Archive for the ‘rwlrwlrwlrwl’ Category

Tonight, I was too busy grading my general chemistry class’s second midterm exam to do more than take pictures of my characters’ new forms on the character selection screen. I’m mostly okay with what I saw; only two characters seem like they’ll be needing prompt facial reconstruction.

My sweet yet serious Gnome has turned into a witch!

And my solemn, somber Night Elf has turned smirking and supercilious. Plus, her current eye tattoos make her look like some kind of super-villain! I’ll probably end up changing her tattoos as well as her face.

So I went to the Barbershop and succeeded in finding some faces were both suitable matches for my poor girls’ original faces and adequately conveyed their personalities. But now, if after a month trial period I just haven’t gotten used to the new models and decide to toggle on the old models, I’ll have to visit the Barbershop again to change their faces back…

There was a face that actually matched Kelilla’s original face a little better than this one — but it had too much of what Zel so appropriately described as weepy mascara.
Somehow using the Barbershop also undid Kelilla’s mogging. I’d better go fix that…

I did decide to change Keriluna’s tattoos, too. I’ve always been fond of this particular design, and the higher resolution upgrade was good to it.

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Recently, I’ve seen a number of comments on various sites (WoW Insider, comments on blogs I read) saying that there haven’t been any new hairstyles since the Barbershop debuted with Wrath of the Lich King.

Now, I would love it if there were more new hairstyles, and I’m still hoping for some to show up sometime during Warlords of Draenor. But it is wrong, wrong, WRONG! to say that there haven’t been any new hairstyles since 3.0.

Everyone seems to have forgotten that Patch 4.2, mid-Cataclysm, brought with it one or two new hairstyles for almost every race. Perculia first saw them on the Patch 4.2 PTR and reported about them for Wowhead, and I documented them after Patch 4.2 went live.

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Well, with the servers down for maintenance, I might as well blow off this head of steam I’ve been building by writing a rant.

I was reading through the Dev Watercooler blogs about the development of raiding and the raid design philosophy for Warlords and everything was looking good to me until I came to this bit (emphasis added):

Accordingly, while loot will be awarded more frequently, Raid Finder in Warlords will have different loot tables than the Normal, Heroic, or Mythic versions of the raids, along with different item art.

Wait, what?! No Tier from LFR? Not even “nuclear snot green” Tier?

So perhaps the LFR colorations of tier items in Mists have been the cheap department store knock-offs of the designer boutique normal/heroic mode versions. If the LFR items are going to have different item art altogether, if Tier will only be obtainable by normal+ mode raiding, then Blizzard just formalized that, in Warlords, LFR raiders will really and truly be second-class citizens.

I have really enjoyed being able to raid “on my own terms” during Mists via LFR, and I resent this notion of being required to do regular raiding again if I want to have the tier look. I burned out on regular raiding during Cataclysm, and I have no desire to start doing it again — not even for tier. In Mists, being able to get the same models as tier/raid items, even if I’ve sometimes had to settle for less-attractive color schemes, has been my primary motivation for running LFR not only with one character, once or twice, as a Tourist, to see the story, but also with many characters, many times. Being able to get current content tier with any character who wants it has been truly wonderful for me! I certainly couldn’t do that with a regular raid group! If I won’t even be able to get the tier models by running LFR, the alternate item art would be a poor substitute no matter how stylish and attractive it might be — as a current example, which looks do people prefer more? The justice points/timeless isle lookalike gear that drops in Mogu’shan Vaults, or the real thing T14 gear that drops in Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring? — and, oh look, there are previews of Warlords armor up on Wowhead and bleargh!, except for cloth, I like what I’m seeing for the crafted and dungeon sets better than the LFR sets! It seems that I will have significantly decreased motivation to do any kind of raiding in Warlords.

When I’m designing a new outfit in MogIt, I’ve learned to ignore PvP items because PvP is a part of the game that I don’t want to play. I’ve learned to ignore the normal/heroic mode color schemes of raid items, too, because normal/heroic mode raiding is not how I want to spend my playtime. Now, I guess I’ll have to re-learn to ignore tier entirely, just like I did in BC when SSC/TK was a little beyond my guild’s reach and BT/Hyjal/Sunwell was way, way beyond my guild’s reach. And that makes this Transmogrification fanatic very sad indeed.

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So, so, so, Warlords is available for pre-order now, despite the beta not yet having shown its face. With the free boost to 90 from buying the expansion now available, naturally the extra boosts are, too. Although the extra boosts are expensive enough, at $60, that I don’t see myself buying any, I still plan to use my free boost on a male Tauren Warrior whose primary roles will be to hold all my non-heirloom BoA stuff when it’s not in use and to look awesome. I won’t be pre-ordering the expansion, however, until I know which realm should be his home. I want to put him on a partner realm to my completely full Tauren home realm, but my home realm has not yet been connected or even had a connection involving it announced. Ever since connected realms were announced, I’ve been waiting for my home realm to get connected so that I could move my three extra Tauren to the partner realm and finally have all my Tauren be in the same guild(s) and able to freely share resources with each other. Alas, each time the list of connected realms has been updated, I have looked to see if my home realm is on the list of upcoming connections, and so far, it has not been. sigh

Meanwhile, my Photobucket bandwidth got overrun again on March 6th. I thought that my bandwidth was supposed to reset on the day of the month that I originally registered my account, which should have been the 9th. It is now the 10th, and all my images are still being held hostage. Grrrrr! I’m still not quite ready to start paying Photobucket yet, though, so instead I’m thinking about moving a selection of images somewhere else — probably some here to WordPress and some to Picasa. I’d probably be moving the art (even though no-one ever looks at it, I still want it to be always visible), the images in the “Things My Characters Wear” series, and the images in “Things My Characters are Wearing with their Shado-Pan Helmets”, “The Very Model of a Warlock Dark and Terrible”, and “The Aristocratic Gilnean in Exile but still in Vogue”. The latter three posts have consistently generated a lot of traffic and thus seem to be the culprits responsible for my bandwidth getting overrun. If I move those images somewhere else, then hopefully that will solve the problem.

ETA: Put in a ticket at Photobucket, seems that my bandwidth didn’t reset properly because my account just happened to reset on the same day that Daylight Savings Time began — stupid, stupid, why don’t we just get rid of DST already? — hopefully problem will get resolved soon. Moved art here to WordPress. Poked around with Picasa (now Google+ Photos); didn’t seem to have quite the functionality I want. Made a new Photobucket account for the images in the three specific posts listed above. Will wait to see what happens this month before moving images in “Things My Characters Wear” series.

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I felt very honored indeed when WoW Insider linked to the “What My Characters are Wearing with their Shado-Pan Helmets” post that I made back in December.

Unfortunately, as you may have noticed by the obnoxious placeholder images now appearing all over my site, the continuing interest in that post, and an elevated level of traffic to my little blog in general this week due to Mog the World in 80 Days and getting a link from the Godmother (another honor!), has now exceeded the monthly “free” bandwidth limit of the image hosting service I’ve been using. Unless I want to pay them some money, in the form of a monthly subscription fee, Photobucket is going to be holding my images hostage until the monthly bandwidth reset of my account. This happens on the day of the month on which I originally registered the account, which happens to be the 9th — about a week and a half from now.

If I make any posts that need pictures between now and February 9th, I can use WordPress’s built-in media storage. I have way, way, way too many images to move them all over to WordPress, though. Furthermore, the WordPress library doesn’t seem to have the functionality to make the various sub-albums and folders that I’d need to organize my multitude of pictures.

I could also make a new Photobucket account, but storage space isn’t the issue. I haven’t even used ten percent of the default storage space in a free Photobucket account. It’s the bandwidth used by folks looking at the posts where I’ve linked those images here on the blog that’s the problem.

As frustrating as this is, I’m not going to pay up for the Photobucket “Plus” account — at least, not now. If my bandwidth keeps getting overrun for three or four months in a row, then I might consider it.

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I felt an odd sort of whiplash watching The Godmother’s #TBLIZ feed during the initial Warlords announcement. One minute, people were squealing in giddy delight, “look at all the ladies!”, while watching the trailer cinematic. The next minute, they were passing around this image –

— and complaining that it has no women in it.

Wait wait waitaminnit… first you’re glad that there will be many ladies in the new expansion, and now you’re sad that there aren’t enough? I R CONFUZZLED.

In retrospect, I suppose I can understand why, after seeing the trailer, they’d be disappointed that that image — or this one, for that matter –

— does not have any (let alone the same level of) female representatation.

In the days since BlizzCon, there’s been this implication in the blogosphere that the principal thought a Real Female Gamer “should” have upon seeing these images is where are all the women?

I don’t know if I would have thought that or not — I didn’t really get the chance. Because blogs and their associated Twitter feeds updated faster than the WoW Insider coverage did, I started seeing that first image with “why aren’t there any women?” commentary well before I saw the unmodified image in its original context. I did wonder why Draka was not alongside Durotan in the second image, though.

I recognize that this gal (Y’rel?) –

— is something of a “token female” in the Warlords of Draenor promotional material we’ve seen so far. I get that there are women who play WoW who feel left out and pushed aside by the emphasis on male characters in what we’ve seen of the upcoming storyline. I acknowledge that, for them, their concerns are real, legitimate, and deserve to be addressed… but I am not bothered much.

As long as the plot and the characters are engaging, and there are not any other aspects of the content that I find disagreeable, I have never particularly noticed or cared about gender balance in the stories I consume. If Harry Potter’s two best friends had been Ron and Neville, the series would have been a rather different story, but I think I still would have enjoyed it just as much. I hope that Blizzard will tell a cracking good story over the course of Warlords of Draenor, as they have during Mists of Pandaria, and I intend to enjoy it without worrying about exactly how many of the “badass people doing badass things” (to borrow a phrase from Anne Stickney) are male and how many are female.

The Aggra thing, however… yeah, that bothers me.

Although I have been culturally raised to believe that stay-at-home-motherhood is the most important and worthwhile lifestyle a woman can choose, I agree that it’s utterly ridiculous that Aggra should be left behind just because she’s had a baby. It’s just not consistent with her character at all. Until someone specifically asked the question about her, I’d been automatically assuming that she would be going along with Thrall, and it does seem, from what I’ve read, that the presenters’ way of answering that question was condescending and dismissive. Aggra is an awesome character in The Shattering novel, and I have been disappointed that her development in the game has not fully lived up to that potential. Akabeko, Anne Stickney and Rades have expounded upon this topic much more completely and eloquently than I could. It would be wonderful if the strong concerns that have been raised over Aggra result in the CDevs changing their minds and more fully including her in the Warlords story, just as the strong concerns that were raised about Ji Firepaw during the Mists beta resulted in positive changes to his character. If that doesn’t happen, though, I’m still going to play the expansion and enjoy the story it tells.

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My plans for Alt Appreciation and Dress Up! related leveling and doing anything at all with my 90s this week were stymied when my home internet connection fritzed out on Tuesday afternoon. I’m not sure exactly when it happened; I turned my computer off for a couple of hours, and when I came back, my internet was gone. I tried resetting the router. I tried power-cycling both router and modem. I tried plugging my laptop directly into the modem with a network cable — still no connection, so the problem seemed to be in the modem, not the router. We then discovered that the land-line phone was out, too, so it’s taken awhile to get the problem fixed because BTH has had to call the telecomm company from his work. It would be nice if the problem was taken care of by this evening, but I would not be surprised if it wasn’t. I am writing this post from the chemistry department tutorial/computer lab.

As much as I have fretted at being unexpectedly internet-less for the past day and a half, it has in truth been good to have a bit of a break from WoW. I read the last of my library books on Tuesday night. I spent yesterday drawing in Photoshop, working up my earlier sloppy sketches for an image concept I’ve been thinking about for some months into clean lineart. My wrists, elbows, and left ring finger — the one I use to spam “2” — have needed the rest. Around the time that Cynwise wrote about wrist RSI forcing him to retire from WoW in early summer, my wrists also began feeling rather sore. I staved off further injury by keeping them bandaged for a few weeks, and I continue to bandage them intermittently whent they start to feel sore again. More recently, I’ve started to feel a little of the same sort of elbow pain that Cadistra described in her recent WoW, Eh? update when I hammer 1 and 2 while pulling weeds and wrestling wild crops at Sunsong Ranch. I’m not quite sure what would be the best preventative therapy for that (other than not playing WoW or drawing for awhile) — perhaps an elbow brace? Furthermore, my arms are unusually sore this week because I beat whipped cream for a fruit salad and egg whites for an angel cake by hand, with a wire whisk, for our Canadian Thanksgiving dinner this weekend (we are living in a company-furnished apartment, and they did not provide a mixer). So really, it has been a good thing to have an enforced break from the game.

I just hope it doesn’t go on for too very much longer.

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