Posting Changes, revisited

Sad news friends. I’m going to have to go off of my 3 days a week schedule to focus on a hopeful new addition to my life as well as school, which is coming up awfully fast. I will still try and get 3 posts a week up (barring this week possibly), but I can’t do it on set dates anymore. Need to be more flexible!

I’m also having trouble figuring out exactly what to write on that will be meaningful and pointful, and not waste your time as the reader. I’ve been lucky enough to have good blogging friends like Pewter, Markco, Gaz and a whole bunch of others that have helped me garner at least a small readership, and I don’t like to disappoint. I suppose I should be visiting BlogAzeroth more often for ideas, but I want to get my own thoughts out too. Cheers for now!

Where’d my new spells go?

One of the hardest things for me while leveling a character is keeping track of the new spells that I get. In Cataclysm, every time you level up, you’ll be shown which spells you’ve received. For the time being, my mind is stuck splintering into two focuses (note that this is different from multi-tasking, which I can do), one aimed at trying to be the most efficient leveler I can be so that my $15 a month is not wasted, and the other half wondering and trying to figure out which new spells I got and where they are in my spellbook. Honestly, up until the announcement that the level up UI would be different Blizzard has been depriving us of an easy way to organize those new spells.

The mind splitting is difficult for a mind like mine which likes to focus on one thing and only send one stream of data from one source at one time. I’m sure there are addons that keep track of this and also there is wowwiki and wowhead, but that’s just opening a third mental track, which fragments my ability to think through my focus much more. What we really need is better organization in the spellbook, something which I feel is important enough to release with the remarkable changes to the level up UI. If we could only show the most recent spells, in some order, on each page, then we’d be doing much better. Instead of seeing each spell rank 1-9 or however far some may get up, we’d only see the most recent rank. The lower level spells would be minimized and come up with the player wants to see the full list. Even a simple change such at that can improve the efficiency of the spellbook.

Not only that, but instead of flashing until clicked on each spec tab, it’d be great to autoflag the new skills and abilities as you get them so that when you look for them in the spellbook, they aren’t hard to find. This would increase efficiency a lot, and remove headaches for people who are bothered by this sort of thing.

Of course all this musing is pretty much obsolete since we know Cata will redefine the level up system and auto-reward you for it (last I heard).

World of Warcraft and the traditional “Man”

This article, as with many of this subject, introduces controversial concepts. This is a warning that there are mentions of rape, phallic imagery and violence. If these things trigger you in some way, you are advised to avoid the article. After writing the article, it occurs to me that some of what I wrote may be misunderstood, specifically my description of men. I want to clarify that the very anti-woman mentality is a description of the stereotypical man, and not in line with my own beliefs at all. I don’t support violence towards women (or anyone for that matter) and I certainly don’t like the stereotype that I illustrated in the first few paragraphs.

Just going to hop right in today without a picture. A while ago Pewter put a call out for men to speak up about how similar issues that feminism observes affects us. I suppose that would be called masculinism or some such, but the labeling is not important. What is important is that voices are heard.

Chastity articulated in a very well written article what I tried to do in my first attempt of this article, the day that Pewter put the call out. I will try my best to articulate exactly what I want to say in this vein. Continue reading

Strap up that shield and grab your hammer, tanks


Image courtesy of a really old post (2007)

Leveling alts used to be a lot of fun for me at low levels. The first instance that I got into was always an experience, an adventure. Sometimes there would be completely new players, and sometimes old players running alts, just like me. I don’t know what caused the change – maybe it was the LFD tool, but recently, I’ve been getting shit tanks and healers. Why? Well… who wants to wait 40 minutes in a queue to get into an instance at that level? I wish I didn’t have to, but leveling my hunter leaves me no choice. We always get healers and tanks who are DPS who just want a quick way into an instance. Don’t get me wrong, I’m guilty myself with one of my druids who is tanking as balance, and to this effect, I don’t mind people that can gear themselves correctly despite spec. I’ve always been a firm believer that the line between dps and healing as well as dps and tanking are very hazy, and all roles can be played by all classes without much difficulty. It only starts to matter a lot when you get into the higher levels. With that said, those who jump into an instance as a tank and are using a two-hander (note that this is a level 15 instance, not 55, so two-hand tanking is a no no) and as healers who are also using two-hand weapons (paladins), are despicable and should put in the small amount of effort it requires to get the right gear for tanking. Below are some suggestions for each tanking class at low levels.

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Where’s the Humor Gone: Voices Edition

Who doesn’t need a little laughter in their lives? This new column strives to put a smile on the face of each and every reader. If I don’t succeed, please email me and tell me! Well you don’t have to, but it sure would be fun to try the challenging cases where people don’t even grin a little when someone smiles at them. To start off this inaugural post, I present to you, courtesy of Jesse Cox of Ten Ton Hammer, the Day Deathwing Came!

And a different take on Maltek’s portion of the story:

And a little fun from Katie Tiedrich over at

I’ll update with more as I find it for this week! Undecided on my Friday post, but there will be something good I’m sure!

On Raiding Guilds

An online gaming community is a fascinating construct to examine. Hundreds to sometimes millions of people are deposited into an online forum in which they can interact with hundreds of other plays from anywhere in the world, but under the convenient shroud of anonymity. The name you make for yourself is the name of your character, and it is by that nickname that you hold fame or infamy.

What’s even more interesting to me is the establishment of player run organizations, created for and by the players. These organizations hold the unique attribute of being completely pliable, flexible and diverse. The constraints are placed by those that are members of the organization and can mimic any real life political structure, real or philosophized, that fit the needs of the organization. Games like World of Warcraft don’t allow quite as much autonomy in this respect as some other games, but the medium is still there to construct a guild that has a specific purpose and is governed by a set of rules and standards.

I enjoy analyzing these player created institutions and watching how they progress, experiencing whatever influences they encounter, from within in the organization as well as from the outside. Take the jump for a look at raiding guilds and other games that are classified as “social simulations.”

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