Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Elephants on Parade

The baby elephant from the D.E.H.T.A. quest hadn't despawned on my warlock yet, and it looks like a common occurrence. Every pug I've run for over a week has had at least two others with the same bug. I'm hoping for a run where all five of us have the elephant, as that would make a hilarious screenshot. The elephant disappears after a dungeon, but it's back again after a relog. Since my main is a gnome, the elephant completely covers my toon most of the time and it looks like death and destruction is shooting from the elephant's trunk!

I sent a bunch of time on my alts this week, and they've been leveling quite nicely without any pug issues. I did have a few issues on my Worgen druid. I was healing a run through Scholomance where the hunter was a bit trigger happy and/or ran into the next room and face-pulled some mobs. I managed to keep everyone alive, but just barely. The hunter did keep apologizing for the pulls and pulling aggro, but kept doing it anyway. About half-way through the drake room, the tank suddenly drops group. The hunter dropped a few seconds later. We got replacements rather quickly and continued on.

The new tank didn't know the dungeon, but we were able to guide her where to go easily enough. the rest of the run went smoothly until just before the final boss. In the room chock full of undead, the tank managed to pull the entire room and died before I could catch up on heals. I managed to get a battle-rez up and kept myself and the others healed though the resulting chaos.

Back on my shadow priest, I was able to score some cheap Cataclysm greens off the auction house. I have a set of the new level 80 cloth gear to replace my heirlooms when I hit 80, but these were level 79 greens that were above and beyond anything that came out in Wrath and filled out a few of the non-heirloom slots quite nicely. I also finally hit level 2 on my alt guild, and my main's guild just hit 25 this week as well! I don't know if there will be any raiding this week due to the holiday, but I will most likely spend some time on my main doing the new Troll dungeons. 


Friday, May 20, 2011

Getting Back Into the Groove

While on vacation, I had brought two laptops with me so the other members of my family could check their emails and such. My wife has also replaced her morning smoke with Pogo games while drinking her first cup of coffee in the morning, so I had to make sure to have that available for her. I did attempt to logon to WoW one night, but when I tried to logon the account was flagged and locked for suspicious behavior. They must really be stepping up the security monitoring, because I've played WoW from several different states over the years while traveling and I've never run into this. I do have an authenticator, so I feel this is a bit of overkill. Instead of going through the password change and whatever else needed for getting back online instantly, I sent them an email from the account registered to WoW and explained the situation to them - I was on vacation in FL, have an authenticator, and I don't want to change my password. By the time I got home from Universal Studios that evening, my account was unlocked with no further issues.

I was playing my warlock and restro druid this week, and the pugs went pretty smoothly. I like the change in the LFG reward system. I normally play one character though all the rested state and then let them sit until the next week. Sometimes if they are close to leveling, I play them until they reach the next level, which usually involves more questing than pugging. Instead of getting only one reward per week, I'm usually getting at least three on my DPS toons and all seven on my healer/tank toons.

With all the pugging, I still haven't run into any real drama. There was one run through Dire Maul where a huntard (my raiding main is a hunter, this was a huntard) seemed to need every drop and started the run pulling instead of the tank. The tank asked him nicely not to pull, and he stopped. Mostly.

On my alts, I don't really care about whatever gear that drops. I have them decked out in all the heirlooms save the ring. I have alts with maxed out professions that can make stuff to fill in the other slots. If I get an upgrade on a LFG pug, I consider it a happy bonus. I rarely roll need unless it's an upgrade for one of my heals or tanks. If I'm on my dps and an item drops that a healer or tank will get better use from I'll roll greed. After watching the huntard roll need on everything and how they were specced and playing, I figured they player as either really new or very young, or both. I think everybody else did as well, since nobody called him on it. It wasn't worth calling him on it as nothing of any real consequence dropped, and nobody else needed anything.

I plan on running my warrior tank tonight, and I haven't played him for almost a month. So a rusty tank going into the LFG may give me some fodder for the blog, but I really prefer not having anything to write about.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Back from Margaritaville

I got back from vacation and the only thing WoW related that I did was update my add-ons and WoW itself. The next day I pugged a bit on my shadow priest, and they went pretty smooth. I managed to hit 75, and made my way to Dalaran to pick up the Violet Hold quest. I got in on my last pug, and it started a little iffy.

The bear tank seemed to have real issues holding aggro, and the mage finally called him on it after pulling the mobs off him for the nth time. I was constantly having to fade or stop dps myself. I quick look on recount was showing the tank putting out less than 500 DPS, and as the mage and the tank started going back and forth I had doubts as to getting the quest done.

The bear bets the mage that he can't pull the next boss off him, and to his credit he managed to keep the boss on him. He also started putting out better DPS and threat, which he kept up for the rest of the run. I turned in my quest, and sent the heirlooms off to my mage.

I've been having a lot of fun on my frost mage, and this was no exception. My first run was to zone into a LBRS run already in progress. We tore through the run, and I dinged 59 at some point. I queued up again, and found myself at Hellfire Ramparts. With DPS ranging one to two levels higher than me, I figured I would be at the bottom of the damage meter.

I feel that mages are a bit OP, as I topped the chart by a considerable amount. The tank had a very good handle on keeping aggro with bigger and bigger pulls, which let me blizzard like a madman. On the few mobs that pulled off I either has built up fingers of frost/frostfire proccs or the tank taunted them back. After the run, I went to Outland and ran the quest chain to get the Ramparts quest. I queued up again, and proceeded to tear up Ramparts. This tank wasn't as capable of managing groups, so I either toned down the DPS or used a few tricks to keep the mob(s) off me when I pulled aggro. I dinged 60 on the last boss and ported back to Stormwind.

I spent some time leveling up my tailoring to get some useable items for my level, and then went back to Outland to turn in my quests. I was killing\skinning some hogs while queued and got Ramparts once more. Another quick run and I was almost at 61! I continued killing\skinning hellboars for that last little bit. If it wasn't so late I would have stayed online and gotten another level - I'm really digging this toon.

Friday, May 6, 2011


I queued up on my level 40 druid to heal a random after swapping my talents around after the latest patch changes. I ported into Uldaman, picked up the quests, and caught up to the rest of the party already in combat with a few troggs. The run went pretty smooth, although the tank liked to charge off out of range every now and then. I didn't let anyone die, and between quests and killing I hit 41 at the end. Again with the nice and friendly people. Normally I would be raiding on Thursday night, but I'm going on vacation this weekend and most likely won't be playing WoW for a week.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Two toons, four levels

I logged onto my 55 frost mage and queued up. I zoned into a Blackrock Depths in the middle of a battle just outside of Golem Lord Argelmach. I guess the last half of this dungeon is just too much for some people, as I seem to get this pretty often. There aren't any problems at all on the run. I'm a few bars short of 56, so I do the Children's Week quests. I ding 56 with almost a full level of rested left, so I queue up again. Same dungeon, same spot.

Everything goes well until we hit the Grim Guzzler. The tank does so much AOE that he pulls too much and overwhelms the healer. Everybody dies, except me. I think I have perfected escaping from this place when things go sideways. Al the elites have died, so the regular mobs stop chasing me before I have to run too far. Things get slowed a bit when we lose a DPS and the tank has a hard time figuring out how to use the mole machine to get past the Grim Guzzler.

The rest of the run is mostly uneventful, and we continue on. I think the folks working on recount need to do a little more bug fixing, because at one point my DPS was around 768k. Even though things were dying pretty quick, I doubt my blizzard was critting for over 200k. I did manage to screenshot my recount numbers, but I'm having trouble getting a readable picture. I'm almost 57, so I head on over to the Swamp of Sorrows to quest for a bit.

If you haven't done the quests here since Cataclysm, you should make some time for it. I was the only player in the area, and must have been for some time because I snagged two rare spawns - Fingat and Captian Wyrmak. Between the launching from cannons and the new quest line in the non-instanced portion of Sunken Temple, the zone is a lot of fun. I hit 57 and before I knew it I had quested and killed though 58 without the rested bonus.

I ported home and mailed my heirlooms off to my 70 warlock. I queued up and did some questing. After a short wait, I entered Utgarde Keep. The run went pretty smooth, and recount showed a more reasonable amount of damage. It must just be the mage. I was questing along afterwards, and I was doing the quest where you have to kill Clam Master K. At least I thought I was. I always remember to save the wine bottle quest to pair it up, but I also always forget to turn in the quest needed to get the one to kill Mr. Clammy.

I kill a shark and get to the wine, and I start looking for Clam Master K. There is another character fighting him and getting hit by two sharks. As I'm targeting one of the sharks, I get an invite from the other player. I take out the sharks while the other player kills K. I didn't get credit for the kill, and I realize I'm not on that part of the quest chain yet. We share a laugh and I thank the other player for being so thoughtful. I turn in my quests, go back and kill K again, and hit 71.

Lately I've been able to play with some pretty nice peeps, although the illusion of an asshat-free WoW is shattered the moment the trade channel comes up

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Rogue Rage

Having used up the rested bonus on my shadow priest, I moved on to my next character - the rogue. I queued for a run and watched a little TV while waiting. The first run of the night was Vortex Pinnacle. I have only ever run this one on my hunter, so the melee fighting was going to be a new experience for me. I also haven't played my rogue in quite a while either. I picked up the quests and waited for the first pull.

The tank and healer were quite good, and we didn't need any crowd control until the big packs later in the run. The warlock even summoned us some 'lock cookies at the start! We did wipe on Asaad once, when the healer died, but we downed him on the next attempt. I really need to start reading the quests a bit better, as I forgot to loot the first boss for the quest item.

My next dungeon would break my streak of non-fail pugs. You know you're in trouble when you pop in the middle of a fight. I found myself in the middle of the first trash pull in Stonecore. The tank bites the dust on the next trash pack and we wipe because the healer was feared. Everything is uneventful after that. We down the first boss, and the agility trinket drops. I roll need, and so does the warrior. Guess who wins. I may be wrong, but why would a warrior need an agility trinket?

We continue on, and we almost get killed when the tank pulls too much trash. Then our agile warrior accidently face-pulls another pat and we do wipe. He also drops group. As we (the healer and I) are running back, I see the healer veering a little too close to a trash pack near the entrance. I pop into stealth as he pulls the mobs. He eventually dies, as the tank is still dead and waiting for a rez (again - I don't think he ever ran in), the other DPS has dropped, and I don't feel like taking any more durability loss for someone else's stupidity. I make my way down to where the tank is and the healer comes back in and is almost there when the tank announces that he has to leave - "my mom needs the computer, I have to leave after you rez me". If I was the healer I would not have been kind. I added the agile warrior and the tank to my ignore list and left the group.

I was only half-way to 83 at this point, so I headed back to Hyjal to continue questing while queued. I pick up where I left off at the last portal (where you have to fight the big turtle) and quest until the queue pops. Blackrock Caverns loads. We wipe once on Steelbender when the tank doesn't get him completely out of the fire, but other than that it went pretty smooth. The tank died several times before we killed Beauty, mainly because he would go out of range of the healer and pull packs of trash. Here's a note to tanks - when all the dps and the healer are way over yonder, it's not time to pull unless you enjoy repair bills.

We killed everything else, and then I was back to questing. I ended up finishing Hyjal completely, and didn't ding 83 until I killed about six mobs in Deepholm. I trained, repaired, and called it quits for the night.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I need to buy lottery ticket...

I wasn't going to have too much time to play on Monday night, but I figured I could get another level on my 73 shadow priest. I queued into Ahn'Kahet, and before I could say "hiya" someone shared the dungeon quest. We blew through the instance with nary a mistake or any kind of drama.

As I'm making my way from Stormwind to Dragonblight to turn in the quest, my second queue of the night pops and I'm standing in Azjol-Nerub. We proceed smoothly enough, although we almost run into trouble on Hadronox when the tank engages him before the adds were even slightly close to dead. The healer was a trooper and we had enough DPS to burn the boss down and then the adds. It turns out that it was the first time in the dungeon for the tank. We down Anub, and everyone throws out some thanks and nice job all.

I finally make it to the quest givers outside bugland, turn in my quest for Old Kingdom, and pick up the ones for Azjol. I queue up again and make my way to Dalaran. The queue puts me back in Old Kingdom for my third and final run of the night. I notice that the tank is the same one I had back in AN. Before the first pull I remind everyone to interrupt the spell-flingers, and we proceed to make our way to the first boss.

He drops easily enough, and for some reason the tank starts pulling the mobs outside on the ledge overlook the rest of the dungeon. I'm not complaining as I'm there for all the xp I can get. We make our way to the prince, and everyone goes up the main ramp without clearing the two add ramps. A friendly "over here" with a little map pinging gets things back on track.

We drop prince and the other two bosses without any issues, and I've reached 74. Three runs in a row, on a Monday night, with no drama, rudeness, AFK, or anything wrong. I should've started this blog years ago!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Weekend Update

This weekend was filled with a lot of real-life activities, with little spare time for WoW. I did some raiding on Friday, although we had to pug a few spots due to absent team members. We took down Magmaw, Omnomnom, and Maloriak. Our pug healer was able to pick up an upgrade, gratz! We made some attempts on Chimaeron. I spent some of Saturday getting the polymorph spell from the holiday vendors on my three mage alts. I logged onto my druid and hit the queue.

I zoned into the most bizarre SM Cathedral run I've ever done. The tank starts pulling a side at a time, and the priest DPS starts bringing over more adds. I'm thinking it's going to be a wipe, but we make it. the same thing happens on the upper level. I glance over at recount and notice the priest has done even less dps than me. WTF? The tank chain pulls into the cathedral, and we take on what seems to be the entire foyer. We clear out the wings and then drop the bosses. While waiting for the loot roll, I check out the spec on the priest, and she's a disc spec. I look over recount and see that while she did little to no dps, she healed just a bit more than I did. I was so confused after the run, I forgot to turn in the dungeon quest!

I ran Dire Maul on Sunday night on the same toon, and it wasn't too bad. The tank liked to outdistance the group, but it was manageable. I was almost out of mana at one point during a rather large pull, but I leveled up at a rather fortunate time. I mailed my heirlooms to my lowbie troll druid and picked up a few levels questing, as he's too low to queue yet. After that, I sent the cloak and trinkets to my shadow priest and queued up again.

The Old Kingdom loading screen appeared, and I knew that this one could be a pain even under the best of conditions. When I appeared before the first boss,  I knew it wasn't going to be nearly the best of conditions. The tank asks me in party chat how to get rid of the bosses shield, as they have been wiping several times. I explain about killing the add that spawns and causes the boss to become immune to damage. He pulls, dies rather quickly, and we wipe.

We run in again, buff up, he pulls. Things seem to be going ok. The guardian spawns, we start burning it down, tanks dies, and we wipe.

While I'm running in the tank gets in an argument over getting a rez. The healer drops group. We get another healer. We wipe one more time.

I decide to give it one more shot. We kill the boss. We make it down to the next level without pulling the patrol, and start clearing the trash. The tank tries to go up to Taldaram without clearing the two platforms, ignoring my advise about having to clear the platforms. We finally manage to get him over to the first platform. Just before the second one, the healer goes AFK with parent aggro. The tank still pulls, and we manage to burn down the mobs before he gets killed.

Our AFK healer drops group and we re-queue. The tank is about to pull the prince without a healer, "we got this, lulz", and my finger is hovering over the leave party icon when a new healer joins us. The tank pulls the boss just as the healer zones in. We manage to drop the Prince and move on. The tank, showing his lack of experience throughout, pulls haphazardly to Jedoga. We drop her and continue on to Volazi. We drop him and it's finally over. I decided to call it quits for the night.