Tuesday, September 29, 2009

September 29, 2009

This past weekend was fun and drama filled. Drama first -- it's the most interesting.

Woah, Boy! Take a Chill Pill!
On Saturday night I went on a guild run to Ulduar. The raid leader's brother, who is in our guild, came on his hunter. Early in the run a trinket dropped and it was given to the brother. Later in the run a bow dropped, which apparently is 2nd best in slot. Well, the loot council decided to award it to another hunter in the group, who happened to be the wife of one of the officers.

I will point out here a few things of note, before going further.
  • I have faith that our loot council makes good decisions.
  • The husband of hunter #2 is an upstanding guy, so I have faith that he didn't push for the bow to be rewarded to his wife.
  • I suspect that the trinket was given to hunter #1, not because he wanted it, but because his brother just gave it to him.
  • I am not on the loot council so all of the previous points are based on observations, not hard cold facts.
As soon as hunter #2 got the bow, hunter #1 flipped a lid. He started screaming in Vent and also going off in Raid chat. He was furious, claiming that he was only there to get the bow and that he never wanted the trinket. The loot council folks explained to him that since he asked for the trinket and won it, he basically blew his chances for the bow. Had he truly only wanted the bow, he should have waited. He claimed over and over again that he never wanted the trinket. The raid leader insisted that he had whispered him indicating interest in the trinket.

The result of all of this was hunter #1 being kicked from the raid and the guild. Luckily, the raid went on further, so the outburst was not enough to derail it completely.

Then...later that night hunter #1 logged into his brother's (raid leader/loot master) account. He stole a bunch of stuff from the GB and kicked nearly every member of the guild out. Most of us members logged in on Sunday to find ourselves guildless. We got invited back in after whispering one of the officers.

Sheesh! All of that over a bow! Though I really think hunter #1 was right in complaining. I truly do suspect that the loot master gave him the trinket against his will since no one else wanted it and hunter #1 is his brother. Can you tell I don't fully trust the loot master? :-) I do trust the loot council as a whole. But when decisions are made by him alone, like this one where no one actually wanted the trinket, I wouldn't put it past him to favor his brother.

Druid Leveling
I got my druid to level 70. As I've indicated before, I'm really mostly interested in maxing Alchemy on her. Unfortunately, I'm at the point where I can't really advance much further without gaining a few more levels. I understand why Blizzard put level restrictions on professions...so a level 1 alt couldn't get max anything. But, it is frustrating nonetheless.

The cool thing is being able to fly in Northrend even at lvl 70. One of my 80 alts bought the book and mailed it to her. And voila! Cold weather flying at 68! Woo hoo! It's helping a lot with herb picking.

Friday, September 25, 2009

September 25, 2009

Brewfest Spewfest

Exciting news! Brewfest is in town and I got not one, but TWO Great Brewfest Kodos. I got the first on my priest a few nights ago. Then I got one on my mage last night. I had seriously contemplated not rolling for it, since I already had one on my priest, but I decided what the heck? I was in the instance unwillingly -- I had been told we were doing the heroic daily and all I wanted was Triumph emblems -- but then I was suddenly summoned to BRD. So I figured I didn't have to be magnanimous when the mount dropped. And honestly, I didn't expect to win the darned thing.

Please, Universe, don't tell me by winning two Kodos in a row I've used up all my good luck for the near future. I beg of you!

Besides doing that daily, I haven't been doing much else related to Brewfest other than getting a Wolpertinger. When I've been in the Brewfest area the huge number of people there amazes me. I really don't understand why I don't get into these seasonal events like other people do. I look at them as annoying distractions from my overall goals. I recently posted about the frustration of having to choose only one toon at a time to play since I want to progress aspects of so many of them. Things like Brewfest make it even more difficult. Time spent doing Brewfest activities is time not spent furthering my goals. Ah well, that's the good thing about this game. There's so much to it that everyone can find the activities that appeal to them personally.

Oh and...I did get the Shop Smart, Shop Pet...Smart achievement when I got my Wolpertinger. So, at least that Brewfest activity gave me something I had been working towards.

I'm a Spoiled Brat Sometimes

An ugly side of me reared its head the other night. One that I'm not very proud of. Luckily, I kept myself in check and only had a momentary lapse of judgment. On Wednesday night I checked my calendar from work to see if any raids had been planned. Since the new Onyxia raid had been released as part of Tuesday's patch, I assumed my progression guild would try it out. But, nothing was on the calendar. So, I stayed later at work than usual, content in the knowledge that I wasn't missing anything exciting in WoW.

Well, when I finally did get home and logged in, the first thing I saw was that 8 of my guild members were in Onyxia's lair. It wasn't just a random 8. Most of them were from our core 10-man group. WTF??? I was so ticked off by that. Why were they doing a progression run without advanced planning? If they had been in there on alts, I wouldn't have been annoyed. But they weren't. They were on their progression mains. After a few minutes of total silence while I stared at the screen brooding, I saw the achievements start popping up. They downed the dragon. Grrrr...

I took a deep breath and congratulated them. Then, after giving ample time for them to distribute loot, I asked in Officer chat if that was a guild run or if there had been PuGs. The answer was that it was an ad-hoc run and, since there weren't enough guild members on at the time that they started the run, they pugged two spots. Of course I knew that there had been only 8 guildies in the run, but this confirmation pissed me off even more. Why had they gone at all?

I suddenly felt I understood my warlock friend's complaint about the guild before I joined it. He told me it was frustrating because they rarely invited him to runs and they seemed to do them all ad-hoc and within a small clique. My experience has been completely the opposite. Well, not completely. Almost immediately after joining the guild I was elevated to raider status and became a part of the core 10-man team. On a weekly basis I have received regular invites to our raids. My luck with getting in with the "in crowd" is surely because I'm a healer (and a darned good one at that!). My warlock friend was right and wrong. Right in that only a small group (core 10-man team, which he saw as a clique) was guaranteed raiding spots. Wrong because the raids were actually pre-scheduled, but he was not part of the core 10-man team, so he was just not getting invites.

The problem with all that was communication. The raid leader should have explained the raiding policies. Other guilds designate core teams and clearly explain what non-core members should expect. Unfortunately, our raid leader does not do that. So, for us core team members, it seems like an organized, well run raiding schedule. But for non-core members, they just don't understand what's going on. I've seen it on several occasions when we're in Ulduar or ToC10 and non-core members are lamenting in Guild Chat that they didn't know we were going. If the raid leader would only explain how we do things, these people would be less frustrated.

So...fast forward to Wednesday. I logged in and see that they're in Onyxia and there's no invite. Suddenly I felt like my Warlock friend. My first reaction was to get pissed and bitchy about it. I did that for a minute or so, prompting the raid leader to ask me to get into Vent so he could explain. His explanation made perfect sense...since we didn't know Onyxia was being released this week and the guild and raid leader would actually not be on for our regular raids this weekend, it seemed that, at least for this week, Onyxia was not going to be on our schedule. So everyone could do Onyxia with any group they wanted. And...that night's run was not organized by the raid leader. Instead, it was organized by another officer who does have the tendency to ignore the calendar and start arranging runs ad-hoc. Just this past week we were scheduled to go to Ulduar 25 and that officer was trying to convince people to do a Naxx Undying run at the same time.

So, the explanation made sense. And, when I calmed down I realized my true source of annoyance. It wasn't really that a run had been made ad-hoc. The honest truth is that I was upset because I felt like I was suddenly not part of the in-crowd. I like being special. In that guild I'm special. I'm part of the core raiding team. I'm the second best geared healer. I'm an officer. The guild master has said that I'm the only one he would trust assuming the GM role in his absence. I like all that attention. So, when I'm suddenly not so special, I get upset like a little child.

I hate when that happens.


So...onto lighter subjects. I went to Onyxia last night with my mage's guild. It was a fun, though unsuccessful, experience. I think we all knew going in that we weren't going to down her, so that made it not as stressful as it could have been. We got through the first phase easily. The second phase, though, was our doom each time. We did progressively better each attempt, which was encouraging. But, after 6 or 7 times, we called it. Not because we're not willing to keep trying, but because some people had to go. One thing is for sure, though, we didn't have much of a chance because of the gear level of several of the people who were there. One had just dinged 80 this week. Others were just not even Naxx geared yet. My mage isn't nearly as well geared as my priest, but I still topped the DPS chart with decent 4k+ and was one of the last to die on each attempt. So, I know I contributed respectably to the success of the raid.

Perhaps the geared team that goes for the "official" guild run this weekend will be more successful. I wish I could join them! But, I'll be raiding on my priest.

I think that's about it for now.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

September 15, 2009

This past weekend was a fun one. Memorable (to me) things I did were:
  • Paid for dual spec on my priest and started doing dailies in Shadow spec. Woah! The speed increase is amazing.
  • Helped my mage's guild finally bring down Hodir. Yipppeee!
  • Got my druid up to lvl 64 and raised her Alchemy up to the point of needing Northrend herbs.
  • Bought the leather heirloom chest piece for my druid, which has noticeably increased her xp rate. Can't believe I was too lazy to do so previously.
  • Cleared ToC 10 again.
  • Downed a few bosses in Ulduar 25.
All in all...very fun weekend.

Friday, September 11, 2009

So Many Options, So Little Time

I've been thinking a lot recently about something that I experience all the time in the game -- the fact that you can only play one toon at a time. I know, it's nothing earth shattering. And, although it's possible to play more than one by dual boxing (or however it's called), you still can only focus on one thing at a time.

I'm an altoholic. Although I have two toons that are my "mains", I have several others that I like to play. This issue doesn't come up for me when I have things planned -- like raids, or emblem farm runs. But, when I have nothing planned, I often stare at the character selection screen and have a tough time deciding which to play.

Any time spent on any toon means no Emblem of Conquest / Triumph progress on any of the others. If I'm in an emblem farming mood, it's tough to decide which 80 will get my attention.

When I'm not in the mood to farm emblems, I consider playing alts. That brings its own set of options.

Do I gather herbs on my DK to raise my Druid's alchemy? Or do I just level my Druid so she can get her own herbs?

Do I gather ore on my Priest so my Pally can raise her Blacksmithing? Or do I just level my Pally and let her get her own ore?

Do I gather ore on my Priest in search of Titanium for prospecting? Or do I focus on leveling my druid's alchemy so she can just create the new gems through transmuting?

Do I fish on my Priest so I can have mats for Fish Feasts for this week's raiding?

Do I do dailies on my Priest or Warlock for cash and/or reputation grind?

Do I spend time on my bank alt, playing the AH for extra money?

The list goes on.

I know I'm stressing over what others might find inconsequential. But, for someone with altoholism, it's a big deal.

Since I have plans to do ToC10 tonight, I'm pretty safe. But, when I get home, I have to decide what to do before the raid. Emblem farm? Dailies for cash? Level an alt? Gather herbs for alchemy?

So many options...so little time!

September 11, 2009

Last night I gained a level on my Druid -- 59 now. Flight form coming soon! I also did some research and found out that I was wrong in my thinking that I needed to choose a mastery in order to raise my alchemy further. I just need to make some more of the items that are yellow until I bump up to the next stage. It's unfortunate, though, that I'll probably get close to max level before reaching 68, when I'd get a mastery and start benefiting from the additional item procs. Oh well...I'll be making flasks for a while, so it won't be a total waste.

I also ran a couple heroics on my mage. Finally got enough emblems to buy the Legwraps of the Master Conjurer. I've gemmed them but have not had a chance to get some spellthread to enchant them.

Tonight I'll be going to ToC10 with my priest's guild. I haven't played her for much of the week -- hopefully the guys haven't forgotten about me. :-)

Oh...I can't remember if I mentioned this before. After last week's raids, one of the officers in my priest's guild asked me if I would be interested in becoming an officer. Uh oh! We know what that means. As soon as I get responsibility, I start to check out. Tread lightly, girl. You don't want to blow a good thing. He was just asking to see if I'd be interested...not offering it to me. So, I won't bring it up again.

I played my Pally yesterday for about 15 minutes. I wasn't too engaged in it...I really don't think melee is my cup o' tea. At least not at the moment.

Speaking of melee, I went on my DK to gather some herbs for my Druid. I had killed several mobs before realizing I had no talent points allocated. I can't remember when it was that talent points were reset. But I think it's hilarious that I could kill just fine without them. I only noticed I didn't have any talents when I couldn't find the spell to summon my pet ghoul. I left her in Netherstorm to collect Netherbloom. But, now I realize my druid doesn't need that herb anymore for her alchemy. I can move her back to Northrend to collect herbs there.

I finally reached out to my old guild leader friend to find out why he wasn't speaking with me. Turns out he's loquĂ­simo. I think I'll keep things the way they are -- him not speaking with me. It's less drama that way.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

September 9, 2009

Last night I got home late form work and was stressed and exhausted. So, I only played my mage. I arrived in time for our scheduled 25-man OS run. Unfortunately, not enough people showed up so we changed it to a 10-man run with 1 drake up. We gave it 4 tries, but didn't even come close on any. So, we finally killed the drake and finished the instance. Oh well, it was fun trying.

Some of us ran a couple heroics afterward, then I logged.

Probably not going to play tonight because it's my anniversary -- 14 years! Woo hoo!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

September 8, 2009

I was on vacation part of last week and yesterday was Labor Day. So I had 6 days of potential play time. I would like to be able to say I played 6 days straight! But, the reality is that I would be in divorce court if that were the case. I did, however, play *as much as possible*.

So, what does one do when they have six days to play? Continue to gear up my main (priest), getting into 25-man groups? Focus on gearing up my mage, who is still in mostly ilvl 200 gear? Focus on leveling my alts?

How about a little bit of all of those?

Shaman Leveling
I played my Shaman a little bit my first day off. I had some errands to run and didn't want to get involved in a raid or heroic farming. So, I decided to "hide" on my Shaman and do some leveling. I only gained one level (30), followed up doing the Air totem quest.

Druid Leveling
This is where I, surprisingly, spent most of my time. It was the perfect mix of avoiding the monotony of running heroics and yet not being completely hidden from my friends. As noted in last week's level check, she was 48 when I started the weekend. I finished up some Tanaris quests, cleared all of Un'Goro Crater, swept through Felwood, dabbled in WinterSpring, did a Scholomance run with guildies and got my 58 level ding! in Silithus. As usual, I stayed up extra late last night to get the last few quests done to reach my goal. I then ported over to Blasted Lands (thank you, Blizzard, for putting in those new portals!) and stepped into Outland. I did the metal/wood quest and got a new helm. Then, I called it a night.

ToC 10
I returned to ToC 10 with my main guild this past weekend. After some mis-starts, we did well...even bringing down the extra boss, giving us the achivement.

I went with my mage's guild, but we still struggled on the 2nd encounter. I'm sure we'll get it down. Practice makes perfect.

Ulduar 10
My mage's guild asked me to jump into their Ulduar 10 run. They were on Hodir. We tried 3 or 4 times, but just couldn't do it. Then we had enough time to try Thorim once. For the first time, I ran the gauntlet. The arena folks died, unfortunately, so we wiped. The good thing is now they've seen it. And everyone has promised to watch videos and read guides.

Ulduar 25
My main's guild tried to run Ulduar 25 with another guild. Fail fail fail. We tried to get Flame Leviathan down 4 or 5 times with two towers up. Why anyone thought it was a good idea to try that the first time we worked together is beyond me. Finally, after 2.5 hours of attempts, we decided to take the two towers down and do it on regular difficulty. Piece o' cake.

We then wiped ingloriously on Razorscale. Night over!

I got a few pieces of equipment on both my mage and my priest. I can't remember what they are, but they are good. :-)

So...what do I do tonight? Raid? Run Heroics? Or level my druid? So much to do, so little time!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Level Check

Death Knight
48 (+1)
Ret 24 (+17)
(no talents)
Enhancement 29 (+11)
(no talents)

So I've spent a fair amount of time leveling my Shaman and Paladin in the last month. Starting tomorrow I'll have a 5-day weekend. We'll see how much leveling I do on my days off.

Still can't drum up interest in leveling my rogue. He's currently my AH toon.