Wednesday, October 29, 2014

This post kind of makes me seem like an asshole, but I'm really just awkward.

Compared to IRL, my rules for socializing within my guild are quite different, especially when it comes to fellow raiders and especially in a 25-man guild. When I'm out at a club or a party or even just standing outside of a building having a cigarette, I'll interact. I'll talk to people and find out what they're about. If someone turns out to be a douchebag, I can give the polite smile and incrementally edge away. But if we have similar interests and a good rapport, we can totally be facebook friends.

OMG FRIENDS WITH AVIA?!

However, when it comes to guildies, I've always kept a policy that I like to call the "office cleaning lady." That is, I'm my usual amount of friendly to anyone who wants to speak with me, and for anyone who does not, I'm just a person they see every day and that's it. It's not to be an anti-social jerk or because I particularly hate people. Rather, it's a strategy I utilize to minimize the situations in which I end up realizing that I spend almost twenty hours a week with someone I probably couldn't stand in real life. Sure, that happens outside of gaming too, and working anywhere inevitably involves being courteous to people one wouldn't necessarily invite to a birthday party. But in WoW, it's highly more likely that I could run into someone who thinks "God hates gays" or asks stupid questions like "If plants had feelings, would you still be vegetarian?" than I ever would in the protective bubble that I've created by living in NYC for years and then never leaving my apartment after moving away. Somehow, the raid environment feels more volatile than the real-life workplace, and every personal relationship or spat of drama has the potential to create toxic tension that makes raiding unbearably uncomfortable or to even dismantle the entire team.

That's not to say I don't develop and value friendships in game, because I definitely do. However, after years of semi-success as an office cleaning lady who manages to befriend one or two of the pencil pushers and trades a "good morning" and a "good night" with several others, I've somehow found myself willingly attending a convention at which almost thirty of my guildies from all over the continent are gathering and sharing the same house...

It's time to pull out my rusty social skills and polish them with some alcohol. I'll be back with some Blizzcon swag, embarrassing photos, and of course all the big convention news because RP Your Life! is heading to California this weekend.

-Avia.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Getting to know your new face or just getting a new one.

Human females look so cheeky. :3

With the implementation of the new character models, I really appreciate Blizzard giving us the option to change our chars' faces with the barber shop. However, as disturbing as it is to be getting plastic surgery at a barber, I'm rather annoyed at the inconsistency of being able to dye a worgen's fur and yet not being able to change my human's skin tone. It's perfectly feasible, logically and in an RP sense, for the fleshed races to re-customize their skin tone. I mean... they have the bleach and dye just sitting around, and I doubt that any goblin has ever listened to a warning label about avoiding contact with skin. Certainly, it's more plausible than modifying a draenei's horns or a night elf's ears, both of which sound like the poor patients would later die of infection from being operated on with a straight shaver previously used for dwarven manscaping.

In my opinion at least, I'm not a big complainer; when they announced and subsequently released the new models, I understood and accepted that my character would look different than it has for years. Better, even. But after reading that the only thing the barber seat would not change was skin tone and then logging in to find that the only thing with which I was unhappy was my suddenly ghost-like skin, I couldn't help but have one of those "Really?" moments when it seemed like the game was specifically targeting me to complain.

Melodramatic? Perhaps a bit. But after all their efforts to transition players to the new models as gingerly as possible and to keep them happy with the choice of free re-customization, it seems they still want to make a little money, but only off of a few select races. I see people on the forums futilely trying to justify the arbitrariness by saying dying hair is something easily done in a salon while one can never change his/her skin color, like self-tanning cream doesn't exist and skin lighteners aren't sold all over the world by merchants just as dubious as goblin barbers performing rhinoplasty.

For now, it seems I'll have to go the self-esteem route and accept my unnaturally pale skin color as a part of who my character is. Despite it not being what I originally planned for her appearance, I'll chalk it up to growing older, changing times and styles, and definitely a more cheeky outlook on life. Just look at that face and tell me she didn't come out of this Pandarian war with a brighter expression belying the years of bloody horrors she has endured and demonic blood tapping she has undergone.

... maybe that's just the smile of insanity.

-Avia.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Guide to 6.0 Pre-Patch Shenanigans by RP Your Life!

Inevitably, patch day is always a hectic and busy affair. When the servers came up yesterday, I had to get in all of the new quests, prepare my gear for raid, and then fight bosses with new spell rotations and adjusted mechanics. Over the past few weeks, every WoW fan-site in existence has published a guide for surviving the WoD pre-patch. I might be a little late now, but I have a little 6.0 pre-patch guide of my own. However, forget all of the class changes, UI improvements, and new features that are baffling everyone, because my guide doesn't address any of that. In fact, there is only one major bullet point:


Iron Starlettes

Take a page from Neopets (if it would load) and hoard a bunch of a semi-retired item. It might take seven years, but they will eventually inflate in value enough for you to get sick of them taking up space in your guild bank, and then you can sell each of them off for a MASSIVE 20g profit. Go ahead and do the Iron Invasion quest chain on every single 90 that you have. Compared to Gahz'rooki's world tour of Azeroth, it takes about ten minutes to get one of these seemingly non-sentient balls of metal that somehow know how to Pok├ębattle, and it will be ten minutes spent investing in your (very distant) future.

Leave it to RP Your Life! to touch upon the important issues for YOU!

-Avia.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Every post-match interview was painfully awkward to watch.


It was just a big weekend in NYC where, unbeknownst to the hundreds of people living, working, and partying around the Hammerstein Ballroom, there was a congregation of geeks watching other geeks play video games for money. The North American regional finals for WoW 3s and Hearthstone finished up on Sunday, and since then, I have been PvPing and collecting conquest points like I've been inspired by the greats. However, the classes and team compositions represented during the WoW tournament were not very diverse. Thus, I decided to take it upon myself to come up with a few unique, strategic, and/or enemy-confusing arena comps for you to try in these last couple weeks of the season. Honestly, it's a little late to push 2200, so we might as well have fun with it now.

Next year, this could be you!!!

Jaws Comp: Rogue/Feral - Rogue/Feral
They can't kill you if they can't find you. Spend the entire time stealthed and circling the enemy team. Eventually, they'll just get bored and leave. Sure, there are shadow sight orbs, but they'll expect you to expect them to use them, and since they think they expect what you expect, you can expect them to not do what they think you expect them to do! By the way, this comp loses its effectiveness with more players since five enemies can spread out and find you more quickly. Not like it's a very effective comp in the first place.

NPF (NamePlate Fuck):  Hunter - Hunter - Hunter
Similarly, they can't kill you if they can't click your nameplate. Burst them down in the 20 seconds in which they're frantically trying to differentiate between you and your stampede. Results after that are not guaranteed. Also, beware of professional players with targeting macros or functional UIs, but at that rating, you should probably switch to a less idiotic comp.

PvEasy: 1 tank - 1 healer - 1 DPS
If the enemies are spread out, focus the healer. If they are clumped, AoE! Don't forget to use taunts, and blame each other when you die.

(Class) Neopolitan - 3 of the same pure DPS class in 3 different specs.
If each of a class' three different specs has different strengths and weaknesses, the best way to ensure a well-rounded arena team is to contain every spec, right? Don't muddle it up by adding a different class with CCs on separate DRs. That's just making it too complicated. By combining three locks and all of the advantages of Aff, Destro, and Demo, one is essentially forcing the enemy team to fight one ultimate warlock. As for the disadvantages, whether you're compounding them additively or multiplicatively is up for debate.

Tree Cleave
My favorite 5s comp, this is the only one in this list that I've actually tried. Basically, it's five resto druids that go in with Glyph of the Treant, pop Heart of the Wild, and try to Wrath someone to death. We had very limited success with it, i.e. we never actually killed anyone. Nevertheless, it was super fun, and I'm sure the other team's reaction was priceless, first when they zoned in and saw the comp they were up against and again when they witnessed an army of trees coming at them. Feel free to combine with Force of Nature for even more trees or Incarnation for some arboreal variety.

-Avia.