Friday, September 21, 2012

A Dalaran-day of AFK

People who know me in-game will undoubtedly tell you I know how to put the "A" in AFK. It's not something I do on purpose, but rather one of those things that 'just' happens, and I've been doing it more and more while waiting for the new content.

Standing AFK in Dalaran is bound to have some interesting results, even if it is an old content capital now. Since Wrath, I've always had my hearthstone set to Dalaran because of the portals. Even when they took those away and left us with only the Stormwind/Orgrimmar portal, I did not change my hearthstone's location. I often have to be in Wintergrasp for odd reasons, need Northrend level herbs, or needed an easy way to get to the Dragon Soul.

Here's some screen shots I took while working on stuff for Transroguerification; which required me to log various characters. I like to think this is a pretty accurate representation of how I've been spending my time during this pre-expansion lull: stand AFK in Dalaran, relog, stand AFK, relog, do dailies, hearthstone to Dalaran, stand AFK some more.

Sea turtle 1 Pain suppression 1
Sea turtle 3 Pain suppression 2
Sea turtle 2 Hooves on fire
Triple dupechargers Neigh

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Mists of Pandaria stable

This took way too long to figure out, but after stable-6.png, I think I've finally settled on it. I've also decided to rewrite this post and include my Cataclysm stables, too. (This may or may not have to do with Erinys' comment below.)

In any case, the idea is to go from this

The names in bold are those pets I've already released; only Echeyakee (Saliman) and Humar (Fender) remain as they were my first tames from when I was a baby hunter (aw yeah getting ganked in the Barrens, cough).

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Reins of the Crimson Dupecharger

A couple of bloggers have posted about this in the past weeks and months, including Jim Younkin from Power Word: Gold and Feid from Clockwork Riot. I particularly liked the PW: Gold post because of the clear evidence it brings forth; I've actually met people in the game (and so many on the forums) that are convinced there is no such thing as duped items. The duping started rather early on our server, somewhere mid-January Deathcharger prices had already dropped down to 60-70,000 gold. Since the start of the summer, however, many servers are really being flooded with these mounts.  Jim Y. explains how he personally deals with this; his take on how it affects the server economy was quite an interesting read.

I, however, bring you my poor-man's point of view. I should say up front, though, that if you are a puritan when it comes to WoW, I suggest you stay away from buying any Vials, Dupechargers, Sea Horses or TCG mounts at "too good to be true"-prices, since pretty much everything is being duplicated right now. There is no way of determining which mount has been ill-obtained, and the chances of it being legit are almost infinitesimally small.

I got my deathcharger for 22,000g the day before JD wrote about getting his and the discussion in the comments made me think about this again. I do not condone cheating in any way, in fact the whole item-duplication-thing has done nothing else but bother me from the start. Knowing that, this was an odd decision to take on my part - but I thought it through for a couple of weeks, and now I more or less have an idea of where I stand. I ended up buying the mount, because I doubt an opportunity like this will present itself again in the future. It is obviously worth about ten times the price it's going for now, and the duped stock will start to clear out once Blizzard has fixed this exploit (i.e. Mists launch). All though by then I expect anyone and everyone's mother will have this mount, so it's interesting to see how Blizzard will deal with it.

It is ridiculous, by the way, how long this has been going on and Blizzard not doing anything about it. A lot of people will say, just do not buy the duplicated items and the dupers will go away - but there'll be always someone else who'll buy the item since Blizzard is not addressing the issue, so why shouldn't it be you now that you can profit from low prices?

I've been doing a lot of reading, here's what I've learnt if you want to make a safe purchase of a possibly not-so legit mount:

  • The people that bark in trade, always check what level they are; if it's a level 1 you should be very wary already (although lately many 85's are selling these, there's even dupers that are part of the best guild on my realm, #39 in the world rankings)
  • Always check the auction house to see if there are multiple listings by the same seller (there's a guy who often has 3 or more deathchargers, I know he sells one every now and then but his stock just keeps restocking)
  • Try to get the mount from the auction house, since it's a lot easier to argue that you didn't know what you were buying - Blizzard also can't prove it was intentionally put up for that price on the AH or the seller just forgot to add some zero's (this actually does happen). But when someone's barking the price in trade, there's no argument to be made.
  • If you do decide to get your mount from a level 1 character on the trade chat, don't go through with the deal if the character advertising is not the one that makes the actual trade. There have been many accounts of people agreeing to buy, only to be traded by a different level 1 "friend" of the original seller. This is a clear indication that something fishy is going on!
  • Ask the seller about the mount, regardless of if he's level 1 or 85, and open a ticket after the sale has been made where you explain your doubts about the origins of the mount, whether or not it is bannable to buy/own such a mount, will you get to keep the mount or will your gold be given back should it be taken away. This is very important, it's basically your "get out of jail free-card".
  • Learn the mount so it does not get removed from your inventory, should anything happen.
I submitted a couple of tickets about this issue, here's the two most recent ones and the GM responses I got:

The last one's response I find a little odd, since I did not mention the name of the person I bought it from and I also submitted the ticket from a different character than the one I bought the mount with. In any case, there you have it, two blue reports (one nicer than the other), but be sure to have your own, verified response. Now, on to the WoW-Factor at US-Wyrmrest Accord!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

OpenRaid transmog contest, enter until 31.08 is a very handy website for those looking to do some cross-realm raiding. I've been a member there for a while now, and I highly recommend you sign up if you want to get old achievements done, get your Glory mounts or are just looking to raid. There's pretty much everything, I suggest you take a look. If I recall correctly, it's both for EU and US players, as well.

View the full-sized image here
They are also holding their first transmogrification contest, which was brought to my attention by Aelobin (hugs go out to you for this!). You can find the contest details here, but you need to be registered before you can see that page, so I'll go through the basics over here and help you decide if you want to enter or not.

You can find the rules here, all nicely summed up in a galore of pink (no need to be registered to see this image), or just enlarge the picture to the right.

The additional info given, was:

To enter, please follow the directions listed below exactly. If you do not follow the directions, you will be disqualified, and that would be a shame!

First, you must send the email to the following address from the EMAIL ADDRESS YOU USE ON OPENRAID. This is how we match your entries to your account.

Send an email to The subject of the email must JUST BE the category you are entering. All lower case. For example, best female.

The body of the email must JUST BE a link to the image. That means a url link and nothing more. We can only take images from imgur, so head over there and paste the link into the body of your email. NOTHING else can be in the body or you will be disqualified.

Remember, you are limited to 3 total submissions, but all of them must be separate emails. Or again, disqualified. :)

We know that the rules are a bit strict, but this allows us to filter them down very efficiently. Thanks so much and stay tuned for the first round winners! (Prizes will be announced soon, tcg cards and other fun stuff)
The categories you can enter for, are:

» Best male
Hello ladies, look at your man. Now back to me, now back at your man. Sadly, he isn't me.
» Best female
Do you think you have what it takes to be the most impressively dressed woman in Azeroth?
» Best look-alike
Is Jaina your idol? Love to strut your stuff in your best Orgrimmar Grunt gear? Show your NPC love!
» Best group
Share your love for transmog with your pals! (only the person who submitted the picture is eligible for prizes)
» Best photography
Don't feel like just standing there? Get out in Azeroth and beyond, get creative too!

So, that's about it. All the best of luck to those who choose to enter!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

MIA, Mogolympics and blogging dilemma's

This is definitely a first for me, being at a loss for words. Usually I ramble away like there's no tomorrow, but today it's not coming as naturally. I'm pretty sure this post will be filled with grammatical and spelling errors, apologies in advance; I'll spot them once I'm less tired and more aware.

It's been two months since my last post and that hiatus was not intended. A couple of days after my university exams had ended, I got some very bad news from home. A member of my family who is very dear to me, passed away. The mind-boggling thing is that it happened on the same day I was going to fly out to see him; I was still packing luggage with five hours left before my flight, when I got the news. It's very weird, in a sense you expect the people close to you to always be around, like they are, in a way, exempt from death - or, I felt this way, at least. It's the first time I've been faced with my friends' and family's mortality in such a grave way; I guess some would argue on a brighter note that I was lucky it's taken this long.

Still, as I'm writing this, I feel like it's not something I will ever 'get over'. His death has shaken me up not only emotionally but spiritually as well. While I've been baptized as a christian, I haven't been practising in 13 years. It was my grandmother who insisted I were baptized, but my parents brought me up non-religiously, something I've never questioned. Now, I just don't know. I just can't begin to fathom how a person is there in one moment, and then gone the next. I need there to be an afterlife so I know this isn't how it goes, that people just drop dead and that's the end of it. I need this not for my own sake, but for his.  It utterly and completely blows my mind how suddenly you have to accept you'll never see him again. I need there to be an afterlife so I know he has found peace, so he's no longer suffering. I need there to be something beyond the grave so he didn't spend the last eight months of his life in absolute agony, for nothing. But then it becomes more complicated, as I ask myself how I could believe in a possible afterlife while not putting my faith in a god. It feels to me as if I'm only turning to God because I need something.

So, you might be able to tell I'm still trying to find out how to reconcile all of these mixed feelings and it seems like long road yet up ahead.

On a brighter note, I've been able to keep my mind occupied trying to catch up on everyone's blogging adventures - I'm ashamed to admit that I couldn't keep up-to-date.
Here are some things I've missed while I was gone:

  • Cymre of Bubbles of Mischief has been doing a great job mapping out the details on the upcoming Pet Battle feature for us which in truth is a godsend for me. With the current flood of information, I'll happily fall back on Bubbles of Mischief for most of my Panda info, as Cymre has also been posting about the beta as it changes. (For instance, the last post I read mentioned that the MoP rares have had their blue quality drops removed, aww!)
  • The WoW Factor came to EU-Argent Dawn! I'm so sad I missed out on this one, it seemed to me that was the first time the WoW Factor team hosted it on a European server. I would've made my level one to check it out for myself!
  • Neri held her monthly Transmog Tournament with a profession-based theme, check out the entries (and winners) here!
  • I (re)discovered some new transmog-themed blogs. Muffy's Shed looks promising and I'm totally swooned by (if that's even proper English) Banesidhe's Transmogative Works! Be sure to check them out.
  • Last but not definitely not least, JD Kenada of Amateur Azerothian seems to be at it again, this time with the phenomenally-sounding Mogolympics! I cannot believe I missed this one! Or as Capitaine Haddock would say, ten thousand thundering typhoons and blue blistering barnacles, I cannot believe I missed this one! Keep on the look out for updates, as the deadline has closed, so I'm expecting JD to start lifting the veil on the entrants' enthralling entries soon!

Lastly, I'm in a bit of a pickle concerning this blog. I'm not too fond of the name nor the address (mostly the address, though) since those seem suggest it's quite heavily rogue themed while it's not - perhaps yet another reason to change it, as people might be expecting to see more rogue point of view posts. As it stands I have no idea which character I'll be heading into Mists with, either.

However, my biggest pickle is whether or not to stay with blogger or port it to wordpress - I find myself really missing that pingback feature I see on so many other blogs! I read something about trackbacks on blogger, but I'm not yet sure how those work, if they work at all - when I checked my settings I had those enabled, but I've yet to see anything to prove that! I think I'll just make a small list, help me think things over.

Wordpress pro's:
• pingback (I think it's neat you can notify others you've linked to their pages and seeing when others have linked to you gives you an idea of your reader base)
• awesome comment-notification system (à la "X replied to your comment on post Y", much easier to keep track of instead by memory)
• lots and lots of themes (way more than blogger)

Wordpress cons:
• intricate interface (read: too complicated for me, takes me ages before I can find the setting I'm looking for)
• will lose all existing comments I have on blogger (and what about the few broken links that would provide?)
• themes cannot be edited

For the few readers that might stumble across this, it was quite the post. For a while I contemplated about just disappearing in thin air, but I like to blog too much for that. It's also the first time I've really been able to "talk", albeit a written monologue, about what happened. It certainly helped me to voice all of those concerns and thoughts I had. Death certainly is a strange thing. One thing I've learned, make sure your loved ones are made aware of just what they mean to you lest you're left feeling guilty about it.

In any case, if you made it through and you have some thoughts on the blogger vs wordpress-platform/change-blog-name thing, I'd love to hear them. Peace!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A few of my favorite things

Posts have been slow, but I'm nearly half-way through my exams so I'll be updating my blogs more regularly in three week's time.

Meanwhile, this is a - be it rather late - response to this week's Shared Topic on Blog Azeroth, where Cymre of Bubbles of Mischief suggested the following:
"What are the top three items on your main that you just love for sentimental, fun or silly reasons and would hate to lose?"
Much like fivequarters of Argus or Bust I clear out my banks and inventories with every expansion pack, and Cataclysm wasn't any different. Off the top of my head, I would hate to lose my Carrot on a Stick because it is the only Vanilla/TBC item I have left and it brings back fond memories. It seems I had it both on my mage and druid, although I only recall doing the quest line with my druid.

Looking at it from a different angle and thought about why I would be sad if one of my characters was deleted or fell into the hands of someone with bad intentions.

My mage was created in TBC and later got a faction change pre-Cata. This was the biggest mistake of my Warcraft life, I never played her after that so I had no problem with vendor trashing most of her stuff once Cataclysm was launched.

While my druid is definitely my main, I have no items I couldn't stand to lose. If I hàd to choose something, it would probably be the Feralheart pieces but since I never finished the set, I'm not very attached to it and with the Darkmoon Faire the novelty of having that set is gone, in my opinion.

My rogue was Cataclysm-borne so there's just one item of real interest there; I wouldn't mind having to level her all over again but I'd be very disappointed having to to re-do the 15-day farm for Jaded Crystal Dagger. There's no story here, just that I think it's an amazing model and it took incredibly long (in my eyes) before it finally dropped for me. (And, of course, the one day that I ran that dungeon on an alt to boost a friend, both the dagger ànd the phoenix dropped.)

That leaves my hunter. I'd be very, very sad if that character was somehow gone. Yet, I don't have any epic items like bows that can no longer be obtained, so what is this all about?

In my real life, I'm very concerned with animals (up to a point where I sometimes prefer their company over that of people - not my friends though, of course). There is honesty in them that you don't find in people and they can be loyal like no other. Not long ago was I in an animal shelter for abused pets and one of the cats there caught my attention. She had been tortured by her owner, who had thrown a fair amount of acid over her, and she still came to me, purring, asking for pettings. My dad said that she must've been a really lovable cat before the accident as well because evidently she still trusted humans after having been through hell at the hand of one (he was stunned at how anyone could do something so cruel to an animal that is clearly this kind-spirited).

I love having a pet around when I do things and that's why I'll play a hunter class where I can. I would be sad to lose any of my pets, since I've bonded with most of them and they all have their quirks and traits. When I tamed a devilsaur I wasn't sure I'd keep him. While I was thinking this over a mob attacked me and he killed it, then did that 'roar' animation at its corpse - as if he was trying to say, hey, don't you mess mess with my owner. It's all just timing, I know, but I kept him and named him Aleki, from Alexei ("defender of man").

Watch out for explosive sheep

But, if I had to choose one pet there is no discussion which one it would be. When it was time for me to head out to Northrend, this pitch-black wolf with an oily aura caught my eye. With some help of a friend and two hours of patience, I finally managed to tame one and named him Bane. The glitch that was used to tame beasts like that was removed with 4.3.3, so now I'm afraid to take him out of his stables in case something happens. I'd be devastated if I were to lose him, without his coat he's just a normal wolf to me. Even though I replaced him with Fox (my first tame of the Cataclysm!) as a solo questing pet and a new favorite, the fact that he has a unique appearance makes him my most prized possession.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Things to get done before the end of the Shattering (aka the Bucket List)

#1: Kill Deathwing on Heroic difficulty on raiding main.

#2: Get the following leatherworking recipes:
Stylin' Crimson Hat
Stylin' Jungle Hat
Black Dragonscale Shoulders

#3: a) Complete Higher Learning.

b) Complete The Coin Master and possibly Accomplished Angler
Still no Sea Turtle, and nearing 10.000 casts. (Sad panda-moment.)

#4: Prepare alts for Mists. This means:
a) For my priest:
- level to 85 (now 50)
- max out jewelcrafting and alchemy
- max out cooking

b) For my death knight:
- level to 75 (now 64)
- max out blacksmithing

#5: Clean out guild banks, bags and personal banks.
I have three guild banks with 4, 5 and 6 tabs which are all filled with more crap than you could ever imagine. I just keep filling them with more crap!

#6: Get the archaeology raptor mount.
It's the only reason I picked up archaeology - the RNG gods do not favor me.

#7: Clear out my hunter's stables.
This will be a difficult one, but I want to make some space for Mists of Pandaria beasts.

#8: Farm exalted rep with Alliance Vanguard.
So I can get the chopper schematic!