Monday, September 29, 2008

Kodo Waddle

On the 19th and final attempt of my group, my kodo mount fell tonight! I really love the bongos on the back of the saddle or are those beer jugs? lol. Who knows. But I really love how fast they waddle from side to side. They're a lot like Elekks but without the fear of heights involved. heh.

Each boss kill for us is usually around 45 seconds but summoning and inviting alts takes like 5 minutes, not to mention having someone configure buttons. :P So I'm glad to be finally done with Adventures of Drunk Dwarf Slaughtering.

Now onto a new mount! mwahahaha. We've made two solid attempts to get the bear boss in ZA (the timed chest event). Last Friday, we had our paladin DC three times during the attempt. Tonight, we had one stray add group pull and a bad positioning on Phoenix boss otherwise we would have had it! We were less than one minute off from getting it! So close.

It is rather nice though to have a new goal before the expansion. Also, it'd be great for to be able to get this achievement as it won't be available once the expansion comes out. Someone said they might take the bear mount reward away in an upcoming patch. I hope not. We need more time!

Episode 37: Bindpoint

This episode is all about my favorite new meta tool, Bindpoint :)
Finally, I get to share with everyone what Bindpoint actually is and what we hope it will do to change the landscape of our meta community.

Related Links:
*Bindpoint Community Feedback Site

Launch BINDpoint Open Beta Client

Click Here to Listen or Subscribe to WoWcast Episodes

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Bindpoint Convo: Cyber Bullying

Good conversation we had in Bindpoint-Metatalks channel about cyber-bullying these days. (in reference to the My Space controversy discussed in Episode 36)

***WoWast: Metatalks Channel***
***Scroll Mouse over text box to pause scrolling***
[Cyber] Hello everyone. It is I, the Meta Moonknight
[Alachia] hola moon!
[Cyber] It has been a long time since my Meta form has been able to chat with you Alachia.
[Alachia] like a year!
[Cyber] wow
[Cyber] I have been meaning to post a response to the last episode.
[Cyber] Been listening on my trip to work and it has been excellent
[Jemimus] Heya Cyber
[Cyber] Hello
[Cyber] BTW, that case that you mentioned Jemimus. The girl's name was Megan Meier. That all happened near my city
[Cyber] Kinda surreal hearing someone speaking about it that was not on our local news broadcasts
[Alachia] yeah, I posted a wikepedia link to her page on my blog.
[Alachia] really sad story there
[Alachia] emotional abuse should really be a crime
[Jemimus] well I think they passed a law in the state that made it a crime now, did they not?
[Cyber] Yes it is now a crime
[Jemimus] I dont think those people ever showed remorse for that they did
[Alachia] I'm not sure they thought it was wrong
[Cyber] No, it was really hard dealing with it around St. Louis for a while
[Cyber] Then some guy posted a really evil blog about her
[Cyber] it was titled "Megan Had It Coming"
[Cyber] He later claimed that he was trying to prove a point but I never found out what the point was
[Alachia] the point being he's an asshole?
[Cyber] That was my take
[Cyber] The case really hit home with me. Made me wonder about a lot of things
[Jemimus] to me it says that we get a lot from the narrow aperture if online personal exposure, but we pay a price too
[Cyber] I want to only be angry about what the woman did but then I also feel a lot of anger towards Megan's parents
[Jemimus] I cant remember the specifcs of the case, what was the issue with her parents?
[Cyber] Well my issue with her parents and many others is that I do not think that young teenagers need to be allowed to have access to social networking sites like MySpace.
[Jemimus] I am not sure of I would agree with that one
[Cyber] Right before she hung herself, her mother had an argument with her regarding the language she used in response to the messages she was receiving
[Cyber] Well let me rephrase
[Cyber] I should not say that we need to isolate teens from online social networking, I just do not know where the line should be when it comes to allowing teens exposure to this environment.
[Cyber] Not to say that people are not cruel in RL, but somehow the written word has the ability to hurt more than the spoken one.
[Alachia] I think it's the actual accessability to broadcast cruelty that makes social networks and online media so dagnerous during that phase of adolecense
[Jemimus] I am not sure we are able to draw a line. Once you let someone on the internet, tne sky is the limit. Technical blocks are useless against the curiousity of a teenager. Only good advise and guidence can help, but in the end, you cant control what hey do, and you cant check it.
[Alachia] you can block sites, you can lock down computers but acutally shielding kids from kid cruelty is impossible.
[Cyber] this is true
[Alachia] I dread ever having a daughter for fear of knowing the type of horrible things I endured emotionally at school.
[Cyber] which is what scares me
[Cyber] I remember how difficult it was for me
[Alachia] there are even types of bullying that involve taking pics of girls in the locker room or bathroom with their cell phones and posting it on myspace or youtube
[Alachia] cyber bullying is the new wave of teenage angst
[Jemimus] I too, do not considder school to have been a happy time. However, here is nothing I can do about it. All I can do is advise my kids well, explain to them what they are going to encounter, both online and offline
[Alachia] even befriending girls as bestfriends and getting them to do stupid things just so they can post it to boost their own popularity
[Alachia] yeah. open communication and support is probably the best you can do
[Alachia] and of course, not turning your back to the technology and exposure you allow your kids
[Cyber] That is what I think I get angry about. I am not sure that we have enough parents familiar with what is possible online.
[Jemimus] I think guidance is key. We are in the position our own parents where not in.. where we can understand the technology aswell as our kids. But here is a really practical example of what I would do: Computer in the livingroom, with the screen facing the room...
[Alachia] aye, very wise tip for parents these days

(mouse over the chat box to stop text from scrolling up)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Bindpoint Open Beta

Come join open beta please!
Let's start pioneering the infrastructure of how want to engage and communicate in the meta!

Launch BINDpoint Open Beta Client

You'll be hearing me talk about Bindpoint more very soon. It's like the answer to my prayers about how we interact online outside of MMORPGs. But for now, give it a go. Let me know what you think.

Monday, September 22, 2008

0/18 Attempts, No Kodo

So last night, 5 of us attempted to get the [Great Brewfest Kodo Mount]. It's an extremely easy Brewfest holiday boss, Coren Direbrew, in BRD that takes less than 40 seconds to kill.
I used all six of my characters to summon the boss, Taint used 6, Flipmax used 3, Sad used 2, and Scrub Lock used 1. (LOL. inside joke. i <3 you Morgan)

EIGHTEEN attempts! And not one mount dropped. Another group in our guild did it 7 times and got 3 Kodo mounts!!! WTF? lol. So needless to say, we shall attempt it again until one of us gets a Kodo mount anyhow.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Fat Lady Sings

I ended the joint raiding today. I'm so happy. It was like trying to break up with someone honestly, very awkward and uncomfortable. In the end though, it was for the best. A few of our guys aren't interested anymore and he's constantly bringing new people.. so we've really lost our core.

Without a core group, progression raiding is worthless. And he asked me if we wanted to go back and do SSC instead, I was like what for?? This wasn't about hanging out together, it was about progressing.

He was not happy and I'm sure he made sure his entire guild hated us for it..but I'm not really phased. He told me I should skull-f..k my guys and get a hold of my guild. LOL. It was like talking in circles.

I'm just so happy though. We had a good run, we accomplished a lot. I'm proud of my guys and I'm sorry he didn't take the same thing out of it. I guess that's the difference between raiding for the experience and raiding for bragging rights.

I'm really looking forward to the expansion and am not sure what I'm going to do to prepare for it. I kind of wanted to keep everything fresh for the launch date but now I'm thinking it won't hurt to take a peak. :)

Friday, September 19, 2008

No Rush to 80

Thank you Sayomara for linking this article to me.

Hopefully Blizzard does something to notify the masses that the race for no-sleep/all-play is off. hehehe. So according to this wowinsider article, they are taking away the "first" titles in the game, including professions.

They're concerned for their player's health and of course people rushing through the content. This is a great load off my mind as now I get to kick back and enjoy questing again. :D

We haven't had a static 5 since ....the dawn of time! LoL. I look forward to it a lot. Warrior, Mage, Lock, Shaman, Druid??? Maybe...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Feats of Strength or Stamina?

With the Expansion will come Achievement tallies. The first of which will belong to the category of Feats of Strength which are more unique than the others.

I'd love to get the First of Something on the Server but I'm not sure what that is going to take. I imagine it will take A LOT of preparation, research, and planning. And as much as I'd love to stake claim on being the First Druid or First Engineer, I also kind of want to enjoy my leveling experience.

To be honest, one of the best parts of the game for me is just questing and leveling up my toons with friends. The rest if just personal bonus. I'd hate to let a little merit badge spoil me of that unique experience in the game. :D

We'll see. I'm thinking I'd have to take off work, research all the quests, and get the rest of my group to play with me for 48 hours straight to win First Class or First Race achievements. :) And who has that kind of stamina!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


That statement is directed at me actually. We keep having issues with the main tank of cykos dropping like a rock. It's almost as if he's a paper tank sometimes. And I go back and look at the stats, it's hard to tell what went wrong.

I wish I had learned to tank so I could offer up advice. I SHOULD learn to tank. I just never enjoyed it much so I never studied it much. Now I'm realizing that a raid leader probably should know as much they can about every aspect of the game. I have the healing, dps part covered but I need 2learn2 tank. :)

So here's the break down of last night's raid. Once again, cykos brings ENTIRELY new peeps to the raid. They have yet to bring a consistent group since the first day we started to raid with them. (nov13, nov13, nov13). Anyhoo, the healers were new, not incompetent but just new.

We got to Azgalor and about 25% left on the bosses health, the tank drops like a rock. (me, being dead from getting curse of doom *The target dies after 20 seconds and spawns a Lesser Doomguard*, can only watch as this happens. doubt I'd been able to help anyhow)

Oh yeah, one more thing about this fight, he does a Howl of Azgalor, 5sec aoe silence on a 15sec cooldown.

so here's the last 5 seconds of the tank's life:
Azgalor melee swing hits the Tank for 8077 Physical. (666 Blocked)
Tank gains 841 health from Druid Lifebloom.
Azgalor melee swing hits the Tank for 6374 Physical. (536 Blocked)
Paladin Flash of Light heals Tank for 1723.
Tank gains 841 health from Druid Lifebloom.
Tank gains 512 health from Druid Regrowth.
Tank gains 1038 health from Druid Rejuvenation.
Tank gains 841 health from Druid Lifebloom.
Azgalor melee swing hits the Tank for 8486 Physical. (536 Blocked)
Tank gains 840 health from Druid Lifebloom.
Paladin Flash of Light heals Tank for 1716.
Azgalor melee swing hits the Tank for 7460 Physical. (536 Blocked)
Tank gains 841 health from Druid Lifebloom.
Tank gains Shield Block.
Tank gains Reinforced Shield.
Lifebloom heals Tank for 1728
Tank Dies

DMG TAKEN by TANK: 30,397
HEALS on TANK: 11,762

So I can only assume the two resto shamans, two holy priests, and the other paladin left on him were silenced during that time.
I also see no Healthstone or Healing pot used by the tank.
Also, it appears the tank took no crushing blows.

It seems like this is a two part problem. One, not enough HOTs on the tank and two, how did the tank take that much damage in 5 seconds? Normally he avgs about 10k per 5 seconds of time.

Case of bad luck or what? It's hard for me to tell. I need to get a tank to look at the date for me.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Christmas comes early!

Wrath to be released November 13th

I for one have been begging for this day to come since May whenever I found out about the 10 man raiding content. Although I had wished it was more like 15 man content, I'm fine with anything less than 20.

What this means? NOT having to BEG people to raid with us anymore. NOT having to settle for complete jerks and scrubs to help you progress. Finally being able to see new content at a reasonable pace. I am SOOO very excited.

Finally being able to prove to everyone that you don't need gear or an a-hole jacktard yelling at you to be a kick @ss player.

Also, getting to explore new content again is something I've longed for ever since I first came across Nagrand for the first time. It really took my breath away. I have no doubt Northrend will do the same.

Thank you Santa for bringing Wrath early this year. It could not have come sooner.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

When I Collide with Myself

Blogger chalice said...
So in your experience, what happens when the meta 'you' and the lifeworld 'you' collide? Do you ever find yourself in situations where your meta ID is incompatible with your RL ID? Clearly, there is some of 'you' in both, but you stated you were more identified with your meta ID and felt it was closer to the authentic you, I think? So does that ever put you in situations or relationships in the meta that are not workable in or transferable to the lifeworld, due to people's expectations and perceptions of you there?

There are usually two times that the two are in conflict and it happens frequently.

One being when people I meet purely on a wowcast-meta basis get to know me really well and privacy barriers need to come down. It becomes a sort of trust issue. Although I don't mind it so much. It always feels natural to slowly let people in as you get to know them better. I think this is true for most people regardless of if they had any walls up in the first place.

The second is when I realize that all the people who do know me only from the RL aspect don't/won't/can't get the meta side at all... It's like speaking a foreign language. All they want to engage with me are standard RL social archetypes.

So what usually happens is personality by omission. I don't lie about myself but I just don't engage openly in personal stuff with pure meta-associates and I don't engage in meta stuff with my personal friends....etc. But as people get to know me better they start to see parts of each for sure, it's just that one isn't focused as much as the other.

F-king aye. I will say that it can be mentally exhausting sometimes though. It honestly would have been better I think if I had just started out with full disclosure. Of course, back then, that wasn't the culture of the podcasting community.

I actually had someone link me a picture once asking me if it was me. They said if it was me, it would change everything. I remember thinking to myself, "really? seriously?" It was kind of insulting actually but I brushed it off.

Sure there are a lot more people out there who aren't afraid to flash their RL pics and videos left and right. But there are some who still felt like the meta would be a great escape from that type of social norm. I like the idea of a place where you are judged first on your persona then on social prejudices/standards of physical appearance. I mean, that's just not possible in the real world. It's a shame the meta is getting saturated again with the very social shackles that made me want to escape the RL in the first place.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Episode 36: Meta Identities Supplemental

Episode 36 began as a question a long time ago when I discovered the background story of the virtual band, Gorillaz. It just fascinated me that this virtual rock band had so much weight and significance to it. And people just widely accepted the "entity" as it was presented, not really regarding the reality behind it at all.

And as I started to unravel the walls I built up to present WoWcast as a specific entity, I wondered if Alachia, me, could be taken as seriously. Or does there need to be a hard link between RL self and meta-Alachia.

I actually had a lengthy talk with Starman one night about his decision to go public with his main identity and asked him if he thought it was possible to be taken seriously without revealing your RL profile. We both ended up agreeing that it'd be very difficult in the culture of Web 2.0 where everything is all about micro-caching all aspects of your life. Very few people are just interested in the vague aspects of a person when they're so used to blatant transparency.

My talk with Jemimus helped me flush out a lot of my concerns and contemplations on the subject. I was so adamant about people's acceptance of virtual constructs that I kind of lost site of the landscape around me. It's not all black and white. There is no longer a clear separation of VIRTUAL worlds and REAL worlds.

We've come to a very exciting point as meta pioneers. A great merge has begun, creating a new landscape where there is no clear line anymore between RL and Meta. You're just as accepted to post your profile on GAX online as you are My Space. And it's just as valid to post screenshots of Nagrand as it is pictures of your best friend's birthday.

It's far less and less today about what you post so much as how often you post and how often you are caching every aspect of your life..... but that discussion is for another episode! :D

Related Links:
Face book scandal: Suicide of Megan Meier
Open ID: How Does Open-ID Work?
Web 2.0:"the term encapsulates the idea of the proliferation of inter connectivity and social interactions on the Web"
Facebook: Social Networking Site
Twitter: Micro Blogging Site (alachia's tweets)
Tad Williams: Otherland Series
Internet Meme: Thanks to Jemimus for this terminology. The actual term was never used in the podcast but it widely describes the cultural shifts we were describing.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Digital Abstinence vs Digital Protection

"One interesting and fast-growing species of Internet fraud is phishing. Phishing attacks use email messages and web sites designed to look as if they come from a known and legitimate organization, in order to deceive users into disclosing personal, financial, or computer account information. The attacker can then use this information for criminal purposes, such as identity theft, larceny, or fraud. Users are tricked into disclosing their information either by providing it through a web form or by downloading and installing hostile software.

A phishing attack succeeds when a user is tricked into forming an inaccurate mental model of an online interaction and thus takes actions that have effects contrary to the user's intentions. Because inferring a user's intentions can be difficult, building an automated system to protect users from phishing attacks is a challenging problem."

I just got this gigantic lecture/scolding from Taint(my brother) about Data Abstinence. Apparently, when I was trying to test out a new networking site, I added his email address to my friends list.

In hindsight, I realize how dangerous and wrong this was. You're never supposed to give a 3rd party your account info or primary email address. And it's extremely bad etiquette to give away your friends or family's email address even if it's to invite them to the new application. You should always ask first.

According to him, a lot of these sites pop up under the guise of a new web 2.0 application. Once they become popular and rally a lot of user networks, they get bought out because they already have set focus groups established. Their database is worth more than their company. That's why you usually want to always have three email addresses: spam email, semi legit, and primary email address.

And while you may have spyware terminators, AVG, Norton etc set up to act as protection, sometimes that's not enough. Especially with the growing number of new applications and social networking sites, you might want to just practice digital abstinence...Stick with known sites. Or if you want to pioneer new applications, make sure you use spam email.

When I was trying out Digsby for the first time, I realized I was pretty much giving the software access to my email account through msn/gtalk etc. I ended up setting up a completely separate account just for chatting. It's amazing how easily you want to trust these sites and applications. Just be careful.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Twit Expand: What Constitutes Contributing

So I asked this in Twitter:
Does anyone really enjoy gearing out people who don't contribute anything to the raid?

nofax1 replied: F-CK NO!

obiwanadobe replied: I would say no except I know at some point I was that guy. I guess the question would be what constitutes a contribution

celticlucas replied: they won't be able to contribute until they get geared... Catch 22.

Thanks for the replies. I really throw this question out there from being frustrated with the repeated abuse of good guilds. Too many times there are established guilds who bring up characters into a cushy silver-spoon existence. They never have to experience progression, they never have to bother learning their class, they never have to bother with flasks or consumables.

They just simply show up and stand there until loot falls. Of course, they always do it under the guise of "hanging out with friends and family"...
So yeah, it's hard to be critical when your guild supports that attitude of community and friendship..etc.

However, at some point, you just feel so sponged and used, you just want to scream, "NO MORE! HELP YOURSELF FOR ONCE!"

And it's not like I don't want to help people because I really do. I enjoy seeing people grow in this game. I love being able to share their experiences from total awe at new content to total pwnage on the dps charts.

What really gets under my skin though is people who take established raids for granted. Those who feel like they need to only come for two or three runs until they get their loot and then don't bother to help out the rest of the raid. And even one step further, ask to bring their next alt in for loot knowing full well they have no intention to help progression.

Yes, I understand having loot is nice and dandy but do you really need it just to have it? Isn't it okay to take a step back and say "I'm obviously only here to hang out every once in awhile, let me do the best I can with what I have" ???

I guess there's this general alt theory going around that as long as you kind of can play each class, you should roll as many alts as possible. That somehow, the priority isn't in perfecting and really maximizing your class but rather getting as much loot on it as possible and moving to the next.

It's a shame too because just a little bit of time and practice (with OR without the gear), I believe MOST people can do really, really well with a little direction and a lot of motivation.

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