Tuesday, February 23, 2010

That Thing.

I was about to publish a post on the subject of healers getting the blame for everything that goes wrong in every group situation, ever, but then I got annoyed with myself and the amount of QQ I can pull together in a long and boring text, so I won't.

However, I do wish some of the dps-ers I've played with in the past few weeks could get into their lovely, adorable heads that sometimes higher dps is the solution, and maybe they should go read up and gear up (properly - enchant your stuff, and no 71/0/0 specs -.-) before they start nagging about wanting to try Halls of Reflection again. Bite me.

OK, off to level my shaman for a bit - strangest thing, once I specced her back into elemental, she was suddenly fun again! (Enhancement smells, and should never bother my sweet draenei again.)

(And ooh, I had to disable Altoholic after a while - it was too heavy for my dear old PC after all, and using portals and entering instances started taking forever - but I'm pretty sure I'll survive :P)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Old Habits, New Addons.

It's usually during the in game holidays that I seriously start questioning my own sanity. The meta achievements are rarely difficult, but usually quite time consuming - RNG and travel comes to mind - and I'm pretty sure I vowed to only do the seasonal metas on my main character a while ago. But then I ran UK on my druid alt, and won this. I can't just not complete the rest, now can I? So yeah, I did the whole thing twice - my priest finished first, and my druid pitied her last fool late last night. Needless to say, I'm a bit fed up with the drop rate of Lovely Charms...

The other day MMO Champion posted a review of the addon Altoholic. I've heard about it before, and have considered trying it out, but haven't - until yesterday. I've been worried that it would take up a lot of memory, that it would be buggy, and have a lot of stuff I don't really need, but yeah, now I'm trying it out.

So far it's really good - it saves a lot of logging in and out if I want to see whether a profession cooldown has run out, if a certain character knows a particular pattern, or if that character owns a certain mini pet. While it does take up a bit of memory, it's not nearly as bad as I thought it would be, and I haven't experienced any bugs so far. The only thing I have to complain about, is that I'd like a better explanation of how to use the addon with multiple accounts. I've kind of gotten it to work, but both a more in-depth walkthrough of the whole process, and information on whether any future maintenance is needed, would be much appreciated.

OK, I'm off to get some food, and then I'm signed up for some fun in Ulduar :)

Monday, February 1, 2010

Hi Number 4!

Late last night, at about 00.56 local time, my baby druid hit 80! Since she was put on ice for a while, there was a lot of rested XP, and after reaching 77 (and hence being able to fly again) things sped up considerably. As I've once again managed to get a character to 80 almost exclusively by questing (though she did run through both UK and Nexus a little while ago), I now have a bit of gearing up to look forward to. And yeah, a bit of L2P as well :D

Healing on her is something I've enjoyed so far, and I'm looking forward to doing more of that - healing, in general, has turned out to be more fun than I expected back when I decided to make my priest my new "main". Having (and playing) a level 80 tree was my original plan with this particular character, and while a newly dinged 80 isn't exactly all that, it's a damn good start!

Now I just have to try and get her into some dungeons, and maybe she'll be cool enough to get a spot in one of the Naxx 10-runs for alts and new level 80s I've heard talk about in guild chat :)

Friday, January 29, 2010

Branching Out... (heehee)

The snow that fell before Christmas is still here, and even more has fallen since. I don't think we've had a winter like this in "my" part of Sweden for atleast twenty years, and while it's very pretty...
...after more than a month of car doors frozen shut, a runny nose, and way too much snow, I want to pick up and move to Hawai'i.

While I haven't been able to go swimming or go out for a run lately, I've had plenty of time to play WoW. I've worked a lot on my priest - gearwise and skillwise - and I've found myself in instances more often than not in the past few weeks. In fact, I've started to feel confident enough in my healing abilities (and finally found the inspiration) to level that healer alt! That's right, my young druid is finally getting some attention!

She happens to be on an account with no level 80 characters, so last night, when she hit 77, was a big one. I've really missed flight form - on her, since she came to Northrend, and on all the non-druid characters I play - and as soon as I'd bought her Cold Weather Flying, I took her out for almost half an hour of just soaring. She doesn't have her epic flying skill yet, but it's definitely in the cards. Partly because I've had her pick up herbalism instead of tailoring (Having someone steal my herbs simply because they fly faster? We can't have that!), and partly because the epic flight form is sooo gorgeous :)

I've spent a bit of gold in the AH during the past week, picking up a few pieces of caster leather. While I'm fairly prepared for the difference in play style between my priest and my druid - reactive vs preventive, looking all saintly vs being a funky tree - I think the difference in gear level might be a bit overwhelming. Not that I've been doing any kind of hard core raiding on my priest, but given a bit of time, you can put together a pretty good outfit these days, simply by running heroics and doing the occasional weekly raid quest. This also means, of course, that gearing up a new level 80 can be a lot smoother than it used to be. Still, though - I'm trying to get my hands on as many iLevel 187-200 pieces as I can, and I'm hoping to get some lucky drops in normal dungeons - I'm definitely not prepared to start doing level 80 dungeons in the level 70-75 quested greens she's wearing now!

Anyway, I'm really looking forward to giving druid healing another try. Now, however, I'm off to go through my in game finances - it's quite possible there'll be some swift flying tonight :)

Monday, January 11, 2010

No You're Not!

Last night I and three guildies decided to do random heroics, and as we were short a tank, we got PuG ones. My expectations were probably a bit low, and I was pleasantly surprised by how good the two tanks I got to play with were. I also got a bit of proof for something I had already suspected for some time: A lot of the people who sport the "the Patient"-title really should reconsider!

The second tank - a gnome death knight in Ahn'kahet - was obviously skilled and geared, but spent the entire run about 20 yards ahead of the healer (me), and wouldn't answer to questions in party chat. It went quite smooth - I didn't have any mana issues, could keep everyone up without trouble, and mobs went down fast enough - but the run was very much an x emblems/hour type of affair for the tank. It's not that I expect a PuG to sit down for tea and biscuits after every boss (although that could be nice too :D) - a fast, efficient run is often great - but I was quite amazed by the blazing speed at which we got to the last boss.

I still wonder whether the tank choosing to call her-/himself "the Patient" was an act of irony.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year! (Better Late than Never, Right?)

Like many others, I've been quite absorbed by the holidays lately - there's been (and still is) a lot of snow, and the temperatures have dipped down to -24 Celsius a couple of times, so we're having a "proper" winter this time around! I hope you've had a nice Christmas and a lovely New Year's, and that 2010 will be a good one for all of us!

I've had time to continue enjoying the features of patch 3.3 - I'm still in love with the dungeon finder, in spite of the occasional bad PuG, and every now and then we've grouped up within the guild, and done chain-runs of random heroics. I have yet to make it through Halls of Reflection on heroic - those waves before and between the first two bosses are just incredibly frustrating - but I'm getting closer to completing my Northrend Dungeon Hero achievement, nice loot has come my way, and I've actually managed to get enough emblems of triumph to buy a few pieces of gear.

I've really gotten into the healing thing lately, and I'm getting more confident while doing it - a great feeling - but yesterday had its ups and downs. When I logged on for the evening, around 9pm, a full guild group was already heading off into a random heroic, and as people were busy leveling alts, pvp-ing or doing something else, I signed up for PuG-ing normal Pit of Saron. I'm very interested in replacing my priest's bracers with the ones that drop from Ick, since it would mean I can hold off on buying the really good and really expensinve ones a little while longer.

Anyway. The PuG went well, but after the last boss was down I started thinking (oh yeah), and after checking on Wowhead I found out that while me continuing to heal with the Overlord's Brand on me doesn't hurt any of my fellow party members, it does in fact heal the boss. The thing is, I use the Deadly Boss Mods addon to keep track of special debuffs, who's got mark of death/doom/boogies on them and all that, and DBM just says "Stop DPS" when the brand is on me, so I've drawn the conclusion that me throwing shiny light on the tank isn't included there. Well, I guess this shows that you shouldn't rely blindly on your addons, and that it might be a good idea to look up what certain spells actually do. The problem is, it seems to me that the boss insists on casting Forceful Smash almost immediately after casting the Brand, and that's when I really, really want to heal the tank... I suppose I'll just have to keep that PoM on cooldown, and my fingers crossed.

A little bit later in the evening I got into a guild run for a random heroic, and after picking up our emblems in VH, our lovely guildmaster organised us in a quick run to complete this week's raid quest. I've participated in killing Noth the Plaguebringer once before, but that was a couple of months ago, and at the time I was mostly having trouble keeping myself alive, so last night's encounter was almost a first :D After getting him down, we went upstairs and killed Sapphiron, and getting a fancy achievement at the same time. So, we were on a roll, and continued onward, into Kel'Thuzad's room. OK, I've never even read about this guy, and I was getting really tired, so when the other healer, a significantly more experienced druid, told me I didn't have to heal ****i, that he would handle that, I said "OK :)", and didn't think too much about it. Well, I did think it was a bit weird, a hunter having his own healer - I mean, while explaining the fight no-one had said anything about focus being on anyone except tank and offtank - but who am I to question these things? We didn't down Kel'Thuzad last night, for several reasons: People were there on slightly lesser geared alts, due to being saved on their mains; some people didn't have a range checking addon, so the frost blast-thingie was chained; we were only two healers, and while we're both overgeared for Naxxramas, I'm not familiar with the place, and I still have a lot to learn.

And yeah, I'm quite sure our lovely druid said **i, the name of the main tank, instead of ****i, the name of our chatty hunter, but my tired mind was easily convinced, and the rather similar names got mixed up. I do hope the hunter doesn't think I hate him, and I hope the druid doesn't think I'm amazingly stupid >.<

After having had a rather long break from druiding, the thoughts of branches, feathers and claws are starting to find their way back into the WoW-part of my mind again, and I've started playing my younger night elf druid a bit. Nothing serious - just a few quests here, some seasonal stuff there - but she might end up being my healing alt. I healed on my old druid for a while, but back then it was all about having lots of spellpower and keeping three stacks of lifebloom rolling, and it would be fun and interesting to learn to heal as a druid, after having gotten some experience as a priest. Anyway, I'll see what happens - either way, I'm planning to re-level herbalism on said younger druid, and thereby removing her tailoring skill. I don't like farming, but she's an alchemist, the prices on herbs have gone crazy, and I already have 450 in tailoring on my priest.

OK, I think I'll be off to see a guild officer about getting yet another alt guilded :)

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Green Dot is Your Friend.

Like many others, I've been more or less swept away by patch 3.3. Most of the time during the past couple of years I've stayed away from pugs (leading to a lot of alone-time while unguilded, yes), probably for the same reasons as many others - I don't like surprises along the lines of "the tank is a cloth wearing moonkin" or "fireball is great for pulling lulz", and I don't like spending two hours trying to get a group together, only to have it fall apart before it even gets to the instance.
But now, now we have the dungeon finder.

On Wednesday, when the patch hit European servers, I put on my holy scrubs, opened the dungeon finder, and signed up for healing Forge of Souls. Within 10 seconds I was standing next to four other players, all from different servers, and none of us had been through the place before. It went very smooth - we ended up doing all three dungeons - and I got several nice upgrades :) An annoying detail was, of course, the (now fixed) bug at the end of Halls of Reflection. Me and the tankadin disconnected when trying to run up the ramp, and then we fell down below :( Luckily, we had a warlock in the group, and she and the two other dps managed to summon us back up, and as someone had heard of Levitate fixing the bug temporarily, we finally managed to get our loot.

My guild has three raid nights every other week, and as last Thursday was one of them, the evening was a pug-free one for me. The objective of the very first weekly raid quest was to kill Razorscale, and that was what we had our sight set on. Up until then, I had never seen her killed - only wiped to her over and over - but we were on something of a roll, and our lovely team cleared The Siege area, and also took down Kologarn. Most of this had been done before by the guild, but Ignis was a first. Quite a few nice achievements that evening!

After that night, however, it seemed we didn't have a whole lot of spirit left, and that, combined with a few people not feeling too hot, led to us wiping repeatedly on Malygos on Friday. We decided on doing a one-boss, no trash encounter, but a lot of us weren't really feeling up for it, and in the end we simply lacked the coordination. Next time, though, next time!

Now, back to the dungeon finder: Yesterday I decided to try and get Lockdown!, and hence I queued up for Violet Hold heroic. Now, it wasn't exactly hard finding a group for that place before 3.3, but if the new dungeons had been launched without the dungeon finder having been implemented at the same time, I'm sure it would've been almost impossible to find a decent group for VH hc. Well, I could have talked some guildies into running it with me - three emblems for very little work and all that - but sometimes that's not an option - people can be busy, not online and so on. Anyway, it wasn't as fast as trying to get into one of the new instances, but within a couple of minutes, I was in a group, and three bosses later I was back in Stormwind AH. The point here is, all of the others had ended up in VH by choosing to do a random heroic, meaning that as long as people use the random dungeon option, even the least popular dungeons will end up being played. Maybe I'll even give Oculus a try one of these days :)

I don't think the dungeon finder tool by some kind of magic has made players nicer, but I'm positive that less waiting makes people behave a little bit better, leaves them with a little more patience. My experiences have so far been pleasant, and the horror stories I've heard from guildies haven't been that horrible. Time will tell if things stay good, I suppose.

Zuramat the Obliterator is still keeping me from getting the achievement, though - I never thought I'd say this, but I think I'll be pugging again tonight :)