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Spiritual Guidance: Sartharion with all drakes {WoW}

Mar 30th 2009 7:09AM Someone in my guild clued me into this a couple of weeks ago. I would reiterate the part about being extra-alert for the shadow fissures, I found it hard to see them when zoomed that far out and end up using the macro, then zooming part way back in now (still farther out than the Blizz default). The other useful trick for healers another priest told me -- and this is probably "Sarth 101" for most people reading this -- is to stand on the edge of the island with your back towards the flame wall, in the spot where you will be standing in a gap if the wall comes from that side. So you only have to watch out for one wall, and you are facing it so you see it coming with plenty of time to finish your current cast and then strafe over to the other gap. If the wall comes from the other side (your back), nothing to do, keep casting. This lets you zoom your camera in a bit to better see shadow fissures and whelps and I find it a little easier than listening for someone to call the incoming flame wall over vent.

Authenticators to be optional for the Forums and Armory {WoW}

Mar 26th 2009 8:20AM The way the keyfobs work (and the soft tokens, e.g. an iPhone authenticator) is they are loaded with a unique "seed" (e.g. a very long randomly generated number); they use an algorithm that combines the seed with the current time to produce the (in this case) six digit code you type into the authenticator box. So hacking or reverse engineering the authenticator app only gets you so far. You still need to know the unique seed loaded on the phone and the user id/password the authenticator is associated with. If you somehow have a large number of login samples (both user id, password, and authenticator id) it may be possible to bruteforce reverse engineer the unique seed, but these things are designed so that you'd need to capture a couple hundred or thousand years worth of logins to do it.

The idea here isn't that these things are uncrackable, but rather that you have to do it user account by user account, which isn't worth the hassle. I'm imagining something like a keylogger on my PC and a keylogger on my cellphone, owned by the same group of hackers, who are then correlating those two streams of data.

Officers' Quarters: Overruled {WoW}

Mar 23rd 2009 3:43PM Ditto on recruiting. During the middle part of BC, my guild did a little number crunching on attendance. We found that we needed about 50 active raid capable players in the guild to consistently field 25 man raids three days a week (this is casual raiding with no attendance requirements -- "active" here means raiding at least one day a week). For a harder core bunch, you might not need nearly this many, but 27 sounds unsustainable.

And I'm sure everyone is having the same experience with Wrath that we are: every month, more raiders are getting bored or sated with the content and dialing back on how many days they want to raid, waiting for 3.1. It feels almost like a little lull, like trying to get raids going in the month before Wrath or the month before BC, when most people just stopped raiding. If you can't consistently get a 25 man going, your new problem may be players leaving for the greener pastures of a guild with a consistent raiding schedule that will hit the new content hard.

Spiritual Guidance: The Undying experience of a Priest {WoW}

Mar 23rd 2009 8:29AM No, no, I think we aren't giving @Hmmph a chance here. Let me take a shot and see if I can translate:

"This acheivement is cake. Plain and simple. Naxx 10 is a complete and utter joke."

Translation: 9.5% of the 60,000 or so ranked guilds have this achievement. So at least 60,000 players (10 man naxx * 9.5% * 60,000 ranked guilds) have the achievement out of 12M players -- about half of one percent of the playing population!

"I feel that If at this point in the game, you do NOT have the title, then you aren't terrible, you're just bad."

Translation: I just got my Undying title last week. In before the haters on this thread!

"Let's take the focus off of trivial acheivements and focus on pertinent information related to the priest class"

Translation: ha, ha, I'm actually a druid. I'm not sure why I wrote that.

"Get F*****, ********"

Translation: why don't you guys like me? All I did was say that all of you suck! I hate you all!

The drama of DKP {WoW}

Mar 18th 2009 5:31PM This topic comes up pretty frequently on WoW Insider, and many of the comments will advocate one system or another as being drama free (loot council! DKP! EPGP! suicide kings! main spec need!).

Groups who trust one another and have common goals can make any loot system work. My guild was tweaking its loot system after every raid during the first couple of months of WotLK in search of a system that everyone could live with. We had everything on farm, epics were flowing like water, and still weren't successful. We had a big guild split sparked by one best in slot piece of loot.

Bottom line: it isn't the loot system, it is the people. Even a perfect loot system can't make up for bad actors or conflicting ideas on progression.

15 Minutes of Fame: Solo healing Naxx 10, Part 2 {WoW}

Mar 17th 2009 10:04AM I'm going to go against the flow here and attract some "l2play" flames by saying that I am impressed. I don't play on that server, so have no opinion on the player, but I have tried to solo heal Naxx on my priest and couldn't get past the spider wing (after enough wipes, one of the dps dropped and we brought in a second healer to finish). I'm sure there are healers on my server who can do this, but "easy"? I'm not seeing it.

Time is Money: Farming in Storm Peaks {WoW}

Mar 17th 2009 6:40AM I read JMTC as well. Some of the tips are pretty subtle -- AH things or out-of-the-way places I never would have figured out on my own. But for all the comments on farming revenants as plagiarism or ruining the spot by tipping people off? Come on guys... every 80 in the game has spent at least a couple of days doing Hodir dailies (include Hot and Cold) to get the starter shoulder enchant. This one is obvious; its not like Markco invented calculus and now Amanda is saying she did too.

Breakfast Topic: Performance anxiety {WoW}

Mar 16th 2009 10:28AM I hear this attitude a lot -- "its just a game" -- usually in the context of things like attendance requirements for raids, making mistakes on boss fights, not showing up prepared, that sort of thing. I think everyone is clear that WoW is a game, but for me, I pretty much approach all games with the same desire to win or at least do my best. In my outside-of-WoW life, I play in a couple of tennis leagues and run races and WoW is just as "real" as those activities and I'm always playing/running to win. The point being, if you are a "Type A" person and like competition, you are going to operate the same way in WoW, whether it is by clearing raid content, getting titles, or knocking out achievements. Losing or playing poorly isn't my idea of relaxation ;->

The best place to get Frostweave {WoW}

Mar 12th 2009 10:57AM I'm baffled by all of the "now you've ruined it" comments. Ruined it because you think Blizz will nerf it? See @angus's comment about other farming spots with fast respawn rates. Ruined it because WoWInsider has a wider readership than Markco's blog?

With the simplification of raid consumables, I'm doing less farming and more playing/questing now than during BC, and I did less farming in BC than vanilla. The same is true for my guildies. Maybe I'm missing out on all of this competition for farming spots, but I'm just not seeing as much farming going on.

If the goal is to farm for the AH, farming frostweave wouldn't be an activity I'd pick as having a high enough gold/hour yield to be interesting -- 10 FW in 5 minutes? 6 stacks in an hour? That is maybe 120g on my server if I sold them at peak time -- I would be better off just spending that hour doing Hodir dailies. I don't see regular readers of Markco's blog get excited until someone starts talking about 500g an hour or better.

Is Wrath too easy, or are we just better? {WoW}

Mar 10th 2009 1:52PM I'm not seeing it as cut and dried as "easier or better?" It sure feels easier when I'm in a guild run, but for all of the other posters saying "easily puggable" as evidence of easy content, I'm not experiencing pugs that can clear content. I'm posting under @Fletch's content about gear, because an experience I had a couple of weeks ago w/ an OS 25 illustrates both that gear doesn't make it a faceroll, and that even players who know better don't always do the right thing.

So here is the story: OS 25 PUG, zero drakes up. The RL and RAs are being pretty insistent about gear, people are being called out for having less than raid quality gear and summarily kicked. It takes a while to get 25 geared raiders, but we end up with a full raid, everyone is in iLvl 200 or better, many are flying their "Champion of the Frozen Wastes" tags. So everyone has done the fight, everyone is geared, and we are planning to do it on the easiest setting. It should have been a 15 minute pleasure cruise. And then we manage to wipe the entire raid on the very first trash pack out of the door. Long story short, the raid disbands without even getting one drake down. I'm sure that many others have similar PUG horror stories.

My theory: core groups of people in guilds who have played together a lot and are motivated are pulling everyone forward through the content. Those are the guys who are reading all of the boss strats, keeping up with the theory crafting, explaining fights on vent, assigning raid roles, etc. I think that is the part that is better. In a guild run setting everyone in that OS 25 raid can probably perform fine. In a PUG, we collectively turned into a bunch of nubs.