Kargath’s Hat

Festive Occasion

Today is going to be a really strange day, for so many reasons.  The group I am with at work is the first group in years that I have actually cared about holiday parties.  So when my boss had a party a few years ago, it was quite literally the first “work Christmas party” I have ever actually attended.  This year due to some odd circumstances we are not actually having a real party, but instead doing a Christmas lunch of sorts.  The plan is to have a long lunch at a local restaurant, and then in place of our normal Wednesday staff meeting we are having these product demos.  This year we had these team projects that we had been working on as we had time.  Each of them did something that we felt was needed in our environment.

In the meeting this afternoon we have to demo our progress, but I am taking this probably way more seriously than I actually should.  I have a product pitch like presentation, with a power point and everything.  My hope is that I can burn through the presentation pretty quickly, because once all of the products have been demo’d we are off for the rest of the afternoon.  I have a feeling that if any one person runs too long there will be much groaning, so I am trying to make sure things are polished enough to go quickly without stumbling on anything.  In any case today is going to be a strange day, and hopefully it will be a fun one.

Kargath’s Hat

Wow-64 2014-12-16 20-04-35-13 This morning I am struggling a bit to focus as I write my blog post.  In part I am groggy from having stayed up a little bit too late, but I am also struggling to figure out how to explain just how awesome last night was.  This so far has been hands down the best start to an instance raid wise I have experienced in World of Warcraft.  Generally speaking our guild and the raids connected to it, have taken a significant amount of time getting our act together before actually hitting the content.  With this raid we attempted to hit the ground running on the week the content was actually released.  Of course Argent Dawn our server did not cooperate… and the game was essentially unplayable for us on that Tuesday, however the following Thursday they managed to down the first two bosses.  Since then we have been progressing steadily each week.  Last week we managed to down our very first Heroic boss as well, but due to some bugs not a single person in the raid got any loot.  The bosses share separate lockouts, but it seems like last week you were only able to receive loot from one of those lockouts.

As such we altered the order in which we did the content so that we could take down Heroic Kargath first before doing any of the normal mode content.  That way if we were only going to get loot from one version… we would at least get the heroic version.  I can’t say we have this boss down on “Farm” yet because it took us a few tries to get him down, but it does feel like it was more solid than last week.  Last week was definitely a “by the seat of our pants” kill, feeling like we barely got him.  This week we had a few rough attempts but then on the time we killed him everything went pretty solidly.  I struggled a bit with staying alive this week in general, which is part really bad luck and part sluggish reaction speed.    When he died I got quite possibly the worst helmet I could use statwise…. which directly replaced the previous version I had…  but at least it has the festive green text saying “Heroic” on it.

Twin Ogron: Doubly Dead

Wow-64 2014-12-16 22-00-15-15This week on normal everything is starting to feel like it is easily farmable.  We downed Kargath and Butcher with ease, before moving forward to Brackenspore.  After struggling a bit last week, this week everything felt smooth.  I can say that pretty much every job on that fight happened flawlessly, but we also got some luck on the mushroom spawn placement.  In any case we one-shot Brackenspore before moving on.  Tectus on the other hand gave us a bit of a problem.  While we one-shot him last week… it was definitely a lucky attempt.  The way we were  “handling” things was far more “by the seat of our pants” than it really needed to be.  In fact the attempt mostly involved me running around like crazy dragging the bosses with me, trying to avoid crap as best as I could and keep the melee out of it.  If we were going to take on that fight on heroic, we needed to start developing a strategy and last night we did just that.  The first few attempts were nonstarters, but there was a moment when everyone started to grasp what needed to happen and just executed it.  While we had like 20 seconds to the enrage timer on our first attempt, this time we managed to down him with a minute and a half left, feeling like the fight is definitely in the sustainable territory.

The fight we struggled with last week of course were the Twin Ogron:  Pol and Phemos.  More than anything we really did not have solid strategies for dealing with things like the fire and whirlwind.  We made a half hearted attempt on Tuesday, and then managed to get some serious tries Thursday… which was enough to propel some research on the matter.  Our attack was two prong… firstly we changed up where we were fighting the Ogron, and secondly we now understood how the axes work and where the fire comes from.  Things went perfectly, and the new placement combined with understanding the patterns gave us our first Twin Ogron kill… and it was a one-shot.  In one night we managed to clear six bosses, one of which being a brand new kill… I feel like that is pretty much a banner night for our raid.  Now we need to do research for the next encounter, which I actually saw on LFR after last nights raid… and which is why I was up way too late.  It looks like it is going to be madness, but hopefully we can struggle on and make good attempts this Thursday.  Unfortunately I spent a token on every boss but normal Kargath, and the only piece of loot I walked away with was the heroic hat.  It’s amazing how being handed fistfuls of gold can make you so sad.

An Evening With Alternative Chat

Bel Folks Stuff Episode 3

This morning sees the release of the third episode of my experimental side podcast, Bel Folks Stuff.  For those who have not followed this development, as the title graphic says I have conversations with interesting people about the stuff they are into.  So far I’ve had such conversations with Gypsy Syl and Rowan Blaze and his wife Scooters.  Both of those were really awesome conversations and I suggest you go back and listen to them at your convenience.  This morning however I am releasing an episode that I have been looking forward to with another good friend the Godmother of Faff behind Alternative Chat.  As a strict devotee of the Faff lifestyle, or at the very least an aspirant to the lifestyle… I always appreciate her bringing the term to public consciousness.  The funny thing is… we really didn’t even talk about this during the podcast.  I believe in letting the conversation go where the conversation goes and we filled up an hour of time chatting away about various bits, and probably could have filled up another hour doing the same.

Of note for this episode I also wanted to make sure that the podcast was available on both iTunes and Stitcher radio to help those folks out who prefer to listen to podcasts through those avenues.  I admit I was nervous with this episode because Alt herself has such an amazing production quality for her own podcasts. I felt like there was no way I could live up to that standard.  That said I feel like this episode is really solid, and that maybe just maybe I am starting to get a hang of what exactly this thing is going to be all about.  I don’t really sit down with a fixed number of questions or anything of the sort, but instead just try and keep the conversation flowing as best I can.  With Alt the conversation flowed naturally even though later in the cast she admitted to having notes of her own.  I still feel like we maybe got more than a few moments of genuine spontaneity there nonetheless.  Speaking of spontaneity, I am always trying to evolve as a person and as such would love to hear your comments on how this side project is working.

Rifftrax and Raiding

With the shit storm that happened Tuesday with the Argent Dawn server, we didn’t actually get to start raiding as a group until last night.  Unfortunately I had other plans, and had to miss the raid.  Some of my co-workers and I have started this tradition of sorts of going to the RiffTrax live shows whenever they happen.  Granted they are not truly “live” for us as in performed in theater.  Nonetheless each time I go I think to myself “I have never laughed this hard ever” and then the next one trumps it.  This go around they were riffing on a show they did during the 5th season of MST3K, a strange version of Santa Claus that involves Santa, Merlin, and some Christmas Devils…  you know the standard fare.  It turns out that apparently the film originally hailed from Mexico where maybe it made more sense?  The final product is this insane dubbed over feature with so many absolutely absurd moments that they had pretty much endless ammunition to make fun of it.  If you are really curious you can check out the MST3K version that someone has dumped on youtube, but apparently it was edited down heavily… and they had all new jokes to make at the movies expense.

As far as the raid goes they apparently had a pretty great night of their own right.  It seems as thought they managed to two shot Kargath, and then down The Butcher a well.  The sounds like they made some good progress on Tectus as well, so they are hoping to easily down that next Tuesday and progress to the next boss.  We apparently ran the raid on personal loot and the RNG gods were good to a lot of players.  I know Rylacus walked away with three pieces of gear, which means he can officially no longer complain about “never getting drops” for the remainder of this expansion.  Admittedly he has always had pretty shitty luck with getting drops he actually needs, but the moment a rare assed mount drops… his dice immediately improve.  I can’t really complain because I too have a collection of rare mount drops, but most of those were diligently farmed… and the only one I actually won when it was relevant was the Fiery Warhorse Reins.

Less Communicative

Last night after my post yesterday, I had a friend check in on me to make sure I was doing okay.  It made me realize that I am doing a pretty bad job of reaching out to say “hey” to people lately.  This friend has been logged into WoW at the same time as me for many nights, but I have been stuck in my own little world quite a bit.  Right now I have a batch of things that needs to be wrapped up at work before going on my holiday vacation after the 19th.  Then there is the daily blogging, and the two podcasts that I am keeping going… one of which records weekly.  After that it seems like I always have some OTHER side project to work on, like my upcoming post for Syl’s Bloggy Xmas.  Someone started a conversation the other day with “I know you are busy but” and I thought…  am I busy?  It seems like I very much am, and as a result when I get busy I tend to encapsulate myself in a little bubble or just shift into “speak if spoken to” mode.

Mostly this morning I wanted to take a moment to say that essentially “its me not you”.  I feel like I am failing miserably at keeping in contact with people during this holiday season.  I promise I still care, and I promise I am still interested in what’s going on in your worlds… but at this point I feel painfully behind in everything.  I’ve always taken the Stanley Spadowski “Drink from the Firehose” approach to information intake.  The problem is I seem to be falling further and further behind as my blog reader consistently has hundreds upon hundreds of posts to read.  Between that and trying to juggle playing World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV and entertain semi-focused raiding in both of them… my attention circuits are maxed out.  I promise I am still out here and still caring… I am just not taking it upon myself to engage directly nearly as much as I previously did.  All of that said… if you need help with something I will do my best to assist in any way I can.  Hopefully after the holiday break things will calm down a bit and I can reach a point of equilibrium.