parried and lose some dps. However, staying alive will increase your dps, which wins in the long run.

Melee all have some form of viable interrupt that you'll probably be asked to use at some time or another. Always have this in an easy to reach keybind so you're ready if you need to use it. Missing an interrupt on bosses such as Halfus (Shadow Nova), Omnotron (Aracanotron's Aracane Annihilator) or Cho'gall (the add's shadow thingy) can equal a raid wipe. Know the cooldown of your interrupt(s) and if you need help with them, ask your raid leader to have someone else backing you up.

Work as a team.
It's never good to forget that your raid has to work like a team to down content. Even if it seems like you're carrying the dps meters, remember that you can't kill a boss on your own. Acting high and mighty will only make others mad at you - nobody likes a snob. You don't want to lose your raid spot or the respect of your fellow raiders because you forgot that you're not the only one in the raid.

Blow damage reducing CDs and healing spells if you need to.
This is a big one. A lot of dps will be so focused on their own rotations, positioning, and interrupts that they'll die to a boss's AoE. A big example of this is Chimaeron. Enhancement shamans can be the most helpful to their healers here (read this post to find out how), but other classes such as rogues and death knights can use abilities like recuperate or death strike to alleviate some of the healers' stresses. If you find yourself kind of squishy, level first aid and bring bandages to raids.

Hopefully this will help you stay alive longer in boss fights and boost your dps to boot!