Blog Azeroth Shared Topic: Gaming Distractions
Hmm, it seems it has been several weeks since I last wrote a Shared Topic post. Well, this is just unacceptable!
We all like to do other things when we game. What do you do? Why?
Well, I am famous for distracting myself in-game (or otherwise). In fact this Shared Topic should be called, “Oooooh, shiny!” because that is usually my response to distractions, since having my tendency and reaction described to me that way by more than one friend.
Blog Azeroth Shared Topic: Oooohh, shiny!
Okie, there we go. (Sorry, Oathblade.)
I have a few modes of WoW play, first of course, is raiding. There is also less formal grouping for dungeons or old raids and such, and lastly, my solo time – when I level toons or just spend a few hours putting outfits together. heh
Since I have joined Undying Resolution, I have come to love raiding again.
One of my signature features as a raider (aside from my awesome healing – well, pretty good healing… eh, I guess I am okie at clicking boxes) has come to be the Techno that is (almost) always playing in the background. Sometimes I listen to CDs (especially if I am in a specifically Moby or Björk mood), but mostly I listen to my Above and Beyond station on Pandora.
Pandora is pretty cool, but I have noticed one must be very careful about what songs they “like.” It is very easy to completely skew a station from the intended selection to something… unrelated, with the “like” of one song. Then, it takes going back and stripping out the unintended “likes” so you can “correct” the station. :/ Needless to say, my Above and Beyond station is a year plus work-in-progress.
But somehow, my music is in some way audible through vent. Apparently it was more prominent with my former headset. Hmm… headsets… <opens a new browser tab>
Hey, tomorrow the new female Pandaren model is supposed to be released!
<quickly closes the other browser tabs and scolds herself>
Other than listening to music, I try not to distract myself too much while raiding. I usually have my laptop beside me, so that during breaks and loot rolls and wipe recovery I can send silly Tweets or check my email, Facebook, Google Reader. Whatever catches my fancy. But not at times it would be distracting, because I know where that would go.
Grouping – Dungeons and Old Raids and What Not
Smaller groups, especially PuG dungeon groups, are a bit different.
Vianessa in the screenshot above is a good example. Yay! Storytime!
I started her as a DPS, because I really wanted to learn to play a Ret Pally. I figured I would eventually make her a Holy spec for doing dungeons. At Level 40, I figured a few dungeons might be nice, to break up the questing. But on a whim, I decided to stay Ret.
So queueing for a dungeon as a DPS means the waiting game – watching that little green, creepy eyeball blink at you while its view wanders around the screen – kind of like the Darkmoon eyeball… Hmm… This is always a great time for distractions – reading blogs, catching up on the tiny portion of Twitter that is still visible, seeing what friends are up to on Facebook, replying to comments on the Blog. Because it is that or watch the 10-15-20 minute queue time go by. Woohoo…
Then, that happy noise of the queue popping trumpets! Hooray!
Click the ready check…
Disappointing door closing noise… Someone missed the queue. Bah!
Back to surfing…
Yes! The dungeon is loading!
Wait, what? The tank left as soon as everyone entered the dungeon?? Bummer. Okie, so I grab the quests and then watch the remainder of the group wander off and start killing things without a tank. I cannot help it, I always like watching these train wrecks in process – it is kind of perverse, I suppose… This is especially amusing when the trigger-happy DPS is a clothie. Because, sure, usually they get through a few pulls, but eventually they overpull or aggro gets out of control and the healer dies and chaos ensues. That is usually the most satisfying time to drop group.
Yay, dungeon debuff… Back to surfing…
Fifteen minutes later, I am able to queue up for another 20 minute estimated wait! Whee!
Surfing… Hey, an email! Neat! Poke my friend on Facebook, continuing the ever-lasting Poke war between he and I.
Yay! Load screen!
Oh, boy, a dungeon in progress! :/ It looks as if everyone except the Hunter left halfway through Scholomance – new healer, new tank, one other new DPS, all asking what boss we are on. Looks like they were heading to Rattlegore. I make the unread suggestion of pulling a few out of the room, but instead the tank runs in and pulls two trash mobs around Rattlegore. Two quickly turns into four, and oh look! we pulled the boss too!
Yay! A wipe and the tank leaves. <sigh>
Okie, the new tank jumps in pretty quick. Let’s finish this dungeon! (Or at least this boss!)
The tank does not offer a hello, no check to see if the healer is ready (or even present) and charges Rattlegore. At least we killed the entrance trash before the previous wipe, so it takes the tank a minute before he incidentally pulls the rest of the room’s trash. I try to pull two mobs off the healer to save him and promptly die. It is amazing how fast a plate-wearing DPS eats dirt once they have pulled aggro in a dungeon.
Yay! Wipe two and tank two leaves.
A few minutes pass, and I browse a few new blog posts.
Tank number three loads into the dungeon. Luckily, now all the trash around Rattlegore except a few in the far, fringe corners of the room are dead, so it is pretty difficult to screw up the pull at this point.
Finally! Rattlegore is dead! Vi gets some boots! <strut>
Our little group moves on. Yes, progress!
The path we carve from there to Vectus and Marduk Blackpool proves smooth, if slow. Vi tops the DPS, without heirlooms – she also proceeds to pull everything she hits with a single target attack. :/ Ooops. Did I mention at Level 40 she only has single target attacks?
In Vectus’ room, things went well. A few more bosses drop dead. But one of the rooms circling the Headmaster’s Study prove our downfall. The tank charges in, pulls everything and promptly dies, very promptly. At least one part of the dungeon goes quickly.
In less time then it took me to type that emote, I was alone in the group. Bah!
Back to Orgrimmar, back to the queue. But wait, I think it is past time I queue as my secondary spec. Then, I remember that Vi has no Holy gear. Bah!
Screw Holy! Throw on a one-hander and a shield on Vi, set her off-spec to Prot, and queue as a tank!
Zero wait time! The queue is instant, Vi loads in, goes on her happy way as the tank in a very smooth dungeon, and gets her first ever random dungeon completion in a portion of Dire Maul. Phew! That was a lot of work for a random bag of crap. The second random bag of crap comes quicker and easier, at the end of the former failure that was Scholomance, and Vi gets her first dungeon achievement (above).
PUG’ing is srs bznz…
“Leveling” AKA Solo WoW Time
Most of my time lately has been spent solo, despite my regular raiding. Leveling, questing, working on professions, putting together outfits, taking screenshots for my Blog. (BTW, my WoW screenshot folder has surpassed 11G.) ><
I spent the better part of yesterday working on Hunter and Mage outfits. I did no leveling. heh
I recently installed an addon that automatically screenshots achievements! (Cuz I need more screenshots, right?) I like it except for one thing – when I hide the UI to take a screenshot, the UI pops back up. This in itself is not too bad, though, usually I take multiple screenshots in case my toon blinks or just to make sure I am picking the best version. But when the UI pops back up automatically, it screws with my nameplates. Quest markers do not show up on characters and nameplates do not work at all. Then, I have to hide the UI and unhide it. That seems to be the only way. It gets old real fast.
Anyway, while I am leveling, what else I occupy myself with is very dependent on my mood. Sometimes, I level and listen to music and do little else – the music focuses me and I do 5-10-20 levels in no time. Other times, I watch TV while I play, surf, and do my other related items that I do while waiting on queues. Sometimes, a certain quest will get me off on a lore tangent. Quests have an annoying habit of not giving an entire story. Sure, the story line likely picks up again later, but I am too impatient for that.
My current lore tangent is the Scythe of Elune. Expect some interesting stuff related to that soon.
TV while playing usually consists of Law and Order: SVU, old Quantum Leap and Star Trek episodes (especially Next Generation) when I can find them, stand up comedy, and comedy or sappy romantic movies (especially a combination of the two).
The other things that distract me while I WoW are in-game. Herbs or ore on gathering toons can sometimes interrupt a questline for a bit, because it never fails – once you gather one, there is usually another one nearby and then one near that one and so on. And all of my toons have fishing and a fishing pole, even if they sit forever at less than 100 points. This is because I cannot pass up wreckage pools. Wreckage pools and treasure chests are like Christmas – surprise! some light leather or some Rumsey Rum or Stranglekelp or a some item (like the fishing journal).
Parting Note: So just as an add-on example of my horrible “Ooohh, shiny!” syndrome (as if this post did not illustrate it enough), writing this was not-so-briefly interrupted by a detour to Amazon.com and some searching of decent gaming headsets, of which I impetuously ordered one that will hopefully broadcast my music better to my vent partners.
:/ >< <—- (various moods resulting from said distraction)
Parting Note 2: I think this post illustrates my point too well.