A Tauren Warrior protecting his land with a mace in hand.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

WICBT: What is your favorite announcement for Warlords of Draener?

Personally I want to say all of them but if I had to choose one it was the announcement of Garrisons. Everything about them, be it the profession tie ins to the follower systems, or the ability to choose which zone you want yours to be in. But more than what the announced features of them were I am most excited for what they didn't announce as I said in an earlier post I am excited for the potential of them to use the followers as mannequins so that they can display your gear you have collected in a meaningful way. I am hoping that at some point in WoD we are able to use our Garrisons to wage war on a player from the opposing faction in Strand of the Ancients type battle. And I am also excited for the RP potential to having my very own Garrison and a forward base for the RP guild I recently joined.

The one thing about Garrisons that I was disappointed not to see was that they really only showed Orc and Human architecture, it would be amazing if we could choose between the iconic Faction structures and your Races structures, a Tauren styled Garrison would be pretty sweet.

Finally the ability to have the Garrison be a living breathing part of the game even when you are not logged in is going to be nice, especially in terns of earning gold for repairs if you cant play outside of your raid times in a given week.

As I stated in the beginning it is pretty hard not to be excited about all the announcements surrounding WoD.

Monday, November 11, 2013

World of Draenor Speculations and Thoughts

So first things first, WOW what a Blizzcon. Now that that is out of the way lets dive in.

First up Garrisons still not quite player housing as many hoped for, but it may be even better. With the discussed features like trophies it could become a way display your accomplishments. So if you're paying attention to the deep dive on Garrisons you may have briefly heard them say something about changing your followers appearance and nothing else was said. Listeners of the The Instance podcast may have heard Ghostcrawler talking about transmog and helping us free up inventory space by doing something with transmog but they don't want to say anything about it because they didn't want to get our hopes up, then the discussion turned to collections much like they are going to be doing for Heirlooms and Toys. The transmog feature I think Ghostcrawler was hinting at is actually a feature of the Garrisons and you follower where you can equip them with your armor thus freeing up some bag space and allowing you to display gear on your followers.

Now I realize they mentioned something about gear upgrades for you follower which could negate this which is why I think follower will have 10 item slots (head, shoulders, cloak, chest, hands, belt, pants, feet, weapon, and off-hand) each of these slots will have a transmog slot where you could just place an item from your inventory. So you would have a total of 20 slots. If nothing is in the transmog slot then the original art will show.

This is a lot  to hope for and may be a little off but I was hoping for The Elder Scrolls-esque mannequins which may be the thing Ghostcrawler was hinting at, although I would like to not just see mannequins but also be able to transmog our followers.

I would also like the ability with Garrisons to perform GvG or PvP Garrison battles, what I mean by this is you can queue to battle someone from the opposing faction and have your followers battle each other either on a battle field or by a SotA style battle of attack and defend, where the loser has there building put on a CD where they aren't generating resources.

Character Models
Next are the new character models, if you haven't seen them I suggest you check them out. Even though I don't put any kind of Machinima, Machinimatographers should be able to do so much more with these new models. Also as some one who has started to dabble into the RP elements of the game I think this will help me immerse more into the game especially as someone who plays a strong silent type role.

I am also very very interested in seeing not just seeing how this expansion plays out but how they handle the characters from the past that were brought to the present and if they will find out that some of these people are there kids.

Boost to 90
Now to the hot topic issue "Boost to 90", in my opinion the feature is completely fine and actually right now is the time to do it if any especially since we almost for sure won't see a stand alone WoW 2. I have a couple reasons for this 100 levels will surely turn off any new comers to the game especially if they have never played an MMORPG before and leveling 1-85 now on alt is lonely even with changes made could you imagine a new player leveling through 90 levels without the MM part of the equation.

It wont hurt the interest in the lore of the game anymore then it already is. Currently you have people who will read ever quest text and do every quest, and then you have the people that just follow leveling guides or the quest tracker (yes even new players) because they want to play with friends. The people in the first category will be the ones who take the level 90 as a new player and level to 100 and go back and play through content that they want to learn about. I did this with my paladin because in my race to to get to level 70 AoE farming an all I went back and played through all the Paladin-centric zones and quests just to explore the lore. Even now in game their are players who could care less about knowing their lore or why they are killing something, they just want their gear and to progress the character stats wise. Just because they don't like lore doesn't hurt me or you. And if you are truly into WoW for the lore RP servers may be a safe haven for you.

It in no way hurts what I have or continue to experience in WoW these people who boost to 90 wont experience defeating Archimonde pre-WotLK Nerfs/Buffs, they wont experience the joy of committing Ogre genocide in Outlands to get that one Blacksmith plan. And frankly they can't take it away from me either.

Some argue a boost to 90 now they will work in a boost to max level because they wont stop. I am fairly certain that Blizzard wont ever go back to pay to win ever again, especially after the closure of the Diablo 3 AH. and leveling to 90 when the cap is 100 is not pay to win. You will still have people who buy and can't handle the leveling process, or get to max level and don't enjoy the gear grind. People will still need to develop skill to become good enough to raid with you unless you like bringing unskilled players.And guess what all of this still happens today even without a boost to the previous expansions level cap. It is only good for the player base as whole because currently subs are on the decline and will only go down especially when the longtime lore junkies had there Warcraft 3 desires filled (Illidan and Arthas) and a potential new player may see that level 90 cap and put the box down. With this change potential new players will think oh I only have to gain 10 levels and they may actually buy the game.

Friday, October 11, 2013

WICBT: Should professions be account-wide?

Image found on MCA Network Academy Blog

This weeks Community Blog Topic hits on an issue that is actually something that I and I am sure many of you have not only thought about recently but through out you playing time in Azeroth. The easy route would be to take a page from the Diablo 3 book and have it be to have all characters have access to all professions and each one of your characters can contribute to leveling said professions at the same time, however I disagree on this route, follow be after the jump to find out my thoughts.

WICBT: How long have you been playing World of Warcraft and what life changes have you gone through?

I have been playing WoW since January 2007. My college room mate (all 4.5 years) asked me if I wanted to try it out with him since he had friends at work who played it. So we went in to the BB he worked at and picked up 2 each of Vanilla, TBC and Time Cards. Over the last almost 7 years my life has changed so much. At the time my girlfriend and room mate all lived together, That same year we found a stray dog that is still with us today. In the December of 2008 my girlfriend and I got engaged. The Summer of 2009 we bought our 2nd dog and in December all three of us graduated from Arizona State, 2 days later my fiance and I packed up all of our stuff and moved back to California. My fiance and I got married in July of 2010. Since then my wife and have bought a car, had a wonderful baby girl, bought a house, and now I am General Manager of a dealership.

I have met many great people in game, and the game has helped me with my social anxiety. Some of my favorite people that I have met in game no longer play even my room mate stopped playing at the beginning of Wrath. I would love to get my wife playing a little bit. I hope to play with my daughter, she seem interested in and loves to sit in my lap and watch me play. I think WoW and a lot of gaming in general if properly handled can be used to develop bonds with our kids and also teach them critical thinking skills.

Finally over with all the changes in my life above I have had those changes effect me in game. I no longer play 6 hours a day 6-7 days a week. Most weeks its 2 days for 3-5 hours, some weekends I get in more play time if I'm not watching football or going out with the family. Also I with the limited play time to put into improving my character every chance I get I have been dabbling in the other aspects of the game beyond Raiding. I have joined an RP server, dabbled in pet battles, leveled a 3rd alt to 90, started to random PvP more, and any of the newer features Blizzard has given us.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

WICBT: What's your most and least favorite expansions?

Image Courtesy of  TheDDGuides
Favorite Expansion is a hard one I could say TBC but then again that is when I started, so it'd be like a  Vanilla vet or Wrath child saying those were their favorite expansions, because it was new and newness and and nostalgia are powerful emotions. I loved Wrath's story if not because I loved Warcraft 3's story so much. Cataclysm was good because well Arms DPS was amazing. Pandaria has been pretty awesome from game play changes and lore plots. But if I had to really sit down an pick a favortie expansion I think I would have to go with TBC the wonder that I felt along with Sunwell was amazing, I think if they hadn't (even if hastily) released Sunwell I think my answer may be different.

As far as least favorite expansion, even if Arms DPS was godlike Cataclysm earns this (dis)honor. Not wrapping up Neptulaons story, or how disappointed I was in Thrall stepping down when the Horde needed him most are just a few of the things that rubbed me the wrong way.  The fact that we killed potentially the biggest threat to Azeroth well before his time, unless Sargeras will finally not fail at coming to Azeroth in his full power and glory.

To sum it up I think all of the expansions have had their bright sports as far as game play, quality of life changes and lore.

Monday, September 23, 2013

WICBT: What do you think of persistent changes to Azeroth?

This weeks installment of WoW Insider's Community Blog Topic deals with persistent changes like the one we are witnessing currently with the destruction of the Vale of Eternal Blossoms. I am going to take a slightly different direction on this one and talk about how somethings that Blizzard has decided to do (not do) greatly affects the effectiveness of persistent changes.

Warning Tangents Ahead!!!

Friday, September 13, 2013

WICBT: What is your spoiler policy?

In this weeks Community Blog Topic the WoW Insider crew takes a look at spoiler policy. My opinion has changed recently over the last couple years. Pre-LFR I would have been fine with end of content spoilers, especially knowing that I may never personally see them with my guilds slow progression (they are good people though). However with the advent of LFR I think the safe time period to discuss major lore spoilers is once the last LFR wing is released, because at that point it is safe to assume that everyone who wants to see it for themselves has.

My personal policy in avoiding trolls wanting to spoil things for me, /leave 2 and I avoid the comment sections of The Queue.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

WICBT: Would you play on an expansion specific server?

Over the last few weeks the good 'ole topic of Expansion based servers has popped back up like that annoying soul stoned lock in battlegrounds. I am torn on this one, although I do think it would be awesome especially for players who never got to experience certain expansions as they were. Myself having started at the launch of the Burning Crusade would love to go back and experience the original the way it was before TBC.

However it wouldn't work. People would begin to complain about the absence of many of the quality of life changes since TBC. They would be unhappy with the lack of support and new content. I think the raid scaling if implemented will do some to curb the need for expansion based servers and I actually look forward to that feature when it does finally come.

All that being said I think when WoW is finally a finished product (i.e. no more content releases) I could see Blizzard having specific expansion servers available and sell them separate from WoW in a Pay for game but free to play type system like GW2.

Friday, August 30, 2013

WI's Community Blog Topic 8/30/13

This weeks Community Blog Topic as provided by the lovely staff over at WoW Insider is, Which race would you like to become playable?

The easy answer for me as a Tauren a heart would be the Tauren subraces Taunka and Yaungol and even those we may have yet find. However I agree with Matt Rossi that as a whole the subraces would be awesome.

Now as far as currently unplayable races the Isectoids of Azeroth are interesting but I would much rather have to separate races for Alliance and Horde and so far all 3 of the know Insectoid races would be more aligned with the Horde.

Etherals would be obvious and they could use the same neutral then faction pick system they did for the Pandarean.

Another option would be to have Horde get Ogres and Alliance Furbolgs they have been in the game since Vanilla and both races have intriguing stories.

My order for new "races" in the next expansion would be finish new character models with the sub races included, and then Etherals. And if the next expansion is The Dark Below then it kinda leaves only Naga if they do plan on adding a new race.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bloated Warrior (Buttons)

Let me preface this by saying I could cut a lot of my button bloat by bundling abilities together in macros, however if Blizzards goal is to make the game more playable for everyone we should not need to use macros just make the game playable in a manner that doesn't require 10 inch long fingers or $150 peripherals. I personally use a shift modifier with the G keys on my Logitech G15 or my Razer Naga. Even after 3 years with the Naga I still can't ditch the G15.

For a list of all abilities check this out over at wowpedia.

For my thoughts on removing some of Warrior's button bloat, take the jump.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

This Weeks Hot Topic: Gear the Good, the Bad, and the Not So Ugly

This weeks the hot topic over on WoW Insider is Gear and whether it is is an outdated mechanic for player progression in WoW.

According to WI staff gear serves 2 main purposes,

  1. Form
  2. Function
While you can read there arguments for and against gear as well as a suggestion on how to remove statistical elements from gear here.

I tend to be one who thinks gear is fine the way it is now agreeing that gear provides a needed slider to help players that aren't quite as skilled as those in the top 10 guilds in the world ease into content. Where as those against it could argue that the stat benefit provided by new gear is not meaningful as to progression.

Both camps for and against gear mentioned that gear provided the form factor of allowing to build your character the way you see them, especially with the advent of transmogification  Neither camp wanted to see gear go bye bye completely for this very reason.

After the break I will talk about how Gear isn't the problem it is the way gear is delivered in terms of the random number generator system.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Hot Topic: WoWs Current Loot System

Since the release of Mists of Pandaria the Loot System in WoW has been under heavy criticism. Whether it be the gating of Valor gear behind reputation grinds that could only be doe through dailies, or the LFR system of loot.

This Expansion Blizzard decided to give us a new way to obtain loot, by giving us Lesser Charms of Good Fortune. By collecting 90 of these thing, through dailies, you could then turn them in for 3 tokens which grant a bonus roll on a boss. This system for the first tier of raiding was under scrutiny because of the frequency that you got gold from it, especially if you got gold from your normal loot roll as well. People dont see it as a bonus roll they see it as something that should guarantee them loot, as the old saying goes the only thing guaranteed in life is death and taxes, and for a WoW player that just means death and lots of time (the tax) grinding.

The last couple days there has a been a heated debate between EU forum posters and Blizzard Blue Draztal (summary found here), about the need for a better way to guarantee PvE loot to players, this case weapons, much like the PvP loot system.

After the break I will talk about my thought on the subject.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tanking With the General Public

A Tanks Guide To Surviving LFD/LFR:

So we all have been there, whether as a Tank, DPS, or Healer, that point in a LFG where we realize some of the people in the group clearly have no understanding of what they are doing let alone the mechanics of the dungeon/raid. We have also been witness to or been the person who's sole goal is to get in and out as quickly as possible but have made it slower by causing a wipe.

Today we will go over ways to survive in the wonderful tool known as LFG

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Tauren Warrior Transmogification RP

So being a Lore nerd and playing a warrior in every RPG I play I like to look like a Warrior of the race I play. I have had the hardest time finding a set the makes me FEEL like a Tauren Warrior with out the use of leather.

After the break I will show some sets, none of which I have, that I think do a pretty good job of mainting that Tauren feel as a Warrior.

Monday, April 8, 2013

The Protective Bull Rises Again

As a fledgling Warrior I began my journey as Arms because I thought hey why not carry around a big 2 handed weapon that made me look unstoppable. Sadly this journey ended when I reached level 60 in The Burning Crusade. It became apparent that in order for me to be able to run Dungeons I needed to tank and the group of friends I had made needed a tank so it seem to fit I tanked until level 70 and even then I kept my tank set to run dungeons but I wanted to raid so I picked up a DPS set I joined a guild and tried to raid as Arms but I was told to go fury or gtfo, so I went fury which didn't last long. After a couple weeks I was asked to off tank, where I stayed until Sunwell Plateau was released.

Even though it was only a year I learned to not only tank but excel at tanking better than I thought I would, teaching any young warrior I could how to tank, I am not going to lie though I had a great teacher myself (a player that when we were DPS in Firelands could out DPS players in epics while wearing greens and blues). 

After the release of the Sunwell I switched guilds and was asked to go back to DPS where I stayed until March 2013 (I had a brief hiatus from Warrior raiding during Wrath after Ulduar was released to raid on my Paladin where I spent a few months as Holy and the rest of the Expansion as Ret).

Last Month my current guild was running into problems keeping a consistent Off Tank on hand. Since the beginning of Mists I told my self I would never tank, especially after a brief attempt during Cataclysm. Tanking in Wrath and Cataclysm seemed broken to me it didn't flow like it used to fr me in TBC and to be honest  I was having fun as DPS. 

Fast forward to last month, As a Warrior DPS I found myself getting bored especially as Fury weather I was Titans Grip or Single Minded it was just boring and Arms was tempting because I was at the ilvl where Arms was actually better DPS. Even after declaring to the guild in 5.1 that I would never tank, some how I had slowly gathered some off pieces and had accumulated Tier tokens I didn't need for DPS. So I volunteered to become the new tank for the guild.  As much as I loved DPS I love raiding in general more and I saw an opportunity to cut down wasted time trying to pug an off tank. 

Learning to Tank again, this time tanking actually felt fluid for me like not the same as a remembered of TBC but much better than the how I felt in Wrath and Cataclysm. Sure I had to learn new things like keeping your new active defenses on CD or when to use them on certain fights, however overall I have learned very quickly how to tank again. My first week tanking we downed Jin'rokh with my 480 ilvl tank set (with DPS neck, shoulders, ring and, trinket).

This is the beginning of the new Blood Sweat and Honor blog focus.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

One of those OMG moments

So I occasionally every couple months pick up a few of the current release of the WoW TGC booster packs, or even the Archive Booster packs if my local Target has them. I have even purchased a couple sealed cartons of booster packs off ebay when the price is right. Last month I purchased a sealed 8 pack of the Cataclysm era booster pack, which also has a guaranteed single loot card (from a couple different Booster pack series) aside from whatever you get in the booster packs.

Finally today I opened that 8 pack box and to my great excitement I found [Spectral Tiger]. Now my previous mounts I earned in from a sealed carton of WoW TGC Archive booster packs I bought off ebay in the same carton I found [Wooly White Rhino] and [X-51 Nether Rocket].

Friday, March 29, 2013

Long Overdue Update

So it has been awhile sine my last post and since then I have gone from a mighty Arms warrior to a Titans Grip Fury warrior, to a Single Minded Fury warrior to now a Protection warrior. So my blog will shift focus a little bit (if I can keep it up to date).

Simple thoughts on all 4 warrior specs after the break