Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sad Gorillas, Happy Crabs

Wow, is there some crazy stuff coming out of the PTR. Some crazy crazy hunter pet stuff. As always, keep in mind that this is always subject to change at any given moment. If you don't like something that you hear then don't hold your breath, it will probably change in a day or two.

Okay so this came out on MMO Champion and I quote:
Thuderstomp (Gorilla) has been removed as a pet skill and replaced by Pummel - Pummel the target, interrupting spellcasting and preventing any spell in that school from being cast for 4 sec. (20 Focus, 5 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown)

Thunderstomp is now a pet talent available to any Tenacity pet. Now your bears, crocs or ESPECIALLY CRABS can join in the AE tanking fun.

Savage Rend (Raptor) now temporarily boost the raptor's damage by 10% for 30 seconds.

Furious Howl(Wolf) now only affects the wolf and its master, duration increased from 10 to 20 seconds.
Wow, so all tenacity pets can have Thunderstomp! This is absolutely huge! (sad for the once popular tanking gorillas out there). But think of the possibilities....

crocadine, bearadine, wormadine, and my favorite (a said by stopableforce) bacondine. Oh, and all the other tenacity pets there too. Now you can actually have a viable tenacity pet that isn't a gorilla. I'll still hold on to Mungula for awhile, he's so cute and cuddle, but he does smell a little bad sometimes.

Random Comments on Patch notes 3.1

Lots of new crazy interesting stuff coming out with patch 3.1. I highlighted a few of the hunter changes, but mostly stuck to the BM hunter stuff.

Highlighted Changes to Hunter Glyphs (the ones I choose to comment on anyway):
Glyph - Aimed Shot -- Reduces the cooldown of your Aimed Shot ability by 2 sec. (Old: Reduces the mana cost of your aimed shot ability by 20%)
Why?? well, I guess I didn't use this one anyway. That extra mana reduction was so nice before, especially when the reduction done with the hunter nerf.
Glyph of Snake Trap -- Snakes generated by your Snake Trap take 90% reduced damge from area of effect spells. (Old: Your Snake Trap creates 2 additional snakes)
I think mage AoE will still probably be able to take them out easily, but not as easily as before, this would be better for PvP I think (I could be wrong). Those darn pesky buggers.
Glyph of Explosive Trap *new* -- The periodic damage from your Explosive Trap can now be critical strikes.
Oooo, that's nice if you are an SV hunter.

More hunter changes (or at least those that I choose to comment on):
*New Skill* Call Stabled Pet - A pet of your choice busts out of its stable and joins you no matter where you are, replacing your current pet. Cannot be used in combat. Instant. 30 min cooldown. Requires Level 80.
Yay!!! 30 min cooldown isn't bad at all. The hinted to it being a lot worse. Boo on the level 80 requirement.
Improved Aspect of the Hawk now has a new spell effect.
What? What is it??? New spell effect, ah, too bad I don't have enough time to get on the PTR. Does anybody know what this is?

Duel Specing:
Characters level 40 and up may now use the dual-spec system.
So they decided to lower the level to be able to do this to level 40? That's cool, it'll help leveling (group vs solo) big time. So, you can level as a shadow priest, but still group holy. Not so bad I think. I'll like this for my DK, yes I will. I like unholy spec (because I like having a pet - and its been fun up to this point), but then I could switch over to frost easy enough to tank if someone needs it. That's nice

The cost to activate the ability is 1000 gold.
This was expected, a good money sink for the economy. I'm glad its not like 5000 gold or anything.
The ability no longer requires a Lexicon of Power.
This is nice for everybody, but those who thought they could make money with inscription. I don't have inscription, so good news to me, I wouldn't hold my breath though.
Switching specs has a 5-second cast time. It may not be used in combat, or in battlegrounds or arenas.
Fair enough, I still like the fact that you don't have to go to a capital city to do this.
There is no cooldown on switching specs.
Nice. That makes me happy.

New mounts:
Aquatic Riding Ray
- aquatic ray??? oh cool, now if you could make it so you don't have to breath while riding it. With something like this coming I just got my mind thinking about a whole expansion based on water. That would be soooo cool. Again, as long as they made an improved scuba helmet or gave somekind of buff or something so everybody doesn't drown. And also, if they bring Jar jar binks into the game with something like this??? /quit, I'm pretty confident that blizzard wouldn't do something so stupid.
"Mimiron's Head - Summons and dismisses a rideable mechanical gnome head. This is a very fast construction. This construction can only be summoned in Outland or Northrend."
Okay this is kind of creepy, a mechanical gnomes head??? As long as we don't make this a trend and started making other gnome body part mounts. Who came up with this idea anyway???

New Vanity Pets:

Lots of new cool pets, woot!! I know I only have 40 pets and I am not even close to being obsessed compared to some, but I'm so glad that more pets are being introduced. Woot! Here are a few of the pets that are coming out: Durotar Scorpion, Teldrassil Sproutling, Alarming Clockbot (that would be so cool if you could set this thing to remind you of something, lol), Enchanted Broom (a little reminiscent of Mickey Mouse from Fantasia if you ask me), Gorloc Orphan/Wolvar Orphan (yeah, this means they are adding northrend children's week quests - I suppose we didn't really think they weren't, right?), Sen'jin Fetish (I don't even know what the heck that's going to be), and last, but not least the Plump Turkey - don't pull him out during November.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting

Okay so there is a quest called Kicking Nass and something Manes (honestly don't quite remember the rest of it). In this quest you are suppose to go take an undead guy with you and whenever you are done killing a troll you kick Nass in the behind and make him get some hairs or something.

The best part about this is you get to have a /kick emote for awhile. So, we did some kung-fu fighting. Mostly Kydra was kicking my nass.

I'm still confused at how she does that in a dress. She got me right in the noggin.

Maybe the WoW killer MMO will be a martial arts one. That could be cool. Or maybe we could mix martial arts and The Oregon Trail. That'll teach us some history and have some cool kick-you-in-the-face kind of action. Something to ponder.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Future WoW killing MMO

So, we're recently learned that Jeff Kaplan has given up his lead position with the World of Warcraft team to work on the secret new MMO that Blizzard is making. So, this leaves so much room for speculation. Hmmmm....

Most people think this means World of Starcraft, or the Universe of Starcraft (which I think sounds better) and there are just endless possibilities with this. Yes the Sci-fi MMO has already been done, and many argue, not very well. But when has Blizzard ever done anything haphazardly. I think could make a sci-fi MMO be freaking amazing. They wouldn't develop the game if they couldn't. But someone on twitter told me that they heard from this guy who heard from this other guy who... well you get the picture, that Blizzard's new MMO won't be based on any of their current games. Really? I don't know.

So, if that's the case what does that leave us with? Bliz can't do another fantasy because that would pull away from the WoW crowd unless its a completely different spin.

They could do some kind of vampire MMO? /ponders the notion... Naw, that would be too close to Twilight and all of those silly Edward lovers out there.

Could it be historical? No, that makes me die of boredom just suggesting such as ridiculous notion. Sci-fi still sounds good if you ask me. The mounts would be awesome. ooOOoo we could do some robotech or firefly based MMO. I'll have to ponder that.

But what are they really doing???? Oh, I'm dying to know. They would have to do something completely different than WoW of course. I really haven't tried any of the other MMOs out there, so I don't even know what has already been done. WoW was my first and so far only MMO. And of course we probably won't know for another 5 years or so.

So, what are your speculations about this future secret Blizzard MMO? Do you think it will really be a WoW killer?

Monday, February 23, 2009

Current Projects in WoW

Just thought I'd quickly say what I'm doing in the game these days. I have 3 main projects. The first one is to level to 80 (yes I'm not level 80 yet). I know only work on leveling my main (my dwarf hunter) when my wife is playing. So, we're doing pretty good, we're both level 78 now... plugging along.

When I'm not playing with my wife I have two projects going. I'm trying to level my DeathKnight alt as a farming alt. At least that was the idea initially. I'm finding myself really enjoying the DK class. I speced unholy so that I could have a pet. The ghoul might not be as lovable as Mungula my Gorilla, but its comforting to have someone to hang out with, even if it stinks from decay.

My other project is the one everybody else has, to make money. Right now I really want to get enough gold to help fund my wife's epic flying training. When you haven't had an epic flying mount you don't know what you are missing, but when you have had one, you don't ever want to go back.

I'm still obcessed with mounts (I'm up to 60 now) and vanity pets (up to 40). I still have a lot of mounts to get, but there all going to take some work and/or luck. And I just need to get off my butt and look up which vanity pets I'm missing. Oh, and whenever there is a holiday I also get obcessed with that.

I'm still not raiding, so when I hear all of your talk about this 10 man or that 25 man in twitter or on the podcasts I'm pretty confused cause I have no idea what you are talking about. Pretty sad I know, but thus is life.

Anyway, what are your current WoW projects?

Friday, February 20, 2009

I've been tagged - 6th Screenshot

So, I got tagged by @Brigwyn who writes a lovely blog entitled The Hunting Lodge. I have to put a screen shot here, but not just any screen shot. No, it has to be much more random than that. You have to look through your old screen shots and pull out the 6th screen shots.

Now I've gone through a few computers, well, not a bunch. But when looking through this computer this is what I found as the 6th screen shot:

Here we are showing off our Vampire Batlings that we got in during Halloween. I think the shaman is my cousin, I'm not sure what we were doing with him. This was just a little bit before WotLK came out (obviously) and we were working on leveling Kydra as quickly as we could. We finally got to the point where our mains were the same level, as it should be. Oh, and I had only recently tamed my gorilla, Mungula. So, this was after 3.0.

However, I realized that maybe I should look at my older computer (more authentic, more vintage). So, this was the screen shot on my older computer:

Whoa, this is a random pic, back from August 2007. Still working on leveling my hunter to 70. I was in the middle of Nagrand (can't you tell), and I'm apparently floating in the middle of a ravine. The computer was being stupid, you couldn't see the bridge I was standing on. So, what does any decent WoW player do when something weird happens? We take a screen shot, so there you go.

Oh, who should I tag????... (1 day later) Couldn't make up my mind, but here goes: I'm tagging Kate & Johnathon at Tastes Like Lint and GamingDiva at ... GamingDiva.

Happy hunting.

PvP vs PvE

So, we had a debate on twitter a little while ago. It was the old PvP versus PvE server argument. I play on a PvP server, mostly because that was the server my brothers were playing on when I got started. So, I didn't really have a choice, I'm guessing that a lot of people have similar situations, you play on your friend's server when you get started. Its not till later (or right away in my brother-in-law's case) that you venture into other realms and test the waters.

So, lets say you just started playing world of warcraft. What are the pros and cons of the different realms.


You don't have to watch your back constantly.
You can PvP in controlled settings.
No camping. Nobody is forcing you to play an alt.
You can have a horde and an alliance character on the same server.
Farming in peace.

Not as exciting. (that can probably be argued).
You don't get the real feeling that you are at war with the other faction (heck you can have an alt of the other faction - which might be a pro instead of a con)
fluff fluff fluff (at least according to those on PvP servers)
Get made fun by friends that you are on a carebear server (yes, that's what my guild calls it).


Okay sometimes it is fun to gank other players, especially if you had a bad day.
You really really hate the other faction which feeds in any RP you want to do.
Yes you have to watch your back, but that makes it more exciting.
You can make fun of your PvE friends.
More PvP skirmishes through out Azeroth.
The feeling you get when someone tried to gank you and you totally owned them!!!

Farming can suck.
Did I mention getting camped by some 14 year old undead rogue???
Sometimes you might decide to leave a zone because their is a jerk going around on a killing spree.
Running back from the grave yard, again.
Death Knights (unless you are one).

Did I miss anything? Any other Pros or Cons?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

When Are We Too Old To Play?

So, I had been wondering when I was going to give up on WoW or MMOs in general. I'm an adult and adults aren't suppose to play games like this, right? For some reason I was using my parents and in-laws to gauge what I would be like when I got to their age. What would I enjoy or do? Part of me thought, well, they don't play video games so eventually I probably won't either.

However, they didn't grow up with video games either. They did grow up with TV and they still do that. So, why would I eventually stop doing something that I grew up with? We aren't the previous generation. We evolve.

So, now I realize that I probably won't grow out of this form of entertainment. I like it a lot more than TV because its more interactive and more social. If I were a betting man I would bet that our brains do a whole lot more when we are playing video games than when we are watching TV. We have to think, make decisions, plan, strategize, etc, etc. When you watch TV you have to ... sit, and ... watch. We also do more socializing with MMOs. We have guilds, we play with friends, family, etc. We meet new people, make new connections. That doesn't happen when you watch TV either.

Don't get me wrong, I love TV. But I really only watch my favorite shows and nothing else (The Office, Scrubs, LOST, Grey's Anatomy, Simpsons). But I'd rather watch my favorite shows while playing WoW (unless its a new episode of LOST then everything stops).

Sorry about the TV tangent. Anyway, So, when I'm old and grey I'll proably still be playing some kind of MMO. Weather that may be Starcraft Universe 3 or World or World of Warcraft 2 I don't know. But I'm not likely to stop playing just because I reached my parents age. I may play less because of more family responsiblities, but I think in the years to come we'll see the average age of people who play MMOs will go up. Do you think you'll still be playing MMOs in 10 years?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

WoW addons, at least what I use

I thought that I'd make a list of my addons to give other people suggestions, but to also get some ideas (via comments) of what other people like for addons. I'm sure that I'm missing something, but I'm pretty happy with what I have right now. Here are the addons I use the most with a link to where you can download them.

If you like making money on the auction house then this is just mandatory.

I love this mod, if gives your pet a voice, weather its a pet for hunters, a demon for locks, or a ghoul for DKs. This mod is especially important I would imagine if you roleplay.

I'm an idiot. If I don't have something to remind me to buff up, I'll forget. Mind you who's a hunter going to buff, but my DK's bone shield thing is constantly going up. So this is mostly for my alts. My wife loves this mod with her mage.

Just added this one, I'm not sure of all the features besides the sexy animation that is around the minimap.

Nice map mod, I love that it includes the dungeon maps. There is a lot of features of this mod that I don't utilize. Sad I know.

Quest Helper
This little mod has changes all of our lives. Of course in Northrend it doesn't always get it right. Can't always trust Quest Helper (like the time it told us to go to Nagrand to assassinate that one guy instead of Borean Tundra /shakes his head at his own stupidity).

If you do any flower picking *herbalism*, or mining, this is a must for you.

Kharthus's Hunter Timers
This mod keeps track of timers for me. Like my serpent sting, lets me know when I last put it own and how soon I'll need to refresh it.

This is a nice little mod that will let you change your outfit quickly. I haven't had much use for it, but someday I'm going to level that Druid, and by golly I'm going to have at least a couple sets of gear on me. This mod (or one similiar to it) will especially be helpful when we get into duel specing (unless Blizz adds some feature to the game like the hinted about).

This mod will remind you to pull out one of you noncombat pets, and gives you a button to do so, randomly. I'm a dork, I love this mod!

Basically the same randomness of Minipet, but with your mounts. As stated in previous posts, You get to the point where if you have too many mounts (I have 60 now!) then you can't fit all of them into a macro *even if you are using numbers instead of the names of the mounts*.

Omen Threat Meter
Gotta keep your aggro down. I've heard it said, if you aren't being forced to feign death then you are dpsing enough. Here is your aggro meter so you can make sure that you don't pull from the main tank.

SKG *suicide kings*
This is our guilds current system for distributing loot. Its designed for a casual guild, but I think we are going to more of a traditional DKP system sometime in the future. I for one like SK more because I'm more casual and I'm not punished for it.

Deadly Boss Mods
I love this mod, it helps out in all of those nasty boss fights. It gives you useful stuff, like telling you when the next phase of the fight is coming up, when you are suppose to spread out, when are suppose to hold still, etc, etc. All of that junk. "Don't move - Flames!"

This is a Hunter only mod that gives us a little reminder to turn your Aspect of the Viper on when your mana is down and turn it off when your mana is back up. I don't know how many times I would forget to turn the d@mn thing off!!! The funny thing is the sound that they use for this particular reminder is the same sound when you failed a quest, so at first I was always thinking, "crap I failed something, what did I do". But now I'm use to it so it's no big deal. This is a must if you are a hunter, not so much if you aren't. There is another one called ViperNotify. It looks like its more popular according to Curse Gaming, but I haven't tried it out.

Little Black Book
I just got this and I haven't played with it yet. This is particularly nice to have on a PvP server. It is a kill-on-sight mod that keeps track of the Horde (or Alliance) characters that have killed you, it puts them on a list. I think its suppose to let you know when you are in the vicinity of someone on that list so you can kill them. I only got it recently (after being ganked by at stupid level 80 DK when I was minding my own business). But I think if you are on a PvP server an addon like this is a must. If anybody out there has a kill-on-sight mod that they love, please do share.

Is there anything I'm missing? I'm sure there is a uber mod that I should have and I don't at this point. I'm open to suggestions. I'm also wondering if there are any good mods spedifically for Death Knights (I've been Playing Elliahna a lot these days). Let me know what mods you like and what they are good for.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Holidays & Achievements

So, another Holiday has come and gone. And no new title... /sigh. Couldn't Pity any Fools in Naxx. So, I thought that I'd have to wait 1 year from this point to my Violet Proto Drake, but it turns out that the Brewfest achievements take an entire year on their own because of the Brew of the Year achievement. That's right, for this achievement you have to join the brew of the month club and taste a new brew which comes... once a month. So, if you didn't do it last year then the best you can hope for is to start it this next Brewfest holiday. Which means that most of us won't be completing the "What a Long, Strange Trips Its Been" achievement till Oct 2010!!! Many of us might not even be playing WoW by then (they'll have already launched world of starcraft or something).

I can't get too mad about the achievements. For me, it has added a lot to the game. There is something more to work for other than leveling and new gear. My wife and I have really enjoyed the holiday activities, but were never before properly motivated to participate (as was everybody else). If anything these holiday meta achievements has given us proper motivation to get to level 80 before Children's Week arrives

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Duel spec news regarding Hunters

Just read an interview with Ghostcrawler where he tells us all about duel specing (Talent Spec Q&A). Interesting stuff.

This is what GC had to say about hunters in regards to duel-specing:
Nethaera: What about hunters? Often their pet talents are set up to match the talents of the hunter. Will they be able to switch their pet specs as well?
Ghostcrawler: We will wipe the pet talents. However we are going to remove the respec cost for pet talents so that players won’t feel like they need to jump through an additional hoop to respec their pet. In addition, we are going to provide hunters a new core ability to let them remotely access their stable on a long cooldown. This way if their exotic pet heads off to the stable, they will be able to get a different pet. We hope to be able to discuss this new spell in more detail when we get a little further along.
Sounds like you are going to have to respec your pet every time, but for free. Pain in the butt to have to do that constantly, but more flexibility. I would have liked to see a way that you could save at least 2 different specs for your pets where all you have to do is hit a button to switch.

As for this new ability to remotely get your pets from the stables? That is awesome, no longer will Locks be able to tease me with their summon demon spell. Too bad it has a long cool down time. It would be nice to be able to pull out the Gorilla when ever you happened to need an off tank in an instance. I don't know how many times this would have been useful in the past.

One other thing:
Nethaera: Will players be confined to only setting up two specs?
Ghostcrawler: We will be launching the feature with just two specs, but depending on how we feel it works out, we might consider additional specs in the future.
More than 2 specs in the future??? Are you serious? Part of me thinks that would be cool, but then another part of me thinks it sucks. Why, because we're losing our individuality of we can every spec we ever dreamed of. Even with that said, I'm excited to have 2 specs. That way I can stay a BM hunter and do some trap dancing to boot! So, I may be losing my uniqueness, but I'll fun in the process.

WoW and Marriage

Over the weekend I saw an add in Facebook for a survey for people who play WoW and are married. Since I fit this category I decided to do the survey (I use to do surveys as a college job, I hated it, but now occasionally I'll give in because I know how badly it sucks to get people to take them.)

Well, having worked in telemarketing, I can see a biased survey a mile away. I wouldn't say they were asking leading questions (which companies are notorious for); however, the questions it did ask were very interesting. You could tell that this was going to be one of those "look how awful WoW is" or "WoW is destroying society as a whole" studies. After asking demographic questions the online survey asked things like "how often do you fight with your spouse because of MMOs".

Some of the questions just were ridiculous (maybe they apply to some, but not to me). They asked how often you preferred to play MMOs instead of being intimate with your spouse. Come one guys, I like playing WoW and all, but I'll leave my toon stranded with mobs all around given the choice between that and woopie. I suppose that we could compromise and RP it. Well, no that wouldn't be the same...

There were other questions that pointed to the great addictiveness of MMOs. I will admit, I'm addicted to WoW. But I'm not having withdrawals from it when I'm not playing. "Do you get depressed and anxious when you are not playing MMOs?", no, not really, I might be thinking about what I want to do on this toon or another, but I'm not a basketcase just because I'm not playing.

I think that most of us enjoy the game or we wouldn't be playing it, or reading about it on-line. Are we a little obsessed? Probably. Are there people more obsessed with Twilight? Yes. I won't even tell you how many times my sister-in-laws have read the series (but its in the double digits now). Is a little obsession such a bad thing? As long as you keep it under control and its not hurting anybody.

So, does WoW ruin marriages? I suppose it could if someone is being stupid. In my opinion, if WoW was a major factor into destroying someone's marriage then there are much deeper problems than the game. It seems really stupid to blame World of Warcraft. Its my guess that if WoW ruined your life, it could have easily been something else in its place.

Now, I do admit that when I first started playing WoW I neglected my family a little too much. My wife wasn't too pleased when I would play half a Saturday. But I've gotten that under control. Now I put my family first and only play when the kids are asleep. Plus, last summer we got a second computer and a second account. Now in the evenings I explore Northrend with my wife (or work on achievements during one of the holidays). So, now its a way for us to spend time with each other. Should we probably try to do more outside of the house? Yes, however, what are you going to do when the kids are asleep anyway? We're kind of stuck here. So, we can watch TV, play board games, fight mobs on WoW, play the guitar, examine my penny collection, etc etc. WoW (and watching grey's anatomy or Lost) often wins out.

Wow, that was a lot of rambling. So, has WoW affected your relationships for good or bad?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Love is in the Air

Alright is that time again, that's right, Valentine's Day (well, not quite yet). But the Valentines Holiday in WoW has began. The guild that I've seen so far is at WoWInsider. WoWhead has also post their guide. So far I just started it this morning myself. You go buy your self perfume or cologne and dowse yourself. Then you go hit on the guards (female guards in IF were difficult to find. Go talk to the lady by the tailor trainer.) There are a bunch of achievements you get to do. And you only have till Feb 16th (at least that's what someone told me on twitter).

If you complete all of the achievements for Love is in the Air, then you get a meta achievement with a title: Fool For Love. And who wouldn't want "The Love Fool" title, I mean come on?? Pull that out at parties to impress the ladies (or at least the lady guards if you can find one).

Pretty much my experience so far has been logging on once an hour to get your new gifts of adoration (actually my wife has been doing this for me while I'm at work). You'll get the things you need to complete the many little achievements. Oh, and it took me a while to discover that Gifts of Adoration (needed for all achievements, but particularly for: Nation of Adoration(Alliance) or Nation of Adoration(Horde)) okay for this you need to go to vendors not guards. I thought Darnassus was broken for a long time until a twitter friend pointed me to the light (or rather... a vendor).

Oh and you need to be at least level 75 to get the meta achievement because you have to go into dungeons for I Pitied the Fool and My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose. I still need to do those ones myself. Anyway, happy valentine, good luck.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Big Doggy Down

I'm sure everybody else and their dog (wow you let your dog play WoW?) has downed Omen, but we finally did it recently.

For those of you who don't know who Omen is (Ryan, or Dave). Omen a 2 headed dog that's bigger than a monster truck that only appears during the Lunar Festival. Killing this big hairy beasts is required for Elune's Blessing, which is need to complete the meta achievement To Honor One's Elders, which is how you get your "Elder" title and puts you one step closer to finishing the What A Long, Strange Trips It's Been achievement.

We decided to not even try for the Lunar Festival achievement this year because we're only lvl 77 and there is no way we're going to hit 80 before Feb 14. You see, in order for you to get the Elders of the Dungeons achievement you must be level 80, because one of the Elders is chillin' in a heroic dungeon. I was very upset. I could have made my toon look like a missionary.

Well, anyway, my sister-in-law really wanted to get the achievement so we decided to kill Omen anyway, anyway (could I use that word more???). So, we got our group together from our guild and made our way to Moonglade (we tried to get there by initiation, but we weren't smart enough - but we did figure it out after we were completely done, /facepalm). One of our guildies told us to rush over there because someone else already summoned the dog.

So, we rushed over to see the battle already unfolding. For awhile we were fighting the big dog right along side with a bunch of horde. It doesn't matter who taps him, as long as you are around to stand over his dead body once he's... well, dead. We were all trying to kill him. Oh my gosh, he took forever to kill, like 20 minutes or something.

I think we accidentally killed the horde in the process, I kept seeing HK:Scout, HK:Private, etc, popping up on my screen. Maybe I used multi-shot once too many times, maybe my gorilla just didn't like the smell of the Horde. I don't know, but we ended up killing all of them. We could have used their help gunning Omen down.

Our clothies also died a lot, but since the graveyard is like, right there, it wasn't a big deal (which is easy for me to say because I did die, thus didn't have to worry about the repair bill). You see we did those horde a favor, cutting down their repair bill (I'm guessing that they probably didn't see it that way).

Anyway, lots of fun, kicks and giggles. I love the holiday stuff, it breaks up the monotony. Not that the game is boring, but I love world events nonetheless. Oh, I think I got a little too happy with the Print Screen button.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Dave's Huntering Guide - Pet Management

Okay Dave, now that you've chosen a pet of sorts (remember you can have up to 5 now), its time to learn how to use him (or her - if your pet is a girl).

With the new expansion several things have changed. All pets now have a growl (which they could have before unless you were being really silly and didn't train it). All pets have a fear, they all have a focus dump (what else would you do with all of that focus coming out your ears), and last but certainly not least, they have their nifty talent based on their pet family.

You'll also get several pet abilities when use up your pets talents in his (or her) given pet tree. Your tenacity pets will have lots of cool stuff that will help them hold aggro better, like taunt. They also have some intervening abilities that can save your tank, or a clothie's butt if needs be. Ferocity pets have some neat things that will help them stay alive longer, like Lick Your Wounds, and a spell that will Rez them with full health (Heart of the Phoenix) which currently seems to be bugged.

Speaking of bugs, sometimes your pet will automatically turn on the abilities. You know when their spell glows, that means its suppose to go off whenever the cool down is up and your pet has enough focus. Well, some abilities were not meant to go together. For example: the pet's fear spell was not meant to be put up the same time as growl. You have an ability that increases your pet's aggro and one that decreases your pet's aggro. What generally happens is that the mob gets so confused as to weather or not he wants to attack your pet that he gets extra angry and he takes it out on you. If you have this problem generally you be thinking your pet is stupid and can't seem to hold the aggro to save your life. Your pet is not stupid, he just doesn't know what to do, he needs you to tell him.

Some people have set up macros to turn off the pet's fear ability, but I find if I just drag the pet spell down to the his ability bar that I can keep an eye on it and make sure that its off when I want it to be off, and on when I want it to be on.

Basic rule of thumb, if you are soloing and you want your pet to take the beating, then turn your pet's fear off, leave your growl on. If you are in an instance/raid, do the opposite. I know most people are thinking, duh. Well, I'm trying to state the obvious... just in case.

Now when do you want to use use passive/defensive/aggressive. Well, when you are in an instance you will almost always want your pet on passive. You get yourself into all sorts of trouble with your pet on defensive and especially on aggressive. If your goal is to wipe your instance/raid then by all means put your pet on aggressive. You're pet will get all excited an pull every mob in a two mile radius. When you realize your mishap your pet will come running all excited lolling his/her tongue all over the place (with about 20 mobs following). If you have your pet on defensive anything that attacks you with range will get your pets attention, usually also a bad idea. Best to be on passive for those situations. Now when I'm leveling I like to keep my pet on defensive so I don't have to tell him everything to do. And my pet reacts quicker than I do. Now there are only a few times that I would actually put my pet on aggressive. The best is if you are fighting rogues. Your pet can find rogues quicker than you can and he can help you sniff them out. Sometimes I leave them on aggressive if I want to clean out an area in a low zone while I'm farming. Oh, and also when I'm mad and want to cause a wipe for my raid (okay, I've never actually done that, but if I were mad I know how I could get everybody killed quickly, then you just feign death - this doesn't win friends or influence people, but if you are pissed at a pug it might be entertaining).

Well, that's all for now. Let me know if I missed anything.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Hunter Changes 3.1.0

I know there's a lot of talk about the changes coming out on patch 3.1.o with some interesting changes for hunters.

I want to look at that and give my opinion (if it counts for a whole lot of anything):
Consumable ammunition has been removed from the game. Arrows and bullets no longer stack, but are not consumed. Ranged attack speed bonus gained from quivers and ammo bags will be preserved in a different capacity.
Yeah for bag Space!!! /cheers. I run out of space so stinkin' quickly in my bags because I have an ammo bag and I have to carry all of my engineering junk around with me in my toolbox (lol, irl I never use anything from a toolbox, but then I suppose in real life I've never been hunting either). Anyway, yay for bag space, but it seems a little unrealistic... I mean, we just get this magical arrow/bullet thing? How can we justify this in the RP servers? But all and all I'm happy for the increase in bag space. Now we just need to throw a bone for those warlocks and make soul shards stackable once and for all.
A new tier of hunter pet talents have been added. In particular, this allows Beastmaster hunters to improve their damage per second (DPS) with their 51 point talent.
This is cool, mostly because I'm still a BM hunter. I hope that we get more bones thrown to us for that stupid steady shot nerf we recently got. I don't really have a lot to say about this, but I'm wondering if the Tenacity tree is going to add DPS as well, or give them better pet tanking stuff. I love the idea of pet tanking even though most people scouf at me when I bring it up (not my wife though, she loves me).
Hunting Party – this talent has been reduced to 3 ranks and also grants a passive bonus to the hunter.
Meh, don't have a clue about this.
Piercing Shots – this talent has been changed. Your Aimed, Steady and Chimera Shots cause the target to bleed for 10/20/30% of damage dealt for 8 sec.
Meh... You know I really should look into the other specs for hunters, lol.
Sniper Training – this talent has been changed. After standing still for 6 sec, you gain a 2/4/6% damage bonus to Steady, Aimed and Explosive Shot.
This seems cool, but haven't been a MS hunter for a long time (back in the BC days), so I'm not very helpful here either.

We are also looking to add additional trap functionality to Survival.
I love traps (even if my traps as a BM hunter suck). When I went MS back in the day I had the rest of my point down the SV tree, why? So, I could get improved traps cause I thought they were cool. It turns out that I didn't do enough 5 man raids to make it worth my time, but I still thought they were cool. Here BRK's discussion about trap dancing almost made switch over to SV because it sounded like a lot of fun. But then I realized "you idiot, why would you want to make the switch when you aren't even 80 yet???". So, I didn't switch.

So, yay for bag space and a new pet talent tier!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Cold Weather Flying - Here we come!

Finally!!! I get to fly again. No more do I have to sneak over to the Outlands to mount up and fly about. I got my cold weather training last night and I can start breaking out my epic flying mounts. Now I need to farm like crazy to help get Kydra her epic flying training. I care a lot more than she does. But she hasn't yet experienced the epicness of epic flying (maybe should have used a different adjective, getting a little redundant).

So, I'm up to 54 mounts right now, I just found out from twitter friends that I could buy all the nether drakes. I thought I only got my free one. So, I'm going to do that once I get my money up. Why would I want to do that seeing how I already have my 50 mount achievement (Leading the Cavalry). Well, I don't have a good answer for that. It is really fun to use a random mount add on (I use Mountiful) and you never know what mount you'll use. Many people in the guild (including my brother) think I'm a little silly with my obsession with mounts. They're probably (most likely) right. I got him convinced that its what I like to do when I'm not leveling with my wife, but truthfully, I would do it anyway.

I just like to collect things I suppose. When I was in high school I was really into collectible Star Wars cards. I spent hundreds of dollars on those stupid things, and now they are just collecting dust. When I was even younger I collected pennies. I have several Indian head ones and one that goes all the way back to the 1880's. Wow, information you probably don't care about. But what do you collect?

I really like getting vanity pets as well, but I've been lazy about doing that lately. I'm still at 39 vanity pets. Need 11 more to get my skunk. Wouldn't want that for a mount, that's for sure.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Guide to playing WoW with Children

Does anybody else have children? Okay, here's your guide to playing while you have a child or infant on your lap.

First of all, you need to master the art of playing one handed. You would be amazed what you can do with only the mouse, nothing else. All moving, spells, etc can be done with the mouse. Now, mind you, its pretty much impossible to do more than one thing at the same time. (macros help). You'll just have to get use to this. However, if you get yourself in the right direction and press the Num Lock key then you'll keep going thus freeing your one (and only) hand to do many other things (but beware, you might run into a tree, wall, or a big enemy town, or run off a cliff).

Sometimes it becomes mandatory to use both hands (like when you have to hold shift down and click something). This can become pretty tricky. It's possible with a sleeping infant, you can lean in and hold down a lower key (like Ctrl, Alt, Shift, etc) and the press the the mouse button. I find that if I do this when they are awake this give them the perfect opportunity to attack the keyboard and droll everywhere, and cause your character to go into hysterics.

If someone whispers to you and you want to reply, I'm afraid you'll just have to stop everything and type one handed. One handed typing isn't so bad, oh sure it takes your typing speed from 60-70 words per minute down to 2-3 wpm. But you have an excuse, "sry, got baby boy, I slow" Oh and grammar goes out the window because who cares about grammar when you can only get out 3 words anyway. Its just better to get a microphone and some software like Ventrillo, TeamSpeak, or whatever your guild likes (not the in game voice chat, no one uses that). Make sure its voice attivated or you defeat the purpose.

And if anything else happens while you are typing in reply to someone, don't have many options, you can either press enter mid thought and use your mouse (which will confuse people, but with your poor grammar they already think there is something seriously wrong with you) or you can, well, you could /lie down and die. If its a mob that's interrupting my conversation then its not a big deal. If its a undead rogue, then usually lay down and die is the more likely option (not that it was an option).

Which brings me to my next point. PvP sucks one-handed. Unless you are some kind of amazing PvP god, its not likely to happen when you have a baby on your lap. Don't try, you'll get pissed off and start swearing and then later feel really bad because you swore like a sailor with your baby on your lap, hoping that they aren't adding all of your colorful words to their blossoming vocabulary. And you'll likely embarass yourself with your voice attivated ventrillo program, your guild will be shocked and dismayed.

Raids, don't really work either, but we've done them before. Don't tell our guild.

Also, if someone asks why you won't stop jumping, don't bother explaining that your toddler thinks its really neat to make your avatar move. Just make something up, like its the new thing in IronForge, or you've taken it upon yourself to add the new dance that Blizz keeps talking about or some junk. Most likely you won't have time to type it one-handed anyway.

You should also expect to have random windows pop up (like your talents, or the character screen, etc), this is normal. Don't panic.

And last, but not least, be prepared for the occasional disconnect. My daughter can manage to turn off the computer with like 2 buttons. Kids are amazing.

Probably what you should do is focus your attention on your child while they are awake and play WoW when they are asleep and accept the fact that parenting is causing you to be a casual player. Remeber you are in company. For those who don't have children, bask in your bliss, but remember, your day will come.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Mushroom Hopping

Well, I was running to the flightmaster on top of the mushroom town in Zangermarsh on my level 63 Death knight. And for some reason my mouse button got stuck or something and I just kept running. I thought that I was going to promptly fall to my death and have to run back to my body. I think (I'm already dead as a death knight so I'm not quite sure how that works, but we'll leave that alone.)

Anyway, I didn't die, I landed on top of another mushroom, so I spent some time mushroom hopping. I felt a little like Mario.