Archive for the 'Dinaer' Category

19
Jul
15

Timewalking is kinda fun

I missed the BC Timewalking weekend.  This weekend I made sure to do the Wrath Timewalking dungeons for the weekend event.  My impressions.

(1) Nostalgia.  Having played through all of this, it was a fun memory trip.  Unfortunately in five runs I only got to see three different dungeons – Nexus once, Halls of Lightning twice, and Ahn’kahet the Old Kingdom twice.  And I’ve always disliked Ahn’kahet.

(2) Not too hard.  It was certainly easier than when it was current content.  In five PUG dungeon runs we haven’t had a single player death.  I did come into a group recovering from a wipe, but I missed the bad part.

(3) Friendly groups.  The people have been social and cordial.  There has only been one hyper-critical jerk.  When I joined a group recovering from a wipe, he was all frothing at everyone and screaming that no one knew Wrath dungeons.  Then everyone linked their wrath achievements.  So he dropped group.  Other than that guy, its been smooth sailing.

(4) Good reward (for now).  Since I am only doing LFR raiding right now, this is the first chance I’ve had to get normal-mode raid loot.  I know that this reward will not be useful for long.  I figure I have one more Timewalking event left to get an upgrade.  In two months I either won’t need that loot or I’ll have given up trying for it.

(5) Getting dressed up!  Since all gear is scaled down to iLvL 160, that means that you can wear ANY gear over iLvL 160 and it will be the same when it is scaled down.  There is no benefit to wearing a LvL690 piece over a LvL 200 piece.

That means that gear-hoarders like me get to flip through our bank tabs and Void Storage looking for something nice to wear.  This could be purely cosmetic or trying to min/max the system.  The word on the webs is that gems and procs are advantageous in the scaling process.  So if you’re trying to really kill the damage meters (5000 dps! Gasp!) then you’ll want lots of gem sockets and good procs.  I pulled out my old Fangs of the Father legendary daggers from Cata and my legendary cloak from Mists.  Later I’ll put more thought into customizing an outfit.

I’m already looking at the calendar to see when the next Timewalking weekend is.  This was a nice move, Blizzard.

04
Apr
14

Long time, no see

dusty bookIt has been a long time since I logged into WordPress and looked at my blog.  Just over three months, actually.

I tried the Twitter thing (@DinaerRogue).  I don’t mind the format, although I am somewhat verbose for 140 characters.  My problem is that I don’t have an instinct to post my thoughts in a stream-of-consciousness manner.  Successful twitter streams have frequent updates of small amounts of information.  I’m just not mentally connected enough with Twitter.

I’m still playing the game regularly.  My guild is uber-casual.  We’re working through Flex difficulty as our main raid mode.  With flex we get to bring different people every week, which means a lot of re-learning and re-re-learning fights.  We still haven’t killed Garrosh as a guild.  We’ve got time.

I’ve been healing quite a bit on my druid.  One of our main healers announced that he is switching to his warlock in Warlords, so I may have to step in and heal full-time.  I enjoy it, so its not a big deal.  Even the announced WoD healing changes don’t turn me off.

With raid healing as my current focus, I’ve been working on the legendary cloak for my healer alt.  It’s slow going.  As we know, the  boosted 90s have made LFR a real chore.  I’m almost done, though.  Just four more Titan Runestones, and then I’ll be in the home stretch of quests.

I have six characters at level 90.  I don’t play most of them – I leveled them for their professions.  I made sure my engineer was at 90 to make the Sky Golem, and that my jewelcrafter was at 90 to make the jade panther mounts.  The only characters I currently play are my rogue (of course), my resto druid, and my paladin, who I am gearing as a backup tank even though I haven’t tanked since Cataclysm.

I am still working the glyph and gem markets.  I got back into goldmaking when I decided to craft my panther mounts.  I’m not hardcore – I’m making about 10k gold per week and that’s good enough.

With the first WoD Alpha patch notes released, I was inspired to come back to the blog and say something, at least on the rogue parts.  Check for that post coming up (if anyone is still out there).

31
Dec
13

Sha-Touched Weapon… good or bad?

When we got our sha-touched weapons back in Throne of Thunder, we were, of course, excited.  The 500 Agility gem made those weapons super-powerful.

That was then.  This is now.

Now I’m a little annoyed.  I mostly run LFR and Flex raids.  The daggers that drop, although a higher iLvL, are not really an upgrade over the sha-touched dagger.  That 500 agility gem is overwhelming.

For this reason, I’m still running with my dagger from the previous tier.  Its a little frustrating to keep raiding without getting upgrades for that item slot.

Looking back, I wish that the sha-touched bonus was something that could be applied to future weapons, much like the capacitive primal diamond that I have for my head slot.

Its always interesting to look back on game features that seemed good when they were new and examine how they age as the game moves on.

14
Jun
13

Long Time, No Post

Its been a month since I’ve posted anything.  It will probably continue this way for a while.  I’ve got nothing to say.

I still play the game.  However, my guild is stuck on Horridon for over a month now.  I haven’t done much in the game other than log on twice a week to raid an do occasional pet bettles.  I haven’t done a single bit of content that came out in patch 5.3.

With the summer here, I may find more time to play so I may get back  involved in the game.  As of now, I am so weakly connected to WoW that blogging about it rarely comes to mind.

When we get more details about flex raids, I imagine I’ll have something to say.  That upcoming feature has piqued my interest.

08
Apr
13

Are you Entertained?

I still like WoW.  Love to raid.  Like to quest.  Like to battle pets.  Like to tend my farm.  Love to get achievements.

However, the game is not sucking me in these days.  On any given afternoon, if I have a few hours to spare I find myself being able to pass on WoW playing.  For the past seven years that was not the case.  I used to be online every spare moment.

Right now, I have very few goals that realy turn me on.  Everything is too grindy.

“But WoW has always been a grindy game” you will all say.  You’re right.  However, for a grind to be playable there has to be a goal – a carrot on a stick to make you log in and try to get a little closer each day.

WoW has become almost entirely a gear grind.  Why do dailies? To unlock gear vendors.  Why run LFR?  To get gear upgrades.  Why grind heroics?  To get VP for gear.

This is good for the majority of WoW players, it would seem.  It misses me entirely.  You see, I don’t care about gear at all.  That puts me in the minority, I know, but it is nonetheless true.  Gear is not, nor has it ever been, a draw for me.  I’ll get it when I get it.  That’s why I don’t run LFR.

And since that is the case, I have no carrot to make me want to log in each day.

I was all about Operation:Shieldwall while that was going on.  Grind or not, the story progression kept me coming back day after day.

I never missed a day on my farm.  Te rewards for Exalted reputation had me hooked.  Now I’m exalted.

While I was striving for a million gold, that kept me logging in every day.  Now that I’ve reached that goal… the AH is not so appealing.

The Isle of Thunder dailies have not captured me.  I don’t feel any inclination to go there and do dailies, other than the distant idea of getting to Exalted as a step toward the 60 Exalted reputations achievement.  I think I’ve only done the dailies on that island four or five times – enough to get to Honored.

Even pet battles have lost their luster.  I was all into that for about two weeks – trying to get a good assortment of pets to max level.  Now that this is done, the idea of flying around two worlds to do repeatable pet dailies is not very appetizing.

I always log in for raid nights.  Other than that, its hit and miss.  Is it just me?  Are you all locked in on the gear rewards?

31
Jan
13

Auction House – another gearing path

I really hate to buy gear. There’s no real logical reason for this, other than it fits into my own personal version of the way the game should be played.

I know that I’m in the minority – the large majority of players just want their iLvL to get higher, no matter what path they take.  Its like their own personal scoreboard for WoW. For me, though, I play the game in a certain way.  I won’t run raids on LFR until I have first cleared them on normal mode with my guild.  I don’t repetitively grind heroics to cap my valor points every week.  I try to earn the gear I get.

This has put me in a bit of a bind, lately, as far as weapons go.  Specifically, daggers.  We’re four months into the expansion and I am still using two blue level 463 daggers.  Until very recently, I was raiding with a 450 dagger. There are no daggers to be purchased with Valor Points.  The Stone Guard, the first boss of Mogu’shan Vaults, has stubbornly refused to drop a dagger for me.  I had no luck even getting the dagger that dropped from the Greench daily during Winter’s Veil.

I’ve got all the gold I need to buy anything I want, but I have always felt that I shouldn’t resort to buying gear.  This week, I finally gave in to frustration.  I bought myself a Miniature Winter Veil Tree from the auction house. That got me to thinking – how well geared can a rogue get using strictly the auction house to buy items?  That means BoE drops and crafted items which can be sold.

Overall, if you’re willing to spend a couple hundred thousand gold and be patient until all these rare items show up on the AH, it looks like you can get yourself to about iLvL 470, although that includes some pvp pieces which are not optimally itemized for raiding.  That’s a lot of gold for little reward, because you can easily do better than that through some dabbling in dailies and heroics and maybe a trip or two into LFR.

19
Jan
13

Gold cap… then a Yak

I’ve been dabbling in gold-making using my crafting and the auction house since sometime during Wrath.  I spent most of Wrath just doing glyphs, because that was practically printing money.  Then in Cata I moved also in jewelcrafting and a little bit of enchanting.  I wasn’t too serious – I didn’t hover over the auction house cancel-reposting.  It was enough to earn a couple thousand gold a day.

When I hit 350k, I realized that I could eventually earn a million gold this way.  I just had to keep doing what I was doing and resist the urge to spend a lot.  And that’s what I did, for over a year now.

This week, I finally reached my goal of a million gold.

Gold Cap

 

So what do I do with all that gold?  Interestingly, I felt like I *had* to spend some.  When I first collected my gold from my mailbox and exceeded a million, I ended with 1,001,500 or so.  My first thought was, “I can’t spend more than 1,500g or I’ll drop back below a million.”  That’s crazy!  That means that even though I was a millionaire, I couldn’t buy anything that cost over 1,500g?  It’s like I was broke again!

So I decided to break the hold that this magic number had.  I went out and bought myself the Grand Expedition Yak for a cool 108,000g.  It was a huge expense and for no real purpose, but it broke me out of the “save your gold! save! save!” mindset I was stuck in.

Its now been three days since I hit that milestone and I have not crafted a glyph since.  I’m sure I’ll get back to it, but I feel no real compulsion to push it.  I feel much more relaxed.  I am spending more time now doing other things in game rather than posting auctions.

ahhhhh, nice.

14
Jan
13

Challenge Mode… ouch

We’re not too far progressed in raid content yet.  However, we were looking for something interesting to do. The presence  of Challenge Modes has been taunting us.

Since the Challenge Modes scale your gear down to 463, in principle it shouldn’t matter how high your gear is, as long as most/all of your pieces are higher than 463.  We got together a group of five who fit that description and gave Temple of the Jade Serpent a shot.

Whoooooooo……. boy.

I was under the impression that it was much like a normal heroic run, maybe a little harder, and it was on a timer.  We ran through heroic Temple for practice right before our Challnege Mode attempt, and got through it relatively quickly.  Then we switched to Challenge and waded in.

To paraphrase our old friend Illidan, we were not prepared.

Everything is much harder.  The mobs hit harder and they go down slower.  All damage effects are increased.  On top of that, since your gear is downgraded your dps and healing are lower than you are used to.

We got to the first boss (Wise Mari) and promptly wiped on him twice.  Turns out he has a mechanic in Challenge Mode that he doesn’t have on normal or heroic.  If you are more than 20 yards away he lobs water bombs on you, and its unhealable damage.  Thus, you have to do the whole fight on those rings around the boss.

Also, he turns around faster when firing his water jet.  Hooray.

We wiped a few times.  We reset the instance and tried again.  Got him down the first time.  Went on to the next boss.  Got it down.  Third boss.  Got it down.  We’re being methodical and not trying to push things.  We pull the final boss with 12 minute left on the bronze medal time.

…. and its all downhill from there.

The final boss is crazy hard.  His shadows do tons of damage, and healer mana gets used up like crazy during the shadow phase.  It took us 6 wipes before we finally got him down, missing the bronze medal time by… a lot.  We did manage to finish, though.  Got our 45 VP plus another bunch of VP for it being the daily Challenge Mode quest.

At this time, in my opinion the Challenge Modes are going to be an exception to the “bring the player not the class” mantra that Blizzard uses.  You would be crazy to do these without a Heroism/Bloodlust in the party.  Also, AoE classes are very useful in moving through trash packs quickly.  We did the dungeon with a very poorly optimized party – no heroism, no paladin blessing, not even a hunter with a variety of pets.

I was hoping that my Shroud of Concealment would be useful, but not in this dungeon.  The trash packs are hard to get around, and many are mandatory.

All in all it was really fun, and quite challenging.  I’m looking forward to trying more.

10
Sep
12

Crazy Assassination Damage

I suspect there may be some nerfs incoming for assassination rogues.

Why?  Let me show you.

Background… I haven’t played my rogue in months.  We’re short of healers, so I have raided exclusively on my resto druid for the past few months.  When patch 5.0.4 dropped, I read up on the changes to my rogue but didn’t get a chance to try them out in the game.  They weren’t major changes, in any case.

This weekend I finally got to raid DS on my rogue.  I had not spent any time on a target dummy in advance, so I was a little nervous going in that I would mess things up.

This is the parse from heroic Ultraxion…

Its not the damage totals that are important.  Its the percentages.  That rogue below me is combat spec.  (he doesn’t have the legendary daggers yet – he has the stage 2 epics).

The assassination damage was crazy.  The legendary daggers proc all the time.  I got the Fury of the Destroyer buff from the daggers 7 times during the 4:44 fight.

As we start to level, the effect of the legendary dagger procs will go away once we replace them with MoP gear.  Still, my damage output on this fight was 50% higher than anyone else in the raid.  I’m not 50% better than the other players who were there, and I was not this far ahead before the patch.  While not shown, my damage total for the entire raid was similarly unbalanced (30% higher than the next best dps, even including fights that favor ranged).  Something here is out of whack.  When there’s that much disparity this early in the expansion process, experience tells me that it usually leads to some nerfs down the line.

Enjoy it while it lasts, my rogue friends.

16
May
12

Memories…

I had a funny memory from way, way back.

I was level 19 in vanilla WoW.  I had heard of PvP but I had no idea what it entailed.  I knew that people did long grinds to get titles.  I decided to queue for Warsong Gulch.

Alliance got trounced over and over.  It seemed like the horde would just group up and make a beeline en masse for the Alliance flag, grab it, and return as a huge group.   We could barely slow them down.  But when Alliance tried to do the same thing, we got torn apart at the entrance to the horde building.

From this, I got the early impression that (1) PvP probably wasn’t for me, and (2) Horde was OP.

However, on my eighth or ninth time queuing up, we ended up with a paladin in our group.  I rarely saw paladins back then, and no one I knew played one.  Me being a video game noob, I had this expectation that paladins, as divine warriors, would be immensely powerful.

We actually won our next WG.

I walked away from that thinking that paladins were amazing.  Every time I queued in PvP for the next 10 or so levels, if we didn’t have a paladin in the group I felt that we were doomed to failure.

The best thing about vanilla battlegrounds was that all the players came from your server.  You tended to see the same characters over and over, so you got to know them.  I casually dabbled in PvP now and then (only in WG), and each time I saw that paladin in my group I got an awestruck feeling.

Ah, to be that naive again.




Armory

Classic WoW:
Dinaer - 11 Assassination Rogue
Cepheid - 13 Prot Warrior
Cartho - 11 Elemental Shaman

Retail WoW:
Dinaer - 120 Assassination Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
Cartho - 120 Elemental Shaman (US - Quel-dorei)
Derence - 120 Prot/Ret Paladin (US - Sen'Jin)
Metius - 120 Shadow Priest (US - Sen'Jin)
Liebnitz - 120 Arcane Mage (US - Sen'Jin)
Darishin - 120 Resto/Balance Druid (US - Sen'Jin)
Fastad - 90 Subtlety Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
January 2021
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