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    Monday, 8 December 2014

    10 million. Really?

    IRVINE, Calif.—November 19, 2014—On November 13, millions of Azeroth’s champions enlisted for the war against the Iron Horde with the launch of World of Warcraft®: Warlords of Draenor, the fifth expansion to the world’s #1 subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game.* Blizzard Entertainment today announced that as of the first 24 hours of the expansion’s availability, more than 3.3 million copies had sold-through and the game’s global subscriber base had passed 10 million, with growth across all major regions.

    Sounds good. When you look at it graphically (thanks to MMO-Champion for the graph) it looks great too.

    When I heard this almost 3 weeks ago I was happy, the game I love is once again thriving. Launch day saw sales of the expansion pack hit 3.3 million, back in August it had sold 1.5million copies so between August and November 13th it sold a further 1.8 million copies and during that same period subscriptions rose 2.6 million. Assuming that ALL 1.8million sales were returners (unlikely) we're looking at 800,000 new subscribers that haven't ordered the expansion along with 5.9 million subscribers.

    Maybe it's just me assuming that more people bought expansions on the day. 

    One worrying thing is that, the servers came to a complete standstill across the US and EU realms with 3.3 million players trying to use them at once. According to WoWProgress, there are 120 US realms (counting connected realms as one realm) and 123 EU realms, this means that each realm averaged 13,580 subscribers that bought the expansion on or before launch day and the servers couldn't cope with the demand. 

    I wonder if this means that some connected realms could now be at risk of being over populated? What would happen? Especially if one half of the connected realm get over populated? This could have a crippling effect on guilds, especially on guilds that have the majority of their members from the sister realm rather than the realm the guild was formed on.
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    Sunday, 23 November 2014

    Sunday Screenshot #45

    A week further on and the crowds of players seems to have pretty much disappeared, no more server queues, very few bugs and most importantly, garrisons seem to be able to be trusted again. So much so that I have now started to log off there on all my alts that have one.

    The daily routine is setting in too and this means many taxi rides around the world to the quest hubs and this week's screenshot comes from one such journey as I was flying over Shattrath. Shattrath was always a great city and the version we have in Draenor is stunning, one I'm really sad we wont be inhabiting unless we get a patch to cleanse it of the demon invasion and if that happens I'll be a happy man.

    Moving on, this week is the start of the 10 years of WoW celebrations and Exhumed involved early on with a guild Molton Core lfr run and to celebrate, I've included a second bonus pic of our run there for you all.

    Sadly we only managed to get 37 guildies/friends on line so we had to pug the last 3 spots but we had a really great time on TeamSpeak and the scariest moments were when I could recall the strategies not only for most bosses, but also the trash packs. To make that a bit more concerning, I wasn't even a raid leader back then and even as late as Naxxramas (Wrath edition) I was horrified at the thought of doing so. 
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    Sunday, 16 November 2014

    Sunday Screenshot #44

    The Sunday Screenshot is back and today I'm celebrating dinging 100, finally. The road to 100 has been frustrating. Not because the Warlords of Draenor questing is rubbish (which it is NOT) but because the servers have been awful. I'm a vetaran in this game and I've experienced launch day on every expansion. 

    TBC was my first, on the launch day I went to my local Game store and purchased the CE box at 9am (as it happens I was served by a certain John Bain before he went off to the US), there was no problem logging on at 10am, yes there was lag, yes there was a shortage of mobs but players grouped together for quests and shared kills, we made friends there were pretty much no douchebags and we had no server crashes. What the servers were like at the midnight switch over I cannot comment.

    My second experience was Wrath and my guild decided to have some midnight launch fun. I decided to take part late and hadn't pre-ordered. At midnight, I went to the local supermarket and bought myself a copy of the standard edition (which irks me as it is the only CE I'm missing), returned home and was on line by 1:30am, again no problems logging on, server was laggy, very laggy we got DCd, we got straight back on and after a while, the Northrend realms crash, I rolled a DK and did the whole starting area without anything more than a bit of lag, OK a lot of lag. After the first few hours everything was smooth.

    Cataclysm was the third launch, once again I was taking part in this at midnight, I pre-ordered the CE box and this arrived ahead of time and I was ready to go at midnight when Blizzard restarted the servers. We had log on issues, the start zones were chaos, there was lag, servers crashed but as had happened in Wrath, afer the first few hours everything was smooth.

    In Mists I once again took part in the launch at midnight, I pre-ordered the CE box and was very disappointed when this didn't arrive ahead of time. My guildies all ordered the digital edition and were online and playing at midnight. The servers did not need a restart this time but, if I remember correctly, players needed to log out and back in to activate their access, the login servers got swamped and people couldn't log back in. I was getting the itch to join in though and decided to buy a digital edition and beg for my money back when I upgraded to the CE (this didn't happen but I did get my std edition key back to reuse). I got in and there was lag and a buggy quest which was only allowing one person to do it at a time /facepalm. However this was fixed quickly and while there was a bit of lag around certain quest hubs the game was very playable  after the first few hours.

    This year, I once again oredered the CE and hoped to get it ahead of time, I didn't and once again caved in and bought a standard digital edition knowing that I would get the key back to reuse or gift. I did this because I wanted to play and play early, I had booked time off work that the following 2 nights to be able to get to 100 before the weekend. The servers once again didn't need a restart, and we didn't need to relog. However, as usually happens the servers couldn't cope with the demands and there wa lag, quest congestion and DCs. Once getting past the initial starting experience we all got driven into the garrisons. The garrison is an instanced area, there is no portal or load screen but it IS instanced.

    The servers could not cope and players got DC's and then couldn't log back in because the character was either not found or already logged in. After an hour of this I decided to give up and go to bed and just play normally Thursday morning. This I did for about an hour before I went back to the garrison for a quest. Then I hit the same wall as I had the night before, many guildies were in the same position and eventually the server crashed and freed us all. I continued playing and that evening the problem happened again more players were stuck and when zoning into the garrison, a personal instanced location, the garrisons were full of other players all unable to move without DCing.

    I decided to switch to one of my other level 90s, when Itried to log on I got to 90% load bar and then DC'd I repeated this on 4 characters before deciding to try a lowerlevel alt, I got in. So now on expansion launch day I was only able to play low level characters, After being unable to play, I decided to go to bed aerly and try Friday morning, Friday was basically the same deal, everyone that used the garrison was unable to play. Guildies that avoided them managed to level quite quickly. To ease the problems Blizzard reduced server capacity which resulted in every server being locked and having queues. So if you were unlucky enough to get DCd, you'd most likely hit a queue.

    Saturday was a day I feared the worst as more players were going to want to play, I logged on early and decided to avoid anything garrison related and that strategy worked amazingly well as I stayed on line all day and got to 99 before I had to sleep. However, other people had all the issues of the previous 2 day. Warlords of Draenor has truly been the worst launch of a WoW expansion pack. 

    I'm sure that the reason is because of server connections because while these are not officially mergers, the realms are all sharing the same physical servers of only one of the realms. This of course means there are less servers to accommodate the majority of subscribers at once and while this is an unusual occurrence, it is a predictable event as it only happens every expansion and Blizzard really should have been prepared better for this.

    I'm hoping for at least some game time credits for all subscribers, not because I want the compensation (quite frankly this would be 2 days pay for me because of my wasted leave days) but  as an admission from Blizzard that they messed up the launch big time.

    What has your launch experience been like? Did you manage to level to 100 yet? I'd love to see your answers to all 3 questions in the comments below.

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    Saturday, 8 November 2014

    BlizzCon 2014: Day 1

    So BlizzCon 2014 has come and Day 1 gave us some big surprises. The biggest was the lack of Warcraft news.

    With all the hype over the past week about the trademarking of the Eye of Azshara, everyman and his dog wasguessing that this was either Warcraft 4, the next World of Warcraft expansion or an outside shot as the new Hearthstone expansion. Which at least two of the three are now definitely out of the running as the new Hearthstone expansion was announced as Goblins vs Gnomes, and this is hitting the streets, albeit virtual ones, in the next month and will feature on cards of a mechanical nature.

    It is also very unlikely to be be Warcraft 4, as Blizzard decided that their next big title was a new IP. Yes despite officially abandoning project Titan, the FPS MMO, Blizzard have decided that the next big thing they're giving us is to be an FPS, but NOT an MMO, and a certain Jeff Caplan was the man at the helm of the team, sounds like the restart of Titan changed the direction from including an MMO element to the game, which will be called Overwatch. It looks awesome and I'll certainly give a go but my past experiences of FPS style games makes me believe that I'll both suck at it and hate it unless I can play in 3rd person mode because my brain can't cope with the loss of peripheral vision.

    The thing I particulrly like are the graphics which are typically Blizzard cartoon style rather than realistic but there is now a much more polished feel than even the new WoW models. If only they could get this style into WoW...

    This leaves Eye of Azshara as really only a WoW title now, and if that ends up being the case that is fine, I'm just glad the announcement hasn't happened at BlizzCon because, quite frankly, knowing the next expansion content (WoW 7.0)  just a few days before we get the Warlords of Draenor (WoW 6.0) would feel very wrong and detract a lot of focus from the new shiny content before it was even live.

    The fear this creates in me is knowing that we're likely to only get two raid tiers in Warlords and that the chances are we won't get sight of the WoW 7.0 beta until after next BlizzCon which means one of two things:
    1. We're getting two very long tiers of raiding over 18-24 months;
    2. We're getting a third tier of raiding which could mean a Trial of the Crusader/Helion raid;
    Of course there is a third option of us getting an announcement 'soon™' of the expansion and beta is going to happen around spring 2015 (which coincides with Overwatch beta) and the launch will be Winter 2015/2016. But if that is so, what of BlizzCon 2015?

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    Monday, 13 October 2014

    Loot Council: The Exhumed Solution

    Loot is the single biggest headache involved with raiding. The past few weeks it has been something I have been focused on heavily as I prepare to move my guild, Exhumed of Shadowsong EU, into Mythic raiding. We decided a while back to move to Loot Council but hadn't considered the nuts and bolts of how to do this.

    We looked at addons and they really don't add any benefit to the process. therefore I have looked around and come up with a system that I feel will work, be easily managed and simple to explain. One thing that I had to accept was that nothing can avoid disagreements over gear.

    I have also set up the Loot Council to have an odd number of members to avoid a deadlock on a piece of gear. The aim is for loot to be distributed as fairly as possible. I have asked that our raid team do not contest our decisions in the raid and this will mean that we won't be changing our decisions. I have asked that anyone who feels we made an error to discuss it AFTER the raid.

    The only situation whereby a person will have to pass loot to a different person is if the loot Council decide that "person A" should win an item but the Master Looter hands the item to "person B". The correction will be announced by the Master Looter and we then expect that the item be handed immediately to the correct winner by the incorrect winner. This will mean that we have had to ask that people do not gem/enchant/transmog an item for 15 minutes as this may make the item soulbound.

    How to express interest

    Bidding for items will be done in raid chat, to ensure that nothing is missed, raid chat should be kept clear while bidding is in progress. To make sure the raid is not slowed down during this process each item will be open for 15 seconds after the item to bid on is linked during this time you should do 1 of 3 things in /ra:
    • Say MAIN link your equipped item – If the item is a significant upgrade for you in your current spec and role. If this is a piece of Tier and it will activate a set bonus add 2pce or 4 piece to your "bid"
    • Say OFF (no item link) – If the item is a minor upgrade or you’d like it for an off spec.
    • Say nothing – If you have zero interest at all in the item.
    After the 15 second countdown, there will be a "Bids closed" statement. Interest expressed well after this point will not be considered into account (unless there was no one interested at all during the countdown). The council will then write the name of the person they feel should be awarded the item in a private channel and the master looter will then announce a winner. Bidding on the next item will then commence.

    This does of course rely on the bidder being honest when linking their equipped item, this will be policed and anyone found cheating the system will be dealt with very harshly.

    Who will be on the Loot Council?

    The Loot Council will consist of 5 people. These will be 3 officers and 2 of the raid team (decided by a /roll each raid). The raid leader will always be on the council. They each have their own individual personality and are 5 different players. Each council member has 1 vote used to decide who receives an item if there are multiple players interested in an item. ALL loot council members will vote on ALL items, even if a member of the loot council is interested in an item.

    6 Influential factors

    Current rank and position: Players not holding a raider rank will not get loot assigned to them if a player holding a raider rank has bid MAIN. This is to prevent people from joining, getting a few pieces of loot, and then leaving. It is basically a form of DKP. It forces people to have a vested interest in the guild and raiding regularly to receive gear. This may be overlooked based on performance, attendance, or the amount of loot already received during that raid.

    Attendance: Raid attendance is extremely important. If players aren’t here to raid, they’re not going to be able to contribute. Remember that loot drops will be awarded in order to be as effective as possible. This means there is a higher chance that a player who attends 80% of raids will get an item over a player who only attends 50%. This doesn't mean that a person with lower attendance will never get loot, just that persons with higher attendance but equal gear level will get loot earlier.

    Effectiveness: Is it effective for the guild as a whole? Will the raider be able to utilize it and ensure that it does not become useless? We want to ensure that items aren’t going to be wasted by being awarded to alts or off specs unless there is no main interest. A guardian/boomkin Druid looking to obtain a spirit item aren’t going to get it if they’re in raids to only to tank or DPS. It doesn't maximize the effectiveness of the item if it is not being used.

    Current items: A player still wearing gear from the last tier or from a raid difficulty lower than that being run is going to have a higher chance of being awarded an item. Keep in mind that this will not always be the case. In certain situations, while the item in question may be a larger upgrade for a newer player, it could be awarded to a veteran player who has been in there for weeks or months on end trying to get the item.

    Equal distribution: Loot will be distributed as equally as possible to the appropriate classes that need them (at least, we’ll attempt to). It is unlikely for players to receive more than one item from a boss. But it is entirely possible for players to receive multiple items in one run. We cannot control what items a boss drops. The last thing we want to do is shard a piece.

    Set bonuses: If you have an odd number of set pieces (like 1 or 3 set pieces), we want nothing more than to help activate them.

    Self improvement and teamwork

    The main tanks in the guild are able to talk amongst themselves and figure out who needs upgrades over the other first. They do this purely through communication and cooperation by figuring out their weaknesses and identifying the items that benefit them the most. When tank items drop, they are able to compromise.
    I encourage other players to do the same with the other classes or other players wearing similar armor types. As an example, I try to work with the other healers to see who can benefit more.
    During our 10 man days many of the loot drops were handled in this informal way and hopefully that spirit will continue with the new larger raid size, everyone takes turns in passing and are aware who can benefit items the most. It’s the times where there is no informal agreement where the Loot Council will step in and make a decision rather than let the RNG of /roll decide.

    That is the approach we are taking in Exhumed, if you have any comments regarding this I'd love to hear from you either via comments below, email to evlyxx at or alternatively in game

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    Sunday, 5 October 2014

    The Change to Loot Council

    I'm back, well I never went away to be honest just a whole lot of real life, preparing for Warlords and if I'm truly honest whole lot of writers block caused by generally feeling run down due to the real world stuff. I haven't stopped playing WoW though and have been really busy working towards a very big goal which I hope to cover soon so i won't spoil that just now (yes, I know I'm teasing you all).

    Anyway the biggest thing that is stressing me in game is the matter of loot in our soon to be Mythic raids, Exhumed has been a 10 man raid guild all the while I have been there, this has meant loot has been a simple affair as we have a fixed squad of 15 people and use /roll. Sure it isn't perfect but 9 times out of 10 the RNG gods didn't punish people to much as the chances of rolling against the someone for loot more than 2 times was almost nil and only our 2 enhancement shaman were rolling against each other for the same stuff as our hunter didn't want mastery and they didn't want crit, sure healers competed with our boomkin on some gear and I even competed with the mage and lock on an item or two but mostly it sorted itself out (unless you count the Prismatic Prison of Pride trinket which has dropped only 3 times for us on normal or heroic and our druid is still using a flex version despite having 33 kills (7x normal and 26x HC) and rolling on it each time too while I've got the normal version in my 43 kills (20x normal and 23x HC) and yes I roll each week as well and have all 5.4). Anyway I digress, the point is loot was drama free and fast to deal with.

    As we move to Mythic, we end up staring down the loot drama boss, RNG can play a huge part the options were all admin heavy and time consuming out of game and nobody wanted to do it and I wasn't getting burdened by that on top of everything else I do for the guild, I simply don't have the time.

    A few months back we polled the guild to see what they wanted from raiding in Warlords and one question we asked was which loot system they wanted, the majority chose Loot Council, but even that doesn't come with admin problems. The biggest one is the time it takes to do in raids, I'm assuming that Mythic will give us 5 loot items per boss kill and I'm assuming that each item will take a minimum of 2 minutes to deal with, that's 10 minutes per boss! With there being 17 bosses in the first tier of Warlords raiding that's 3 hours per week just spent on dishing out loot and our raiding schedule is 2 nights of 3 hour raids which makes that 3 hours 50% of our raid schedule spent handing out loot. 

    I've looked at addons to help, they're either broken (not working cross-realm even for connected realms) or just don't add up to a time saving as they don't handle the loot council decision making process at all. This means I'm stuck looking at ways to make the process efficient. I've tried researching Loot Council and all I can find is what loot council is and how much better or worse it is than DKP, EPGP, /roll or Suicide Kings. One of the better articles I found, on World of Matticus, is a bit old but still relevant and I've used this as the base for the overview of how I see Loot Council working for Exhumed (I won't go into too much detail of the differences as it is still a discussion for our officers).

    So this post is really aimed at people that are running a loot council already as I'd love to hear from you about how you deal with the bidding and decision making process without spending too much time per item, particularly from 25 man raid teams.
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    Sunday, 14 September 2014

    Sunday Screenshot #43

    Continuing on from my last post about how I dislike Evlyxx's new look, which all revolves around her face I thought I'd share a series of screenshots that I have uploaded as a video to my YouTube channel (please subscribe and leave comments).

    The biggest changes are on the last 3 faces, the new versions don't look like the originals (although they are probably the worst of the original faces in terms of both quality and "prettiness") if I had one of those as my toons face I would feel like I'd been robbed!

    Thankfully, I've discovered I'm not a lone dissenter and I really hope that the issue is one of the "beta" issues seen so often before.

    If you have beta or PTR access I urge you to go and check the new models out and see what you character looks like after the change. It is possible to switch between new and old models in the menus go to System > Advanced and tick/untick the option Show New Character Models.

    Other related articles/forum posts you may want to read:
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    Wednesday, 10 September 2014

    Evlyxx: The New Model

    Evolution of a brand happens and when Blizzard announced that the character models were to be revamped there was much excitement and much nervousness. But at BlizzCon 2013, Blizzard knocked our socks off with the new character models and I was one of the millions of players that rejoiced at the way the new models where so close to the original, but better! So far, I have not heard a single dissenting voice about the models, sure people whined that the NElf had no fangs, but she did, and ofc the female Draenei April Fool caused a ripple but no one seems to have moaned about their toon being ruined.

    But today for the first time I've been having some doubts because the female human model looks kind of odd. To show you what I mean I put Evlyxx to the test on the beta realms by using the diable new character model feature so I knew it was a direct replacement rather than me getting something wrong elsewhere.

    Undressed the human female form looks very unchanged:

    This is great and adding some armour shows some subtle changes in posture, notice the neck and shoulder area and the way the robes hang differently near the feet:

    I'm sure you'll agree it all looks rather good and nothing much to complain about.

    Until you look at the face. The changes are, quite sublte and revolve around the mouth being a different shape and the eyes being less animé style and also being furter awayy from the eyebrows but it makes such a huge difference to the character. She looks as if she is in deep thought and less friendly, meaner, more grumpy even. If it were a person I was talkking with, it is if she is not engaged in the converstaion with me but had her mind on something some place else. In short, Evlyxx no longer looks like Evlyxx it is as if someone kidnapped her and replaced her with an evil clone of her.

    Maybe I'm being petty, maybe there are some tweeks left to come from Blizzard but right now I'm a very unhappy bunny about potentially having to use the old character models when using Evlyxx, especially after being a fan of the new models for so long, maybe I'll warm to the new look, who knows. Have you checked your toon out to see how it changes when using the new model? If so I'd love to hear your thoughts.
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    Thursday, 14 August 2014

    13 November 2014: The Warlords are Coming

    The cinematic is incredible and really makes me wish that Blizzard had tackled the soon to be released movie in house. Sure te resources needed would have been far more than that required for a 5 minute trailer but, we've waited 8 years already and still have another 2 more years to wait, surely it must have been a possibility.

    Blizzard have thrown us all a major curve ball with the release date of Warlords of Draenor coming on a Thursday as all previous Warcraft realeses had been on a Tuesday. My predicted date of 23 September was very, very wrong. I also think that Blizzard could have pushed it back a day and made the release date 12-13-14!

    That said the exact day is pretty much irrelevant and it seems that Blizzard expects us all to endure another 3 months of Siege of Orgrimmar. I'm both saddened and happy at this as it does give my guild 3 more months to kill Garrosh HC, well most likely 2 as once the pre-oatch gives us mythic I don't think we'll have the personnel in place geared and experienced for such trials but I'd love to be wrong.

    Anyway that means 2 more months to get things done like a few more alts through Challenge Modes and finishing off my Legendary Cloak collection and a few other goals. I won't be ending my subscription between now and then. Will you? If not what are your goals between now and November?
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    Tuesday, 12 August 2014

    Sunday Screenshot #42

    This end of expansion lull I have been fighting has finally arrived. I'll admit that things have slacked here at Evangelysm and while I am slacking I really am still focuses on the blog, I just struggle currently to invent content that is worthwhile posting about.

    I'm in the beta but to be honesst I am not keen on spoiling the new content befoe live and so am spending my time in game slacking on alts and slacking at picking up the legendary cloak on as many of my Shadowsongsters as possible in preparation for leveling them uo in Warlords. I'm also leveling my Hordie alts and it is there that I obtained this weeks image. Clearly someone had too many banquests and too much time!

    How are you spending the lull period? Are you even still playing WoW?
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    Tuesday, 5 August 2014

    Why You Should Play a Human

    A recent forum post that made me giggle asked a really stupid question. I decided to answer that question and thought I'd share that with you all.

    • Trolls - look deformed with the curved spines;
    • Orcs - look deformed with the curved spines;
    • Taurens - scratch their backsides, helms look ridiculous and appear to move too slowly;
    • Undead - armour looks awful as half of it is missing;
    • Blood Elves - males look effimate and females look like they would snap in battle;
    • Night Elves - males look like they are crapping themselves when they /walk, females bounce when standing still;
    • Gnomes - annoying high pitched voice, get line of sight issues and get lost in crowds;
    • Worgen - female models are awful and the males sniff all the time;
    • Draenei - they have tails, squid like tentacles and legs would break under the weight of the upper body;
    • Dwarves - females have blow up doll faces and males can't be clean shaven;
    • Humans - look like humans!
    That is ofc just my view and people may disagree, that is your prerogative. That said, I do play all races with one exception, worgen as I really do think that the female model is awful as are their animations. The male sniffing was too much for me to cope with when I rolled a male hunter so much that I ended up race changing to, yes you guessed it, a female human.

    What is you favourite and least favourite race?

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    Friday, 1 August 2014

    Thok Cooldown Rotation

    Thok positioning (courtesy of FlaskUp)
    Its been a while folks, but never fear I am still here! Or maybe that should be a reason to be fearful? Anyway, been doing some HC progression and needing to buff up the knowledge on Thok, Man the coordination there is intense, so I've been researching a bit deeper and the raid cooldown usage is indeed the key. 

    This is NOT  JUST HEALERS, everyone who can assist should assist and so we don't all splurge our CDs at the start we need an action plan. Because the team make up varies week to week I have put together the action plan below which states roles not classes. Some weeks we'll have extra CDs to use, in which case people not specifically assigned should use theirs at a point that isn't mentioned, prefarably near the end.

    The rotation below is for the 1st and 3rd Cry in the Darkness phases. The 2nd of these phases will see the raid have no raid wide cooldowns available, kill the bats and last as long as we naturally can with an aim of hitting 7-10 Screeches.
    • Screech #06 – DPS 1 Raid Cooldown
    • Screech #09 – DPS 3 Raid Cooldown (if available)
    • Screech #11 – Healer 1 with a Blessing of Protection so no interupts
    • Screech #14 – Healer 2 with Blessing of Protection  so no interupts
    • Screech #17 – DPS 2 Raid Cooldown
    • Screech #19 – Devotion Aura
    • Screech #22 – Healer 3 Cooldowns and players personal Cooldowns.
    • Screech #24 – DPS 4 Raid Cooldown (if available)
    • Screech #27 – Stack up!
    • DeathKnight: Anti-magic zone talent (spellid:51052) 75% spell damage reduction, 10 seconds with a 2 metre range.
    • Druid: Tranquility (spellid:740) channeled, 8 seconds with a 8 metre range.
    • Monk: Zen meditation (spellid:115176) redirects 5 harmful spells, 8 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Monk: Avert harm brewmaster(spellid:115213) 20% all damage redirected, 6 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Monk: Revival mistweaver (spellid:115310) (instant/3 metre range).
    • Paladin: Devotion aura (spellid:31821 20% magic damage reduction, 6 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Priest: Divine Hymn (spellid:64843) channeled, 8 seconds with a 3 metre range. - HOLY ONLY
    • Priest: Lightwell (spellid:724) 15 charges or 3m/3 metre range. - HOLY ONLY
    • Priest: Power Word: Barrier (spellid:62618) 25% damage reduction, 10 seconds with a 3 metre range. - DISC ONLY
    • Priest: Spirit Shell discipline (spellid:109964) absorption shields, 15 seconds with a 1 metre range. - DISC ONLY
    • Priest: Vampiric Embrace shadow (spellid:15286) 10s-glyphed or 15s-unglyphed/3 metre range. - SHADOW ONLY
    • Rogue: Smoke Bomb (spellid:76577) 20% damage reduction 5-7 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Shaman: Healing Tide Totem (spellid:108280) 11 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Shaman: Ancestral Guidance talent (spellid:108281)  Level 75 Talent TAKE IT!
    • Shaman: Spirit Link totem restoration (spellid:98008) 10% all damage reduction, 6 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Warrior: Demoralizing banner (spellid:114203) -10% damage dealt by all enemies, 15 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Warrior: Rallying cry (spellid:97462) temporary 20% increased health, 10 seconds with a 3 metre range.
    • Warrior: Mass spell reflection talent (spellid:114028) reflects 1 spell, 5 seconds with a 1 metre range.

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    Wednesday, 9 July 2014

    How to: Bind a Macro to a Key Without Using Addons.

    With the Warlords of Draenor beta being addon free, I've been looking around for a way to bind a macro to a keybind.

    Hunting around I discovered a script that allows just that (which sadly doesn't fix the issue as scripts are also currently banned on beta). However, as I'm hoping to free myself of as many addons as possible when warlords hits the streets sometime in 2015 (?) it will be some use later on.

    The command you need to run is:
        /run SetBindingMacro("SHIFT-A", "MacroName")
        /run SaveBindings(1)
    I use a macro on a hotbar for this and recommend you do too as I'm not too sure how it behaves if you simply type it in on two lines. Of course, when you do this, you need to change the exact wording to fit your needs:
    • Replace SHIFT-A with whatever key you want to bind the macro to (e.g. A, ALT-A, CTRL-SHIFT-A);
    • Replace MacroName with the name of your macro;
    • Replace the 1 in the SaveBindings call to a 2 if you use character specific key bindings which I don't as all of my character use the same bindings;

    You can also replace MacroName with the name of a spell or other ability, which can be useful especially for pet abilities.
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    Monday, 30 June 2014

    Getting Ready For Realm Connection

    With the connection of Aszune and Shadowsong announced as being July 2nd, I decided to check out the web for a list of common issues post connection, so I could be prepared for the worst, should it happen. What I found was reassuringly few problems but the ones I did find were fairly major ones.
    PROBLEM: ALL characters vanished during the connection process. Blizzard is did restore the toons and did make this their no1 priority but still there can be delays.
    SOLUTION: Open ONE ticket to request ALL your characters be restored and list ALL character names, guild names and specify the server name.
    PROBLEM: Players who have deleted characters and created new ones to replace them have seen the deleted character(s) reappear and the new one(s) disappear after the realm connection.
    SOLUTION: Deleting the "deleted" character, switching to a different realm and then back to home realm will update the character list to restore the "missing" character. If that fails, log out of then back in and if you're still missing a character, open ONE ticket to request the missing characters be restored and list ALL character names, guild names and specify the server name.
    PROBLEM: Guilds have disappeared.
    SOLUTION: If you're not an officer, don't panic let your officers do that! If you're an officer, still don't panic raise ONE ticket explaining the problem and let your other officers know you've done it. No point slowing the Blizzard folk down with duplicate tickets..
    PROBLEM: All mail went missing. Blizzard will try to restore the missing mail but they can't guarantee they will restore everything and they won't accept your word for what went missing!
    SOLUTION: Make sure to empty out the mailbox for ALL your toons and avoid sending mail unless absolutely necessary.
    PROBLEM: Auction Houses have lost all auctions. Blizzard restored the deleted auction items to the players who had posted them but it can take days and that's several days you won't able to sell those items and earn gold.
    SOLUTION: Don't post auctions that will end after 2am Wednesday morning. To be 100% safe, don't post any auctions AFTER 2am Monday morning.
    PROBLEM: Raid lockouts are lost. That means any old raid saves may be lost. Also if the connection gets postponed to Thursday, we may be at the start again on Thursday.
    SOLUTION: We will get 2 lockouts, progress will be hindered BUT we get 2 shots at loot.
    PROBLEM: If you have the Valor of the Ancients buff you'll lose the buff during connection. Unfortunately, the system still retains a memory of the VP already earned by character for the week.
    SOLUTION: You'll need to cap on a different toon. However, this will only be a problem IF you cap between the weekly reset and for the server shutdown prior to the connection. As our connection is Wednesday morning, don't cap until after the connection. You could also get close to cap so you'll only need a quick HC or a few daily quest hand-ins to cap.
    Hopefully, as we're far from the first realms to be connected, whatever was causing some of the issues above has been fixed. But it is still good to be prepared and if something major goes wrong don't panic, it will most likely not only be you and simply raise a ticket and give Blizzard as much info as you possibly can and be patient.

    WoW Guild Rankings
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    About the Author

    By day I'm an IT Server analyst for a major telecoms compnay in the UK and I've been playing World of Warcraft since November 2005 when a pair of colleagues bullied me into playing! I have evolved into a raider (summer 2006), an auction house wheeler dealer (2007), a guild officer (2007), an altoholic (2008), a raid leader (2008), a Warcraft blogger (2010) and a PVPer (2012)

    My main has, and always will be Evlyxx, a priest and I love to heal. I started as Holy in vanilla, dabbled with the shadow side during the middle part of Burning Crusade, before returning to Holy but I have been mostly Discipline since mid-Wrath.

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