Posts tagged ‘Loot’

Soloing Don Carlos as an Enhancement Shaman

Don Carlos is a mini-boss in Heroic Durholde who has a 100% chance of dropping Don Carlos’ Famous Hat — which makes sense, because he’s very clearly wearing it!  Of course, given the number of raptors running around without eyes, not to mention humans without skulls, I guess we can’t exactly take that kind of logic for granted …

Don Carlos

Anyway, Don Carlos’ hat is an absolute must-have for any self-respecting shaman — not only because it’s pretty damn sexy in its own right, but because the “incorporeal coyote spirit” summoned by its on-use effect looks exactly like our Ghost Wolf form.  I missed the zeppelin the first time it sailed, because Lil started as a lowly alt; by the time she was leveled to 70 and attuned to the Caverns of Time, all of my friends had already farmed Old Hillsbrad dry and were pretty burnt out on it.

Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to solo at level 80.

Here’s how I did it (and believe me, if I can do it, anyone can!):

1.  Spec Enhancement.  I don’t think this is necessary, per se, but it’s fun.  After a long week of healbotting friendly things and boring unfriendly things to death, a girl has to get her Windfury on.

2.  Port to Orgrimmar.

3.  Remember that there’s a portal directly to the Caverns to Time in the Dalaran’s Violet Citadel.

4.  /sigh.

5.  Astral Recall to Dalaran.

6.  Wonder if anyone’s started a QQ thread about Shamans being cheated in 3.1 by a 30 minute Hearthstone cooldown …

7.  Be amazed to find that cooler heads do occasionally prevail!

(What were we doing again?  Oh, right…)

8.  Port to the Caverns of Time.

9.  Run a couple of laps around the central cavern, trying to remember which instance is Old Hillsbrad.  (For the record, it’s the one that looks like an Alliance outpost, but not actually an Alliance town.  If there’s a lot of buildings, its Old Stratholme.  If there are only a few buildings, it’s Durnholde.  Trees and swampy things mean you’re on your way to Mount Hyjal or Black Morass.)

10.  Old Hillsbrad is an outdoor instance, so don’t forget to mount up or shift into Ghost Wolf form.  I recommend Ghost Wolf.  You’re doing this for fun!, after all, and nothing says fun! more than romping around naked while scratching yourself and howling.  (Just ask the man in your life.)

11.  NO!  Don’t take the dragon!  He’s all gung-ho to rescue some hapless orcs, or something.  Save that for some sightseeing Children of Wrath; you’re on a mission, here.

12.  Run up the road.  No, the other up!  I mean down.  I mean— …

Why the hell are you asking me for directions?  Did you miss the post in which I confessed to getting lost in the Dalaran bank?  Just … run around, howling and scratching, until you stumble across Don Carlos and his faithful Coyote Spirit.  That’s what I did, and it didn’t take long.

13.  Scamper ahead of the dashing don, and drop some totems.  I went with Windfury, Mana Stream, Earth Elemental and Magma Totem.


14.  … Remember belatedly — and vaguely, from doing this on your level 70 ‘lock — that Don Carlos is ranged, so you while you definitely succeeded in making him angry, he’s still dancing out of range, shooting you with arrows, and (insult to injury!) his pet puppy is chewing on your furry Tauren tail ass.  (Almost forgot; Old Hillsbrad makes you human.  /shudder)

15.  Panic.

16.  Heal yourself.  (Ah, familiar ground!  Flash of Lesser Healing Light works well here, because you will be getting pushback.  Just don’t do what I did, and waste precious seconds troubleshooting your Riptide keybind.  You specced out of it, dummy.)

17.  Run up to him, taking the long way because (damn it!) there’s a fence in the way …

18.  Push some buttons.  If they include anything that procs Windfury, you win!  If they don’t, heal yourself and try again.

(Okay, okay.  I’ll try to be helpful.  “Some buttons” actually means Stormstrike, Earth Shock and Lava Lash, in that order.  Every time Maelstrom Weapon stacks to five, use Chain Lightning or Lightning Bolt for DPS or Healing Wave for a clutch self-heal.  Imbue your main-hand weapon with Windfury on your off-hand with Flametongue.  Also, due to some bizarre math thing I don’t quite understand, the Torch of Holy Fire is currently the best enhancement main-hand in the game … so if you’re fortunate enough to have one, don’t bother equipping that level 75 Northrend blue that you’ve been carrying around in your off-spec set.  Just use the pretty healing mace, and you’re g2g.)

19.  Repeat step 18 until Don Carlos dies.  Then do it again to his puppy (which doesn’t despawn, for some reason).

20.  /cheer! — and pose for the camera, of course!

Seeing double?


March 23, 2009 at 8:38 am 7 comments

I’m not ususally one to /pout about loot …

Sad shaman is sad ... and unarmed.

… but awarding Angry Dread to an undergeared rogue on his very first Naxx-25 — when I’ve been scrambling to put together an enhancement set before 3.1, and still have Crimson Cranium Crusher for a Main Hand — may have broken my heart a little bit tonight.  I lost Crimson Steel to him last week too, in that disaster of an alt OS10 PuG.


March 17, 2009 at 10:47 pm 7 comments

OMG, ninja!

scarlett-ohara1Drotara of Less QQ, More PewPew posed an interesting question: When would you become a ninja?  

My first impulse was to exclaim “Never!” in my best Scarlet O’Hara voice, while clutching at my heart with one hand and fluttering around wildly with the other.  Then I remembered that I’m Undead, with half-rotted fingertips that are likely to fall off if I attempt that bit of girly frivoloty … so, nevermind.

For the record, Drotara isn’t asking “Why would you master loot that spirit trinket to your mage (over the PuG resto druid who could actually use it)?” or even “Is it ever appropriate to Need-and-run?”  No, Drotara is more interested in the ethics of passing another player over for a piece of loot — especially if she actually won the roll — if you don’t feel that she “deserves” it.  Maybe she died 3% into the fight and didn’t contribute at all.  Maybe her performance was simply subpar.  Or maybe you don’t agree that she needs an item because it isn’t optimal for her class or role.

What really made me stop and consider the question was a story Drotara shared about another player’s mother, who participated in a Vault PuG and actually won the roll for Valorous gloves — only to watch them go to another Death Knight because the raid leader decided she “sucked.”

My Mom plays a Death Knight, too.  The last time I checked, she was completely decked out in spellpower plate because it looked cuter on her Blood Elf than DPS gear, and had the added benefit of “making her spells pwn more.”  (Really.)

If my Mom were brave enough to PuG into a Vault run — which she isn’t; she’s listened in on enough of my siblings’ raids to be absolutely terrified of opening herself up to that kind of criticism — I suspect she’d come somewhere below the tanks and above an Affliction ‘lock her Baby Blizzard Bear on DPS.  She’d try her best, and possibly even drive herself to a panic attack in the process … but the damage meters would not be kind, and I can’t imagine that the typical Black Dragonflight PuG would be either.  (Sometimes, I think my server prides itself on its collective cruelty.)

What if I were the raid leader?  How would I handle the situation?

As a guild leader, my reputation is extremely important to me — so on the rare occasions that I organize trade channel PuG’s, I am very careful to (1) make the loot rules clear before the first pull and (2) follow them to the letter.  If this means rewarding the Death Knight who can’t DPS her way out of a netherweave bag, so be it.

When I’m handling loot in guild runs or even partial PuG’s, I do tend to be a little more subjective.  In these cases, the letter of the law actually becomes secondary to its spirit.

I’m thinking specifically of an incident that occurred in a 3/4 guild, 1/4 PuG run of Serpentshrine Cavern.  SSC was officially considered farm content, so we were using a simple “Need for main-spec/Greed for off-spec/Pass otherwise” rule to handle loot (with a few pre-determined exceptions, such as the Earring of Soulful Meditation and Tsunami Talisman — our primary reasons for hosting the PuG in the first place!)

We were muddling through with less than a full raid group, including a PuG tank who remains to this day the single-worst prot paladin I have ever met.  “Healsforhugs” absolutely could not pick up his adds on Hydross; our feral druid ended up tanking all four, while Hugs ran around dropping Consecrates around the perimeter of the raid for … no discernable reason.

Still, the rest of us overgeared the content, and were able to brute-strength our way through it fairly easily.  Hugs picked up a couple of off-spec drops uncontested, including the warrior-tanking mace off of Lurker.  (We really couldn’t figure out why he wanted it, but no one else did, so … whatever. /shrug)

We eventually made it to Leotheras, who dropped a Champion token (and some other things I can’t remember, but definitely not a Tsunami Talisman).  Healsforhugs asked to /roll.  So did our Holy Paladin, who already had healing gloves but was looking to build a protection set in preparation for Mount Hyjal. 

At that point, Hugs was in the raid simply because I didn’t have the heart to kick him.  His actual contribution was negligible — perhaps even negative, since he had been directly responsible for numerous trash deaths, and we had already decided to call the raid after Leo since there was no possible way he could tank Tidewalker’s adds or anything in the Karathress fight.

Meanwhile, it was in the guild’s best interests for the Holy Paladin to have an up-to-date prot set, since our pally tank was teaching a summer course and often missed raids, which occasionally left us without a viable tank for Hyjal trash.

I explained to Healsforhugs in whispers that even though the other paladin was healing at the moment, prot would be his main spec in guild raids so I was giving them equal priority.  The /roll alone would determine the winner.

The Holy Paladin won the roll, and I looted the tier token to him.

Healsforhugs threw an absolute fit.  He immediately dropped the raid, hearthed to Shattrath and started denounce us in /say us as “ninjas” and “robers” … which, come to think of it, led to this rather comical moment:

[Healsforhugs]: Don’t join Elleiras’s guild!  Ninjas!  They just robed me!!
[Random Player #1]: You mean … they forced you into a robe?
[Random Player #2]: OMG, I would totally join a guild for a free robe! Where do I sign up?!

… I really shouldn’t make fun of poor Healsforhugs, especially since — technically — he was right.  I did break my own loot rules when I accepted the Holy Paladin’s off-spec roll as if it were main-spec.

Was it justified?  I think so.  Healsforhugs was worse than useless, had already received several items and actually lost the roll to the Holy Paladin.

Did the guild’s reputation suffer as a result?  Not at all.  Healsforhugs made a fool of himself in Shattrath and I actually received a /w that night from the leader of a guild he had recently applied to, thanking me for exposing him as a loser and a creep … which I didn’t quite get, since the extent of my public response to his theatrics was a simple “/say You lost the roll to another paladin; I’m very sorry that upset you.”

February 10, 2009 at 5:46 pm 16 comments


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