Flask Half-Empty

ramblings about warcraft, other games, & randomness

Category Archives: community

Of Griefing, Oddities, and Pyllgarr’s Mighty Banhammer

With the changes to LFR that came with patch 5.0.4, I’m pretty sure most people were as excited as I was to finally be rid of the constant loot drama and whining that came with every random raid group! But as I started running through with my various alts, I started noticing more and more griefers that just made groups (particularly on Fall of Deathwing) completely miserable. Many others have noticed the same, even mentioning that there are entire groups of people streaming griefing sessions on TwitchTV and the like. Navimie’s fictional story this weekend, Diary of a WoW Griefer, reminded me of a recent horrible-yet-bizarre LFR experience. In general, I usually drop group if there’s more than one wipe, and I’m never much for getting angry over pixels. Especially with random strangers! But this one time was like none other…

Our fancily mogged and H DS-geared (lol?) tank just WOULDN’T STOP BOUNCING…

Everything looked fine when Cyrelle (my shadow priest) zoned into the second half of LFR. There weren’t any flames flooding the platform, nobody was dead, and Ultraxion went down like a breeze. As the corpse was looted, the fanciful tanks dropped group and were replaced with less fanciful tanks, but all seemed to be ready to go for the next encounter. And away everyone went to board the lootship!

Ysera knew better than to stay on the Failboat…

The fight began without too much trouble, but halfway through the trash the tanks started dropping like flies and with them any aggro went flying out the window! Half the raid was dead within a minute, and it was a wipe. An eager shaman popped up and mass ressurrected everyone, but suddenly the DBM timers were showing on-screen and Twilight Barrages began again! With nobody ready, it was another wipe and many of the group released and ran back in since the whole group had the mass res debuff. As we zoned into Ultraxion’s platform, some ported onto the ship quickly, and about half of the raid sat on the platform to eat/drink and buff before going in. Before we knew it, the DBM timers went off again. Half of the raid (including the main tank) stood on the round platform, watching the portal shrink. Before we knew it I was watching all the little bars on my raid frames drop like flies, and soon half of my Grid was speckled with dead indicators everywhere!

Dash, dash, dash!

The main tank was super frustrated, and took the lead of the raid by saying that nobody should port onto the ship until everyone was resurrected and that the griefers were kicked. Names were thrown out and kicks were initiated, and we thought we were good to go. But before everyone got on board and was buffed, someone started again and it was another wipe! This happened at least five other times afterwards, and in the meantime a good half of the raid ended up spending 30-40 minutes on the Ultrax platform just messing around and waiting to identify the culprit(s). People dropped in and out of raid, and only a handful boarded the boat. Everyone else hung back with our tank before the portal. Looking back, I don’t know why I bothered to stay that long to do nothing but wait since I had such a long queue. But I guess a bunch of us were waiting patiently while goofing off and doing silly things: my priest was life gripping random, unsuspecting people and we were all dashing around the platforms with her angelic feathers. A couple other people took out archaeology toys and trinkets! I guess when it comes to silly fun stuff, my patience can be tested…

The raid group finally filled up, and we all buffed and started porting into the ship. And guess what? Before the main tank ported in, someone started again! But at least this sometime, many people in the raid identified a jerkwad of a paladin who kept doing it. Even more annoyingly, he was purposefully wearing all heirloom gear and started taunting people in raid chat with “ooh report me, I’m soooo scared!”  He was quickly kicked, but to our amazement LFR had dropped him back in our group a minute later! How weird is that? But by that time, I was kind of done and had things to do IRL, so I finally left group. Probably should have done that an hour ago! Before I logged, I filed a ticket about the situation with some chat log time frames. Many people from the LFR group were planning to file tickets, but I figured another one wouldn’t hurt and that hopefully some response would come about from them.

And indeed, when I logged on the next day there was a reply!

Greetings Cyrelle!

Thank you for contacting the World of Warcraft Game Master Department regarding the inappropriate behavior of the player _____________.

*Swoosh*

I heard there were shenanigans afoot and I came skipping as fast as possible! With no time to waste, I made sure I knew exactly what you were reporting and immediately sprang into action! Here’s what I did to ensure your report was handled accurately and completely.

Kapow!  *Polishes the Mighty Bann Hammer of Justice*

That’s the sound of digital justice, my friend. I have many fearsome tools at my disposal, but what separates me from the rest is how I use them. I can read over logs quicker than you can spell supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, there’s no place that the violating actions can hide from my watchful eye. I scoured the logs for this person’s reported actions and swiftly set their pants aflame! =O

I have to keep my heroic abilities a secret though, so any specific details about how I handled this situation were burned along with those pants. Despite how awesome my powers are, I’m still held to lawful standards.

*Listens intently*

Harassment in progress? I must go, my people need me! Before I fly off again I wanted to tell you something – We do appreciate you taking the time to make this report. We want to make sure that your experience has as little disruptions as possible, so rest easy knowing that your report was fully investigated into and that all actions regarding the situation were reviewed.

If you still need to contact us, please feel free to do so! I want to make sure that everything has been resolved properly. I hope you continue to enjoy your Adventures in Azeroth and beyond!
<(^_^<)  ^(^_^)^  (>^_^)>  ^(^_^)^   *Pyllgarr Dances Away!*

Regards,

Pyllgarr
Specialist Game Master
Blizzard Entertainment

Too funny. This was quite a surprise in the little ticket answered box, as I haven’t been particularly impressed by my previous GM encounters — the last one I spoke with directly through in-game conversation was ridden with typos and spelling errors, and took 10 minutes between each of my simple questions regarding fixing my Sons of Hodir reputation issues, only to give me answers straight from WoWWiki. So this speedy and quirky response was quite a welcome sight in my inbox! But regardless of whether or not Pyllgarr’s Mighty Ban Hammer were true or just something they say to make us feel better, it sure made me smile. Plus, evil Cyrelle was only too amused by the mental images of setting said person’s pants aflame… ;)

But anyhow, I’ve been pretty happy with the changes to LFR, but I sure hope these kinds of instances don’t continue on into MoP. For people like me who don’t have time to adhere to a regular raid schedule, LFR has been a very fun (at times) opportunity to see some epic battles. And especially for those of us who have many alts, it’s an incredibly simple way to get some decent gear. It would sure be disappointing if people still ruin the fun come expansion release, because I honestly think the griefing is multitudes worse than any old loot system. Hopefully people are just bored by DS and are just antsy waiting for the launch of Mists. Just two weeks away…

Edit: Look at this neat item Navimie made me! Thanks, Navi! :D

*Kapow!*

Silverwing in the Mogolympics Pt. 2 and Wrap-Up

The Transmogolympics ended with a special closing ceremony this week, and I finally got around to catching up on some of the events that I hadn’t yet watched. In the grand finale, JD even announced the opening of the Transmogolympic Games’ very own official homepage! Every faction’s outfits are displayed together with specific scores. How cool is that?! Now if only I knew the exact pieces of some of those winning outfits… :)

What an exciting occasion it has been! Just from reading and watching all the fantastic commentary, slide shows, videos, and compilations of outfits shows how much time and work all of the judges have put into looking at each and every submission. And then the submissions themselves have all been excellent — everyone who entered has put a lot of work into the outfits, too! Congratulations to all of the winners!! But most of all, I think it was most exciting to see how energized everyone was about the events! It was my first time participating in a large-scale community event, and it was SO MUCH FUN. I definitely look forward to joining in on the fun stuff like this in the future!

To wrap up my outfits posts, here are the last round of my submissions:

Javelin shmavalin

Shoulders: Spaulders of Egotism // Chest: Tunic of Indulgence // Wrist: Vicious Leather Bracers // Hands: Pirate Sinker’s Gloves // Waist: Dusty Lasso // Legs: Shady Dealer’s Pantaloons // Feet: Grease-Covered Boots // Weapon: Oathbinder, Charge of the Ranger-General

For the Javelin event, I knew I wanted a strong troll lady to be the model. It was hard to find a polearm model that I actually liked and much less a decent outfit. Plus, trolls have peculiar feet that seemed to make all the boots/shoes I picked invisible! I guess this was probably my least favorite outfit of them all. At least she was able to throw the javelin to 365ft, though!

Fencing with Bloodsail Admiral Caprice

Helm: Rifle Commander’s Eyepatch // Shoulders: Defiant Spire Shoulderguard // Chest: Mixologist’s Tunic // Hands: Heavy Earthen Gloves // Waist: Expedition Girdle // Legs: X-52 Pilot’s Leggings // Feet: Trogg Kickers // Main-Hand & Off-Hand: Electrocutioner Leg

My silly rogue, Caprice, was only too excited to model for the fencing event! I think she may like this leather outfit even more than the cycling one because it has pointy objects and PIRATES! ARRR, YE MATEYS!

Equestrian Event

Shoulders: Green Silken Shoulders // Shirt: White Common Shirt // Chest: Ivycloth Tunic // Wrist: Ironwood Bindings // Hands: Ruthless Gladiator’s Felweave Handguards // Waist: Keyton’s Sash // Legs: Duskwoven Pants // Feet: Saltarello Shoes

My lock, on the other hand, was none too excited to be modeling next to her despised Felsteed for the equestrian event. “Why are we doing this? Why am I wearing pants? Do Humans really wear this kind of stuff and ride around on horses??” I guess if I went a more warlock-y route, she may not have hated the more classic rider look I was going for. But never fear, she mogged back to her blue-purplish Tier 10 right after the event, faster than she can cast Incinerate…

Freestyle: Archaeology Professor M. Leakey

Helm: Eye of Flame // Shoulders: Necropile Mantle // Chest: Shadow Council Tunic // Wrist: Krom’gar Legionnaire’s Linen Bracer // Hands: Farshire Gloves // Waist: Sash of Arcane Visions // Legs: Legwork Trousers // Feet: Jormungar Galoshes // 1-H Mace: Shovel of Mercy // Off-Hand: Mistyreed Torch

Last but not least was perhaps the outfit I had most fun making — the freestyle event! Archaeology is my favorite profession in-game, and I wanted to make a fun NPC for it. I named her after a famous British archaeologist and anthropologist, Mary Leakey, who discovered some of the first humanoid fossils in Africa. As an in-game NPC, I imagine that she would be a higher-level Archaeology trainer that provides tidbits of archaeology lore when a player talks to her! :)

- – -

So that’s it, and we’re finished! Everybody should definitely check out the Closing Ceremonies if you haven’t already and congratulations once again to all of the winners throughout the events! A big congrats to Draynee over at Pretty Fly for a Draenei for being the champion of the 2012 Mogolympics! :D I hope more people will post their outfits and the different pieces they used — there were so many neat sets that I would love to farm or try out on my various toons. And last but not least, definitely check out all of the factions’ entries over at the Official Transmog Games webpage!

Shared Topic: How WoW Has Changed My Life

This week’s Blog Azeroth Shared Topic is by Effy from Effraeti’s RPHow has WoW changed your life?

Such a simple question, but there’s so, so much to it. I think during the six years I’ve played, the game’s done a lot of growing up and changing…and so have I! And of course, WoW has played a very large part in how I think and feel about many different things.

More than anything, WoW has definitely changed my perspective and attitude towards people and life as a whole. In last month’s Battlechicken Monthly Challenge, I posted about entering the field of teaching. When looking at what I’ve learned from WoW, all of my experiences from the game and interacting with the community have really built on important characteristics that I think I’ll need and highly value as an upcoming school teacher. From my WoW experiences, my views and perceptions of many things have adapted and changed…which I think are good, as I start working more with students! So here are some of the key qualities that WoW has made me value highly and aspire to get better at myself:

“You’ll never believe what crazies I ran into in that last dungeon, Cubby! They were all cursing like sailors!”

Believe it or not, I think WoW was a great avenue for me to be more outgoing (which I didn’t use to be), even if it was with strangers online. In doing so, I definitely learned to have thicker skin — whether it was through dealing with asshats in the dungeon finder, or being able to take constructive criticism as a part of a core raid member. Through watching the in-game community change dynamically through expansions, I’ve noticed how easily derogatory slurs and insults are thrown everywhere. It’s commonplace!But also because I can always expect to see that kind of behavior everywhere I go (sad reality that may be), I’ve learned to stop taking things too personally, and to keep in mind that it is just a game in the end. Even if it’s become a very consistent form of stress-relief for the past few years and what some may call a lifestyle! ;) And hey, sometimes you just can’t help but bite back a little, too.

What is this, I don’t even…

Being able to step up and take the lead is something that after having played WoW, I’m a lot less scared and tentative about doing. This has to do with my feeling comfortable and familiar enough with the game now, as I sure wouldn’t have the guts to even suggest ideas to people if this were back in TBC! In the above picture, I’d zoned into an LFR on my warlock alt and saw the entire platform covered in purple flames. I’d died even before I finished the loading screen! Then Ultraxion landed and snuffed out the handful of people still alive. Everyone jumped right in and started pointing fingers and calling names — but what good is that? I didn’t want to wait in another 30 minute DPS queue again. I went ahead and asked the two tanks if they knew what they were doing, and they had never even been there. After a few other group members chimed in to explain the fight, the boss was down in the next try. And all it took was someone to push the group towards the correct strategy and working together!

Children from the Stormwind Orphanage

We run into so many interesting (and sometimes just downright terrible) people in the game, but I think WoW has taught me to be so much more tolerant and patient. Maybe these people have a hard life outside of the game and use the pixels as a vehicle to steam off their stress. Maybe they in fact really just are immature, rude, or arrogant as a person, and it’s hard to completely change an individual’s personality. While these definitely aren’t excuses for offensive behavior, I’m more understanding that there might be some outlying issue making that person the way they are. That’s the way they will be. They’ll crave for attention, be annoying, whine a lot, and point fingers everywhere, but in the end, they’re just children. And sometimes you have to point them in the right direction and give them a talking to, and sometimes you just have to let them be themselves and leave them alone…

One, two, three, eleventy wooly mammoths!

Finally, I think the biggest changes and things I’ve learned from WoW have to do with time management. Nobody teaches you how to manage a schedule or keep up with tasks or prioritize in life. Hardly do you ever see anyone learn that from a class. Having played WoW from both semi-hardcore raider as well as very casual perspectives, I’ve noticed my priorities (both in-game and IRL) changing more and more with each expansion. In TBC/WotLK, I regularly raided as a holy paladin and was extremely active as an officer of my guild. Now in Cata (and I expect the same for Mists), I’m incredibly casual but have an embarrassingly large army of alts. Back then, my paladin was my “main” and I did absolutely everything on her — achievements, pets, mounts, you name it! Now, I’m incredibly attached to all of my alts, and don’t really have a main. And even though I don’t raid anymore, I still make sure to gear up all of my characters as best I can through non-“raiding” means (LFR/Valor).

I think much of the time management portion goes hand in hand with “growing up” and just taking on so many more responsibilities, especially now that I’m going into teaching. Instead of the long-houred sessions of play time I had during college, I sometimes even have nights where I hardly log in but to check mail/AH…and even nights where I won’t log in at all. (/gasp!) And while I do sometimes terribly miss what I consider “real” raiding and being on a core raid group, I’ve learned to really enjoy the small and fun stuff that I can enjoy without devoting all of my time to a guild and raid team. I’m always still on the lookout for silly things like giant mammoth parades in Dalaran… :)

Starstruck: a bit of fangirling and a lot of realm pride

<Kumpania>’s 6th year anniversary few months back — enjoying fireworks w/ friends in the guild!

Seems like I’m a bit late in joining the popular topic! It is a fantastic one, and I’ve wanted to dabble into the subject since I saw it posted on Blog Azeroth. In this week’s Shared Topic was suggested by Dragonray, who asked:

Are you starstruck by anyone? Does someone in the community respond to a post or a tweet and get you all speechless because they actually responded? Is there anyone you are waiting to have respond directly to you? Is there someone that you would like to chat to, but are too chicken? Am I the only one who puts other bloggers on a pedestal?

I’m still a newbie to the WoW blogosphere and have only just begun to engage more with the community outside of the game, so I’m definitely starstruck by everyone I meet and get to talk to! It’s a pervasive feeling for me, since I feel incredibly humbled (in a good way!) by all the interesting and neat people I find, whether it’s here on my journal, on other people’s journals, in forums, through Twitter, and more. I jump up and down whenever I get a tweet or a follow, and I smile myself giddy like a fool whenever I get a comment or like or an RT or discover I’m on someone’s blogroll. From other newbie bloggers and veterans alike! To have people actually reading my ramblings? Whoa…! To get to talk directly to some of the people I really admire and am constantly amazed by? Awesome!!

When I joined in the MMONBI in May, I’d set out decidedly that the main purpose of this blog would be mostly self-reflection and a place to jot down memories of my adventures. I’ve mentioned before about having moments of introversion and skepticism, especially when it comes to gaming communities. Starting out this blog, I wasn’t sure how much I’d actually throw myself out there and be able to engage with other people. Well…it’s now July, and my standpoint couldn’t possibly be any more different! The WoW community outside of the game is incredibly contrasting from within the game — the people I’ve been lucky to meet and talk to have been so thoughtful, funny, clever, insightful, and all around friendly and approachable. Sure, I’m still tentative about commenting at times, but I think that’s inevitable considering all the amazing people I’m surrounded by in the community. There’s too many people to link and mention, so I’ve (finally!!!11eleven) gotten around to making a proper blogroll of just a few of the blogs I try to keep up with the most as of now. Yay! :)

I think it’s important for me to mention that I’m often starstruck when I’m on my server, too. Having been on Turalyon for the past four years, there’s been a fair share of neat things happening and moments where I’ve said, “Whoa!! That was on Turalyon!” or “Hey, he or she is from my server! That’s awesome!” It’s little stuff like these that make me feel at home here and reluctant to roll alts on other realms (despite having a full page of characters — ack!!) And while they may not be super “internet famous” or anything, I sure do feel a bit starstruck knowing that they’re from my home realm and are players among all of us. So I’d like to introduce a few of my hometown idols to you all! (While trying not to feel too stalker-ish, of course…! And um, on the unlikelihood that any of these people would ever stumble upon my blog…I’d might die of embarrassment and hope they wouldn’t find this creepy and fangirlish! *shuffles away*)

Kripparrian, World 1st WoW Ironman!

One such Turalyonite is Kripparrian, a troll hunter who was the first to reach level 85 on the WoW Ironman Challenge! When I first heard about the challenge, I didn’t give it much thought besides thinking to myself that it would be incredibly hard and patience draining. I’d forgotten about it soon afterwards, until I saw on my Twitter feed some time much later with a tweet from The Daily Blink asking if anyone knew how to get in touch with the world first WoW Ironman so they could make a poster featuring him. And lo and behold, Kripp had rolled on our realm to grind out the challenge! It was pretty cool to discover that he’d been doing the challenge right there on Turalyon while I’d been playing and I didn’t even know it. It also spurred my own interest in going after the challenge too. Although, I’ve had to reroll once already and haven’t had much progress since…*cough* Moving on……..

Scarab Lord Grayson!

Next is Grayson, from <Fusion>! I think Fusion had quite a reputation back in TBC/WotLK when they hit several World Top 10/20’s and realm firsts. They and their Alliance rivals from were known by everybody on the server and with many other hardcore realms/guilds worldwide! To me (since I don’t raid anymore), they were like hometown teams we all rooted for, you know? :P In Cata, many from the previous two top guilds retired and some remaining people transferred over to Ally to form , which still kept in the US Top 10. But I mention Grayson specifically because I actually got to talk to him a couple times! He is the Scarab Lord of Turalyon, showing that he’s been on the realm since back in the day of opening the Gates of Ahn’Qiraj. So cool! I got the off-chance of talking to him when he had advertised on the realm forums for specific class/race combinations to flesh out his Stay Classy achievement on his level 25 bank guild to get the last bank slot. It just so happened that undead warlock was one of the last few combos he needed and I had a lv 80 one I wanted to level cap, so it went from there! Well, I didn’t really get a lot of time to talk with him since he wasn’t often on and I was just there to leech guild perks while doing the job…but it was still pretty cool and to know that he’s just a regular player too! (Albeit insanely wealthy and has a level-capped guild bank full of mysterious stuff and rides a Black Qiraji Battle Tank to boot! Ha!)

Nadina’s Diablo 3 Monk Cosplay, Picture by FiveRings Photography

And finally is also another old member of Fusion, Nadina! :D Not only was she kind of a hero in my eyes because she played a hardcore, competitively raiding holy paladin (my main spec/class back then), but she was also the winner of the 2010 Blizzcon Costume Contest for her Diablo 3 Female Monk cosplay (and multiple times as runner-up in previous years)! There was a ton of celebration on the realm forums when she was announced a winner. Everyone was so proud!! Since then, she’s continued cosplay and even has a cosplay facebook page. There are lots of neat costumes that she’s been working on, some most recent ones being Vanessa Vancleef and Riven from League of Legends! One of the pictures in her “Future cosplay ideas…” album is Nausicaä from the Miyazaki film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. Boy, if she were to cosplay Nausicaä, I might die of happiness! (It was my favorite film as a child and even now!) I believe she is now a team member of Cryptozoic (the company behind the WoW TCG). Her in-game paladin was also made into an actual card for the TCG named Nadina the Red — pretty awesome, huh? Now if I could only stop buying TCG packs for collecting and actually start playing…

But there you have it — all my fangirling for now and quite a bit of realm pride. :P I really do recommend checking out Nadina’s cosplay page though, Zerina Cosplay, because not only are her costumes extremely gorgeous and detailed, but you can see how dedicated she is to the games and gaming community as well! She sometimes does little raffles for WoW TCG loot codes on her fan page, so that may be something to look out for if you like those kinds of things! :)

The Lull of Summer

Little Sproutling is too sleepy for beach time fun…

Ahh, summertime. The sneaky creep of hot weather and lazy days is among us. Or is it…?

It’s the summer lull that’s been knawing away at my mind, knowing that expansions and new releases are abound and on the horizon. So close…yet so far. On first glance, the chanced sightings of friends and guildmates online have been slim: WoW seems like a barren wasteland nowadays, with guild members online in the zero-to-single digits, and friends logged onto other games. And even in said other games (I’m looking at you, Diablo 3) friends are progressed into Nightmare-Hell modes, and some even Inferno — far beyond where I’m still lurking, in the early Acts on Normal.

I suppose this is where I feel a bit wistful. I wish I didn’t always feel as if I were far behind everyone, but at the same time the last month has been all-around tasking with work and my slow transition into the next phase of my life/career, moving from research to secondary education.  A classic case of real life “getting in the way” of the fantasy escape. (…it’s been nearly a month since D3 released? Geez, I am behind the times!)

I think these are the questions I always find myself asking:

Did I find happiness, having followed my priorities? Or is there some way I could have managed my time to have squeezed in more gaming?

The answer should be simple. It should be a given that I’m satisfied, maybe proud even, that I’ve been so focused on the next stage of my life and career. When I received my acceptance letter to the teacher residency program I interviewed for, it was surely an “Achievement Unlocked!” moment. And I felt that way again, after I started back on my routine of jogging 4 miles a day. But I couldn’t help but feel selfish at the same time. Maybe I felt like I ditched my friends, guildmates, or even characters. Maybe I missed the structure and set-paced schedule of progression raiding. Maybe I just miss playing hours on end and devoting more time to a hobby I love. Maybe I even felt guilty for playing so little of something I’ve paid for. Or maybe in the end, it’s a kind of withdrawal syndrome.

But back to finding the happy medium. I think the dissatisfaction of being perpetually “behind” stems from the social aspect of these games. Seeing friends take down fantastically designed bosses in D3 has me longing to be there alongside them. It’s hardly so much that spoilers are everywhere I look, but the fact that I take delight in viewing said spoilers is the double-edged sword that has me yearning to catch up to everyone and stop trailing behind everyone. I think this is something I need to discover and remind myself; to be perfectly okay in being slow in progress, but to remember to set aside some game time into my schedule as well. I’ve had laughs with a close friend about planning out “when to work on what” in various games in my agenda, but I think it’s not too far out there. I’ll keep trying to squeeze in time every day, but I’m doubtful of returning to the times where I’d have solid blocks of hours to grind. Oh, how I’ll reminisce those good old days of spending hours and hours with friends doing silly things.

On a positive note, I guess for now the summer lull is a hidden gift. While people may be burning out on end-of-expansion boredom and looking to other games, I’ll take the chance to explore things slowly at my own speed — explore every nook and cranny of maps and crack open every barrel and chest, without anyone to pressure me to “hurry and catch up!” It’s also perhaps a perfect time to squeeze in time to work on my WoW Ironman Challenge, since I won’t be leveling like crazy to hit 90 and then the ever antagonizing grind for gear…yet. So I should probably get on that, yes. Until next time…