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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Raiding Addons

There are thousands of addons you can get for WoW but there are a few that are especially good for raiding. Some guilds make some or all of these mandatory for raiding.

Deadly Boss Mods
(DBM)- DBM helps you out by announcing various boss mechanics. This can include warnings to move or timers for various mechanics. DBM will sometimes audibly count down to events which helps the raider move before they take a lot of damage or before an event. It will also announce spells and debuffs cast and changes of phases. DBM also works for instances and battlegrounds.

GTFO - GTFO is a great addon in addition to DBM. GTFO will make a sound if you are standing in something on the ground, get hit by something your not suppose to, or generally dying in some way. It is nice because you will hear the sound and know you have to move out of something even if you are focused on healing or rotation. Another perk of the addon is that it warns you of things outside of raiding also like getting fatigue or drowning.

Recount - This addon keeps track of DPS, Healing, Interrupts, CC breaks, and a handful of other stats. This addon isn't something mandatory to raid but it does help keep track of the dps or healing you are doing in relation to others in your raid. You can click on each member and see what spells they were using to do damage and heals and you can in turn use that to help figure out your own rotation. You can also see the main mobs the person is DPSing or healing. This can be very useful if certain members are not changing targets during a fight.

Omen Threat Meter - Omen is an addon all raiders should have. It shows how much threat you have on a mob. This is extremely important for tanks and DPS. If the DPS sees they are getting too close to the tanks threat they can stop DPSing until their threat goes down or can Misdirect or Tricks of the Trade threat to the tank.

Healbot or Vuhdo - Both of these addons deal with healing and decursing. You don't use both. Choose one or the other. Quite a few people prefer Healbot but test out both if you haven't used them before. You can set up your healing spells and cleansing spells to mouse buttons and shift/ctrl/alt modifiers. Instead of having to click on each person to heal them you just click on the addons raiding frames to directly heal them. Using one of these addons is much more efficient and easier to heal than manually clicking a raid member then clicking the healing spell you want. You can also see debuffs on all players, a quick view of everyone's health, and which players have died.

Omni CC
- This addon changes the count downs of your buttons. Instead of seeing a clock dial counting down your buttons you see a number. Instead of having to guess how much time you have before a button can be hit you can just look at the number and know if you have time to hit another spell before the cooldown is up.

Tidy Plates - This addon was made for tanks but it has expanded to be helpful to all classes. It adds a health plate above a mobs head. You can change the style depending on what info you want to see. If you are a rogue you can have it show the timers of your bleeds and poisons. If you are a tank you can show the mobs you have a lot of threat on and which ones you are losing threat. DPS and heals can see if they are getting too much argo on certain mobs. The plates can change color depending on how much threat you have on a mob and also if there are any raid markers on the mob. The plate will change to a certain color marker such as white for skull, red for X, and yellow for diamond.

Rating Buster - Sometimes when looking at gear that dropped it is hard to decide which is better, what you are wearing or what dropped. This addon helps with showing how your stats will change. It takes into account your class and spec. You can see what stats you lose and what you gain. It also shows resilience, mana, armor, and health changes.

Raiding Guidelines

You are a part of a guild. Act like it.

If you only go on raids that benefit you people will take notice. If you only raid until you have what you want and then stop going to that raid you may not get invites to other raids you want to do. If you are going to guild raids then continue to go on guild raids to help others get the gear and achievements they need. If you act like a pompous jerk then you will be treated like a pompous jerk.

You may not go on a raid you signed up for.

A raid leader must first invite the tanks and heals. After that they choose the DPS that signed up. Under normal circumstances DPS will be added according to the time they signed up. Sometimes invites are based on needing Melee vs Ranged. In some cases like progression or off specs needed a better geared/raid aware person or person with needed off specs will be added instead of first signed up.

If you sign up for a raid then show up. If you sign up tentative you will be taken into consideration after any accepted people are added. If you really want to go but you are not sure if you have to work or will get back home in time from something then let the raid leader know and it will be their choice if your tentative response is considered an accepted.

Be prepared.

Sometimes the raid is graced with a person or people who will supply raiding food tables and flask cauldrons. Do not rely on these always being available. The people supplying them have other things to do in the game and may not be able to make up enough for every raid. Something you can do to help out with this is to get supplies needed to make them and put them in the guild bank. Then raiders can look in the guild bank for mats they don't have and make up meals and cauldrons. Remember the raid feasts are BOP once made and the flask cauldrons are bound to your battlenet account. Don't make up a ton of feasts on a toon you do not raid with or cauldrons on a battlenet account you don't raid with.

The seafood feast requires Highland Guppy (2), Lavascale Catfish (2), Fathom Eel (2) per meal.

The flask cauldron requires Flask of Steelskin, Flask of the Draconic Mind, Flask of the Winds, Flask of Titanic Strength, Deathblood Venom (8). This is basically all cata herbs and volatile life.

Show up ready to raid.

If you show up to a raid stoned or drunk don't be surprised if you are kicked from the raid. Yeah sometimes its funny to have a drunk person in raid but if the raid keeps wiping because your impaired ass is killing people off then you will be kicked.

Learn the fights.

If we are doing a raid you haven't done before there are a million Youtube videos on how to do the boss fights from every classes aspect. Taking a couple minutes to glance at videos will give you an idea of what the fight is like and can help you with tips and tricks for your class.

If there are certain raids that you just cant get a hang of or just hate the raid don't feel like you have to sign up for them. If you are getting frustrated just let the raid leader know and they will see if they can get a replacement. If you down right cant stand the thought of going into Naxx then dont sign up for those runs. Either through guild, friends, or pugs the raid can find a replacement for you.

Listen to the raid leader.

If you are not the raid leader or the raid leader hasn't asked for your opinion then shut up and let the raid leader do their job. If you learned a trick in a pug group and think it would be helpful in the raid then mention it to the raid leader and they will take your input into consideration. If you are not the raid leader and are trying to set up placement of people for a boss fight 5 trash pulls away just shut up. People tend to have a short attention span and it is easier for the raid leader to set up pulls at the boss than for 3 people to shout out commands and confuse the rest of the raid.

When you agree to sign up for a raid you are agreeing that you are willing to put the cyber life of your toon in the hands of the raid leader. If there is a boss that instantly kills the first person to attack it and the raid leader says you are that person then you run in and die. If you find out that you don't like how the raid leader is running the raid then no one is forcing you to join any of their raids in the future.

If you get to a boss and the raid leader starts to explain the fight listen. Do not say you are going afk and then get back after the fight is explained and ask how to do the fight. Personally I would kick the person on the spot. If you need a break ask for one. Don't just say afk like you know what you are doing and come back and say that.

Keep vent clear.

Listen to the raid leader when they give orders on how vent is to be used. If it is a run that's on farm and lol-easy then you will probably be able to have fun and joke around. If it is a fight that requires people to hear orders or people are learning the fight then keep vent clear except for people the raid leader designates. Some things the raid leader may assign vent role to include decursing, calls to offtank adds, or timers. When a bunch of people try to talk on vent at the same time the voices are mumbled up and it is hard to hear what people are saying.

Also please don't yell in vent. Some people get headaches from being on vent too long because of people yelling about random things. You may be really excited about something but please try to stay within average decibels. There is no need to yell things like you have died. Healers can see you have died and usually a couple different messages pop up that you have died.

Don't start pulling shit before the whole raid gets there and before the raid leader says to start.

It is great that you have the initiative to get to the instance before everyone else but if you start pulling before the raid gets there then you are just being an ass. In some retro raids the trash mobs are easy to solo but some raid members may be going to get rep or rep drops. We have also had retro instances completely cleared and last boss killed before the whole raid gets there. Something like Mags and Gruuls are very short instances. Wait for your raid. If the raid is too slow getting there for your liking by all means leave the raid and do the instance by yourself.

Know your role.

Not all raid leaders know what spec you have and what gear/skill level you have with certain specs. If on a raid signup the raid leader asks for role then send them an ingame mail saying what specs your toon is and what spec you would rather play in. If you are offspec tank but don't know any of the fights let the raid leader know. You will not be forced into a role you are uncomfortable with. Also know that if possible the raid leader may allow you to use the raiding time to learn a new spec. Some really good tanks and healers can come out of an understanding raid that allows them to learn.

Don't waste the raids time and gold.

It is one thing to learn how to do a fight. It is another to wipe over and over again because of stupid shit. If you cannot grasp the concept of raiding mechanics on retro raids then don't expect to be accepted into progression raids. In progression raids there needs to be people who are willing to learn and give a shit about the game.

Don't point fingers.

The raid leader isn't stupid. If someone keeps messing up they know about it. Going off on a person in raid chat or vent does nothing to help the situation. You are not gods gift to raiding. You will screw up big time too.

Just because you can raid the LFR doesn't mean you are geared and experienced to raid.

The looking for raid option is the lazy mans way of getting gear. LFR is no different than getting into a battleground. Yes, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. You can stand in whatever you want, take the hits of Faiding Light, and stand in the stomps and still live. If you put a trained chimp in front of a computer it could do better than some LFR people. True story. If you are fully LFR geared that just means you are lucky at drops. If you do well in dps or heals what would happen if we took into account how much damage you took or how much overheals you did? Just because you can survive the LFR does not mean you are ready and able to raid Firelands or regular Dragon Soul.

Guidelines for Raid Leaders:

If you have something that is on reserve then let people know that on the calendar. It is rude to have 10-25 people show up and then let them know a highly prized item is on reserve. If you do reserve items limit it to 2-3 items a raid and switch around people the reserve it going to. No one wants to go on raids just to gear up the raid leader and their friends week after week.

State loot rules before the raid starts. With some raids you may want people to need all items over 185 item level to try to get people the Needy achievement. You may have everyone greed and only need items the actually need or for items they want to transmog. State if people should need on items like mounts, quest items, or bags. It is usually better for everyone to need on such items so there isnt confusion when it comes time to roll.

If you do loot master you may want someone you trust to handle that. You have enough in your hands running the raid. Let someone else deal with tells and rolls for loot.

If someone is being rude in your raid then warn them. If they continue then kick them. There is no reason for a raid leader to have a headache or be fuming because of some jerk. If you dont like what a person is doing say something. Raid leading is suppose to be fun, not a nightmare.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Guild Names

With the introduction of the Guild Bank back in patch 2.3 there has been a huge influx of guilds in Warcraft. Most of them are personal bank guilds. It is nice to spend a small chunk of money and have an extra guild with 2-4 tabs of more space for all the stuff we collect.

With creating a guild we are stuck in the same situation of the character creation screen. What is its name? Some people go with a favorite saying, band, movie, or location in game. I have two bank guilds, Hordecore Pwnography and Razorfen Down Syndrome.

What are some of the funny guild names you have seen? Below is a list of a few I've seen over the years that stuck out.

Nagas Gave Me Harpies
Burns When I PVP
She Said She Was LvL 18
Built Horde Tough
Crits and Giggles
Gnomeland Security
And Two Stealthed Rogues
Bovine University

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hunter Rep Rewards - Cata Edition

With Cata Hunters have a lot of options of rep rewards to help gear up for Heroics. Once you become friendly with a faction you can wear their tabard in level 85 instances to gain rep and there are also quests you can do to raise rep. The only faction that doesn't reward rep for wearing a Tabard is the Tol Barad factions. Here is a brief list of Hunter related gear.

Dragonmaw Clan/ Wildhammer Clan

Zone: Twilight Highlands
Quests: Once you have done some of the quests in the zone you will have access to 5 dailies that grant a total of 1,250 rep per day.

Snarling Helm - Revered Head

Guardians of Hyjal

Zone: Mount Hyjal
Quests: Doing all the quests in Mount Hyjal will bring you up to Revered.

Acorn of the Daughter Tree - Revered Neck
Treads of Malorne - Exalted Boots


Zone: Uldum
Quests: All of the Ramkahen related quests are located in Uldum. There are also 2 dailies which will grant you a total of 1,000 rep per day.

Belt of the Stargazer - Honored Belt
Arcanum of the Ramkahen - Revered AGI Head Enchant

The Earthen Ring

Zone: Vashj'ir, Deepholm, and Twilight Highlands
Quests: All of the zones above contain quests related to The Earthen Ring faction. There currently isn't any dailies related to them.

Mantle of Moss - Honored Shoulders
Softwind Cape - Revered Cloak

Zone: Deepholm
Quests: Once you have completed most of the quests in Deepholm 6 dailies will open up for you for a total of 1,500 rep per day. Once you hit Revered another 2 dailies will open up but only one is available a day for another 350 rep.

Lesser Inscription of Shattered Crystal - Honored AGI Shoulder Enchant
Greater Inscription of Shattered Crystal - Exalted AGI Shoulder Enchant
Terrath's Signet of Balance - Revered Ring

Hellscream's Reach / Baradin's Wardens

Zone: Tol Barad and Tol Barad Peninsula
Quests: You will get 5-6 dailies in Tol Barad Peninsula a day netting you 1.3500-1.500 rep depending on how many you get. If your faction controls Tol Barad you will get an additional 2-3 dailies in Tol Barad.

Baradin Grunt's Talisman - Honored Trinket
Dagger of Restless Nights - Revered 1HS
Ravening Slicer - Revered 1HS
Sky Piercer - Revered Ranged Crossbow
Spear of Trailing Shadows - Revered Polearm
Unsolvable Riddle - Exalted Trinket

Day 8 - Least favorite dungeon and why?

Though there has been a lot of great content through the years Warcraft has had it's share of completely crappy content. With the release of Cata there is one instance that makes me cringe every time I go into it, Throne of the Tides. For some reason my computer hates that instance. Whenever there is someone who has something on them that makes their character not fully appear that toon is under the ground on my screen. Being a Goblin whenever I am in Camo this happens and my Ghost Wolf also appears under the ground. The puddles of slime that appear with some mobs are also under the ground which makes it hard to see them because I can only see the top part bubbling. Even with completely upgrading my computer and making sure my video drivers are updated I still have this problem.

With the older instances it would have to be Blackwing Lair. I dont mind the instance as a whole. It is the first boss fight that I hate. Razorgore is so buggy that it seems like the raid stops before it even starts half the time. Grumble and I went in there last week to try to duo the instance but we couldn't get control of the orb for the fight. After about 45 seconds we would explode. After looking up the fight on WoWHead we learned there is another bug that makes the raid die instantly once the mind control over Razorgore ends. It just seems like a terrible fight to start off a great instance. I would like to run it weekly but hate the repair bills because of no fault of our own.

WoWathon 2011

One thing I have learned from blogging and just being active in the Warcraft community is how we stick together and how big of a heart gamers have. Starting June 30th a group of WoW gamers are going to have a WoWathon to raise money for Child's Play Charity. Child's Play raises money to buy electronic and board games for childrens in hospitals around the world. This gives children who are undergoing scary treatments a way to get their minds off their condition.

At 8am on June 30th they are going to create a Worgen Druid and Hunter duo (best classes evah!) named Chyld and Playy on Lightbringer-US. They will be leveling up their toons to 85. They have a goal set of $800 by the time they hit level 20 and an overall goal of $10,000. They have welcomed people to make toons with them but said they will keep groups near their level so they aren't power leveled.

If you would like more information please visit their website WoWathon. You can donate by clicking on the ChipIn widget on the sidebar of their webpage or the one I placed in the side bar of this page. You can also check out the Child's Play website for more information on the organization. In addition to monetary donations Child's Play is also looking for volunteers to do things such as hook up and maintain gaming systems at local hospitals.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Day 7 - Favorite dungeon and why?

There are so many good instances in Warcraft. With the Cata there were a couple of revamps which added some interesting game mechanics to lower level instances. I like how Blizzard has changed things so not every low level instance is just a tank and spank.

As for my favorite instance it would have to be Black Rock Depths. During BC I used to run that instance over and over getting enchanting mats. In under 2 weeks I was able to buy fast flying for both Grumble and I. I like the fact that after the split at the beginning the instance is very linear but when someone new runs it doesn't seem to be linear. The instance is very organized chaos.

I also like the fact that this instance was the first one that involved any type of game mechanics to get through it. You have fights with adds, fights involving a whole group of mobs coming at you one after another, and the room where you have to get the torches and light the braziers within 5 minutes or your torch will go out.