Parliamentary Papers

Grimmtooth has posted the flowchart of awesomeness about why you’re totally going to die.  Pissing off the healers is a very bad idea.

I’m always excited to learn about quests that I will probably never do – and slightly sad that I’ll never get around to it.  Heavy Wool Bandage presents: Chillin’ With Yetimus – Yetimus Facts.  It almost makes me sad that I’m not a dirty hordie.

Syp at Bio Break hates sissy elves as much as I do.  Woot!

Elfi points out murloc-themed hilarity in trade chat.

Guildies are so funny!  Morehnai gives us some raiding euphemisms.  I have heard these used often in vent.

New from the Gamer’s Fridge – A public service announcement about swirlies and why not to stand in them.

Minstrel points out a visual nerf to disco priest graphics.

(Yes, I know, I usually do this on a Friday.)

Priest Guide Updates for 4.2 and Sunsetting the Resource Links

Priest Guides Updated for 4.2

Priest guides have been updated (Holy, Disc, and Shadow).  Find them HERE.  The primary changes were to stat priority and some rotation tweaking on the shadow side.  There may be further changes once EJ updates their guides for 4.2.

Resource Links Sunset

What the Frak I’m talking About. These pages.  One page for each class.  Plus raiding, professions, etc.

Why Do These Pages Exist. Way back in the day, I used to keep a list of resources for my guild.  That way, if someone had a question about a specific class, I could just point the person to a link and say READ IT!!  Naturally, I posted these links to the blog because it was far easier to edit than the forum software.  Plus it was easier for me to find stuff I needed when I needed it.

But now, I’m not a resource for the guild.  They are bloggers and can find their own information.  Plus, I just started my own priest guides which are a bunch of work to keep updated.

How I update these pages… I read a lot of blogs, or at least skim them.  Every time I see a guide article, I flag it in my feed reader.  Once a week, I transfer the links from my feed reader to the appropriate page.  As you can imagine, it’s a lot of work managing that many blogs in my feed reader, and a lot of blog updating.

What prompted this post is that  MMO Melting Pot just posted all these updated guides, with links to the long-and-involved source material on EJ etc.  If I were a reader needing to find something now, I’d probably think “MMO Melting Pot has it” and not “Those Murlocs sure know Hunting” (which we totally do not).  I looked through Analytics and the pages get about 300 hits out of about 9000 hits (I’m severely rounding here) which is about 3% of blog traffic.  Not a lot compared to, for example, the priest guides.

TL;DR Keeping up the link pages is a HUGE pain in the ass, especially for classes we don’t play, and there are plenty of comprehensive resources in other blogs to fill that niche.  I will be sunsetting those pages.

(What that means is the pages will be up for another week or so for people to copy anything they need from them, and after that, I will take them down.)

And the Blogroll

I just can’t keep up with all these blogs on classes I don’t play.  Without needing to read them for the aforementioned pages, I’ll be downsizing that as well.  Besides, apparently nobody views my blogroll anyway!

Kid Movie Reviews Take 2

Well it’s been a while since I last gave advice about how not to scare the shit out of your 2-year-old, and we’re on to the task of not scaring the shit out of your 3-year-old.

Toy Story Series

Now, kids aren’t going to get the angst of toys that are afraid they’ve outlived their usefulness and might get thrown in the trash.  At least 3-year-olds won’t.  You, however, will feel intense guilt about every toy you’ve ever given or thrown away.

Toy Story 1. Those creepy tortured toys and sadistic neighbor.  That is pretty scary, yo.

The toys are clearly horror movie allusions, with music to match.  Not cool, Pixar.

Toy Story 2. Oh noes, it’s the chicken-man, who acts as antagonist, but not out of malice toward the toys, as he simply a person who thinks of them as inanimate objects and is not aware that he holds their fate in his hands. The peril there is far less dramatic, with no horror movie aspects.

Toy Story 3. There’s an actual toy villain (oh noes, an evil pink bear) who at one point acts as a jailor.

Fortunately, most of the scare factor in Toy Story 3 (which is, I think, the scariest of the movies) affects the parents and goes right over the kids’ heads. Toward the end of Toy Story 3, there is a scene of “staring inevitable death in the face” which would be scary to kids that are old enough to understand it.

At the very end of Toy Story 3, all parents will be blubbering like sentimental idiots.  And their kids will be staring at them like “I don’t get it.  WTF, Mom.”

Twig’s Reaction: She loves all the movies and is totally oblivious to any sad or distressing elements that might keep Mom up at night.  She loves the little girl in Toy Story 3.

Shrek Series

Political power is at the heart of every Shrek villain.  Really, not joking.  On to the scary?

Shrek 1. Farquaad (who is quite creepy in a sleazy-nerdy sort of way) threatens with imprisonment and performs cookie torture.

Oh noes, cookiecide!

The dragon is momentarily scary until she becomes totally cuuuute.

How can you be afraid of such a CUTE dragon?

Shrek 2. The main tension here is whether fairy godmother can con Fiona into marrying Prince Nice-hair.  Um, yeah, horrible.

Shrek 3. Prince Nice-hair is back and wants to take over.

Hostile takeovers are srs bzns.

There are some tense moments when he might have Shrek and/or Justin Timberlake killed, but Timberlake wins with logic and reason.  DAMN YOU, TIMBERLAKE!

I'm bringin reason back!

Shrek 4. Rumplestiltskin AKA “Curly Toed Weirdo” (do not google search for “curly toed weirdo”) attempts to erase Shrek from existence.

It’s like It’s A Wonderful Life with witches.  Who are kind of scary.  But not that bad.

Twig’s Reaction: The Shrek Series is appreciated using a very simple test:

Is there a baby ogre on screen? (y/n)

No baby ogre?  Ok, is Puss In Boots on screen? (y/n)

No puss either?  Sigh.  How about Donkey? (y/n)

If all the answers to the above questions are “no”, Twig has wandered away from the television before you finished reading the questions.

Monsters Inc.

One would think that jumping out of closets and scaring was, in fact, scary.  Not so.  It’s pretty mild.  The monsters are harmless and loud.

I mean… THIS is your Abominable Snowman:

Except Salamander boy here is scary:

His dastardly scheme to kidnap kids will scare the shit out of your kid… if she’s old enough to understand it.  Twig was not.

Twig’s Reaction: “It’s the girl with pigtails, JUST LIKE TWIG!”

“Girl in costume!”

What can I say?  They fixate on what they want to see and ignore a lot of the rest.

Chipmunks (1 and 2)

This is very important.  Are you ready to accept that your child might think that these chipmunks are squirrels, rats, guinea pigs, hamsters, or another type of rodent?  OK, then let us continue.

Totally not squirrels.

In the 2nd movie, there are girl squirrels.

There’s very little peril in either movie.  Mostly adults being disappointed in the shenanigans of the rodents…

A very painful shenanigan

… popularity (and football) versus family…

Really. Chipmunk on the football team. REALLY.

… mild school bullying…

..and at the end of each movie, putting said rodents into cat carriers/cages (from which they escape/are rescued).  Oh. Noes.  Oh right, there’s also an eagle.  30 seconds of peril from that one.

Twig’s Reaction: Singing is fun.  Girl chipmunks are fun.  Not really that interesting to her.  She disapproves of the horrible messes the chipmunks make.

Ratatouille

You’ll be pleased to know that there’s really no peril here.  The rat cooks.  The humans whine about restaurant ownership or getting poor food critic reviews.  There’s some “chasing with carving knife” nonsense, but it’s not really that serious.

Now, Shorty does kidnap our little rat friend, but he kidnaps him for planned use of his cooking skills, not for death purposes.

Twig’s Reaction: “Rat cooking!  He wash his hands.  Rat make soup!  Rat make salad!  Rat make dessert! Rat under the hat!”  Yeah, she loves it.  And anyone who makes dessert is totally awesome to Twig.

Despicable Me

Gotta love this one.

The minions really make this movie.

I mean, they’re so freakin cute!

 

They’re like the best office workers ever.

OK, so they smack each other around a bit.  They’re probably setting a TERRIBLE example for your child.

Ok, focusing back on the cute…

That's a minion HEART. Awww.

Right, peril.  So, uh, the slightly inept i-villain (no really, all his gadgets are Steve Jobsy) …

…kidnaps the kids and the peril is that they might fall out of a plane.  Gravity is srs bzns.  The most ruthless villain ever.

Daddy Gru flying to save the day

That’s pretty perilous, but… less scary to a kid than an actual evildoer.

Twig’s Reaction. Like I said before, kids see what they want to see.  Twig calls it the movie with the “three girls”.

She’s excited when the girls put on tutus and dance.  She immediately catches on that Gru is “the daddy” even before he realizes he’s the daddy.

She objects to the minions hitting each other because everyone knows you’re not supposed to hit.  But she loves the minions.  A lot.

Kung Fu Panda 2

Yes, I put this one last because everyone has been impatiently waiting for Twig’s assessment of PANDA MOVIE 2.

And, as mentioned before, there are flashbacks to BABY PANDA.

I mean, is there ANYTHING cuter than that?

Po came to be (gasp) adopted (I know, his dad is a goose, you didn’t see that coming) because bad things (TM) happened to his birth parents.  Fortunately, that happens off-screen.  The parents get it.  The kids don’t.  Plus, it’s done in drawn animation style, causing children to become instantly bored until the computer characters reemerge on screen.

Po's dad is a total badass.

Po's Mom. Also a badass.

The villain peacock fights dirty.  He doesn’t just use fists.  He uses a freakin glaive.

And then there are the KNIVES! Ok, they’re like feather-knives.  But still knives.  Which, in my book, is totally cheating.

But I don’t seem to recall any blood, so that’s cool.  As seen above with Po’s father being a badass, he has minion wolves who are scaryish, but they don’t have knives that I recall.

Twig’s Reaction. Twig loved this movie so much.  We’ve seen it twice now, and leaving the theater at the end is a major ordeal with much protesting.

Next up: Mr. Popper’s Penguins (to be viewed July 1)

Plagiarists Obviously Go In the Bee Pit Too

Holy shit, guys.

So one of my guildies sends me a message that a blog on my blogroll that shall remain nameless (but has since been removed from said blogroll) has at least 2 mostly-copied pieces from another site.  So I went to check it out.  Yep.  Mostly copied.  Pretty obvious when you compare.

Seriously?  SERIOUSLY?

/cast Righteous Indignation

Into the pit!

I Can’t Do 5 x 2 (but I can rhyme)

So… 5 x 2 project.  Read about it here.  The idea is that you’re supposed to be able to bust into combat with a total of 11 abilities hotkeyed.

However, as a holy priest, I have a LOT of spells that I use all the flippin time!  I won’t bore you with the details of my SPECIFIC keybinds, but here’s a list of core abilities I use in every encounter.

  1. flash heal
  2. heal
  3. greater heal
  4. renew
  5. prayer of mending
  6. prayer of healing
  7. circle of healing
  8. holy word: chastise
  9. binding heal
  10. dispel
  11. chakra (I’ve counted chakra as 1 key to slim down the list, even though most priests use at least 2 chakra macros (1 for each chakra state).)
  12. fade (that’s serious business)

Oh noes, that is 12, not 11.  I just don’t see how ANY of these can be excluded!

Situational abilities that MIGHT be excluded…

  1. mass dispel (one could argue this is situational for the encounter)
  2. cleanse disease (one could argue this is situational for the encounter)

Now, you can argue that if these abilities are not needed for some encounters, so they can be taken off your bars and then put back as needed.  Totally valid point.  My problem with this is muscle memory.  If I keybind cleanse disease only for encounters that HAVE disease, I’ll be fumbling for it.

Cooldowns that are used a LOT and need to be used QUICKLY (and probably need to be keybound)

  1. guardian spirit
  2. life grip
  3. desperate prayer (which I use a lot)

Even the ones that might be used once per battle are not the kind of things that I can be late on.  Fumbling with clicking the mouse for Guardian Spirit?  Dead.

Long non-urgent cooldowns that can probably be clicked

  1. fiend
  2. lolwell
  3. hymn of hope
  4. d. hymn

My bare minimum arsenal of spells without ANY cooldowns is already 12 spells, not 11 (close!). Including my immediate cooldowns puts the count at 15 abilities.  (However, I have all of the above keybound, along with my racial, bringing the total up to 22).

TL;DR 5×2 doesn’t work for me as a holy priest, because holy priest has a lot of bells and whistles – and disc isn’t far behind.  (So I bought a Razer Naga.  Right now it’s blowing my mind.)

Does this mean that some classes are more accessible than others?  Or is it expected (by Blizzard) that we’ll find our favorite spells and ignore some tools in our arsenals depending on personal playstyle?

You Can Hate Cliques Until You’re In One

As a kid, I was never in a cool clique, or a clique of any kind.  Now suddenly, I am, in the most unlikely place – Team Heal.

What is your damage, DPS?

In fostering a sense of teamwork, we seem to have become somewhat of a clique.  It wasn’t really intentional.  We just work together so much that it was bound to happen.  Because there are 3 regular healers in the raid rotation, 1 part-time healer, and 1 emergency-only-healer, we raid together regularly and dependably.

What makes a healer-clique so weird is that because there is only one healer per heroic, we almost NEVER get to run 5’s together.  One of us would have to break out a pitiful DPS spec.  Also, it seems wasteful to put 2 healers in the same group if we have a second group without any healers.  In other words, getting together in-game outside raid nights is a rare event.

We’re not cliquish because we make snarky comments, in a “Mean Girls” sort of way.  It’s not having the private channel, because we really only use that on raid nights for raid stuff (and, ok, the occasional snark).

Do you think the tank is getting chubby?

It’s that, when I want to talk to someone in game, I feel closest to my fellow healers.  I’m more likely to whisper them about random crap, or want to run a heroic with one of them.  We like each other and seek out each other to hang with.  Is that wrong?

I’ll answer – it may be wrong and rude to other people not in the in-crowd, but I can’t bring myself to care.  I’m in the in-crowd!  We have private jokes that nobody else gets.  We crack each other up on a regular basis.  Cliques are cool.

Remember, there is no cure for SMS (Stupid Man Syndrome).  There is an effective treatment, crotch-punching, but it is still in clinical trials.  Symptoms may include scratching, bragging, flatulence, and excessive amusement at flatulence.  Of course you don’t get it.  It’s our PRIVATE JOKE, dammit.

I am the Jerk who Ganked Your Flower

As we talked about before, guild cauldron making is srs bzns.  I do a lot of herbing, and there is nothing more annoying than having to mount and dismount while some annoying DRUID BIRD swoops down and yoinks the flower.

Especially when you’re a moron, like me, and forget to swap from holy spec, and end up smiting weakly the mob guarding the herb while the stupid BIRD swoops down and swipes the flower.  Cackling.  With its beak.

No longer!  I’ve retasked my druid to herbalism.  It took a surprisingly short time to get back up to speed (thanks, old world flying) and now…

I’m that jerk.  Swooping down on your flower.  Cackling.  With my beak.

I was totally expecting some asshole to swoop down on my flower as I was posing for this screenshot.

Clones and Linking in ForteXorcist

If you are a shadow priest, and even if you’re not, you might be using ForteXorcist.  Hey, it appears in the UI of Aliena, the holy priest who narrates the Tank Spot videos.  So if she uses it, it’s hard core, right?  (There are other addons that are out there that are just as good, but we’re not talking about them today, k?)

Anyhoo, there used to be a big warning that clones were not working, so I did not bother.  But now they are, and I am super-excited.

What Is A Clone?

Simply put, it’s a copy of something you already have, complete with all the same settings.

But you don’t want to keep an EXACT copy.  Two bar sets that do the same thing are not cool.

The whole point is that you copy over your settings to the clone, and then you make some tweaks so that the clone is useful in its own right.  However, you don’t have to redo all the options you’ve already set that you like, such as bar size, bar texture, font size, and other things that are time-consuming to duplicate.

If you click "New" you get "clone of X" (whatever tab you were on when you clicked "new"). You can rename "Clone of X".

See FAQ: How to make a new profile or clone

What’s Linking?

There are three types of linking.  Linking PROFILES, linking CLONES (bar sets), and linking individual OPTIONS (like bar thickness).

Here’s what linking does: the items are exactly the same, and will stay exactly the same.  If you make a change to one, you make a change to the other.

I do not recommend automatic linking, period. There is nothing more frustrating than finishing modifying your NEW bar set only to find out that you inadvertently applied all those settings to your OLD bar set and have to undo them all.  If you want to link, set the default to not link, and have linking be a purposeful choice.

If you want to keep your settings the same across all toons, you don’t need linking.  You just need to use the same profile.

Where linking might come in is if you want to use some (but not all) the same bars across toons.

This has automatic linking enabled (not recommended). It also describes how to un-link something.

See FAQ: Using Linking

Example: My Shadow Setup

You're gonna have to click to embiggen. Srs.

As you can see, I have 3 sets of bars pictured (and one not shown).

Set 1. My current target.  It will include all dots that I’ve applied.  I have decided not to include other people’s dots at this time, but I could.

Set 2. All targets of my offensive spells.  This includes my current target, but also includes my focus and any other mob I have dotted up.   Notice here, I have multi-dotted 3 target dummies.  The one that is not faded is my current target.

Set 3. My cooldowns.  I use this bar set only for longer cooldowns over a minute.  I have filtered out shorter cooldowns such as prayer of mending.

Set 4. (Not Pictured) This bar set is for my focus and shows ONLY my crowd control spells.  That allows me to keep an eye on my shackle duration when I’m using a focus target.  I have filtered out other debuffs on the focus.

Dr. Frostlove: or How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love Frost Spec

Recently I gave frost a second look because my offspec arcane I never played for two reasons. First we have two other raiding arcane mages in Eff the Ineffable which would make three complete lunacy, and second because I find arcane boring. Personal preference.

Now, I will admit I wasn’t initially eager to try frost because I am not a pet class lover. My only pet class (a warlock) I play affliction like it was a DoT mage, and since the water elemental (Squirtle) was a key part of being a frost mage I was not terribly enthused. However, this week has been an experiment in Frost and one that has me excited to feel like I have choice again when playing a mage.

Unleash the Beast Within With Frost!

Stat Priority

If you go by a broad approximation from Ask Mr Robot you find that Intellect and Spell Hit are topping off the list and Haste, Crit, and Mastery are well below that and virtually interchangeable.

Intellect=1
Spell Hit=.94
Spell Power=.82
Haste=.44
Crit=.42
Mastery=.41

So basically reforge as much as you can into Hit and don’t worry so much what secondary stats gear has. If it is cloth and doesn’t have spirit, it should be fine. No real haste vs crit angst like fire or mastery vs haste like arcane.

The Spec

I built off a basic frame Elitist Jerks provided and got this.

Key talents:

  • Shatter 2/2: Frozen targets have three times the normal crit chance against them and your frostbolt has 20% increased damage against frozen targets.
  • Ice Floes 3/3: Decrease almost all your big frost cooldowns.
  • Ice Shards 2/2: This is optional, but can be very useful in slowing down packs of adds.
  • Fingers of Frost 3/3: your chill effect has a chance to proc this which treats the target as if they were frozen. (Thus you get the benefit of shatter)
  • Improve Freeze 3/3: Your pet’s freeze ability can force Fingers of Frost
  • Enduring Winter 1/3: Replenishment. There is no reason for taking more than one talent point here as the mana savings aren’t that big, and you spam frostbolt enough that you will probably have high replenishment uptime anyway.
  • Brain Freeze 3/3: Makes Instacast Frostbolts proc.
  • Reactive Barrier 2/2: If you take damage dropping you below 50% health you get an automatic Ice Barrier. Nice Survival talent.
  • Frostfire Orb 2/2: Changes your Flame Orb to have a slowing effect.
  • Deep Freeze 1/1:  On Bosses a preferred Finger of Frost damage proc.

The Glyphs

The Glyphs I’m running for a PvE environment are as follows

Prime

Major

The Rotation

The rotation reminds me of Fire in the use of procs more so than Arcane does. Basically follow this list on priority for the spell to cast on single target fights.

  1. Frostfire Orb
  2. Deep Freeze if Finger’s of Frost is active
  3. Frostfire Bolt if Brain Freeze Proc is up
  4. Ice Lance if Finger’s of Frost is up but Deep Freeze is on Cooldown and Brain Freeze has not Proced
  5. Pet’s Freeze ability to force a Fingers of Frost proc. Ideally you’d wait until Deep Freeze was off cooldown and of cource if you have a Fingers of Frost proc up wait until it is gone before making another.
  6. Frostbolt spam.

For AoE you will pretty much use Blizzard. Maybe Cone of Cold if they get too close or frost nova and blink away to start casting blizzard again.

Squirtle Management

Like I said above I am not one for pet classes in general, but I find the Squirtle AKA Water Elemental to be pretty easy. First thing you want to do is bind the Squirtle’s freeze ability to some key you can easily get to instead of trying to remember ctrl+4 or mousing over to your pet bar. Second generally have your pet on passive by default. The last thing you want is to be lumped in with the hunters and warlocks who wipe a group because of a bad pet.

When a fight starts get the pet attacking the main boss. Don’t worry about trying to get your pet to attack adds, it isn’t worth your time to be micro managing the pet that much. Use the freeze ability on cooldown, but otherwise just forget about it and let it auto attack the main bad guy while you do everything you need to be doing.

Final Advice

Frost is pretty proc heavy, but doesn’t feel like it has as much as debuff management as Fire. I still don’t like having a pet, but it is not as bad as I remember. Be sure to set it on Passive though and direct it where to shoot. The last thing you want is to have your pet pull stuff before people are ready. For me frost has been on par with my Fire DPS on some fights, and trailed on others. But what it really gives me is some choice in how I want to raid a particular fight. For movement heavy fights I will probably stay fire, for fights with lots of adds I may choose frost. And sometimes just knowing a different way to play your class can help you refine your skills on your primary spec.

Srs Bzns Gaming Equipment: The Adult Sippy Cup

When you’re gaming, it’s seriously important to have the right drinking equipment.  After all, you don’t want to SPILL, do you?

I present to you the adult sippy cup:

This is the one I use, but there are a bunch of similar ones on the market.  Key features include:

  • Insulation.  This is good for not just keeping your drinks cold, but for preventing condensation from forming and dribbling all over your desk (or onto your keyboard!  The horror!)
  • Straw structural integrity.  This bad boy can be used for milkshakes.   Milkshakes while raiding rule. Sissy straws that get bent by an overactive chewer (admit it, you CHEW) are fail.
  • Lid security.  A screw on lid is nice. A pop-on lid is asking for trouble.

The adult sippy cup: Twig tested, gamer approved!

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