Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Yep, delayed till January, and to hear the beta tester on Terror Nova tell it, not much to get excited about.

Oh yeah?

Here's a snippet from an interview with Frank Pearce, Sr. VP of Product Development

Will there be any... what I noticed is that the Alliance hub and the Horde hub are quite close together. Is the idea that it'll be one almighty scrap?

Frank Pearce: I don't know about an almighty scrap, but all the Outland zones are going to be contested territory. And there'll be outdoor PvP objectives, or goals to have outdoor PvP objectives in all those zones. Whether or not we'll hit them all up at once with PvP objectives remains to be seen. But that's our goal.

The outdoor PvP objectives in the zone of Nagrand involve the town of Halaa If you don't control that town, if your faction doesn't control that town then you'll have PvP objectives to kill the guards and whatnot and part of that will involve strafing runs over the town 'on rails' where you'll drop bombs. That should be fun.


Blizzard said recently that the plan is to release WoW expansions on a yearly basis...

Frank Pearce: That's our goal.

How set in stone is that plan, and how far into the future are you looking in terms of overall WoW development?

Frank Pearce: Well, the goal is concrete. That's our goal, and we've publicly stated that. Whether or not we'll be able to achieve that goal remains to be seen. An expansion set of the scope of The Burning Crusade is a lot of content to deliver on, on an annual basis. We're working to improve our production methods, to try and be more efficient on delivering and creating quality content. But at the end of the day, the quality of the experience is more important than the timeline it's delivered in. It's our goal to do it in that timeline but, if it's not ready, then... [sounds, on our dictaphone, like someone was eating a big bag of crisps at this point so we couldn't quite hear what was said. No one was actually eating a big bag of crisps, but that's what it sounds like].

And as far as how long we'd do that, that depends on the community, right? Because if players are playing WoW, we certainly want to continue to support it.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The other side of the game

Found this blog posting and found that it resonated more than I cared to admit. Balance in life seems to be a tricky thing, and games expressly designed to absorb time certainly play into that.

Where's that MC signup?

Monday, October 16, 2006

I am Meesiah!

I know I'm behind on my posting all over the place, but this'll have to do as a stopgap

Meesiah was a toon I encountered when I first went into BGs with DruidiaJane. An undead priest, she was just impossible to stop. It was freakish - she'd be in the game, and bam - Horde wins. Killing her was near to impossible, and when she ran with her guildies from Zeiram - game over.

I have become Meesiah.

Well, maybe not really, but today, as a break from work and building printed schedules and other assorted b.s., I logged into Shadowpeeg to take a run in Warsong, and it happened. Alliance went down 1-0, and it happened fast - so fast I wondered if they were using a speed hack, and then I kicked it in gear. I got across the mid, and into the tunnel untouched. No boots, but into the flag room, and grabbed the flag. Nice, but not wildly unusual. Popped a speed pot, bubbled, renewed myself, ran the tunnel, feared the pursuit, renewed, bubbled, boots weren't up but I cappped. A good run. 1-1.

Waiting a moment, it suddenly became clear to me how the next flag was going to go down. Horde had a huge zerg incoming, and so I paused for just long enough - about 15 seconds, before heading out over the gy. Midfield was completely clear, but to make it take just a little longer, I ran ramp, and sure enough, some Alliance player grabbed the Horde flag and made a dash for it. I could see them start to take damage right away, even as I headed for the horde balcony, and knew they were toasted nubcakes. Flag returned just as I dropped into the flag room. Bubbled, renewed, grabbed the flag and headed out the tunnel.

Met the defenders coming back up the tunnel, feared, renewed, and dropped the speed pot to get out into the midfield. Passed the Horde FC and they made the mistake of turning toward me, just as all of the Alliance GY emptied out. They pounced on the Horde FC, I bubbled, desperate prayer, renewed and dispelled like mad into the tunnel - boots were up, and I capped. 2-1.

It was one of those rare moments, quite frankly, where text told more than it normally does. "damn good job" came a tell, and another whispered "now let's win". The shift of momentum was palpable. I renewed, and I headed out over the gy.

I could see there were two players ahead of me, and I knew that I'd gone tunnel both times, so I typed "grab their flag and go ramp". Sure enough, I met our FC mid ramp, bubbled him and got him through the midfield scrum and up the tunnel. He was a twinked rogue, and when we reached the flag room (ours was gone, of course), he /say'd "passing to you shadow, I'll go kill". We passed, I bubbled and went to the balcony. I watched as the retrieval crew headed out to midfield, then shifted to our GY tents. Ten or 15 seconds later, the retrieval was into their base, and just seconds after that, one of them said "cap" even though the return hadn't happened. I knew enough about that rogue, however, just in the 10 minutes we'd played together, to know that he was going to finish the job, and I dropped a speed pot and headed to the flag room

The flag reappeared just as I was three yards from the cap. 3-1, and +200 rep for the game (!). I swear I heard 10 Horde players yelling "Shiiiit! Damn that Shadowpeeg! Fuck!" as the scoreboard came up.

I am Meesiah.

And damn, it feels good.


So I drank a little tonight, and whilst on the long gryphon flight from Auberdine to Silithus, the beast within emerged, showing hunger... I listened to my thirst for nutrition, and moved into position.

I came in upwind..scanning the common food prey that frequented this area. I peered quietly into the cabinets to see my options of kill. The oatmeal, too risky as it takes too long to ensnare. The chips looked malnourished, and weren't to my liking. The crackers, again, weren't tantamount to the needs of the nutrition receptacle.

I searched on..

The jar of pickles looked like steak to an interest. The box of cheesy scalloped potatoes were not aligned with the quickness of need, which my hunger indicator professed.

Ahh..I see you.

*lowers, pulling against the stove, to keep my presence unknown*

Alone..helpless..unaware.. A box of Basic 4 cereal..captivated by the vision of a girl walking in the rain..holding her umbrella tightly..spilling too much salt to be unnoticed by its carrier..stared on in amazement of the carelessness... how fitting.

It had no chance....


Top of the food chain at its fucking finest.

I lashed out, quick as a black mamba, and stole away the unsuspecting cardboard embodiment of the grain, nut and fruit victim, like a thief in a jewelry store.

I tore into it like Christmas was five days late. Spilled it's battle won contents into a primitive, plastic bowl. Doused it with milk I had bartered from this "walmart" lad earlier that day, and shoveled it's daily allowance of whole wheat victory into my awaiting, highly developed, devouring device.

No attention to its cries..I was unaffected by its drowning gasps for oxygen and help. Again, it had no chance this eve.

After I was done with the body of the hunt, I held its milky remains high..and let it pour down my body to revel in the kill....more like I drank the milk and rinsed out the bowl in the sink.. But nontheless!! I savored my trophy.

You'd think my craving for sustenance was quenched..not whatsoever, as I was unsure to when I would see my next available prey.

I could hear the helpless cry of four, unattended cookies. In their dire need of protection from their mother/baker, they gave their trademark, toll-house distress yelp. They resorted to cowering under the ill-advised safety of instant, unreactive and dehydrated rice. Desperate, they were detected giving the sound cues of utter abandonment. I'm assuming someone already devoured the parents under a similiar situaion.

None of my concern..I crouched..crept..and slithered my way into position in for the pounce.

Another resourceful night lived on the grocery hunting plains.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Who Pulled the Surger with the Core Hound?

I have now had my second MC run. Nothing like the first one. We must have wiped about 3 or 4 times. I think people were tired, cause when Bizz got testy and we focused up, we had no real problems. Now the more I play the MC, the funnier the MC Raiders tune is, and the less funny the Onyxia wipe tape is. It's also increasingly clear that there really is some task complexity to leadership in this sort of complex simultaneous large group foray. It has a very military feel to it, in that there are subgroup specializations, and those groups need some leadership as well. The take-downs of the mobs and bosses are really very tactical. I wonder if military folks make the best leaders, which is an odd thought because in the middle of the MC run last night Soveigny announced he'd gotten a call and was just promoted in his military unit, to something fairly high level. I am also aware of a military dude in one of my guilds, and who knows how many others. If the game weren't so addicting, it might make a nice training ground. Although...that horrible run yesterday took from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. I can't believe I managed to stay in it without getting restless.

Okay so the good news, bad news part is: Good news, I got two Felheart pieces, for only 40 DKP total. The bad news, I was the aggmag as we were trying to slide around the corner and not deal with a couple of mobs. Nearly wiped the group cause they whacked us from behind. I'm still not sure it was my fault, but Bizz said the first guy to die is the person who pulled 'em. I think a bunch of us went down at once cause the mob threw an AOE fireblast, but what the heck. I felt very bad cause Bizz had been yelling at people during the Baron wipes (drat that Baron / Shazz combo makes for a tough room.). He had been threatening to toss people out of hte raid if they exploded as living bomb in a group of people. So I pst'd him about leaving and he laughed and said, if I kicked out everyone who had made a mistake I'd only have 20 people left to play.

I don't know how people do it, I have a hard time just "seeing" what's going on. My toon view is often blocked by various toons. I'm also struck by the need to be so mobile. You have to get close enough to be within range to cast, yet far enough to avoid harm. These distances rarely, if ever, overlap, which means you have to pay attention to the action and run in when it's safe and bang out some spells, then turn tail and run when the mob cranks up the AOE. Suddenly all those doofy talent points that merely increase distance seem way more important than they did when I was leveling up. I figure after a couple more runs I'll be up for a respec.

Anyhow, here's some shots for you to enjoy. There's the obvious wipe at Baron/Shazz; you can see the priests starting to rez people. And I've added the visual mess that IS a 40 man raid fighting in a narrow area (of which there are many in MC). And, last but not least, I've added a shot of Saami up in Azshara completing a quest. Saami is gonna go for Dragonscale LW, and the trainer is up there.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Virgin Run

Yup. Got that first MC run under my belt and did it with Crimson. I was lucky to have a friendly face, Twinkleheal, along on the run. It helped calm me down. There really isn't much info forthcoming for n00bs on an MC run. Yeah, sure, Bizz was on vent calling out the plan and reprimanding both the goofy and the error-prone. When he called out, in a rather testy tone, "The next living bomb who takes out a group of people will be removed from the raid and lose DKP" ... it was all I could do to NOT type: and 50 DKP minus in the chat window. LOL.

But toward the end of the raid, when I whispered a question to the wizzened ole lock and friend Nunnster, he asked if I were on the lock channel. Huh wha? says I. So he tells me to join channel 7 with the other three warlocks. Dude, I type furiously, told you I was a n00b on MC; don't assume I know everything. Of course I added the requisite LOL to indicate I wasn't pissy.

As a warlock, I had a major obligation to keep elementals banished while the tanks held the aggro on the main boss and the casters tossed all they could at it. Fun and yet, more than a little nerve wracking. We got as far as taking down Sulfuron. That only took two efforts. We had a full wipe only once, at the Baron. That was the living bomb problem mentioned above.

I did bid on some sweeeeeeeeet epics, and was super annoyed to learn that when I bid my max pts, 73, the two items in question were each won with a bid of 75. Arg. So close and yet so far. But hey, it was my first run. At least I know what to expect now, and that matters a whole lot.

I was hugely surprised by the dmg reports. I expected the warrior tanks to have the max, but DUH, they were busily being aggmags. It was the rogues who really racked it up. I get it now, and I see why James said what he said about MT. I felt so worried for poor TK (Trendkiller) as MT. What a lot of responsibility.

I'll have to grab a snap of my RL setup. It's pretty funny. I'm on vent on the HP lappie whilst playing on the MacBook Pro lappie. I'm including a few of my fav snaps. The first is after the wipe. This is the line to get back in. The second is after we downed Sulfuron, sorta proof we got there and did our jorb. The third is just an shot of the many toons....omg.