May 16, 2010

In the 5 years I’ve played wow, there’s been one thing that’s (mostly) constant – with a few tiny exceptions, I never (willingly) talk on vent. There are people I’ve raided with for about 4 years now who have literally never heard my voice.

I don’t know why it is – I mean, I don’t like the sound of my own voice on recordings, but who does? I’m not sure if it’s overwhelming shyness gripping me (I’m not a mute in RL, so why should I be one in wow?) or the fact that I’ve gone so long without talking it’s become the proverbial elephant in the room, not to mention my guild already jokes that if I ever DID talk on vent the whole raid would wipe as everyone alt-tabbed out to their desktops in unison to discover who that strange female voice belonged to.

There was one time, back in the BC days, my roommate (using my computer to raid while I was at work, as his PC was having issues) left my mic on my desk in voice-activated mode while a guild Kara run was going on.  I got home, plopped down at my desk, and proceeded to blab loudly to my roommate about my day, only to hear over the speakers “Wow, it sure is nice to hear Avvy’s voice for once!”

Mortified, I ripped the mic out of the computer and proceeded to verbally flambe my hapless roommate. Needless to say he hasn’t repeated THAT mistake since.

I’m not sure what my vent-aversion is. I mean, I don’t really like speaking in public but I DO it when necessary, so I’m not sure why addressing a room of 30 faceless guildmates intimidates me so much. They can’t see that I’m sitting around in my jammies or chowing down on ramen while I vegetate in front of my PC, and it’s not like a face-to-face conversation where there’s more “pressure” to reply in a non-awkward timeframe. (I mean, if we took as long to respond to people in person the way we do online or in texts, they would think we were seriously messed up.)

I think I need to just get over it and DO it already… but it’s so SCARY!


For a random screenshot of the day, here’s my 76 hunter on a quest in Dragonblight, wondering with horror if she will truly turn into a meleeing huntard at level 80.

I knew it! I turned into a huntard :(

did future me run out of ammo?

Until next time!


Chomping at the bit

April 23, 2010

Heh, I just realized banner!Avvy up above (and some of the other alties in the pic as well) is wearing old gear that I have  long since vendored – however, since I’m too lazy to update my banner every time I get new gear (well… at least new shoulders, heh, I could be like a pantsless TV anchorman for all you know!) you’ll just have to deal with sadly-out-of-date Avvy welcoming you to the site.

I also just realized my gnome mage is the only toon I have the helm displayed on… but that’s because engineering goggles are so AWESOME LOOKING >_>


I’ve been a bit… frustrated… as of late with state of raiding in my guild. We seem to be stuck and/or constipated with our raiding lately – the 25-man schedule has dropped from 2 times a week to 1  (which seriously hinders progression right there in my opinion) and we typically steamroll the first 4 ICC bosses with ease before beating our heads against festergut and/or rotface a few times and then calling it for the night. It feels like we SHOULD be able to down these bosses easily and I’m not sure what’s holding us back (aside from the aforementioned lackluster raiding schedule).

I have a coworker who took an extended break from wow shortly after WotLK came out. In the last 2 months, he reactivated his account, geared up through heroics, joined an up-and-coming ICC guild that was just starting to learn the Deathbringer fight when he joined, and is now knocking on the Lich King’s door with that same guild. All in the space of a little more than a month. (He doesn’t cease to rub it in on a daily basis, either ;P)

Meanwhile, my guild has paused time and floats ethereally in the plane of stagnation, repeating the same old dance week after week after week and not getting anywhere with our progression.

There may be an attitude issue at play here as well – raiders start to drop out like flies when we reach the “progression” fights (rotface and fester at this point) and I’m almost beginning to think they mostly want to tag along for the fights we can down easily and avoid wiping on learning attempts… which is incredibly frustrating to me. I WANT to progress! I WANT to learn new fights and experience the joy of downing a new boss for the first time with the guild! We’ve already lost several of our better-geared members to further-progressed pugs (they haven’t left the guild, but they don’t raid with us, either) and I have to say, as much as I hate to admit it, that option is looking pretty tempting these days…

I’ve talked to a few of my longtime friends from the RC days (some of whom are officers in the current guild) and they’ve expressed similar frustrations. I’m not sure what it will take to change this but having at least 2 raid days a week again is the first big step… heck, one raid day a week isn’t even casual… it’s more like pug status.


In other news, I blew ten bucks and picked up the Lil-XT pet. My new favorite thing is to bust him out when someone sets down one of those annoying train sets, as Lil-XT will immediately exclaim “NEW TOYS?! FOR ME!?” and run to the middle of the train set, then proceed to smash the crap out of it and blow it up. He then slurks back over to you with “I THINK I BROKE IT…” hahah. Clever Blizz, very clever!

Nooo… not my beloved tree form!

April 12, 2010

With the rush of new class info for Cataclysm dripping down from the mouthpieces of Blizz there were a lot of interesting, kind-of-meh, and “different” battle plans revealed, but I have to say the one thing bumming me out more than anything else is this little tidbit:

Tree of Life is changing from a passive talent to a cooldown-based talent, similar to Metamorphosis. Mechanically, it feels unfair for a druid to have to give up so much offense and utility in order to be just as good at healing as the other classes who are not asked to make that trade. We are exploring the exact benefit the druid gets from Tree of Life. It could strictly be better healing, or it could be that each heal behaves slightly different. You also will not be able to be banished in Tree of Life form (this will probably be true of Metamorphosis as well). Additionally, we would like to update the Tree of Life model so that it feels more exciting when you do decide to go into that form. Our feeling is that druids rarely actually get to show off their armor, so it would be nice to have at least one spec that looked like a night elf or tauren (and soon troll or worgen) for most of the time.

I love tree form. Absolutely love it. I love its goofy expressions and hilarious emotes. Jumping around as a freakin’ TREE is the whole reason I picked my druid to be my healing toon in the first place (that and he was a tribute of sorts to old friends that no longer play WoW who were also charmingly bark-covered in-game). I have many other toons I could play if I wanted to look at a character in “caster form” – the different appearances are part of what make druids so unique and fun. I mean there could have been more variety in the tree form – different-colored leaves based on hair color, or something like that, or at least a difference between Alliance and Horde versions – but to scrap the form altogether and turn it into a lame cooldown is pretty disappointing… so much so that I may retire the resto side of my druid entirely and embrace the boomchicken within.


Guess I’ll have to go fraps myself dancing in tree form before it’s too late!

In other musings on the cata changes, I’m mostly “meh” about the rogue info – it seems more PVP-orientated with not much to chew on in regards to PVE. I mean I can see SMOKE BOOOMB having its uses but it’s not going to go into my dps rotation. Redirect will be kind of cool, but again, not going to help much on single-target DPS races. Blizz wasn’t very clear on how exactly they were going to chuck all the “passive damage bonuses” from our talent trees (does this mean HfB will be interesting again?) so I guess I’ll have to wait and see what they replace all those holes in the talent trees with.

My shadowpriest is going to like the shadow balls of doom, though, I can already tell…


April 7, 2010

Harro fellow players of wow… I apologize that I have been seriously slacking in the putting-thoughts-to-paper (or fingers-to-keys as it were) as of late… I have no idea where the time has gone! But as you can see by the nifty tattletale RSS feed of my wow adventures in the column to the right, I have actually been raiding lately (I managed to pull myself away from the lures of Dragon Age, which was a challenge as the expansion has just come out as well!)

Strangely, though, any burning desire I may have once had to play WoW has all but disappeared. I enjoy it while I’m logged on, I still get a kick out of downing bosses and chatting with my guildies, but I don’t think about WoW throughout the day; I don’t dash to my computer as soon as I get home from work and burst into Azeroth; I don’t worry about getting more emblems and the inevitable slight falling-behind my toon is enduring. (People in my guild who hit 80 nary a month ago are already outgearing my poor lil rogue – I must admit I do take a sly pleasure in still coming out on top of the meters on fights like Festergut or Deathbringer, though ;D)

I’m not sure what spurned that change – was it Dragon Age? A general loss of interest in devoting the entirety of my evenings to a game? I’ve had game obsessions before (my Sims phase in the early 2000’s was fairly timesucking) and after time they all passed on into the storage closets of my brain. I can’t say for sure that WoW is heading that way, but it’s definitely not gripping my attention like it once did.

Cataclysm may change that; my guild finally getting to face the Lich King might also get my passions fired up again; interesting rogue changes may get me playing consistently… I guess I’ll have to wait and see.

In other news the shammy preview for cataclysm dropped today and all I have to say is daaayyyummm, if rogues get changes half that interesting and awesome I will be pretty thrilled!

Time to hop back on the merry-go-round

March 11, 2010

Well,  after a month of being mostly AFK (ok that’s slightly a lie, I was AK -at keyboard?- but was cheating on wow with another gamelookit all my purty toons!) I’m feeling like I should probably finally make my return to Azeroth. I’ve been keeping tabs on the recent PTR changes and with patch 3.3.3 looming I feel like I need to pick Avvy off the couch, dust off the cobwebs, and whip her back into shape.

This is probably the longest break I’ve ever taken from WoW in the 5+ years the game has existed, so I don’t feel too bad about it – it was a good chance to remind myself that I don’t HAVE to play wow, I’m not OBLIGATED to log in every night, and it truly is just a game, not a job – it’s a hobby, not a chore. Hopefully I can hang onto this mindset as I ramp back into raiding.

I may even change my dual-spec to Subtlety and dip my toe in the cesspool of PVP for the first time since BC… oh, the huge manatee!

Still distracted…

February 10, 2010

I’m still swept up in the throes of Dragon Age (if you haven’t played this game, and you like intense, story-driven games, what are you waiting for?!) – I haven’t been this gripped by a game in a long time. I mean wow!Avvy is awesome, but DA!Avvy is falling in love (and for that, getting chided by other groupmates) and changing the world around her permanently. The character creation in DA is nice, too… DA!Avvy is much more loverly than wow!Avvy :3


Avvy does the Proving

I love that I can take over control of any member of my entire party if I want, or let them run around on a tactics script I set up. At this point I have 9 companions to choose from and depending on the combination in my party, they get into some pretty hilarious conversations with each other (I Fraps’d a few… might upload them later). I always have Alistair along because not only do I <3 him, but he seriously cracks me up on a regular basis; I will literally lol in front of my computer like a ninny, drawing the curious inquiries of my roomie (who didn’t like DA, actually, due to all the “story” – he just likes to go out and kill things… a FPS dude at heart, he is).

thrilling combat!

Alistair looks kind of like a paladin in that getup

So needless to say with all this Dragon Age madness going on I completely forgot about the mushy love holiday currently taking place in WoW. Luckily I finished the achievements and snagged my Love Fool title last year, but apparantly there are new pets (and a SWEET MOUNT) to be had this year, which may drag me away from Dragon Age for awhile.

It’s kind of nice, though, allowing myself to slip off the hamster wheel of WoW raiding for a bit and just enjoy a game for a game, and not feel the pressure of needing to log in every day to get my emblems and the nagging obligation of feeling like I need to gear up my mostly-pathetic alties. If I allow myself to think about it for too long, that little voice in the back of my head starts up again – “oh crap, you’re missing out! you need to get your Frost gear, the rest of your T10, or you’ll fall behind! and hey, what about this holiday stuff!? you don’t want to miss out on these pets, do you?” – so in that respect I’m enjoying the little vacation Dragon Age has given me.

I know it’s impossible to stay off the WoW-wheel forever, though…

“Hang on, I’m reading the quest”

February 8, 2010

I’m a reader. Text grabs my attention, and when I’m bored (such as waiting in a line somewhere or when left with nothing to do at my job), I shift about restlessly looking for something to read. I read books on my bus trips to and from work (currently plowing through Anna Karenina), read diagrams and posters stuck up in the break room, read the top folds of newspapers through their cases while waiting for my bus or my coffee at Starbux, and read all the dialogue in games I play.

Of course, this means I read the quests in WoW. I enjoy the story, the underlying plot, knowing WHY I’m doing what I’m doing. This can drive people of the opposite persuasion – who accept quests as quick as they can and turn them in without a thought as to what just happened – quite crazy when paired with me.

For example,  I leveled through BC and some of WotLK with my roommate, who is a most extreme non-quest-reader – he will grab all available quests and dash off to start completing them, while I pause at each questgiver to read over the text and learn more of the story. I’m a quick reader, but it still drove my roomie nuts.

“I’m starting without you!” he would call from his room.

“Hang on, one sec… just reading the quest!”

Often this meant I had to cut short and try to read the quest as we killed/gathered/did whatever we were supposed to do (this was the usual result as I hate feeling like I’m dragging somebody else down or wasting their time), or we would find ourselves in some quest-created predicament that didn’t make sense to him, but that I could explain. It ended up an incompatible questing partnership and we more or less had to quest our own separate ways for most of WotLK.

Are you the kind of person who will read every story, or do you subscribe more to the collect quests – dash away school of WoW?


The other day I hopped the bird out of Dalaran toward Sholozar Basin for the fishing daily. As the gryphon was circling the city my onscreen graphics froze for a moment, as they often do before I DC, and then suddenly un-stuck with a most noticeable difference in the landscape around me.

my eyyyes


strangely hungry

are those.... fish? o_O


oh gosh it burns

what is this I don't even

oh ahahhaa the trees...

memo to self, lay off the caffiene

oh guildies (pardon my typos, the glitch was rendering my text box unreadable, so I couldn't see what I was typing >.<)

Maybe that’s what WoW would look like all the time if I took acid!

This happened to me once before on my old computer back in BC. I don’t know if my video card is about to give up the ghost (it runs insanely hot as is) or if this was just some weird random graphics glitch (apparently more common than not). I killed wow and started it back up and the world had returned to normal. It’s too bad, I almost missed the benevolent fish in the sky…

In other news I’ve started up Star Trek Online (for reals now) and have also been playing Dragon Age, which is an immense time-sucker of the likes to rival WoW (and I have to admit… I know he already has crap tons of fans and his own fanclubs, and I usually don’t go for the massively “popular” kind of attractions – but I am totally e-infatuated with Alistair <3 He’s so funny and weird and… totally my type! le sigh), so my WoW time has diminished somewhat, but never fear, I can never fully abandon my one true MMO love.


oh Alistair...

Oh and yes, I’m a rogue in Dragon Age too… I’m always drawn toward sneaky stealthy stabby characters :3

Now I shall cease sneakily uploading screenshots and actually go back to work…