Since so many of you offered suggestions and advice on gearing my sons Death Knight, I feel I owe you an update.
I’d been saving Blood Spirits and Living Steel with the intention of having the 496 Blacksmithing crafted gear made for him someday.
Before worrying about that though, we asked him what he’d like to do last night. Watch a movie? Play some Minecraft? TV? Tablet games? Toys?
“Maybe if you and mommy aren’t busy, run some scenarios?”
Okay, plan. Sure, we can do that.
If we can find a couple more folks willing to join us, would you rather do scenarios, or heroics?
Okay, let the call go forth!
Gooseigaly, who was such a powerful healing presence on our ICC achievement runs volunteered to come along, so we’d only be looking for a pug tank. Shouldn’t be too bad, Cassie does very nice DPS on her Shaman and even on my Warlock I’m doing about 65k in Heroics. Alex won’t be doing so well, but he’s gearing up, what do you expect? We can take up the slack.
No problem. Right?
Scarlet Monastery. You’d think it would be a lot of fun. Alex never saw it while doing normal groups and leveling, so it will be fresh. And it has lots of fun stuff, like the hounds turning on the houndmaster, then tearing on down the path. And buckets of chow to throw for them. He should like that.
One minute into the run, the tank announces that my son should be ashamed for only doing 15k DPS in a heroic.
Just, fucking sigh, man.
I need to make an in-game /p facepalm macro. I swear to fucking Mylune and all the little bunny rabbits that I do.
I am actually getting grumpier as I get older (I know this comes as a shock to most of you) and so I told him that the DK was my son, and the rest of us were all in a group together to help him get some gear to improve, so we were there to pick up the slack. No need to worry.
It went downhill from there.
Really, I’m not going to dwell on it. The tank was a bully, and yet pulled the victim card at the same time. Oh yes, he was being a dick, but it was only because he knew we were going to kick him, so he got his retaliation in on us in advance.
So when a blue plate chest dropped on the first boss, and he already had it, the reason he rolled need and took it was because he knew we were going to kick him. And the reason his health plummeted in his ungemmed, unenchanted mixed blues and greens was because Goose wasn’t healing him out of vindictiveness, not because he was squishy as hell and standing in the middle of the bad with his back to hounds who didn’t have to deal with parries, blocks or dodges and could gnaw on his boxers without distraction.
You get where I’m going with this.
Cassie announced to me in vent that she was glad to be reminded so forcefully of why she’s just about quit WoW already, and said she was out of there. Fuck him. I wholeheartedly agreed.
I let Goose know we were dropping, and he stayed in a bit while Cassie, Alex and I waited out the 5 minutes left on our deserter timer.
Deserter. Talk about a name meant to shame. Allow me to suggest a better name is the “Prick Penalty“.
You weren’t willing to deal with the prick? You have to deal with the penalty.
Probably NSFW. (Not Safe For WoW).
No worries, you all know my position when it comes to dealing with abuse. Nobody has to take that shit, nobody should ever feel they SHOULD take that shit, ever. If you’re in an abusive situation, fuck them, let them live with their own nasty selves and stew, ain’t my responsibility to take it. Nor is it the responsibility of my wife or son.
And it sure as hell isn’t on our shoulders to feel guilty for leaving a group with someone that’s going to act that way.
Anyway. We sent the call out looking for a tank again, but it was friends on Horde side night, so instead of playing instance roulette, we decided to do scenarios instead, and waved a fond farewell to Goose.
The scenario was Monkey Island. It went great.
Cassie defended the beach while Alex manned the cannon (and I’m sure placed bombs) and I ran around using my boozehunter knowledge to grab all the beer and bring it back fast. Worked like a charm.
I know where the booze is to be found.
That was fast, fun and unrewarding. Still no loots for Alex.
Then Serendipity whispered me to see if we were still looking for a tank. She had one… but she was DPS, did we have a healer?
Cassie was glad to bow out to make room, she had her fill of groups with the tank from the first one. Goose was gone, so we went in, three DPS and a tank, taking a chance on a pug healer.
Turned out the tank, a Paladin, was just starting out, had gear even worse than Alex, and hadn’t done the Mogu’shan Palace heroic before so he didn’t know his way around yet.
I didn’t care, Alex and I aren’t looking to set any land speed records here, we’re just doing a heroic. And you have to start somewhere, and do an instance for the first time sometime.
The tank was refreshingly skilled. He had the classic, old school style. He used crowd control. He pulled mobs using line of sight and physically controlled the positioning and facing so as to let AoE effects go off without breaking the CC.
Basically, the tank was calm, considerate, and went at a measured pace using talent on loan from God.
A classic example of having all the skills, and just needing to get some more gear.
So, the big question.
How did our pug healer handle having one insane high-DPS Warlock (proportionately speaking, that is) that persisted in pulling aggro and acting like a nutjob, a Rogue that marked and sapped targets, a tank in blues and greens that took his time carefully making each pull the classic way, and a Death Knight doing, ahem 20k DPS?
healer was a fucking champion. Not a single word of complaint, not a SINGLE fucking word of complaint at the pace. No bitching, no sulky lack of heals, nothing like that at all.
He (or she) offered a few suggestions, healed like a pro, moved around with us like a member of the team in long standing, and only asked if we could maybe pull the last boss back to the doorway to help make their healing smoother, which we were happy to do.
Let me repeat that. The healer ASKED if we would, and gave a reason why they’d like us to do it that way. No pissy demands, or pouting like they were lowering themselves to deal with us idiots.
Now, I’m sure the healer would have liked a faster run, or higher DPS in the group overall, or a tank that didn’t require so much work to keep alive.
But they played the game with what they had, did an outstanding job of it, remained cheerful and really left me wishing they were on my server so I could add them to my casual realm friends list, just to give them the occasional “Hey, wanna do something?” shout.
You know, like we used to be able to do before the cross-realm choice became “Hey, can I add you to my Battletag list so I can see everything you do on every character you have on every server, and even on other games like Diablo and Starcraft?”
This too might surprise you, but I don’t actually ever say that in a run, no matter how great the other person was. Developing an in-game friendship is one thing, renting an apartment together is a bit much for a ‘next step’ after meeting them.
Anyway. The end result was the entire night was spent playing as a family, Alex had fun, Cassie got disgusted, I got irritated, Goose got a single boss kill, and we got to meet a great tank, play with Serendipity, and have fun with a rocking pug healer to take the foul taste of the earlier run off our palates.
Also, Alex didn’t win a goddamn thing to help his gear iLevel.
Kiss my ass.
There is this really handy feature on Ask Mr Robot that I use for my alts, now that LFR is gated behind average iLevels.
If you load your character, you’ll see on the right side panel a bunch of stats for your equipped gear. Including ilevel.
What is helpful is, you can change an item and save it, and the results will show up on that panel… including your new ilevel with that piece of gear equipped.
If you pay for a subscription with Ask Mr Robot you’ll be able to see what is in your bags as well, and compute best equipped gear based on all your combined stuffs, but I don’t have a subscription yet.
You don’t need a subscription to call up a character, choose a different chest piece from the list, save it and see how that would affect your average iLevel.
And that’s what I did late last night. I loaded Ask Mr Robot, and asked, “What would happen if I got the rest of the Blood Spirits and Living Steel and made Alex the 496 chest and gloves?”
“Okay, so where can I get the last point. Trinket is the worst item, but I can’t replace that without a Darkmoon Card, or a lucky drop. Fuck random pugs, what else.”
“He had a 446 ring. What if I made him a second 450?” No.
Hmmm. He’s got enough Justice Points for a 458 item. “What would, say, replacing the ring with a 458 do?”
iLevel 460 exactly.
Fine, done and done.
Bought what I didn’t have, Venoym volunteered to craft the items, I flew the Death Knight out and bought the JP ring, and bam. Fucking done.
It ain’t enchanted or gemmed yet, and he doesn’t have a Key to run the Trove for Elder Charms, but I’m sure that will be taken care of by this weekend, and the next time he wants to run something, the option will be to run Mogu’shan Vaults LFR with my Warlock along for the ride.
I could almost thank that pug tank from my first run. If he hadn’t shown just how MISERABLE a heroic run could be with an asshat in the group, I wouldn’t have been so inspired to just cut bait and get it done.
Almost. But, um, no. Fuck him.