A new context

Time is moving rather slowly in these parts. Classes are clogging the time drain and finals are slowly creepy closer and closer. Days seem to pass by so slowly when you have a date in the near future and so this week seems like it will never end. Couple of weeks ago I got fed up with my server’s low population and terrible progression and decided to move to Malfurion, where I now make my home on horde-side. A couple of friends transferred with me so we created a guild. That puts me in the unique position of being an officer/GM again, despite wishing to never have to do that job.

The recruitment is slow. We’ve added one or two new people since we transferred (apart from the 4 that came with me) but as Cata draws nearer I feel like I’m floundering while trying to build a 10 man team. People who want to join aren’t what we need for the 10 man, but I feel silly not inviting them anyway. Then there’s the issue of being the raid leader. I can do it, I just haven’t had much experience and with that comes a lot of anxiety. Added on top of all of that, I’ll be one of the healers in our raid unless we find a lot of healers, so that adds to the stress level too.

And all this time I’m trying to find interesting topics to blog on. I like sharing bits of my life on here but I also feel like I’m boring anyone who bothers to read it if I’m not grinding out shaman topics and theory. Hopefully when my quarter ends in two weeks and I go home for 6 weeks of break, I’ll have more time to find awesome things to blog about. Hopefully…

In the mean time, if a good idea strikes my fancy, I will blog about it!

Shamantastic: Patch 4.0 and Shaman Talk

*rumble*

"Uh, Jinra, is that you shaking up the place?" "Nope." "Shit."

Finally, I have a little time to play WoW, which means, wabam, I have time to attempt to entertain you all with information you’ve heard a thousand times! I bet you haven’t gotten a sub-max level opinion on the changes though, so I’ll put some of that in this post too. As a short side story, I was in-game earlier and the world shook. My friend genuinely thought that I was using earthquake and he had just gotten back into WoW so he wasn’t aware of the world effects. The caption of the picture says the rest, heh heh. Anyway, aside from daft guild members and loads of ridiculous homework (can you believe I’m on academic alert for failing a midterm because they wouldn’t reschedule the study session to avoid my three hours of meetings and classes? :() let’s get to some meaty, shamany content.

Continue reading

An Update… yay!!

Greetings, those who still follow… I haven’t disappeared, just been bogged down with classes and fighting senioritis. I mentioned in a previous post that I have a new project in the works. I can now announce it! It has nothing to do with WoW sadly, but I’ve been selected to be a fellow at the Euphrates Institute Center for Middle East Understanding at my university. I’m 1 of 6 and my twitter days (@cmuprin) are always on Wednesday. All 6 of us will also be posting to our blog, however either my name or Shadowscale will show up on my posts so you can see the research that I’m doing. This is what has been drawing my attention away from WoW to the point where I couldn’t get my shaman to 75 so that I could get Brewmaster :(. The blog is cmuprin.wordpress.com and it has no data on it right now, but in the next few weeks news analysis and other research will be posted, so if you’re into our goal, which is to seek a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict peacefully, then I invite you to follow the blog and see what we come up with. I may or may not be on board for next quarter (Jan-Mar) so I should be able to devote a little more time to WoW and my blog, however I’ll be doing my senior thesis for English and a class on Practical Criticism which is intense and required to graduate.

If all goes well after that, spring quarter I should be in Prague for 3 months studying. Crazy couple of months coming up! Starting around Nov. 20th I won’t have any responsibilities besides maybe work, and so can become sufficiently addicted to WoW, this blog and the shaman community. Sorry for my absence!! I really tried to keep up to date, but so many responsibilities and dealing with some personal health issues has kept me from being able to focus on it.

Jinra, my shaman, will be 80 in time for Cataclysm, I’m sure, and from there I’m golden! 🙂 Hope all is going well for you all and i look forward to being able to reenter the community. Thanks for your patience and support. I might add a small update about another venture I’m taking on at my school which requires a post on it’s own. It branches out of one of my articles, kind of, but is important nonetheless and won’t be uninteresting to those interested in feminism and human rights.

…So, how does that make you feel?

frombogotawithlove.com

For me, the success of a game is measured by how it makes me feel. Most times, I play to get away from the real world for a bit. I want to have FUN, just like many other gamers. And what is the point of a game that you don’t find amusing, reaffirming, challenging or worthwhile? I haven’t run into many games that make me feel terrible, though some that are releasing soon are sure to disappoint (speaking of Tera here), however for the most part, I’ve been lucky to experience games that keep me coming back and yearning for that release from the real world that allows me to challenge my point of view. Sometimes, that draw to bring a player back is a marketing ploy. Take WoW for instance. By never allowing the player to win, to gain complete fulfillment, they assure that the players will continue to come back. It’s like dangling a carrot in front of a horse, and in the end it benefits both parties provided self-control is present.

Continue reading

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).