Archive for the ‘rwlrwlrwlrwl’ Category

Before Alunaria’s Happy Thoughts Experiment officially begins tomorrow, I need to take a moment to whine about something that’s been annoying me.

Ever since Patch 8.1, I have been getting relentlessly spammed by the error message “Lost connection to the voice chat service.” It happens on average about every 15 seconds, and sometimes 3 – 12 copies of the error message pop up all at once. My activity log is so filled with this error message that I can hardly find anything else in it.

I had voice chat disabled using Parental Controls; I re-enabled it; that didn’t fix the problem.

I tried turning “Optimize Network for Speed” off; that didn’t seem to help.

When I look at “Voice Chat” in my Systems menu, it tells me that my microphone and output devices are “invalid” — probably because I have neither a microphone nor headphones connected to my computer.

I’ve submitted two bug reports about it.

I sure hope that what ever is causing this gets teased out and fixed soon, because it’s really driving me nuts!

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Teldrassil was never a good idea.

There, I said it.

I hadn’t completely agreed with Shan’do Stormrage’s assessment that it was necessary to sacrifice Nordrassil — and our immortality — to stop the demon Archimonde, but it had been done. Instead of trying to regain what we had lost by trying to grow a new World Tree, however, we should have been more focused on reclaiming some of the other things we had lost. The forest now known as “Felwood”, for one. The regions of Ashenvale that had become infested with orcs, for another. If we’d cleared out the orcs from Ashenvale when we had the chance, then their so-called allies the undead might not have defiled the Dor’danil Barrow Den and killed my grandfather…

And perhaps if we had not been so determined to “not interfere with the development of less advanced societies*” (utter rubbish, given our interactions with the furbolgs), we might have been the ones to save the tauren from the centaur, denying the orcs one of their most valuable allies. The tauren could have been our allies, instead — not just the ones who’d been invited into the Cenarion Circle, all of them. Hadn’t it been my own grandmother who had argued that the existence (and sophistication) of music created by the tauren tribes demonstrated that they were a more intelligent and advanced society than their centaur, harpy, quilboar, and gnoll enemies?

But I digress. Teldrassil. It was Shan’do Staghelm’s idea. When the Aspects, especially my beloved Ysera, initially refused to give it their blessing, that should have been a clue that it really wasn’t a good idea. After all, hadn’t Shan’do Staghelm already been involved in the creation of a failed World Tree, Andrassil-that-had-become-Vordrassil up in Northrend? Like Andrassil, which had created the leak into the Emerald Dream that allowed the Emerald Nightmare to begin, Teldrassil also was corrupted.

Furthermore, Teldrassil and Darnassus had only even existed for, what, fifteen years? Twenty? Maybe thirty? Even for a young kaldorei like myself, less than a millennium old, born after the War of the Shifting Sands, that was still an absolutely insignificant amount of time. I didn’t understand how any kaldorei could truly think of Teldrassil or Darnassus as “home”, except perhaps the handful of children who had been born there.

Watching Teldrassil burn, I was infuriated by yet another Horde atrocity, and I grieved for the innocent lives that I could not save. But for the tree itself? I found no sorrow in me for the loss of a false home.


* Yes, that is a sideways reference to Star Trek‘s Prime Directive.


Remember, this is an RP story! Kerithian’s opinions are not necessarily my opinions!

…Okay, maybe they are. Apologies to my Night Elf friends, but Darnassus and Teldrassil have never particularly captured my imagination. I don’t dislike Darnassus the way I deeply dislike Undercity — it just never “clicked” with me (I am glad to see Undercity gone — definitely no tears there at all!). When it comes to Night Elf zones, I’ve always preferred Ashenvale to Teldrassil.

I played through the War of Thorns first as Horde, then as Alliance. I’m glad I chose to do it with my Rogue on the Horde side; I don’t think any of my other characters (except perhaps the Warlock) could have stomached doing what Sylvanas commanded. My heart ached through the whole thing, as Horde as well as Alliance.

Look, I play Horde because I want to play Tauren and Blood Elves. I don’t play Horde because I like or agree with the role they are too often given in the overarching plotlines of the game. I am tired, so, so very tired, of the Horde always having to be the bad guys. And there are those who might say, oh, but the Alliance sometimes does bad guy things too — but the Horde always has to do more and worse bad guy things. For example, the things the Horde sees the Alliance doing versus the things the Alliance sees the Horde doing in the first part of the Jade Forest storyline, or the Horde killing the Astranaar guards with a swift poison versus the Alliance using sleeping powder on the Horde guards in the captured furbolg village in the War of Thorns.

The kaldorei have now suffered a population decimation on par with that suffered by the quel’dorei when Arthas and the Scourge burned the Dead Scar through Eversong Woods and what is now the Ghostlands. The Warbringers: Sylvanas short draws that parallel very clearly. I’m not sure what I want to say about that beyond pointing it out…


Kerithian is the granddaughter of my Night Elf Mage, Keriluna, through Keriluna’s son, Ceredion. She was born, raised, and spent most of her early life at Feathermoon Stronghold in Feralas before becoming one of the caretakers of Nordrassil during its recovery after the Battle of Mount Hyjal, then one of the vanguard on the Molten Front during the Cataclysm. The events relating to her grandparents that she mentions are described in Keriluna’s Song.

Keriluna herself survived the inferno by virtue of not being in Darnassus when it happened. When she resigned her position as one of the Temple of the Moon musicians at the beginning of Cataclysm to pursue the Arcane arts, she moved herself and her belongings to Feathermoon Stronghold — a place that had long been something of a secondary home for her — so that she could study under the tutelage of Estulan.
I didn’t actually move the character to Feathermoon Stronghold and set her Hearthstone there until a week or two ago, though, shortly before playing through the War of Thorns campaign.

On the other side of the faction fence, Kivrinne had been traveling back and forth between her home lab in Undercity and Plaguewood Tower in Eastern Plaguelands, where her on-again, off-again romantic interest Argent Apothecary Judkins resides, for some time. After her friends Parqual and Vellcinda failed to return from the events chronicled in Before the Storm, she moved herself and her belongings out to Plaguewood Tower permanently.
As with Keriluna, I didn’t actually move the character there until recently, and in this case, the nearest place where she could reset her Hearthstone is Light’s Hope Chapel.

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One of my favorite female hairstyles in the game is the long, loose ringlets of the Draenei “Jeweled Band” hairstyle.

I’ve often wished that other races could wear ringlets, too.

Although I’m still a long way from being able to create my Void Elf Mage — I haven’t even gotten my Demon Hunter to Argus yet (though she’s already reached Honored with Argussian Reach from Kirin Tor Emissary tokens) — I can experiment with what I might want her to look like using the “Preview” option that the devs so considerately included on the character creation screen.

I was initially rather excited that the Void Elf female hairstyles include some options that, while more wavy than true ringlets, have a similar aesthetic to the Draenei style. Alas, most of the ringlets-like hairstyles also feature the animated, glowing void tendrils — which are too creepy for me.

This one is my favorite from the back, but in the front, it has those void tendrils instead of proper ringlets.

This one is my favorite from the front, but in the back, what would otherwise be very nice ringlets turn into void tendrils.

If I could have the back view of the first one with the front view of the second one, that would be perfect!

This wavy hairstyle is quite pretty from the back, and it doesn’t have void tendrils in either front or back — which might be why I see it on so many Void Elves — but I’m not much of a fan of the hair-over-one-eye look, either.

I think this hairstyle is rather romantic… except for those void tendrils in the front again…

I’m fond of the long braid pulled over the shoulder hairstyle — originally a Night Elf hairstyle, added to Dwarves and Blood Elves when the Barbershop was introduced — because Jaina will be wearing her hair like that in Battle for Azeroth, I think Humans should get it now, too — so perhaps my Void Elf will choose this long ponytail pulled over the shoulder hairstyle.

And is it just me, or does the animation of those tendrils not look suspiciously similar to the animated, glowing, sinuously-shaped pillars on the statue of Rhonin…?

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As Warlords wound down, I kept all three of my Tailors* busy making bags to ensure that all of my Horde characters who would be actively leveling and doing endgame stuff in Legion would have Hexweave bags in all of their personal and bank inventory slots. The Underpowered Death Knight got full Hexweave bags, too, because she had decided to become my primary Banker. But then I got tired of grinding out bags, so I left my secondary Shaman and secondary Monk — whom I intended to retire anyway — with Royal Satchels in their personal inventory slots and random combinations of the smaller Frostweave and Embersilk bags in their bank slots.

In a post last week-ish, Coffee Cakes & Crits mentioned continuing to churn out Hexweave bags with their Garrison Tailoring hut machinery not just to sell on the AH for teh golds but also to give to those in their guild who are leveling new Allied Races alts. This reminded me that I should get my bag-making operation going again, because someday I, too, will have new Allied Races alts who will need bags.

Thus, yesterday evening I dusted off Kaobeka and took stock of the bag-making supplies that she had on hand personally and that were stashed in my guild bank. I don’t think I’ll try to make full Hexweave bags for all of my Highmountain Tauren**, though, but will be satisfied if I can get to the point where I have enough Royal Satchels & Hexweave bags, combined, to fill all of their personal inventory and bank slots. Anyhow, by keeping Kaobeka’s primary Hearthstone at Sunsong Ranch, it should be easy for her to hop back and forth each day between Pandaria, to farm Windshear Cactus at Sunsong Ranch to make Royal Satchels, and Draenor, to trap beasts and put in work orders at her Garrison Barn and Tailoring hut to make Hexweave bags.

The problem is that her Garrison Hearthstone is broken. When I try to use it, the Garrison loading screen gets to 70 or 80% and hangs for a few minutes, and then I get disconnected. When I log back in, she’s right where she was when I tried to use the Garrison Hearthstone.

I first started experiencing this problem around, um, Patch 7.2, I think. For a week or two, no-one’s Garrison Hearthstone worked. It wasn’t access to Draenor that was broken, or access to the Garrison instance that was broken — if I got to Draenor some other way, such as by a Mage teleport, the portal to Ashran in Orgrimmar, going through the Dark Portal, or using the sooper-sekrit backdoor teleport between the Timeless Isle and Gorgrond, I could then fly into the Garrison without problems — it was just the Hearthstone teleport that failed. After a few weeks, some of my characters’ Garrison Hearthstones started working again. After a few more weeks, I figured out that the characters who’d come to Draenor the “right” way — who completed the Tanaan Jungle intro questline — could use both the Ashran portal in Orgrimmar and their Garrison Hearthstones, whereas the characters who’d come to Draenor by the backdoor — who skipped the Tanaan Jungle intro questline — could use neither the Ashran portal in Orgrimmar nor their Garrison Hearthstones. Those characters could still get to Draenor by the Timeless Isle backdoor, though.

So I guess if I want Kaobeka to jump back and forth between Sunsong Ranch and her Garrison every day without spending a lot of time getting from here to there, I’ll have to go through the Dark Portal and do the Tanaan Jungle intro questline with her…

Update: So I went and did the Assault on the Dark Portal questline with Kaobeka. At the very end, however, I couldn’t turn in the final quest because I already had a Shipyard in her Garrison, which put the landing site in a different phase. Her Garrison Hearthstone still disconnects, but she can use the portal to Ashran from Orgrimmar now. Going through the Dark Portal from the Blasted Lands puts her in Ashran, too. I can live with that. I probably really only have to visit the Garrison twice a week, anyway, because I can do the Hexweave CD anywhere and a full set of work orders for the Barn & Tailoring Hut takes about 3 days to complete.

* Kaelinda, Kaohana, and Kaobeka (my secondary Monk)

** My Void Elf, being Alliance, will have to muddle along with the bags she can obtain from quests and boss drops until she has enough money to buy better bags on the AH.

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This fortnight, Z & Cinder want to know

What is your favourite mount, and why?
Do you have one mount in game that is your absolute favourite? Or are there are few you swap between? Or does each of your characters have a different favourite mount?

I wrote on the same topic four years ago for another series of blogging prompts. Let’s see what’s changed — or not — since then…

Each of my characters has a certain subset of mounts that she prefers, so each has her own custom mount macros to summon them. I use the Favorites feature of the mounts tab to curate the subset of mounts that may appear at my Garrison Stables or be summoned by Aludane Whitecloud when I fly from Dalaran.

All of my characters have the Grand Expedition Yak on their action bars for anytime-anywhere Transmogrification. Most of my 100+ characters also have the Azure Water Strider on their action bars for easy access to water walking — even Kamalia and Kregga, who have class abilities that provide that skill. I keep these mounts at the bottom of my right action bars, with my regular mount macros at the top of my right action bars.

Kamalia has four mount macros.
She loves kodos and has all of the available kodo mounts except the recent elite PVP Vicious War Kodo.
Sometimes, however, kodos seem too big and awkward, and she wants a mount with a smaller profile. Her macro of smaller ground mounts summons the Swift Zhevra, White or Tan or Silver Riding Talbuk, Swift Brewfest Ram, White or Brown or Black Riding Goat, Blue Shado-Pan Riding Tiger, Spirit of Eche’ro, Llothien Prowler, or the Leatherworker-only Dustmane Direwolf.
Her flying mounts are divided into dragons and smaller creatures.
Her favorite dragons are the Albino, Bronze, Red, Black, and Blue classic drakes; the Azure and Veridian Netherwing drakes; the Golden, Onyx, Jade, and Azure Cloud Serpents; and the Enchanted Fey Dragon.
Her smaller flying mounts of choice are the Argent, Cenarion, Flameward, and Emerald Hippogryphs; the Tawny Windrider and Grand Wyvern; the Red Flying Cloud; the basic and Jade Pandaren Kites; the Mystic Runesaber; and the Luminous Starseeker.

Kaelinda keeps the Mystic Runesaber separately on her bars for whenever she is in Suramar. When I finish the Insurrection campaign and get the Arcanist’s Manasaber, I will make a macro that will summon either manasaber mount — and when I purchase Battle for Azeroth and do the scenario to finish unlocking the Nightborne Allied Race, I will add the Nightborne Manasaber to Kaelinda’s manasaber mount macro.
Kaelinda also loves her chocobos hawkstriders. Her ground mount macro is all the colorful hawkstriders (Blue, Purple, Red, Silvermoon, Swift Green, Swift Pink, Swift Purple, and Swift White), plus the Creeping Carpet and the Llothien Prowler.
Kaelinda’s flying mount macro consists of the flying carpets (basic, Magnificent, and Frosty) that she can make and use because she is a Tailor, plus the Ashes of Al’ar, Red Flying Cloud, Celestial Steed (about which I wrote a lengthy story), Winged Guardian, Enchanted Fey Dragon, and Luminous Starseeker.
Someday, perhaps, she will have the Archmage’s Prismatic Disc.

Kiralaira doesn’t like the special Illidari Felsaber mount, so she uses the Red Shado-Pan Riding Tiger instead.
When she needs to fly, she uses the Red Flying Cloud or one of the Netherwing Drakes.

Ketura thinks kodos are too big and ungainly. She would much rather have a sleek, brightly colored raptor. Her favorite raptors are her Venomhide Ravasaur that she raised from the egg; the Fossilized Raptor; and the Darkspear, Swift Blue, Swift Olive, Swift Orange, Swift Purple, Black War, Emerald, Turquoise, and Violet raptors. Her ground mount macro also summons the Crimson Primal Direhorn. Because she is an engineer, she keeps the Mechano-Hog available separately on her bars.
I recently started farming ZG for the Armored Razzashi Raptor, but it may be a long time yet before it drops for me.
As an engineer, her preferred flying mounts are the ones she’s built herself: the Flying Machine, Turbo-Charged Flying Machine, and Geosynchronous World Spinner.

Kelisanna used to favor the Black Hawkstrider almost exclusively. When Kaelinda obtained the Llothien Prowler last fall, however, Keli decided that that a sly fox also suited her, so now she has a macro that will summon either mount. After she took up Engineering, she wanted to ride mechanical mounts, too, so she has a separate ground mount macro that calls forth the Mechano-Hog, Goblin Trike, or Goblin Turbo-Trike.
For flying, she prefers the Red Flying Cloud or the Geosynchronous World Spinner, which she keeps separately on her bars.
Someday, perhaps, she will have the Shadowblade’s Omen.

Kalaneia has enough sense of propriety and respect for her people’s allies that she has one macro for her demon steeds (Felsteed and Dreadsteed for now; may someday include the Netherlord’s Wrathsteeds) and one for other mounts that she uses in places like Thunder Bluff (Black, Swift Red, and Sunreaver Hawkstriders; Raven Lord; Flametalon of Alysrazor; Swift Forest Strider).
When flying, she likes mounts that evoke the colors of casting a Shadow Bolt — Green Wind Rider, Dark Phoenix, Twilight Drake, and Corrupted Dreadwing — and also the Dread Raven and Sunreaver Dragonhawk.

Kaohana is also a Tailor, so she has a macro just for the Flying Carpets. She is fond of the heavenly colors of blue and white.
Her ground mounts are the White Kodo, Great White Kodo, Swift Springstrider, White Riding Goat, White Riding Talbuk, White Polar Bear, Golden Riding Crane, Swift White Hawkstrider, Blue Hawkstrider, and Blue Shado-Pan Riding Tiger.
Her flying mounts are the Albino Drake, Argent Hippogryph, Ashes of Al’ar, Blue Wind Rider, Celestial Steed, Red Flying Cloud, Winged Guardian, Azure Cloud Serpent, Enchanted Fey Dragon, Blue Drake, and Sapphire Panther.

Karaelia loves her Sunwalker Kodos, of course, but her time at the Argent Tournament also gave her a great fondness for horses (Argent Charger, Argent Warhorse, Swift Zhevra, Celestial Steed; may someday include the Highlord’s Golden Charger).
In flight, she prefers mounts that evoke divine light: the Ashes of Al’ar, Celestial Steed, Winged Guardian, Golden Cloud Serpent, and Argent Hippogryph, plus the Sapphire Panther that, as a Jewelcrafter, she made herself.

Keija has very simple, uncomplicated preferences. The only ground mount she uses regularly is the Black War Kodo.
When she wants to fly long distances, she uses the Red, Bronze, Black, Blue, or Albino Drake.
When she needs a smaller flying mount for more precise landings, she uses the Tawny Wind Rider or Grand Wyvern.

Kregga does the Black Knight thing and rides lots of black mounts — but it also amuses her to be a Black Knight on a White Horse and use lots of white mounts, too.
Her ground mounts are the Acherus Deathcharger, Black War Kodo, Black War Raptor, Black Riding Goat, Black Hawkstrider, Regal Riding Crane, Great White Kodo, White Skeletal Warhorse, White Riding Talbuk, Swift White Hawkstrider, and the ghostly Spirit of Eche’ro.
Her flying mounts are the Winged Steed of the Ebon Blade, Onyx Netherwing Drake, Onyx Cloud Serpent, Black Drake, Onyxian Drake, Albino Drake, and the frosty Blue Wind Rider.

Katewatha is fascinated by all things Pandaren.
Her ground mounts are the Green and Great Green Dragon Turtles, Blonde and Grey Riding Yaks, and Blue Shado-Pan Riding Tiger.
Her flying mounts are the Red Flying Cloud; basic and Jade Pandaren Kites; and Jade, Onyx, Azure, and Golden Cloud Serpents.
Someday, perhaps, she will have Ban-Lu, the Grandmaster’s Companion.

Kerisa doesn’t use mounts much because Travel Form is more fun.
When she does use a ground mount, she uses the originally-Druid-exclusive Raven Lord or its upgraded appearance, the Dread Raven.
On the rare occasions that she needs to be on a flying mount instead of in Stormcrow form, she uses the Cenarion War Hippogryph.

Kaumaleia‘s preferred mounts coordinate with her own white-and-blue color scheme: the Cobalt Riding Talbuk, the Blue Wind Rider, or the Cobalt Netherwing Drake.

Kaylynda loves horses. She is so excited to see the horse models getting an upgrade in Battle for Azeroth and hopes to compete in the Norwington Estate horse show.
On land, she travels on the Brown Horse, Chestnut Mare, Black Stallion, Swift Zhevra, Quel’dorei Steed, Celestial Steed, Argent Warhorse, or Spectral Steed — or the Golden King.
I haven’t separated her flying mounts into large (Albino, Bronze, Red, Blue, Black, and Twilight Drakes; and Enchanted Fey Dragon) and small (Golden, Ebon, Armored Snowy, and Grand Gryphons; Silver Covenant Hippogryph; Mystic Runesaber; and Luminous Starseeker) yet.

My Void Elf Mage will use her racial mount, plus the Winterspring Frostsaber, Swift Moonsaber, Dark Phoenix, Twilight Drake, Purple and Violet Netherwing Drakes, and Voidtalon of the Dark Star.

My Nightborne Mage will use her racial mount, plus the Mystic Runesaber, Arcanist’s Manasaber, and Leywoven Flying Carpet (if the darn thing ever drops for Kaelinda, that is).

Each of the Minor Mages used to have a mount macro that collected my favorite colors of her racial mounts, but the Horde gals lost their mount macros when I server transferred them a few weeks ago, and I haven’t bothered to re-create them yet. For each of them, I’ve just pulled out my most favorite color of her racial mount onto her action bar… except for Kivrinne; I just don’t like the skeletal horses, so her mount of choice is now the Swift Zhevra.

I would like to have the Green Drake, but while most of Dragon Soul is a pushover by now, the one time I tried to solo Spine of Deathwing, I got so frustrated by how the mechanics are actually made more difficult by OP DPS that I decided it wasn’t worth it to put myself through all that nonsense just for a tiny tiny chance that the Blazing Drake might drop from Madness of Deathwing. I wish that the final drake for the Awake the Drakes achievement was Experiment 12-B from Ultraxion instead of the Blazing Drake… sigh…

I would like to have the pink hippogryph, and I’ve seen an Ephemeral Crystal a few times, but I’ve never been in the right sort of mood to drop what I was doing to go looking in every single itty bitty nook and cranny in Azsuna trying to find the rest of them before time runs out. I’m discouraged by the blog entries I’ve read from people who’ve gotten it because they’ve all reported needing help from other folks to find enough of the crystals within the time limit. Now that I have flying, I guess I should give the Ephemeral Crystal treasure hunt a try… but if I don’t succeed on the first attempt, I might not ever try it again.


Thanks for this topic, Z & Cinder! I’ve been wanting to write a blog post like this for quite a while 😀

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Augh, writing peer-review committee and department chair letters for the interim tenure reviews of the other chemistry faculty who were also new the same year that I was is giving me all kinds of inferiority complex and existential insecurity about my own interim tenure review. I am acutely aware that I have this job because one of my high school friends didn’t get tenure, and I am terrified that I am so lackluster compared to my colleagues that I will meet the same fate.

I also have two exams to write by next Tuesday, so as much as I might like to play as much WoW this long weekend as my baby will let me, I shouldn’t. And then, of course, those exams will need to be graded, and the first piles of lab reports are incoming…

Not that I could go to Argus right now even if I wanted to. I know darn well that Kamalia did the pre-launch event Broken Shore scenario, but she didn’t get the breadcrumb quest to go to Argus on Tuesday. I hypothesize that it’s because she still has the breadcrumb quest for Armies of Legionfall in her log, never turned in from Patch 7.2 (and that she didn’t get the breadcrumb quest for the Whispers of Frightened World scenario for the same reason). Maybe I’d only have to turn in the first Armies of Legionfall quest to get the first Argus quest to open up, but I think I’d want to do at least enough of the Broken Shore to bring Magatha Grimtotem into the fold of the Earthen Ring before I went gallivanting off to Argus. That would be at least one night of gameplay, but with the amount of time I have for WoW right now, it might take two or three nights of play and two or three weeks to have enough nights where I felt like I actually could play that much.

So I might be pretty quiet for awhile until I’m not drowning in work quite so badly.

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So I went to sub up for my Transmogrification Photobucket account. They’d been pushing getting to be ad-free for $2.49 a month, so I was expecting a figure comparable to that — maybe double or triple or something — to enable 3rd party hosting. When I got to the checkout, though, the price was $399 a year — or $33 a month. Holy sticker shock, Batman! I took one look at that and said Heck NO!

For comparison, $33 a month is about a third of what I’m currently paying for my mobile devices family plan and for my ISP. Do I think that the bandwidth that this blog uses for images, even with the large number of images that I post, is worth that much? No. I get barely a trickle of traffic — mostly from you guys who Follow me (thanks! {hug}).

I suppose I’ll start putting the images for the Sunday Mog Show in my WordPress media library going forward, and I’ll slowly start backfilling the images for older outfits in the “Things my [Class] Wears” posts into my WordPress media library. My most favorite other posts will eventually get updated, too… but there are too many posts and too many images to do them all. Many images and many posts will just get left broken indefinitely.

If I run out of storage space in my WordPress library, then I guess I’ll start paying for my WordPress account. Even the most expensive WordPress plan, with unlimited storage space, is only $25 a month…

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I’ve been increasingly irritated by the increasingly pushy and obnoxious advertising on Photobucket during the past several months. It’s so terrible that I always open Photobucket in a separate browser window so that I can immediately close it when the most annoying ads come up. The worse the advertising got, however, the more stubbornly I refused to upgrade my account to a paid account. I felt like the ramping up of the obnoxiousness of the advertising was a form of extortion.

Well, I guess enough other Photobucket users were of the same mind as me, or something, because now Photobucket has upped the ante: when I went to look at an old post that had come up in the “posts people are looking at today” section of my WordPress dashboard, I discovered that all of the images in the post had been replaced with a placeholder image explaining that Photobucket is no longer allowing third-party image hosting for free accounts. /headdesk Not cool, Photobucket, NOT COOL.

I am closing in on 1000 posts on this blog. Most of them have multiple pictures — a single Transmogrification post might have over a dozen pictures — so I have posted thousands and thousands of images. Some years ago — about the time that I first created the “Things my [Class] Wears” pages — I began to have bandwidth issues with my Photobucket account. Not storage issues — I still had plenty of room. Toward the end of the month, my images would start getting replaced with placeholders because my account was using up too much bandwidth. I got around that problem by creating a second account. One account is used exclusively for the pictures in the “Things my [Class] Wears” and “Sunday on the Promenade” posts; the other is used for everything else. Thus, if I wanted to restore all of the images I’ve posted on this blog, I would have to pay for two premium Photobucket accounts.

At the time that I made my second Photobucket account, I moved all of my artwork and the character portraits for my Characters page over to the Media library of my WordPress account. I also started occasionally putting images for posts that would use only one or two pictures into my WordPress media library rather than going to the bother of opeining up Photobucket. Any images that are still visible on my blog today are in my WordPress media library. I’ve currently filled about 4% of my WordPress media library. I’m not sure how much room I’d have left to grow if I put all the rest of my blog images there. Furthermore, the WordPress media library doesn’t have a sub-album functionality, which I very much need to keep my Transmogrification pictures organized.

I have neither the time nor the mental energy to spare for the enormous, nearly Sisyphean, tedium of finding another free image hosting service that is easy to use (and isn’t going to pull the rug out from under me at some future date), locating all of those thousands of images on my hard drive, uploading them to the new hosting service, and updating thousands of links in hundreds of blog posts. I am going to have to give in and start paying for the image hosting for this blog.

I don’t want to pay for two Photobucket accounts, though, because Budget. At the moment, I’m thinking that I’ll only sub up for the Transmogrification account. I’ll move the pictures from my favorite story posts over to a new sub-album in the Transmogrification account, or into my WordPress media library. That will still be a lot of work, and I definitely won’t try to do it immediately or all at once, so there will be broken image links in old posts on this blog for a long time to come. Many image links will stay broken permanently.

Meanwhile, I got two emails from Pinterest this evening: one asking for a confirmation to set up an account, and another notifying me of a new login to my account from somewhere in India. I don’t have a Pinterest account. I didn’t approve the creation of the account, of course, and I then went to Pinterest directly and followed the directions in their Help center to disconnect my email address from the fraudulent account creation attempt. sigh I’ve had this happen before — a few years ago, someone in India tried to use one of my personal email accounts to set up a Facebook account. I used the appropriate Facebook reporting tools to shut down the fraudulent user — but now I can’t use that particular email account to make a legitimate Facebook account for myself, either.

growl grumble growl growl snarl

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I was looking forward to finding out what the Trial of Style cosmetic rewards would be, so that I’d know if this event would really be something I’d want to put a lot of time & effort into.

Well, the rewards have been previewed… and they’re not particularly exciting to me.

Trial of Style reward preview images from Wowhead

I don’t really like that cloth set at all; I like the bottom half of the leather set but not the top half; there are other low-level mail sets I like better anyway; I do like this plate set, though.

Furthermore, they are all appearances that are obtainable in other ways… and I’ve already collected as much of those sets as I’m interested in acquiring.

I guess I can see where the devs are going with that; I suspect that they want the Trial of Style to be a thing folks do more for the fun of doing it and the Twitter/blog bragging rights of winning it than for the tangible rewards, and they also don’t want folks to complain about feeling obligated to do it because the cosmetic rewards are too desirable.

Still, I think it would be more interesting if the rewards were at least new & unique colorations of these armor models. For the cloth set, perhaps pale pink where it is teal, pale gold instead of silver for the metallic areas, and emerald green for the jewels? There already exists a blue version of the pants for the leather set, but no other items in that coloration, so a full set of a blue version of this leather gear would be nice. I’d go for that mail gear in blue, too, whether it was blue & silver or blue & gold. For the plate set, a black & red Blood Knight version might be appropriate.

The shirt reward for actually winning the competition appears to be a darker version of the Gilnean Adventurer’s Shirt. It’s something that would be nice to have… but not “must have” to the level of strenuously trying to get it.

Still, I’ll probably try out the Trial of Style at least once or twice just to see how it goes. (Then again, I still haven’t gotten around to going Timewalking, even though in principle I think it’s a great feature…)

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Oh, I am so tired of Blackwing Lair. So tired of Razorgore and the eggs, so tired of the suppression room. But Nefarian hasn’t dropped my Priest’s robe yet, and Chromaggus hasn’t dropped my Rogue’s shoulders yet, and Broodlord hasn’t dropped my Paladin’s boots yet, and Vaelastrasz only drops his shield for people other than my three shield users. And so I keep coming back, every Tuesday, hoping that this week, the things I want will drop so that I won’t have to come back again next week.

I’m still working on getting a few bits and pieces from other tiers*, too, and trying to get a couple of raid drops that aren’t tier pieces. I’m almost finished with Outland dungeons — I just need one item from one Heroic. I’m starting to say to myself, as I look through my list of things that might be nice to have, “ehh, I don’t really need that” or “meh, I’ll farm that if and when I think of a mog idea that would actually use it”.

After all, I already have so many fun-looking items** that I could probably do another year or more of “Sunday on the Promenade” before I’ve used everything in my wardrobe*** at least once.

Although my choice to ignore the Patch 7.2 content in favor of focusing on filling the gaps in my wardrobe was deliberate and considered, by now, I’m starting to feel like I’m really falling behind. Seeing that this week’s Legionfall quest is to kill three Elites, I wonder if there will be enough people still doing Broken Shore stuff to help me with that when I finally manage to catch up. I basically haven’t done World Quests since Kamalia got to 36 traits in all of her Artifacts. I haven’t been running Order Hall missions. Most of my characters haven’t even been to their Order Halls for weeks, except to change the color of their Artifacts. So I’ve been taking the baby step to ease myself back into Legion content of starting to spend time fishing up the coins in the New Dalaran fountain.

Just as I’m wanting to start doing current content again, however, my 10-week-old baby has decided that he needs to be carried. Last week, I could just hold him in my off-hand arm while I read a book, typed, or ran through a legacy content dungeon or raid using my main hand. This week, I can’t get away with that anymore. Being moving by being in the swing isn’t good enough; after a few minutes, he will start yelling. Being held isn’t good enough; if I sit still for longer than a minute or two while holding him, he will start yelling. I either have to be walking around with him or, if I’m sitting down, actively playing with him instead of just passively holding him. This new behavior is even worse for my summer plans to revise lab manuals and restructure my online homework assignments than it is for my WoW-playing goals…

* Well, all the legacy content through Cataclysm, that is. I’ll wait until my characters are level 110 and wearing at least World Quest-level gear to attempt the Mists raids and Warlords dungeons.

** Some collected recently, some collected not-so-recently (but I still haven’t quite gotten around to actually using them)

*** All the items that I actually like, at any rate. I’m not going to try to use the stuff that I don’t particularly like!

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