A weekend without WoW

I had the pleasure this past long weekend of going for a trip to the beach. There is a majestic holiday spot along the western coast of Victoria called Lorne, and a mate’s family has a house there. A modest five bedroom place that is hard to resist… So we packed up the 6 month old, a small mountain of her bags, and the odd package of civilized rations (wine, chocolate, bagels, salami, olives, etc), and drove out into the non-Internet.

Being offline in this manner was great and it was insane how much of a decompression you can fit into a few short days.

As those days passed I started to contemplate the impact that 4-5 days away from WoW might have on my lifestyle, and it was pleasing to think that the game will be waiting. Initially I felt the tug of the login screen. I did not want to miss out on my dailies, instances, and scenario runs. I have a drive to participate in LFR each lockout so to get the small drop chance of upgrades from some bosses – especially a weapon drop from Elegon.

Then as time passed I accepted that I could not get online. My gaming machine was a 2.5 hour drive away, and I didn’t really wish to stop relaxing to ramp up into a run. The friends and family were entertaining and except for the poor sleep a person gets when their child does not know the new place much, we had a great time. The break was excellent.

Upon returning late last night I could probably have logged in for some dailies or a quick scenario, but it seemed I would be somehow cheating on the holiday experience (or perhaps shortening it) by getting into a typical night of gaming.

Instead I read my book, and let the anticipation build. A side affect too was the positive reaction from my family in not spending a  night in front of the glow of the screen.

Tonight is a gaming night, and I’m really looking forward to it. I can almost taste the queue timer for LFR as I type, the sting of the wipe, the glory of gold in the loot-bag. 🙂

Got flasks and mats? LFR zerg, just DPS you tard (just kidding).

My thoughts on gear from the recent post proved true too, as the Insidious regular raiders have boomed ahead in gear levels, and are now consistently above 6666 score on WoW Heroes. I think this is fantastic as it means that they’re seeing the successful encounters to lead progression along. More gear means more capacity to win through the earlier bosses in good time, and also should allow the later/harder bosses to be attempted more successfully each lockout. It might not occur in one or two cycles, but it should happen.

With the new Heart of Fear open for investigation there may also be a new source for some early boss kills. At the very least that means Valor and chance of loot.

Great times ahead.

How to ruin your Guild’s reputation

[Language Warning, this is a rant on a specific set of players. And it makes me mad]

A guildie was recently targeted by a few unsavory players on the Nagrand-US server. I’m calling attention to it because this type of whisper based harrassment is totally beyond reason, and should be outside what anyone experiences on a daily basis.

My 2c is that these players are immature asshats.

Oxygen Thieves is another term I like for those individuals who get a kick out of being rude and vile while being protected by the anonymity of the internet. I’d dare the same juvenile cretins to speak to that guildie in that manner in real life. She’s near kill them, and frankly they wouldn’t dare. I’d also love to meet them in real life as well, and I get a kick out of the idea that someday one of these foul mouthed belligerent little recalcitrants might be interviewing with my company, and I can tell them to go home. Just stop the interview, and send them on their way.

Why is it blog worthy when it happens all the time in game?

I think Blizzard will do sweet fuck all about the harassment, and this is exactly the type of players I wish were doing something else. So instead I’m calling out the behaviour here as garbage. WoW should not tolerate this, and the players should get at least a few days ban, if not a month. If somebody can be sacked for writing the wrong thing into a message forum, then they certainly should be banned for harassing other players. That behaviour is illegal in Australia.

Now I know that these guys are essentially trolling this guild member, and a bit of attention from the internet is exactly the type of drama they might love. They got a rise from a player – well done, you’re special.

It is not hard to be offensive on the internet, and certainly does not differentiate the speaker from almost every other anonymous and rude internet screen-name. Nothing special about the behaviour and I suspect nothing essentially special about the people either.

I could say far worse things about these people and use language which was totally disgraceful, but instead I choose to smile and consider the karmic payback. I am sure that if their real life dealings are executed with the same disregard for civil interaction then they will be serving hamburgers to their peers for a very long time.

Funny thing too – a regular wow activity in game is grinding rep. Essentially getting factions to like you. Now given it is a means to an end, and that is a corner stone of the game – I think its odd that players would choose to ruin their reps, and the reps of their friends through their action but spend so much time pretending to be heroes. Pretending to be powerful and respected characters.

Perhaps they’d like to go play in the traffic. I wouldn’t swerve to hit them, but I’d watch.

Where do you stand within the Gearing community?

Today I ponder my item level. Non-gear junkies might look away?

There is a way (well many ways from different websites and many methods) to know how you are gearing for PvE by comparison to others, in guild, on server, and in general. Fundamentally this is a score based from the item level of the gear your character is wearing. I like using Wow-Heroes ranks to check gear and enchantments. It is a bit less math-y than some tools, and covers good recommendations to improvements.

Aside – ranking of position, and gear scores are essentially epeen malarkey, and only worth something to the owner, or if used “properly”. Wrath’s short romance and break-up with GearScore was a very interesting time in WoW, and one that could be a set of blog-posts unto themselves. As a tool for drawing quasi-intelligent conclusions the websites like wow heroes give us that opportunity. It considers

  • real value of all items (not just their item level)
  • all gems (their value and quality)
  • all enchants (their value and quality)
  • also gives a small penalty for using a resilience (PvP) items according to benefits from the useful stats from that item

What that tells me is that the GS is a useful measure of how advanced a character’s gear is, giving a plausible ceiling value and range for the character’s performance. The game also uses something similar when considering if a character is ready for Heroic dungeons and raids, although the algorithm in game appears to be less fussy and far more forgiving of offspec gear and bad choices.

Use any of the sites you like, understanding none are better than the other in the long run, unless you’ve a particular need.

So: I know that Mortigen’s dps gear is scored as 6663 from Wow Heroes, which ranks around 6-7ish in guild, and ~264th on the Nagrand server. That is also approx 10th on the server for Dps Death Knights.

While I’m proud I’m also a bit surprised and put off.

I play 3 nights a week and should be far lower in the rankings. It seems that something is not 100% in the ranks as presented. Perhaps this is the players who are ranked because it is what the servers can find on the players, or those players have had their data refreshed recently, and others have not. I imagine that all the high geared players would be ranked to a close approximate as they’d care and want to know, but then that itself is a huge assumption.

Then I checked Wow Progress (another tool, focused more on what the charterer has done, as well as what gear) and saw more humbling figures. They have my Death Knight’s Gear-Score (not the same math rules for the numbers) as 10550, which sits as 1024th on the realm and 83rd for Death Knights. That sounded more in line with what I expected.

But then I updated the Wow Progress tool, fetching the latest data. It altered to 10618, making Realm overall 712, and DK 49th. Fark, for a casual scrub that’s ok. It’s not even close to mid 200s on the server, but then that always sounded like a bunked number.

Finally for the sake of being particular I checked what Mr Robot had, and my very old score was 80602 from around 18 October (again the ranking on each site mean totally different things, they do not correlate). Then when updated today it rose to 84569.

I see also that almost all the higher geared DKs are using Frost, which matches what I’ve seen around and means I’ll likely switch soon to test it out too. The actual position is variable because of things like the rating given to different enchants or gear; and what gear a character is logged out wearing. eg. Sometimes I log-out in my Tanking set and fall down 25+ positions as it is poorly setup and not configured correctly.

Overall – odd. Something is not quite right…