Saturday, August 31, 2013

Mataoka and Navimie's Friday Fished-up-Wish Fables : Ansirem

We're up to our usual mischief once again! These may not be true 'fables' but all is fair in love and alliteration. Fridays will find our blog filled with the stories behind the coins fished from the fountains, and sewers, of Dalaran. Be careful what you wish for, dear readers!

"If you would only just TRY..." Ansirem threw his hands up in despair as he faced his daughter, her hands on her hips and furious frown a testimony to her obstinance.

"I CANNOT do it, I do not have the gifts!  When will you see?" shouted Catelyn.  She picked up a knife from the table and hurled it at a picture on the wall - the nonchalant way she tossed it belied her deadly accuracy as it hit a portrait of her grandmother squarely between the eyes with a solid thunk.

"I know within you it's there.  Our family blood is full of magic, both sides..."

"And I'm sure it's been know to skip a generation," sneered Catelyn, as she paced furiously.  "Father, I am serious.  I will not attend mage school anymore.  It's ridiculous.  The only reason I'm even there is because I'm your daughter and nobody will criticise me because you are the leader...."

Ansirem sighed, his shoulders slumped in defeat.  He sank into a purple cushioned armchair and put his hand to his forehead.  "What do you want then, Catelyn?  Tell me.  You must have some other path you wish to pursue."

His daughter stopped.  Her eyes turned to him, unreadable as she tried to find the words that would forever change her future.

"I want to be a fighter.  I have skills with a blade - many blades!"  She decided to change tack.  She rushed to him, kneeling before him, her eyes beseeching.  "Let me study the sword, and I promise, I will excel, and be the best that I can be! I KNOW this is what I am made for."

Ansirem looked down at his beautiful teenaged daughter, and smiled, his hands smoothing over her red hair.  "Perhaps you can one day be a Dalaran captain of the guard."  He stood up and kissed her forehead.  "Very well, I will see the swordmaster tomorrow."

Catelyn was lost for words.  But her shining eyes said it all.

Other coins in the series
Squire Rowe

Author's note:  Ansirem Runeweaver was the previous leader of Dalaran, and his daughter Catelyn, is a known as Catelyn the Blade, of the Blackwater Raiders. A pirate.  Well, at least Ansirem's wish came true :)

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 31)

Day 31: Dangerous
Day 31 - Watch out Aza!  You might get burnt in that bread oven!  This tiny cute little Azadelta is lethal in PvP, and it is a very rare thing to find anyone who could beat Aza in a duel.  We would go to Barrens stuff, and there would be flagged Allies there, and Aza would come and flag, and everyone would just leave us alone!  Scary dangerous destro locks!
That concludes the month of screenshots!  Thanks everyone for looking at my pics, and I hope you enjoyed them as much as I loved sharing them :)  Thanks to Tycertank for the opportunity to show off piccies (and for me to find new blogs) - it's great to find another Aussie blogger :)  The list is growing!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Raiding: Thursday - Small steps on Lei Shen but no candy yet

It's official.  No  more Disco for a while.  And I forgot Bish was not around for 2 weeks - was it a holiday or moving house?  I forget.  But we are down to me, as the only Mainspec heals and Lush as offspec.

Taloski kindly offered to heal for us, and he did great for his first time healing it!  I gave him a hard job - he had Green healing squishyshaman Luxy and papermage Xyn, and Lush went to heal Sev and Souglyy in Blue, and I was with Aza in Purple.

We still struggled on transitions for ages.  I see now why healers in purple take a pounding, but I switched to Heart of the Wild for the extra health and lay mushrooms tree form and we did ok in purple.  I suppose I could always use Might of Ursoc as well for the extra health in times of stress!

By the end of the night we were getting through the transitions, though Asys was feeling bad because he had some left right dyslexia and we had some punted bear over the edge.  We reassured him that Fue, our former GM and tank also had left right dyslexia so it must just be a tank thing.  But we got it down to 35% which is better than we had before because we weren't spreading and stacking for electric balls properly but it's looking better.

In the meantime, I am looking for a healer.  Taloski can't come on Mon or Wed, so that rules out most raid days.  I am looking through our guildies to see who would be suitable but nobody is geared enough yet.  Voros is still struggling for gear drops and I don't think he could commit to regular raiding yet, but he's keen for Flex.  However, with Flex we might get some of our casuals up to speed in gear so they could sub in when able.  Looks like I might have to pug for a bit.  At least on Saurfang there ARE pugs to find.

Either that or I move raids to Sunday.  But then Sabre can't come :(  Ugh, this stuff does my head in!

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (day 30)

Day 30: cluttered
Day 30: This cluttered screenshot with sha bubble effects was taken during the Dominance Offensive series of quests.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Raiding: Wednesday - Lei Shen bashing again

I don't feel like we're getting anywhere.  I am hoping this week of practice will get us sorted out on the corners so it won't look so goddamn messy.

My hopes of Lush learning to tank it on his Monk were dashed as Bish didn't turn up, so Lush had to heal. Moo tanked up, and he had done it before so it felt ok, but we are still struggling on those corners.  My corner must be a lucky corner because we have no issues, but the other guys, especially the one with just Aza and a healer, seem to take a massive pounding.

I am tempted to switch corners to try healing it with everyone else to see what is the problem, but I don't want to jiggle things up and make people disoriented.  Last night we had the corners labelled different colours and that disorientated people already!

What concerns me more is that in a few weeks, Disco and Neri will be moving house.  This means that we will be a healer down for a few weeks at least.  We only have one offspec healer.  If Bish doesn't turn up to raid then we will be stuck for heals!  I think it's time I looked within our guild again for people who would like to step up to raiding, as I am really reluctant to recruit an outsider when we have so many casuals hanging around.

Asys has offered to heal on his shaman, but we need a tank.  If Raked turned up then we would have a tank.  But the other DPS classes are not hybrid classes.  2 hunters, 2 warlocks, a mage and a rogue - none of whom can take on any other role than DPS. Luxy is the only one who could but I don't really relish the thought of forcing people into an offspec role.  I will just have to wait and see what happens.

In other news, Lacrox has returned to WoW and shocked by the changes of a new guild leader, a whole bunch of unfamiliar faces and when he asked me what role I needed him in I said heals/DPS.  Not sure if he really wants to raid, but hey, couldn't hurt.  Will definitely try to grab him for flex though.  Now, off to inspect McTacky's gear...

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 29)

Day 29: Lucky
Day 29: Here I am with Lucky Scotty's Coin active, dancing next to a Luckydo.  I guess it's kinda lucky that there are no mobs aggroing onto me.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Minipost: Achievements this week

Another slow week! I'm still digging away - I still have a few more achieves in archaelogy to get so I will be continuing with those!

And boy was I surprised when an achievement popped up on Monday when we killed Iron Qon.  Asys and I got Can't Touch This, which is dodging some of the damage abilities (which are avoidable). It's like the Alysrazor achievement Do A Barrel Roll! so you can do it over a few encounters.  Was pretty chuffed though, because I'm pretty goofy when it comes to avoiding things (though, Asys getting it is even MORE mind boggling).  It's an individual achievement, so unlike Do a Barrel Roll! which requires everyone in the raid to avoid the stuff, it's just you.

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 28)

Day 28: Corridor
Day 26:  Creepy, creepy Undercity.  Full of scary corridors and dark spider ridden corners.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Guildleader chores: Happiness in game - how to promote happiness in guild

One of the things that does flitter on my mind sometimes is whether my guild members are happy.  How do you measure happiness and what can you do to promote it?

It all comes down to what makes people happy in game.  Some philosophical people talk about "pillars of happiness" which of course can be translated into game speak:

  1. Health
    Sick people are not happy people, generally. But in game, everyone is healthy, well, until they are killed in game, and their health is 0.  People don't want to be dead all the time, so the game needs to be just hard enough so that you're stimulated, but not so hard you're dead all the time.  Wiping constantly on a boss without making headway, or losing every single battleground with your guild does not make you a happy Frostwolf.
  2. Family
    A feeling of inclusion, respect and feeling comfortable around other guild members is important. Nobody likes to feel like an outsider at a party, nor does anyone like to have their playstyle questioned when it is what they enjoy.
  3. Friends
    You cannot choose your family but you can choose your friends.  Friends are people you enjoy playing the game with(whereas family in game is the guild), and it can be lonely if you can't find people to kill dinomancers with, or to quest/level/PvP with.  Friends don't have to be in the guild, but sometimes, it helps, as you would like to spend time with your friends.
  4. Wealth
    The accumulation of things, be that gold, items, points or achievements, are what I think of as wealth, and that includes loot, ingame items, achievements, honour/valour/justice/conquest points.  If rewards are given in game, it should be done fairly, so that nobody feels like they are working solely for the benefit of others.  On the other hand, you would expect that a member should understand that they are part of a team and that everyone takes turns in receiving their rewards.  Loot, or rather lack of it, is what causes a lot of angst.  It's a tricky thing.
  5. Profession
    I think of raiding/battlegrounds/arena as a job sometimes, as satisfaction in your work at these counts a lot to people's happiness.  
  6. Spirit
    This usually refers to religion, but ingame it refers to your attitude to the game.  Is the game a joy to you, or is it a chore?  Do you login because of guilt for letting your teammates down?  How do you feel if you login to raid and get sat out?  It is a person's game spirit that also helps to bring happiness and it is a very individual thing.

I realise that it's not possible to make EVERYONE happy.  Trying to make EVERYONE happy is just a recipe for heartache or stress for myself.  It's sometimes a little hard not to feel personal insult when someone leaves the guild for whatever reason, and I am always curious to why they left and what I could have done to improve it.

Obviously, the culture of a guild family will determine if that is what a member wants.  A hardcore gamer is not going to feel happy in a guild full of social players.  A female may feel uncomfortable in a male dominated, sexist guild.  However, before you have people jumping in and saying "you can't have that in game", you have to remember that freedom of CHOICE and EXPRESSION is a right that everyone has.  As long as those people are not using them to hurt or impose their will on others, then it's ok for them to all associate with each other.  That's what makes them feel comfortable.  You can choose not to go there.

This statement is not true, but damn, it made me laugh
What culture have I been trying to promote?  We are an adult casual raiding guild, with a heavy social aspect.  I like to know more about people - almost every guild member has been peppered with questions from me in whispers about what they like to play, how they like to play, where they live, what they do.  Call it nosy, but it helps me remember each guild member more and give me an idea of where they would fit into the guild.  I strongly encourage people who have friends who would like to be part of our guild to join and be with their friends, but I also do a quick spiel to each person about what our guild is like, what to expect, and what I expect from them.  Nothing fancy, but setting ground rules is important to know boundaries.

Just today I was reading some blogs and both talked about their dissatisfaction with what was going on within a guild.  One couple wanted to raid heroic content and felt their guild wasn't giving it to them and made the hard decision to leave.  The other person talked about conversation happening within the guild which made him feel uncomfortable, and wasn't sure if this was the right place for him.  I thought about what I would do if they were in my guild and how I would rectify this situation.

I've talked before about guild conversation and how it could offend people.  However, as Australians, I think we tend to take the piss out of ourselves more often than not, and so using derogatory terms, especially towards ourselves is acceptable, to an extent.  We have gay people in the guild - if they are not taking offence to gay references, should anyone else be?  Yes, we are an adult guild, many of us have partners, and children.  We do talk about sex.  We do use swear words.  I have never seen offensive sexist comments in guild, and had I, it would be stomped upon.  Even racist comments are hardly seen (is it racist if I use the term chinese farmer and I'm asian?) and I have said many times there is no bullying or abuse in guild chat.

It is raiding that has me concerned a little.  We had members leave because we didn't offer enough raiding, progressive raiding.  Back then, signups where low and we often had no raids. However, that is a lot less frequent now, and will probably be less frequent as guild members continue to swell, and people are getting geared for Flex raids.  I want to keep our good raiders interested in raiding, but I don't want people to feel like we're not getting anywhere.  Constant wiping without progression or improvement is bad for health and morale.  However, I think everyone is trying their best and we are still progressing.  Our guild seems to be attracting the former heavier raiders turned casual players and I wonder what this will be like when we hit Flex - I am hoping that Flex will be the guild bonding group activity that I miss from the days before the Cataclysm.

There isn't much I can do about spirit.  It depends on the individual.  The only thing I can offer is demonstrations of game spirit from other members in the guild.  Some guildies are generous with their time, and help out others.  Some are generous with their professions and crafting materials.  Some are generous with advice and on the best ways to do a quest/farm/kill (oh that looks bad, putting kill there) things in game.  Others are just generally supportive or encouraging (we still all yell out "GRATS" whenever someone spams an achievement in guild), or even just like to talk enthusiastically about whatever it is in game they enjoy, showing that there is more to WoW than raiding/PvP/farming/AH/Alts/questing/Achievements.  Being in that kind of environment tends to encourage that others to feel the same (herd mentality) if the inclination is already there.

What I'm trying to say, I guess, is that even though happiness is an individual thing, there are still small things we can do to help make people happy in guild, just as long as the individuals are not selfish, pig-headed bastards who enjoy torturing small animals for pleasure. I don't think that sort of person would find any happiness here in Frostwolves.

No mindless slaughtering of druid forms allowed in this guild

Monday raiding - Here we are again

Back at Lei Shen again!

Unfortunately we were one over last night, and I had to get Xyn to sit out.  We had our full complement of healers, but no Raked, so Lush got on his monk to tank.  With 2 warlocks in the raid, that whirlwind part is easy.  At least this time I had my head screwed on had healer cooldowns sorted for the last bit - but we didn't quite have enough (I had Bish bubble first Fist Smash, then I tranq'd the second but Moo also put his banner down for the second, and then I had tree form for one other and for one other I had mushrooms as a last ditch).  Luxy walked away with Tier and Bish got the offhand.

Twins was not as smooth as last time.  Asys admitted that he was capped (!!!) and also we healers were a bit fail because we forgot NOT to heal the person with the mist beast hitting on them.  Disco quite enjoyed killing himself.... and all his "dad" jokes through the night.

"If for bird flu you get tweetment, for swine flu do you get oinkment?"

You see where these jokes are going.  Having missed the last few raids, Disco made up for it with his usual continuous stream of commentary.  Good for Asys, because now the heat was off him and Disco was the one eliciting groans from the raid.

Sev did the drawings and we got twins down after we sorted ourselves out.  Tier helm was taken by Souglyy and Moo got a tanking neck.

That didn't leave us much time for Lei Shen and Lush had to learn it all over again, but he was getting it.  He didn't quite realise how hard Lei Shen hit him for and he went splat at the pillar.  And we still need to get our areas sorted again.  Hopefully with a week working on it, it will be ok.  I hope every healer turns up next week, because if Lush is to learn to tank it, I can't have him offspec healing it.

I am still mucking around with the EPGP thing, and the addon takes some tweaking for me to work out still. Like when the lootEPGP comes up, I don't put the loot in there AND inthe EPGP addon as well because then you get double charged.  And of course, I forgot to put master looter on.  AND I should accept the values of the items that are allocated by the addon because it's weighted and I keep forgetting that.  When patch goes live, hopefully I will have worked it all out.

I've noticed a few guildies gearing up for Flex raids, which is rather encouraging!  Looks like we will have a nice number to hit flex on Sundays when it goes live.  Can't wait!

Mourning the end of Arena teams

Most people would not mourn the loss of arena teams - opening up arena to an LFG type thing is probably something a lot of people would like, and would make some really competitive combinations.  I guess it's all part of the dwindling server disease and opening it up so you have more people to play with is part of the reason why we're in an MMO in the first place.

However, my arena team has been the same for a long time.  I have had the same arena partner since BC (Sev and I for 2s) and in the last year or so we had Shab joining us for arena in 3s.  We've had a fun time, and learned a lot from each other's playstyles, and though we are far from being pro, we have set aside time each season to make sure that we can play together, and I think we have all become better players for it. Shab has become the strategist and the dissector of our team game play, whereas I tend to be the potty mouthed punctuator (I do applaud my teammates for being able to distinguish the meanings of my varied ways of saying S**T and F**K).  Sev usually is the quiet one and when he starts swearing you KNOW it's something REALLY bad.  I still have not trained Sev's pet to stop line of sighting me with line of sighted enemy healers, but maybe one day...

We never did get a 1750 3s rating.  This was the highest our team ever got.  I think I screenshotted EVERY increment we got in rating until we got to this.  Next season we shall work on that!

But the real reason I am writing... is because tomorrow is the end of the arena season.  This season was different because it's the first season that I could actually purchase Elite gear - I was much more diligent with my conquest caps than I was with my valour cap.  Hell, I even earned more conquest this season than I did honour.  Aza told me that I should get out there and buy something while I still can.  However, much to my chagrin, there isn't really anything I would really like to buy.  Perhaps the shoulders... but even that's a bit of a stretch.  I feel like I should buy something as a souvenir of the season - but if I do that my precious bank space will be cluttered with even MORE junk.

So tomorrow, it's farewell to Void Hawks, and farewell to Shadow Wolves.  I know that I will still be able to play with Sev and Shab, and it won't affect our gameplay at all, but saying goodbye to my team just brings the hint on nostalgia that makes me wanna grab a tissue.

Void Hawks (on Tournament)

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 27)

Day 27: 10 minutes from home
Day 27: Nothing is really that far away, but somewhere really far to me is Gilneas, and I flew around there exploring.  This town was sunk after Cataclysm (so I'm told) but it makes an interesting eerie underwater scene.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 26)

Day 26: Entrance
Day 26: I was looking up at the ceiling in LFR whilst doing trash at the Entrance to Ji Kun's nest.  I was trying to screenshot things, and waiting for my annoying leaves and green lines to drop of me from my healing spells when I got another spell put on me which left these pretty star patterns!  I am sure someone will tell me what they are because I can't figure out what it is... is it something priestly?  But I like this screenshot.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 25)

Day 25: Culture
Day 25: I really like Gilneas architecture.  Probably fascinates me more because I don't have a worgen toon.  The church is always gorgeous to me and I took a picture from the bridge trying to be fancy pants.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 24)

Day 24: In the Background
Day 24: After seeing everyone playing with Ornate Spyglasses taking awesome macro shots I wanted to try one, and I thought I'd try taking a picture of one of those sapflies that hang around in Dread Wastes near those sap feeder things.  I love this spyglass!  All that stuff in the background suddenly becomes the focus!

Friday, August 23, 2013

No Thursday raiding

Gosh, nine people with nowhere to go....

I was the only mainspec healer, and Raked was still sick.  Roshii couldn't come, Sev was unwell, so that left us one person short.  Goddamn it.

A small group of 5 decided to venture into LFR (I was on the quest for an offhand) and it actually was one of the smoothest LFRs I've done in ages.  Interestingly, there was only one tank for Twins, and we killed off Moon twin and so Sun twin was hitting like a goddamn truck.  The tank died 3 times and was rezzed each time but we killed it!  Then for Lei Shen we got another tank and we pulled it without even knowing where we were going, but everyone seemed on the ball and there was a last minute assignment and whoosh off we went.  Fastest, cleanest LFR I've had in a long time!

The most amazing thing I heard yesterday was Aza saying that we could extend next week... he was one of the strongest anti-extending people, but perhaps it was because he got a weapon, he's happy to do so now. That makes me happy and it means that next week I will extend the raid so we can kill Lei Shen before the patch hits.

2 new hunters joined the guild yesterday - one was a friend of Souglyy's and the other was Brae's main (Aurii's hubby) which has brought our number of mains to a whopping 47!

I heard virtual realms will not be implemented when 5.4 goes live, so I guess we have some time to go.

I'm off to take my kidlets to see snow today, so I may be quiet... but then again I may not!  Wonder if there is internet reception up there in the mountains? :)

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 23)

Day 23: Yellow
Day 23: I like these Pandaren screens.  Boring for yellow, but they have such cosy little alcoves behind them for sleeping.  I could sleep there all night.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Wednesday raiding - Asys... really? LOL!

Poor Asys, it just wasn't his night.  Lucky he's give furry enough shoulders to bear the teasing - though I think he berated himself more than any of us berated him.  Ok ok, enough puns :D

Animus, I told Xyn, was a nice easy fight.  So WHY did we keep dying on it yesterday?

It started well.  Only 2 goes to get the trash down.  Phew.

New raid, new positions.  The little animas were staggered, so none of the side by side easy tank stuff.  Poor Asys has never been wonderful at positioning ones who were one up the stair and one down.  He started trying to tank a far one and a close one, which may have been part of the problem on that side.  They kept being side by side and smacking him in the face.  Ouch.  Even 2 healers couldn't help him.

So I moved him to my side, which was a little easier.  Moo died a couple of times too, probably because I hadn't healed him enough, I got distracted healing Xyn.  Xyn was tanking the mob with his water elemental and frostbolting it to heal it and that was going well most of the time.

Then I had issues with swaps.  Sometimes people were far away.  The font thing was killing people.  MOVE MOVE MOVE!  I was out of range of some people and couldn't dispel till late.  The interrupting jolt would whack people for six.  Asys ran out of the anima ring popping 2 bubbles.  OUCH.

Then there was the fun time where he went form 650k health to 290k health and was taking a wallop.  "WHAT IS WITH YOUR HEALTH!" I yelled at him.  "Did you forget to repair again?"


Oh dear, he did it again.  He forgot to repair and was all broken.  We couldn't do anything except laugh. Poor bear!  When we heard that Luxy put her repair bot down in the middle so he could maybe repair in the fight, but he didn't have time to do that.  So when we wiped and came back we had to carefully click as the repair bot was right underneath the big red ball and we didn't want to start the fight too early.  Luckily nobody did.

Just before interrupting jolt on our kill I decided to go tree and top everyone up as much as I could before the jolt and then tranq straight after.  That seemed to help.  So when it was dead... thank goodness.  Aza rolled and got a dagger.  I got one too.  But I have no offhand to go with it, so looks like more LFR for me.  I have a bad feeling that I've been DE'ing them.  At least both items were looted - Bish got Tier, and Moo got a helm. We didn't have much time for Iron Qon, but it was going well, so we will get that tonight.  I think Animus just made us tired.

Roshii made an appearance last night - yay he has game time!  And guess who else is back - that old Kiwi, Vaakis is back.  Social of course, but he already had toons on Saurfang so he's back with Frostwolves again.  Frostwolves is looking nice and full these days, and it makes me happy to see members always logged on at various times of the day.

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 22)

Day 22: A room
Day 22: Look at this room!  There are druid forms mounted on the walls!  This must be what Gilnean homes look like (it is taken from inside one of the houses near Waterworks in the battleground Battle for Gilneas) - barbaric human/worgens!  Killing druids for sport!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Challenge Mode Noobs - Took a long time to brew this Silver!

Desperate to do ANYTHING except Scarlet Monastery, some weeks ago I suggested to the other Challenge Mode Noobs we do Stormstout Brewery.  It was painful the first few times we did it, ages ago and we hadn't gone back, but I figured any time we got would be an improvement on what we had before.

The first time we tried it, Lush wasn't there - he was sick with that lingering cold that seems to be upon many of us this winter.  Even I still have it and it's been more than a month.  It was a difficult time because you really need some consistency when you're trying things again and again, and though we got Moopie in for a go, he could only stay for one attempt and then we had Xyn come and had to teach all over again.  Sev came a few times and last week Lush was better so we went and tackled it again.  But Luxy, Arv and I were pleased when Lush came back and we had our 4 regular CMNs again.

The first boss, Ook-Ook isn't really an issue.  However, what we didn't know was that killing the little neutral spirits in the first trash room reduced the health of the trash mobs by half.  That saved time.

I'm so cute and neutral... but kill me anyway!  Poor little elemental!
Also, Sev noted that the barrels in the next trash room could be detonated and wipe out the mobs.  Arv tends to like to charge in like a pain in the ass hero and Sev started running ahead of Arv to blow up the barrels before Arv could pull the whole room and wipe us LOL.

Hit me hit me!  But don't stand near me...
We had to keep an eye out for the exploding hoplings in the gauntlet because more often than not, that would kill us.  You can't invis that bit because they can see you, and I just ended up loading Arv up with hots and then we'd get a roar and run.  Once we got to the door of Hoptallus' platform I'd displacer to the far end, blow the annoying little rodents back and then cast a tranq.  Often meant that my mana was a bit screwed for the fight, but if we got our hammers ok and got rid of the exploding ones during the boss fight and not get hit by things like carrot breath, then we'd go ok and it would die.  We had a few where we'd wipe on that and need to reset.

But it was Yan-Zhu which is the BIGGEST PAIN.  Trying to block each healing little elemental could be a little hit or miss!  Just one heal for one second would stuff up the whole thing and we'd miss it.  We would get to Yan-Zhu with at least 6-7 minutes left on the silver timer and then get screwed by healing from the adds. We only had one really good attempt in earlier times where we didn't get the adds healing (but by then we'd already wiped on it so we were in bronze times) but it was what was stuffing our silver up every attempt.

Luckily, last weekend we managed to get it!  Lush was going to go on his monk, but she hadn't done Brewery on heroic so we couldn't and Lush came on his boomkin.  It didn't take him long to catch up on the strats and when we got Yan-Zhu we were all packed in nice and close (except me - I got knocked back by Arv's bloat) and I even took Heart of the Wild for that part just so I could help DPS for 15 seconds when the bloodlust went off.  Not that my DPS did much LOL.  But we did it!

Gold... well I dunno how we're gonna get that.  Maybe not with me healing.

So 3 more silvers for Luxy, Lush and myself before we get the whole shabang.  Hopefully Sev doesn't mind being dragged in for CMN runs.  Oh and you can also read Arv's version and Luxy's version.

Mini Luxy, Mini Arv, and Mini Navi, standing with giant Lush and giant Sev.  Gotta love that Shrinka!
I have a bad feeling but I think it might be time for Scarlet Monastery again (/covers ears to muffle the groans from Lushnek and Luxy).

Minipost: New Achievements and pets this week

Like Luxy, only one achievement this week, but it was at least one we had been trying for a few weeks - but had some difficulties!  I will write about it later, but you can read Arv's post on it here.

And one new pet as well - a big thanks to Cavendar who came to my server to give it to me.  He was bummed he couldn't give me a red carp.. don't know why since he hates fishing... but this pet was red too!

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 21)

Day 21: Slow
Day 21: Catch me if you can, Garalon!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tycertank's #WowScreenshot a day (Day 20)

Day 20: Stairs
Day 20: Stairs in Throne of Thunder, approaching Lei Shen, lightning off!

As 5.4 approaches...

I was pretty excited watching the 5.4 trailer, I thought it was pretty amazing.  The raid looks exciting!  And poor Taran Zhu...

I would have liked to have Lei Shen down, and sometimes, I feel a little gimpy that we haven't.  Now that we have solid raiding happening, I think that we will at least have a good start on the next tier.  It seems a while since we had the 80 wipes before a boss kill thing happening.  One of my friends, whom I used to think was rather casual, has killed Lei Shen and teases me that now I'm the scrub.  Though inside you bristle a little, I do feel a little better because when I ask him how do you do this fight and that fight, he shrugs at me and says "I don't know I just hit stuff they tell me to hit."

It makes me wonder how classes are changing.  People don't want to do things other than DPS because doing other roles - such as kiting, kicking, controlling, driving - drops your DPS.  And though it shouldn't be, it seems like EVERYTHING is about numbers these days.  Godmother said
It is the notion of damage is everything, often to the detriment of everything else.
Our two biggest damage dealers, Roshii and Aza, do think this.  I don't blame them - they pull AMAZING numbers and it seems a waste to have to make them do other things.  Both are also excellent players with great awareness and skill, so it's not like they just stand around DPSing stuff and standing in bad because they don't wanna gimp their DPS, they are the ones who more often than not don't die to stupid things like cyclones and holes in the ground or knockback.  I am often laughed at because of my hopelessness at working my head around certain 3D mechanics which takes me a long time to get the hang of.  But hey, I am far from a brilliant player, the main thing going for me is that I LOVE to play and try to improve as best I can, and I don't give up.

I look forward to seeing some of the druid changes - there are so many that it may change my heal style and choices.  Icaruss was telling me about it, and I look forward to seeing them being implemented.  I have felt really strong these last 2 patches, and I wonder if that strength will continue.

I was pleasantly surprised the other day to see this message on Twitter:

And I was quite excited and pleased to have Voros join our guild as a social/casual raider as I do remember my very first Navispam (before it was Navispam) was of him and Glow.  I had forgotten that they were on Saurfang - when I think about it, I did remember when I was first scouting Saurfang because I had a level 1 gnome there with the name Navimie, and I remembered it was from meeting Glow.  So I was expectantly waiting for a tell and I got one in mid raid and I invited him on his little BE hunter, and then he decided to do a big move and he faction changed his DK to horde.  Which of course, came with all the disorientation of navigating Orgrimmar from a lifelong alliance player and trying to find things that we Hordies for life take for granted.

Which brings me to what I am excited, and a little nervous about - Flex raids.  Excited because suddenly we can have a big group to play with, but nervous because what if it doesn't work out?  I just want everyone to just have fun playing in a large group - after all this is an MMO, you are supposed to play with other people - but what if personalities clash, or people get angry?  I am hoping that it's just that little bit harder than LFR so it's not just a yawnfest, but it's not so hard that people get angry at those who make a few mistakes.  Since we've moved, the guild has had an increasing social membership, many whom have had raid experience or leadership roles, so allowing them the opportunity to at least dip toes in some content but keep playing for fun is what I've been trying to aim for.  But it's easy for me to forget that although I know the new members or where they came from, that everyone else doesn't and it is hard to fit into a new home.  I just hope that if there are any grievances they are brought to me and not left to simmer into an explosion just waiting to happen.

I guess I'll find out... NEXT WEEK!  Bring it on!

Minipost: Monday raiding - Not as good good as I'd hoped...

 It was Xyn's first time doing these bosses outside of LFR and Durumu was a little different but he got the hang of the maze.  Poor squishy mage died lots but he seemed to enjoy himself... even when he accidentally bloodlusted (or whatever it is mages do) before the pull /facepalm.  He was kicking himself over that but in all reality I wasn't even fussed.  After all, I had my share of stuff ups - I jumped back in the life draining beam one time when I'd already had stacks so that wasn't good.

I did try to grab Az before he got knocked away, but I was too slow.  In our kill attempt, I had life drain beam and then I had the Force of Will and Xyn gallantly took the beam as I displacered away and he got knocked off the platform.  After that attempt Xyn whispered me and said Force of Will was the only ability he didn't quite understand, but NOW he does.

Disco walked away with some new legs and on we went to Primordius, who wasa pushover, and everything was DE'd.

I would have liked to have Animus down but for some reason we were dying to the Font and I had a bad dispel whilst I was tranqing!  Durumu had hiccups but I think the beam running is heaps bettter even though healers and melee are in disagreement about it.  We won't go into that because I can see their point of view but I also have my selfish point of view too!

Animus as usual was fun, and I like it, though the DPS moaned at it.  At least this time we did the trash and it only took us two goes to get it down LOL!

Oh well, one more week till 5.4.  I am unsure if we will get Lei Shen before then, and I am resigned to the fact that we probably won't, but that's ok!  A new raid to play with will distract me enough.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Tycertank's #WowScreenshot a day (Day 19)

Day 19: Lost
Day 19: Part of the Lost and Found achievement, this is one of the few remaining ones that I hadn't found yet (even though I have found enough for Is another mans' treasure.  I managed to snag this last week!  This is the Dissector's Staff of Mutation, which can be found in far SW Dread wastes.

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 18)

Day 18: Someone you spoke to today
Day 18: After a round of tournament arena, we slipped down to the Alliance Brawler's for a drink.  We even had a Wa(i)ter elemental serving us!  Luxy, Sev, myself, Sev's observer, and Shab are enjoying our conjured drinks.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 17)

Day 17: Exercise
Day 17: "Come on Perky, you need to work off those cakes you ate earlier.  Chop chop!"

Mataoka and Navimie's Friday Fished-up-Wish Fables : Genn

We're up to our usual mischief once again! These may not be true 'fables' but all is fair in love and alliteration. Fridays will find our blog filled with the stories behind the coins fished from the fountains, and sewers, of Dalaran. Be careful what you wish for, dear readers!

Genn Graymane surveyed the wall, nodding approvingly.  The solid brick construction would easily repel the orcs and other would be invaders from his kingdom.

Gilneas was a flourishing nation - all the other nations were envious of their prosperity. This war that King Terenas Menethil had dragged him into was merely a plan to use his resources and armies to fund a war that neither threatened his borders. War efforts had a tendency to bleed coffers dry - and keeping orc prisoners as slaves in internment camps... what was the point of that?  No, he would not help this Alliance henceforth. Gilneas was strong enough to stand on its own, and this wall would prove it.

The cobblestone streets were immaculate and children ran alongside carriages, their pinwheels spinning as they laughed in childish abandon.  A smile creased his face as he watched a group throwing coins into the centre square's magnificent fountain, their eyes closed as they made secret wishes.  The Dalaran magicians held nothing to the glory of his city.  THIS was as close to paradise as any human could want - peace, prosperity, security.

Gilneas would close its doors to the outside world, and leave them to their petty struggles.

Other coins in the series
Squire Rowe

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (Day 16)

Day 16: Cooking
Day 16:  A lovely excuse to use this screenshot which is so lovely.  Who doesn't love the food from Pilgrim's Bounty?  Best time to level cooking!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Tournament progress

Anyway, it usually cheers me up to do some arena after a raid that I was disappointed with, so off went Shab, Sev and I to Tournament to get our games up.  Unfortunately, the team that keeps killing us was there - resto shaman, destro lock and frost mage - and we just could not get on top of them.  They were very slick with their cc's and though we lost to them continuously, we only lost one point of rating each time because they were so far ahead of us in rating.

Sev was getting demoralised but I insisted we needed to get our games in because we wouldn't fit them in otherwise.  Shab got a whisper from their team's mage, asking us to keep queuing.  I wondered if he was being a troll but it didn't seem like it.  In fact he was very pleasant.  I even chatted to him myself.

The embarrassing thing he asked was if we were there for the 50 games.  I told Shab and we laughed with embarrassment - was he saying that we were playing so badly we looked like we were there for the pet?  I said that we were there for the title as we had done tournament last year and placed well, but we didn't do the 100 games for the title so we were back this year for it.  The mage gave me his battletag which didn't go through on Tourney realm - the realm is so buggy!

The mage also told me that just making a team on tournament realm will put you in the top 1000 teams so if we just play our games we would get the title.  REALLY???  Maybe everyone should get out there and play 100 games!

Shab asked me to ask them where their mains were from - and get this, they were from Saurfang and from Barthilas.  How weird!  I asked them which guild, as we were from Saurfang and the mage said he was from Skill Banner. Oh man, no wonder.  #1 guild on our server!  The mage kept asking us to queue - he even said we were battlers - and he apologised for farming us.  I don't know why Shab was unusually pleasant about it.  Usually he gets frustrated.  Probably because we really weren't losing much rating at all.

So a few more pet teams logged on which helped us get our games and rating up, and that pushed us along nicely.  Sev was distressed with us losing rating as we wouldn't be able to get our title but I said I'm sure we could just get along and farm some pet teams and get our rating back up again.  So we finished the night with rating more than 100 above what we were before.

This morning I was wondering what our rating would be like.  I was a bit sad thinking we wouldn't get into the top 1000 teams this year, after paying for it.  So off I went to look at the ladders.

When I looked at it, I couldn't find my team in the place I thought it would be.  So I searched for it.  And I was shocked.  So shocked I had to text Shab.

"Do you want to hear something funny"

He rang back straight away, as his work was quiet.

"What, what is it?" he asked me.
"Guess what our ranking is on tournament realm," I said.
"Oh," he sounded a bit crestfallen.  "Is it really bad?"
"Just guess," I said.
"Umm... about 500?"
"I thought that's where we would be too!  I was searching for us around there and we weren't there.  You will not believe this."
"NO!  Better!"
"What rank are we?"
"You won't believe this.  We're number 10."
Shab went to look at the computer.  I showed him where to find it.
"How is that possible?" he asked.
"I don't know!" I said.  "We had some tough teams there, where are they?"
"Wow, that's hilarious!"
"I know!  Maybe EVERYONE is pet farming?"

We looked for the team that was kicking our ass and they were at number 5.  Shab said excitedly that the mage in the 2nd rank team was Venruki, his hero!  Shab had checked Venruki's stream and he had an undead mage with that name on tournament so he was pretty chuffed about that.  I wonder what Shab would do if we ever had to fight that team in arena - he'd probably play like a total awestruck fanboy and make a ton of mistakes and then freak out that he was looking like a total idiot!

I think that the rankings only show those who got on that day.  I couldn't find Luxy's, Zeirah's or Arv's teams in there and I KNOW they have played heaps of games.   But, this is the first time ever I will see our team that high ranked, even if it's an error, it still is kinda cool :)

Minipost: Wednesday raiding - I hate Tortos still

Outvoted yesterday 4:3 for reset vs extend with 2 voting they didn't mind and Disco abstaining (until really late), we were stuck with doing the first few bosses again.  We wiped on Horridon because the boss was DPS'd down to 25% when we were on the 4th door and adds were still up, but we knocked it down the second time.  Lush was tanking on his monk but he wasn't feeling very well and after council he had to go lie down.

Council was messy but we didn't wipe for once.  Aza was unhappy because he got stuck in sand for 45 seconds - I seriously did not see anything to dispel and he had typed it in chat and you know how often I look at that during the fight, especially before Sul goes down.  However, gear helps and mana was shit for a little bit until things calmed down and once Sul was dead it was easy.  Familiar story.

Moo came for Tortos and I was a noob and tried to sleep a big bat and pulled the other mob of bats with my butt.  Xyn was learning to kick and he really liked it and he was doing well, but we still wiped continuously on it from fall damage and bats.  Ugh.  I hate that!  So we didn't get Tortos down and I felt sad that we were stuck doing all this stuff from the beginning instead of killing Lei Shen.

Souglyy, Luxy and Mctacky zoned in to the raid to try to do their jumping for the gun, and I'm not sure if any of them got it but after we spent the raid soaking people with our water pistols I think more people wanted them.  Here are some pics of me and Aimei (Lush's panda) being silly with the water gun.

This is a stick up!  Hands in the air!
Oof! That's cold!

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (Day 15)

Day 15: The Best
Day 15: It's hard to take a picture of what is the best.  But of all the silly pictures I've taken, this is my favourite.  We are doing the achievement Here, Kitty Kitty... and we all took pictures with us holding the rats.  So I call this my best silly shot.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Shado-Pan Geyser Gun Gymnastics

I was reading Orcish Army Knife yesterday and Rades was talking about Fabulor and the super soaker.  He was talking about the bizarre graphics that Fabulor had when he equipped the soaker (like his spine was broken and his body twisted bizarrely so you can see his butt and chest in the same shot) - however, I was more interested in seeing that gun he had - he said you get it from Tortos!  How do you get that from Tortos, a blue quality item, Shado-pan Geyser gun?

So I read about it and I thought OMG that is so cool, I must get one!  I logged on and nobody was on in guild, so I asked Zeirah to party with me to see if I could go investigate this phenomenon in our cleared instance!

She was on Barthilas doing some mining, so I made a raid and off I went.  Oh no!  I can't zone into Throne of Thunder because the other member of my party is from a different zone!  So I was trying to decide whether to ring Lush or Luxy - Lush was sick so he might be sleeping, but Luxy was also sick but she USUALLY is up playing some other games...

So I rang her and she sleepily said "Hello?" and I blabbered my apologies and talked at 100 miles an hour about Throne of Thunder, Tortos and this Geyser Gun.  She said she would get online soon.

In the meantime Zeirah had logged onto Saurfang with her level 20 alt and we made a raid and I found I could get into ToT then!  So I zoned in, and of course, we were working on Lei Shen so I had to run back to the beginning of the instance.

It is possible to run all the way back.  Once you get to Ji-Kun you just jump off, take a feather and enter the red portal in the middle high up in the air.  At Megaera, there is a geyser you can interact with which blows you back up and then you run all the way back to Tortos.

So I started to jump.  Oh my lord, I am a spazz when it comes to jumping, I had a few goes and couldn't get past 5 stacks.  Luxy had logged in by then and I invited her to raid and she came and started jumping.  She got to 80 stacks on her 2nd go!  I was feeling even more retarded then, and so I thought I would log and go to Lush's house and see if I could do better on a real computer instead of my laptop.

So by the time I got there (I had a meeting to go to in the evening and Lush's house is near my work), Luxy had got her 250 stacks!  Lush was resting, but I got him up and he too had to listen to my hyper excited chatter about this item.  He said he had wondered about that because he had been building stacks jumping around in Tortos on those geysers one time whilst waiting for raid to get started.  So he watched me for a while as I tried to jump, and I was excited when I got to 25!  Then a few more fail attempts - I tried it as bear then tried it mounted on a water strider (that didn't turn out well) and then I got my all time best of 45!  I had to leave by then, so I begged Lush to try it for me, and he reluctantly said he would.

As I drove away, I rang Luxy because I didn't want to disturb Lush's jumping and told her how stupid I am. She said that you could do it mounted and with another person so the other person could get your stacks too - I thought maybe I would try that later if I couldn't do it.  Lush rang me, and then told me that he got to 102 on his second go!  If I didn't feel silly before, I sure did now!  But I was excited, maybe I would get my gun soon!

By the time I got to work, Luxy told me that Lush had got me to 250 stacks - on his THIRD go!  But with my meeting, I couldn't get home in time to log in and play with it, so I decided to leave it till servers came up. Lush said you get a pretty snowflake effect at 250.

Spray water stacks
So, if you want to try this, probably the best option is to use an instance which has cleared at least to council, or to go into LFR and do this - probably best to do it after the raid has finished.  I wonder if Zeirah got hers yet?  She went to try it when me and Luxy were trying it.

Thanks Rades for the heads up!  I am sure everyone out there will be out getting their Super Soakers now!

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (Day 14)

Day 14: Trash
Day 14: Dead trash inside Crypt of Forgotten kings Scenario.  Who knew that dead sha made such interesting pictures?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Minipost: Monday raiding - More Lei shen

Getting the platforms right was our focus for last night.  Luxy sat out for Xyn (she wasn't feeling well) - and I thought well, one squishy for another squishy, both of whom can bloodlust... woot!

So after a few attempts we were consistently getting it down.  Bish was having a hard time in that phase with healing - nice to see him healing his guts out for a change :D - and Aza did not want to part with him so Disco was stuck with Xyn and Sabre.  But we all had it down and then next was sorting out the tanking for the next bits.

Asys was feeling a little bad because he wished he was Raked but I told him not to worry.  Moo was having some moments and complained that he didn't like being pulled - I had symbiosed Bish and was using lifegrip to drag people around, and dragging tanks around seemed to be logical.  The comment about being pulled and taking all your balls to Disco made me sound like some whorehouse frequenter, but we got him down to about 53% before we wiped, but practice will get us there.

Next week however, is a bit of a pickle.  I am keen to kill Lei Shen, but there are many others who are keen to start over.  It is true that it's my selfish desire to get Lei Shen down before 5.4 to show that we cleared something, but I can understand that the others still want gear.  It's a tough one!

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshotaday (Day 13)

Day 13: Fast
Day 13: Yet another daily but a fun bombing one!  And boy does this plane go fast!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (Day 12)

Day 12 - Macro
Day 12 - I don't use many macros but this macro is the one I use the most, which is my Nature's Swiftness + Cyclone for PvP.  Demonstrated here on my arena buddy Shab.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWscreenshot a day (Day 11)

Day 11: I love doing this!
Day 11: I don't think we'll get to see this on live - this is Sky Claw, and you can pick up a passenger with it and release them in mid air.  We had fun with it on Tournament realm.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Tycertank's #WoWScreenshot a day (Day 10)

Day 10: Beverage
Day 10: "Yes good sir troll, I did say I would like that bottle of Horde beer.  Don't look so surprised.  Tauren do drink you know."

Mataoka and Navimie's Friday Fished-up-Wish Fables : Landro

We're up to our usual mischief once again! These may not be true 'fables' but all is fair in love and alliteration. Fridays will find our blog filled with the stories behind the coins fished from the fountains, and sewers, of Dalaran. Be careful what you wish for, dear readers!

"So what do I do with this?" asked the Night Elf hunter, waving the card at the gaudily dressed goblin.

The goblin regarded him with a bored expression.  "Do you see that panel?"

The night elf stared in puzzlement at the card.

"Here."  Landro jabbed a green finger at the unscratched grey panel at the base of the card.  "Scratch here with a coin.  A copper one will do, the smaller the better."

The night elf looked crestfallen.  "I don't have a coin.  This was a gift."

Landro patted his pockets, as he searched for a coin.  "Sparks and jibbers!" he exclaimed, snapping his fingers.  "I knew I shouldn't have thrown it into that stupid well in Dalaran."

Other coins in the series
Squire Rowe

Author's note: Landro Longshot is the goblin vendor found in Booty Bay that redeems the codes from the TCG cards.