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  • Shiro
  • Member Since Mar 19th, 2007

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Recent Comments:

Breakfast Topic: Why reroll? {WoW}

Mar 2nd 2009 12:39PM Yeah, done it a few times.

1) My first re-roll was when I had a Gnome Rogue from release day of vanilla. I picked Mining and Blacksmithing as her professions and I was more uber psyched about crafting than anything else. However, mining was almost impossible at that time. Copper nodes were camped, literally people sitting where the node was known to spawn waiting to hit it. I got her blacksmithing up a bit before I realized that almost nothing in blacksmithing was any good for her. Then I switched to engineering but hated that as well. I eventually just decided to create a new character at level 1 with some friends to play together. I did eventually come back to my little rogue though and got her to 70 in BC.

2) While leveling my priest to 60 in vanilla I kept getting into groups with tanks who just sucked. I figured "when I get to 60 that'll change". It didn't change. I decided to re-roll as a tank so that at least I wouldn't be complaining about it without having tried it myself.

3) After about a year of MC attempts and getting as far as Garr with three guilds that broke up because of MC, I eventually got to talking to a friend with a guild doing BWL on another server. He got me and the wife invites on the contingency that we could level to 60 in under three months. We re-rolled over there, started new characters and were 60 in just under two months. That was the hardest re-roll because we didn't have all our alts providing us with money.

4) The wife and I had originally wanted to play horde. We ended up with alliance because of my brother-in-law who wanted to play alliance together. He stopped playing around level 40ish, we ended up with 60s on the alliance side. We've never forgiven him for that. We decided prior to BC release to re-roll horde on another server. Got our hordies to level 40ish before BC hit, and then continued to level them in BC. Then our guild tempted us back by telling us that the starting BC zones were empty now. We logged back to alliance and leveled back up. After getting to 70 and doing kara, gruul, mag, and TK we decided to finally finish up working on our hordies.

Right now, our hordies are our "mains" and we just dinged our first 80s about a week ago. We're both working on a full slate of characters though and so have 9 others to bring up whenever we're ready, most of them are in the late 60s, early 70s at the moment.

I shudder to think of what could happen to make us re-roll again...

The Queue: Slack-jawed daffodils {WoW}

Jan 27th 2009 5:36PM Yep, every guild that I was ever in had a Main Assist.

Someone other than the tank who was responsible for making sure that they called out the target for everyone to assist.

I filled the role for a long, long time, and had macros set up to shout out the name/gender/level of the mob that was the kill target into Raid chat (before the invention of the lucky charms symbols).

When symbols got added the job got a lot easier, just make a macro to put a skull on the kill target and tell everyone to write an assist macro to get on your target.

Easy as pie. :)

So, yeah, make your group set a MA, then make a macro to assist them.

Breakfast Topic: Is 68 too low for Northrend? {WoW}

Jan 26th 2009 9:30AM I've got to agree with the prior posters.

1) Gear makes all the difference - Going in with my epiced out rogue was totally different than going in with my not-so-geared Paladin.

2) The rewards are so totally worth it. I admit that I do cherry pick here. I go out to the Hold (horde side/Orgrimmar airship) and get through the questline that leads you out to Taunka'le for your blue weapon upgrade. That one upgrade alone is totally worth going out at 68 for and it's not too hard. I've done the 68 jump with both my DK and Warrior now (the Rogue, Paladin, Mage, and Shaman were all 70 already). It was more challenging with my Warrior, but not to any extent that would make me think twice about it.

As per previous posters, once I've got that blue weapon upgrade, all my other slots are pretty much upgraded as well, thus it's easy enough to go back and finish off Outlands questing. Those starter quests get me to 69 and mid-way to 70, so going back gets me to around mid-point of 72 if I finish just Nagrand and Netherstorm. That's still leaving Blade's Edge, and SMV (which I hate with a passion) completely untouched. If I had more patience I could probably get 73-74 without going to Northrend but I see no need to torture myself. :)

3) I'm not sure how much people usually have left in Northrend if they started at 68. Starting at 72, and being sure to get at least enough quests in a zone to get the achievement I managed to get through BT, HF, most of Dragonblight, most of Sholazar Basin, and just started on the Grizzly Hills. That leaves me at least 4 zones of quests untouched. What does it look like starting at 68?

4) Sometimes you just need to see some new quests. I know I've done Outlands enough times to know which quests and areas I never want to touch again (I'm looking at you SMV). The good news is that you know what to ignore. The bad news is that you can really start to wonder why the heck you're doing this *again*. I think this depends a lot on when the last time you rolled through there was. My alts tend to hit Outlands one after another. With 4 70s currently starting Northrend, HF/BT are beginning to get on my nerves. I decided to focus in on one character after the 3rd one went through BT and I admit that despite really loving the quest chains in the early zones I find myself wishing I could skip them on the two new alts.

5) Anyway, my advice, roll through early quests at 68, just enough to get geared out. Then go back and finish off Outlands, or at least get to 72. Also, I ignored instances when I first did Northrend. The second and third time through I found out that you can really conserve quest XP by running instances when they're available to you. Plus, you never know when you'll run into a upgrade in there.

Breakfast Topic: Identity Crisis {WoW}

Jan 12th 2009 5:32PM Yep, she's combat swords. I agree that in good circumstances it's an awesome leveling spec, but I got way too used to the "smack 'em in da face" style of play that I employed in instances. Her gear was sub-par and as a result it was like "smeck, smeck, smeck... Oh crud, he's got a friend" then the inevitable death/corpse walk.

For leveling I much prefer a more control based spec where I can take little damage, and have more escape moves. I'm a bit unusual in that way. :)

I just can't seem to get the hang of really going all out combat for leveling as a rogue.

Breakfast Topic: Identity Crisis {WoW}

Jan 12th 2009 8:34AM Yep, despite having a Warrior, Shaman, Rogue, Paladin and Mage at level 70 when the expansion hit, my first choice was to level up that DK.

My biggest problem was that everyone was mis-specced for Northrend leveling, and I didn't feel like switching. My Warrior was Fury DPS, my Shaman was healing, my Rogue was specced Swords, my Paladin was Prot, and my mage was a Fire raid spec.

This meant that I felt like my warrior was gimped when I looked at prot warriors and the arms guys. My Shaman couldn't kill anything and wasn't getting enough XP in instances. My rogue was OK, but a bit undergeared for Stamina which meant that she was kind of squishy for Northrend. My Paladin couldn't kill anything as Prot, and my Mage got squished without the Frost leveling talents.

The killing blow was when I started leveling my DK in Outlands which I reasoned was just because Northrend was way too crowded.... Level 64 before Zangarmarsh? Level 68 before Nagrand? I managed to get to level 73 before I seriously started in Northrend (just did the starter quests in BT for the blue weapon).

Yeah, being overleveled for everything with an already beefy class is pretty darned sweet. At around level 74 I switched to a tanking spec and didn't notice much of a dropoff in my DPS so now I can do either in an instance depending on what the group needs.

I still find myself saying "I wish I was playing my resto shaman" a lot when we're looking for healers in groups though. There is a real lack of them right now which makes it very hard for me to swallow not leveling her next, even though I really, really would rather be playing my warrior. :)

Forum post of the day: Honor, glory, and coercion {WoW}

Sep 26th 2008 5:03PM I think that what's happened essentially has been hit "around", but not been pounded on the head enough.

Before Arena gear started showing up in the Battlegrounds, you had four distinct groups.

1) PvE Raiders
2) Arena Enthusiasts
3) Casual PvE people
4) Casual BG people

What happened when you dropped Arena rewards into the Battlegrounds (and very nice ones at that) was that group 3+4 merged. People who were casual PvE players started leaking into the BGs in order to get some stuff that wasn't questable/craftable.

These people aren't ever going to start doing Arenas or Raids, mostly because they don't have the time to invest and don't have the social network to do so.

When you plunk down Arena ratings on all PvP content these people will go back to their segregated groups again. Only this time three things will happen that you don't really want to have happen.

1) People who were BG enthusiasts will be unhappy because they can't get rewards unless they do Arena as well. This will lead them to finding alternative ways to enjoy themselves while doing BGs, most likely they'll go back to the twink game.

2) The casual PvE players will abandon the PvP game entirely, and they'll refocus on questing again. If that happens and there are enough quest rewards/craftables then there isn't a big deal. If those bits fall flat, then you'll find that these folks start to feel like they'd rather see the return to the "good old days" when their PvP playing could get them some new stuff. They'll get bored and eventually leave.

3) New Arena people will feel a bit put out at "having" to run BG content in order to get their Arena gear. They won't like the choice between spending all their Arena points on pure Arena gear or splitting some off to buy BG gear.

In short, no one really ends up happy. The downside is that the people who were pushing for this to happen are a very small minority of high-end Arena folks who don't like the BG geared people jumping into Arenas and being competitive.

Most of the raiding people I talked to love this system because it allows them to weed out applicants who haven't at least gotten a minimal level of grinding out of the way (to get their PvP gear), and they end up with recruits that can actually get into some content right out of the gate instead of having to be hand-held through Heroics, Kara, and SSC.

Casual PvEers love it, I've got friends that are totally *loving* the PvP system for getting gear that makes their character better in their limited play time.

Casual PvPers love it, they enjoy working for three weeks and getting a piece of Gladiator gear.

Most Arena players like it, because they get more competition from people who are actually reasonably geared.

Some Arena players hate it because they occasionally lose to a team of S2 scrubs that get lucky.

Some guilds hate it because an S2 scrub who has never done any PvE content gets into their guild and they didn't weed them out in their application process.

Ask WoW Insider: How to PuG Heroics {WoW}

Aug 27th 2008 8:44PM Yep, I'll go along with everyone else here. Your first step is to get to know some good healers and tanks.

Your first goal should be to have 4-5 healers and 3-4 tanks on your Friends List. Then when you log on, say "hi" to any of them that are online. Making contact frequently starts up a friendship and lets them know that you're sending them tells for more than just heroics.

Get to know them, and after 2-3 times of just saying "hi" then start to ask if they're interested in running anything tonight. The more you do that, the more likely they are to think of you if they're running something.

Yes, it can get tedious having a lot of friends who you actually "talk" to each time you log in, but doing that will get you a LOT more invites as long as you're not a totally useless player.

Finally, I always recommend running a lot more "normal" mode instances just to build up a reputation. If you're not in a guild, then start one with just you in it. My current guild is myself and my wife. We constantly get asked for groups because of the "good reputation of your guild". Little do they know that they're always running with the same people just on different characters.

Ask WoW Insider: Defining mains and alts {WoW}

Aug 19th 2008 9:41AM OK, I love, love, love this question. It really brings to light what different kinds of guilds are out there and how they define things like alts and mains.

1st up: This is a guild by guild distinction. I've been in progression guilds both pre and post BC. Each and every guild I've ever been in has treated this issue differently. They've all progressed and some of them where I was like "no way will this work" have progressed the fastest.

The only way you can define this is to ask your guild leaders how they define it. Then you'll know what your own personal guild thinks.

2nd point: Why should you let an established raider who has their main geared out ever run with an alt?

I'll answer that one. We had in an older guild that I was an officer for, a person who gave us the ultimatum. "I've been raiding for 2 years now on my "main" who is a healing paladin. I'm burned out, I need a break. I've been leveling a Mage for DPS and I love it. You guys have two choices. Either I put my mage in a different guild and raid with her there, or I can change my main to a mage here and raid with her with you guys." This was a guy who hadn't missed a raid in years. What do you do? Say "no" to him. Tell him to find another guild to raid with so he can gear up his new mage? Of course not. You say "OK, we really want you around, stay with us, we'll let you gear up your new mage".

Here's where it gets tricky. Now you've got three or four other people in the raid who want to do the same thing, once they see it happen for him. Now all your hardcore raiders no longer want to bring their mains on farm content. Uh Oh, problem city dead ahead.

3rd point: How can it work *for* you. A different guild I was in had a very different problem. They were "progress at all costs". They made everyone choose a main, and you *had* to raid on your main. No alts, ever. If you did bring an alt, and there was gear that was about to be sharded, then maybe you'd get it if we didn't need any enchanting mats, but you paid DKP on your main, and your alt went on lockdown where they couldn't get any loot for a decent amount of time.

What happened here? Well, we had a tanking trio who tanked *everything* for us. They were the mains, they showed up every night, and we focused on gearing them up and having them learn every fight. Things progressed rapidly. Our healers on the other hand weren't as good about showing up to farm runs. Thus, the DPS didn't gear up very fast (priority drops to healers and tanks made it take longer for them). We recruited more healers, which helped for a time... But, you can see that with a larger pool of healers it took longer to gear them all. Meanwhile our tanks were getting impatient. Progress slowed, and all three got poached by guilds further in progress within the space of 2 weeks.

Now your guild has *NO* tanks, no one who has ever tanked anything, even farm content, and no one even close to being geared.

Another guild I was in allowed alts, and as such when a tank left, no big deal. They had a ton of decently geared tanks willing to fill the spots and most of them had tanked in farm content and even some in progression content to fill spots when the tanks wanted a night off.

The guild with the tanks who left folded within a month of them leaving.

Point 4: The moral.

You can do what you want with your guild.

If you recruit enough people and have a tanking rotation, and a healing rotation, and enough DPS, hey good for you. You can mandate mains and alts.

If you "lay down the law" and keep alts out of raids, then you have a mass exodus of one particular class, you can look forward to your guild folding like a house of cards. Sometimes it's that guy with 8 level 70s (like me) who has them all geared and can be either DPS, Tank or Healer on any given run who is the one that can hold your guild together while you recruit. All you need to do is to throw him the occasional bone.

Breakfast Topic: WoTLK: The perfect time to switch mains? {WoW}

Apr 22nd 2008 11:06AM I've switched "mains" now more times than I care to remember...

I first started raiding as a holy priest, and that was fun for a while, but I really hated that I couldn't do anything *but* raid with her. Everything else was painful beyond belief.

I switched to a warrior and went arms/prot back when it was possible to tank in endgame content as a hybrid. I tanked through MC with her, but it was more stressful than I liked.

I moved guilds and servers to play my druid and expected to be a true hybrid. I ended up being a MT healer and offtanking when needed. Not horrible, but still too much pressure.

I got into another guild who needed a rogue so my rogue got to see time in BWL/AQ40 pre-expansion. She got the furthest in progression, and I loved playing her.

However, when the expansion came out I felt like I needed a tank and healer first (so that we could run whatever, whenever) and so I leveled my Druid. My guild at the time really needed a Shadow Priest, so I leveled her as well.

So, following BC my Priest moved back to being my main for progression content, and I played my Druid for Heroics and Kara when a healer was needed (she was also my PvP healer).

Around that time, everyone was leveling their healer alt, so I took a break and ran my rogue again. Got her geared in Kara (while my "main" priest was in SSC). I was on track to move her back to being my main due to a lack of DPSers when the guild went fizzle.

At that point I had been leveling a horde shammy on another server, so I took a burnout break and got her to 70 to be my new main. Now she's 70, but I find it hard to play her because of a difficulty getting groups. Thus, I leveled a prot pally to be my tank for grouping.

Currently the prot pally is sitting at Thrallmar doing towers and rep runs through ramparts. Once she gets her Thrallmar rep maxed, I'll start doing some questing and get her to 70. I like her enough that she'll probably be my main, at least until I get someone else up there that I want to play as.

At this very moment, I'm leveling my hordie rogue (she's 40) while I wait for that Thrallmar rep and the rest state on my Pally. I wouldn't be surprised if once my pally gets to 70, I take a break to play her for a while. :)

So, yeah, don't save your "main change" for the expansion. You can do it any time, as long as your guild is OK with it and you don't hamper their progression. In my case I just continued to play my "main" for raiding, and tried to gear up my "alt" during downtimes to get them to the same gear level as my "main". Then it's a simple matter of swapping out to whoever you want.

Player vs. Everything: Raid leaders are jerks {Massively}

Apr 15th 2008 11:01PM A heck of a lot of people forget that the position is called "Leader".

That means that one of the things you need to be good at in that position is leading people.

This requires you to know the people that you're dealing with. I like to use the analogy of the high school football coach. There are some kids on the team that won't run sprints unless you yell at them. Some of them work a lot harder if you single them out in practice and point out their flaws.

Then you get the star quarterback who really, really needs you to be careful in what you say and how you say it so that you don't wreck his confidence. You've also got your star linebacker who when you point out his flaws will get so consumed with what you just told him that he loses track of where he's supposed to be for a few plays.

You've got to treat each and every person in your raid differently. You need to get to know them and find out how comfortable with this stuff they are. The *only* way to do that is to talk to them and run lots of stuff with them outside of a raid environment. Heck, some of them will even be uncomfortable with you yelling at someone *else*.

If you've discussed things with them in advance, and you've gotten a handle on their personal attitudes, you can then lead each and every person on your team to success. If you don't do that, then you'll lose people that don't like your style. When that happens, then you'll eventually end up with people who all like the same style of leadership.

Here's the pickle though, eventually you end up with all people who either...

a) Love raiding, want to do tons of it, respond well to criticism, and work their butts off to progress.
b) Like raiding, don't mind being yelled at, but need that yelling to motivate them and don't work unless you berate them nightly.

Now, fast forward a bit in your progression. If you *ever* stall even for a slight bit, those people in category A will not hesitate to move on to a guild that's farther progressed. Their motivation is that progression, and they're not afraid to work hard to get it. This means that after a stall, you're left with a higher percentage of type B people each time. Eventually, as a raid leader you end up with only people you *require* you to yell at them to get them to work.

That's the trap. When you manage your raiders right, you end up with a greater diversity of raiders, and sometimes that can allow you to keep a core together even through a slow spot.

I've personally seen this happen to three guilds already... First all the "nice" people leave but everyone keeps on going because progression just got "easier". Then a block comes up and you stall for a minimal time. During the stall, all the A people leave and the raid leaders go nuts because all of those Bs just make raiding a pain in the butt.

Anyway, if you're a raid leader who wants to keep your guild together and forge ahead, you've got two options.

1) Be at the front of the pack. If there isn't anyone beating you to new content, then all of the As are yours by default.

2) Be a better leader for *all* of your people so that you can hold together a good raid group. Then people will hold fast to your guild out of loyalty. If someone leaves because they want more and faster progress, let them go. They eventually would have left at a later point anyway.