Monday, November 30, 2015

Monday Random Thoughts

- Hope everyone enjoyed their feast in game and the Americans outside of game as well.

- I spent my extra time off this weekend playing some Civ 5.

- Not to say I did not play warcraft, but for some reason I had a desire to play some Civ.

- As far as in game goes what a difference a week makes.

- With everyone (at least those that pushed it) already capped on valor and having all their gear upgraded the LFRs were back to nightmare mode.

- As I like to call them, hell FR.

- But not all was bad.

- Goes to show you all you need is four people to have a good run.

- One solid tank, one golden healer and two top notch damage dealers.

- That is about all my group had going for it in part 2 of HFC LFR this weekend.

- Maybe my poor groups have more to do with the fact I do them like 6 AM on a sunday morning than anything else.

- But this group was the average LFR group outside of us 4.

- First boss the boomkin gave me a run for my money on council.

- The tank basically solo tanked it.

- And everyone was at full health the entire time thanks to an amazing healer in all 725 or better gear.

- His gear, and his skill, added up to the fact the other four healers could have went DPS.

- As a matter of fact, the druid that was challenging me was queued up as a healer.

- Same guild as the healer so he probably knew he would not be needed as heals.

- Second boss I set an LFR record for myself on killrog.

- Not like that is hard, it is only the third time I killed it in LFR.

- Did it the week it came out, last week and this week.

- Did 187K.

- Me and the druid with another damage dealer went in on the first visions.

- Went we came out the boss was at 60% health and he melted before the buff even ran off.

- The druid did 148K.

- The tank solo tanked it again and the healer, basically, solo healed it.

- Third boss, I got sucked in first, but with the burst from me and the druid we burnt it on the first feast.

- After it was done he was at 2% and we just finished him off.

- So that was not hell, that was awesome.

- Oddly enough my archie group was kick butt too.

- Not one single "great" player in it, except for maybe the healers.

- The tanks did not move the boss right, people ran doomfire through everyone, you name it the group did it wrong, but our health never dipped.

- I did 19.7% of total damage done, and no one died, the DPS was just that low otherwise.

- But as I said, on the backs of some fine healers it was no problem.

- Goes to show you, all you need is a few good players for a good run.

- One shotting archie in LFR is an accomplishment if you ask me.

- The first and third wings however, they were the perfect example of hell FR.

- I will not even go into details, just lets say we wiped to everything you could possibly think to wipe to.

- I think we even wiped to things I think were not possible.

- I tanked some bosses, I tanked lots of trash, I tanked nearly as much as I DPSed.

- MD and feign death only go so far.

- See, told you survival should be a tank spec, hunters need it.

- Speaking of aggro issues, and high numbers in LFR, I have two weekend stories to share.

- First up an LFR one.

- After iron reaver in LFR one of the DPS whispered me "what are you in, all mythic gear".

- I thought he was being sarcastic, but I replied anyway, "mostly normal and still a couple of pieces from blackrock foundry, wish I had all heroic never the less mythic."

- He said he only does LFR so he loves seeing what people could so sometimes.

- I inspected him and he seemed to have a mix of baleful, world boss and LFR gear, I explained to him how to inspect others.

- I also told him to try and get into a normal, with practice he can do just fine.

- I told him my numbers are pretty much average for a raider, maybe a tiny bit above average.

- I added him to my real ID and told him that maybe one day I can bring him along on a normal run if he is interested, maybe even a few bosses of heroic if we are able.

- He will never be able to come with me, the times do not match, I don't raid at 6 in the morning. lol

- But it was the thought that counts right?

- Next story is from a dungeon, make that two dungeons, two in a row at that.

- My one daily heroic Saturday and my one daily heroic on Sunday.

- Both tanks were wearing that stupid thing that disables me being able to misdirect to them.

- Seriously WTF?

- If you are in tank spec you should not be able to even apply that thing.

- Sundays run was no biggie, it was a geared tank that was holding aggro just fine, but Saturdays run was annoying as hell.

- The tank yelled at me for pulling aggro.

- I said, take of the neutralizer, or whatever it is called and explained hunters generate more threat than any other class in the game by design, we have MD and FD to handle that situation.

- I said, if you are not going to let me MD to you, do not complain about threat.

- I think I was in the right.

- He has absolutely zero right to complain about threat issues if he will not let me misdirect to him.

- This went on for a while, I even started to use the old school game play of waiting for the tank to get some aggro.

- Count to 5 to stay alive.

- I still pulled threat instantly on my first shot.

- After some back and forth the healer just said, don't worry about it, if he loses a mob he will keep me alive.

- Said I was easier to heal than the tank was too.

- After I stopped worrying about aggro and just pulled off the tank, the run went smooth.

- If you can call me tanking it smooth that is.

- A shout out to that healer, thanks for making that run decent, the tank was a jerk refusing to take off the buff and then complaining about aggro.

- Seriously, blizzard needs to chance that so if you are in tank spec you can not use it.

- More so if you are a poor tank, be it due to skill or gear.

- Being you can not judge skill sadly it needs to be a blanket effect so no tanks can use that item.

- All in all, I had some good groups, I had some poor groups, but over all the groups were not as good as they were last week when everyone and their mother wanted valor.

- How quickly things change now.

- Fits the warlords model of one and done.

- It seems like everything we do is done so fast.

- I think the people that stay around like me are a dying breed.

- I think the game is being designed more for people to come and go than it used to be.

- As if they do not want people staying subscribed.

- I wonder why?

- Could be it telling of what to expect in the future?

- I guess we will have to wait to find out.

- The funny thing about the future is the best way to see it is wait for it.

- I tried to pug some raiding this weekend as we got none done.

- We raid Thursdays and being in the US meant most people were away for thanksgiving.

- I was being my normal picky self.

- Funniest one I saw when looking was a "one shot" group looking for more on archie.

- Said they had been in queue for 7 hours.

- I think they should remove the "one shot" line from their advertisement.

- It does not take 7 hours to one shot the entire raid.

- You could not even pay me to sign up for that one, but I must admit, I wonder if they ever managed to get it down.

- I could not find any groups that were on bosses I wanted, mainly heroic tier bosses, trinket bosses or archie, that seemed inviting to me.

- So after about 2 hours of looking I settled for a normal archie for the ring upgrade.

- I got into this awesome groups.

- And no I am not being sarcastic, it was awesome.

- I was inspecting as we assembled and there were some people in full mythic gear.

- One hunter with all 725 or higher pieces, nice.

- No way I am beating him, but this should be a nice challenge.

- We pull and the boss just melts, about 6 of us, including myself, go over 200K on the pull.

- The first doomfire did not live for 3 seconds, if that long.

- If you had never done this fight before and someone mentioned all the adds you would say, what adds.

- They were dead as they spawned.

- We used the zerg first nether approach and the thing died before the last person even hit the ground going in.

- He was at less than 5% when the second nether spawned and everyone went in again and we wiped because of that because the one tank and one healer that stayed out could not survive even if we were out near instantly.

- Opps, we got this next time, just assign 3 people as the sacrifice group to go in on the second and we collect loot.

- But noooooooooo.

- People started to drop.

- Oh come on, this is an easy kill on the second attempt.

- Even if you go get another group it will still require another attempt, why not stay with this group which will get it on the next attempt.

- I don't get it.

- I almost beat that mythic hunter too, I wanted another go at him, but he left too.

- He did 78K and I did 76K, only 0.1% difference in damage done.

- I would have got him next attempt, I am sure of it.

- How there could be too ways to look at this.

- He was either doing very poor for his gear or I was doing very good for mine.

- While it was most likely to former I am going to go with the latter and say I was doing good, just because it makes me feel better.

- We refill, we wiped again, the group did worse.

- More drop, more fill, more wipe, and the cycle repeats.

- Why didn't that first pull group just stay together.

- I swear I will never understand people.

- I try, it is just not possible, people make no sense.

- We did finally get it down after about 6 pulls, I used a coin trying to get the neck with a gem slot, which would be a good upgrade for me, but ended up with the trinket.

- Some people would be jumping for joy with getting their class trinket, but as marksman it sucks.

- I did think of a way to make the trinket better however.

- Being we need to stack up so often, and it loses all its worth unless you are max range.

- So unless you have healers that want extra work of healing you when you are not stacked with others, you are really hurting the group making the most out of that trinket.

- So that is when I came up with my awesome idea for that trinket.

- No only do you get a damage increase the further away you are from the boss, you also get a damage taken reduction the further you stand away from the boss.

- That way it would work wonders, stand at max range, take nearly no damage and get the damage boost.

- That is the only way it would be a great trinket, like class trinkets are supposed to be, great.

- As it is, it is situational at best, crappy on average.

- You can tell no one at blizzard plays a hunter.

- Just look at how they are being destroyed next expansion, but to think this trinket was a good idea there had to be no one that 1) has ever raided and 2) had played a hunter, if they thought this was a great class trinket.

- Novelty trinket is more like it.

- It is more suited to be something that dropped off one of the rares on T2.

- Well, just my opinion, I am sure some love it.

- Heck, I could see a group with a few MM hunters even having them all stay at max range and have a healer float around with them.

- So it does have some uses, it can be good.

- I would just rather a trinket that is always good, not situational good.

- But hey, don't listen to my word for it, I am one picky mofo.

- Why do you think it takes me forever to even find pugs, I am way to picky.

- I have to really learn to break that pattern.

- Maybe in the future, wait for it. ;)

- Have a great day.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Monday Random Thoughts

- How is the first week of valor treating you?

- I missed doing some stuff.

- Did not get the daily heroic once and I am still missing 2 mythics.

- I guess I could still do them tonight, but do not feel pressed to do so oddly enough.

- All because I know all my gear will be upgraded next week either way.

- Only 4 pieces still not upgraded.

- I have a few blackrock foundry pieces still on that can not be upgraded.

- That is why I am done so fast.

- Had a debate with someone in guild when I passed on a 710 neck even though I am wearing a 691.

- He said I was making a mistake.

- Made a big deal of it too.

- I shut him quickly by explaining that stats mean more than item level for a damage dealer.

- Can't argue mathematics.

- I explained why the 691 was better, because of the fact it has my two best stats and a 75 gem in it as opposed to the 710 with my two worst stats and no gem slot.

- My neck is still, albeit slightly, better than the 710.

- Now if it were warforged it might have been better.

- Just might.

- Those gem slots mean a lot, even more so if you put a 75 gem in it.

- Mr Robot even says the 710 is -12 and Mr Robot does well with math stuff.

- I would never trust them on trinkets or things like tier sets, things with additional stuff, but straight up pieces, they are right 100 out of 100 times.

- Because it is straight up math.

- When I reach the critical strike soft cap things will change stat wise and I could upgrade for item level purposes, maybe.

- I need the heroic tier legs, the best tier piece for me, and all I have is the normal version, so I am using a pair of 715 pants otherwise at the moment.

- But when I get the tier pants, with critical on them and then take off the gloves, without critical on them, and can put on the pair of 705 gloves with a gem slot I have, with critical on them, based on napkin math I will be at the soft cap for critical.

- Then I can start thinking of changing that neck piece, but now the value of critical is still high for me and makes that neck awesome.

- Needless to say, that person will never be questioning me about my gearing choices again.

- I know what I want to roll on before I step into the raid.

- Like if I know today is farm night and we are knocking out the first 6 or 7, or whatever we have time for, I know which ones I will roll on.

- If it is warforged is it an upgrade, if it has a gem slot is it an upgrade, does it need both to be considered an upgrade.

- Just seems like way to much work.

- Why can't they just make it simple?

- I thought that was their idea for this expansion, to make gearing more exciting and simpler.

- It now needs more research than ever before.

- And the loss of reforging makes it even worse, because now the seemingly good upgrades are useless.

- It would take anyone that does not look into stats make a gearing mistake easily.

- Take the necks I compared, the 691 and 710.

- To a novice the 710 seems like a sure upgrade, even if the 691 has a gem slot, but it isn't.

- However, with reforging still in game it would be.

- So they made gearing more complex by adding random stuff to it and removed the one thing that could be used to offset some of that added complexity.

- But then again, knowing what you would reforge would just add another level of complexity wouldn't it?

- So it would be replacing one problem with another problem.

- But that does not change the fact I want reforging back, I want it bad badly.

- But all these random things like warforged and gem slots really just screw everything up so nothing is as straight forward as it could be, or should be.

- How exactly does that make things easier?

- It also kills me for pugging stuff.

- My low item level keeps me out of so many runs because they see the item level and just dismiss me as fast as I sign up.

- Looking for my moose, as my guild has still not killed archie on heroic, as everyone seems to have given up after normal, so I tried to get into some groups.

- One said 725 item level, 40K DPS minimum.

- Seriously?

- What do they want, underachievers?

- If you are a 725 item level as a damage dealer and can only do 40K you are not all that attentive with what you are doing, do you really expect people that only do 40K at that item level to be attentive enough to follow the mechanics.

- No bother, I did not have the item level to sign up for it anyway, not that I would have, no thank you, that group was asking to wipe.

- Now if you said 680 and 40K, I would expect those people to all be decently skilled players.

- If they can pull that DPS at that level they need to pay attention to their class, which means they will pay attention to the fight mechanics.

- I would bet you anything that a group of all 680 people capable of 40K would get it down a lot easier than a group of 725 people all doing 40K.

- Because one group (the 680) would need to be the type that pays attention to details and the other group (the 725) would be the type that just slaps their keyboard and lets the gear do the work for them when they are not really paying attention.

- Next group that peaked my interest said 710 50K.

- That seems more reasonable.

- I might not be 710 but it counts the items in your bags and by bags I am 713 and not 705.

- So I sign up because I have the item level and can easily pull the required DPS they asked for.

- I wait about a minute and a half and get declined.

- Next up a 700 group that asks, fairly enough and this sounded like a group I would really like, that you have TisFC achievement and at least some attempts at heroic archie.

- I fit that, I am over 700, have the time achievement from a while back, and have had some pulls on the heroic version.

- I sign up, get turned down near instantly.

- What is it?

- sniff, sniff.

- Does my armor stink or something?

- I try again 6 or 7 times and get anything from the wait until it times out or get declined instantly.

- I decided I would try to make it easier on myself by adding some things when I signed up.

- Started saying won't roll on loot and linking my logs.

- That way if there is a friend in the guild that is a hunter they do not have to worry about me rolling on their loot.

- And if they follow the link to my logs they will see that I am normally between 94%-99% for my item level consistently, as my item level goes up my DPS goes up.

- So it is not just at a certain item level I do respectable, I usually do.

- After adding the no loot and logs thing I sign up for another 3 or 4, same results.

- Seriously how do people keep saying "pugging is so easy" when I spent the better part of 4 hours signing up for groups, groups I am WAY more than capable of being in, and not getting one.

- Sorry, pugging is not easy.

- Anyone that says otherwise is completely full of shit.

- If you get invited to a group because you are friends with someone, even if it is a pug, you can not call that pugging.

- Pugging is getting into a completely random group.

- And they seem to hate me.

- I have less luck finding a pug than I do getting loot.

- And we all know I have no luck getting loot being I just mentioned I am still wearing some blackrock foundry pieces.

- Now back to more fun stuff, mythic dungeons.

- Was easy enough to get all guild for those, so no need to pug.

- Loved them in all guild, they felt more like normal than mythic.

- The trash was harder than any of the bosses, but isn't it always that way.

- My favorite one was doing Auchiindoun.

- When you start to over power that one it is just a giant series of patchwork fights.

- First boss, dead before it threw the shield for us to get behind.

- Second boss, dead before it spawned the bubble we have to stand in.

- Third boss, dead before he lifted into the air.

- Forth boss, dead before the first abyssal finished spawning.

- In other words, all 4 bosses  just walk up to them, kill them, collect loot and walk off.

- I did all but 2 of the dungeons, won a total of 4 pieces, none I needed of course.

- But for anyone that might be keeping track of these things 2 of them were 685, one was 705 and one was 710.

- So from my tiny sampling 50% of my drops were warforged.

- In the run of those with guild two players got a maxed warforged one of 725.

- So it is not like the 725 are all that rare either it seems.

- What was that, 6 dungeons?

- So again, in that small sample, there was a one third chance that one in five people will get a 725.

- Seems like a small enough chance to make it reasonable that people are not covered in 725 gear from mythic but a big enough chance to make it worth running them.

- Too bad after this next reset I will not need valor any more, unless I get new gear.

- But I might keep doing the mythic dungeons to try and get upgrades from there.

- I have to try somewhere.

- I wish there was a way to disable the roll from popping up.

- I am always afraid I am going to click it by accident.

- I would not mind if the chance to win a 725, if you win, was 100%.

- But if I waste a coin and get lucky enough to win something it will be a 685, I am sure of it, so I would never waste a coin there.

- Unless I got my best in slot (heroic) gear from the raid and was looking for a specific piece.

- But like I said, that is not going to be happening anytime soon with my luck.

- The addition of valor made playing this weekend... enjoyable.

- And having flying made playing this weekend... enjoyable.

- Makes you wonder why these two things were not included at launch like they should have been.

- Aren't things that are enjoyable good for the game?

- I'd like to think so, but I understand if not everyone likes them, because not everyone likes the same things.

- This is why having them, as a choice, is a good thing.

- Those that want to do it can do it, those that do not want to do them don't.

- Choice is nice isn't it?

- I actually enjoyed doing dungeons again thanks to valor and flying for many reasons.

- 1) I flew around from dig site to dig site.

- 2) I flew around sporadically grabbing treasures I might have missed or killing rares.

- 3) I checked on rare spawns in T2 flying around.

- 4) When I got in the dungeon it went super smooth, I mean a heroic with pugs was as simple, easy and smooth as doing the mythics with my guild were.

- 5) I got to meet some people at or near my skill level instead of doing 80% of the damage or more sometimes.

- 6) I got to see some seriously geared people and see what they could do, like one run had a tank that was doing over 100K even on bosses which is insane for a tank.

- 7) And when it was all over I got a reward worth queuing up for in the first place, to me at least.

- Needless to say, I liked it.

- Just wish there were more reason to do it.

- Sad that after this week when everything is upgraded and I have a small stash, there really is no reason to do that again.

- I'll join guild mates for a few mythic dungeons here and there and that should keep me with enough valor should I win anything else.

- Either way, for a week it was nice.

- Now all they need to do is add more things to do with valor to make it worth doing each week.

- For my alts some valor gear would be nice.

- Not sure what else could be added, maybe a mount or two for 4000 valor.

- But even at that, you can get that in one week.

- As much as I really love that there is no cap on how much you can earn each week, other than running out of valor things to do, it is not good design.

- See, I can admit that even something I like is bad for the game.

- And I like being able to get over 4K valor in a week.

- But it is bad for the game.

- If it were 1K a week like before than it would have extended the life of valor being useful and the fun that I had this week getting it.

- Then again, maybe it wouldn't.

- I would log in on tuesday, knock out four mythic dungeons, and be done with valor for the week.

- So it still would not be as fun as it was this week.

- So what the hell do I know right?

- I am sure there is a happy medium, I just think blizzard needs to find it.

- I hope they figure out something before they release the next expansion.

- Because it would be really nice to have flying and a reason to do dungeons from the get go.

- So I can fly around doing things while I wait in queue and I can have a smoother run in the dungeons.

- Hey, I find that fun, nothing wrong with me wanting to have fun in game right?

- We do play to have fun after all don't we.

- Have a great day.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Reason to Log in on Reset Day (But For How Long)

This expansion was missing something, a very important part of the game, for the entire expansion thus far, and that is a reason to log in on reset day.  Of course at the start of the expansion when everything was fresh and new you would want to log in on reset, but it was not because it was reset, it was because it was all still new and shiny.

My guild does not raid on Tuesdays so even raiding was not a reason to log in on Tuesdays.  We ditched raiding on Tuesdays back in wrath because of the constant delays with the game being up in time for raid and being a casual guild it was never really imperative to raid on Tuesdays to begin with.

So what inspires some people, like me, to log in on reset day?  Something we feel is worth doing of course.  Something that resets on reset day, which is after all why it is called reset day.  Something that I felt was worth doing even on alts.  As I mentioned about raiding, which is the big thing that resets on reset day, that had not be a motivator for me since, what is it, 2008.

Why I logged on for reset was always about valor.  It was valor reset day.  I could start capping characters again and I was usually good for capping at least one if not more in recent years, every single week.  I enjoyed logging in to do that, it felt as if there was something worth doing.  While the fact does remain valor gear is not back yet, as it should be, we can upgrade our gear with valor now.  And unless you are like me, someone who is still wearing a few blackrock foundry pieces (don't judge, I have horrible luck), you will most likely be able to upgrade every single piece of gear you are wearing.

At 250 valor per 5 point upgrade, meaning 500 per piece for the full 10 points you are allowed to upgrade, that means you will need, at most, 8000 valor to upgrade all your gear.  In the old days that meant at least 8 weeks of valor capping.  That meant there was a chance you would get an upgrade in 8 weeks.  It means even me with my bad luck has a chance to get an upgrade after 8 weeks.  So that in turn could mean even longer to get enough valor to upgrade all your pieces as there would be a new piece in the mix I would now need to upgrade once more.

For me, having some sort of currency like valor was a key to making the game repeatable, doing those same things over and over again, the things we stopped doing early on this expansion.  There have been no real reason to run dungeons, no real reason to run LFR, no real reason to do anything but log in on raid nights.  So having something in the game, something that is useful to help my characters personal progression, is a great motivator to logging in on reset day for me.  It has been a key component to what made a game like this great, it allowed what was otherwise one and done content, as in content that is consumed quickly with no need to return to it, worth doing again, that is the glory of valor.  I am glad it is coming back, it gives me a reason to log in on reset day again.  Even if I can easily get everything done over the course of a week, I still like getting it out of the way on reset day.

But that brings me to a question as there is no longer a cap on valor you can gain per week.  As far as it seems there is around 4700+ valor you can get each week now and you can get all of it.  No cap of 1000 per week.  However, there is an over all cap.  If you already have everything upgraded you can only bank 5000 valor for later use.  But unless you get 10 new pieces of gear in one run (I wish I had a run like that) you won't be able to blow through those reserves faster than it would take to replenish what you spent.

So instead of it taking 8 weeks to upgrade all your gear it is theoretically possible to upgrade all your gear in 2 weeks, even if you have every single slot with an eligible piece.  And you would have lots of valor left over to boot.

So lets say you want to max out the level on your existing gear, and cap out at 5000, you can do so in 3 weeks.  Is this really a replacement for the valor that made me love logging in every week on reset day or is this some fake substitute that will be like the rest of the expansion has been, something you do quick and are done with.  I am thinking it will be more along the line of the latter. 

Even more so when you think about the rate people get new gear, or at least people like me, I might need to get some valor once in a blue moon, but it will not be like old valor.  It will be warlords valor, where everything is one and done.  Heck, you will not even need to keep a reserve if you do not want to.  As I said, it is not like someone is going to get 10 upgrades in one week, which is what would need to happen for you to not be able to upgrade everything in one weeks worth of valor.  So you do not even need to be sitting on a reserve.

Warlords has screwed up everything, I think they even screwed up valor.  What is even worse is valor, at least for me, is completely useless on alts.  We need valor gear, not valor upgrade. 

Come now, do I really want to upgrade a 670 trinket on my mage?  Nah, I would rather there be a 700 one I could buy with valor points.  Upgrading a 670 to 680 would not motivate me to play my mage, but letting me buy a 700 sure as hell would.  Blizzard seems to have forgotten how to make things worth doing long term anymore.  They only know how to design for one and done content.

Hey, at least for a couple of weeks I have a reason to log in on Tuesday for reset day and I am happy for that.  Just wish they had done a better job with bring valor back.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Monday Random Thoughts - Fallout 4 Edition

- I did not play too much warcraft this weekend.

- Logged on Saturday for an alt raid.

- Took forever to get enough people to do it.

- Even did the first 2 bosses with only 9 before a 10th showed.

- We only managed 6 bosses in an hour and a half, but it was productive.

- Two people switched to mains for tier bosses to try and get their 4th tier piece.

- Both got it.

- So even if we did not do much, it was a productive night.

- And a lot of alts got gear.

- Funny part is one person was on a cloth alt.

- The only cloth wearing player so you figured it would be a good night for them right?

- 6 bosses, not one cloth piece.

- Reminds me of whenever I tank on my warrior.

- We disenchant plate every week over and over, unless I am there, then no plate drops.

- Such is life they say.

- Now to fallout 4.

- Friday night I started playing, a little behind the pack.

- Did not really have time during the week to play.

- My play time usually comes on weekends, even more so this weekend as I was sick, so I played fallout 4 all weekend.

- See, there is a good side to having a cold sometimes, you can play games and not feel bad you are not doing anything else.

- I am really liking it thus far, but as with everything there are some things I can nit pick about.

- Mostly color issues.

- I love the feel of fallout 4, that 50s style.

- And the music is great and fits the style well.

- Sadly there are not a great deal of songs so listening to the radio plays itself out really fast.

- I really like dogmeat, the companion.

- Even if I now have many others to choose from, he is the one I like best.

- Could it be because he is so cute?

- Could it be because I do not need to give him stimpacks?

- Could it be because he can not die?

- Could it be because I still get the loner bonus even if he is with me?

- Or could it just be that over all he is the least intrusive?

- Maybe a little of all, but I have not really tried all the others out yet.

- Tried one for a short time only and then dismissed him.

- Then I could not find dogmeat again.

- Where did you go?

- Seems he went back to where I originally found him.

- Well... that makes sense.

- Not used to games making sense after playing blizzard games so much.

- I hate that I can not get the camera further out, I am not a first person shooter type of player.

- Honestly I hate FPSers for the most part.

- I try to play with the camera out as far as I can most of the time.

- Unless I am scouring an area for goodies.

- Sometimes they are easier to find in first person.

- Okay, have to ask this, is it my color blindness or it is nearly impossible to see stuff in the game sometimes?

- Kill a mob on the road at night, go to loot its body, where the hell is it?

- I think I have spent more time trying to "find" bodies of people I have killed as I have killing people.

- Is it my color blindness doing it, or is it really that hard to see.

- It is one of those cases I hope it is not just me.

- There was one area, hubris comics, there on the second, or was it third, floor, I could not see where the hell I was going, I mean, at all.

- It was so dark I was firing off weapons just to make some light.

- If I did not do that I would have never finished the quest there.

- I ended up going through a path that I swear I could not see was there, at all.

- If they start making mods for this game there are two I would really love to see.

- One would be to make it brighter.

- The other would be to make loot sparkle some.

- Like in warcraft, and basically every other RPG out there.

- Stuff just blends together.

- I am up to level 11, have completed a fair deal of quests, and died more than a couple of times.

- Your standard everyday gaming stuff.

- First death?

- Deathclaw, of course.

- Was not expecting him to come out of nowhere and he beat me like a red headed step child.

- Other deaths, getting sniped to death by a mob I could not figure out where the hell they were.

- Nor could I get out of line of sight or distance it.

- Then there is the, admit it we have all done it, moment there you go to make a jump it looks like you can easily make and you don't exactly make it.

- Splat, street pizza.

- Word of advice, save often.

- And I am not talking just letting the quick save do it for you.

- Sure that saves often, but you want to have saves before you enter each big area too.

- A separate one, not the base quick save.

- Why you ask?

- Because you can get stuck quite easily is some places.

- I got stuck in one I was too stubborn to reset my game because I did not want to have to do what I did all over again.

- I spent about 30 minutes jumping moving positioning, just to try to get out.

- I did, finally, but that I when I learned, have a lot of save back ups.

- Now I save before anything dangerous.

- Don't want to work a long dungeon and then get stuck in a wall and get screwed.

- Saving is not a bad idea either way.

- Even before talking to people, so you can test out how they react to you.

- Maybe even see what you can get away with.

- Ask for money up front, ask for more money, or just be a jerk to one of those guys that is a jerk to you.

- You might not want to keep a game where you were a smart ass to them, but it was still fun to basically tell them to go screw themselves.

- There are bad guys around every corner here it seems.

- Funny how the main city is in Fenway park.

- Love the one guys description of how you play baseball.

- Won't spoil it for you if you want to play, but it is worth asking him all about baseball to see how he thinks it used to be played.

- I walk from place to place a lot, even if I can quick move.

- The reason being is you never know what you will find.

- I've found tiny settlements, I've found small dungeons, I've found people just traveling in the middle of nowhere.

- None of which are marked on the map.

- It pays to explore.

- Still getting a hang of upgrading weapons.

- Helps having read that you can downgrade weapons you loot and then their upgrade is put into your pack under mods.

- Then you can use that upgrade on a weapon, even if you do not have the skill to make that upgrade naturally.

- So luck does play a part in getting some nice upgrades.

- I love building settlements.

- And I hate building settlements.

- Placing stuff is so darn hard sometimes.

- But once you get it going it seems to get better.

- Just wish we had a better view while placing items.

- Speaking of things I would like when building settlements.

- WTB a flat surface to build on, anywhere.

- Trying to place housing is like finding a needle in a haystack.

- I gave up in some places.

- Others I have a really nice settlement going.

- Okay who else just put beds out in the middle of nowhere at the beginning?

- Please say it wasn't just me that made my people sleep under the stars.

- Hey, at least I gave them the nice beds and not just some sack on the ground.

- I've put more work into the other settlements that I think I forgot about my main settlement.

- I have to look up some stuff today, because I really do not know much about the game just yet.

- Like what is max population of the settlements.

- What the hell do the +s, the hearts, the starts, and other notations mean on some thing.

- I think the stars are legendary.

- Think the +s are upgrade levels.

- Have no clue what the hell the hearts mean.

- My gear loves me?

- Maybe?

- I also what to see what type of gear dogmeat can wear.

- Want to deck out my pup.

- The art is done well, the presentation is done well, the sounds are done well, and the game has been over all good thus far.

- Not sure how it is going to hold up as time goes on for me, as I won't be playing during the week and I will forget where things might be when I log on during the weekend again.

- With something like a dozen active quests it is only logical I will forget what my plan of attack was not playing for a week.

- My goal however is to build a castle, somewhere.

- Have not decided where yet, need to find a nice place with lots of flat land.

- Then I want to invest all my time and energy building one super city.

- Just for the fun of it.

- We all need goals in life and in gaming.

- Mine is to build a castle so high it touches the sky.

- Have a great day.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

It is Never to Early to Start Planning for 7.0

While  it is entirely true that we could be looking at another 10 months of warlords that doesn't mean that there are not a few things we should keep in mind when it comes to thinking about getting ready for the next expansion.

Maybe you have been through this before, maybe you have not, but I will tell you that it is very easy to keep telling yourself,  "I'll get to it later", and then before you know it the prepatch has landed and you are out of time because you are too busy trying to learn your new rotations, play with your new abilities, and finish off what seems like 101 other things you waited until the last minute for, that you missed the best time to do something, or missed the last time to do something.

We might not know what to expect and there is a hell of a lot that can still change.  After all the beta for legion is not even out yet.  But that does not mean you can't try to get a leg up and work on some of the more simple things before time starts getting short.  So I've made a very small list of a few things that might be worth considering, at least they are things I am currently thinking about.

Hunters, Get a Polearm

There is only one spec of only one class in the game that is changing the weapons they use come next expansion and that is the survival hunter.  While blizzard has said that they will make sure that hunters get a polearm when the patch comes, I say it is better to be safe than sorry.  For all we know blizzard will give hunters a free 630 crafted polearm.  If I had to guess they might give us a baleful weapon token that we can use while having survival as our loot specialization and maybe, just maybe, and empowered apexis fragment to upgrade it.

All we know is blizzard said survival hunters will get a weapon to help adjust to the charge.  I suggest not waiting for them or counting on them to do the right thing.  While you can not win a polearm on a coin roll, and you can not make one from a baleful weapon, if you are currently raiding at normal or higher, you can roll for one if no one else needs it.  Don't be a jerk about it, let anyone that can use it for main spec, or even for off spec get it first.  But if no one needs it and it is going to be sharded, ask to have it and keep it in your bags.  That way you do not have to depend on blizzard doing the right thing and giving you a polearm equal to the item level of your current ranged weapon (which would be the only fair way to do it in my opinion).

Even if you do not intend to play around with the new hunter melee spec, might as well grab one while you can.  It is better to have one and not need it, then notice you need one and not have it.

Make a Mog Bank Alt or Three

If you are someone that is interested in transmog but are out of bag space and was spending most of your time vendoring those items you got from your salvage crates instead of seeing what you might wear maybe it is time to think about holding on to them.  After all they are BoE mostly and you can send them to someone else to hold for you for the time being, and a guild bank alt can surely hold a lot of BoEs.

With the wardrobe coming anything you hold on to is going to only temporarily take up space.   Once 7.0 is released and you bind those BoE items to you by equipping them they will become learned and you can ditch them.

For the time being why not make a alt guild bank and send all those BoEs you snag from your salvage crates or from soloing old content over to the bank for safe keeping until it is time for you to learn them.

If you do plan on filling out your mog listing, now is the time because for all we know blizzard will nerf the hell out of salvage crates come 7.0, which would not be out of line for what they usually do to old money making options once a new expansions pre patch comes out.

Pro Tip:  As we do not really know if this will work this might not be the best tip but if it works, it is one hell of a killer tip.  If wardrobe does work how I (and it seems many others) believe it will work, anything you can equip will be added to your wardrobe.  So perhaps having a plate wearing character as your bank alt holding all those BoEs so you can equip everything, as in all the plate, mail, leather and cloth gear and then vendor it would be the best option instead of having to mail everything to classes that could do so. As a side note, when wardrobes are added soloing as a plate wearer so you can equip everything that is not class restricted sounds like a pretty good idea to me.

Switch Professions

A great deal of players dropped their gathering professions this expansion being it was so easy to get materials.  They figured they would never need them again.  A great many players I have spoken to in guild and other places have told me the same, that they ditched their gathering professions, and you might be one of those people too, yes you.

If you ditched a gathering profession this expansion perhaps you could consider picking it back up again.  Even if you only level your mining or herbalist through doing it in your garrison and never stepping outside, you should have more than ample time to get back to max level.  Skinning, sorry, but you will have to go out and skin.  I suggest nagrand.  Lots of animals, really super easy to kill now, and it is a ghost town there on most servers.

You will need your gathering professions again next expansion, but if you would rather just buy your materials instead of farming them, that is your right.  I like making money off you and I support that right of yours. ~insert over used 'show me the money' catch phrase here~

However, if you do plan to be self sufficient, perhaps you should start considering getting those gathering professions back before the expansion comes.  The last thing you want to do is be stuck collecting "fragments" of herbs and ore and skin for 700 skill levels before you get the real stuff after the expansion hits.

Or perhaps you were one of those people that made additional tailors to make a lot of bags, or made extra jewel crafters so you could take advantage of the lucrative jewel crafting daily every day.  It might be time to switch back to something more suitable for your characters.

Lets not even mention that right now many of us are sitting on a massive pile of materials, maybe even 10,000 primal spirits like myself, so switching a profession while you have those materials just laying around doing nothing anyway will be quick and easy.  And it will give you something to use those primal spirits on.

Pick a Third Profession?

Take this one with a grain of salt and call it more a dream of mine, as I have been saying for a long time that professions would be opening up some more.  Either by becoming account wide like mounts and toys and pets and so much other stuff has, or that they would be letting us take a third profession.  While I have absolutely zero proof either of these two things are happening, I do have a solid reason to believe we might be able to have three professions next expansion.  At least three.

Are we getting a third profession option?

I do not know how you would read this image, but to me it sure looks like that person had three professions, namely enchanting, skinning and herbalism. Outside of the obvious question of why the hell someone would choose those three professions to go together there is the one that jumps out at me.  Does this person have three professions and will we be having 3, or more, professions in legion?

It might just be something they were doing to test professions allowing people to have more during the alpha where this image was taken from for testing purposes, but with my best wishful thinking I am hoping this means we will have three professions come legion.

With that in mind, maybe it is time to start thinking what you want your characters to add.  For example, your herbalist and alchemist could easily meld well with adding inscription.  Perhaps your enchanting and tailoring alt could help your many plate wearing characters by collecting ore as well.  Or that blacksmith and miner you have could add either jewelcrafting or engineering, which both make some sense.  Or maybe you just have that druid that was a gathering alts for many years, because of their instant flight form, could now pick up the third gathering profession or maybe add a crafting profession you need to fill the spots so they can finally be promoted from being only a simple gathering alt.

All cool things to think about if you ask me.  And I am already considering what my third profession will be for all my characters.  Lets hope this was not just some "test" they happened to screen cap and show at blizzcon because I hate getting my hopes up for nothing.

(Edit:  Sadly Jaeger pointed out the quite logical thing that maybe the skinning and herbalism are just enchants to increase them while on the broken islands. I think he might be right.  Darn, I was so hoping for a third profession.)

Unload Materials

It is never too early to start unloading materials.  If you have been active all expansion or if you have a million and one alts, and you know you do, admit it, then you most likely have thousands of extra materials you will never use.  Heck, even if you do use them from time to time they are so easy to get now you can sell everything you have and restock on a whim as you need them with your garrison either by mining, herbing, or just trading extra garrison resources for what you need at the trading post.

Being the stacks are bigger now many of you might not even notice that you have more material than you will ever need.  It will just be clutter next expansion.  So ditch it now while someone still needs it.  Thanks to garrisons making people so much gold there are a great many player out there that no longer even try to gather, they just buy everything they need.  600 gold for a stack of food, on a bad day, proves that.  And I am on a small server.  So sell sell sell.  Sell while the selling is good.

Also you need to remember that blizzard has now, for a couple of expansions, made catching up on professions easier.  So much easier that you really do not need any old materials any longer.  So it will not be like the days before where at the end of wrath when infinite dust was worthless and I horded it and then sold it at the beginning of cataclysm and made an absolute killing when everyone wanted it but did not have any, just won't work as a gold making strategy any longer.

Blizzard will make a way to catch up with current materials so I will not be making a ton from old materials. Old materials, while they might still have some value, will never be worth as much as they are worth right now, because no one will need them next expansion or the one after that either thanks to professions always having catch up mechanics.

Ditch the old materials.  And while you are at it, ditch those 655, 685, and other BoEs you keep thinking "I'll sell later".  The window on getting anything from them is really closing fast.

Finish Those Challenge Modes

Anyone that might want the mounts or the transmog weapons from challenge modes, now is the time to start working on it.  If you do not have a group of friends to do it with then pugging groups that can net you all golds for the mog or even all silvers for the mount could take months.  Trust me, I know, been there and done that.  It is not fun and it sure as hell is not quick, you very well might need 10 months depending on how often you play.

The last thing someone that really wants these things wants to face it trying to get groups in the last few days before 7.0 comes out and seeing people ask only for people that already have gold.  Really people, if someone already has gold it would be easy to find a group that they would not be trying so hard now, or they would already have gold so why do it now, but that gripe about pugs aside, no one wants to miss getting the mount because they missed one silver in the closing days before challenge modes go bye bye.  Don't let that person be you.

What else do you think people should make sure to do?

Now, I know what all of you are going to say, "But Grumpy, the expansion is not coming out for as long as 10 months and 7.0 might be at closest 8 months away, why should be worry now?"  I will tell you why you should worry.  Because it is easy to get distracted, to go do something else, to think you will always have time to do this later.  Like it or not, there are a lot of procrastinators out there, me included, that think, "I'll do it later" and sometimes before you know it, later has passed and you missed the chance.

Maybe there are a few things I did not think of that come to your mind as things we should do before 7.0 comes.  Please share them.  I know I can use a gentle reminder sometimes and maybe someone else could too.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

How the New Transmog Wardrobe Made Me a Mogger

I say this from a very strange place in my game play life but I am really looking forward to the transmog changes.  The reason I say this is from a strange place in my game play life is because I never really cared too much about transmog, and after the announcement of the changes to transmog, now I do.

I have never been much of a mog person.  Sure I do it on my main, I even sought out the pieces so I could make the outfit I wanted for my main, but I only did it because it was there and I was bored at the time.  I also have used that one outfit since I made it and never looked for anything else.  I am content with it just as I would be probably be content with my ugly armor had blizzard never added transmog to begin with.

After seeing the announcement I have changed my mind.  Yes, I am capable of changing my mind.  No opinion I have ever had is truly set in stone, it is just my opinion at the time I make it and up until the blizzcon announcement my opinion on transmog was I could take it or leave it.  Blizzard did just enough to it with the announced changes to make me change my mind.

What changed my mind?  A few things really, but one thing really sold me.  Collecting.  I am a fool for collecting.  I used to collect pets before pet battles were in game.  Did they have a use?  Nope, but I made sure to get my hands on every single one I could.  I wanted to have one of each.  I was a collector and I like to collect things.  I am a collecting freak, what can I say.

So seeing that there will be a check list, basically, that shows me there are (for example) 480 chest pieces my hunter can mog into makes me want each and every one of them.  Not to mog into them, no, I have my chest piece and it is the only one I ever use, but I want all 480 of those chest pieces because there is a list that shows me what I have and what I do not have.  So I must get what I do not have.  The collector inside of me will not be happy until I do.

This means that an entire new world of adventure has been opened for me.  I've had lore master since I started playing.  I went back and did every quest I could find as soon as I had hit max level originally.  I still do every quest as soon as I find it, so the only issue I would have had was that I could not longer get those pieces.  However, blizzard is going to be kind enough to scan all our quests and give us all those rewards that we vendored off in the past.  Cool huh?  That does not mean I have nothing to seek out, there are all those raid drops and dungeon drops and world drops, I never held on to them.  I need them now, so I can go out in the world and start hunting for gear once more.  It just created a wealth of content for me.  Something this expansion could have really used.

I am extremely happy that blizzard is going to go through all the quests I have ever done, which is all of them, and award me not only the items I did take but the items I did not take that I would have been capable of using for transmog purposes.  How freaking awesome is that?  I take my fair share of shots at blizzard for the things they do wrong, but I also praise them for the things they do right and this, without a doubt, is the single biggest right thing they have done in a long time, a very long time.  Normally I would have expected them to release it and then there would be months and months of people asking for quest rewards before they would have added it.  Blizzard was forward thinking for once and knew that day would come and instead of having to be talked into doing the right thing they are doing the right thing from the get go and they deserve props for that.  Job well done blizzard.

It almost seems like blizzard nailed everything with the announcement of the new transmog system.  You have the wardrobe that shows what you have and what you need.  You have sets you can create so you can switch mogs nice and easy.  You can put tabards in the wardrobe, and that is something we have been asking for since, well, forever.  Even better is that it is account wide so now all my hunters can dress as my main hunter who just so happens to have 4 pieces on that were removed from the game which prohibited my other hunters from wearing the same mog set as him, but not any more.

It was hit after hit after hit.  And I do not even like mogging and I love this.  This was the most exciting bit of information to come out of blizzcon if you ask me.  Many might be surprised to hear that coming from me but none are more surprised that I am saying that than I am myself.

Who would have ever thought that an addition to the game that I threw to the side would eventually be something I consider the best new feature of an expansion.  This is either a very good thing or a very bad thing.  I guess depending on how you look at it.  But one thing I see, is that the next time we hit a lull like we have now, with the transmog wardrobe at least I will have something to do.  Add to my collection.

Who would have ever guessed the day would come where I, the grumpy elf, would be excited about transmog.  It's the seventh sign, I swear.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

These are Not the Hunters You are Looking For

Based on the original concept of a hunter in the warcraft game and how the class has been designed and played throughout its history the current incarnation of hunters come the release of Legion look nothing like what we have come to know and love as the hunter class.  No more are they the fast paced ranged physical damage dealing class with a pet in all three specs, heck, not even one spec meets that description any longer.  These are most definitely not the hunters I am looking for, that is for sure.  As a matter of fact, I don't even know what they are any longer but they surely not not the warcraft hunters that I originally fell in love with.

I am not throwing in the towel even if hunters are no longer the hunters we have come to know and love come the next expansion, at least from what we have seen with the early previews.  Be warned however to take everything we saw and everything I say here with a very large grain of salt.  As things are still subject to change and my opinions here are based on the extremely limited information we have and also based on what will most likely not be the finished products we see when the time comes.

We have been through a great many changes as a hunter.  In fact more than any other class has ever had to deal with as the only class that had their main resource changed a few years back.  All classes go through additions, removals, redesigns and what have you but no class has ever had it entire identity turned on its heels like hunters have had in the past and have even more so coming with legion.

Don't Wanna Be Your Beast of Burden

Beast Mastery hunters once again seem to have the fewest changes of all the hunter classes.  From mists to warlords they seemed almost identical, which made a lot of people very happy with the BM class.  They do not get away with such a light touch this time around but they still seem to change the least.  And being they changed a lot, that means something.

Beast Mastery will be more reliant on pets, more so then ever before and it does make sense for the spec as they are the masters of beasts are they not.  Blizzards idea, at least as it stands now, is for you to spend more time micromanaging your pets and less time on your hunters rotation.  To help push this agenda along they removed the focus generating ability from beast mastery hunters completely.  Now you just have to sit and wait there for focus to regenerate naturally, or with some talents, as I am sure will be added.  Effective making beast mastery hunters ranged rogues with a pet as focus, for BM will act more like energy than like focus does without a generating ability.

While BM does seem like it will be a lot of fun and you will often be running around with multiple pets instead of just one, it does lead to make concerns.  One major one being blizzards horrible track record with fights where pets will bug out and not attack at all.  There are a few this expansion, one of which I even reported on beta, that have still not been fixed.  This could effectively make using the spec a liability.  Being nearly all your damage is pet based through multiple pets and multiple pet talents, one bugged boss means you are completely useless and all that time spent leveling that BM artifact gun will mean nothing when you could switch to MM or SV with a completely leveled weapons and do better.  Lets hope, for once, blizzard has not pet unfriendly fights or BM is screwed and anyone that spent all their time working on their BM weapon is screwed.

Even with all the changes to BM, and there are a boat load of them. BM still remains the least changed spec, at least that is how it seems.  More reliance on pets, more pets, more requirement to micro manage pets, and no focus generator, but at least you are still a ranged damage dealer with a pet.

Losing a Spec and Gaining a Spec

For all intents and purposes hunters become the first class to ever lose a spec since the game was originally released.  The ranged spec known as survival is being removed and replaced with a melee spec of the same name.  I really wish they would change the name as this is not the survival spec we have all come to know and love.  They changed the rogue combat spec name to outlaw and that did not even go through a change like survival did, so why have survival keep the same name, it makes no sense to me.  But do not make any mistake, hunters lost a spec.

This is different that just changing a rotation, adding or removing some abilities, or changing our resources.  One spec and all identity it had is being removed from the game.  No class has ever had to deal with this and I would not wish it on any of them either.  It is a horrible thing to happen to someone that might happen to love their spec to see it removed from the game. 

How do you think someone that has been tanking on their warrior since vanilla would feel if warriors suddenly woke up and could no longer tank, or someone that has been healing as a holy priest since they started was told nope, if you want to heal as a priest now you need to be discipline because holy is now a white magic DPS spec.  I would not wish this on my worst enemy so needless to say I do not like it happening to my very own class, even if I was never a fan of survival to begin with.

I will admit from the early previews that our new spec, also named survival, does seem to have a lot going for it.  It looks, at first glance, to be something that might very well be fun, even if it is melee instead of the ranged spec we were previously used to.

Adding some potential for burst by chaining mongoose bites together as each bite increases the damage of the next bite within quick succession and by adding a cooldown named snake hunter that grants us 3 stacks of mongoose bite so we can string 6 together for some serious gives survival something it has been missing all expansion, and that is burst.  If you can manage to weave in other abilities, focus allowing, and proc even more bites the potential for long term burst is very attractive.

In melee with a pet will be something that will take some getting used to but from the early looks of it, it might also be fun because it is adding parts to the game that survival, the ranged, did not have all throughout warlords, such as burst.  I just wonder why they could not fix survival the ranged instead of removing it and adding survival the melee.

Survival will also be the only spec that will be able to utilize traps come Legion, which is a huge loss for both beast mastery hunters and marksman hunters. Oddly, it makes less sense for the melee class to have certain traps than it does ranged.  I would think the ranged classes would have a great deal more use for frost and ice trap, but traps were always intended to be more of a survival specialty and now it seems that is being made to happen, like it or not.

Even if the redesign to melee seems to at least be something that could be interesting and powerful the fact that hunters needed to lose a spec to get it will always be a hard pill to swallow for some.  No other class has ever had to suffer this indignity of having a spec removed, hunters should have not had to either.

I Don't Want to Play the Waiting Game

My biggest complaint about the information that was released is that two of the specs are losing focus completely.  Both beast mastery hunters and survival hunters are losing focus and getting energy instead.

No no, it is still called focus, but it now acts like energy instead of focus.  The beauty of focus, at least for me, was the fact that it was a never ending resource.  You spend it, you build it, you spend it, you build it.  It made for a very rapid style of game play, the style of game play I love.  As a matter of fact, that is one of the reasons I never switched classes to another class to DPS with.  Because hunters were the only ranged class that had that rapid fire mentality that melee do, but without the need to wait on resources to do things.  It made for an incredibly fun and fast paced play style which I loved.  Hunters controlled how fast, or slow, they took things.

Beast mastery and survival will no longer have a focus generator, or at least that is how it seems from the early preview.  So their focus will generate on its own, which effectively makes it energy.

There is a reason I do not play a feral druid or any type of rogue, and that is energy.  I really do enjoy the rapid "idea" of both classes, but they have to pool their responses for a bunch of quick fire moves and then wait to go through it all again.  I am not a fan of the waiting game.  It is also why I routinely call myself the worlds worst rogue despite the fact that rogues have the easiest rotation in the game.  It is because I am not good at waiting for resources to build.  It is why I suck as a rogue, and it is why I would suck as a beast mastery hunter and a survival hunter.

I will miss the old style of being a high speed class that required people to act in a manner that was always doing something.  Sure you could do fairly well as a hunter just hitting things as fast as you could but the real skill of being a hunter was hitting the right thing and never, ever, even wasting a tenth of a second.  I remember some years back when I did a post where I logged target dummy damage doing quick hits and doing hits delayed by 0.1 seconds, and the DPS difference was insane over a long fight.  So while everyone loves to say hunters are "easy" they never quite understood that to be a good one, you needed to be fast thinking because even a 0.1 second delay could be 10% of the damage you do over the course of a long fight.

That is my style, that is the way I like to play, that is one of the reasons I have always loved being a hunter and that is gone from two of the tree specs, as only marksman has a focus builder.

I Now Only Have One Spec, And I am Not Even Sure I Like It

I'll be the first to admit that as soon as I saw lock and load moved over to marksman as a passive and when it procs I get two instant aimed shots free of cost I smiled from ear to ear.  I mean what hunter, no matter what spec you play, hell what class, no matter what class you play, wouldn't like 2 instant cast and resource free powerful abilities going off?

Then there is the fact that marksman still has a focus generator, even if it is now arcane shot instead of steady shot.  It is also an instant focus generator, which is pretty sweet if you ask me.  So I still have a class that works on the rapid fire, fingers moving as fast as I can move them, style of game play that I love so much.  Plus one for marksman here.  Which at the moment seems to be the only spec worth playing in my mind.  At least as they have been presented to me.

But not all is well and good in marksman land.  Lone wolf is now baseline which sucks for solo play because I like having a pet out while questing and soloing and the such.  I personally believe that marksman should have a reverse option to what lone wolf used to be.  Where lone wolf gave you a bonus when you had no pet out, maybe have a version were you could have a pet out but you do less damage?  Just an idea.

At the moment the fact I can not have a pet, ever, is really a huge turn off to me as a hunter.  Even if I was never an avid pet collector on my main hunter I still love my pets.  I level every expansion with Fang, my first ever pet.  He does not see much play time, only when leveling, but he is always there for me when that time comes and he is ready to go.  The fact that I would lose that if I play marksman really upsets me, maybe in a mildly unhealthy way, who knows, but I do not mind raiding without a pet, but otherwise, I want my pet by my side.  It is what a hunter in warcraft is known for, in the great original cinematic, the dwarf and his bear, that is what a hunter is in the mythos of warcraft.  Marksman hunters need an option to have a pet.  Somehow they need to add it.

Two Fixes Could Make For a Happy Elf

Again I will state things can change and we do not even know everything they have out there yet for hunters, but there are two very simple fixes they could make to hunters that will make all the changes that much more bearable, for me at least.

One, add a focus builder back to BM and SV so they can become their rapid fire, always hitting something, selves once again and feel like real hunters once more instead of being rogues with energy.  Two, add an option for marksman to have a pet.

Really, it is as simple as that, those are the things I am most hung up on with the changes we have seen mentioned.  I can deal with ability changes.  I have lost things I liked before like volley.  So that is a roll with the punches sort of thing.  But removing the focus builders from BM and SV and the pet from MM is not rolling with the punches, that is getting punched in the nuggets.  And trust me, no one likes that feeling.

What's an Elf to do With no Viable Options?

Sorry if viable is a loaded word, but I could not think of another to use in my summation.

Survival is melee, which I do not enjoy, beast mastery does not have a focus generator and basically uses the slow waiting game with energy now, and marksman can't have a pet even if they were willing to sacrifice DPS to do so.

I am not sure what to make of it right now.  The hunter class has three specs and none of them look anything like the mythos of what we have known being a hunter is throughout the history of the game.

Fast paced rapid fire game play with a pet from ranged.  That is the warcraft hunter.  We no longer have any spec that fills that.  So what now?

Artifact Weapons "Could" Ruin it All For Me

Right now my intention is to raid as marksman, solo as BM and quest as survival.  But being we need to level each artifact weapon as an individual that will not really be an option.  Sure the tri spec and being able to switch between all three specs on the fly will be nice and all, but with the need to level all three weapons I will be forced into playing only the spec I raid with, at least until I top out my weapon for raiding.

Now all can be thrown away if BM or SV ends up being the top raiding spec, and my bet would be that SV will be the top raiding spec because they will make it over powered to try and stem the damage they did to the class by removing the ranged spec in favor of a melee one.  So if they make it really strong less people will complain about it.

The bottom line is, having to level three weapons if I want to play all three specs is generally not appealing at all.  Not even in the slightest.  There is still time for this to change, and I hope it does, but blizzard should listen to me and make it so you level up your artifact ability levels up.  Not have it so the spec you are in levels up the weapon for that spec.  So, for example, if I level as survival and get my weapon to level 7 (example) then switch as soon as hit 110 to marksman, by MM weapon is also level 7.  That is the appropriate way to level artifact weapons and allow people to switch specs.  I just do not have faith in blizzard to do this the correct way.

If All Else Fails...

I guess I will just be a tank next expansion.  I level in tank spec for all the tanks I play so no artifact weapon issues here.  Or I could roll a demon hunter which you know will be insanely over powered and being a demon hunter tank will be like taking the easy route to awesome.  Not to mention tanks all have those rapid fire rotations, and being that is the style of game play I like, it fits well enough.

Either way, the most appealing hunter spec to me at the moment, is being a druid tank.  As a hunter, that makes me really sad.  Lets hope that changes.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Monday Random Thoughts - Blizzcon Edition

- While there was a lot I did this weekend otherwise, I plan to go over a few of my random thoughts about blizzcon for this random thoughts.

- The best looking announcement thus far was the changes to transmog.

- And I am not even a mog person really.

- Just on my main, because I hate the look of "armor" so I go for a more clothing type look.

- The second best thing, or maybe the first best, not sure it really is a tie for awesome, is the cinematic.

- Say what you want about the game and the issues each and everyone one of us have it with sometimes, but blizzard has really gotten the art of the cinematic down to a science.

- The wrathgate remains my absolutely favorite but this one has to be top five.

- Perhaps even top three.

- My favorite part of it is one that I bet most of you never even saw.

- The exchange between King Varian Wrynn and Sylvanas was amazing.

- Slight, ever so slight, and I am sure nearly everyone that watched it even missed it, but to someone like it it spoke volumes.

- The old saying "I picture is worth a thousand words" really fits here.

- Seeing him nod to her and her nod to him really was a thousand words.

- It showed the respect he had for her as a fighter and she for him.

- It spoke to the enormity of the situation that two mortal enemies would show that respect when a bigger threat looms.

- A split second of cinematic, a story all its own.

- Watch it again if you did not notice it.

- Look at Varian when the horde ship first appears and take note of that ever so slight, blink and you miss it nod, and tell me that it does not change the entire feel of the cinematic after seeing it.

- It is not them working together because they want to, it is them working together because they have to.

- It is like an unspoken bond where each is telling the other, we stand together, I will protect you as if you were my own.

- Going to be so sad when it game comes out and we have to watch Varian die.

- If rumors are to be believed.

- It was the first time I could honestly say I liked the idea.

- But that is blizzards MO, make it is you start to like someone and then kill them for impact.

- Their writers are, to put it politely, hacks.

- They can not tell a deep and meaningful story with any real substance, so they go for the quick impact.

- Put some time into a character, put them center stage, make people like them, kill them for impact.

- It is an old tactic used by piss poor writers to create feeling, connection.

- But it works, so even if it is poor writing, it is why they still do it.

- The writers need to take a page from the cinematic teams book.

- You do not need to beat someone over the head with something to tell a good story, you just need to tell a good story.

- That nod, it was awesome, and it told a better story, a more compelling story, than all of warlords put together.

- Back to transmog for another note of awesome.

- They are going to go over every quest we have ever done and award us every single piece of gear we collected from those quests, and even pieces of gear we did not take but could have used from those quests, and add them to our transmog options.

- Can you say "home run"?

- Blizzard really hit the ball out of the park with this one.

- Does this mean I am going to get my staff back from the level 60 epic hunter quest?

- I got rid of it so long ago but I would like it back.

- When they added transmog and I was looking for things to mog my hunter into all the best gear for me was from quest rewards.

- Many cases rewards I collected, and vendored off years eariler.

- I was so upset to lose those possible transmog options as the quest item were probably the best looking gear ever.

- At least for someone like me that like the minimalist look.

- Great work blizzard.

- They answered that question before it needed to be asked, they did the right thing.

- Yes, blizzard did the right thing.

- Without needing to be pushed to do it.

- Without the need of hundreds of threads asking for it.

- They are building it right from the get go.

- I am dumbfounded, I did not think they had it in them.

- And having mog sets, something people have been asking for.

- Everything about the mog system is just so well done it seems.

- I don't even get into mogging and I am loving it.

- You know what my favorite part of it was?

- You are going to laugh.

- You might even call me crazy.

- Well, I am, so that is fine.

- But I love that it is also adding a collection for it.

- So now people like me that love to collect stuff will go around and collect all the hunter loot.

- Even if I do not mog into it, if there are 500 helms, I will make every effort to get all 500 helms.

- I am weird that way.

- I most likely would never mog into any of them, but I will sure as hell collect them because I dig things like that.

- And it was only in passing but I thought I heard something I have to ask if many anyone else did.

- Are these mog collections account wide?

- So all my hunters would have all the things my main has now?

- That would be freaking awesome.

- My mog my hunter uses has most of the pieces removed from the game.

- To be able to have all my hunters wearing that mog would be awesome.

- Level 60 epic bow on all of them.

- Woot woot.

- Please say I heard that right because if I didn't I might cry.

- And the best gear news of all?

- You can hide shoulders now.

- That is so awesome because blizzard rarely makes a decent pair of shoulders.

- My druid is wearing ones right now I got from HFC that I love, but I can not remember the last time I said that about shoulders.

- Actually, I don't think I have ever said that about shoulders.

- I am thankful for them being able to be hidden now.

- No more freak of nature shoulders for me on my characters thank you very much.

- How about the trading personal loot option they are adding.

- Another winner that should have been in the game from the get go.

- If you have an equal or greater item level piece and you win something on a bonus roll you can trade it to anyone in the raid.

- Awesome.

- And about time.

- Something you have to wonder why it takes them so long to add obvious solutions.

- Challenge modes turning into rifts from diablo?

- No thank you blizzard.

- It works in diablo because you get loot success or failure.

- It works in diablo because you can do them over and over again, even a hundred times in a day if you wish.

- It will not work in warcraft because you get 1 per week.

- It will not work in warcraft because if you fail you get nothing.

- One disconnect, you lose you keystone for the week and your chance at loot.

- One emergency where someone needs to step away an you lose your keystone for the week or your chance at loot.

- One pug that joins only to be a jerk and screw other people out of the chance at loot (and yes this will happen) and you lose your keystone and your chance at loot for the week.

- Sorry blizzard, bad idea is bad.

- Go back to the drawing board before you even consider moving forward with this.

- Because right now, it is a dreadfully horrible idea that was not thought out and will be more annoying than enjoyable.

- Keystone challenge modes = failure, and they have not even come out yet.

- Mythic staying 20 player = failure.

- Yes, while I agree it is much better from a challenge perspective, and much better from a design perspective to make the challenge, it has been a failure this expansion and it will be a failure next expansion.

- They need to rethink that.

- Where is the motivation for casual guilds that know they will never have 20 player to even raid.

- I know many players that just quit after normal now.

- Why do heroic when you would only be doing heroic to get to mythic and you can not do mythic because you do not have 20 players?

- So there is no reason to do heroic.

- So guilds like mine suffer, guilds like every one on my server suffer.

- One of my guilds on another server did archie on normal 3 weeks after release and stopped raiding.

- Yeap, three weeks after HFC came out, they guild stopped raiding.

- Why?

- No reason to do heroic.

- Heroic is a stepping stone to mythic and they could not do mythic, so no need to do heroic.

- And oddly enough, when they made the decision to quit raiding the guild did not fall apart.

- They all just quit, together.

- 20 man mythic hurt the game way more than it helped it.

- Blizzard has to realize that.

- They are doubling down on mythic trying it for another expansion at a locked 20.

- And the only way that I can see that working is if they greatly decrease the difficulty of it, so I guild like mine can take the lesser players just to get to the 20 people.

- But if they do that, it would not longer be mythic.

- So that completely defeats the purpose of it.

- Yeah, 20 man mythic needs to go.

- Oh how about the profession news.

- Nodes are on a per person basis now.

- Can someone say about freaking time?

- Seriously, what took so long blizzard.

- I do worry about professions the way they are changing them.

- You need to be active to get all the patterns?

- You need to level them up to level 3 by being active?

- So how exactly is this going to work with alts now?

- I can no longer have my alts make things for me because they exist purely for their professions?

- Fuck you blizzard.

- Excuse my language, but really.

- They are called profession mules for a reason.

- I like them being there so I can be self sufficient.

- I am going to really hate this crap if I need to be "active" on all my characters just to make one character have what he needs to have.

- Seriously blizzard, fuck you.

- It is a game, not a job.

- Stop taking the fun out of things.

- But maybe I am over reacting.

- I did see one thing that leads me to believe it is quite possible something I predicted a long time back might come true and all professions would be account wide.

- If that is the case, my main could do all the professions and level them all up, and I would be fine with that really.

- It is possible too.

- Look back at the screen shots, if you can find them, see if you see what I saw.

- One screen shot had someone with what looked like was 4 professions.

- Another had someone with 3 professions.

- Not "looked like" three professions, absolutely was three professions.

- So there are a few possible things this could mean.

- 1) it is an alpha test thing were the characters have multiple professions so they can test them all.

- 2) they are increasing us to 3 professions per character, as there was absolutely 3 professions in the screen shots.

- 3) or professions are now account wide like so many other things.

- I am hoping for #3, not because I predicted it and I love saying "I told you so" but because the other option is that I have to active play alts just for their professions so one character will have everything they need.

- Sorry, like I said, this is a game not a job.

- I want to play my main and have my alts support him.

- I do not want to be forced to play my alts all the time to level up their professions just to support my main.

- About the demon hunter.

- No tank news really, that is what I was looking for.

- DPS news was a snorefest.

- Nothing to see here, move along.

- Really see no reason this class was added at the moment.

- It does not fill a required role in the game, there are already too many melee DPS classes and the issue with tanking is because there are too few of them, it is because people do not like to tank.

- So the class serves no purpose, it doesn't look overly interesting (to me) so it is a complete waste of resources to add it.

- Lets hope when they flesh out the tanking spec there is something new and interesting there because there is nothing new and interesting from a DPS perspective in my opinion.

- Flying will not be added on release again.

- And this is proof positive that blizzard does not learn from their mistakes.

- How can a company screw up so badly one expansion, then recognize they screwed up and try to make up for it, and then make the same exact screw up in the next expansion while they were still trying to repair the damage that mistake did to this expansion?

- Seriously what the hell are they smoking over in the blizzard headquarters because it is making them not care what happens to the game.

- About changes to classes.

- Hunters looks screwed every which way they can be.

- Marks seems to be losing its identity and becoming a hybrid between marks and survival.

- BM seems to be saying closest to what it has been, but some changes that are completely unnecessary.

- And survival, no, just no, what they are doing is a crying shame and shows blizzard cares little for their player base or the history of the game.

- I said it before and I will say it again, if blizzard really wanted hunters to have a melee spec they should have added a 4th spec.

- Don't laugh at hunters, the next class the screw over could be yours.

- Maybe next time they will say, we do not like paladins being able to DPS so we are making retribution a second tank spec.

- Maybe they will say, we do not like shaman having a melee DPS so we are switching enhancement to ranged.

- They should not be changing the identity of a spec because they "feel" like it.

- Even more so when there is no reason to.

- There are already too many melee specs, they are adding a heroic class melee spec, they do not need to move hunters into melee too.

- There is no game play reason to do it, and no logical reason to do it.

- They are changing disc back to atonement healers.

- Not sure why they nerfed it to begin with.

- No wait, I lie, I know exactly why they moved away from it.

- Because it is too powerful.

- It needs to be.

- As it is not aimed healing for it to be effective it needs to be a little over powered.

- The problem is that by being a little over powered, as you get more gear, it becomes way over powered, and that is why they nerfed it to death this expansion.

- Do I like disc is going full on atonement again?  Absolutely.

- Do I have faith they will do it right?  Absolutely not.

- It will either be too weak and you could never heal even a five man with it and it would only be good as a third healer option in a group, or it will be too strong and you would only need DPS dealing healers like disc.

- I am not sure they can create a decent balance.

- Honestly, I am not sure it is even possible to do so.

- Hope they do not screw it up.

- I loved their description for the changes to bear tanking.

- A bear should not be dodging, it should be in your face taking damage.

- I hope, really pray and hope that they can make their description work and not turn bears in mana sponges.

- I like the idea that they take all the damage and can handle it.

- Seems to fit what a bear would be like and it could be a really fun play style, if they add more survival cooldowns to it, otherwise it would be just a mana sponge and death will be soon to follow.

- But the idea that the more damage they take, the more they absorb could be a fun play style.

- Others they mentioned like arcane mage, fury warriors and death knights with their runes all seem to be in an effort to streamline the classes and make them easier.

- Which I am sure a vast majority of the player base will be very happy with.

- The classes, nearly all of them, have gotten too complex for the average players.

- So much so that the majority of players could not even come close to playing most classes to their potential.

- Heck, look at the two easiest, in terms of buttons, classes out there right now in hunters and rogues, and see how few of them actually do decent.

- If that does not show you that the classes are too complex for most players, I do not know what will.

- Not sure what to make the the changes to shadow priest.

- Sounds interesting, seems like it will be a clusterfuck.

- Spend the entire fight trying to build into insanity, burn while in insanity, spend time trying to get back there.

- Are their going to be useless outside of insanity?

- Sure seems so from that short description we got.

- Hope that does not end up being the case.

- Seems like they are trying a bit too hard to make classes unique.

- I am sure some classes will get screwed in the attempt.

- Sure seems like shadow will be one the ones that get screwed unless they do not balance insanity right.

- Now to class halls, we will have class garrisons now instead of personal garrisons.

- At least that is what I seem to get from what little we know.

- Okay, might be cool, but over all seems kind of useless.

- The class halls will basically just be a daily hub, so to speak, as it seems.

- So hunters will go one place to pick up their dailies, rogues will go to another, priests their own, etc.

- Not bad, but nothing game changing.

- How about that news that drops all over the world, from questing to raiding can be any item level.

- With luck...

- Seriously blizzard, more RNG?

- Stealing another page from diablo it seems.

- I can see people already posting on the forums for their grinding spots.

- Where they just grind mobs in the world trying to get lucky and get that one good drop.

- Don't worry, this will never make it live, not in a million years.

- Top end guilds will cry like babies that they are "forced" to grind mobs in the world to get the best gear for the world first race and blizzard will cave to them like a house of cards on a windy day, just like they always do.

- But I agree it is a good idea to make killing world mobs more interesting after we reach max level.

- As it stands now, once you reach max level you want to avoid everything in the world as much as possible as it is just a waste of time.

- But the idea that it could get you a mythic raid level piece, with luck of course, means it is not "as" annoying to have to stop and kill stuff.

- So it has potential.

- It is just not attractive for people like me who have no luck.

- Oh joy, another expansion of me getting no gear because my luck sucks.

- I am not going through that again blizzard.

- If you plan on everything being completely luck based, count me out.

- Give me ways to earn my gear, please, I am begging you.

- Do not make me have to luck into it.

- That is not a fun or compelling game style.

- Unless you really increase the drop rate of things to be something along the lines of you will get a top quality piece once every 100 or so mobs.

- Did you see that we will have a boat load in legendary items?

- I think I saw a back, neck and boots, there could be more.

- Each seems to have class specific bonuses.

- I guess they really wanted to removed the "legendary" from a "legendary" item if we are going to be getting flooded with it.

- I like the idea that we will be able to upgrade gear by "disenchanting" old gear.

- Not sure it if is really disenchanting, just using that word for now.

- But what you get from it is used to upgrade pieces.

- So weeks like this week were I managed to get 5 pieces were I needed none of them I could go "disenchant" or whatever we decide to call it and use those to upgrade a piece of gear I currently have.

- That seems like a good idea.

- Also seems like another diablo idea.

- Seems like legion steals a lot from diablo this time around.

- I would like to see them steal one more thing from diablo.

- And bring scenarios back with the diablo idea of just a massive amount of mobs a small group goes in and slaughters and they have a chance to drop awesome loot.

- Now that could be fun.

- If they are going to keep stealing diablo stuff might as well steal the fun stuff too.

- As long as they realize that some things will not work.

- As I mentioned with the challenge mode thing.

- Can't use the warcraft weekly lockout design with the diablo key idea.

- Some ideas translate well, others do not.

- This one will not, for the main reason that you can spam stuff in diablo, so if you fail no one minds, but if you are locked out for a week, it will make people hate other people.

- Making people hate other people because they screwed them out of their weekly lock out is not a good way to build up community in an MMO.

- Just a friendly word of advice from someone that apparently knows a lot better how people react than blizzard does.

- There is so much more I wanted to comment on.

- I am sure I am going to remember some of it as soon as I hit post.

- But that is enough babble for now.

- Hope you saw stuff you liked at blizzcon.

- Have a great day.