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The Queue: Pause at just the right time {WoW}

May 6th 2011 5:35PM Why do I get the feeling that a big part of the Lord Rhyolith encounter will be dodging and weaving your way around flying lava balls?

Drama Mamas: Are guild perks worth putting up with a bad guild leader? {WoW}

Apr 30th 2011 1:43AM My deepest sympathies to Grim. Guild breakups almost always suck and leave hard feelings all around even in the best of circumstances. I've been involved in far more more such breakups than I care to think about, and it never gets easier to see something you put time and effort into making crumble to dust and drama over night. And the guild leveling system seems to almost add insult to injury now since it acts as a quantifiable measure of that now-gone time and effort.

Best advice I can give is to move on. As nice as those perks were, you can get them again. It will take time and effort, no doubt. But I'd rather be a part of a guild that is relatively free of drama and has fun who aren't at a high level than a part of a high-level guild that's a festering cesspit of drama and resentment.

And as much as you might want to try to take some kind of vengeance on your loathsome former guild leader and his cohort, don't. He isn't worth your time to pursue such activities. In the end, he'll just be wasting even more of your time, and it seems very likely that as the game stands now, there is little to nothing you could actually do to him without crossing some nasty ethical lines of your own.

Find a new guild or build a new one salvaged from the wreckage of your old guild. It won't be the same as your old guild, but you'll be much happier in the long run than dwelling further on what is already lost.

Scattered Shots: Patch 4.1 hunter loot {WoW}

Apr 21st 2011 7:36PM I can not wait until I can get a hold of those shoulders (Which, as others have pointed out, will drop from Narlorakk, the bear boss, in Zul'Aman.) They are a reskin of my absolute favorite hunter shoulders in the entire game - the Pauldrons of Primal Fury. I loved wearing those things back in BC and it was a bittersweet day when the time came for me to upgrade to newer, better (Stats-wise, at any rate) shoulders (that liked to stare creepily at my fellow raid members.) When i heard ZA was going to be upgraded for level 85, my first thought was that I had to get those shoulders. I want my funky bear head shoulders back, damn it!

I am disappointed that there's no gun. Hell, they even had a great gun they could have reskinned in ZA. Tuskbreaker

Patch 4.1: Blizzard unveils dungeon finder Call to Arms {WoW}

Apr 7th 2011 7:41AM I see what Blizzard is trying to do. But I don't think this will work more than superficially. The issue of tanks and healers not wanting to tank or heal a pug is nothing new. In the dark ages before the LFD system, I have vivid memories of standing around in the hug city de jour desperately seeking a tank and/or healer to run an instance. Giving extra treats to the tanks/healers seems like putting a band aid on the problem without confronting any of the underlying issues. And for the DPSers who will likely never (Outside a rare occasion in lower tiers of dungeons) receive those treats, it will seem wildly unfair.

Yeah, I've read the argument that the DPS's 'reward' from this system is a lower queue time. I'll believe that when I see my hunter or mage's queue time drastically drop. All I see this doing is throwing extra treats to the various tanks and healers - both good and bad - who are already dipping their toes into the random queue anyway. I'll be pleasantly surprised if it does help queue times, but I don't hold out much faith.

As an aside, I'd rather like to see a system put into place to reward groups equally who work well together. Like a reward for completing an instance with at least four of the five original group members (Got to give a little leeway for people disconnecting or having other technical troubles.) Or a reward for not dying during the instance. Something that might make players of all roles bring their A game to the instance.

The Queue: Lazy Sunday {WoW}

Apr 3rd 2011 5:31PM Love Is a many-splendored thing.

Win loot from WoW Insider and {WoW}

Mar 29th 2011 7:06PM Posted in thread.

The Queue: Evacuate the dance floor {WoW}

Mar 25th 2011 6:01PM I first learned about the wonders of Decursive while playing my mage. When you're in the middle of lighting things on fire, it's a bit distracting to have to manually find curses you might feel like removing. A little red box that tells you, "Hey! You can help save the healer a headache and remove that debuff that's slowly reducing your fellow group member into a puddle of glowing goo," makes it far easier to contribute to the group using a bit of utility people (Including the mage them self) sometimes forget mages have.

Breakfast Topic: Which Cataclysm heroic do you dread seeing on your loading screen? {WoW}

Mar 22nd 2011 7:56PM Blackrock Caverns. It's not that hard or anything... Well, the first two bosses seem to give people a lot of trouble if they can't figure out basic concepts like running away from the insta-kill aoe or exiting a beam before a debuff stacks too high or that fears much be interrupted on said boss. But, no. I despise that place now because I've been in there so many times on two of my characters. Farming it for my mage's wand and my hunter's bow (Both of which took weeks of farming to see drop) has turned that place into my least favorite instance in the game for the moment. I've seen far too much of that lava-filled cavern and could be quite happy not having to run it again any time soon.

The Lawbringer: Fighting the gold fight -- how the strategy must change {WoW}

Mar 18th 2011 10:15PM I disagree with the idea of putting anything aside from vanity items in the Blizzard store. Truth be told, I'm also very much against the store existing in the first place, but that's mostly because I don't believe that one should have to give more money to Blizzard for extra perks when one is already paying a monthly subscription fee. But at least if they leave it with vanity items only, there is no the player gains no advantages in the game outside their flying sparkle pony or spiffy companion pet. Putting skills on there - even if it would help conceivably the gold selling situation - is a step too far. Suddenly, players are gaining an advantage over their fellow players who do not wish to spend real world money for cross-account flight privileges. And if they start putting skills in the store, it seems unlikely it will end there. It's a road I've seen other games go down that I detested there.

Long story short, I don't think micro-transactions are a good solution to the gold farming issue. It would change the game on a fundamental level to make it legal for those willing and able to invest real money beyond their subscription fee to gain in-game advantages. Doing so would cause more harm than good, and those who would be harmed most are those who weren't willing to spend real money on in-world items in the first place while those who were willing will redirect their funds to Blizzard from whatever third-party source they were using. And all of that aside, I don't think simply removing a gold sink will halt much of the illicit sale of gold. It will simply redirect it to other other places.

Breakfast Topic: The most memorable raid interruption {WoW}

Mar 18th 2011 9:22PM A couple weeks after the launch of Wrath, I was in a Naxx with the guild I was a part of at the time when I received a telephone call. It was from a company I had applied to work at and they wanted to interview me over the phone for the position. So I typed in raid chat, "BRB. Need to interview for a job." Much laughter broke out on Vent while I stepped away from my computer. The interview took about half an hour, during which my group didn't really do all that much, though mostly from healers who liked to go AFK for long stretches between bosses and not from the lack of my hunter's DPS. After I returned, we eventually (after I think we replaced the healer, but I'm not sure if I'm remembering that right) went on to finish off Naxx.

And I did end up getting the job after a later face-to-face interview.