WeÂve got two Chen Stormstout figures to give away to loyal Overpull readers. Here are the rules and theyÂre really simple. First be sure you're a subscriber to The Overpull, then simply email me, [email protected], with the subject ÂChen Stormstout GiveawayÂ and you can include anything in the body of the email that you want, like Overpull feedback or whatever. The contest ends Noon EST on Wednesday, February 3rd 2010. WeÂll pick two winners at random and send out a request for your address to where we can get Âem shipped to (and phone numbers for international winners). YouÂll need to get your contact info back to us by 4PM EST Thursday, February 4th, 2010 to claim your prize if you're one of the lucky winners.
So, to reiterate, send an email to [email protected] with the subject ÂChen Stormstout GiveawayÂ by Noon Wednesday, February 3rd 2010 in order for a chance to win. WeÂll pick 2 winners at random and theyÂll be shipped one awesome panda figure. Be sure to respond to your "you've won!" email by 4 P.M. EST Thursday.
One final note, you need to be a subscriber in order to win! Click here to subscribe, and be sure to email me with the email address you're signed up for to receive the overpull!
Wondering what the Chen Stormstout figure is like? We have a review of it here.
The Loremaster's Corner this week has left to become its own regular feature here at Ten Ton Hammer. The Overpull will now feature the news and then The Weekly Musing, our editorial piece
HereÂs the lineup this week
Ghostcrawler says new content will be awesome. News at 11.
No, seriously, he actually said something cool this week. The first is the talent revamp which will involve the system where passive bonuses will be replaced by ÂfunÂ bonuses. Next, the new instances wonÂt be Molten Core and BWL just bumped up to level 85.
Outside of that there wasnÂt a lot to the news this week. Trinkets should be hard to get according to Blizzard. Patch 3.3.2 notes are out. TheyÂre kind of silly.
The Invincible Music is pretty good. This Overpull was typed up to it. You can view it here.
Since I have blank space IÂd like to talk about account security. When I said that this is a war I meant it. This isnÂt a game, this isnÂt a joke, and itÂs not alarmist propaganda. Accounts are falling left and right. The RMT industry is making one last push before their market is destroyed. ItÂs up to us the players to do the right thing and fight back.
Your sword? Anti-viral software. Your shield? Anti-spyware protection. Your armor? Knowledge. Blizzard has posted up an awesome page that talks about what you can do to protect yourself. Seriously everyone. Get an authenticator. People that I know have been hacked recently. Did they sign into a phising website? I donÂt know, but an authenticator would have saved each and every one.
So join the battle, spend the $7 bucks, and save your account. If thatÂs asking too much then please read BlizzardÂs post on what you can do and get informed.Â
Oh, 3.3.2 is suppose to hit and the ending cinematic for WotLK has gone up on the 'net. I'd talk about it, but I'm going to save it for next week when we can properly enjoy it without worrying about spoilering everyone.
Hey our forums are open if you want to talk about any of this. Click here to find your way over to our community and put your two cents into the news this week.
This weekÂs question:Â What kind of silly name would you apply to a WoW themed drink?
You know whatÂs bothering me? The vocal majority thatÂs asking for crowd control to become a requirement of 5-mans again. I know whatÂs coming out of your mouth. ÂSHUT UP! You elitist bas-Â and IÂll stop you right there. IÂm not elitist and even if I say that I guess it doesnÂt mean you have to believe me, but I do want you to hear me out.
I too long for the days when 5-mans were the first stepping stone to raiding and had more loot than you could ever want. They were lengthy dungeon crawls with tons of bosses and required coordination and crowd control just to make it through the instance. It was a lot of fun the first few times but then became more of a grind than anything else in the game. Luckily, once your few select pieces of gear were obtained you no longer had to set foot in that instance. Lather, rinse, and repeat for the rest until you were decked out in all blues and had enough fire resist to zone into Molten Core.
Â The dungeons were challenging, they were far from boring, and provided a long profitable gaming session that gave you a sense of reward. You didnÂt repeat them enough, usually, in order to become sick of it. Well, except for Dire Maul. It was the same in TBC, almost, except daily dungeon quests came. You didnÂt have to do them if you were a raider, per se, since youÂd have access to the gear up for sale most of the time. However, the dailies were easily skipped and there wasnÂt a major rush for the gear since you couldnÂt do the content without being attuned anyway. PvP gear was a big favorite of the casual crowd because it gave you easy to get gear for PvP and could be ported over to PvE instances.
Then Wrath came and the daily dungeon was an essential requirement. You had to run instances in order to gear up even if you raid (for the crafted gear and new tier). No matter the patch, no matter the time, the first step to gearing up is running instances and farming badges. In order to get a full set of Tier 9 youÂll need 160 triumph badges, plus 35 for a ring, and 45 for the 245 shoulders. If youÂre getting the ranged slot item thatÂs 25 more badges for a grand total of 265 badges. At 7 badges an instance that is still 37 instances Â assuming you donÂt want the 245 trophy loot. Then you have to consider Frost Emblems at which point youÂll need many, many more instances over the lifetime of your character.
ThatÂs a lot of instances and a lot of time. If you had to slowly grind through each and every instance then thatÂd be a pain in the rear. Then, youÂd have to do it again everyday to get the latest tier of emblems. So itÂd take a lot more time out of our gaming sessions. If thatÂs alright then there is another issue IÂd like to bring up.
In an instance run today we had a tank that was Ârusty.Â In that hall where the guys in the hallway bust out the tank was unable to keep AoE aggro and the Mage Ice Blocked, the Hunter feigned, and the DK wasnÂt AoEing for whatever reason. When I came out of fade they returned straight to me, since no one was using AoE, and I died after a long struggle to keep them off of me while I stood on top of the tank. Then he quit without a word before he died. This is just one in a long line of stories about players who are unable to or do not want to pay attention to the game or get better.
Do I fault them? Do I hate the group members? No, because I can understand that some people do not want to invest the time into a game to become experts. I requeue and go on about my day. However, in the current endgame where you faceroll over every enemy you are still faced with people who canÂt spam their AoE and win. If you required them to keep something sheepÂd or trapped or anything for a long period of time then youÂd see random dungeons become painful and de-evolve. You say you could just make premade groups, but not everyone can join the perfect guild thatÂs doing runs 24/7.
You say you could just group up with other players, but if things are hard or require skill then the retarded GearScore checks or achievement checks come into play and people get locked out of content. Those who are not overgeared or on some magical approved list get turned down by the majority of the game. People being locked out of content? Hrm, sounds a lot like a return to just a few people doing raids and hard content while everyone else sits in PvP because itÂs the path of least resistance.
I love the idea of dungeon crawling with a group, but when youÂre forced into doing a dungeon each day in order to gear up for current content (Emblems of Frost are still hard to come by, even doing 25 and 10 ICC) it becomes something that turns from ÂRADÂÂ to ÂLAMEÂÂ to quote the Hipsters in Space. If you say Âthe desire to do it every day is elitistÂ then I respect that opinion, but I donÂt see it to be unreasonable for you to desire to do the daily dungeon every day for your character development.
I do believe there is a solution to bring back the party to well, parties in the game. However, I donÂt think requiring CC is going to get us anywhere. Just like requiring you to joust in ToC isnÂt going to bring about people to learn how to use vehicles. The vast majority of players follow the path of least resistance and I donÂt blame Âem, so optional increased difficulty content is out of the question. Speaking of thatÂ
Halls of Reflection is a great example of where players will do anything at all to simplify content. Take a look at how the enemies just beg for you to CC Âem. Yet, how many players do that? They donÂt, they LoS all of the enemies to stack them on the tank. YouÂd have an easier time using CC and keeping them contained but no one wants to do that. Why? Because itÂs either A) time consuming or B) a skill that they do not want to pick up.
Like I said, we need to keep the game about being in a group and experiencing content together. Not about the end result, the loot, or whatever else. It should just be about enjoying your spare time with others online. However, at the same time it shouldnÂt be a requirement shoved in your face each day to struggle through instances or block out players without a lot of skill in order to accomplish it. ItÂs just counterproductive.
Of course, Blizzard could redesign CC to be easier to use. Perhaps icons floating above somethingÂs head for you to cast a CC spell or some kind of U.I. box the tank could use to assign CC targets to people who would only have to click a single button in order to accomplish this task. Then again, thatÂsÂ dumbing down the point of coordination and just adding in an additional step. They could redesign CC mechanics to be easier to use, but then that has a negative effect on PvP. We donÂt want to have that happen, do we?
So, at the end of the day, as long as the daily dungeon quest and badge farming exists then I do not see a reason why we should subject ourselves to longer dungeon sessions each day. It was bad enough to beg for groups in /trade and /lfg. I donÂt want to have to keep rolling for groups until we get a Mage who knows how to press sheep every x seconds while we spend an hour to get through HoL. Take out badge farming and daily dungeons and weÂre stick with casuals having no outlet to gear up for raiding.
Well, thatÂs my rant. IÂm sure there are people who disagree, want to call me elitist for wanting to run the daily dungeon each day, but thatÂs my point of view and I invite you to share yours on our forums.
Let's talk about it on the forums!
-David "Xerin" Piner