Pre Patch Panic

Life Aggro
Between school (5 hours of homework each night!), getting sick, and a super secret project coming Soon™ (ooh, cryptic messages), Fussypants and Yotaan have had almost no time to blog, and even less to play WoW.  Never fear, we are hoping back onto that blogging train, and just in time because 6.0 is on the horizon.

Fussypants: I was doing what typical Fussypants’s do when there is not much coming in WoW; meandering through normals, slowly gearing up, smelling the roses and all that.  And then BAM! Patch 6.0.2 PTR NOW LIVE!

Uh oh.  I need to get moving!  I have a bajillion things I need to do before that patch drops!!
For instance, I want to
⦁    Kill Normal Garrosh for the Ahead of the Curve achievement!  This is an almost obsession, and I’ve been pugging frantically in an attempt to get this
⦁    Get all the Proving Grounds achievements I can, many which will turn into Feats of Strength
⦁    Finally finish up Hexos in the Brawlers Guild (I’ve been stuck on him for MONTHS guys)
⦁    Perhaps get some Challenge Mode dungeons done?
⦁    Kill Ra-Den for the Achievement, which will also become a Feat of Strength
⦁    Get my warrior to 90, she’s kinda stalled out at 80 right now
⦁    Legendary Cloak on my druid if I can
⦁    Start running flex raids with my guild again
⦁    Get at least one heirloom from Garrosh
⦁    Possibly try out RP? Maybe? How does one do that?
⦁    Decide on a main for WoD
⦁    Do stuff on this list!

So yeah, that’s a long list! And I’ve got two weeks to a month at best.  And school is ramping up hardcore. Yikes!

Yotaan: I have been not only busy but I have been distracted by Hearthstone.  Deathrattle Priest for the win! I do have a few things I want to accomplish before the patch drops:
⦁    GREEN FIRE!!!!  I got the legendary cloak on my warlock, so I hope I can handle the scenario questy thing.  I’ll get a cool title too.
⦁    Help Fussypants get her normal Garrosh kill.  I really hope she gets it!  (of course an heirloom for us to share would be nice too.)
⦁    Well, that’s pretty much it actually…

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What are all your prepatch panics?

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The End of the Contest

Beta Key Giveaway
The beta key contest is officially over!  The answers to the riddles were:

First Riddle: Tales of a Raid Rebirth
Second Riddle: Flying from Cloud Nine
Third Riddle: You are not your #%$@ DPS
Fourth Riddle: Topper McNabb

I also learned an interesting bit of trivia from one of the submissions.  Apparently Topper McNabb is a reference to Paul Dooley (aka J. Wellington Wimpy) from the 1980 film Popeye.  The more you know!

The two winners were Khizzara and Letusbefree-Windrunner.  Congrats!

Thank you to everyone who contributed! I hope you had as much fun solving the riddles as I did coming up with them! Emails have been sent out to the four winners.

Pugged Groups: Looking for Ego?

Awkward Moments Raiding
NOTE: The Beta Key Contest will end on Friday, September 19th at 3 PST, 5 CST, 6 EST.  Go solve those riddles!

So you all know how I love the Other Raids feature.  Even with its tendency to show healers as needing a group when they don’t,  or randomly unlist your group, the feature is pretty great.  Thanks to Other Raids, I have gotten my ilvl up to 556, been able to clear 8/14 Normal SoO, and gotten a few achievements on the way.  All in all, I’d consider the feature a success.

But, even I will admit, the feature was a band-aid on a bigger issue.  Pugging, and the extreme difficulty it was without outside sources.  And with 6.0, Blizzard intends to put in place their real solution to the problem.

The Looking for Adventure tab in the Group Finder, it is called.  Within it, players can search through and find a group to their liking, and then apply.  Or they can create a group, and set certain criteria such as item level or voice comm.  So basically, a built-in OQ.  In theory, I think the idea is sound enough, but I have a few queries.

First things first, will you only be able to list groups, or can you list as an individual looking for a group?  One thing I’ve noticed in the current iteration of Other Raids, is that there will be dozens of people looking for raids, and only a few groups listed.  With this new LFA (that’s gonna be my acronym folks, you heard it here first!), will there be just a few groups forming, and dozens of people all rushing to get into those limited spots? Or will I be able to queue up as a healer, and just wait for the whispers to come in?

I kind of hope that the LFA will let you queue as an individual or as a group, but have them under separate tabs.  For example, someone looking for a group might list themselves under the Individual tab, then go and search for a raid in the Group tab.  And vice versa.  Also, as a sometimes raid leader, I like the fact that you can  pick from an array of different people, instead of just the people who apply.

My second question; will the requirements be abused?  Yes I know that you cannot put an ilvl higher than your own, and if you put a high ilvl, only people with that ilvl will see it.  But you can easily circumvent that by putting a low ilvl requirement, but in the description mention that you actually want x ilvl.  I can see lots of possible ways that this system could be abused.

Also, one of the specific requirements that you can choose are Proving Grounds level you wish your group member have achieved.  Personally, I disliked the Proving Grounds.  I didn’t feel like that was an adequate way to test your skill at a class.  I thought the time was too punishing, and the kiting/defensive cooldowns severely lacking.  I learned almost nothing about raid awareness, CCs, or group etiquette.  All I got from my experience was how to spam your abilities the best and how to complete some highly specialized and otherwise irrelevant tasks.  As a result, I barely did any of them.  I don’t really want that to become a requirement.  I didn’t enjoy them, and I didn’t think they were a good test of the skills necessary in a raid.  And I certainly don’t want ‘LF DPS, Need PG GOLD’ to become a new normal.

But unfortunately, this sort of elitist behavior is already common in the gaming community.  I don’t want to tell you how many times I see a flex with an ilvl 550+, or a normal demanding ilvl 570, the legendary cloak, and heroic experience.  You definitely don’t need that level of gear and experience to run that level of content.  But unfortunately, many groups now want that.  And with this new group finder, I worry that this will become even worse.

I guess what I am getting at here is that while the LFA will be a great feature, we could possibly be trading ease of access for elitism.  I absolutely love the idea of pugging, but left to its own devices, it can get way out of control.  We need some sort of incentive to bring along at gear level characters, not just massively over geared ones.
‘But Fussypants, can’t you just set up your own pugs?’ Yes, but I shouldn’t have to do so every time.  There should be groups with moderate requirements that I can join.  Not just groups with outrageous requirements that are way out of my range.  The nature of pugging is quick semi-formal groups to run content.  Not hardcore, elitist jerks that carry the one leader of the group.

All things in moderation, especially World of Warcraft pug requirements.

Ready… Set… Go!!

The Beta Key contest is starting… now!

Your first riddle:
The first word be a story
The end of a ferret
An adventure of merit
Something so great you must share it.

The second and thirds
Are more filler words
And ones that are often times heards

The word numbered four
Is an action and noun
That the vikings did sound
In the days when they were abound

And finally to five
Is a valued druid spell
When a person hath fell
And your raid leader shouts with a yell

Together these will form
An article of inform
And one that is out of the norm

 

EDIT: We are now giving TWO keys away! Yotaan and I decided to give away the other beta key we got, so now first and second place get a key, and third and fourth get a painting! Happy hunting!

Good luck!
HOW THIS WILL ALL GO DOWN
In this article is the first riddle.  The answer to the riddle will be either the title or the topic (or some other such clue) of one of my previous blog posts.  Upon going to that blog article, you will find the next clue in the bottom of the post.  This riddle will lead you on again.

There will be four riddles in all.  Riddle number four won’t lead you to a new post (you will be reminded on that riddle that this is the last one).  Instead, you will email me at thefussypants@hotmail.com (remember the ‘the’ in front of Fussypants in the email, or I won’t get it) with the answer to the riddle AND THE TITLES OF THE OTHER POSTS IN THE ORDER WHICH YOU HIT THEM.  This way, I will know that you actually followed the trail instead of just answering the last riddle.

The first three people to email me with the correct answers win!

Prizes will go as so
1st place: The beta key (obviously)
2nd place: A watercolor painting of your character
3rd place: A (slightly smaller) watercolor painting of your character
(Key will go out the following day if possible, paintings depending on when I get them done)
If I cannot reach you to give you your prize, I will award it to whomever was next.
If you are first and you don’t want the key, please make that clear in the email, and I will give the second place person the key and you shall receive a different prize.

You don’t have to want a beta key to join! Anyone can participate, for fun, for the watercolor, or heck, even for bragging rights!

TIPS
Use the search function in the blog
Think outside of the box regarding the riddles
If you are stuck on a certain riddle, comment in the first clue post and I might help you
Have the email all set up beforehand so you can send it right away once you have the answer
Have fun!

REMEMBER
This is supposed to be a fun event! Yes, it is also a competition, but don’t lose sight of the fun aspect in your race to be first!  Good luck to you all!

Disclaimer: Yotaan and I retain the right to refuse to award the prize to anyone on the grounds of cheating or unsportsmanship.  So please. Don’t do it.

Beta Key Giveaway Rules

Oh man,, these Photoshop skillz though

Oh man, these Photoshop skillz though

You voted, you commented, and now the results are in!  The way Yotaan and I will give away the Beta key is… by riddles in the blog!

Now, time for the nitty gritty.

On Sunday the 14th of September, at 3 PST, 5 CST, 6 EST, I will post the riddles through out the blog.  I will also post an article basically saying GO! and shortly after that I will update my Twitter with said post.  So that time is when you start hunting and solving riddles.  Just to reiterate Sunday the 14th of September, at 3 PST, 5 CST, 6 EST.

HOW THIS WILL ALL GO DOWN
In the article I post, will be the first riddle clue.  The answer to the riddle will be either the title or the topic (or some other such clue) of one of my previous blog posts.  Upon going to that blog article, you will find the next clue at the bottom of the post.  This riddle will lead you on again.

There will be four riddles in all.  Riddle number four won’t lead you to a new post (you will be reminded on that riddle that this is the last one).  Instead, you will email me at thefussypants@hotmail.com (remember the ‘the’ in front of Fussypants in the email, or I won’t get it) with the answer to the riddle AND THE TITLES OF THE OTHER POSTS IN THE ORDER WHICH YOU HIT THEM.  This way, I will know that you actually followed the trail instead of just answering the last riddle.

The first three people to email me with the correct answers win!

Prizes will go as so
1st place: The beta key (obviously)
2nd place: A watercolor painting of your character
3rd place: A (slightly smaller) watercolor painting of your character
(Key will go out the following day if possible, paintings depending on when I get them done)
If I cannot reach you to give you your prize, I will award it to whomever was next.
If you are first and you don’t want the key, please make that clear in the email, and I will give the second place person the key and you shall receive a different prize.

In order to make this more fair, I will be changing the blog temporarily so that only the first paragraph of every article shows.  The riddle will be in purple text in order to make it clear where they are.

You don’t have to want a beta key to join! Anyone can participate, for fun, for the watercolor, or heck, even for bragging rights!

TIPS
Use the search function in the blog
Think outside of the box regarding the riddles
If you are stuck on a certain riddle, comment in the first clue post and I might help you
Have the email all set up beforehand so you can send it right away once you have the answer
Have fun!

REMEMBER
This is supposed to be a fun event! Yes, it is also a competition, but don’t lose sight of the fun aspect in your race to be first!  Good luck to you all!

The rules stated here will also appear in the first clue post next Monday.

Disclaimer: Yotaan and I retain the right to refuse to award the prize to anyone on the grounds of cheating or unsportsmanship.  So please. Don’t do it.

Durumu: Best Boss Fight in MoP?

creature_durumu
‘What?’ you say,  ‘Durumu? The one with the maze? You must have made a mistake here!’ Actually, imaginary interpretation of person, I have not.  I have said it before, and I’ll say it again: Durumu is one of the best boss fights from MoP. And here’s why.

First things first, Durumu the Forgotten is not easily forgotten.  Every single person who has raided Throne of Thunder remembers him.  Most people remember him because of his difficult to navigate maze or annoying cones of light ability, but for whatever reason, Durumu does not slip from many’s memories.  In my mind, and I would assume, in Blizzard’s mind, the best boss is one that people remember.

Sometimes, bosses are remembered because of lore reasons.  The Lich King, Illidan, and Edwin VanCleef come to mind right off the bat.  There is great story behind the character, and the fight is a very personal thing instead of just fighting Evil Troll #4 or something along those lines.  A lot of times, quests or the instance itself lead up to the inevitable demise of said character.  But not every boss has an in-depth fleshed out background.  Not every boss can.  So that brings me to the second reason bosses are remembered.

Bosses are remembered if they have particularly hard mechanics. Things like Yor’sahj the Unsleeping (the dude with the colored globules in Cata), The Occulus (that entire dungeon was frustrating) or Kor’Kron Dark Shaman stick out in people’s minds.  People remember the wipes, the tears, and the time invested in getting those bosses down.  And this is exactly why Durumu  is remembered.  From his hard to see maze with added death beam, to the cones of light revealing Fog creatures, and the pools of badness on the ground, Durumu is one for the record books.

But Durumu’s mechanics aren’t just memorable, they were also creative and new.  The idea of a maze, in which you basically stop dps to navigate is a pretty unusual one.  And it worked.  No other boss in Pandaria had mechanics quite like Durumu.  The boss was a radically different experience from all the others.  It had so much going on, but at the same time was rather easy to understand in concept.

And it was one of the few bosses in Pandaria where dps didn’t matter as much.  If you got to the maze phase, it didn’t matter if you could do 200k dps or 5k, because you have to get through the maze before you could dps.  Raid coordination became more valuable than the gear you were wearing.  Durumu was the great equalizer.

Sadly, the glory days of wiping endlessly in LFR on Durumu are coming to a close.  With a whole new tier, it has become more and more common for people to dps Durumu down before he ever gets to the maze phase.  But I, and many other players, will remember him for far beyond MoP.

WoW needs bosses like Durumu.  Bosses with new and innovative abilities, bosses that require more than DPS or luck to beat.  And honestly, WoW also needs bosses that are ridiculously hard, that challenge even the most elite, and push people to try new techniques.  If every boss was a tank and spank loot piñata, we would get bored with raiding really quick.  So this is why I like Durumu, and why I consider him one of the best bosses in Pandaria.

 

Addendum: Beta Key Giveaway coming Soon™