Archive for November, 2006

Embrace the Shadow!

A while back the Iconfactory assembly line brought us a WoW freeware icon set for your Mac or PC Warcraft: Volume 1. The always talented Dave Brasgalla created this set back in January but somehow I missed it. Feel free to email him and demand more. ;) And after that, head on over to Dave’s personal site Pixelhuset to download some Warcraft inspired desktop pictures to help make your computer’s transformation complete. See now you have something to do while waiting for the Burning Crusade.

You think your realm has world PvP? You have no idea

Just got this e-mail about what might be the biggest world PvP event ever, and if you aren’t on Dark Iron then you missed it.

I don’t know if you guys are hip to this yet, but last night the guilds that compromise the Penny Arcade Alliance on Dark Iron launched the largest offensive in World Of Warcraft history.
After several days of planning and reconnaissance the members of the Penny Arcade Alliance were told to meet up in Darnassus for a surprise.

At 7pm server time everyone was told that the Penny Arcade Alliance was launching a full scale attack on all three horde cities.

Everyone immediately began forming raids and awaited their assignments. Groups were sent out on diversionary raids against the Orgrimmar gates, Brill, Tarren Mill, and Crossroads, while the elite PVE raiders (who cancelled their AQ40 and BWL runs) were summoned into the capital cities for assaults on the racial leaders, as well as every single NPC we could find.

By 7:20 Cairne became the first racial leader to fall. Within minutes Thrall, Vol’jin, and Varimathras were joined him. Sylvanas herself was down to 50% when the stress of having over 300 people inside the Undercity brought the eastern kingdoms down completely.

But we weren’t done.

As soon as the eastern kingdoms were back up the group that had successfully razed all of Orgrimmar (and Razor Hill, and Sen’jin village, and pretty much everything else in Durotar/The Barrens) hopped on a zeppelin and redirected their attack towards the Undercity.

After a long battle to her throne room, we were ultimately felled by massive lag and another server wipe.

The PAA however, was comfortable with the fact that we’d just wiped out every single horde NPC, in every major horde city (and their outlying towns) in a surgical strike usually reserved for bombing civilians in Iraq.

The gauntlet has been thrown down. This is the face of world PVP now.

-Manif, representing Team Hurricane, and The Knights Of Arcadia.

Official forum threads with personal accounts and screenshots can be found here, here, and here.

Remember the Day?


Remember that day? Compared to the changes from then to today, TBC is small change. Those were the days when we’d disassemble MPQ files to learn more about how Blizzard worked internally, and GMs and Blizz devs cheered us on and helped. Before the day that was a bannable offense.

Undead and Sort of Liking It, I Guess

After a long, unfortunate break from our game of choice, I have returned with a new lease on life, or unlife, as it were.

Browsing my previous posts easily shows that my penchant for creating multiple alts that get to about level 10 or so and float aimlessly through the long-forgotten limbo of whatever random server I happened to choose at the time. I see no reason why this character should be any different. I like to be predictable.

Strat and Scholo: The New Shadowfang Keep?

Relmstein over at The Many Relms of Relmstein had an extremely thought-provoking post: Can the Current Level 60 Dungeons be Saved? In it he makes several very good points about how the Burning Crusade will affect current dungeons. If players indeed experience the same difficulty level in doing Scholomance as doing Hellfire Citadel, but with lower-level rewards, why should players run the older instances? Will Scholomance become a rarely-run dungeon along the lines of Shadowfang Keep?

What do you think would be be best way to handle this issue? As he points out, the option that Blizzard seems to be taking is to ignore the older content, which would be a shame. It seems a much better solution to rebalance the difficulty level of the older content, so that those areas remain a feasible option for mid-level players.

Nice post, and bound to generate discussion. What do you think?

The Long Wait

Every blog I’ve read recently has mentioned pre-BC burnout and ennui. Our guild has been doing Naxx runs with 35 members, whereas previously we’ve always had more people than slots available. We’ve had guild members go on hiatus until after the expansion is released, since grinding our way through instances seems very pointless when we all know that BC greens and blues are better than the gear that we can get now. Part of this may be the disappointment that everyone felt after the official release date was announced (no November release despite what had been listed on Amazon, etc.).

Tobold’s MMORPG Blog has an interesting post on Measuring World of Warcraft Burnout. “The number of people quitting isn’t really relevant, the health of the game depends on the difference between the number of people joining and the number of people leaving. So how do we measure whether there is a general burnout of World of Warcraft players in this pre-expansion time?”

How has it changed your experience of the game? If you’re in a raiding guild, are you experiencing raid burnout and poor attendance? Knowing that your rank will be wiped out at some unspecified date in the near future, are you joining BGs less frequently? Or are you still finding the same joy in the game?

World of Office Space?

I only wish it went on longer!

The Alamo Preservation Project

The following is Alamo’s guide to Druids. Titled “Alamo Teeches U 2 Play Durid”, this writeup used to be a classic until Blizzard discovered that it didn’t have a sense of humor or community oriented policing and unstickied as well as locked the thread, ensuring it would be gone within the month.

To make this clear, I did not write Alamo’s guide, I am not Alamo, and I do not assert any rights to the text ot the images. But this icon of Druidic humor is too historical and hysterical to be forgotten.

Some notes:

* If you don’t find it funny, chances are you’re not a Druid :)
* If you’re wondering what the Innervate issue is, chances are you’re a new Druid. There once was a time when Innervate was a 31 pt. talent, and to get it Druids had to spec so deep into Restoration their DPS assumed the damage potential and consistency of a wet noodle.

With that in mind, heer is Alamo teeches U 2 play Durid…

Strapped for Cash

I was reading an interesting post on Terra Nova today, Endgames and Expansions, regarding the nature of raiding and endgame and what will happen to WoW after the raid cap changes in BC. That’s another discussion, but one of the comments made me think about an encounter I had recently. The comment to the Terra Nova post was “The only explanation that matters is that although 40 man raids are very enjoyable for the people who do them repeatedly, esp later content such as Naxx etc. They just don’t make any money.”

My encounter involves being inspected by a lower-level character while waiting for a boat.

“How much money do you have?” he asked.

“That’s quite a personal, and probably rude, question.”

“I’m just asking because you have all epixx.”

Alamo teeches U how 2 b banned

Who doesn’t know Alamo? He taught the Durid (if you believe this is a typo I implore you to read the thread while it still exists) how 2 b bare, how 2 be heelz, and how 2 ninnervate. Along with Kralnor and few others, he is part of the World of Warcraft player lore, the ones who did something funny, insightful, or powerful enough to be remembered in perpetuity.

Some get this through community. Others through Blizzard’s own mechanisms, such as the “green” posters, many of which most of us might have a hard time naming.

Alamo used to be stickied on the Druid forums. All across the realms “drink a pot, nub” became the rallying cry of Druids unwilling to spec into restoration, “bare durid is 4 tank, lol” used to be the /say command triggered by SwiftShift. In a nutshell it was good, well mannered, well natured, and clean fun.

Then something happened. The new forums came and stickies became rare. The Druid community, unwilling to lose Alamo, see him – who is something of an idol of the class – go the way of all old threads, asked for stickies and came a-bumping. In a class forum where daily discoveries of more nerfs to the Druid class are about as prevalent as blue postings are absent (other than the one where Drysc claimed that ‘potions and procs in feral forms […] are a bug’, something kinda contradicted by the fact that those acts had custom tailored animations and items received the “Classes: Druid” tag), Alamo brought a smile to the faces of many.

Along comes Coreiel (forum signature: “What I do, I don’t do for you”, good one for a member of the customer service department). A bona fide blue post, a real CM, someone to ask and answer the many questions and concerns Druids seem to have these days. The news? Alamo will not be stickied. Asking for Alamo to be stickied will result in a temporary ban of the poster from the forums. Responding and questioning the decision will lead to a … permanent ban.

Also banned, those who voiced the common “Tom Chilton hates Druid’s” (sic!) phrase. Some posters were perma-banned up three times (on different accounts) asking for clarification on Druid issues, others simply had their threads deleted.

Blizzard’s customer facing side exhibits more and more signs of the god complex native to monopolies and large scale operations. To counter the most prevalent argument, the fact that Blizzard only closed “whiner” threads and derogatory ASCII art, an example: One of the most informative mathematical analysis of DPS scaling, complete with recommendations what to work towards and how to overcome some weaknesses and bugs was deleted after the original author suggested one of the bugs had been known since patch 1.5.

A bunch of insulting and whiny children? Or a class with serious concerns, hoping for “blue” clarification and receiving the death sentence for one of its only light hearted legendary threads, disappointed in the fact that Blizzard communication only happens to take away?

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