Archive for May, 2006

For the Alli- er- Horde

Thank you to everyone who responded to my previous post. As expected by most of you, I was welcomed back, though it was amusing to see that when I logged on, my guild tabard was white. I had to be reactivated.

On the flipside, however, a misunderstanding with my GM led to some bruised egos — Hopping online to dink around for an hour or so before going to dinner with the wife was quickly refocused when an impromptu invite to the weekly MC raid came in. I joined, explaining I hadn’t been planning on the raid, and therefore couldn’t stay long. This was accepted as okay by the group. However, later on after the first failed attempt to kill Rag, repairs and summoning and regrouping was taking far too long and I had to sign off. The GM, not happy at all about this, started to lambast the mages in the guild because he was “very disappointed” in us. Another mage had left early as well, leaving only two to AOE the Sons.

I protested, saying over vent I hadn’t signed up for the raid anyways–

“You *never* sign up for raids!”

Perhaps the definition of the word “hiatus” had been lost on him. No matter, others jumped to my defense and still others whispered me to tell me that the run hadn’t been going well before I arrived, and that he was just blowing off steam.

I left, went to dinner, and enjoyed real life for the duration of the evening.

Monday, however…
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Faster, Azeroth! Kill! Kill!

Hey mac users… ATIccelerator II can change ATI graphics cards frequencies live, on-the-fly, under Mac OS X. Imagine up to 20% faster WoW!!!

But remember….If you destroy your costly 9800 Pro or your now worthless Rage 128 because of a bug in this program or your careless utilisation of it, you’re on your own!

WoW vs. GW danceout

This, well made, WoW vs. GW danceout shows not only the stunning similarities between /dance in WoW and dancing in Guild Wars, it’s also mucho fun to watch. Check it out.

WoW / Second Life crossover

Jerry from the Electric Sheep Co. is currently planning a crossover event between WoW and Second Life.

“SL and WoW respectively represent the state of the art in the narrative and non-narrative, game and non-game metaverse, but their cultures, aims, and the experiences they provide are dramatically different. WoW players often dis on SL users (“Oh, it’s just a boring social world”), and vice verse (“You can’t *do* anything in WoW”), perhaps based partly on a lack of understanding and shared experience.”

A wiki about the event has been started here.
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Why Flexbar won’t likely be done by 1.11

testserver.jpg

As some of you might know, I am one of the people working on Flexbar, one of the most versatile, powerful, and – admittedly – most cryptic to configure, ActionBar replacements out there. With Flexbar, users can define up to 120 buttons, bars, and button groups, which can react dynamically to system and world events. For a Rogue, for example, it’s very easy to bind Sinister Strike, Riposte, Eviscerate, and Cheap Shot/Ambush/Backstab to one key, and execute the right function based on wether you’re facing or behind a target, stealthed or not, and how many CPs are available. It’s even possible to make a button react differently in PvE and PvP, or to swap stances, weapon sets, ot clothing, before executing a move. Buttons can grow, shrink, show, fade, and move, based on what happens. It’s VERY powerful. And, well, it’s VERY dependent on knowing what’s going on.

1.11 ([Unofficial Patch Notes] [Official Patch Notes]), like every patch, introduces changes to LUA and the API, as well as to events and how AddOns “see” the world. And that’s all fine and good, after all, we have test realms for coders and raiders to see what’s new.

Or do we?
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LFG Higher Learning PST

When my peers of the class of 1995 were choosing the location of their next academic foray, they used rather diverse metrics.

Most sought qualities of a scholastic nature: professor/student ratio, program depth, academic reputation, etc. Some looked for the legendary appellation of “party school,” seeking to broaden their social horizons. But another quality, perhaps less obvious and rarely listed in brochures, was the diversity of peer groups.

I went to a big state school with 26k students, so finding a group that fit me wasn’t difficult. The internet was just getting its legs – chat rooms, email – these things suddenly became pastimes, though there were still few of us aware of it. Somewhere in my Sophomore year, my friend started playing Ultima Online – it had a small online population then, and I doubt many students of West Virginia University were playing it.

Things have changed. Not only do universities probably boast a rather large number of World of Warcraft’s 8 million players, but now you can actually get a vague idea of what schools have the most players.

Are we seeing another new metric for selecting college? Are you, gentle reader, planning on enrolling in Washington University because 1.7% of the traffic to Mapwow.com originates from its servers?

If so, you should probably not tell your parents.

You don’t have to buy the box anymore

I’m not sure when this happened, but it’s pretty cool. US$39.99 is the equivalent of 60% of the price of a retail box here in Australia, and you still get the 30 days subscription. Now, the phrasing does look like you need to have a trial account to upgrade, rather than just being able to buy an account from scratch on-line, but did I mention that all current players can hand out trial accounts at the moment? This would have been handy back at the beginning when supplies of the retail product were a little low.

A Long Hiatus…

Due to an extremely busy schedule of work, filmmaking, and a wedding (yes, mine), I haven’t touched World of Warcraft in three weeks. I always knew I’d be taking time off, but not for this long. And sure enough, the itch has come back, and I’m ready to jump back in.

However, before I run back to my guild and realm, I’m extremely nervous about being “behind”. Everyone knows that the virtual world moves much faster, and my guildmates are most probably another raid dungeon ahead of me. We had 5 full-time mages running raids, all attempting to gear up. I was already #3 in the pecking order. Where am I now? What if they recruited more mages? Hell, some guilds would kick someone out for three weeks of inactivity.

With only one piece of epic loot, it’s a very good possibility that i’ve cost myself more than just three weeks of raids. Has anyone ever had a situation like this? What was your solution? My biggest fear is that I have lost my spot in the guild entirely, or at least as a member of the “Top 40”. When this happens, am I pretty much looking at a new guild, or hours and hours of grinding in the hopes of earning my place back?

Advice is appreciated.

Vaguely depressing

So last night I was running Glaukos through Scarlet Monastery with some other friends and guildmates. One was a hunter, a level below me, who was attracting aggro like nothing else (and whooping some butt in the process too…). He had Stalvan’s Reaper, and some other one-hander that I can’t remember (also blue). I asked him where he got the Reaper, and he said at the AH for about 10g. Not a bad deal, I thought, and so this morning I went and spent my hard-earned gold bidding on it. Luckily, there was one for around 10g (others were going for 15-20g). I won it, used it tonight in SM, and topped it off with Sword of Serenity after completing In the Name of the Light. Now I felt like I could do some damage! When my hunter friend came on later, we were chatting about my new gear. He showed me a gun he had just bought, with twice the DPS of mine. I asked “Where do you get all the money for the AH? You must be making bank with your professions!”

“No, I buy gold. Then I buy things at AH and re-sell for profit.”

Oh. My heart sank a little. I spent +10g, busted my ass off in SM night after night, and you bought gold online? *sigh* But hey, at least I have some decent stuff now…

Viral Marketing

Blizzard have started up another “refer-a-friend” promotion for WoW. You can email up to five friends at a time with a 10-day trial code. If they convert to a normal paying account, you get a free 30 days. Or to put it another way, if anyone you know already intends to buy WoW (or has bought it but is yet to register) you can score 10 free days for them and 30 free days for yourself by using this system first.
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