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Shoot first, ask questions later.

February 5th, 2010 Comments off

Blizzard again in their infinite wisdom have chosen to out of the blue nerf paladins again via an immediate hot fix.  Last night paladins sacred duty was dropped from 4%/8% stamina increase to 2%/4%.   I do not understand why paladin fixes are hot fixed right away.  They never wait till the following Tuesday, when they can release a mini-patch that would include updated talent descriptions and give players a heads up.  I was already off of the game when the rolling restarts took place.  It is my understanding based on various forum reading that this had many a tanks looking at gear trying to figure out what is going on.

Is the nerf bad?  Not really, I lost ~1K health.  It is the fact that they continually patch first and tell later with paladins.  I do not know how many other classes have been tinkered with and tweaked on the fly with no heads up to the player base.  I feel this is a bad practice that if continues will leave a horrible taste in many a players mouths.

Here is the blue post

Quote from: Crygil (Source)

We are making some adjustments to tank survivability based on what we’re seeing in Icecrown Citadel. We feel this is particularly important in preparation for upcoming Heroic attempts. This is tricky and occasionally subjective, so we might very well make more adjustments as we get even more data.

Paladin (Forums / Talent Calculator)

  • Sacred Duty now provides 2 / 4% Stamina, down from 4 / 8% Stamina. The cooldown advantages of the talent remain unchanged.

Death Knight (Forums / Talent Calculator)

  • Frost Presence now provides 8% Stamina, up from 6% Stamina.
  • Icebound Fortitude now provides 30% base damage reduction, up from 20% damage reduction. For a geared tank with high defense, this translates to 50% damage reduction, up from 40%.
It’s important to note that we aren’t trying to single out paladins here. We like the tank balance of warriors and druids at the moment, and we have a larger sample size of warrior tanks that we can compare. Another solution would have been to buff warriors, death knights and druids and then increase boss damage accordingly. Obviously, that would have been a much larger change with greater risks and a longer delay.

Though Ardent Defender is always a possible target for changes, we like that this talent provides such a distinction between warriors and paladins. Rather than have all the tanks have the same health, armor, avoidance and cooldowns, we’d rather have four unique tanking classes rather than just superficial or artistic differences. Yes, that design is harder to balance, but we think class distinction is ultimately more interesting, which is better for the long term health of the game. The goal remains to have all four tanks be viable for any encounter, assuming sufficient gear and skill, and any differences in performance on individual encounters to be minor. “Minor” is obviously a subjective term.

Please note that the death knight change will result in a small survivability increase in PvP, which we think is appropriate. We chose it partially with that in mind.

As you can see DK’s actually had gotten a buff. My DK tank, under geared, now has more health then my ICC geared paladin.  Granted, that comment is misleading,  my paladin has more effective health.  However in ICC, with the debuff chill of the throne, I do not know how much my shield stopping 2.5K makes a difference when the DK has 4 emergency abilities to be used regularly on short intervals.

Categories: General Tags:

Yup…That’s Me!

January 22nd, 2010 Comments off

I love the new recording format for The Instance, they have been consistently recording the last few weeks at around 2PM CST.  I tune in while at work and it certainly helps make the time go by.   As a result, I won the authenticator they gave away today.   You can hear my named called out at 1:28:12 on ep #175.

Thanks for the authenticator guys, it will be put to good use as we have had some bad luck with hacks lately.  We can arm one more officer.

Fail of the Lich King?

December 9th, 2009 Comments off

FallofTheLichKing

Well, patch 3.3 has dropped and those of us lucky enough to get on early have had some immersion into the new instances and quests.  I started the night out very happy and ended it in almost complete nerd rage.  The picture above, seems to look like “Fail” instead of “Fall”.  Look again, a quick glance and you see fail and that is how I feel as of now.  I have a laundry list of things I am not pleased about – the new camera follow is AWFUL! – they replaced the wall of yellow “Additional Instances Cannot be Launched” with a load screen, then a lovely debuff that does not allow you to run instances again for 15 minutes.  That is AWFUL!  The pinnacle of the 5-man dungeon “Halls of Reflection” crashes upon finishing it, so you are unable to get the loot you deserve or hand in the final quest.  I played on the PTR almost the entire time it was up.  I used the random dungeon feature and saw a finished HoR run.  Blizzard seems to have ZERO scale prediction.  And this to me leads me to the big problem.  This company makes millions a month on subscriptions, yet they cannot seem to plan for capacity.  Plan ahead, scale more then you need, I am sure you have the money, or is that cutting into the Bobby Kotick yacht fund?  You always know you have an influx of returning/new subscribers per patch and this boost of users is ruining the subscribed experience.  This just has bad planning written all over it.  Were they prepared?  Did they adequately test?  I do not know these answers.   I seem to think it was pushed early.  This allows them to address issues under stress prior to the holiday, however it allows them to not lose more users to holiday dull drum.   I think they pushed it to help the experiences of new holiday subscribers.  We now are beta-testing the events for the people that will log on Dec 25 and beyond compensation, in fact we are paying for it.  Finding out that the Lich Kings final confrontation will not be until sometime in April – if the 28 day lock out per wing is consistent.  Way to draw out the patch.  These problems are inherent to MMORPGS, it is just a fine line to walk, we want information, then admitting that the problem is load and heavy traffic.   We want the info, we don’t want to hear it was something that could have been prevented.  You know your subscriber numbers and you should be prepared for all those users to log-in at any time.

To put it bluntly, “You were not prepared!”

Categories: 3.3, Blizzard, General Tags: , , ,

Is Raiding like Football?

November 17th, 2009 Comments off

I have been thinking a lot about this the last few days, especially after working on TotGC.  Football is a very tactical sport.  Those not familiar with the sport do not understand the intricacies of the the game.  There is a chess match going on, not just big hits and guys in tight spandex.  Teams constantly sacrifice position or players to see what the other teams scheme maybe, then they use one of their checks to adjust based on the movements or tells that are made.  These systems have built-in redundancies to help compensate for on the fly adjustments.  Now this is in a  perfect world, with two good coaches.   Then it just comes down to execution and still.   I can draw a corollary to raiding in WoW.

We are the Offense, the encounter is the defense.   The RNG is the audible called by the encounter.  Think about it for a second – Take ToC for example – on Northrend Beasts – we know timing on the impales, timing on the stomp, we know snobolds will happen, we know there will be fire – we do not know who will get the snobold or where the fire will land.  Raiding teams have set plans to address these changes – for us – only remove the snobolds from healers, get out of the fire, etc.  We have back-ups on when to use a battle-rez, who handles what when a person goes down – for instance, when our rogue has to run out on Jaraxxus when he gets Legion Flame – I know I have to interrupt the Fel Fireball while he runs out.  These redundancies and understanding of them help improve success.

With all this being said, success then is dependant on execution and recognizing these changes and making the adjustments.  I notice this all the time, especially when we are bringing in people that are not part of our regular raid group.  We developed a synergy (yup mark that off your buzz-word-bingo) while working on Yogg.  People became very aware of everyone’s responsibility and eventually we figured it out and succeeded.  Another thing with this is practice, you have to try encounters to recognized what certain things mean, how spells work, posistioning, maps (Yoggs brain room) and how to adjust to them.

So lets look at it, to raid you need to practice, build redunancy, recognize tendancies, adjust to deficiancies, and execute.  Football carries the same things.   Football is the only real good comparison because of the setup.  It starts from a static start, most other sports are always moving and always flowing.  Football works a lot like the boss encounters.  When it is all said and done, it should boil down to skill and execution.  To me, this has been proven by a few guilds going into Ulduar and clearing it in just blues.  So stay out of the fire, hit the right buttons, and win!

Edit: Added link to the blue run for Cadowin.

Categories: General, Raiding Tags: ,

We still get a dress…T10 Preview

November 5th, 2009 Comments off

I like the look.  I really do.  I am happy to see the pink chin guard bug corrected.  I was really beginning to think Blizzard really did hate Paladins and wanted them to go play DK’s.  Anyway here is the full screen shot of it (click to engorge)

huge-pa

Tier 10 Preview

I do think the shoulders and helm are pretty badass.  I do not PVP however, the look of that set is flamboyent and awesome!  (I never thought I would say those two things together)

Season 8 Preview

Season 8 Preview

Categories: 3.3, General Tags: ,

We were’nt alone in the Dark, we had each other.

November 2nd, 2009 Comments off

WoWScrnShot_103109_002115

We went in Friday night, wiped a few times, however we resolved and knocked him out.

Took a while, but our luck was better then Dec’s luck getting a squashling.  Since we have finished current regular content we are going to start on Heroic ToC and some Ulduar Hard modes.

Great Job Guys!  I am very proud of all of you.

Categories: General, Raiding Tags: ,

My Apology to GC

October 29th, 2009 Comments off

So Ghostcrawler updated the post.

My response was not about the topic. I was responding to the classy “DIAF” part of the post.

You’re welcome to whatever opinion you want to try and support in these forums. Telling the developers to die in a fire when you don’t agree with them isn’t something that is going to lend strength to your argument.

If you get amazingly upset because Blizzard nerfed your class or doesn’t agree with your point, feel free to stand on a mountaintop and scream, post epithets in your guild forum, or go butcher Pygmy Surf Crawlers in Durotar if it makes you feel better. Don’t bring it here.

Original – Response in page 3

and

With that said, we’re just not sure a Lay on Hands change really accomplishes much from a balance perspective, while it feels bad to lose such an iconic ability. We just don’t think the bang for the buck is there on this change, which is why we reverted it. But I’m not going to promise we won’t touch it.

Original

To break it down – Lay on Hands is still in the game, it is in the current PTR as only on others, however it will return to it’s original glory.  GC’s comments were directed towards a flame poster telling him to die in a fire.  So this is why a lot of people could not find the notes anywhere.

My reaction was the typical reaction of any class with one of it’s iconic abilties on the verge of going away.  They saw the problems realted to this and have decided to reverse it.  Since that is fixed, get a new PTR build out with it corrected and fix the exit game crash on the PTR.  Thanks, Bye!

Categories: 3.3, General Tags: