Sunday, March 31, 2013

A Break

It's been a while. I've been procrastinating more with reading than writing lately, so posting has slowed down. It's Easter weekend, which meant a 4-day weekend for me. With some good news, out raid finally downed Garalon- by the skin of our teeth. At least this one wasn't as much of a shock as Elegon, I was expecting him to die. I managed to pull some awesome DPS (first time I've ever been tempted to link recount) as a healer. I was 5th overall, beating the mage. Of course, he was a kiter, which slowed him down. But I had fun teasing the DK tank about it. He brought it up, so I felt it was only fair.

I've been feeling an itch. I want to do so much more, but I don't have the time. I've been sad by the loss of 3 guild members recently. I think that, and the realization that our guild hasn't done any events aside from the anniversary party in almost a month, has made me want to lead some. I've tried before, with some challenge modes. No interest. But something like old school runs, I can do. I just don't have the time. I raid Wed and Fri, and there is a second raid group going on Tues. Only that group is very hit or miss, so I can't plan anything then. I need to study sometimes, and if I go out, it's usually on Mondays. Half price pizza, yeah! And I'd like to keep that up with my friends, get off of campus occasionally.

There are all sorts of things I'd like to plan- pet battle tournaments (get rid of those silkworms- an entering prize), old raid runs for mog gear and achievements, and just some fun stuff. That scavenger hunt this weekend was fun, and I thing my guildies might really like something like that. Weekly LFR runs, things to do as a group. Cause if you aren't in a raid group, the guild really isn't doing anything. And I think part of that is size- we are relatively small. There just aren't enough people interested in organizing things who aren't raiding, and those who are have no time.

I might give it a shot- throw a few old runs up on the calendar, see who shows up. Maybe OS, Naxx, and Ulduar- where I started. I suck at PvP, so I will hope our tank has the time to pick PvP night up again. I still need the OS253D mount, and if this goes well, maybe I'll try some ICC runs. I've never been there, it might be nice to take the druid back. She left before it was released. So, that will be the plan for tomorrow- look at my schedule, and put some stuff on the calendar. Happy Easter everyone, and I hope I don't turn around and call this April Fool's wishing.

Friday, March 22, 2013


Been a while. Midterms are over, thank goodness. I am working on summer plans now. I am just to darn shy to get up the nerve to contact people. But I will do it this weekend.

In WoW, I killed Oondasta. The spawn timer has been decreased, to around 3 hours now, and health has been nerfed by 50%. I caught a message in trade about an Oondasta raid forming right after our guild raid ended, so I popped out to the Isle of Giants, and logged out. No one had been in sight, so I figured it would take about half an hour to get a group out there. I logged back in at midnight, and 5 minutes later there was a pull and Oondasta went down. (I think of Oondasta as a she. I think it's the name- double O's make me think oocyte, which is most certainly a female thing.) The nerf made a huge difference- I didn't even have time for 3 minute cooldowns to come back up. One shot. Way better than the last attempt, with several pulls, skeletons everywhere, and no kill. And yay, I got a ring!

I think the nerf was needed, but I am of two minds about it. On one side, it makes kills easier and requires less people. I kinda think that even with tap to faction no world boss should require more than one raid group to down. On the other hand, it felt less epic, even though my repair bill appreciates savings. I think I would have liked to kill her once before the nerd, just like I would have liked to clear the raids before the nerf.

Speaking of raiding, we are stuck on Garalon. I have managed some awesome numbers on heals and decent on DPS on that fight, but we're wiping to enrage with about 13% to go. We've tried 2 healing, 3 healing, different DPS compositions, having out rogue eat the furious swipe with our tank (which he seemed to really hate, and was super reluctant to do). Nothing got us any closer. Sadly, one of our main tanks has left us, and that's left a DPS switching to heals, and the normal third healer switching to his tank. I am frustrated by that fight. I feel we should be getting it. I switched to DPS for an attempt, and our strategy involved everyone hitting the legs when they come up. As melee DPS, that left me with times when no legs were up because the raid was killing them. Thus, no DPS buff for me. So I was a sad panda.

I've been easily annoyed lately by people's attitudes. Possibly because LFR has been really bad this week for me. Really, really bad. Tanks not picking up adds, people not killing adds, standing in the bad, etc. So much so that even the game must feel sorry- I haven't been getting the deserter debuff for leaving those groups. Well, here's to a good weekend. I'll try to get LFR done with the rest of my toons, and maybe see if I can sneak in more Oondasta kills.

I leave you with some images of my first Oondasta attempt:

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

New Patch!

And I have hardly done anything. I have heard whispers that our raid leader may be back this week, and I dearly hope so. The Tuesday raid group did not get together last night. When I logged on at 5 to check, everyone had declined. I talked to 1 tank, who was going to be able to come. Then I talked to the other tank, to find out why he'd changed his mind and if he was still interested. He appears to be suffering some raid disappointment. They haven't gotten together but 2 or 3 time, not at all in the past 3 weeks, and only downed 1 boss. New patch should lead to much better gear and them downing the bosses easier, especially with the nerf. But anyway, what I was trying to say is t's really frustrated to lead a raid when no one is interested. I was only in charge 2 weeks, and really we didn't form up either one. I let it go the first time, since there was some confusion with the message passed along about me taking over for a bit. But last night was really annoying. Everyone declined or didn't comment. Then a healer, who had declined the calendar invite, pops on and asks if we were raiding. That, for some reason, really bugged me.

I had, earlier that morning, decided that come hell or hight water, if people were interested, I'd get that raid together if I had to spend a few hours in trade chat hunting for DPS. But when one of our tanks dropped out, and everyone else either had not responded, declined, or hasn't been seen for a few weeks, it left just me and one lone tank. Who did not seem disappointed at the thought of no raid. I gave up. I was leading it on an alt. I was doing it as a favor. It just makes me mad that people who signed up for raiding, expressed interest, and had to go out of their way to post on the guild site, don't even bother to take 2 seconds to respond to their calendar invite. I always do, and not just because the flashing question mark annoys me- although that is a large part. If you don't want to or can't come, that's fine, but please tell me! Grrr. Hopefully that group will be in our normal raid leader's hands next week, and he can straighten them out.

So, it's that time of year folks. You guessed it- MIDTERMS! So I might be posting as a way of procrastinating a bit more later. I already bought and read 3 books in the last few days. Awesome books. If I was stranded with only one author's works around me, it would be Anne Bishop's (this week at least). But seriously, I love her stuff. Can read it over and over, and still get sucked in. Her new book is fantastic.

I have put it off long enough- back to bacteriology.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

To Fistweave or Mistweave?

I was asked the other day which character I consider my main, and I was stumped. That used to be a clear-cut, easy answer- my druid. She was my first max-level character, and the only one I did anything besides professions and leveling with. Then I leveled the monk. I took her into LFR, and had a blast. LFR, as a healer, can sometimes have a lot of downtime, if the other healers are decent. But with the monk, I could hit things between heals! I had no downtime, it was more engaging and fun! My druid was still my best-geared, and my raid toon.

Then we hit Gara'jal, and wiped. Many times. At 7%, once with about 220k health left on him. That was annoying. So I brought the monk the next week, for just a tad more DPS to push us over. And she stuck. I'll admit, on the monk, I am kinda half a healer. But I feel that 2.5 healers is about where we're good at for most of those fights. Because of that, I was hesitant to heal Elegon. I preferred to DPS on my monk there, but I was pulled to healing, and did fine. But if I am going to really heal, be a main healer, part of a 2-man healing team, I'd rather be on my druid. Our other regular healer, however, is a druid. I'm already competing for the same gear, I should at least bring different skills to the table. (Like the monk 3-min healing cooldown- it's great!) Plus, then I would be the 4th druid in the raid. And we've run with a full spectrum of druids before, that was no planned. So the monk has become the toon I spend the most time on.

And I love her, I do. She kills things so quickly, there is just enough to keep track of with DPS, not too much. I can heal and dps at the same time, and now she is the best geared toon- in both her specs- that I have. But I don't think of her as my main. I don't think of the druid as my main either. I'm mainless, aimless maybe. I feel disloyal to my druid to call anyone else my main.

But the title of this post was to fistweave or mistweave. so, to get back to that. Looking at the meters, my HPS and DPS appear to be awful- both about 20k. I'm doing both at the same time, so I feel it is ok. But with monks as a new class, I can find so few resources to really help me. I fistweave because I enjoy it, and because our raid is at the point where we can maybe run with 2 healers, and maybe not. So I feel two-and-a-half works great for us. I should ask our other healers, though, see how they feel. If they feel differently, I might switch back to my druid, or gear up my priest and try that for a while. 

I feel a tad uncomfortable mistweaving, because I am not familiar with mana management. I can so easily run out without paying attention. I can do it, I did just fine with Elegon. But if I am going to be doing that all the time, I would rather be on my druid. Maybe I'll fall in love with priest heals, but from running dungeons while leveling, I think it'll take a while to get used too.

So, to conclude: my monk is a fistweaver. She does light healing while doing a bit of DPS, and mixes in big heals when the raid needs em. She is not a mistweaver, to focus solely on healing and little else. She supports healers, and can step in to be a main healer, but she prefers to be the supporting role.

My druid is a healer. She heals, and that is her job. She enjoys it, believes healy druids should be trees, and really that seeing your armor as a druid in a raid is wrong. (Probably why I am so slow to transmog- why bother when you never see it?) She will be a lead healer, and do a great job at it, as that is all she knows to do.

My priest is an enchanter. He will do LFR for loot to disenchant. Maybe, if I start to fit into the priest groove, he might join a raid, depending on the composition of raid healers.

I do love the monk. I believe playing a fistweaver has made me a better player. I had to become much more situationally aware. I had thought I was before I began fistweaving, then I realized how much I really only paid attention to the health bars and what I was standing in. Now I focus on the whole encounter in a much more comprehensive manner. I would be sad to stop playing my monk in raids. But I don't want to hold the team back, and I don't want to stop fistweaving. If they need me to be a full time healer, like when we move on to the next raid, I will probably switch to my druid. I'll give the monk a try, and talk to the other healers, get their opinion. We'll work it out.

I feel like I have heard that conversation before, about fistweaving and healing. In another raid. And I think I just hit on what bothers me about my raid group right now. My guild is a casual guild. The raid team takes raiding seriously, but not that seriously. Oh, they come prepared, and gemmed and enchanted and reforged, having watched video and seen the fights in LFR. I love them all to death. But I feel like they should be further than we are. I suppose we're doing well for a group that started late on the raiding game, and only raids 2 nights a week.

So what I am saying is I need to chill out. And relax. And not take things so personally. This is all just the aftermath of a bad raid night. I will sleep, and be happy not to have a Classy priest hanging over my shoulder, and- have some fun! What to do for fun?

Friday, March 1, 2013

Bad Raid Night

What makes a night bad? Not getting bosses down is an obvious answer, lack of progress, but I don't care too much about a few nights of wiping to learn the fight and improve. Admittedly, weeks of wiping to 1 boss frustrates me, but even then I usually come away with hope we'll get it next time.

Tonight left a bad taste in my mouth. Really, this whole raid week. We only had 1 hour of actual raiding Wednesday, between waiting for a tank and discussing strategy. Originally, I had plans for tonight that did not include raiding, but  Fish Friday fell through, so I showed up to raid instead. I had expected that our raid leader would have found a healer to replace me, since I confirmed with her Wednesday I was going to be out. But there was still room- and we had 1 spot open. So we grabbed a DPS, and our boomkin popped into her off-spec to heal. She was doing ok, but I get the feeling it is completely an off spec to her, something she may have known well from Cata, but hadn't done any research on for subtler MoP changes- like how Nourish is no longer the bread and butter for healing. But whatever, she  did a great job. Our tank was being squishy tonight, and died a few times. So he whispered me about doing less fistweaving, more mistweaving.

That kinda upset me, because a few minutes before our raid leader had made a comment about "healers trying to DPS" to the detriment of their healing. I felt like it was directed at me, even though no names were mentioned.  Anyway, those comments rubbed me the wrong way. I probably didn't start out in the best mindset. I was hopeful, and having fun, but I had woken up from a nap about 20 minutes before raid time.   I said to myself- ok, I will see if I can pay more attention, see if I can improve my healing, and to make them happy, quit chasing down the adds and hanging around the boss so much. But it's Will of the Emperor, if people are doing their jobs right (and mostly they were) there was very little damage going around, and with 2 druids rolling Lifebloom on each tank, they weren't having a lot of health deviations that I had to stop and really heal, throwing out renewing mists and chi wave was keeping everyone up. So I was DPSing lightly to spend chi for mana tea. And, since I am a melee healer, I figured staying around the boss, so I will keep the tank in range and not spend a lot of wasted time running around was a good idea. I have gotten much better at avoiding devastating strike since I've had a chance to practice. I only miss if I stop to heal, and I get out of the way if  am going to be doing that.

I realize that is a block of whining essentially that someone told me I was doing a bad job. I just needed to vent a bit, that raid left a bad feeling behind. We didn't down the boss, our best attempt was 5%. I was kinda hoping for the feat of strength. If I feel like I have a better mindset tomorrow, I'll see if I can find a group for it.

As a side note, I am once again in charge of next Tuesday's raid- this time, I will make sure to contact people before hand to let them know that yes, I am running it, it will be happening. I hope our normal raid leader comes back. Don't get me wrong, I think our GM has been doing a great job, but I feel like she's been very frustrated lately. Plus, he's got a healer he usually brings, so... But really, if he comes back, we'll have a pally, me, and it looks like the druid that filled in a few times is now a permanent fixture (which is good) so I can bring my priest in once I get him geared, or my monk. Or the shaman if I ever manage to level her. I really miss the healer who started with us. He's been out for school, and not on much. He was fun.

Maybe I should have taken the night off. The grind to level my priest for the contest kinda wore me down. I dreaded logging in for a few days, because I felt any time not on my priest was a waste, and I didn't want to quest. But we reached 90, so yay! A chance to sleep, and not worry about anything WoW related might have been good. Tomorrow, it's back to the valor grind on my monk- almost done! Next week I won't even have to cap valor to finish Wrathion's quest. Then I get to run LFR with the druid, and rogue, and try to get those last 2 points I need to take the priest in. And start the GL, so I can get the rep for the enchants. I feel like my to-do list for WoW is hours long, and my "fun stuff" to do list is never going to see the light of day.

Is it raid burn-out, or group? Do I just need to get away from WoW for a few days and come back fresh? Or do I need to just practice and become a mistweaving monk rather than a fistweaving monk?

I feel like it isn't raid burn-out. I am looking forward to finding a PUG, something low-stress this weekend to do. I might need a break, but I probably won't take one this weekend.

And the monk. That might be another post.