Day 12 – A Day in the Life

This post is part of Saga’s 20 Days of WoW Blogging Challenge!

I’m not sure if this meant what I do in terms of blogging or what I do in terms of the game. Blogging takes a back seat to all the junk I do with regards to the guild and the game, so I thought I’d share with you guys a day in the life of me-as-a-GM, at least on raid days.

What I do on a day-to-day basis depends on a lot of things, primarily whether or not it’s a raid day. Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday are our raid nights, so a lot more preparation/paperwork goes into those days.

Raid Days

If it’s a Tuesday/Thursday/Sunday, the first thing I really do when I sit down at the computer is to go to the armory and check the calendar invites to see what I have to work with. I tend to lock the raid signups 24 hours ahead of time. If you’ve accepted the invite, you’re expected to be there. If you’ve declined, you’re not expected there. If you’re “tentative”, I put you on “Standby” and if you don’t answer one way or the other, I get cranky and either hit you up via PM on the forums (or hit you up on twitter) and hope for a response or set you as “Out”.

We generally have an idea as to what we’re looking at that night, so I start compiling the available list of people and then start with making sure we have all the appropriate raid buffs available via MMO-Champion’s Raid Composition Tool.

When looking at the various encounters, I take a lot of things into consideration when it comes to putting someone into the raid if we already have all the buffs we need. This is usually in the order I think things, but for progression, I usually skip down to #4.

1) Do they need anything off the boss?

2) What’s their EPGP priority? (Would they get anything off the boss if the boss got downed?)

3) Is the fight on farm or is it progression?

4) If it’s a progression fight, can they do the appropriate amount of healing/damage that will be required of them? This involves going back through our World of Logs parses and seeing past performance if I’m not sure. If, after looking through those, I still don’t know if they can do the appropriate amount of healing/damage, I’ll generally give them a shot, even on a progression fight, and I really like making sure people have an idea of how the fight goes. I think exposure on a fight is very important, so I like to start with a basic roster that should be able to get things done and then will swap people out as needed (usually at our half-time break, but earlier if need be).

5) Has this person been sat recently? I don’t keep a spreadsheet (although I probably should) but I’m generally the person in charge of swaps and my role leads will yell at me if I screw up/etc or will let me know if they have preferences, for the most part.

So I do that for almost every fight we have planned for the night. Usually, I’ll split the raid into 9-10:30 and 10:30-12 sets and endeavour to minimize swaps unless they’re at break.

I also spend extra time making sure we have positioning organized for certain fights (group positions on Al’Akir can take half an hour on its own!) and organizing platforms for Nefarian is something I now have down to a science so I can do this on the fly, but I also spend time ensuring we have the appropriate interrupts for Nef in the raid for the half of the raid in which we’ll kill Nef. It used to take a lot longer, but I’m much more comfortable with it nowadays.

Of course, almost every single night, there’s something different that happens to screw up all of this preparation. Really, the smart thing to do would be to do it all on the fly. However, I loathe doing things on the fly. As such, I usually try to set everything up in case everything goes as it should, but that almost never happens. People are late, laggy, DCing, unable to perform, etc, etc. All of that goes into changing the roster in the middle of everything and I hate hate hate that.

I generally do the rosters/positioning in the late afternoon/early evening and communicate this to the officers on the officer section of our guild forums.

Once rosters are done, my major job for raid nights is done. Note that I haven’t actually logged into the game at all at this point.

By 8:30pm on a raid night, I log on to Mumble (so that my overlay works in-game) and join the Officer channel there. We generally spend a few minutes discussing where we’re going or any other little thing that needs discussion (EP bonuses, promotions, etc) then I log into the game on Kurn, who is the guild master toon, and I turn on bank repairs for the officers, the Raiders and the Initiates. Officers/Raiders get 100g in repairs a night and Initiates get 50g. I usually also say “Invites in about 15! Main up, repair and head to (our first destination).”

Then I get on Madrana, make sure I’m repaired myself (using my own funds) and grab 6 of each flask plus a stack of Spirit flasks and make sure I have 20 Seafood Magnifique feasts on me and make any that I’m lacking. Then I head out to where we’re going first (or where I’m zoning in first — like, I’ll sit out BH as I did last night, so I headed to BWD) while inviting the officers to the raid group and such. At this point, I’ll load up the WoL client and make sure I renamed my previous combat log so that I can start live logs as soon as I zone in.

8:45 is when invites go out and I spend time organizing the groups as per my rosters for the night (plus any changes due to various issues) and then give groups 1-5 the all-clear to zone in just before 9 and hopefully, I don’t forget to tab back out and start the logs.

The three hours we spend raiding are possibly the least hectic in a given day. ;) We take a 7 minute break around 10:30 and this is generally when I do swaps.

The raid ends at midnight, or shortly beforehand, and I’ll go back to the officer channel on Mumble and then get on Kurn to close repairs about 10 minutes after the raid ends. (I do try to close it before midnight so people don’t double-dip on repairs, but only if we finish around 11:50 or earlier.)

Then I post a thread on our forums with our WoL link with a couple of initial comments and chat a bit with the officers about issues we saw or what-have-you and then generally log off of the game and Mumble.

If we killed something for the first time, I edit the screenshot to add our guild name, the date, the boss killed and the people in for the kill and post that to the Apotheosis website. I’ll also update our progress in the sidebar and then double-check my own armory before submitting updates to Wowprogress and GuildOx. I’ll also edit a few forum posts (realm forum, Elitist Jerks, Wowhead forums) to reflect the new progress.

Once all of that is done, I generally kick back and watch some TV that aired while I was raiding or I’ll go through the logs if something’s bugging me and I generally try to get to bed between 3-4am. (I’m not working at the moment, so this is a nice luxury to have!)

God, we’re at 1200+ words already… Sorry? :)

Non-raid Days

Days where I don’t raid are either very intensive days of guild work or days where I don’t do anything and go out and have a semblance of a real life. ;)

Today, for example, I don’t raid, but I’m going out in the afternoon for a couple of hours. So here’s what I’ve done today/plan to do today.

– Made a copy of a spreadsheet and made it public for the guild to view where they are on our mandatory flask “donations” which enable us to make Big Cauldrons of Battle.

– Asked in the officer forum what the officers feel we should do on Thursday and Sunday.

– Responded to a PM from one of my former guildmates from Choice of Skywall about holy paladin stuff.

– Wrote this blog post. (I’ll often blog in the afternoons or after a raid.)

– After this, I plan to go through some of Choice’s logs to see if I can see anything going horribly awry as they work to get Nefarian down and will write Fugara (the GM) some notes if I see anything.

– I need to write to my moonkin. Last I heard, his computer threw up on him but I should check up on him and make sure he’s doing okay/he has an idea of when he can raid.

– Do a healer evaluation of the disc priest whose trial with us is nearly done, send it to him and see if anything I discover in the logs affects my final decision in whether or not he makes it to Raider.

– After eating, showering, drying my hair and dressing for the crappy, rainy weather we’re having today, I’m heading out to an appointment around 3 and should be home again by 6.

– I’ll probably have a few things to respond to — maybe my moonkin will write back, maybe my former guildie will have more questions, maybe the disc priest will write back, the officers will likely have chimed in about our plans for tomorrow. And maybe I’ll have comments here I’ll need to reply to. So I’ll respond to those people and then update the guild on where we plan to go tomorrow/Sunday.

– Then I might actually log in to the game!! haha! At this point, I’ll go through my bank and pull out mats for my weekly donations of flasks and our EP drive (this week, it’s 5 Heavenly Shards or 8 Greater Celestial Essences — I think I have the shards) and mail those to our bank toon, managed by my brother.

– If I do get to login, I’ll either farm on the shaman or level the baby paladin.

– Since Canada is in the midst of an election campaign and since I raided last night and missed the English-language debate, I’ll probably try to tune in to the French-language debate tonight. (Canadians, vote on May 2! for information on how and where and when to vote!)

– At some point tonight, I’ll go through our logs from last night and pluck anything interesting from a couple of longer attempts on H. Maloriak and see if I can see any trends or patterns and see if I need to yell at my healers for not respecting healing assignments, after I asked them politely to do so last night before the raid.

– I’ll end the evening with some TV.

Mondays/Podcast Days

So I do a weekly (well, mostly weekly!) podcast called Blessing of Frost with Majik and we tend to record on Mondays, either in the afternoon or the evening. This isn’t a raid night for me, so I do non-raid day stuff and then make sure I’ve edited our shared Google doc to put in all the stuff I want to talk about and then I harrass Majik to make sure he does/did the same. Then we sit down with our guest (if we have one) and record the podcast. This takes about two hours and then I put it all together and publish it either late Monday night/early Tuesday morning before I go to bed, or I publish it after getting some sleep. Hot tip: if it’s published before 10am, I didn’t sleep. If it’s after 10am, I did sleep. ;)

Every Day

Every day, I spend time responding to people, either via Twitter, email, PMs on the forums or through the blog. I read a lot of stuff to do with whatever fight we’re working on and sometimes look ahead to the next encounter(s). I’ll poke around other people’s logs and see what they’re doing and scrounge through YouTube looking for videos, too.

All righty. That’s about it, really. It sounds like a lot, but most of what I do is so very ingrained that I don’t have to think about it consciously. Like replying to people, checking up on people, that stuff is automatic. It’s the planning that’s a killer, especially if the plans don’t work out as intended!

Yesterday: Bad Habits and Flaws
Tomorrow: People (players/bloggers) that you admire

5 Replies to “Day 12 – A Day in the Life”

  1. Now that you’ve described your job, how do you spend your times having fun on your games?

  2. I love that you loathe doing things on the fly. Best part, seriously. Your planning and effort shows, it is highly appreciated!

  3. UFTimmy – What’s fun for me is a smooth raid night. Not necessarily easy, but smooth. Also, progression. ;) So a lot of my time is spent trying to get that outcome and that’s worth it for me.

    In-game, though, I have fun raiding, I have fun playing my hunter and such.

    Throughout the day, I also play FreeCell, Miniclip’s 8-Ball Pool and other things like that while I try to let things settle in my head. :)

    Sara – Thank you! I’m glad the raiders can see the results of the planning and benefit from it. :) Now if we can just have one night where everyone’s latency is low, no one DCs and everyone’s on time!! :)

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