I should throw myself in the bee pit

I was a total jerk.  Totally.

Deathjerk and Rankwatch

I started a random on my priest, and rankwatch started spamming me that the death knight had multiple downranked spells.  I politely told him this in group chat, to which he responded that he had just hit 80 and “didn’t have the money” to train.

Now… this sort of thing grinds my gears, so to speak.  If you are going to be grouping with others, you need to put forth the basic minimum effort to do your part.  You don’t have to be wearing all blues, or be the best at your class… but training at 80 is something that you need to do before inflicting your craptastic DPS on the group.

I was feeling kind of snotty about this, especially since the tank was pulling like we had an overpowered group – and that clearly was not the case.  I looked at Skada and saw the Deathjerk was doing 400 dps.

400 dps.

I kinda lost it.  Politely.  I said in group chat “[Name of deathjerk], the group is kinda carrying you.  I’d suggest that you train all your spells before you join another random.”  I wasn’t going to kick him or anything, but I didn’t want him to think it was OK to continue to expect other groups to carry him.

Tank says: “It’s ok, he’s in my guild, I don’t mind.”

So… wait… if the tank is ok with dragging your sorry butt through the instance, then we should all be OK with it too?

Deathjerk: “Yeah the only one who cares is you.  Why are you looking at my spellpower?”

Spellpower?  Really?

Me: “I care because everyone else in the group has put forth the basic effort to be ready for a heroic.”

And Deathjerk goes on and on about how I’m “stalking” his spells and nobody else cares, and blah blah.  He will NOT let it go.  Meanwhile his tank friend is still pulling like we’re overpowered.

Throw me in the bee pit now

I silently ported back to Dalaran and toodled around while they pulled without me and died.  Yep, total dick move.

But I wasn’t about to drop group.  Nope, I wasn’t about to get my debuff.  It took them a while to figure out what happened, and when they did, it was of course “Heals?”  Not like I have a name.  The usual.  Strangely, through the “figuring out what happened”, all other group members released and ran back except the tank.  I guess he was waiting on a rez.

I told them that they were just going to have to kick me, and they did.  Then I requeued immediately, and got a polite and easygoing group.

I’m not particularly proud that I was a total jerk.  But hey, sometimes you’ve just had enough.

Parliamentary Papers

Resources

Forums!

Mana Obscura’s forums launched for Mages and Operation Totemspot launched for Shaman.  Check them out!

Other Blogs

Try the Melting Pot.  They grab articles of interest that they find around the blogsphere.  This can help you find new blogs you might want to subscribe to, or simply draw your attention to articles from blogs that you don’t normally read.

Healers

Using and Receiving Rebirth from Stories of O.  Useful for both the “rezzer” and the “rezzee”.

Just in time versus Just in case healing from Life in Group 5.  An excellent analysis of the current healing style and what the cataclysm healing style might be.

Tanks

Deme the DK talks about working as a team with your fellow crotch-watcher (tank).

Saniel has a two-part series on tanking (Losing Aggro, Directing.)  My bad if I jumped the gun and there are more parts to the series in the works.

Current Events

Broken Toys has a brilliant take on the enforcement of Blizzard’s policies with regard to ERP.

Beta Peeps

Gazimoff (mage), Kurn (healing pally), Rhidach (tanking pally), Rilgon (Hunter), Derevka (Priest), Malevica (Healer!), Askevar (DK), Lissanna (druid), Jacemora (moar druid!), and Saunder (moar healing pally!) are in beta and are telling us all about it.  Go forth to their blogs.  Unless you hate spoilers.  Then don’t.

(If I missed a beta blogger or five, leave a comment!)

Edited for additional bloggers:  Gravity (DK tank), Relevart (Boomkin).

Sindragosa and Frost Resist Gear

Guess what, chicken butt?  I use frost resist gear on Sindragosa, and I’m not ashamed to admit it!

But why?

Damage Reduction (Math?  Ew.)

Wearing 2 pieces of frost resist gear last night, I took 1950 damage per tick of frost aura.  A similarly-geared player without frost resist gear on took 2460.  So that’s like a 20% reduction, eh?  Something like that.

I didn’t look at other abilities.  I’m incredibly lazy.  I’m assuming they are frosty and would behave similarly.

Increased Health Pool

On Sindy, there were times when people were within a sliver of health.  Maybe they stood in the bad.  Whatever.  The point is that the extra health does make a difference.  Frost resist has nice stamina.

We don’t need no more stinkin spellpaur

Now that the Wrynn buff is at 30%, I have more spellpower than I know what to do with, and it translates into a lot of overheal.  I can afford to lose some spellpower and still keep my healing at around the same level.  For you DPS, the tradeoff isn’t as obviously beneficial.

How To Gear Frost Resist Smartly

Which Pieces?

First, you never want to replace your strongest gear pieces.  I would almost never replace the chest, since likely you’d be breaking up a tier bonus and… well hell no.  In my opinion, 1 pieces is nice, 2 pieces is really nice, but 3 is probably overkill.  I’d go for the belt and/or boots.

Gem appropriately

Now that you have your frost resist on, take a look at the appropriate caps.  Don’t just blindly gem your best stat.  If I lose 50 haste on the transaction, I’d better toss in some haste gems so my timing isn’t totally thrown off.  DPS, make sure your hit cap is still in the ballpark.

If you can’t keep your relevant caps with your frost resist gear on, maybe it isn’t worth it.  Maybe you want to drop down to 1 piece of frost resist gear.  Use your best judgment.

Also, keep an eye on your meta gem.  If you lose your one blue gem in the swap, you’d better replace it with something in your frost gear… or gem a nightmare tear elsewhere in your gear.  (I am guilty of forgetting this little issue.)

And remember, regardless of your gear, don’t stand in or get hit by the bad.

Dinotam Limerick

There once was a pet named Dinotam

Who misbehaved on the Deeprun Tram

The draenei he licked

The gnomes he kicked

And filled chat with “SURPRISE BUTTSECKS” spam.

Dinotam Haiku

Time to moisturize

Sprawled on a rock in the sun

Then, SURPRISE BUTTSECKS!

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, catch up on the saga of Dinotam at KissMyAlas.

And I can totally do haikus any day of the week!

Adventures in Alt-land

A Baby Pally is born…

Before we joined Alas’s guild becoming the awesome mage/druid combo that is quickly becoming the stuff of legend (in my own mind), we wanted to test out the guild culture to make sure it was a good fit before we paid the transfer fees. So we rolled alts on the server and started from scratch. No money, no bags, nothing. Until they offered us start up gold (10g I think) and some bags from the guild bank. But that was it. These be tough times and I had to walk to Ironforge uphill through the snow barefoot!

Now my choice for what was going to be a temporary goof-around character was a paladin, because it was easy, familiar (I had played a pally in Vanilla), and not a class I was likely to transfer over.  After we took the plunge and transferred the 80’s, this lil’ Pally sat in the Westfall Inn being rained on by the hole in the roof,1 while my awesome magery dazzled and delighted my new guildies. I even showed them how gnome warriors rock the free world, though not as often because unlike many guilds we seem to be swimming in tanks.

… and is joined by some merry idiots

The funny thing about online relationships is you begin to have people who tend to gravitate towards each other. On the old server we had a guildie from back in SWG who joined us. We will call him The Wookiee. He has been playing on-and-off for years, and recently resubbed and rolled a new alt on our server. Well, last week another old SWG guildie, whom we will call The Lizard,  let me know that after 5 years of EQ2 he finally had enough with how they were running the game and was switching to WoW. So now I’ve populated maybe polluted Alas’s lovely guild with folks from Socrates Wyld Stallions.

Let the Leveling Commence

This weekend was a leveling fest. The wookiee referred-a-friend the lizard and let’s just say that some pretty crazy stuff happens when you put two linked refer-a-friends in the stockades with a crazy cat(zel) pulling a John Fucking Madden on anything that moves. Now that the lil Pally has friends who are for now level appropriate, I took the time to trick him out in any and all heirloom I could. He has a ret, prot, and heals set (taking the cloth heirlooms that were intended for a priest at some point).

I ran some random dungeons without the Lizard or the Wookiee. And in these I realized a few things.

  • First, Paladin has changed a lot since 2005 (when I leveled up to 60).
  • Second, Cataclysm leveling pugs will make some people pine for the jerks they get now in heroic randoms.

I talked about this with Zel last night and she told me about Pugging Pally who leveled a pally to 80 using the random dungeon finder and blogged about it. I will be doing something similar (you can’t raid every night). I’m introducing a series of posts called Adventures in Alt-land where I throw out observations about the leveling process, who you meet along the way, how things probably will change in cataclysm when you are leveling your worgen druid or goblin shaman. My companions along the way will be the Wookiee (paladin like me and wow vet) and the Lizard (Enhancement Shaman) and I’m sure the occasional helping paw from Zelmaru’s kitty killing machine. Hopefully I can provide some amusing anecdotes and observations. Let the journey begin.

  1. Are they EVER going to finish fixing that?

Healing on the Run: Practice Makes Perfect

Once you get to raiding, you’re going to have to move out of the bad a lot. If you can toss heals while you’re doing it, you should.  Mostly this applies to druids and priests who have multiple useful insta-cast spells.  Sorry, Pallies and Shammies.1

Now, intellectually, you know which heals of yours are instant, and which should be thrown when you’re moving out of the bad… however, practice makes perfect!

The Challenge

Go into an instance that you can reasonably heal.  Not total EZ mode but don’t try this on HHOR.

Do not stop moving unless you totally have to. Unless someone is about to die and you have absolutely exhausted all of your spells that you can use while moving.  Once you cast the cast-time spell, start moving again.

Always be casting. Even if you don’t necessarily need to.  Top people off.  Throw preemptive hots.  Whatever.

Why?

Simply put, muscle memory. It’s one thing to “know” what spells you can cast while moving.  It’s another to be able to start running and not even waste a gcd thinking about what to do next.  Get it ingrained.

Not the “best” spells

We’re used to using the “best” spells for the occasion so often that we forget about other spells in our toolbox.  Many druids don’t use lifebloom much.  But if you’re on the run, you’ll use it and you’ll like it!  Practicing this means that you won’t have to fumble for your lifebloom button in an extremely mobile fight.  Hell, I even broke out ye olde holy nova which I hadn’t used in months.  And you know what?  Now I remember it and hit it during Booooonestormmmmm.

Watch where you’re driving

If you’re not used to steering and casting at the same time, you may well hop from one bad patch into another (tail swipe, anyone?).  Practicing steering around while casting will improve your navigation skills.

Keep Practicing!

I say this is a “challenge,” but I do this during most instances to keep my skills up.  I’m damn good at it on the tree and I’m getting much better on my disc priest.

  1. While this post was totally written but the site was down, wow.com did a piece on “healing on the run.”  I am forced to assume that they employ mind-readers. Actually, if you’re a pally, you should read the wow.com piece, since I don’t know crap about pallies.

We’re Cautiously Back

/wave

Seems like everything is working on the new web host.  You live, you learn, and you hope you get your money back, eh?

For those of you who want to learn from our tale of woe: the old web host is Justhost.com and I can honestly say, it sucks.  Do not use.  There was intermittent downtime almost every day for… eh 10 minutes at a time.  That wasn’t too bothersome, since this is a website that doesn’t exactly make money or do anything important.

But when this blog got slammed with spam, they cut us off our “unlimited transfer” plan.  Nice, right?  I’d hate to think if wow.com linked us or something.  Justhost’s “suggested fix” was to get a spam checker (already have one) and super cache (yes, already have).  Thanks, dorkfaces.  Oh, and get captcha, because that totally works on pingbacks…

The new host is 1&1 which was recommended by Grimmtooth and others, and we should have just used it from the beginning.  So far so good.  Honestly, their “how to” FAQ articles are AMAZING.  I feel like I can do just about anything, even complicated crap.

Anyhoo… will start posting for realsies next week.  Would hate to start doing real content and then have to wipe the site again.  Let’s not talk about how ArcaneTinkerTank “accidentally” dropped a file from his stupid site into THE PRECIOUS WORDPRESS DIRECTORY and borked everything up.  Men, can’t trust em with an FTP account, right?

And of course, let us know if anything is still broken or unfinished.  I had to manually redo the plugins, so I might have missed something.  Or my beloved spouse might have dropped an errant file in THE PRECIOUS again.