Rummys Blog An world of endless Monday

Tuesday, 20 January, 2009

Welfare Epics again

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 2:53 pm

I’m going to talk about welfare epics, drugstore though not in the traditional sense, mind.

What I’m thinking about is Flowersz current level of gear. Allegedly (and probably in fact) she’s geared up well enough to start Naxx 10 man. But, and here’s the nub.

I don’t believe that she’s wearing any quest rewards after about level 76, she’s not exulted with any Northrend faction and probably not revered with any either, she’s never run a single level 80 dungeon and has only got one piece of kit from a heroic (only a minor upgrade to an AH item). And yet despite this she’s wearing 3 epics (2 jewelcrafting items and a blacksmithing item) and has the equivalent of 3 epic gems (again from JC).

Basically she’s bought her way up to raid status. Would you take someone with these qualifications on your raid?

No, neither would I. Just a passing thought, just remember inspecting gear isn’t enough!

There are of course mitigants for Flowersz, she has raided before and she has done 5 or 6 heroics, though you would have to compare achievements to see that. Even so I’m sure she’s well below a typical Munqui raider in experience.

Guild Achievements

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:31 pm

‘Cmon Blizz! Don’t be lazy! How hard would it be to create Guild Achievements for raids (or any other kind of instance for that matter). All you need to do is check to see if the party is all in one guild when the boss dies.2

Last night there was a very nearly official Munqui raid on the Spider Wing of Naxx! Woot! I believe it was a spur of the moment affair, buy but they still did the required level of squishing.

Flowersz was not in attendance, order Real Life? reasons. No matter, all things in their own time.

/Train is so much more hassle than /Motorbike.

Monday, 19 January, 2009

Thrown in the dungeons

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:46 pm

What a busy weekend, migraine and to very little “material” gain. This weekend I finally decided to bite the bullet and do some heroic dungeons. So I ran four (or possibly five, I can’t remember). This has netted Flowersz several achievements, experience, and, unfortunately not a whole lot more. In all her runs she has so-far managed to get exactly one minor resto-gear upgrade, and that was a cloth belt. I say only one, in fact she has been getting plenty of off-spec Enhancement shaman gear including one epic, is Blizzard telling me something? She has also netted 3 new gem cuts, though tbh I don’t know if any of these are likely to be profitable.

I have though learned a bit, for example The Nexus is exactly as horrible as I remember it (9 deaths and probably 7.5 wipes). We finished Keristraza on the third attempt with two players standing and both of us at around 20% health, and don’t mention that damn Grand Magus Telestra. I think I can say, without much fear of contradiction, that the healer was to blame! The Nexus seems, to me, to be unfriendly to Shaman. It’s full of interrupts, AOE, requires movement and several situational totems that have never been on my taskbars, let alone hotkeyed. Frost Resistance totem, I’m looking at you!

I did discover that you can fire off an instant (Riptide) in the “bouncing around” phase of the fight during the very short period before you’re hurled into the air again. In truth I probably ought to do this dungeon more often to hone my mobility skills like how to contort my fingers so I can cast riptide while moving, and refine my spell rotations like casting Riptide or Chain Heal before a Healing Wave or Lesser Healing Wave.
I’m glad heroic UK (2 runs) is easy though because it has a surprisingly good blue chestpiece drop that Flowersz needs: [Dalronn's Jerkin] and I’ll be running this as often as I can until she gets it. She’s not obsessed, if I have to roll for it then I’m not going to throw a strop. Well not until I’ve been in there a couple of more times at least! This may be the first ever time I’ve done a dungeon looking for a specific drop.

The UK runs were both PuGs and so a little different from my normal experience. Very very quiet in party-chat and, I suppose, business like. I guess because most of the bosses are pretty much just “tank and spank”? there’s no real reason to pause for explanation, if you can’t handle these as a healer then go elsewhere. (Though I did wipe the raid once on the end boss;).

Raiding followup.

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:31 pm

I’m now quite happy that this is now “under discussion”. The potential raider that I spoke to on Thursday raised the question again on Sunday, approved which is basically the scenario that I was worried about. They were immediately reassured.

Raiding in a very casual guild is particularly difficult at this stage of the game when there are only a little over a dozen guildies that are well geared (and some of them may be alts). Any players in a raid with this few stand-bys would find themselves under quite a bit of pressure to put in two hard days a week, remember we’re absolutely a casual guild so pressure like that is a no-no.

It was easier when Flowersz was raiding Kara, though many players could only commit to one day a week there were nearly always enough stand-bys to fill a second day.

Case closed.

Friday, 16 January, 2009

ready to raid?

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:27 pm

The munqui‘s not Flowersz, and don’t be stupid!

The other night one of the guildies asked for a link to one of these gear evaluation sites you hear about. It took at least 30 milliseconds before I could remember the URLs, health system because I hardly ever use them, well… not more than once a week, err… hardly ever more than a couple of times a week, well on a normal week at any rate. If you’ve never been to one then you’re not missing out on a whole lot, though they are kinda useful at hinting on the best enchants you can get.

There are two “ranking” sites, be.imba.hu and www.wow-heroes.com , beImba was the first one I used and I believe at the time it was the only one, it was pretty good at rating Flowersz’ readiness for Karazahn. In reality she went in before she was properly geared up, but that’s allowable when the other 9 players are as good as her friends were.

Now I’m looking again there are two, both offer pretty similar information, though I think I’m coming down on the side of wow-heroes for three reasons. It caches data so when the armory is refusing requests (which is fairly often) you can still see something. It provides a list of possible enchantments, complete with a “ranking”, so if you can’t get that Northrend shoulder enchant you can still see that the old Aldor Exaulted one is 2/3 as good. I’ll leave the third reason for a bit. On the downside wow-heroes doesn’t appear to do a live “guild grab” to rank everyone in the guild, it seems to only work off the data it has in its cache, so you have to do individual searches on everyone first.

BeImba on the other hand, will do a whole guild audit using live data. This is pretty good, but does sometimes mean you can’t do anything if the armory is being narky.

Oh, and if you’re not after a gear ranking because you’re not like that  don’t have an e-peen to stroke, but you want to know where the good stuff is, then you can do much worse than look at http://gear-wishlist.appspot.com/ .

The third reason I’m liking wow-heroes though, and it’s probably the most important is that it is much stricter on what it considers to be Naxx10 ready – beImba seem to have dropped the ball on this one, it ranks Flowersz as Naxx10 ready, while wow-heroes thinks she’s still got a bit of a way to go. I dunno which is really right, never having been anywhere near it (well, I think I might have seen it on my map while questing in my mid 70’s). I’m guessing wow-heroes is accurate for a full new-to-Naxx group, and beImba is accurate for a mixed group of vets and virgins (there’s a party theme for you!).

Anyway, back to the point – the guildie came back a little later after discovering that he was more than Naxx10 ready according to wow-heroes (beImba was not working), nothing more was said. But it got me thinking. One of my worst habits. I was wondering just how many Munquis were really well geared and whether we would see yet another set of migrations to raiding guids. We saw a bunch leave a while back before Flowersz started on Kara, and another bunch left in November when the expansion came out (some will probably come back when we start). So I posted a question on the guild forums and was told that it had been discussed, which I didn’t know.

Now some people don’t want to go in yet and I understand Smyth‘s position, yet still I wonder, he mentions that some of the “usual suspects” aren’t ready. He’s right on that point, but what about the unusual suspects? I do feel we might just be in danger of losing them. On the other hand wow-heroes thinks we’ll have a bit of trouble getting 10 properly warmed-up bodies, so maybe we just aren’t ready and I’m rocking the boat for no purpose. On the other other hand we could probably keep some players interested in sticking with us if we at least set some sort of date for starting.

There’s a good reason I’m not an officer in the guild :).

I guess not knowing that raiding was under active discussion was beginning to make me feel like it wasn’t really over the horizon yet. Of course if we do get a Team A, then they’ll start pulling away in gear terms and Flowersz will be in danger of being left behind, unless she gets her tail in gear!

Flowersz is looking to do some more Heroics this weekend.

Wednesday, 14 January, 2009

and more

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:14 pm

I’ve just seen Smyth’s post, treatment it seems the DK’s from my party went on to do 2 more heroics last night! Don’t they sleep?

Heroic Gun’drak run!

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:12 pm

Whee!

Did a guild run of Heroic Gun’drak instead of soloing Gnomeregan for Gnome rep. OK, viagra here I was originally looking for a normal run, herbal but everyone was bust and another group still wasn’t complete after 10 minutes so what’s a healer to do? This makes Flowersz second Heroic, mycoplasmosis and only her fourth Northrend dungeon in total, so we were more than a little nervous. Since the last time she has bought/crafted quite a bit more gear and I’m pretty sure that made quite a bit of difference, at least by wipe count!

The group was very similar to Flowersz’ last heroic (which had more wipes than you can count on the fingers of two hands!) with only a DK exchanged for a Rogue, so still all melee. Our leader and tank was the superb Vaphyr (Rad), he knew all the strats and explained them carefully before the bosses, not to mention a brilliant tank! I’m sure he’s geared enough for full-on raiding. Only one wipe the entire run. I don’t know if this is typical of Northrend dungeons but the boss fights were extremely quick, I suspect it was the group though. Flowersz had no mana problems, because there simply wasn’t enough time to use it all up! And having a Pally that was prepared to pinch heal was a real team-saver, thanks Karudan, I did notice.

Anyway, thanks to Vaphyr, Lurni, Veddartha and Karudan for such a nice run.

Three achievements, a leather casting belt (quite a good one I believe), and two Enhancement mail items for offspec! And our rogue got (I think) an epic, which he seemed quite proud of in Guild Chat. And all finished in time for bed! Good days!

Monday, 12 January, 2009

Laughter Lines

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:03 pm

Who on earth decided to call them Crow’s Feet?

Please leave the planet NOW!

Friday, 9 January, 2009

There goes the neighbourhood

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 4:58 pm

Jewelcrafting is starting to slump, for sale I said last week that I was bowing out of the [Titanium Impact Ring] market to give a new arrival something to sell. Well suddenly there are 4 makers of this item and the price has taken quite a beating. Fotunately [Titanium Impact Choker]s still seem to be rare, abortion though I don’t expect that to last for long. What people don’t realize is that the mats for the rarer Choker are only a hundred gold or so more expensive than the now common Ring, unhealthy but the markup is about 300g bigger.

I’m still going to keep an eye on the market and keep on playing it while it’s reasonably profitable, but Flowersz has maxed out her JC and is likely to bow out of the entire market soon. She’ll be settling back to learning recipes that are useful to her and selling [Dragon’s Eye]s for insane amounts of money – it’s an impressive return on a daily quest. Though even the prices for eyes is starting to slump, I expect them to drop from their current 400+g to 100g eventually, I’ve seen them for 300g, though not for long – Flowersz buys them up pretty sharpish!

I’m not complaining, I’ve been very lucky in this market. It’s hard to guess how much Flowersz has made, probably in the region of 15-20K, though she has also spent 4k on epic flying, 1k on Cold Weather Flying, 2k on a shield and a further 2k on a ring that she couldn’t be bothered to learn to craft herself. I owe almost all of my profit to picking a nearly empty market, sure there’s a very small demand for the Titanium Impact gear (only two or three a week), but an even smaller manufacturing base. Flowersz was also quite aggressive in undercutting any competition when it appeared, occasionally cancelling and relisting, and accepting only a small profit.

The way I saw it was that as long as I was getting back the cost of the raw mats, covering the AH cut, and still making a couple of hundred profit I might as well craft something instead of simply selling the Dragon’s Eyes on their own. I was also careful to buy the [Titanium Ore] and smelt it into [Titanium Bars] saving a few gold each time.

It’s nice to have some money for a change, Flowersz is sitting on about 10k gold with not much left in the way of BoE gear to buy, and a potential 4k still listed on the AH. She’s still got to get a decent set of gems (1k set aside for this) and the there’s the enchants. That will have to wait until after the next patch with it’s reduced material requirement, though it will still make a big dent in the Bank!

Thursday, 8 January, 2009

RP

Filed under: RP,World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:18 pm

RP on maxing out Jewelcrafting.

Flowersz delicately put the finishing touches to the ring she was crafting, information pills straightened up, phlebologist stretched her back and wiped her brow. All this close work was really quite a strain but the end product was worth it. The ring sat there in the vise, a new design, recently learned. It had a ruddy gleam to it. Was it her imagination, but did it, perhaps, glow a little redder than the light from the setting sun would warrant?

There was a quiet knock at the door, and Timothy Jones leaned his head in. “I’d like a quiet word, Flo”.

Flowersz beckoned him in, gave one last back-crackling stretch and indicated her recently completed ring. Timothy walked over to inspect Flowersz’ work and nodded, “Good work, better than good actually.”

“In fact that’s what I came to talk to you about. It’s time, Flower, time to let you go. You’ve learned pretty much everything I can teach you, and what I can’t teach you’ll most surely pick-up on your own.”

Flowersz looked confused. Timothy pulled a scroll out of an inside pocket.  “Come on, dear, you must have realized how much you’ve progressed these last few weeks.” He took a deep breath, cleared hist throat, and said “I have the privilege of announcing to the world of Azeroth that you are now a recognized ‘Grand master'”. He held the scroll out. Flowersz didn’t move.

In a more normal voice Timothy continued, “Normally we have a bit more ceremony than that, but times are what they are, and most of us are out on the front-line fighting the scourge. Which, I’m sorry to say, is where you must go now. The Munqui Tribe need you with them. You’re not following your true calling here, shut away in this dusty room getting back-ache. Go! Go and fight the scourge!”

Flowersz was astonished, more than astonished. The weeks had flown by. Learning new ways of cutting gems to bring out their strength and purity. Learning how to make necklaces and rings. Learning how to combine several different gems and persuade the melded structure to become a single complete whole greater than its parts. She had lost herself in her trade, that she had reached the pinnacle of her trade astounded her, but more shocking was the realization that she had been neglecting the battle and worse that she had forgotten her comrades in arms when they needed her.

She bowed formally to Timothy, accepted the proffered scroll and said, in high Draenei, “Thank you master, if  have learnt well it is because I have a good teacher.” Then, turning away, she slipped her newly made ring on one finger, walked to the dimmest corner of the room, picked up her mace, shield and backpack. She bowed once more to Timothy and, in common this time, said, “If you don’t mind, I think I’m needed elsewhere” and walked briskly out the door.

Timothy watched her go, silently wishing her well, remembering with regret the number of times this scene had been enacted before and hoping that he would see this pupil again.

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