June 30, 2015
Once again, time for me to clean out my drafts closet — those bits and pieces of ideas for posts that never really got fully developed. No logic, no order, just my virtual version of 1-800-GOTJUNK.
Watcher Hazzikostas. He’s still no Ghostcrawler, but I have to give him begrudging credit for — finally — understanding the value of discourse and for recently putting himself out there for interviews, Q&A, Q&A follow ups, and some detailed and thoughtful blue posts. I still disagree with much of what he says, he relies way too much on sly corporate lawyer weasel-wording for my taste, and I never get the sense that he is passionate about any aspect of this game beyond the corporate earnings bottom line. Nevertheless, he does seem to have figured out that there is value in more frequent, more detailed, non-snarky communication with the player base. So, with that extreme back-handed compliment, I encourage him to continue on his journey of enlightenment. I would, however, like to see him grant a few interviews where he had to field some questions that were not huge softballs scripted in advance.
Guilds. I’ve been wondering lately if there is such a thing as a perfect guild. Maybe perfect is the wrong word, but what I mean is, are there any current guilds out there able to offer robust activity in many areas? Are there viable guilds that offer value for the PvP-er, the raider, the leveler, the social butterfly, the achievement hound, etc.? And if such guilds do exist, how are they coping with the guild-killing aspects of WoD?
I started thinking about this while I was making the difficult decision to leave the social guild I had been with for close to five years. Eventually, I abandoned it on its deathbed, which I am not especially proud of, but in truth there was no hope for it, and even now it is defunct in all but name and one or two players logging on sporadically out of habit.
That guild in its heyday was a social guild with a fairly strong raiding arm, a fledgling but feisty PvP arm, and lots of both ad hoc and planned guild activities. It was a great guild brought low by two things: WoD and the continuing and simultaneous absence of both the GM and the Raid Leader.
I thought for awhile that WoD was the main culprit for this guild’s demise but now I am not so sure. I am beginning to think that a strong leadership presence plays a much greater role in guild viability than I had thought. And that leadership presence really has to be the GM or someone with equal stature, not just a few officers. I say this because I am starting to see a noticeable decline in the raiding guild I now belong to. It, too, is a great guild with excellent people and an environment I find very comfortable. It is not a hard-core raiding guild, but it was established for the purpose of raiding, and the core raid team takes its raiding — but not themselves — seriously. It is a fun team, and the GM/RL is one of the best I have seen. But he has had some IRL schedule changes that prevent him from logging on except at odd hours. Also, we have lost some key people from the team, notably a couple of healers and our top DPS. Consequently, we have not started raiding the new tier, and we really have no clear plans for how/when we will start up again. Guild participation is suffering as a result. Whether it is the start of a death spiral for the guild, or just a temporary lull, is yet to be seen. But it has been going on since the end of March, and the longer it continues, the harder it will be to pull out of it.
I wish I had some wise insights about this, but I don’t. I just know that I have been in four guilds since I started playing this game, that every time I switched guilds it was because the guild was dying, and that the common denominator in every case was prolonged absence of the GM.
Hunters in 6.2. I can’t seem to get over Blizz’s deliberate dismantling of Survival as a viable hunter spec. It really is the spec I love best, and if it were even close to viable I would play it anyway. But it is not. It is now so broken that even a die-hard survivalist like me has had to abandon it. Bad enough that 6.0 removed all burst damage capability from it, and that single target damage was made mediocre, but now combined with the gigantic AoE nerf from 6.2, it hardly even qualifies as a damage spec any more. This makes it useless for soloing/leveling, and downright irresponsible as a raid choice.
But I miss it a lot. This was driven home to me last night as I blasted my way through some rares, both solo and in quick teams. Out of desperation, I have been playing Beastmastery now for a month or so. It is not a bad spec, can be quite powerful when you get your Focus Fire timing down. But if the RNG gods do not smile on you by providing the appropriate number of pet frenzy stacks at the right time, Focus Fire loses much of its effectiveness. If your pet dies you are hosed, and you MUST stop DPS and rez it (instantly if Phoenix is up, otherwise it takes a few seconds). You lose a lot of DPS in fights where there is rapid target switching. And honestly — and this is what I realized last night — it is boring. Boring and annoying. Once you get the whole Focus Fire thing down, you end up spamming filler shots while you wait for RNG to grant you some frenzy stacks so that you can augment your filler shots with a real rotation.
I keep trying Marksman, but I just can’t like it. To me it seems like it reduces my mobility beyond what I am comfortable with, making my hunter seem like a physical damage dealing mage. I leveled my hunter as MM, and years ago it was THE hunter spec both for damage and for depth of play. In 6.2 it is probably once again the spec for hunter damage, but it feels too un-huntery to me.
I want my Survival back!!!!!!!!
Jewelcrafting. Not a big fan of the profession “experiment” they are trying with it in 6.2. Brawlers Guild rep in order to get a key recipe? Raiding requirement to get another of the key recipes? Nope and nope. Hell, if Blizz is going to require raiding in order to craft, why don’t they also require crafting to raid? “Sorry, but in order to get into HFC, you must have completed crafting at least 3 epics on a crafting profession. Why? Oh, because we are conducting an ‘experiment.'”
Let JC’s learn their own recipes? No no no no no, we can’t have that! Let’s make them jump through their butts to get recipes FOR A ROBOT WAY THE HELL UP IN NORTHERN TANAAN, and then make them go all the way up there to have the robot craft their gems for them. Heeheeheehee, we have so much fun when we pick on JC’s!
And while we are at it, let’s make each gem require an insane amount of the scarcest resource we have. HAHAHAHA, let’s see them make any gold off gems now!
Once again, Blizz is attempting to fix something they themselves have broken by breaking it even worse.
OK, that’s it, drafts closet once again is all neat and tidy.