A Good Friday
Today is a very excellent day… other than the fact that I am actually awake at this hour of the morning when I don’t really have to be. Without exposure to children to constantly remind me of an impending holiday, they tend to sneak up on me. So at the beginning of this week when a co-worker asked me which day we got off for Easter I completely blanked… and had a sudden rush of realization that it was in fact that time. So I had expected to have to work today, which is part of what makes it such a truly good Friday. As far as what I will be spending my day doing… well we already have a list of things that I need to accomplish. For example as soon as the tag office opens I will be venturing out to renew the tag on my jeep, and at the same time going to get a money order to pay taxes.
On top of this I also have planned to record two different podcasts today, which is going to make it an exceptionally busy day. During the time in between I plan on streaming some Darkest Dungeon, which for those who have not listened yet is our March AggroChat Game Club game. I have not played it at all yet, so I figured I would stream my first moments in the game today. This was actually my pick in the round robin system we set up, and mostly because I had heard so many of my friends playing it a few months back. I am not sure what to really expect other than the fact that it is a dungeon crawler RPG about mental illness. The real question will be just how quirky the game is versus how fun and playable it is. There are a lot of games out there with a quirky mechanic that is supposed to be the reason why you play the game. Micromanaging mental conditions is not necessarily enough of a mechanic to keep me engaged, so hopefully there is a lot of good monster slaying fun as well.
Seven and Three
My week has been pretty much consumed with posts about the Developer Appreciation Week, and at least part of today will be consumed with trying to collect posts about the DAW2015. But during the time in between I did quite a lot of raiding. This week is easily our single best week in World of Warcraft raiding. In total we managed to down seven normal mode bosses and three heroic mode bosses in Blackrock Foundry, including two first kills for us. To recap that is Gruul, Oregorger, Darmac, Ka’graz, Kromog, Thogar, Hans & Franz on Normal leaving us Blast Furnace, Iron Maidens and Blackhand. Then we repeated a kill of Heroic Hans & Franz and went on to take down Darmac and Gruul as well. We spent most of last night working on Heroic Oregorger, which was the source of several frustrations… namely because we were getting discombobulated on the order in which we need to pop the boxes on the second time. We would end up tanking him where he stood when the boxes went down a second time, meaning that our normal order was jacked up because that place how was full of piles of the crap that he drops on the ground.
Unfortunately with all of these boss kills, I still have yet to pick up a pair of pants. I am still to this day rocking 640 legs, and I am starting to get frustrated enough to dump the resources into crafting a set. Honestly I have had some pretty shitty luck loot wise for awhile now. I was hoping and praying that Gruul would drop me an upgraded sword, but alas nothing. The best upgrades I have gotten in awhile seem to be from the Garrison loot crates that I get I believe every two weeks. I did somehow manage to get two piece set bonus this week which is a positive. I am not sure if it has helped my dps at all however, since I still seem to be bringing up the rear of the pack dps wise. I am insane on AOE fights, but single target fights I fall to the bottom. I think that might just be what Gladiator dps looks like honestly. All in all it was a fun night, but once again last night we struggled with lack of healers. For a period of time it looked like we were not even going to raid at all. So to come through and manage to down Gruul I guess was quite a feat all things considered.
Alone in the Crowd
@AlternativeChat the biggest challenge I see about the WoW community, is that lots are playing, but few are truly joyful to be playing it
— ▪Bel▪Writes▪Things▪ (@belghast) April 2, 2015
I got into an interesting discussion yesterday with Alt that in truth all started from me misreading a tweet. In the tweet she asked what piece of advice would you give a new player starting Warcraft, the wording however lead me to quickly misread it as “Someone you know who has NEVER played Warcraft before wants to start a game from scratch. Give them ONE piece of advice.” To which I and apparently several other people replied to try FFXIV… because if I had a friend that had not played an MMO and was looking to get into them, that is now the game I would suggest they try playing. So I was being unintentionally contrarian because other responses to the question admittedly colored my own interpretation. This lead down an interesting path where we start talking about why I am frustrated with the World of Warcraft community. I said that I did not feel that most players feel “joy” in playing the game any longer, meaning that I think most people are playing the game because they have played the game for years and have one hell of a sense of inertia built up.
To which Alt drove down a course of discussion asking if the community even matters if you are mostly a Soloist. I had a pretty knee-jerk reaction of yes… community always matters, but upon sleeping on this question I still feel the same. There is this whole “butterfly effect” that happens in an online game. Even if you are going out of your way to avoid other players, you are being effected by them. You might wander through an area because the player density is less there, causing you to get into more battles along the way, than if you had followed the beaten path. Similarly it might take you twice as long to complete a quest because other players in the area are farming down and actively fighting you for the spawns. Essentially you are never alone when playing an online game, and even without you realizing it other players are imposing themselves upon your game time. My theory goes something like this… if you play a game with an excellent community these random encounters feel less imposing. In a game like Warcraft the systems are set up in a way that make you adversaries with every other player operating in the same space, fighting for the same resources. The Garrisons have created this bubble world where you no longer have to interact with other players, but that world is a hollow shell version of the larger world. I feel that games that create systems that allow players to share and collaborate instead of compete are more enjoyable experiences.