Insight into the SYTYCB Selection Process and Important Question (see end)

Before I crash to bed, I wanted to take the time and answer and address a few things. We all know who the top 7 are. But what happened to the rest?

Why you were rejected

I know most of you would be okay with not getting the call back for the next step in the process. Both Wyn and I went through all of the entries many times. I know I wouldn’t like it if I got a term paper back with all red marks and slashes without remarks and critiques. I’m going to attempt to do the same here.

Wasn’t taken seriously

For a lot of you, I could tell the interest level just wasn’t high enough. It was blatantly obvious to me that you just decided to submit something on a whim. There wasn’t enough thought going into your submission and it didn’t seem like it was something that you really wanted to do. Yes the question and such was for fun but that doesn’t mean I’m not serious in looking for another writer. I’m not going to take someone whose going to apply and then figure out that it’s not something that they want to do.

Language or writing challenge

This is more of a technical thing than anything else. As a blogger, clear communication is a requirement. I know there was at least one submitter whose English was not their first language. I can’t fault them for that but I can’t take them on either. For the rest, minor things like uncapitalized I’s or “urs” or other signs of unprofessional use of the English word is not something I’m looking for. Obviously there are going to be exceptions, but when you’re trying to make a first impression it better be a damned good one and I just didn’t get that feeling.

Nothing special

At that point in time during the initial selection process, there many good posts. However, there were extremely few special posts. The 7 underbloggers that are competing right now not only submitted a post, they wrote a Matticus styled post. They took the bar and they popped Heroism, Winterfall Firewater, and Noggenfogger to set the bar even higher. An example is that I had 1 blogger attach images to her submission to help illustrate a point. Another blogger was aware that I had extremely aversive and allergic reactions to wall of texts resulting in immediate program shutdowns (thankfully, Wyn has developed an immunity to them). Ergo, they spaced it out accordingly and added emphasis and other formatting wonders.

In the future, when you’re applying for any kind of a position (even if it’s not a blogging one), try to stand out from the other applicants. Try to attract the guy’s attention.

Axe now or axe later?

It’s difficult to judge the bloggers individually. These guys have done excellent work thus far. Here’s an idea that I’ve been entertaining:

I know I said in an earlier post that I would cut bloggers week after week. But, would it be better and more entertaining for me to keep all 7 of them and then make 6 cuts at the end?

Don’t forget, the last 2 bloggers will be having their posts up later on today.

I’m also toying with the idea of giving my critique and feedback publicly on my blog - via webcam. Yes, I picked up my Logitech Orbit Webcam and played with it briefly. Anyway, why critique on video? Why not just do it as a blog post?

Honestly, I don’t know if I can accurately convey the true meaning of what I want to get across in a simple blog post. I’m afraid that what I say could get interpreted in too harsh of a manner or misinterpreted entirely. The problem with text based communication is that you can’t exactly impart tone, style, emotion or any of that stuff across.

I rarely ask for public opinion. I always do my own thing. When I do ask for your thoughts and comments, it’s usually for a reason. I’d love to hear your thoughts on both the elimination scheme and the critique idea.

(PS, underbloggers you are also allowed to comment. There is no conflict of interest situation here.)

SYTYCB: It’s not you, it’s me. Yea, no. Really.

SYTYCB: It’s not you, it’s me. Yea, no. Really.

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Image courtesy of Willrad. This is a SYTYCB submission from Rusco who made it into the top 7. 

rusco-post Hey everyone, Rusco here.

There are only a few things in this game that bother me; super long flight paths, druids inability to crowd control inside most instances while npcs use similar spells without issue, and a warlocks fear. But on the top of the list sits something that doesn’t have to due with coding.

It’s the players. I feel like there are so many ignorant, stupid people that play this game.

It makes me feel elitist, to say the least, when I think of it and I hate it but it’s true. I tend to get frustrated when I’m grouped with other people I didn’t pick and chose to group with. Usually in battlegrounds, I can ignore the people yelling at everyone to give up or making stupid remarks. Unfortunately, it’s a bit harder in raids that I ask to join because I have to keep my ears peeled and my eyes on the screen.

Even in 5-man’s I still come across people that can get to me without actually trying to. Just the other day, I was in a partial pug run through slave pens and make a joke about one of my friends getting himself killed before we met at the entrance when our mage drops group because he didn’t like my attitude. I can almost understand, I’m generally sarcastic in my humor and if you’re coming from the point of view that all people are out to hurt one another then yea, I could have come off a wicked jerk. But this guy knows me in real life, we’ve played tabletop rpgs for two years. We’re not close, but it was a shock to see him react that way to something he should recognize as playful not harmful.

Slightly less specific, a good friend of mine has a podcast about world of warcraft and one of their usual features is “Real Noobs of Warcraft” and I badgered him until he included an idea of mine called the “back-seat raid leader.” Now that’s something that really gets me in raids. When someone other than the raid leader starts spouting off commands or details, especially when someone asks a question directed to the RL, I throw my head back and groan. It’s like, “Yea, we all know you’ve been around since beta or whenever. We know you’ve got experience in this game. But you’re not the boss. Stfu. Srsly.”

Speaking of raids, is it too much to ask to have people arrive in a timely fashion and packing all the heat they can bring? I don’t think it’s too hard to find out what elixirs, food, reagents, potions, scrolls, weapon buffs, or whatever else you can use during combat that can benefit the raid as a whole. Sure, that may seem like a lot of stuff to remember but it doesn’t take much effort to check to see if you have what you need and if not to go get it. Not enough gold? One run through the Sunwell dailies and you’re good to go. What’s the problem there?

Now, I come from a casual guild, so it’s not required of anyone to be über prepared but I just don’t see why anyone wouldn’t want to make sure the raid does it’s utmost best. I’m taking my time, but I plan on having what every class/spec needs for raiding because I’m sick of complaining and maybe then no one will have an excuse to skimp out. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy doing the research and work, but I hate hate hate that I come across so few that will actually do it for themselves.

Don’t get me started on people who don’t know how to play their class. I’ve heard a horror story from a good friend of mine coming across a shaman that didn’t know what a totem was.

World of Warcraft brings in so many different walks of life and luckily there are really cool, smart people that play this game. I just wish I could play with them, rather than just read their blog. Maybe I’m just being overly pessimistic but I think I’m either getting the short end of the stick or I’m just crazy.

SYTYCB: The Last Piece of Loot

SYTYCB: The Last Piece of Loot

This is a SYTYCB submission from Crutch who made it into the top 7.

crutch-post “Of course,” I sigh as I pick up my badges, trying to ignore the other loot as it taunts me with its very presence. I walk away, moving on tothe next boss, just a little disappointed.

I’ve been running full Karazhan clears every week since the beginning of February. I’ve downed this boss 29 (TWENTY-NINE!) times, and I’ve only seen it drop once. And that time I lost the roll!

“I want this nightmare to be over!”

It seems like everyone has a story about some piece of loot that just won’t drop for them. That elusive item that you’ve hunted for hours, weeks, months, maybe even years, and it still hasn’t dropped. You’ve farmed this item so long that the anticipation of clicking on the corpse is just a little painful, even as fighting the actual monster is trivial. You know all of its tricks, you just want that little icon to appear when you click on the corpse. As the mob loses its last percent of health and it falls over dead, you’re torn. Do you pray the treasure would finally just drop already, or do you try to keep yourself from believing, hoping to avoid the feeling of disappointment when it inevitably doesn’t?

Maybe you’re a prot paladin, running Shattered Halls well past the point of getting Exalted with Thrallmar, all for a Figurine of the Colossus. Maybe you’re a hunter in yet another pug, praying that Gruul will finally drop your Dragonspine Trophy (and, while you’re at it, that you’ll beat all the other hunters, rogues, and fury warriors on the roll!) Perhaps you’re the rogue on top of the DKP list for your guild, and you just want Illidan to drop his Warglaive of Azzinoth. It might be that you’re running Black Morass for the 20th time looking for Hourglass of the Unraveller, or maybe you’re just hoping that those Scarlet Spellbinders will finally, finally give up the Enchant Weapon – Crusader.

Me, I’m a holy paladin. Our guild is 4/5 MH 4/9 BT, but I’m still running Karazhan every week, and not just for badges. No, every week, as we kill Illhoof, kill the four spell shades at the top of the next ramp, and turn to those cursed library doors, I think to myself “Ok, Nielas Aran, are you finally going to give me my Pendant of the Violet Eye?” I spend those two or three suspense filled, excruciating, boring minutes dodging blizzards, not moving on flame wreaths, dodging arcane explosions, healing a little harder through the elemental spawn. Long gone are the days where we worry about him running out of mana, and having to bubble through a pyroblast. The accursed Shade drops, and I drink, waiting for our raid leader to announce that maybe, this week, it dropped. But, no, another Saberclaw Talisman and Shermanar Great-Ring to shard later, and we’re on to Netherspite.

“I’m not even sure I want it anymore!” I yell at the screen, frustrated.

Maybe I should get in on an SSC pug and get Sextant of Unstable Currents, or TK for Fel Reaver’s Piston. “It’s not that good,” I mutter angrily, trying to convince myself that what I have is>enough. And maybe it is “enough”… but it’s not what I want.

So next week, I’ll go down that familiar hallway past Curator, past Illhoof, to that ill-fated progenitor of Medivh for the 30th time.

Will it drop?

Or will I sigh, loot my two badges, and leave again, just a little more disappointed?

Tell me, oh readers, of your tales of RNG woe and let us commiserate together.

SYTYCB: The Dark Side: Expansion Syndrome

SYTYCB: The Dark Side: Expansion Syndrome

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tulani-postThis is a SYTYCB submission from Tulani who made it into the top 7.

I remember back in September of last year, I was talking to a friend of mine. He had raided through Naxx pre-BC, and at the time resided in my hardcore progression guild. We were discussing the unnamed expansion, and he warned me of something that at the time, I didn’t – nay, couldn’t – believe, in my limited BC-only raiding experience. Now, however, it’s more than a reality; it’s an epidemic.

Expansionitus.

That’s right, I said it. I said what so many of us in our “expansion craze” refuse to acknowledge.

There is absolutely nothing that makes me want to scream more than pre-expansion lull. The length of time to get five people together increases to unbearable standards, and god forbid you try to slap a raid into a cohesive class balance. Recruitment slows to a crawl, and the only sign of life in your previously loudmouth guild is the discussion of what’s to come. Everyone turns to the future while shunning the present.

I’m talking to you. You, who’s read everything you can on the new expansion, and now you’re biding your time, leveling alts, and saving up your money, ready to sprint right up to the top all over again. In the meantime though, you’ve grown bored of this version, and you’ve started showing up less and less, and when you do, you couldn’t be more uninterested. And your attitude drags everyone else down with you.

Oh, you thought the quitters were the worst? No, it’s you – the player who’s far too lazy to put in the effort they did a few months ago, but still hang around anyway. You, the member who, had you acted like this before, would have been kicked without a second thought. These members litter raiding guilds as the expansion nears; as an officer, you won’t believe how infuriating it is to deal with the victims of this plague. Well, I’m here to administer the vaccine, and a swift kick to the behind:

Expansion isn’t for months. That’s months of new raids, months of new content, months of new kills.

Allow me to backtrack a second here: I am every bit as eager for a new haircut as the next girl, and there is nothing wrong with preparing and being excited. Expansion will surely be great, and with all the buzz, it doesn’t take an analyst to see how much it dwarfs what we currently play. However, I have goals which I need to see accomplished before I can enjoy something new.

My aspiration? To /dance on Kil’Jaeden’s corpse, plain and simple. I mean, it seems easy enough. You’d think with guilds who have cleared the majority of the game, the only way to go is forward, right? Wrong. Let me tell you my abbreviated story: the looming expansion has hit my guild smack in the face, right after we killed Mu’ru, the “hardest boss in the game.” And I’m not alone. I’m not the only guild experiencing the all-too-common symptoms: the sudden disappearances, the lack of concentration, the endless burnout… but one boss from the end? Your attitude, Mr. Waiting-For-Expansion, is a slap in the face not only to current members, but to everyone who’s given all they have to get us where we are today.

“But Lani, it’s all for nothing anyway. In a few short months, everything you do now won’t matter.”

Allow me to read this for what it really is: in a few months, all that nice gear, and your top dog reputation, will be insignificant, and you can’t handle that. Did you not join your guild saying that the joy is in the journey, not in the epics? It’s another reminder of how a lot of people lie on that question, and unfortunately, it’s those very people that see that the physical gain is going to be worthless, and they’re jumping ship quick. But me, I have a need to kill this big stinking Eredar, for pride, for completion. I don’t want to be “That Guild,” who we’ve all heard about when we’re clearing trash. The “yeah, we almost killed C’Thun, then Beta came out” guild.

We all know Expansionitus isn’t a real disease. It’s simply people who choose to lose sight of the world around them as they sit on their thumbs and wait for a new one. Maybe you’re already sneaking off from raids or your arena teams, or just showing up and watching some ESPN until it’s over. Maybe, like me listening to my guildmate long ago, you just don’t believe it. Wise up. If you want to have anything to come back to in Wrath, then when it comes time for your daily dose of raiding, do those 24 other people who rely on you a favor and pay attention.

So come on. This is the current game. Let’s finish it.

SYTYCB: Last Details and the Rest of the Seven

SYTYCB: Last Details and the Rest of the Seven

sytycb

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And here we have the remaining 3 underbloggers! Crutch was able to sneak a submission in on the last day under the wire which we liked enough to squeeze him into the remaining positions we had open.

Unfortunately, Sindaga had to withdraw from the competition due to time commitments and other real life responsibilities. Good luck in your endeavors, Sindaga (and keep trolling the Plusheal forums)!

Let me just say that by getting this far, the top 8 bloggers have earned the right to contribute to this blog and this community as guest posters.

But only one will be able to earn the 3rd blogging position. Who will it be?

Competition begins now

Two posts will be scheduled later today at 10 AM and 2 PM courtesy of Tulani and Crutch. Be sure to give them some excellent critiques and feedback! The other 5 bloggers will have their posts featured Wednesday and Thursday.