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Posts with tag elitist-jerks

The Illusion of Logistics: Elitist Jerks' Hamlet on 10 vs. 25 man raiding

You may remember Hamlet from Elitist Jerks, or you may not. Whether or not you do, he's written an interesting post over on his personal blog discussing the 10 man vs. 25 man raiding issue. I addressed my own thoughts on this issue this week, but Hamlet's take is far more analytical (which is to be expected) and also somewhat epistolary, taking the form of feedback on the issue and expanding from there.

Frankly, I'd do the post a disservice by attempting to summarize it, but I'd also be doing it a disservice by carving it up piecemeal here and commenting on it. One aspect of the post of note, that I really found both interesting and a trifle challenging to my own preconceptions, is his deconstruction of the notion that 25 man raiding is logistically harder than 10 man raiding. His points about how 10 man raids can often be far more difficult to run if even one player misses a night is valid, and he goes through all the ways 10 mans are limited by their smaller pool of players in a thorough and convincing manner.

This is in service of the main point of the piece, which again I think deserves your full attention. He makes the case that the problem isn't logistics at all, but rather that due to group composition constraints 10 man raiding simply can't be as complex, strategic or difficult as 25 man raiding, and so it's not an issue of logistical difficulty, but rather purely inequality of design. In other words, 25 man raids are generally harder than 10 man raids because they can be, they don't have to be designed to be completed with limited group compositions. There are 34 specs in the game, and 25 mans have more room for more options than 10.

Again, this is summarizing a really well thought out piece. You may or may not agree with it, but please go read his argument and don't just rely on my brief on it -- by necessity I'm missing a lot of subtleties here.


It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Encrypted Text: Expanding your collection of rogue resources

world of logs
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

While death knights have only been around for a couple of years and retribution paladins are tasked with rediscovering themselves every few months, rogues have remained consistent throughout WoW's entire lifetime. We've obviously received tweaks and changes along the way, but the rogue of today looks an awful lot like the rogue of the past. Over the years, the rogue class has been dissected from every angle, and our studious brothers and sisters of the shadow have discovered its secrets.

There are three main areas of rogue research: mathing out how the class works (and yes, mathing is a verb), picking the right gear, and figuring out the best specific strategies. The best and brightest rogues are constantly monitoring our DPS models to ensure their continual accuracy, compiling lists of the best gear and how to get it, and detailing their guides for dealing with players and raid bosses alike. I can say with a tremendous amount of bias that Encrypted Text is the best source for rogue info, but of course there are other sites that are useful as well.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Arcane Brilliance: Optimizing your mage's gear through Rawr

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Arcane Brilliance for arcane, fire and frost mages. This week, we're talking about what is arguably the game's most trusted gear optimization program: Rawr. Also, we're planning to see how many times I need to type the word "rawr" before my spellchecker snaps and murders me through my computer screen.

Close your eyes.

Imagine, if you will, that you have a mage. Ha ha, of course you have a mage. Sometimes I crack myself up. Now imagine that your mage has gear, but that gear is not optimal. Now open your eyes.

Hello, every mage ever.

Yeah, chances are pretty close to 100% that no matter who you are and how religiously you play the game, your mage, beloved though he may be, does not have every slot filled with best-in-slot gear and does not have every item perfectly gemmed, enchanted and reforged so that your DPS is up to its fullest possible potential. WoW is a computer game -- an old one, sure, but still home to millions of algorithms and formulas and computations and other math terms that I don't fully understand. It would take, I firmly believe, a robot from the future to calculate all of those numbers and variables and turn them into something a human brain can parse accurately enough to actually benefit from.

Well, mages and magesses, I have recently contacted Kavan, one of the main authors of the ubiquitous gear optimization program Rawr, and I can tell you that he is that robot from the future. I only pray he can protect us from whatever other, more evil and technologically advanced robot from the future that might at some point follow him through the wormhole with a directive to kill our unborn children or something, because you know that's what's happening.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Encrypted Text: Even rogues have homework


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any screenshots you'd like to see featured here or any questions you might have!

I hate homework. When I was in school, I was always finding creative ways to turn my assignments in as late as possible. I completed most my English assignments the night before they were due, and I've solved a few calculus questions in the car on my way to class. No matter how important the assignment was, there was always something more interesting that I would rather do. When it comes down to a heads-up match between playing Warcraft 2 and studying biology flashcards, there's really no contest.

Playing a rogue successfully in the endgame of World of Warcraft requires a lot of homework. We've talked before about the very math-centric natures of rogue theorycrafting. Without a spreadsheet or other mathematical tool, it's almost impossible to create a working model for testing DPS and checking gear. Boss abilities are constantly changing and being added, and they often interact with our abilities in non-standard ways. Blizzard's developers are implementing fixes on a daily basis. In order to keep up with the pace of WoW's development, you simply have to do your homework.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: An interview with the ever-cautious Aldriana

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. This week, I interview Aldriana, the infamous author of rogue spreadsheets.

Nobody likes rogues. Whether it's due to an instinctive fear of being stabbed repeatedly in the back or a Freudian bout of jealousy, we are easily the most reviled class in WoW. Death knights may be characterized as noobs while hunters are blamed for rolling on every single weapon, yet rogues still receive the least amount of good will. Because of this, it's rare to see anyone talking about rogues outside of asking for massive nerfs for all of our abilities. Playing a rogue has become a thankless job.

I'd like to take this opportunity to reverse that trend. With the last tier of content for level 80s (and the associated gear), Aldriana released the final copy of his infamous Wrath spreadsheets, which had been maintained since Naxxramas' release. Aldriana has a long history of involvement in the rogue theorycrafting community, particularly on the rogue forums of Elitist Jerks. With spreadsheets dating back to The Burning Crusade and numerous contributions before that, Aldriana has been dedicated to keeping rogues informed for years. Blizzard itself even gave Aldriana a nod via an in-game item, Aldriana's Gloves of Secrecy (thanks splodesondeath). I recently had the pleasure of asking him a few questions about his rogue, his spreadsheets, and life as an EJ moderator.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

The cynic's guide to World of Warcraft

We tend to be very careful while composing articles here at WoW Insider. We're always mindful that not everyone plays the game in the same way, or has the same experience on different servers or factions, but every so often a certain madness seizes us and we feel the urge to ... tell the truth. In that vein, I am pleased (sort of) to present The Cynic's Guide to World of Warcraft.

This article owes a heavy debt to Ambrose Bierce's The Devil's Dictionary. If you want to see a real master at work, read that.

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Filed under: Humor

Fixing raiding lag

There is quite a thread going around with some ideas about how to fix raiding lag. Lag, like many cross-computer issues, is a pretty complicated thing -- there's all kinds of reasons it could be happening, from errors on your computer to errors on Blizzard's end, and all the little connections and switches in between. A certain amount of lag is unavoidable. But there are certainly some things you can do to make sure the link between your client and Blizzard's server is working at its best. This thread, which started on the EJ forums and then moved on to Livejournal, has some good tips in it, including turning off most combat logs like Recount and even Blizzard's official "Everything" log -- having to write down everything happening in game does cost some computer time as you play. Blocking addon "spam" is another way to keep things simple and clear -- while lots of useful addons help you share information between raid members, sending that info back and forth can cause problems when you're down to milliseconds of lag.

The final suggestion is to run a third-party program that's supposed to keep your latency high, but I would be leery of doing that -- a better solution if you continue to have high latency constantly, even after making the changes above, would be to go to Blizzard (and/or your Internet Service Provider, or ISP) with your issues. They have a good guide to smoothing out your connection, and many times the problem can be with your router or firewall, which is usually a quick fix.

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Filed under: Guilds, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, Hardware

The Queue: Irrelevant


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's (almost) daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Embedded video has absolutely not relevance to anything in this edition of The Queue. Why did I use it? Because I like the music. Do I really need more of a reason than that? Nope! Now let's jump into the questions. Some of them came from right here on WoW.com, and others came from Twitter.

Lavoz asked...


"With Cataclysm, the blood elves will finally have access to the warrior class. Is there any information as to what order they will belong to? Will they be a part of the Blood Knights, or will we refer to them as Spellbreakers?"

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue, Cataclysm

The Queue: I don't really know what's happening here


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

The video I've included in today's edition of The Queue is... something. It is certainly a thing. A thing that is entirely unrelated to WoW. I know the music is produced by Justice, but the video? Well. It's a video. Enjoy?

corwin asked...


"Is anything more going to be done with the Grizzly Hills Venture Bay PVP areas? It seems like it has a lot of potential and isn't paid any attention."

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, The Queue

Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 Q&A

Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Patch 3.2 has been shaping up to be a welcome event for professions in World of Warcraft. Soon, we will all have access to the next "tier" of gems and profession-unique buffs.

This week, I will be devoting the column space to answering some reader questions. Pre-patch notes and Public Test Realm data can often create confusion, especially when we know that anything could change before we ever see it live.

At the very end, I have included a bit of a spoiler, although I attempted to keep the details to a minimum and the wild speculation to a maximum.

Are the new flasks for Alchemists only? - Joemama
The new flask is called Flask of the North and can only be used by Alchemists with a skill of at least 400. This flask is clearly inferior to the Wrath raiding flasks because it is meant to be used in arenas. While it should give you a bit of a boost, Blizzard does not want everyone suddenly becoming Alchemists in order to compete.

Of course, if you play the game primarily for arena, then you might consider switching if you haven't already.

The most exciting changes for Alchemists will likely be the new epic gem transmutes and the fact that potions will stack to 20.

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Filed under: Alchemy, Cooking, Enchanting, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Economy, Jewelcrafting, Features, Making money, Insider Trader (Professions)

Elitist Jerks and Opera team up for WoW browser

This past Friday, web browser developer Opera announced that they had teamed up with respected theory crafting website Elitist Jerks to create a new browser. The Elitist Jerks browser, as it is titled, is designed to cater to the needs of the World of Warcraft online community, with an array of customized features, pre-selected options, and a sleek skin reminiscent of the site it's named for. The pitch interested me enough that I decided to put away my beloved Firefox for the weekend, and give Opera's Elitist Jerks browser a thorough test.

Obviously it would be somewhat insane to expect that this is an entirely new browser built from the ground up. At its core, the browser is Opera 9. So if you've got a strong aversion to that browser, you're not going to find anything here to redeem it. However, if you're ambivalent towards Opera, or if you've never even tried it, the Elitist Jerks browser is definitely worth checking out. It's got all the features we as consumers have come to expect from a browser over the last few years, along with the polish that Opera is known for.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends

WoW Ladies in the spotlight


Just a quick word of congrats tonight to our friends the moderators of the WoW Ladies Livejournal group -- their community has been spotlighted over on the Livejournal front page. Definitely some well-deserved recognition for one of the best sub-communities in World of Warcraft.

The mods over there are ready to deal with the exposure, too -- though you can see over in this thread that they're a little "dazzled" by all of the new traffic, they've (as usual) got things well in hand. They've created a series of "Master Posts" to keep overflow on the channel to a minimum, and as you can see from their main page, they're taking the growth right in stride, still showing all kinds of interesting viewpoints on the game from their various posters.

The WoW community is a gigantic one, but it's all of the little interrelated communities within it (from us here at WoW Insider to the theorycrafters on Elitist Jerks to all of the hundreds of WoW player blogs, each with their own little voice and insight) that really make it such a diverse and creative group. Good to see one of the best WoW communities out there spotlighted on a major mainstream site.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard

Encrypted Text: How to use a spreadsheet

Every Wednesday (usually), Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the Rogue class. This week, we discuss how to properly use a DPS spreadsheet.

Patch 3.1 is finally released, and there is a ton of new gear available for Rogues. The Argent Tournament has some great gear for newly 80 Rogues looking for solid-quality blues and epics, Ulduar has over 800 new items (more than all of TBC's raids combined), and Arena Season 6 should be starting next week. There's multiple new epics for every slot and for every playstyle.

With this sudden influx of new gear, the infamous Rogue spreadsheets have seen a huge increase in download traffic. While I haven't seen any officially updated sheets from our friend Vulajin, Aldriana has published a pair of new Mutilate and Combat spreadsheets. While not quite as pretty as Vulajin's, Aldriana's has all of the major features that you need to plan your gear upgrades. Read on for detailed instructions on how to use a spreadsheet.

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, Guides, Classes, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

The Queue: Item level, attunements, and more


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Good morning/afternoon/generic time of day, everyone! I don't have anything funny or interesting to say here, so let's skip that part and pretend that I did it! Yay! Now imagine there's a silly poll for you to vote in! Exclamation points! More exclamation points! Not enough exclamation points yet! We need more!

Okay, that's enough of them.

Erogroth asked...


"How exactly does item level work? From what I gather its almost like talent points for an item. So any item that is the same level should be about equal in how good it is. However often items of the same item level are no where near equal. So what's the deal?"

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, The Queue

Is Wrath too easy, or are we just better?

In the eternal question of whether Wrath of the Lich King is too easy, Our Girl Friday posits an answer that I've often wondered about myself. Is it really that WotLK is so gosh-darned easy, or could the issue actually be that maybe, just maybe, the players have gotten better?

The wealth of knowledge about the nuts-and-bolts of theorycraft has never been more available. New players and old veterans alike have resources like WoW Insider, Wowhead, WoWwiki, or that juggernaut of theorycraft, Elitist Jerks. There are strategy videos, stategy manuals, and even a few strategy comics. The forums themselves have never been more informative, especially when you consider Ghostcrawler laying down wisdom all over the place. The information about how to play is out there for the taking.

And, c'mon. It's been about half a decade and near 12 million subscribers. Once you've done Nethekurse or Zereketh, you should know that you're not supposed to stand in pink, black, or red circles. Really, just don't stand in stuff. Is that really such a deep and meaningful skill that you have to relearn "Don't stand in stuff!" for Kel'Thuzad? So, if the Wrath raids aren't demanding a gear-based progression (meaning, it's all a gear check), then we should entertain the idea that we've gotten pretty good at not standing in stuff. That's certainly not the only raiding skill, but I'm using it as an indication that we're meeting the basic "skill" requirements.

Of course, even Ghostcrawler has acknowledged that Naxxramas is somewhat the new welfare epics. We know that Ulduar's going to be noticeably more "difficult." But until then, we could probably accept that the current accessibility of content owes some part to us getting better as players.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Blizzard, Guides

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