Posts Tagged ‘Pug’

Did a lot of different stuff in WoW this weekend, mostly on my 60 Draeni priest and my 25 Tauren shaman. Healing on both, even though the shaman is supposedly leveling Enhancement. More on her another time, this is about Hellfire and damnation. Or death knights, anyway.

Anyone who’s run dungeons in the low 60s level range know how many dks seem to be lurking there just waiting for you. I needed two levels on Verdandi, the priest, to catch up to Reversion’s warrior gnome so I queued her up and got Hellfire Ramparts. The good news is that you have a pretty fast queue as a healer; all the dks waiting to be healed make things snappy.

This group had two dks, a mage, and a balance druid. DK tank starts out by overpulling and I heal like crazy, then sit and drink (this group was very good about letting me drink and the mage thoughtfully made me water that was better than the stuff my still 59 priest was forced to use). Meanwhile I checked the dk tank… level 59, wearing the starter gear, all the points in frost, in frost presence. I mentioned that if he put a couple points in the other trees he could get really nice talents that would make him a little less fragile. No response.

Another pull and we barely survive, thanks to the druid going bear and growling things off the mage and the dps dk tanking two creatures.  We asked why the tank wasn’t using Death and Decay. “Dont have it”, he said, and I later looked up and saw that you train it at level 60. Which means he was trying to keep aggro with… not much of anything for tools.

The next pull we wipe. We run back in, I rez the dps dk who has been making suggestions to the tank dk. The mage has been complaining about how bad dk tanks are at this level and how you should level a warrior or paladin as a tank first, not switch right from hunter.  It probably annoyed the tank dk but since he said nothing, I don’t know.

We wipe again, and again, and we kick the tank. Sorry, maybe you didn’t have all the tools yet but that’s a good reason not to queue as a tank. The other dk offers to try tanking for a while and we get a rogue. All goes well up to the first boss. We down him – and then the rogue stealths forward and manages to pull three packs of mobs. We wipe, the rogue drops group. Now we get another dk, this one level 64 when the rest of us are barely 60, so we ask him to tank since our tank dk can’t hold threat off him. He launches into a lecture to our dk about not queueing as tank if you’re not willing to tank – we cut him off with agreement but add a “Dude, you have no clue what we’ve been through”. We finish the place off and drop group with relief.

Now Reversion gets on and will tank for me, we get Hellfire again and this time a dps dk of the “Death Grip is leet funz!” type. First four pulls he grips a mob out of the pack to him and stands there and dpses it. Reversion gives him the “You yank it you tank it” warning after pull 1.  The first few times, the other dpsers help him. Then I think they noticed that he wasn’t getting heals and the tank wasn’t taunting it off him, and realized what we were doing. The next time he came close to dying. “I’m not taunting it off you if you Death Grip it over there,” Reversion says, and I add “and I don’t heal anyone who is making the tank’s life harder.”

Oddly, he got the message… and I didn’t even have to let him die. He slipped up once or twice but his health bar going to 30% seemed to keep him on the straight and narrow.

The next three dks we got all knocked our socks off! Every one showed knowledge of when to use DG. They’d pull casters into the melee and let Reversion get them, and one even pulled back a runner that was about to aggro the patrolling boss! We gave each of them kudos. Is there something in the water?


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3-Manning Oculus

This just happened over lunch:

So Reversion and I get on our mains to run a quick instance over lunch. Instaqueue, as usual, and we get the Oculus loading screen. No problem, we actually like Oculus and the extra rewards are just icing on the cake.

As soon as we get there, one guy drops, instantly. We move forward, Reversion re-queueing us, and then realize, halfway through the first fight, that one of the two remaining dps has “dc’d”. Yeah sure. We have to vote kick him. We get two more dps, one of whom instantly drops. Right about then is when I notice that the paladin, the one who has been there this whole time, is doing 400 dps and getting into fights really slowly. He also refuses to select a role, so we can’t get another guy to replace the most recently dropped one.

I ask him to please select a role. Nothing.I check his gear; mostly 200 blues, respectable gear that he should be able to get at least 1k dps out of, and since he’s used all of three abilities in his “rotation”, I am pretty sure he’s slacking. (Also; no Blessings, and no Aura up. After the instance I checked Recount; he used Crusader Strike and Consecration. That was it.) I point out that we could use the extra help  from another person since he’s not contributing much, this after three failed tries to get us re-queued, without him saying why he was declining the role check.

We get no response. Not a “yeah whatever”, not an “Ok”, not even a “Screw you guys”. Nothing. So I go to vote to kick him so that we can maybe get a full party – and it says we can’t remove any more players.

Oops. I guess the dc’d guy was our one kick of the instance. Argh. The mage – who came in after we kicked the dc’d guy – tries, and he can’t either. We continue on. The paladin shows up halfway through the first boss fight and promptly dies. Yes, I was not healing him; I was hoping he’d take a hint and leave. He didn’t. After the fight he released and came in and – did nothing.

No, the three of us got dragons, went on, cleared the instance, and this guy sat there at the dragon platform. He didn’t even get to roll on loot since he was too far away, but he sat there, silently, the whole time.

I don’t know if he got badges – there was no way for me to check. Maybe he did. Either way I thought it was an insanely spiteful waste of time. Guess he disagreed though.

Shoutout to Kazaratfh of Auchindoun, an awesome mage who performed flawless, put out great dps even though he “only” had a gearscore around 4800, didn’t pull off the tank, and stopped frost nova-ing when we asked.

(Quick recap: we had three different dps drop or ‘dc’ as soon as they saw it was Oculus, one guy refused to do anything, and one guy who worked his heart out. I think the Oculus problem is getting worse. Here’s to the half-hour deserter debuff.)

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I am a jerk

Been reading some other blogs and I guess I am a jerk when I heal. I say ‘gogogo’. It is another way of telling the tank ‘Hi, I am in good shape. My mana is fine. Feel free to continue pulling.’

I also aggro other groups on occasion. I don’t do it if the tank is having trouble holding aggro. I don’t do it if I can’t HEAL through it, and I don’t do it if I expect the pack is going to two shot me. I just heal-tank them until the tank shows up. Yeah. I am challenging the tank and pushing him to be better. If they say anything about it, they usually say that. Or they say how hardcore the run is. Some tanks like a challenge. I don’t do it all the time. And if I mess up and wipe the group I apologize. I will even pass on a few rolls to give the rest a few more G for repairs.

I play tank and heals and dps in pretty equal amounts. I know there is a fine line between being a jerk and not. For example if I pull three groups on my bear, pop cooldowns so I am easy to heal and we AOE the crud out of them, nothing wrong with that. If I was a failtank and simply aggroed two groups and then cussed out the healer for letting me drop I would be a moron. I don’t do that. I do pull two, and often more. I think my record is 4, or two groups and a boss. Depends on the boss though. Still, it is usually my wife healing me so no one can complain. And If I screw up and get the group killed I say ‘sorry’ and I pull more sanely. This is not being a jerk. This is trying to get a run that is not insanely boring to a 5.4+K geared tank specced and gemmed for ICC. I don’t even need heals for any single pull in most instances. So why would it be rude to a healer if I pulled two?

If I am healing and pull a second group back to the tank, what is the issue? No really… if we don’t die, he had no trouble getting aggro, I had no trouble healing, and the dps was all good, what is the issue? If I did it when the tank was AFK or not ready then yeah, that would make me a jerk and I would deserve the boot. But if he is downing the last on in a group and another group comes over, no biggy. I play a tank, I know what groups to aggro and what groups to stay the heck away from.

Oh, I am more of a jerk than that, I also complain about DPS. Yup, I sure do. If I get in a run with some guy pulling 700 dps I say, ‘hey buddy, you should read some blogs or something because you should be able to do more.’ Is that jerky? Some people thinks so. Other people in the group will be all, ‘his gear is bad, lighten up.’ To everyone that thinks that, FYI, I can do 1200 DPS on my hunter naked with just a bow. That is right, in my undies. So don’t tell me that 700 DPS on a rogue with a mix of quest greens and blues is ok. It isn’t. If I let that rogue know (as I did Sunday night) that he should use some finishing moves on occasion because melee and fan of knives should not make up over half of his 700 dps I don’t think that is being a jerk. If everyone is too nice to ever tell him that that is unacceptable how will he ever know not to?

Take the dps warrior I ran with on Saturday. I had to tell him a couple times to stop using Heroic Strike. If someone can’t figure out what they are doing wrong on their own then someone HAS to tell them. I mean, I think it is pretty clear that if the guy doing 3 digits of damage keeps pulling aggro of a solid AOE tanker there must be SOMETHING not right.

But I am an even bigger jerk that just all that. Yeah I even check gear scores! *gasp* I know, total sociopath, right? Not just that but I will tell people that 1100 dps is NOT ok for 4k gear. I am nice about it though. I will suggest reading blogs and such. I will even add that doing that is how I get better when I think I should be getting more out of a class. Oddly, most people either say nothing or thank me. My wife and I use GS to judge people all the time. But not in a vacuum and not before the start of the run. Nope. We wait for a few pulls and compare GS to DPS and often even check their rotation with the recount logs.

Oh it gets worse. Sometimes I even link recount. Or dare to complain about their underranked spells.

I don’t kick often though. No, I usually just try to offer some advice. Gevlon (http://greedygoblin.blogspot.com/), rip up my ‘jerk’ card and stamp ‘social’ on my forehead. Sometimes I do kick though. If someone is really lagging the dps meter, had gear that is way better than his performance, ignores the 9 down ranked abilities that rankwatch is spamming him about and only seem to use 3 abilities in the recount log… yeah those people are likely to see the boot. But we are pretty forgiving. If someone even tries to fix their down ranks and takes constructive criticism with a ‘ok, thanks. I will look into that.’ then they get a pass. Everyone was bad at some point. Show me a glimmer of willingness or ability to learn and you are in. Ask for real advice and I will give you an earful. Come across as genuinely in need of practice and gear and I will invite you on a few runs. And, if you are getting serious performance out of ‘been 80 for an hour’ gear then you will get thanks and praise.

Yeah I judge. But I don’t do it in a vacuum. Some people DO suck. Pretending they don’t will just mean we are stuck carrying them through Cata heroics a year from now, or a year after than when they finally catch back up.

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So there is this bug with trying in off spec, right? Everyone knows about it, I’m sure. Or maybe not…

When you have dual spec and train, two things happen to the other spec. One is that the buttons on your action bars for the other spec are not updated with the new rank of spell. The other is that if you have a spec specific spell over there it does not get trained at all. The trainer will not even offer it to you.

This makes perfect sense to long time players of the game. We can remember when the book showed all ranks and there was no way to hide the low ones. We can remember when the buttons did not auto update. After each training session we had to mouse over each button and check that it was not new. Or just check through our books for the stuff that we had trained.

Because of this offspec bug , someone went and made an addon that detects low rank spells. It is called RankWatch and it is really freaking handy. Any time anyone in your party casts something, RankWatch checks if that spell rank was the max rank for their current level. If it is not it pops up a notice. Depending on how you have it set the warning can just go to you, or it can be whispered to them. You can even set it to spam the notices in party chat so everyone sees it.

The message is pretty self explanatory. It tells you that you’ve used a spell rank lower than the max rank, what the max rank at your level is, and suggests you may have forgotten to train, or have an out of date spell on your bar.It is a great tool. It is most helpful for people still leveling or if you pug with newly 80 players a lot. What is most interesting about the addon is how people react.

A thoughtful and knowledgeable player usually just whispers ‘thanks’ and updates their bars. On the next pull the messages stop and the party continues clearing the dungeon. But not everyone is thoughtful or knows anything about this whole ‘ranks’ think. These people usually whisper back ‘huh?’ or ‘what?’ or something equally responsive. Then you have to explain what the addon is trying to say. This involves repeating exactly what the message Rankwatch sent says. But maybe using fewer words, or shorter ones, so that the person can figure out what was already said to them. The real shining stars of intellectual power have to have it explained two or three times. Sometimes they get it. Other times they INSIST what you are saying is impossible.

My favorite example was a few weeks ago. My wife and I were running something… I think it was HCoS. As is usual for our runs we did a quick mouse-over check of gear score. I know I know people like to rant “GS isn’t everything!!!”. It isn’t, but it does tell you some things. In a Pug it can tell you what you are in for. I guess you might call it profiling. Some of us don’t think that is a bad word. You see I can see that 5k GS hunter over there, with the ghost cat pet, does not take heroic runs seriously, or think he needs to do his best in there. He things having a cooler looking pet is more important than doing the best dps he can for the group. Then again if that hunter with the vanity pet has a GS just breaking 3k I know he is a new 80. This is where RankWatch comes in.

Sure enough, we start the first pull and RankWatch lights up with all sorts of announcements. This guy has not updated his bars. So much so that some of his stuff is more than one rank low. Alright, no biggy, we are used to this sort of thing.

“Huh?” says the hunter.
“Update your bars” I say.
“You stuff is downranked. Update them from your spell book.” – Me.
“No it isn’t.” – Him
“It is, just drag the new ones to your bar” I say.

Silence. In the mean time I see his pet is growling.
“Take your pet off growl.” I say.
“He isn’t.” The hunter says. I watch the three lines pop up over a mob’s head as he says this.
“Yes he is. I can SEE it.” I say.
“I swear he isn’t. I checked.” The pet does it again.
“We can all SEE it.” I say.

Silence. Mysteriously, the ‘growl’ lines stop appearing. Heh. Meanwhile Rankwatch continues to chatter away about half his spell book. Finally I toggle it to start spamming the party chat.
“What is that?” asks one of the other dps.
“Oh that just means the hunter has not updated his bars.” I say.
“I SWEAR my stuff is up to date.” the hunter defends himself.
“Dude, the LOG does not lie.” I them proceed to give him a third detailed explanation of why the ranks get bugged, how Bliz has not fixed it, and how the addon is using the actual logs to report things.

Silence. By now we are half way through the CoS run. From here to the end of the run RankWatch, still reporting to party chat, slowly stops reporting on his stuff. He is finally updating his bars. At the end of the run he was all thankful for our help getting his bars fixed.
Heh. Rankwatch > liar.

There was another run where the guy did not argue with it but was a new flavor of fail.
I don’t recall if I was tanking or healing this run, or what it was, might have been Nexus. After the first couple Rankwatch whispered spams he says in party, “Can you make that stop spamming me?”
I reply, “It goes away if you update your bars.”
“It says you will make it stop if I don’t want to hear it. Make it stop,” he said.
“Just update your spells from your book. It stops automatically.”

This continued for a couple more exchanges before he decided to put me on ignore. Rank watch stopped chattering after that. I am not sure if he got what I was saying, and updated his stuff, or if it does not whisper someone who /ignores you.

Fortunately the majority of people who see RankWatch spam just say ‘thanks’ and update their bar. Many of them even ask for the name of the add-on so they can get it. Of course it also catches those total morons who started running heroics before bothering to train their 80 skills. But those are stories for another day.

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