Apr 15th 2010 3:12PM This is exactly what I was going to say. The only "use" this item provides is the miniscule amount of gold you'll save on buying mounts for your alts. You still need to buy the riding skills, you still need to raid hardmodes or PvP your way to an arena drake or spend a year grinding seasonal achievements to get 310% speed with it. If anything, the Celestial Steed is more like a BoA mount than anything else, and when half the alts in the Barrens are riding one around, they're going to look about as special as well-lit dirt.
I have no problem with other people buying one. It gives no in-game advantage, and it gives Blizzard more money to do neat things with for us. But I don't plan on picking one up myself; with those stubby little legs, it looks more like a Celestial Dachshund than a noble steed. Me, I'll stick to my talbuks!
Oct 27th 2009 9:12PM This is dreaming, I know, but I'd love to see a complete removal of the current character creation system. The dynamic of picking a race, then a class is completely artificial, and I think it contributes greatly to the relative homogeneity of race/class combos. (How many troll priests have *you* seen lately?).
In my perfect world, character creation would start with a series of questions about what you want your character to *be*. The first question would deal with faction affiliation: have a paragraph or two describing the ideals and aspirations of each faction, and mention both their positive and negative qualities so the player can make an informed decision based on something other than "well i guess humans are like normal so ill be that" or "WOO DA ORKS ARE DA BADDEST, SMASH PUNY ELFMEN!"
Next, ask the player what they want that character to be able to do, letting them pick up to two different options from a list: heal, tank, melee dps, or ranged dps. Then show them which classes would be suited to their interests. Is your sole interest making things hurt from the other side of the map? Hunter, warlock, mage, priest, or druid. Want to be able to heal or tank? Paladin or druid. Tank or melee dps? Warrior, DK, paladin, druid. Melee or ranged dps? Druid. (God, druids are awesome). Explain which talent trees should be taken for which role, too.
Finally, shows the player which races are available for which classes in their role, so they can make their final choice - rather than their first choice - based on aesthetics.
Oct 26th 2009 8:48PM Shaman tanking? Sure. Grab a shield and spear, summon Dogdog, buff yourself and the pup (mmm, HoS), then throw a DoT on the mob to get its attention and tank it in teh face! Keep the mob slowed, toss torpor on yourself when your hp gets low, and if things start looking hairy, just back off and root-rot.
... no? Damnit, there I go living in the past again. I'll leave Aikinn the barbarian shaman languishing at the second torch in the EC tunnel, and drag myself up to the modern day. I have an enhancement shaman now, currently in his mid 70s, with every possible piece of heirloom gear (two McGowan's maces with +15 agility, Deathdealer chest, Beastmaster shoulders, both trinkets), and he is a goddamned beast in instance runs. He never goes in *intending* to tank, but, well... sometimes I'm outdamaging the tank by so much that not even spirit weapons and wind shear spam will drop my threat enough, and sometimes the tank is fixated on a melee mob and completely ignores the cosmic rift spawning infinite adds behind it, so I step up. While I would never volunteer myself to tank a boss, geared shamans can make damned fine offtanks on trash. Between maelstrom weapon's instant-cast healing wave, shamanistic rage to tap back mana, and spirit wolves for heals and quick dps, I can easily keep that spellflinger distracted on my own until the rest of the group has finished with their target.
I don't want my shaman to be an MT. I love that he can tank things in the face when soloing, I love that he can save a healer's ass with a well-timed frost shock and a few seconds of offtanking footwork, but the class is just not suited to full-on tanking in its current state. We already have four classes that can tank, with very different styles and strengths; if not enough people are playing those, adding a fifth isn't going to magically fix the problem.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to post another hopeless petition for the ability to rename my BRS worgen pet to Dogdog.
Oct 20th 2009 7:52PM I get talbuks on all my characters because they are the prettiest mounts, and I constantly get tells from lowbies and 80s alike asking where I got them. I don't blame people for not knowing; they're fairly obscure, unlocked only after completely a massive quest chain in Nagrand which includes multiple group quests, and even after finishing the quests, you need to grind rep with warbeads to get the rest of the way to exalted.
So when people ask me where I got my talbuk, I don't mock them. I do, however, respond with the gravity and reverence the subject deserves, even though I play on a PvP, non-RP server where in-character chat is about as rare as a black unicorn. A typical conversation goes something like this:
Stranger: where u get talbuk
Me: The reins of this talbuk were entrusted to me by the Mag'har of Nagrand, after I won their respect and admiration.
Stranger: wut did u need to do
Me: I brokered a truce between the Mag'har orcs and a group of invading ogres; I destroyed a Burning Legion invasion force, turning their own foul demonic armaments against hem; and, perhaps most importantly, I restored the confidence of Garrosh Hellscream, son of Grom, by persuading Thrall himself to visit Nagrand with me to convince the wayward son of the heroism of his absent father.
Stranger: ... how long did it take u?
Me: Earning the trust of the Mag'har took several weeks of dedicated labour, slaying thousands of ogres for their cause, collecting endless warbeads from the corpses of the fallen to submit as proof of my valor. The end result, though, was well worth it: talbuks are swift, tireless, and noble steeds, possessed of unsurpassed grace.
Stranger: ok thx
[Two minutes later, in trade chat]
Trade: [Stranger] were i can buy talbuk??
Oct 13th 2009 8:55PM Here are the main problems with the idea of a raid training school:
1. If you do it on outdated content, it's worthless.
1a. Even a fresh 80 wearing greens will be ludicrously overgeared for any Outland content, which will trivialize large portions of each encounter. There won't be any challenge, there won't be any sense of danger, there won't be any of the excitement or thrill that makes a real raid fun.
1b. None of the gear will be upgrades, which makes people feel like they're wasting their time. DEing or vendoring stuff is nice in theory, but bear in mind that Outland enchanting mats can only be used for Outland-level enchants, and other than the still-rare Mongoose, there isn't a single Outland enchant worth getting these days.
2. If you do it on moderately outdated content (ie, Naxx), it's worthless.
2a. Again, most of the gear will not be an upgrade for people, which is disheartening.
2b. People will still outgear the encounters, which will allow people to get away with making mistakes that *should* wipe them. When my old warrior did Naxx for his new newbie guild, half our fights were just sloppy as hell, people were not listening to instructions, and when I tried to bring it up as a problem, I was brushed off with "Well at least we got the boss down, that's good enough." Well, no, it's not. The only thing people learn from sloppy runs is that it's OK to be sloppy.
3. If you do it on reasonably current content, people need to gear themselves up first.
That last one is the clincher. A lot of people do not understand the importance of running heroics. They want to jump right into raiding, but they *can't*, because everyone else is geared way beyond entry-level stuff. Blizzard is going out of their way to make it easy for newer players to catch up, it's now possible to get ilvl 226+ stuff in every slot just from running heroics, but if people can't take the time to gear up, well, they shouldn't raid.
Considering the life stage of the game right now, the number of genuinely new players who want to learn how to raid, *and* who are willing to put in the time... well, there aren't many out there. At this point, in any given guild, pretty much all of the people who don't know how to raid either don't want to learn or can't be taught, and all the well-meaning advice in the world won't help them.
Now, I do recognize that there are a *few* genuine raid newbies out there, and I'm a big proponent of running heroics with them to gear them up, working with them one-on-one at the training dummies to go over rotations and gear choices, then integrating them into raids. But even they would benefit more from an afternoon of chain heroics than from being dragged through Kara.
(Hopefully this doesn't double post, I waited like five minutes to see if it showed up the first time).
Oct 13th 2009 7:51PM I'm running into this problem right now in two of the guilds I'm in.
I have two 80 raiders, both geared and skilled sufficiently for 25 TotC content. One is in a fairly high-end raiding guild, and usually holds his own on the dps charts (always top five on overall damage and dps, usually top three). He knows his class, he keeps his gear properly enchanted and gemmed, he uses appropriate class-specific and raid addons to maximize his efficiency. There is a boomkin in his guild who out-gears him by a considerable margin. This boomkin is wearing almost full 245 gear, mostly because he's the only leather caster in the guild, so any of that stuff that drops goes to him automatically. The boomkin uses flasks, he knows the fights, he listens in on Vent, he gives every indication of being a good raider... but I have *never* seen him put out more than 2k dps, less than half what I do on my feral. I don't know what his problem is, I don't know if the officers have talked to him about it, but I just twitch every time I see him get a raid slot, because it means that the rest of us will need to work that much harder to compensate for his low numbers.
My other 80 went into semi-retirement back in Ulduar days, but I recently dusted him off to tank for a newbie raiding guild formed by an old buddy of mine. A lot of the new guild's members are true newbies, just dinged 80, haven't even run a 10m OS with no drakes yet... but their attitudes just *infuriate* me. I can work with undergeared people who just need upgrades, I can work with people who need help understanding how to use their skills, I can work with people who need advice on what stats to gem for, but I cannot work with people who expect everything to be *handed* to them. These newbies don't want help, they want handouts. Heck, they aren't even content with the welfare epic handouts available through pugging heroics: they stamp their feet, say "Heroics are boring!", then expect nine other people, including my already-geared tank, to spend hours every week running through Naxx and Ulduar, even though they could get better gear in less time by busting their own butts for it.
I'm sure Jay is going to come blustering in here huffing at me for being an elitist jerk, but if you want to play the game at a high level, you need to put in the damned effort. If you are unwilling to put in that effort, or if you are just functionally incapable of raiding because you can't pay attention or take it seriously, you should not be allowed to raid. It's a privilege, not a right. Yes, you can play the game however you want, it's your dime every month; yes, if you think your 1500 int arcane-shot-spam hunter build is the best thing in the world, you can solo your little heart out with it; but as soon as you start raiding, as soon as you start working as part of a team with other people, you play by the team rules or you get the frak out. Initial ignorance is excusable, simple lack of knowledge can be easily fixed with instruction, but willful stupidity or laziness have no place in raiding guilds.