Breaking in The Newbie

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So you’ve just recruited a new healer and need to integrate them into your healing line up. The question a lot of people have is how do you do this effectively? Well, it will obviously be different a little bit for every guild but I’d like to offer up some tips

As a Leader

Communication

Probably the most important thing you can do is talk with the new person. Make sure they understand the rules of the raid if there are any. If they don’t know the specific rules of a raid it’s too easy to trample on them. Communicate healing assignments to them and see how they react. Seeing if they can follow an assignment is a great indicator of their raid mentality. If you have a veteran healer of their class in your raids that performs well, ask them to talk to the newbie and gauge their performance. Most importantly socialize with them a little bit. Getting to know someone a little bit can make a big difference in how they perform and react. Also being able to judge if the person can communicate effectively, as well as if they mesh with the other personalities of the raid is a good thing to do.

Performance

This is something you think wouldn’t be an issue, but it is. You have to be able to put the player in a situation where you can accurately gauge skill and knowledge of the role. If you bring them to a raid that you out gear, with your team of best healers, chances are the new guy wont show up quite as well against the others. It’s easier if the person is equally geared but chances are just as likely that they are below your current gear content. Give them a place to shine, take them on 10 man runs with alt healers, take them on heroic runs, chain pull and see how they react. Give them a chance to show you their moxie without the saturation of other over geared healers.

Evaluation

When it comes time to look at what they’ve done, take the time to include them in the analysis. They may have done things that you don’t quite understand, but they might have a perfectly logical reason for doing them. Talk to them about the runs you’ve done, things you like, things that might be concerns, you’d be surprised how many people respond very well to just being talked to about what’s going on.

As an Applicant

Be Vocal

Don’t just be the silent kid who follows along behind the pack. Be vocal, say hi, converse with the your fellow healers and guildies let them see your personality. Don’t overrun ventrilo or take over the conversation, but try to be sociable. It goes a long way when people can see your personality shine a bit. Don’t be afraid to offer to go on heroic runs and such.

Ask Questions

I encourage my raiders to ask questions if they are ever unsure about anything. You shouldn’t be afraid to ask for clarification or anything really. I’ve had raiders ask why we do things a certain way compared to another, and it’s OK with me, I have zero problem explaining why we’re doing it one way if someone cares to know.

Don’t Be Afraid

Probably the most important thing I can say is don’t be afraid to be yourself. Don’t try to be someone or something you’re not. There’s nothing worse then trying to shoe horn yourself into a little category or check box. Just be you!

Have fun!

It is a game after all! If you’re not having fun with the people you’re around, then what’s the point? We want to have fun too and if you can have fun with us, well that’s just a ton of points in your favor.

Practical Application

I’m going to share with you a story of one of my healing team members, you might know him. He’s a little bald Dwarf named Thespius. You might have seen him around Here and There. He came to me as a transfer applicant, he transferred servers just for the chance to raid with me and mine. We had talked over twitter and on AIM and email, and eventually he decide it was worth while to hop servers and spend time with us. I talked to him outside of the game so I had a decent understanding of his personality and I made it clear what I was looking for in a healer and a raider. We were both on the same page. And then after he was transferred on server we got him into one of our ToC (25) raids.

Keep in mind he is a Disc Priest for the next part. I started switching him back and forth between tanking heals and raid healing, purposely overlapping him and my other Disc Priest multiple times. I wanted to see how he would react and if it would interrupt his rolling if he got to a target that already had the weakened soul debuff. He didn’t make one complaint, nor did he break stride. He performed very well, never questioning orders. He had one suggestion that night and sent me a tell about it right away, and I encourage this in all my raiders as we either succeed or fail as a guild. I had also sent a tell out to the healers to give it all they got and not go easy so I can see if he can keep up (we out geared him a little bit ). At the end of the night I uploaded numbers to World of Logs. Thespius had performed more then admirably, he did downright fantastic! My healers had given their all and he kept right up with us despite the gear discrepancy.

I talked to him the next day and let him know what a fantastic job he did and that I was happy to have him on my healing team.

We talked, he listened to assignments and he wasn’t afraid to be himself. Since then he has contributed to strategy as the guild was working on three lights in the darkness. Communication between us was clear and he always responded when I gave assignments letting me know he knew what to do. He performed well, and was very personable with everyone in the guild, going along with heroics and raids and just having a blast. Honestly was one of the best applicants I’ve had in a long time.

Being the newbie isn’t always the most fun thing, but just remember to be yourself and have fun!

So how about you out there. How do you try to integrate the new recruits? What about when you first joined your guild? Any tips you want to Share?

That’s it for today, until next time, Happy Healing~

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Chill of the Throne and It’s Future

Chill of the Throne and It’s Future

As Matticus has just reported, Daelo and the Dev Team have unveiled a new mechanic that tanks and healers are going to experience in Icecrown Citadel.

The new mechanic is a skill called “Chill of the Throne”, and it’s applied to all enemies in the zone:

The spell, called Chill of the Throne, will allow creatures to ignore 20% of the dodge chance of their melee target.

Healers have grown accustomed to the heart-attacks caused by massive spike damage and carefully timed cooldowns.  There is a thrill accompanied with the notion of needing to stay on top of things to an extreme degree like that.  However, the reality is “Can the dps kill the boss before the healer runs out of mana spamming their biggest heals?”  We’re pigeon-holed into praying and hoping our heals land at the right time so our main tank doesn’t eat two 25k hits in a row.

Chill of the Throne allows the size of the hits to become smaller, rather than huge hits that hit every so often (via a tank’s mitigation).  If RNG fails, a tank is dead.  We, as healers, now get to heal a steady stream of damage, instead of breaking down with panic attacks.

Where does this go from here?

Devs have been talking about introducing a way to incorporate expertise in new bosses.  Although it seems that system isn’t viable for Icecrown, we may be able to see it in Cataclysm.  The  idea is for bosses to scale in skill, not just in health and damage done.  This could definitely open up more possibilities for damage management in the future.

ThespiusSig

Handling Icewell Radiance

Props to this guy for coining the term.

Daelo announced earlier in the day the implementation of raid wide buff called Chill of the Throne. What does it do?

The spell, called Chill of the Throne, will allow creatures to ignore 20% of the dodge chance of their melee targets. So if a raid’s main tank had 30% dodge normally, in Icecrown Citadel they will effectively have 10%.

Similar in concept to Sunwell Radiance, the reason it was implemented was to lessen the overall spikiness of incoming tank damage. Spikiness refers to something like a tank taking constant streams of 15k damage here, 14k damage there, and then suddenly plummet after a 44k hit of some sort. Sometimes it was predictable and in other cases it was not. It’s a large and often unpredictable hit that is capable of flooring a player.

I call it the Chuck Norris effect.

For present healers, the current way to deal with this is to use defensive cooldowns in tandem with tanking cooldowns. If tank avoidance isn’t high enough or if cooldowns aren’t used, they can easily get 2 shot in a manner of seconds.

With luck, this will be the last time we’ll ever see a buff like this in the game. Going forward into Cataclysm, the idea is to raise the health pool of tanks. Right now our overall approach to healing is to spam really fast heals, really large heals, or AoE heals depending on the situation.

While tank health pools go up, healing spells will scale up but not as sharply. The ratio of healing done on a tank vs tank health won’t appear to be the same as it is now. Let’s say a Greater Heal can cover 60% of a tank’s health right now. When Cataclysm hits, Greater Heal might only heal for 35% or something. The approach is to make overhealing a real risk to the point where healing spells can’t be spammed just to get through the boss fight.

That’s going to present an interesting change. It feels as if it’s going to be a hybrid between Vanilla-esque healing and TBC-era healing. I daresay those were the two extremes. In Vanilla, you had to rotate out with other healers and regen for a minute before tagging back in. In Burning Crusade, you could get away with Circle of Healing spam. It looks like in Cataclysm, they just might make overhealing mean something again since we can’t spam heals nor can we switch out with other healers to come in for us.

PTR: Fond Friend or Venomous Vixen??

PTR: Fond Friend or Venomous Vixen??

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The PTR.  Public.  Test.  Realm.  It’s been our best friend and our worst enemy.  People will flock to it, and then people will cry outrage or joy at its contents.  Some avoid it like the plague, while others spend more time in its embrace than in the game itself.

I have a huge innate sense of curiosity.  I love learning things.  When it comes to this game, I try to learn everything there is to know (without delving into theory-crafting and copious amounts of number-crunching).  There are different healing styles, different add-on preferences, different philosophies on gameplay.  I’ve learned to love the variety of them all.

However, the idea of the PTR has me torn between love and hate.  I don’t harbour a global hatred for it, but I have my reservations about it.  It is both a blessing and a curse.  And I’ll tell you why.

Friend

Patch Notes have become a huge cornerstone of the WoW community.  We read them every chance we get.  We get Twitter updates about them; entire blog posts are dedicated to them.  They help us get accustomed to our class.  If we need to change our playstyle, we get a heads up.  If our class is getting nerfed to oblivion, we know to spend more time on an alt.

We can see what gear we have to look forward to.  We drool over gear models, agonizing over the ever-changing nature of new tier set bonuses.  Our dreams are peppered with new craftable items, new patterns, new glyphs, new gems/enchants.  It’s like waiting for (insert related holiday with presents)!

In this, I’m a huge fan.  I love having to save up money/gems/mats for new enchants, or re-speccing to take advantage of a new spell bonus or counteracting a nerf.

Foe

I’m averted to the large exploitation of the upcoming raids on the PTR.  I don’t “hate” it, because I understand its purpose.

I get a huge adrenaline high from facing a new boss on my server with my guild, without really knowing what to expect.  I have to think on my feet.  The raid has to be ready to adjust and listen to the raid leader for directions.

Remember the climactic scene of the movie “The Wizard”?  The kid and his nemesis are the in the final battle, about to play a game that no one has ever seen before.  The curtain is lifted….SUPER MARIO 3!!  I was a kid when that movie came out, and I just about crapped my pants.  Neither the kid nor his nemesis had any experience with this game.  Both were going in totally blind.  No tricks, no strategies, just shutup and play.

It’s that mentality that I crave for the community when it comes to releasing a new raid.  The new content is released and has been tested by a representative sample of the community under a confidentiality clause.  My team goes in on patch day, bags filled with flask/food, ready to conquer.  Our gold stash resembles Scrooge McDuck’s money pit in “Duck Tales”.  Let’s learn this boss our way.  We can be as hardcore as we want to be.

The Toss-up

In spite of all my rantings, I understand that living on the cutting edge of raiding needs every advantage.  World and Server Firsts are a big deal to a lot of guilds.  They need that edge–the ability to practice something, even if it’s not in it’s final form.  Guilds can strategize what needs to happen before the boss actually hits the live servers.

My proposal, though, is to assign a smattering of raiders the ability to do a closed testing of these bosses.  Start the difficulty of the bosses high and slowly bring it down as needed, but not so much to make the boss one or two-shottable.  Keep in mind it isn’t too interesting for us to go in and down bosses in our current gear.

My random thought of the day: Would we complain as much about the ease of boss killings if we didn’t have a head start?  A marathon is a piece of cake if you only have to run a small portion of it on the actual day, right?

What do you think?  Would you rather train in the PTR, or save the workout for after a new raid goes live?  How do you feel about the ability to test and learn a boss ahead of time?

ThespiusSig

PTR Live: Gunship Battle

You can read my full impressions of the encounter over at WoW.com.

Hope this works.

16:54 – Clearing trash right now. Reminds me of faction champs.
17:20 – Two attempts on the boat.
17:23 – Going to zerg Saurfang
17:25 – Nevermind, Saurfang gains more health back than we can DPS.
17:27 – Yeah, encounter’s over. There’s no way we can finish it. The cannons are bugged. Don’t seem to be damaging the other boat.

Video clips at Ustream

Two Applicant Paths Diverged in an Azerothian Wood

Two Applicant Paths Diverged in an Azerothian Wood

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Once you decide you’ve reached the raid-ready threshold, it’s time to find a place to do that.  Aside from the risky and unpredictable nature of PUGs, the most plausable option is a raiding guild.  Whether casual, progression, or hardcore elite, you’re bound to encounter some form of an application process.

The process always varies from guild to guild.  Each one is slightly different, but I’ve always seen three common practices:

  1. (Trade Chat) “Lvl 80 LF Raiding Guild” -> “So-and-so has invited you to join the guild: Such-and-such”
  2. An application of varying length, seemingly focused on gear, skill, and experience.
  3. The Applicant Period -> Includes a formal application, and a “waiting period” or “trial period”.

The first of the three is relatively self-explanatory, and is usually frowned upon.  I don’t take raiders seriously that look for guilds that way, and I don’t instill a lot of confidence in raiding guilds that subscribe to that method.  This is all just from personal experience.

Just like I’d apply for a job to pay my bills, I’m applying to a guild to fulfill my raiding passion.  I want to know that the guild I’m vying to be a part of isn’t accepting just any ol’ package of pixels.  I’d be really worried about credibility if the guild just said “Yes!” without screening me or requiring any sort of “test drive.”

My personal preference is the 3rd option.  Every guild leader has their own preference, and that’s absolutely encouraged.  Each guild is obviously different.  My choice is based on permanence and personality.

I’m hugely averted to what are known as “guild hoppers”.  I’ve never been one, and I get a pit in my stomach anytime I come across someone that might be one.  I look at my guild as a family–people who work together to achieve a common goal because they enjoy that camaraderie and team work.  I invest in you, you invest in me.  Someone that sees guilds as stepping stones to higher echelons don’t interest me.  I feel it’s selfish and takes away from the “community” that I’m so fond of.

Secondly, if we are going to be spending large amounts of time together, I have to get along with you.  We have to be able to crack jokes, share stories, and simply enjoy each other’s company.  I’m not too keen on running with someone that is demeaning to other players or constantly fluffs their own ego at the expense of others.  Admittedly, if I don’t wanna hang out with you, I’m probably not going to jump up and down at the chance to raid with you.

As you know, I’m one of the Discipline Priests on Lodur’s healing team in Unpossible.  Their application process is a rather complex one, but its payoff is knowing they’re a great fit for me, and I’m a good fit for them.  It was because of their application process that I got excited, because it’s near identical to my casual guild, Team Sport.

To summarize, an interested Applicant must acquire a Sponsor.  This is done through gaming and socializing via a chat channel made specifically for the guild.  It is the Sponsor’s job to get the Applicant invited to off-night raids and bring them along on heroics or other guild activities.  This is designed to get the guild acquainted with the Applicant.

The Sponsor then solicits enough votes from the guild (along with the Applicant’s Class Lead) to invite the Applicant into the guild on a trial basis.  This begins a month period where the the guild and the Applicant get to know each other.  The Applicant can be invited into raids and has access to loot drops.  At the end of the month, the guild votes again whether the Applicant becomes a full member or not.

At any point, I can withdraw.  If I don’t feel like this guild is what I want, then I can move on.

What an application process like this does is allows me to know what I’m getting myself into before I’m fully in the mix.  It lets them sniff me out and make sure that I’m not a “guild hopper” or someone there to grab gear and run.  Like I said, I’m into the family-style guilds.  This, I feel, promotes that.

What about you?  What kind of guild process you feel best fits your style?  Are there certain styles that attract or deter you from joining a guild?

ThespiusSig

Two Val’anyr at WoM? That’s Unpossible!

Two Val’anyr at WoM? That’s Unpossible!

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First things first I’d like to congratulate Matt on his Hammer of awesomeness!

Matt and I were long talking about sitting on the 30 fragments and needing to get the mace completed.  Matt’s guild was not the only one to have problems deep into Ulduar. Unpossible on Zul’jin, my guild and my home was tearing through Ulduar. Fragments were dropping and loot was being passed all around. Then we got to Vezax, the guild was going full steam…until we lost some of our top dps and heals to burnout. A top dps DK, Hunter, and a few others just didn’t have any more juice left. They had been raiding you see since before BC. It happens, and I don’t fault them for it, but that meant Unpossible was recruiting. All my guildies hit the streets so to speak, spreading word that we needed people to bolster our ranks! I sent a call out across twitter and got a response from someone on the Firetree server. We began negotiations and talks almost daily for several weeks and in that meantime we would bring in non raiders from the guild to fill in gaps and try to keep raids going.

Eventually the Firetree crew transferred servers and joined our ranks, and we began the process of integrating raid styles and getting everybody on the same page. Shortly after that we got our first Yogg kill, with new players we felt quite accomplished. Now came the problem of farming the rest of the Fragments of Val’anyr. We gathered up steam and pushed forward until Trial of the Crusader patch hit. We now were faced with a difficult decision. Continue to farm content till we had all of our fragments or push on into ToC and place Ulduar on the back burner. We did what was best for the guild as a whole and made our way into ToC. After finally pushing through faction champions the rest was easy to clear. Standing on top of the corpse of one giant Beetle we set our sights back to Ulduar. We dove back in and lady fortune smiled upon us as we got the last of our fragments, Mimron was kind enough to let us have the last piece. The guild excitedly followed me to the Archivum where we activated the console, and listened and watched as the history of the mace unfolded before us.

Now we had met with another guild on Zul’jin back at Blizzcon and they had already completed theirs. Sympathetic to our recruitment dilemma and bringing people up to gear and speed they offered to help us complete the mace. After weeks of waiting to hear from them, we finally said and I quote,

“To hell with it, lets do it our own damn selves!”

And so into Ulduar we dove one last time, clearing to the watchers, only to find Thorim bugged for us. He would despawn when he jumped down. Frustrated we waited, until finally we got a good spawn. We pushed through Vezax with ease and made our way down into the prison of Yogg Saaron, or as we like to call him, Yoggles.

We strode in and began the pull, only to have Murphy rear his ugly mug and slap us around. Tanks DC’d in the middle of combat, losing spawn and immortals and clothies died in troves. Random lock ups and lag spikes caused people to be frozen in the path of so many clouds that we had too many spawns to handle. After 32 attempts in 3 days of attempts everything clicked into place. Transitions were smooth, no one disconnected or lagged out. Like Matt I died not once, not twice, but thrice. One soulstone and two battle rez’s were burned and we were up and running into phase 3. Yogg opened wide and I turned, threw in my hammer and then healed my rear off keeping everyone alive I could with my heal team! Then all of a sudden I started shaking in real life, the nerves, anticipation, adrenaline all came in one rush as I looked over and saw Yoggles at 2%. Down his life went and UP went the achievements!

3 Lights in The Darkness (25) completed as well as Drive Me Crazy (25)

Off to the archivum we went, I completed the quest and in my hands lay Val’anyr, and the cry went out over vent

“WOOOT! Now bubble me bitch!”

and Unpossible rejoiced.

here’s a link to the full image from the header, it’s possibly my favorite screenshot ever taken by me, it just looks cool

Awesome Unpossible Screenshot

And as an added bonus, here’s a video for you all to enjoy.

Now what does this mean now that Matt and I both have Val’anyrs? This means that truly World of Matticus is Legendary. Also since I’ll be a dwarf sooner or later maybe Matt and I can be “Hammer Brothers”!

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A Val’anyr Story

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Several weeks ago, the leaders of two guilds met together. Both had a serious problem. Both guilds had 2 players that had 30 fragments for Val’anyr but did not have the drive nor the personnel at the time to pull it off. An agreement was made to launch an operation into Ulduar to finish off and complete the weapons of mass prevention.

A plan was hatched to take the best from both guilds and launch repeated assaults on Yogg-Saron. The instance ID was already cleared having been saved and unused for the past 9 weeks.

The first such attempts were designed to gauge how this hybrid raid group would function together. DPS checks were made followed by threat and healing checks. It certainly seemed as if the group had the DPS to do it. It was felt at times that 6 healers was one too many but it wasn’t a significant issue as the players outgeared the boss. Even then, people were dying left and right for unfortunate (and in most cases preventable) reasons.

After 2 and a half hours though, the raid managed to buckle down. On the last attempt, I fell not once but twice against Yogg’s early minions. Both battle res’s were burned and we were fresh out of pick me ups. A guardian was burned too early but there was nothing we could do but grab another. Phase kicked in. Yogg reared his ugly head and tentacles began sprouting. Portal teams were finally in sync and hitting the right portals. They were getting there early ahead of time (to make sure no one was jacking their portals).

It was frantic non-stop action. The amount of running and tentacle dodging might have rivaled a really cheesy hentai movie. Surprisingly this Dwarf’s agility managed to survive and escape the clutches of Yogg (although losing part of the beard in the process). Soon, we advanced to the final phase.

Guardians began swarming all around us as the brain team emerged from Yogg. We held fast to our positions as the rest of the strike force rallied to our position. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a Ret Pally thrust his spear into one guardian before another guardian came up and struck him from behind. He crumpled to the ground from the unexpected blow. I muttered a curse and inched back towards the entrance of the room while motioning to the other healers to do the same. No sense in getting caught off guard ourselves.

When I wasn’t too busy firing off heals and shields, I would steal occasional glances at Yogg to determine how much longer we had to hold the fort down for. The reserves of the healers were all but expended. A sudden warmth and glow filled the raid. Heroism had been activated for the last minute. The raid fought back with renewed vigor. It felt like an eternity.

But it was done.

Without Hodir.

Who needs him anyway?

Patch 3.3 Makes PUGing Easier

Patch 3.3 Makes PUGing Easier

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Back at Blizzcon we received an announcement from the devs that they were implementing new ways to reduce the wrath of the “additional instance” boss, which was already in place on many realms at the time of the convention. As many of you may have noticed this seems to have gone off pretty well and I think at least for now the instance door boss has been put down. Lets hope his respawn timer doesn’t come back up anytime soon, but so far so good. People have been able to farm Headless Horseman to their hearts content and daily heroics don’t see us spending 45 minutes waiting to just zone in.

At the con they also announced that they were going to refine the LFG system as well as add in cross server LFG capabilities to the game. Well in patch 3.3 PTR we are seeing the beginnings of the system. I for one am incredibly excited and can’t wait to see how this feature shapes up. As it stands you can use the system to go into a completely random group, or you can party up with a couple people and random the rest. You can choose your spec or role that you can fill just like in the current LFG system, but now you have the option of assembling a completely random group from different servers, and you get an option to sign up to lead the rag-tag band of misfits you aquire. As a reward you’ll receive a number of Frost Emblems and a helping of gold for your time and trouble. That alone is a good incentive to use the system as money and badges are always a good thing.

For me the biggest draw of this is the cross server interaction. They put that together for us back in an attempt to balance out Battle Grounds (which more or less worked but that’s a topic of debate for another day). Now the idea of being able to go directly to the instance with people pulled from the other servers of my battle group excites me. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a group ready to go but missing a tank, and there were none to be found. I just imagine a tank on another server unable to find a group kicking his can around wondering why no one wants to play with him. With this new system, the problem is lessened in theory. With the amount of badges we’ll likely need when Icecrown drops this will help ensure you’re able to find a group.

In a nutshell this will help eliminate those times where you’re sitting around for hours waiting for a group to do something. Just hit a button and shortly thereafter you’re off on a new adventure.

This is also important because there are also plans to use this for raids as well, at least the random group part, but not the cross realm part. Right now the interface for it is buried in the PTR (you can dig and find if you like). This is good for people like me with an army of alts. There are a ton of raids I would love to run on my hunter, like I would love to run her through naxx, but I can never find a group. This would also help struggling guilds that are having trouble filling in the last couple slots of their roster for a raid, just pop open the tool and find a few more folks to join in the fun.

I’m really excited about this feature and I think it will open up a lot more of the game for many people. It will allow greater accessibility to the content of the game for people that otherwise might not have been able to see it.

What do you think? Like it? Hate it? What do you expect from it? Will you use it?

That’s all for today, until next time Happy Healing!

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Image borrowed from wow.com

Hey Everyone! Look at the new guy!!

Don’t recognize the new name being tossed around the site, do ya?  I hope it doesn’t scare you.  All will be well.  I’m going take a minute to get you acquainted with that sexy bald dwarf you’ll be hearing from more often.

Hopefully, you’ve started to become familiar with some of my guest posts here, here, here, and here. 

Well, Matticus finally decided that he was tired of me sending him post after post after post and actually gave me this little promotion.  Boy, what a mistake that was!  Mwa-ha-ha!  (Just kidding, Matt.)

Why I’m Here

I’m here because I have a profound passion for this game, and I really like to blog about it.  Namely, the community, the escape, and everything the game has to offer.  I try to remain versatile and familiar with all aspects of the game.  I raid, arena, BG, whore myself out for acheivements, and anything else I can do with good people.

I play two 80s right now.  A feral tank and 2nd shaman are in the leveling mix.

My Dwarf Priest, Thespius, is specced Discipline.  I can proudly tout myself as one of the members of Lodur’s elite healing team in Unpossible on the Zul’jin server.  He and I have found an awesome synergy and work really well together when it comes to big green numbers.

My other 80 is a Draenei Shaman I play on the Nazjatar realm.  It’s my casual toon that I play with some RL friends.  My brother plays over there as well.

My Gaming History

I used to always be a console gamer.  NES, SNES, Sega Genesis, Sega CD (yes, I owned it), N64, Playstation, PS2, Xbox, and now Xbox 360.  Some of my favorite games of all time are still Legend of Zelda (all the titles on NES and SNES, but I could never get into the N64 series), NBA Jam (Sega Genesis), and Final Fantasy VII.  I can still play those games for hours on end.

In 2003, some friends roped me into buying Star Wars: Galaxies when it launched that summer.  My first MMO.  For those that remember the game, I did the whole holo-grind, the 32-ish profession grind that lead to unlocking my Jedi.  The most fun I had in game wasn’t necessarily the game itself but the people I was gaming with.  MMO seemed like a fun genre.

My brother tried to get me into WoW just after it launched, but I was so into my Jedi grind in SWG that I couldn’t make the switch.  It wasn’t until the fall of 2006 that I started my warlock, Thespius.  I’ve been hooked ever since.

My History

Without boring you guys TOO much, I’ll just go over the basics. 

I live in Chicago, IL.  I was born and raised in the area.  It’s home and I love it.  My undergraduate degree is in Acting Performance, and I pursued a full-time acting career for the past 6 years.  After a fairly successful run (mix in some odd jobs to make ends meet), I’ve decided the whole “starving artist” archetype wasn’t what I wanted for the rest of my life.  I still perform around the city in my spare time, and I also pursue a small voiceover career on the side.

The goal from here?  I’m in graduate school for Secondary Education in English.  I’m open to the idea of eventually working up to a professorship at a university, but we’ll see.  Other than that, I’m just enjoying life.  I’m excited to see where my love of WoW takes me.

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Twitter: @Thespius       Email: elder.thespius@gmail.com