The folks over at SwagDog have taken the lid off of some of their latest World of Warcraft gear, including a pair of Alliance and Horde jerseys emblazoned with the faction’s respective logos on them, and then another customizable jersey that can be designed with a number and a name on it, both of which are shown above.
Personally, I like the ones without the numbers on them better, but they both look pretty hot. They’re hockey-style jerseys, so you know they fit loose and are designed to be comfortable. The non-designed horde/alliance ones are $99.99, and the customized ones are $159.99.
Each week over at The Blog Azeroth Forums, the community comes together around a shared blog topic – interested WoW bloggers can pick up the topic and make posts on their own sites to respond to it, and all of the responses are collected and linked at TwistedNether.net. “What to do when Good Guildies Go Bad” is this week’s topic!
This week’s shared topic at Blog Azeroth resonated with me specifically:
What do you do when a normally good guildmate performs poorly or behaves badly? Your rock solid tank comes to raid ungemmed, your master mage dips down into pre-cata dps numbers several nights in a row or your best healer can’t seem to keep from going oom 2 minutes into any fight. What do you do? The obvious answer is shoot the hostage but…
It’s been a while since I’ve been in the kind of position to really gripe about this, but I’m going to take a different approach – not just one around DPS or poor performance in raids and instances, but also when it comes to behavior in general. I definitely have experience with guildies who generally behave badly and can’t bring themselves to either just be considerate to their guildmates or who are just so obnoxious in general that they’re difficult to deal with.
First thing’s first – let’s talk about the kind of guild member I’m thinking of here. Sure, there are plenty who mean well but do poorly in raids and instances because of one thing or another – bad gear, improperly gemmed, using the wrong weapon, poorly spec’d. You know those folks. Some of them may be a bit defensive when called out on their errors (after all, no one wants to be told they’re wrong) but more often than not they’re willing to learn from their mistakes and improve their game if you bring it up to them in a police and reasonable way. These people aren’t the ones I’m talking about.
I’m talking about the kind that constantly link their items in guild chat just to show off what they’ve seen/picked up/looted lately, the kind that use guild chat as their personal trade chat or use it largely to talk to one other person, (the kind that use guild chat for the types of conversations that should happen in whispers, for example) the kind that can’t stop saying wonderful things about themselves and generally clog up guild chat or raid chat with their own self-aggrandizing banter.
They’re the type who are the most defensive when you call them out on their errors, because they simply can’t believe themselves capable of any wrong. They’re the type who will start whining about you when you bring up a way they can improve – no matter how nicely you do it – or build a massive conspiracy theory against them on behalf of you and your whole guild if they perform poorly in raids and find themselves benched.
Oh yes, I know this type of person very well. And admittedly, they’re not always the type who was “good” before they “went bad,” usually this type has always been bad, but they made friends somehow, right? So what do you do about them? Click the jump, let me offer some suggestions.
The fine folks at Raid Ready (who we spoke to a while back) have taken a break from making hilarious internet videos and ar eback to working on the Raid Ready service. In the interim though, they need some new videos, preferably from folks like you and I for whom sometimes World of Warcraft can be a little close to reality for some people’s comfort.
So, they’re looking for your videos! That’s right, YOU.
The video above outlines what they’re looking for and what’s at stake, namely a bag of delicious delicious skittles. And 6 months of pre-paid WoW game time, a 2009 Blizzcon Authenticator, and a Starcraft II poker set! But seriously, skittles!
This hilarious video (hit the link to see it in HD at YouTube) is one of three that have been unlocked over a Raid Ready, all designed to give you a little bit of a clue as to what Raid Ready will be when it’s released.
Okay, the videos themselves don’t say too much, and that’s okay because they’re all hilarious – the one above is the first to be unlocked, and since then there’s another great one that parodies an eHarmony ad, and yet another that makes me feel awful for that poor guy – he just wanted his morning cup of joe.
Anyway, between the site and the videos, I had to find out what this Raid Ready business was all about, so I dropped the team there a line to find out what they’re planning and what they could tell me about it now.
I noted the air of mystery around the videos, and I asked what exactly Raid Ready was going to be: a Web site? A service? An add-on? A utility? A subscription service? What was the deal? Here’s what Stubby, one of the folks behind the scenes working on Raid Ready, had to say:
Raid Ready is a new way to measure the readiness of players and entire raids for certain content. In the past 3-4 years several methods have been introduced that give players what I feel are rather ambiguous ways of measuring their readiness for certain content. What’s wound up happening with all these methods is that we have several sites, add ons and calculators which give you either a number or a graph that tells you what you’re ready for and how you rank against other players. The problem with these systems is that they tend to use things which don’t matter to measure the capability of players. I’ll be 100% honest. The only real thing that matters is a player’s ability, but there’s no true way to measure that outside of having that player in your raid and seeing how they perform.
Raid Ready doesn’t focus on iLevels or achievements to make it’s assessment of players or groups. Instead it takes the accumulated research on player stats and measures known good stats against the stats of players in your raid, allows for variance in stats to compensate for others and mathematically takes into account players who will make up for others in order to come up with an assessment that determines whether a raid can find success in the content they’re attempting. The idea is not to tell a raid leader that their raid will pull content off but to give them a better understanding of what they’re taking in so they can be better prepared and build strategies accordingly. This is really just a small part of what we intend to do but at it’s core this is what Raid Ready is.
So, I asked, it’s more about understanding the overall “talent” of a player, as opposed to his or her gearscore or total HP or DPS averages, right? Some way to determine how a player will likely perform overall, not just a stack of numbers that supposedly define them, right? Stubby replied:
Somewhat a look at talent. It does take some level of understanding of a class to be able to stat properly, but more to the point it’s about knowing whether the group as a whole based on the known required stats can pull off the task at hand. In that way, yes, our approach is much more holistic and takes the character into account over gear.
Very interesting – so we still don’t know how Raid Ready will do what they’re planning to do, but the concept is exciting regardless – imagine as a raid leader having the ability to understand the capabilities of your group and whether you have the right mix of talent, stats, and skills to get the job done, as opposed to just staring at some potentially non-representative piles of numbers that supposedly will help you make a judgement call on your own.
We’ll have to wait and see what the folks behind Raid Ready have up their sleeve, but the prospect is exciting, and the videos are more than entertaining!
Take THAT, Call of Duty: Black Ops. Activision Blizzard is reporting that World of Warcraft: Cataclysm sold over 3.3 million copies in the first 24 hours from release, making it the fastest selling PC game of all time in the United States, and dethroning the previous title-holder, CODBLOPS.
Granted, all of the money is headed to the coffers at Activision, so it’ll be a very happy holiday for everyone involved – it must be nice to have the two most popular and best-selling games of all time in your wheelhouse. Maybe I should have opened with “Take THAT, Electronic Arts.”
Activision Blizzard is having a pretty good year. Weeks after its “Call of Duty: Black Ops” game set a five-day sales record of $650 million, the company announced Monday that “World of Warcraft: Cataclysm” sold more than 3.3 million copies in its first 24 hours, making it the fastest-selling PC game of all time.
Those sales numbers surpass Activision’s previous PC sales champ, “World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King,” which sold 2.8 million copies in its first 24 hours.
“We had to bring Azeroth to the brink of destruction in ‘Cataclysm’, but the result was our best expansion yet,” Mike Morhaime, chief executive and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment, said in a statement. “We want to thank all of our new, existing, and returning players throughout the world for their incredible enthusiasm and support, and we look forward to hearing what they think about all the new content.”
Bob McKenzie, senior vice president of merchandising at GameStop, said the ‘Cataclysm’ release was bigger than “StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty,” another monster summer release from Blizzard.
In October, Blizzard Entertainment announced that its World of Warcraft subscriber base had grown to 12 million users, up from 11 million in October 2008.
I’m happy to say one of those sales was mine, and I’ve been loving the game. Then again, I love lots of games. Did you pick up Cataclysm on launch day or did you wait a bit? Let us know if you have it or are planning to find it under the tree this holiday season in the comments!
The fine folks at ThinkGeek have a wide variety of new Blizzard-related gear, especially a number of World of Warcraft items that are must-haves for people just getting into Cataclysm. For example, the Cataclysm Mugs are brand new, deliciously usable (unlike the other Tankards available elsewhere) and perfect for use at home or when you’re at work and unable to get your WoW fix.
If you’re a fan of unboxing porn, and I don’t know who really isn’t, this is an article worth drooling over.
The collector’s edition has all of the goodies we’ve come to expect in a box like this, including the gorgeous stylized box that will fit right in with the collectors editions of the other expansions, a beautiful hardcover artbook, the behind the scenes DVD and the beautiful soundtrack (that we know we’ll love – the music for Cataclysm is already well loved,) guest passes, WoW TCG cards, and more, including the Lil’ Deathwing in-game pet.
All of the devs hard at work behind Cataclysm got together to sign this one-of-a-kind poster featuring Deathwing prominently in the center and their signatures in silver all around the perimeter of the poster. Why? So they could put it up on eBay, and donate the proceeds from the sale to Southern California Golden Retriever Rescue, who take in homeless Retrievers, care for them, and try to find them new homes.
The auction has been up for a little while now but it still has 6 days to go, and the bidding is already up to $500 US with 17 bids on the poster at the time of this writing – it looks like the charity will get a sizable donation, but it’s not too late to toss your hat in the ring. Head over to eBay and bid now, and when you win make sure to get that bad boy framed and hung in a place of pride. Those devs do good work.
If you live in Fountain Valley, California, or in Taipei, London, Toronto, Berlin, Madrid, Moscow, Paris, Rotterdam, Stockholm, you’re in luck! Blizzard has scheduled a Cataclysm Launch Event at a store near you, so you can head over at midnight, meet some devs and game masters, pick up your copy of the game at midnight, and maybe get a little loot for your trouble.
For the rest of us though, we’ll just have to watch as our friends – especially our European ones, since they have so many, and after all, Ghostcrawler himself will be in London for the launch event there – revel in the event and report back to us about how awesome they are.
It’s possible there are more coming, so stay tuned to the Launch Event page for more if there is anything more, but if not, the rest of us will just have to have our own little launch event with our copies of the game and some booze.
Now now, I just gave him some ideas, he assembled the list and penned the piece all by himself, and you have to admit, he did well, and he doesn’t even play! You can bet that if someone just “happened” to get me anything on that list for this year’s holiday season, they’d have a very very happy WoW player on their hands.
What’s on the list? Some of the items you can probably guess (like our little plush Murloc friend above,) but there are a few new items in there worth thinking about for the gamer on your list – or things worth putting on your wishlist if you’re looking for a Warcraft-themed gift under your tree/menorah/shrub/etc this year. Head on over and check it out!