Sunday, January 23, 2011

Incentivizing the Team: Turtles All the Way Down

So Blizz oversteered a bit on the WotLK and subsequent WotLK patches. Or rather, the gamers out-gamed the system, in this case, the Dungeon Finder system. It was meant to allow players access to 5 man dungeons whether or not their guild could support a 5 man run at the time.  To some extent it also incentivized folks to roll tanks and healers, as those two classes always had the shortest wait time to get in to a PUG dungeon via Dungeon Finder. But pretty soon people began to rely on the DF to level and farm for gear, and many bad tanking, healing, and even dps habits were not corrected in PUGs, in fact they were often supported, albeit inadvertently. I won't enumerate those since it's not the point of my post and it's been enumerated and discussed to death many places elsewhere (e.g., here).

In Cata, Blizz has decided the DF serves a function and should stay, but to balance the tendency to run without your guild, we now have "guild achievements" that allow your guild to "level up" and unlock guild-wide rewards. Our guild has a core of desperados who bite on everything hierarchical, from gear to personal and now guild achievements. So... we're humming along. Already at level 11 in the guild system. One of our guild leaders realized that a very cool thing to have unlocked would be the reward for a guild fishing out 10,000 fish. For those of you who have played and leveled fishing, you understand how close that number is to infinity. [Scary word to the unwise: there are two more steps in this: 50K and 100K fish. Yah. Really.] The reward is the unlocking of the "new" fish feat recipe. Toward that end, a fish-in was organized for Saturday afternoon. Most of us jumped into vent (Ventrilo) to chat and help the time pass.

Cleverly this was timed to coincide the wkend fishing contest in which the first player to get a particular fish (black tipped shark or some such) wins a prize and gets a coveted "achievement" to add to their list of uber achievements.

Now, I'm a very efficient player. I tend toward efficiency in real life. I am fast and smooth in tasks of all kinds. It didn't strike me as a surprise that at the end of two hours I had caught the most fish, by quite a bit. Here's the downside of my efficiency and the upside. The downside: I actually caught the shark, and probably was the first person to do so, but neglected to notice I had it in my bag. [I was able to turn it in for a consolation prize but... wow, that was a major /facepalm.] The upside: I caught the extremely rare turtle mount (see below) and got the achievement for it, Turtles All the Way Down.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

I want a Camel Mount

Time flies. Or so it would seem. Hit level 85 with Tynaqua very quickly. Leveled my professions. Made a killing in the early Cataclysm Auction House market. Sitting on about 16K gold, which is especially phenomenal for me. It probably represents the fact that I have nothing much to spend it on. I've even given away gold to Sarah and some doc students.

New zones are quite fun. Great new quest mechanics. Wonderful homages to Indiana Jones, Jules Verne, and more. Still haven't gotten enough rep. to get a camel mount but you know I will. This mount is only for a quest with Harrison Jones... lol, get it?

More later...