Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Not Related To WoW, But Hopefully Humorous.

I figure you online folks can appreciate the following anecdote.  If you've ever dealt with tech support or online ordering, you'll know where I'm coming from, and I figure, if you're reading blogs, you've probably done at least one or the other at some point in your life.

We have a special "VIP" website through my job whereby we can order discounted things.  In this case, I was looking for a new washer and dryer.  A pretty hefty purchase.

The site itself is good enough.  Plenty of pictures.  Some adds.  And a Live Chat feature.

Aside: If you happen to be a phonophobe (or is it telephobe, hmm) like me, you surely appreciate the advent of Live Chat.  I have no problems reading and writing, I just don't like talking to people over the phone.  It's not completely rational, I'll be the first to admit it, but if I can PuG in WoW, I can Live Chat with the best of 'em.  Nothing these Live Chat folks can throw at me will be any worse than a random PuG, amirite?

I select a washer easy enough and they go to fetch the matching dryer.  I mean, they have to match.  You can't have a non-matching washer and dryer.  Can you?  Wouldn't that anger the Laundry Gods?  You know, the same guys who steal your socks.

First model I select: out of stock.  It's cool, this model is a similar price, just without the door window: out of stock.  How about this version?  Out of stock.  Are you kidding me, you don't have any of the matching models in stock?  What is this madness.

/click Live Chat

Steve: Hello, how may I help you today?
Me: Hi, it says all of these are out of stock.  Do you know when you might get more in?
Steve: Which model?
Me: The Nonintuitivename model here.  Nonintuitivenumber.
(Left Brain: What a pretty name.)
Steve: I looked it up.  It says out of stock.
Me: Right, and you might get more when?
Steve: It doesn't say.
(Right Brain: There are only two logical reasons for that...)
Me: So does that mean it's been discontinued, or that we just don't know when it'll be restocked.
Steve: It has not been discontinued, I just cannot give you a date.
(Left Brain: Think outside the box!)
Me: What about others of a similar price range of the same model?
Steve: Which model? Which numbers?
(Right Brain: Must I do everything here...)
Me: /ctrlc /ctrlv, /ctrlc /ctrlv
(Left Brain: Ahhh copy and paste.  Clever!)
Steve: They all say the same things.
Me: Hmm, not the answer I was looking for, but thanks anyways.
Steve: Is there anything else I can do for you today?
Me: Not right now, thanks.

/click hang-up

Now a personal philosophy of mine is that if I'm going to err on a large purchase, I might as well err on the side of quality.  I also believe that you basically get what you pay for in life.  So I decided I'd just look at the more expensive models and give those a try.  I try a few and get to the top-of-the-line model.  Of course it's in stock.  Well, whatever, I'll just go with that.  It's only a couple hundred bucks more, and we do need new machines.  Seriously, it takes three rounds to dry a pair of jeans.

So I filled my cart with the necessities: A washer, a dryer, a three prong plug, and some nylon braided hose.  I'm all excited because, hey, clean clothes are cool.  Our current washer seems to add oil spots to our shirts.  It was time to upgrade.  The ebay special from our apartment days had done it's noble duty.  It could burn in a heroic pyre.

I view my cart, review my purchases, and click the holy "proceed to checkout" grail button.  Sort of like a grail shaped beacon, only far less sexy.

Next comes, you guessed it, the delivery options!  Much rejoicing.  Having the aforementioned ebay special, I elect to go with the "they bring it her and take my old crap" option for a modest price of 50 McDonald's double cheeseburgers.

*ERROR: Some shit about how I can't find shit in the database random number strange code ampersand*

WTF is this, say I.  Wherefore am I to go now?

/click Live Chat

Steve2: Hello my name is Stevenottheotherguy.  You can call me Steve. How may I help you today?
Me: Hey, I'm getting this error /ctrlc /ctrlv.
Steve2: Do you have a browser with a popup blocker?
(Left Brain: What does a popup browser have to do with a database lookup error?  I'm pretty sure that's on their end and not mine.  I may be making a leap here, but I'm pretty sure Right Brain has my back on this one.  We sort of do this stuff all the time.  Also, this whole chat with Steve Part Deuce is happening in a popup. I've obviously disabled the popup blocker like a good employee.  And why am I judging poor Steve?  I know he's just on a script.  He's just reading step one.  Maybe I can skip a few steps...)
Me: They are disabled.
(Right Brain: Whoa now there, Left Brain.  That's progressive thinking.  You can't skip steps.  Steps are meant to be followed.  You've probably just thrown this poor, rational fella totally off his script.)
Steve2: I'm sorry for the inconvenience, but the VIP site is currently off-line.  You can make your order by phone.
(Right Brain: OMG we broke him.)
(Left Brain: Wow, we just skipped from step number one to step number the last.  That's pretty badass.)
(Amygdala: Did he say phone?!)
Me: Do you know when it'll be up again?
Steve2: We hope to have it back working within the hour, but I cannot make any promises.
(Left Brain: Of course not.) 
(Right Brain: Left Brain will have to translate. *shudder*)
Me: Well, I'll just try again later.  Thanks.
Steve2: Have a nice day!

/click hang-up

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

On a Giant's Shoulders

I haven't had a Question of the Day in some time now, so I thought I'd drop one off for discussion today.  The inspiration comes from our raid last night, wherein we all showed up with the intention of nine-manning the early ICC content.  One of our regulars was lounging somewhere on a beach instead of raiding (A pox on him! ...but only because I'm jealous).  Being pretty much the definition of casual, we just said "no big deal" and turned the night into an "emblem run" night by resetting. 

One of the things in ICC is that it really ramps up in difficulty as you progress.  That first wing is, after the implementation of a rather large buff and our gearing up, pretty trivial.  I can still easily remember when it wasn't.  Was it always the hallmark of raids that by the time you were facing he final boss, the first stuff was trivial?  I guess I thought the ramping was a lot less steep in TBC.  Not that it wasn't there, just that it wasn't as stark.  Also, I can't help but think that has a bit to do with the piecemeal release pattern.

In any case, we all signed on at the usual time and, surprisingly, found one of our less active members on.  This friend had actually been dormant for some time, but was getting back into the swing of things since some time opened up.  That sort of thing happens when you're casual, right?  So it was a surprise when we realized we'd actually be able to ten man the content. 

We still decided to reset and emblem-run it since the new fellow hadn't seen more than the first two fights.  Besides, the weekly for our realm was Marrowgar.  It was destiny. 

As we ran, we gave the "newb" the token explanation of each fight before we basically facerolled over them.  One of the great things about our raid team (and probably most raid teams) is that we have great retention of fights.  We learned these the hard way and had pretty much the same people, so attacking these bosses we played like a well-oiled machine.  It was a very enjoyable, fun, non-stressful raid environment.

With each "new" boss we downed, our old friend chimed in on vent "how cool" this stuff was.  What I didn't count on for the night was how much his sense of wonder rubbed off on me.  I mean, I'd seen all this stuff before, but there's something about bringing a friend in and giving them the ten-cent tour that reignited my own passion for the content.  It was really interesting to me.  I just felt a renewed sense of pride and excitement at literally showing someone what we've been up to. 

It's sort of like when you've spent a lot of time on a personal project and you finally get to share it with someone who can appreciate it.  Maybe where the night before you were throwing your tools against a wall in frustration, revealing the project to someone else casts it in a new light, and lets you really focus on all the positive things about it.  Of course, you also probably notice the few flaws and make some mental notes to fix those up, but I think the feeling is overwhelmingly positive.

In any case, my question today is if any of the rest of you have experienced this phenomenon.  That is, do you notice a renewed vigor when taking an old friend through content new to them but old to you?  I know I certainly did, but maybe it's just me.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Check These Out

I have nothing new or inspirational today. It's Monday. What I do have is a Google Reader full of weekend articles. So let's kill two birds with one stone, shall we? I'll highlight the thought provoking ones, tell the thoughts provoked, and then when we get done I'll have both a post and a clean reader. Now, don't worry, I'm not going to highlight all 50 of 'em, just the few that I have something to say about (and are WoW related).

In no particular order -

I've been wanting to highlight Rip's new site for a while now.  If you like what I do around these parts on Fridays, you'll like his fan fic site.  And while I enjoy his stories, I think what I, as a writer, the parts I've enjoyed the most are his commentaries on the writing process.  We seem to approach things with some similarity.  In particular, I appreciate how he describes a story taking form in his head, the challenge then being to translate it down on paper.  I think a lot of decent/good writers will attest to that phenomenon: the characters almost write the story themselves (when you have strong characters anyways).  It's really kind of cool, but hard to explain until you've experienced it. 

While we're on this topic, I wanted to highlight a "writer's corner" post by Pike too over at Clockwork Hare.  I'm going through the editing process on my own closet project right now and find a lot in common with her.  Especially the "editing taking more than double the writing time" phenomenon.  I just get really picky about things like word order and flow.  I want it to be this symphony and when I really probably just got two coconuts that I'm bangin' together.

Oh, I got sidetracked.  The reason I picked today's post by Euripedes is he mentioned getting sidetracked with D&D.  I wanted to report that this weekend I created my first ever D&D character.  Fuu and I are road tripping up to see Jessabelle (and the rest of our raid group) this weekend.  There will be alcohol, vaping, and D&D.  We're quite excited.  For the curious, I'm keeping my usual moniker for simplicity and creating a backstory around it.  Since we're just sort of dabbling, it makes sense.  I'm going to be some sort of Deva Invoker who almost went evil in a former life.  Perhaps he used to be a Warlock.  I mean, I think I can swing that... :-)

In other news, Larisa writes about the soon-to-be changing Blizzard philosophy on gear colors over at PPI.  She says it all very well (as usual), but I wanted to throw in my two cents.  I seem to remember epics being a lot harder to come by in TBC.  Maybe I just wasn't as involved with raiding, but it was a Big Deal when I replaced one of my blues with an epic.  Fast forward to Wrath, and I was epic'ed out really fast.  It was more about replacing one or two hard to find pieces.  It'll be rather interesting to see how they fix this, and yes, I do think the ease of getting purples was a problem in Wrath.  Epics should feel... epic.  In Wrath, it felt like we just pretty much skipped the whole Rare item level, going straight from greens to purples.  I will personally enjoy it if it takes a bit longer to "purple out", but I think it would be even more fun if you had to "blue out" first in early raiding.  I like gearing and replacing things, new colors just accentuate that.  I really don't think it'll affect how "powerful" we feel, as they'll still have to scale the encounters to the generally available gear.

Moving on.  Boy, that Tam seems to put his foot in his mouth an awful lot doesn't he?  Poor guy.  With great blogging power comes great blogging responsibility, right?  Or at least the potential to realize you're not being nearly as clear as you thought you were.  I feel for him this time.  Blogging about the buff is srs bzns.  You can't just go throwing out buff opinions and expect people to respect them.  The buff has been somehow tied to e-peening now.  I know, for one, this blogger is confused about exactly how this happened.  I mean, Tam's original post seemed clear enough for me.  I don't really agree, but I didn't feel like... patronized or anything.  And more configurable = better, IMO.  So, to each his own. 

My own co-raider Jessabelle wrote similarly a short while ago.  I argue with her about it all the time.  She likes it hard.  (Giggity.)  That's her prerogative.  She's not going to stop being a stubborn dorf just because I speak reason.  Since when has any of this been about reason or rationality?  It's about having fun, and sometimes the most fun things are irrational.  I mean, go watch YouTube.  Many irrational videos.  Handle it.

My "bottom line" on the whole Buff Issue is that I want to see all the content before Cataclysm.  Ideally, for me, I would finish up with the old content a week before the new is launched.  I don't want down time.  I want a constant flow of fun.  It's not a race for me.  I will support usage of the buff in order to achieve that goal.  If we're progressing too fast, then we'll go without the buff.  If we're going too slow, then we'll use the buff.  It's that simple.  It has more to do with the time available to us to raid than it does with skill.  I believe we're skilled enough to do it sans buff given enough time.  Time is the limiting reagent though.  Not skill.  At least in my personal World... of Warcraft, that is.

That's probably reiterative and boring.  Sorry for the buff tangent.  Enough's been said on it I suspect.

To end on a positive note... I can't wait to get new specs to tweak and new content to write about.  One of the fringe benefits of a prolonged lull before an expansion is that a lot of people are checking out alts and such.  Thus, I get the random comment on my link guides from new readers who have found the information (mostly) helpful.  It's really exciting to see that sort of traffic trickle through and motivates me to make sure those particular entries are up to date.  It's sad that nothing new has really come our way in a while, so they almost feel stale, but it's just good to know they're still helpful.  If anyone is just dusting off their old 'lock or DK or even Pally (I'll bug Fuu for you) has some questions, we love getting them.   Hit up comments or email at your leisure.  It can be found on the About Us page or (for those getting this via reader)... fulguralisandfuubaar AT gmail DOT com.  Happy lulling?

    Friday, June 25, 2010

    If WoW Were A Musical

    Fulguralis sighs in the darkness and waggles his fingers towards a trunk in the tent. Atop the trunk, a lantern springs aflame, casting mournful shadows around the small canvas enclosed space. The Warlock sits up and rubs his eyes ruefully. He is alone. Again.

    Standing up, Fulguralis stumbles wearily to the front of the tent.  He bends down and pushes the flaps out of the way.  Cool Icecrown air washes over his face.  The night is calm.  He steps out and surveys the sleeping camp.  The only light seems to be coming from Jessabelle's tent a few spans away.  She must have be burning the candle at both ends again.  Sometimes he wish that silly Dwarf would take it a bit easier on herself.  Even for a Priest, she was quite full of fervor, but, as the Warlock well knew, the brighter the flame, the quicker you reach the end of the wick.  Or whatever your fuel of choice might be.

    A full moon hangs overhead, the clear Northrend air doing little to dim it's bright light.  Fulguralis ponders over the whereabouts of his wife and a deep sadness mingles with uncertainty.  He wished he had the answers for her odd behavior, but he had no idea what was causing it in the first place.  She seemed to have no idea she was behaving erratically, which made it all the worse. 

    With a heavy heart, Fulguralis raises his head to the moon and begins to sing:

    Where do you go, my Pally?
    Where do you go?
    I wanna know, my Pally, I wanna know.

    Where do you go, oh oh eh oh
    I wanna know, oh oh eh oh
    Where do you go, oh oh eh oh
    I wanna know, oh oh eh oh

    You leave without a word, no Hearthstone, no Portal.
    And now my head is pounding like minions are taking over.
    You left me with no Soulstone on my heart.
    Girl you should see me burning all night, and I wonder...

    Everybody says, you're a 'lock, don't complain.
    They don't fight the boss we try to slay.
    Seen you wandering round every night in Icecrown.
    I've been Summoning you night and day.

    You gotta Cleanse this silence, don't keep me locked out.
    Just like you've learned Pursuit of Justice
    You're unreachable to me
    Please hear what I'm saying

    Where do you go, my Pally
    I wanna know.

    Where do you go, oh oh oh...
    Where do you go, oh oh oh...
    I wanna know
    Where do you, where do you go?

    An angry Dwarf head pokes out of the lone lit tent in the camp.  Looking around she finds Fulguralis staring forlornly at the moon. 

    "Shut up, will you?" Jessabelle hisses.  "Some of us are trying to... do things."  The head disappears in a huff back inside the tent.

    Fulguralis sighs and returns to his lonely lair.

    Thursday, June 24, 2010

    If You Don't Know By Now

    The Fire Festival boss is immune to Frost.  I guess since he's a frosty kind of guy, it makes sense.  The Warlock in me could care less.  The double frost specced DK, however, is a different story.  I can't tank, I can't DPS, I'm pretty much worthless.  And when you have two frost DKs in the party and they're you're only tanking alternatives, you're pretty much up shit creek.

    We probably should have thought about group composition before queueing up and getting the free teleport in.  It worked well for our mains, it was just the alts that had a problem.  Who would have thought there were an overabundance of DK alts.  Hmm...

    I haven't even experienced the new patch yet, all my WoW activities keep getting canceled due to things like... summer.  I suppose I could log on to like, do solo stuff, but that's the itch Civ IV is scratching right now.

    Ahh... world domination.  Is there anything more Warlockerly? 

    (Mulching is definitely not).

    Tuesday, June 22, 2010

    Alfonzo Says It's Patch Day

    Since the truth is already out there, I'll just relate a few thoughts I, Alfonzo Illustriatza Calcaterra, have about today's patch notes.  At least I'm going assume they're patching today.  All signs point to it.  If I'm a week or so early, sue me.  The sentiments still hold.  Also, I have to admit, I have always thought my middle name indicates honorary membership into the ranks of WoW Dragons.  Maybe it does.  You won't know until you see me go Dragon Form on you, and by then it'll be too late. 

    1. Real ID - Yep, the patch adds this.  How do I feel?  Well, we'll see.  I've never been particularly paranoid about my real name being "found out".  On the other hand, I rather like my online personality.  It is something I've cultivated over the years and games I've played.  Even before I started blogging, Fulguralis has been my moniker.  It's sort of like my gaming "pen name", and I'm not ready to scrap it.  With that being said, we'll see how it's actually implemented and how it affects my continued charade.  It sounds like it'll all be completely voluntary, so I don't believe there's any reason to get too upset about this.  You can always choose not to participate.
    2. The Ruby Sanctum is released... but not.  Don't get too excited, I guess it's not 100% ready to go right away.  It's just setting the stage.  I still feel behind as we've yet to claim our Kingslayer titles.
    3. Vote To Kick has been tailored to scale dynamically with your abuse use of it.  I don't really care much about this to be honest.  I don't PuG enough any more to really make use of it.  However, I love the concept of dynamic scaling, of punishing only those who deserve to be punished.  Still, I'm sure it won't work exactly as intended and some truly righteous folk will suffer, but I'm a Warlock.  I'm all about righteous folk suffering.  More important here to me is Blizzard's willingness to alter the game experience based on your behavior.  This is really showing us that they don't need to make the game behave exactly equal to every paying customer (especially if you're going to abuse something).  I think this is a good thing, but that's a debatable opinion.
    4. The UI has been updated a bit.  I'm a "stick with what works" kind of guy, and my current UI works for me.  Maybe some of the new stuff will appeal to me and I'll use it, but I'm still using an Outfitter addon, for reference.  Conceptually, improving their interface is almost always a good thing.  Except if you're Microsoft and then you completely change the interface of office productivity software and kill productivity for at least a year while people struggle to find where the File menu went.  I know we're all techno-literate and figured out the blinky button right away, but I can't say the same is true of all of my co-workers.  Many a company presentation hath been hindered by the switch to Office '07.  (Yeah, I know, welcome to three years ago.)
     So there you have it.  The short and the long of it.  I know, it's pretty boring, but this is a patch to "tide us over".  We'll see how well it works.  Personally, I think it's a drop in the ocean of apathy before the expansion, but you will never catch me complaining about new content.  Even if it is skimpy.

    Monday, June 21, 2010

    Hey Peter, Man, Turn To Channel Four.

    That is, if you don't want to read a rant. There will probably be no socially redeeming qualities to this post, other than I'd like to let off steam and put something out there for bloggers everywhere.  And, conveniently, it can be compressed down into one simple statement:

    If you're not going to read the post, don't comment.

    That's it.  It's simple.  I don't come down to your evil lair and piss all over your skull collection.  Why do people think it's okay to show up, find a post from four months ago, call its author bad names, and say absolutely nothing of value.  Oh, and did I mention that paragraph three completely explains everything you're taking issue with.  Go ahead, read it.  Then tell me how I don't know what the fuck I'm talking about.  IT'S ALWAYS IN PARAGRAPH THREE.  Don't blame me if you can't read.

    I think what happens is that these leetist fuckwads come from Fuckwadshiresville and look really hard for a reason to tear you down.  I'm not sure why this is, but that's what they do, right?  I think, in the vernacular, we call them trolls.  Inevitably, they gravitate towards the linked guides and peruse them with a very fine microscope.  And by fine microscope I mean: don't fucking read them AT ALL.  They just click on whatever is linked, and then feel the urge to spend the next five minutes proving to you that they can use the word "fuck".  If you hail from Fuckwadshiresville, I already assume you can use the word fuck.  There is no need to prove it to me, I assure you.

    For instance, if you take issue with one of my builds because it, say, includes PvP talents and you're looking for a raid build, then you proceed to tell me I shouldn't be "fucking giving fucking adfuckingvice to anyfuckingbody; refer to paragraph three wherein I say explicitly that I'm including PvP talents because I plan to PvP on this toon as well as raid and that such a move may not work for you.  It's right there.  You just added absolutely nothing to the post, nor did you help anyone.  We've already established that there are PvP talents in my DK raiding build.  Paragraph three states that I hardly ever raid on the toon.  The point is for people to use what I'm doing as a springboard for using their own brains.

    No way, you mean I think most of my readers are smart enough to figure out a custom spec?  GTFO.  That's unheard of.  If we don't spoon feed shit, how is everyone going to learn to be l33t?  If you're looking to just copy and paste the "best" spec, hit up Elitist Jerks.  That's what they do.  That is NOT what I do.

    I love comments.  I love constructive comments.  I get a lot of them (thank you for that by the way).  To me, it's absolutely awesome when I throw out some info and five or six people comment with completely different yet vaguely related suggestions.  This is players helping players here.  It's great!  It doesn't contain the word "fuck".

    If you want to post your "better" build, I'm all for it.  Do it without swearing or calling me an idiot and it'll make me happier.  Prove to me that you actually read the post, and I'll feel warm fuzzies. 

    I think I can speak for bloggers everywhere that there is nothing we hate more than getting a trollish comment that proves that the author DID NOT READ THE POST.  I hate deleting comments.  I know a lot of bloggers who feel the same.  It's we're afraid of becoming some sort of comment propogandist, and that's not what we're about.  We like free speech.  Many of us do this to engender constructive discourse.  Even trollish comments can sometimes be helpful when they've read the post.  It doesn't have to be non-combative.  It just has to be intelligent.  That's it.  It has to show us you are literate. 

    If you post something I answered in paragraph three, I just assume you are an illiterate git.  I also hit the "reject" button on you comment, and I die a little inside.  Not because anything you said made me feel any sort of emotion, but because I now feel like I'm becoming Warlock Stalin.  Censoring is bad, mmmk?  (Plus, I steer clear of the Legion on principle.  You're more likely to become a minion with them.) 

    I've posted comments from others that have questioned my intelligence in the past; I really don't mind it.  I don't care if someone totally disagrees with me, I can take that.  This is not an ego thing.  I actually like a good argument now and then.  I like to learn where I'm wrong.  However, if you're arguing with me about something I've already acknowledged... it's just dumb.  You're just dumb and it's that simple.   Go back to Fuckwadshiresville.

    Read the post.  Absorb the information.  Form a coherent response. 

    Those are the three steps to commenting.  If you skip them all, don't be surprised when the nether swallows your comment out of spite.   If you'd like to bandy insults, feel free to email them to me.  You can find my contact information in the About Page.  Then again, I'm sure you've already tried to comment on that to tell me that my naming conventions are ALL WRONG.  I'm not going to subject my other readers to your stupidity though.  

    (For the record, I get about one a month and they're almost always on my DK posts.  Ironically, I get a lot of very good comments and traffic through there.  Considering DKs are like third down the line as far as the focus of this blog, that's a good thing.  I certainly like sharing what I've been doing, but I've also taken a very unconventional route.  I think that's what some people have appreciated about it; it isn't just your general cookie-cutter fare.  And it works.  Azeroth doesn't force-disconnect me when I show up with my sub-par spec.) 

    So, if you see me tell a commentor to "go back to the Shire", y'all can have a little chuckle with me and know that's my new way of saying "you obviously didn't read the post".  Or I may just tell them to refer to paragraph three.  I hope it's on a two paragraph post too.  That'd make my day.

    Friday, June 18, 2010

    What Do You Want On Your Tombstone?

    Look at them all, out there, casting away.  They're all so blue.  There are blue flashes of light, blue robes, and blue steel.  Even fire seems blue from in here.  Fire shouldn't be blue, that's ridiculous.

    It's so cold.  I don't like the cold.  I would really like to make some fire right now, but my arms seem to be pinned at my sides.  I suppose I could create fire without gesturing, but that's no fun.

    You know they're missing me right?  You know she's missing me.

    Everything is so muffled.  I'd bet it's really loud out there with the rest of them.  I'd bet those big flashes of light make a lot of noise.  Still, it's no crackling fire.  Boy, I could use some fire right now.

    Is it just me or does everything seemed so slowed?  I feel like they're all moving through water outside.  The blue doesn't help.  It's like they're all swimming as some sort of grotesque, semi-synchronized death machine.  A death boat?  For a death boat, it's curiously devoid of fire.  A proper death boat should have flames.

    They totally need me.  See how they keep hiding behind me?  I should get back to making that fire, but it's just so slow and peaceful in here.  And quiet.  Sometimes quiet is good.

    Okay, something is wrong.  There is a black spot at the edge of my vision.  It isn't blue.  Nope, definitely black, and black is certainly not blue.  If there is one color I know, it's black. 

    See!  There are more of them.  And they're congealing together.  That can't be good.  I think I've had enough blue now.  I'm ready to rejoin the fray now.

    Ah, burning.  Finally.  Of course, the burning is in my chest and not outside like I wanted.  Did I really accidentally just create a fire in my chest?  I don't remember casting a spell, but the burning is there.  And the black.  Black and blue.  Can I get some orange and red?  Who do I have to enslave to get some color in here?

    Hello!  I'd tap on the walls of this poor crystalline imitation of a casket if I could move my arms.  You guys need to get me out!  I need to make fire!  I'm going to fire all over my robes if you don't let me out.  Seriously.  Not. Funny.

    Do you think Unending Breath works in ice?

    Nope.  Not so much.  Hey!  Sparky!  Come over here and nom on this.  You've got a warm, demonic tongue.  That should count for something right?  Besides, you can't reach that flying pile of bones from where you are.  You're just going to strain yourself jumping up and end up in another realm again.  I do hate having to fish you out of the nether during a fight.  It's such a bother.

    Oh Light.  The fire is spreading.  I think my eyeballs are going to pop out to escape the heat.  There's also more black than blue now.  Stupid blue.  Someone is going to be in some serious pain when I get out of here. 

    Medivh's Chessboard that was loud!  What the fel was that cracking sound?  Are those spiderwebs in front of my face.  I could see better without all this damn black in the way.  Seriously. Shoo, shadow!  I command you!  Why won't you obey?  You always have before.  Are you cheating on me too?

    Spiders, why did it have to be spiders?

    It's... getting... really... dark.  Fire... is... uncontrollable.  Must... OW!  Well, there's color again.  And air.  Sweet, sweet air.  Took you guys long enough.  That's the last time I'll be the ice shield for you orcholes. 

    Sindragosa!  You overgrown bone chicken.  Not cool.  Come down here here and fight like a... um... skeletal being.

    Whatever.  Eat fire, bitch.

    Wednesday, June 16, 2010

    New Alts in Cataclysm

    Hey Gang!

    With all of these random info vomit piles that are spewing out of Ghostcrawler's little crabby pinchers (I dont believe crabs have mouths.. just mandibles. Which I guess could be considered a "mouth" but that's neither here nor there.) about the new and up coming changes awaiting for us in Cataclysm, I'm not going to talk about much of that right now.  So, if that's what you're looking for /shoo.

    What I do want to highlight from this past weekend's info dump was in regards to Bind on Account gear. To sum up, all new characters (this includes Goblins & Worgens) can use your acquired BoA gear for Cataclysm.

    "You've earned them"

    List includes:

    -1/2 handed weapons (that's 1 to 2 not .5 because only allowed to use half of a weapon would sorta suck)
    - Trinkets
    - Ring (I just found out that there was such a thing as a BoA ring. It's a reward for winning the new Walrus Fishing Tournament on Saturday's)

    THEN you also have a choice of how you want to aquire these. Either Emblems of Heroism or Stonekeeper Shards. Heroism = PvE & Stonekeeper = PvP.

    The Dev's went on to state that you can use these BoA pieces from 1-80 and new BoA gear will be implemented for 80-85. At least that's to my understanding of their comment. Over all, that's pretty exciting news for people who do plan on rolling a new toon when the expansion comes around. I will be one of them!

    Now, I must warn you, I get UBER bored at work (I have a hurry up & wait sorta job). So, I do what any bored person does... MAKES LISTS! >.> maybe that's just me. I make GOBS of lists. Lists of Goals for me when I get home, lists of Achievements that I want to finish, reminders of things that I need to do before the raid, on & on.

    Anyways, I've been making lists on what I would need for this new Female Worgen. I've been tossing around ideas of what class & spec I want this little wolf to be. Since I already have a tank & a healer, I need a DPS. Yes, I know that I could dual spec my tank or healer to fulfill my DPS needs but I just don't really enjoy PvE DPS of either of my 80s.

    Ok, Side tangent: How does someone level a toon from 1-80 with one spec and then at 80 work with a completely different spec? I just couldn't do it. I leveled Fuu Prot all the way up & felt very comfortable with it when I hit 80. I had practice with all of my new spells slowly and I didn't feel so pressured when I started running instances right away. I could never image leveling as Retribution and then once I hit 80 flip over & be "pro" at tanking in Prot. I had a similar feeling with my Priest. I leveled her as half shadow, half Disc priest. Once I hit 80, I switched to Disc & attempted to heal. I just didn't feel really comfortable with it & switched full shadow. Come to find out I failed at both specs ><. Abigora has been many hats until I tried PvP and that's where she'll stay. Maybe it's different for Pure DPS classes switching from one spec to the other since you're still doing the same thing just the buttons might be a little different. Am I odd?

    Ok back to the topic at hand, I wanted to find a pure DPS class that was bursty.

    - Mage (All Three Specs)
    - Warlock (Destro... sorta)
    - Rogue (All three Specs)
    - Hunter ( MM & Survival)

    So these were my choices. I'm going to be leveling with Ful's new toon as well & I think he might choose something that actually attempts to Fill Health bars instead of subtract from them. I believe that hell has, indeed, frozen over. He's not set in stone though either, so he could potentially just roll a Worgen Lock and call it a day. We also might be leveling with one of our other friends who is pretty set on rolling a Rogue.

    So from my deduction, Rogues are out. I already have a lvl 63 BM hunter in outlands so that's out. I also have a lvl 32 Demo Warlock working her way up to the top so she's out too. So that leaves me with ...

    carry the two... subtract 12... plus 5

    A Mage.

    *ducks for cover*


    I think a mage would be a great fit for our little threesome. I can supply food & drink for everyone, burst everything down with my mad Deeps, and be the public shuttle for where ever we choose to go. I believe that a mage would be a great addition to our guild as well since we no longer have any.

    TL;DR I'm Rolling a Female Worgen Mage for Cataclysm

    Ummm did I do that?

    I'll probably pick the spec closer to when I actually roll it. Anyways, so now that I have that out of the way, I need to acquire my BoA gear. Simple enough since I have most of it on my Warlock. Poor poor abused warlock. Now she'll be naked :( She, currently has, the BoA Shoulders, Chest, and Haste trinket I believe. I would only need the Staff and if I get lucky, the Ring. Fuubaar has a gajillion left over Triumph emblems so that's easy enough to buy the Staff.

    Professions... This one was a tuffy for me. I've already got Jewelcrafting/Skinning, Alchemy/Herbalism, and Inscription/ Herbalism on the way. I don't much care for Blacksmithing or Leatherworking so that pretty much just leaves me with Engineering/ Mining to fill in the gaps. I've always found engineering to be fascinating. I have it on my Shaman Twink for the goggles but the bombs are just so much fun to chuck at people. /swoon

    So we're at Female Worgen Mage with Engineering/ Mining as a profession. I still have to give her a name but I usually can't do that until I actually see her on my Character Screen. I'm particular like that. I mean, I'm pretty sure we'll see "Worgen Freeman", or the first idiot to think it's clever to spell "Worgen" backwards & be called a racist moron. Anything with "howl","wolf", or classic dog names  like "Lassie" will just make me /facepalm.

    Question for you: What are your new Alt plans for Cataclysm. How prepared do you plan to be for your new toons? Do you plan on power leveling your professions once you roll your toon? Are you going to stock pile materials for them?

    I'm curious :)

    <3 Fuu

    Tuesday, June 15, 2010

    Unchained Post

    Apparently, I'm a magnet for the Instability debuff on the Sindragosa fight. If you don't know what I'm talking about, this is the ranged caster debuff that stacks every time you cast a spell.  You can basically only go up to five stacks before you have to wait for it to drop off.  I don't know anyone who enjoys the buff, but it's hell for an Affliction Warlock, let me tell ya.  It's not just damaging casts that it counts, but life taps and usages of your dropped 'lock portal too.  Everything.  I suppose it's encouragement to break out the wand, but F that.  So what ends up happening is that I get to refresh my dots really early (because of course they're going to fall off while I'm waiting for the debuff to clear) and I get to squeeze in a couple shadow bolts.  Then, I have to sit for 3 seconds doing nothing before getting back into the rotation.

    I end up with this sort of flow: SB, UA, Haunt, SB, SB (or Life Tap)... wait for the buff to drop to about 1.5s, then queue up another SB to start the pattern over.  This keeps all my DoTs refreshed (the SB usually just barely catches Corruption) and minimizes my downtime.  It's not so bad until you get an unexpected Nightfall proc or sucked into Sindy's range and need to port back out.  I've been known to accidentally get 6 stacks, but as long as you don't make a habit of it, it's not killer.  It gets even harder in phase two when you're supposed to be doing a lot of target switching between the ice tombs and Sindy.   With a few DoTs on each, I'm almost constant at the 5 debuff limit.  I feel like I spend more time waiting for the damn thing to drop off than fighting, and I get it every time.  Does it target based on activity or something?  Because it can't be random.

    In any case, on our first night of attempts, we're consistently getting the frosty dragon down to around 20-25%.  Phase 2 is killing us.  There's just a lot to pay attention to in the fight, and it's all thrown together at the end.  Any suggestions for how your crew handles it?  Right now we all try to group up behind the tomb, killing it ASAP, then whoever gets marked next goes away from us and the group moves to the next tomb when it's up.  We kind of end up going back and forth between two tomb spots and the tanks try to run out when they're not doing the tanking to clear their magic buffet.  (Which is far funnier if you pronounce is like an all-you-can-eat and not like, you know, a blast of wind).  What really ends up happening right now is a clusterfuck.  Rich, chocolatey clusterfuck.  Mmm.

    INSTABILITY(4): Well, apparently I'm going to have to wrap this post up soon because otherwise I might die.  I hit enter and the debuff popped up.

    INSTABILITY(5): Damnit! You mean those two little sentences counted as a paragraph?  It was an aside, not actual content.  WTF?

    INSTABILITY(6): Great, now I'm really screwed.  I hope the healers are really on it today.  Speaking of being "on it", let's talk about Warlock Glyphs....



    Friday, June 11, 2010

    Out Of The Frying Pan

    Fulguralis's eyes snapped open as the tent flap slapped shut.  His wife had just gotten up in the middle of the night, again, leaving for unknown reasons, again.  The Warlock had tried following her on other nights, but he could never seem to keep up.  He blamed it on the hindrance of long robes.  Paladins always seemed to be just a hair swifter.  Also, quickness was not his style.

    Where was she going?  Fulguralis sat up and rubbed his eyes sleepily.  It was always the same thing.  She'd wake up with a jolt in the dead of the night, get up, and wander away.  Had he not known as much as he did about magic, he have thought her bewitched.  Priests were always doing that sort of thing to the unsuspecting or unprepared.  Not the good Priests, mind you, the more shadowy ones.

    Fulguralis had no problem with that; he preferred the shadows himself.  Fear was a useful tool when used appropriately.  Still, if one of those bastards was preying on his wife, they would be in for a world of slow, agonizing pain.  If there was one thing Fulguralis knew, it was how to make the pain last.

    More likely she was sleep walking, but she had never exhibited the tendency before.  The Warlock was certainly puzzled.  Ever since taking that locket from her with its strange inscription on the back, Fuubaar's stability had seemed to continue to erode.  Fulguralis wasn't sure he even knew who she was any more.  She was distant and sullen in her more lucid moments, crazed and, frankly, scary on the battlefield.  The Warlock desperately wanted to bridge the chasm forming between them, but he had always been far better at burning bridges than building them.

    The fear that corrupted Fulguralis most inside was that she was seeking comfort in another's arms.  That she had totally given up on him.  That he was not enough.  Though he kept up his facade of confidence and control, on the inside Fulguralis was warring with more demons than usual.  Self-doubt was a festering sore in the mind of a Warlock that, if left alone, would eventually weaken the barriers that kept minion from being master.  It wasn't only his marriage that was at stake here, but his very sanity.  Without the woman he loved, he wasn't sure he'd survive.

    If only he knew how to start the conversation.  If only he had some sort of clue.

    Wrapping his cloak around himself, Fulguralis slipped quietly out of the tent grimacing at the cold, crisp Northrend air.  Perhaps he would get lucky tonight and stumble upon his wandering wife.  Maybe that would be the break he needed.

    *  *  *

    More than a world away, Decedereful stepped out of the inn at Honor Hold and walked with purpose towards the barracks.  The hot air buffeted her like a furnace.  The Death Knight thought that if she stayed here long enough, the chill of the grave itself might leave her bones.  It had been a very long time since she'd felt truly warm.  

    Even so, she strode quickly towards the large stone structure.  She needed to find a battlemage and get a port to Northrend.  She needed to find her brother.  The information she had was hotter than anything this peninsula had to offer.  Decedereful knew her brother was hurting, suspected his confidence was eroding.  He needed to hear what she'd learned, if only to save himself from himself.  Family was hard to come by in Azeroth right now.

    Loud shouts stopped the Death Knight in her tracks.  Around her, the hold suddenly became a beehive of activity.  Soldiers were running around haphazardly, shouting as if the world were breaking about.  The cracked ground trembled beneath her feet as she stared as the disorganized soldiers.  Decedereful wondered if a simple earth tremor always caused such commotion.  Surely soldiers serving in the Outlands should display more mettle than this.

    "Look out!" A fresh faced young soldier called from several paces away.  He was staring directly at her with wide eyes and pointing towards the sky.  

    Decedereful felt a chill for a moment as her eyes fell on the young man's panic stricken baby blues.  It was cooler in the shade here.  

    Shade?  Decedereful realized with a start that she was standing in the middle of open ground.  Why am I in the shade?  Alarm cranked her neck skyward.  Directly above, rocketing towards her at an alarming rate was a rather large hunk of rock.  What was worse, green flames appeared to be dancing joyously on its surface. 

    That can't be good, were the last thoughts Decedereful had time to think before the world went dark.

    Thursday, June 10, 2010

    Into The Fire

    A fiery blast of air hit Decedereful in the face as she stepped from the portal and onto Hellfire Peninsula. High stone walls surrounded the moisture starved land that made up the interior of Honor Hold. The keep itself sat atop a hill and loomed above her as she attempted to get her bearings.

    Heavily armored alliance guardsmen milled around her, toiling in the hot sun.  Few gave her a second glance as she started up the path leading to the keep.  Had she possess functional sweat glands, she would already have been sweating profusely as she labored up the incline.  It didn't take too much exertion to elicit a bead in this perpetual heat, yet any evidence of moisture on the soldiers had been swiftly snatched away by the dry air that blew as if from a furnace.  It was not a pleasant station, yet it was one of the original footholds for the Alliance in the Outlands, so there was a certain pride to serving there that offset the misery.

    "Your orders?" A footman guarding entry to the keep asked blandly.

    Decedereful eyed the man curiously, wondering if her burning blue eyes might cause her trouble.  The man, however, stared back with a uninterested look.  Soldiers who had served a turn in the Outlands generally were a little more laid back than the Eastern Kingdoms fare.

    "Lady Jaina has sent me and I have a message for Force Commander Danath," Decedereful intoned.  It was a harmless play on the truth.  After all, Lady Jaina did send her and she did have a message for Danath.  Let the man link the two if he wished.

    The man hardly blinked, "Up the stairs at the back, then.  The Commander'll be at his desk."  He gave her a salute and returned to staring back down the hill at nothing.

    The keep was largely utilitarian, with most of it's spaces given over to storerooms and equipment racks.  A stand of armor her, a box of goods there were the only decorations.  Dece hurriedly found the wooden stairs at the back, same as they were in every keep made by humans, and wound her way to the top. 

    Couriers danced around each other in the hallway, providing a constant stream of activity in and out of the room that surely contained the Commander's desk.  Decedereful entered and surveyed the scene.  Only a handful of people stood around examining maps and other miscellanea, but her eyes quickly found a graying man who exuded the aura of authority seated behind a large wooden desk in the back of the room.

    Danath Trollbane had white hair with a matching beard that flowed down to his chest.  His sun bleached uniform had seen better days, but his eyes were vibrant and busy as they scanned the piece of parchment in his hand.  Dece crossed the room and stood patiently before the desk, waiting for the Commander to acknowledge her presence.  As soon as he finished with the document, he placed it neatly on a stack in front of him and turned his piercing eyes to study her.

    "Yes, Death Knight?" he said.  Mild irritation colored his voice, but his face otherwise remained impassive.

    "Lady Jaina sent me.  I have a few questions about a Captain Brightrune," Decedereful posited.

    The first name raised one eyebrow, the second sent its partner up to join the first high on Danath's brow.  "Strange questions from one such as yourself,"  Danath admitted, then glanced around the room.  "Leave us!" He bellowed.  The room emptied.

    "If it were anyone but Jaina asking," he began, "I might question their motives.  However..." he trailed off.

    "Sir?" Decedereful prodded.

    Danath waved a callused hand through the air, "It's no matter.  Brightrune is a name I've not heard for some time.  Well before the Third War I should think." 

    "Do you know where he is?" Dece asked hopefully.

    "Dead I should think," he replied bluntly.  Then, with a considering look at Decedereful amended, "Perhaps that's one of the better fates for the loyal sons of Stromgarde.  No, I suppose I don't know at that.  Why do you ask?"

    In response, Decedereful held up the necklace she had brought with her, "A friend was in possession of this and I've been tasked with finding out how she came about it."

    "She, you say?" Danath asked incredulously.  "Could it be? Brightrune blood lives on?"

    "What are you saying?" Decedereful asked.

    Dece found her own eyebrows climbing skyward as Danath Trollbane recounted a somewhat preposterous piecemeal tale based mostly on hearsay.  Still, when he'd finished, Decedereful couldn't help but be anxious to leave.  With what she'd learned, she needed to return to her brother right away.  There was something he need to know about his young bride.

    (Note: As promised, we'll get a dual episode this week with more to come tomorrow.  I had this done last Friday just never got a chance to post it, and purposely saved it for today so we can do back to back.  I suppose that makes some sense, right?  Besides, it's never too early to start celebrating Friday.)

    Wednesday, June 9, 2010

    I Talk Smack In Raids

    Yeah, that's right. I do. Wanna fight about it?  I talk smack to the trash.  I talk smack to the bosses.  And, yes, I talk smack to my fellow raiders sometimes.  Not always is it in vent or chat, sometimes it's just out loud without keying in, but I totally do it.  Tell me you don't do the same.  Honestly?  Liar.

    For the record, usually my smack talking is heavily laced with profanity.  Thus, examples will generally be more mild than reality (Ha, me. Mild.  Right).  Actual results may vary.

    I wanted to admit to this today because I think there is a general disapproval shown towards talking smack, or e-peening as it's called.  After all, e-peening is childish and bad right?  To a point, I agree, and the majority of what we see is mindless, unhelpful e-peening that crosses that point.  The question I want to ask then is if e-peening can be mindful.  Can talking smack actually help you raid group?  When done correctly, I think so.

    I'm going to break my smack talk down into three main types and explain why I believe they can be used constructively in a raid environment.  Now, you have to apply a certain amount of maturity and brain power to the smack talking (But not too much, mind you.  The best smack is generally off-the-cuff).  Also, keep in mind the key is to help the group here, not break it apart.

    First, we have the "Screw This Boss" category. 
    Let's face it, bosses are meant to be frustrating.  Frustration equals challenge.  Or maybe that's the other way around.  Apply the transitive axiom of equality and you have it.  (Did I just reference an axiom of equality... yes, yes I did.  Wanna fight about it?).  A great way to vent frustration is to talk smack.  Yeah, let it out.  If you wanna call the boss a twatface, do it.  Loudly.  In vent.

    The bonus points come here when key that shit in.  Seriously.  Sometimes you're having a wipe-fest and it just needs to be done.  Like on Professor Putrizzle.  I like to yell such inspired shit as "Profess this, fucktard" and "Chuck another green ball at me, I dare you.  I double dare you.  Chuck one more ball motha-shutyomouth".  (If you are hurting for inspiration, find a Sam Jackson soundboard.  Or Full Metal Jacket.  Tweak some of those and you have it.)

    Care must be taken here that you don't talk over the raid leader's instructions.  Also, don't over do it.  Sometimes a one-liner is what the doctor ordered to release some tension and let everyone know that, hey, raiding is frustrating, but we're doing some fun shit too.  Also, you may need to censor yourself depending on your guild.  PuGs are probably not the place to do this, at least not right away.  Then again, it may make the night for someone.  You never know unless you try, and bottling it all up just isn't healthy.  Plus, there's nothing like some good smack to help unite you all against the common, shit-spawning foe.

    So next time lady D-bag starts on her monologue and you're pulling trash, feel free to tell her to shut the hell up; she'll get hers.  Her and her little adds, too.

    Next, the "Just For Me" category.
    This post is all about honesty and letting it out.  Look at your man, then back at me. Now look at your man.  He's standing in a fire.  Yes, this happens.  Every. Raid.  Someone will do something completely dumb.  It may be all one person, or it may be spread around.  Everyone preaches: be nice, help them, teach them.

    Forget that.  Scream at the top of your lungs.  Wake up your kids.  Call that person every name you can think of that ends in -ucker.  Like Mushroom and Swiss Burgerucker.  Just don't key this smack in.  Trust me, this is the deconstructive smack.  Sometimes, people are playing like idiots, and we should just call a spade a spade... in the privacy of our own home.  This helps if you have one other person you can bitch at.

    Letting it out is good.  Holding it in is not.  Once you unleash the beast on the dust mites in your computer lab, then the healing can begin.  As long as you're holding it in, you're going to be nurturing resentment.  Just take care not to let this turn into repetitive talking smack about someone behind their back.  Say it once, then put it in a magical bubble and LET IT GO.  Personally, I'm more likely to ninja-yell at the tool belt that feels the urge to keep track of every mistake you've ever made and relate them at length in your ear than the poor sod who just didn't realize the goddamn red rope leads directly to the person you need to run towards.

    Finally, the "Friendly Competition" category.
    I'm a competitive guy.  I'm huge into sports.  I've talked about the strange double standard of sports v. raiding on here before.  One is socially acceptable to be obsessed with, the other is not.  They almost seem of two different worlds, but, really, they hold nearly everything in common.  You have fat basement dwelling nerds that play fantasy sports as often as you do playing video games.  Nothing about sports helps your complexion or your lisp.

    My point here is that I take the same attitude on the court that I do in a raid.  My goal is always to win.  If we didn't win, I'm not happy.  I hate to lose.  I usually play at least twice a week on a men's league team in various sports (Basketball and softball mostly nowadays, but I've done flag football, disc golf, even ultimate Frisbee.  If there is a city league of it, I'll try it).  I try to raid a couple times a week as well.  I approach both with the same attitude.

    In sports, it's not uncommon to talk a little smack.  In fact, that's often part of the game.  Even talking some smack to your teammates.  When Joe Everyman is just not pulling his weight on the basketball floor and I'm making it rain from the three point line, sometimes I just have to talk a little smack about it.  A lot of the times, Joe will step up and start playing harder to rise to the challenge, if only to shut me the hell up.  I'm not nasty about it; I don't question his manhood or anything.  I just simply make sure he's well aware of the quality of the masonry he's putting up.

    The same thing can be useful in raiding.  I'm not a big meter spammer, but I will most definitely whisper other DPS that I know and brag a bit.  A lot of times, they'll try to get back at me on the next fight.  This engenders a little friendly competition that makes the night more fun, the raid more challenging, and the team better as a whole since we're putting out bigger numbers.

    Like the other categories, you have to take care to not lose sight of the bigger goal.  I make sure when I'm talking smack that I not only talk about raw DPS, but raw DPS while doing my job.  I'm not standing in the fires or letting bone spikes half their way with my buddy's prostate.  I'm topping the chart while getting shit done.  A good way to make sure you do this is to treat it as a full night competition.  Often, different fights require different people to step up.  If there's one that favors your, there's probably one that favors your buddy.  Thus, you gotta make the most of your opportunities. 

    To sum it up.
    Whether you're Telling the Boss Off, Yelling In Private, or Prodding A Friend, smack talking is not all bad.  It has it's place just like any of the other spells in your spellbook.  Don't be afraid to put /cast Smack Talk on your action bar.  Bind that shit to your push to talk key.  Get it off your chest.  Just don't be an idiot about it.  Or rather, be an idiot, just not the idiot that makes everyone else want to talk smack.  It's a fine line, I know, but I can walk it.  Not my fault if you can't, you Smack Talk Failucker.  (Pronounced Fah-luck-er, wanna fight about it?).

    Tuesday, June 8, 2010

    /GlaresAtManBehindCurtain... We Cool Now?

    A couple of housekeeping items before we get back into things:

    1. Blogger inexplicably locked me out yesterday.  Did anyone else experience this?  Oh, I could see the site just fine; I just couldn't get into the posting area.  I wanted to post this yesterday but couldn't even work on it.  Woe is me.
    2. Sadly, neither Fuu nor I will be attending Blizzcon again this year.  The fall is a bad time for me to travel due to other commitments, and they always have Blizzcon in the fall.  Here endeth the discussion on Blizzcon tickets as far as I'm concerned.  I wish I could experience the festivities, but it's just not in the cards.  Poor Fuu could go alone, but we don't do that.  We're like the puke couple you see that dresses the same and has codependency issues.  
    3. Seriously, we get all mushy after spending any more than twelve hours apart.  I've been know to do stuff like stand forlornly in the living room wondering what the hell I'm supposed to do when she's gone.  Don't say it's cute; it's sad.  Love stole any semblance of being self-reliant from us, the vile emotion.  And don't talk to us about spawning.  Other warlocks are cornering that market.  And we get it enough from our parents.  We still think we're too co-selfish.
    4. If you're looking to meet us, come up to Indy for Gencon.  We'll be there.  I'll be wearing my red WoW hat with my old guild sigil on the front (the lion).  It also says Fulguralis on the back.  Say hi.  We won't bite.  
    5. You may also get a peak as Jessabelle if find us at Gencon, as we will likely be in her company as much as drunkenly possible.  I assure you, she still exists.  We chat about Civ IV on gchat at work (and still raid once a week).  Yeah, I picked up Civ IV finally.  Welcome to last decade.  Totally an addicting game, though.  They've got a sweet battle-chesty like combo for like $40.  With four games included, it's pretty buxom, and that's always good.  Anybody ever try the "play by email" option?  Is it any good?
    6. Last week's IC post is 98% written and it never got finished.  I will probably therefore make a special double IC post this week and finish that one off for tomorrow.  Dunno whether that makes folks happy or roll their eyes.  
    7. I'm glad Gnomer is still watching.  I would hate to think my underhanded machinations are going unappreciated due to some silly scuffle amongst the lesser classes of Azeroth.  And also, I <3 my banner.  Just sayin'.
    That is all.

    Wednesday, June 2, 2010

    Geeky Girls Gone Wild! Er... Girls Gone Geeky!!!!!!

    Hey Gang!

    If you haven't read the Girls Gone Geek Post over at Miss Medicina's Blog... Go Right now & DO IT! I'll Wait.

    Welcome back! So are you on the charter for the club yet?! For those of you who were A) Allergic to Jess's blog & did not read it or B) Too Lazy to click on a link (for Shame)

    June is Celebrate Geeky Girl Month! 

    As you can see, Fuu celebrates by taking her pants off & tanking an entire instance while proving that girls do play WoW & can tank... actually she was just showing off her tanking epeen (and her pixelated booty) to her guildies.

    Why do I support this Club? Well for one, I'm a Girl & two I'm a Geek. I've also been a huge gamer since my original Nintendo & my Dad's old school IBM where I played my first Sims game (Sim Ant fyi). Once I got my first clunky PlayStation I was hooked on Final Fantasy. I would play for hours at a time & for months on end. I used to print out where all of the treasures where so that I could finish everything in one swoop (which would take me upwards to 5-7 months). No small feat if you ask me. Gaming was such a huge part of my life. I loved it and still do today.

    Here in lies the problem though, I didn't have any friends who were gamers. I couldn't ask them how they beat Zelda or how long it took them to grind for the Legendary Shield of blah. I mean, it was such a part of my life but I had no one to share it with. Even when I had guy friends, they would only be playing the latest Madden game or Golden Eye (which OMG I would beat the living daylights out of them with Slappers only). I do remember one time when I was in high school where one of my girl friend's brother's had a Nintendo 64 and we played Mario Kart until our fingers were aching. If you must know, I was always Donkey Kong (the fat pixelated monkey who's kart was so slow that people would lap me). It was actually nice to play with someone else who was a girl. This was a true gift at this awkward age. Where gaming wasn't cool and girls had to be sexy in order to fit in.

    Looking back at it, it made me sort of sad to think that I couldn't share my love of gaming with others freely for fear of being judged (of Light) or labeled as a geek. The more I think about it though, perhaps I should have just embraced my passion & threw a net out to see if there were other "gamer girls" in my school. Hind Sight 20/20 right? Talking with Jessabelle yesterday made me realize how much I did miss out on. Things that I know that I would have enjoyed but wasn't brave enough to do it alone. 

    Now is different because I actually have people that I care about in my life to share my geeky passions with. I have a wonderful husband who games right by my side. I have an entire guild of people that I can honestly say that I've shared a beer with in real life. And most of all, I have a great girl friend who urges me on to express my inner geek. Injecting bravery to try all of the things that I've missed out. 

    This year, I'm going to Gen-con in Indianapolis, IN. This will be my very first Gaming Convention and I cannot express to you how excited I am to go and be with my friends. I'm also doing something that I've never done before and that is wear a costume. Now, I'm not going to LARP (aka Live action roleplay) or anything quite yet, but I figure how often do you get to actually dress up in your life? Halloween and random college breakfast clubs but that's about it. I'm going to buy a medieval dress and maybe Elf ears (the ones that actually stick to your skin not the odd looking Goofy ones). I'm also going to be traveling to my very first Renaissance Fest in Ohio with Jess. Her & I have decided that we are going to dress up as beer wenches, get drunk & frolic in the forest.

    This is why I support Girls Gone Geek for the month of June. I implore you to reach inside and think about something that you've always wanted to do but weren't brave enough to do it for fear of rejection by others. WHO CARES! Life is too short to live like that. Pick up that game you've been too shy to buy. Start sitting in with your D&D friends. Go & see the new Iron Man movie with your girl friends. I'll bet if you do something that is outside of your box, you'll learn something about yourself.

    <3 Fuu

    PS: /wave to all of the new people who followed the link. I encourage you to sniff around, you might find your new favorite bloggers :)

    I'm Like An S-Country

    Did you know that Switzerland is not the oldest neutral country on record?  It was a surprise to me, but actually Sweden beat 'em to it by a year (1814 is when they were last involved in a war.  Switzerland established their neutrality at the Congress of Vienna in 1815).  Fact.  Wiki that shit.

    Another little known fact: one of life's greatest pleasures is when Mages and Hunters fight.  Really, it's a win-win.


    (I think Fuu is making the "real" post later today, fwiw).

    Tuesday, June 1, 2010

    Lore Memorial Day

    In honor of Memorial Day here in The States and also because I really enjoyed writing it, I'd like to link to an old post of mine.  It is a "fan fic" type post or in the same vein as what I call my IC Friday posts.  I figure some new people may have shown up around here and haven't had a chance to read it.  I believe it is one of my more emotional works, and appropriate.  It was written last September on the 11th, which will perhaps become the Memorial Day of my generation. That is to say, I think each generation always has a handful of days that stick out in memory.  For my parents, maybe it was JFK.  For me, it was 9/11.  It's one of those things that, as a kid at the time, you'll always remember where you were (Adults too, mind you, but I think when you were a child, you really have an opportunity to reflect on how little you understood, though you thought you knew everything.  Isn't that always how it goes?). 

    Apart from the RL implications, this story also notes some of the lore surrounding Stromgarde, a ghost of a city that has really become central to the on-going saga here on Fridays.  It's also pretty much stand alone, since there are no recurring characters in it.  Thus, I figured it'd be a "several-fold" good article to link, even if it is my own.  Is that unbelievably lazy, listing your own old stuff?  If so, sorry.  Then again, if you're like me you probably have triple digits in your feedreader from being busy all weekend and not keeping up.  If you're in that boat and you've read the article... by all means click "read" and carry on :-).

    Anyways, here's the link to my old story: In Honor of the Fallen.