AVR to be Broken

Better get out your pens and paper again, ladies and gentlemen, and start sketching out where those with the raid symbols for Frost Beacon are supposed to stand on heroic Sindragosa. They’re purposely breaking AVR’s functionality.


I’m not terribly upset about this. Sure, it was fun while it lasted (and will last until 3.3.5), but it really did feel like cheating. More detailed thoughts on its use in this previous post.

Kurn's Guide to Lower Blackrock Spire

Okay, after much hemming and hawing and many false starts and far too long spent in the editing stage, I think I’ve pieced together an okay two-part guide to Lower Blackrock Spire. It’s done the way we used to do LBRS back in the day and is still a really efficient way to clear out the instance. Included are Warmaster Voone, Shadow Hunter Vosh’gajin, Mother Smolderweb, Urok Doomhowl, Halycon, Gizrul the Slavener, Overlord Wyrmthalak, High Lord Omokk and how to obtain and complete the quests Bijou’s Belongings, Urok Doomhowl and how to get you started on the Seal of Ascension questline. Note that there are other quests in here, including the one for the Worg Pup and Mother’s Milk, neither of which are covered here.

Apologies for how dark the videos seem on YouTube. On my computer, they’re both much, much brighter, so I’m not really sure how to deal with that. I would try re-rendering them and re-uploading them, but I know if I don’t post these now-ish, it’ll be another couple of weeks before I bother trying again.

So, here we go. :)

Kurn's Q&A #17

Man, it’s starting to get bright super-early over here. 5:34am as I start to write this and I can see across the street in the early morning light. I’m clearly up wayyyyyyy too late. :P And I can’t even blame it on raiding!

Ah, well. Time for another bunch of keywords that led people to the site.

1) shadow priest sindragosa heroic 25

I have to come out in favour of this. Vampiric Embrace is very useful on any fight with a persistent aura, such as Sindragosa or Blood Queen.

2) “pit of saron” tips skip riding

Okay. First of all, I hate people skipping the last few trash pulls. If you time it right, you can skip three of the last four groups of trash. This is, in my mind, an exploit. You are not MEANT to skip this trash. This trash is blocking the path you need to take to the final boss of the instance. That means it’s not optional. Man up and interrupt the flame caster guys on the first two pulls.

3) 16 int or 30 spellpower holy paladin

Bracers, right? I prefer 16 intellect because I’m a Holy Light-style paladin. Obviously, if you’re a spellpower-stacking, Flash of Light-style paladin, you want 30 spellpower. And if you’re new to 80 and don’t have 2000 spellpower yet, you want 30 spellpower.

4) bringing in kingslayer to trigger hard modes

Lame. True, you can probably kill Marrowgar and definitely Gunship on heroic modes without too much trouble, but lame, lame, lame. Go kill the Lich King first. Then you can trigger any hardmode you want.

5) can’t keep people alive in trial of the champion

You know what? That’s not horribly uncommon. I had a hell of a time keeping people up on my resto druid when I was a fresh 80. You just need to be aware of the various abilities. Turn around to not face Eadric the Pure so you don’t get stunned. Cleanse various debuffs off your party. If you get Paletress, Tremor Totem, Fear Ward, whatever you got to keep yourself from being feared. Having said that, though, if it’s not an exceptional environmental thing you can’t heal through, check your gear, your spec and glyphs. Maybe you’re just not ready to heal it.

6) does having someone suicide in phase 3 on professor putricide hardmode work?

Interesting idea. I presume you mean someone with Unbound Plague running out and dying to it? Maybe, although I doubt this is what the game designers had in mind when coming up with the fight. It’s very possible to do it using the more traditional method of dealing with Unbound Plague which is to pass it around the raid. (FYI: you still get it with Divine Shield up!)

This sounds a lot like the whole “let the first mark die” on Saurfang thing. Which just makes me roll my eyes.

7) dont wanna go to zangarmarsh

Hahahaha, yeah, me either! You can stay in Hellfire and do all the quests which should ding you 63-64. Once you hit 64, you can hit up Nagrand. You can probably start getting Terokkar quests around 62-63, too. Congratulations! You’ve skipped Zangarmarsh!

8) glory of icecrown raider total hours spent

Wow, that’s a very interesting search. I only have 25-man experience, so let’s see…

Considering all I’m missing is I’ve Been Waiting a Long Time for This achievement on Lich King, I have to say a LOT of my recent raid time has been taken up by driving towards this achievement. I’m taking into consideration how long it took us to down heroic modes like Sindragosa (weeks!) and also Gunship (first attempt). Probably anywhere from 30-40 hours of dedicated wiping just for the heroic modes, with additional wipes and issues on Boned, Full House, I’m on a Boat, Portal Jockey, All You Can Eat… So maybe 40-50 hours of wipes.

Yeah, now I want to quit…

9) what’s the priest bubble shield speed boost

It’s a deep holy talent called Body and Soul.

10) what does eh mean paladin

Well, I’m Canadian, so the first thing I think of is “eh?“… but you’re probably talking about EH — Effective Health for tanks. Your effective health is what your health actually is due to mitigation provided to you by things like armor.

Here’s an effective health calculator from my favourite warrior tank site. Go nuts. :)

What I Look for in a Holy Pally App

I’ve been basically begging my guild to recruit a third holy paladin for months. A third holy paladin would have been great when the main holy paladin (who had been there when I arrived) ninja-transferred in the middle of the night after killing LK on 10-man for the first time and getting his Kingslayer title. A third holy paladin would have been awesome even last week, when I, and the current other holy paladin, both had our birthday celebrations. A third holy paladin would be great at any time for heroic Saurfang.

We had two holy paladin apps but one didn’t like the idea of sharing raid time at all, so he came up with some lame excuse and transferred. The other one stuck it out, is a member of the guild in good standing and is someone I know I can rely on to do what he’s told in a healing situation. Unfortunately, he’s also going to be unavailable for close to a month, starting, oh, nowish.

So I’ve spent some time over the last couple of days perusing wowlemmings looking for holy paladins who can meet our raid times, who are fairly geared and, here’s the kicker, know what the hell they’re doing in terms of gearing, enchanting, gemming, speccing and glyphing.

You would think that they would, for the most part, know what they’re doing. Particularly if they’re looking for a progressed guild, right? Well, they don’t. No kidding. They do not. Thus, here is what I look for (and therefore, what I don’t look for) when looking at a holy paladin’s armory. (Please note that this is what I look for when taking my current guild situation into account. That means typical raid makeup, encounters we’re working on and the like. Posting it here is basically showing you what my own rules of thumb/preferences are in general and there are, of course, a variety of circumstances that could change these preferences.)

1) Overall gear. Is the gear strictly out of heroics or from the Emblem of Frost vendor? If so, chances are slim that the rest of the stats will impress me. What I am looking for in particular:

2pc T10, even if it’s 251. Ideally, the helm and the shoulders, as these are our strongest pieces at 251/264/277 levels of gear.

Talisman of Resurgence as one trinket and then a variety of others. Why Talisman? Well, it’s easy to get, stacks our best stat and has an on-use that helps to offset Divine Plea. Of course, FoL pallies would probably prefer two +spellpower trinkets, but for Holy Light pallies, I want to see Talisman. For the other, I would prefer Meteorite Crystal or heroic Solace of the Defeated, but will also be okay with regular Solace, Pandora’s Plea or even DMC: Greatness (Intellect). What would not wow me, but would still be better than a spellpower trinket for a Holy Light paladin, is Tears of the Vanquished.

– Something other than the badge shield. Even the 226 shield from Kel’Thuzad. I do not want to see Zom’s Crackling Bulwark or the Protective Barricade of the Light.

– At least the honored version of the Ashen Verdict ring. Sorry, you cannot step into an 11/12 HM guild if you’re not that familiar with the instance.

2) Gems. I want to see all +20 intellect and a Nightmare Tear or all +23 spellpower. If you’re all +intellect, I also want to see an Insightful Earthsiege Diamond as your meta and if you’re +spellpower, it’s that OR an Ember Skyflare. Pretty much no exceptions. If you have anything else as your meta, I’m moving on to the next paladin on the list.

3) Enchants. Helm is spellpower/mp5 for HL and spellpower/crit for FoL, shoulder is spellpower/mp5 with exalted Hodir or inscription for HL, spellpower/crit for FoL, chest is powerful stats, bracers is +16 intellect (HL) or +30 spellpower (FoL), gloves are +28 spellpower, belt has the extra buckle, legs are spellpower/stamina (if you use the spirit one, I swear to God, you need to be smacked), boots are either Greater Vitality or Tuskarr’s, weapon is either +63 spellpower (FoL but acceptable for HL) or+30 int (HL), shield is +25 int. Period. Again, there is VERY little room for argument.

4) Libram. This probably should be under overall gear, but it’s SO important that I felt it deserved its own little category. If you are a holy paladin and use Holy Light more often than not and you are NOT wearing the Libram of Renewal, you fail. Hardcore. Screw gearscore, this is ten thousand times more important than upping your ridiculously stupid gearscore by 50 points. I don’t even want to know that you exist if you don’t use this libram. If you are a holy paladin and use FoL more often than not and you are NOT wearing one of the Gladiator Librams that increases your FoL spellpower, then you ALSO fail and I definitely don’t want to ever meet you.

5) Haste rating. I’m going to try to be calm here, but I might lose it… If you don’t have 676 haste, GO OUT AND GET MORE FREAKING HASTE. Gah. What is wrong with people in ICC content, who have downed the Lich King who have like, 400 haste? You’re being idiots! EVERY holy paladin needs 676 at minimum and if you don’t have the spell haste buffs in your raid, you need MORE. You also need more if you cast Holy Light more. Do you get me? HASTE IS AWESOME. I have 936 haste and eat 40 haste food, for 976 haste PLUS Wrath of Air PLUS Swift Retribution Aura PLUS Judgements of the Pure. It is GOOD.

Ahem. Yes. Haste needs to be over 600 before I’ll take any holy paladin remotely seriously.

6) Spec. Holy Light paladins should have a prot subspec and FoL paladins should use a ret subspec. I don’t want to see you speccing into ret and Conviction if you’re gemmed all intellect and basically vice-versa. Don’t spec and gear half-assedly. Pick Holy Light or Flash of Light and spec/gear/gem accordingly. I also don’t want to see any crazy, cockamamie 68 points in holy. You go 51 or 52 or 54 points into holy and 5 or 17 or 20 into prot or 2 or 15 or 20 in ret. You definitely want your talents to be something like:

51/5/15 – FoL

51/20/0 – HL

51/0/20 – FoL

54/17/0 – HL

52/17/2 – HL

Check out this previous post of mine to help determine what talents you absolutely need to take and which are situational and debatable.

7) Glyphs. If you’re a Holy Light paladin, it’s Glyph of Seal of Wisdom, Glyph of Holy Light and Glyph of Beacon of Light. If you’re a FoL paladin, Glyph of Seal of Light, Glyph of Flash of Light, Glyph of Holy Light. If you use Beacon a ton, you might want to swap out Glyph of Holy Light. There’s a little wiggle room here, but not too much.

8) Achievements. If you’re a Hand of A’dal, you get extra points in my book. If you did any of the “big” fights before T9 became super easy to get (ie: Sarth 3D, various Ulduar hard modes, Algalon, etc), you get extra points. “Extra points” means I’ll be willing to listen to you defend some of your more bizarre choices in gear/enchants/etc. It is not a carte blanche to be a total moron when it comes to your character’s spec and equipment.

So there you go, what I look for on each paladin’s armory before I go posting the typical “hey, want to raid with us?” post.

As an aside, yes, as of May 14th, I am still pushing to get another holy paladin in. If anyone reading has a geared holy paladin and you’re looking for a new guild, here’s some info on us:

– mature PVE/PST server

– guild has been together for 4+ years, downed Algalon in Ulduar, TOC, TOGC (4/5), ICC25 12/12 and ICC25 HM 11/12

– raids are 8pm-11pm PST on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays

– you *must* run Grid/Clique or Grid/mouseover macros (not my requirement, but I’m okay with it) as well as DXE as a boss mod and AVR for Sindragosa and oRA2 and Omen

– definitely prefer a holy paladin who is HL-specced/geared at the moment, with the possibility of being able to play with FoL spec/gear in the future

Bear in mind that we don’t typically use Vent (or, at least, it’s not required).

We’re 11/12 HM and doing achievements NOW for Glory of the Icecrown Raider, so do not think we are your ticket to a mount. We are currently your ticket to hardmode loot as we push to down LK on heroic.

If you can make close to 100% attendence and feel you’re the type of paladin we’re looking for, email me for more details:

kurn [at] apotheosis-now [dot] com

(Note that that’s my personal address and not affiliated with the guild I’m currently a part of.)

You can also tweet me at kurnmogh on Twitter and we’ll chat. :)

Beta Beta Bo-Beta…

As I wait in the interminable Bloodlust (Alliance) queue for a dungeon, waiting for someone to need a level 68 healer, I thought I’d drop in my two cents about the upcoming Cataclysm Beta.

I got into the Wrath beta, thanks to my RL friend the resto druid. She had a spare beta key that she gave me and I spent much of my time screenshotting things, getting my hunter to 73, laughing my ass off when Unholy Blight would crash world servers and generally exploring things. I remember when Infusion of Light would cause an instant HOLY LIGHT, not just a Flash of Light. I remember when there was only a 25% penalty to healing when using Divine Plea, not a 50% one.

I really enjoyed my time in Beta. I got to see half-finished mobs in Dragonblight, I got to experience quests before others. You know the quest for Nexus called Quickening? You kill the big ol’ tree things in the zone and get Arcane Splinters. In Beta? They weren’t group loot. There were like, 10 of them available total or something. I wrote feedback, recommending group loot or 25 total so that all five people could get their quest items if all five people were on the quest. Guess what? That’s what happens on live. :D

I also really enjoy just learning the new mechanics before things go live. One thing I hate about expansions is that it’s a near-total knowledge reset. By the end of Burning Crusade, I could have tanked on a warrior at 70, even though my own warrior is only level 16. I had done my research. I could have played just about any spec of any class adequately throughout any encounter from Kara to BT. I might not have topped damage meters or healing meters or been able to hold aggro from our resident fury warrior while I was tanking, but I knew enough about what abilities were available to everyone and when they should use them that I could have done an okay job.

Come Wrath, most of that knowledge was gone.

“Vigilance?” I remember asking, “What the hell is that?”

It typically takes me at least a full year to be relatively acclimated to the game changes an expansion brings. Beta knocks off a bit of that time and lets me learn about my own classes right off the bat so that I have the knowledge that’s most important to me already subsumed by the time live hits. When live hits, it’s about learning about other classes, newer quests and instances I never tried on beta and such.

I’m hoping I get into Cataclysm’s beta early on so that I can learn about some of the big changes — guilds, mastery, archeology and the like — as well as my own classes so that when Cataclysm comes out, I am ready to hit the ground running.

I really do want to restart my dear old Apotheosis (most of the time, anyways!) and the best way for me to do that is to go into 4.0 filled to the brim with knowledge about how things work in Cataclysm.

The thought of going forth into the beta and the next expansion really reminds me, too, that a lot of the content I post here, the informative stuff, is technically time-sensitive. My Holy How-Tos are going to be all but useless come the expansion. Definitely something to bear in mind, going forward. Every patch, every expansion, things will probably change, which is something I haven’t had to deal with since I only REALLY started blogging in earnest after 3.3 hit, despite the fact I started this blog up around 2.4!

Anyways, should I get into the beta, I WILL be posting stuff here. I’ll put it all behind the cut, though, and my blog subjects will be not-too-spoilery. :) This is your notice!

The queue still hasn’t popped. In other news, I got Portal Jockey and I’m on a Boat last night!

… yeah, that’s about it for now, I guess. This queue is awful. I think I’ll try my hand at some AV.

Thoughts on Glory of the whatever Raider

The drakes-as-reward for people doing all kinds of ridiculous achievements always seemed way unimportant to me. In general, I still think they are unimportant. More importantly, in some cases, the hoops through which you had to jump to get them were just INSANE, particularly with 25 people involved.

Take, for example, Glory of the Raider, the original one dealing with Tier 7 instances.

There were a lot of easy achievements as the requirement here, but, among the difficult ones were Sarth 3D, 5-6m Maly and The Safety Dance (no deaths on Heigan in that kind of lag? Please.). And then there was The Immortal. While poor old Apotheosis never even got Thaddius down, much less Sapphiron or KT, I know raids who had one person die unexpectedly on KT every week, people who DCed through Thaddius attempts… These people never got their drakes and I imagine that honestly few people did. The Immortal, and its 10-man cousin, The Undying, were just ridiculous requirements, particularly given the obscene lag Naxxramas suffered in early Wrath. (And no, I never did get my Undying run done.)

So then Ulduar was coming out and the devs recognized that hey, we’re going to outgear all this crap and so they would remove the drake as a reward. Good on them.

And then Ulduar came out and they introduced Glory of the Ulduar Raider.

Honestly, while The Immortal was just dumb in terms of how many things can possibly go wrong, I think that the Ulduar challenges are more difficult. A lot of them aren’t gear-based, but based on co-ordination and a metric assload of cooldowns, which is why these are still attainable. It’s about knowing the fight, knowing what you have to do and sure, your gear now makes it easier, but it’s still HARD.

Some of them are super-easy, like Disarmed, or not too hard with a bit of planning and gear, like Stokin’ the Furnace and Heartbreaker. But Steelbreaker last? Freya with 3 adds? Yogg with only ONE keeper? GEEZ. Having done Steelbreaker last (albeit with my current guild who had practiced it over and over and done it several times before I joined), GOOD GOD, that is hard. I’ve done Freya with 1 add when Ulduar was current content and that was shitty enough for me, thank you very much.

Then, of course, Icecrown Citadel came out and with it, Glory of the Icecrown Raider.

There are 17 achievements in Glory of the Icecrown Raider and four of them include killing all the bosses, save Lich King, on heroic. Which is HARD. Heroic Putricide and Heroic Sindragosa are right up there with Steelbreaker last and what I imagine Freya +3 would be like. There’s just SO much personal responsibility and personal awareness required on everyone’s part in both those fights that if you can get those done, you bloody well deserve a little something to show off.

Of the 17, I have 10 done. The four heroics, Boned (shut up), Nausea…, Once Bitten, Full House, Made a Mess and Orb Whisperer.

This reset, the raid leader and guild officers have decided to work on getting 25 of us our drakes. We are, more or less, the people who have been there since the LK kill who have maintained 75%+ attendence. So we’re going to do a bunch of regular modes slightly differently (Flu Shot Shortage — OMG, Festergut without Malleable Goo again? ECSTASY!!!) and do a couple hard modes this week and save heroic LK attempts for next reset.

This is the closest I’ve ever been to getting a drake this expansion and, like I said, it’s never been important to me, it’s never been a priority. But that the guild is deliberately putting off progress to give us a bit of a break and a bit of a reward makes me feel good. It makes me feel like a real part of the guild, a real part of the team, and it’s based on my dedication, perseverence and attendence, which are all important things to me.

Go go achievement spam. I’m ready to put in the effort to get my Reins of the Icebound Frostbrood Vanquisher. And even though it’s less important than killing the bosses on heroic mode, it’ll remain a testament to all the effort I’ve put into the guild and the game over the last several months.

Kurn's Q&A #16

Ah, Tuesdays. Relaxing day with no raid. It feels sooooo good to chill.

And I kind of deserve the day off, even if it’s nothing special and we always have Tuesdays off. We downed heroic 25-man Sindragosa on Monday, bringing us to 11/12 HM in ICC 25. Gah. I’m so worn out. Of course, our second holy paladin is apparently going to be MIA for a MONTH starting after Thursday, so I am not going to get a lot of recovery time. I told the raid leader that we needed not just one more paladin, but two, because I NEED a night off sometimes without the potential guilt that a raid can’t happen. Neither of us were there last Thursday, since we, strangely enough, both had our birthday on Friday, so in three hours they only got heroic Rotface, heroic Festergut and a few attempts at heroic Putricide before downing him on regular.

Anyways, guilt and obligation are not a factor tonight, so I ordered pizza and will be watching some TV shortly. While I wait, it’s time for Search Terms I Wish To Expound On!

1) unbound plague melee

Probably the most important thing you need to do if you, as melee, get Unbound Plague is to run the hell out of melee until you and people in melee no longer have it. The worst case scenario is that everyone, including your tank, keeps passing Unbound Plague around, increasing your debuff stacks and then you all die.

Check with your raid leader, but that thing spreads FAST, so my advice is to get out ASAP.

2) “divine sacrifice” putricide hm

Dear sweet God, if you have it as a holy or ret pally, bubble and hit Divine Sacrifice in P3. Right about when the third stack of Mutated Plague starts hitting the tanks is a REAL good time for the whole raid to take 20% less damage, assuming you have Divine Guardian, or a good time for your group to take 30% less damage. (Do not hit Divine Shield and Divine Sacrifice if you are a protection paladin who has stacks of Mutated Plague, because you will heal Putricide.)

3) 2 beacons on 1 tank

Yep, no problems here. They do stack. Bear in mind that there is lag between the casted heal on a person and the person with beacon, so watch your tank anyways.

4) anti magic zone viable for sindragosa hardmode?

This is a great question. I don’t actually know. I will state, with confidence, that nothing but LOS is wiping off stacks of Mystic Buffet. But AMZ may be useful for P3 on heroic Sindragosa, perhaps allowing people to drop Instability stacks in the raid for a short time.

5) can fury of frostmourne be bubbled through?

Excellent question. I’ll try that this reset. I think one of our shammies Reincarnated on Monday’s LK kill after FoF, so…

6) do you have to interupt npc in frost tomb lich king

I love that I’m answering this without actually ever getting sucked into Frostmourne.

– If you’re a DPS, you need to kill the bad NPC and that includes interrupting his cast.
– If you’re a healer, you need to heal the good NPC and that includes dispelling the magic effect on him.
– If you’re a healer who cannot dispel magic, you must heal your good NPC and then interrupt the bad NPC’s cast. Shammies would, in this case, use Wind Shear. Druids will need to bear form and bash.

So unless you’re a priest or a paladin, you need to interrupt the bad NPC’s cast. If you’re a priest or a paladin, you just need to dispel magic or cleanse the debuff on your good NPC.

7) haste pally 3.3.3 holy

If you’re someone stacking spellpower and mostly casting Flash of Light, get to 676 haste and then stop worrying about it, given Wrath of Air Totem, Improved Moonkin Aura/Swift Retribution Aura and Judgements of the Pure.

If you’re a holy paladin who stacks intellect and mostly casts Holy Light, don’t stop stacking haste! Ever! :) Stat priority goes:

Intellect > Haste > MP5 > Crit > Spellpower

8) nagrand level range

I believe 64 is when you can start picking up quests in Nagrand and you can easily spend four levels there if you do ALL of the quests, including some group quests like Durn the Hungerer, the forge camps, etc. And Corki. But I prefer leaving him to die. I hate that bastard.

9) prot pally why not divinity

This is an interesting question. After all, Divinity improves the healing you take by up to 5%, right?

The issue here is one of what is a better allocation of those five talents.

A semi-typical spec for a raiding prot paladin would look something like this:


With a spec that’s 0/53/18, could you take five points out of ret and sneak them into Divinity? Sure. But you’d be losing out on more damage done out of something like Crusade and Seal of Command or utility out of Pursuit of Justice. It’s not really worth it when you have Improved Devotion Aura which you should usually have on if only for the armor bonus, which also adds 6% extra healing. If you are suffering so much that you feel you really need the 5% extra healing from Divinity, your healers are slacking.

As a tank, you have two main jobs.

a) Hold threat. You hold threat by doing damage and using high-threat abilities.
b) Stay alive. You stay alive by virtue of the gear you’re wearing and various cooldowns like Divine Protection, Ardent Defender and other forms of avoidance (dodge/parry) and mitigation (block).

Your first responsibility is to pull everything on to you and hold them there. Your survivability, while most certainly something that should concern you, is not your most pressing concern. If you’re specced and geared properly for the content you’re attempting, your healer(s) should be able to keep you up. Blow cooldowns if you have to, but you should not need the extra 5% healing. Consider those to be points incenting holy paladins to start dropping points in Protection.

10) toc toc different lockouts?

Yep. There are FOUR lockouts for Trial of the Crusader.

a) Trial of the Crusader, 10 man (regular)
b) Trial of the Grand Crusader, 10 man (heroic)
c) Trial of the Crusader, 25 man (regular)
d) Trial of the Grand Crusader, 25 man (heroic)

Thankfully, Blizzard recognized that that is WAY too much time spent on the same bosses in what is the same blasted instance and changed hard modes for ICC back to being something you can trigger or select within the same instance of the raid.

Kurn's Etiquette for Forming a PUG Raid

I had what was pretty much the oddest experience I’ve ever had when it comes to being invited to pug a raid the other day. This is what has caused me to write this post.

[Complete Stranger]: u do icc 10 this week

Uh. Is that supposed to be a question or a statement? I thought about ignoring him. I thought about taking his head off about randomly whispering someone he doesn’t know that he sees has a high gearscore and a Kingslayer title.

And I decided to be nice.

Me: No interest in doing it. GL to you.

I figured that ought to be enough and continued the two other conversations I was having. Fifteen seconds later:

[Complete Stranger]: what if i pay u very high amount of gold

I sighed and quickly responded.

Me: I said I have no interest in doing so, thank you.

Ten seconds later…

[Complete Stranger]: ur cranky how rude

Okay, NOW you’re starting to get on my nerves, you illiterate, impolite child. You want to get in it with me? FINE.

Me: I said no thank you instead of telling you to take a hike. I think I was quite polite, actually. You’re the rude one, persisting in your request and just randomly asking me if I’ve done an instance. I don’t even know you.

There, that ought to take care of him, I thought. Alas, foolish me.

[Complete Stranger]: Why no interest. dont u need gear

/FACEPALM. Need gear? From regular 10-man? Are you KIDDING ME? I haven’t “needed” gear from regular 10-man ICC since, well, ever. It’s one of the positives of raiding 25-man. Determined to shut the kid up, I responded thusly:

Me: Apart from the fact that I strongly dislike 10-man raid configuration, I do not need gear. [Heroic: The Plagueworks (25 player)] [Heroic: The Crimson Hall (25 player)] [Fall of the Lich King (25 player)]

I was pretty sure I wouldn’t hear from him again, having been properly chastised, so I returned to my other conversations. About 30 seconds later…

[Complete Stranger]: ur not nice

/SIGH. Okay, kid. One last try at being polite before I rip you to pieces.

Me: Beg to differ, but you’re entitled to your opinion. Good luck to you.

[Complete Stranger]: Not very nice sir

I got snippy.

Me: Ma’am, actually.

Immediately thereafter:

[Complete Stranger]: Im sorry now i feel bad!!!!!

This is where my head exploded.

It’s OKAY to harass a GUY to do an instance he has no desire to do, but as soon as I say I’m a woman, NOW he feels bad? NOW he apologizes for being annoying?


Okay. Deep breath, Kurn. This all happened last Friday. It’s days ago.

All right, I’m better.

This little episode has illustrated the complete lack of manners people have in this game. Of course, in a game where Trade chat regularly degenerates into ethnic slurs and questioning of people’s sexual orientations, perhaps expecting any kind of manners from the population is a stretch.

But I remember a time in this same game where people weren’t quite this rude. I suspect a lot of it stems from the sense of entitlement Blizzard has bestowed upon the players these days, but I digress.

You’re trying to form a pug raid? Fine. Here’s how to do it.

1) Grab your in-game friends. Make sure you all know how to play your selected roles.

2) Make sure you have at least some of the tanks or healers required before you go seeking them out. There’s nothing worse than seeing “LF5M, 2 tanks, 3 healers!” in Trade. You know what that says to tanks and healers out there? That no one in your little group of friends cares enough about shouldering some of the responsibility in a raid to run on a tank or a healer.

3) Once your raid group has formed and you’re trying to add new people to it, type this in:


Skip down to Browse and select the instance and size you want to do. Examine the people in the queue for that particular raid.

Whisper them, one at a time, until you’ve filled your raid with what you need or have gone through the entire list. And by “whisper them” I don’t mean “icc 10” and a ninja-invite.

I mean something like this:

“Hi, would you be interested in tanking/healing/DPSing in [name of instance here]?”

To say “heal icc 10?” is just lazy and not something that’s going to get me to want to heal your sorry butt. You’re dealing with OTHER PEOPLE here. You should really do your best to impress them with your grasp of the language your server speaks.

4) Once you’ve gone through all the people in the queue, go back to set your own group in the queue. Select which instance and size you want to do on the first screen of the raid finder interface. Put a note in the comment section advertising what you’re seeking. For example:

“Need 1 tank, 2 DPS and 1 healer!”

Set your comment. Enter the queue.

5) Ask around in Trade or LookingForGroup — don’t spam. The last thing anyone in Trade wants to see is you spamming the same line of text 10 times.

“LF3M ICC10, need 1 tank, 2 DPS, PST!”

That suffices. Once every couple of minutes at most. You want to be short and direct in your advertisement for your raid.

6) Ask your current raid members if they have any friends who want to come.

7) Check your friends list or guild to see if anyone’s logged on since you last checked.

8) Continue the above tactics (also checking the raid queue frequently) to pull in more people until your raid is full or you decide to cancel your run.

Note that at NO TIME is it considered “okay” to see someone randomly run by you in a major city and act like you are entitled to their time and services.

If you are absolutely desperate for just one more person, it might be considered all right to gently inquire as to the potential availability of a random stranger.

How do you gently inquire? Like so:

“Hi there, I’m sorry to bother you, but I’m putting together a raid for [instance, size] and I was wondering if you’d like to join us as a [tank/healer/DPS]. If not, no problem, I just thought I’d ask.”

If they say “sure” or another few words agreeing to the run, please be sure to thank them and then toss the invite.

If they say “no” or anything else stating that they’re not interested, here’s how to respond:

“All right, thanks anyways and have a good day!”

If they do NOT respond, do NOT keep whispering them.

Every person that you antagonize or annoy or piss off is someone that will potentially never run with you, ever. They may put you on ignore. They may remember your name from that day you annoyed the crap out of them. It’s a social game, people. You have to play well with others to do anything in terms of raid content and to succeed at high-levels of PVP. Everywhere you look, there are PEOPLE and, sadly, we can’t ignore them all. (WTB larger ignore list, PST!!!)

TL;DR Version:

– Don’t piss people off
– Don’t randomly demand time or services from someone you don’t know
– Don’t act upset if any random people don’t want to join your run — they owe you nothing

This public service announcement has been brought to you in part by the Kingslayer title, which Kurn has now hidden on her paladin, opting to display Hand of A’dal instead.

Why Ranks Matter

The bottom line is, ladies and gentlemen, that ranks matter. No, not guild member ranks or PVP title ranks or arena rankings. Not guild progression rankings, not server progression rankings or anything like that.

I’m talking about spell ranks, ability ranks and talent ranks.

While levelling, I can understand that you don’t train every ability to its top level every opportunity you get. I will probably still think you’re a moron for not training, but I can at least understand that stuff happens and you ding unexpectedly or you forget to train.

As soon as you hit 80, though, I expect you to train all of your spells available in your spec. Both your specs, if you have dual spec.


I’ll try not to rely on my primary argument, which is “BECAUSE IF YOU DON’T, YOU’RE AN IDIOT!” as that is not remotely helpful. It is, however, the ultimate message I would like to impart on people, so if you don’t want to read another 1500 words explaining why you’re an idiot if you don’t, you can stop here. ;)

As soon as you hit 80, you can’t instantly queue for heroics using your crappy greens or outdated blues. I would imagine that most fresh 80s these days, at least those who are alts, buy a couple BOE ilvl 200s or get some crafted gear or, if they’re lucky, have a main who is rich that buys them pretty BOE things from raid instances. Once they’ve done that and manage to trick the system into thinking they’re deserving, they queue up for their random heroics to get badges to try to start collecting tier 9 ilvl 232 gear. (This is why I miss revered rep as the requirement for heroic keys. Oh, Burning Crusade, when a human’s Diplomacy was the most OP racial ever.)

It’s not that it’s a horrible thing to go to heroics quickly, particularly if you know what you’re doing. The thing that you need to be aware of, though, is if you’re a drag on your group.

What do I mean by that?

I mean if you pull 1k DPS at 80, you’re a drag on your group. You obviously haven’t done any research on your class and don’t know your DPS rotation or priority system.

If you’re a tank who can’t hold aggro against people in T9, which is a lot of the people running heroics these days, you’re being a drag on your group. I’m not saying to expect to hold aggro against people in 277 ICC gear, but you know, don’t be that moron whose AOE threat moves doesn’t do anything.

If you’re a healer and you can’t keep the tank AND the DPS AND yourself up through regular damage (not like DPS standing in the fire), you’re a drag on the group.

Part of not being that tool that everyone hates because they are dragging you through the instance, is doing your job, whatever that job is.

That means training all ranks of all your spells. No, really. It does. Doesn’t matter if you’re a prot or ret paladin — if your healer asks you for wisdom, you need to have the max rank available for them, even if it’s not improved.

If you’re a hunter and you’re using Aimed Shot Rank 6 instead of Rank 9, you’re not doing your job because that is a crapton less damage, depending on how often you use Aimed Shot.

Even if you’re not a team player (why are you even playing this game if you have no interest in being a team player?), there are reasons to make sure your spells are up to date. The most compelling for the non-team player is this:

Your damage/healing output suffers when you’re not fully trained. If you’re not a team player, chances are you care about your damage or your healing. If you use mana, did you know that lower spell ranks cost the same as the highest rank? That means that you’re doing less damage or healing for the same cost the regular rank would cost. Wouldn’t you rather spend your 500 mana doing 1000 damage or healing rather than 500 mana on 250 damage or healing? I know that I sure would. You’re basically throwing away mana on something much less useful than it could be. So quit it. Train your spell/ability/talent ranks!

If the idea of letting down the team (group) because you’re not fully trained doesn’t actually bother you, or if you’re not too fussed over your DPS or HPS, then the above arguments just don’t make sense. Fine. I get that. What I don’t get is you inflicting your dumbass self on people who actually care to play their characters properly. Are you really that much of a douchebag?

There are three types of people in the random heroics these days.

a) People who are just there for their two Emblems of Frost, period. These people are generally very well geared and are probably raiding ICC content.

b) People who are farming Emblems of Triumph. These people are generally decently geared but still need a few Emblems in order to get their 4-piece bonus or something along those lines.

c) People who just hit 80 and are starting the grind towards 232 T9. These people are generally horribly geared and don’t know the instances because they didn’t bother running them on regular the first time around. (Halls of Lightning, Halls of Stone, Utgarde Pinnacle, Oculus, Trial of the Champion, Forge of Souls, Pit of Saron, Halls of Reflection, just to name a few.)

All of the people above are interested in completing an instance quickly and efficiently (although quickly and efficiently differ based on whether you just want your Emblems of Frost or you’re farming Triumph). No one wants to wipe. No one wants some moron to screw things up and cause a wipe. No one wants to be stuck with these people for any longer than they have to be. The overriding mindset is get in, kill the minimum amount of bosses for the run to work for you, get out.

So imagine if you’re not running the instance with one tank, one healer and three DPS. Imagine instead that you’re running with half a tank or half a healer or the equivalent of 1.5 DPS.

By not training your ranks, you are doing everyone in the group a huge disservice. Does it matter if there’s someone there who can pick up your slack? No, because even if there is, there’s not guarantee that there will always be.

I’ve been thrown into a group where myself (the healer) and the tank were the only ones who should have been in a heroic. The three DPS (and I use that term loosely) were all clearly new to 80, didn’t know their abilities, their capabilities and were still wearing things like heirloom shoulders and chests and weapons.

There is a difference between doing a boss fight as it was intended (most likely in in ilvl 187/200 gear) and doing a boss fight with two well-geared players and three people who didn’t even care enough to finish training before queuing up for heroics. What do I mean by that? I mean that I don’t care if you’re appropriately geared for a heroic (with 187/200 gear) so long as you are doing your best. If I have a hunter in my group with a 3000 gearscore, or whatever is considered laughably low-end at this point, I don’t care as long as they know how to damage the mobs and knows how to control their pet and would actually know where their Freezing Trap and Wyvern Sting buttons are for emergency CC. I don’t care if their Explosive Shot hits for next to nothing as long as they’re trying to do their best.

Part of doing your best is training.

Of course, sometimes, training is not enough.

I run RankWatch on most of my toons. It was a very popular addon a few months ago when it was discovered that your abilities on your action bars did not update in your inactive spec when you trained. I discovered this by doing Instructor Razuvious the very first week of weekly raids on my restoration shaman, who I had levelled as enhancement. I’d been healing on her for 3 months or so, random dungeons, VOAs, the odd Sarth or Onyxia…

I got a whisper from someone running RankWatch, telling me that, among other lesser-used spells, my Chain Heal was three ranks out of date.

Chain Heal 4. Chain Heal 7. For 835 mana each time I cast it, CH4 was healing people for 600-700 (plus spellpower and bonuses) instead of 1055-1205.

For three months.

I felt like an idiot and whispered the person back, thanking them. I took some time to verify my ranks (on all my toons) and then got the addon and started running it myself.

While RankWatch was welcomed in the early days of random dungeons (perhaps because the people running dungeons actually had standards then?) it’s as if I’ve just insulted someone’s mother if RankWatch goes off now.

Part of it might be my settings. I have it set to go off in /say so that if it’s a healer, for example, who triggers it, the tank might realize “hey, the healer needs a second to get their ranks in order”. (This is rarely the case, but I maintain it’s faster and more efficient in a group than the whisper-spam which people, in my experience, take less well than a simple /say announce.)

“Turn that shit off,” people will say, “it’s annoying.”

I generally reply with something along the lines of “What’s really annoying is that you’re using Rank 1 Devastate at level 80.”

“lol,” is the typical response I receive.

Good to know my tank is taking his or her job as seriously as I take mine.

The good news is that I’m seeing less and less dual-spec related mistaken ranks. The bad news is that I’m seeing more and more people who just haven’t bothered to train.

Blizzard is forcing us together because there’s currently no form of cap on the amount of Emblems of Frost we can earn a week, something I’m relieved to know they’re changing in Cataclysm. As long as game mechanics strongly encourage me to group with people I don’t know or care about once a day, I’m going to insist on certain things: a tank in a tank spec with tank gear; a healer in a healing spec with healing gear; DPS in a DPS spec with DPS gear. I’m also going to be that annoying person throwing out RankWatch warnings if you’re using out of date ranks of abilities and if you’re NOT trained and REFUSE to train, I’m going to try to vote kick you and will leave the group if I can’t kick you yet. Even if you’ve already pulled and I’m the healer.

What brought this on? I was running RankWatch silently in an Alterac Valley in the 61-70 bracket this weekend on my level 66 priest. I had to unload the mod because of all the spam I was receiving, notifying me that others had failed to train or failed to use their max-rank abilities. And the Alliance was just confused as to why we were losing. I resisted the urge to call people out for not training, but of course you’re not going to do as much damage as a 64 shaman who is trained, even if you’re 68 if YOU haven’t trained.

Thankfully, I don’t see it all too often in dungeons, but I still see it enough to think it’s important to explain some of the my justified hatred towards people who deliberately don’t use max ranks.

In lieu of two posts I want to make…

… I joined Twitter.

Which is kind of silly, ’cause I have a “RL” twitter account I don’t really use and another one that I used for quite some time and then a more professional one… and now a WoW one.

I can only imagine my “RL” twitter followers will be relieved to see a distinct lack of WoW tweets from now on, though. ;)

So I’m @kurnmogh over on twitter. Already have connected with someone who had actually apped to Apotheosis back in the day when we were searching desperately for an ele shammy. Kind of a crazy-small world we all live in!

The two posts I want to make will be coming up this week:

1) Spells, downranking and RankWatch.

2) Courtesy and etiquette regarding asking someone to pug a raid with you. (ie: How NOT to piss Kurn the hell off when randomly approaching her in Dalaran, which people apparently don’t know how to do so I’ve turned off my Kingslayer title, you cretins!)

Many thanks to Rilgon, a fellow hunter who feels strongly about his WoW.com representative in a similar way that I do, for talking a bit about Twitter in our recent mails and thereby (perhaps unknowingly) encouraging me to branch out into that brand of social media.