Saturday, December 19, 2009

Yes, I am a 3.3 fanboy

Hello fellow wanderers. Random LFG tool how awesome I think this is, almost game changing. I was always a avid battleground person on all my toons. Not withstanding the occasional asshat telling x number of people they suck and he,she,it are ubber leet; I readily enjoyed the random aspect of a on-line game throwing x number of people in for a common cause. I love running with friends and guildies always have, if ask pre-3.3 I would have cheerfully said I was anti-pug. That I would get the random asshats in battlegrounds and they were enough. Well 3.3 been out for a bit and I have pugged every toon I have that is above 70 at least once and multiple times on most. With by far the general experience being positive. Heck I even made use once of the random raid finder and ran into my old old guild filling in spots for a 25 man VoA.

A few things I have discovered more on Grai doing the random heroic than on Fanabb doing the random regular; first of which is the speed which 95% of the tanks chain pull trash. The other day did a random heroic daily on Grai that turned out to be Halls of Lighting. Double check make sure the tank is set right on healbot and away we go. We ran that dungeon + trash as AoE to the boss burn everything down. I was incredible fun for me playing Grai holy because in the average fast speed 5 man I never need to worry about mana and may only drink prior to final boss simply to have back to a full bar. No worries about judging wisdom and running into melee range to grab a little back or using divine intervention wisely. This run pushed me into every mana back trick I had including my darkmoon card. We finished and I had many real life things to do and was unable to continue as they were going on to chain run and pull I'm sure many more. Fanabb who is currently 75 moves a wee bit slower disc priest w/alchemy so I make free use of endless mana pot out of combat, the nice trinket with the + 40% boost and have to sit to drink, for instance in violet hold regular and the end of each boss waiting for portals again. It seems that the zerg mentality is definitively this patch's flavor of the month.

Heroic Halls of Reflection is probably the instance I enjoy most on my hunter. I get to use CC again, I try and frost arrow either the mage or the priest if they are both in AoE damage ill try for the rifleman but for me he is harder. Same thing with the casters on the gauntlet, some tanks use their AoE abilities other just save them for the last to be killed. I know blizz said that CC would be back in for Cat, just very glad that its made an appearance so soon.

My DK has even tank a few random dungeons. Soloing never need to worry about icebound fort or bone shield. Now I throw on the cobalt defense set pop frost aspects and have a different group of cooldowns to manage. Having played prot for so long on Grai its AoE tanking but different. Now get your AoE attack down and then insult the groups lineage,weaponry or sorry I meant death grip one taunt the other and have ghoul boy annoy the third. I mark on Sheenah because I not toatly confident in my aggro building on her and only had one fail group when healer was half and half on gear and at the low minium level for the instance.

Ah Carack my long ignored rouge, love him at max level for PvP never found a like of rouge PvE play. He was and is incredible fun in AV and annoying in WSG, but never leveled him fast and never felt comfortable in any spec but sub.. Done a few randoms on him and went assassination and do decent plus hes an enchater so I offer that lol.

Fal poor Fal is still languishing on the couch of WoW he's done a few random heroics but still havent gotten back into him post the fury nerf. When the shine dims down on the others he'll get his run.

Well I guess thats 3.3 for me on the whole a hugely positive at a time when WoW was getting stale. Perspectives change on many things and for me pugging has been a very good thing

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Well it sure hasn't been boring

Hello to all who still have this moldering away at the bottom of your rss readers, and to anyone whom might have stumbled by here on accident. Its funny haven't posted in ages and now find that still having this here old thing around might just come in handy. Seeing how I havent posted a story or even a blurd to say hello let me give a readers digest version of the last 5 months.

Summer was fun and busy trying to manage the schedules of 5 boys 16 to 7 and two adults with opposing work schedules was fun, yeah right. First semester of school lead to 2 honor role students and 2 merit role, the elementary school doesn't have a system like that. 12 soon to be 13 yr old son broke the tib + fib in left leg in mid-Nov. and that has been and adventure in and of itself. That fairly well hits the high points of casa Grai, and now onto the game which is what this silly thing is supposed to be about.

When I first started this thing it bloomed out of a pug run I was on with this at the time small guild called Sidhe Devils on my server. Members of that guild had blogs and that was my introduction to WoW bloggers in general outside of the magazine type sites. At that time I was in my original guild that I was currently GL and RL of. We were a moderately successful Kara level guide that had around 20 active raiders. I personal had gotten to a point where I no longer wanted to put out the numerous brush fires that flare up when any divergent group of people are communally seeking a shared goal. So I decide that a smooth orderly transition would see the guild on to bigger and better things and I could be one of the many again. Well that didn't happen as opposing factions took root in the guild and it split into two successful guilds that both continued to raid. Me I left and went and became of of the group of sidhe devils to have a chance to quietly remember what about this game I enjoyed.

Sidhe Devils is a remarkable place and when I first found it, I knew I had discovered nirvana. The place kids not the band.(grumpy old man segment). Adults who would understand in the middle of a raid, a 5 man or just general chatting in guild that life happens at the speed of life and people need to flexible and go with these changes. We raided and we wiped, and we raided and we succeeded, always putting whatever in the perspective of the time spent with our friends was time well spent. As Sidhe Devils grew into becoming a much larger guild it still to, kept the feeling of it being "Cheers" but everyone being "Norm". As time and growth bring changes to all things, so did Sidhe Devils face points of change. As a member of,and a holder of many found memories of the guild. It was during this time of change I decide to look at what I wanted to do or if WoW had for me run its final daily.

After much personal introspection I decide to leave, to venture forth into a different path in the game. Much of the process of where or if I will land on my current server is unclear. I said to a friend last night that I am befouled of a hellish dilemma in that I view myself as to casual to be hardcore and to hardcore to be truly casual. Added into this is the fact that I do like to ponder and view things for as many angles as I can wrap my head around leads to sometimes glacial like decision making times. Do I wish to someday write Grai's spin on how he and his gang were key elements of the downfall/ maybe redemption of Artha's, hey I'm a sucker for the sappy ending.

So I'm sure right now as much as I'm sure of anything I'll be playing somewhere. So if we share a battle group or a party or mabye even a raid someday in the future; please, please remember one thing folks. The pull is always on the wings. Good luck and many blessings to everyone this holiday season.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Carack's Memories

I decide to write this bit about myself for two reasons, the first being called shy by Graimerin is a bit odd for reasons I'll go into later; and secondly Falro keeps asking what I know about the dishonor that is the central feature to Grai's stoicism. As the erstwhile leader of this motley assortment of people from the land of Azeroth Grai can be a bit vague when it comes to his early days. Being the one person in our group who has known him much longer than any other let me tell some of his past along with fill in a few gaps of my own.

I am Carack not the name that I was given at my birth nor the name I use in some areas of our world, I move through the world with the hope that I'm not remembered at all. Carack is the name that was given to me in my youth by my older brother. I was trying to sneak into his room when a poorly placed foot cracked some carefully placed boards he left assuming I would try to gain entry into his room. I will never forget the laughter in his voice when he yelled “ Hey Brat Boy isn't that the last sound a thief should ever hear.”. Then he broke into laughter and said you will always now be Carack to me. While this brother was not the oldest he is and will always be the one that to me can solve anything. He left to go finish his studies and start on the path that led him to his lot in life now. Strong, stalwart, compassionate this is my brother a man that has given everything but his life to people he hardly even knows, why because he says his honor needs to cleansed. Yes my brother is Graimerin, the gray man rarely these days do I hear laugh that shaped my youth and for that being taken from me I follow this road simple in the hope that someday my brother will put off the mantle of the gray man and be himself once again.

Its midsummer time again and as I was making my way through our lands and those on the other side of the dark portal many memories came flooding back in. Some of these are of a happier time and place and some trigger memories that are best left in the past. The happy ones are mostly of a young man and his brother. We would celebrate and honor our fires and look forward to traveling through the areas around or homeland. It was during this time that I found out I could move noiselessly through many areas. We would gaze in awe at the jugglers and laugh till we couldn't breath dancing around the flame poles. The sad memories occurred when I went by what is now called the undercity, a place now known more for fratricide and regicide than the shinning jewel of my youthful homeland. Gone are the times that I would sneak away to watch my brother in the various stages of his training. It was during these times that I came to understand that being unseen had many advantages. I will never forget the day that my brother was accepted into the order and others would now call him brother because of gifts he possessed. Although it was a only a short time until the darkness descended that still shrouds these lands. Ahh I must put off this melancholy as what is done is done and the people who once where friends, companions or a familiar face for the most part are gone.

It was shortly after being accepted into the order that Grai as he wishes to be called now made it home to our family and told us that he had met someone who he cared for deeply. Our parents being who they where questioned him about whether she was of noble birth, and I'm sure knowing them hopefully of a higher standing house than us. Grai tried to be as evasive as a honest man can be when questioned on matters of the heart but finally told us all that she was from Silvermoon city. Father instantly saw this as a means to move upward socially as his son was not only a Paladin but one that had contacts with the high elves. Mother was concerned about the fact that Grai would age in front of his paramour and she would hold her youthful beauty. For my part I was happy and a bit jealous as my favorite had found someone else to share his heart. I put aside the petty jealousy that was my first reaction when I saw the joy in my brothers face when he spoke of his lady.

During the time that Grai was away I started on what was to become my lot in life. Information about what was going on in the camps and just generally throughout my homeland had value and those that could get this information became a assets to our King. Needing a reason to be moving from city to village to the secluded farm, I took up the mantle of a traveling merchant. One who specialized in rare cloths and magical items. Having a high level of dexterity with my hands aided me in this and my many daggers that I kept concealed on my person made sure that I stayed safe. I always find it amusing that people find a wandering tradesman nonthreatening and will often times give away valuable information simply to know what is going on further down the road than they have traveled. It was in this way that I came to hear about the horrors of the plague coming across farms that were once full of laughter and joy where now burnout husk housing unspeakable monsters.

I was making my way back to our home city when rumors of what our prince had done not only to his father but the city reached my ears. I decide to speed north hoping to find my brother so that he could tell me that this was a story told to frighten children and could not be the truth. Knowing him as well as I do I looked for a holy site figuring he would be asking for guidance from the light. We met up outside a small chapel in what is now known as the eastern plaguelands and to my horror he confirmed that these rumors where true. Lost in away I had not been since I was a small boy I asked him what should I do. He told me to head for Stormwind and to inform anyone who would listen to me. I asked him what he was planning on doing, he replied that he was headed north in hopes of rallying the elves to our cause.

I made it to Stormwind but a horse can't move as fast as a rumor and a story of this horror precede me there. Once there I decide to turn around and head north again with the simple hope of helping my brother in some way. I found him a broken husk of his former self leading his mount who looked as ragged as he did. He recounted to me a horror that worse than any I could imagine, Silvermoon in ruins. He said then that he had shamed his order and himself by not being able to stem the tide of this horror. All that he cared for save is kid brother, brat boy where dead or worse. He looked at me and said until he could cleanse his honor he would be know as Graimerin, the gray man one devoid of hope and searching for purpose to his life. He told me to continue with gathering what ever information I could in these dark times as that would have a value that no amount of gold would ever match. I asked him what he was going to do, a small part of the man I remembered surfaced then and he said he was going to dedicate his life to the eradication of the horrors visited upon this land. I asked him if the leaders of his order couldn't stem this tide how would he. His response was coldly delivered “ I have seen a darkness that I shall carry until the light can cleanse this land.”

We parted then and I went about doing the task he had set for me, with a open ended plan to meet so that I could let him know what whispers I had heard in my travels. When we met back up he had some how gained the trust of Falromord a true servant of the light whether he knows it our not. As time has moved forward more have joined his cause and knowing my brother I'm sure he'll be present when we can cleanse this land if the light allows us to.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Fanabb's history

Graimerin came to me earlier this day and asked me to offer my life's history for his journal. I scoffed at him at first and coldly told him that until very recently my history was the self same history of this world.

Let me formally introduce myself, I am known as Fanabb in common which will serve for this purpose. I am a night elf and priest of Elune, once immortal but now subject to death as any living being is. My race was the first to awaken and we heard the call of Elune. We venerated her at the most powerful of sites and basked in the glory of her power. We learned though that with great power comes the possibility of great danger.

The first I personally saw of battle wage on a vast scale was the first invasion of the burning legion. What many of short lived races have taken to calling the war of the ancients. Queen Azshara a great a noble member of my race was cruelly tricked by the foul demon Sargeras. He wanted a portal to be opened to allow his minions access to this pristine world. Many other wise and great members of my race discovered his plot and were able to close the portal before he was allowed access but at a cost that not only sundered the very face of the continents but changed my people forever. Those that weren't sucked under the waters of the newly formed sea and transformed into monsters managed to survive. But the cost of survival was terrible my race broke in two. Many took to boats and sailed away to one of the new continents and called themselves High Elves, the continued to practice arcane arts that almost destroyed us once. Our druids descended for centuries into the dream where they sought to protect our world with the aid of Ysera one of the great dragon aspects. Those of us that survived and choose to stay retreated to Mount Hyjal where for centuries we lived in peace within our forest and zealously protected our lands.

Being a priest of Elune after the sundering was a difficult time. Many of my race saw those of us that served as part of the problem. We allowed ourselves to believe we where above the rest of our race, that somehow we where better of a higher caste than they. I personally never had the pleasure of serving at the great temple. While I venerate Elune and know her tremendous powers I only saw her well once in my enormous lifetime. My service was out in the settlements helping to explore the forest and come to know its inhabitants. Cenarius the demigod was someone I saw more than my Queen. But I had freely given myself to a different path and didn't study at the feet of the great stag. I knew his powers and saw the great gifts he bestowed those that choose to follow him into the drudaic arts.

The war is chronicled many times over by those much more scholarly than I. I will simply add that destruction that vast should never be visited upon any living being. How the gods managed to save what we have of this world is simply a testament to their powers.

So the centuries passed as we stayed secluded in our false safety on the mountain until we came into contact with a new race. They called themselves Orcs, the were destroying our beloved forest and met with death from the sentinels who where its guardians. This was the beginning of the end for my life as it had been for centuries. Archimonde a old enemy returned again at the head of an army this time of undead and demon alike brought death and destruction to our mountain. The world tree was destroyed and our immortality taken along with it. Battle was joined by those that defiled the forest to protect what we could Orcs that we one time killed helped us save what we could of ourselves and our homeland.

It was during this time that we learned what had befallen our brethren that crossed the sea centuries before in there pursuit of the arcane. Their city in ruins and a monster raised from their sunwell our isolation had to end.

We gave up immortality in our hopes to preserve life as we know it in our forests. Many of my brothers and sisters still toil to cleanse our forest from the sickness that has enveloped it since the end of that war. I choose to leave the forest, to take the battle against this scourge army. I have tried in my own way to make a change in the way I view the short lived races of my home world. This was how I came to meet the human Graimerin and his friend and companion Falromord.

In my venture into the outside world I first choose to stay within my races area of control. I went to Silithus where the Cenarion Circle has maintained an outpost for time immortal battling the denizens of that inhospitable place. Where we imprisoned Qiraji to stop their rampart destruction of the land. The Circle decide to open the gates and to destroy them once and for all so that we could stop their spread.

I went out to help during one of the small skirmishes before we ventured into the vast prison when I saw a human and a dwarf battling the insect like inhabitants of this area and the very elements themselves. Having seen first hand the battle prowess of the races during the battle for our sacred tree I sought to offer what add I could. Calling upon the power of Elune I shielded the human who seemed to be taking the brunt of the attack and and cast upon he and his dwarven companion words of power to increase their fortitude while in battle. The skirmish was over quickly as those two seemed to be able to weave together a dance of death the likes of which I had never seen. When it was nothing but corpses left upon the desert floor the human turned to and said “thank you sir and may the light bless you. I am called Graimerin and this is my friend Falromord.” Not knowing what was proper for the ways of the people I simply said may Elune bless you in your battles against these foes.

Then I can only imagine it to be Elunes divine guidance that took hold of the human he asked if I would like to add he and his companion in their eradication of horrors of this land. Before I could decline his offer the dwarf barked that they didn't need any assistance and I should go back to hiding in the trees as my race had done for centuries. Offended by this rude comment from one of the lesser races I was turning to leave when the human quietly said to his friend that to decline aid in battle was to help was ones enemies and during these dark times enemies where plentiful but allies scarce.

Wisdom such as this human had just shown was remarkable to me in one so young, intrigued I wondered what help they might need or could offer me. I was unsure though because I had no wish to make friends with life forms destined to die; till I had to sharply remember that now even I could die. I decide to simply be as truthful as I felt comfortable with. I told them that I was a priest and could offer some healing and some other assistance if they needed it. Graimerin seemed pleased and quickly wanted to accept my offer of aid but the dwarf Falromord still seemed uncertain if not outright suspicious but apparently he trusted the humans instincts. Shortly after we met nightfall was upon us and we began the process of setting up a camp for the evening. I quickly saw that these where people used to the hard life of the road much more than I, even if they couldn't feel the land they way my people do the did respect it. A small fire was made and carefully banked and shielded as to not only protect us but also as not to give away our position to our enemies. They broke out their road food consisting of some dried meats and I assumed some dwarven spirit. I offered to share some of my food with them which consisted of cheese and fruit which they accepted with graciousness.

It was during the meal that the dwarf turned to me and bluntly stated that as far as he was concerned Grai as he called him was a overly trusting youngster destined only to see the good in people. He then furthered his point by telling me he trusted the stone of the earth and little else with the huge exception of the human Graimerin. I replied coldly that I trusted little but Elunes grace and her wisdom. He then asked why would I agree to this grouping if I distrusted so much; my reply then is as true as it is now that in Graimerin I sense a wisdom beyond the years a human could ever know. Surprisingly the dwarf chuckled and said “aye I know what you speak of, Grai seems to have ability.” Taken aback by this rather radical change I didn't respond but decide that this dwarf and human may bear watching as they seemed to be much more than the sell swords I initially took them for.

What seems to be merely a eye blink of time to me but I'm sure is much more has passed since that day. I still seem to be traveling with these two odd companions of the road and others have joined us, the wisdom I saw in Graimerin that day is still evident and always astounding. Falromord is still the gruff dwarf fierce in battle and friendship and always the defender and sword arm of his closet friend Grai. Me I still travel with them keeping them healed as the singlehandedly at times seem to need to win this war on their own. Graimerin talks of his need to atone for some stain upon his honor, Having traveled with this man I can not imagine him ever to be dishonorable but his demons he refuses to share as he purges the land of theirs.

Will I ever feel fully accepted by these people I'm still unsure as centuries of seclusion are hard to overcome. Although of one thing I am sure no one ever had more stalwart companions in such an unsettled time.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Home City Again

"This will be another one of them stories ?" Fal says as he rolls his eyes in my direction as he sees me writing in my journal. I simply nod as anything said will only start up his incessant questions and questionable commentary. I hunch up preparing for the peek over my shoulder as he stretches and stands on tip toes. "Back acting up old timer?". Gets greeted by something I shouldn't write down and a cuff to the back of the head that I avoid. This is generally the way we spend our days awaiting the call to Icecrown Citadel, let me stop rambling about now though and tell the tale I'm supposed to be telling.

Word spread through out most of Northrend of a tournament sponsored by the newly formed argent crusade. A martial battle to test one skill and possibly if the stories are true champion a city once again. Gone is my happy memories of the city to which I was born. That my old city almost crowned this monster the first time is a horror that I shall always carry. For a chance again to be from somewhere and not a wondering sell sword but again to have a home. I find Fal and tell him some of what I heard and some of what I hoped. He scoffed at me and said a home youngster you always have a home with me in the mountain. I tell it its a open tournament with champions from all the Capital cities. This peeked his interest and he softly grumbled into his beard "wonder what they call Champions back in Ironforge." Well if your so set on doing it he dead pans over to me we might have to practice up some long unused skills for both of us.

So for the next few weeks he took pains in showing me how little I remembered of fighting with a huge mace again in my hands. The inertia one must over come and then to control the swing as not to overbalance yet maintain a solid base. Lessons poorly learned in a distant youth, when the shield and sword called to me as my martial instruments. Although I had a good teacher back then they couldn't spin two monstrous weapons with which the ease Fal does. So under his glaring eyes I got a huge compliment. One day you will be okay. Then the pendulum swung back the other way as it must.

Fal may easily be my better in the art of massive damage, but I, I have mastered the sword and shield. The joy of wave of enemies bashing themselves away as I hold the ground on which I stand. It took him sometime to remember how to balance to adsorb the blow and recoil into attacking motion. He learned quickly and showed me a couple moves that I never learned so was taken a bit by surprise. He gently chuckled to himself and said something about a dang holy bubble.

Our martial skills to a level we felt comfortable with we preceded to the tournament grounds. We were greeted by goblin profiteers looking to pay little and get paid themselves considerably more for our work to fulfill their contracts. We find the contact person for this tournament and get given some task of killing off small scourge units and searching for some special swords. Then a piece of news that made me smile, jousting . For a minute I wondered if Fal would know the skills of mounted combat. Our first combat on the mounts they gave well trained steeds of war, was simply against target dummies. I carefully watch Fal go for his first pass. Flawless, up out of the saddle, knees flexed but braced all his weight balanced behind his lance and shield. His lance shattered under the impact of a perfect hit. He reined in his mount and rode past me chuckling and said to me "We Dwarfs do have a cavalry". Again this man of middle years as judged by his people, a group of season way past a number any human can live astounds me yet again.

My time behind a lance was during my training in the silver hand and jousting to me was time well remember from my younger years. As a set the lance into my stirrup as I prepared to charge my first target dummy, my mind drifted back to a time that seems forever ago. On the training fields in novitiate for the knights many an hour was spent this way. Some on similar stationary targets and some at hanging shields. The thunder as a train war steed bears down upon his target, to me its the finest music their is. A harsh pounding sound occasional punctuated by the trumpeting of my horse as he stormed to do his own battle with the opposing horse. Lost in this memory came sharp thump on my head and Fal gruff voice asking if I was scared of wood these days. I settle into my stance and the warhorse surged forward a solid thump in my shoulder and the sound of shattering wood let me know I had scored a solid hit.

After proving ourselves worthy of fighting for them we moved up to small sorties against Arthas's mounted troops slowly drawing out the unit commanders and not just his throw away minions. Once we even went against one of his undead worms. Fal shouts to me to keep out the hammer he made me as he has some armor he wish to try out. Some new combination of ore and the very elements of the earth that is supposed to shield one from the bitter cold that many of Arthas minions use in battle.

It has since slow done and soon we are told it will be a more proper tournament. But for the work and martial prowess Fal and myself showed and the work for some goblins to earn funds to pound out bents and such. We we awarded something dear to me and maybe to Fal also based on what he said to me. Me I am Graimerin of Stormwind again I rdie into battle in defense of my home. Fal well Fal on the other hand is now known as Falromord of Ironforge or as he so nicely put it. "where else is a self respecting Dwarf from".

Friday, May 15, 2009

Adventures in Dragon Slaying ( Old world Style)

As some of you know the old boring life style around the Gang's house has changed drastically for the good. My 4 sons are now living here which is a major change but that's already been posted now on to the WoW stuff.

My oldest Olli for purposes of the blog was questing out in the Badlands and saw Temperus the Devourer and wondered if I would give a shot a taking him down. So I made my way out to the Badlands and boom one dead dragon. Two of those perfect crystals which wield a nice rare bow and a usable plate Helm. He was very happy one for getting the dragon two for getting loot.

Well about this time the old man had a smashing idea!! Can we get a level 52 warrior into Onyxia's Lair. Well of we fly to wetlands and then over to thereamore I don't have the mudsprocket fp wasn't there when I was lol. So he flies over to mudsprocket and I swim. We get to the lady's dwelling and yes he could enter.

Well we clear the trash leading up to her and then I engage her. He got the non achievement achievement of dieing to the whelps during flight phase. Yes the Blizz gods will seek payment for 52's doing Ony. So we get her down he got the real achievement and it was a hoot.

The warrior helm didn't drop but he has a nice 18 slot bag plus other assorted vendor ables. Me I got to do something with my son had a great time and a nice moment. We used to do Warcraft II together and this brought back some happy memories. Its kinda nice to see him back into the game as he was the one that got me to get the original way back when.

Now he's chomping to reach 60 so he can turn in the head and be the dragon slayer for a bit.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Thank You

Warning what follows is a non wow specific blog post.

Some of you fine folks know that the last week has been somewhat bizarre in cassa Grai. My four sons are living here now and it definitely changes the dynamic from a 3 person household to a 7 person household. I delighted that they are living here but the circumstances were to say the least emergent. In this last week I have discovered some things about the WoW community and blogging that I wanted to share.

First off to all my guildies in Sidhe Devils you are very awesome people. Your words of kindness and your simply concern for me and my family was awe inspiring. We flame asshats gleefully and may occasionally feed trolls. What I/we rarely do is thank the decent and considerate among us. So I decide to use this semi public forum to say thank you to a large group of people who made me realize that sometimes playing this silly game we share can be a way to help a real person not just pixels.

Secondly to anyone who I read and enjoyed as a blogger and I tried to emulate in my poor fashion thank you. I will never be one of the premiere wow bloggers, my silly little stories aren't those of ratters, i don't do the post that BBB does, I cant write that long (lol). The hundreds that are not mentioned I apologize to. Why am I thanking the other bloggers, well my oldest son read my silly stories about Grai, and Fal then about Burning Steppes and got excited about creating his own stories for his characters. We talked for along time last night about how his toon would be and how my would play a part in there story. His creativity has always been by drawing but this silly blog site gave us a chance to be closer and to share a common interest.

These are gifts that I would have never received if not for a game. Thank you doesn't seem enough, but it is all I have to offer. So the next time some asshat does what asshats do please remember that some of us appreciate those that blog and those that just say hello when we log into g chat.

Be well in Azeroth my friends and save some bad guys for me.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Into the Mountain

Fal has been pestering me about another story, or at least his way he keeps saying " human you started telling these tales might as well continue." Then he goes into that gruff laughter of his race, always reminds me of stones falling down a mountain side. So for this tale as my short friend calls these it was a time when the whole gang was together. We had been pursuing dragonkin and Orcs in and around what was once the redridge area but is now referred to as the burning steppes.

Just as a point of reference i will quickly go over the shy folks that help fill out the gang as brat boy named them. Brat boy my affectionate name for Carack, whom I have known the longest of any of these fine folks that share the road with me. We meet in a different time and place for both of us, and by mutual agreement we don't talk about what once was back when the Undercity was our beautiful home and we had a Prince and a King. Carack is a spy, assassin, and sometimes thief that can blend in to almost any situation and literally almost disappear. He is our main source of information about what is going on in the world. As a collector of magical items and rare cloth he seems somehow undangerous, so he gleans information for people that they didn't even know they let slip. Next I would like you to meet Padrad I'm never sure if he's a cousin of Fal's or not, what I can tell you is that he also is from Ironforge and apparently was according to Fal overly influenced by two major events in his life. The kings call to follow his brother Bran's explorations concerning the titans and the according to Fal the Gnome invasion of Ironforge. Somewhere he manage to get a pet gorilla just like Bran's and he loves to tinker with his devices sometimes they work wonderfully and sometimes not so much. Then we have Fanabb a nightelf one of the last ones to join us a man of deep mystery and subtle magics. He has words of healing and words of pain, he like all of his long lived race is still mostly a mystery to me but he is a fine companion none the less.

Now to more fully set the time frame for you folks, this was a time when the King of Stormwind was still missing and his son was the prince regent with his advisor Lady Prestor. Unsettled in the human lands barely begins to describe what it was like. So Carack hears some tale about a Marshall of the alliance army being held captive in the dark iron dwarf strong hold of Black Rock Mountain. Fal and Paddy start cursing in dwarven about something called ragnaros and the vile nature of the darks in general and how they wanted to usurp Ironforge and are ready to fly into the fortress right then even if was to save someone they had never meet. We decide that we need to free this man if he still lives simply to get him out of the clutches of people who will torture and kill him for the hope he has some useful information.

Now for anyone who hasn't ventured into that Mountain fortress it is a daunting place with great dark iron gates that one must pass first to even enter then a tight rope walk across a chain suspended over molten lava to the Island where you find passage and stairs. We first entered a crypt type room at the top of this suspended island and both Fanabb and I sensed a restless spirit, but that is a different tale and one best told in the full light of day. As you move through the fortress you enter the quarry where slaves toil to keep digging out building stone and the dark ore that seems only to be found here. Being only a small party and not a full fledged invading army we slowly made our way through the outer quarry. Carack,Fal and I using skillful blows to the heads to knock senseless these slaves made our way to the prison area.

The prison like the rest of this fortress is a honeycomb maze of tunnels and rooms dug out of this mountain. We didn't have to worry about being silent anymore as the pitiful wails and moans of the prisoners was near deafening. This might have been the one thing that helped us that we didn't plan on. Fal gave a soft chuckle and turned to Carack and said that he wouldn't need to slit as many throats today as he shrugged his shoulders to seat his armor and ready his massive weapons. Paddy tossed a snack to his gorilla, Fanabb said a prayer to his goddess and I strapped on my shield. We made our way carefully through this maze avoiding patrols when we could and trying to use doorways and outcroppings of rock to descend on our targets as fast as we could and leave the dead where they couldn't be found. Carack disappeared ahead looking for something that would lead us to the right area of this deadly maze when he over heard a gaurd address a troll as inquisitor or questioner and hoped he would have information we needed.

He came back to tell us what he had heard and also let us now what he intended to do. Looking at Fal with a evil gleam in his eye his said " I do have one throat to cut today. You wanna kill his buddies while I do it?" and quietly chuckled coldy. Fal didn't miss a beat he just a calm and coldy replied just make sure to be done when i start the steel whirling boy. Swinging two of these I sometimes don't look real close as to who I'm hitting as long as I'm hitting something. So we move our group into position Carack seemingly disappears only to almost instantly appear behind his target, a dead troll he just doesn't know it yet. Knowing what was coming I still didn't see it. Anything of value on the Inquisitor was gone, his throat slit and Carack back behind me. Then trolls companions turn and see me standing there and made there death mistake instead of running away they ran towards me. Feet set shield ready I took the charge of the group knowing that death was waiting on them Fal, Paddy and Carack each take a offensive position and in seconds the 4 are dead. It is scary what that dance of maces, daggers and bullets do so quickly to their targets.

We slowly approach the door and we hear sounds coming from inside. A man's voice claiming that he will unmask this foul dragon plot and see Stormwind free. Thinking we had found a mad man if nothing else we open the prison door and see a man talking to what appeared to be a floating dragon head, The dragon head slowly turned to us and laughed and said well maybe we will meet but I'm pretty sure it will take more than you 5 to kill me. The imagine then blinked out of existence. The man standing there had been beaten and the gods know what else done to him came to attention and stated. " I'm Mashall WIndsor and now we will get my armor and weapons and we will unmask the dragon plot in Stormwind."

Well the hour grows late and this tale will have to be finished another time.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Im back and will try to post more often

Hello again all. Been hectic around casa Grai the last few weeks. Between changing schedules, school vacations, teen age sons visiting for holidays April is almost over and I not even sure where it went.

Not loads of in game news. Fanabb is 69 resting up in Northrend. Graimerin was seduced by the crit side. Not much else new from the character sheet.

Personal wise Shrinn's health is okay nothing new good or bad on that front. John's B-Day is fastly approaching, this Friday. Guess who gets to play party planner lol. I'm good just trying to adjust to the new schedule with SHrinn working evenings now.

And a picture update on the Puppy.

Who has double in size since we got him lol he may be over 10 lbs by now.

SOrry so short and frantic style stories will return soonish.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Hello all again. Post puppy update post

I promise for this post to be free of references to Tek. While having him in our household is wonderful it has effected the amount of time, I can hid in my cave where my computer lives. So I have been choosing playing over writing. Although today I have the opportunity to do both I hope.

Start with news about Grai. It is taking me longer than I thought it might to get used to 30 minutes seals. I didn't have this problem when they went from 30 seconds to 2 minutes but I find myself still trying or wanting to refresh. Haven't done any raiding on him since my computer issues have been resolved but have been able to do some instancing. Heroic UP was very good to me and the best tanking sword for my content drop the Red Sword of Courage. I was a very happy Paladin, for whatever reason I hadn't run that instance many times on anyone so to get the on a first time heroic was awesome.

Fal got invited to help out EoG on there 10 man Naxx Plague Quarter run. For many reasons it was Fal's first successful foray into Naxx. While i would like to say that I safety danced well I can not. I didn't die during the first phase but I ran to deeply into zone 4 and couldn't get out in time. Alas all was not a loss though thanks to some very nice loot rules I was able to roll on these .
I won them and the next boss dropped the t7 shoulders on which I passed and the other warrior on the run was able to get them.

Also have been suffering a bit of altitis lately. Having tons of fun on my discipline priest lately. He low 60's but showing marvelous versatility in that I can heal well in on level instances and do decent soloing damage. It is very nice to play a pure caster class for me something I have had trouble with in the past never getting anyone save Fanabb out of the 20's. Reflective shield and power word shield are a very nice combo for me at the moment and it is adding a huge portion of fun back into the game. I have to low 70's alts but just have no desire to re run northrend quest again at this time.

Well there ya go, the gang has been updated. Heading off to hellfire to smite my way to Zang and beyond have fun all.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

He ruined my reputation

As some of you may know we recently had a new addition to our family. Tek a Boston Terrier puppy. Well I work at a Vet Clinic and normally don't get all gushy over the puppies and or kittens that come in. Well on Friday Tek went to see the doctor and it was a cold rainy day here in Western New York so I carried him inside my coat.

Kinda ruined the grumpy old man persona I was working towards.

But here he is in all his glory, and yes he thinks he's the biggest dog in the room. Behind him in the photo is Shrinn.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I'm alive still

A quick update on what is happening here at the rl home of Grai's Gang. This last week has been kinda a lost one towards anything productive. SHrinn MB arrived DoA Friday night bummer but easily worked around. The bigger issues is was that I came down with pneumonia. I sure i misspelled it. Well that put me in the ER all day saturday and has effectively put me on my but most of this week.

Yesterday Shrinn had her spinal tap a nasty headache has been the only negative side effect so far.

And the GAng got one member larger yesterday out 8week 4 day old Boston terrier joined our home.

I have a new power supply to order for my PC tomorrow Shrinn new mb should be in mid week I hope and then if all things smile at us we should be back.

So to friends we miss you all terrible each day but god willing only at worst another 7-10 days and we will be annoying you folks again.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Gonne be a bit dark

It appears that my PC at the hard drive. One can only assume the stories where so bad it went into digital cardiac arrest. Posting thru the lovely Shrinn's old PC so wont be many updates new post till i can get the HDD installed.

Doubt the loss will be great just wanted to let the 2 or 3 readers I have know.

Will miss you much and be back and boring as soon as the pieces arrive

Monday, February 9, 2009

Fal's version

Apparently my friend and road companion for these last years of my life, Graimerin, has taken to story telling in his old age. Now Dwarfs and Humans get along well in most regards but there are a few things that dwarfs just do better than humans. Drink, craft the ore's of the earth and last but not least, tell tales. Now I read his and to be honest he left a few blank spots, if ya take me meanin'. I have seen much of this world and many a person in Lordaeron, but never one named Graimerin. The gray man seems to be a name he choose after what he calls his cowardice. I fought side by side with the man and have never seen a moment of cowardice in him.

He touched quickly on the night we meet in Dun Morogh. I also remember it well, if differently than him, I had just settled into my camp and heard this sound like troggs mating coming from the west side of my camp. I jump up and grab my throwing axe and threw it towards the sound. I chase after it with my mace ready to cave in another trogg head and continue cleansing my land of their filth. Well to my surprise I hear the sound of it bouncing off metal and wonderin' if I be battlin' a worthy foe ,an orc.

I let loose with my battle cry and swing my mace in hopes of either disarming or injuring my opponent enough for a quick kill. To my surprise my mace slammed into a shield. The blow bein' stopped cold. I quickly settled into my battle rotation consistently looking for an opening to land at least a blow that would give some advantage. The dark and the skill of the opponent only in my mind confirmed an orc was my opponent. Heh, ya can imagine my surprise when I hear a bull like bellow claiming that this interloper to my camp is not only human but on the king's business.

With the certainty that I could get my mace back to a suitable position to defend myself, I step back into the dim glow of the camp fire and allowed him to speak. Guardedly, he began tellin' me his tale of how he had abandoned his vows to the Silver Hand after the traitor showed his true colors and was tryin' to redeem himself by helpin' when and where he could in the southern lands. My first reaction was horror that one could break a vow, freely given, but these have been odd times of late in Azeroth. My people, the dwarfs of Ironforge have felt the bite of the traitor deeply with the loss of the King's brother with the traitor in the cold forsaken north.

I offered him what hospitality is to be found on the road. Warm fire, a bit of ale, and a fine meal if I do say so me self. During this time it appeared a weight had been removed from his shoulders, simply seeming to be able to accept a kindness started to change him. We settled into a uncomfortable comfortable kind o' silence that any warrior of the road knows these days and made our plans to sleep for the night.

The morning found me alive and ready to continue my cleansing of the kings land of the foul troggs that had sprung up like weeds, during these last few season of battling orcs and plague crazed undead. I started breakin' down me camp and finally took a long look at this stranger who came out of the dark last night, noticing that while only of middle years for a human his hair and beard where completely gray. Feelin' a bit of the wise ass in me creep out, I asked him what a youngster by dwarven standards was doing with all that wrongly colored hair and sorry attempt at a beard. Now friendship can be based on many things but to me, ours will always be based upon his reply. He calmy stated “ I have seen the gates of hell, my young 'Ramord and I am searching for the way back.”

Now I don't take too well to being referred to as young, espically by one of the short lived races. Although that twinkle in his eyes when he said it made me wonder what this man had truly seen. I tossed back over me shoulder a simple claim that I'm out to hunt some troggs and if he is still looking to fill out his bounty, mayhap we can kill twice as many, twice as fast.

I'm a warrior trained from the days when I could barely hold the mace that me father crafted for me, and have seen many a fine warrior take to the field. Still seeing how this man would run into a pack of this vermin and the call upon the power of the light and simply hold them there while I wadded through their ranks decamating them. There are trully many ways to gauge the measure of a man but for me tis simple, can he hold his drink, can he hold his own in battle and most importantly can he turn a phrase and make a joke. While his ability to hold a drink had yet to be determined he made me laugh and was impressive in battle. So after we had our share of trogg killing I offer the chance for him to return to Ironforge with me.

We returned to my beloved mountain home, which I am away from to much to suit me those and these days. We managed to close a tavern or two together, and while he cant drink like a true dwarf he is close for a human. After this I knew that I couldnt let hin return to his war with the armor and weapons he carried into my camp. So I took him offer to the great forge and set about a task that nowdays seems to be me lifes work. Crafting him the best weapons and armor that my small skill in smithing allows me to create.

Many battles have we waged on this world and distant others, we even manged to gather a few others into our group, but seeing as how he wants to be the story teller I let him continue this tale as my small part in correcting his mistakes is done.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Grai's Story

It is at twilight that I begin this story. My story, a story about how I came to be in this frozen waste land; and my pursuit of the traitor who changed my life. I'll try not to make this as rambling as my travels have been these last few years. Although I shall try to include many of the fine people of this great land of Azeroth that I have meet on my journeys, through this land and strange lands where we have fought the taint of the shadow; in its many forms and guises. Who am I ? You may wonder if you are reading these words, I'm just a simple Paladin once of the Silver Hand and now of no group, save a few dedicated friends. My name is Graimerin, I'm not a lofty hero but a simple man trying to find the answers that have eluded me for many many season.

I was born into a lesser house of nobility in fair Lordaeron, the second son of a second son. My choices were limited to entering the clergy or hopefully getting accepted into the Knight of the Silver Hand. While I follow the light I'm not a overly pious man, I do follow the tenets of the light. So I applied and was accepted into the knighthood. During my novitiate I was taught martial skills, from the wielding of mighty two handed arms; too the ability of holding a enemy at bay until others could dispatch it. My instructors often told me I was stubborn as a rock and about as bright so I gravitated to shield work. Marking my spot on the ground with the power of the light in me and allowing my comrades to dispatch our foes. My training during this time was multi faceted and develed heavily into the arts of healing and sustaining my comrades through skirmish and battle.

Then came the glorious day when I was to be knighted, no longer a novice I would be sent out defend, protect and heal the citizens of Azeroth. It was at this time that a terrible plague descended upon my homeland. The dead rose and walked again as mindless slaves to the demon Mal'ganis. Hope sprang in our hearts because our Prince Arthas was on the field of battle. A fellow knight albeit of greater standing by birth and martial prowess would save us. I was fighting in what we now call the eastern plague lands when the story of horror came to my ears. We had been disbanded and named outlaw by our Prince, whom if tales carried on the wind were true then but my beloved city to the sword wantonly killing men, women and children; in his misguided attempt to save them.

I am ashamed to say that I ran. My order disbanded, a man whom I looked up to turned monster, my life turned into chaos in moments. Southward was my direction hoping to outrun the tales of horror that ran before me. In my shock I never removed the items that identified me as a knight, and I would get looks for the citizens wondering if I was another monster coming to destroy their homes and lives.

Rumors continued about a mission to the North where Arthas was to finally confront Mal'ganis. I didn't go as I had given up my allegiance to the silver hand by then. Hindsight now shows that to be a wise decision as none of my former comrades came home from it. Arthas did kill Mal'ganis but the cost was horrible. But his is not my story to tell.

During this time of my wandering I somehow manage to find my way into the southern human lands near Stormwind. Where a call was going up for people to help defend the area against the incursion of beast and man set upon destroying what fragile safety they had won for themselves. I answered this call as more of a way of redeeming myself for the earlier cowardice act I had committed.

It was during this time that I came to meet some wonderful people whom I still call friend. The first was a memorable encounter that I barely escaped from alive. I had taken a commission in the killing of trogs in and around Dun Morogh area. I was to collect their ears as proof of kills. It was getting towards dark when the light can play tricks on the eyes. I saw a campfire and was going to approach to yelling distance when a axe comes flying out of the darkness. I raised my shield to deflect the axe and when I had a chance to focus saw this enraged dwarven warrior rushing at me trying to finish the job he started with the axe.

Now I had battled man and beast and things that were both and neither. Never a battle have I had like the one that day. The power with which he could swing that huge mace was astounding, what was worse was that he didn't leave many openings to counter attack through. Having taken a few small wounds thankfully nothing fatal I screamed that I was working for his king, helping to defend his homeland. That seemed to quell his rage and he slowly lowered his mace, and very gruffly in heavily accented common said speak human.

This is how I came to meet Falromord. A prototypical dwarf, strong as the mountain rock from which he came; and just about as likely to change. It was obvious that he didn't have a lot of trust of me but was willing to at least hear my tale. After I told him of what had gone on in my life these last few years

, he challenged me saying that if I truly deserved the right to my weapon and shield I would continue on this path and do what I could to help.

He accompanied me back to the mountain glory that is Ironforge, where he crafted me armor that replaced my old and worn set. Slowly we began to trust each other and set out on the road of adventure together. Many battles have we fought side by side theses last years. He keeping me in weapons and the finest armors that can be made. Me taking the brunt of these attacks upon my shield and sword arm as he destroys our enemies with the whiling dance of death he creates with his maces.

While there is much more to my fine dwarf friend I shall let him tell his own tale of how he came to be on the road that night.

There are others of whom I shall tell you latter but the hour grows late and this tale grows long so I shall did you goodnight for now.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Why I havn't posted in a few days

Hello again folks. Been trying to get used to some new glasses, they have transition lenses. Easiest way to explain it for anyone under the bifocal cap is this. Imagine your eyes are out of control zoom lenses, every time you move your view point(eyes/head) the image either gets larger or smaller and also becomes fuzzy or clear. That been my life the last couple of days. My dear Shrinn tells me I look like a bobble head doll with a bad spring in it.

Okay some quick updates and maybe a small rant upcoming.

Play time has been somewhat limited for above reason but did manage to get a couple runs in last night. Log into Fal and figured I'll waste time for awhile waiting to see if we would have enough people log in for some guild raids VoA/OS. Get a whisper from a old guildie who needed dps for heroic VoA/OS figured 90 minutes should be plenty of time and if the guild needed me I warned in advance that I would leave.

So I make my way to wintergrasp only to find out we are still filling spots ok short wait but no biggie. Well we finally assemble blow threw Archie like the sub zero winds we have been having over here in the east and move on to OS.

Now I have over an hour till a possible guild run should be no problem. Right? Oops we had mad problems. From people dcing,sleeping, going afk without warning all the wonderful lovely things I despise about pugs. So we are finally moving through the trash no major issues take down western drake. After looting him we move our position up some and somebody face pulls next pat. We lived through but the recount of who,why and what took about 5 minutes. Clear trash skip the whelp drake as we want to try and leave him up for the bonus loot. Clear rest of trash and other drake.

Now we approach Sartharion, the raid leader didn't have a pre planned set up for tanking or healing assignments did I say this was a pug already. So after a period of time we finally make our attempt. Wipe for many reason. Fly back in try again wipe again more reason some same some new. Now we decide to take down drake we left. 10 minutes later we are still talking, I love pugs.

We kill the last drake then take 3 more attempts to finally kill Sartharion. 6 heroic emblems average out to about 12g a piece in repair bills.

Now I will freely admit this was a pug. Also that I am very spoiled by our guild runs we have communication in general vent chat, we have a healer channel so they can plan and raid leaders and tanks know who's doing what; and we rarely ever have bickering. It was just eye opening to see how different life can be than what I am used to.

Ok rants done.

I forgot after that wonderful waste of time I've just chronicled we did manage a guild heroic of AN. Seeing how are secret weapon was on-line. Grai managed to get the belt of the last boss which was a big upgrade for him. No trinket but ended the night on a relaxing run with the guild.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Helping them find you

The Big Bear Butt Blogger has ask that we throw up a short note concerning his reader. He upgrade something that wont talk to somethings else. So if you haven't gotten a feed update you need to re visit his sight and sign up for his new and improved feed reader.

The Big Bear Butt Blogger

So head on over and sign up if you haven't gotten your daily dose of bearness.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Raid Night Beatdowns

Last night we had VoA and 10 man OS up on the calender raids. So the entire raid was logged in early and we decided to do VoA simple because we had Wintergrasp and assumed if you had control and the battle started you were fine. Well as soon as we start on the 1st trash pulls we get the raid will reset timer, from first trash pull to dead boss,looted, and portback to Dalaran maybe 12 minutes. 2 nice t7 chest pieces were the loot.

Now we were moving unto the second part of our schedule doing 10 man OS. Clear the trash and take down the two nearer drakes (left and right), then talk about if we wanted to try leaving the last drake up and decided against it. So we clear her out the way, I think its a female seeing as she has all the whelp eggs; then continue off to the big badie. Main tank on dragon, OT on add patrol and the occasional of heal boom another dead dragon.

So it was at this point maybe 45 minutes to an hour into the raid night schedule that 3B inquires if we would like to poke are heads into Naxx and see if revenge can be had after harsh introduction last week. Ready check for interest everyone is so we head over there.

Now the raid make up consisted of 2 tanks, 3 healers, 5 dps. Windshadow(mt),Graimerin(ot),Ruune(heals),Para(heals),Lixie(heals),Cassie(dps),Barre(dps),
Ely(dps),Cal(dps) and Sinnas(dps). So instead of trying the kitting method for swarm boy we went with the tank and spank + power heal version of the fight. 1st attempt should have been a win but something happened I either taunted the wrong mob or something else incredibly moronic because at around 30% health and during a loctus swarm I ended up with not only the crypt guard but also the boss. 2nd attempt and a better behaved paladin it was dead boss Sidhe Devils first Naxx 10 boss down.

So heady on the wine of success, we keep going threw some minor trash, and come to the grand widows room. Really fun trash before boss just cause the groups are big lol and then we are looking at her, and her gang of four. So its decide I'll take the four attendants off to the left as wind occupies the lady on the right. Well all the dps types join me for the intial spanking off her attendants then they move off to her. I kept insulting their job choice and family trees while occasionally judging the lady and giving her a bash with the shield. When we would get the raid warning about her enrage I would call kill target, dps would switch and dispatch them. First time 90% of the raid had seen that fight and it was a flawless one shot.

Now it is starting to get near when Para one of our healers need to log off but we wanted to get one try in on the final wing boss. Position, explain, pull. Oops Para had some weird thing happen and he dcd. Now he's main tank healer and it turned into a Chinese fire drill but we got a great look at the mechanics of the fight. Switched out Night for Para and gave it try #2. This attempt was perfect ranged and heals all positioned well to make my spider grabbing job easier and we all got our spider wing achievement.

We started this at about 7pm server time. We were all back in Dalaran by 10 pm server time. We did for are smallish guild a huge night of raiding content. We all learned from the errors of our previous Naxx atempt.

In closing we kicked but. Wind as raid leader had ready explanations, everyone knew the basic dynamics of the fight, super healing, and massive sustained on target dps. .

Thank you very much my fellow guildies for sharing a ubber evening with me, it would have been fun just doing the stuff as our guild the success is truly icing on top.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I like Big Crits and I can not Lie

With all apologies to Sir Mix-A-Lot nothing else conveys why I min-max on some of my toons. Case in point, my left for the dust bin hunter; dear ol' Padrad. He started his Wow life post BC and was my PvP battleground diversion. But he was originally a survival hunter simple to cause massive havoc to flag carriers in WSG. It was very fun to watch a twink get wing clip rooted as the rest of the alliance team crashed around him and got the flag back.

Then came the time to level out of the 29 bracket and challenge Azeroth and beyond so I went Beast Mastery. I went the spec that contained when high enough level the built in I-Win button. Now a enraged pet that isn't subject to CC or fear also was very fun in BG's, so I would get massive yellow numbers and still play to my favorite aspect of the game.

By the time I got Paddy to level 70 BC was waining but with the help of the darling Shrinn on her druid we did have the chance to experience some 2v2 arena love getting me the 2 handed s3 axe a couple pieces of s2 gear and generally just having fun in game together.

Well as some know her computer melted down and we haven't been able to replace it yet so with no arena on the horizon Paddy was relegated to the yeah I'll get to ya.

BM at low levels in Wrath offered some nice things pre 3.0.8 but was never over awed by the exotic pets. I mean come on the great dwarven hunter Bram(unknown spec) has his red gorrila; and Paddy has PrimalGrai so if Bram doesn't need a special pet Paddy didn't either.

Watched BRK's movie on trap dancing and how the survival spec put out massive crits and figured hmmm I do love big yellow numbers lets check it out. He gained almost 10% to his crit rating and the occasional free shot and now his traps actually get used. I've removed volley from the action bar, and am now looking forward to leveling so I can get a Polar Bear from dragonblight area.

I have no expectation of raiding on Paddy, heck I have Fal for big yellow numbers for raiding. Just now days when I run into to place a trap on my current target and auto attack changes to melee that big ol honking s3 axe goes Whoomp and throws up a crit sometimes. Yeah my melee weapon isn't a stat generator only now woohoo.

So while I do not link damage meters to stoke my e-peen ego I do run blizz combat text so I can smile when one of the dwarfs lands a massive hit.

I mean heck even Grai lands some impressive crits for a prot paladin these days, the old joke that pally's should duel wield shields would be awesome now.

So I shall take my leave of you fine folks now, and once again go in search of over sized numbers in blizz's scrolling combat text be they yellow or white, and sadly miss the days when Paddy's companion was able to generate orange ones.

But as Sir Mix-A-Lot said while i admit to my love of crits you other players can't lie and love them also.

Monday, January 26, 2009

My Little Warrior Done went and Grew Up

For as long as I have had Grai, I have had Fal. At most I think they were 5 levels apart through all the journeys. From the vanilla WoW days to Burning Crusade and now into and through Northrend. One of the givens to having them both was Grai is the main and Fal is the other guy.

For vanilla Fal lived as a arms warrior happily swinging his big ol honking 2 handers. Remember the joy of the old mace specialization, that random stun proc was a life saver many times. Overpower please Mr. Rogue try and dodge I lived for that to light up. Then came Kang and i switch to bleed effects and axes.

During all that time when asked the answer was easy Grai is my main, yes even in the bad old days I had my main as a Pally tank. The Cathedral in the monestary how many times did I run that for my sheild seems like hundreds in retospect. We were know where near the ubber must have tanks the BC turned us into but I loved being out front just getting hit.

BC was Fal's first foray into to the fine art of fury warriordom. Had the old Rogue in Plate spec. , loved bgs where i could pop berserk and or death wish and eat locks for lunch. This was before whirlwind effected both weapons and oh the damge increase that brought to the party. Just there was absolutely no plate gear designed for fury warriors pre t5 stuff and the first badge rewards where all tanking. So Fal farmed and mined and dreamed of being a over the top dps toon.

Well then we got the pre patch for Wrath. We knew Titan's Grip was comming first it was gonna be a huge speed penalty, then when it came to live it was only a extra 5% to hit we needed; now even thats gone. To me all the changes along with the abundance of plate with prime stats for fury warriors leads me to call this the fury expansion.

The title refers to a simple comparison this is Fal's armory profile this is Grai's.

Friday, January 23, 2009

We Went, We Saw, We Skinned

Sidhe Devils entered 10 man OS as a guild last night for the first time. We had 2 tanks, 3 healers, and 5 dps. We all knew what was needed of us and came suitably prepared. We left with achievements, skins of various styles and a sense of guild accomplishment.

As this was our first attempt we took down all 3 drakes. As I was on Grai I got to be the portal hoper and found out I need to be quicker to the glowy purple thing. We didn't lose anyone during those fights just shouldn't have our dps first through. The attendants don't hit me hard but they do hit non-tanks for a fair bit of damage.

We managed the lava wall like pros. Excellent calls for direction and which way to move, in or out. It showed one of the reason I truly love my guild. Everyone was ready and on their A game. Yes I know this isn't a difficult raid but to run a first time guild group with no wipes I believe shows that prepared we can tackle anything.

Also I have learned to be quiet. Instead of being a chatter box during the raid I actually shut up which might be a epic win for our raid leaders.

Tonight is the spider wing, hopefully good teamwork and people will pay off again. I know it will be a fun time spent with my guildies so any loot is a bonus.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

We are Going In

Well tonight hopefully Sidhe Devils will do our first guild raiding. We have Vault and OS on the schedule, for the 10 mans. Lucky me I have two toons to offer to help if we need spots filled. Grai who has tanked 10 man OS and Fal who has dps both. So if all goes well one of my guildies or maybe even me will get a nice bonus bag of emblems and gold this evening, along with a chance for tier gear.

On other news from the gang, Carack has gotten up to 425 enchanting. Woot to materials being lowered for those now the push to 450 in earnest. A certain bear wants the new stam to bracers chant.

Outside of that no real news except the grind for rep continues and most likely will for awhile still. Well work beckons, so i will hopefully write of glowing victories tonight in our raids.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Kinda like going Home

Just after I got Fal his 400 unarmed skill and his 4 weapon skills to 400 achievement, I get a whisper from a dear friend needing help in CoT :Strath. I asked what they needed tank or dps , figuring tank. Well I got the first pleasant surprise when I found out they needed dps and that meant that lil 'ol Fal could go hit things.

Zaanah who had whispered me said the invite was on its way when the second pleasant surprise happened. Jerdaz was also in the group because he invited me, now Jerdaz is one of the legion of alts Kiernan he's a good friend and old guildie. So 2 of the group I know to be old guildies from Essence of Grandeur a very good guild on Kael'thas US. So I accept the invite only to get pleasant surprise number 3 Carrador and Azzarea, warrior and rogue respectfully are also in the group.

All members of EoG when for some odd reason they let me run it way back when. It felt to me like a EoG guild run back into heroics. Brought back many happy memories and i had hopes of forming new ones, and those hopes were realized.

Now way back in the days when Kara was hard Carrador would change specs sometimes OT sometimes fury depending on what we needed on any given run. So tanking wasn't gonna be a worry. Azzarea has always been a very good rogue timely interrupts and good dps. Zaanah is and always will be the person I think of when I think of frost mages. To many good runs watching her own the dps meters while maintaining CC if used and just a very nice person. Jerdaz is just a dam good player I don't care which one of his innumerable alts he's on his skill will show through.

So we decide before we even start the run that we are not trying for the 30 minute timer none of them had ever done starth culling on heroic and I have only done it as a Pally tank. So we get started with a easy lets just beat this attitude have some fun and see some new levels of content. Meathook gave us a bit of a problem the first time he kept interrupting Jerdaz's heals and the dot wiped us the first try. Second attempt after a few changes in our strategy we collected our loot and badges and moved on.

The rest of the run was good communication and even better teamwork. We executed our plan on the instance and got our rewards. Azzerea was able to claim the epic fist weapon from Mal'Ganis and we all secured 4 badges. Zaanah offered us a port and poof back in Dalaran.

I don't remember whom asked if we could run another one. We all agreed and decided that heroic Violet Hold was quick and close. Sounded like a winner so off we go to protect the citizens from the motley collection of felons from the azerothian universe.

Again I'm the only one who has done this instance on heroic, so we discuss which bosses we have seen and the strategies for them. The only 2 bosses the majority of the group hasn't seen are the bird boss and the ethereal boss. I had seen both so figured the rng would never give us both in one run and assumed I could explain on the fly.

First 5 waves no problem so what boss, Bird boss quick easy explanation burn him then clean up the adds. We aced it. Mana and food back up during our little break 5 more waves of trash dispatched no worries. 2nd boss ethereal I was there and the rng hates me. SO i give a quick and poor explanation of my prefered kitting method, forgot one major point that we needed to turn back the way we had come and not across the floor. Ooops that one was completely my fault.

So we regroup inside get our buffs reset and burn through the first 11 portals, nice. Now this time the group shined beautiful kitting and massive sustained dps we gets loot and badges. 5 more waves of trash and we get our big blue felon, dispatched her with no issue. 4 more achievements for my friends and the bonus one of not having any damage done to the door.

2 heroics cleared rep earned badges gathered and loot for all. I believe Zaanah got the epic bracers from the final boss in VH. For any group a good run and not a bad few hours invested. A group that had never done either instance on heroic defiently a good job.

Me I got a nice dps ring but the best part was new memories with old friends. This game we play sometimes sees us move from guilds for many reasons. Wishing to raid, schedule changes, wanna be in a guild full of bloggers; and many that are for lousy reasons. I left EoG to join Sidhe Devils because of blogging and burn out. So running a quasi EoG guild run heroic was kinda like going to your hometown. All the good things I remembered where still there maybe a little shiny er or maybe just a new suit of clothes. But the decent people I remember and miss are still there. 10 levels higher and wiser in the tricks blizz plays on us but still the same wonderful warm and welcoming people.

So to close this long and ramble post Thank You all for being who you are. The longer I play this game I realize its not the game that keeps me here its the people. Be they old friends, current friends or friends I have yet to meet. You are the ones that help me find fun and keep me coming back.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Have I said I love Titans Grip

For almost all of my 3+ years of playing WoW I've been a Paladin tank. Every once in awhile, I would spec holy just to get a different view of the fight. Not this time around Falromord my dwarf warrior is getting more play time has better gear and is generally much more fun to play. Like alot of places the guild I'm in our healers are catching up with the dps and tanks, so we dont have enough currently to run multiple heroics.

Enter Fal from stage right. Short bad attitude and carries to very big maces. He just dinged 80 Sunday, but is currently hit capped for Titans Grip (TG), with the penalty still in place. Over 4k AP in 5 man groups and seeing how he has been running with a druid tank 28% crit in berserker stance.

He hits that primitive note inside me that says as a man I'm supposed to beat something up and take their stuff. I give our tank a second or two to get good threat generation and then KAPOW lets bring da pain.

He and Grai have truly always existed together since I started playing. They have normally never been more than 5 levels apart at anyone time. Just normally Fal provides money and gear to the pally. Fury warriors had it tough in BC wearing whatever cast off bits off armor we could grab as we approached Kara. Lots of leather and or mail gear, and Kara had absolutely no true fury pieces other than the T4 tokens.

This xpac we have TG, we have plate with hit,crit,expertise and oh yeah two big old honking weapons with outsized stats. I play more with Fal's spec these days than Grai's trying to squeeze out that last drop of dps. I use the EJ spread sheets to find out the best rotation for dps per rage point. I'm in nerd heaven.

Instancing is easy now, because our lack of CC doesn't hurt us these days. So will Grai always be the "main", I think so; or possibly I will have co-mains. I just know that when I see looking for dps for x these days I'm happy to respond and say I can do that.

Monday, January 12, 2009

I've Been Scooped

Yesterday was a very eventful day for little ol' Fal. When i logged in to do some quest in Icecrown a couple of guildies mentioned that CoT: Strat was the non-heroic daily and were putting together a group. They had a tank so I got to go beat stuff up. Ahh the joy of a lolgrip warrior.

So we went in and had a successful clear but we had another guildie that wanted to make the run but didnt , because we were full so we ran it again swapping Fal out for Grai to tank and Nas came as dps.

Then I had RL stuff that needed to be taken care off so I log off for a bit and got chores done.

Having a few free hours I hop back on and timed it perfectly as the guild was building a group for HoL, so I offer my dps and away we went again. Started the instance about 20% short of leveling and maybe 300 rep from honored with Argent Crusade. We figured out the first boss (don't let him grow) and the rest went down easy till Loken. Loken took 2 tries we decided to just eat the storm and keep pounding.

After loken i was 1400 ish xp from the ahhh so we did one last trash pull and this happened.

So I have a thing I do every Sunday night and when i got back home I check and see that The Big Bear Butt Blogger scooped me.

Thank you to all the guildies who made these last 10 levels very fun and lets go beat some more stuff up.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

10 Man OS

Got a whisper last night from a friend saying they needed help in 10 man OS. I said sure switched from Fal to Grai and away we went. Mostly a pug group but I imagine some of his guildies but about half of us had never seen it, including me. Clear what limited trash there is and then it was onto the drakes. They went down easy after the portal phases were explained.

Now we get to Sartharion again good detailed account of his lava wall ability, and we engauge. First attempt the MT positioned the dragon short of the spot and the melee got caught in the lava wall. Second attempt went like clock work boom dead dragon. 4 emblems for me in about 40 mins. no tier loot as I had a lousy roll, but saw a entry level wrath raid and had some fun.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My Favorite 5 Man Story

Ok The Big Bear Butt Blogger is asking for stories about or favorite 5 man instance story where we had to use or groups class abilities to overcome the instance.

Before I venture into my story, a little background about Graimerin and what it was like trying to be a Paladin Tank pre-BC. I leveled him 1-70 as protection specced and up to 60 pre-BC. End game as a paladin then was not for tanking, heck even our tier gear looked like a dress. So with the pre-BC patch changes paladins changed for good or bad eh thats another post.

Simply stated we had no ranged pull, a blue rage bar that depleted very , very quickly and almost no gear even close to being designed for protection spec.

Enter BC we got most of the commonly used abilities that are common now.

Ok now for the story.

This goes back to when you needed to be revered with a faction to get the heroic key for that dungeon. I was in a different guild and we where getting ready for Kara. I had a few of my D3 pieces and needed badges, so I could have me some epics. Well the group I was in consisted of myself on Grai, a shaman healer (Archangle), a frost mage (Zaanah), and 2 warlocks (Vagar)and (Kiernaan). This group of good friends became Grai's gang long before there ever was a blog. So I had read that heroic slavepens was supposed to be the easiest one so off we go for adventure,glory and badges.

Well we were doing ok as we plodded threw the instance again the majority of us in crafted blues and or dungeon sets. The casters might have begun working on there BoP tailoring epics not sure it was a long time ago. So we get to the room we all came to hate. Multiple mobs with varying abilities that could destroy your carefully laid plans. I marked up the mobs knowing that the rays could fear and the priestess had that nasty mind control that would happen at the worst possible time. Well first 3 or 4 pulls end with a long run back from the graveyard when either Vagar or Kiern had one of the greatest ideas ever in WoW.

The told me throw your shield and drag the group way back here where we have stuff cleared and we will use chain fearing as we move threw the mobs. What was and is a fun way of handling that room Zaanah would sheep the rays I'd drag the rest as far away from there buddies as possible and BOOM 2 are running in terror. Misjudge how far one would run and it went bad but we learned how to abuse that room.

I learned that having skilled players of any class, many times Kiern came one one of his alts their are many; can and will overcome the special tricks that the devs throw at us. If you have never seen how much fun chain sheeping + chain fearing can be you missed a fun time.

We as a group got better gear and left Heroic SP behind along time ago but even these days of AoE tanking and speed runs, I still miss working out how to get by this ****ed up room,boss, etc.

These days if the group wants to I'll do a speed run, or if its a guild run I'm just as happy to let my group do there stuff. I love the team work aspect of this game and the trust and bonds of friendship that can form from inclusion instead of exclusion.

Random thoughts

Not alot today WoW wise but a couple of big changes in RL.

First off I'm back to feeling okay had a touch of the stomach bug this weekend which was why I never made it back Saturday for a few guild runs we wanted to try. Fal made it to 78 last night when i did duck in for about a hour.

And secondly and most important I'm back in the work force. As my in game guildies and friends know I have had a couple major back operations. So I had kinda given up hope of finding something I could do that would fit in with what i need to do so I don't lock up. Well as soon as I figured there was no chance "poof" a job that was willing to work with me about what I can and can't do.

I'm excited and nervous and now will be busy 3 days a week with the chance of more hours and days being added if my back can hold up.

Best wishes to anyone who is pursuing RL or in game goals I found out that when it looks the bleakest good can happen.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Full Sidhe Devils Heroic

Well today Sidhe Devils did our first WotLK heroic as a full guild run. The line up was Para holy Pally, Cassie on her rogue, Windshadow kitty dps, Suvon hunter and little ol' Grai prot pally. We formed up and gave heroic AN the old college try but couldn't seem to figure out a way to handle the waves from the first boss. So we decided that heroic UK would have to take the beating so we could be avenged.

So we all get out to the instance get buffs set and off we went. I had done heroic UK before so I explained how I like to potion the mobs and which ones we could skip seeing how it wasn't going to be a full clear rep run.

Para was concerned that he wasn't geared properly but we did fine once the silly pally out front didn't try pulling full hallways at once. One of the coolest moments in the run was after the first boss when 4 in the group got the achievement for their Emblem of heroism. The wand dropped which couldn't be used by anyone so it went to vendor trash. That was the only drop that wasn't useful to someone.

The next 2 bosses where much more generous to us with Suvon getting the dagger which will help him maintain his awesome dps when the savage cobalt slicer Nerf hits and Wind and Suvon both getting awesome drops from the final boss. Wind got the druid staff that is very very good and Suvon got the epic crossbow.

So we all managed to get at least 3 badges each and have a great time together. The emblem gathering for the devils is in full swing now and I couldn't be happier. Seemed a great way to start into the new year.