The Scorpion and the Frog fable – sabotaging our own WQ success

Fables were meant to be stories with moral lessons, and you’ve probably heard of the scorpion and frog one. If not, or you need a refresher – read here

Otherwise : Spoiler alert – the Scorpion stings the frog as the frog is carrying the Scorpion across the lake and they both end up drowning

I’m still playing in Warmode. A bounty was called upon my head as I was fishing and to see a flight of horde players on dragon back descend upon me was truly frightening. In Warmode, there are also several world quests that mark all players as hostile, Horde or Alliance alike. Like Blown Through Wind: Rhuzast

Most classes can’t solo the mob yet which is a rare elite so we need each other, we need to co-operate to achieve the goal, the kill. You can create a group, which is 5 max so you have some people who have your back, but it doesn’t matter because it’s the nature of players to try and kill each other anyway. Rhuzasts platform becomes a small collection of mini fights as players land, and see a hostile enemy and start to damage regardless of faction We are all foes in this battle.

Warmode servers has always been for me a weird mix of ‘we are just going to politely ignore that we could kill each other, and get along with our quest, or what ever it is we are doing’, or it becomes an opportunist slaughter fest. I will help a Horde, or be helped by a Horde kill a big Lunker ( getting them to shore can be hard and help makes it easier ) but the moment, a Horde player tries to access a resources chest in the middle of a crowd of Alliance it’s on. If a bounty is called on the map queries for players wanting to go hunting goes out in chat.

One person on my server called out their dismay at Alliances players willingness to kill our own in chat for these Pvp World quests .

One Rhuzast kill we had all managed to separate our selves around the Proto Dragon, and seemed to come to some kind of unspoken agreement and were dotting / dpsing it down, when it just devolved. Maybe someone accidentally dotted up some one, or there was a cleave and while the Dragon is stomping around trying to eat us, we were all trying to destroy each others health bars. When I do these quests, I think about the Scorpion and the Frog, and wonder if Blizzard, or the quest designers knew that they were creating some kind of social experiment to see how players would co-operate, or sabotage their own successes to complete a goal for the sake of PVP. We are acting like the Scorpion.

The PVP World Quest Wild Arcana gives you a choice to kill players or Unstable Arcana – at 5% a pop it takes 20 Arcana to do the quest, or according to the Wowhead page, only 7 players. I spent almost 10 minutes with 3 hostile players running around in circles, dotting up slow spawning Unstable Arcana just so we didn’t try and kill each other. No words were spoken aloud, no formal agreement was made, but we just didn’t kill each other. By the stage I was done, we had been collecting orbs like no tomorrow, and were completely overpowered. When a new player entered our circle and didn’t know that unspoken social pvp rule we had all agreed to and tried to attack us, he went down quickly, and we went back to running in circles looking for spawning Unstable Arcana.

Is that the answer?, we all just agree not to participate in PVP because we want to complete the quest without dying. Will our society then punish the rule breakers by making them targets until they comply, or it will just eventually be that only the strongest players could complete the quest because the weaker ones will always be fodder and easy HK kills.

Games I played in 2022

Thanks to my Razer I have a nice little summary of where I have been gaming the last year. ( other then Warcraft that is)

2022 saw me studying and working full time and next year will be the same, so gaming time is precious. I haven’t rejoined a guild because I can’t commit to any kind of raiding schedule, and I am ok with that for this cycle of my life – I don’t need to quit completely but I do need to manage priorities.

I also have a Switch lite and an Xbox, but the switch is really only used for animal crossing and two point hospital. I did buy the Star Trek Prodigy game and will play that more over Christmas break.

Stardew I tried both on switch and Pc and I was eternally frustrated by my inability to do more things because of energy levels. I was trying to rush ‘progression’ because Wow has trained me to grind – but thats not how to play. I may revisit when I can pace myself

Ark was my second love, but I’ve never quite recovered after losing my biggest base because I didn’t log in and feed my dinos in time – this can be a huge time sink and I ended up hosting an offline session and god moded my tame times so I could collect some dinos that were out of reach before ( try baby sitting a snoring T Rex for hours to tame it) I did get to explore the map more including the ice areas where survivability is harder. I was tempted to also try in xbox but there is a new Switch game out that is getting ok gameplay reviews, and I can see me playing it casually so will see what Santa brings this year. ( Or else I will buy)

Satisfactory has a great – non toxic community of builders and the game is not even fully released. As one person said – there is absolutely no pressure – you can progress as slow or fast as you like, the map is huge, and you don’t have restrictions on things like day/night and sleep requirements. ( your character is permanently fueled by Coffee ) you can be creative or technical or productive. I love the problem solving requirements, and the exploration. I still have a grind mentality here though, but when the goals are just so big you are also forced to pace yourself. I will keep going back.

I was surprisingly engaged with Raft, I just found the navigation hard trying to get to places I hadn’t seen. The build/ reinforcement was fine, was fed watered and protected – had a fantastic net debri system set up – starting collecting the animals and even found the radio tower and cruise ship, just got lost too often with wind direction, and couldn’t sustain a motor for too long so too much time spent on open seas.

Only a little way through Halo – but happy to keep going with the story.

Will see what next year brings – happily immersed in WOW for now till Uni starts back.

Respect the Role

I started dungeon running in Dragonflight as heals but it stressed me out trying to learn new mechanics including Dragon flying in the plains and chasing tanks who were determined to skip mobs and all have different shortcuts. Mana wasn’t a problem at that point but having time to loot those precious greens and cloth for leveling professions was, so to get more confident I ran as dps, and was dismayed at the dps for shadow until I got my Shadow crash timing right to mass double dot all the trash mobs and my army of apparitions floating at a pack.

I now have two decent healing trinkets and picking up gear upgrades as I go couple of rep pieces and lucky drops – I will probably go back to healing because of shorter queues and more likely to get picked up for raid pugs, but while running as dps I have come across some healer hate, and had to defend the healers.

First Heroic dungeon, a tank pulling mobs and bosses like we were running stockades again told a healer they sucked when we died because totems weren’t going down fast enough in Brackenhide Hollow on Decatriarch Wratheye. The Choking Rotcloud will silence casters which is particularity annoying for healers who need to stay mobile, avoid it, and heal dps silly enough to stand in it, if those totems don’t go down fast enough the fight gets too long and its harder. I defended the healer saying they were doing a fantastic job. The tank said /whatever and totems died faster no wipe the second time ( and I will always say a friendly reminder to kill totems now to make sure it goes smoothly)

Second Heroic last night saw a new Tank refusing to tank because the healer swore at him in caps for not asking for help. He was clearing all the mobs in the Forgemasters room in Neltharus, given he had gotten lost earlier and had admitted he was new to tanking this dungeon ( which we thanked him for telling us) the healer got impatient and got a little shouty especially as he accused us earlier of pulling his mobs for him when they were just connected packs and extra friends. Tank didn’t want to continue, healer refused to apologise for getting shouty – Tank said he was being abused, healer called him a sook and neither was getting enough votes when they tried to vote kick each other. I mostly soothed things over, appealed to both to allow dungeon to continue, and eventually we cleared with no wipes, but no one in that dungeon group had fun that run.

So respect the role, and each other and we can not walk away from a dungeon run feeling crap, because I can say from experience of now many expansions – this has all happened before and it will all happen again, the mobs might have changed but people haven’t.

The Dragons must have taken all the ducks

The Mystery has finally been solved as to where all the ducks had gone.

Many years ago, we realised that Azeroth had no ducks. I complained a little when I realised after a visit from my sisters Duck in my Post Where are all the ducks?

Blizzard has taken the missing creatures to heart and have managed to locate them in the new Zone. The Dragons had them all along,

It’s also noted in the Embassy Visitor Log as a reason for your visit when you sign the guest book.,

There is an escort ‘toy’ that puts a duck on your head ( fits nicely safe and snug in my crown helm)

It looks like we now have a selection to collect as pets,

And in the Wild there are all sorts of ducks – including duck meat for cooking.

These may not have been the fluffy ducks I was looking for – but I will take it.

Twas the night before the next expansion…. goodbye Maldraxxus

and all the citizens of Azeroth cleaned out their bags in preparation for the next collection of Junk.

I’m going around saying my goodbye to my very familiar friends in the Seat of the Primus, in Maldraxxus. I am going to try and use some of the keys in my bag to open up some final chests. There won’t be a need to come back here for a while.

I’ve hugged Plague Deviser Marileth for the last time. He still burns.

I am reminded of all the Metal Music references in Maldraxxus as I say goodbye. Wowhead has a list here : Maldraxxus is METAL

One of my favorite Bands is Lacuna Coil – an Italian metal band with an amazing lead singer Cristina Scabbia and there is a character called Chiara Coil in the Seat Of The Primus. I was lucky enough to see them play in Sydney a few years ago, and they were also a trigger to finding some life long friends at work, when in a happy discovery we were talking about slightly obscure music for Australia and “You know who Lacuna coil are…” meant instant bond. ( and I will be seeing them tomorrow during the WOW expansion launch night in a Concert with Gojira instead of playing WOW but that is a happy sacrifice)

Also in Maldraxxus is Tapani Nightwish, another favorite band of mine, Nightwish

and Lyra Hailstorm for Lzzy Halestorm of the band Halestorm ( playing in Sydney next year )

Yes, there are other Metal homages in Maldraxxus, but these were the ones that meant more to me.

Goodbye Maldraxxus, I have felt more at home as my Shadowey self here than any other zone.

Warcraft Story on Twitter

This was a cool little thing that they did. We know a certain social media site is well, going through great change and there needs to be a shuffling before a new ‘normal’ will set in and how those final cards are played and who will be left and who has a blue tick is currently unknown. Its a bit undecided where people are going to move to, if they will move etc I don’t have any immediate plans to do anything yet. /popcorn

#WarcraftStory

Don’t forget we have that ability to /share within our game with a direct connection and Integration to Twitter – I wonder if that will remain. It was added to the game in 2015 as part of patch 6.1.0 according to Wowpedia ( which also includes some instructions on how it works) Steam also allows you to tweet, and of course you don’t need an integration to talk about gaming

Twitters own gaming related marketing page calls out Gaming as an reachable audience – apparently there is 91 Million of us gamers out there ( or was in 2021)

But a Warcraft story was a cute little engagement piece. A very positive community engagement. I saw a few people got a ‘ only died in fire # of times’ but I am happy with my /Cheers even if this actually seems a little low to me, it’s not like I am /cheering everyday but I know when I am on flag carrier escort duty healing in say Warsong Gulch when we cap I try to /cheer the flag carrier.

Relieved that critter killing was not my story and frankly – dying from falling as a priest that takes absolute pleasure almost in jumping from heights to levitate would have been embarrassing. This was fun ( despite the number of people failing to follow the directions required to get the BOT to pick up the right information and I will admit to getting the hashtag wrong the first time in a now deleted tweet)

10,000 hours v 21 hours

416.666666 days

Apparently makes you an expert.

I’m past that on my main. Yes this is a little shocking to me too.

Yes I also read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell (Shiva got me to read Blink, another one of his books a long while ago) .

It’s spun my head around a little,  we don’t always think about successful people as having the talent, and the drive,  but also the opportunity to be great.  Some people are very much instrumental in creating or prolonging their opportunities and others it’s chance, and being there at the right time with the right resources.  Could have our computer and programing greats been as great if they didn’t have access to a mainframe until years later? Or did all they can to extend their allocated computer time.

One of the concepts that resonated with me,  was  the 10,000 hours it took to be GREAT. I’m not sure that number has to be exact,  but the general concept is more you practice the better you come.  Some peoples learning curves means they might get there faster,  but after 10,000 hours you should be a master.

To do anything for 10,000 hours,  I think you really have to have a passion for it,   I can’t imagine making a kid do 10,000 hours of math homework, or force someone to play a instrument, or practice a sport for that length of time.

I used to play flute in school, and I’m no where near the 10k hours, but I was decent.  The skill remains with me  now though and I still have the flute I bought, but as for self made opportunities,  I’m not interested, no drive, and I shall never be a Master.

So lets relate this back to a WOW

With the pre-Dragonflight leveling bonuses I leveled my new Hunter in less then 21 hours from 0-60. I’ve played a hunter before (41 days worth according to /played ) but 21 hours to learn a new character/ experience content, train to use my abilities in a variety of circumstances – is this really enough?

There are different talents, choices and rotations and the Dragonflight talent trees have messed up what I learnt anyway – ( why for no multishot in my build, not hating the serpent sting change but need it to proc on more abilities)

So far my experience playing with people who are minting new level 60’s in prep for Dragonflight have been ok. We certainly aren’t masters but we seem to have been around the block enough times that 21 hours to 60 was enough for dungeons we have already played – I got my gear score up and now into heroic dungeons and will probably dabble in some LFG raids and park her till Dragonflight so I have something else to play besides my Priest and new Dragon ( Dracthyr Evoker).

I am finding though that an OP tank that out dps’s everyone and drags us panting through a dungeon to get it over quick might be efficient but we aren’t adding to our skills by being carried.

I dismay a little at the grind, particularly the covenant my main went through, and am grateful I could skip so much on my new hunter, but I feel a little jibbed, if we no longer need extended learning curves or time to get used to new abilities or new mechanics because we have done this before the only reason to play a storyline is to 1) extend the experience and 2) enjoy the story and the scenery.

Then to consider 10,000 hours on my priest thats gone through every expansion, talent trees, tweaks, chopping blocks, its been fiddled, poked, minor and major adjustments. Its not 10k on the same spec even. So does it even matter her played time is so high, and the real mastery learned is resilience and our ability to play in the face of change and new content again again.

The time I have spent with my main means I have formed a deeper connection to my identity with my character, the hunter has no such connection. Time causes bonds to form, even if its with pixels and so 21 hours to build, learn and bond is way too short.

Can’t do that while stunned

Can’t do that while stunned.

Can’t play, can’t attack, can’t move, but you CAN queue for dungeons and PVP.

I Dc’d during a Solo Shuffle PVP match while dead. The CAT cable to my pc runs under a hall rug which becomes a slippery slide for one of my cats, so the cable is a little sensitive and just needs to pushed back in. I spawned back in Oribos being unable to move ‘Can’t do that while stunned’ the error said. Couldn’t cast or do anything involving an ability. So I googled, and read some forums on how to fix.

One recommended logging in and out again, another wait for 10 min. So I tried both. Logged back in and still stuck. logged out again figured I had other priorities and I would try again next day. Same problem

The I used the self service move character to a safe place. Nope, ended up frozen at Sentinel Hill. Gnolls and soldiers locked in battle and poor me stuck in the GY. I was off to PAX so figured try when I got back. Still no movement.

So I raised a ticket – no category fit so it went into other issue request. I checked the progress of ticket Sunday morning and 6 days in with a 22 day wait period.

This was annoying – I can count the tickets I’ve raised on one hand, and to be honest pretty sure I’ve only had two GM interactions over the course of play. But 22 days is almost a month of playtime and this bug meant I could not play my main character at all.

Did some more googling – one forum post suggested that you needed to die to reset the bug. Dieing on Sentinel Hill is kind of hard. Even flagged for PVP the chances of a horde player finding me was low. So in despair I queued for WSG – the only BG I could think of where a Horde player quickly enters a base and could put me out of my frozen status

A whirling Tauren Warrior spun into the flag room, breaking my stunned chains and when I rezzed at the WSG GY I was able to play again – so thankyou Warrior I was not AFK in flag room, am frustrated that I needed to get to that point – that the one time I needed help, it was so far away.

So this post is hopefully for anyone else that needs to find the unconventional way of solving your own Bug problem with ‘ Can’t do that while stunned’ Solution was for me, was for my character to die.

PAX AUS – Writing Panel

I am in Melbourne for my third PAX – covid meant we had to skip a couple, and there are so many people here together for the love of games. I’m on the three day pass and I don’t feel like that’s enough, I remember Fridays being the quieter day, but not this year. So far have been in panels and queues and wandering the floor. ( started writing this in a queue)

While writing isn’t necessarily a medium thats dying -I feel blogs have had their day, and even now WordPress wants me to do a ‘Story’ post with more media. I’ve been writing since I was 9 in some form – poems, songs, stories, book attempts, and a finished book, but writing is why I went to the Panel ‘Pen is mightier than the Joystick – writing for and about games’ and got to hear some different backstories and journeys of how the panel ended up writing for or about games.

There was some great career advice about having a portfolio, transferrable skills and finishing projects are more important then ideas on a hard drive ( I have a fair few draft posts that will never see the light of a webpage) and it was pointed out that while creative industries aren’t always job secure that any job can change – be restructured or disappear. Creative opportunities can come in many forms so grab what you are able.

Besides blogging I’ve never tried to write about games or for games – and panels like this make me worry could have I, should have I, should I? I’ve been pursuing certificates and currently a post grad in my career with the same passion as I used to have for gaming. Work is pushing me and I’m doing well but I worry that I have chosen the more reliable path of a stable professional career then a creative one that sates my desire to write, both make me happy, but writing has always been a need.

I promised once I graduated from the course I’m finishing I would focus on creative me, and NaNoWriMo is on in November. I met the goal last year, and I can this year, so I can make that, and this – this panel the boot up the butt to pursue being creative. I also might dust off and clean up some of those drafts if there is anything rescuable

Satisfactory – Employee of the Planet

I have achieved ‘Employee of the Planet’ a true FICSIT pioneer and employee in Satisfactory the game and got myself the Golden Mug for endless caffeine which shows I have finished the delivery four on the space elevator. This was my second play through and I did it in approx 300 hours of game time. My first attempt was abandoned after finishing delivery three when I realised just how much work was needed to set up for the final stage. I have pushed through after starting in fresh in a new space on a different part of the map, determined to be clean neat and tidy and gave that up very quickly and cared not for the chaos of my base. My aim was to bring as many resources from all over the map and have them filtered into the storage containers on the right hand side which fed them where I needed them to be. It worked. Ran it on two nuclear stations and about 14 coal burners closer to the coal nodes which require a water source. I conveyor belted my plastics and packaged aluminum from a 2nd base that was power self sufficient through fuel burners and burning petroleum coke from heavy oil as a poor mans substitute for coal – it crashed a few times when my storage contains filled up and it needed it’s production to generate it’s own fuel, but fixed that after a few failures and more conveyor belts back to my main base. I recycled water where I could ( un-packaging aluminum at my base was useful water wise for for Sulfuric acid and then for batteries. ) I’ve started setting up a nuclear waste refining facility, my waste got three massive towers of storage contains tall and there’s plenty of empty space on the map so I don’t think it’s going to get out of hand any time soon.

Instead of trains/train tracks, I turboed tubed as much as I could between the bases. This is much fun, especially when you go under the map because my tubes went underground. I built massive ramps to get to hard to reach places like the uranium node I used this time round on top of one of the highest mountains, and like my priest in wow, levitating down to the ground with a jetpack was also a lot of fun. ( I really like to do that in any game )

There have been mishaps along the way, I was particularly destructive with my vehicles,

I really like this game. The spiders still make me jump, you will be running along exploring a new area as it slightly gets dark and then a massive furry multi eyed, multi legged beast jumps out you, spitting sulfar, fire, or just scurrying around you in a swarm. The big bugs were often bugging out which made them easier to kill though,

You don’t notice so much because of the first person player POV but the main character is a woman, dubbed as ‘Becky’ by the community, because as a pioneer you are clone and property of FICSIT.

As a time sink, as an automation exercise, exploring, problem solving game this game is awesome, it’s got so many amazing places to pollute, destroy, cut down or just sit and contemplate the view, and it’s still in early release! Update 6 soon.

I didn’t die as much to begin with the second time playing through, but I still did stupid things like tried to use a parachute off a cliff and hit too many buttons so it canceled and I fell, pushed off a cliff by an angry beast and so on. It’s been meditative, and fun making widgets.

Update 6 is soon so I am looking forward to the changes and some new foes,

Personal update: Still playing wow, and I decided to go back to Uni, as an adult, with a full time job, a life, and an interest in time consuming hobbies like gaming, it’s been a challenge, but it’s been really helpful in filling up the time that being allowed to work from home since Covid has given me. I’ve booked to go to PAX in Melbourne later this year, and looking forward to being emmersed in gaming on that scale again.

Hope everyone is staying healthy and well.


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