About as Relevant as Carson Daly…

… But still fun nonetheless. Finally, a tauren-sized mount!

This Camel is Not Feeling My Vibes

Trying to finish up some Glory of the Cataclysm Hero achievements, I couldn’t help but notice that my druid looked like an absolute idiot on a camel.

Change of a Dress

Although I really liked wearing the Stormrage recolor and will probably switch back to it at some point in MoP if only out of respect to how long all the pieces took to drop and my resulting frustration, last night I felt a bit bored with it and opted for the tier 6 recolor (purchasable for 4500 honor from Kezzik in Netherstorm). Luckily, I had some honor and JP to convert stockpiled, so Sunflowers was a new woman in a matter of minutes.

Of course, I also hit up the barbershop and after a lot of debate, decided to go with the black-and-white cow-print skin. I’m surprisingly really happy with it, but I should be after half an hour of indecision. You know me.

My only gripe is I’m not entirely sure the gloves are a seamless match, even though they’re part of the set. They’re the same color as the side panels of the legguards, but I think some brown and a royal shade of blue (like the center of the legguards) would have tied it together better. Here’s a profile view of how it “matches”:

(Okay, it actually looks like it matches there, but in-game is a different story. Also, fact: tauren females have the best silhouette.)

Top 10 First-World (of Warcraft) Problems

It’s tough sometimes, isn’t it?

Sitting at home on your computer, sipping a soda, playing a game. We’ve all been there, right? Unsure of how to correctly perform during an encounter, but feeling too lazy to read our dungeon encounter journal? Forgetting we redid our keybinds and totally messing up our rotations? Listing an item in the Auction House only to be undercut mere minutes later? Sometimes it feels like no one understands just how tough it is. Well, I do, and I’m here for you. Let’s commiserate together, shall we?

10. Your backpack is full of valuable loot and you’ve been forced to exchange it for in-game currency before you can continue to pick up valuable loot.

9. You just saw someone else’s character that’s the same race as yours and realized you like the face they picked better.

8. You said some of your most hilarious material in guild chat seconds before a raid group got achievements and now you don’t think anyone got a chance to see how funny you are.

7. Someone in your random dungeon group asked for DPS meters, but you don’t want to post your Recount because you’re not at the top.

6. You tried to fake a disconnect during the raid so you could go play your level 5 gnome warlock, but you forgot that the raid leader is your RealID friend.

5. You won Ashes of Al’ar. On your first run. On your alt.

4. You hope no one realized that you popped all your cooldowns when the tank engaged the boss, but you forgot that he gives a speech before you can actually attack him.

3. You hate everyone who talks in trade chat but you don’t want to leave the channel.

2. You’re so bored because there’s just absolutely nothing to do in this game.

1. You’re lagging.


Curing Altoholism

I used to be an altoholic.

I had all the early warning signs in childhood — I got sick of my toys easily, followed my parents around the house screaming, “I’M BORED!”, and would come home from my first ballet class claiming that actually, my calling was soccer (and then volleyball and then crew and then cheerleading and then why hadn’t they let me stick with ballet? I could have been selling out The Nutcracker by now.). The usual.

So it was no surprise that when I started playing WoW, I had the same wavering commitment towards my characters. In Vanilla, having two level-capped characters was almost unheard of due to the relatively daunting time it took to even get one to level 60, so most of my alts stayed in the 20-40 range for the majority of the game. I liked trying out different classes, so much so that often times it was difficult to figure out who my “main” was — the one who was the highest level? The one I spent the most time playing? The one I enjoyed the most? I switched both mains and mainly-played-alts every expansion, unsure of what class I even had the most fun playing.

And then I rolled a druid and it became clear that no other class would ever compare.

On other characters, I miss being able to do stealth runs. I miss hopping out of the water in the middle of nowhere, popping into flight form, and bouncing away. I miss sprinting to where I’m supposed to be when something trivial distracts me. I miss knowing that if I want to, I can tank, heal, melee DPS or ranged DPS with just a respec (and an obnoxious gear grind, but still). I miss the mechanics of the class because they all click with me (on my warlock, I’m just like, “I don’t even” whenever a boss is pulled and I have to figure out which ability to press first; on my mage, I Arcane Blast with one hand and flip through a magazine with the other; on my holy paladin I wonder if I should use that cooldown now or wait or heal through it or… oh look, the boss is dead, didn’t use my cooldowns at all, fantastic). I’m fairly confident that for as long as I play, I’ll be playing my druid and mostly nothing else.

… Those monks look kind of interesting though, don’t they?

Healing Mushrooms: Why, Earthmother, Why?

One thing that’s always made me want to die a little about resto druids is our lack of damage mitigation and burst reactive healing. While I think being a preventative healer is interesting, I love playing resto, and I think glyphed Swiftmend is a great spell, topping a player off in a pinch can often be a very anxiety ridden activity.

Every expansion, I cross my fingers and hope for a big, fast heal with a medium cooldown (25 seconds or so) that reduces damage on the target by x amount for x seconds, or sticks a new HoT on the target for x seconds for x amount of the healed amount. I became convinced that in MoP, my prayers would be heard. Maybe we wouldn’t get the big, fast heal. Maybe Gift of the Earthmother would become an actual gift — when activated, the target would take 40% less damage for 5 seconds. That would actually be worth writing a thank-you note for.

I know. I’m dreaming. But druids need something, so when I first started reading about Healing Mushrooms, I was 50% excited and 50% skeptical. Now I’m about 90% skeptical.

If you’ve played a moonkin, you know the feeling of elation of entering solar eclipse and tossing your mushrooms down pre-pull and get ready to see a screen of satisfying numbers. You also know the feeling of dread when you realize your dopey tank is, for no apparent reason, dragging the mobs just out of their radius. That’s fine. You’ll just set up once mo– IS HE MOVING AGAIN?

When you consider this and the priest Lightwell ability — the spell that launched a thousand macros begging group members to please click it in order to not die — healing mushrooms quickly begin to look like a loveless marriage of the two most annoying variables in the game: positioning/movement and relying on other people to make good choices.

Sure — for forced stacked fights or fights that have absolute positioning requirements, I foresee healing mushrooms being pretty powerful — so powerful, in fact, that there’s little doubt in my mind that they’ll see at least one nerf after they go live. But with an unforgiving 8 yard radius and a “some assembly required” set-up, a situational ability with a high chance of error looks like a headache instead of an answer to our problems.

But who knows? I’ve been wrong before.

Farming in Deepholm, or Why My Characters Are Always Broke

Sometimes I wish that “the Lazy” was an actual achievement title. It would be a multi-parter — you’d have to win 100 battlegrounds without contributing anything substantial (no bases defended or assaulted, no flag returns, certainly no killing blows), defeat the end boss of a raid while either being disconnected or dead for more than 80% of the fight, ensure that the majority of your /played was amassed in your capital city, and of course have two maxed professions but make no effort towards using these professions for at least a full calendar year.

My druid’s professions of choice are herbalism and inscription. Herbalism as a tauren druid literally couldn’t be any easier, and yet this is how all of my “farming sessions” go:

Stage One: The stage in which I decide I probably won’t be able to afford gemming and enchanting any possible upgrades this week unless I, you know, find a way to make gold.

Stage Two: The stage in which I decide to farm whichever herbs are ripping players off by the largest margin at the moment.

Stage Three: The stage in which I whisper everyone I know online some variation of, “Ughhhhh, I have to go farm herbs.” and then wait for their sympathetic responses.

Note that we’re already at stage three and I haven’t even done anything yet.

Stage Four: The stage in which I port to the necessary zone and make my first circuit.

Stage Five: The stage in which I can’t collect my herb faster than I facepull the mob next to it, so I opt to fly away.

Stage Six (optional): The stage in which I spend more time screenshotting myself with attractive backdrops than I do actually farming anything.

Stage Seven: The stage in which I decide two stacks is enough and promptly hearth.


Fashion Woes: My Guild Tabard Doesn’t Match My Transmog

As you can see by his unwavering commitment to a staring contest with the bar shelving unit, not even the tipsy orc gentleman beside me cares to admire my shapely physique when it’s shrouded in this primary color aesthetic crime. I’m all for guild pride, but what exactly am I “representing” here? Blindness?

Hopefully I’ll be exalted soon.

Middle Class Problems Revisited & Mount Envy

When I was twelve or so, all of my budding hipster friends had fancy cruiser bicycles and I had a mountain bike. The mountain bike — despite the lack of mountain ranges within biking distance and my innate aversion to the outdoors — was what I’d wanted for my twelfth birthday. I couldn’t exactly ask for a new bike. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I did. But my agitated parents didn’t deliver. Personally, I don’t even know how they could stand me.

Anyway, it was traumatic, really, being the lone wolf on a clunky contraption while the rest of your friends went sailing around on their cruisers with a perfect stack of unread books in their front baskets. Of course, I eventually got over this hurdle and went on to be the perfectly semi-functioning adult that I am today.

And then came the Raven Lord, the mythical Burning Crusade mount of my dreams. I didn’t play much during the majority of TBC, nor did I have the wisdom to roll a druid back then, nor did I have any druids on speed dial to summon the boss for me, so it remained out of my reach. I stopped thinking about it and farmed rep for a fleet of Talbuks and Netherwing drakes instead.

However, my jealousy was reawakened one morning of routine unsold auction collecting at the mailbox. Someone had parked their Raven Lord mount in just the right spot so as to allow for its tail to slap me in the face every few moments. It was clear: I needed to be able to do this to people.

And so, like many other slaves of RNG, I began running Sethekk Halls daily. For the first few runs, right as I pulled Anzu, I’d get this feeling of hope in my heart. This is it, I’d think, I can feel the loot table. It’s going to drop. Was I psychic? Thirty runs later, I decided I was an idiot.

And then — somewhere around my fiftieth run (which is still a lot of time invested, but lucky compared to some) when I’d given up hope and more or less decided that I was over the Raven Lord — it dropped.

With flying mounts being far more relevant these days, it’s less of a status symbol and more of a testament to pixel devotion, but at least I never have to zone into Sethekk Halls again. Next on my wishlist: the elusive Sea Turtle.