Rummys Blog An world of endless Monday

Monday, 21 December, 2009

The healer’s guilty secret

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:37 pm

I’m going to let you into something today, approved it’s a dirty secret of mine, website like this and I think every healer probably shares it though I bet many wouldn’t admit it.

The secret is…. healing gets easier everytime a DPS dies.

Well, eczema not quite always, but very nearly. In just about every 5 man I’ve been in the healing gets tough somewhere along the line – and just to keep up I need to stack haste and shove out heals as fast as I possibly can. If one of the DPS dies, suddenly instead of healing 5 players I’m healing 4 players, 20% less heals needed! Do the math!

Take last night’s Raid PuG, the one to get the weekly raid quest done (XT002 Deconstructor). It was a pretty rubbish pug, I don’t know how many attempts they’d had on Flame Leviathan before I joined, but I know they wiped at least once once before I was able to join the instance. Anyway I joined and we downed Flame Leviathan and we went onto XT002. Unfortunately the PuG only had 2 healers. It was tough going and by around 25% quite a few of the DPS were dead. After that it was “plain sailing” just hoping the tanks could do enough damage and worrying about the enrage timer. The healing itself was pretty simple. Even with getting more than my fair share of gravity and light bombs, there was enough time to chuck in a few Lava Bolts/chain lightnings and Flame Shocks.

So my guilty secret is that if you die at least one member of the team is not upset!

Friday, 18 December, 2009


Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:28 pm

The guildies kindly took me into Forge of Souls the other night, find normal to start, ailment and then immediately after, Heroic.

As a shammy healer at my gearing and with these DPS/tank FoS isn’t a bother. I think we might have wiped once, but it went very well.

I was going to do the JC daily (nearly always do) and log, but it looked like the group still wanted a healer for Heroic Pit of Saron. So back I went. This time it was on Heroic, and not so nice. A few things scared the shit out of me. The first boss, where you have to hide behind a stone, except you also have to heal the tank who’s out of sight! Damn, wipe! Second time around we got him.

Second boss was a wipe due to not knowing just how far to stand away from the mines. I think that was the 2nd one anyway.

onwards, ever onwards. The next big problem came when we had to tackle a group of hard hitting casters on a path up a hill. Blimey! I was spamming Healing Wave, and I really mean spamming it! And still the tank died! Could I have been faster? It’s difficult. I could have tried to weave in a RipTide for the haste, and I should have, but I was too scared watching that health bar just dissapear!

Next attempt we used some Crowd Control, so so so much easier with two priests in the party. This time I also managed to ground some stuff and interrupt, and I’d eaten haste food. –  I’m slowly getting better at interrupting, though it does take a “quiet” time in the healing rotation to pick my target. And of course I don’t interrupt while casting a heal, usually the heals are far more important.

Finally onto the last boss in the Pit. Difficult. The first attempt started well. As in we were just stood there listening to the dialog, unfortunately it fell apart when the fighting actually started. I was stood well back ready to start the healing when suddenly the tank dashes out of range and dies. Damn again! Next time we managed it (just) and I was far more prepared for the tank to run away, you know, watching him on my screen so I can see where he’s going, not actually standing 39 yards away, all that!

Anyway a fun run, and I’ll be a little better prepared next time. You never know, I might even read the strats!

Other crap.

Just for a laugh I turned up shadows a notch in IronForge so they’re not just blobs directly under the toons. Far more atmospheric, and about 60% the framerate :(, just usable. I accidentally left it on in PoS, it’s creepy seeing shadows of dragons passing under your feet, quite chilling. I’ll leave it on for a bit longer, it’s really quite nice!

I’ve not seen a “freeze” now for weeks, sound has been good to me too! The only issue is how long it takes the bankers to appear in IF/Dalaran.

Wednesday, 16 December, 2009

Best thing since sliced bread?

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:47 pm

I’ve only used the new LFG tool the once and it worked a dream in the instance within 5 minutes!

I’ve been reading a few blogs and plusheal and elsewhere and the general impression is that this is what it’s all about! And it could be the best thing that Blizz have done in a long long while. It makes me wonder if the way the next Star Wars MMO is going with its “Companions” is way way the wrong solution. Solo in an MMO FTL! Betcha they bring this feature in.

Tuesday, 15 December, 2009

Things that make you go hmmmmm.

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:32 pm

Smythy posted an interesting comment on my first Northrend tanking experience.

In case you can’t be arsed reading it he says

“If you have a very sensible (or spiteful) healer, see they?ll let any over-agroing DPS?er drop dead, clinic because that way the mob will usually just wander back over to the tank afterwards.”

I mostly heal in raids or with the other Munquis so letting players die intentionally isn’t an option, but yeah, once in a blue moon I pug. And yeah, when I do I often see DPS pulling aggro. It never occurred to me before that letting them die was a sensible option, I’d always thought it was something you did when you were feeling particularly narked.

But maybe letting them die really is the only way they’ll learn. And as Smy says, it will probably only make the trash take longer and not actually cause a wipe.

Run away quickly.

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:25 pm

Getting ready to run away.

The munquis went for the first Icecrown Citadel raid last night. After an interesting issue with Phasing where  no one could see anyone else – making summoning particularly difficult, stuff we gathered together inside the instance and started on the trash.

There’s a fair bit of trash, which gives you plenty of time to hear the voices acting out bits of the current lore. I quite like this, usually the lore is only there if you bother to look for it, here you don’t have to go looking, it comes across as a natural part of the instance, not glued on. Well Done Blizz.

The trash in here can be a bit tricky, but not too difficult. There’s a couple of times when you trigger some enormous “Bone Wasters” just as you engage a new pack, fortunately these seem to be “tied” to an area and will de-aggro if you run away far enough.

The second time we came across the Bone Wasters was especially memorable. There we were all setting up, wondering if we’d aggro the Bone Wasters on the next pull. The tanks agreed that if we did aggro them we would run away until they reset. Plan made.

Everyone is ready, pull starts and, not unexpectedly, the Bone Wasters wake up and come out of their niches. Half the ranged/healers turn and start running towards the entrance. Over Vent we hear “It’s all right, we’ll tank them here”. So we all turn around and start running back in range to heal. The tanks die because there aren’t enough (any?) healers in range! So we got back just in time to turn around and run away again!

It was hilarious!

If my Vent weren’t on Push-to-talk I’d have been muted, just so they didn’t have to put up with me laughing my head off continuously for ages. I’m still smiling now just thinking about it. Best pull I’ve been on! Ever! Even more memorable than the “heal me” incident in Naxx.

Anyway, the first boss was a bit too much for this team so we went and cleared Trial of the Crusader in the remaining time. A couple of wipes, but pretty damn good. Especially for Flowersz because she got some Healing gear and some offspec Enhancement gear. The place is already heading to Farm status.

Drive by Shooting

Filed under: General — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:19 pm

Sue was visiting a bunch of news sites the other night, visit this site trying to find something or other about Strictly Come Dancing, when suddenly a notepad window popped open with random looking text in it, starting with the dangerous MZ characters and including some text or other about “this program cannot be run in DOS mode”. Simultaneously Kaspersky popped up saying it was putting “CriticalUpdate.exe” in the low risk group.


We’re pretty sure one of the sites had managed to shove a trojan/virus on her computer presumably using vulnerability in Firefox or one of the essential addons (Real Player, Flash or somesuch).

A full scan with Kaspersky found two highly suspicious files with its heuristics analyser but they had later dissapeared from view! More than a little suspicious.

I’ve managed to find 4 really iffy looking files, two tmp files containing executable code and two executables lsass.exe & CriticalUpdate.exe. I’ve stuffed these into a zip for later investigation.

The thing is Kaspersky doesn’t see them as dodgy! Not even when I check them on my presumably uninfected machine.

I’m dissapointed. Until Kaspersky can see these files as bad we can’t assume that the machine is not badly infected.

It’s looking like we’re going to have to wipe her notebook and start afresh. Which is difficult because it doesn’t have a built in CD drive or standard Windows XP installation CDs.

So now I know that Kaspersky isn’t quite as solid a defence as everyone pretends it is. I’m particuarly annoyed that it blithely accepted lsass.exe as low risk when it wasn’t even in the System32 directory! If Sue hadn’t previously associated .tmp files with notepad we probably wouldn’t even have noticed anything!

Boo! Then again, maybe I’ll get to play with Windows 7.

Monday, 14 December, 2009

Hit me with your rhythm stick

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:28 pm

Hit me!

The new LFG got me an Utgarde Keep run in about 10 minutes which beats the several hours last week by about several hours. This was Fflowers first tank since his teens, obesity which explains why a level 74 went into a level 70 instance. Also it makes the whole defence/hit cap stuff much less of an issue, cialis what with Ingvar being a paltry level 72. The healer was a shadow specced priest, contagion so being high level was, I’m sure, a help there as well.

How did it go?

Fair to SoSo I’d say.

The hunter’s pet was a bit unruly, pulling mobs off me the whole time he was there. And a few of times on trash I lost a mob. I tried taunting it several times but what with the DPS hitting on it I never quite got it’s full attention. So now I know what mocking blow is for!

There’s loads of scope for improvement, particularly in keeping up Demoralising Shout, I used it, but no way enough. And I was relying on the AOE and cleaves to keep secondary mobs on me, not tab/sunder(or devastate) as I think Panzercow recommends.

It was still fun, and we finished the instance (with me dead at the end watching the DK in blues tanking). I’ll certainly be doing it one more time before moving onto the Nexus. And after that, well, who knows? It looks suspiciously like the end of questing for Fflowers though.

Otherwise I did nothing in WoW this weekend (excluding fishing and the JC daily).

Thursday, 10 December, 2009

Slow part 2

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 1:10 pm

Sorry about that last post, therapy but it’s been bugging me for ages.

Died in Onyxia a few times last night, generic she was bugged so I doubt that we would have got her down anyway. So what did I die to?

1. Wing Buffet killed me and knocked me into the Whelp Cave. Good job I was already dead or I’d have triggered a swarm of whelps.
Slow because I’ve been Wing Buffeted before!

2. Released instead of Reincarnated
Slow because I’ve been doing this since way back in BC. I get a brief rush of joy when I press the right button, usually followed by dieing to AoE within 5 seconds. Is there any easy way to change the text to “Graveyard” instead of “Release”?

3. Died to “Blast Wave”, twice!
Slow because, well, twice in one night? Being a ranged healer I tend not to know what the mobs can do, because they always do it over there to the tank, not over here to me! Twice is no excuse however.


Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:58 pm

Ghost wolf: 1.5 second cast, viagra 60mg 40% speed increase, sick can only be used outside.

Summon Mount: 1.5 second cast 60-100% speed increase, can only be used outside.

Gimme a break! Once you hit 20 and can buy a mount untalented Ghost Wolf is a total sham! Sure you can put 2 points into Improved Ghost Wolf to make it instant, but that’s TWO whole talent points. I really expect something pretty damn nice for that, give me a talent called “Housebroken“!


So as a resto shaman I have a macro: Natures Swiftness + Ghost Wolf that gives me instant Ghost Wolf, otherwise I don’t use it.

At all.


Wednesday, 9 December, 2009

All clear

Filed under: World of Warcraft — Andrew.Rowbottom @ 12:39 pm

I got to raid with the Munquis on Monday, pilule 10 man Trial of the Crusader and it went well. Considering this is my second visit, and first “proper” visit (aka downed Northrend beasts), it went very very well, in fact so well that we cleared the place in a single evening! Flowersz got some loot too, which, lets face it, is always nice even if it isn’t necessary. In fact there was a fair amount of loot-celebration going around. The bosses in totc give out Badges of Triumph like they were going out of fashion, which I suppose they are.

And the bosses were nice to me, for the most part they seemed to leave me alone to do my stuff. No Snobolding for me!

I guess that Achtung Panzercow was right when he said it was easier than the end of Ulduar! I shall certainly be signing up again.

I was bad and thanked one of the healers for the nice healing on the last boss (AN), but didn’t thank Komati. Looking at the combat logs all three healers were within a percent of each other, nice!

And last night we went and downed Onyxia, with some help from the Bad Apples. It took two attempts. You know it’s going to be a tough one when the first heal you cast needs Natures Swiftness 🙂 ! She gave me just enough badges to upgrade one of my rings ([Annhylde's Ring]) to [Heartmender Circle] that’s quite an upgrade!

I’m still running without recount, and it’s certainly freeing. I’m playing just as hard as I ever did, but not getting any downer moments when I see that I’m not “top of the hill”. Thinking on it, I’m just not sure I’ll bring it back, it isn’t contributing anything to my activity. I’m not really dissing it, after all some encounters need the Raid Leader to know if a player’s gear/skill combo is significantly outshining the others so that the right jobs get given to the right player.

Also, in woes….

I didn’t see any of my “micro-freezes” at all, allthough Wow actually crashed on me late on in Northrend Beasts! And again after the raid in Dalaran. It’s never done that before. I’m running the repair tool now. It fixed something so maybe that was it.

I may even have found some of my sound issues too! I was poking the headphone plug that leads into my computer and suddenly sound was back. That’s twice that poking around with that particular plug has sorted the problem, so I’m putting in for a new headset for crimbo.

Where does that leave me?

I think I can bring Power Auras back in for the next raid.

My sound woes are likely to get sorted.

And the focused shadow gem macro isn’t working to my liking. Damn!

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