Google+ ALT : ernative: 02/09/2014 - 02/16/2014

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Saturday, February 15, 2014

That's the Way the Money Goes


Old Skool Farming. SO PATCH 5.2.

As I discussed yesterday LIVE NO SCRIPT ARGH in the Podcast, farming has become part of my daily routine. It wasn't before because I wasn't making the time for it, but now as I cycle alts around the Valentine's Day Event, there is the opportunity to make it happen. As a result I have 8 farms 'on the go' and am producing enough raw materials to allow new things to happen, like getting characters maxxed in Cookery who aren't, simply based on items now freely available. I realise that if I'm smart and marry this up with killing specific mobs on the Timeless Isle I can probably get away with spending next to nothing getting Cookery to 600 on just about everyone (probably an hours fishing required but that again will require some thought and undoubtedly a list) and then I am into regions of Faff as yet unexplored. Ah the Organised Faff, who would have thought it.

These are strange times indeed.


DON'T START ABOUT THE MOGGING. YET.

Sorting my game life out right now is roughly akin to doing a 6000 piece jigsaw with no idea of what the final picture will look like: you can put certain pieces together and know they're right and fit correctly, but you really have no overall clue of what your final scene is supposed to depict. You can make guesses though and that drives you on to look for other elements in the mix that might fit the overall end result. Therefore, selling pets and organising banks is a 'thing', a little at a time, as I grasp what I think I'll want to keep and what can be binned. I've made extra containers for food because as of now I don't see them being a waste of time. I've upgraded all P's bags to Royal Satchels because even when all my vanity items get stuck in the Toybox I'll want more space for mogging. Understanding my own needs has actually become quite important in the equation too: having bankalts who are organised makes me feel happier and more capable of coping when things suddenly change. It's a small thing, but it matters.


Make this a poster for me STAT.

Yes, I could be grinding out those difficult Achievements now, but actually I have my eye on other priorities. I want five Jewelcrafting mounts made now so I don't have to worry about them later, and possibly some put away in the bank for sale during warlords. I need to spend money now so I can accumulate it when the beta goes live and people realise we really are on a timer. Most importantly I want to feela s if I am the one in control of my destiny for the first time in this Expansion, that I am not at the beck and call of the latest rep grind or difficult farm to get what I want before we all move on to the next thing, and that is probably the most important factor in all of this. I play this game, no-one does it my way, I need to have the whole thing within my grasp, easily and logically. Right now, I am well on my way, and for the first time in many months I can see the fruits of my labours.

All I need to do now is kill Garrosh, and I'm done.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Alternative Chat :: Episode 16





Okay folks, here we go. I tried to write a script for two days and it didn't happen, so I've decided to go LIVE. Random ramblings? We have them!


This week, I will be mostly chatting about:

  • Why I cannot write words without pain.
  • How beautiful Garrisons are.
  • Passion in all its forms.
  • How Mogging has become Therapy.
  • How Blizzard is an institution.
  • NO ROCKET MOUNT EVER.
  • However, organisation has broken out everywhere.





If you have any comments or thoughts on this week's Podcast, or you'd like to abuse me for not having a clue as to what the Hell I'm talking about, please send your mail to:

alternativegodmother (all one word) AT gmail DOT com

==


NOTES.


There are no notes. I can't do it :(


==


I WILL be back next Friday 21st. YES.

Vogue :: The Other Side


Playing both sides takes some work...

The Horde Mog got redesigned when this lass hit 90, and in terms of projects is probably one of my most successful. It's also one of the simplest, at least in terms of base colours and co-ordination. Again, the starting point is the shoulders, and that is becoming a bit of a theme, and in this case they are asymmetrical for a reason. This particular PvP set is frankly one of the few I have really liked in the entire run of designs, the other is the set my Male Hunter is currently wearing as a complete ensemble, the only time I have specifically ground a set in that way. However I'm only using shoulders and belt in this case, pretty much as counterpoints to each other.


Details are everything

This is essentially a palette of three colours: brown, gold and silver, with the purple breath of the dragon as an accent. Again I've gone for a single trouser colour because I am getting increasingly frustrated with the fussy nature of new armour sets, as if it's only any good if it has every colour used somewhere at least once. The Dragon details on the shoulders and waist act as the motif for the whole outfit, and the chestpiece lends elements to gloves and bracers, which I don't normally bother with but in this case give the gloves a subtle extra dimension. Boots are deliberately understated too, and as I know now that Blood Elves will eventually get a character makeover, I'm tempted to hang onto this look until that happens. I feel this is probably one of the most quintessentially 'huntery' outfits I've ever made, that it could almost pass for camouflage.


Great to be able to use a cape as well and not hide it ^^

The short, stocky nature of the gun suits the character and the mog, I think, that too much ostentatious would draw attention away from the shoulders and belt, which is very much were I want the focus to be drawn. It is all about the understated yet significant with the Blood Elf, that it's easy to get lost in the crowd sometimes, and that's pretty much the point if your stock in trade is to be largely anonymous until it's time to kill things. In that regard, this would be a great Rogue outfit but they don't get to wear mail, we do. All loot is ours, and long may that continue. Should make the mogging choices increasingly simple for the family as I redress them.


Not bad. Not bad at all.


Full List of Transmog Items as follows:




Sadly this Rifle is no longer in game, but there are three similar colourations that would work just as well. P is using one as an alternate to her current mog, as it happens...

Thursday, February 13, 2014

I'm In Love with a German Film Star


This, in all things.

With tomorrow being That Love Day it seems particularly apposite to talk this morning about what fires the synapses into acts of spontaneous enamour. Gaming, after all, is supposed to be something to be approached with enthusiasm and passion, but for many of us can end up feeling like... well, a bit of a job. That impression has a lot to do with the way any game is thrown at us to begin with, and that is where our story starts, at inception. Here's a personal story about how the first impression of a game matters, and how if make your content for perhaps the wrong reasons, people will find you out.


Yes, it looks lovely.

I never 'did' Everquest the first time around, I was a bit busy freaking out about giving birth to my son back in 2000. However, I've been watching a number of people getting very excited about the EQ Landmark 'experience' currently being tested (most notably The Aggronaut) and will admit, my interest was piqued. Being able to design your own housing (in a Minecraft stylee) is an attractive proposition, and doing it in a fantasy 'scenario'... it presses a lot of my personal buttons. So, I decided to go investigate the options, and what I found was roughly akin to the time I fell for the blonde, blue-eyed boy in the Third Year of Secondary School only to discover he came with a caveat: if you were poor and plain, he wasn't interested.[*]


Wowser.

Let us be very clear here, I am *NOT* about to be critical of companies that make players stump up cash to play their games, because let's face it, that's what I'm doing right now and I have no complaints. Where my qualm lies is that I have a passion to play having seen my peers do just that, but not the cash... and if I wanted to dive in now, even buying the lowest 'pack' EQL has on offer wouldn't get me instant access, I'd be waiting until the end of March. When I think about it, about 20 quid to buy myself into what is effectively an Alpha client is not really any different than the cash I stumped up for Hex to be made or for Elite to go into production via Kickstarter. So why do those choices seem considerably more worthy than this, which immediately struck me as an exercise in opportunism? Is it because Sony could never justify trying to do what most independent publishers are often forced to in order to get the cash up front to actually make their poducts?

Whatever happens, this time I'll wait, because what situations like this demonstrate is that it doesn't matter what companies do, if you can't afford to play you won't, and in my case whenever 'free' Beta does actually arrive I'll take my chances, and it won't matter if all the 'good' spots are gone because if they are, I'll probably have lost my interest to begin with... if you make a game where only the best content can be bought, you will inevitably be on a hiding to nothing. I know how economics work, and this is NEVER a great way to found an economy. Trust me on this. Spending huge amounts of money on a game before you've sold it's also not the wisest of move, and the Elder Scrolls people know that too, which seems to be the other game so many of my blogging compadres are discussing right now. As Tobold put it so eloquently yesterday:


Maybe competence is more important in a game developer than just passion. 


You can easily forget that all the graphical lushness and ease of use allowing you to recreate the whole of Tolkien's works visually or an ocean liner in your game is all well and good, but if you are forced to insert cash every week to keep things just so or to maintain your dominance, your passion for a game isn't then just about your ability to play it, it also becomes dependant on your ability to afford it. Microtransactions aren't just in your mobile device's future, after all, everyone's getting in on the act. Convenience = payment, and this will continue to be the case as long as people have the money and are prepared to give it up for their addictions. [**] This is the cash that pays for all the people who make your game too (supposedly), even if most of us believe those extra dollars afford an opportunity to dispatch the Gaming Company's CEO Scuba Diving in the Maldives. Mismanagement costs a lot too, incompetence even more so, you just need to look at the banking sector to see how that's panned out. Ideally, what you want is a company that not only looks organised but maintains a level of passion that is easily and continually apparent, because you can then feel that your money isn't simply being well spent, its being put in the right places to begin with.



Music is one thing, but do you understand the
 meaning behind it?


Many people have asked me how I keep this up, how I post daily on Warcraft when many people were packing up their bags and leaving town, some for good. Well, this game has never let me down. It never expects me to give up the cash for anything important, and when the time came to start making extra money out of players it thought about the consequences. The people who will inevitably complain about the insertion of a Blizzard Shop button to the Character Screen when it appears in 5.4.7 next week do not grasp that the future, such as it is, depends on Blizzard towing the same line every other MMO will tread. If people WANT to pay for things, you give them the option, but it never becomes the default. When I pay my monthly sub, and I will continue to do so on two accounts, I'm not just paying to stay in the game. I pay for the CM's, for the in-game support, for the chance to talk to Devs on Twitter, for the Quality of Life I have come to expect from Blizzard. I am, in effect, paying for competence.

That's a subscription I have no issue in maintaining.

There are those who complain that Blizzard has its cake and eats it with the sub and the mounts and the pets, and soon with the 90's you'll be able to buy. Well, they only get dessert if people keep stumping up the cash and if the quality of service remains. As soon as it all drops off the World, the money will dry up really fast, and when I see people returning with new enthusiasm for a game that really should be covered in mould and smelling after a decade, something is clearly being done right. Of course there will be detractors, and actually that's no bad thing in the long run, because making noises and throwing rocks has the double advantage not simply of keeping everyone keen, but also of fostering a strong community spirit. As my good, dear friend @Grimmtooth constantly loves to remind me, this is a World of Whingers, and without the moaning the planet would simply become a Utopian Paradise, and we know NOBODY wants that.


These credits are probably lying.

I am still stupidly passionate about Warcraft, to the point of being told to 'calm down, dear, it's just an MMO' by many, many people. The thing is, it's MY MMO, that inspires me and pushes me forward and makes me think about the world in ways nothing else has adequately managed in my time on this Planet. If this one thing is capable of so much, then it needs to be looked after carefully, and managed in a way that I think Blizzard more than adequately understand, even though it may seem at times as if they don't really hear things that well at all. Nobody is perfect, and there is always room for manoeuvre. We universally understand that every day is a school day, after all. However, when all is said and done, these people have treated me with respect and kindness and they don't take my money unless I give it to them, and in the current gaming environment that is a VERY significant factor in proceedings.

As long as that continues, I suspect my passion will remain unabated.


[*] True Story.
[**] Whole new Blog post. Just saying.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

This Week I Will Be Mostly :: Could It be Magic

MAGE TOWER EDITION.

Ah, where has the last week gone? /wistful.

See, this is the problem when the clock is ticking... suddenly, there's just no time to do anything you planned. However, last week was not a total disaster and this week has a lot going for it. Oh, and that Garrisons Post last night has made me unreasonably cheerful and encouraged for a huge number of things in the Expansion. Thumbs up, Blizzard.


Oh, Colbert. /swoon

Anyway, I digress. Last week there was not any actual levelling, but there was an unreasonably huge amount of organisation.


MANY PETS. COUNT THEM.

With P's change of mog came a clearout and re-tame of a number of pets to match the new colour scheme, plus I decided to finally go and do the last of the Kalimdor low level quests I needed to complete Achievements for every zone. I just have Felwood and 1000 Needles to complete and I'm done, and I've picked up a fabulous selection of new companions along the way. I also extracted the digit and now all 8 90's are farming in some form or another. I'll be using the Shaman's farm to grow Spirits of Harmony to ensure that she gets all the BS recipes, and there will be a concerted effort this week to a) cap at least one person with Valor and then b) run everyone else through some Instances/LFR around the Timeless Isle to build up some points as well.

With the Valentines Festival in full swing, I want everyone I can doing the Crown Chemical Daily SO THE MOUNT CAN FAIL TO DROP. On top of that I should pick up Charm Kits for Island occupants so I can make and consolidate bracelet production and see if I can't buy anything useful with what results.


NEVER AGAIN ^^

I now have no need to ever return to the Isle of Giants, as I ground my last 1000 bones for the Porcupette (though I could go back and rofflestomp it in Warlords, and I'm sure I will :P) I've been selling insane amounts of leather this week (thanks in part to low level questing but also because Timeless Isle occupancy's up again and MANY DEAD THINGS LYING AROUND FREE GOLD KKTHXBAIBAI. There has also been a marked increase in the number of Battle Pets I've been selling, which says to me that people are looking to fill in holes in their collections before the Expansion hits. As my pets are currently spread over several alts and in different Vanity Banks, it could well be time to consolidate what I have.

The Vanity Banks have been given a good going over too this week, with new specialist bags for tasks and a critical eye on future Expansion requirements. Items have been removed and disposed of, and I'l be looking at who handles what in the weeks that follow. I may also start making the Jewelcrafting Mounts if leather sales continue to remain healthy: I'll go for the individual colours first and aim to have the Onyx one done before Warlords hits.

Plus, the Recruit Myself A Friend Mount finally appeared :D


VERY NICE BIRD.

That was last week, so what about this? Well, I suspect there will be great deal more of exactly the same... so if you'll excuse me, I'm off to fail at winning a Rocket on the Eight L90's... ^^

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

To Build a Home :: Homeward Bound

New Graphic Incoming. COUNT ON IT.

Well, we knew we were getting a fully interactive experience when Blizzard announced their latest edition of Artcraft, but I'm not sure I was actually prepared for the stunning I got when I fired up my browser thirty minutes ago. If you're one of those people who thinks Garrisons aren't a really significant part of the Walords Expansion, it's time to think again. This feature may end up redefining everything that surrounds us, including the World of Warcraft we live in.


The Garrison feature is going to be a huge part of your core experience in Warlords of Draenor. 
Cory Stockton, Lead Content Designer.



The details are everything. AND THEY ARE.


Gone are the clunky and blocky buildings in my old graphic above, to be replaced with what the Art Department themselves describe as a reinvention of the traditional buildings we have come to live in and love over the last decade. This 'trip down memory lane' brings a level of detail which took my breath away, where it is clear that care and attention has been lavished from the planks on the floor to the flames of the candles. It would be a considerable understatement to say I'm now desperate to see what these places look like when animated.

When we’re creating the art, we actually use small stories as a way to guide the scene. We use lighting, material choices, silhouettes, and carefully crafted details to invite the imagination of the player to look beyond the pixels and textures, and bring their character into the world. I like to think of the buildings as characters themselves, each with a personality, from the little nicks on a doorway, to the warm hearth in the Town Hall. 
We hope you feel right at home when you step into each of these places.
Wendy Vetter, Lead Artist, Warcraft Dungeon Team. 


What is also clear is the change that occurs as buildings are updated, although I can already see people not willing to do so because they'd like to keep the smaller nature of some of the tents and buildings themselves.


Not a Mill, at least not yet!


The implications for this are significant: for the person who asked on the Forums for faction-specific buildings and who was then told it was that or a Raid Tier, it should be abundantly clear to anyone looking at the US Blog post exactly why that would be the case... but the potential is HUGE, especially if transposed onto the wider framework of the World, because let's face it, who wouldn't want these buildings all over Azeroth at the first available opportunity? Could this mark the beginning of a concerted redesign of other buildings outside the auspices of the Garrisons, part of a commitment by Blizzard to bring the real world up to scratch with the much-anticipated redesigned character models? What could this mean for future Expansions? Could we expect Night Elf and Undead architecture to be similarly revisited? Who knows... but for now, anyone who thought this feature would be a crushing disappointment...

If all else fails, I could stare at this stuff for hours and not get bored.


IT'S ENCHANTING!


I sense something of a sea change in the graphic outlook here: of course the look of the game has always mattered, and there are some epic vistas in every part of Azeroth and beyond. However, this approach is tied to making the ENTIRE experience of Crafting something more than simply sitting in a Capital City and grinding out hundreds of items. For some, this is always what the experience will be, but for those who want to truly feel a part of what they do and what they make, this is a major departure, and a hugely encouraging one. Everything matters in your garrison, and that respect for the franchise is visible in every pixel.

I'll revisit the Buildings in more detail in the next few days, because to do all of this justice needs me to sit and take it all in with the benefit of time and consideration. Needless to say, I'm really glad I've been covering this feature since Blizzcon.

This is possibly the most excited I've been about something new for quite some time.

I Hate You So Much Right Now

That's one way of looking at it...

Hunters. There's a reason so many people play them.

They are, like it or not, incredibly easy to grasp. They require little or no skill to cope with at low levels. My eight year old can do a very decent job of one, because her pet does most of the work ahead of her. In effect, if you wanted to start playing the game from scratch, a Hunter would probably be your best choice. It's why, back in Vanilla, most gold farmers picked them as tractors. [*] And yes, the respondent has a point. Hunters have pretty much zero penalty for movement. The problems arise with the skill of players being able to grasp this mechanic along with all the others, not get killed by the mob/s we're attacking, making sure we're actually facing what needs to die while we do that and being able to stay alive to maintain a rotation that sustains damage. In that regard, there is balance, because being able to move is all well and good, but actually doing that and then dps is entirely a different matter.

When you look at balance in certain lights, it will appear to be anything but, only because you are yourself not considering the impact of player skill in grasping that class to begin with. The one factor that most players complaining singularly fail to factor into their equations is their own ability versus that of everyone else. In shock news, not only are you probably not as good as you think you are, you can guarantee everyone else isn't either. In most cases, it doesn't actually matter if you are or not, as long as the other 9-24 players around you bring their A Game to the fight you're trying to crush. Then it's down to the meters/the combat log/the perceptions of your peers as to whether or not you're packing the goods, and if you're not then you're probably looking for somewhere else to raid. The exception of course is LFR, where the only thing that matters in most cases is making it from A to B in the quickest time possible and with the fewest wipes, and in a lot of cases that's got nothing to do with moving and everything to do with simply understanding what the heck is going on.

It's not about the class, it is the player, but feel free to blame balance if you're looking for an easy comeback.


BIIIIG Difference.

The place where skill and balance begins to really show is PvP, like it or not, and this is inevitably why PvE gets the shaft so often, because someone who can really play a lot better than most of us has worked out a way to use 'balance' to their advantage, in a way that actually makes the possibility of imbalance across the board feasible. So, everyone gets nerfed and everybody cries a bit inside because nobody likes to feel they are any less than they are, except that most classes bear very little relationship to what they started as when the game began anyway so it doesn't actually matter in the giant scheme of things. Everyone is made equal these days, because if they aren't no-one plays at all. Oh, except Warriors, who have always been broken and Rogues who no-one can ever find to change to begin with. Apart from that, everyone is equal. No, really they are.

That's the key here. You can play just about anything and if you do it properly, it's great. This is the best it's ever been.

Except HANG ON I hear you say, I can't do that because I'm 90 and I've been on the Timeless Isle since yesterday afternoon and it's taking a week to kill anything! The other issue many people conveniently forget when moaning about playing this game, apart from the fact that Hunters are OP and Warriors are broken and no-one's seen a Rogue since Cataclysm is that YOU HAVE TO DO STUFF TO MAKE IT WORK. Go back to paragraph three and grasp the truth that your ability matters in this equation: that means decent gear, which you'll need to pick up or purchase, and that means understanding basics like hit. However, Blizzard have now grasped that giving players these tasks to fulfil is too tough an ask in many cases, and just for you whingers in the upcoming Expansion you won't need to worry about either multiple sets of gear or having to make certain numbers appear in your character screens. All you need to worry is about making some new, cool-sounding numbers as big as possible. That's not difficult, now is it?

At some point you might stop moaning and actually start playing, but somehow I doubt it, because the notion of things actually being right isn't something some people will ever be ready to accept, despite every indication to the contrary.



Stat inflation. It's a pig.


When I read someone complaining about balance, I more often than not find myself wishing they'd just stop. Not because they're wrong, and not because I don't accept the right of that person to legitimately air their concerns, but because of the inevitable consequences. Words like 'button bloat' stopped being criticism and become acceptable concerns, even though I like all my buttons and am annoyed they keep getting fiddled with. The more people moan, the less finesse is required to boot, because over time the stuff that's too hard simply gets shaved away, and in twenty years time we'll wake up playing Warcraft with one finger on a screen, a la Flappy Bird, and then people will start complaining how easy things are and how they miss the great days when YOU ACTUALLY HAD TO THINK TO PLAY. That's the biggest issue of all, at least for me. There is balance, and there is bland. There is variety, and there is homogeneous. At some point, if you people keep complaining, you'll ruin it for everybody, because you'll wake up and we'll all just have shoot and heal as our two spells and the only way you'll tell us apart is that we dress differently. If the Rogues have any sense by that point they will have completely vanished anyway.

Yes, I'm being deliberately extreme, but you get the point.

The next time you open your mouth and decide you need to air a concern, remember who you are. Yes, you have the right to complain, of course you do, but every word you utter has potential consequences you might not even have considered if placed next to others. You are indeed but one cog in a machine but you could be the person who changes everything, who tips the balance finally... but not in the way you'd hoped. Wishing for easy is all well and good, but aspiring to hard and challenging is not just something you should do in the Real World. You can learn a lot about people by how they play their games, and you can learn a lot more by what makes them passionate, sometimes to the point of completely forgetting that what may be good for them isn't for someone else.

Just because you think something is broken doesn't mean it needs fixing. Maybe you just need to reconsider your position to begin with. If someone finds the Rogues, tell them we understand, but if they become any less than they are, they then won't be Rogues to begin with...

==

[*] Back when Gold Farmers actually farmed in places such as The Burning Steppes and didn't just pick clean inactive accounts for cash.

Monday, February 10, 2014

To Build a Home :: Everything is Awesome


Stuff it! We'll do TWO FEATURES THIS WEEK \o/

This should be a telling couple of days for Garrison Fans.

On Saturday I had an interesting conversation on Twitter, in which I was told to be prepared for 'crushing disappointment' when this feature was released and it turns out to be... well, average. However, I'm thinking at this point that Blizzard already know just how significant a deal this version of Player Housing is going to be for the Community, otherwise I can't see us being given trailers like this from Community Managers:

The level of detail we're approaching with Warlords of Draenor means that these are going to be some-of-if-not-the-best looking sets, props and buildings ever seen in the World of Warcraft.


Somewhere there are people who won't have a clue what Garrisons are, undoubtedly, because it always the way that you fixate on a favourite feature of any particular new release that may have little or no relevance to someone else. However, this is a big deal, especially if it is as closely combined with the changed to Professions we now know are being actively worked on by Blizzard in anticipation (presumably) of the Beta release, whenever that may be (website's ready for pre-orders, natch.). If all else fails, your Garrison could end up as a viable alternative to sticking your Hearthstone in a Capital City, even if you don't do anything else with it:


You knock them across, Son, I'll head them in...


Even if my small patch of t'Internets isn't typical, Guildie reaction to Garrisons goes pretty much one of two ways, and then we find ourselves in familiar territory:


Do do do do do do dooooo, do do do do dooooo....


It looks like you'll either love them or hate them, and a fair deal of the popularity of this feature is likely to hinge on a number of crucial factors:


  • How useful is my Garrison?
  • How customisable is my Garrison?
  • How can my Garrison make me money?
  • How can my Garrison help me play the game?
  • How will my Garrison affect my standing in the Community?



all of which, let's face it, have the potential to become pretty self-centred interests. I came up with five thoughts quickly based on the thought processes I see on Twitter of an average day, all of which are covered in game as we stand. You can re-arrange those as much as you like as well, I know many people who'll put the gold-making potential of the feature right up at the top of the pile, and with good reason. Blizzard may quite rationally be producing this feature and paying absolutely no mind to the potential money-making capacity it presents, but know this, others will not. Just like every other part of the game's 10 year history, someone is out there waiting to turn the quick buck. You shouldn't try and pretend it won't happen, or work on the assumption that people will simply take what they're given and not try and think outside the box. The only way you make this think have no interest to the Gold Makers is make it produce nothing of value, and I can't see that happening.

Don't say you weren't warned in advance.

The thing about being disappointed made me smile at the weekend, because ironically that's exactly what I got with Pandaria, but I didn't realise until it was too late. Anticipation is wonderfully subjective, yes, but it does give you the opportunity to consider options before they become set in stone. That's also the great thing about having a Blog, I can speculate to accumulate knowledge, to test the waters around me, to poll other people's opinions before we all get given the lowdown. As we discussed at the weekend, once you know what's at steak to make this feature happen, it's understandable that Blizzard won't divert key resources to make everything happen straight away, but if the feature is a success and keeps the subscription money flowing in, I'm absolutely positive they'll start giving people what they crave. We could have that microtransactions argument now or later, fact remains that as of now the feature is an unknown. 

However, once we see each other again tomorrow with A TUESDAY EDITION of this feature to correspond with the artwork being released, I suspect a lot of people might have something new to say. It depends on what we're going to be given, and until it's live we won't know. Needless to say, the next week should make for interesting blogging...

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Vogue :: New Direction


Have Goat, will Travel...

The last of the farming for my new Mog was concluded this week. and so it seems the right moment to undertake the transformation and go from Pandaria to Draenor, even if we have as yet no idea when that Expansion will arrive. What I do know is that I'll have a new Dwarf model to look at, with distinct fingers and facial features, and the new mog has been fashioned to take advantage of these changes. My face is uncovered for the first time in over a year, and I've missed P in the flesh. It is good to have her back.


A lot of d├ęcolletage. Not suitable for melee combat ^^

One of the reasons why this outfit appealed (and is quite similar to one I wore pre-Pandaria for a mogging contest) is that there is no obvious belt 'visible.' Of course it is there, but it pretty much vanishes into the lower half of P's body, and gives the chest/legs the impression of being a seamless mail unit. The boots are a fairly sizable crafting undertaking from TBC yet are a remarkably good fit for the rest of the outfit, which actually includes items from every current Expansion. The mail shoulders are a drop from Thorim in Ulduar, and served as the initial inspiration to construct this ensemble. I like the use of earth tones which compliment P's eye colour, and give a robust yet attractive overall combination of mail pieces. I also think this particularly suits her frame type: nothing is too squashed or elongated, there is good overall definition on all the particular pieces which fit together remarkably well.


Back to a gun. I've missed it.

From the back it becomes apparent the armour is mostly around legs and the front of the body, which then ties in well with the cloth/mail nature of the gloves. The Gun is the only part of the Mog that may change due to it's overtly fussy nature on my back, but there's no doubting the colour scheme is perfect for the overall outfit. It then comes down to whether that adds or detracts from the final feel when I'm the only person who looks at my Hunter from behind. There's also the subtle addition of the glowing scope which counterpoints the fire in the shoulders: this is is as close I think I'm prepared to run to animation on P. It doesn't bother me on other alts but in this case, I am quite particular. I'm also really glad that gun enchants don't have a glow of their own.


With gun out, even my cloak proc is now tolerable.


Full List of Transmog Items is as follows:


The gun fiddling will continue apace. Watch this space for potential changes.