Sunday, August 30, 2009

Loremastering: Funny Moments

I've been working on Loremaster; it's nice, easy questing to help relax after all the pressure of work recently. It's let me explore areas of Azeroth I rarely see, or in rare cases, have never seen at all. I've also been able to have a laugh at some of the quests!
  • Collecting Termites is risky business for a tree.
  • Blood Elf: "You cannot imagine the hatred I possess for this wretched land. The ilk of Cenarius and the kaldorei druids at the peak employ their pathetic powers to stifle the flow of magic, even so far south of their pathetic holdings... their beloved forests. I have no doubt you love the night elves and their allies as little as I. Aid me, and both our ends might be satisfied. Go forth, slay the sons and daughters of Cenarius, druid!!"
    Kaelynn: "Wait, what??!"
  • Undead: "Place this toxin fogger at the Goblins' airport. And run."
    Kaelynn: "Are we defumigating it for the goblins?"
    Undead: "Something like that."
    Kaelynn: "This doesn't sound at all suspicious."
    Undead: "Don't worry about the goblins. They're chopping down your trees, aren't they? They deserve it."
    Kaelynn: >.>
  • Questgivers: "Hi there, here're 4 quests for Sunken Temple! Have fun!"
    Kaelynn: /completes quests grudgingly
    Questgivers: "Oh good, thanks for doing those! Because we know you love the instance, here are 2 more!"
    Kaelynn: "WTH?? Ohhh I hate you." /completes quests
    Questgivers: "Haha you thought you were done with ST? Here's another."
    Kaelynn: "I KEEL YOU"
  • Blood Elf: "Thank you for killing those darn druidy cenarius-offspring for me."
    Kaelynn: "..... I only did it cuz they attacked me first."
    Blood Elf: "Whatever. Now I want you to go into a druid stronghold and kill their leader, chop off his head, and bring it to me."
    Kaelynn: "WHAT?!"
  • Questhelper: Go to Stormwind to collect Runecloth.
    Kaelynn: "I don't think killing guards in Stormwind would be a very productive way of gathering runecloth."
  • Blood Elf: "Thank you for killing that druid for me"
    Kaelynn: "..... I only did it cuz he attacked me first. You're an evil, evil woman."
    Blood Elf: "Whatever. Now, while you were off killing my foe, I tortured a bunch of little kaldorei druids for information."
    Kaelynn: "WHAT?!"
    Blood Elf: "My, my, aren't you eager! Well, I found the location of a cache of ancient druid relics I want you to steal."
    Kaelynn: "And what exactly would you want with a bunch of ancient druid relics? >:( "
    Blood Elf: "Nothing. I just think it'd be hilarious for you to steal them."
  • Questhelper: Go to Stormwind to collect Rugged Leather.
    Kaelynn: "Wait, guards and Alliance players are skinnable now?"
  • Questhelper: Go to Tanaris to collect Venomhide Baby Tooth.
    Kaelynn: "I already did that daily today, I can't do it again."
    Questhelper: Oh, okay. Go to Un'Goro Crater to collect Venomhide Baby Tooth.
    Kaelynn: ...
  • /clicks crate in lumbermill to deposit Termites.
    No quest pops up.
    /wags arms energetically over crate to deposit Termites.
    No quest turn-in pops up.
    Questhelper: "I can't do that, Dave."
  • Troll: "Bring back 4 frostmaul shards, and my lucky charm will be yours."
    Kaelynn: "You don't LOOK like a leprechaun..."
  • Blood Elf: "Defile Uther's Tomb, and be quick about it, druid!"
    Kaelynn: "What do you want me to do, mark it in cat form? O.o"
  • Undead: "Here, let me get those termites off of you and put them in this jar."
    TreeKaelynn: "Phew, thanks! I almost lost a limb!"
    Undead: "Heh. Now go release them in the lumbermill."
    TreeKaelynn: " are trying to kill me, aren't you?"
  • Drunken Dwarf: "I want to milk you."
    Kaelynn: "I'm sorry, this is just too wrong. I'm not that kind of cow."
    Drunken Dwarf: "It's okay, here, I'll give you a mug of it when I'm done."
    Kaelynn: "NO!" O.O /flees

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Personality: 223 responses+

Edit: I have tallied up through about 3pm EST Sept. 29, 2009, with 640 responses. You can see that analysis here.

These are the results of 223 responses. We are still getting more in, of course :)

You can see some of the raw data here and here. It required manual tallying the data, since I couldn't figure out how to get Excel or google docs to tally it for me.

When looking at this data, you must remember that those who responded (voluntarily) found this chart via either my blog, a person who reads this blog, or the forum posts Arael made on wowhead and mmo-champion.

Update of the first charts I had posted:

As you can see, most of the responses were introverts (I's) and druids :) What do you think this mass of introverts means, particularly in comparison to the large chunk of extroverts (E's) found among the ENFJ's? Something to ponder.

Raw results vs World Pop Statistics:

This I found also interesting, and helps highlight the difference in introverts vs extroverts that responded (granted, 223 is a small pool to look at). Most notable is the difference in large numbers of:


...and in the relatively small numbers of:


What do you think causes it? Something else to ponder on. Factors include:
  • Those who play WoW
  • Those who found this survey
  • Those who decided to answer the survey

Guild "Jobs"/Roles compared to class, broken up by MBTI types:

(click to enlarge)

Most who answered the survey and put down a role said that they were class leaders or role leaders, either voluntarily or found themselves locked into such a position.

For a quick breakdown and synopsis of what each type E/I, S/N, T/F, J/P is like, check out

Guild Masters: these tended to be the Intuitive types rather than sensors ("big picture" types, inventive, looking to the future), Thinkers rather than Feelers (rational, don't take things personally), and those who Judge rather than Perceive (can make decisions, schedule-driven, rule-driven). This makes sense to me. I/E didn't factor in as much. What I would like to look into more is who among these GMs were the "casuals" vs the hardcores, and how raid style plays into the GM's personality.

Raid Leaders: it surprises me the number of Introverts that claim to be raid leaders; again, something to perhaps look into raid style for more conclusion, and is probably also affected by the sheer number of I's vs E's in this data pool. Again, Thinkers are favored over Feelers (objective, direct, able to see flaws without bias for feelings), and Intuition over Sensing (creativity, like to figure things out, big picture).

Class/Role leaders: these are pretty even across the board, and it seems personality has little impact on players serving in this role. Thinkers seem to be favored a bit over Feelers (honest, direct, able to see flaws without the bias of feelings), though Feelers themselves make a good standing in this role as they tend to be very diplomatic, and often serve the role as a go-between for the other officers/RL/GM and the raid members.

Bloggers: the vast majority are intuitive introverts (IN types). It seems ironic, doesn't it, that a bunch of shy people are sharing themselves and their ideas through a blog? I am amused by this, and understanding of it, being an INFP myself :) Are these types more drawn to blogging than others? What sorts of blogs (guides, theorycraft, funny stories, accomplishments) does one type more often have over another? This may be answered somewhat by raid style.

Web Admins: your IT people. Not too surprised that this is dominated by introverts! They are also predominately judgers rather than perceivers: they are serious and can concentrate on things like code. Judgers also tend to be the ones who can more easily make decisions for themselves, and who are most focused on *finishing* a project over just *starting* one... /whistles innocently*

Nannies: these are the people who find themselves dealing with the guild drama. They've cropped up in every personality, meaning that most of those who answered the survey often find themselves pulled into such roles, regardless of their personality.

Recruitment officers: not all guilds have this role fall on the GM, so I broke it out out of curiousity. One noticeable bump is that most are Thinkers rather than Feelers, following the same logic as with leading a guild or a raid: objective thinking, seeing flaws without bias, and aren't as likely to be bent into recruiting someone into raids that is only there because they talk pretty or because they're so-and-so's younger brother, even though he stands in void zones.

~So, what are your thoughts? I'll certainly be throwing up more charts and detailed comparisons over time, but even this alone is plenty for a mind to chew on!~

Quickie Post



No, I have not forgotten the survey ;) Aertimus of HoTsTree and Arael have been helping collect and stare at the data as well. We have gotten 172 results in so far, mostly druids of course! I will MAKE time later today to post some charts of the results I've received thus far. I promise :) Even though work is like OMG I'LL SWALLOW KAE WHOLE RAWR and I have a raid tonight, hehe.

I will, of course, continue to collect data, so please keep those surveys rolling in :)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Personality & Warcraft: 24hr's Results

24 hours after posting my survey, I have gotten 55 responses. Not enough yet for a really in-depth study, but an interesting starting point :)

I wanted to share the breakdown thus far of classes, roles, and personality MBTI's.

One key thing to keep in mind is that those responding to my survey are, for the vast majority, followers of my PvE Druid blog who had time to reply on a Friday when Blizzcon is in full swing. Thus, mostly druids who are interested in reading whatever rambles out of my mouth and don't think I'm completely insane, and were probably bored at work :)

If you'd like to help push this study along, post or link this survey: your guild forums, strat forums, etc. Get those of your buddies/guildies who don't normally read blogs or forums to pop on and take the time to fill it out. If nothing else, a guild discussion sharing your personality MBTI's can be fun and insightful!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Personality and Warcraft

Recently I've been looking back at the Myers-Briggs personality profiles for various reasons, and it made me wonder: does personality have any correlation to preferred class and raid role?

I found a few forum threads that wondered along these same lines, but they didn't usually go into much depth on analysis. For example, the Personality of the Druid thread just picked the most popular result, without taking into consideration the relative proportion of personality types in the overall general population. This sort of logic leads to conclusions such as "INFPs don't play WoW much," when they're estimated to be only about 1% of the total population to begin with.

I'm really interested to know what the breakdown among WoW players is, and not just what is the most common result among a class. Are certain personalities more likely to be tanks or healers? Enjoy a certain class? PvP over PvE? Be raid leaders, guild leaders, officers? Be bloggers?

Take the Personality Quiz:

If you are unsure of your type, I highly recommend you take multiple tests so that you can get a more accurate assessment. If you take two tests and get different results, try some others, and read through the descriptions to decide which best reflects you.
Be honest with yourself when taking those quizzes; it's the only way you can get an accurate result. Answer according to how would you WOULD react to the proposed situations, not how you think you're "supposed" to: there are no right or wrong answers, except with how truthful you are about yourself.

MBTI Descriptions:
Once you've taken one or a few, I recommend LifeExplore's descriptions, as they combine the descriptions used on multiple websites, in-depth. The Personality Page also has good descriptions. These descriptions can give you interesting insight into yourself, relationships, and career choices.

My Survey:

After you've figured out your MBTI through the above linked quizzes and descriptions, take this survey to help me collect class/role/personality data:

You can also access the survey through this link.


I will share the survey's results as I get enough data in. For now, I will keep my own MBTI a secret, though I am curious what others may guess of me :)

Number Surveyed as of 9:15pm EST: 44, representing 11 out of the 16 personality types. When I reach 50, I'll do a preliminary run-down of roles vs personality types.

A few interesting notes:
  • The vast majority have all been introverts.
  • 5 have noted that they're bloggers, themselves.
  • Half of the respondents have been IN types (Introverted, Intuitive), which ironically are among the minority in general population studies.
  • Part of me is wondering how much a person's personality will play into even finding/responding to this survey, and at what time :) Those responding on a Friday afternoon vs those in the evening, compared to the typical 8-5 work day? Hehee.
If you'd like to help, please link this post or the survey to your guilds/buddies, as more data will make more meaningful results!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Time? Wha's that?

I am forcing myself to take a break from work to type something up, because sanity is a wonderful thing that I should never let go of...

Scratch that, I have no sanity, I just need a breather :) Things usually get very busy this time of year with classes about to start back, so my attention has been split a dozen different ways and I've been put to scheduling classes, designing instructor pages, writing software guides, juggling clients and coworkers, and looking at the strategic plans for the department, rather than doing all that stuff for raids and druidly things.

The raids and druidly things are much more fun.

That said, here're some druid spec tips for dealing with the start of a new school year when working for a university:

University Employee Druid Spec:
  • Ignore things like Gift of the Earthmother, because in your haste, you will probably forget something. Or misstype something. Heaven forbid.
  • Take full Imp Barkskin, Subtlety, and Natural Perfection. These will help manage your aggro from students and/or instructors, or students' parents. If you can reroll Night Elf, do it, as shadowmeld will dump aggro to your next coworker.
  • Take Imp Tranquility in the form of boxes of donuts or other sweet foods that you will bring in to share with your coworkers, as your party will then be much happier and easier to co-operate with.
  • Ignore Genesis in favor of full Starlight Wrath. It's therapeutic, and a good quick-cast wrath to the face will deter those who've aggroed on you. At the very least, it's a pretty ball of light that can serve as a momentary distraction.
  • Living Spirit, cuz that's what universities do. You'll need a healthy dose of it to keep from being overwhelmed by the amount of school spirit permeating the campus. It's an osmosis thing, beware being hypertonic or they'll just sap you... chain sap you, with no DR.
  • Revitalize, innervate, and intensity are also known as caffiene. Share the sugar-candy procs, coffee, and soda.
  • Dual-spec into Feral and be ready to switch at a moment's notice. Feral Instinct is useful, along with Survival Instincts, Thick Hide, Feral Swiftness, and Survival of the Fittest. Brutal Impact will help buy time. Just avoid Berserk and Mangle... they may be counter-productive. Infected Wounds may also create a panic on a university campus, so close on the back of the swine flu scare.
As always, I would love to hear from others on what specs and strategies work for them in the crazy rush that is the Start of Fall Semester raid. ;)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Setting an Example for Kekek

I chose the Wolvar pup for both of my druids, as I love their wolf-like features (though they're more like wolverines than wolves...) Amusingly, I had different reactions to Kekek's antics, depending on which druid I was playing.

Note: Kae is a feral night elf. Kaelynn is a resto moocow.

"Orphan lady tell Kekek not to fight with other pups, but Kekek fight anyway."
  • Kae: *smiles knowingly* Is it really fighting, or is it just play? All cubs must practice through play to grow strong.
  • Kaelynn: *frowns* you shouldn't fight with your friends, Kekek.

"Kekek warrior, not bully."
  • Kae: I'm glad to hear that, little one. Warriors fight to protect others... bullies only fight to protect their fragile egos.
  • Kaelynn: Good... I don't want to hear of you fighting with your friends anymore, okay? There are enemies enough in this world already.

"Maybe go tip over walrus men while sleeping."
  • Kae: Ha! Those poor Kalu'ak. Don't be cruel, though... they mean well. They aren't cows. *gentle smile*
  • Kaelynn: ......

"Know what? If Kekek closes his eyes, you can't see him."
  • Kae: I wonder if that works for me, too? *goes catform, stealths* Okay I closed my eyes.... can you see me?? *giggle... pounces on Kekek*
  • Kaelynn: *gentle smile* Line of Sight doesn't quite work like that... let me explain...

"Dragons big and powerful. Elf-lady weak."
  • Kae: ...and that is why I fight in the forms of panthers and bears, little one.
  • Kaelynn: he just insulted the dragon queen!! what do I do, what do I do, what do I do...

"Maybe give up and throw book at animals, but try."
  • Kae: Oooo yeah, let's play fetch!
  • Kaelynn: Err, that will probably just make them angry! Be patient; a book's knowledge is a far greater weapon than its weight.

"Kekek take you hunting. You be good bait."
  • Kae: *bearform, swiftly pins Kekek down to the ground with one huge paw. Smirks.* Most creatures look at a bear and run in fear, little one... while most will look at you and lick their chops. However... I admire your courage. *grins toothily and lets him up, but only after he stops squirming*
  • Kaelynn: ...I think I need to return you to the orphanage now.

"Caught three chickens for lunch. Bet you couldn't catch any."
  • Kae: *grabs Kekek by the scruff and grins* If you can catch chickens and I can catch you, how many chickens do you think I could catch? *winks at Kekek* Regardless, those chickens are as big as you are. I hope you weren't wasteful; don't hunt more than you can eat.
  • Kaelynn: I'm somewhat relieved to hear you aren't a vegetarian. *goes treeform.*

"You should stay away from walrus-men. They could pup-nap you."
  • Both Druids: *looks away with a sad, thoughtful smile* They only pup-nap those who are offspring of their foes, and raise them to not be enemies anymore. Or at least, that's how they explained it to me. Granted, I have yet to see what becomes of these pups after abduction... *pauses and looks back at Kekek,* were you pup-napped, little one?

Which brings me to wonder where exactly all of the tens of thousands of pups nabbed by players in Snowfall Glade have been carried off to by those Tuskarr. >.>

Saturday, August 15, 2009


I've been keeping a wary eye on the ongoing commentary and "reports" of the upcoming content expansion. The thing is, Blizzard itself has not reported anything yet, and we won't know if the goblin/worgen race release is even remotely going to happen until they say it themselves. The "excellent sources" that sites such as MMO-Champion claim to have can, in fact, be wrong. It may be an elaborate hoax. Or it could be a leak, either unintended by the Blizzard management or, possibly, planted to see what the public reaction might be to such things so that they can make adjustments.

That said, here're my thoughts on it:
  • Goblins are notorious for their love of money and economic-manipulation. Aligning themselves with only one faction would not only go against goblinish ways (in fact, aligning with Horde is cutting out the significant client base that is the Alliance), but also really throw the cross-faction AHs in the air. Language barriers would truly come into question, as well.
  • Worgen are, lore-wise, akin to the undead: abominations/twisted versions of humans, in many cases, due to Arugal's curse, though the original Worgen are from another dimension. How many of those once-human worgen were willing to undergo that curse? How open would the family be to discover their child, their mother, their father, their neighbor was turned into a Worgen? How accepting would they be? Would it be a "Aww my son turns into a big fluffy puppy now! Hey, you'll now be an even better shepherd, and can sleep on the hearth rug. Here's a bone, Spot!" ...or would it be a "Oh, lord, why has such black magic has fallen upon our family?! Out with the beast, before it eats us all! Let us mourn the loss of our son, and destroy the beast that has taken over his body!" Yes, the Worgen were originally summoned by a human and a night elf, but they also just as quickly turned upon their summoners. I can't see them seriously aligning voluntarily with the Alliance en masse. It would also require a reworking of Silverpine as it is a "no PvP, Horde-baby-leveling" zone, akin to the Barrens and Darkshore; allowing alliance to have a shared 10-20 zone with the horde is unheard of thus far in the game. If Worgen do become an alliance-only race, I would see them more likely starting down in the Duskwood/Redridge area.
*IF* the rumormill is accurate that these may be released as player races, I'm throwing my hat into the Cross-faction Race crowd and favoring that these nuetral races will be given a choice per player as to what faction they will choose, be it at character creation or through a series of quests leading up to, say, level 10. Both races could conceivably ally themselves individually with either faction, as both races are known to either fight against both factions (in the case of Worgen) or work amiably with both factions (in the case of Goblins).

We'll see what happens. I'm eyeing the whole thing guardedly. I'd LOVE to level a worgen druid, though... if I can roll one as horde, I'd gladly play a worgen druid over moocow! ;)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

3.2 Hit Rating Cap

FYI, the hit rating cap has not changed for 3.2.

I want to dispel this rumor!! I don't know where some have gotten the idea that the hit cap was altered in the patch, except that the moonkin Balance of Power talent's text description was changed and is misleading (it's still 2%/4% +hit per talent point like it was in 3.1, they just mis-wrote the new tooltip text). Lissana at Restokin has also pointed this out, complete with Blue-Post linkage. There is no change in the moonkin +hit cap (which you can find the breakdown on here).

Feral druids, your hit cap has not changed at all from before 3.2 (nor your expertise cap, for that matter), and there are no feral +hit talents to even confuse the tooltips on :) The 3.1 feral cat/bear hit cap information here is still accurate.

Maybe we should get a shammy out there to start spamming Purge Rumor. :)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Raid Icons

Pugging has brought my attention to the fact that a lot of players really have no idea what the real raid target icon order is, as listed in-game. When raid icons were released, a lot of party leaders defaulted to "skull" as the primary kill target as it symbolizes death, etc. Skull is the last mark in the list. Going BACKWARDS up the list from there is X, which became the common PuG 2nd-target. Strangely, many puggers have no concept that skull and X aren't actually the first two icons in the list, or that other marking systems are out there, and why.

The Icons

This skull -> x assignment is backwards from the actual listing of icons. The icons are listed as follows for left-to-right reading countries:

When listed top-to-bottom, they are read in the same pattern: Star, Circle, Diamond, Triangle, Moon, Square, X, Skull. They are also labeled in the system 1 through 8 in this fashion:

{Star} {rt1}{Circle} {Coin} {rt2}{Diamond} {rt3}{Triangle} {rt4}{Moon} {rt5}{Square} {rt6}{Cross} {X} {rt7}{Skull} {rt8}

Listed in {} are the chat commands for each icon, which will insert the icon into your chat window. The number labels 1-8 are used in the game's code and in macros when referring to raid icons. A very useful icon script the guilds I've been in have used for tanks marking their targets is:

/script SetRaidTarget("target",1)

You can change the 1 to be any of the numbers 1-8 of your choosing. The script, when created as a macro, will then quickly assign the chosen raid icon to your target. You can change "target" to be "self" or "mouseover" as well.

My own keybind for this is on mouse button 5 and ties other actions into the button using modifiers, in the following macro:

/cancelform [mod:alt]
/cast [mod:alt,target=mouseover,help] [mod:alt,help] [mod:alt,target=player] Regrowth
/stopmacro [mod:alt]
/script SetRaidTarget("target",1)
/clearfocus [form:1]
/focustarget [form:1]
/cast [form:1] Mangle (Bear)(); [form:3] Shred

Edit: I added in the /clearfocus and /focustarget lines at Celeritas' suggestion :)

Boss Mods

The problem with the Pugger -> marking system is that boss mods such as DBM and Bigwigs have long used both Skull and X for their own scripted boss warnings, which is reasonable considering Skull and X are the last two in the list. The mods will drop that icon on a player to bring attention to them for things such as life leech and slag pots. If a guild is using either of these marks for kill targets, things get chaotic as they try to remark mobs mid-combat, usually manually. You can easily get around this, however, if you break away from the Pugger skull/X mark mentality and use the other icons.

In all honesty, the Pugger Skull-for-Kill-Target is a "lowest common denominator" tradition, implemented for group members who don't know the actual icon order and for tanks that have to pre-mark all of their targets before combat. It shocks me how many players don't know the order, when it seems to me so basic a thing. If you don't know the order and plan to raid, I highly suggest you learn it, as you can't rely on skull/x in high end raids.

If you're really stuck on the use of skull/X for your kill targets, you can go into your boss mods' LUA files and change the SetIcon line to a different corresponding icon number. Each of your raid assistants will have to make the change as well, and every time your boss mods were updated, you'd all have to make the change again manually.

Tanks with Personal Marks

Ever since the implementation of target icons in the game, I have run with guilds that assign each tank their own, "permanent" icon for all guild runs. In the days of necessary CC, we assigned semi-permanent icon targets to mages and hunters as well! The MT is often Star, the first icon, but different tanks have had their own favorite marks and can certainly choose a different one!

Personally, mine has been in raids, though I moved it to for the purposes of pugging on Kae-bear.

In Vortex:
  • our warrior uses
  • our feral uses
  • our paladin uses
Our only rule in the icon claims has been to leave skull and X alone, as they belong to the bossmods!

The tanks each used the above /script SetRaidTarget("target",1) and tied it to an easy-access key or mouse button (I use Mousebutton 5 for it), so that they can quickly mark a target while attacking mid-combat. You can even add a /cast AttackName or a /startattack line to the macro to make your click more versatile.

DPS Discipline

Breaking further from the Pugger marking system, most of the raiding guilds I've been in have opted for a variable kill order rather than having a set "moon then triangle" or even "skull then x" order. Obviously, this is something for voice chat communication and thus not really feasible in a pug (unless you use that ingame voice chat, but I won't go there). As far as a guild's internal raids are concerned, however, having a shifting command of which icon to kill first is a great way to discipline and train your DPS: discipline and attentiveness that is helpful, or even necessary, for learning boss fights and difficult strategies. Raiders need to be alert and able to react quickly to the leaders' commands, and variable kill orders are a way to train it.

The guilds I've been in that didn't use this variable kill order had a lot of difficulty with getting DPS to listen to the raid leader when it came to important target switches or interrupts during boss fights.

For raids without that level of discipline (PuGs) or communication, a set kill order among the tank targets is optimal.


When dealing with Puggers, you never know what you're going to get. Some will adapt quickly to the personal tank-mark system, while others act like you've just shoved their head under water off the side of an iceberg while the frenzyfish are swarming up from the depths, gnashing their teeth in hunger.

Generally, it is good at the start of the PuG to announce "My target icon is (whatever), please kill it first." Those used to the Pugger mark style will just have to change from looking for Skull to looking for your mark. If they argue, just explain that you have it macroed, and they typically will not argue further: if they don't know about the game's raid mark order or are that unwilling to break Pugger tradition, then macros are probably a foreign continent for them as well.

From there, don't mark all of the adds. Having too many marks up will confuse the puggers and make them ask for the full kill order, and even after explaining it, inevitably some will forget and still dps the wrong target. Only mark the one that you are focusing on (aside from those rare CC), as a tank: the one you'd like the DPS to kill. Once your current target is dead, mark the next using your script. Think of your tank-mark as a "I'm putting threat into this one, so you're safe to dps it" icon.

In a way, this is easier than the skull->X strategy since the DPS only has one mark to look for, so they really have little room to complain about the break from pugger tradition.

  • If DPS is on the wrong target, call them out on it and remind them that they need to be on your marked target.
  • If there are multiple tanks, establish an order of precedence from the start of the instance: "Our MT is Soandso, their mark is , so kill the Star first. Our OT is Suchandsuch, so kill thesecond. Kill order: -> ."
  • Alternatively, if your raid needs further simplicity, have your MT pull mobs off of the OT and/or remark them with her own target mark so that the DPS is absolutely clear on what to kill next. Thus, there will only be one mark for your DPS to pay attention to, and they can ignore all others. Whether this is skull or the MT's own mark doesn't matter as long as the dps is warned ahead of time.


  • For one, be aware that Skull->X is actually backwards in the icon list order and that boss mods will automatically reassign them to important boss-specific alerts on players, so they are generally unsafe for use in raids as kill target markers.
  • For two, I highly suggest using a targeting script for tanking to apply a mark to your target. This will save time between pulls as the tanks/RL will not have to manually mark each target for kill order, and it will more easily establish which mobs are being actively tanked vs being an offtarget.
  • For three, if you go against the typical Pugger style of Skull->X kill order, be ready to let the DPS know what kill target they should be going after at the start of the instance. Many Puggers are easily confused.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Faction Transfer revisited

After playing 3.2 and some discussions with my husband, I've slipped more firmly to the side of transferring feral-Kae over to horde. His limit is the price: if it's, like, $50, it's not going to happen, because that's just ridiculous for what is technically an alt. If it's $25 or so, then she'll probably get transferred. Considering the realm transfers alone are $25, there has been conjecture that the price will be up in the $50 range; the official price has not been announced yet (as of August 10).

Why I want to transfer her:
  • I have to pug ALL THE TIME on alliance, and would rather to slip into groups with my friends instead rather than always rely on luck-of-the-draw in the LFG channel. I get lonely while playing her.
  • I can't dedicate myself to a 2nd guild without sacrificing part of the 1st (hence I've kept her in Dreambound as a solo guild).
  • I love playing feral cat and bear; melee is fun for me, and I much prefer playing a druid over my rogue.
  • The new tauren forms aren't as bad as the old ones.
  • When running chain heroics with my resto druid this weekend, I went into cat form on trash while letting rejuv/WG tick for heals. I need my feral fix.
  • I've grown quite fond of Kae-bear's new form. The skunk look is pretty cute and is my favorite of all the new feral forms, both cat and bear.
  • Potential price of the transfer may be too much.
  • No more easy access to alliance AH (and cheaper prices compared to Horde), white kittens, and other alliance-purchased pets, which I've been using to get pets for my horde main and friends.
  • My resto main gets the best feral gear and badges (over what feralKae would get as an alt). If I could tri-spec or quad-spec (beyond just dual-spec), this whole thing probably wouldn't be an issue, cuz I could then get my feral fix on Kaelynn and wouldn't have to deal with respecs, which themselves are a pain with all of the reglyphing required. Maybe Blizz will happily announce the additional of further spec-save configurations and all my worry will be for not?

: /

EDIT: it's been a while since I got a chance to sit down and just doodle in photoshop. I need to find more time for it, it's relaxing.

Friday, August 7, 2009


I fired up my Curse Client this afternoon, and lo and behold, there's an update available for GridStatusRaidIcons!!

Yes, this is that Grid module a bunch of us were trying to uncover from the locked bowels of the wowace forums a couple months back! For those out of the loop, this is a Grid module that will add the graphical raid target icons as a watchable status option. Personally, I set them up with the GridCornerIndicatorIcons module (separate download) so that one corner shows the person's own mark, and a different corner shows the icon of their current target (if any).

GridStatusRaidIcons is available from the Curse website here.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Kae's New Bear Form

Reworking my Moonkin Offspec

With all 3 healers present in our Wednesday raid last night, I spent the majority of our Ulduar run under cover of feathers. It took a long while to get used to the strange eclipse procs, and I almost turned off Squawk'nAwe since it was only tracking the first cooldown and thus was generally being useless for me.

If any experienced moonkin have suggestions on things I can tweak/fix, please feel free to leave a comment!

Spell Rotation Attempt

Eventually, I settled into this:
  1. DoTs and IFF up on boss or large trash thingy (skip if baby trash)
  2. Wrath until Lunar Eclipse (out of habit), reapplying DoTs if they fall off before proc. Proc sets off SnA cooldown.
  3. Starfire through the proc, reapply DoTs at the end.
  4. Keep Starfiring to proc Solar Eclipse, reapplying DoTs if they fall off before proc. SnA is still showing Lunar cooldown.
  5. Wrath through the proc, reapply DoTs at the end.
I just got a bit lost in what I should cast when the Solar Eclipse ended but my cooldown for Lunar (judged by SnA since it was the first to proc) wasn't over yet. After a couple bosses, I attempted to just start weaving wrath/starfire by alternating the casts, so that when the cooldown ended I could quickly proc the next and not have to switch spells midcast. Unfortunately this sometimes resulted in cooldown confusion as a Solar Eclipse would proc first and be monitored by SnA, and out of distraction to moving around, staying alive, etc. I'd forget which one I had already procced, even if for just a couple spell casts.

Moonkin rotation just got tenfold more complex with these eclipse changes. It's honestly refreshing, as it's something I will need to sit down and really teach myself.


I think I need more spellcrit. I was running an average 23.55% spellcrit for myself, which felt really low when it came down to procs at important times (like sitting on top of FL killing turrets). At 2500 spelldamage, my wraths were doing all of 3k damage per hit on the turrets, which felt REALLY wrong and made killing the turrets unreasonably slow at times, while the nerfed kittydruid was still beasting out his own damage. Sometimes I'd get a great proc and the turret would die quickly; other times it would take forever. It was frustrating me, and focused me on wanting to figure out how to make my turkeyself better.

The scariest part was when I considered giving up moonkin and going cat spec for my dps dualspec. 2 problems with that: 1) we already have a raiding cat and need the moonkin buffs when I'm not needed healing, and 2) if I don't play turkey, I can no longer say I have 2 druids that cover each of the 4 major druid types anymore :) So, I'm gonna try to make this work.

Mana Use/Re-Spec?

I never once needed my innervate for myself except when I was swapping between tree and moonkin specs (and thus was sent OoM just by the respec). I was running full moonglow and 2/3 Intensity. I was thinking to drop another point out of each and pick up 1 point of imp moonfire and 1 pt of gale winds, like so: 57/0/14 ??

I'm open to further suggestions on spec. I use turkey spec for soloing/dailies, occasional 5-mans (rare), and 10-man Uld/ToC raids.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Grid DungeonDifficulty Error?

Grid Bug Fix

Are you getting this error?

Interface\AddOns\Grid\GridRoster.lua:258: attempt to call global 'GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty' (a nil value)

Amidst the ramble of last night, the fix for this Grid bug was shared. Curse does not currently have an updated copy of the mod on their website, but there are two ways you can go about fixing this error and getting your raid frames back!
  1. Your first option is to download the "beta" copy from, which is available here. It contains a patch for "PTR compatibility," which will fix your DungeonDifficulty error.
  2. Otherwise, you can go into your GridRoster.lua and do a search in the code (ctrl f) for GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty. Delete the "Current" to make it GetDungeonDifficulty, save the file, and then reload your UI!
Thank you (again) to EricTetz and Beruthiel for pointing these options out!

Grid Debuffs for Coliseum

I'd also like to point over to Beruthiel's blog, Falling Leaves and Wings, as she wrote up a list of the debuffs useful for adding to Grid for the Beasts of Northrend fight in the Coliseum. I imagine these have not been added to the GridRaidDebuffs mod, yet, so you will need to add them manually for now!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tuesday 3.2 Running Commentary

I will be updating as I play tonight :) Wif pictures!

Logging In:

  • Pitbull 3.0, SCT, FuBar 3.6, and IceHUD had updates to download from Curse
  • Stuck at retrieving character list for about 4 minutes
  • Logging in with a full loading bar for 6 minutes (still loading), though hearing the dings of others logging in! Sitting in vent; a couple guildies are in the game and noting the NPCs have disappeared.

Children's Week

  • Trying to find the NPC for the children's week stuff... ah, there she is! She's outside the "Alliance" bank and inn, standing by the statue in the plaza, near the fishing fountain. You can choose which of the two "children" you want to look after, regardless of your current faction standing... I chose Wolvar.
  • Cowtip looks broken. :( Default tooltips are running, even though I told it to load out-of-date addons. Oomni says it's turned on (glad I installed Oomni before the patch, btw, so I don't have to log out to turn addons on and off!). Weird. Used LunarSphere to move the annoying game tooltips back to lock against the right side of my screen where they belong.
  • Spent the next bit lagging all over Dalaran. And then lagging all over Dragonblight just attempting to talk to my Wolvar orphan, since I hoped lag would be less outside of Dalaran :)

Pup Kekek wants me to take him all over the world... in this lag? He wants to go hunting and being warrior-y. Silly Wolfie. FYI, wolvar pup is a problem child...

  • The lag is lessening, but I'm wary yet of returning to Dalaran.
  • Flying over Wintergrasp will flag you for PvP still, but it won't drop you out of flight form :D Horde also won WG while I was flying over it... and I got the mark of honor O.o Cool.
  • Kekek wants a Paper Zepplin. Not sure he deserves it, bloodthirsty little fellow, but I guess it's not nearly as dangerous as, say, a gun. Or a rock. Of course, that is in Dalaran. Ughhh... don't wanna go there yet!

Raid??! Hello, Icehowl!

  • 7:00 Others making noise about starting up our raid, though some are still trying to log in. Might get something going here in another 45 minutes with the Coliseum.
  • 7:30 BLAH GRID ERROR! Grid's not showing more than 4 people in my raid and it keeps throwing an error up in my face :(
Interface\AddOns\Grid\GridRoster.lua:258: attempt to call global 'GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty' (a nil value)

  • 7:45 I had to turn off Grid (and Headcount) due to the Dungeon Difficulty bug. Turned on Pitbull. Kitarha reports that RatingBuster was also throwing up errors, though I turned that off when loading in cuz I wanted to see the Blizzard one.

  • 8:10 pm, I've tweaked Pitbull to show all the druid buffs (and thus my HoTs). It's not Grid, but it's functional. Now we're just dealing with AHMAGAD POISON! Those Jormungar are munching our tanks.
  • 9:11 pm, Not One, But Two Jormungars! Achievement :) But it was still a wipe. I'm using a lot of nourish here to keep the tanks alive; the damage has been super-spikey. Not liking the HoT display on Pitbull, since it's showing all "druid buffs" rather than just HoTs, but I'm adapting...
  • 9:25: Icehowl down! :) Our feral was dead the whole fight cuz he bugged and couldn't see the boss... or the fire... hehe! Little black kitty was flambéed. Scepter of Imprisoned Souls (Wand) and Gormok's Band (strength ring). We decided to go poke FL+4 after this, which'll be super interesting with the lag!

  • Break time before Ulduar, I went ahead and edited my lua file as EricTetz suggested in the comments, changing the GridRoster.lua's "GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty" to "GetDungeonDifficulty". Did a UI reload from there and it was all better! /boots Pitbull raid frames back out to unenabled-land. Thanks again, Eric!

Raid 2: Uld? VoA? Eh.
  • 9:52 Hearthed to Dalaran, back in lag-central. Attempting to purchase the pet raptor from Breanni and get little Mr. Bloodthirsty a paper zepplin. The raptor is 40g at exalted. I think the server's crashed, though... it just doesn't know it yet!

This guy was just swimming in place, hovering over the paving stones. I purchased a raptor, but it's not in my bags yet...
  • 10:02, I managed to mount up and start flying to Ulduar. Partway over the Storm peaks, I purchased 4 Obsidian Hatchlings... oops. Ha. Pets for my raiding buddies!! Alas, no one is actually able to load into Ulduar. I'm hanging out on the steps until loading works.
  • 10:12 I dueled our warlock so that he could practice banishes on me. His imp kept throwing fireballs at me, so I walked over and punched it. He cried "NOOOOOOOO, not Nokpit!!" and killed me for it. I mean, what, it's okay for his imp to turn me into a cooking fire, but I can't punch it in the face?? ;)
  • 10:15 Instance servers aren't letting anyone in, and even the trade window for one of the raptors has been stuck open for 3 minutes now. Sooo we decided to call it. Kitarha wants to go watch Hell's Kitchen with me. So, hope you all enjoyed my ramble, good luck tonight with your own attempts to play!!

3.2 Release

It's been confirmed; 3.2 is being released today. On that note, a huge congrats to Fusion (Turalyon - US) for downing Yogg+0 last night as a server first! You guys made it just in time, he got nerfed quite a bit with this patch.

The following is some commentary and pointing out of things I find significant in this patch, as a raider and a healer and a druid!

Cross-Class Notes:
  • Epic Gems - Kaeya, my little mining rogue, hasn't seen much of a workout since I've been splitting my WoW-time between my two druids. I saw a lot of titanium nodes while farming Hodir rep on feral-Kae, and had a little pang of regret that I wasn't out mining up titanium ore instead, since I beleive there's a very good chance that you'll get at least one epic gem out of every stack of titanium ore prospected.
  • Mount collectors - go pick up your extra undead pony / baby kitty from the appropriate faction vendor back in old Azeroth. The other mounts are purchased through seals, so if you've saved up enough after all the minipets and hippogryph and other mounts, then you have far more willpower on those dailies than I do :) There is also now a ravasaur trainer quest in Un'Goro for horde, akin to the wintersaber trainer line for alliance in Winterspring.
  • Pet collectors -Shimmering Wyrmling is BoE for the same price of 40 seals as the other tournament pets, but only useable/purchaseable at exalted. If you'd rather save your seals, you can buy it from another player, technically. There are also a slew of little baby raptors, one of which can be purchased from Brianni in Dalaran; the others drop off of various rare-elite raptors around the game, or can be farmed from the raptors in WC, Zul'Drak, and ZG.
  • Children's Week -This starts from Orphan Matron Aria in the Eventide in Dalaran. You will get one chain or the other between the Wolvar and Oracles, likely dependant upon whichever faction you're currently not hated by. If you want to switch, remember that you can do so by challenging the lich in the cave in eastern Sholozar, and killing the NPC of the group that you no longer wish to be factioned with (it's horrible, I know) while killing the lich. There is also a chance that you can just choose one or the other of the kids from the Orphan Matron and save all that hassle, so check first before going off and switching factions.
  • New tournament dailies - If you're exalted with the sunreavers/silver covenant, you get something new to do, if you're like me and are entirely burnt out on the 3.1 dailies. There are also a banner, tabard (with tournament-hearthing action!), and squire available for purchase to those thusly exaltified.
  • Coliseum Constructed - built of mountain rock and the limbs of tree druids, the coliseum is finished and is now a raid instance. There are separate normal and hard modes for 10-man and 25-man raids, and all 4 have a separate raid lock-out timer.
  • Badges - You can convert down, but all instances will now drop Conquest badges rather than Valor/Heroism. The Coliseum itself will now drop Triumph badges.
  • Item Compare - Shift + Mouseover on an item to compare stats with currently equipped. This is a nice addition to the Alt + Mouseover which will let you select from among gear in your bags that can go in that character sheet slot, something that was slipped in amidst a previous patch.

Feral/Shifter Notes
  • Agility/Dodge - you will need more agility to get the same amount of dodge as previous. The nerf numbers may look scary, but it shouldn't be too huge a drop, as diminishing returns ate up a lot of that before anyway. Resilience recieved similar treatment, meaning that more will be required for (non-feral druids) to become uncrittable.
  • Feral changes - base damage from all attacks in the upper ability ranks has been weakened through application of foam to all kitty claws, presumably a side effect of the pedicure recieved when all druids undergo their magical art transformation. Bears can now use rage potions.
  • Feral Skins - again, I point you to Tigerfeet's beautiful fur/skin assignment chart. Are you happy with your new skin? If not, do you prefer the old skin, or a different one of the new skins? Will you be/have you already visited the barbershop to select your feral colors?
  • Travel Forms - Travel form trained at level 16 and Flight form at 60; flying forms can now benefit from crusader's aura. Also, if you have a super-fast flying mount above the base speed of your swift flight form, your flight form speed will scale up to match!

Caster notes
  • Replenishment Nerf - a very slight nerf, but one to note for those players who often have mana difficulties. "Replenishment: This buff now grants 1% of the target's maximum mana over 5 seconds instead of 0.25% per second." This is 0.25% less mana per 5 seconds, a 20% nerf in overall replenishment regen. In turn, however, mp5 itself has been increased by 25% on all items. This will lead to a reconsideration of mp5 vs spirit for many druids; personally, while I had previously considered mp5 to be of significantly less importance than spirit, I may now consider them equal. Whether one stat is needed over another will probably depend on the tree's own current spellpower vs mana problems. Monitor your mana, druids!
  • Innervate - 3 minute cooldown (from 6), but at half power. Use it more often and share the mana love if you don't need it. Of course, as always, if you need it for yourself, use it on yourself! I've heard recently that there are still guilds who order an innervate be used on someone other than the druid. Sigh.
  • Resto changes - lifebloom's final bloom has been nerfed (again), which mostly makes me worry for the General Vezax fight. Since its timing was so unpredictable in whether the target would need the heal by the time it bloomed, however, I think that overall this nerf will have minimal impact on PvE healing. Empowered Touch now boosts Nourish by 20%, making it a much more attractive talent to druids who use nourish regularly (it was in my spec before, and I'm keeping it, certainly).
  • Turkey changes -Eclipse has separate cooldowns for lunar and solar, which will allow for more proccing and the "weaving" of starfire/wrath cycles... for more information, I point over to Graylo's recent post regarding the Eclipse procs. Panzerkins (Owlkin frenzy) will also regen mana through the proc, which is quite nice for soloing/leveling.

And because we were all very worried about this (I know I laughed each time I saw it!):

Cenarion Set: No longer reduces the (nonexistent) cooldown on Hurricane. Instead, the set bonus increases the damage done by Hurricane by 15%.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Feral PuGing

I was quite sick at the tail end of the last week, and to keep my mind off of my roiling stomach and seething heartburn and lack of sleep, I spent a very large chunk of time playing feral-Kae. Her gear and rep were bugging me, and I wanted to see if I could just slash around in some pugs to earn badges and some new shinies.
  • OS10. Bad run. We had two healers: a disc priest and a holy pally. They are typically MT healers, yes? The both of them? Yeah, sure, I get that. I wanted to smack them both, however, when they both said that they just wanted to target the tanks and only heal them. Hence, dps got NO heals. WTF. I mean... seriously, when you have a raid that has 5+ melee dps and a tank who wants to sit in the flame orbs, you're NOT going to get trash down, even with the little feral druid fleeing to stand behind the healers and BANDAGE HERSELF while the rest of the dps dies horribly, writhing in flames. Not a heal. Not one. We almost wiped to the first drake because of the AoE damage, since the MT again said "hey, don't go in the portal, just burn the drake down." Guess what that does? DAMAGES THE RAID! Now, I can understand it being the dps' fault when some stood in void zones, but dieing to straight environmental aoe that is unavoidable just because the two healers refuse to see anything but the tank's health is ridiculous. Angry kitty. Oh, and the mage didn't know he could remove curses ;)
  • OS25. Decent run. Typical pug, nothing amazing or notable, though they had me OT the adds. I danced with fire elementals and got badges.
  • VoA25. Bad run. I tried this several times, but the groups kept falling apart, usually because of bad healing... most of the healer puggers were in blues and self-admitted "bad alts." The tanks just kept dieing, and they easily had the gear to tank the instance. Personally, I have nothing wrong with alts in a raid like that, as long as they know how to play ;)
  • VoA 10. Good run. I ran this after a very successful heroic daily run, when our 5-man heroic group decided to grab 4 extra dps and a healer and go kill Emalon with me as the OT. Very smooth run.
  • Uld 10. Bad run. I had been sitting in LFG as a tank/dps for this and two other dungeons/raids, but with a comment that I should only OT or just play cat in Ulduar, because I know my gear is comparatively bad and I didn't have a separate kit for bear with the proper stam enchants. After a few mis-invites and fail-to-start groups where people didn't bother reading my comment about not having a MT-capable tank set, I took myself off the "tank" portion of LFG and just left it as "can tank anything below Ulduar" comment, as a pure dps lfg. I got a whispered invite to a U10 run after that, and since I'd been in the LFG as a dps, I figured it wouldn't be a big deal. They'd already downed flame leviathan, but that's 1 boss out of 14, right? They need a dps, sure, let's do this. Turns out, they wanted me as an MT. When I balked, they said I had the gear to do it... and I balked more. Then I inspected them. Indeed, my gear was the best among them, aside a resto druid who had more T7.5 than I did. Alright, I decided, I may as well see what happens, they seem to have confidence, in spite of their scattering of blues in scary item slots (chests, pants, helms, weapons...). So, I MT'd XT-002 and Razorscale for them, and we put a couple attempts in on Kologarn. They did pretty well for as undergeared as we all were, though many of the players really just didn't get the boss mechanics (eye beams? If I move two steps and stop, I'll be okay, right?) or even really their own class mechanics (wild growth? rejuv? why should I cast those?). I wish I could've helped them to down more bosses, but between replacing players and keeping those we had inside the instance (they kept hearthing to Dalaran to repair >.> ), and the relative inexperience at staying out of Bad Stuff™, we had to call it after Razorscale. Speaking of, the debuff was only stacking to 3 on me, so I was able to keep moving when solo-tanking Razorscale when the OT was practically one-shot, albeit very very slowly. This is new, and was a pleasant surprise, since it let us actually down the boss as the taunt-exchange just wasn't gonna happen! I'm glad my patience was able to hold out, because it certainly wasn't the Uld run that I was expecting.
  • Naxx25. Good run. This was a 60%-or-so guild run by "stone axe clan" and I was one of the pug dps; apparently the guild had lost some members and was determined to complete the instance without them, and I was happy to help in trade for some upgrades to my tanking kit. What shocked me, though, was that I, apparently, really know my kitty dps rotations and can be a beast with them: I was steadily in the top 1, 2, 3 dps through the whole instance, even with a green trinket and 2 pieces of strength/armor tanking gear in my kitty kit, and even when the dps warriors left and I had to apply mangle myself! Wut?! Yeah, I didn't get it, I was outdpsing people in Ulduar gear. Kitties can be scary-good when they can keep their bleeds, shreds, and buffs in order... I know this well, as I regularly raid with a feral druid. By the end of the night, when we needed another tank for KT, the raid leaders refused to let me go bear because they didn't want to loose my dps. I was flattered, in spite of knowing that my own tank set was/is still pretty pathetic. They invited me to their Uld25 run for the next night; I was tempted to go, even though they said they were only looking at 4 bosses, but ended up going out of town instead (hubby wanted to pick up his new knife set! Shun classic, folded steel, he's quite proud of them.)

Around all of the raids, I was running heroics with various groups, some better than others; I hit exalted with the Ebon Blade and am working my way through revered with Sons of Hodir (I circled the Hodir valleys for hours picking up Everfrost chips). My friends list grew triple in size as I made note of those to contact for groups/raids, or who I generally thought were cool people. I'm also turning in my Nobles deck at the darkmoon faire today; I purchased the cards individually, and the whole of the deck cost me less than 3500g :)

So, overall, it was an interesting experience with high points as well as bad, and I have at least a semi-decent tanking kit now, particularly once I pick up my Greatness trinket :)