Friday, June 20, 2008

A few mini blog entries…

Knowing how to have fun…
I must say that I really wish I could enjoy multiple games the same way that The Ancient Gaming Noob (TAGN) enjoys them. During the course of my gaming career, I typically play one game at a time. I might *try* other games and even *switch* but I rarely ever play several games at the same time. TAGN, on the other hand, manages to play several games all at the same time. He’ll play WoW for a night or two, then Eve, then EQ2, then LOTRO, then something else and so on. The amazing thing is that while he progresses very slowly because he is splitting his time across multiple games, he nonetheless progresses towards end-game in all of these games. From a pure experience standpoint, he is experiencing far more content than I am just playing my single game.

The irony is that when I read his WoW related posts, I often skip them because it’s a bit boring to read about how someone tackled and experienced an instance like Mana Tombs for the first time when I have easily completed it 50 or more times. However, his writing is so thorough and well-done that when he writes about other games I haven’t played, like Eve, I feel like I really “get” the Eve experience.

The other thing I admire about TAGN is that he only plays things that are fun to him. If it’s not fun, he just moves on to something else. A lot of us, myself included, get caught so caught up in the reward system of a game that we will grind out all kinds of unfun things to get our shiny new toy.

Rogue School
I put another Rogue School article up today. I don’t really consider this a “rogue” blog, but this is something that I want to do. Once I get a few more up, I’ll add link list on the left as a reference tool. It’s a bit of a struggle because doing these articles right is going to take some work and since I can only spend so much time writing – it means I’ll write less about other topics I enjoy. So – I decided that I am really just going to try to limit these school posts to one a week (likely Fridays). My intent is to make them sequential in the sense of what I think a new Rogue should be learning or doing. Eventual topics will include things like talent reviews, how NOT to get ganked, addons and macros, and so forth.

Why I prefer Shamans over Mages…
Blizzard CM Bornakk wrote on the forums that “having multiple CC classes can make things easier in some places, but (sic) a lot of players put more emphasis on CC than is needed.” I agree 210%. If you ever sat in a party with me while we were LFM, you would find that I am very outspoken about taking Mages simply because they can CC.

The most popular DPS class to group with are Mages. Everyone wants a Mage because they have great range DPS and the best CC in the game (Polymorph). The least popular are likely Fury Warriors, Ret Paladins and DPS Shamans – because they offer no ability to CC a mob. Even Shadow Priests and Druids can shackle/mind control and sleep in some instances.

The irony is that while you would think that the Mage in LFG would make an instance smoother – it can actually go far far smoother with another class. Part of the reason is that Mages are so in-demand that you are more likely to get a terrible Mage than a terrible anything else. The point here is not that Mages suck, but that just because someone is a Mage – that doesn’t make them more desirable in a group. A well geared and knowledgeable Mage is a wonderful and formidable thing. However, when you are LFM – you are that much more likely to get an under-geared idiot instead because everyone and their dog wants a Mage in group.

For whatever reason, DPS Shamans struggle to find groups and the opposite happens. It’s actually quite easy to find a well geared and smart Shaman in the LFG channel. And while they offer no CC, the group buffs are pretty damn awesome and they have excellent interrupts, including things like Tremor totem. The simple fact is that runs with Mages often seem harder than they should and runs with Shamans seem easier than they should.

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