Executive resignations and shake ups at work announced. I'm out of town as a result then racing back to close on my house this weekend. Between the work drama and movnig I'll be MIA for a couple of weeks at least.
Today my son announced that he's quiting the World of Warcraft. I'm surprised on one level and not on another. I guess he's serious. He's already uninstalled the game and told me to take my Warlock back and put it on my account, so that his account can be closed.
He said the game just isn't the same. He's a competitive player and their guild just isn't what it was pre TBC. The guild that we were both a member of used to be one of the top three raiding guilds on Illidan. You may recall that I quit several months ago over the war between the casuals and hardcore, when required raid attendance suddenly reared it's head in our guild, which had always been - even before WOW, a casual family oriented guild. We were a family and that was our mantra. People wanting to get into Naxx while others were just burned out and wanted to PVP or play alts, was the first spike that started the divide amongst friends. Then TBC came along and fanned the flames with the raid size changes, completely new content and new races, player differences and varying priorities just became more pronounced.
The first real splintering came with the drive to 70. Some people ran, some sauntered and others just started over, choosing to leave their former personaes behind. When the more hardcore got to 70 there weren't enough members along side so new cliques formed, some of which were with other level 70s outside of the guild. The first ten got into Kara without looking back, and the once f"amily above all" guild, wasn't quite the same.
Trying to piece things together they'd made some unpopular rules about raiding with alts versus mains - made and A team and a B team, which caused some hurt feelings and drama. In the end, they've slipped way back in the raiding pack on the server which my son hasn't been happy about, yet he's also just not inspired enough to find a new guild and begin again, so he's quitting.
Part of me finds it hard to believe that someone who loved WOW like he did, knew so much about the game, classes, raid encounters, weapons, armor, etc. can just up and walk away. For me, the apple hasn't been shiny for quite some time, but him - quit? WOW, is about all I can say. He didn't like LOTRO and really disliked EQ2. For now he says he'll just wait for Warhammer.
Meh, this leaves me feeling a bit down about it all. It's one of the things we could always talk about and bond around - MMOs. Blizzard's lead Dev recently posted on the forums that they feel priest healing is right where it should be in the game, so any hopes of seeing the Holy Tree fixed have been nailed into the coffin. And given that in the same post they basically said that they needed to nerf Paladins to bring them in line with the Priests, we can stop hoping for a miracle on that score as well.
It's definitely not a good week for WOW in our household. However, with summer coming, us buying a new house with more space and great backyard for entertaining, lots of work and a trip to Quebec in August, I'm sure we'll find plenty of other things to do until Conan, Spellborn, Pirates of the Burning Sea or Warhammer release.
Hey all, my first episode as co-host on WOWPodcast is finally up. You can check it out by listening to episode 25. We were delayed this week because "who's on first" was doing video, as in, everyone thought someone else was doing it. :-)
Tonight we recorded the show for next week and uhm, I won't be surprised if they re-think their newest host choices, myself included. *Smile* We were joined by yet another new host and the episode drifted into mass confusion, riotous behavior and innuendos that I'm going to have to edit out of the audio! For a second, I thought I was on MOG. I mean things got a little too loose because the chemistry of the hosts just clicked a little toooooooo well.
No new character progression for my Captain in LOTRO. Having not played my main, I certainly haven't rolled a farming alt. Knowing that I can only get another 3 levels anyway at this point, allows me to procrastinate a bit.
Instead I've been in WOW playing a Paladin - my new Paladin. Background first...So several months back I wrote that my son was burned out on his Healadin. He hadn't realized that choosing the plate wearing dude would land in the back of the raid, cooling his heals with the skirts, cleansing and healing only. Like all young men, he had visions of pwnage in his head. So after reaching 60 and doing the 4 nights a week raid thing, we were both about done with WOW.
For me, I was sick to death of looking at my Warlock. I'd been playing for about 18 months at the time and had no alts. I'd gotten to the point that just looking at her made me ill. I went off to EQ2-it for a while and he asked to play my Warlock. A month or so later I come back to WOW and well, needed my character back in order to play. But I could tell that he was rather bummed. He'd been grouping with her and had done a few raids in Naxx. Although he didn't say as much, I could tell that he'd gotten hooked on the damage out put. Trying to be nice and not wanting him to quite WOW over it, I gave him my Warlock.
He offered up his Paladin, also at 60, in return. It was almost an equal trade - both 60s, already in T2 and attuned for all raid content. Only difference was that I always max out all professions (tailor/enchanter), including cooking and fishing, while he does NONE. He hadn't even bothered to level his First Aide. Dork. At the time I declined the offer. I couldn't see taking his Main - his namesake character, even though that's what I was giving him.
Several months have passed since I transferred my Warlock to his account. I went about rolling and leveling my Priest, who is now retired and will stay that way, until Blizzard gets a clue about the Holy tree. Before the Priest I started a Paladin but the leveling was painfully slow. Shortly after I ditched my priest, I went back to my Paladin. In that time they'd been buffed into great healers, viable tanks and at least no longer laughable DPS.
With the Paladin bitch-slap changes looming, I wanted to know if I was really going to stay a Paladin. I'm not into rolling the flavor of the month. But I'm not going to take it...I'll use the PG version...I'm not going to take in on the chin to be a healer either. And if I wanted to off-tank, I'd have to re-grind all of his gear, which is all spec'd for healing. Therefore, if healing as a Paladin is greatly diminished, bye-bye Paladin.
I decided that the best way to test how the Palading pre-nerf, compares the the Paladin post nerf, is to play a high level Paladin. Himm, now where can I get my hands on a level 70 Paladin? I know, the son whose games and internet connection I lovingly provide. I asked my son if I could get on his account for a while and play around, to which he said, "Sure." He's been distracted by catching up on the Sopranos so he can see the final season. Too bad he laughed it off as for you old folks, when I first suggested that he'd probably like it. But hey, what the hell do I know. Oops, I digress.
I played a few BGs as an easy way to try out his spec without having to form or deal with an instance PUG. Plus I didn't want to compromise someone's group trying to be main healer before I was comfortable with the level 70 skills that I hadn't encountered before. It was good. It was the fast-paced fun I remembered BGs to be on my priest, but without the deaths. LOL I'll do a different post about how few players tried to dismount when they saw me going by for a quick kill. I kid you not, I don't recall a single time that one player tried to jump me one-on=one. It was like four or six of them converged or they all steered clear. Man, it felt good to be the king.
After three nights of doing this, he kinda wanted his account back to himself, and once again offered up his Paladin. I thought about it. Didn't really want. But then I figured why not? It's just sitting there idle anyway. Why run mine from 44 to 70 if I don't have to?
So with the easy way out, I now have a newly transfered 70 Paladin to play with. The only thing I don't like is that I'm playing a "he". But I guess if he can get over playing a "she", I can do it in reverse. In the beginning he really hated the idea that people would think he was a girl. LOL
Knocking through teams in BG has been a distraction from LOTRO the past few days. For now, I just want to get my spec to match my play-style. I want to choose what PVP rewards I'm gunning for and grind his professions to 300 -at least. I'm going to go pure gatherer with mining and skinning. After that, this toon will be set for me to be able to just pop on WOW when I'm in the mood and do some PVP as my way of upgrading his gear, and farm occasionally to make the gold for the flying mount. Once those ducks are in a row, I'll be heading back to LOTRO. I just can leave something half planned - I don't have to complete it all, but the plan of attack must be in place.
f figure by the weekend I'll have had my fill for PVP for a while and can head back to LOTRO. Before I got distracted I was trying to decide on my alt class. I thought about ranger but they're pet-less in LOTRO. Lore Master was fun but I want something low maintenance since it's just a crafting alt. I've never ever played a rogue so maybe I should give that a try?
You know they just never cease to amaze me. Not long ago I was complaining about how badly the healing priests were doing in TBC, and was quite angry that hybrids in non-healing gear could out heal a Holy Priest. What I was looking for - along with every other Holy Priest, were buffs and fixes to make us competitive. What did Blizzard do instead? Bitch-slap the Paladins. GG Blizzard!
Paladins are taking multiple hits but one of them is a real kick in the nuts - 50% reduction to Illumination's mana return. I won't bore you on the details here. If you want an in-depth explanation, read this excellent forum post. Net-net is that Illumination has been in place for two years and dramatically affects how Paladins gear themselves. Their buffing stats are built around +Crit and Spell damage not MPS gear, so if they're getting their mana regeneration nerfed, they now need different gear - gear that isn't readily available in Plate, and I wonder who determines the stats of the class sets? Hmm, I think it's Blizzard. You want to see drama? Wait for the first Holy Paladin to /roll on cloth gear for the +Int or MPS, and win it over a Priest. There will be a Holy war in game and on the forums of truly epic proportion.
As a Priest, I was affronted by the fact that we were being outclassed by a hybrid in healing. But what Priests wanted was for the devs to fix our Holy tree. How does gimping another healing class help anyone? Healing is such a thankless job, they are the last class that should ever be left gimped. Okay, so thanks to poor TBC Priest scaling, you have many more Priest spec'd Shadow. And now, you gimp the class that was taking our place, without fixing us. Exactly who is supposed to be healing now? Or better question, who the fart wants to heal!?! Do they suddenly expect Priests to say, "Great, I'll go back holy and heal now - not because I can suddenly do it better than I could last week, but just 'cuz they nerfed Paladins, so that will somehow make life better for me!" NOT!!
I hate Blizzard x2 now. I shelved my Priest and selected the next viable healing class, Paladins, just to end up back in the hands of poor dev planning. Can anyone say hurry the hell up, Warhammer!
Ah well, I'll wait to see exactly how different life feels. There's a chance they'll back off the nerf a bit. I'm done rolling anything new in WOW. I think this experience with healing classes will probably put me off of them forever. I've never played one in any other game and likely won't in the future. It's thankless, you're at the mercy of too many fools - in game and at the helm of the code and doing anything by yourself, when you're not playing whack-a-mole in groups, is painful. So why did I want to do this? Honestly, soloing my priest was actually the most fun I had playing the class, followed by BGs. Instances with her always left much to be desired.
Last chance is the Hunter. I have two of those. My level 48 is on Whisperwind (PVE) where she was retired to making potions for my Priest and Paladin. My level 56 is on Twisting Nether (RP PVP). Outlands in terms of leveling was very well executed but not enough for me to look forward to doing it again so soon.
Hmm, I might retire into PVP again, like I'd done after I burned out on raiding with my Warlock and eventually my Priest. Too bad I hear that the new PVP gear is crap. Ugh, Blizzard get your shit together please. You're becoming dramacidal nubs.
You might be surprised to discover how many of the hardcore gamers that left their previous MMORPG to play the soon to be released, Lord of the Rings Online, are spending their time. No, they’re not slaying Orcs. No, they’re not battling the dark forces of Sauron. No, they’re not racing off to aide in the quest of the One Ring – well, some of them are. So just what is it that many of the LOTRO Tour participants are doing? Farming, and I don’t mean grind mob style farming. I'm talking about actual sling them seeds and bail them crops type farming.
Farming is one of the professions available to players and from what I’m seeing, it's very popular. I wanted to try farming from the minute I read about it on the forums but was hesitant to take something that would be high in production time but low in return on investment. Like cooking in WOW, or the more elaborate cooking in EQ2, I enjoyed the professions but they weren’t money-makers.
I still remember the first time I read someone say in chat that they were farming, I thought, “Cool! We can farm on this game?” Yeah, I was fresh off the boat and still had visions of Mineral Town in my head. In my early days of WOW, I spent plenty of time farming mobs and herbs, and always wished that I could actually just farm a plot of land. Well low and behold; Turbine has implemented just that into their game.
The few people that I’ve spoken to about farming say that it requires funds, is a lot of work and doesn’t pay off until you hit Tier 3. Given that my last two characters did Tailor/Enchanter in WOW, I’m not up for the long haul with slow payback profession at the moment. I’m doing Explorer on my main which is harvesting wood, ore and tailoring. On my Alt I’ll do Yeoman which is cooking, farming and tailoring.
I can’t wait to hit max pre-release level on my main so I can quickly spin up a few level on my alt and join the crowds chucking seeds in LOTRO. Everytime I pass through the countryside and run across farms crowded with players it makes me chuckle to think that some of these people where in Naxx a few weeks ago, raiding in EQ2 or dinging 70 in Outlands, and are now bent over tending their fields. I can't wait to join them and it makes me pick up my step a little so I can get on my alt!
I don’t know why that old gospel hymn popped into my head as the title for this post, but it did, so there you have it. Lots of changes for me in the coming months – both personal and professional. As I’ve mentioned before I’ll be buying a house and dealing with all that moving stuff. I’m settling into the first busy season in my new role at work. And for the big news, I’ve joined Broken Eggs Media’s (BEM) World of Warcraaft Podcast.
Yep, that’s right. Even though my personal podcast faded quickly enough, I had the balls to join a weekly WOW Podcast. One of the current co-hosts is leaving the show to spend more time on personal pursuits, creating a vacancy that will be filled by me, beginning on next week’s show. As to be expected, I’m both excited and nervous. It’s one thing to fling my nonsense up on the internet to my few, but wonderful listeners. It’s a whole other story to broadcast out to thousands of players. Hopefully, the chemistry will be right and I’ll be a good addition for the trio.
Given that I’m also playing LOTRO, I’m hoping to coax BEM into also doing a podcast for LOTRO. How on earth would I fit two shows into my busy work schedule, hectic life, alter ego episodes in MMORPGs and my misadventures with The Sims 2 Seasons? I have no flippin’ idea. I’m always short on time but never on cahones.
Please wish me luck and be sure to tune in! If you’d like a LOTRO podcast post a comment as a vote here. Let’s show some numbers and start chattin’ up Middle Earth too! Feel free to send me WOW Podcast specific email to: Lauren@wowpodcast.com.
See you in the funny papers.
Day two in the LOTRO tour was pretty good. I connected via IMs with Darren from, The Common Sense Gamer. He's several levels above me so we didn't hook up to quest. However, we traded conversation back and forth for the better part of an hour, while we each tended to our own tasks.
When I logged of my Captain was level 11 and being followed about by her trusty Herald. A few things have changed since the early beta. None of which are unexpected but warrant a mention:
In all the questing I've done, I only encountered one bugged quest. The quest giver, who you have to escort was working when I was passing thru the region earlier. However, by the time I had the quest and went to help him kill some baddies his only reply was, "You don't have permission to use this object." More and more players started milling around his hut. It's safe to assume they were waiting to start his escort as well. I went off and did other quests and came back twice, but he was still only spewing crap so I logged for the nite.
OK, so I lied when I said I was coming on LOTRO a couple of days ago. I didn't get back on until today to roll my new character on Silverlode. Where was I you might ask? Err, playing The Sims 2 Seasons. I know, most of you are hurling right now. So I won't bore you with my new misadventures. Anyone who has played The Sims knows that it's very addictive and you can't eat just one.
After I got my fix on the that new expansion, it freed my mind to go back to LOTRO and get my little head-start. So what's with the login queues??? I have no idea how many people they've tuned the servers for, but you can imagine my shock at being placed in a queue to get into the game. Nasty flashbacks of being number 9999 trying to login into WOW's Illidown...Illidan server raced through my head.
Luckily the wait was less than 5 minutes and I was on my way. I didn't get very far. I'm basically retracing the BETA steps on the last character I played which is the Captain. I made it to level 7 and will try to reach the maximum pre-release level allowed which is 15 tomorrow evening. I would sign on tonight but my new Sim is very close to getting a promotion and I think spring will start during my next session allowing me to start my first vegetable garden. Decisions...Decisions.
Until Blizzard does something about the Holy tree, my priest is pretty much retired. I don't want to be Shadow spec'd at 70. I rolled this character to heal, not passive heal and do DPS. Still, I do log on to her to use all of my tailoring cooldowns and farm motes. If you recall or care, I mentioned that I was only a few pieces of Primal Mooncloth away from making the complete set.
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But that I didn't make any of the items because I was considering selling the cloth and funding my Paladin, keeping it to trade for Spellcloth at a later date if I ever switched back to Shadow since farming would be faster that way or holding the comps just in case the Priest class gets fixed in the near future. It's taken roughly 40 days for me to make the cloth alone and all told, the comps and cloth together are worth 3000g minimum on most servers.
Imagine my shock and terror when I logged on to make another piece of cloth and found all of my comps gone from the bank!!! I completely panicked. I logged out and back in to make sure there wasn't a glitch. I was so caught up in the fact that all the comps were missing from the bank that I hadn't even looked at my character. What did I see when I did? Alysianah, my priest, was in the full Primal Mooncloth set. I was like WTF!! Then I remembered, all too late, that my son had been on my Priest.
I screamed his name and he came in to see what I wanted. I could hardly get the words out of my mouth. I was like a village idiot - my mouth hanging open just pointing and the screen. He smiled and said, "Yeah, isn't it cool? I saw you had collected all the comps, so the last time I was on your account I made the two missing pieces of Mooncloth and made the set. I socketed the belt but you dont have enough gold to socket the chest."
I was speechless. I tried to mumble out an explanation of why I didn't actually make the items. He didnt get it. He said the stuff I was in was crap PVP gear and that I couldn't main heal in it. He looked so proud and said that he'd done some of my quests, so I should go ahead and finish my attunements for Kara now that I had this nice set. When my shock wouldn't allow a reply, he shrugged his shoulders and left.
I felt like William Shattner. I threw my head back and roared,