Friday, June 24, 2011

Balancing motivating a raid vs knowing when to fold

I very rarely blog about specifics of guild drama. Mainly because I know many guildies read this blog regularly. But something that has been eating at me for the last week came to a head last night, and now I feel like I have to blog about it.

To step back just a little bit, our guild has been working on Chogall for weeks. We started on him a couple weeks back and probably did the best (getting him down to 2-3% or so) the very first night we were on him. However since that night, our hunter Kal has had computer problems, so he has not been online since.

So yes, we have been very unlucky with our raid makeup. Meaning we don’t have a frost DK, a shammy, or a hunter on the adds. We’ve thus been two healing the fight to make up for it with more dps on the adds. This means I’ve had to try to manage my mana really well, which goes successfully sometimes and not so successfully other times.

But all of this isn’t really the crux of the issue. Well, maybe it lays the foundation in that perhaps we just haven’t had the right raid makeup to do this fight. But the crux of the issue for me is as a guild leader, how do you balance motivating your raid through something that is really tough and sucks and requires perseverance vs recognizing that it is just demoralizing and admitting defeat. But this second option is just very very difficult for me to accept.

It’s been hard because I believe that at least half the raid, if not more, has already given up on believing we can do this before the nerf. But even though I complain about this fight, deep down inside I believe we can. When you still think that your raid can do it... how do you motivate them to succeed when they step into a fight already expecting to fail? When people have given up and don’t think its going to happen, what are you supposed to do?

Maybe it takes a really exceptional leader to do such a thing, and perhaps I just don’t have it. I do recognize that I am very much an internally motivated person in all facets of my life. I’m not someone who needs external motivation to cheer me on. Perhaps because of this, I am not really good at verbally and publicly motivating others. So even though I believe we can succeed, if I can’t translate that to others, maybe I just have to accept that I’ m just not a very good public motivator.

The other side to this leadership question is this. Perhaps another mark of being a good leader is recognizing your limits when a group just can’t do something. Perhaps I should not have continually pushed the raid back to Chogall raid after raid. I know that its been demoralizing. It hasn’t been cupcakes and rainbows for me either.

But perhaps I should have recognized that while I believe that we can do it, others are too demoralized. Perhaps I should have recognized that we just don’t have the right makeup and quit banging their heads on the wall. Perhaps good leaders know when to fold, for the best of the guild, even if they don't want to. Perhaps I should stop saying perhaps.

I don’t know. I can see and argue both sides. I’m torn. What’s also been tough is that Jess and I have not necessarily agreed on this. I think Jess has leaned more on the side of believing we shouldn’t continue to take the raid to Chogall and that its too demoralizing. And I’ve been more on the other side that we can do this pre nerf, and thus have convinced Jess to do so.

This difference of opinion came to a head last night. So we had this difference of opinion of whether we should even be there to begin with. But layered on top of that we disagreed on the specific boss strat that we were going to use. This thus made for one of the more public vent fights we’ve had in a while. We’ve had plenty of “fights” to this degree via whispers, but this time we did it on vent. Lorosia told me afterwards that the kids (the rest of the guildies) were trying to block out the trauma of mommy and daddy fighting before them by playing with their archaeology toys. Awww.

I don’t know. It’s been a hard decision for me. And I have one more hard decision to make. We have another raid scheduled on Sunday night, a raid that Jess is not going to attend due to a vacation. I believe that our hunter Kal is going to be back by then as well. If he isn't its a no brainer. But if he is... if he is...

Then what. Do I take the raid back to Chogall YET AGAIN and see how it goes with a hunter? Or do I take the raid to at least see a pre 4.2 nerfed Nefarian? Or do I say that we are doing 3 pulls on Chogall with Kal and see how that goes, and that if it doesn’t work then we go to Nef?

But the crux of the question is this. How do you balance pushing a raid through what has been a demoralizing boss versus recognizing your limits and just accepting defeat?


Thursday, June 23, 2011

A new approach to BGs?

O hai there! Not sure how over a week went by without a post here, but I've been surprisingly busy with work. I hate when that happens. Seriously, I do some of my best blog posting during work, so when I can't, I feel cheated. You expect me to work for my pay?! What nerve.

Anyways, what have I been up to in game past couple of weeks? Lots of pvp. A couple weeks ago I did finally get Master of Alterac Valley. Grinding out the final wins was painful. I think I could do without ever seeing "Horde has defended Iceblood Tower or Towers Point" ever again. Ever!

Last weekend was AB, which I've long said is my favorite BG. I picked up a couple new achievements, including Overly Defensive. This one was definitely not easy to get as a healer. But my strat? I used Noggenfogger elixirs to get itty bitty and just planted myself right on the flag.

I was unable to get Resilient Victory as I had hoped. I think I'm really going to have a make a premade to get this. And can I just say those League of Arathor peeps are total bitches? Getting exalted with them takes forever.

Anyways, guildies have asked how I do so many bgs for achievements... asking how I haven't gone crazy. I answered, perhaps I was crazy to start with? In terms of the bitching and whining that goes on in the bg chat, I used to generally ignore it half the time and engage in it the other half. But as I've been doing more lately, I've been engaging more.

I think I was in a losing AB with Nikolai last weekend where someone noted that it was ok that we were losing badly because he was just there to practice. I pointed out that our top healer had 6 deaths, but that the horde's top healer had 0 deaths. I suggested he practice killing their healer.

Anyways, I think what I need to do is run these back to back bgs while listening to my latest favorite song, Javier Colon's rendition of Coldplay's Fix You from the TV show The Voice:

I think the song is so incredibly calming, perhaps it can help control my nerd rage. Though, honestly it's not nerd rage so much as it is a genuine interest (or misguided hope perhaps) in trying to make your team better... i.e. fix you.

Coldplay's original version here:

Lyrics to Fix you:

When you try your best, but you don't succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can't replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you're too in love to let it go
But if you never try you'll never know Just what you're worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down on your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down on your face
And I...

Tears stream down on your face
I promise you I will learn from my mistakes
Tears stream down on your face
And I...

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

This is why they call me Empress Positive

Our hunter Kal has recently started calling me Empress Positive. Probably an appropriate nickname since I can be sort of bossy and say things as they are, instead of necessarily sugar coating things.

Two recent guild happenings that only prove this point. So we were on Atramedes last week and for a number of attempts we just couldn't get it going. Meaning folks were dying and we were wiping way too soon, even before he was 50%.

I got irritated and informed the raid that I was no longer putting down Seafood feasts until we proved that we could survive a couple of phases of the fight... that Lavascale Catfish was too expensive to waste.

Well, wouldn't you know it, the very next attempt... somehow everyone got things together and we downed him. The boss was at about 2% or so when Kal mentioned that if we had gotten food buffs, the boss would be dead by now. /sigh

Secondly, I logged on over the weekend to see something that cut me deep to my soul. What was it, you ask? It was this piece of guild news:

So most normal people would be happy for a guildie's good fortune. But not me. Especially not when the said guildie is a holy pally who least needs the mana. My reaction in guild chat was something to the effect of:


Seriously, what is he going to do with the doll? Never go below 90% mana? I mean how is this right? And, I am no lore expert or anything, but it has to go against some lore requirement that a dwarf pally would get the doll before a night elf druid. It's just wrong! Hence my changed guild message of the day:

What I have done to try to keep up is to equip the Tol Barad healing trinket, Mandala of Stirring Patterns. I'm trying to match my innervates to when I get the +1926 intellect proc. Its the only thing I can do while I dig up the 110th night elf common...



Thursday, June 9, 2011

Hatchling nest locations

My archaeology has slowed down a bit, but I'm still doing some of it. I try to alternate my archaeology with pvp. It basically means I alternate moments of sheer boredom with moments of sheer terror. Alternate extremes FTW.

Anyways, another task that I've alternated lately is picking up the Hatchling pets. Now you guys probably know that as of 3.3 there are 4 hatchling pets that you can loot from nests right? Well, its a nice activity to do if you are in the area doing archaeology or if you are waiting for bg queues (AV queues take forever to pop for me).

I have picked up all 4 pets, but I'm still picking them up. Why? Well, I could use them as gifts (I was going to give one to our hunter Kal, but he's been really mean to me lately) and to sell.

But another option is to wait to sell them. Why? With 4.2 we get pet rewards for getting the 100 and 125 pet achieves. Thus, people are going to be buying pets to get these achieves and the new pets. So I would suggest that you collect these Hatchling pets now, save them, and sell them once 4.2 is live for a pretty penny. Because its all about maximizing how much money you make!

Thus, I am going to summarize the four locations here for you guys, but really more so for myself... so that I have one consolidated place to go when I'm hunting these nests. I don't use coordinates, so I can't verify that these are the exact right locations, but I've gathered them from wowhead for those of you who do.

1. Darting Hatchling from Dart's Nest in Dustwallow Marsh:

Coordinates may be:
48.0 14.2
49.2 17.5
47.9 19.0
46.6 17.1

2. Leaping Hatchling from Takk's Nest in Northern Barrens:

Trying to see if you can grab Takk's nest is a good activity to do when you're in Org trying to fish up Old Crafty. :)

Coordinates for Takk's nest:
60.9 19.8
62.8 20.2
64.2 23.0
64.9 28.8

3. Razormaw Hatchling from Razormaw Matriach's Nest in the Wetlands

For Razormaw's nest, go into the cave. It looks like there is just one coordinate location for this next, next to Razormaw Matriarch at 70.1, 29.3.

4. Ravasaur Hatchling from Ravasaur Matriarch's Nest in Ungoro Crater.

It looks like coordinates may be:
68.9 61.2
63.0 63.2
62.2 65.2
62.0 73.6
68.9 66.6

Happy nest hunting!


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Fishing for Old Crafty

Last weekend I was flying around doing a combination of some archaeology and farming for the hatchling pets to sell in between doing battlegrounds. And somehow I found myself flying close enough to Org. Thus, I decided that I would try my hand at fishing for Old Crafty!

Now I haven't been to Org since they allowed flying in the old zones. Wow, is it so much easier now! You can just fly overhead and swoop down to find your spots! I found two pretty good spots and I spent a while there fishing in between waiting for long AV queues (97 wins... 3 to go!!!) or Gilneas queues. I guess my mindset was this:

"Horde, you can kill me in BGs, but I am sneakily hiding in your city, fishing all your fish! Muahahaha!"

/sigh. Anyways, it was funny because when I first whispered Beru, I said "I'm in your city!". To which she thought I meant the city she lives in in real life, not the WoW capital she hangs out in. :) She then asked me where I was hiding and I told her my spots. She said she was curious to go see if any Alliance where there on her server.

A little while later a hunter tracked and found me. He tried killing me, but to no avail. I was then able to get out of combat to get into flight form and fly away. But then later in the day I am peacefully fishing when all of a sudden I see red letters in front of me again. I immediately got ready to defend myself again which I can do a decent job of in my pvp gear with 3200+ resilience.

But alas! Who is it that plops down in front of me? None other than Rades from Orcish Army Knife! Awmigawd!

What are the chances that he would just so happen to be online and just so happen to find me? After the initial gasps, we then spent a while trying to communicate as much as possible through emotes. So yeah our communication was limited. We traded a couple of emails a bit later laughing over the coincidence. He remarked what a good sneaky hiding spot it was. So I'm going to share my two spots for you guys, though I have to ask all you Horde readers to take an oath first.

Please raise your right hands or green appendages or hooves or skeletons or whatever you may happen to have in place of a right hand. And repeat after me:

I promise to not use this information for evil. Meaning I will not use this information to camp and kill Alliance folks. If I do, I shall accept the fact that K may then find and publicize places for Alliance to camp and kill Horde.

So are we all good now? Remember... you Horde friends promised! Anyways. So I have two fishing spots in Org. The first is at the base of the largest waterfall in Valley of Wisdom.

You can get behind the falls and fish out once you turn your camera view to view from above. If you /sit or /sleep you can get even further behind the falls.

The second spot is up on the water bend in the Valley of Honor.

Put your self back in the corner of the rocks and again, fish with your camera panned from above.

Most likely the only Horde who are going to find you in these two spots are Hunters, because they have tracked you on their mini map. If you want, you can take Elixir of Camouflage so that you can't be tracked. Also just to be safe, remove any titles so your name appears as short as possible. You could even take some Noggenfogger Elixir to make yourself even smaller.

I didn't get Old Crafty this time, but I will probably try again now and then. Happy fishing!


Thursday, June 2, 2011

All for Mojo

A while back I was in a guild ZA run on my cute ass lock Kimchee. She picked up four or five hex sticks during the run. But since K is my pet collector, I sent the hex sticks to her to try to get Mojo.

Last week I'm online by myself at some random time and I was tired of running AV. So I thought to myself,

"Self, why not go into ZA and stealth through the mobs and see if I can get Mojo?"

I know, I know... I'm sure all sorts of alarm bells are going off in your reasonable heads. But let me just walk you through my thought process.

So first, I go to the flight master in Stormwind and fly down to Northern Stranglethorn. D'oh #1. Once I get there I realize ZG is Stranglethorn, ZA is Ghostlands. Sigh.

Well after I fly back the ENTIRE length of the freakin content, I was up at the ZA entrance. I zone in and go talk to the guy and hit the gong together. I'm all ready and stealthed, waiting for the mobs to come. And hell, do they come.

The mobs come straight for me and seem to ignore my stealth. And I die. Because its a gauntlet? D'oh #2. You would think after D'oh #2 I would have learned my lesson and moved on. But not me! No siree! I think to myself:

"Self, perhaps since now the mobs are standing out there the gauntlet is "over" and now I can stealth past them and get my mojo".

Are you sighing or laughing again at me? I am. Sigh. So I zone back in to see if my brilliant plan works. But nope, as soon as I zone in, the mobs come straight for me and I die yet again. D'oh #3.

I swear its a wonder I get myself around!

Anyways, in other news unrelated to "How come K never remembers anything and does stupid things and gets herself killed", the summer slowdown in raiding has started for our guild with just a tad more people unavailable for raids than before. And in such a small guild, one more person being a bit more unavailable makes raids difficult to fill.

Thus, our guild could use another body or two. Here is a link again to the recruitment post I put up earlier this year.

A healer/dps hybrid or pure dps or Tank/dps dual spec would be awesome. But really we could make any role work. What's more important is someone wanting to raid a bit more casually in a 10 man environment with fellow adults. So if you're interested contact Jess (jessikathetank at gmail) or myself (keredria at gmail) or whisper us online.

I may get myself killed getting Mojo but I'll heal you to keep you alive. I swear!