Friday, August 31, 2007

Killing sprees

At one point in our short lives, we find out that we actually have the power to kill a living being. From that point forward, we define and refine our concept of what a life is worth.

For most people, humans are off limits in regards to killing; plants on the other hand are generally viewed as expendable. These two groups seem to be at opposite ends of the spectrum when evaluating living beings. Of course, with different cultures come different evaluations, but as a general rule, I would think this stands.

Between these two beings live a whole host of animal/plant life, and that's where it becomes interesting. I would posit that more intelligence grants the holder more value, along with being bigger, animated, and more rare. We hear about saving the whales more than having a vigil for the housefly.

But what about the situation of saving a 200 year old Redwood vs. a chipmunk. Now we have to do some evaluations. The Redwood is bigger and arguably more rare, but the chipmunk is animated and arguably more intelligent. If you had to kill one, which would you choose? Would mitigating circumstances come to bear as in the dead tree can be used for lumber or the dead chipmunk can be eaten or made into a hat (of sorts)?

What's really interesting is to look through this lens when observing the current debate on killing a fetus. The pro-abortion group must see the fetus as less than human. For our terms in this post, the fetuses have less intelligence and are smaller. The opposite value added attributes are that they are animated and rare (at least for that specific mother). Once that fetus enters the world and becomes a baby, everything changes....except, they still have less intelligence and are smaller, all the while being (more) animated and rare (an individual now). By virtue of being physically separated from its mother, the (now) baby gains an immeasurable value and is protected by all sorts of laws and rights. What a difference a day makes.....

Personally, I am anti-abortion. In all cases. Every single one. Makes me a hated, non-compassionate, scum-sucking moron. I know. /shrug. I refuse to endorse an idea that values one life above another solely due to a geographic issue - the baby's residence in the womb vs. the baby's residence in the crib.

For all of you still reading, I wasn't sure how this post was going to turn out. I wanted to work through how life in general was evaluated. But the train of thought ended up here. meh. Think I'll go kill some pixels.

A tribute....of sorts

Ten years ago, a wonderful person died. We know about her from news reports, although many met her and were touched by her kindness. Once she became focused, she devoted her life to helping the poor, the downtrodden, and society's castoffs.

Many of the poor she helped were children. She appeared in orphanages and pediatric wards to encourage, support, and comfort the abandoned or ill.

Her work became widely know in the 1970's, and she was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 1979.

I'm talking about, of course, Mother Theresa. Do yourself a favor amid all the Diana hoopla going on in the media: Read up on a person who devoted her entire existence to the wellbeing of others.

If it wasn't'd be some other day....

We take dings when ever we can get 'em. So, in light of that, PuddyTat dinged the big five Oh last night. I immediately trained him with Growl (level bazillion) and Natural Armor (I forget which one). Now to wait for more training points.

In other 'toon news, Rysteranch (PuddyTat's pet) is over halfway to 51 and doing well with Gerwintassle the Tank and absent Guild co-leader. We tore up the blasted lands lookin' for basilisk brains and vulture gizzards. Is it just me or shouldn't all of these animals have these essential parts? About 1 in 3 basilisks have brains! Who knew?! As far as gizzards are concerned, 80% of the vultures in the Blasted Lands are either genetically deficient or had that organ removed in elective surgery. Our unelective surgery only produced about 1 gizzard in 5 vultures. Meh, it's all xp, right?

Daxenos (aka Dax) knocked out some quests in Terrokar with Neya. Now, I have two main times I play: right after work until dinner time (~2 hours) and after dinner to bed time (~3 hours). Anyway, Neya and I hooked up for the first session, and I really wanted to play with him the second session just cause I'd like to get to 70 and soloing with a Holy priest - let's all say it together - sucks. But, despite assurances that he'd be on, he wasn't.

Gerwintassle quit on me around 8:30, and Neya wasn't on. Dang! Well, off to Desolace and STV with Daxie. Collected some Hatefury parts, some Snapjaw Croc parts, and some shiney objects from geologists. Then, put the smackdown on some elder STV tigers and Lashtail Raptors. She's almost to 35. It's amazing how fast these lower levels go, lol.

Slow night for the guild, Kat and Myk weren't on, Mal had to work, Ditch & Jow weren't on, and Rip has probably been working late...again. Hannah showed up for a little bit, but then I had to log. The other night we had 7 on at one time! I do believe that is the current record census. One of the reasons Gerwintassle is AFG (away from guild) is to check out a big guild and see how it is. His main reason for leaving is he was having trouble leveling. Now that he and I are the same level, AND I'm helping him, I wonder if he'll come back. I think he really likes the guild he's in and switching back will be difficult, if not highly unlikely.

I like my guild. We are growing very, very slowly. In fact, one might say not at all. As GM, I would like to screen people before inviting them. This helps to avoid the loot ninjas and the "I have no control at home, so I'm a total jerk on this game snot nosed little kid" types. The down side is I have to keep my eyes open for unguilded people and then strike up a convo with them. But, then again, the tradeoff is soliciting in /2 trade and getting Mr. "I've been in 18 guilds in the last 5 days, what can you do for me?". No problem, I'll continue doing as I have been doing.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Some musings

On Saturday, I was minding my own business in Stranglethorn Vale, when all of a sudden, I got ganked by Cleaning, the House. ACK! Power Word: Shield!

Got several adds to this lvl ?? Elite Boss:
Shower Stall, a lvl 65 elite water Elemental.
Vacuum, the Floors, a lvl 65 elite earth Elemental.
Dusting, a lvl 63 elite air Elemental.

First of all, let me tell you Feign Death is always resisted and generated HUGE amounts of threat(s). Also, Mind Control cannot be used on any of the mobs. /sigh, we're in for a long fight....

Alt-itis and other fine Indian cuisine

So, Dax is halfway to 67, with the blue xp indicator for the rest of level 66. But, I have alt-itis, and while I know there are 12 step programs and special clinics for people like me, I refuse to go.

Daxie dinged 34 last weekend, and Rysteranch hit the big five oh. Rysteranch was working on rest xp and got the level done in one evening (approx 4 hours played). Two of the hours were with a warrior buddy in Tanaris, and the rest was solo in the Blasted Lands.

Dax is still partnering with Neya, but he wasn't on yesterday and was busy the day before. Tonight is supposed to be instance night, but our tank's days off changed, and I think we'll either punt or try to PuG one. Some of our alts are getting to interesting levels (mid 30's to 40's), so maybe I'll suggest an alt instance. The problem with it, is no healers. Daxie is specced shadow, and I will NOT respec her just for an instance run. We have a two druids, but one is only in her 20's (and I think has very little healing experience) and the other is in her mid 30's, which is good, but she hasn't been on at instance time. Of course, if either of them showed an interest in healing a guild instance run, I would be all over it. But I don't know if either of them want to be responsible for healing a group as the sole healer.

I guess our guild has two halves. The higher level players in Outlands and a bunch in the 30's/40's. One of my struggles has been having a burn to level Dax, which meant I left the others behind and then, seeing I had left them behind, I leveled Rysteranch, but passed them cause they took a two week hiatus to move. Finally, my warrior guildie has caught up to Rysteranch, but that doesn't help the healer situation. /sigh. Now Daxie has almost caught up to the other co-leader's mage and druid, which is cool, cause we can play together again!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

ZG, shammys, and me

So, the regular group didn't work out last night, so I responded to a buddy's invite to raid Zul'Gurub. Now, I've never been in a raid, which is the reason I decided to go, and just getting a summons proved to be difficult. I should have known right then that it wasn't gonna be pretty.

But, I was in (and I had dragged my new friend Neya the Shammy in as well) and figured I'd might as well see what it was like. I'm sure my friend and his cohorts were thinking, "Hey we're 70's, we should be able to take this down like Wailing Caverns." Wrong.

From what I've read, ZG was a 25 man raid before B/C. That's 25, level 60, totally geared out, raiding veterans. What do we have? 25, level 60-70, outland geared, raiding noobs. And it showed. Several of us had never been to the instance and had no idea of what to expect, while others charged ahead and started beating on things with no regard to coordination. No big deal with the trash, but on the first boss, people started dying, someone aggroed the boss and ran out of a certain area, which made the boss reset. It wasn't pretty.

The raptor boss went a little better. People still died, but the tanks held aggro pretty well. Then came the spiders. Wipe. No problem, one of the priests got away. He starts rezzing.....aaaand aggros the spiders again. Wipe. The raid starts losing members. I rez at the spirit healer and leave. What a waste of

On the plus side, Neya and I did a number of quests together in Terokkar and Zangarmarsh and are developing a good symbiotic relationship. In fact, we took down a lvl 64 elite, with adds. Neya is only 62, so I thought it was a big deal!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

On hitting 65 and other nonsense

Well, I finally hit 65 last night. As a Holy/Disc priest, I find leveling to be quite tedious outside of instances. It seems to take forever to kill mobs.

So, last night, I saw a little lvl 62 shammy taking on the Bonelashers (64-65) and the tree things in Terrokar (Auch). I had already completed my killing spree on the birdies, but I hadn't finished killing the wood mites from the trees. Short story, we teamed up, finished three quests. It was a nice easy time of healing her and adding DPS.

After dinner, I got on again and saw a level 66 mage headed out toward the Tomb of Light. I whispered him and asked if he'd like to team up. You betcha, was his reply. We nuked the ethereal beings and then went off to find some big bird. Didn't find it, but leveled along the way.

So, tonight is Slave Pens with my regular group. We'll see how it goes. I got a new Renew, PW: Shield, and another spell.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Ramparts take II

PuG'd a Ramparts run on Saturday. This was the first time I was group leader, and I did ok. I learned a little about specific fights, and we did a lot of pulling groups back to a cleared area and beating the snot out of them.

Group make up: 1 mage (60), 1 warrior (59), 1 pally (60), 1 Shammy (60ish), and your's truly (64).

We wiped, before the final boss, two times. And the self rezzing shammy was a godsend. So, the first wipe was when one of the NPC "released the hounds", and we didn't realize he was going to do so. Wipe. The second happened when we got to the circular platform and pulled one side, but both came. CC kept getting broken...Wipe.

After that, we pulled small groups and pummeled them. Downed 2nd boss, no problem. Then the final boss. Wipe.....wipe.....and.....wipe. Tank couldn't hold aggro and when he did, I couldn't heal him fast enough.

No phat lewtz.

OOMana Tombs

Last Friday I got into a PuG for Mana Tombs. Everyone was 67 or higher except me (64). Group make up was 4 squishies (2 'locks, 1 mage, and your's truly) and a warrior.





We wiped on a trash pull gone bad, but took down every boss easily. Unfortunately, on the escort quest, we lost a 'lock, and he was unable to complete the quest. Other than that, goodness all the way around!

Got a nice pair of boots from the last guy and a schweet pair of pants as a quest reward. I got one red gem from the run (tank cut it for +healing) and the tank gave me two more after the run was complete, so the pants are socketed with 3 +healing gems. Very nice!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Some musings

While we all can appreciate the sight of a sweaty man in a ruffly pirate shirt, what is less common is the love for a near miss road kill.

We've all been there - in the dark, doing 40 mph or so, and from the shadows comes the gank. This time it was a raccoon, and as he realized the predicament he was in, he thought he could beat Melissa on the angle. He was wrong.

Now, I've make some roadkill, seen some roadkill, and maybe even eaten some roadkill, but I think this it the first time I've given a critter a glancing blow, if you can call running into the sidewall of a tire a glancing blow. I have every expectation that when I go home from work that I will not see that particular 'coon's guts strewn across the roadway.

Do I feel good about this? I'm glad Melissa doesn't have some careless mammal's blood splattered on her sleek black paint job. As for the critter....maybe he's a little smarter for the knock in the head.

P.S. If he was dazed by the contact, he could be a meat pancake as I saw another car headed the other way.....

What the????

So, I figured that if I'm going to keep this blogging thing up that I might as well see what the heck I can do with the settings and template tools.

Well, surprise, surprise, I found a list box tool and voila! I've listed my toons!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Respecs = Respects?

Well, Tuesday, I respecced Daxenos back to 40 points in Holy and the remainder in Disc. I healed Blood Furnace with my regular group (the 'lock was AWOL, so we picked up a Pally. Thanks Eb!).

Well, the spec works for healing! LOL. We had three deaths, two of them on the second boss. The rogue and the pally died that time, and the mage died the other. Rezzed and moved on. And, I won the roll for the nice cloth belt from the last guy! Now for some gems to socket.....

So, group make up is priest, warrior, mage, rogue, and pally, and what drops from the second boss? A gun! shard.....

In other news, Daxie dinged 20 and has one quest left on Bloodmyst before moving on to the moldy oldy quests in Ashenvale and Stonetalon. Once she hits 30, then it's lock and load time for the leveling guides I found. Hopefully they go by quickly.....I'm really looking forward to getting into areas where there is more than copper to mine!

Last night my tank was on an alt and complained to me about his guild not helping him. I smell opportunity. I'm GM of my guild, and we like to feel people out before inviting them, so we're very slow growing....Anyway, I'm thinking, "Here's a chance to improve the rep of the guild and build good will with the guy I'm healing on a weekly basis. Plus, he might consider jumping ship in the future, and we want to be at the top of his list." Also, it's the kind of guy that I'd like to be....not always am, but would like to be. So, I jumped on my hunter and put the smackdown on some furlbog, furblogs, whatever, for him.

Now, he didn't jump guilds, nor do I expect he will. Hopefully we'll get to know each other and become better friends.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Some musings

So, here I am in the Intensive Care Unit, just minding my business, when some yahoo in scrubs comes up to me and demands some sort of ID. Well, as many people have found out, the Air Force prepares people for such an eventuality, and I was no exception.

As I prepared to whip out my Big Red Kitty Identification Card and Florida Sunpass draft ID, I noticed the Environmental Services employee talking into his mop handle. The gig was up!

Quicker than you can say "I could've had a V8", I distracted the charge nurse with my handy-dandy Piece-O-Chocolate, which I lobbed into the nearest supply room. Her eyes moved from me to the dainty, little treat as it arced through the air. Foam dripping from her mouth, she attacked the morsel like a stylist on Britteny's hair. I quietly backed away......

A dilemma and other misspelled words

Hmmmm.....what to do, what to do. I leveled Daxenos to 59 as Holy (with 5 points in Spirit tap to make it more bearable) and got my buttkis kicked in outlands. So, I respecced Shadow and MELTED SOME FACES!!!!111!!!!ONE!!!!ELEVENTYONE! Man I love that spec!!!

But my healing stunk. And, I was running instances with a regular 4-man group as the only healer. I did ok as a healing Shadow priest, but I often ran OOM and depended heavily on Vampiric Embrace? (the one that gives health for shadow damage) and a renew to heal. Of course, I'm trying to DPS the crap out of the mobs with shadow damage to provide healing and it's no surprise that I drew aggro quite a bit. /sigh.

So, I respecced as 41 point Holy/ remainder Shadow. It's good for healing, and so so for soloing. It takes quite a long time to kill a mob, but at least I have Shadow Word: Death for those whimps that run crying to their little mommies.

Now, I'm looking ahead to end-game and wondering if I should respec again and leave this toon to be my instance healer, while I level my Shadow priest (level 16 at the moment). I'm close to 64, so for sure, I'll ding that today or tomorrow soloing.

My worry is that the group I'm with will advance without me. The MT is already lvl 70, so no worries there. But the 'lock, rogue, and mage (not the ones I played with last night in Ramparts) are all around my level.

I guess that I'm going to have to put in some solo time with my current spec....but, DANG that Shadow spec is fun!

Who am I?

Server: Baelgun
Toons: Daxenos - Human Holy Priest
Daxie - Draenai Shadow Priest
Rysteranch - Night Elf Beast Master Hunter

Server: Spinebreaker
Toons: Rysteranch - Troll Marksman Hunter
(I've liquidated all my assets on this guy and this server in the hope of transferring him and his gold to Baelgun)


Well, last night, I got a tell from a former guildie who wanted to know if I'd heal Ramparts with a PuG(Pick up Group).

Uh, sure. I was just questing in Terrokar and was debating whether to smack around some fel orc peons or tear apart Tuurem looking for some box/crate/whatever for Mr. "I'm Scared of Green Moths" Druid.

So, off to Ramparts I go. After some summoning games, we're off! Level 60 'lock, warrior, mage, level 61 rogue, and your's truly, level 63 priest.

First pull: Sap one, pull the other. So, ya know how you wait for the pat to leave before pulling? Well, we didn't. No problem, we have a MT right? Well, it's looking like.....the rogue is....uh, tanking???? Yep, got aggro like a big dog and didn't let go. Ok, time for Invincible Rogue of Death (IRoD), which is my little term for a shielded rogue. 8-P Now, I don't generally like doing this as rogues as a group think they're invincible without shielding and this only encourages them.

Aaaaaaanyway, downed the first two with the pat; got the disorganized pull out of our system! Next one goes a little smoother, wait for the pat to leave, pull the two onto the bridge, and voila! dead meat. Ok.

Now, in two pulls, I'm noticing some bad trends. The rogue and 'lock minion are getting aggro quite a bit, I have no idea when to heal a 'lock's pet, and the tank doesn't seem too interested in being a meat shield.

Pull #3 (nice variety in listing pulls....8-P): Wait for the pat to go away and deal with the group just to the right of the bridge. Casters....ick. Priest gains the attention of one of them and fades. Tank doesn't see it or doesn't care and 10 seconds later, I have aggro again, only this time fade is on cooldown. Crap. Shield, renew self. Heal, heal, heal. Well, lookit that! I'm a big whitish/blue thing with wings!!! Heal, heal, get asked if I want to use a soulstone. I see that the fight is not going to result in a wipe, so I say, "Sure!". I watch as the mage tanks the last mob while everyone is beating on it.

So......I make the innocuous comment, "That would have been a great time to taunt the mob off the mage." To which our intrepid Tank replies, "I've got to go."

Thank goodness.

So, now we have no Tank. The 'lock's minion(something with a big axe) has not been the best tank (before you post, I know absolutely nothing about 'locks or the interaction between them and their underlings). One of the party says they might be able to get a pally. I whisper my friend, a 67 DPS warrior, and ask if he's interested in tanking. He lol's and says, invite me!

OK. Now we're cooking with gas! First thing our new MT does is start marking mobs: star = sap, moon = sheep. Alrighty now! Pull, kill, pull, kill. We slowly make our way to the first boss. MT dies once, whoops! But DPS is good enough to finish the job, and I rez the MT with the sincerest apologies.

1st boss goes down easily. Fast forward to the entrance from the hall to the big round platform.
Tip: There are guards stationed just outside the doorway. If you pull a pat, they come with!

And pull a pat we did! 6 on 5...uh, oh. "Don't panic", yells the MT, and I start a renew on him. The miracle was that no one else drew aggro. All of the mobs were focused on the MT, I was chain spamming Greater Heal, and everyone else was DPSing like mofos. Dead, dead, dead, dead, dead, and....DEAD! Down they went, and we all let out a collective "WOOOOOT!" It was on!

From that point on we rocked. Small groups pulled and pummeled. 2nd boss went down easily and off we go to the big guy. Keelhaul the pair on the front of the bridge; smoke the pair on the other side of the bridge (got a 4442 healing crit on that pull!). Ok, dufus is dropping from his ride and taking us on.

Not much to write about the final two bosses. Tried to stay out of the fire (the 'lock didn't and died), kept renew going and greater heals on the MT, and threw renews on everyone else. I need to research what these other nifty spells are so I might be able to use them (circle of healing being at the top of the list; I spent the talent point, why am I not using this???).

So, after a slow start, we got to rocking and actually did very well. Sorry I can't link the PHAT LEWTZ, as I don't remember what we got and can't access any good WoW sites from work.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Why??? For the love of Mike, why?

Why on earth would I create a blog? Uh, I wanted to post on BRK's blog.

Ryster Anch