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Guild Level Five – Cash Flow

December 18, 2010 Leave a comment

Cash Flow

“Each time you loot money from an enemy, an extra 5% money is generated and deposited directly into your guild bank.”

 

I can’t be the only one who thinks that this gives guild leaders license to anally abuse every single guild member without even dropping his pants. 5% isn’t a huge amount, but when you have 100 members (or more) all depositing a trickle of gold into the bank each day, it can stack relatively quickly. Insert unadulterated and entirely inaccurate napkin math below.

Total Cataclysm Quests Available: 150+115+125+108+95 (numbers pulled from loremaster achievement from each zone) = 593
Plus a ton of daily quests.

Now imagine that two thirds of all of these quests require you to kill mobs (for drops or for slay counts). Each one on average 8 mobs (napkin!)?

400 (or so) quests.
3200 mobs killed.

That can give you anywhere from 640 gold to 2880 gold (using lower cap of 20s per mob, upper cap of 90s per mob).

5% of that can be anywhere between 32 gold and 144 gold per person leveling (approximately) from 80 to 85. A hundred of those means anywhere up to about 14k gold sitting in a guild bank. Don’t forget that this then doubles with Cash Flow (Rank 2) at guild level 16.

Maybe I’m being melodramatic, but most guild leaders aren’t stupid, they’re going to notice a few hundred gold trickling into their guild vaults every day, and nobody’s going to see exactly how much they’ve deposited because it doesn’t show in the guild bank log. Most guilds also operate a policy of not giving free repairs to new members, or even only to officers. When you’re running a tight ship like that then where does the gold go?

Oh hi guildmaster, I didn’t see you there behind your armor crafted from Truegold and unicorn cunts.

Going Social

June 27, 2010 Leave a comment

My Druid is finally 80, I have to say that now I’m not suffering from “OOMitis” and “tooscaredtocastStarfallbecausealltankssuckitis” I feel a lot happier with playing Boomkin, the only thing I’m struggling with is the whole Eclipse mechanic, or more specifically, how to get the ball rolling the very first proc. It seems like a very luck based class, if I don’t crit then I don’t win, effectively. I’m going to main spec as Resto, but I’m running instances as Boomkin because it’s: a) more fun; b) easier to slack since a bad DPS isn’t going to let down the group with just “low numbers”.

I’ve given up full time raiding again, because I don’t have the time or commitment, because this is the seventh month that Icecrown Citadel has been out and because there’s nothing new at all. There’s only so many times I can hear “BOOOOOOOOOONESTOOOOOOOOOORM” or the likes from some of the awfully voice acted bosses there and even the thought of downing the Lich King (which we haven’t, even with a 25% buff, though I don’t think we’ve had a raid since it came out due to lack of attendance) isn’t enough to inspire me. I’m going to go back to my happy go lucky lifestyle of dipping into PuGs when I feel like it, and not when the guild has a slot open. I’ll probably stick to ten mans for a bit, just to find my Resto feet, since I’m still not comfortable with Druid healing (how hard can spamming Rejuve be?) and go from there. Hopefully Cataclysm is closer than we think and we can ditch ICC for a considerable amount of time more (at least until Bolvar makes an uninspired return a la cliche style).

I’m going to try find one of those scrubby little casual guilds on my Druid, because I have four characters in Wrath of Wisdom and sometimes I fancy a change. It’ll also give me less reason to raid, or if I do, the knowledge that raids are probably only going to last a couple of hours at most, rather than a three hour slog of what feels more like a job than a hobby.

The only thing I’m not looking forward to now is the emblem grind to get another two specs geared up. Oh. Joy.

Encouragement

May 12, 2010 2 comments

Raiding guilds have off days, everybody has an off day, and all the off days seem to happen to all of the same people on all of the same days. Think of it like that thing where women syncronize their vaginal bleeding. It’s exactly like that.

Today was one of those off days, we got the first four bosses down no problem (which is something even PuGs can do nowadays), Blood Princes took a couple of wipes, and then BQL took the rest of the evening, and she’s still alive. The problem was this:

  • We had new players, they hadn’t been in this raid before, they don’t know how we work, they don’t know the tactics, they’re generally unprepared for teamwork.
  • It was just generally a bad day, we had disconnects and lag, the usual suspects.
  • There was no team cohesion, the new players hadn’t found their spot in the groups yet, the healing team was working with people they didn’t know, the DPS team was working with people they didn’t know.

Bearing in mind that runs like that are highly frustrating on all sides, one has to question “at what point does one speak up and say ‘this sucks'”? Perhaps I underestimate the job of an officer, but we’re all under the same pressure, we all have our jobs and roles to do in battle and we all get extremely pissed off when people disconnect, or make stupid mistakes that wipes the rest of us.

But there’s no reason to make it worse by throwing anger and rage into the mix. Having a polite word to somebody who messes up is fine, it might put them on the right track, it might not. If it doesn’t, step it up, call them out in raid and make them feel that single sense of utter shame at having screwed up. But by god don’t drag it out and pretend your shit doesn’t stink, and don’t pretend you know everything you don’t and then go nosing into other peoples business about how they can improve.

Yes, the healing team isn’t perfect, but am I the only one who feels extremely patronized by being constantly yelled at over vent “keep me healed!” or “who’s healing during the blood whirl phase?”, as if they’re not completely fucking naive questions. I don’t yell at you over vent “keep tanking!” or “so who’s tanking during the air phase” because they’re obvious question with obvious answers. Sure, if you phrase it as “which healer is healing me“, but when you phrase it was “which healers are healing (generally)” then it’s just downright patronizing, as if we’re all suddenly going to stop and say “here Pendulus it’s your turn!”.

Apart from the stupid questions and patronizing requests (as if I press all the pretty buttons thinking I’m actually tanking?), the whole negative attitude is just downright annoying. Being told every wipe that “we all suck” and our attempts are “shit” does not help morale in any way at all. Yes, we know that that attempt was bad, hence why we wiped, we don’t need an overzealous officer breathing down our necks. And hey, if we do then where’s the officer clapping us all on a job well done when we do something?

So being yelled at sticks better, you remember the negativity, but that’s only if it’s something so directed at you that you want to curl into a ball and cry (and being singled out in a raid for a mistake certainly makes you do that), but being droned at every day for sucking generally just gets tiring, I’m bored of hearing TJ yelling on vent about everybody’s problems except his own, and I’m bored of the attitude of “we say it shut up you scrubby raider” that the officers seem to have whenever anybody disputes something they say.

I called them out on it today, the fact that there’s never any positive reinforcement, that no person ever gets singled out for a bloody good job, only that we’re droned at and fined and hated for failing. Where’s my DKP bonus for being a damn good healer or saving the raid with some quick witted decisions, or my whisper from TJ about being a good player. They’re certainly few and far between, much fewer than the constant whining over Ventrilo that everybody needs to get a grip. We know that, stop wearing out the damn phrase. Keep whining at us and eventually we’ll just be immune to it, we’ll get bored of it and we’ll leave. Raiding will feel more like a chore, it doesn’t help that Cataclysm is on the horizon and raiding ICC feels chore-ish already, we don’t need more reasons to resent raiding. The thrill of “getting the Lich King down” will only go so far, and nobody in Wrath of Wisdom can honestly be deluded enough to think that we’ll be able to manage it on Heroic any time before the release of Cataclysm (at which point we’ll move onto new content anyway).

Out of twenty five people, two of them were officers who immediately spoke down to me in their mighty fashion, twenty one of them said nothing, didn’t read it or just grunted in an uncaring fashion, and one, just one person whispered me saying they agreed that the negative aura was putting a dampener on the guild, which was bittersweet because they also told me to stop wasting my time trying and things would never change.

Maybe they’re right, and maybe I’m just like TJ in that I want the best for the guild but I’m going the wrong way about it. I certainly see the irony in getting annoyed at TJ bitching constantly when this whole blog is just that, but there’s a different: I can see potential and I can be positive about it. Being told you suck and never told you rock will leave you a hollow shell with no self confidence, I get enough of that shit in real life, I don’t need more of it when I go to the only place I really can escape to.

Mirror, Mirror

April 27, 2010 Leave a comment

So I’m hoping anybody with a brain will have read the new blue post that was quite nicely summarized on MMO-Champion as:

  • 10-Man and 25-Man raids will share the same lockout.
  • 10-Man and 25-Man raids difficulty will be as close as possible to each other.
  • 10-Man and 25-Man raids will drop the exact same loot, but 25-man will drop a higher quantity of items.
  • Normal versus Heroic mode will be chosen on a per-boss basis in Cataclysm raids, the same way it works in Icecrown Citadel
  • For the first few raid tiers, our plan is to provide multiple smaller raids. Instead of one raid with eleven bosses, you might have a five-boss raid as well as a six-boss raid.

Personally, after seeing the end-game depression that we’re sliding into now, I don’t mind the change. People are complaining that it will ‘kill’ 25 man raiding for good and yes, it might well do, but I highly doubt it. Some guilds thrive on 25 man raiding, Wrath of Wisdom is one of them. Plus, you get rewarded for playing 25 man with extra loot/gold/badges per person, which offsets that extra hassle of having to co-ordinate 15 extra people.

The shared lockout isn’t a bad idea, I spend far too much time on this game and when I have to run the same raid four times a week across two characters (more when I get some more to 80, undoubtedly) I get sick to my stomach thinking about when I have to do it next, it’s just that drab. Knowing that I can slip into a 10 or25 man raid whenever and only have to do one or the other is a comfort because it means I can spend time doing other things, like non-Warcraft things. As if that would ever happen.

Multiple smaller raids is something I want to raise a very curious eyebrow at, since we’ve all seen what happens with these kinds of raids, yes, I’m talking Trial of the Crusader all over again. And possibly worse. As long as we don’t get some near-unheard of character calling shots for the whole expansion again by having a carnival with random monsters he’s managed to ‘slip into his giant Paladin Pokéball’ I guess it can’t quite be as bad as ToC, but smaller raids means less epicness on a grand scale. I quite liked walking into Naxx knowing I had to kill hordes of filthy Scourge, I didn’t quite like walking into ToC knowing I only had to kill 5 things then go AFK for the rest of the 9 hours per week raiding period. If anything, they should take note from Ulduar, yes it was huge but it was also epic, the scenery changed and it was like multiple raids glued into one big clusterfuck of awesome.

The whole raid changes for Cataclysm felt significant enough for me to make a note of, though it’s a fairly underwhelming post. Overall I’m happy as long as they don’t make it into the next Blizzard Carnival of Captured Crap and Loreless Nobodies, though I would quite like to see some ‘epic proportion’ raids again too. And I’m not talking copying and pasting Molten Core with higher level mobs either.

On a personal note, I’ve kind of found Wrath of Wisdom a replacement Restoration Shaman, which is good news because it means I have more of a chance to move to my Priest. I spoke to Esmi yesterday during her first raid back for two and a half weeks, and she said we were short of Priests anyway, and that she wouldn’t mind changing her recruiting around to see if we could get another Restoration Shaman instead, though hopefully I’ve beaten her to it. We’ll see how it goes, now isn’t the best time to be throwing things like this around, what with two officers on vacation and another officer effectively giving me the “I have better things to do than talk to you” finger, so I’ll probably press the issue in a couple of weeks on our next round of lockouts.

Hardwired

April 21, 2010 2 comments

So not so much a WoW blog as a real life blog, I mentioned recently that my computer was having a few issues with running Warcraft, and that I was taking a step back from raiding until I could get it fixed. What with it being my depressingly void 21st Birthday on Monday, I got a bit of spare cash to buy the parts I wanted. Bought an extra 4GB of RAM, a second monitor (obviously not needed to run Warcraft, but at least now I have an excuse to watch the DVDs I borrow) and Windows 7 (which I’m backing up files ready to install as I type this).

I did a raid on Monday (I got the parts that day) and managed to get through the whole thing with every graphical setting known to man on max without a single crash, error or even screen stutter. Better yet, I managed to do some pretty nifty healing, as much as Lhuranan anyway, so I presume that I have my mojo back once again. Not sure I’ll be able to do tonight, depending on how long 7 takes to do, but I’m in no hurry, I did say I’d be gone until this Friday and I’m under the impression that I won’t be docked DKP for skipping until that point (conversely, I’m under the impression that I won’t be given DKP for Monday’s raid since I wasn’t meant to be there).

I made a new Priest ready for Cataclysm, Telyth. Level 16 at the minute, the grind to 15 (and the ability to use LFG) wasn’t too bad, though I thought that Westfall was a bit quest-starved, but maybe that’s just me. I’m playing as Discipline for a change, I leveled as Holy last time so I’m going to mix things up a bit, maybe change to Shadow later on (I’ve been playing Shadow since 3.0.3, I know how it works). I’m also planning on reviving my Discipline Priest guide, as well as drafting up a shiny new Holy Priest guide, see if I can get a bit of interest on those. Hoping Esmi might run over the Disc one to double-check I’m not talking rubbish, since she’s the authority there, and I’m pretty sure I can write Holy from experience alone.

Something really bothered me yesterday though, I was in my first ever LFG on Telyth, with a Rogue, Warrior and Hunter, (the Paladin tank had left already). The Rogue would Sap mobs every now and again (usually the casters), but other DPS would just break it by targeting that mob directly. All I did was make an idle comment of “if the Rogue Saps it, there’s no need to DPS it right away”, and the Rogue turns around and tell me to “shut the fuck up”, followed by a stream of abuse about how I owe him for saving my life (I had mobs on me, he pulled them off me, I didn’t ask him to), and that I know nothing about the game and that I’m a “low life” “retard” “noob” who needs to (again) “shut the fuck up”. Now, I’m so weathered to this sort of abuse that I just shrug it off and carry on dungeoning, the problem was that it’s not the usual sort of abuse, especially when it’s unprovoked. If I were a run of the mill level 15, first character, never played WoW before and had no idea what I was doing, comments like that would just make me want to curl up and never play WoW again, that’s how negative I felt afterwards. I immediately filed a ticket about it, and a few hours later (inconveniently during our Marrowgar 10 attempt, which caused me to have sucky healing for him and Deathwhisper while I chatted) a GM popped up and asked me about the character in question. I gave the name and a synopsis of what had happened, and the GM vanished saying “he’d fix it” but “I couldn’t know about the outcome because it wasn’t really any of my business”. Now, in the real world, somebody mugs me and I’m more than welcome to sit in the public gallery to hear his sentence. Why can’t I find out if the Rogue got a similar punishment?

We know this story anyway. He’ll get a slap on the wrist, and that’s it. No suspension, the GM won’t bother doing anything at all other than sending a macro’d “be nice” mail to him, and the world will keep turning and he’ll keep being an ass. I don’t mind, I’m not some self-righteous sword of justice wanting to bring redemption upon his head, I just thought it was a bit of a stupid thing to say.

Speaking of negative players, Sheepless recruited a Warrior DPS yesterday (by the name of Yoshi (stupid letter accents included if I knew how to type them)) who immediately gained a less than favorable response from the guild. Njevarfu, Tomjones and Yaoigirl all messaged me within 10 minutes of each other saying how they’d taken a dislike to him and how immature he was. Now, I was polite as usual and hey, until he’s shown his real stuff (he might be the next Slater, or better; conversely he might be the next Edicia) I don’t want to judge him, so I stayed friendly, though apparently I shouldn’t have because Tomjones is now using me as some sort of ‘question funnel’, making me ask the questions that he either can’t be bothered to or just doesn’t have the nerve to. Age, old guild history, play time, the usual suspects, though I can’t help feel a little bit distasteful towards the conduct. It’s fair to say that perhaps TJ or Slater should have done the recruiting interview (since they’re the Warrior class buffs), but on the other hand it’s also fair to say that TJ should be able to ask the questions he wants in the open without needing to masquerade behind another player. It just makes me feel a bit ‘bleh’ about being used, it left a bitter aftertaste that I didn’t even get a “thanks” for my time afterwards either, it’s not my job to do it and I did it anyway.

Anyway. Bitchiness asides, I really shouldn’t whine about officers because I know that both Sheepless and Esmi read this. On the other hand, my blog, my rules, I did warn them before they read it, so whatever.

I’ve got another 20 minutes of file backups (moving them to my netbook while I wipe my desktop) to do, then my flatmate and I are heading to Maplins to spend some more money on computer parts. Hopefully I’ll be all sorted by the time I have to raid this evening, but if the case is that I’m not, then it’s not a big deal, Wednesday signups are usually massive anyway, free badges and stuff, and my attendance isn’t expected anyway.

Losing the Will

April 18, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve heard of the pre-expansion depression but I’ve never actually felt it, since Wrath was my first expansion and I apparently missed the whole downer at the end of TBC. It’s like, you’re driving a Prius and you’re told that you’re getting a Jag, but only in a few months. The Prius just feels shitty after that.

I only really enjoy raiding and playing with Veir nowadays. Logging in to do some chatting with the guild is fine, and I don’t mind flying mindlessly around maps farming Ores and hoping I get some decent money from it, but there’s just nothing exceptional anymore. Icecrown Citadel is losing its charm very fast, I’ve seen all the boss fights and I’ve done most of them, and I just don’t feel inspired anymore. My Shaman is fully geared up minus perhaps a weapon, so there’s nothing to improve upon there until we get to Heroic fights. My Priest really needs the gearing up but nowadays I just don’t feel like doing ICC10 and I don’t particularly want to PuG 25. My Paladin is losing charm too, tanking isn’t what I enjoy doing and I’m sick of Holy. I’ve got one of every class except Rogue and Mage, and I really don’t feel like burning one of my new class choices until I can level through all of the new Cataclysm content.

I’m not burning out, I’m still playing and doing my dailies and stuff, and my shiny new mount makes me love flying idly around Dalaran or herbing or mining, I guess really I’m just bored without raiding, which I can’t do until next week. The raids bore me, but when I’m running with twenty four other people, some of whom I compete with on a friendly basis and some of whom I just want nothing more than to impress, I can overcome the repetitive content because it’s still entertaining, and I quite miss out Ventrilo conversation that usually end up turning into Gnoor bashing or general sillyness.

Blizzard keeps releasing more and more Cataclysm goodies, and I’m not sure what to do with them, it’s the carrot dangling on the stick just longer than my arm and I want it. I’m aware that nothing content-wise is going to entertain me in Wrath, not now I’ve seen how much awesome joy is to come, so I need to find something to do that’ll inspire me for long enough to play. The guild really is it at the minute, though I feel awkward saying that because I also sound like I’m playing just for the guild, which isn’t true.

It’s complicated. Everybody’s feeling a little blue, but I’ll keep playing WoW no matter what, whether I’m in a guild or not and whether I have friends or not, it’s just what I do. I fly around, I farm, I chat, I raid. So the content is boring, but the people aren’t, and that’s really the key to keeping me here. Yes, I’m probably paying £9 a month for what is effectively a glorified MSN, but to keep in contact with the people I am, I’d pay that and more. I keep thinking about everything Esmi has said to me, and it’s invigorating, that I’ve been in the guild for less than two months and I’ve already made an impression. If I give them two months more, and two months after that, then Cataclysm will be here and I’ll really be able to step up again and give it everything. I’m over my ‘bad player’ thing, I’ve got my mojo, I’ve got my guild and I’ve got my ‘Retarded Horse’, I’m set to play, just, perhaps, not with as much vigor as I would if it were all shiny and new and Cataclysmic.

Homogenization

April 14, 2010 Leave a comment

I love how Blizzard want to give healers their own ‘niche’, when really all they’ve done for Cataclysm is turn them into the same class with different icons and armors. Priests, Paladins and Shamans all have three primary heals: a fast cast and mana inefficient heal; a go-to heal for all occasions; and a big hitting and mana inefficient heal.

Shamans are the new Druids, with AoEs out of every orifice, but maintaining some slither of tank healing. Priests are the new Shamans, with roles in everything thanks to Chakra. Druids are still Druids, with an “oh shit” button. Paladins are just… I have no idea. Take this quote for example, directly from a blue post found on MMO-Champion:

We want paladins to be slightly more interchangeable with other healers. In Cataclysm, you should be able to have a Holy priest on the tank and a Holy paladin on the raid.

No. No no no. I’m all for giving Paladins a bit of oomph in the AoE arena just because that means we might be able to do Halls of Reflection without having to mash my Holy Light button on one target at a time and hope that it works. Instead Blizzard have gone too far the other way, they’ve not only changed Beacon around so much that it now looks like more of a chore to maintain than a help, but to imply that they’re potentially better raid healers than a Holy Priest? Pah.

It seems to me that every class now has a ‘raid’ and ‘tank’ healing ability, and the whole homogenization thing is only furthered by the fact that every talent tree has near identical masteries (add a HoT, heal more if they’re low, add another HoT, and maybe another HoT), so now the only difference between healers is how pretty the skills look.

  • Flash Heal, Flash of Light, Lesser Healing Wave, Nourish(?) are all the quick identically mana inefficient heals.
  • Heal, Holy Light, Healing Wave, no idea of the Druid spell, but they’re all the identical go-to heals.
  • Greater Heal, HOLYLIGHTMOTHERFUCKINGHOLYHOLYLIGHT (new Paladin talent for Holy), Greater Healing Wave, Healing Touch are all the powerful but identically mana inefficient heals.

Perhaps I’m musing over nothing, I think it’s nice that some classes have a bit more power to vary their roles (ever been in a ten man with two raid healers only to find that your group has recruited a third raid healer?), but they should at least have some niches. And they really don’t have that many as they are, so why change them?

  • Tank Healer: Paladin, perhaps Shaman.
  • Raid Healer: Druid, Holy Priest, perhaps Shaman.
  • Raid Migitation: Discipline Priest.

There are only three roles. The only healer that hasn’t been turned into an idle clone right now is the Discipline healer, who’s only “still going” because they can bubble and no other healer really can. Holy can do everything, Paladin can do everything, Druid can do everything, Shaman can do everything. Even the only thing that really made the Shaman that desirable has been given to Mages. I don’t understand why they’re adamant that “take the player not the class” can still stand when they go sharing some skills but not others. Where’s my Rebirth for my Shaman, or my Divine Sacrifice for my Priest, or my Guardian Spirit for my Paladin (oh wait, Guardian of the Ancient Kings pretty much covers that in a different-but-similar way), instead you go giving my Paladin Wild Growth, my Shaman Tranquility, my Holy Priest epic tank healz and to top it off, you go telling Discipline that “shielding isn’t always the answer”, so what, another Holy Priest except with different buttons to mash?

I’m fine with the Cataclysm changes, really I am. Shamans got some good stuff, Priests got some excellent stuff, Paladins got some cop-out stuff, Druids got some… same stuff (i.e. nothing new). The fact that healers now have to be mana smart, and that my HoTs can crit and be hasted more than make up for the dribble that was the Paladin release and some of the less-thought-through changes like Life Grip, but I like to have my musing and whining, just to look back in a couple of years and say “yeah, god that was a stupid thing to muse about” or “I was so right about these changes”.

I’m leaning on my Priest rather heavily at the minute as my favorite for Cataclysm. Holy looks pretty awesome, it’s versatile and I get all of my favorite skills made even better (Renew critting, holy shit about time), and Disc might be okay depending on how the shielding changes are made and how much more ‘favorable’ healing might be versus shielding. I still have a few months to make up my mind, so I’ll probably lean another way in a couple of weeks, I should probably keep a tally chart and just see which way I’ve leaned the most until release. Yeah, let’s do that:

Shaman: 1
Druid: 1
Priest: 1
Paladin: 0