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Runzwithfire: Shits & Giggles with a Troll Mage

Trials & Tribulations of Frost: 4.0.6

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My word, I go on holiday for a few weeks, come back, don't know what to blog about then all of a sudden it all hits and I'm churning posts out like there's no tomorrow. I've  got another Frosty goodness post lined up after this to help update the Frost PvE guide and my friend Darianna has been beavering away at a Frost PvP guide for you all to enjoy. One day I will get round to the other specs I promise, it's just that I'm heavily invested in Frost at the moment and the one I have the most knowledge about - maybe I'll outsource Fire to Reegis (our guild's imba Fire Mage) just so that it gets done quicker for you all.

Anyway, I wanted to talk today about Patch 4.0.6 and in particular how it relates to Frost.  I will endeavour not to make this a massive QQ post but a view on how I think 4.0.6 went.  I'm also not going to be going through each change in detail, better men (and women) than I have already done that.  No, this will instead be a bit of a points of view post.

First and foremost, I absolutely applaud the changes to Arcane and Fire.  They are significant improvements that will help really improve the play of both these specs.  They're not perfect of course, there are still some complaints about Arcane and the massive fluctuation in DPS because of the mastery.  I haven't played Arcane yet so don't feel qualified to comment but overall, from an outsiders perspective, things have improved and Blizzard is committed to making that a fun concept that works well.

Then we get to Frost; Frost is still probably the most fun you can have with your pants on as a mage in my humble little opinion.  Before the Shattering I was desperate to play Fire, I still am I guess, but it was Frost that took my heart.  After the 2-3 button Arcane rotation of Wrath, here was a spec that felt organic, fluid and responsive.  Whilst Arcane has changed little with regards to spell rotation (the game really being mana conservation with your burn/conserve phases) and Fire feels a little bit like a Lock with the DoT application only with fun Pyroblast! procs (and being way sexier than a lock and without the heavy eyeliner that gets smeared by qq), Frost by far and away, feels the free-est of any of the three specs.  It's about reacting to your procs, your situation and your enemy and in that sense it is genuinely the spec that feels most like 'you' when you play it, not 'you spamming a pre-set rotation in order to apply all the DoTs and achieving the state in which you do most DPS'.  In Frost, you do most DPS by reacting to your situation.  Coincidentally, this is what makes Frost such a great PvP spec as well.  You don't just hit button 2 because it follows button 1 in your rotation, you hit button 4 because your FoF has procc'ed, so has Brain Freeze, mobs are bearing down your throat from two different directions, you need to slow one with Frostfire, Freeze another and set up a defence with Ring of Frost whilst waiting for Deep Freeze to come of CD cos you totally have enough haste for two frostbolts before DF wears off and you don't want to use up a the second FoF with Ice Lance on a target already frozen, so maybe you can hit that other mob running at you with it instead.

Phew, I'm exhilarated just thinking about it.

Proud Frost Mage is Proud

However, us Frost mages got a bit of an unpleasant whollop around the face with a shit covered nerf bat all in the name of PvP class balancing.  Well honestly I don't accept that, I do not accept that at all.  And here's why, so listen up chicken lips.

Last Updated on Friday, 25 February 2011 23:19

The Photo-Journal of Fail

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So I'm not exactly the most proactive of people when it comes to doing the World Event Achievements.  Runzwithfire has been about since about March of 2009 (prior to that was a burnout break then before that was my warrior) and frankly I have completed a shockingly few number of the event achievements.  The same process goes through my head each time:

Day 1 of Event: Pah, silly world event.  I have reputation grinds to finish and I'm in need of gold to buy shiny crafted epics from guildies.

Day 10 of Event: Bugger, I forgot there was a mini-pet to be had.  Curse you obsessive desire to collect mini-pets.

Day 12 of Event:  Have mini-pet; hmmmm wander if there are some easy achieves I can do with these left over tokens/currencies, I'll just have a nosey and do the quick and easy ones.

Last Day of Event: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, the event can't be ending, I have more achieves to get.  Why?  Why do I do this every year?  Why do I wait until nearly the end of the event before deciding that one day I might actually want a Violet Proto-Drake before I'm at retirement age?  Stupid stupid stupid Runz.  Quick, may if I run about like a headless chicken for the three hours left before this event ends I might be able to eek out one more achieve, after all it's one less to do next year right?  right?  RIGHT?????

And so it was this lead to my first photo journal of fail as I decided to document my desperate gambit to get one more achievement for Love is In The Air this year.

Last Updated on Thursday, 24 February 2011 11:07

Misrepresentin 2: The Fox & The Newshound

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I was going to leave this topic alone, I'd largely said everything I wanted to say in the last post and in the comments section.  However, my attention was drawn to this issue again by Tweets from Total Biscuit and MMO Melting Pot.  It would appear that giant of fine upstanding journalism - Fox News (I refuse to link it) - has been at it again, this time with regards to a game called Bulletstorm.

What is particularly special this time is that the gaming news/blog site Rock, Paper, Shotgun have investigated the claim behind the Fox News story and they've decided to take the (and I mockingly refer to him as this) journalist to task.  The guys at Rock, Paper, Shotgun really are to commended for some outstanding work; they're open minded, they investigated the leads, they even managed to get copies of the questions sent to interviewees in the Fox Story and the full responses - the disparity between what the journalist reports and what was actually given in answer is frankly shocking.  I won't recount the whole tale here, go look at RPS' full round up story, Bulletstorm Gate, yourself.

There are several things that do really hit me about this though.  The first is that the Fox News journalist so grossly misrepresents the majority of people he interviewed that I am surprised there is no law in place to redress the issue (or none that I am aware of).  They couldn't be taken to task under libel because technically under Defamation Law you have to cast the subject in a negative light.  Those crafty little buggers at Fox didn't do this; what they did do was misquote - in fact they misquoted so much that it portrayed those who actually supported the Bulletstorm game to almost be vehemently against it.  You may be able to take Fox to task under False Light laws, but really are you going to face off about a multi-million dollar company in which the onus is on you to prove that what they stated was factually incorrect and also prove that it negatively affected your well-being?  No, no you're not.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:30

Misrepresentation of WoW and Gaming

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That's right boys and girls I am back from my adventures abroad.  Now I've not played WoW properly for nigh on four weeks now so insightful play tips will not be forthcoming for a little while whilst I try and get to grips with the new patch (more QQ on the Deep Freeze nerf soon I promise lol) and remember what the hell I'm meant to be doing. So today we're going to be looking at something a little bit different...


I was reading through WoW Insider the other day to catch up on everything I'd missed when I stumbled upon this Breakfast Topic, basically it refers to an episode of The Big Bang Theory in which it is rather crudely alluded that characters in WoW can have sex with each other by clicking on each other.  This, of course, is total bollocks but I'd watch the episode not that long ago and didn't think much about it at the time.  In fact I read the WoW Insider article, thought it was an interesting take on how some games and gaming can be misrepresented in popular culture, some of the comments were quite interesting but beyond that I gave it little further thought.  I mean let's face it, as far as the misrepresentation of gaming games this is a really minor offence done in the name of forwarding a comedic plotline.  I have seen far greater misrepresentations, particularly in sensationalist media outlets (yeah Fox News, I'm looking straight at you).

Anyway, I was reading the Daily Mail today (I enjoy a good laugh, and their 'reporting' is some of the basest scaremongering so appalling that it's funny) when I stumbled across this article.  Frankly it's a fairly shocking article made all the more sinister by the idea that this young person actually took a good three hours deliberating over whether it was a good idea to kill his mother or not and actually came to the conclusion that yes.... yes it was... WTF????  The reasoning of course being that the mother had taken away this 16 year old boy's Playstation games.  An older article from early last year struck a similar cord with me.  Perfectly fucking logical to end the life of another human being then huh.


Now whilst not always explicitly stated, the inflection of many of these articles are often that computer games and gaming are the cause of these evils because they are interactive, addictive and reward violence.  Worse still are the so called bloody do-gooders who take these stories and just run with them, often in a direction that is far removed from reality that it's concerning that people actually listen to these so called 'experts' - just see the example below...

Last Updated on Friday, 18 February 2011 16:42

Get Your PvP Nerfs Out Of My PvE Game

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This isn't just a big QQ rant about Frost Mages being nerfed I promise - and overall the patch promises many, many good things for mages in general.  No, this is a rant about the significant hardship that PvE players have to endure due to an overly pampered PvP minority, and in particular the hardcore arena fans.  It just happens that it relates to Frost a lot and I happen to play Frost at the moment.

Don't get me wrong, I love PvP.  I'm on a PvP server, I started playing WoW initially to PvP, I desire - nay, I demand - more world PvP like the good old days around Halaa.  I love rated battlegrounds and it finally gives me something to really strive for in PvP because I've always hated Arena.  For me, Arena was always so disconnected compared to the idea of the Alliance and Horde facing off against one another in a battleground as they seek to secure land and resources and totally humiliate the other side by stealing their flag.  To paraphrase Eddie Izzard; everyone knows you build an empire by stealing land with the cunning use of flags.

However, as much as I enjoy PvP I hate many loudmouth PvP players I meet in forums and in fact many BGs too - they are impatient, petulent and rude.  Unfortunately they also tend to be the most vocal part of the community.  Woe betide you if you happen to stumble across them during a time when their chosen class is no longer top of the PvP tree - you will be subjected to whines, rants, sobbing and general teddy bear throwing behaviour.

Now of course I can say this as a Frost mage, the current class/spec that is so horrendously OP that last night in Arathi Basin I saw two Gnome Frost Mages hold off an assualt of six or seven Hordies at the Blacksmith.  I'm a Frost Mage and I agree we need to be nerfed in PvP.  But what is really annoying me at the moment is that the loud QQs and rants from those classes who feel hard done by the current PvP situation provokes what appears to be violent knee jerk reactions from Blizzard which have serious consequences in the PvE game - apparently all in the name of PvP balancing.  I'm using the current Frost Mage nerf proposed in Patch 4.0.6 as an example because it's relevant to the now and it's probably the most extreme example I remember seeing of PvP balancing really messing up a PvE spec but every class and spec has been there at one time or another.

Last Updated on Monday, 17 January 2011 11:33

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