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Officers' Quarters: The wrong stuff

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

A big reason I love writing for this Web site is you, the readers. Whenever I write a column and ask you for feedback, you always provide some insightful comments. And whenever I fail to mention an important point, you guys always manage to catch it and comment on it. It's a supportive and intelligent community here, and it certainly makes my job easier!

Last week, I wrote about the "right stuff" to look for in a good officer candidate. I mentioned five traits to value in a candidate: maturity, generosity, good communication skills, emotional intelligence, and game knowledge. Necessarily, that means someone who is immature, greedy, barely literate, emotionally stunted, and a total noob would have the "wrong stuff." But, as several readers pointed out, there are other warning signs that someone will make a bad officer.

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Filed under: Guilds, Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Maintenance extended three hours

In a regularly-scheduled world, the servers would be up and we'd all be playing WoW 2.3 right now. But did any of us really expect that to be the case? Turns out maintenance has been prolonged until 1:00 2:00 PM PST, two three hours later than the previous estimate (Drysc). But let's try to look at this in a positive way. Now you have more time to:
What are you going to do with your free downtime extension?

Filed under: Patches, Realm Status

Three month cooldown on US and EU character transfers (and free transfers in EU)

Thundgot, one of the EU CMs, has confirmed that the character transfer cooldown has been reduced for the EU realms (and raised for the US Realms, as here it was previously one month, and three months, and six months before that). Currently, the cooldown for both EU and US transfers is three months. That means that any character you transfer has to stay put for at least three months before it can be moved again, which most players (and Blizzard, obviously) seem to agree is a good period of time.

And on the heels of that news, Thundgot has also posted that free character transfers are available on select EU realms, as listed below:

From: Frostmane, Grim Batol, Kazzak, Outland
To: Boulderfist, Burning Blade, Daggerspine

From: Stonemaul, Warsong
To: Shadowmoon

First free character transfers in a while (the last I can find were these Oceanic transfers). Since BC was released, it seems like Blizzard has a pretty good hold on population control (or maybe it's just that the populations aren't changing that much anymore). I remember when free transfers used to come almost every week on US servers, but nowadays they are few and far between.

[ via MMO Champion ]

Filed under: Realm News, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard

Why Tuesday mornings?

Maintenance is going on right now on some servers, so now's a good a time as any to ask a question I've never really considered before: why 5 to 7 am PST on a Tuesday morning? Why did Blizzard choose this time to refresh and update the servers every week?

The obvious answer is that that's when the least number of players will be bothered, and indeed, that's what the wise and kind Nethaera says. But there's no way that time is always the lowest population every week, and sometimes maintenance, as it will today, runs long anyway. Why not Wednesday morning, or Sunday morning, or Thursday midafternoon, or Saturday evening? Actually, that last one would be a problem. But you're always going to inconvenience someone, so why not move it around a little and give those Tuesday players a break?

Neth says they're "always going to choose to do what needs done for the most benefit of the health of the game and servers." Which is fine by me-- back when I worked in retail shifts, I usually had Tuesday mornings off and couldn't play, but with my 9-5 now, it doesn't bother me anyway (and the recent changes to have restarts rather than downtime help, I'm sure). But are you someone who's been screwed out of gametime every Tuesday? And if you're not, would you mind giving up your playtime one week just so the folks on Tuesday morning wouldn't have to deal with the downtime and the restarts?

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Realm Status, Odds and ends, Blizzard

AddOn Spotlight: Grid

I used to raid heal using mainly the CT_RaidAssist emergency monitor. Call me a bad healer if you want; it was a lot nicer than having 40 health bars all over my screen. The emergency monitor is not clickable in WoW 2, and thus began my hunt for a way that I could see everybody's health and still see the fight. CT_RA bars, Blizzard's bars, and the like were all out due to being simply too big. Furthermore, I find them a bit overwhelming, making it hard to spot who's low on health. I mostly heal main tanks, but I like to be able to easily see if a Rogue or something takes a big hit. So where does one turn for a set of raid health bars that's small, legible, and informative?

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Features, Raiding, AddOn Spotlight

Europeans disgruntled by unreliability

Level 1 naked gnomes flooding an online serverAs usual, this Wednesday is maintenance day for European players, and it also marks the second in a batch of hardware upgrades for selected servers -- upgrades which have already caused an extended extended maintenance. These upgrades are long-overdue by many players' reckonings, with plenty of stories of fatal lagspikes during raids or other adventures flooding the forums.

Reader Hammer writes in with a few other complaints of note (thanks!):
  • The main website is frequently down, with many parts of the site either bad links or inaccessible -- including the all-important Account Management section.
  • Several servers are repeatedly experiencing problems and random downtime; poor Draenor is an example. Here's hoping the upgrades help with this.
  • The new forums may look good, but they're often down -- for example, when the EU login server was broken for several hours yesterday, nobody could get on the forums to find out more. The forums, designed for European players, run on American time, adding extra confusion.
We Europeans may have been sitting smugly through US players' tales of woe for the last few months, but it looks as if the game's popularity has caught up with itself on our continent as well as across the pond. So, it's not just the Americans and Australians who have material for complaint; Asian players haven't spoken up yet, but we'll give them time.

Filed under: Bugs, Realm Status, Blizzard

Login Server Down for Emergency Maintenance

I knew I should have just gone AFK when I went to get something to eat. Because, sure enough, as soon as I come back & try to log on, I get the good ol' "unable to connect" message.

There is a message from Blizzard on the login screen that states 'We will be performing emergency maintenance on our login server this evening which may result in an inability to log in to the game', along with a bunch of other stuff that doesn't make me feel any better. Apparently, the maintenance is extended until 11PM PST. And there's not a darn thing on TV....

*UPDATE* The message has been changed to read 1:00 PDT, as of a few minutes ago. Totally weak...

*UPDATE* Make that 4:00 PDT. Yippee...

Filed under: Realm News, Realm Status, Odds and ends, Blizzard, News items

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