World of Warcraft hits 10 million active players

The official subscriber count for Warcraft has reached 10 million players. Grats to Blizzard

Christ. Think about how many people that is, all playing the same game, its staggering. We’re all regularly paying a fee, learning strategies, and looking for the next piece of good gear.

And then there is me trying to get an Blood Furnace run during the off hours without success. Grumble.

They also made a small patch last night as part of the maintenance, and I’ve yet to see any un-official tweaks or nerfs made. So all good there too.

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No Country For Old Men (quick review)

No Country For Old Men is established on a simple concept: present a short view of a possible series of events, in a country which is being torn apart by violence and sadism. If this was a historic war film, or even set in the near future, the impact of this lesson would be lost, but by making it present day America the lesson is very hard to ignore.

The American society is creating villians which are disolving it, and this film shows the spins and throws which occur between the main characters as they are drawn further and further into the downward spiral of destruction. Nobody is unaffected by the events, and nobody survives for long.

Some people did not like the ending, and I didn’t get it until a day or so later, but I really think its the only way to end it. After you see it, ask yourself how else could the final character have escaped his destiny created by the society he lived within? I would argue that his strength of character allowed him to that, rather than face the ending that so many of his fellow countrymen had faced.

For: Incredible acting from all the leads, and a story that demonstrates how natural humanity reacts to harsh events and environments.

Against: Violence, but then thats the point. Don’t see this film if you don’t tollerate creepy killer types, or random acts of violence.

Score: 8.5 out of 10.

Stardust (quick review)

The film Stardust is a highly entertaining fantasy film set in England “some years ago”. I really liked this film and would rate it along side the Princess Bride in terms of style. Its not quite that excellent, but its close.

Robert Deniro as a camp bloodthirsty captain was easy entertainment, and the stand out best supporting cast was the princes who you’ll meet about half way through, who then entertain as they observe the rest of the story. Claire Danes and Michelle Pfeiffer are great, and the guy who plays the goat is fantastic!

 For: Good story, great cast, and entertaining humour aimed at adults far more than kids.

Against: No much, maybe the initial story into was a bit sharp(?)

Score: 8/10

My little pony (pally distraction)

I had to laugh at an affect from one of the flying pain-in-the-neck wasps in Zangramarsh which gives you a tainted blood.

pinkpally.gif This slows casting and increases Agility, so for me its great; as all the stuf I use is instant cast, and Agi = dodge.

However it also gives your character a pink-ish glow, which when added to the Paladin’s gear looks totally horrid.

Now all the character needs is some cute hair clips and a love heart on the guild tabard.

Strange that it also poisoned my horse – thats strong stuff.

Toon Update

As part of this character update, I’d like to make an observation about Mining. Its easy! And if I find it easy, its got to be almost impossible to screw-up (so simple a 10 year old child with A.D.D and a voilent twitch could still do it).

Mining HelmetWhich perplexes me as I’ve read a heap of posts about it being difficult. I realise that Blizzard may have changed it recently, in which case I apologise to the child above – but it was still easy when I was leveling from 1-60.

I guess the whinge-fest that is the Internet needs to be taken with more salt now.

Onto the toon update:

Warlock – kinda parked, but still looking to do instances, daily quests, level enchanting, gather mats, etc. Now that he has an epic flyer, its much better getting around, and I wish to an unholy god that I could have a flyer on my gathering profession characters.

Paladin – My focus, as its such a different experience from what I remember. Hit 375 Mining today, also hit 330 Engineering, and level 64.

Rogue – parked, till I need some time away from the above two characters. At 40 with a normal mount.

How to waste time on the Internet

Here are a few link worthy things that I choose to look at when I should be doing something productive, like leveling my Paladin or working.

 http://www.wulffmorgenthaler.com/ – a great webcomic which is as sick as it is satirical.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/editorials/zeropunctuation – a game reviewer who makes it fun to hear about the current releases which hit (or miss) the mark.

http://www.therawfeed.com/ – a blog about cool gadgets and strange IT stuff. 

http://www.myextralife.com/ – a blog about game and internet culture.

 And yes, this post is about me wasting more time online. Shut up and stop laughing.

Patch 2.3.2

Patch 2.3.2 delivers a lot of buffs, some significant tweaks, and only a few nerfs. In other words is a good patch, and I think it was designed to edge towards where each class should be heading.

For Paladins this is a good patch.

  • Santified Judgement change is great for all, especially the Retribution spec.
  • Crusader Strike change is great for starting and leveling paladins, but I can see some folsk not being please that +spell dam is not applied. I like it and think it far more reflects what a Retribution Paladin is supposed to be like.
  • I had no idea that Righteous Fury was costing double mana, and its good to see it fixed.

For Warlocks there is nothing major – in fact they might not notice the patch, due to not getting nurfed.

For Shaman its a good, but minor patch – they didn’t really need a buff, but its a minor buff.

Hunters got some minor love and some important fixes, especially the pet leveling time reduction.

The networking algorithm known as “the Nagle algorithm” was disabled. I’ll go out on a limb here and say that this is good, only becuase (a) I suffer under a lot of latency, (b) I think the NA is designed to hold traffic for efficient transfer, and (c) efficient transfer in online games is totally different than in most other TCP applications.

Perhaps this was due to the increased load from voice apps, or they found that holding traffic was making folks get spurts of lag, rather than a consistent degree of latency. Whatever – I hope I can get below 550 regularly.

Read the details and a good thread here