Monthly Archives: August 2010

Surviving the expansion transition: Guild woes

Okay, so at this point, we’re deep into the pre-expansion rut. People’s focus has shifted from current raid content to Cataclysm content that isn’t yet available to us.

Guilds who killed Lich King long ago have attendance problems, and guilds who haven’t yet killed the Lich King are still feeling the pinch.

As members get bored, frustrated, tired, or just burnt out on the game, it becomes harder and harder to get together a group of 25 people to run ICC in the months leading up to a new expansion release. I’m not here to offer solutions, because at this point, I don’t have any. At this point, my goal is just to keep my guild (Conspiracy) running at all costs, with a constant battle of recruitment (at this point, anyone interested could still apply… even resto or feral druids).

At this point, Conspiracy got set back a bit in progression, and has always been a more casual guild, so we still haven’t killed the Lich King on 25-man (though we have killed him on 10-man and have been making pretty good progress on our 10-man hard mode runs!).

For Conspiracy, we’re still hanging on, but having battles over things like whether to do hard modes before we have LK dead on 25-man as a gearing tool & morale boost, but we still have some members who feel like buying a LK kill for a member just to unlock hard modes feels like cheating. I’m sure we’ll eventually kill LK 25-man before the next expansion, but being locked out of hard modes completely for now really sucks because full clears are potentially boring and LK is still just outside our grasp.

I really wish that doing Hard Mode Gunship & the easier hard modes didn’t require a LK kill, because it locks a lot of guilds out of having a progression path that allows them to work at their own pace. I really wish Blizzard would reconsider their Hard Mode lockout system for Cataclysm, and instead build a more flexible system that allows all guilds more flexibility & options.

That said – I just wanted to pose some questions out to the community: How is your guild surviving the pre-expansion slump? Has your guild considered buying your way to hard modes if you are stuck on the Lich King? Or, if you are already on hard modes, how are you keeping people interested in the weekly grind?

We’ve been doing off-night runs & achievements to try and fill the time with more fun activities, along with gearing up alts on alt run nights.

Posted in Uncategorized

Cata: Effloresence graphic update

So, the graphic that I posted for effloresence (the healing lava) didn’t last very long, and so last night I took pictures of what it looks like now. They took away the green ground-covering effect, and left a circle ring of leaves & such that spring up around the edge of the radius:

So, now it looks less deadly. I still have to convince people in instances that standing in it is good, but that’s going to be a problem for all the class’ effects that are ground-targeted.

In terms of the spell mechanics, the healing it is doing is about 400 to 500 per tick at level 83, which actually makes it sorta average in terms of power, which I think is probably fine since it’s a talented bonus to regrowth, and NOT it’s own spell. Keeping effloresence from being overpowered is really important, because it would be a shame if we were encouraged to spam our flash heal (regrowth) until OOM as our primary healing strategy.

However, a 4 yard radius is really too small, because most of the time, the AOE heal effect is only going to hit one person. I think an 8 yard radius would be better.

In the current build (12803), regrowth’s crit rate is 60%  from talents, before gear. This feels like a talent bug to me because it really makes regrowth overpowered as a spell compared to other class’ flash heals, and compared to the other healing tools we have available. Either that 60% crit rate is supposed to be on people below 25% health, OR they need to have a lower (maybe around 20%) bonus crit rate that we have all the time. Leaving it at 60% before raid buffs or gear means that it will devalue crit as a stat, because it gives you a pretty low soft-cap for crit before it does nothing for Regrowth (and that is really what Blizzard has been trying to avoid by removing all the crit & haste bonuses from the various class’ talent trees).

So, in conclusion, effloresence in the current beta build has:

  • Okay graphic
  • Okay amount of healing done
  • Too small of a radius
  • too high of a regrowth crit rate

If they increased the radius & fixed the regrowth crit rate bug, it would be easier to evaluate the talent. As it is, I’m already spending too much time focusing on one of our many talents. However, having Effloresence be good without being overpowered will go a long way towards us being able to have our actual problems addressed, rather than just having regrowth + effloresence carry us through being a 1-button spammer through Cata.

Posted in Cataclysm, Restoration Healing Trees, Uncategorized

Should the Moonkin Repository “branch out?”

So, the Moonkin Repository is a forum designed for moonkin to post on (as the name implies), and moonkin of all types (pvp, pve, experts, novices, newbies, alts) come to the forums to discuss, well, anything related to being a moonkin! If you are a moonkin and haven’t been to the moonkin repository, you should check it out!

Recently (as in late last night, or early this morning) I got suckered recruited into being a moderator on the Moonkin Repository’s forums, to help out with keeping things running smoothly. (The position comes with a free can of troll repellent, or so I hear).

In addition to adding me as a moderator, there are other changes up for discussion related to TMR. The most exciting of which (that impacts a lot of my readers) is the possibility of expanding into having a restoration druid & feral druid forum, in addition to the currently existing moonkin one. These new forums (after some discussion) will likely be separate forums that are all cross-linked together (so, you would have something like: the moonkin repository, the resto repository, and the feral repository – or whatever the name of each forum would be).

There is one discussion going on in the WoW druid forums. There is also additional information in the original post on TMR, as well as more recent updates about conclusions made from the feedback they received. Please go and express your opinions on the idea (either positive or negative feedback is welcome). You can also give your opinion on what the new forums should be named.

Also, if the resto & feral forums DO go live, we’re going to need the support of other resto & feral druids to help with increasing publicity, generally posting there and being helpful, and potentially even volunteers to help moderate those forums.

If it’s something you think we should do and something you think you would visit, please let me know. I know one person expressed concern about the resto forums possibly stepping on the toes of other forums like the Plus Heal forums, however I haven’t seen a big resto druid presence on the plus heal forums in a while.

It’s going to take some time to get a resto & feral forum up and running, but I will make sure to post updates here as things develop.

So, what do you guys think? Are the new forums a good idea? bad idea? Is a new feral & resto forum something that you would use, or think the community needs?

Posted in Druid - General, Feral Bear tanking, Feral DPS Cat, Moonkin Balance DPS, Restoration Healing Trees

Lord of the Rings Online – Going Free to play

So, my other MMO is Lord of the Rings Online. I have 3 characters, all of which are way below the level cap (under level 40 out of 65 max). I dabble in it some, and keep it active mostly because I enjoy their housing system so much (and it’s nice to play in a game where I don’t already know every little detail of it). In all my time, I never hit end-game in it because, well, I just don’t have time. I may average about one hour a week of playtime, which ends up meaning that the game is a pretty big expense for how little I actually play it.

However, starting September 10th, the LotRO game goes to a “free to play” model, and I’m one of the people who could benefit from just paying for what I need, rather than maintaining a paid subscription.

As someone with a currently active subscription, it looks like I start out at a “VIP” tier, where it seems mostly like what my paid subscription is now. When I stop paying that subscription, however, I only drop down to a “premium” tier, which still has slightly more benefits than the normal free player tier (ie. more than people who never bought the game). I also get to keep the perks I bought through the expansions.

I’m looking forward to this, and have already pruned my characters down to the 3 I’m allowed to have on a premium account for when I stop paying for it (lets face it, I won’t play LotRO all that much this winter when Cataclysm is released).

Posted in Lord of the Rings Online

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