Saturday, May 30, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

So turns out the only thing worse than working alone in the office on Saturdays, working alone in the office on a Saturday that also happens to be your birthday.

Well it is now 8:30 am. Only 8.5 hours to go huh? The wife has told me I am not allowed to go home for lunch today. I wonder why? It might be because for the second time in the last five 6 years she has attempted to throw a surprise party. The first time was on my 30th, when I randomly bumped into her best friends mom, who blew the surprise. This time the wife blew it. I was making plans for tonight with some friends to install a solar pool heater, when she said "But what about your party Saturday night?"

So at least I will be able to get ripped tonight! yay me!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Into the Scarlet Monastery.

I have a good in game friend who is the GM of her guild. They were making excellent progress on Naxx25 when a good portion of their core raiders left for more progressed guilds. They are in the process of training a new batch of raiders for 10 man content. I feel for the GM and all the 80's left in the guild because it is a huge step backward. They are basically back in the wiping 2-3 times for every Anub'Rekhan kill.

My guild has pretty much left me behind. Not out of malice, or anything like that. But because real life has made raiding with my guild pretty much impossible lately. So I have decided to join up with The Lost for their Naxx10 runs and help them build a new batch of raiders.

Last night I got the wife and the kid out of the house, dinner cooked and settled in for a night of Naxx10 with The Lost. Well real life jumped up and bit me again, "The Boy" had a final project for both English and Science due today, that was just in the starting phases. He needed mini-figures for a board game they were making, needed CD's ripped for a speech project blah blah blah.

Well that kinda shot the raid for me. We killed Anub'Rekhan, and Grand Widow and I had to leave the raid. Fortunately for The lost I was just DPS'ing and not healing, a DPS spot is pretty easy to fill on our server.

After the homework crisis was averted, 2 hours had passed and I logged back in on my baby Pally to just futz around a bit before bed. I was invited to SM Cath as at level 29...and Ret. Well it went well till we got to the actual cathedral and my little level 29 butt had such a huge aggro radius that one flash heal and I pulled the whole cathedral.

Two wipes later I gave up and brought in the big guns...Skraps. I must say running a group of 30 somethings through all 3 wings of SM was way more fun than I thought it could be. I basically pulled the whole instance to the final boss and Magma Totem, Chain Lightning and Thunderstorming the whole thing into oblivion. The 4 guys I ran with all Leveled up at least once. Good times were had by all.

The most amazing part. Two of the players were brand new to WoW! They had never seen the unbridaled wrath of a level 80 Elemental Shaman. There were resounding ohhhs and ahhhhs heard through the entire cathedral.

I think I may run those guys a few other instances this weekend it was that much fun.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Thanks to everyone...

Thanks to everyone that helped me figure out how to get loot-links to work. I can now show off proper wowhead links on all that super cool loot that drops, I mean if I can win a roll. Who knew I would ever think "Why can't my guild run a DKP system?"

Stupid RNG hates me!

Heirloom Items.

So I have been meaning to write a post about heirloom items for some weeks now, but I kept putting it off because I wanted to grab screen shots of my characters with the super cool shoulders and the Bloodied Archinite Ripper but every time I login to get a screen shot, I end up running some heroic (Halls of Lighting 5 times since last Thursday) or other. I will try to get screen shots today and update this post.

So after running 25 naxx on my hunter and my shaman 1000 times and getting decent gear pretty regularly I have found after buying the trinkets, because if a trinket ever drops on a run I roll a 2, I just stockpile the emblems. There really isnt much to buy (so I thought). I decided to blow about one hundred emblems a few weeks ago. I thought I would get the plate shoulders and axe to help my DK level through Outland and Northrend. What I found is not only does that 10% XP boost rock, those two items are prety much BIS while leveling. I have held on to some BoE drops thinking when I level up I will equip the because they are better than what I have. Well when I ding, so does the item! They just keep getting better!

Now I have sent them down to my baby ret pally at level 28. She is tearing through mobs like a hot knife through warm butter, and then there is that whole 10% XP boost.

If you have an addiction to Alts, and the emblems to spare I strongly recomend you spend some of them on these items, you wont regret it.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Soap Box.

/Soap Box On

I will not be climbing on my soap box very often on this site, but today I feel I have to.

While I am in an extremely happy hetero-sexual marriage, and was even married in the Catholic church, I am saddened by today's California Supreme Court ruling, to uphold the constitutionality of Proposition 8. It frightens me to think they have set a precedent to allow a majority to restrict or remove the rights of a minority.

I know it has been a long time since my high and college civics classes, but I always thought the constitution was a document designed to protect and grant rights to the people, not to remove them.

What bothers me the most is this whole situation has put me in a position to support my mother-in-law! (Who married her partner Sandy in August 2008) I mean come on! Why should I have to side with her on anything, that just isn't right!

And lastly, come on! California is now officially less progressive than Iowa? Whaaaa? How did a fly-over state on the fringe of the Bible Belt become more progressive than California, and grant constitutional freedoms that California has refused to acknowledge?

/Soap Box Off

Monday, May 25, 2009


So after months and months I finally found a group of alts in the guild that actually wanted to run heroic Halls of Lightning. I ran as heals, one of our new Ulduar tanks, well, tanked. We had a assortment of 2500-3000 dps'ers. We were so over geared for the instance that I DC'ed on Volkhan and by the time I was back he was dead, and with my Earth Shield cooking on the tank, they didn't even notice I had DC'ed.

To go along with the Champion title I also got these little achievements to go with it.

Oh and I also topped off my reputation with the Kirin Tor, and am about half way to finishing up Knights of the Ebon Blade.

Maybe I will start leveling my Death Knight in ernest now.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

My fost favorite thing in the world...

Next to my wife and "The Boy" is The Cure. I have been a huge fan since I was in 7th grade when I first heard the album "The head on the door". That first listen opened a door that lead me to a world beyond "Top 40" music. This is when I learned record companies do not have my best interests at heart and there might be a world of music that they would never promote due to its lack of commercial viability.

The Cure guided me through all the trials and tribulations of my teenage years and high school. Now as an adult living the suburban life I still listen to them almost every day (Much to my wife's chagrin). I am not sure I would be the person I am today with out this band.

Last summer I took my son who was 13 at the time to his first concert, it was The Cure for the 4:13 Dream album. He loved it, although he seems to be more into the opening act "65 Days of Static"

This weekend Sirius/XM are doing a Cure weekend, so I urge you to check it out on First Wave 22. If you do not have Sirius/XM it is also broadcast on DirectTV's music channels or you can listen online, go here for a free 3 day trial. They are playing a 3 hour live concert from Hollywood Bowl twice a day all weekend too.

If you have never listened to The Cure, here is my list of albums to check out for those new to The Cure.

1.) Disintegration (of course). This is probabally the bands best album. It is the album that moved music from the 80's electropop, to the early 90's grunge movement (not that it sounds like either one of those). Matt Parker and Trey Stone from South Park, summed it up best at the end of the "Mecha Striseand" episode...Robert Smith kicks ass, and Disintegration is the best album ever!

2.) This is tough, do we move forward to Wish with its heaver guitars, some more accessable sound or back to The Head on the Door? Both albums are light and full of pop type hits. Both are excellent albums to introduce new listeners with out the heavier overtones of other albums, but with a good example of their lyrical style.

3.) Lets move to the dark side. There are 3 albume in their early catalog that are heavy, dark, and powerful. These albums are where The Cure cemented their "Goth Rock" lable. Pornography, Faith, and 17 Seconds. While these albums are heavy fan favorites, their general mass apeal may be limited. If you really enjoyed the first 3 albums I listed check out one of these.

4.) Because I am such a huge cure fan, I am going to list as number 4, the rest of their catalog. I know lame but thats how I feel. Wild Mood Swings, panned by the fans is full of up beat quirky songs. "The Cure" produced by Ross Robinson is recorded in 1 take, very lightly produced and kind of raw, while not a favorite is still pretty good.

Japanese Whispers is an EP full of pop singles, Three Imaganary Boys/Boys Don't Cry is their first album, full of post punk angst. Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me is the album that introduced me to my wife. The Top is my all time favorite, for its bizzare guitar riffs, lyrics and over all uniqueness.

Or just buy the deluxe edition of their Greatest Hits, 18 tracks that span their entire discography, with "live" accoustic versions on the second disk.

Enough rambling from me. I am at work alone today as it is Saturday and I should get back to work.


Friday, May 22, 2009

It's Friday Night, and I just got paid!

So it is Friday afternoon, payday and a 3 day weekend...except not really because I drew the Saturday schedule for the month of May. Really it isn't too bad to shift the weekend one day forward, I get to miss most of the getaway traffic.

So a few things. Had a busy week this week and didn't get to post a bunch of stuff so here goes.

1.) FINALLY finished Naxx on my Shaman alt, that has become my main. Although my guild does not seem to realize this, as they always want my hunter in raids.

2.) After finishing Naxx went back to Outland to do something I had always wanted to do, but never was able to.

I'm pretty sure this is how it went if the Outland bosses were real people. *Speaking as Lurker* "Ohhh lookit that neat little wormy thing in the water! It has been so long since I have seen one of those, I think I'll eat it! What! it has a hook in it! ow ow ow ow! Thats it I'm pissed! There are going to be 25 people up there to kick my ass, oh well beter get this over with". *Splash, Jump*

"Hey where is every one? Where is the "Hey Lurker, your Momma's 3 day old sushi" guy in plate, the Pew Pew people and the healers? Ohh look it is a little old Shaman all by his self! I think I'll eat him". *chomp*

So after that I just spirit resed and paid the repairs.

3.) Thanks in part to the Argend Dailys and some lucky drops and suckers on the Auction House i finally got Epic Flight on this toon. Let me tell you Herb Farming is soooo much easier now.

Dont think I will be doing any raiding this weekend as I am starting a D&D game on Saturday, I feel I am being a bad dad if my son starts high school with never having played a good old fashioned pen and paper RPG. So a bunch of friends from college and highschool are starting a campaign with me and The Boy.

Sunday I will try to pug some raid, and on monday the wife bought me tickets to see "Flight of the Concords" in Berkeley for my birthday, so yay! I will leave you with the first Flight of the Concords song i ever heard. Have a great weekend, see you all next week!

- Skraps

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Blizzcon Tickets on Sale Today.

So last year I tried desperately to get tickets to BlizzCon and was greeted like so many others with our friend the Failoc. Tickets go on sale in just under 40 minutes and I am torn on weather or not I want to purchase them.

I have the money, I have the ability to take off work, and it is only a short 5 hour drive from where I live in the Bay Area California. But I am going to be in Mexico for a father/son no girls allowed dive trip the week before BlizzCon. So I am torn.

I think I may just buy the DirectTV PPV event so I can get that uber cool Murloc Space Marine pet to add to my collection, and get to see the announcements and see the hot chics in the costume contest.

What do you guys think?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Crap that sucks IRL

Crap that sucks.

So Monday night I received a phone call at 10:30 pm from my mom. You know it is bad news when you receive a call that late from someone who goes to sleep as soon a s the sun sets. My uncle passed away Monday night. He had a heart attack while walking down the hallway to the bedroom. He was dead before he hit the floor.

So that sucks. We were close. He lived less than 10 miles from me, he introduced me to SciFi. He gave me my first Robert Heinlein book, "Stranger in a Strange Land" when I was 12. He lived with my family for a year when I was 12, when he first moved here (Northern California) from Chicago, and that first summer when I was 12 or 13, we would stay up late on weekends watching old scifi B movies, playing Backgammon for money and eating pizza.

So enough of that, more crap that sucks.

In January I took the dogs to the part to throw the ball around and generally let the dogs burn off some energy they have had stored up from lots of inside time due to rain. I threw the ball, and there was a "Pop" in my knee. This is a knee I have had ACL reconstruction on due to a snowboarding injury in highschool. Had a bit of surgery on it again a few weeks ago, and say the Doctor yesterday for the post-op follow up. Long story short (too late) he says the knee will forvere be clicking and poping now. This was not my last surgery and I need to start working out 6 days a week instead of 3 (cause I'm a fat lard and need to loose 50 lbs).

More crap, but this time in game so not terrible.

Although nobody has confirmed my suspisions I believe it to be true. I have been replaced as DPS for our regular 25 mans. I have had a rough 6 months and have not been able to attend regularly, added to that we have moved raids from Friday/Saturday/Clean up on Monday to a Wed/Thur/Friday schedule. Well Being the good father that I am, Wednesdays are Boy Scout nights, so I miss Wednesday. Thursday is the only night Mrs. Skraps is off on a regular basis and we catch up on Lost, Survivor, Amazing Race, Heroes and whatever other shows Mrs. Skraps is attached to at the moment. I like 2 of those shows, guess which ones and "Reality" shows dont count. So that brings me down to just one of the regular raids per week. Not really a help to the core raiding team so I understand why I was replaced, but I'm still bummed.

Not crap.

I finally grinded (ground? what is the past tense of grind?) the gold for my 3rd epic flight training. Kinda sucks I dont even play the toon that I had epic flight on first. But now that I have epic flight on my Shaman grinding herbs for flasks is so much easier.

So seeing as how I am not raiding, except the occasional Naxx PuG, where I can never seem to kill K'T for my stupid "Champion" title. I have had time to finally work on my Death Knight. I finally finished with Outland last night, and will be heading to Howling Fjord tonight, as I just like that zone better than Borean Tundra.

I have been playing with all 3 trees in the DK talents. I would like to Tank my way to 70. We will see how that goes.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Son...I have no Son!

So the boy went to see Star Trek with his grandmother last night. He said it was better than Star Wars. He is now dead to me.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

California, please make up your mind.

So yesterday it was 60 degrees and raining. Today it is 80 degrees and beautiful. Now I don't mind the rain, but come on! In the last 3 weeks it has gone from cold and rainy, to 100 degrees, to cold and rain and now back to almost the 80's!

Little consistency please!

That is all.

Worst. Tank. Ever.

So last night I ran DTK as DPS. Now remember I an not some sort of Uber Leet Deeps. I was rolling about 1850 DPS, which I thought was pretty good considering the group did not provide much buff wise.

The down side is I think I could have done better, but I was unable to use any shock other than Wind Shock. Every 6 seconds I had to Wind Shock, because my screen was flashing red, and big scary bosses were running at me. As it was I died most every boss fight because I could not keep the bosses off me.

I thought at first maybe I was just on a REALLY lucky crit streak. then I saw my numbers and nope. Crit was pretty normal. Then I figured I must drastically out gear the tank. Nope he was actually in better gear then me. My gear is mostly 10 man naxx and heroics, he was mostly 25's.

The only thing I can figure is that he had collected a complete set of off spec tanking gear while Retting up Naxx.

I guess dual specs just gave some people the chance to "learn" a new role, at my repair expense.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Childrens Week.

So last night after work I logged in to do some childrens week action.

Now after reading all the QQ about how difficult the PvP portion would be I was afraid it would take me forever to get it done. All done it took about two hours. The achievement was not difficult at all. But I will make the same observations everyone else has made.

1.) Arathi Basin is probably the easiest and most fun. Since the requirement actually encourages play in the style of the battleground. This weekend may have been the most fun I have ever had in Arathi. A few of the battles we 5 capped, lost all 5. The alliance 5 capped then lost. Quite a lot of fun, tons of teamwork and guess what? PEOPLE DEFENDED THE FLAG! It was so weird to see someone cap a flag then stay there to defend.

2.) Warsong Gulch my most hated battleground ever. This might be because my first few entries into BG's when I started WoW were here. I was a lowley twenty-something and I encountered twinks honor-farming, and I was the crop. Ever since then it has left a bad taste in my mouth. So for the achievement, I went in with a heavy heart. It took a number of battles before I found a group willing to play the game. Finally at a point when I was on defence, a rogue stealthed in, grabbed the flag and droped it at my feet. So I followed him back to the alliance flag room grabbed their flag dropped it, then frantically healed myself while a hunter tried to kill me. All the other allies in the flag room started yelling what I canonly assume is "stop killing him! he is helping with the achevement!" Then I picked up the flag and dropped it for the next 10 minutes. In all this madness I somehow managed these achievements.

3.) Alterec Valley. This was pretty straight forward. Everyone rush to the throne room, but with the twist of people stopping to cap the towers on the way. There was a bit of douche-baggery on my part. Someone made it to the tower before me, started the cap and the guards killed him. I let them. Then capped it after he died. Earth shield FTW.

4.) Eye of the storm. This consisted of me healing team mates at the center flag until I was able to grab a flag. Then Earth Shield and run to neerest tower. After I got my cap, it wasa peice of cake to cap towers all arount the zone, since alliance were all at the flag waiting to grab it. I think they forgot they had to control a tower to return it. Yeah for cooperation on horde side and every man for himself on alliance.

All in all I think Blizzard screwed the pooch on this part of the achievement. Not because it is too difficult, but because it broke battlegrounds for a week for people who actually want to compete. Me, I avoid PvP except for Wintergrasp, and the odd BG when I am waiting for something else to happen.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

What is worse than working on Saturday?

What is worse than working on Saturday? Working on Free Comic Saturday! Since I am stuck here at work and am unable to take my boy out for Free Comic Saturday, I thought I would give a shout out to my favorite shop. Waterfront Comics in Suisun City California. Here is to you John, hope you have a successful and busy day. Bring some new readers/collectors into the hobby!

If you have never been to a comic shop, I strongly recommend you head out today and check one out. The worst that can happen is you get some free books, and hey. last time I was there there are tons of girls at the shops now days! Where were they when I was a kid and going to the shops?

After work tonight I think the Boy and I will be heading out to the theater to see "Wolverine" I hope Gambit is good as I want him to be.

Tomorrow or Monday after I have had time to try it out I will post my QQ or my QQ Moar post about the PvP portion of Childrens Week. This will be a perspective from someone that can't PvP to save his life. For some reason the people I am trying to kill wont stand still and let me throw lightning bolts at them till they die...and I can't figure out how to cast and move.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Am I a crappy hunter?

So last nights raid was a no-go. Had a minor emergency here at work and made it home late, so missed raid invites. Maybe I will make it tomorrow. So instead of doing anything fun I spent the whole night in front of the target dummy's.

What I found:

1.) BM Nerf is still alive and well. Playing with shot rotations, macroing steady/arcane while manually activating Kill Command/stings/aimed wasnt working for me. I tried just manually doing shots and DPS never went up. Heck I even tried my pre 3.0.8 steady spam macro for grins and my DPS was below what I thought it should be.

2.) Survival is a much better PvE spec for pure DPS. Even with a cobled together "I like this talent" build I out DPS'ed my BM build by 400-500 DPS.

3.) I suck at Survival Huntery. I miss my Big Bad Devilsaur, that is unstoppable. I miss my pet doing 50% of my DPS.

4.) I really need to level a DPS pet to 80 for my Survival build, as all my DPS pets before were "Exotics" and no longer usable to me.

5.) Survival is so strong now that I out DPS'ed my BM spec using a level 80 Tenacity pet. I even out DPS'd my BM spec using a level 77 cat I picked up from Zul'Drak.

Now what is really depressing me is this:

Am I just that bad a hunter that I can't grasp the post 3.08 hunter changes, and I'm swapping to "The Flavor of the Week" build? Or is the BM nerf that bad?