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Posts with tag simulator

Do you dream of a World of Warcraft simulator?

Years ago, before vanilla WoW became vanilla WoW, a friend of mine made the passing comment, "If only I ran as much as my night elf. I'd be in amazing shape."

I've been dreaming about a World of Warcraft simulator ever since.

Mind you, I'd suffer the fate of Pheidippides if I ran a fraction of what my night elf runs (I'm a terrible long-distance runner), but I suppose that's what makes the idea of a WoW simulator so appealing. Of course you'd be awful when you first started, but over time you could expect to get better. In my overly optimistic imagination, I saw hardcore raiders becoming sculpted athletes, sprinting from left to right to avoid boss abilities.

But in the absence of a holodeck or some other form of simulated reality, is a WoW simulator even feasible? I got my first look at an answer in 2010, when researchers at the USC Institute of Creative Technologies released a video demonstration of their Flexible Action and Articulate Skeleton Toolkit (FAAST). The middleware toolkit allows motion control to be integrated into games without existing motion control support, by translating gestures into mouse and keyboard inputs. In the demonstration video, a Microsoft Kinect is used to control a mage running around Dustwallow Marsh. Awesome, right?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Ask Mr. Robot


Simulators for WoW are nothing new -- Rawr, for instance, has been around for years, and is steadily snowballing into a one-stop shop for simulating all classes (it's not there yet, but I still love it). In case you're scratching your head at this point, a simulator is like a spreadsheet, but much smarter -- instead of using some general approximations to calculate how your gear is going to change your DPS, it basically goes ahead and plays a model version of the game for you. Edit: apparently Rawr is not a simulator -- it uses formulas that come up with the same answer every time, much like spreadsheets. We still love it anyway.

What is new about the simulator I want to talk about today, which seems to be entitled "Mr. Robot," is that it runs on the web, in Microsoft's Silverlight framework (Silverlight seems to have come about because someone at MS saw Flash and decided they wanted one too). This means it's cross-platform and there's nothing to install (well, except Silverlight, but you may have that already). They're only doing sims for Death Knights right now, but the team says more classes are coming (I hear Warlock is next, but don't quote me).

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Filed under: Classes, Death Knight

Raid boss simulator for Teron Gorefiend

The European Horde guild "Ferox" has designed a flash-based simulator to help assist with the Teron Gorefiend raid boss fight in the Black Temple. I've never been to the Black Temple myself, but according to Bosskillers, Mr. Gorefiend will debuff a random player every 30 seconds with "Shadow of Death," which basically gives you a 55-second countdown till you die. But your death isn't the end of the battle for you yet, in fact it's just beginning: four "Shadowy Constructs" will spawn around you, and as a ghost you will get special abilities only you can use on these constructs -- other raiders will be helpless against them.

The flash game based on this fight does a great job at letting you practice the strategies to success, and it even makes for an interesting puzzle for people who like to figure out how to do things on their own. For those of us who are never likely to actually get to go to the Black Temple, simulations like this help convey a taste of what it's like to be there for real, too, so I hope more and more players develop these sorts of simulations in the future. If you want to figure out the simulator from scratch, go ahead and check it out; otherwise I'll explain the basic tools, and then after the jump I'll explain how to win.

The constructs will spawn from the point where you die as the Shadow of Death countdown finishes. From there, they will make their way to the rest of your raid. To win, you have to kill them before they get there. Some of the basic controls are explained in the game itself, but the 5 spells you can cast as a ghost are not clear at first. The first and last abilities, "Spirit Strike" and "Spirit Shield" are useless in the flash simulator, so you can ignore them here. The important abilities you'll be using are the three in the middle, "Spirit Lance," "Spirit Chains," and "Spirit Volley" (which you can use by clicking, or pressing 3, 4, or 5, respectively). Spirit Lance will damage a construct within a certain range and also slow it down, Spirit Chains will freeze nearby constructs in place, and Spirit Volley will do AoE damage to all the constructs around you. Continue reading for the secret cheat codes to give you super-extra-strength and +1000 damage!

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Filed under: Walkthroughs, Instances, Raiding, Guides

SimTank

As a project while learning Java programming, Morn of Executus-EU decided to create a tanking simulator and run some experiments. The simulator, which can be downloaded here, lets the tanking classes input their "to be missed", block, dodge, parry, block value and armor, and run it against the boss's attack damage range and speed. You can also use it to compare how much damage/crushing blows/burst damage paladins, druids and warriors would have while tanking the same fight. As a cool side bonus, the site also shows a "combat log" of the fight against the boss, complete with your hits, misses and damage.

A better theorycrafter than I could have some fun with this, but Morn found that assuming comparable gear, a druid takes 15 percent more damage than a warrior and 10 percent more than a paladin. He notes that it could be a good way for tanks to figure out what stats they need to improve to become better at damage absorption.

Who do you think makes the best tank? What information can you gain from this simulator?

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff

WoW Druid Simulator for Excel

Ok, I'll admit that I have no real idea what this thing does, or if it's even useful, but I figured I'd let you guys be the judge of that. FileFront.com is hosting a user-created Druid Simulator for MS Excel that allows that allows "druids to test their gear setups. It should allow them to determine which gear to aim for."

So, I guess it's a spreadsheet kind of thing? Personally, I don't get into the minutae of stats & all the numbers when I'm playing an MMO...or any game, for that matter...but I know there are plenty of folks that do, so maybe some of you will find this useful. You can download it from this link.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Add-Ons

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